Friday, July 29, 2005

Micaiah's vision

This is what Micaiah said to Ahab (once Ahab had agreed to summon him):

I saw the LORD sitting on his throne with all the host of heaven standing on his right and on his left. And the LORD said, 'Who will entice Ahab king of Israel into attacking Ramoth Gilead and going to his death there?'
One suggested this, and another that. Finally, a spirit came forward, stood before the LORD and said, 'I will entice him.'
'By what means?' the LORD asked.

'I will go and be a lying spirit in the mouths of all his prophets,' he said.
'You will succeed in enticing him,' said the LORD. 'Go and do it.'

So now the LORD has put a lying spirit in the mouths of these prophets of yours. The LORD has decreed disaster for you.
Micaiah, 2 Chronicles 18:18-22
I don't get it. It seems to be saying, pretty blatantly, that YHWH was behind the deception of the prophets. Also, since he was trying to trick Ahab into attacking Ramoth Gilead, why did he let Micaiah know what was really going on? I suppose he knew that Ahab hated Micaiah, and wouldn't want to listen to him, but I'm still confused.

Ahab chucks a tantrum

The king of Israel answered Jehoshaphat, 'There is still one man through whom we can inquire of the LORD, but I hate him because he never prophesies anything good about me, but always bad. He is Micaiah son of Imlah.'
'The king should not say that,' Jehoshaphat replied.
(2 Chronicles 18:7)
That just cracks me up.

Thursday, July 28, 2005


The priests and Levites from all their districts throughout Israel sided with him [King Rehoboam]. The Levites even abandoned their pasturelands and property, and came to Judah and Jerusalem because Jeroboam and his sons had rejected them as priests of the LORD. And he appointed his own priests for the high places and for the goat and calf idols he had made. Those from every tribe of Israel who set their hearts on seeking the LORD, the God of Israel, followed the Levites to Jerusalem to offer sacrifices to the LORD, the God of their fathers. They strengthened the kingdom of Judah and supported Rehoboam son of Solomon three years, walking in the ways of David and Solomon during this time. (2 Chronicles 11:13-17)
Reminds me of Christian Exodus: offers the opportunity to try a strategy not yet employed by Bible-believing Christians. Rather than spend resources in continued efforts to redirect the entire nation, we will redeem States one at a time. Millions of Christian conservatives are geographically spread out and diluted at the national level. Therefore, we must concentrate our numbers in a geographical region with a sovereign government we can influence through the electoral process.


A couple of days ago I read 2 Chronicles 10, which is about Israel's rebellion against King Rehoboam. The people had asked him to reduce the heavy taxes Solomon had introduced. However, Rehoboam said,

My father made your yoke heavy; I will make it even heavier. My father scourged you with whips; I will scourge you with scorpions. (2 Chronicles 10:14)
It seems kind of like he's treating them just like their ancestors were treated in Egypt, when they were slaves:
Afterwards Moses and Aaron went to Pharaoh and said, 'This is what the LORD, the God of Israel, says: "Let my people go, so that they may hold a festival to me in the desert."' (Exodus 5:1)

That same day Pharaoh gave this order to the slave drivers and foremen in charge of the people: 'You are no longer to supply the people with straw for making bricks; let them go and gather their own straw. But require them to make the same number of bricks as before; don't reduce the quota. They are lazy; that is why they are crying out, "Let us go and sacrifice to our God." Make the work harder for the men so that they keep working and pay no attention to lies.' (Exodus 5:6-9)
Because Rohoboam wouldn't reduce the taxes, all the tribes of Israel, except for Judah, rebelled against Rehoboam, and made Jeroboam their king.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005


From Google Earth.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Solomon's request for wisdom

Last night I started reading 2 Chronicles.
What stood out to me in the first chapter was that YHWH was pleased with King Solomon's request for wisdom because he wanted it in order to serve his people well, not so he could become rich and famous or whatever.

