Monthly Archives: July 2020

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 330 LETTER TO HUGH HEFNER (“Playboy was the first mainstream club, non-black club that actually put on stage black comedians,” Hefner said. “Even in Las Vegas Black performers that performed on, including Sammy Davis, who was a very close friend of mine, would appear on stage, but they couldn’t walk through the casino. They had to walk through the back entrance”) Featured Artist is Jean Lamb


HEFNER AT HOME: THE BIRTH OF THE MODERN BACHELOR PAD

Apr 11, 2016

Hefner and his bunnies at the original Playboy Mansion, Chicago, 1966. Photograph by Burt Glinn/MagnumPhoto

“IN MY FATHER’S HOUSE ARE MANY MANSIONS”—JOHN 14:2

Editor’s note: News that the Playboy Mansion in Holmby Hills is on the block for $200 million reminded us of this essay from Man of the World No. 11, in which Steve Garbarino assesses the architectural legacy of the original swinging bachelor …

When Hugh Hefner was drafting the image of his ideal Playboy reader—a literate and liberated sort, who also enjoyed a nice set of cans—his ideas went far beyond silk bedsheets, martini shakers, and one-night stands with stewardesses, a dog-eared copy of the latest Kinsey Report laid conspicuously on the nightstand.

In fact, one of his most lasting contributions to Western culture might be in the realms of architecture and design, areas of interest that allowed him to round out his readers’ world. After inventing the Playboy bunny, he laid the floor plans for another cultural icon: the bachelor pad. Raised in Chicago amid the buildings of Mies van der Rohe and Frank Lloyd Wright, Hefner was an early champion of midcentury modern. He was also a student of human nature, having earned his bachelor’s degree in psychology at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Hefner’s erudite interiors were fully automated, streamlined machines for high-end living, with doorless quarters to encourage debauchery. In contrast to today’s man caves and the musty drawing rooms of yore (where men lounged in cracked leather chairs and harrumphed into their cognac snifters), Hefner’s renderings were chockablock with gizmos and designed to seduce, with linear open plans so a man could smoke his pipe anywhere he damn well pleased.

Hefner in bed, 1966. Courtesy of Playboy.

Remote control in hand, he could also draw the curtains, open the garage door, pop open the wet bar, or click on the hooded fireplace, all from the comfort of his two-piece Eames lounge. You could say Hefner saw his reader, a sort of 007 with a license to lady kill, as the future of American manhood. His reasoning was sound: After surviving the horrors of WWII and Korea, didn’t every guy deserve a castle all his own?In the gorgeously rendered architectural and design drawings that appeared regularly in Playboy’s pages from the early fifties to 1979, the classic men’s den, a secluded habitat equal parts fantasy and function, radiated out into every room of the house.

“THE NOTION OF THE SINGLE MAN BEGAN IN THE 1950S. THE IDEA OF THE BACHELOR AS A SEPARATE LIFE WAS NEW AND OBSCURE,” HEFNER SAID.

These renderings, featuring recognizable midcentury furnishings and the entertainment console gadgets of the day, were often accompanied by profiles of the great modern minimalists. His interest in residential architecture for the upscale single male culminated in the Playboy Penthouse Apartment (designed by Chrysalis architects and featured in a 1956 issue), with its echoes of Neutra and the Eames Case Study House. But it wasn’t until May of 1962, when the magazine published its ambitious pictorial, “Posh Plans for Exciting Urban Living!” that the design world took notice.

BACHELOR PAD ESSENTIALS

The master bedroom of the Playboy Penthouse Apartment designed by Chrysalis architects, 1956. Courtesy of Playboy.

The renderings of the so-called Playboy Town House, drawn up by architect and designer R. Donald Jaye and overseen by Hefner, envisioned a three-level luxury spread, which the magazine described as a “modishly swinging manor” for an “unattached, affluent young man, happily wedded to the infinite advantages of urbia.”

HIS CHICAGO HOUSE BORE A PLAQUE ON THE FRONT DOOR THAT READ, “IF YOU DON’T SWING, DON’T RING,” IN LATIN

Amid the open-plan sprawl—paneled with enough teak to build a second Honey Fitz, and dotted with curvy furnishings by Knoll, Herman Miller, Laverne, and George Nelson—there were show-stopping amenities like an indoor swimming pool, a remote-controlled skylight, a “kitchen-less kitchen” (where drawers and panels hid any evidence of food prep), a twelve-foot upholstered wet bar (because, of course), and the pièce de résistance, a rotating bed, patented by Playboy Enterprises, for work and play. Half a century before the Internet of Things, a man could control his home’s sound and lighting, open and shut curtains, and even pop the toaster from the comfort of his circular sex bed. (Later, Hefner would equip the “Big Bunny,” his converted DC-30 jet, with a similar model, which had become something of a trademark.) “The gadgetry helped give it a James Bond mystique,” he told the Times.

The Playboy Town House predicted many common twenty-first century residential features, with its sprawling open plan and built-in hi-fi system, variously dubbed a “media wall,” “Electronic Entertainment Wall,” and “Wonder Wall.” Inspired by van der Rohe, the house concealed all its internal wiring, and anything else that might disrupt the streamlined effect. This was a place in which you didn’t trip over clutter. To paraphrase Hefner, a civilized man doesn’t leave his dirty socks scattered about.

“Wonder Wall” concept drawing by Syd Mead, 1971. Courtesy of Playboy.

Truth be told, Hefner was never all that removed from his readership. A fantasist who enjoyed vicarious thrills, he lived for a time in his own office, sleeping on a pull-out cot after his wife tossed him out, and spending most of his days in pajamas. And his own homes—both his limestone-and-brick behemoth on Chicago’s Gold Coast and the more infamous digs in Holmby Hills, California, currently the most expensive house for sale in the the United States, furniture included—were hardly the stuff of modernist dreams. A fan of dorm-style living and outré touches (his Chicago house bore a plaque on the front door that read, “If you don’t swing, don’t ring,” in Latin), Hef rarely followed his own blueprints.

But others certainly have, and still can. In 2014, the German Architecture Museum in Frankfurt featured an exhibition of all things architecture published in Playboy from 1953 to 1979. (Hefner actually donated the original mansion to the Art Institute of Chicago, in 1974; it is now luxury condos.) And in 2011, to coincide with Playboy’s fiftieth anniversary, legendary architect Frank Gehry was asked to draw up his own plans for the modern bachelor pad.

While spectacular, like most reboots, it just wasn’t the same.

written by STEVE GARBARINO

Our church FELLOWSHIP BIBLE CHURCH sponsors HIDDEN CREEK REENTRY CENTER,  Assisting incarcerated individuals with a successful transition to their community.

Hidden Creek Reentry Center added 4 new photos.

January 13 ·

So proud of these guys… They had the honor to go with Mr.Glover yesterday to a school to speak to some children.

Hidden Creek Reentry Center added 3 new photos.

August 7, 2016 · Little Rock, AR ·

Well its been a eye jerker today… great tears of joy!! I have watched these guys grow so much… I pray they continue to grow out there… next month they graduate the program!!

Hidden Creek Reentry Center added 2 new photos.

April 16, 2016 ·

In a nutshell – Its simple and uncomplicated, giving of yourself and being of service to others is one of the best ways to strengthen your own recovery. In essence, you give and you receive. Twice blessed.

Hidden Creek Reentry Center updated their cover photo.

April 13, 2016 ·

Ernest Hemingway A Clean Well-lighted Place – Complete Narration

Published on Nov 20, 2012

Complete narration by DB. Enjoy the audio and interpretation on a classic short story.

Woody Allen talks ‘Midnight in Paris’

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Letter on Racial Equality, Drugs and Alcohol and Solomon  I can’t do anything to go back and  save those who have passed on in the past, but I can do something to encourage those who have obstacles to overcome today!!!! David Plant,

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We can’t bring back those we have lost like Bobbie Arnstein but we can help those struggling now to overcome their obstacles with drugs and alcohol!!!

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Dick Gregory and Tim Boxer at the Chicago Playboy Club, 1961

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Mississippi State players swarmed Morgan William after she made the game-winning jump shot at the buzzer in overtime.

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Handshake between Jerry Harkness (Loyola) and Joe Dan Gold (MSU). LOYOLA won 61-51 that day and went on to win National Championship in 1963!!!

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This picture below is the cover picture of the Facebook page for the ministry HIDDEN CREEK REENTRY CENTER, and this ministry has the purpose of assisting incarcerated individuals with a successful transition to their community. I have had the joy of giving some of my time to help these gentlemen.

Hidden Creek Reentry Center in Little Rock, Arkansas
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This picture below is the cover picture of the Facebook page for the ministry HIDDEN CREEK REENTRY CENTER, and this ministry has the purpose of assisting incarcerated individuals with a successful transition to their community. I have had the joy of giving some of my time to help these gentlemen.

Hidden Creek Reentry Center in Little Rock, Arkansas
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FILE – In this May 12, 1959, American novelist Ernest Hemingway, left, speaks with actors Alec Guinness, center, and Noel Coward in Sloppy Joe’s Bar during the making of Sir Carol Reed’s film version of “Our Man in Havana,” based on Graham Greene’s best seller, in Havana, Cuba. Sloppy Joe’s will be reopened in February 2013 by the state-owned tourism company Habaguanex, part of an ambitious revitalization project by the Havana City Historian’s Office, which since the 1990’s has transformed block after block of crumbling ruins into rehabilitated buildings along vibrant cobblestone streets, giving residents and tourists from all over the chance to belly up to the same bar that served thirsty celebrities like Rock Hudson, Babe Ruth and Ernest Hemingway. (AP Photo, File)

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Larry Joe Speaks  (August 20, 1947 to April 7, 2017)

Photo of Larry Joe Speaks

____ April 25, 2017Hugh HefnerPlayboy Mansion16236 Charing Cross RoadLos Angeles, CA 90024

Dear Hugh,

As I have promised I am writing you over and over until I go through all 6 things that Solomon pursued to try to finding a lasting meaning in his life UNDER THE SUN in the Book of Ecclesiastes. Today we will look at LIQUOR.In this letter I am looking at three things.FIRST, I want to compliment you on your stand for racial equality.SECOND, I want to look the problem of escapism and what Solomon had to say about it concerning the path of liquor.THIRD, I want to look at a portion of the sermon WHO IS JESUS? by Adrian Rogers. (This is the sermon that my good friend Larry Speaks gave to hundreds of people during the last 20 years of his life. Larry put his faith alone in Christ in the mid 1990’s and he passed away on April 7, 2017 at age 69.)Let me start off by saying something very nice about you and that is you have always stood for racial equality. I thought about that again recently when I read the article Connecticut’s 111-Game Winning Streak Ends With Loss to Mississippi State by JERÉ LONGMAN on APRIL 1, 2017.You might wonder why that reminded me of you?I got to attend the graduation of my niece from Miss St University last May and I noticed that the banners that hung down from the ceiling showing that Miss St had won their conference in men’s basketball in 1959, 1960, 1961, 1962, and 1963 but they had only chose to attend the tournament in 1963. I wondered why. I researched out the reason and I discovered that the Miss St administration did want their white basketball team to play against basketball teams in the NCAA Basketball Tournament that had black players on the team. However, in 1963 the team quietly and secretly left town in a private airplane and flew to play in the 1963 playoffs without the administration finding out. That act of bravery by the part of the Miss St team reminded me of you the other day when I read about this huge upset the Miss St women’s basketball team  had.WHY DID I THINK OF YOU, HUGH? I have been reading  a lot about you in the last few months and I  think this article below sums up best your efforts in the area of racial equality.

Hugh Hefner Recalls His Role As An Activist For Civil Rights

May 13, 2011 11:00 PMBy Pat Harvey

“Playboy was the first mainstream club, non-black club that actually put on stage black comedians,” Hefner said. “Even in Las Vegas Black performers that performed on, including Sammy Davis, who was a very close friend of mine, would appear on stage, but they couldn’t walk through the casino. They had to walk through the back entrance.”

“When we started franchising, when they refused our members, the black members, entrance, I said, ‘you can’t do that, these are members of our club.’ And we literally bought back the franchised clubs,” he said.

Hefner was seen with a young Jesse Jackson, as he met Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.

“When Dr. King came to the Playboy Mansion, he was in Chicago specifically to deal with the segregation that existed in Chicago. And that is really how I met Jesse and I was very actively involved after King’s death in the funding of PUSH and the Rainbow Coalition,” he said.

“In fact, the last published piece written by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. before his death appeared in Playboy. ‘Playboy’ magazine became the platform for freedom in a time of restriction.

“The very first interview was Miles Davis and he didn’t talk so much about music, he talked about wishes and equality,” Hefner said.Next I want to turn to a subject that is very sad indeed and it is the attempt by many today to find  their meaning in life through drugs and alcohol. Perhaps they are trying to escape the hard realities of life by taking this path. Like everyone around us, I too have many close friends and relatives who have fallen into this trap. I have a great deal of compassion for these individuals. In fact, several times this month I have taken time to drive individuals from a facility that my church sponsors to AA meetings. We want these individuals to overcome their addictions and live in victory.  I can’t do anything to go back and  save those who have passed on in the past, but I can do something to encourage those who have obstacles to overcome today!!!!

Our church FELLOWSHIP BIBLE CHURCH sponsors HIDDEN CREEK REENTRY CENTER,  Assisting incarcerated individuals with a successful transition to their community. I have had the joy of giving some of my time to help these gentlemen. In fact, I just back from volunteering  at the center tonight. These individuals have made a 6 month commitment to taking the path towards sobriety and many of them attend our church too.  Let me share some posts from their Facebook page:

Hidden Creek Reentry Center January 13 ·

So proud of these guys… They had the honor to go with Mr.Glover yesterday to a school to speak to some children.

August 7, 2016 · Little Rock, AR ·

Well its been a eye jerker today… great tears of joy!! I have watched these guys grow so much… I pray they continue to grow out there… next month they graduate the program!!April 16, 2016 ·

In a nutshell – Its simple and uncomplicated, giving of yourself and being of service to others is one of the best ways to strengthen your own recovery. In essence, you give and you receive. Twice blessed._______I have just finished the book about a man who had a tough time breaking drug addition and the it is entitled,  FEARLESS: The undaunted courage and ultimate sacrifice of Navy Seal Team Six Operator Adam Brownby Eric Blehm.This is how the book opens:

When Adam Brown woke up on March 17, 2010, he didn’t know he would die that night in the Hindu Kush mountains of Afghanistan—but he was ready….Adam Brown did understand what it meant to disappoint, to feel the shame he’d experienced on a hot, humid August afternoon years earlier when his parents had him arrested. “It’s time for you to face what you’ve done,” his father had told him in 1996, just before Adam was handcuffed and escorted to the backseat of the Garland County sheriff’s cruiser. When the deputy slammed the car door shut, Adam watched his mother’s legs buckle, and as she collapsed, his dad caught her and held her tightly against him. She began to cry, and Adam knew he had broken her heart.That vision—of his mother sobbing into his father’s chest—would haunt him for the rest of his life, but it also sparked the journey that defined who he would become. Officially known as a Chief Special Warfare Operator (SEAL), Adam Brown was one of the most respected Special Operations warriors in the U.S. Navy.______________________Recently when I read the book MR PLAYBOY by Steven Watts, I noticed that he gave a great deal of attention to the life of Bobbie Arnstein and he concluded his time on her with these words:___

William Safire in New York Times wrote:

What clear invitation to perjury can there be than such a provisional sentence. It is on thing to give a cooperative witness a break,  entirely another to threaten  to let a defendant rot in the slammer until he or she tells the story the prosecution wants. 

Samuel K. Skinner dropped the case and concluded:

No evidence of unlawful or distribution of cocaine or hard drugs by Mr. Hefner, the corporation or its employees had been adduced. 

Samuel K. Skinner in a personal letter to Hefner came close to an apology:

I am aware that the last year was not an easy one for you or your associates and I truly wish it could have been avoided. I have always felt that any investigation should be conducted without any publicity whatsoever in order to protect the individuals involved.

So Hefner was finally vindicated in a drug case that seemed to have been driven mainly by an anti-Playboy political agenda. But much damage had been done. Most disturbingly a young woman lay dead.  (Bobbie Arnstein )____Why do so many individuals today turn to drugs or liquor?  Many atheists have a hard time getting positive about the ultimate lasting meaning of our lives. Take Woody Allen and Ernest Hemingway for example.  Woody Allen has used comedy as a device of escapism while Hemingway turned to liquor but they both reached the same pessimistic conclusion that life has no lasting meaning.“Some lived in it and never felt it but he knew it all was nada y pues nada y nada y pues nada.” This quote from Hemingway’s short story A Clean Well Lighted Place shows that Ernest Hemingway embraced nihilism.The Spanish word NADA meaning NOTHING. The old man in the story tried the previous week to commit suicide but was saved by his niece, and he saw it as a temporary saving.Hemingway also wrote in his last book THE GARDEN OF EDEN, “Happiness in intelligent people is the rarest thing I know.”A sensational bestseller when it appeared in 1986, The Garden of Eden is the last uncompleted novel of Ernest Hemingway, which he worked on intermittently from 1946 until his death in 1961.In you go to You Tube and watch the video Woody Allen talks ‘Midnight in Paris’ which was posted on January 27, 2017 and runs 43 minutes and 37 seconds, you will notice at the 27 minute mark that Woody Allen says:

I have never gotten to the point where I can give an optimistic view of anything. I have these ideas for stories that I hope are entertaining and I am always criticized for being pessimistic or nihilistic. To me this is just a realistic appraisal of life. There are these little Oasis’s these little distractions you get. Last night I was caught up in the Bulls and Heat basketball game on television and for the time being I was thinking about who was going to win. I wasn’t thinking about my mortality or the fact that I am finite and aging. That was not on my mind. Labron James was on my mind and the game. That is the best you can do is get a little  detraction. What I have learned over the years is that there is no other solution to it. There is no satisfying answer. There is no optimistic answer I can give anybody.

The outcome of that basketball game is no less meaningful or no more meaningful than human life if you take the long view of it. You could look at the earth and say who cares about those creatures running around there and just brush it. Ernest Hemingway in one of his stories A FAREWELL TO ARMS) is looking at a burning log with ants running on it. This is the kind of thinking that has over powered me over the years and slips into my stories.

Drinking was a large part of Hemingway’s life. Solomon in the Book of Ecclesiastes also takes a long look at liquor and tries to see if it will bring any satisfaction UNDER THE SUN.

In fact, Solomon  filled his home with the best wine (Eccl 2:3).

Concerning the Book of Ecclesiastes Francis Schaeffer noted: 

Solomon was searching for a meaning in the midst of the details of life. His struggle was to find the meaning of life. Not just plans in life. Anybody can find plans in life. A child can fill up his time with plans of building tomorrow’s sand castle when today’s has been washed away. There is  a difference between finding plans in life and purpose in life. Humanism since the Renaissance and onward has never found it and it has never found it. Modern man has not found it and it has always got worse and darker in a very real way.

Ecclesiastes is the only pessimistic book in the Bible and that is because of the place where Solomon limits himself. He limits himself to the question of human life, life UNDER THE SUN between birth and death and the answers this would give.

In Ecclesiastes 1:8 he drives this home when he states, “All things are wearisome; Man is not able to tell it. THE EYE IS NOT SATISFIED WITH SEEING. NOR IS THE EAR FILLED WITH HEARING.”  Solomon is stating here the fact that there is no final satisfaction because you don’t get to the end of the thing.

What do you do and the answer is to get drunk and this was not thought of in the RUBAIYAT OF OMAR KAHAYYAM:

Ecclesiastes 2:1-3

I said to myself, “Come now, I will test you with pleasure. So enjoy yourself.” And behold, it too was futility. I said of laughter, “It is madness,” and of pleasure, “What does it accomplish?” I explored with my mind how to stimulate my body with wine while my mind was guiding me wisely, and how to take hold of folly, until I could see what good there is for the sons of men to do under heaven the few years of their lives.

The Daughter of the Vine (from the RUBAIYAT OF OMAR KAHAYYAM):

You know, my Friends, with what a brave Carouse
I made a Second Marriage in my house;
Divorced old barren Reason from my Bed,
And took the Daughter of the Vine to Spouse.

A perfectly good philosophy coming out of Islam, but Solomon is not the first man that thought of it nor the last. In light of what has been presented by Solomon is the solution just to get intoxicated and black the think out? So many people have taken to alcohol and the dope which so often follows in our day. This approach is incomplete, temporary and immature. PAPA HEMINGWAYCAN FIND THE CHAMPAGNE OF PARIS SUFFICIENT FOR A TIME, BUT ONCE HE LEFT HIS YOUTH HE NEVER FOUND IT SUFFICIENT AGAIN. HE HAD A LIFETIME SPENT LOOKING BACK TO PARIS AND THAT CHAMPAGNE AND NEVER FINDING IT ENOUGH.  It is no solution and Solomon says so too.

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Both Woody Allen and Ernest Hemingway like Solomon looked for meaning UNDER THE SUN in what I call the 6 big L words in the Book of Ecclesiastes. These areas are  learning (1:16-18), laughter, ladies,luxuries,  and liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11)and labor (2:4-6, 18-20). All three men agree with the conclusion of Ecclesiastes 2:17:

17So I hated life, because what is done under the sun was grievous to me; for all is vanity and a striving after the wind

Then in last few words in the Book of Ecclesiastes Solomon looks above the sun and brings God back into the picture: “The conclusion, when all has been heard, is: Fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.”The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.Now I just want to provide you with the outline of the 3rd point that Adrian Rogers makes in his sermon WHO IS JESUS? I remember discussing this sermon with Larry Speaks. He was so excited that the Bible gave us so much evidence that Christ was who he said he was.If you take the time to look up these verses you will see that Christ fulfilled the prophecies in the Old Testament that had been written hundreds of years before he even existed. Some may doubt that these scriptures were written in advance, but after the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls that interpretation is no longer feasible. Contained in the Dead Sea Scrolls and dated back to approximately 200 years before Christ we have copies of portions of manuscripts from EVERY OLD TESTAMENT BOOK IN THE BIBLE (except Esther). Plus we have a complete copy of the Book of Isaiah. With that in mind please take time to read both Old Testament prophecies and the New Testament fulfillment listed below or just google the name PETER STONER.

THE PROPHETIC WITNESS OF THE SCRIPTURES  (Acts 10:43)

  1. The theme of the Old Testament is the Lord Jesus Christ.
  2. Fulfilled prophecy is one of the greatest proofs that Jesus Christ is the Son of God.
  3. All of the prophets speak in unanimity that Jesus is Lord.
    1. It is estimated that there are more than 300 direct Old Testament prophecies that prophesy the miracle birth and earthly life of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.
    2. Micah 5:2
    3. Matthew 2:1
    4. Isaiah 7:14
    5. Isaiah 53:4-5
    6. Isaiah 53:9
    7. Matthew 27:57
    8. Matthew 27:38
    9. Zechariah 11:12
    10. Matthew 26:15
    11. Psalm 22

Thanks for your time.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221

PS: I have been so blessed to be a part of a ministry such as Hidden Creek Reentry Center. When I think of the pain and suffering that alcoholism and drugs have caused it makes me think of the Christian track HAPPY HOUR that describes such a case and how Christ can turn someone around. I personally have attended a funeral of a dear friend who went to the grave prematurely. It is true that I can do nothing to bring him back, but I do something about the people who are here now who need help. 

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Francis Schaeffer has rightly noted concerning Hugh Hefner that Hefner’s goal  with the “playboy mentality is just to smash the puritanical ethnic.” I have made the comparison throughout this series of blog posts between Hefner and King Solomon (the author of the BOOK of ECCLESIASTES).  I have noticed that many preachers who have delivered sermons on Ecclesiastes have also mentioned Hefner as a modern day example of King Solomon especially because they both tried to find sexual satisfaction through the volume of women you could slept with in a lifetime.

Ecclesiastes 2:8-10 The Message (MSG)

I piled up silver and gold,
        loot from kings and kingdoms.
I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song,
    and—most exquisite of all pleasures—
    voluptuous maidens for my bed.

9-10 Oh, how I prospered! I left all my predecessors in Jerusalem far behind, left them behind in the dust. What’s more, I kept a clear head through it all. Everything I wanted I took—I never said no to myself. I gave in to every impulse, held back nothing. I sucked the marrow of pleasure out of every task—my reward to myself for a hard day’s work!

1 Kings 11:1-3 English Standard Version (ESV)

11 Now King Solomon loved many foreign women, along with the daughter of Pharaoh: Moabite, Ammonite, Edomite, Sidonian, and Hittite women, from the nations concerning which the Lord had said to the people of Israel, “You shall not enter into marriage with them, neither shall they with you, for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods.” Solomon clung to these in love.He had 700 wives, who were princesses, and 300 concubines. And his wives turned away his heart.

Francis Schaeffer observed concerning Solomon, “You can not know woman by knowing 1000 women.”

