Tuesday, January 21, 2014

The Higher Man

"The Hebrew name for Altar is explained as signifying, "It wipes away sin; it nourishes the higher man; it fosters love for God; and it atones for all guilt" (Ket. 10b): its four letters (initials of meḦilah, zekut, berakah, Ḧayyim), point to Forgiveness, Justification, Blessing, and Life (Tan., Terumah, 10). It was considered a miracle and a proof of the manifestation of the Shekinah that the continual fire upon the Altar did not destroy the copper with which the stones were overlaid (Lev. R. vii.; Tan., Terumah, 11)."

Jewish Encyclopedia of 1906

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Saturday, January 18, 2014

Altar of Whole Stones

"Thou shalt build the altar of the Lord thy God of whole stones: and thou shalt offer burnt offerings thereon unto the Lord thy God:"

Deuteronomy 27:6

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Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Altar of Stone

"The Altar is the means of establishing peace between the people of Israel and their Father in heaven; therefore, iron, which is used as an instrument of murder, should not be swung over it. What a guaranty for those that endeavor to establish peace between man and man, and between nations and nations, that no evil shall befall them!" said Johanan ben Zakkai (Mek., Yithro, 11; Tosef., B. Ḳ. vii. 6). And in the same spirit he said: "If the altar of the Lord must be built of whole stones (according to Deut. xxvii. 6), all the more should the men that perform the peaceful work of divine instruction be whole-souled and peaceful" (ib. 7). In a similar strain: "If the very stones of the altar are to be treated with respect and with decorum, how much more living man!" (Mek. l.c., end).

Jewish Encylopedia of 1906

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Saturday, January 4, 2014

And are built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone; In whom all the building fitly framed together groweth unto an holy temple in the Lord: In whom ye also are builded together for an habitation of God through the Spirit."

Ephesians 2:20-22

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Wednesday, January 1, 2014

True Nobility

"No deiform soul is in its essence of greater value than any other deiform soul. For when God in His supernal goodness creates each soul in His own image, He brings it into being endowed with self-determination. By exercising this freedom of choice each soul either reaffirms its true nobility or through its actions deliberately embraces what is ignoble."

Maximos the Confessor

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