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Offline LexBrand  
#1 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 10:03:34 AM(UTC)
LexBrand
Joined: 2/13/2013(UTC)
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Location: Bay Area CA

My christian family (Mom, sisters, brother, in-laws) already knows I am searching Scripture learning what Yahowah has to say but I guess I need to make a blanket announcement about not doing holidays and birthdays anymore. I was going to send out an email explaining why I made that decision. Could I post my draft here and run it by you all to get your suggestions?

I also have a few questions about Coming out of Babylon.

The research I did on the pagan origins of birthday celebrations mentioned the tradition of Saying Grace before meals. That this was apparently a pagan ritual asking the gods to bless the food as an offering or dedication of some sort. When my family gets together, they always say a prayer before meals, always to the "Lord", and ending with "in Jesus's name Amen". Now, maybe I'm being paranoid, but would eating food blessed and especially blessed in this manner be wrong? It kind of feels wrong!

What about invitations to weddings and funerals which take place in a church? I'm already disgusted by the church, but how do you handle these events? Maybe just attend the reception afterward?

I've never been comfortable singing church hymns but I've always enjoyed singing to my favorite classic rock songs, and I have lots of songs on my ipod. Does walking away from Babylon include shunning secular music? Interestingly, one of the few church songs I like is Amazing Grace. But now that I read the lyrics, I realize it's promoting false doctrine. Kind of like another beautiful song - "Imagine" by John Lennon. I can only conclude that the Adversary is a very talented songwriter.

OK, this next one is pretty out there. I know dogs are considered unclean animals, and no I would not eat dogs LOL, but I do have dogs in my home. I own a dog that I adore, and I babysit dogs from time to time. Any thoughts on that?

Hey, everyone said I could ask dumb questions! Laugh
Offline knowing1  
#2 Posted : Saturday, February 16, 2013 3:56:00 PM(UTC)
knowing1
Joined: 5/28/2010(UTC)
Posts: 166
Location: New Jersey

Hi LB!

I feel for you regarding the decisions to do what you must do to come into relationship with Yah. I am dealing with this myself, with my Jewish family and friends of all religious corruptions. I too enjoy listening to "secular" music, but it does not affect my relationship with our Creator. I have realized that Yah has given me the gifts to comprehend and appreciate the world around me, and this includes appreciating all type of "good" music.

As a person trained in the physical sciences and mathematics, I see it truly amazing how Yah's Universe functions, and can't even imagine what it took to create such awesomeness!

I am very uncomfortable when it comes to the usual celebrations of holidays, birthdays, weddings, etc. I try my best not to contribute to these celebrations and try not to go out of my way to celebrate these things. I just try to get through it. But it is comforting to know the truth of the origins of such pagan rituals. And take every opportunity to try to enlighten those around me when I can.

I see pets as just that. No more no less. Again do not get caught up in the nonsense of treating an animal like a human. However, we must still show compassion to Yah's creations and treat them as such. Agian, it's about knowing and understanding.

Keep at it LB...Remember, we all are struggling, striving and perservaring with Yah.

Only those who come to know Yah are truly blessed.

Offline dajstill  
#3 Posted : Sunday, February 17, 2013 2:08:51 AM(UTC)
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Hello LexBrand,

My biggest advice I can share is to breath, go slow, and focus on relationship with Yahowah first. For many of your questions, there may not be a "right" answer, but the answer that is best for you.

I can share some of the decisions my household has made. We don't do religious celebrations (Christmas, Easter, etc.), but we do celebrate the Feast. We do acknowledge and celebrate birthdays. The reason is because there had to be some acknowledge of birthday's from the beginning - since scripture tells us how many years Adam lived, Noah, etc. someone was keeping track in some way, so I have no issues with acknowledging each year Yah has blessed me, my husband, and my children with being here. We have parties, but we are known to have playdate parties for our kids for no reason at all, so it isn't an out of the ordinary thing. It would seem silly for me to tell them they can throw a party to enjoy a new tea set, but not throw a party for their birthday. I may feel differently a year from now, this is a journey and I am learning more along the way.

I haven't seen anything in the Torah that would indicate pets are not acceptable. As knowing1 pointed out, animals are animals and not people, but Yah has instructed us to treat animals humanely.

We don't do things that take place inside churches, so if someone is getting married in a church we wouldn't attend, but if someone was to get married on a beach - I am all there. My husband and I may renew our vows at some point, probably when we finally get back to the spot we married (a destination wedding at a wonderful resort).

