THE 400th YEAR BIRTHDAY OF THE KING JAMES VERSION (or "Authorized Version") OF THE HOLY BIBLE
May 2, 2011 was the 400th year anniversary of the King James Version of the Bible. This is probably the most influential book in the English language. It has endured and it is still a very popular and beloved version of the Bible.
To learn more I would like to recommend a couple of good resources: A Visual History of the King James Version and A Visual History of the English Bible by Donald J. Brake.
In the "Translators to the Readers" (the seldom reproduced introduction to the King James Bible), the translators did claim to have consulted the Syrian version of the Bible, although they translated from the Greek. By the Syrian version they meant the Aramaic Bible. This is the Aramaic version of the Bible that was made by the Assyrians. It is called the Syriac Peshitta. The Syriac Peshitta, the Latin Vulgate and most "official" translations of the Bible, are from the same manuscript family, the "Byzantine" text, which is also known as the Majority Text, the Received Text and the Antiochian Text.
THE 39th Year Birthday of Stephen
At the end of May I turn thirty-nine. It is a time to reflect upon my accomplishments and my lack of accomplishments. It is pretty depressing, especially since I have recently lost my closest friend.
OSAMA BEN LADEN DEAD
Now, it is the time for my observations about Osama Ben Ladin and his death.
- I remember talking to a friend of mine in the military in 2010. He heard that Osama was already dead, that he had to have dialysis and died during the invasion of Afghanistan or soon afterwards. I said no, the man is very much alive. I told my friend that, the "Northern Alliance," our allies in the invasion of Afghanistan, smuggled him out to the mountainous border between Afghanistan and Pakistan. We would have gotten Osama during the invasion of Afghanistan if we had our troops on the ground. We will have to get Osama ourselves. No Muslim government is going to assist us in capturing Ben Laden. If we try to use Muslim assistance they will tip him off and help us to escape from us. (Why? Because to them he is like the Pope. If, for some reason, the Pope was a wanted man, no devout Catholic would give up the Pope. ) By 2008 or so, he was staying in a house or mansion of some sort, I assumed (incorrectly) that this residence was in the wild tribal "no-man's land" of Pakistan's western frontier. I gleaned this information by paying attention to the news.
- I have been telling people that Pakistan and Saudi Arabia ARE Al Qaida. This killing of Ben Laden proves it. (I discuss this in my book "The Hammer of God.")
Now, here is what happened. Obviously, Mr. Ben Ladin was a guest of the government of Pakistan. He was 30 minutes away from the capital (Islamabad) and he was living in a military town and was surrounded by several regiments of the Pakistani military. (Britain was foolish to create Pakistan. Now, we have to live with the consequences-many people will probably die as a consequence. Pakistan was a part of India-we should not have allowed the Muslims to carve off their own state. Isn't it interesting how the Muslims always want to carve off their own state-because they are "unique" and "distinct." If its Pakistan of Bosnia or Kosovo-its always the same story and its really all about global conquest. Gandhi was weak. He should have resisted all efforts by the Muslims to partition India.)
The government of Pakistan obviously built him this huge palace compound where he has been living for the past five years. Musharraf, the former Prime Minister of Pakistan, who was the PM for most of the Bush administration and our supposed "allie" was outraged by the raid and the killing of Osama. Pakistan is an enemy of the United States-and all mankind really. The most radical Muslims in the world are Pakistanis and Saudis. The Death of Osama is a time for rejoicing. Justice has been served. I would have preferred that Osama was captured and stood trial. I would like to have seen him declared guilty and executed. However, we have a weak, pro-Muslim president right now-so with the present circumstance it is better that he was killed. Barak Obama is a Muslim. Lets go back to the "Osama is on dialysis" thing. Where did this lie come from? Many Muslims are proud of Mr. Bin Ladin and support him. However, because of the strong reaction of Mr. Bush, he became a liability to the Muslim community. Muslim apologists want him to disappear and to direct all outrage at the 9-11 attacks away from Islam and onto Bin Ladin-who, they claimed wasn't a true Muslim. This is all propaganda. Why would Obama kill Osama, his Muslim brother? Because it is politically advantageous. Mr. Obama's poll numbers are declining. He is unelectable. The economy is going south, gas prices are going up and he seems uncaring and out of touch. Many people voted for him thinking (against the clear facts) that he was a moderate. It turns out that Obama is a far left extremist. People were surprised to find that he is a far left wild-eyed fanatic and a zealot-so they are not going to vote for him again. Mr. Obama is hoping for a boost in his popularity so that he can coast into a second term. Mr. Obama knew about Osama's palace compound at least since August 2010-if not earlier. When I learned he was dead, I wondered about what to do with his body. I thought burial at sea would be a good solution-which, as it turned out, is what they did. I think that the body needed to be displayed. Obama does what he thinks is in the best interests of Islam-so I don't trust him to release the photos. I think they need to be released. Obama made sure that Osama, his Muslim brother, received a proper Muslim funeral. I am against this. He was given an almost hour long funeral service. I think that is an outrage.
