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Posts Tagged ‘Book of Revelation’

Sign of the Cross: Biblical Roots

Everything you want to know in life is in the Bible.  As having my Christian roots in Catholicism, I did not know the Sign of the Cross was referenced in the Bible.  Yes, I still bow my head when the name of Jesus is said.  I never take Holy Communion in my hand.  I am old school. But I never learned the Bible in nine years of Catholic School.  Not until I went to a Baptist women Bible Study did I understand what the Bible means. Wow, I am just learning after 6 decades of life.

Christian Bible Studies

Pray continually, Paul urged the Thessalonians. The early church fathers took this one step further: continually make the sign of the cross.

“In all our travels and movements, in all our coming in and going out, in putting on our shoes, at the bath, at the table, in lighting our candles, in lying down, in sitting down, whatever employment occupies us, we mark our foreheads with the sign of the cross,” wrote Tertullian at the turn of the third century, A.D. In the fourth century, St. John Chrysostom (apparently anticipating an American Express slogan) wrote, “never leave home without making the sign of the cross.”

Andreopoulos and Ghezzi find in the sign of the cross a symbol of baptism, protection, profession of faith, defiance of the Devil, invocation of God’s power, solidarity with the church, and a rebuke of self-indulgence—to name a few.

The origins of the sign are unknown; as Andreopoulos points out: “our information is sparse because this ancient practice emerged naturally, as something that made sense to most Christians.” The earliest descriptions, such as Tertullian’s, indicate that the cross was made with one finger—probably the thumb—on the forehead in the shape of a Hebrew T or a Greek X, letters that stood for names of God and Christ. Presumably, early Christians were taking their cues from passages in Genesis 4:15, Ezekiel 9:4, and Revelation 14:1 and 22:4 that describe a mark on the forehead as a sign of God’s claim on a person.

“The spiritual weight of the sign has always been the same,” Andreopoulos writes. “In texts from Tertullian and Origen to Kosmas and Aitolos, it is a blessing, a prayer, a proclamation of the Christian identity, a living mystery, and an acceptance of the role that God has given us.”

“Whether I sign myself silently or with the invocation [of ‘in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit’],” writes Ghezzi, “it helps me to look beyond the mundane things I have to do every day … and focus on God and on the greater part of reality, the part that is spiritual and invisible.”

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Pope Francis meeting the grand imam of Cairo’s Al-Azhar Mosque, Vatican.

Highest authority in Sunni Islam is imam Ahmed al Tayyeb but Islamic extremist are committing Christian genocide all over the World.  Why is Pope Francis embracing and praising Islam? I find this meeting very disturbing.

Matthew 24:7-8

For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are but the beginning of the birth pains.

Revelation 13:12

12 It exercises all the authority of the first beast in its presence, and makes the earth and its inhabitants worship the first beast, whose mortal wound was healed.

Revelation 13:1-10, Revelation 13:11-18

 

 

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Saint Michael, the Archangel, Protect Us.

Daniel 12:1 ESV

“At that time shall arise Michael, the great prince who has charge of your people. And there shall be a time of trouble, such as never has been since there was a nation till that time. But at that time your people shall be delivered, everyone whose name shall be found written in the book.

Jude 1:9 ESV

But when the archangel Michael, contending with the devil, was disputing about the body of Moses, he did not presume to pronounce a blasphemous judgment, but said, “The Lord rebuke you.”

Revelation 12:7 ESV

Now war arose in heaven, Michael and his angels fighting against the dragon. And the dragon and his angels fought back,

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James 1:12-13

12 Blessed is the man who perseveres under trial because when he has stood the test, he will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him   When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone;

Revelation 2:10

10 Do not be afraid of what you are about to suffer. I tell you, the devil will put some of you in prison to test you, and you will suffer persecution for ten days. Be faithful, even to the point of death, and I will give you life as your victor’s crown.

Each sin has its door of entrance

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