So, while I am not a stickler for birthdays, I am a stickler for other things that my fellow brothers and sisters in Yah may not see as a big deal. For instance, I try to stay away from pagan symbols so much that I won't buy Starbucks coffee. But, that is "my" thing mainly because my kids are visual. We love music in our house and I am constantly finding old religious CD's I need to destroy because my kids like to sing them. But, we do enjoy what is considered "secular" music on a regular basis. As long as the music isn't glorifying that which is unwelcome in our home (unnecessary violence, adultery, idolatry, paganism, etc.) it is fair game for us to enjoy. The same goes for movies and television (surprisingly, it has been children's shows we have had to eliminate the most because of blatant paganism being passed on). So, we dumped satellite TV a while ago and go with streaming so we can choose what we watch, avoid commercials, and only have the television on when we are actively watching it.

I guess my point I am trying to make is that your journey won't look exactly like the next person. Diversity is a wonderful thing. I truly believe that while some things aren't on Yah's "well that is just wonderful kiddo" list, many things aren't relationship killers. Also, we didn't start to drop activities until we could communicate the "why" behind our decisions clearly, calmly, and effectively to our children and to others. We didn't want to shake off one religion of rules and regulations only to put ourselves into another. The more we focus on relationship, the more things seem to fall into place and not be the big deals to drop we thought they would.

Again, this is a journey and it takes time. You don't have to have it all right, right away. In fact, you don't ever have to get it all perfectly right. At least that is my opinion.
Offline tagim  
#4 Posted : Sunday, February 17, 2013 7:23:02 AM(UTC)
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Cool wonderful perspective, daj
Offline cgb2  
#5 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 7:41:14 AM(UTC)
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I wish I could go back and withold some I things I said to xtians before I understood the path. Majoring in what was wrong with xtianity, rather than presenting Yah's instruction regarding the path to him a simple as possible. I recall an incident where I was telling an xtian freind "the torah is so simple a child could understand it, but so rich one could spend a lifetime...", only to catch myself desparately hoping he wouldn't ask for the child version explanation. Blushing . Made me realize I better understand myself before I share any further.

On birthdays I can't find scriptural support, and like daj pointed out people were well aware of how old they were. Even Job specifically mentions "their day" regarding his offspring. However I do shun cake and especially candles and making wishes since that is pure babylon.

I probably would attend important weddings/funerals regardless of where held especially if relatives. In the case of marriage they are following portion of that torah, although I might get disgusted if a pastor read 1cor13 Paul's love chapter, that says love is never jealous, when Yah said on the 2 tablets he is jealous.

And I certainly see no prohibition against unclean animals as pets, for many had donkeys, camels, dogs, etc...just teaching about kind and humane treatment with them and giving work animals a sabbath rest too....and don't eat them, they are bad for you. BigGrin
Offline pilgrimhere  
#6 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 9:53:53 AM(UTC)
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Good stuff, all! Here’s just some more for you:
Birthdays are an occasion for us to celebrate a mile-marker for our kids. We enjoy giving them the individual attention once a year to feel like a princess. We do tend to do things unconventionally.

My wife and I were married outside fortunately. If I can help it, I would not bring my kids into any church building at any time for any reason. At the same time, I don’t figure Yah will hold wedding attendance against someone. My stomach just turns at the thought of going in there anymore.

Many of the melodies that still come to mind from day to day are xtian stuff. I’ve gone through and purged everything that mentions ‘jesus’ or is clearly of babel. The most difficult have been Rich Mullins and Keith Green (which you may not be familiar with). Some of their stuff is still in my music collection but nothing that’s cut and dry xianity. I enjoy my favorite classics and trim out the stuff that disturbs my spirit from any given artist/band. I pretty much determine what I listen to by the content of each song.

One of the four beagles we’ve had remains with us and will be in our home till she dies. We will not have another dog after that simply because we don’t want to abandon a good dog should Trumpets call. We may get a bird for our kids instead. When Nathan gave David a dressing down regarding the trouble he got himself into, he related the story to a man’s lamb that was like a pet. I figure that concept had to have been common to be comprehended. Otherwise David might have thought, “Why would anyone be so attached to some silly sheep?”

Even prior to making our way out of Babylon, we were repulsed by Disney. And sort of like dajstill, now we won’t even buy sea salt with some ocean goddess looking thing on the label. Just don’t want to see stuff like that in our home.

daj really hit the nail on the head with,
Quote:
The more we focus on relationship, the more things seem to fall into place and not be the big deals to drop we thought they would.
I figure the more you discover and begin to know and understand Yah, the more you will reflect those things He loves, hates and esteems in your own life.