God said to Solomon, "Since this is your heart's desire and you have not asked for wealth, riches or honor, nor for the death of your enemies, and since you have not asked for a long life but for wisdom and knowledge to govern my people over whom I have made you king, therefore wisdom and knowledge will be given you. (2 Chronicles 1:11-12)
Previously I'd gotten the impression that Solomon had had asked for the right thing, but now it seems more like he had the right motive.

Friday, July 22, 2005

King David and the Temple (part 2)

David said to Solomon: 'My son, I had it in my heart to build a house for the Name of the LORD my God. But this word of the LORD came to me: "You have shed much blood and have fought many wars. You are not to build a house for my Name, because you have shed much blood on the earth in my sight. But you will have a son who will be a man of peace and rest, and I will give him rest from all his enemies on every side. His name will be Solomon, and I will grant Israel peace and quiet during his reign. He is the one who will build a house for my Name. He will be my son, and I will be his father. And I will establish the throne of his kingdom over Israel forever."' (1 Chronicles 22:7-10)
When I was down in Warrnambool last month, some guys from one of the churches there invited me round to their place to eat pizza and watch this film about King David.
When it got to this bit, at first I thought it was a bit harsh on David, considering that YHWH aided him in battle (1 Chronicles 11:14, 14:10, 18:6, 18:13).
I have a feeling now that YHWH might not have been punishing David, as such, but that maybe David just wasn't the right person to build the Temple, same as a chainsaw isn't the right tool for banging in a nail.

King David and the Temple

I've been reading 1 Chronicles. Almost finished it.

This afternoon I was surprised to read that Nathan originally told King David that he should go ahead and build YHWH a temple, before God told him that he didn't want David to build it (17:1-6). I think Nathan would have had to be pretty humble to go back to David the next day and admit he'd been wrong.

When YHWH says:

'I have not dwelt in a house from the day I brought Israel up out of Egypt to this day. I have moved from one tent site to another, from one dwelling place to another. Wherever I have moved with all the Israelites, did I ever say to any of their leaders whom I commanded to shepherd my people, "Why have you not built me a house of cedar?"' (17:5-6)
it seems to me as though he is suggesting that he is a wild deity, and that David is (conscuiously or unconsciously) trying to contain or domesticate him.

This reminds me of one of Pro Hart's paintings, which we saw at his gallery in Broken Hill:

It's called The Search for God. I'm finding it hard to put into words why I've been reminded of this painting though.
Any ideas?

Wednesday, July 20, 2005


Picture: Return of the King

One word Paul uses to describe the fruit of the Holy Spirit is 'joy'.
One of the Hebrew words that we translate into 'joy' is 'teruwah', which is a battlecry. It's used to describe the sense of jubilation in battle:

When they make a long blast with the ram's horn and you hear the sound of the trumpet, all the people shall shout with a great shout [teruwah]; and the wall of the enclosure shall fall down in its place and the people shall go up [over it], every man straight before him.
Joshua 6:5
So the people shouted, and the trumpets were blown. When the people heard the sound of the trumpet, they raised a great shout [teruwah], and [Jericho's] wall fell down in its place, so that the [Israelites] went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.
Joshua 6:20
Upon what were the foundations of it fastened, or who laid its cornerstone,
When the morning stars sang together and all the sons of God shouted for joy [teruwah]?
Job 38:6-7
And when the ark of the covenant of the Lord came into the camp, all Israel shouted with a great shout [teruwah], so that the earth resounded.
And when the Philistines heard the noise of the shout, they said, What does this great shout [teruwah] in the camp of the Hebrews mean? When they understood that the ark of the Lord had come into the camp,
The Philistines were afraid, for they said, God has come into the camp. And they said, Woe to us! For such a thing has not happened before.
1 Samuel 4:5-7
And now shall my head be lifted up above my enemies round about me; in His tent I will offer sacrifices and shouting of joy [teruwah]; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord.
Psalm 27:6
I realised that I've been getting sick of the spiritual battle (parituclarly against my own sexual lust) and fed up with it. Need to get back into fighting joyfully.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Broken Hill photos

These are some photos Tab and Em took. (Haven't got mine developed yet.)

