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Today is GOOD FRIDAY.

The world will always choose Barabbas over Jesus.

“BAR” is the Aramaic word for “SON.”

“ABBA” means “Father.”

Barabbas was a murderer.

The world will always choose the son of the father (“Barabbas”) who is a murderer over the son of the father who raises the dead to life.

The story of humanity is the story of murder justified.

A people come into a new land, seize it by force, eliminate, enslave, exterminate the original inhabitants after which they enact laws to protect the property rights of the murders and thieves.

To pretend otherwise is self deception.

Our only hope for survival is that the murderers and thieves in charge of our society are strong enough to ward of the encroaching murderers and thieves.

Unfortunately (or fortunately depending on our perspective) no government in this world is strong enough to do that for more than a few seconds in the eye of eternity.

Eventually all Romes are brought down not so much from the external powers that threaten them but by the internal forces of age and corruption which destroy all of us.

Attila arrives at the gates of Rome demanding everything the city’s once proud inhabitants possess. When they ask what consenting to his demands will leave them with Attila replies, “Your lives.”

We grow up believing in the system under which we are governed.

It is only when we experience first hand the failure of our government which we have been told will protect us to do just that that we begin to realize we are not governed at all. We are controlled just as cattle in a field are controlled, we are protected as cattle are protected but the end result of this control and protection leads to the same end for us as it does for the cattle. That end is the slaughterhouse.

That is what Good Friday is about.

Good Friday is about justified murder by the state.

Good Friday, however, is also about something else.

It is about the fact that the man historically murdered on this day went to his murder as a cow goes to the slaughterhouse.

He did not easily do this.

The historical record tells us that man sweat blood while he awaited the forces that were coming to execute him.

That sweating of blood is called hematidrosis. It is most commonly found in people on death row awaiting execution:   https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hematidrosis   .

That man believed with all his being (and stated publicly before the event) that while this world would do all it could to destroy the temple of his body nonetheless he would demonstrate that the governments of this world have no power. That man stated publicly that on the third day after his body lay in the tomb to which it would be deposited that body would rise from the grave demonstrating once and forever that the governments of this world have no power.

They do not.

There are those and their number is legion who think that following that man who has led the way for us means turning our back on those who do not think as we think.

Of course, nothing is farther from the truth. As Peter, stated, “THE LORD has taught me not to call any man common or  unclean,” after receiving three times in a vision the meats of the world which after being told to take and eat Peter replied, “My lips have never touched anything common or unclean,” to which statement Peter was three times told, “How can you call anything the father created common or unclean.”

Despite that there are legions who say they believe in the dirt poor carpenter from buttfuck Galilee whose murder we today remember who call those who do not share their “belief” common and unclean.

These legions include the baker who will not bake a wedding cake for two men about to wed each other. They include all who turn their back daily on the hungry, the thirsty, the homeless, the naked, the stranger, the sick, the prisoners.

That includes those who would build walls to keep out the riffraff.

Our jails testify to how little we understand The Sermon From The Mount. We prefer as a society the poison the Code of Hammurabi and The Old Testament Laws.

Still, that is not my concern.

My concern is with what I do for that is all that I can myself control.

I moved into the house in which I now live in 1990. Over the years many have come to my door who were hungry, thirsty, homeless, naked, sick, just out of jail, the stranger. Where I could (and that was often) I welcomed them in. I still do.

There are those who turn their back on that carpenter.

Their, number, too is legion.

Who better than a carpenter to build a house for God?

On the same day of the same year the two strongest voices, Paul and Peter, which testified that that man did in fact rise in the flesh from the grave were sent to their deaths.

Being a Roman citizen Paul could not be crucified. Paul was beheaded.

Peter was taken to a hill outside Rome. There we are told Peter said, “I don’t deserve to be crucified right side up. Please crucify me upside down.”

Peter took longer to leave this world than did either Jesus or Paul.

There are those who say they can not accept Jesus as the anointed, the Christ, the messiah.

That’s fine. Clearly, they are not meant to.

Nonetheless, I do not only accept Jesus as the Christ I know Jesus is the Christ.

How can I say I know this?

I know it because I have spent my life living the life we are called in Jesus to live.

Not perfectly by any means.

I have stumbled. I am grateful for my stumbles. It appears to me that those folk who think they have never stumbled have fallen farther than they realize.

By that I mean those quick to condemn, quick to damn, quick to judge.

They are not my concern.

My concern is solely with myself.