I appreciate the energy you have brought to the forum. Do post your draft. I’m right in the heart of bringing all of this to the attention of my extended family as well and would love to see other’s approach.
Offline LexBrand  
#7 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 10:48:47 AM(UTC)
LexBrand
Joined: 2/13/2013(UTC)
Posts: 26
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Location: Bay Area CA

Well this is a long reply - sorry!

THANKS for sharing your personal thoughts and principals regarding my questions. I do realize that eveyone will come to their own understanding of what Yahowah says and how it applies to each one of us individually. I like that concept.

cgb2 I do feel completely inadequate in presenting my understanding of Yah's word to my family at this time, (although there are a few things of which I am absolutely certain), which is why I am holding back on "the announcement". But I will do it soon because many birthdays are coming up. I am completly comfortable with acknowledging someones birthday and being thankful they were born and of course keeping track of years is all over Scripture. So that part doesn't bother me.

dajstill, I love your thoughtful responses. I appreciate how everyone gave me a direct answer - it's extremely helpful. And yes, I will breathe and go slow. BigGrin

pilgirmhere It's funny that when I got married in 2009, I resisted getting married in a church (we married in a beautiful outdoor setting in a garden) and I wrote out exactly what I wanted the officiant to say, specifically excluding 1 Cor. 13 - that verse seemed so phony and overdone at weddings. Glad I did. That's interesting about Dowd and the pet lamb. Although a lamb is "clean", hmmm.

I feel like I always had a kind of radar concerning false doctrine. I may not have known exactly what bothered me about many aspects of religion, but a red flag went up quite often, keeping me from engaging. Ironically, my family considers me to be the last holdout. They had high hopes for me these past few months when I told them I was reading the "Bible". But, oh my, they will be so disappointed when they see the direction my reading has taken me - in the opposite direction of their "faith", but in the correct direction towards truth.

knowing1 I appreciate your perspective, and the fact that you are dealing with family and friends who are entrenched in their religion. My husband has always been derisive of religion. His favorite saying is "Show me the evidence!" With christianity, you are not supposed to have evidence - just faith. While he is not jumping on the Yah bandwagon with me (yet!), at least he is enjoying learning that the religious doctrines he's always despised are wrong, and his quest for proof is proper. He seems to get a kick out of me stirring up conflict with my discoveries. I also think it was a relief when I told him I didn't want to celebrate Valentines Day anymore - he was off the hook for flowers, candy, and remembering to make reservations for dinner! I was at Costco on valentines day and I actually started laughing out loud in the checkout line because everywhere I looked, was a single man with 1-2 bunches of roses, and nothing else, waiting for checkout. I actually felt superior. LOL

I think it's easier to be married to someone like my husband than to a person mired in their religion. So I'm thankful for that. I don't have children either. So it's just my extended family that I need to deal with. And a few friends that consider their birthday sacred.

And YEA for all the music and pet opinions. And don't worry, I don't dress my dog up in clothing! Laugh And pilgrimhere, you are right, I have zero knowledge of christian music - it always made me gag.

Thank you all for taking the time to reply. It's SO helpful.

So here's the draft of my announcement:

Hello everyone,

I am going to make an announcement that will undoubtedly shock you all. I can predict reactions ranging from anger, amusement, incredulousness, and much eye-rolling. Oh well, so be it.

Some of you already know I have been deep into researching the Scriptures for the last few months, trying to discover exactly what God says. The more I study, the more shocked I am at the difference between what I have been taught it says, and what it actually says. I mean, talk about opening up a can of worms. Studying the earliest manuscripts is eye-opening and revealing, due to the extensive copyediting and mistranslations that occurred in later copies. But that's another entire story for another discussion.

So I've now become convinced about a few things - even at this early point in my studies. And by the way, this is my opinion, not Cecil's.

The thing I need to announce to you all is that I have come to the conclusion that God wants all his family members (in Covenant) to walk away from political and religious idolatry, paganism, and deception. That's the first step, and the one I am currently studying/embarking upon.

Along those lines, my research has uncovered rather shocking pagan, god/idol-worshipping traditions that I've been practicing all these years out of ignorance of their origin. According to the Scriptures, this is an absolute NO-NO. It's something that will not be tolerated by God in members of his family in any way, shape or form.

So from now on, I will not be participating in the following traditions:

Christmas
Easter
New Years
St. Valentines Day (Cecil's off the hook...LOL)
St. Patrick's Day
Halloween
Probably some others I've not researched yet
Sunday as the Sabbath
And the one that will cause the biggest uproar: Birthdays

So everyone, here's the thing. I'm not trying to be a scrooge here but, this means I am no longer doing the whole giving birthday/christmas gifts and I won't be attending birthday parties and sending out birthday cards. It's fine for me to acknowledge the day you were born and be thankful you were born and keep track of how old you are, but doing the celebration thing is not something I can do anymore. Nothing personal - I'm not trying to be hurtful or mean.