Featured artist is Jean Lamb

Contemporary Christian Art – The Rt Revd Lord Harries of Pentregarth

Published on Apr 10, 2012

Contrary to much opinion, the current scene of faith-related art is very much alive. There are new commissions for churches and cathedrals, a number of artists pursue their work on the basis of a deeply convinced faith, and other artists often resonate with traditional Christian themes, albeit in a highly untraditional way. The challenge for the artist, stated in the introduction to the course of lectures above, is still very much there: how to retain artistic integrity whilst doing justice to received themes.

This lecture is part of Lord Harries’ series on ‘Christian Faith and Modern Art’. The last century has seen changes in artistic style that have been both rapid and radical. This has presented a particular problem to artists who have wished to express Christian themes.

The transcript and downloadable versions of the lecture are available from the Gresham College website:
http://www.gresham.ac.uk/lectures-and…

Gresham College has been giving free public lectures since 1597. This tradition continues today with all of our five or so public lectures a week being made available for free download from our website.
http://www.gresham.ac.uk

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From her website:

About

Info :  Born 1957 Hampstead, London.

BA Honours in Fine Art First Class Degree 1979 Reading University

Oxford Certificate in Theology 1984 St Stephens House, Oxford

MA in Fine Art 1988 Nottingham Trent University

Artist and Associate Priest living and practicing in Nottingham

Offering : Public and Private Commissions, Home Gallery, Studio Retreats, Creativity Days, Lectures, Consultancy, Framing and much more.

Studio/Gallery :    St Albans House,  4 Dale Street,  Sneinton,  Nottingham,  NG2 4JX

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Jean Lamb

Mother and Child

Jean Lamb works part time as an artist and part time as a Church of England Deacon in Nottingham. She writes that she turned away from the church when young, but rediscovered Christ in the womb of creation. With the birth of her second child she discovered Christ there and offered him back to God. This is reflected in this statue, which clearly also has echoes of Mary and the Christ child.

Crucifixion

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Ecclesiastes 2-3 Published on Sep 19, 2012 Calvary Chapel Spring Valley | Sunday Evening | September 16, 2012 | Derek Neider _____________________________ I have written on the Book of Ecclesiastes and the subject of the meaning of our lives on several occasions on this blog. In this series on Ecclesiastes I hope to show how secular […] By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Current Events | Edit | Comments (0)

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 Is Love All You Need? Jesus v. Lennon Posted on January 19, 2011 by Jovan Payes 0 On June 25, 1967, the Beatles participated in the first worldwide TV special called “Our World”. During this special, the Beatles introduced “All You Need is Love”; one of their most famous and recognizable songs. In it, John Lennon […] By Everette Hatcher III | Posted in Francis Schaeffer | Edit | Comments (0)

FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 158 THE BEATLES (breaking down the song WHY DON’T WE DO IT IN THE ROAD?) Photographer Bob Gomel featured today!

April 6, 2017 – 12:25 am

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE PART 142 Marvin Minsky Part G (Featured artist is Red Grooms)

December 15, 2016 – 7:18 am

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 118 THE BEATLES (Why was Tony Curtis on cover of SGT PEP?) (Feature on artist Jeffrey Gibson )

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 101 BEATLES,(MANY CHRISTIANS ATTACKED THE BEATLES WHILE FRANCIS SCHAEFFER STUDIED THEIR MUSIC! Part B) Artist featured today is Cartoonist Gahan Wilson

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RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 159 FF “Open letter to Harry Kroto’s friend Richard Dawkins” Page 143 of THE GOD DELUSION: “I am astonished by those theists who seem to rejoice in natural selection as ‘God’s way of achieving his creation’. Peter Atkins calls this the lazy God”

Canary Islands 2014: Harold Kroto and Richard Dawkins

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September 6, 2019

Richard Dawkins c/o Richard Dawkins Foundation, 
Washington, DC 20005

Dear Mr. Dawkins,

i have enjoyed reading about a dozen of your books and some of the most intriguing were The God DelusionAn Appetite for Wonder: The Making of a Scientist, and Brief Candle in the Dark: My Life in Science.

Page 143 of THE GOD DELUSION: 

I am astonished by those theists who seem to rejoice in natural selection as ‘God’s way of achieving his creation’. Peter Atkins calls this the lazy God.

Here is we agree!!!!

Francis Schaeffer rightly noted, “These two world views stand as totals in complete antithesis in content and also in their natural results….It is not just that they happen to bring forth different results, but it is absolutely inevitable that they will bring forth different results.”

Darwin’s Dangerous Doctrine

by Henry Morris III, D.Min. *

Nearly every candidate for pastoral ordination has been challenged with the charge given by the Apostle Paul in 2 Timothy 4:2-3:

Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all long suffering and doctrine. For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears.

So why will more than 10,000 pastors publically endorse evolutionary naturalism as “compatible” with Christianity during the month of February 2009?1 One word: Darwin.

On February 12, much of the world will be celebrating the 200th birthday of Charles Darwin, whose popularized notion of evolution has influenced science, education, and many other realms of society for the past 150 years since the publication of his book On the Origin of Species. The media will no doubt hail him as a hero for his contribution to science.

Sadly, many Christians will elevate the life and work of Charles Darwin on February 12. Aberrant hybrids of the biblical creation account, such as progressive creation, the day-age theory, and theistic evolution, are growing in popularity across church denominations and even among evangelicals, who “subscribe” to the inerrancy of the Scriptures.

“Oh, we absolutely do not believe in evolution,” these believers will tell ICR speakers at our seminars across the country. “We are committed to inspiration, but we don’t like to stir up dissension among our folks. A lot of our members hold to long ages, and we don’t think it’s necessary to choose between the ‘young earth’ and the ‘old earth’ positions. The Gospel is what’s important today, and we want to emphasize evangelism and godly living rather than controversial issues like origins.”

Oceans of Piffle

Thomas G. Barnes, a former ICR colleague and long-time Professor of Physics at the University of Texas at El Paso, concluded:

The inevitable consequence of evolutionary training is indoctrination in an inverted form of logic. Inverted logic begins at the wrong end and runs counter to the fundamental laws of science. Inverted logic is the type that would erroneously lead one to think he can lift himself up by his own bootstraps, with his feet still inside the boots.2

The “science falsely so called”3 is so full of inverted logic, empty promises, and unproven “facts” that it defies human reason why and how so many embrace its “piffle.”

Willingly Ignorant

Indeed, the major purveyors of this piffle know that it is nonsense! Richard Lewontin, a Harvard professor and a widely published, highly influential evolutionary geneticist, had this to say about the “scientific method” routinely used by him and his colleagues:

It is not that the methods and institutions of science somehow compel us to accept a material explanation of the phenomenal world, but, on the contrary, that we are forced by our a priori adherence to material causes to create an apparatus of investigation and a set of concepts that produce material explanations, no matter how counter-intuitive, no matter how mystifying to the uninitiated. Moreover that materialism is absolute for we cannot allow a Divine foot in the door.4

It is no wonder the Apostle Peter insists: “For this they willingly are ignorant of, that by the word of God the heavens were of old.”5 The “language” and “knowledge” of the creation speak every day and every night.6 That speech is so “clearly seen” that self-blinded, rebellious people who worship and serve “the creature more than the Creator” are “without excuse.”7

Deadly Compromise

That a majority of the world’s naturalistically-educated scientists believe in evolution is not a surprise. Jesus told us that “many” would follow the broad “way, that leadeth to destruction.”8 Much more disturbing, however, is the growing number of evangelical leaders who are willing–even passionate–to embrace some form of compromise with the atheistic theories of naturalism, causing them to subjugate the inerrant Word of God to “fit” with that which is alien to the text of Scripture.

Surely such leaders are aware that the evolutionary and creationist worldviews are in diametrical opposition to one another. Surely pastors know that “the backslider in heart shall be filled with his own ways” (Proverbs 14:14). Surely evangelically-trained Christian leaders are aware of the writings and warnings of Dr. Francis Schaeffer.

These two world views stand as totals in complete antithesis in content and also in their natural results….It is not just that they happen to bring forth different results, but it is absolutely inevitable that they will bring forth different results.9

One wonders if such leaders love “the praise of men more than the praise of God” (John 12:43).

“Progressive creationism” is not a modern interpretation developed to bring the Genesis record into harmony with modern science, but a very ancient concept devised to impose a theistic connotation upon the almost universal pagan evolutionary philosophies of antiquity. The primeval existence of the cosmos, with matter in some form present from eternity, was a dogma common to all ancient religions and philosophies, seeking as they were to function without an omnipotent, holy, eternal, personal, Creator God. Compromising monotheists, both in ancient Israel and in the early Christian church, repeatedly resorted to various allegorical interpretations of Scripture, involving some form of protracted creation, seeking to amalgamate creationist/redemptionist theology with pagan humanistic philosophy. Almost inevitably, however, such compromises ended in complete apostasy on the part of the compromisers.10

Charles Darwin began as a biblical creationist, but slid into total atheism as he accepted the “proof” of Lyellian uniformitarianism, the geological ages, and a form of the so-called progressive creationism. It was not long before he became a committed theistic evolutionist, and ultimately a full-fledged atheist.

After the infamous Scopes trial in which William Jennings Bryan embraced the compromised day-age theory during his “defense,” other creationist organizations failed to stand firm on the biblical account and quickly capitulated to theistic evolution or other such hybrids.

Exponential Decline

Those among the Lord’s family who are inclined to merge some portion of the evolutionary dogma with the biblical message are doomed to undermine their own faith, as well as those whom they influence. These two belief systems are diametrically opposed. It is not possible to “serve two masters” (Matthew 6:24). One or the other will dominate.

Ideas do have consequences. If one entertains an atheistically-founded doctrine, he or she will ultimately encounter conflict between the revelation that originates from the Creator God and the rebellious desires of godless humanity, which seeks to exclude God from its thinking.

The very reason for postulating an ancient cosmos is to escape from God–to push Him as far away in space and as far back in time as possible, hoping thereby eventually to escape His control altogether, letting Nature become “god.”

…Furthermore, if one must make a choice between a full-fledged theistic evolutionism and a compromising “progressive creationism,” with its “day/age” theory of Genesis one would have to judge the latter worse than the former, theologically speaking….Surely all those who really believe in the God of the Bible should see that any compromise with the geological-age system is theological chaos. Whether the compromise involves the day/age theory or the gap theory, the very concept of the geological ages implies divine confusion and cruelty, and the God of the Bible could not have been involved in such a thing as that at all.11

The decline of intellectual capability is frighteningly described in Romans 1. Once a person sees the evidence for God in the “things that are made” (Romans 1:20), and in spite of the speech and knowledge that presents itself every day to humanity everywhere (Psalm 19)–once a person rejects that knowledge in favor of a doctrine that changes “the glory of the uncorruptible God” and changes “the truth of God into a lie” (Romans 1:2325)–such a person becomes “vain in their imaginations” and their “foolish heart” becomes darkened (Romans 1:21). “Professing themselves to be wise, they became fools…. And even as they did not like to retain God in their knowledge, God gave them over to a reprobate mind.” (Romans 1:2228)

While the primary application of those warnings are directed toward godless men and women who “hold the truth in unrighteousness” (Romans 1:18), it is entirely possible for God’s own people to be plundered “through philosophy and vain deceit” (Colossians 2:8), and for those of the King’s children who do not grow in their faith to lose assurance of their salvation (2 Peter 1:9) or have their faith made “shipwreck” (1 Timothy 1:19).

Compromise with the “error of the wicked” can only end in a “fall from your own stedfastness” (2 Peter 3:17).

Contend for the Faith

Jude’s admonition to “earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints” (Jude 1:3) has never been more critical. Revivals in society have always been preceded by revivals among the saints. The promise for national healing is dependent on God’s people humbling themselves and turning from their sinful behavior (2 Chronicles 7:14). Once the repentance of that which is ungodly has been made, then prayer and seeking the face of our Creator will bring healing to the land. ICR’s founder phrased it this way some 20 years ago:

If it were not for the continued apathetic and compromising attitude of Christian theologians and other intellectuals on this vital doctrine of recent creation, evolutionary humanism would long since have been exposed and defeated. The world will never take the Biblical doctrine of the divine control and imminent consummation of all things very seriously until we ourselves take the Biblical doctrine of the recent creation of all things seriously. Neither in space nor in time is our great God of creation and consummation “very far from every one of us.”12

It is that understanding and the many challenges of God’s Word that drive the work of ICR today. All of us are committed to contend and to fight for the truth of God’s Word, at every level and in every opportunity that God opens up for us.

Become an unashamed “creation advocate” today and stand with ICR on the front lines of our battle for truth.

References

  1. Ford, L. 2008. Capitulating on Creation: Changing the truth of God into a lieActs & Facts. 37 (9): 4.
  2. Barnes, T. G. 1985. Oceans of Piffle in Evolutionary IndoctrinationActs & Facts. 14 (4).
  3. 1 Timothy 6:20.
  4. Lewontin, R. C. 1997. Billions and Billions of Demons. The New York Review of Books. 44 (1): 31.
  5. 2 Peter 3:5.
  6. Psalm 19:2-3.
  7. Romans 1:2025.
  8. Matthew 7:13.
  9. Schaeffer, F. 1981. A Christian Manifesto. Westchester, IL: Crossway Books, 18.
  10. Morris, H. 1984. Recent Creation Is a Vital DoctrineActs & Facts. 13 (6).
  11. Ibid.
  12. Ibid.

* Dr. Morris is Chief Executive Officer of the Institute for Creation Research.

The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221, United States

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

Nick Gathergood, David-Birkett, Harry-Kroto

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I have attempted to respond to all of Dr. Kroto’s friends arguments and I have posted my responses one per week for over a year now. Here are some of my earlier posts:

Arif Ahmed, Sir David AttenboroughMark Balaguer, Horace Barlow, Michael BatePatricia ChurchlandAaron CiechanoverNoam Chomsky,Alan DershowitzHubert DreyfusBart Ehrman, Stephan FeuchtwangDavid Friend,  Riccardo GiacconiIvar Giaever , Roy GlauberRebecca GoldsteinDavid J. Gross Brian Greene, Susan GreenfieldStephen F Gudeman,  Alan Guth, Jonathan HaidtTheodor W. HänschBrian Harrison,  Hermann HauserRoald Hoffmann,  Bruce HoodHerbert Huppert,  Gareth Stedman JonesSteve JonesShelly KaganMichio Kaku,  Stuart Kauffman,  Lawrence KraussHarry KrotoGeorge LakoffElizabeth Loftus,  Alan MacfarlanePeter MillicanMarvin MinskyLeonard Mlodinow Yujin NagasawaAlva NoeDouglas Osheroff,  Jonathan Parry,  Saul PerlmutterHerman PhilipseCarolyn PorcoRobert M. PriceLisa RandallLord Martin Rees,  Oliver SacksJohn SearleMarcus du SautoySimon SchafferJ. L. Schellenberg,   Lee Silver Peter Singer,  Walter Sinnott-ArmstrongRonald de SousaVictor StengerBarry Supple,   Leonard SusskindRaymond TallisNeil deGrasse Tyson,  .Alexander VilenkinSir John WalkerFrank WilczekSteven Weinberg, and  Lewis Wolpert,

In  the second video below in the 67th clip in this series are Richard Dawkins’ words that Harry Kroto wanted me to see. Since then I have read several of Richard Dawkins books and have attempted to respond to the contents of these books directly to Richard Dawkins by mail. In fact, I have been writing Richard Dawkins letters since May 15, 1994 which was the 10th anniversary of the passing of one of my heroes, Francis Schaeffer. Francis Schaeffer spent a lot of time responding to many of Richard Dawkins’ heroes such as Carl Sagan, Jacques Monod, H.J. Blackham, Isaac Newton, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Max Planck, Johann Sebastian Bach, Francis Bacon, Samuel Beckett, Leonardo Da Vinci, Albert Einstein, Michael Faraday, Gerald Horton, Edmund Leach, Louis Pasteur, George Wald, Jacob Bronowski, Steven Weinberg, Charles Darwin, Paul Kurtz, Peter Singer, Jonathan Miller, William B. Provine, Woody Allen, Noam Chomsky, James D. Watson, Francis Crick, Michael Polanyi, The Huxley family, Antony Flew, and Edward O. Wilson (Dawkins has since revised his opinion of Flew and Wilson, but he earlier regarded them very highly). 

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Francis Schaeffer 1911-1984

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Both Francis Schaeffer and Richard Dawkins have talked extensively about the life of Charles Darwin.

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Sir Harry Kroto with his high school friend Sir Ian McKellan at the FSU National High Field Magnetic Lab on Tuesday, October 27, 2009.

Image result for harry kroto richard dawkins

50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

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Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

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Edit Post ‹ The Daily Hatch — WordPress

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

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Richard Dawkins Photos Photos – Professor Stephen Hawking Unveils Medal For Science Communication – Zimbio

Professor Stephen Hawking Unveils Medal For Science Communication

Professor Stephen Hawking Unveils Medal For Science Communication In This Photo: Richard Dawkins, Stephen Hawking, Brian May, Harold Kroto, Alexi Leonov, Garik Israelian

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Richard Dawkins, founder of the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science. Credit: Don Arnold Getty Images

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Garik Israelian, Stephen Hawking, Alexey Leonov, Brian May, Richard Dawkins and Harry Kroto

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September 2, 2015 – 8:42 am

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said: …Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975 and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them. Harry Kroto ____________________ Below you have picture of 1996 Chemistry Nobel Prize Winner Dr. […]

MUSIC MONDAY Stairway to Heaven: The Song Remains Pretty Similar Did Led Zeppelin write the greatest song opening in rock history—or steal it? by Vernon Silver May 16, 2014, 2:56 PM CDT

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Stairway to Heaven: The Song Remains Pretty Similar

Did Led Zeppelin write the greatest song opening in rock history—or steal it?
May 16, 2014, 2:56 PM CDT
Photograph by Heilemann/Camera Press/Redux

Weary from touring, Led Zeppelin guitarist Jimmy Page retreated in 1970 to a stone cottage in Wales, called Bron-Yr-Aur, with no power or running water. Legend has it King Arthur fought his last battle nearby. Not far off is the mountain Cader Idris where, it’s said, those who spend a night at its summit are fated to die, go mad, or become poets. At Bron-Yr-Aur, by candlelight, Page constructed the bones of what may well be the most popular, and valuable, rock ’n’ roll song of all time, Stairway to Heaven. This included the introductory finger-picked section that launched a million guitar lessons.

Back in England that winter, Page laid out the budding epic for the band at another house, Headley Grange, where the magic continued around a fire fueled on one occasion by a section of stairway banister. As Page plucked, singer Robert Plant seemed to channel another world as he wrote the lyrics. To Page, who has referred to the song as “my baby,” it was Zeppelin’s crowning achievement. “Stairway crystallized the essence of the band,” he told then-teenage rock writer Cameron Crowe in a March 13, 1975, Rolling Stone interview. “It was a milestone for us. Every musician wants to do something of lasting quality, something which will hold up for a long time, and I guess we did it with Stairway.”

For generations of middle-class youth, the song is the 8-minute soundtrack of adolescent romance—or at least the anticipation of it. Stairway is slow dancing, the last song played at high school proms, sweet-16 parties, and summer camp mixers across a broad swath of the late 20th century.

Jimmy Page in 1969
Photograph by Chris Walter/WireImage via Getty Images

Stairway’s stature—financially, culturally, and musically—is towering. By 2008, when Conde Nast Portfolio magazine published an estimate that included royalties and record sales, the song had earned at least $562 million. It was so profitable in part because Led Zeppelin refused to release the song as a single, forcing fans to shell out for the entire album, which is untitled but known as Led Zeppelin IV. In the U.S., the album has sold more copies (23 million, according to the Recording Industry Association of America) than any save Michael Jackson’s Thriller and the Eagles’ Their Greatest Hits (1971-75). To this day, Warner Music Group cites the song in its annual reports as an example of its publishing portfolio.

For live audiences, Stairway’s power starts with its introductory notes. “Can you think of another song, any song, for which, when its first chord is played, an entire audience of 20,000 rise spontaneously to their feet, not just to cheer or clap hands, but in acknowledgment of an event that is crucial for all of them?” Observer critic Tony Palmer wrote in a 1975 profile. Dave Lewis writes in Led Zeppelin: The Complete Guide to Their Music that “Stairway has a pastoral opening cadence that is classical in feel and which has ensured its immortality.”

But what if those <a style="background-color:transparent;margin:0;padding:0;border-width:0 0 1px;border-image:initial;font-variant:inherit;font-weight:inherit;font-stretch:inherit;font-size:18px;line-height:inherit;font-family:inherit;vertical-align:baseline;color:#3c3c3c;text-decoration:none;border-color:initial initial #2800d7;border-style:initial initial solid;" title="Game: Which Is the Real Stairway to Heaven?” href=”http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-05-15/the-stairway-to-heaven-game-did-led-zeppelin-steal-the-greatest-song-opening-in-rock-history&#8221; target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow noopener”>opening notes weren’t actually written by Jimmy Page or any member of Led Zeppelin? What if the foundation of the band’s immortality had been lifted from another song by a relatively forgotten California band?

You’d need to rewrite the history of rock ’n’ roll.

In 1968 a Los Angeles area band called Spirit put out its first album, the self-titled Spirit. Among the songs was an instrumental piece, Taurus, written by the band’s guitarist, Randy California. (Born Randy Wolfe, California got his stage name while playing with Jimi Hendrix’s band in New York in 1966. Hendrix took to calling him Randy California to distinguish him from another Randy in the band. California, only 15 at the time, chose to make it stick.) Taurus runs just 2 minutes and 37 seconds. About a minute of it is a plucked guitar line that sounds a lot like the opening measures of Stairway to Heaven.

For Led Zeppelin, 1968 was a big year. The band recorded its first album and flew to the U.S. to promote it with a series of shows. The day after Christmas, it played its first concert in America at the Denver Auditorium Arena. Led Zeppelin opened for Spirit.

Mark Andes, Spirit’s founding bassist, says he believes the members of Led Zeppelin heard Taurus that day, beginning a process that would lead to its appropriation for Stairway. Taurus was a fixture of Spirit’s set at the time. “It was such a pretty moment, and it would typically come after a big forceful number and always got a good response,” Andes says at his home in a Houston suburb, where his music room is lined with framed gold records, many from the decade he later spent with the band Heart. “They would have seen it in that context.”

Members of Spirit including Jay Ferguson, Mark Andes, Ed Cassidy, Randy California and John Locke, pose for a portrait in 1970 in Los Angeles
Photograph by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Within four days of its inaugural U.S. gig, Led Zeppelin had already assimilated some of Spirit’s other music into its act. At Gonzaga University in Spokane, Wash., the band played a medley that included Spirit’s Fresh-Garbage. The song, with its grinding bass line, shares side one of Spirit with Taurus. Set lists posted on Led Zeppelin’s official website name Fresh-Garbage as a song for the Spokane show and at least 11 other shows in the following months. Even if Page hadn’t heard Taurus at that first gig, he would have had other chances to hear it live as the bands crossed paths through 1969. “We did quite a few shows with those guys,” says Andes. “Not to say they might not have heard it from the record.” On May 16, 1969, the bands played a concert together in Detroit at the Grande Ballroom. On July 5, 1969, at the Atlanta Pop Festival, Spirit played right before Zeppelin. The two bands played the closing day of the Seattle Pop Festival on July 27. The weekend of Aug. 30, they played on two separate days at the Texas International Pop Festival.

California doesn’t seem to have griped about Stairway’s genesis, at least publicly, for decades. Finally, citing the gigs they played together, California told journalist Jeff McLaughlin in the winter 1997 issue of Listener magazine that Led Zeppelin had filched his song. “I’d say it was a ripoff,” California said. “And the guys made millions of bucks on it and never said ‘Thank you,’ never said, ‘Can we pay you some money for it?’ It’s kind of a sore point with me. Maybe someday their conscience will make them do something about it.” On Jan. 2, 1997, California drowned while rescuing his 12-year-old son from a rip current in Hawaii.

Now the late California’s allegation may get its day in court. Andes and the trust that handles California’s royalties say they’re teaming up to seek credit for Stairway. They’re working with Francis Alexander Malofiy, a Philadelphia lawyer whose cases include a pending suit against the singer Usher over the writing credit for the song Bad Girl, which Usher is fighting. Starting in June, Led Zeppelin is preparing to cash in anew on Stairway and other hits by releasing all its albums in deluxe, remastered vinyl and CD editions. Malofiy says he is going to file a copyright infringement lawsuit and seek an injunction to block the rerelease of the album containing the song. “The idea behind this is to make sure that Randy California is given a writing credit on Stairway to Heaven,” says Malofiy, 36, who says he grew up with posters of Led Zeppelin on his bedroom wall. “It’s been a long time coming.”

Andes, 66, says he was so wrapped up in his music back then that he only recently noticed how similar Stairway was to California’s song. “The clarity seems to be a present-day clarity, not at the time of infringement. I can’t explain it. It is fairly blatant, and note for note,” he says. “It would just be nice if the Led Zeppelin guys gave Randy a little nod. That would be lovely.”