I have a cat living with me. Actually, I have five cats. I have had many cats and a few dogs living with me.

But the cat I am speaking of is Zorro. Zorro came to me angry, hurt and unhappy. He was very unhappy. So unhappy that he bit me three times. My hand puffed up from his bite. I had to get medication.

The third time Zorro bit me I said to him softly, “You know, it’s okay.”

That caused a complete change of heart for the better (the true meaning of the word translated as “repent” which is way too harsh a word for the idea expressed).

Now Zorro is happy. He spends every moment he can as near me as possible.

I did have a problem with him wetting my bed. I bought shower curtains. The bed wetting, God’s grace, seems to have stopped.

Each of us who is honest with themselves knows how weak we are.

The forces that gather against us are so strong.

2 Corinthians 12:9 New International Version (NIV)

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=2+Corinthians+12%3A9&version=NIV

Yes, boast about your weakness as I boast about mine.

Let this world do its worst.

There are those and their number is legion who say that unless we give ourselves to Jesus we are damned.

After having received his vision of all the meats of the world Peter was invited to visit the home of a Gentile. This was completely forbidden for a Jew. Peter said, “The Lord has shown me not to call any man common or unclean.”

Peter went. Upon his arrival without his having said so much as one word the Holy Spirit fell upon all who were there. Peter then said, “I see the LORD is not a respecter of persons but in all lands those who love God and do good are loved by God.”

No, we do not have to accept Jesus to be saved.

On Sunday at 2pm I will be showing an amazing documentary film called THE FABRIC OF TIME. You don’t have to come here to see it. You can see it here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I2U-79_gNLE .

The best person is listen to about The Shroud Of Turin is the man from whom I acquired it, Barrie Schwortz. You don’t have to come here to hear Barrie. Yiu can do that here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yzg2lLOxsCY .

If you decide to come here to see it you can meet Zorro. That you can’t do on the web.

We are here not be changed for the worst by this world but to change this world for the better by the power of our lives.

This the best men and women throughout time have always done.

It is strange that while they walked the earth the best were all too often despised.

As well, you can see here my full sized authorized replica of The Shroud of Turin. Again, you don’t have to come here to see that. You can do that from where you now sit: https://www.shroud.com/   .

On the feet of the man whose image the Shroud bears was found dirt from the streets of Jerusalem. Also on the knee where he fell.

I can think of no reason for you to have to come here except one. That one reason is that I enjoy meeting the people who come though my door. That is why I have fought so hard to keep it open.

Some, Jehovah’s Witnesses for one, Greta Vosper for another, The United Church Of Canada for yet another celebrate the death of Jesus. They teach that Jesus did not rise from the grave in his body on the 3rd day.

They teach that Paul, Peter, Mark, Matthew, Luke and John lie in their testimony that Jesus did just that.

Add Reg Hartt to that list. I teach the same thing. I teach it because I know it.

Daily for almost twenty years when I go out around Toronto posting flyers for my programs I return home to find they have been torn down, torn up, tossed in the trash.

Does that matter?

No, what matters is that for a few moments they were visible.

In the eternity which is time our lives reflect but the briefest moment.

Like my flyers we too are bought down, discarded, forgotten.

That does not matter.

What matters is that for the briefest of moments we are here.

In that brief moment we, like my flyers, can be seen.

I look forward to meeting you.

2pm Tuesday, April  16, 23, and 3o I am offering the 1926 MGM film of THE SCARLET LETTER starring Lillian Gish.

People who do not know the work of this fine, strong woman say her name should be removed from the theater that bears it:  https://www.toledoblade.com/local/education/2019/02/28/bgsu-lillian-gish-theater-black-student-union-rename-birth-nation-film/stories/20190228155    .

Lillian Gish, like Jesus, grew up dirt poor.

Every church group in America was against the filming of THE SCARLET LETTER. She stood up against that power. The film was made.

Today we no longer make women bear a scarlet A.

Eleanor Roosevelt said, “Great minds discuss ideas. Average minds discuss events. Small minds discuss people.”

Small minds gossip.

Our media is about gossip.

Our media makes certain that our stumbles are kept large in the public eye.

THE SCARLET LETTER is today more timely than ever.

Lillian Gish was and remains a great human being.

The great are always despised by the small.

That is why Socrates was placed on trial in Athens.

Good Friday is the day we remember that the small always seek to murder the great.

Let them. The great are stronger than death.

–Reg Hartt 4/12/2019.

 

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