I don't have any problem with giving gifts for other non-pagan occasions like graduations, weddings, etc. or upon getting a new career (Jonathan!), or if I see something I think you would like, there's no reason I can't just give a gift for the heck of it. But not for the above mentioned days.

If interested, click this link to read about the pagan origins of birthdays: http://www.yahweh.com/pdf/Booklet_Birthdays.pdf (I'm not 100% on board with a few things this report says, but the research into the pagan aspects of birthdays is very good.) Actually a simple Google search will give many hits about the pagan origins of all these traditions.

And I'm no longer going to say Happy Birthday or "God Bless You" when you sneeze LOL. (I don't believe an evil spirit enters you or your soul leaves you when you sneeze - the origin of saying God Bless you). God has already provided seven yearly feasts plus the weekly Sabbath (Friday night sundown to Saturday night sundown) for partying, feasting and having a great time, while getting to know Him better.

OK, you can commence the eye-rolling now!

Love, Annmarie
Offline knowing1  
#8 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 2:59:03 PM(UTC)
knowing1
Joined: 5/28/2010(UTC)
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You have a lot on your plate LB!

I would not make an announcement regarding your "walking away"! Just go about learning more everyday and jump the hurdles when you approach them (there are going to be a lot of hurdles!).

My wife would actually get offended when I first started NOT saying "god bless you" when, or anyone else for that matter, sneezed. But now, she got used to it. I approach most things this way now. Otherwise people think you are "preaching" and are attacking their belief systems, however irrational and unreasonable they may be!

Remember, the path is narrow and not popular...

Yah blesses those who trust in and rely upon Him.
Offline pilgrimhere  
#9 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 6:14:21 PM(UTC)
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I have to agree with knowigng1. After composing several 'explanations' over many months and passing some by my wife for review, I concluded that people generally don't want to hear that something they value is a lie, etc. The approach I settled on was to ask questions for them to consider. Instead of, "I'm doing this because ..." I will ask, "why don't you do this?" Eventually, the questions will center on where the information that forms xtian faith has come from. Many people will not listen to reason if they cannot think outside their religeous paradigm. I have heard nothing after a week or so after presenting my questions ... okay, there were more than questions by the 5th page or so. It's hard to hold back something so exciting! My goal is to cause my family to question their faith and religeon so that they will seek out the answers. I'm afraid that dumping facts all over them will stifle any further rational discussions and end any hope that they will listen to reason. Honestly, I have no idea how best to handle it and appear to be making it up as I go. And I'm going very slowly.
Offline cgb2  
#10 Posted : Monday, February 18, 2013 6:39:37 PM(UTC)
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LexBrand wrote:
...If interested, click this link to read about the pagan origins of birthdays: http://www.yahweh.com/pdf/Booklet_Birthdays.pdf (I'm not 100% on board with a few things this report says, but the research into the pagan aspects of birthdays is very good.) Actually a simple Google search will give many hits about the pagan origins of all these traditions.
...


I recall we had someone from the "House of Yahweh - Abilene TX" in the forum a while ago...
Ummmm, you may want to look into them a lot closer before embracing their doctrines Blink , even if much true.

One thing I got tripped up early on was the notion that "if pagans do x, we must do opposite"...as if counterfeits don;t try to look genuine or else they wouldn't fool anyone. One was since pagans oberve first visible cresent (start of months) we should observe modern "new moon" as if the scriptures talk about no moon Confused and Yah would make observance difficult...and many other topics. A group I got hooked into would pantomine, spell, and do guessing games to keep from saying English words with "pagan origins"...a huge chunk of our language...mostly from Paul's notion that the covenant has already been renewed then misapplying "clean lips" prophetic verses (still yet future). Was frustrating religious bondage to even converse.

