Collected Works


"Through these fields of destruction, baptisms of fire, I've witnessed your suffering as the battle raged higher. Though they did hurt me so bad: In the fear and alarm, you did not desert me, my brothers in arms."


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Sitting on the Promises


It's funny about blogging. I struggle to fit myself into a "clique" of political thought, religious thought or philosophy. I know I'm not writing about fishing, but what if I want to discuss Donovan McNabb's horrible Superbowl performance? Does that disqualify me from having an opinion on the Maitreya as UN guru? My cousin Rob and I recently took some "political compass" tests: I landed dead-center on the first and hard Libertarian with the second.

I'm registered as a Libertarian. But I am totally committed to the idea of public schools. Let's face it, there is just no use fitting Americans into broad groups. We are really, really free people (praise God) and that means we are very, very distinct and unique from one another.

That reminds me to make my next essay about the virtues of the bi-cameral, US system of representative democracy and the parliamentary system used by the rest of the world. I have a lot to say about that. But...

..I want to talk about a rock in Scotland.

Yes, a rock in Scotland.

The stone in question is called "Jacob's Pillar", the "Liafail" and probably other things as well. For the last seven centuries or so, it has lived under the coronation chair of the English monarchs. Where did they get it? They took it from the Scottish monarchs when they conquered them. Okay, where did they get it? They got it from the Irish monarchs when they conquered them. Yes, I realize this is confusing. Why would you steal a rock from a country you conquered? Wouldn't you take the sheep and women and gold (maybe not in that order)? You would. And they did. But they also took the rock.

The movement for Scottish independence has really gained strength in the last decade, so much that the Scots demanded their rock be returned (I am not making this up). And England obliged, but with a proviso: When Prince Charles becomes King Charles (the Fourth? Tenth? No idea), England will get the rock back long enough to put it under the chair for the coronation. When that's over, they will give it back to Scotland.

Why all this fuss over a rock? The story goes like this:

Joseph, made famous by Andrew Lloyd Webber and also mentioned in the bible, is known for his "coat of many colors". If you follow his story, he ended up being the de facto ruler of Egypt, and he even imported his eleven brothers as his cabinet, despite their earlier decision to sell him as a slave. Well, Joseph was a big shot at this point, and he needed a big shot wife, so he married one of the Pharaoh's daughters, and she had twins. Now Pharoah's grandchildren were also Abraham's great-great-grandchildren. And they inherited "Jacob's Pillar", which they kept in Egypt.

A many centuries passed before Egypt enslaved the Hebrews. While the Hebrews were waiting for Moses to be born and give Cecil B. DeMille his moment of fame, some of the more adventurous sailed off and ended up settling in Greece, where their Egyptian educations apparently bought them a lot of respect.

A later Hebrew king from Greece returned to Egypt for a visit, just in time to befriend Moses, who had copied Joseph's earlier trick and become really important in Egyptian government. It was during this time that the Greek-Hebrew king was entrusted with protecting "Jacob's Pillar", the stone that Jacob slept on when he had a vision of angels on Heaven's escalator (also known as "Jacob's Ladder", but not to be confused with those two sparking, high-voltage wires you built in high school science class). He took "Jacob's Pillar" and sailed for Spain when Moses and Aaron turned God's plagues loose on Pharaoh.

Much later in Hebrew history, God promised their second king, David, that there would always be a throne for his kingdom. His kingdom was pretty big at that time, it basically included all the Middle East.

The bad news is that the kingdom was divided by his grandsons, and was eventually completely conquered and enslaved. The good news is that, at exactly the same time as the last Jewish king was wiped out, "Jacob's Pillar" was taken to Ireland from Spain (!). It was placed under the throne of the Irish kings who were descended from the Spanish Hebrews.

Kings and Queens have really gone out of style these days. There just aren't that many left. They're mostly ceremonial positions in any case. But in an odd twist, the monarchs of England have the title "Defenders of the Faith". Not the Jewish faith, of course, but they do have the religious authority in the UK (created when King Henry VIII ditched the Pope). And that authority has lasted for a very, very long time.

Look at modern politics. Despite being a democracy, modern Israel has only two real allies: the USA and the UK. Certainly the USA would be far better off, in terms of oil, to just jettison Israel. But we don't. And Blair is always in trouble for his support of the USA and Israel. Yet he keeps right on with it. It makes no Machiavellian sense, yet it continues.

Which countries put Israel back on the map after 1900 years? The USA and the UK. If you look over the documents of this more-recent process, you won't find any references to prophecies or promises or magic stones under thrones. Yet it all "worked out that way" just the same.

Now that's a keeping a promise. I'm not a British Israelite or a member of the Worldwide Church of God. Their "history" is fundamentally flawed. But I do know that God keeps His promises, and He uses some pretty unconventional techniques when it suits Him. You can decide for yourself, but it's the kind of incredible story that points to something bigger. A hidden director of history. I'll keep trusting the Director to look out for me the way He's preserved the throne of David's kingdom for all these centuries.

May God bless the United States of America,