<a style="background-color:transparent;margin:0;padding:0;border-width:0 0 1px;border-image:initial;font-variant:inherit;font-weight:inherit;font-stretch:inherit;font-size:18px;line-height:inherit;font-family:inherit;vertical-align:baseline;color:#3c3c3c;text-decoration:none;border-color:initial initial #2800d7;border-style:initial initial solid;" title="Game: Which Is the Real Stairway to Heaven?” href=”http://www.businessweek.com/articles/2014-05-15/the-stairway-to-heaven-game-did-led-zeppelin-steal-the-greatest-song-opening-in-rock-history&#8221; target=”_blank” rel=”nofollow noopener”>

Jason Elzy, a spokesman for New York-based Warner Music, says, “Both Led Zeppelin and Warner Music will be offering no comment for this story.” Hollenbeck Music, which publishes Taurus and receives a portion of the royalties, is run by music mogul Lou Adler, a childhood friend of Randy California’s mother, who signed Spirit to its first record contract. Associates of Adler say he’s told them he believes the lick was lifted, but Adler isn’t part of the lawsuit and didn’t respond to requests for comment. Hollenbeck has compared the songs and doesn’t think there is a case, says Howard Frank, an executive at the Santa Monica (Calif.)-based company.

It’s no secret Led Zeppelin borrowed from blues and folk musicians in what it said was part of an organic tradition that created new, original works. Page has explained how he crafted songs with bits of others. “I always tried to bring something fresh to anything that I used,” he said in an interview for Light & Shade: Conversations With Jimmy Page by Brad Tolinski. “I always made sure to come up with some variation. In fact, I think in most cases, you would never know what the original source could be.” Zeppelin histories that address the issue seem to favor Page, calling him a transformer rather than a thief. In When Giants Walked the Earth: A Biography of Led Zeppelin, Mick Wall details the Welsh genesis of the song and writes that if Page was influenced by the chords from Taurus, “what he did with them was the equivalent of taking the wood from a garden shed and building it into a cathedral.”

But songwriters from whom Led Zeppelin drew inspiration, or more, have brought legal challenges for decades, often successfully. Since its 1969 debut album, the band has altered the credits and redirected portions of the royalties for some of its biggest songs, including Whole Lotta Love and Babe I’m Gonna Leave You. A copyright infringement suit over Dazed and Confused, a defining number that formed the centerpiece of Led Zeppelin’s live shows, was settled in 2012. The rise of the Internet has made comparisons by amateur plagiarism detectives easier, with mashup videos of Zeppelin songs and their alleged antecedents appearing on YouTube.

After its first two, mostly hard-rocking albums met with instant acclaim, Led Zeppelin put out the mainly acoustic Led Zeppelin III in October 1970, only to see it panned by critics. It did not sell well. The band called off a planned British Christmas tour so it could go back to the studio, according to When Giants Walked the Earth. The press speculated about a breakup. Against this backdrop, “Jimmy would soon discover his compromise between the two realms of music, the acoustic and the metallic,” Stephen Davis writes in Hammer of the Gods: The Led Zeppelin Saga. The six-string intro, according to Davis, was recorded at the Island Records studio in London in December 1970 before the band decamped to Headley Grange, where Plant wrote the lyrics.The song that emerged is a concerto in three movements. The first is the finger-picked portion, with a recorder accompaniment played by bassist John Paul Jones. The second section, on which Page switches to a 12-string guitar and drummer John Bonham comes in, is the “and it makes me wonder” section. The third and final “and as we wind on down the road” movement speeds up the tempo. A headbanging three-chord progression repeats under Page’s guitar solo before the instruments surrender to Plant’s final, a cappella “and she’s buying a stairway to heaven.” The song made Led Zeppelin’s fourth album, released in November 1971, its biggest.

As the band rose to rock deity status on the back of Stairway, behind the scenes the slow and expensive unraveling of its intellectual-property foundations was already beginning. In the early 1970s, Chester (Howlin’ Wolf) Burnett’s music publisher sued Led Zeppelin for The Lemon Song, saying it was derived from Burnett’s Killing Floor. The parties settled, according to When Giants Walked the Earth. Burnett got a writing credit.

Willie Dixon in 1970
Photograph by Gilles Petard/Redferns via Getty Images

The next case started around 1979, after Shirley Dixon-Nelson, the daughter of blues legend Willie Dixon, heard Led Zeppelin’s Whole Lotta Love at a friend’s house in Chicago. It’s Led Zeppelin’s highest-charting U.S. single, reaching No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100. To Dixon’s 13-year-old daughter, the song sounded a lot like her father’s You Need Love. Dixon sued, reaching a settlement in 1987, and the song is now credited to the four Zeppelin members and Dixon, who died in 1992. Despite the settlement, “there was no significant money to Willie from record sales. He went to his grave feeling that he was not represented properly,” his wife, Marie Dixon, told Barney Hoskyns in Led Zeppelin: The Oral History of the World’s Greatest Rock Band. Today in Chicago, Willie Dixon’s Blues Heaven Foundation runs a blues education program in local schools and awards college scholarships to study topics including artists’ legal rights.

In the mid-’80s, another artist stepped forward. To reach the home of the 83-year-old woman who wrote the original Babe I’m Gonna Leave You, you drive up a dirt road on the edge of California’s Sierra National Forest. In a house made from two double-wide mobile homes, Anne Bredon, silver-haired and lanky, spends her days making jewelry, which she sells at craft fairs. To get to town for supplies, she drives a white electric car plastered with bumper stickers like “My Other Car Is a Broom.” She’s not a fan of hard rock.

Bredon wrote Babe around 1960 as a student at the University of California at Berkeley. She shared the chords and words with a fellow student, Janet Smith, who took Babe with her to Oberlin College and popularized it there. In 1962, Joan Baez came through the Ohio campus, heard Babe, and added it to her repertoire, including it in a songbook (credited to Bredon) and on a live album (not credited). In 1969, Led Zeppelin’s first album included a version of the song based on the Baez recording, listed as “Trad. arr. Jimmy Page.” “Jimmy Page must have assumed it was a folk song,” Bredon says. She, in the meantime, had no idea that her song was in the pantheon of classic rock.

In 1981, Bredon’s old college friend, Smith, was strumming the tune at home when her 12-year-old son popped into the room. “Gee, Mom, I didn’t know you did Led Zeppelin songs,” he said, according to Smith. It wasn’t until the mid-1980s that Smith happened to look at a copy of the debut Led Zeppelin album in a Tower Records store and realized her friend hadn’t gotten credit. She contacted Bredon with a proposal to hire a lawyer, and the two agreed to split any money they could recover. To resolve the dispute, Led Zeppelin’s publisher made an offer: Because the band had made the song famous, the authorship of the Zeppelin version should be split 50-50, with half going to Bredon and the other half to Page and Plant. Future editions of the song would be credited, “Words and music by Anne Bredon, Jimmy Page, and Robert Plant.”

Bredon, who was married to a math professor and living in New Jersey at the time, got what she says was a small amount for back royalties and has collected royalty checks regularly since. “I just wish we could have known about it earlier,” says Bredon in her living room, holding her banjo. “I lost out on a lot of money. … What I really wanted was my credit. I wanted to get my name on the song so they knew I wrote it, damn it.”

In June 2007, Howard Stern had Denny Somach on as a guest. Somach was the producer of the syndicated Led Zeppelin show, Carol Miller’s Get the Led Out. A big chunk of Somach’s appearance with Stern was devoted to Dazed and Confused and how it sounded a lot like another song called … Dazed and Confused. The earlier version, by a folk singer named Jake Holmes, has the same slow, descending bass line, a similar melody, and some lyrics in common. Holmes had since left folk music to write advertising jingles, including Dr Pepper’s Be a Pepper and the U.S. Army recruiting song Be All You Can Be. After the radio program put Holmes in the spotlight, “He hired a lawyer,” Somach says.

On June 28, 2010, Holmes sued Page and his publishing and record companies in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, alleging copyright infringement of his 1967 Dazed and Confused. He demanded damages, profits, and an accounting. In a 2007 interview published in Somach’s book, Get the Led Out: How Led Zeppelin Became the Biggest Band in the World, Holmes said he’d known Led Zeppelin had done a version of his song but had been unaware it was a highlight of its live show, with renditions running as long as 20 minutes. “I wasn’t interested in Led Zeppelin,” he said. “It wasn’t until about 20 years later that I really thought this wasn’t fair.”

On April 6, 2011, Page’s lawyers filed his response to the lawsuit, denying any copyright infringement and saying the 1969 Led Zeppelin song was independently created. Additionally, Page’s filing said of the Holmes song, “plaintiff’s composition entitled ‘Dazed and Confused’ lacks originality and is thus not protectable by copyright.” Page also requested attorneys’ fees and costs. At the time, Led Zeppelin was preparing for the 2012 release of Celebration Day, the DVD and double CD of its 2007 London reunion concert—on which Dazed and Confused, at 11 minutes and 19 seconds, was to be the longest track. On Nov. 7, 2011, the two parties stipulated to the court that the case should be dismissed, which it was, on Jan. 17, 2012. When Celebration Day came out in November of that year, Dazed and Confused was credited as “Jimmy Page; inspired by Jake Holmes.” Citing the settlement, Holmes declined to comment for this story. “I can’t really talk about it,” he said in an e-mail.

Now it’s Spirit’s turn.

On an afternoon in March, Spirit bassist Andes is standing in the study of his Texas home listening to a recording of the Howard Stern episode for the first time. His lawyer, Malofiy, who is visiting from Philadelphia, has found the audio online and plays it from Andes’s laptop into a pair of speakers above the desk. A barefoot Andes, wearing a white T-shirt, his gray hair in a ponytail, listens as Somach and Stern pick through the hits of the band that once opened for him.

“Everyone knows Dazed and Confused, I mean, that’s a dead ripoff,” Stern says on the recording after playing both versions.

“That’s amazing,” Andes responds.

“Give Jake Holmes a credit,” Stern says.

“I agree. Give credit,” Andes says, laughing. Then Taurus comes on. “Aww,” Andes says. Stern plays a clip from Stairway for comparison. “Yeah,” Andes says, fluttering his left hand over his heart. “Aww. That’s so great.”

Later, in his kitchen, which overlooks a pond and a pasture for the four horses he and his wife own, Andes leafs through a copy of Somach’s book. He reads aloud from the pages that list Spirit’s shared touring history with Led Zeppelin. “It’s so interesting that this is all coming out and it’s so well documented. I love it,” he says. He’d heard that Led Zeppelin had played Spirit’s Fresh-Garbage, but this is the first time he’s seen it written about.

After some minor hits with Spirit, California’s career faded
Photograph by Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

Part of the reason Stairway’s authorship hasn’t been challenged is Spirit’s members and their survivors haven’t had the means. Randy California’s career sputtered. Spirit had some small hits with I Got A Line On You and Nature’s Way, but his original record deal left him with meager payments. In his final years, living in Ojai, north of Los Angeles, he bartered songs for food. “He’d play sitar at an Indian restaurant in return for being fed,” says Bruce Pates, Spirit’s archivist, who worked with the band in the 1980s and ’90s. After California drowned, his nephew Josh Keiser helped clear out his rental apartment and found he was living on ramen noodles, Keiser says.

After California died, his mother ran the trust that collects his royalties with Mick Skidmore, a London-born former rock journalist who works as a customs consultant in Boston, handling paperwork for importers and exporters. Since her death in 2009, Skidmore has done the job himself. “I don’t have the resources and barely have the time to do the trust stuff and hold down two jobs. It’s like a hobby,” he says. Randy and his mother had talked about a legal challenge but never acted, he says. “Nobody had any money, and they thought the statute of limitations was done.”

Neither issue may be a problem. While the statute of limitations for civil copyright infringement under U.S. law is three years, courts often read that as only restricting back royalties to the previous three years, not barring old infringements. As for money, it appears Malofiy, who had already been representing Andes on other matters, will handle the case on contingency, though he wouldn’t comment on the exact financial arrangements. Skidmore says he’s ready to take a shot at it. “It will be nice if Randy got the credit,” he says.

To show infringement under U.S. copyright law, you generally need to demonstrate two elements: that an original work was copied to make something substantially similar, and that the copier had access to the original work. If a Stairway-Taurus case were to go to trial, each side would hire musicologists who would present opposing analyses of how alike, or not, the songs are, says John Hartmann, a record executive and lecturer on the music business at Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles. “In a court this would be measured by experts, and a jury would have to decide,” he says.

Ultimately, the legal test isn’t what experts say. Under U.S. law, the standard a jury or judge would apply is whether the song in question sounds like a copy to an ordinary lay listener. To get an idea in this case, I conducted an informal poll of passersby on Los Angeles’s Venice Beach and Hermosa Beach, playing clips from Taurus and asking what song it sounded like. Of the 58 people surveyed, 18 named Stairway to Heaven, without being given any song titles to pick from. It was the only song anyone mentioned by name, with the exception of one young man who recognized it as Taurus.

One of the respondents who suggested it was Stairway happened to be a copyright lawyer, Eric Maier. “It certainly sounds like it would be hard to argue it’s a coincidence,” said Maier, who asked if Spirit needed a lawyer. “If it did get to a jury, it can’t be good for Led Zeppelin.”

“Of course, there’s millions of dollars at stake here,” Malofiy says. Who would actually get any cash could be as sticky a question as infringement. According to Andes, Skidmore, and Pates, most of the money from Spirit’s earliest songs goes to the publisher, Adler, with the rest going to the composers. If a ruling or settlement were based on the Taurus copyright, which is in Randy California’s name, the composer’s share would go to his trust. That means it would end up at the Randy California Project in Ventura County.

On an evening in March, about 50 children wearing Randy California Project T-shirts take the stage at a middle school there, where Randy once lived. These performers get their music lessons, loaner instruments, and band direction paid for by Randy California’s trust, which has made the music project its sole mission. Over the past four years the trust has given $93,000 to Ventura schools and $27,000 to schools in Quincy, Mass., where Skidmore lives, he says. California’s sister, Marla Randall, is attending the concert. She stands in the back of the room, wearing a peace sign pendant around her neck.

The first group, third graders with recorders and xylophones, plays Old MacDonald Had a Farm. They’re followed by the Randy California Band, a brass, woodwind, and percussion ensemble of fourth and fifth graders. Halfway through the show, Ventura Unified School District Superintendent Trudy Arriaga takes the microphone and pays tribute to the man whose music has made this all possible. “Randy California is watching over, looking over, the children of Ventura,” she says.

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Open Letter #99 to Ricky Gervais on comparison of the Tony of AFTER LIFE to the Solomon of ECCLESIASTES, Don’t attempt to make your job the place you look for meaning because that is like chasing the wind!!!

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After Life #1 Trailer

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After Life 2 Trailer

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On Saturday April 18, 2020 at 6pm in London and noon in Arkansas, I had a chance to ask Ricky Gervais a question on his Twitter Live broadcast which was  “Is Tony a Nihilist?” At the 20:51 mark Ricky answers my question. Below is the video:

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If Death is the end then what is the point Kath asks below:

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Kath: You are an atheist?

(Above) Tony and Anne on the bench at the graveyard where their spouses are buried.

July 25, 2020 
Ricky Gervais 


Dear Ricky,  

This is the 99th day in a row that I have written another open letter to you to comment on some of your episodes of AFTER LIFE, and then I wanted to pass along some evidence that indicates the Bible is historically accurate.

Ricky Gervais plays bereaved husband Tony Johnson in AFTER LIFE


Matt: Okay everyone listen up. That was Mr. Middleton. Some of you know that he owns everything, the newspaper and the building. He wants to stop running the paper. He wants to close the paper and then sell the building. 
Tony: Probably sell it to a property developer. This would be luxury flats. 
Kath: I will be alright. Tambury Brewery already said they would take me on. I think the boss fancies me. 
Tony: Well that is the end of the Tambury Gazette kids. Don’t worry we will just get another [crappy] job that barely pays enough to live. 

Sandy: This is the only job I have ever liked. I won’t have a job. My mum is disabled and my daddy can’t work. My brother and sister are in school and they get nothing as it is. (Starts to cry.) 

Tony: Okay. 
Sandy: So I got to find another job that I hate. 
Tony: Okay we will save the paper. 
Sandy: How?

Tony: We will get more revenue. Kath will get more. 
Kath: How?

Tony: You are really good at your job. You will charge more for advertising, like Tambury Brewery. They will pay more, won’t they. Or we will get a loan. Happens all the time. We will buy the building and we will pay back the loan with the profit from the paper and it will be our business to make it work. So don’t worry. 
Sandy: You promise? You will save the paper? 
Tony: Yeah. We will. 
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Tony is involved in a very worthwhile effort to save the newspaper but ultimately will it being meaning to his life UNDER THE SUN?

After Life on Netflix

After Life on Netflix stars Ricky Gervais as a bereaved husband (Image: Netflix)


I want to quote Mark Henry who is one of the teaching pastors at FELLOWSHIP BIBLE CHURCH from his sermon on ECCLESIASTES. 

(Pictured below Pastor Mark Henry with his family)

Here is a part of that sermon below:

WORK BEGAN WITH GOD. GOD IS A WORKER. Jesus was a carpenter. He had a job too. 

GOD CREATED ADAM AND EVE TO WORK AND BUILD A CULTURE THAT WOULD GLORIFY HIM. WE ARE WORKERS. Being made in God’s image also includes being designed to work, and we have that desire is in us. But in Genesis 3 because of our sin God’s beautiful design for accomplishing and doing comes to a bitter and untimely end. God cursed the ground so that creation continually wars against itself making all of our labor a frustrating toil. 

THERE IS NO WORK IN OUR LIVES THAT HAS NOT BEEN KISSED BY THE CURSE OF THE FALL. 

Ecclesiastes 2:18 English Standard Version (ESV)

The Vanity of Toil

18 I hated all my toil in which I toil under the sun, seeing that I must leave it to the man who will come after me,WHAT MAKES OUR WORK TOIL IS THAT EVER SINCE THE FALL WE HAVE BEEN LOOKING TO OUR WORK TO GIVE US A SENSE OF IDENTITY. We believe we are what we do. Our work is a toil because we try and find our identity in our work rather than find our identity in Jesus. Why do you think there are so many workaholics? Workaholics have this obsessive desire to succeed and this comes out of the hope that maybe that some amount of work and accomplishment will bring meaning to their life. However, no amount of work can bring true satisfaction to our souls. No matter how much money we make there is always this sense that something is missing and there has to be more to life. Solomon says if you think you can cheat this because you are saying that you are doing all this hard work for your kids, well that is vanity too!!!!!Remember SOLOMON IS OLDER AND HE SEES THAT FINISH LINE OF DEATH QUICKLY APPROACHING and he has worked to build this massive empire and the question that haunts him is this: WHAT IF THE KID WHO INHERITS ALL MY STUFF IS AN IDIOT?”Ecclesiastes 2:21 English Standard Version (ESV)

21 because sometimes a person who has toiled with wisdom and knowledge and skill must leave everything to be enjoyed by someone who did not toil for it. This also is vanity and a great evil.

Our works and achievements don’t truly last. In time what we have accomplished and gotten will be lost by the next generation because they didn’t earn it themselves. They don’t value it the same way. 

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There are two points that my pastor made that I want to directly personalize to you Ricky!!!

1st point: (You were born in 1961 just like me and over half our life is past!!!) YOU LIKE SOLOMON ARE IN THE FINAL DAYS OF YOUR LIFE (YOU SEE THE FINISH LINE APPROACHING) AND YOU NEED TO LOOK AT SOLOMON’S FINAL CONCLUSION IN THE LAST TWO VERSES OF ECCLESIASTES:

13 The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.14 For God will bring every deed into judgment, with every secret thing, whether good or evil.

2nd point: Dont make your legacy your job!!!

Solomon points out that is like CHASING THE WIND to try and pass on your legacy to your son because he may be an idiot. 

Francis Schaeffer comments on ECCLESIASTES below:

Works of Men done Under the Sun

After wisdom Solomon comes to the great WORKS of men. Ecclesiastes 1:14,  “I have seen all the works which have been done under the sun, and behold, all is [p]vanity and striving after wind.” Solomon is the man with an empire at this disposal that speaks. This is the man who has the copper refineries in Ezion-geber. This is the man who made the stables across his empire. This is the man who built the temple in Jerusalem. This is the man who stands on the world trade routes. He is not a provincial. He knew what was happening on the Phonetician coast and he knew what was happening in Egypt. There is no doubt he already knew something of building. This is Solomon and he pursues the greatness of his own construction and his conclusion is VANITY AND VEXATION OF SPIRIT.

Ecclesiastes 2:18-20

18 Thus I hated all the fruit of my labor for which I had labored under the sun, for I must leave it to the man who will come after me. 19 And who knows whether he will be a wise man or a fool? Yet he will have control over all the fruit of my labor for which I have labored by acting wisely under the sun. This too is vanity.20 Therefore I completely despaired of all the fruit of my labor for which I had labored under the sun.

He looked at the works of his hands, great and multiplied by his wealth and his position and he shrugged his shoulders.

Ecclesiastes 2:22-23

22 For what does a man get in all his labor and in his striving with which he labors under the sun23 Because all his days his task is painful and grievous; even at night his mind does not rest. This too is vanity.

Man can not rest and yet he is never done and yet the things which he builds will out live him. If one wants an ironical three phrases these are they. There is a Dutch saying, “The tailor makes many suits but one day he will make a suit that will outlast the tailor.”

xxxx

Lots of evidence points to the Bible being historically accurate, for instance, King David existed!!

House of David Inscription

The current issue of Biblical Archaeology Review has an article entitled, “Archaeology Confirms 50 Real People in the Bible,” by Lawrence Mykytiuk. The first in his list is King David, whose name was found in the Tel Dan Stela, found in Tel Dan in July, 1993. Mykytiuk writes:

According to the Bible, David ruled in the tenth century B.C.E., using the traditional chronology. Until 1993, however, the personal name David had never appeared in the archaeological record, let alone a reference to King David. That led some scholars to doubt his very existence. According to this speculation David was either a shadowy, perhaps mythical, ancestor or a literary creation of later Biblical authors and editors. In 1993, however, the now-famous Tel Dan inscription was found in an excavation led by Avraham Biran. Actually, it was the team’s surveyor, Gila Cook, who noticed the inscription on a basalt stone in secondary use in the lower part of a wall. Written in ninth-century B.C.E. Aramaic, it was part of a victory stele commissioned by a non-Israelite king mentioning his victory over “the king of Israel” and the “House of David.” [See BAR 20:02, Mar-Apr 1994] Whether or not the foreign king’s claim to victory was true, it is clear that a century after he had died, David was still remembered as the founder of a dynasty.

This past October I had the occasion to photograph this important stela, which is housed in the Israel Museum in Jerusalem.

Gary Byers suggests that the stela “most likely memorializes the victory of Hazael, king of Aram, over Joram, king of Israel, and Ahaziah, king of Judah, at Ramoth Gilead recorded in 2 Kings 8:28–29″ (Bible and Spade 16:4, p. 121).

For more information on the House of David see Ferrell Jenkins’ post illustrating Isaiah 7 here.

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The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002

PS: What is the meaning of life? Find it in the end of the open letter I wrote to you on April 23, 2020. 

Below is the workforce of THE TAMBURY GAZETTE 

Seen below is the third episode of AFTERLIFE (season 1) when Matt takes Tony to a comedy club with front row seats to cheer him up but it turns into disaster!!!

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Part 1 “Why have integrity in Godless Darwinian Universe where Might makes Right?”

Part 2 “My April 14, 2016 Letter to Ricky mentioned Book of Ecclesiastes and the Meaninglessness of Life”

Part 3 Letter about Brandon Burlsworth concerning suffering and pain and evil in the world.  “Why didn’t Jesus save her [from cancer]?” (Tony’s 10 year old nephew George in episode 2)

Part 4 Letter on Solomon on Death Tony in episode one, “It should be everyone’s moral duty to kill themselves.”

Part 5 Letter on subject of Learning in Ecclesiastes “I don’t read books of fiction but mainly science and philosophy”

Part 6 Letter on Luxuries in Ecclesiastes Part 6, The Music of AFTERLIFE (Part A)

Part 7 Letter on Labor in Ecclesiastes My Letter to Ricky on Easter in 2017 concerning Book of Ecclesiastes and the legacy of a person’s life work

Part 8 Letter on Liquor in Ecclesiastes Tony’s late wife Lisa told him, “Don’t get drunk all the time alright? It will only make you feel worse in the log run!”

Part 9 Letter on Laughter in Ecclesiastes , I said of laughter, “It is foolishness;” and of mirth, “What does it accomplish?” Ecclesiastes 2:2

Part 10 Final letter to Ricky on Ladies in Ecclesiastes “I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song, and—most exquisite of all pleasures— voluptuous maidens for my bed…behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun” Ecclesiastes 2:8-11.