I would agree with last several posts and wish I wouldn't have presented things the way I did early on. Getting my own bearings and focusing on my relationship first, then presentling gently what the narrow path is. Most would still reject it in favor of their religion, and even despise gentle inference that they are living a lie....but at least I might have found few more open & receptive.
But at the same time a lot of excitement, and sense of urgency...I love you and want to warn that you're heading in the wrong direction!
Offline dajstill  
#11 Posted : Tuesday, February 19, 2013 2:25:34 AM(UTC)
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I agree with others on the effectiveness of a "big announcement". Because I am so enthusiastic about my journey, my compromise has been posting things on FB (I often do a Hebrew word of the day, then go into various aspects of how the word, concept, or idea has been corrupted through religion). It allows people to opt in or out of the conversation without feel pressure. When it comes to the xthian holidays, we decided to not make it a big deal. People are allowed to give my children gifts, but they know any gift of a religious nature the children won't be able to utilize. This approach where we don't force our ideas on others, but don't actively participate has allowed gentle change to come from family members like grandparents. They now don't come by "on" Christmas and they give the kids gifts without attaching it to Christmas explicitly. In further "progress" when my daughter asked her grandfather if he celebrated Christmas his response was "no, we don't really celebrate it really". That is a huge movement. However, and this is BIG and I think a big reason why our large family hasn't balked at our changes, we increased our time with them outside of the holidays. We stopped linking visits, phone calls, invitations to dinner, etc. to the pagan holidays. They know we may drop by to visit any time, invite them to dinner any day - because we love them and want to be with them and want the kids to have time with them. People hold on to the pagan holidays not so much because they love the holiday, but because they love their family and this is often the only time they can count on seeing them, spending time with them, having fun together. They don't balk at the kids not needing an "easter dress" because they realize they can buy the kids a nice outfit and we will gladly take pictures and have them framed for them so they can see the kids in their nice fancy clothes - without the need for a pagan celebration.

My fly by FB postings have also had a great impact on many friends. I get a lot of private messages with questions, people telling me I got them thinking, and even a "thank you". This past December I had a high school friend gladly message me that "operation no Christmas" was a huge success in their home this year. If I had approach things more head on, I am not sure I would have gotten as many people to take the time to stop and say "hey, what is she talking about really".

Of course, there are those who completely reject what I am saying, but I have done enough research that anytime they have been bold enough to argue, I came with facts and figures while all they could say was "Pope V from 1340 said Christmas was okay" (and this was coming from a Protestant). But, again, people are opting into and out of the conversation - it isn't being forced on them.

The big thing I have learned in trying to leave Babylon is that when you live in Babylon, you can't completely leave. For every 100 things we have walked away from, everyday I am finding there are 100 things that are so engrained in our lives we can't live in this country and be completely free of Babylon. When you go head on at people they can find those 100 things you haven't walked away from (whether it be because you don't feel it necessary, didn't know about it, or just choose to continue) that you can be backed into a corner.

There are little things that I have done that I may or may not do again, but it was a gentle approach for me. My family sends Christmas cards, so I sent out a Pesach card (created by a Karaite, so a more accurate translation with Yahowah's name proudly posted on it) where I included pictures of the kids. I only sent out 5 of them (to siblings and close friends) as a way of saying, "well, I didn't ignore your Christmas card, but this is what we are gearing up to celebrate). I take pictures of the kids in their sukkot shelter and put them in a newsletter I send out to family and friends. It is just a gentle way to introduce them to our world. Sometimes people question, sometimes they are just silent, but there have been no big rejections. When I changed our diet to a torah based diet, my larger family just included more foods that we can enjoy - no fighting, no last grand stands, no loud declarations "we don't eat unclean things". And, I do allow my children to occasionally eat things that aren't clean, but since I didn't make a big deal about them, they just naturally started to leave those things alone; I don't have to be the food police because. I guess my point is, the more I follow the example of Yahowah - just putting the instructions out there and letting people choose to opt in or opt out, the more people opt in and when people opt out - they don't try to undermine what we are doing.

I also had to make sure to allow people to opt out without judgement and without frustration. I will look at my niece and nephews easter pictures and tell them how cute they look, I will let my siblings tell me all about the Christmas shopping journey and congratulate them on a big score. They know how I feel and we all agree that free will should be protected at all costs. But, this has also left the door open for them to have a safe place to ask questions and share their concerns and ideas.

It can be a hard and delicate balance. Sure, I get frustrated (one of my siblings is married to a pastor) and my heart does ache a bit when I know what my nieces and nephews are being raised in. However, I remind myself that my kids were being raised the same way until 2 years ago. The path is narrow, but it is big enough for anyone who chooses to come. My goal is to make it light enough for my family and friends to find if they choose; rather then pushing them to dig in their heels in anger and frustration. I haven't been perfect at all and sometimes I think "why did I say that", but it is a journey.
Offline needhelp  
#12 Posted : Tuesday, February 19, 2013 2:41:28 AM(UTC)
needhelp
Joined: 5/19/2011(UTC)
Posts: 197
Location: US

3 pretty good reads:

Fossilized Customs
THE PAGAN SOURCES OF POPULAR CUSTOMS
Sixth Edition
(or eighth either one)

The Two Babylons
or The Papal Worship
Proved to be the Worship of Nimrod and His Wife
By the Late Rev. Alexander Hislop

Come Out Of Her My People
C.J Koster
Offline James  
#13 Posted : Tuesday, February 19, 2013 3:08:33 AM(UTC)
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LexBrand wrote:
So I've now become convinced about a few things - even at this early point in my studies. And by the way, this is my opinion, not Cecil's.