WHAT IMPORTANT THINGS DO WE LEARN FROM THIS?
- Radical Islam remains a very serious threat. Mr. Bin Ladin was merely a financer and figurehead of Al Qaida. The real mastermind is an Egyptian doctor named Dr. Zawahiri. We must capture or kill the Egyptian doctor. People are going to have a false sense of security now that Osama is dead and will be surprised by the next attack-which will come.
- Someone will take Osama's place. First, the Shiite Ayatolla Khomeni was the face of radical Islam. After his death, the Sunni Osama Bin Ladin became the face of radical Islam. Someone else will emerge.
- This is a major victory-even if it is in some ways a symbolic victory. Symbolic victories are important too.
- I think about the years of my life I spent serving in war in Iraq. I think about all of our American heroes who died in Iraq and Afghanistan. Ten years of hard work, sacrifices and loss of over 3,000 brave warriors on the field of battle and we finally killed the bastard. This is good. Muslims think long term. So should we.
- Remember October 31, 2010. 78 Assyrian Christians slaughtered in church. Then there were massacres of Coptic Christians in Egypt. THE WAR GOES ON. We need to have a vision for victory. I have what I believe is a key for victory-the four principles of Moderate Islam. (They are: Muslims must renounce a. legislating Sharia law b. all violent jihad-anywhere and everywhere AND c. non-Muslim minorities in Islamic countries must have equal rights with Muslims and d. all Muslims everywhere have the right to leave Islam-if they so choose.) If we insist on these principles we can by implementing them globally, destroy Islamic extremism.
Certain odd things: they now say Mr. Bin Ladin was unarmed. Obviously, he felt secure, being surrounded by several regiments of the Pakistani military protecting him. Not that it matters to me-but this was an assassination mission. Also, we set the facility on fire. Shouldn't we have gone through it like CSI to see what sort of intelligence we could gather? (They say the CIA did seize several computers from the compound.) We wanted to shut Osama up. Having lived in the Middle East and having read Osama's speeches, I have to say that Osama knew the Arab and Muslim people very well-he knew exactly how to talk to them and what buttons to push. I guarantee you that his words do carry a lot of weight. (Why wasn't Bush able to get him? I read of a book entitled "Shadow Warriors" about Clinton appointed Democrats in the CIA. They obstructed Bush's efforts to capture Bin Ladin. They weren't going to allow Bush to get any political capital out of the war or out of capturing Osama if they could help it. Interestingly, the movie "The Green Zone" does portray such a person-but in that movie they attempt to portray him in a positive light.) One thing I am glad about this is how that Pakistan has been exposed for supporting Obama. Now it is obvious to the American people that Pakistan is the problem. Bill O'Reilly gave excellent analysis the day after the killing.
Bashir Assad relaxed the "state of emergency" laws in Syria. After doing this he began slaughtering hundreds of Syrians in the street. The man is very predictable-as is the Media. "Middle Eastern Experts" say we need dictators so that we can maintain "stability" in the region. This is stability? Most of these experts are on the payrolls of these Middle Eastern regimes. They are their PR men. Obama's policy is very odd. It almost seems that he has a pro-Iranian foreign policy. (Not pro-Iranian but pro-Mullah regime of Iran.) We attack Libya but we are not going to do anything to support the pro-democracy movement in Syria, which is an Iranian satellite. We support demonstrations in Egypt and Libya but not Iran or Syria. That is very interesting.
I went to a ministerial prayer meeting. One pastor spoke up rebuking people in his church for celebrating the death of Obama. Rejoicing over the death of a person isn't Christian, so he said. Excuse me, I said, I have spent years of my life on a battle field. I have seen soldiers with horrific injuries, terrible burn injuries, lost limbs, ect. I have seen families trying to deal with trying to piece back together a life with the surviving remains of their husband, sons, and fathers. (I saw a very pregnant woman in a military hospital with a child in stroller spoon feeding her husband, who was in a wheelchair and was missing both legs and one arm and was wearing a neck brace.) 3,000 Americans were murdered by Osama on 911. Over 3,000 military men and women have died in his pursuit-it has taken 10 years to bring that man to justice. And it is an occasion worth celebrating. I don't know why people think that being a passive wimp is "Christian." (Being a gutless coward is not Christian.) If I had the opportunity, I would have shot Osama in the face myself. And I know that doing so would be the Christian thing to do.