Part 11 Letter about Daniel Stanhope and optimistic humanism  “If man has been kicked up out of that which is only impersonal by chance , then those things that make him man-hope of purpose and significance, love, motions of morality and rationality, beauty and verbal communication-are ultimately unfulfillable and thus meaningless.” (Francis Schaeffer)

Part 12 Letter on how pursuit of God is only way to get Satisfaction Dan Jarrell “[In Ecclesiastes] if one seeks satisfaction they will never find it. In fact, every pleasure will be fleeting and can not be sustained, BUT IF ONE SEEKS GOD THEN ONE FINDS SATISFACTION”

Part 13 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon realizing he will die just as a dog will die “For men and animals both breathe the same air, and both die. So mankind has no real advantage over the beasts; what an absurdity!” Ecclesiastes

Part 14 Letter to Stephen Hawking on 3 conclusions of humanism and Bertrand Russell destruction of optimistic humanism. “That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms—no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.”(Bertrand Russell, Free Man’s Worship)

Part 15 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Leonardo da Vinci and Solomon and Meaningless of life “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes Book of Ecclesiastes Part 15 “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes 2:17

Part 16 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon’s longing for death but still fear of death and 5 conclusions of humanism on life UNDER THE SUN. Francis Schaeffer “Life is just a series of continual and unending cycles and man is stuck in the middle of the cycle. Youth, old age, Death. Does Solomon at this point embrace nihilism? Yes!!! He exclaims that the hates life (Ecclesiastes 2:17), he longs for death (4:2-3) Yet he stills has a fear of death (2:14-16)”

Mandeep Dhillon as Sandy on her first assignment in ‘After Life’. (Twitter)

A still from ‘After Life’ that captures the vibe of the Tambury Gazette. (Twitter)

Michael Scott of THE OFFICE (USA) with Ricky Gervais 

After Life on Netflix

After Life on Netflix stars Ricky Gervais as a bereaved husband (Image: Netflix)

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Psychiatrist played by Paul Kaye seen below.

The sandy beach walk

Tony Johnson with his dog Brandi seen below:

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Francis Schaeffer THE AGE of FRAGMENTATION

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FRANCIS SCHAEFFER ANALYZES ART AND CULTURE Part 329 LETTER TO HUGH HEFNER ( After touring the Playboy mansion Peter O’Toole said, “This is the way God would have done it if he had the money.”) Featured Artist is Katrin Sigurdardóttir

Francis Schaeffer has rightly noted concerning Hugh Hefner that Hefner’s goal  with the “playboy mentality is just to smash the puritanical ethnic.” I have made the comparison throughout this series of blog posts between Hefner and King Solomon (the author of the BOOK of ECCLESIASTES).  I have noticed that many preachers who have delivered sermons on Ecclesiastes have also mentioned Hefner as a modern day example of King Solomon especially because they both tried to find sexual satisfaction through the volume of women you could slept with in a lifetime.

Ecclesiastes 2:8-10 The Message (MSG)

I piled up silver and gold,
        loot from kings and kingdoms.
I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song,
    and—most exquisite of all pleasures—
    voluptuous maidens for my bed.

9-10 Oh, how I prospered! I left all my predecessors in Jerusalem far behind, left them behind in the dust. What’s more, I kept a clear head through it all. Everything I wanted I took—I never said no to myself. I gave in to every impulse, held back nothing. I sucked the marrow of pleasure out of every task—my reward to myself for a hard day’s work!

1 Kings 11:1-3 English Standard Version (ESV)

11 Now King Solomon loved many foreign women, along with the daughter of Pharaoh: Moabite, Ammonite, Edomite, Sidonian, and Hittite women, from the nations concerning which the Lord had said to the people of Israel, “You shall not enter into marriage with them, neither shall they with you, for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods.” Solomon clung to these in love.He had 700 wives, who were princesses, and 300 concubines. And his wives turned away his heart.

Francis Schaeffer observed concerning Solomon, “You can not know woman by knowing 1000 women.”

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Francis August Schaeffer (January 30, 1912 – May 15, 1984[1])

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building of king solomon’s temple

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The Judgment of Solomon, 1617 by Peter Paul Rubens(1577–1640)

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Steel mezzotint engraving by John Sartain
of the 1863 painting by Christian Schussele

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Adrian Pierce Rogers (September 12, 1931 – November 15, 2005)

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Larry Joe Speaks  (August 20, 1947 to April 7, 2017)

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On April 16, 2017 is the day we celebrate Easter which is about Christ’s resurrection from the dead!!!

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Hugh Hefner and Barbi Benton at the Playboy Mansion in LA

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Will Smith, Hugh-Hefner, Karyn Parsons and Alfonso Ribeiro at the Playboy Mansion

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__Hugh Hefner, Lawrence Fishburne and Dennis Hopper in 2005 at the Playboy Mansion

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__April 16, 2017Hugh HefnerPlayboy Mansion16236 Charing Cross RoadLos Angeles, CA 90024Dear Hugh,

Today is Easter and I wanted to talk to you about that especially at the end of this letter. I hope you got a chance to go to church today. What is Easter about anyway? I can assure you one thing and that it would not have been necessary for Christ to die and be raised again if we could simply EARN our way to heaven. Ironically, I wrote you today about your LABOR (your life’s work).Hugh, you built an empire on the Playboy Magazine and then you attempted to make your PLAYBOY MANSION WEST a showplace for  everything you stood for. In  fact, after touring it Peter O’Toole said, “This is the way God would have done it if he had the money.” I read Steven Watts’ book “MR PLAYBOY: Hugh Hefner and the American Dream” and on page 274 it asserts:Surrounding the mansion were six acres of land with a greenhouse, game-house, guesthouse, sweeping lawns in front and back, and the largest stand of redwoods in Southern California. Almost immediately, however, Hefner decided to extensively renovate the grounds to create a personal fantasy setting.Anthony Haden-Guest in an article for ROLLING STONE MAGAZINE in 1973 noted:“…a mullioned slab of Old Englishry, a gray gleam of ersatz granite in the Southern California sunlight. To the back the image dissolves, re-forms. Sexy vicarage metamorphoses to miniature Versailles.”I have personally visited Versailles in France and I can see from these pictures that Anthony Haden-Guest is right.3000 years ago Solomon reached the same conclusion in the Book of Ecclesiastes concerning his LABOR:I have seen everything that is done UNDER THE SUN, and behold, all is vanity and a striving after wind. (Ecclesiastes 2:14).Therefore, it just seems proper since many times in the past you have been  called a modern day Solomon to  compare you to King Solomon and look at what both you and Solomon have accomplished in the area of LABOR (or his life’s work). For Solomon that basically came down to the labor he commissioned in his building campaigns through out his kingdom plus the effort he put forth building his own palace and the temple in Jerusalem.II Chronicles 9:15-28:

15 King Solomon made 200 large shields of beaten gold; 600 shekels[d] of beaten gold went into each shield. 16 And he made 300 shields of beaten gold; 300 shekels of gold went into each shield; and the king put them in the House of the Forest of Lebanon. 17 The king also made a great ivory throne and overlaid it with pure gold… 20 All King Solomon’s drinking vessels were of gold, and all the vessels of the House of the Forest of Lebanon were of pure gold. Silver was not considered as anything in the days of Solomon.21 For the king’s ships went to Tarshish with the servants of Hiram. Once every three years the ships of Tarshish used to come bringing gold, silver, ivory, apes, and peacocks.

22 Thus King Solomon excelled all the kings of the earth in riches and in wisdom23 And all the kings of the earth sought the presence of Solomon to hear his wisdom, which God had put into his mind. 24 Every one of them brought his present, articles of silver and of gold, garments, myrrh, spices, horses, and mules, so much year by year. 25 And Solomon had 4,000 stalls for horses and chariots, and 12,000 horsemen, whom he stationed in the chariot cities and with the king in Jerusalem.26 And he ruled over all the kings from the Euphrates to the land of the Philistines and to the border of Egypt. 27 And the king made silver as common in Jerusalem as stone, and he made cedar as plentiful as the sycamore of the Shephelah.28 And horses were imported for Solomon from Egypt and from all lands.

1 Kings 7:1-9 English Standard Version (ESV)

Solomon Builds His Palace

7Solomon was building his own house thirteen years, and he finished his entire house.

He built the House of the Forest of Lebanon….And it was covered with cedar above the chambers that were on the forty-five pillars, fifteen in each row. There were window frames in three rows, and window opposite window in three tiers. All the doorways and windows had square frames, and window was opposite window in three tiers….There was a porch in front with pillars, and a canopy in front of them.

And he made the Hall of the Throne where he was to pronounce judgment, even the Hall of Judgment. It was finished with cedar from floor to rafters.

His own house where he was to dwell, in the other court back of the hall, was of like workmanship. Solomon also made a house like this hall for Pharaoh’s daughterwhom he had taken in marriage.

All these were made of costly stones, cut according to measure, sawed with saws, back and front, even from the foundation to the coping, and from the outside to the great court. 

Ecclesiastes 2:4-11 English Standard Version (ESV)

made great works. I built houses and planted vineyards for myself. made myself gardens and parks, and planted in them all kinds of fruit trees. made myself pools from which to water the forest of growing trees. I bought male and female slaves, and had slaves who were born in my house. I had also great possessions of herds and flocks, more than any who had been before me in Jerusalem. I also gathered for myself silver and gold and the treasure of kings and provinces. I got singers, both men and women, and many concubines,[a] the delight of the sons of man.

So I became great and surpassed all who were before me in Jerusalem. Also my wisdom remained with me.10 And whatever my eyes desired I did not keep from them. I kept my heart from no pleasure, for my heart found pleasure in all my toil, and this was my reward for all my toil.11 Then I considered all that my hands had done and the toil I had expended in doing it, and behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun.

I have read a lot about your life and your life is the closest I can think of to the universal man that Francis Schaeffer talks about in the past. Schaeffer’s two examples are Leonardo da Vinci and Solomon. 

Below are the comments of Francis Schaeffer on Solomon and the Book of Ecclesiastes:

Leonardo da Vinci and Solomon both were universal men searching for the meaning in life. Solomon was searching for a meaning in the midst of the details of life. His struggle was to find the meaning of life. Not just plans in life. Anybody can find plans in life. A child can fill up his time with plans of building tomorrow’s sand castle when today’s has been washed away. There is  a difference between finding plans in life and purpose in life. Humanism since the Renaissance and onward has never found it and it has never found it. Modern man has not found it and it has always got worse and darker in a very real way.

We have here the declaration of Solomon’s universality:

1 Kings 4:30-34

English Standard Version (ESV)

30 so that Solomon’s wisdom surpassed the wisdom of all the people of the east and all the wisdom of Egypt. 31 For he was wiser than all other men…and his fame was in all the surrounding nations. 32 He also spoke 3,000 proverbs, and his songs were 1,005. 33 He spoke of trees, from the cedar that is in Lebanon to the hyssop that grows out of the wall. He spoke also of beasts, and of birds, and of reptiles, and of fish. 34 And people of all nations came to hear the wisdom of Solomon, and from all the kings of the earth, who had heard of his wisdom.

_________________________

Here is the universal man and his genius. Solomon is the universal man with a empire at his disposal. Solomon had it all.

Ecclesiastes 1:3

English Standard Version (ESV)

What does man gain by all the toil
    at which he toils under the sun?

Solomon took a look at the meaning of life on the basis of human life standing alone between birth and death “under the sun.” This phrase UNDER THE SUN appears over and over in Ecclesiastes.

__________

The Christian Scholar Ravi Zacharias noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term UNDER THE SUN — What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system and you are left with only this world of Time plus Chance plus matter.” 

Many have tried sexual exploits just like Solomon did, and many have thrown their efforts into  business too.Sadly Solomon also found the pursuit of great works in his labor just as empty. In Ecclesiastes 2:11 he asserted, “THEN I CONSIDERED ALL THAT MY HANDS HAD DONE AND THE TOLL I HAD EXPENDED IN DOING IT, AND BEHOLD, ALL WAS VANITY AND A STRIVING AFTER WIND, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun.”

HUGH, OF ALL PEOPLE YOU PROBABLY THINK YOU HAVE COME UP WITH SOMETHING TRULY NEW UNDER THE SUN!!!!!!

Many like you have claimed that they have pioneered something new.   But Solomon noted in Ecclesiastes 1:9, “What has been is what will be, and what has been done is what will be done, and there is nothing new under the sun.”

Holman Old Testament Commentary Volume 14, Ecclesiastes, Song of Solomon byDaniel Akin and David Moore:

Solomon now moves to the second way he demonstrated that life apart from God has no meaning–that there is nothing new under the sun. At first glance these words seem naive. Saying that there is nothing new seems like an overstatement. Today we have many things like computers and cars that the ancients never had. So how can Solomon make the claim that there is nothing new under the sun?

Solomon’s point is to direct our attention to the fact that things like power, status, wealth, and pleasure are the same things that people have always pursued in search of the “good life.” The “packaging” of these things is certainly different today–cars instead of chariots–but the quest is basically the same. There is no new pursuit that can give meaning and purpose to our lives apart from God.

After the 1972 Super Bowl Dewayne Thomas the star of the game was asked, “What does it feel like to win the ultimate game?” Thomas declared, “If it’s the ultimate game, why is it being played again next year?”His response captures the spirit of this passage.

Many people through history have reminded me of  Solomon because they are looking for  lasting meaning in their life and they are looking in the same  6 areas that King Solomon did in what I call the 6 big L words. He looked into  learning (1:16-18), laughter, ladies,luxuries,  and liquor (2:1-3, 8, 10, 11)and labor (2:4-6, 18-20).

Then in last few words in the Book of Ecclesiastes he looks above the sun and brings God back into the picture: “The conclusion, when all has been heard, is:Fear God and keep His commandments, because this applies to every person. For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.”

Photo of Larry Joe Speaks

I started writing this series of 7 letters to you concerning Solomon and the meaning of life after the death of my good friend Larry Speaks. During the last 20 years of his life Larry would hand out CD’s of Adrian Rogers’ message WHO IS JESUS? and I wanted to share one of the points that is made in that sermon that particularly applies today since it is EASTER:

Simon Peter gave THREE LINES OF EVIDENCE, three witnesses; and we use these same three witnesses when we share Jesus today.  Let’s look at Acts chapter 10:

39 And we are witnesses of all that he did both in the country of the Jews and in Jerusalem. They put him to death by hanging him on a tree, 40 but God raised him on the third day and made him to appear, 41 not to all the people but to us who had been chosen by God as witnesses, who ate and drank with him after he rose from the dead. 42 And he commanded us to preach to the people and to testify that he is the one appointed by God to be judge of the living and the dead. 43 To him all the prophets bear witness that everyone who believes in him receives forgiveness of sins through his name.”

I  THE PERSONAL WITNESS OF THE SAINTS (Acts 10:39)

  1. The apostles were a diverse group, yet they were united in their witness.  Among them:
    1. John was young, observant and sensitive.
    2. Peter was a rough, hard-working fisherman.
    3. Simon the Zealot was a political activist.
    4. Nathaniel and Thomas both tended to be skeptical and inquiring.
    5. Matthew was a hardened, political businessman.
    6. Andrew was gentle and compassionate.
    7. Philip was a calculating thinker.
    8. James was a straight shooter.
  2. They were eyewitnesses of the virtuous life of Jesus.
    1. Acts 10:34 & 38
    2. Matthew 17:1-5
  3. They were eyewitnesses of His vicarious death.
    1. Acts 10:39
    2. Deuteronomy 21:23
  4. They were eyewitnesses of His victorious resurrection.
    1. Acts 10:40-41

II THE PROPHETIC WITNESS OF THE SCRIPTURES  (Acts 10:43) (We looked at this in a previous letter.)

III THE PERSUASIVE WITNESS OF THE SPIRIT  (Acts 10:44)

____________

Today is Easter and it is a day that Christ died NOT for his own sins because he was sinless,  but for ours (Romans 10:9) so we could receive the free gift of grace (Ephesians 2:8). Through your LABOR you can NOT earn salvation.

Romans 10:8-13 English Standard Version (ESV)

But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim); because, if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. 10 For with the heart one believes and is justified, and with the mouth one confesses and is saved. 11 For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.”12 For there is no distinction between Jew and Greek; for the same Lord is Lord of all, bestowing his riches on all who call on him. 13 For “everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.”

The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thanks for your time.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, Little Rock, AR 72221

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Featured artist is Katrin Sigurdardóttir

Katrín Sigurdardóttir was born in 1967 in Reykjavik and lives and works in New York. With a background in filmmaking and painting, the artist now works in sculpture and installation, creating works that challenge ideas of space, memory, and perception.

Having produced miniature replicas of buildings such as her childhood home and elementary school, as well as models of real and imagined Icelandic topographies, Sigurdardóttir has long considered place as a construction of the mind. Her conceptual installations often distort scale in order to challenge perceptions of time and distance. In addition to employing traditional sculptural techniques, Sigurdardóttir also works with processes such as cartography and architectural model making

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(I just learned of his death this week!) HE WILL BE MISSED Sir Jonathan Miller ( July 21,1934 – November 27, 2019)

It is 11:35 pm on July 20th and I am in the hospital thinking about an upcoming surgery and I have just learned of the passing of Jonathan Miller. Below is a letter I wrote to him in the past:

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Jonathan Miller

For other people named Jonathan Miller, see Jonathan Miller (disambiguation).

Sir Jonathan Wolfe Miller CBE (21 July 1934 – 27 November 2019) was an English theatre and opera director, actor, author, television presenter, humourist and medical doctor. After training in medicine and specialising in neurology in the late 1950s, he came to prominence in the early 1960s in the comedy revue Beyond the Fringe with Peter CookDudley Moore and Alan Bennett.

Sir
Jonathan Miller
CBE
Appearing on TV discussion After Dark in 1988
BornJonathan Wolfe Miller
21 July 1934
St John’s Wood, London, England
Died27 November 2019(aged 85)
Alma materSt John’s College, Cambridge (MB BChir, 1959)
OccupationHumoristmedical doctortheatre and opera directoractortelevision presenterauthor
Spouse(s)Rachel Collet (m. 1956-2019; his death)
Children3
Parent(s)Betty Miller (née Spiro)
Emanuel Miller

Miller began directing operas in the 1970s. His 1982 production of a “Mafia“-styled Rigoletto was set in 1950s Little Italy, Manhattan. In its early days, he was an associate director at the National Theatre. He later ran the Old Vic Theatre. As a writer and presenter of more than a dozen BBC documentaries, Miller became a television personality and public intellectual in Britain and the United States.

Life and careerEdit

Early lifeEdit

Miller grew up in St John’s Wood, London, in a well-connected Jewish family. His father Emanuel (1892–1970), who was of Lithuanian descent and suffered from severe rheumatoid arthritis, was a military psychiatrist and subsequently a paediatric psychiatrist at Harley House. His mother, Betty Miller(née Spiro), was a novelist and biographer who was originally from County Cork, Ireland. Miller’s older sister Sarah (died 2006) worked in television for many years and retained an involvement with Judaism that Miller, as an atheist, always eschewed. 

Miller was educated at Taunton School[1] and St Paul’s School, London[2] where he developed an early (and ultimately lifelong) interest in the biological sciences. While at St Paul’s School at the age of 12, Miller met and became close friends with Oliver Sacks and Oliver’s best friend Eric Korn, friendships which remained crucial throughout the rest of their lives. In 1953, before leaving secondary school, he performed comedy several times on the BBC radio program Under Twenty Parade.[3] Miller studied natural sciences and medicine at St John’s College, Cambridge (MB BChir, 1959), where he was a member of the Cambridge Apostles before going on to train at University College Hospital in London.[citation needed]

While studying medicine, Miller was involved in the Cambridge Footlights, appearing in the revues Out of the Blue (1954) and Between the Lines (1955). Good reviews for these shows, and for Miller’s performances in particular, led to him performing on a number of radio and television shows while continuing his studies; these included appearances on Saturday Night on the LightTonight and Sunday Night at the London Palladium. He qualified as a medical doctor in 1959 and then worked as a hospital house officer for two years, including at the Central Middlesex Hospital as house physician for gastroenterologist Francis Avery Jones.

1960s: Beyond the FringeEdit

Miller (far right) in Beyond the Fringeon Broadway, with (from left) Dudley MooreAlan Bennett and Peter Cook.

Miller helped to write and produce the musical revueBeyond the Fringe, which premiered at the Edinburgh Festival in August 1960. This launched, in addition to his own, the careers of Alan BennettPeter Cook and Dudley Moore. Miller quit the show shortly after its move from London to Broadway in 1962, and took over as editor and presenter of the BBC‘s arts programme Monitor in 1965. The Monitorappointment arose because Miller had approached Huw Wheldon about taking up a place on the BBC’s director training course. Wheldon assured him that he would “pick it up as he went along”.[citation needed]

Miller’s first experience of directing a stage-play was for John Osborne, whose Under Plain Cover he directed in 1962.[4] In 1964, he directed the play The Old Glory by the American poet Robert Lowell in New York City. It was the first play produced at the American Place Theatre and starred Frank LangellaRoscoe Lee Brown, and Lester Rawlins. The play won five Obie Awards in 1965 including an award for “Best American Play” as well as awards for Langella, Brown and Rawlins.[5][6][7][8]

He wrote, produced, and directed an adaptation for television of Alice in Wonderland (1966) for the BBC. He followed this with Whistle and I’ll Come to You(1968) starring Michael Hordern, a television adaptation of M. R. James‘s 1904 ghost story “Oh, Whistle, and I’ll Come to You, My Lad”. He produced a National Theatre Company production of The Merchant of Venice starring Sir Laurence Olivier. He later resigned as associate director.

1970s: Medical history and operaEdit

Miller held a research fellowship in the history of medicine at University College London from 1970 to 1973. In 1974, he also started directing and producing operas for Kent Opera and Glyndebourne, followed by a new production of The Marriage of Figaro for English National Opera in 1978. Miller’s other turns as an opera director included productions of Rigoletto (in 1975 and 1982) and the operetta The Mikado (in 1987).

Miller drew upon his own experiences as a physician as writer and presenter of the BBC television series The Body in Question (1978),[9] which caused some controversy for showing the dissection of a cadaver. For a time, he was a vice-president of the Campaign for Homosexual Equality.[10]

1980s: Shakespeare and neuropsychologyEdit

In 1980, Miller was persuaded to join the troubled BBC Television Shakespeare project (1978–85). He became producer (1980–82) and directed six of the plays himself, beginning with a well received Taming of the Shrew starring John Cleese. In the early 1980s, Miller was a popular and frequent guest on PBS‘ Dick Cavett Show.

Miller wrote and presented the BBC television series, and accompanying book, States of Mind in 1983 and the same year directed Roger Daltrey as Macheath, the outlaw hero of the BBC’s production of John Gay‘s 1728 ballad operaThe Beggar’s Opera. He also became chair of Edinburgh Festival Fringeboard of directors.[citation needed] In 1984, he studied neuropsychology with Dr. Sandra Witelson at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, before becoming a neuropsychology research fellow at the University of Sussex the following year.

1990sEdit

In 1990, Miller wrote and presented a joint BBC/Canadian production entitled, Born Talking: A Personal Inquiry into Language. The four-part series looked into the acquisition of language, and complexities surrounding language production, with special focus on sign language used by deaf people. This interest was contemporaneous with his friend Oliver Sacks’ immersion in, and writing/publishing a book about Deaf Culture and deaf people entitled Seeing Voices. Miller then wrote and presented the television series Madness (1991) and Jonathan Miller on Reflection (1998). The five-part Madness series ran on PBS in 1991. It featured a brief history of madness and interviews with psychiatric researchers, clinical psychiatrists, and patients in therapy sessions. In 1992, Opera Omaha staged the United States premiere of the Gioachino Rossini‘s 1819 opera Ermione, directed by Miller.

2000s: Atheism and return to directingEdit

In 2004, Miller wrote and presented a television series on atheism entitled Atheism: A Rough History of Disbelief (more commonly referred to as Jonathan Miller’s Brief History of Disbelief) for BBC Four, exploring the roots of his own atheism and investigating the history of atheism in the world. Individual conversations, debates and discussions for the series that could not be included due to time constraints were aired in a six-part series entitled The Atheism Tapes. He also appeared on a BBC Two programme in February 2004, called What the World Thinks of God appearing from New York. The original three-part series aired on public television in the United States in 2007.[11]

In 2007, Miller directed The Cherry Orchard at The Crucible, Sheffield, his first work on the British stage for 10 years. He also directed Monteverdi’s L’Orfeo in Manchester and Bristol, and Der Rosenkavalier in Tokyo and gave talks throughout Britain during 2007 called An Audience with Jonathan Miller in which he spoke about his life for an hour and then fielded questions from the audience. He also curated an exhibition on camouflage at the Imperial War Museum. He appeared at the Royal Society of the Arts in London discussing humour (4 July 2007) and at the British Library on religion (3 September 2007).

In January 2009, after a break of 12 years, Miller returned to the English National Opera to direct his own production of La Bohème, notable for its 1930s setting. This same production ran at the Cincinnati Opera in July 2010, also directed by Miller.