I would change one thing about this sentence. I understand you want them to know that this is not what your husband thinks, and that is right to do since you don't want him being hit with the blow back. But i would change the word opinion. This is not your opinion, this is your conclusion based on careful observation of the facts. I hate when people say that something I show them from Scripture is just my opinion, just a pet peeve of mine.

My wife has been considering writing up something like this to give to her family, even though we haven't celebrated pagan days in several years. Even though she has explained why they still don't seem to get it or respect it, at least not most of them some do. So she is wanting to write up a full explanation of where she stands and why she stands there.

I think what you have is a good opening. You are telling them what you no longer wish to be a part of and why, and you are leaving it open for them to question further regarding the details. The important part is that after you do that you be prepared with the details when they do question you.

As Yada has said in the past the most effective way to share the Towrah with someone is not by citing Yada Yah. Until you own the material in Yad Yah, meaning you've researched it, you've checked it and you are comfortable with it, it's difficult to wield it effectively.

You are quickly going to be called a cult member, nut job, etc. So I hope you have thick skin.
Don't take my word for it, Look it up.

“The truth is not for all men but only for those who seek it.” ― Ayn Rand
Offline LexBrand  
#14 Posted : Tuesday, February 19, 2013 9:29:27 AM(UTC)
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Posts: 26
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Location: Bay Area CA

You all have no idea how much I value your input.

Sounds like you have all been there/done that and have experience with the fallout from family and friends, their responses and attempts to change your mind. (My sister asked me a few months ago if I was becoming a Sabbatarian!)

This is the thing I am most concerned with - that I am not sufficiently educated on Yah's word to respond appropriately with the facts when the inevitable questions arise.

I've read quite a bit of this forum where folks come on and challenge you and Yada. And the responses I've read are so deeply researched using laser-like proof. It makes me picture the analogy of the Word being used as a sharp sword. I'm impressed with the boldness and courage you use to succinctly make your points.

I know that kind of skill takes lots of study and time. I enjoy all the reading I've done so far with ITG, YY and QP. I have purchased the Dead Sea Scrolls Bible (they use LORD and LORD God - yikes!) and I have a Hebrew Lexicon on order. I feel I should be doing my own study but I'm not sure how to start. I will have to save up for the Logos software. I think e-sword is free but I'm not sure if I should trust it - I presume it's based on the later translations. I'm loathe to study anything based on the newer translations.

After the great feedback here, I'm thinking that since I'm obviously not ready or equipped to properly answer all the family's questions, I should just keep my announcement short and sweet and whomever is interested can ask me personally how I came to my decision.

I am comfortable giving some basic answers. The good thing is if they ask me a question I can't answer, researching the response will be a good learning experience for me.

@ James, OK - no more "opinion" BigGrin And as for thick skin, we shall see...

@ needhelp - Thanks, I love reading good books, I'll check those out.

@ dajstill - I like the FB idea. And you are exactly right about the holidays being the only times my family gets together and I will miss that. So we need to make sure we get together outside of those holidays - thanks for bringing that up. I can be blunt at times, and I don't like putting up with BS, so it's an effort to soften my approach. But it sounds like I'll alienate my family if I'm too frank. I sent out a "Year End Newsletter" last year around the 1st of December - pink and black stationary, no xmas message or anything. Not one person noticed it was not a xmas letter. I guess I'll be more obvious next year, and I like your Pesach card idea. You have shared great wisdom and please know I am listening intently to all you are saying. (To all that everyone is saying!)

@cgb2 - Yes I agree that some of the House of Yahweh stuff is sketchy, but the actual pagan research part was very good. I heard something awhile back that I keep in the back of mind - I eat the fish and spit out the bones. It's rare for me to find research that is purely what I think is correct. More often, I find a chunk of information that I agree with, and I discard the rest. And thanks for the suggestion that I be more gentle with my family - I'm gonna need that reminder.

@ pilgrimhere You know, I asked my Mom and sister a few questions when I first noticed the discrepancies in Paul's doctrine and I've never heard back from them on that. One question was, "Was "Jesus" here teaching doctrine for just the next few months until he was crucified, or was he teaching things for all time? Because he was teaching and living the Towrah." I know my Mom runs these questions by her pastor.