This is one of the exploded tires.

This is my Best Soft Feather Heavy Breed ribbon.

This is Peter Browne's gallery, in Silverton. Silverton is a ghost town. They've shot a lot of films (Mad Max 2, Town Like Alice, Priscilla Queen of the Desert, Dirty Deeds) and ads there. It rained a lot when we were there.

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Op shopping and desert wandering

Almost everyone has gone back to Canberra or Strathalbyn or Sydney or wherever now. We're going back to Ballarat tomorrow.
This morning we went op shopping. I got two shirts, some grandpa shoes and four Everworld books for under $10.
This morning I've just been walking around in the desert taking photos (the sun's come out a lot more today).

Wednesday, July 13, 2005

Pro Hart's gallery

Apparently Broken Hill has about twenty four art galleries. Some of us went and visited four of them yesterday.

The best was Pro Hart's gallery. He has the largest private collection in Australia, including a lot of his own work, as well as some stuff by Salvador DalĂ­, Claude Monet and George Gittoes (my favorite Australian artist).
Pro Hart also has a sculpture park across the road from the gallery, which backs onto an old picture framing shop, where Adam (fine art student from Canberra) found a huge, gold frame, which he now has to try and get home somehow.

Pro Hart's Miner's Cricket Match

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Broken Hill Poultry & Pigeon Club

I forgot to mention last night that I won the Broken Hill Poultry & Pigeon Club 2005 Best Soft Feather Heavy Breed award.


Two of the tires (front right and back left) on Matt's car blew up between Avoca and St Arnaud (very early in our trip) at the same time. The RACV towed us into St Arnaud though, and we got them fixed up there. Blog more when we get back.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

Broken Hill

Me, John, Kelly and Em are leaving for Broken Hill at 6am Sunday, so I probably still won't be posting much for ages. We're visiting Tab and taking part in Discovery Week (which is to do with the fruits of the Holy Spirit) at Cornerstone.
Haven't been to Broken Hill before. I've been told it's in the desert and there are a lot of artists, so that sounds good. Apparently someone from Broken Hill won Big Brother last year, but I'm sure it can't be too bad.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Book meme

Kitty tagged me for this meme yesterday.

Total books owned, ever:
Don't know. Probably about six-hundred. I just counted that I have eight-two at my parents house, and I've probably got about twice that at my house. Maybe I'll count them when I get back.

Last book I bought:

Last book I read:

Five Books that mean a lot to me:

Now I'm tagging Adam, Anthony, Susan and Ted.

Friday, July 01, 2005

God changes his mind?

Here's an example of on of the many things I don't understand:

In those days Hezekiah became ill and was at the point of death. The prophet Isaiah son of Amoz went to him and said, "This is what the LORD says: Put your house in order, because you are going to die; you will not recover."

Hezekiah turned his face to the wall and prayed to the LORD, "Remember, O LORD, how I have walked before you faithfully and with wholehearted devotion and have done what is good in your eyes." And Hezekiah wept bitterly.

Before Isaiah had left the middle court, the word of the LORD came to him: "Go back and tell Hezekiah, the leader of my people, 'This is what the LORD, the God of your father David, says: I have heard your prayer and seen your tears; I will heal you. On the third day from now you will go up to the temple of the LORD. I will add fifteen years to your life. And I will deliver you and this city from the hand of the king of Assyria. I will defend this city for my sake and for the sake of my servant David.' "
2 Kings 20:1-6
If God doesn't change, then why does he change his mind? Why would God chnage things because of people praying?
Maybe he intended to change his mind all along once Hezekiah had humbled himself. But if YHWH was intending to heal him all along he would have been lying to say that Hezekiah wouldn't get better.
Another idea that came to mind is, maybe God really did intend to let Hezekaih die, but was emotionally moved by Hezekiah's misery, to the point that he was willing to change his plans, even though he was in the place of authority.


Why does this have to happen? It's the last day that I can hand in my last essay and the computers aren't working, so I can't access my essay to finish it and even if I could, I can't print it.