2010sEdit

On 15 September 2010 Miller, along with 54 other public figures, signed an open letter published in The Guardian, stating their opposition to Pope Benedict XVI‘s state visit to the UK.[12] In April and May 2011, Miller directed Verdi’s La Traviata in Vancouver, Canada,[13] and in February and March 2012, Mozart’s Cosi fan tutte in Washington, DC.[14]

On 25 November 2015 the University of London awarded Miller an honorary degree in Literature.[15]

Personal lifeEdit

Miller married Rachel Collet in 1956. They had two sons and a daughter.[16] From 1961 to his death he lived on Gloucester Crescent in Camden Town, north London.[17] In November 2019 Miller died at the age of 85 following a long battle with Alzheimer’s.[18][19]

Parodies and representationsEdit

  • Stevie Smith, a friend of his mother Betty Miller, “rather disloyally” included a thinly-disguised and uncomplimentary version of the nine-year-old Miller, “precocious and brattish… constantly demanding attention”, in her short story ‘Beside the Seaside: A Holiday with Children’ (1949).[20]
  • Private Eye (which had a falling-out with Miller[21]) occasionally lampooned him under the name “Dr Jonathan”, depicting him as a Dr Johnson-like self-important man of learning.[22]
  • In the film for television Not Only But Always about the careers of Peter Cook and Dudley MooreJonathan Aris played Jonathan Miller as a young man; Aris reprised the role in the BBC Radio 4 play Good Evening (2008) by Roy Smiles.
  • Along with the other members of Beyond the Fringe, he is portrayed in the play Pete and Dud: Come Again by Chris Bartlett and Nick Awde.
  • In the BBC Radio Four series The Burkiss Wayedition 35, broadcast on 2 April 1979, he was impersonated by Nigel Rees in a fairly lengthy parody “The Blood Gushing All over the Screen in Question”, in which the history of nasty diseases was traced and the style of Miller’s presentation was sent up. It was written by Andrew Marshalland David Renwick
  • In the 1980s a puppet of Miller appeared frequently in Spitting Image sketches, most notably “Bernard Levin and Jonathan Miller Talk Bollocks”.
  • In series 4, episode 6 of Peep Show, Jez is explaining that a “Mellon-Off” involves a competition between men stood with melons on their erections, with the first man whos melon falls off declared the loser. Mark replies, “Right, and who won – Gore Vidal or Dr Jonathan Miller?”

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Harold J. Blackham (1903-2009)

Francis Schaeffer (1912-1984)

Jacques Monod (1910-1976), Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine (1965)

CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS was written and directed by Woody Allen

Judah has his mistress eliminated through his brother’s underworld connections

Anjelica Huston

__

April 14, 2016

Jonathan Miller/ , London,

Dear Dr. Miller,

Wikipedia noted, “In 2004, Miller wrote and presented a TV series on atheism entitled Atheism: A Rough History of Disbelief (more commonly referred to as Jonathan Miller’s Brief History of Disbelief) for BBC Four. I watched that complete series and did not see any reference to Antony Flew which I thought was strange since he was such a prominent atheist for so long. Maybe it is because he left atheism behind. Actually I corresponded with him several times in the 1990’s and sent him both material from Francis Schaeffer and Adrian Rogers. Did you know that back in the 1960’s Francis Schaeffer mentioned you in one of his speeches: 

There are art forms expressing the pessimism. I like this quote because I think he will be one of the coming men in England…I like to quote Jonathan MillerJonathan Miller is going to be one of the important men in England and I am perfectly convinced of this at this time. In an interview as he shrugged his shoulders he said there are only two humanist painters left and they are Francis Bacon and Alberto Giacometti and he pointed out why, and these were pessimistic men. The interesting thing is what he was saying is that these two men wouldn’t have been considered humanist artists a certain number of years ago because they both were so black and so pessimistic. So we find Francis Bacon is in complete revolt, and I think he is one of the great forces too. His awful paintings in which humanity is just smashed and bloodied and humanity becomes a side of beef smashed into nothing except dust. Then on the other hand you have Alberto Giacometti who said before his death “I have searched all my life for the essence of man and I never found it and if I ever found it, it would be so horrible that no one could look at it.”

You must see that this something to do with these people’s lives too and as we go into it. You have this pessimistic concept, you have a shift in the other art forms. For example, if you are thinking of America’s 20th Century Novel, it began to move into the area of modern man in a very strong way. These novelists always made moral judgments. Maybe they were perverse moral judgments. Maybe they were judgments that we as Christians scream against, but they were moral judgments, but now we go to the opposite end with Capote’s COLD BLOOD and just his camera saying click, click , click, and there are no moral judgments. Man has died. It isn’t that man has the wrong judges but there are no judges. It has taken on the place where the human’s value is just gone.

I know that you are active in the  BRITISH HUMANIST ASSOCIATION so I thought this short letter may interest you.

H. J. Blackham was the founder of the BRITISH HUMANIST ASSOCIATION and he asserted:

On humanist assumptions, life leads to nothing, and every pretense that it does not is a deceit. If there is a bridge over a gorge which spans only half the distance and ends in mid-air, and if the bridge is crowded with human beings pressing on, one after the other they fall into the abyss. The bridge leads nowhere, and those who are pressing forward to cross it are going nowhere….It does not matter where they think they are going, what preparations for the journey they may have made, how much they may be enjoying it all. The objection merely points out objectively that such a situation is a model of futility“( H. J. Blackham, et al., Objections to Humanism (Riverside, Connecticut: Greenwood Press, 1967).

On John Ankerberg’s show in 1986 there was a debate between  Dr. Paul Kurtz, and Dr. Norman Geisler and when part of the above quote was read, Dr. Kurtz responded:

I think you may be quoting Blackham out of context because I’ve heard Blackham speak, and read much of what he said, but Blackham has argued continuously that life is full of meaning;

With that in mind I wanted to ask you what  does the BRITISH HUMANIST ASSOCIATION have to offer in the area of meaning and values? Francis Schaeffer two months before he died said if he was talking to a gentleman he was sitting next to on an airplane about Christ he wouldn’t start off quoting Bible verses. Schaeffer asserted:

I would go back rather to their dilemma if they hold the modern worldview of the final reality only being energy, etc., I would start with that. I would begin as I stress in the book THE GOD WHO IS THERE about their own [humanist] prophets who really show where their view goes. For instance, Jacques Monod, Nobel Prize winner from France, in his book NECESSITY AND CHANCE said there is no way to tell the OUGHT from the IS. In other words, you live in a totally silent universe. 

The men like Monod and Sartre or whoever the man might know that is his [humanist] prophet and they point out quite properly and conclusively what life is like, not just that there is no meaningfulness in life but everyone according to modern man is just living out some kind of game plan. It may be knocking 1/10th of a second off a downhill ski run or making one more million dollars. But all you are doing is making a game plan within the mix of a meaningless situation. WOODY ALLEN exploits this very strongly in his films. He really lives it. I feel for that man, and he has expressed it so thoroughly in ANNIE HALL and MANHATTAN and so on.

According to the Humanist worldview Jacques Monod the universe is silent about values and therefore his good friend Woody Allen  demonstrated this very fact so well in his 1989 movie CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS. In other words, if we can’t get our values from the Bible then  the answer is MIGHT MAKES RIGHT!!!!

I CHALLENGE YOU TO TAKE 90 MINUTES AND WATCH THE MOVIE “CRIMES AND MISDEMEANORS” AND THEN ANSWER THE QUESTION: “What reason is there that Judah should not have his mistress eliminated if there is no God and afterlife of judgment and rewards?”

King Solomon closed the Book of Ecclesiastes (Richard Dawkins’ favorite Book of the Bible) with these words, “The end of the matter; all has been heard. Fear God and keep his commandments, for this is the whole duty of man. For God will bring every deed into judgment, with[d] every secret thing, whether good or evil.” With that in mind I have enclosed a short booklet called THIS WAS YOUR LIFE!

Thank you again for your time. I know how busy you are. 

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221

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Daniel 11 Old Testament Prophecy Fulfilled Already in History as told by John MacArthur verses 1-35

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Daniel 11 by John MacArthur verses 1-35

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in his discussion of Daniel chapter 11 John MacArthur asserted :

The details of this prophecy, particularly from verse 2 to 35, are so accurate, they are so remarkable, they are so verifiable, that it is this section of Scripture that has been the cause of all the attacks on the book of Daniel.

I have studied the Book of Daniel and come up with Six Pieces of Archaeological Evidence that Support the 6th Century View: Since Daniel was an eyewitness to 6th-century events, he could accurately record historical details. The conservative scholar Dr. Stephen R. Miller notes: “In fact, the author of Daniel exhibited a more extensive knowledge of Sixth Century events than would seem possible for a second-century writer.” R. H. Pfeiffer (who argued that the work contains errors) acknowledged that Daniel reports some amazing historical details: “We shall presumably never know how our author learned that the new Babylon was the creation of Nebuchadnezzar (4:30 [Heb. 4:27]), as the excavations have proved… and that Belshazzar, mentioned only in Babylonian records, in Daniel and Bar. 1:11, which is based on Daniel, was functioning as king when Cyrus took Babylon in 538 [Chap. 5]” (Pfeiffer, “Introduction,” pp. 758-759). Harrison comments that the author “was quite accurate in recording the change from punishment by fire under the Babylonians (Dan. 3:11) to punishment by being thrown to lions under the Persian regime (Dan. 6:7), since fire was sacred to the Zoroastrians of Persia” [R. K. Harrison, Introduction to the Old Testament, Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1979, pp. 1120- 1121; cf. A. T. Olmstead, History of the Persian Empire, Chicago: University of Chicago press, 1948, pp. 473-474] (Miller, p. 26).

It is true that there are “some amazing historical details” to be found in Daniel, but also there are some small details throughout the book that support the view that its author lived early in the Persian period. For instance, concerning Daniel 6:8, 12, 15, the conservative Dr. John Whitcomb notes, “the mention of Medes before Persians in the phrase, ‘the law of the Medes and Persians,’ is an evidence of the early date of the book; for in later years, the Persians were usually mentioned before the Medes [Esther 1:3, 14, 18, 19, though not 10:2; cf. I Macc. 6:56] (characteristically, the critics find an anachronism in the fact that Darius the Mede is under the law of the Medes and Persians. Cf. Arthur Jeffery, p. 442)” (John Whitcomb, Darius the Mede,[Grand Rapids: Baker, 1959], p. 55).

Nevertheless, the critic John Joseph Owens still claims this is a sign of later authorship. Owens asserts, “Esther 1:19 gives the proper evolution of the rank in ‘Persians and Medes’ instead of the later view as in Daniel” (p. 415). Conservative scholars point out that the evidence contradicts this assertion (Miller, p. 181, n.54; E. J. Young, The Prophecy of Daniel, [Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1949], p. 127).

Daniel 6:8, 12, 15 also states that the laws made by the king could not be altered. The critic Carey Moore disputed this in his commentary on Esther (Anchor Bible, Garden city: Doubleday, 1971, pp. 10-11), but many critics will concede that Daniel was correct about this too (Hartman, p. 199; Driver, p. 7; Collins, pp. 267-268). The critic Lacocque observes: “Diodorus of Sicily (XVII, 30) in fact, reports the case of a man put to death under Darius III (336-330) even though he was known to be perfectly innocent. (Darius III) immediately repented and blamed himself for having committed such a great error, but it was impossible to have undone what had been done by royal authority” (Andre Lacocque, The Book of Daniel, Atlanta: John Knox, 1979, p. 113).

Again, Daniel was correct when he placed Susa in the province of Elam (Dan. 8:2). Dr. Gleason Archer, Jr., notes: “From the Greek and Roman historians, we learn that from Persian times Susa, or Sushan, was the capital of the province of Susiana; and Elam was restricted to the territory east of the Eulaeus River. Nevertheless, we know from cuneiform records that Sushan was part of the territory of Elam back in Chaldean times and before. It is very striking that Daniel 8:2 refers to ‘Susa in the province of Elam’­ an item of information scarcely accessible to a second-century B.C. author” (Archer, p. 19).

Daniel 4:30 quotes Nebuchadnezzar: “Is not this the great Babylon I have built as the royal residence by my mighty power and for the glory of my majesty?” Did Nebuchadnezzar actually say these words? Archaeology seems to indicate that he did make a very similar statement: “The fortifications of Esagila and Babylon I strengthened and established the name of my reign forever” (George A. Barton, Archaeology and the Bible,Philadelphia: American Sunday School Union, 1916, p. 479). Nebuchadnezzar evidently did have a habit of boasting, which indicated that he was very prideful.

How would a Maccabean author know these details? [1] Belshazzar was ruling during the last few years of the Babylonian Empire. [2] The Babylonians executed individuals by casting them into fire, but the Persians threw the condemned to the lions. [3] The practice in the 6th Century was to mention first the Medes, then the Persians. [4] Laws made by Persian kings could not be revoked. [5] In the sixth century B.C., Susa was in the province of Elam (Dan. 8:2). [6] Nebuchadnezzar had a pride problem (Dan. 4:30) and often boasted about his great building projects.

John MacArthur’s sermon below:


Daniel 11 by John MacArthur verses 1-35

Now this has happened a couple of other times, hasn’t it, in the book of Daniel, where we get the whole flow of history; and we get it again here. Only this time, rather than focusing on the Gentile powers particularly – although they will be alluded to here – it focuses on the nation of Israel and the suffering that Israel will endure. 

Now I’m going to give you a footnote that I want you to remember. The details of this prophecy, particularly from verse 2 to 35, are so accurate, they are so remarkable, they are so verifiable, that it is this section of Scripture that has been the cause of all the attacks on the book of Daniel. There are two main books in the Old Testament that are attacked by the critics: Isaiah and Daniel. And they want to deny the prophecies that are there. And in the case of Daniel, from verses 2 through 35, Daniel prophesies specific events about the Persian and Greek Empires. 

Now mark this. We know they came to pass, because we know Persian and Greek history; there’s no question about it. We have many, many sources for that. And the critics have found that the prophecies are so absolutely accurate that they therefore have concluded that they must have been written after these events happened. Therefore they take the whole book of Daniel and they shove it up past the fulfillment, because they say it’s impossible that anyone should be so accurate. 

Now, of course, their basic supposition is that God didn’t write the Bible. And their secondary supposition is that Daniel was a liar, because Daniel said he was receiving these revelations from God before the time. So they’ve got two problems. Number one, they’ve got a God who doesn’t know the future; and number two, they’ve got a man like Daniel who has impeccable character of whom the other prophets said he was one of the three most honorable men that ever lived and they’re making him into a first-rate liar. But isn’t it interesting what the critics will do to try explain away reality? These are incredible, accurate prophecies. 

I’m going to try my best to help you to understand what they’re saying. There is so much here that, in fact, I couldn’t even figure out an outline; and usually that comes real easy. And I worked and worked, and finally it all came to me. There are five major kings mentioned, and all of their names begin with “A”. And I went into immediate paradise. I couldn’t believe it; it was so wonderful. I mean I have this alliterative problem. Why do you think our family is Matthew, Mark, Marcy, Melinda, Mom, and me; and our dog is Mutt? No. But anyway, I want to take you through this and show you the amazing, remarkable prophecy that is predicted here. 

By the way, there are multitudinous reasons why we know this couldn’t have been written at the later date, all kinds of reasons: linguistic reasons, historical reasons; many, many reasons. Most of all, because Daniel is not a liar; he has too great a character for that; and because God can predict the future, as well as He can tell us about the past. 

All right, let’s begin, and we’ll flow through this period of history. From Daniel’s day, we’ll go up to the time of the Antichrist. Number one king: Ahasuerus. Ahasuerus. A-h-a-s-u-e-r-u-s. Ahasuerus. Verse 2: “And now will I show thee the truth.” Here comes the revelation. “Behold, there shall stand up yet three kings in Persia; and the fourth shall be far richer than they all, and by his strength through his riches he shall stir up all against the realm of Greece.” 

Now the angel says, “Look, there are going to be three kings; and then following those three there’s going to be a fourth. He’ll be stronger and richer than the others, and he is going to try to stand up against the nation of Greece.” Now the prophecy then centers on the fourth king. 

Let me just say this as a note. There were more than four kings in Persia, but the angel picks out the key right here. There were three who ruled just before a fourth, and that fourth one was the one who led a major attack on Greece. And that’s the thing we want to see. 

The first of that line of four was a man named Cambyses who was the son, by the way, of Cyrus, who was king at this time. The second, history tells us, is a man named Pseudo-Smerdis. He was, by the way, a usurper and an impostor. He looked so much like Cambyses that he claimed to be Cambyses, and through all kinds of deception he got himself into the throne. The third king was a man named Darius Hystaspes. 

And the fourth one was named Xerxes. But he had another name, and his other name was Ahasuerus. He is the king mentioned in the book of Esther. He is one of the greatest Oriental rulers of all time. He had fabulous wealth. He commanded the largest army in the Ancient World. In fact, he commanded the largest army that we know about in ancient history. And he decided that he wanted to attack Greece. The mood with the other three kings was moving that way; and in fact that third king, Hystaspes, made a sort of a small, piddly little attack on Greece. But this fourth one really stirred up all he had against the realm of Greece. By the way, he was totally and utterly in a devastating way defeated by the power of Greece. And the Greeks never forgot about it. 

After that, 150 years went by, and a lot of other little nondescript kings came along, but they never forgot what Ahasuerus did; and 150 years later, the Greeks finally got their act together and decided to retaliate based upon what this guy had done 150 years before. And they came. And when they came, they came led by another king whose name is Alexander, and he’s the second king, Alexander, verse 3. 

Of course, you know that following the Persian Empire came the Greeks: “And a mighty king shall stand up that shall rule with great dominion and do according to his will.” A mighty king, none other than Alexander the Great of Greece. All Bible commentators agree that that is who is in mind. He retaliated for what had happened earlier to Greece. He seized the entire Persian Empire. It says he had great dominion. 

I’m telling you, the man was a man who stands out in history as perhaps the most remarkable military leader ever. By the age of 33 he had conquered the world. His army wouldn’t go any further. They were literally worn out. They had conquered everything from Europe to India, and he was weeping because there were no more worlds that he could conquer. He changed the course of history more than any other ruler. He was the son of Philip of Macedon, and it says in verse 3 that he did according to his will. He was an absolute monarch, an absolute sovereign who had not only the power of personality and the power of leadership, but the power of military might. 

(22:18 minute mark)

And of course, both the Persian Empire and Alexander overran the nation Israel. The Persians possessed it and controlled it. The Greeks under Alexander, possessed it and controlled it. But you remember that he died at 33. And what happened? Verse 4: “And when he shall stand up, his kingdom shall be broken.” It seems no sooner does he stand up and get his kingdom, then it is shattered. And watch, “It’ll be divided toward the four winds of heaven.” 

Now remember, this is all before the man is even born. I mean this is a couple of hundred years before he’s even born. “And it will not go to his posterity, nor according to his dominion which he ruled.” In other words, “It won’t go to his children, and it won’t be to the extent that it was when he was ruling. It’ll be plucked up and given to others.” 

Now look carefully at that verse. It will not go to his posterity. Alexander had a half-brother who was mentally retarded. He had an illegitimate son, and he had a baby born posthumously. In other words, the mother of the child was already pregnant when he died, and the child was born after he died. All three, his mentally retarded illegitimate son – or rather his mentally retarded half-brother, his illegitimate son, and his new­born baby, all three were murdered, and he had no posterity. 

The angel was exactly right. The kingdom did not go to his posterity, it was thrown to the four winds. What does that mean? A great battle ensued for who was going to rule, and the battle was won by four generals, and the kingdom was divided into four parts: Cassander took Macedonia, Lysimachus took Thrace and Asia Minor, Ptolemy – remember that – took Egypt, and Seleucus took Syria. Egypt is south of Israel. Syria is where? North of Israel. Those two become the ones we focus on the remaining of the chapter, because they are the ones that are right around the nation Israel. And in Egypt, a Ptolemaic line of kings was established; and in Syria, a Seleucid dynasty was established; and through the centuries, those two dynasties warred with each other, and they fought most of their wars on the soil of Israel. So Israel became the pawn in this. From here on to the twentieth verse, we cover about 200 years when these wars waged on the borders and throughout the land of Israel. 

Now let’s find out how it went. By the way, each one had a diminished dominion, therefore what he said about it will be not according to his dominion did come to pass. Each of the four had a diminished dominion. 

All right, now we come to 5: “And the king of the south” – who would that be? That would be the Ptolemies in Egypt, because everything geographically is indicated in reference to Israel. You’ll notice down in verse 6, in the middle of the verse, “the king of the north.” That’s Syria. 

Now mark this in your mind. You’re going to see for many verses now, “the king of the south, the king of the north.” That doesn’t necessarily mean one king. We’ll go through a lot of different kings in the Seleucid dynasty, and a lot of different kings in the Ptolemaic dynasty. The point is the king of the south, the king of the north is simply whoever’s reigning in that are at the time. But I want you to watch how fabulously this unfolds. 

“And the king of the south” – that would be the Ptolemaic dynasty – “shall be strong and of his princes;” – that is of the princes of Alexander – “and he shall be strong above him and have dominion. His dominion shall be a great dominion. And in the end of years, they shall join themselves together; for the king’s daughter of the south shall come to the king of the north to make an agreement.” 

Now let me fill you in. The Seleucid dynasty is built in the north, the Ptolemaic dynasty is built in the south. The Ptolemaic dynasty starts out a little more powerful, but it doesn’t take very long until the north becomes more powerful as the expansion of the north develops. Finally the two realized the tension that’s existing, and so in verse 6 it says they’re going to make an alliance. And how do they do it? This was the old way to make an alliance: the king’s daughter of the south comes to the king of the north to make an agreement. You give your daughter to the nation you want to make a treaty with, she marries the guy, and you hope that makes the right kind of relationship. 

And that’s exactly what happened. The angel was right on. Antiochus Theos. Can you imagine taking the name Antiochus Theos? Theos means God. That’ll show you the kind of problem he had. 

Antiochus Theos who was the third king of Syria needed to make a treaty with Egypt. The king of Egypt was a man named Ptolemy Philadelphus. And so he decided that what he wanted to do was marry the daughter of the king of Egypt, or the king of the south. Unfortunately, he was already married. But that was no problem, he divorced his wife. He divorced his wife, and he married this daughter of the southern king. Well, his wife wasn’t real thrilled about it, so she murdered his new wife. She not only murdered his new wife, but she murdered all her attendants too, then she poisoned him to death. 

It says in the middle of verse 6, “She shall not retain the power of the arm; neither shall he stand, nor his arm.” In other words, the power of both of them, the whole thing fell apart. “But she shall be given up, and they that brought her, and he that begot her, and he that strengthened her in these times.” In other words, everybody involved is going to go. And that is exactly what happened. 

Now this brought to the throne in the north, because now the Seleucid king Antiochus Theos is dead. So this brought to the throne a man named Callinicus. Look at verse 7: “But out of a branch of her roots” – that is, out of the roots of the murdered wife Berenice. There was a man named Ptolemy Euergetes, and it says – I think it’s in verse 8. No, it’s in verse 7 – that “one shall stand in his estate.” I don’t know if you’re following me too good, but stay with me. Out of the branch of the roots of the murdered wife comes a brother from the south, and he comes with an army; and he comes against Callinicus and he defeats him. And verse 8 says – this is what I want you to note: “He carried away captives into Egypt, took their gods, their princes, their precious vessels, silver, gold, and so forth and so on.” 

Now history tells us all about this. It tells us he took 40,000 talents of silver, 2,500 idol statues, and it goes on and on. And even Callinicus died, because he fell off his horse. And there’s an interesting note there. I’m just trying to think where it is. Yeah, at the end of verse 8, it says: “The king of the south shall continue more years than the king of the north.” And that is exactly what happened. Callinicus fell off his horse, died, and the one in the south continued four more years. Now the reason I just point this out is because you need to know how accurate the Word of God is. But the point behind it all is that in the middle of this sits Israel, and all these wars are going on raging across their land. 

Now look at verse 10. We come to another king. The third one is Antiochus the Great. We’ve seen Ahasuerus, we’ve seen Alexander, now we come to Antiochus the Great. And history again doesn’t even argue. You can read a liberal commentary or you can read a conservative commentary and they all come up with the same names, because there’s so much evidence in this area. 

Now remember that the Ptolemy of the south at this particular point in verse 10 has conquered. So he’s kind of ruling in Israel. He’s kind of got the power base. He’s defeated Callinicus in the north. Ptolemy Euergetes – if you want the name – has defeated Callinicus in the north. Callinicus fell off his horse and died. And now the north doesn’t like the south winning. 

So Callinicus has two sons, verse 10: “His sons” – plural – “shall be stirred up, and shall assemble a multitude of great forces, and one of them shall certainly come and overflow, pass through, and return and be stirred up even to the fortress.” 

One of Callinicus’ sons died, the other one became the king of the north. His name: Antiochus the Great. And he came. And it says he would come with a multitude of great forces. History tells us he had 75,000 soldiers. And he came to attack Egypt, and he stomped right through the land of Israel. 

Verse 11 says, “And the king of the south was moved with anger.” Wouldn’t you be? Somebody arrive at your border with 75,000 soldiers. “And he comes forth and he fights with the king of the north, and he shall set forth a great multitude.” And so the multitude begins a fight. 

Now the king of the south is Ptolemy also by the name of Philometor. He has 73,000 men, history tells us, 5,000 cavalry, and he also had 73 elephants. They used elephants like battering rams, and to carry things and so forth. And so this tremendous war goes on. 