@ knowing1 Yes, I'll pull back a bit, thanks for the advice. On the sneezing thing, it's such a knee jerk reaction, I catch myself saying it - even to the dog! Man that stuff is ingrained.

Thanks everyone!






Offline Sarah  
#15 Posted : Wednesday, February 20, 2013 6:18:16 AM(UTC)
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LexBrand, et al,

Thanks for your input to the Forum. I'm on the same path with the same issues as all of you here. I just send/email/share small interesting tidbits of my new understanding with my grown children, relatives, and friends. I make sure that I plan a great meal for Pesach, Shabua, and Sukah to share with family along with gifts, and as many other things that will make the occasion memorable. This Pesach I would like to rent a big house in the moutains for a family get together. I do send out cards and a family newsletter along with corresponding reprints of YY chapters for Pesach and Sukah; I make my own cards. The first year I sent out the 'revised' family newsletter around Nov 20th, I removed the "Merry Christmas" from the header; my husband, who proofs it so carefully, didn't even notice! This year I changed the header completely; I used a photo of our beautiful red serviceberry branches along with the verse "On the 15th day of the Seventh Month you shall gather beautiful branches . . . , etc." at the end of the letter, I printed a whole page of the amplififed Psalm 119.

As for "praying before meals", I was thinking: Surely we are 'thankful' for what Yahowah provides; if we are eating meat, are we not killing an innocent animal? should we not offer it to Yahowah first?

Contact me on FB: Lassie Mettler

Offline cgb2  
#16 Posted : Wednesday, February 20, 2013 12:13:41 PM(UTC)
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LexBrand wrote:

.....
@cgb2 - Yes I agree that some of the House of Yahweh stuff is sketchy, but the actual pagan research part was very good. I heard something awhile back that I keep in the back of mind - I eat the fish and spit out the bones. It's rare for me to find research that is purely what I think is correct. More often, I find a chunk of information that I agree with, and I discard the rest. And thanks for the suggestion that I be more gentle with my family - I'm gonna need that reminder.
......


Perhaps the research is good, and maybe I'm just more sensitive from my dad "researching" the most cultish stuff on the web and trying to apply it to me. So I would be very careful to link a source he might have ammo with.

If you want to see what the "house of Yahweh - Abilene TX" is about, we had one visit (and get banned) here.
Hit "search" above, then in "posted by" put "BillyBobthethird" and read some/all of his posts, and decide for yourself.

Chuck
Offline dajstill  
#17 Posted : Thursday, February 21, 2013 7:00:44 AM(UTC)
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I guess I am still wondering how we know the ages of people like Adam and Noah if birthdays are pagan. Again, I get the candles being pagan, but how is acknowledging a birthday pagan? If people didn't even acknowledge their birthday, how were ages recorded? We even know how old some people were when they had their first child. I am not trying to stay steeped in a pagan tradition (again, we are not candle sort of people), but I also don't want to be one to go the way of the Puritians - who in an effort to take away all things pagan, took away all signs of fun and enjoyment.

Offline LexBrand  
#18 Posted : Thursday, February 21, 2013 1:06:19 PM(UTC)
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cgb2 wrote:
If you want to see what the "house of Yahweh - Abilene TX" is about, we had one visit (and get banned) here.
Hit "search" above, then in "posted by" put "BillyBobthethird" and read some/all of his posts, and decide for yourself.


Ugh, ick. Thanks for the warning Chuck.
Offline James  
#19 Posted : Friday, February 22, 2013 3:00:25 AM(UTC)
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dajstill wrote:
I guess I am still wondering how we know the ages of people like Adam and Noah if birthdays are pagan. Again, I get the candles being pagan, but how is acknowledging a birthday pagan? If people didn't even acknowledge their birthday, how were ages recorded? We even know how old some people were when they had their first child. I am not trying to stay steeped in a pagan tradition (again, we are not candle sort of people), but I also don't want to be one to go the way of the Puritians - who in an effort to take away all things pagan, took away all signs of fun and enjoyment.



I'm in the same boat. I don't seen anything about celebrating a loved ones birth that is overtly pagan. Now a lot of the way it is celebrated in today's society is, but just acknowledging and celebrating the fact that someone you love and care about was born does not seem pagan to me.
Don't take my word for it, Look it up.