(32:19 min mark)

Verse 12: “And when he hath taken away,” – and the “hes” and the “hims” are very difficult to figure out in here unless you know the history, and so we’ll just run by it as quick as we can. “And when he hath taken away the multitude, his heart shall be lifted up, and he shall cast down many ten thousands; but he shall not be strengthened by it.” 

The king of the south was very effective in the battle. History says that they caused the north, Antiochus the Great, to lose 10,000 footmen, 300 cavalry, and five of their elephants. This we know from the historian Polybius. But this didn’t really strengthen the king of the south, it just made the king of the north more angry. And so in verse 13, the king of the north is to return. “And he’ll come down with a multitude greater than the last multitude, and he’ll certainly come after certain years.” Amazing. It was thirteen years later that he came back, exactly as the angel had said, with a great army, and great riches; and he came back to get his revenge. 

Verse 14: “In those times there shall many stand up against the king of the south.” Boy, he had a great army, and people were joining it along the way because they hated the south so much. And look at this, “Also the robbers of thy people.” 

Who were Daniel’s people? The Jews. Who were the robbers? Well, the Hebrew term here means “sons of breaking,” “children of breaking.” And what that means is people who don’t keep their promise, covenant breakers. They are the rebels. It could be translated “men of violence who break the law.” Frankly, what they are is strong-willed, apostate Jews who are revolutionaries. They are like mercenary soldiers, and they join the cause of the king of the north, and they aid him in his attack. 

Really, most historians feel they wanted Judean independence, these mercenaries, these apostate Jewish revolutionaries. They thought that by war, if they could get in with Antiochus the Great, knock off Egypt, maybe Antiochus would give them freedom for their assistance. That’s really what they wanted. But at the end of verse 14, it says they shall fail. They didn’t get their goal. He didn’t give them what they had hoped to get. 

Verse 15: “So the king of the North comes, casts a siege mount.” And it goes on to describe how the battle takes place. And by the way, if you want to know who won, it’s very simple: the north won. The north literally routed the south, destroying them. 

And then verse 16, this is the key: “But he that cometh against him shall do according to his own will, and none shall stand before him;” – that is the king of the north, Antiochus the Great – “and he shall stand in the glorious land.” 

What is the glorious land? What land is that? That’s the land of Israel. And here again we see the same kind of thing. They didn’t get their independence; the mercenaries didn’t get what they wanted. All they got was domination by Syrian power from the north, the Seleucids. Antiochus the Great took a lasting dominion over Palestine. Now he was a smart man. Because some of them had assisted him in the battle with the south, he gave them some money, he treated them with some favor; but he was basically their captor. 

He decides, in verse 17, to strengthen his power, and to keep Egypt on his side. So he does something that’s kind of interesting: “He sets his face to enter with the strength of his whole kingdom and upright ones with him, and he gives him the daughter of women.” Now that’s probably a term referring to somebody who is the height of femininity. He picks out some fabulously lovely person. In fact, it turned out to be his daughter who was named Cleopatra. And he gave Cleopatra to the Ptolemy king, and he said, “Here, take her and marry her as a sign of good faith.” And what he really wanted was to plant a spy in the palace. 

But you know what happened? She loved her husband more than her father, and the whole thing failed. Verse 17 says at the end, “She shall not stand on his side, nor be for him.” So it didn’t work. 

Now why does the Bible put a little thing – you’re saying, “Why does the Bible put any of this in here?” Just to show you how absolutely God knows history before it ever happens. If you for a minute think anything happens in history without God’s control, you’re wrong. He determines all the boundaries of the nations. History is, as someone said, “His story.” 

Verse 18: “After this shall he turn his face to the coastlands.” You know, once Antiochus the Great had conquered that part of the world, he decided to go to the coastlands, and that meant, if you will, the Mediterranean Islands and the borders of Greece. He was going to get Greece. Well, you know who had the power out there by this time? Rome did. And so as he turns his face to the coast and takes many, “A prince on his own behalf causes the reproach offered by him to cease; without his own reproach he shall cause it to turn upon him.” What it simply means is that it brought him into conflict with Rome, the prince, and Rome utterly routed him. In 190 B.C. he was routed by the Roman soldiers. 

Verse 19: “He shall turn his face toward the fortress of his own land, but he shall stumble and fall, and not be found.” You know what he did after Rome beat him? He was so distressed, he went back to his own land; and in a fit one time, he tried to plunder the temple in his own land and steal all the treasures in there; and the people got so mad they murdered him on the spot. He wasn’t found anymore. 

He was followed by another ruler, verse 20, this is interesting. A guy who stood up in his estate was a raiser of taxes. Now what is that supposed to mean? You know what? When Rome defeated him, they said from then on, “Syria, you will pay taxes to Rome.” And they were required to pay a thousand talents periodically to the Roman power. Therefore, the next king had to be a raiser of taxes – exactly what God said would happen happened. The detail, people, is thrilling. The Bible is accurate. 

So we meet Ahasuerus, Alexander, Antiochus the Great; fourthly, Antiochus Epiphanes. Now we’re going to really fly through this one, so hold on to your seat. Antiochus Epiphanes – and I don’t want to get all bogged down in too much detail, but I do want you to get the message. And all of this was written by God and He has a purpose for it. 

“And in his estate shall stand up a vile person,” – how would you like to have that for your epitaph, or for your introduction: a vile, contemptible, wretched, rotten person? And he will stand up in the place of Antiochus the Great – “to whom they shall not give the honor of the kingdom.” They don’t give it to him, but he comes in a sneaky way, and obtains it by flattery. 

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Do you know that Antiochus Epiphanes, who is referred to here, had no right to reign? He had no legitimate claim to the throne. He had absolutely no right at all. But he gained it by intrigue, and by flattery, and by buying off certain individuals; and he got in there. 

Verse 22: “And with the arms of a flood shall they be overthrown from before him and shall be broken.” And that is the south. He literally devastated the Egyptians and the king. 

Verse 23: “And after the league made with him, he shall work deceitfully; for he shall come up, and shall become strong with a small people.” He tried to adopt a policy of friendship with Egypt, but he violated it, and he broke it, and he did everything he could. He plotted; he worked out all kinds of things. 

It’s very interesting in verse 24 that he entered peaceably upon the fattest places of the province. Boy, when he saw there was crop or money or something to be gained, he came in all hearts and flowers and with peace, and so forth and so on; and he did what his fathers never did before. He was wily and smart, and he gained greater acceptance. And then when he got spoil, he scattered it among the people, and he let them share in it, and he made it all look so good. 

And then at the end of verse 24, “He was plotting against the strongholds.” Whenever he saw a strong village or a strong group, he would plot their destruction. So on the one hand, he looks like Robin Hood. On the other hand, anything that begins to move in his kingdom he puts it down fast. He’s building an incredible power base. 

In verse 25, he has another war with Egypt. “He stirs up his power and his courage against the king of the south with a great army; and the king of the south is stirred up to battle with a very great and mighty army; but he shall not stand, for they shall plot against him.” Another war with Egypt, this time at Pelusium, and Egypt lost. And it tells you why: because the counselors of the Egyptian king himself betrayed him. In fact, his trusted counselors turned against him. It says his own men plotted against him. 

Verse 26: “Yea, they that feed of the portion of his food shall destroy him,” – his own troops, his own soldiers – “and his army shall overflow, and many shall fall down slain.” Verse 27: “And both these kings’ hearts shall be to do mischief.” Both of them were evil. Here’s this war; Egypt has lost. So they decide to sit at a table. They want to come to the table. 

We still do that, don’t we? You see all these guys around a big table, and they’re all signing these meaningless treaties. And you know how many treaties have been broken in the history of the world? All of them. Just wanted to get that in. 

“They sit at a table. They speak lies. And their supposed talk doesn’t prosper; for yet the end shall be at the time appointed.” They made promises they never meant to keep; and God had it all in the plan anyway. 

“Then after this, he returns to his land with great riches. His heart shall be against the holy covenant, and he shall do exploits and return to his own land.” Now listen, here we are right back in Israel. After Antiochus Epiphanes has this deceitful meeting in the south, he comes back, and again he does things against the holy covenant. He comes back into the land of Israel and desecrates the land. In fact, he marched on Jerusalem after he left this meeting in Egypt. He marched on Jerusalem and he sacked the city, and he cruelly slaughtered people, and he brought about horrible suffering. Verse 29: “He returned and came toward the south, but it wasn’t as the former or as the latter.” 

Now have you ever seen a picture where the Indians and the cowboys were in a battle, and off in the distance you hear the sound of the cavalry to the rescue? That’s what happens in verse 30. 

Chittim. The ships of Chittim. That’s an ancient name for Cyprus, and probably is general reference to the Roman army, the Roman Empire, the Roman power. The ships of Chittim would be the Roman fleet. By now the Ptolemies are so sick of Antiochus Epiphanes, that they say to Rome, “Send us a fleet.” And so they do, and they come against Antiochus. He is grieved and returns, because he can’t do anything against Egypt because of the Roman navy that he fears. 

So what does he do? Verse 30, watch this: “He has indignation against the holy covenant, against the holy covenant. He even returns and has intelligence” – or special meetings, watch this – “with those who forsake the holy covenant.” He gets back with these apostate Jews. He begins to raise support from them. 

And then it happens. Then it really happens. Verse 31: “And the forces shall stand on his part, and they shall pollute the” – what? – “sanctuary, and take away the daily sacrifice, and place the abomination that maketh desolate.” He is so frustrated now by the Romans, he goes back into the place of Israel, back into Jerusalem. 

First thing he does is he puts guards all around the temple; nobody can worship. He stops the sacrifice; he halts all worship. And then on a given Sabbath, he sends his soldiers into the city, and he slaughters all the children they can find. And then he slaughters all the women. And then he makes heathen idolatry mandatory. And then he has nakedness flaunted by supposed athletes in full view of the temple ground. 

He enforces Greek culture upon the Jews. He erects a statue of the main god of the Greeks, Zeus, on the very altar in the temple. He slays a pig on the altar in the temple, and makes the priests eat the pork. This is the abomination of desolations. He abominates the temple to make it desolate; and he even had some Jews in with him. 

Verse 32: “And such as do wickedly against the covenant shall he corrupt by flatteries.” Found some apostate Jews to even agree to get involved. But the end of verse 32: “The people who do know their God shall be strong and do right, do exploits,” however you want to translate that. The people that really know God resisted. 

Now I want to read 33 and 34: “And they that understand among the people shall instruct many; yet they shall fall by the sword and by flame, by captivity and by spoil for many days. Now when they shall fall, they shall be helped with a little help; but many shall cling to them with flatteries.” 

The angel says, “Daniel, if you think the seventy years is the end, you’ve missed it. They’ll be seventy years. And then at the end of that seventy years they’ll be an Ahasuerus who will dominate your land. And then there will be an Alexander who will dominate your land. And then there will be Antiochus the Great who will overrun your land. And then there will be an Antiochus Epiphanes.” And by the way, Epiphanes was the name he took for himself. It meant “Great One.” And they called him “Epimanes” which meant “maniac,” “mad man.” 

“There will always be this, and finally it will culminate in a desecration that is beyond your belief.” And it says in verse 33, “They’ll fall by the sword, by flame, by captivity, by spoil.” And that’s exactly what happened. 

But verse 34, when they shall fall, they’ll be helped with a little help. What was that? During this time of horrible persecution – and it was mass slaughter of the Jews in their land by Antiochus Epiphanes. In fact, he’s called the antichrist of the Old Testament because he so pictures the Antichrist. There arose a group of Jews who were known as Hasideans

Have you ever heard of a Hasidic Jew? That’s a term that came out of the Maccabean period. This group of Hasideans, they stood for the law. They’re talked about in the Maccabees, 1 Maccabees chapter 2. They had a leader, and their leader was Judas Maccabeus. This is a time of history that is not spoken of in the Bible; it occurred in the four hundred years between the Old and the New Testament. 


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But Judas Maccabeus was able to lead a successful revolt, and he is the one who helped with a little help. It was just temporary relief from persecution. And by the way, Judas Maccabeus got all those apostate Jews and he treated them bloody severity. But like many revolutions, it says at the end of verse 34 it had a lot of folks hanging on just for what they could gain. Some people went with the revolution to gain their own ends. 

Verse 35: “And some of them of understanding shall fall, to test them, and to purge, and to make them white.” Now wait a minute. Why is all this happening? Why are You doing this, God? Here it is: to test, to purge, to make them white. What does that mean? To burn off the sin, right? To burn off the dross. 

Nothing is as effective in driving people to God as suffering. You understand that? When you stand in the face of inevitable destruction, your thoughts go straight up. 

I watched the TV this afternoon. A man was standing in a burning house out there in Bradbury where the house had burned to the ground. Tears in his eyes, the man said to him, “What did you think about when you saw this?” He said, “I’ll tell you one thing: it makes a man think a lot about dying.” That’s right. And when you think about dying, you begin to think about the inevitability of judgment. 

“To test, to purge, to make them white, until the time of the end because it is yet for a time appointed.” God gave to Daniel through this angel the most incredible layout of the suffering of the Jews through the reign of the Persians and the reign of the Greeks. And you know who came in after the Greeks? The Romans. And the Roman period is described by the last final great Roman ruler, the Antichrist, the final “A” in our five kings. And that’s for next week. But God has ordained it all: the flow, the sequence, the intimate minute tiny little details. 

Now listen to me, don’t turn me out now in these last couple of minutes. God is not finished with the purging process. You understand that? Why is it hard for Israel today? Because the purging is still going on. When the Messiah came the first time, He said to them, “You will not come to Me that you might have life.” 

“0 Jerusalem, Jerusalem,” He says, “thou that killest the prophets and stonest them that are sent unto you, how oft I would have gathered you as a hen gathereth her brood; but you would not.” In Romans 10:21, Paul speaking the words of God, “All day long have I stretched forth my hands unto a disobedient and contrary people.” They haven’t turned yet. 

But you want to know something? The suffering is a gracious suffering. You say, “Why do you say that, John?” Simply for this reason: God has every right to forget them, doesn’t He; but He doesn’t. God has every right to say, “Because of your constant harlotries, because of the incessant disobedience, I forever turn by back on you, because you have known so much, received so much, had so much. Yours are the covenants and the promises. Because you’ve had it all, and you’ve turned your back on Me, I write you off.” 

But He never says that. He continues the purging process until the end time, the time appointed. And that time will come; and in that latter day in the future, Paul says in Romans 11, “All Israel shall be” – what? – “saved.” Isn’t that great? 

Zechariah the prophet saw that. In chapter 12, verse 10, he said, “I will pour upon the house of David and upon the inhabitants of Jerusalem the spirit of grace and supplication; and they shall look upon Me whom they have pierced, and they shall mourn for Him as one mourns for his only son, and shall be in bitterness for Him as one that is in bitterness for his firstborn. And in that day there shall be a great mourning in Jerusalem.” 

The day is going to come when they weep and wail in the agony of recognition, when they see that Him whom they pierced was none other than their own God. And what’ll happen? Zechariah says, “In that day there shall be a fountain opened to the house of David and to the inhabitants of Jerusalem for sin and for uncleanness.” 

God’s going to wash them – that’s right – in that day. They’re going to come to a day of true repentance, and God’s going to give them a day of true salvation. That day is coming. Gloriously, beloved, the whole thing ends up in the kingdom for Israel, but there has to be a long time of purging. 

You know what’s wonderful to think about – and we’ll get to this when we get into Romans – that during this time of purging, Paul says in Romans chapter 11 verses 1 to 6, “There will always be a remnant.” And there’s a remnant right now, isn’t there? The nation is purged. Many of you sitting right out here are part of that remnant, aren’t you? You’re Jews, and you know and love the Lord Jesus Christ. 

Right in the middle of the passage that talks about the chastening of Israel in Romans there is this great word: “Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord, shall be” – what? – “saved.” And throughout the Persian area, the Greek, the Roman, right on out till the kingdom, there will always be that remnant from Israel, because God is a gracious God. 

And then in the end, here’s what Isaiah says will happen: “The Redeemer shall come to Zion and unto those who turn from transgression in Jacob. As for Me, this is My covenant with them,” says the Lord. “My Spirit that is upon thee and My words which I have put in thy mouth shall not depart out of thy mouth, nor out of the mouth of thy seed, nor out of the mouth of thy seed’s seed,” said the Lord. In other words, the Lord said, “I will redeem them, and that word will never change, never.” What a great promise. 

“Yes, it’s a time of chastening for them. But be encouraged; Michael’s watching over them, and I’m watching over them,” says this other angel. “And there’s going to come a day when Michael stands up for the people of God, and a day when the Spirit descends upon them, and they’re redeemed and receive their kingdom. But in the meantime, there must be a chastening. 

Beloved, my word to you in closing is this: I hope you have a heart for the Jewish people. I hope you realize that that remnant is there and that God calls us to reach them. An old missionary hymn put it this way: “Shall we whose souls are lighted with wisdom from on high, shall we to souls benighted the lamp of life deny?” Let’s pray together. 

Father, we thank You again tonight for the study of Your Word. We know that this has been a study that demands our concentration. And we can’t remember all the individual parts; but we have this overwhelming reality in our minds that You control history, every event; that Your Word can predict the future; and when it speaks of the future, it’s absolutely accurate to the most minute detail. And we’re overwhelmed with its accuracy; and we sense that if it’s accurate about that, it’s accurate about us too, and that its spiritual truths are just as verifiable. 

And we sense, Lord, that history is marked out by divine plan. And we are reminded again that You’re chastening Your people Israel; and we can watch it just by reading the newspapers, hearing the news, watching their struggle for survival, watching the Arab world pressing in, the Russian bear hovering to the north. We’re going to see next week how that all comes to pass. 

We sense, Lord, the chastening that they’ve undergone for all these centuries. But we’ve been reminded again of Your unending promise, that You’ll redeem Your people, and that Your Word will never change. Father, in the meantime, may we be faithful to share with that remnant the message that whosoever believeth on the Lord Jesus shall be saved. May we know that You control the destiny of every man and every woman; and there are only two alternatives: an eternal hell, or an eternal heaven; the kingdom of darkness or the kingdom of Your dear Son. God, help us to make the right choice for Christ’s sake. Amen.

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RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Part 159 EE “Open letter to Harry Kroto’s friend Richard Dawkins” Page 151 of THE GOD DELUSION: “one of the truly bad effects of religion is that it teaches us that it is a virtue to be satisfied with not understanding”

Canary Islands 2014: Harold Kroto and Richard Dawkins

Image result for harry kroto richard dawkins

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September 4, 2019

Richard Dawkins c/o Richard Dawkins Foundation, 
Washington, DC 20005

Dear Mr. Dawkins,

i have enjoyed reading about a dozen of your books and some of the most intriguing were The God DelusionAn Appetite for Wonder: The Making of a Scientist, and Brief Candle in the Dark: My Life in Science.

Page 151 of THE GOD DELUSION: one of the truly bad effects of religion is that it teaches us that it is a virtue to be satisfied with not understanding.

QUOTE FROM DR. Marvin Minsky taken from atheistic blogger:

My head says the former; my heart, the latter. Maybe my head needs some help—and I know where to find my potential helper: at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, my alma mater. Marvin Minsky, the legendary pioneer of artificial intelligence, is not known to be shy about entering the science-religion debate.
To get Minsky started (it doesn’t take much), I ask him whether it is efficacious for scientists to seek harmony between science and theology.
Minsky gives me a look and calls religion “an amazing phenomenon for thousands of years” that is a “psychologically wonderful device.” But he’s just warming up.
“Take all the questions you can’t answer and give them a name,” says Minsky. “So somebody says, ‘Well, God did that.’ And the right question to then ask is, ‘Well, how does God work?’ And [believers] regard that as rude. So there’s something strange about theology. It’s a system of thinking which teaches you not to ask questions. And so it’s incompatible with science.
“The trouble with religion,” Minsky continues, “is it picks particular things and says, ‘Don’t think about this.’ ‘Don’t change that.’ ‘Abide by this Book.’ And that’s very convenient. It saves a lot of time. At any period, if there are questions science can’t yet answer, why knock yourself out? I regard religion as a wonderful way to save people’s time.”
Minsky believes that if religion would not have impeded science for hundreds, if not thousands, of years, humanity would be far advanced, even in dramatically extending human life. “I think death will go away,” Minsky opines. “But we don’t need to pray for it. We need to work for it.” Not yet finished, Minsky adds, “If we look at religion as fossilized old beliefs, some of which may have been useful, that’s fine. But I can’t see serious discussions of theological ideas because they’re all nutty. Unless you say how God works, saying that God exists doesn’t explain anything.”
Minsky is fierce. Good for him. Religion as an excuse to avoid hard questions? Based on the history of religion, he makes a good argument.
But from the foibles or fallacies of human religion, does anything really follow about a Creator God?

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Let’s break this down a little bit. Religion does not encourage science but discourages it by suggesting that we omit the hard work and just say God did it. Minsky is also asserting in this same discussion, “Unless you say how God works, saying that God exists doesn’t explain anything,” and he is implying that brilliant scientists are the ones who give us the answers that we can depend on.

drian Rogers:

Did you know that all atheists are not atheists because of intellectual problems? They’re atheists because of moral problems. You say, “But I know some brilliant people who are atheists.” Well, that may be so, but I know some brilliant people who are not. You say, “I know some foolish people who believe in God.” Well, I know everyone who doesn’t believe in God is foolish.

In other words there are brilliant and stupid people on both sides of the fence and it is not an intellectual issue but a moral one. Let’s take a look at the history of science that was handled down to us from Western Europe and take a closer examination of those great men’s religious views and if their religious views were corrosive to their scientific pursuits? This is the accusation of many modern day evolutionists.

Francis Schaeffer in his book “HOW SHOULD WE THEN LIVE?” stated that according to Alfred North Whitehead and J. Robert Oppenheimer, both renowned philosophers and scientists of our era (but not Christians themselves), modern science was born out of the Christian world view. Whitehead said that Christianity is the “mother of science” because of the insistence on the rationality of God. In the article, “Christianity and Technological Advance – The Astonishing Connection,” by T. V. Varughese, Ph.D, he observed:

Without question, “technology” has now become the new magic word in place of the word “science.” Since technology represents the practical applications of science, it is clearly consumer-oriented. Herein is bright economic promise to all who can provide technology.

In terms of technology, our present world can be divided into at least three groups: countries that are strong providers of technology, both original and improved; countries that are mass producers because of cheaper labor; and countries that are mostly consumers. Without a doubt, being in the position of “originating” superior technology should be a goal for any major country. The difficult question, however, is “how.”

An obvious place to start suggests itself. Why not begin with the countries that have established themselves as strong originators of technology and see if there is a common thread between them? The western nations, after the Renaissance and the Reformation of the 16th century, offer a ready example. Any book on the history of inventions, such as the Guinness Book of Answers, will reveal that the vast majority of scientific inventions have originated in Europe (including Britain) and the USA since the dawn of the 17th century. What led to the fast technological advances in the European countries and North America around that time?

The answer is that something happened which set the stage for science and technology to emerge with full force. Strange as it may seem, that event was the return to Biblical Christianity in these countries.The Epistemological Foundation of Technology

According to Alfred North Whitehead and J. Robert Oppenheimer, both renowned philosophers and scientists of our era (but not Christians themselves), modern science was born out of the Christian world view. Whitehead said that Christianity is the “mother of science” because of the insistence on the rationality of God.[1] Entomologist Stanley Beck,though not a Christian himself, acknowledged the corner-stone premises of science which the Judeo-Christian world view offers: “The first of the unprovable premises on which science has been based is the belief that the world is real and the human mind is capable of knowing its real nature. The second and best-known postulate underlying the structure of scientific knowledge is that of cause and effect. Thethird basic scientific premise is that nature is unified.”[2] In other words, the epistemological foundation of technology has been the Judeo-Christian world view presented in the Bible…

Perhaps the most obvious affirmation that Biblical Christianity and science are friends and not foes comes from the fact that most of the early scientists after the Renaissance were also strong believers in the Bible as the authoritative source of knowledge concerning the origin of the universe and man’s place in it.[4] The book of Genesis, the opening book of the Bible, presents the distinctly Judeo-Christian world view of a personal Creator God behind the origin and sustenance of the universe (Genesis 1:1Colossians 1:17; etc.).

Among the early scientists of note who held the Biblical creationist world view are Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), Sir Isaac Newton (1642-1727), and Samuel Morse (1791-1872) – what motivated them was a confidence in the “rationality” behind the universe and the “goodness” of the material world. The creation account in Genesis presents an intelligent, purposeful Creator, who, after completing the creation work, declared it to be very good (Genesis 1:31). That assures us that the physical universe operates under reliable laws which may be discovered by the intelligent mind and used in practical applications. The confidence in the divinely pronounced goodness of the material world removed any reluctance concerning the development of material things for the betterment of life in this world. The spiritual world and the material world can work together in harmony.

 References –

  1. Francis A. Schaeffer: How Should We Then Live (Revell, 1976), p. 132.
  2. Henry M. Morris, Biblical Basis for Modern Science (Baker, 1991), p. 30.
  3. Schaeffer, p. 131.
  4. Henry M. Morris, Men of Science, Men of God (Master Books, CA, 1988), 107 pp.

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Henry Morris pointed out:

Many of these great scientists of the past were before Darwin, but not all of them. However, all of them were acquainted with secular philosophies and some were in fact opponents of Darwinism (Agassiz, Pasteur, Lord Kelvin, Maxwell, Dawson, Virchow, Fabre, Fleming, etc). Many of them believed in the inspiration and authority of the Bible, as well as in the deity and saving work of Jesus Christ. They believed that God had supernaturally created all things, each with its own complex structure for its own unique purpose. They believed that, as scientists, they were “thinking God’s thoughts after Him,” learning to understand and control the laws and processes of nature for God’s glory and man’s good. They believed and practiced science in exactly the same way that modern creationist scientists do.

And somehow this attitude did not hinder them in their commitment to the “scientific method.” In fact one of them, Sir Francis Bacon, is credited with formulating and establishing the scientific method! They seem also to have been able to maintain a proper “scientific attitude,” for it was these men (Newton, Pasteur, Linnaeus, Faraday, Pascal, Lord Kelvin, Maxwell, Kepler, etc.) whose researches and analyses led to the very laws and concepts of science which brought about our modern scientific age…. 

To illustrate the caliber and significance of these great scientists of the past, Tables I and II have been prepared. These tabulations are not complete lists, of course, but at least are representative and they do point up the absurdity of modern assertions that no true scientist can be a creationist and Bible-believing Christian.

Table I lists the creationist “fathers” of many significant branches of modern science. Table II lists the creationist scientists responsible for various vital inventions, discoveries, and other contributions to mankind. These identifications are to some degree oversimplified, of course, for even in the early days of science every new development involved a number of other scientists, before and after. Nevertheless, in each instance, a strong case can be made for attributing the chief responsibility to the creationist scientist indicated. At the very least, his contribution was critically important and thus supports our contention that belief in creation and the Bible helps, rather than hinders, scientific discovery.

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My relatives live 3 miles from Spring Hill, Tennessee. When the new General Motors plant opened there I got to go see it. What if I had said, “The assembly line created a beautiful Saturn automobile!” Hopefully, some would have corected me by responding, “The assembly line did not create the automobile. It was first designed by the General Motors engineers in Detroit.” ASSUMING EVOLUTION IS TRUE, IT WOULD STILL ONLY BE THE MECHANISM. DOES EVOLUTION ACCOUNT FOR THE DESIGNER?

The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, Box 23416, LittleRock, AR 72221, United States

On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said:

…Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975

and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them.

Harry Kroto

Nick Gathergood, David-Birkett, Harry-Kroto

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I have attempted to respond to all of Dr. Kroto’s friends arguments and I have posted my responses one per week for over a year now. Here are some of my earlier posts:

Arif Ahmed, Sir David AttenboroughMark Balaguer, Horace Barlow, Michael BatePatricia ChurchlandAaron CiechanoverNoam Chomsky,Alan DershowitzHubert DreyfusBart Ehrman, Stephan FeuchtwangDavid Friend,  Riccardo GiacconiIvar Giaever , Roy GlauberRebecca GoldsteinDavid J. Gross Brian Greene, Susan GreenfieldStephen F Gudeman,  Alan Guth, Jonathan HaidtTheodor W. HänschBrian Harrison,  Hermann HauserRoald Hoffmann,  Bruce HoodHerbert Huppert,  Gareth Stedman JonesSteve JonesShelly KaganMichio Kaku,  Stuart Kauffman,  Lawrence KraussHarry KrotoGeorge LakoffElizabeth Loftus,  Alan MacfarlanePeter MillicanMarvin MinskyLeonard Mlodinow Yujin NagasawaAlva NoeDouglas Osheroff,  Jonathan Parry,  Saul PerlmutterHerman PhilipseCarolyn PorcoRobert M. PriceLisa RandallLord Martin Rees,  Oliver SacksJohn SearleMarcus du SautoySimon SchafferJ. L. Schellenberg,   Lee Silver Peter Singer,  Walter Sinnott-ArmstrongRonald de SousaVictor StengerBarry Supple,   Leonard SusskindRaymond TallisNeil deGrasse Tyson,  .Alexander VilenkinSir John WalkerFrank WilczekSteven Weinberg, and  Lewis Wolpert,

In  the second video below in the 67th clip in this series are Richard Dawkins’ words that Harry Kroto wanted me to see. Since then I have read several of Richard Dawkins books and have attempted to respond to the contents of these books directly to Richard Dawkins by mail. In fact, I have been writing Richard Dawkins letters since May 15, 1994 which was the 10th anniversary of the passing of one of my heroes, Francis Schaeffer. Francis Schaeffer spent a lot of time responding to many of Richard Dawkins’ heroes such as Carl Sagan, Jacques Monod, H.J. Blackham, Isaac Newton, Ludwig Wittgenstein, Max Planck, Johann Sebastian Bach, Francis Bacon, Samuel Beckett, Leonardo Da Vinci, Albert Einstein, Michael Faraday, Gerald Horton, Edmund Leach, Louis Pasteur, George Wald, Jacob Bronowski, Steven Weinberg, Charles Darwin, Paul Kurtz, Peter Singer, Jonathan Miller, William B. Provine, Woody Allen, Noam Chomsky, James D. Watson, Francis Crick, Michael Polanyi, The Huxley family, Antony Flew, and Edward O. Wilson (Dawkins has since revised his opinion of Flew and Wilson, but he earlier regarded them very highly). 

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Francis Schaeffer 1911-1984

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Both Francis Schaeffer and Richard Dawkins have talked extensively about the life of Charles Darwin.

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Sir Harry Kroto with his high school friend Sir Ian McKellan at the FSU National High Field Magnetic Lab on Tuesday, October 27, 2009.

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50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1)

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Another 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 2)

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Edit Post ‹ The Daily Hatch — WordPress

A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 3)

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Richard Dawkins Photos Photos – Professor Stephen Hawking Unveils Medal For Science Communication – Zimbio

Professor Stephen Hawking Unveils Medal For Science Communication

Professor Stephen Hawking Unveils Medal For Science Communication In This Photo: Richard Dawkins, Stephen Hawking, Brian May, Harold Kroto, Alexi Leonov, Garik Israelian

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Richard Dawkins, founder of the Richard Dawkins Foundation for Reason and Science. Credit: Don Arnold Getty Images

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Garik Israelian, Stephen Hawking, Alexey Leonov, Brian May, Richard Dawkins and Harry Kroto

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  On November 21, 2014 I received a letter from Nobel Laureate Harry Kroto and it said: …Please click on this URL http://vimeo.com/26991975 and you will hear what far smarter people than I have to say on this matter. I agree with them. Harry Kroto _________________ Below you have picture of 1996 Chemistry Nobel Prize Winner […]

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RESPONDING TO HARRY KROTO’S BRILLIANT RENOWNED ACADEMICS!! Bart Ehrman “Why should one think that God performed the miracle of inspiring the words in the first place if He didn’t perform the miracle of preserving the words?”

September 2, 2015 – 8:42 am

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Open Letter #98 to Ricky Gervais on comparison of the Tony of AFTER LIFE to the Solomon of ECCLESIASTES, Tony “We are chimps with brains the size of planets.” DARWIN asserted, “Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey’s mind…? [Yet our minds] have developed from lower animals!”

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After Life #1 Trailer

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After Life 2 Trailer

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On Saturday April 18, 2020 at 6pm in London and noon in Arkansas, I had a chance to ask Ricky Gervais a question on his Twitter Live broadcast which was  “Is Tony a Nihilist?” At the 20:51 mark Ricky answers my question. Below is the video:

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(Above) Tony and Anne on the bench at the graveyard where their spouses are buried.

July 24, 2020 
Ricky Gervais 


Dear Ricky,  

This is the 98th day in a row that I have written another open letter to you to comment on some of your episodes of AFTER LIFE.

(Tony Johnson with his dog Brandi seen below:)

In episode 2 of the second season of AFTER LIFE is the following discussion: 
Tony: I drink in times of trouble. I can’t help it the world is filled with trouble. It is a horrible place. Everyone is screwed up in someway. Everyone has worries like money or health or famine, war. We are chimps with brains the size of planets. No wonder we get drunk and try to kill each other. It is mental.

Matt: Always good to talk.

Tony: I was just explaining my new plan is to drink myself to death till I eventually implode in on my own evolution. 
Kath: Do you believe in all that? 
Tony: What? The proven fact that there is evolution? Yeah

Ricky Gervais plays bereaved husband Tony Johnson in AFTER LIFE 

Tony and his wife Lisa who died 6 months ago of cancer

Ricky, it was interesting to me that you had Tony say, “We are chimps with brains the size of planets.

Charles Darwin resting against pillar covered with vines.

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(Darwin wrote: But then with me the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man’s mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey’s mind…?)

Jim Al-Khalili in Origin of Life:

 In the book LIFE ON THE EDGE Jim Al-Khalili noted:

Have we overlooked some vital spark that animates the living and is absent from the nonliving? This is not to say we will be claiming that any kind of vital force, spirit, or magic ingredient animates life. Our story is much more interesting than that” (p.27).


No serious scientist today doubts that life can be accounted for within the sphere of science” (p.101).

David Noebel wrote:

Hear the counsel of Francis Crick:  “An honest man, armed with all the knowledge available to us now, could only state that in some sense, the origin of life appears at the moment to be almost a miracle, so many are the conditions which would have had to have been satisfied to get it going.”  


Leonard Susskind comments on Origin of Life:

Quote from Professor Susskind:

I don’t believe that the universe was designed by an intelligence. I believe the universe was designed the same way the incredible human being was designed. It certainly looks – and before Darwin it looked like some designer must have….what else could possibly account for the complexity of a human being, the human brain and so forth, and we eventually found out what it was. It was random mutation, a bunch of carbon oxygen and other stuff for that mutation to work on, and a little bit of everything evolved. Some things did better than others. Those things are more populous than the things that didn’t do well and so it was basically randomness, statistics and the laws of physics that led to our own design.

I think the same is true of the universe. oh incidentally, in the process of designing us, it also designed a hell of a lot of stuff not nearly as intelligent as we are in fact most of the stuff out there is not intelligent. And so it wasn’t that there was an upward trend that just naturally led to intelligence, there was just, everything happened. Everything that could happen happened. Some of it’s still happening.
That seems to be the way, or at least according to one version of cosmology, and it’s by now the most popular version of cosmology, is the universe is exceedingly big, just like the bush or the tree of life, it has many different environments. So many different environments that a very small fraction of them are capable of supporting life and that small fraction of them happens to be the small fraction that ‘looks’ [Susskind’s emphasis] as if it were intelligently designed. Incidentally it’s the only fraction we can exist in which to ask the question. So that’s my view of it other people have different views.

Sean carroll “Darwin undercut [Design] argument:

From the popular You Tube video ANOTHER 50 RENOWNED ACADEMICS SPEAKING ABOUT GOD (Part 2):  

Aristotle would tell you things like if you have an object and you want it to be in motion. You have to keep pushing it because if you stop, it stops. And Aristotle was right. It stopped if I stopped pushing it. 

Physicists like to make fun of Aristotle these days but he was right in the context he was talking about.  So if you believe about fundamental stuff in the world, motion only exists when something is pushing it, then you can imagine that these kinds of arguments make sense that the fact that we see things moving in the universe despite the fact the motion requires a mover makes you believe that there must be some prime mover out there behind the whole thing. Then comes along Galileo and Newton and they saw actually if you think about it carefully the natural status for objects is uniform motion. Its just because of friction dissipation and other annoying features of the world that we see things stop

At a fundamental level things want to keep moving and unless you act upon them they will remain in uniform motion.This notion conservation of momentum completely underminded the sort of metaphysical reasoning behind the arguments for the first cause and prime-mover and things like that , and you can actually see the impact on the theological literature,  once they invented Newtonian mechanics, arguments for the existence of God changed their focus from prime-movers, first cause arguments from contingency to the argument from design. They started inventing machines and they said, “It looks like a machine and maybe there is a machinist and so forth.” Then Darwin to a good extent undercut that argument and we are still living in the aftermath of that.

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(Darwin wrote: But then with me the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man’s mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey’s mind…?)

Charles Darwin resting against pillar covered with vines.



Did you know that Charles Darwin said something similar?

Darwin, C. R. to Graham, William 3 July 1881

Nevertheless you have expressed my inward conviction, though far more vividly and clearly than I could have done, that the Universe is not the result of chance.* But then with me the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man’s mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey’s mind, if there are any convictions in such a mind?

(Francis Schaeffer below)

Francis Schaeffer observed:

Can you feel this man? He is in real agony. You can feel the whole of modern man in this tension with Darwin. My mind can’t accept that ultimate of chance, that the universe is a result of chance. He has said 3 or 4 times now that he can’t accept that it all happened by chance and then he will write someone else and say something different. How does he say this (about the mind of a monkey) and then put forth this grand theory? Wrong theory I feel but great just the same. Grand in the same way as when I look at many of the paintings today and I differ with their message but you must say the mark of the mannishness of man are one those paintings titanic-ally even though the message is wrong and this is the same with Darwin. But how can he say you can’t think, you come from a monkey’s mind, and you can’t trust a monkey’s mind, and you can’t trust a monkey’s conviction, so how can you trust me? Trust me here, but not there is what Darwin is saying. In other words it is very selective. 

Ricky in your interview with Russell Brand you asserted, “We are machines. We are machines trying to understand ourselves and that is hard. Will there one day be a computer suffering from anxiety? I reckon so. We are chimps with brains the size of the planet….I don’t understand consciousness…”

Charles Darwin also has a hard time explaining how our consciousness came about:  “This follows from the extreme difficulty or rather impossibility of conceiving this immense and wonderful universe, including man with his capacity of looking far backwards and far into futurity, as the result of blind chance or necessity.“

I’m an evangelical Christian and you are a secularist but I am sure we can both agree with the apostle Paul when he said in First Corinthians 15 that if Christ did not rise from the dead then Christians are to be most pited!!!! A few years ago I attended Easter services and this issue came up and Mark Henry asserted that there is plenty of evidence that indicates that the Bible is historically accurate. Did you know that CHARLES DARWIN thought about this very subject quite a lot?

I just finished reading the online addition of the book Darwin, Francis ed. 1892. Charles Darwin: his life told in an autobiographical chapter, and in a selected series of his published letters [abridged edition]. London: John Murray. There are several points that Charles Darwin makes in this book that were very wise, honest, logical, shocking and some that were not so wise. The Christian Philosopher Francis Schaeffer once said of Darwin’s writings, “Darwin in his autobiography and in his letters showed that all through his life he never really came to a quietness concerning the possibility that chance really explained the situation of the biological world. You will find there is much material on this [from Darwin] extended over many manufacturers years that constantly he was wrestling with this problem.”

When I read the book  Charles Darwin: his life told in an autobiographical chapter, and in a selected series of his published lettersI also read  a commentary on it by Francis Schaeffer and I wanted to both  quote some of Charles Darwin’s own words to you and then include the comments of Francis Schaeffer on those words. 

Darwin, C. R. to Doedes, N. D., 2 Apr 1873

“It is impossible to answer your question briefly; and I am not sure that I could do so, even if I wrote at some length. But I may say that the impossibility of conceiving that this grand and wondrous universe, with our conscious selves, arose through chance, seems to me the chief argument for the existence of God; but whether this is an argument of real value, I have never been able to decide…Nor can I overlook the difficulty from the immense amount of suffering through the world. I am aware that if we admit a First Cause, the mind still craves to know whence it came, and how it arose.”

Jan Constantijn Costerus and Nicolaas Dirk Doedes pictured below:

Image result for charles darwin Doedes, N. D., 2 Apr 1873

Francis Schaeffer noted:

What he is saying is if you say there is a first cause, then the mind says, “Where did this come from?” I think this is a bit old fashioned, with some of the modern thinkers, this would not have carry as much weight today as it did when Darwin expressed it. Jean Paul Sartre said it as well as anyone could possibly say it. The philosophic problem is that something is there and not nothing being there. No one has the luxury of beginning with nothing. Nobody I have ever read has put forth that everything came from nothing. I have never met such a person in all my reading,or all my discussion. If you are going to begin with nothing being there, it has to be nothing nothing, and it can’t be something nothing. When someone says they believe nothing is there, in reality they have already built in something there. The only question is do you begin with an impersonal something or a personal something. All human thought is shut up to these two possibilities. Either you begin with an impersonal and then have Darwin’s own dilemma which impersonal plus chance, now he didn’t bring in the amount of time that modern man would though. Modern man has brought in huge amounts of time into the equation as though that would make a difference because I have said many times that time can’t make a qualitative difference but only a quantitative difference. The dilemma is it is either God or chance. Now you find this intriguing thing in Darwin’s own situation, he can’t understand how chance could have produced these two great factors of the universe and its form and the mannishness of man.

From Charles Darwin, Autobiography (1876), in The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, ed. Francis Darwin, vol. 1 (London: John Murray, 1888), pp. 307 to 313.

“Another source of conviction in the existence of God, connected with the reason and not with the feelings, impresses me as having much more weight. This follows from the extreme difficulty or rather impossibility of conceiving this immense and wonderful universe, including man with his capacity of looking far backwards and far into futurity, as the result of blind chance or necessity. When thus reflecting, I feel compelled to look to a First Cause having an intelligent mind in some degree analogous to that of man; and I deserve to be called a TheistThis conclusion was strong in my mind about the time, as far as I can remember, when I wrote the Origin of Species, and it is since that time that it has very gradually, with many fluctuations, become weaker. But then arises the doubt…”

Francis Schaeffer commented:

On the basis of his reason he has to say there must be an intelligent mind, someone analogous to man. You couldn’t describe the God of the Bible better. That is man is made in God’s image  and therefore, you know a great deal about God when you know something about man. What he is really saying here is that everything in my experience tells me it must be so, and my mind demands it is so. Not just these feelings he talked about earlier but his MIND demands it is so, but now how does he counter this? How does he escape this? Here is how he does it!!!

Charles Darwin went on to observe:  —can the mind of man, which has, as I fully believe, been developed from a mind as low as that possessed by the lowest animals, be trusted when it draws such grand conclusions?”

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Francis Schaeffer asserted:

So he says my mind can only come to one conclusion, and that is there is a mind behind it all. However, the doubt comes because his mind has come from the lowest form of earthworm, so how can I trust my mind. But this is a joker isn’t it?  Then how can you trust his mind to support such a theory as this? He proved too much. The fact that Darwin found it necessary to take such an escape shows the tremendous weight of Romans 1, that the only escape he can make is to say how can I trust my mind when I come from the lowest animal the earthworm? Obviously think of the grandeur of his concept, I don’t think it is true, but the grandeur of his concept, so what you find is that Darwin is presenting something here that is wrong I feel, but it is not nothing. It is a tremendously grand concept that he has put forward. So he is accepting the dictates of his mind to put forth a grand concept which he later can’t accept in this basic area with his reason, but he rejects what he could accept with his reason on this escape. It really doesn’t make sense. This is a tremendous demonstration of the weakness of his own position.


Cambridge Biologist Patrick Bateson comments:

In the You Tube video “A Further 50 Renowned Academics Speaking About God (Part 1),” He asserted:
‎”I’m not a believer.”
Are you an agnostic or an atheist would you say?
“Well, that’s a good question, I think… Darwin’s response when he was asked whether he was an atheist was I don’t know, so I think agnostic. I think I’m actually an atheist when all is said and done, if I’m really honest about it, I really don’t believe in a God.”


Darwin also noted, “I cannot pretend to throw the least light on such abstruse problems. The mystery of the beginning of all things is insoluble by us, and I for one must be content to remain an Agnostic.”

Francis Schaeffer remarked:

What a stupid reply and I didn’t say wicked. It just seems to me that here is 2 plus 2 equals 36 at this particular place.

Darwin, C. R. to Graham, William 3 July 1881

Nevertheless you have expressed my inward conviction, though far more vividly and clearly than I could have done, that the Universe is not the result of chance.* But then with me the horrid doubt always arises whether the convictions of man’s mind, which has been developed from the mind of the lower animals, are of any value or at all trustworthy. Would any one trust in the convictions of a monkey’s mind, if there are any convictions in such a mind?

Francis Schaeffer observed:

Can you feel this man? He is in real agony. You can feel the whole of modern man in this tension with Darwin. My mind can’t accept that ultimate of chance, that the universe is a result of chance. He has said 3 or 4 times now that he can’t accept that it all happened by chance and then he will write someone else and say something different. How does he say this (about the mind of a monkey) and then put forth this grand theory? Wrong theory I feel but great just the same. Grand in the same way as when I look at many of the paintings today and I differ with their message but you must say the mark of the mannishness of man are one those paintings titanic-ally even though the message is wrong and this is the same with Darwin. But how can he say you can’t think, you come from a monkey’s mind, and you can’t trust a monkey’s mind, and you can’t trust a monkey’s conviction, so how can you trust me? Trust me here, but not there is what Darwin is saying. In other words it is very selective. 

Now we are down to the last year of Darwin’s life.

* The Duke of Argyll (Good Words, April 1885, p. 244) has recorded a few words on this subject, spoken by my father in the last year of his life. “. . . in the course of that conversation I said to Mr. Darwin, with reference to some of his own remarkable works on the Fertilisation of Orchids, and upon The Earthworms,and various other observations he made of the wonderful contrivances for certain purposes in nature—I said it was impossible to look at these without seeing that they were the effect and the expression of mind. I shall never forget Mr. Darwin’s answer. He looked at me very hard and said, ‘Well, that often comes over me with overwhelming force; but at other times,’ and he shook his head vaguely, adding, ‘it seems to go away.’”

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Duke of Argyll (1823-1900)

Portrait of 8th Duke of Argyll

(Despite differing opinions, Darwin and Argyll had great respect for each other and he served as one of the pall bearers at Darwin’s funeral.)

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Francis Schaeffer summarized :

And this is the great Darwin, and it makes you cry inside. This is the great Darwin and he ends as a man in total tension.

Francis Schaeffer noted that in Darwin’s 1876 Autobiography that Darwin he is going to set forth two arguments for God in this and again you will find when he comes to the end of this that he is in tremendous tension. Darwin wrote, 

Charles Darwin Charles Darwin – portrait by George Richmond, 1840. CD, English scientist: 12 February 1809 – 19 April 1882. GR, English painter: 28 March 1809 – 19 March 1896.

At the present day the most usual argument for the existence of an intelligent God is drawn from the deep inward conviction and feelings which are experienced by most persons.Formerly I was led by feelings such as those just referred to (although I do not think that the religious sentiment was ever strongly developed in me), to the firm conviction of the existence of God and of the immortality of the soul. In my Journal I wrote that whilst standing in the midst of the grandeur of a Brazilian forest, ‘it is not possible to give an adequate idea of the higher feelings of wonder, admiration, and devotion which fill and elevate the mind.’ I well remember my conviction that there is more in man than the mere breath of his body; but now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind.

Francis Schaeffer remarked:

Now Darwin says when I look back and when I look at nature I came to the conclusion that man can not be just a fly! But now Darwin has moved from being a younger man to an older man and he has allowed his presuppositions to enter in to block his logic. These things at the end of his life he had no intellectual answer for. To block them out in favor of his theory. Remember the letter of his that said he had lost all aesthetic senses when he had got older and he had become a clod himself. Now interesting he says just the same thing, but not in relation to the arts, namely music, pictures, etc, but to nature itself. Darwin said, “But now the grandest scenes would not cause any such convictions  and feelings to rise in my mind. It may be truly said that I am like a man who has become colour-blind…” So now you see that Darwin’s presuppositions have not only robbed him of the beauty of man’s creation in art, but now the universe. He can’t look at it now and see the beauty. The reason he can’t see the beauty is for a very, very , very simple reason: THE BEAUTY DRIVES HIM TO DISTRACTION. THIS IS WHERE MODERN MAN IS AND IT IS HELL. The art is hell because it reminds him of man and how great man is, and where does it fit in his system? It doesn’t. When he looks at nature and it’s beauty he is driven to the same distraction and so consequently you find what has built up inside him is a real death, not  only the beauty of the artistic but the beauty of nature. He has no answer in his logic and he is left in tension.  He dies and has become less than human because these two great things (such as any kind of art and the beauty of  nature) that would make him human  stand against his theory.

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Erasmus Alvey Darwin with Charles Darwin’s sons

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DO THESE WORDS OF DARWIN APPLY TO YOU TODAY? “I am like a man who has become colour-blind.

Martin Rees comments:

Ian Sample spoke to the astronomer royal Martin Rees on Tuesday before the announcement that he had won the Templeton Prize.

I suppose one thing I would say, from my BBC lectures, I think doing science makes me realize that even the simplest things are pretty hard to understand and that makes me suspicious of people who believe they’ve got anything more than an incomplete and metaphorical understanding of any deep aspect of reality. And also I see human beings as not the culmination, but only a stage in the marvelous unfolding of evolution, because the timeline ahead is as long as the time that has lapsed up to now. Those are respects in which my professional interests affect my response to dogmatic religion. But as I say, I participate in occasional religious services which are the customs of the society I grew up in. I’m not allergic to religion.