“The truth is not for all men but only for those who seek it.” ― Ayn Rand
Offline needhelp  
#20 Posted : Friday, February 22, 2013 3:10:41 AM(UTC)
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I agree. Key words being "someone you love", "candles", "way
you celebrate". No presidents day, or other person's ie. christmas
easter etc. They are all pagan if you go back far enough.
Celebrated commercially also. Don't think that is just acknowledging
a loved ones day of birth.
Offline Bubsy  
#21 Posted : Sunday, May 18, 2014 7:00:35 PM(UTC)
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I have read the first 28 pages of the PDF on birthdays in #7, and so far I see little to no overlap in how my family has celebrated birthdays up to now, and the practices described in and around pages 13 and 14 of the PDF. From what I gather so far, it looks like the big no-nos include erecting any kind of altar in the home and decorating it with flowers and wine (which would make it an offering to a genius/demon), and/or candles, and any kind of pre-meal prayer (which makes all the food present into food that has been sacrificed to demons/idols). So far I don't see any overlap between that and simply preparing a meal or going out to dinner, and singing "Happy birthday to you", unless the having of a party, including inviting relatives and friends, is itself considered an offering to a demon ("The principal rite… was the rite of sacrifice", "sacrifice" implied "feast", therefore "The principal rite… was the rite of a feast"? And therefore inherently includes worship??? Huh Even if nothing is killed, cooked, and eaten???). I do see on page 13 that the bringing of presents or sending them along is part of the ritual, and up to now, we have done that. I'm thinking my gift this year to each family member will be a mutual lifetime release from exchanging birthday and Christmas gifts. BigGrin We're all so difficult to figure out gifts for, anyway, or even coming up with anything we would want, so that could easily be blessed relief for us all. Apparently there is something pagan about the cake, perhaps covered in later pages of the PDF. Maybe I'll just stick to ice cream from now on, and try to figure out ways to keep clean of paganism. Cool Now to read the rest of the PDF, and see if it answers anything I brought up. [Yoda voice on] Much to learn, I have… [Yoda voice off]

(2 days later)
And now that I have gotten through the rest of the PDF, now I think I understand better. Starting from page 56, apparently "Happy" invokes the name of Hapi, Egyptian god of the Nile, the same way "Amen" invokes the name of Egyptian sun god Amen Ra. So wishing a "happy" anything is apparently calling upon one of those demons or hidden gods to come upon the person and grant favor, or turn their wrath away from that person. Hmm, "joyous/blessed completion of another orbit around the star"? And if striking "happy" from the vocabulary isn't enough, we're apparently also to strike "fortune", "luck", "fate", and "hap(pen)" as well to avoid invoking names of other pagan gods, according to page 72? Holey rusted metal, Batman, the blind leading the blind don't lead them into a ditch, they lead them into a dense minefield!

I'm wondering about page 76, where it cites Colossians 3:17, especially since I think that's been identified as a Pauline book. Is the paragraph right above "Accepting Gifts To Yahweh's Honor" implying that if someone greets you with a simple, "Hello", "Hi there", "Howdy", etc, instead of a lengthy, "May Yahweh be blessed, praised, and thanked through Yahshua Messiah for allowing you to come to this day" (now there's a mouthful to remember!), that you are not to accept the simple greeting? And moreover, implying that if you offer a simple greeting instead of the mouthful, that it is considered an abomination? That is starting to sound suspiciously like a burden. Or maybe that's particular only to recognizing someone's birthday.

The paragraph in the middle of page 79 helps some, pointing out that the eating of meat was such a rare occurrence in ancient Israel that it was cause for celebration, and always with significance. That helps explain what baffled me in the first 28 pages. Today, I suspect most of us view consumption of meat in our meals as routine, and nothing special, and all religious/festive significance has been lost.

Only once I got to pages 82-86 do I see credible explanations of why giving and accepting birthday and holiday gifts, and other common birthday traditions, would be considered an abomination. Looks like I ought to request all gifts to be given in connection of the Feast of Tabernacles, for acceptance of them to be acceptable to Yahowah. These were the pages I needed to read to understand why we should avoid the common birthday celebration practices.

The PDF at least seems credible in the parts that explain why birthday celebrations are pagan, and therefore to be avoided. The fact that they heavily cite Paul's epistles, and call him an Apostle (!) detracts a bit from their credibility, though. But they do appear to be credible where it counts for explaining why not to celebrate birthdays. Now to print out carefully selected pages and strategically leave them where the rest of the family will see them and read them… Tongue

Edited by user Tuesday, May 20, 2014 8:20:57 PM(UTC)  | Reason: additions

Ha Shem? I'm kind of fond of Ha Shemp, Ha Larry, and Ha Moe myself. And the earlier shorts with Ha Curly.
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