Theodor W. Hänsch comments:

DO YOU THINK THERE IS LIFE AFTER DEATH? ” I can’t see that for an individual.”  OR THAT THERE IS HEAVEN OR HELL? “No.” WHEN YOU SEE THE PRECISION OF THE ATOM DOES THAT RELATE TO INTELLIGENT DESIGN OR TO A RELIGIOUS APPROACH TO THE WORLD? “Naturally all things around us look like they have been designed intelligently. So the principles that led to their being of course in some ways implies some intelligence but it may not be the intelligence in a person like being, but intelligence is it’s own. In it’s own mechanism, how nature evolves.

Alan Guth

“My feeling about the word God is that I’m not sure if I know really what it means. I certainly have a big place in my philosophy for the unknown – I don’t think at this point we have any way of knowing where the laws of physics came from, we could hope that when we really understand the laws of physics that they will describe how the universe came into existence…

…I have never seen much in the idea that the universe was designed. My problem with the concept is that it always seems that the designer is more sophisticated and more complicated than the object being designed – that is certainly true with the way it works with cars, building, and trucks. So, if one needs a designer that is more complex than the thing being designed, the designer doesn’t help explain the design – it becomes an infinite regress.

So, I’ll freely admit that I have no idea why the laws of physics are what they are – and I also have no idea how to even go about approaching that question – but to me just saying that there is a designer doesn’t help at all.”

(Below is the message I first since to Anthony Flew and he wrote me back and said he enjoyed listening to it)

I have more articles posted on my blog about the last few yearsof Antony Flew’s life than any other website in the world probably. The reason is very simple. I had the opportunity to correspond with Antony Flew back in the middle 90’s and he said that he had the opportunity to listen to several of the cassette tapes that I sent him with messages from Adrian Rogers and he also responded to several of the points I put in my letters that I got from Francis Schaeffer’s materials. The ironic thing was that I purchased the sermon IS THE BIBLE TRUE? originally from the Bellevue Baptist Church Bookstore in 1992 and in the same bookstore in 2008 I bought the book THERE IS A GOD by Antony Flew. Back in 1993 I decided to contact some of the top secular thinkers of our time and I got my initial list of individuals from those scholars that were mentioned in the works of both Francis Schaeffer and Adrian Rogers. Schaeffer had quoted Flew in his book ESCAPE FROM REASON. It was my opinion after reviewing the evidence that Antony Flew was the most influential atheistic philosopher of the 20th century.

The Fine Tuning Argument for the Existence of God fromAntony Flew!

Imagine entering a hotel room on your next vacation. The CD player on the bedside table is softly playing a track from your favorite recording. The framed print over the bed is identical to the image that hangs over the fireplace at home. The room is scented with your favorite fragrance…You step over to the minibar, open the door, and stare in wonder at the contents. Your favorite beverage. Your favorite cookies and candy. Even the brand of bottled water you prefer…You notice the book on the desk: it’s the latest volume by your favorite author…

Chances are, with each new discovery about your hospitable new environment, you would be less inclined to think it has all a mere coincidence, right? You might wonder how the hotel managers acquired such detailed information about you. You might marvel at their meticulous preparation. You might even double-check what all this is going to cost you. But you would certainly be inclined to believe that someone knew you were coming.      There Is A God  (2007)  p.113-4

As a secularist you believe that it is sad indeed that millions of Christians are hoping for heaven but no heaven is waiting for them. Paul took a close look at this issue too. I Corinthians 15 asserts:

12 But if it is preached that Christ has been raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? 13 If there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. 14 And if Christ has not been raised, our preaching is useless and so is your faith. 15 More than that, we are then found to be false witnesses about God, for we have testified about God that he raised Christ from the dead. But he did not raise him if in fact the dead are not raised. 16 For if the dead are not raised, then Christ has not been raised either.17 And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile; you are still in your sins. 18 Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ are lost. 19 If only for this life we have hope in Christ, we are of all people most to be pitied.

I sent you a CD a couple of years ago that starts off with the song DUST IN THE WIND by Kerry Livgren of the group KANSAS which was a hit song in 1978 when it rose to #6 on the charts because so many people connected with the message of the song. It included these words, “All we do, crumbles to the ground though we refuse to see, Dust in the Wind, All we are is dust in the wind, Don’t hang on, Nothing lasts forever but the Earth and Sky, It slips away, And all your money won’t another minute buy.”


Kerry Livgren himself said that he wrote the song because he saw where man was without a personal God in the picture. Solomon pointed out in the Book of Ecclesiastes that those who believe that God doesn’t exist must accept three things. FIRST, death is the end and SECOND, chance and time are the only guiding forces in this life.  FINALLY, power reigns in this life and the scales are never balanced. The Christian can  face death and also confront the world knowing that it is not determined by chance and time alone and finally there is a judge who will balance the scales.

Both Kerry Livgren and the bass player Dave Hope of Kansas became Christians eventually. Kerry Livgrenfirst tried Eastern Religions and Dave Hope had to come out of a heavy drug addiction. I was shocked and elated to see their personal testimony on The 700 Club in 1981 and that same  interview can be seen on You Tube today. Livgren lives in Topeka, Kansas today where he teaches “Diggers,” a Sunday school class at Topeka Bible ChurchDAVE HOPE is the head of Worship, Evangelism and Outreach at Immanuel Anglican Church in Destin, Florida.


The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002

PS: What is the meaning of life? Find it in the end of the open letter I wrote to you on April 23, 2020. 

Below is the workforce of THE TAMBURY GAZETTE 

Seen below is the third episode of AFTERLIFE (season 1) when Matt takes Tony to a comedy club with front row seats to cheer him up but it turns into disaster!!!

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Part 1 “Why have integrity in Godless Darwinian Universe where Might makes Right?”

Part 2 “My April 14, 2016 Letter to Ricky mentioned Book of Ecclesiastes and the Meaninglessness of Life”

Part 3 Letter about Brandon Burlsworth concerning suffering and pain and evil in the world.  “Why didn’t Jesus save her [from cancer]?” (Tony’s 10 year old nephew George in episode 2)

Part 4 Letter on Solomon on Death Tony in episode one, “It should be everyone’s moral duty to kill themselves.”

Part 5 Letter on subject of Learning in Ecclesiastes “I don’t read books of fiction but mainly science and philosophy”

Part 6 Letter on Luxuries in Ecclesiastes Part 6, The Music of AFTERLIFE (Part A)

Part 7 Letter on Labor in Ecclesiastes My Letter to Ricky on Easter in 2017 concerning Book of Ecclesiastes and the legacy of a person’s life work

Part 8 Letter on Liquor in Ecclesiastes Tony’s late wife Lisa told him, “Don’t get drunk all the time alright? It will only make you feel worse in the log run!”

Part 9 Letter on Laughter in Ecclesiastes , I said of laughter, “It is foolishness;” and of mirth, “What does it accomplish?” Ecclesiastes 2:2

Part 10 Final letter to Ricky on Ladies in Ecclesiastes “I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song, and—most exquisite of all pleasures— voluptuous maidens for my bed…behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun” Ecclesiastes 2:8-11.

Part 11 Letter about Daniel Stanhope and optimistic humanism  “If man has been kicked up out of that which is only impersonal by chance , then those things that make him man-hope of purpose and significance, love, motions of morality and rationality, beauty and verbal communication-are ultimately unfulfillable and thus meaningless.” (Francis Schaeffer)

Part 12 Letter on how pursuit of God is only way to get Satisfaction Dan Jarrell “[In Ecclesiastes] if one seeks satisfaction they will never find it. In fact, every pleasure will be fleeting and can not be sustained, BUT IF ONE SEEKS GOD THEN ONE FINDS SATISFACTION”

Part 13 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon realizing he will die just as a dog will die “For men and animals both breathe the same air, and both die. So mankind has no real advantage over the beasts; what an absurdity!” Ecclesiastes

Part 14 Letter to Stephen Hawking on 3 conclusions of humanism and Bertrand Russell destruction of optimistic humanism. “That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms—no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.”(Bertrand Russell, Free Man’s Worship)

Part 15 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Leonardo da Vinci and Solomon and Meaningless of life “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes Book of Ecclesiastes Part 15 “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes 2:17

Part 16 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon’s longing for death but still fear of death and 5 conclusions of humanism on life UNDER THE SUN. Francis Schaeffer “Life is just a series of continual and unending cycles and man is stuck in the middle of the cycle. Youth, old age, Death. Does Solomon at this point embrace nihilism? Yes!!! He exclaims that the hates life (Ecclesiastes 2:17), he longs for death (4:2-3) Yet he stills has a fear of death (2:14-16)”

Mandeep Dhillon as Sandy on her first assignment in ‘After Life’. (Twitter)

A still from ‘After Life’ that captures the vibe of the Tambury Gazette. (Twitter)

Michael Scott of THE OFFICE (USA) with Ricky Gervais 

After Life on Netflix

After Life on Netflix stars Ricky Gervais as a bereaved husband (Image: Netflix)

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Psychiatrist played by Paul Kaye seen below.

The sandy beach walk

Tony Johnson with his dog Brandi seen below:

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Related posts:

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John MacArthur on the Bible and Science (Part 2)

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If Death is the end then what is the point Kath asks below:

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Kath: You are an atheist?

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Francis Schaeffer THE AGE of FRAGMENTATION

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Open Letter #97 to Ricky Gervais on comparison of the Tony of AFTER LIFE to the Solomon of ECCLESIASTES, C.S. Lewis: “Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. A baby feels hunger: well, there is such a thing as food. Men feel sexual desires: well, there is such a thing as sex. If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world”

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After Life #1 Trailer

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After Life 2 Trailer

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On Saturday April 18, 2020 at 6pm in London and noon in Arkansas, I had a chance to ask Ricky Gervais a question on his Twitter Live broadcast which was  “Is Tony a Nihilist?” At the 20:51 mark Ricky answers my question. Below is the video:

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If Death is the end then what is the point Kath asks below:

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Kath: You are an atheist?

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(Above) Tony and Anne on the bench at the graveyard where their spouses are buried.

July 23, 2020 
Ricky Gervais 


Dear Ricky,  

This is the 97th day in a row that I have written another open letter to you to comment on some of your episodes of AFTER LIFE. I love the film series AFTER LIFE but Tony just like Solomon in ECCLESIASTES is lamenting that even though he is asking the right questions he is not getting the right answers. The reason for this search being similar to chasing the wind is that it is a search for meaning UNDER THE SUN!!!!

:The Christian Scholar Ravi Zacharias noted, “The key to understanding the Book of Ecclesiastes is the term UNDER THE SUN — What that literally means is you lock God out of a closed system and you are left with only this world of Time plus Chance plus matter.”

Ricky as an atheist you have put no spiritual solutions in AFTERLIFE except to make fun of the dimwit Kath who is the only Christian in the script. No wonder you have Tony returning to his alcohol and his constant contemplation of suicide. 

Let me make a very simple point and that is we all have a deep longing in our soul that must be satisfied spiritually, and that is a lacking component in AFTER LIFE. 

Francis Schaeffer noted: 

The classic work Leonardo da Vinci, published in Italy and translated in English in 1963, contained a section by Giovanni Gentile (1875-1944) on Leonardo’s thought-forms. He spells out the fact that Leonardo really grasped the problem of modern man. Leonardo anticipated where humanism would end: 

(Giovanni Gentile pictured below)

GENTILE, Giovanni

From Galileo’s day on rigorous scientific method has limited itself consciously to what are called appearances or phenomenon as they later were to be termed of nature that is to the surface but Leonardo while looking to such an ideal of scientific knowledge can not be satisfied with the surface his keen unsleeping eye penetrates deeper and on observation the experience that is so greatly praised and exalted no longer serves him he intuits or invokes the inner life the secret soul setting in motion the great machine that he has taken apart and studied piece by piece, watching, and spying and scrutinizing by means of mathematics, mechanics, anatomy and every instrument that might enable him to follow the operations of nature step by step. 

Hence the anguish and the innermost tragedy of this universal man divided between two irreconcilable worlds, hence the desperate life long labor of this implacable self torture whose marvelous work of gleaming of art spread from full hands day by day on paper, on canvas and on storied walls and of precise concepts and inspired researches which in many fields of scientific knowledge are pretentious anticipations of the future leaves in mind an infinite longing made up as it were of regret and sadness. It is the longing for a different Leonardo from the Leonardo that he was, one that could gathered himself up at each phase and remained closed himself off either altogether in his fantasy or altogether in his intelligence in order to taste the pure joy of divine creation (that’s not God’s creation but his own). It is anguished longing such as always welled up in Leonardo’s heart each time he put down his brush, his charcoal or his rod where he had to break off setting down his secret thoughts.

(Painting of Leonardo below)



What Gentille is putting forth here is that Leonardo was not satisfied with living in two worlds at once. He was not satisfied with being the modern man who would put his aspirations and his longing for unity and meaning in one compartment to be taken out and looked at when he can’t stand the pressure of the details. And Leonardo realized that these two things based on the beginning of man from himself would absolutely lead in this direction…Leonardo was looking for a meaning amidst the details of life.

Why do so many people throughout the world believe in God and an afterlife? Ecclesiastes 3:11 “God has planted eternity in the heart of men…” (Living Bible). 

Psychiatrist played by Paul Kaye seen below.

The sandy beach walk

Even Tony seems to feel this in episode 4 of the first season of AFTER LIFE when Tony talks about being with his wife in the future.

Matt: Tony that doesn’t even make sense. You are a rational man. You don’t even believe in an afterlife. 

Tony: I know she is nowhere. Alright. But get this through your head. I would rather be no where with her then somewhere without her. 

After Life on Netflix

After Life on Netflix stars Ricky Gervais as a bereaved husband (Image: Netflix)

Why does Tony say these things? First, he knows deep down that he was made for more than just this life. Secondly, he can’t live as though he is a machine even though his secular viewpoint tells him that he is only a machine. Modern man, says Francis Schaeffer, resides in a two-story universe. In the lower story is the finite world without God; here life is absurd, as we have seen. In the upper story are meaning, value, and purpose. Now modern man lives in the lower story because he believes there is no God. But he cannot live happily in such an absurd world; therefore, he continually makes leaps of faith into the upper story to affirm meaning, value, and purpose, even though he has no right to, since he does not believe in God.This EXPLAINS why Tony makes statements such as the one that SHOCKED Matt!!!!

As Augustine famously says to God at the beginning of the Confessions: “You stir man to take pleasure in praising you, because you have made us for yourself, and our heart is
restless until it rests in you.” 
35 
C.S. Lewis asserted: 

Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. A baby feels hunger: well, there is such a thing as food. A duckling wants to swim: well,(12) there is such a thing as water. Men feel sexual desires: well, there is such a thing as sex. If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world

Tim Keller in his book MAKING SENSE OF GOD notes: 

The Infinity of Our Discontent page 91 (3:12:35)


The ultimate disordered love, however— and the ultimate source of our discontent— is failure to love the first thing first, the failure to love God supremely. In his Confessions, Augustine prays to God: “For there is a joy that is not given to those who do not love you, but only to those who love you for your own sake. . . . This is happiness and there is no other. Those who think that there is another kind of happiness look for joy elsewhere, but theirs is not true joy. Nevertheless their will remains drawn towards some image of the true joy.” 33

Augustine here distills the biblical view of humanity. Human beings were made in the image of a God who is tripersonal— Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. From all eternity those three divine persons have been loving one another in infinite degrees of joy and glory. We were created to know this joy by loving and glorifying God preeminently. Whether we acknowledge God or not, since we were created for it, we will always look for the infinite joy we were designed to find in loving communion with the Divine. We turn to things in the world to give it to us, but “[ we] sin when, neglectful of order, we fix our love on the creature, instead of on Thee, the Creator.” 34 The reason even the best possible worldly goods will not satisfy is because we were created for a degree of delight and fulfillment that they cannot produce. As Augustine famously says to God at the beginning of the Confessions: “You stir man to take pleasure in praising you, because you have made us for yourself, and our heart is
restless until it rests in you.” 
35 We were made for God, and so nothing can give us the infinite joy that God can.
All things are precious, because all are beautiful, but what is more beautiful than He? Strong they are, but what is stronger than He? . . . If you seek for anything better, you will do wrong to Him and harm to yourself, by preferring to Him that which He made, when he would willingly give Himself to you. 36
You harm yourself when you love anything more than God. How does this work? If you love your children more than you love God, you will essentially rest your need for significance and security in them. You will need too much for them to succeed, be happy, and love you. That will either drive them away or crush them under the weight of your expectations, because they will be the ultimate source of your happiness, and no human being can measure up to that. If instead you love your spouse or romantic partner more than God, the same things occur. If you love your work and career more than God, you will necessarily also love them more than your family, your community, and your own health, and so that will lead to physical and relational breakdown and often, as we saw above, to social injustice.
If you love anything more than God, you harm
the object of your love, you harm yourself, you harm the world around you, and you end up deeply dissatisfied and discontent. 
The most famous modern expression of Augustine’s view was the ending of Lewis’s radio talk:

Creatures are not born with desires unless satisfaction for those desires exists. A baby feels hunger: well, there is such a thing as food. A duckling wants to swim: well,(12) there is such a thing as water. Men feel sexual desires: well, there is such a thing as sex. If I find in myself a desire which no experience in this world can satisfy, the most probable explanation is that I was made for another world. 37


The Augustinian analysis does justice to our experience. As we saw, the evolutionary explanation of our perennial discontent fails to account for it. The idea that “most people are basically happy” trivializes it, but it is not trivial at all. Some have, as it were, sought to fill the inner emptiness with billions of dollars and virtually unchecked power to gratify their impulses and appetites. Yet the testimony of the ages is that even goods on this scale cannot fill the vacuum. That is powerful evidence that the cavern in our soul is indeed infinitely deep. 38


The Healing of Our Discontent
 (3:17:11)


Here, then, is the conundrum we face. Our surprisingly deep discontent leads us to lock our hearts onto things with profound intensity. The ancients wisely taught that the only way to avoid unhappiness is to avoid this “love as attachment,” that is, to attach ourselves so powerfully and exclusively to an object or person that we cannot imagine life without it or him or her. 39 Not only do such attachments lead to envy, resentment, anxiety, and even violence in order to defend our possession, but they also make us fragile and vulnerable to the inevitable changes and disruptions of life.
However, we have seen the dangers of finding contentment through detachment. That not only brings
about a selfishness and hardness but also weakens our love relationships, thus undermining the greatest source of
joy we know. We need not only to receive love but also to give it. 40
Augustine breaks through this logjam. He does a radical critique of love-as-attachment, and presents his own pre-Christian self as a case study. He had attached his happiness to a friend whom he loved intensely but who died suddenly. He later realized that he had “loved a person sure to die as if he would never die (Confessions, book IV, chapter 8). This happens because our souls “become stuck and glued to these transient things,” which “rend the soul with pestilential desires and torment” because “the soul loves . . . to take its repose” in them. Yet “in these things there is no point of rest, for they . . . flee away” (Confessions, book IV, chapter 10). 41
However, after Augustine confirms the deadliness of love-as-attachment, he turns and says that such love is good, right, and essential when given to God. Though idolatrous attachment to earthly goods does indeed lead to unnecessary pain and grief, the solution was not to love the things of life less but to love God more. The problem is not that you love your family or job too much but that you love God too little in relationship to them. Intense attachment and detachment kill. Don’t harden your heart against
love, Augustine says, but don’t give your heart ultimately to things that you can lose and cannot satisfy. Instead infuse your heart with a sense of God’s love and incline your heart to love him in return.
 This will be transformative.
Consider this: If you live a long life, it will tear you up to see the people who matter most to you put into the ground one by one. If your greatest source of contentment and love is your family, that will be intolerable. But if you (13) learn to love God even more than them, your greatest source of consolation, hope, joy, and value will not be diminished by grief. Indeed, the sorrow will drive you to drink deeper from it. You will not find yourself empty, and you won’t always be hardening your heart in order to deal with how your losses tear you up. The love of God can never be taken from you, and in his love, the Bible says, you live with loved ones forever. 42


Of course, not even the strongest believers love God perfectly, nor does anyone get close to doing so. Yet to the degree you move toward loving him supremely, things begin to fall into order, into their proper places in your life. Instead of looking to the things of the world as the deepest source of your contentment, you can enjoy them for what they are. Money and career, for example, become just what they are supposed to be. Work becomes work, a great way to use your gifts and be useful to others. Money becomes just money, a great way to support your family. But these things are not your source of safety and contentment. He is.
There is another powerful dimension to this reordering of loves. Paul Bloom, in his book How Pleasure Works, argues that what matters most for pleasure is not the simple impact on our senses but what it means in relationship to other persons who matter to us. A painting that we think is an original by an admired artist gives less pleasure when we find out it is not. A chair may be comfortable, but if it is our mother’s favorite chair from her sitting room, it will give us even more pleasure. To use theological language, “we enjoy things most when we experience them as a sacrament— as carriers of the presence of another.” 43 Some have charged that religion drains ordinary life of its joy by devaluing it in deference to “higher,” more spiritual interests. This is not true— at least,

(3:22:11)
it is not the case with Christianity, the faith that I know by far the best. Christianity teaches that we are saved by God’s free grace and pardon. Unlike some forms of religion, Christianity does not say that we merit blessing through depriving ourselves and turning our backs on the world in order to earn heaven. Once we know through faith in Christ’s work for us that we are reconciled to God, and that the Creator is now not just our sovereign but our father, we can begin to have a more “sacramental” experience of the world. We see everything as a free gift from Father and a foretaste of the glory and goodness to come in our eternal inheritance. In short, as Miroslav Volf puts it, “Attachment to God amplifies and deepens enjoyment of the world.” 44 It does not diminish it.
Here, then, is the message. Don’t love anything less; instead learn to love God more, and you will love other things with far more satisfaction. You won’t overprotect them, you won’t over-expect things from them. You won’t be constantly furious with them for not being what you hoped. Don’t stifle passionate love for anything; rather, redirect your greatest love toward God by loving him with your whole heart and loving him for himself, not just for what he can give you. 45 Then, and only then, does the contentment start to come.
That is the Christian view of satisfaction. It avoids the pitfalls of both the ancient strategy of tranquility through detachment and the modern strategy of happiness through acquisition. It both explains and resolves the deep conundrum of our seemingly irremediable discontent.
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How to Love God (3:24:01)


It may be that, reading this, you think Augustine’s analysis and solution make good sense. The magnitude of our discontent points to something beyond this world. We harm ourselves if we try to satisfy our deepest longings in human love, and we also harm ourselves if we detach our hearts too much from love. Augustine’s solution is that only the love of the immutable can bring tranquillity, and only an infinite love can satisfy our hunger for infinite joy.
Even if this all makes sense to us, how do we actually know that love? You can’t just tell yourself “God loves me” and expect your heart to change. Nor can you just say, “From now on I will love God.” Love cannot be generated simply by an act of the will. Children learn to speak only by responding to speech and learn to love only by reciprocating love. So we cannot love God just by thinking of an abstract deity who is loving in general. We must grasp and be gripped by the true story of God’s actual sacrificial, saving love for us in Jesus.
In the Gospel of John, Jesus speaks to a crowd about the “bread of life,” such that whoever eats it “will never go hungry” (John 6: 35). He is talking metaphorically about something that gives both strength and delight, an image
of fulfillment and satisfaction. He also observes that human beings seek this in the wrong places. He warns against “work[ ing] for food that spoils,” that does not in the end satisfy (John 6: 27). But he does not just say, “I am the dispenser of the bread of life.” Rather, he says, “I am the bread of life” (John 6: 35) and “This is my body given for you” (Luke 22: 19) and “This is my body, which is for you” (1 Corinthians 11: 24).
The heart of the Christian faith is the simple Gospel message of sin and grace. Because we fail to love God and
our neighbor, we sin, and for God to forgive our sin, the Son of God became mortal and graciously died in our place on the cross.
 This is an offensive idea to many people, but for the moment just consider the two ways this message can bring about the love relationship with God, which solves the human dilemma.
First, the knowledge of our sin softens our hearts. If you were to raise a child and work your fingers to the bone to send that child to college, and the child only occasionally sent you a Christmas card and never gave you the time of day, that would be wrong. It’s wrong because the child owes not just deference but love. Now, if there is a God who created us and keeps us alive every minute, then the love we owe God would be infinitely greater. To not love him supremely would be infinitely worse. If you believe that, you begin to see how much we have wronged him. It begins to draw your heart outward toward him in humility and grief.
Second, the knowledge of his grace ignites our hearts. If you want to forgive someone who has wrongfully cost you a great deal of money and can’t afford to pay you back, you must absorb and pay the debt yourself. If God was going to forgive us, he had to pay the debt we owed himself. And Jesus Christ pays it by going to the cross. Keep in mind that outside of salt and a couple of minerals, everything we eat has died so that we may live. If you are eating bread, not only did the grain die, but the bread has to be broken into pieces. If the bread stays whole, you starve and you fall apart. If the bread is broken into pieces and you take it in, then you live. When Jesus Christ says, “I am the bread of life.
. . broken for you,” (John 6: 35; Luke 22: 19) he is saying: “I am God become breakable, killable, vulnerable. I die that you might live. I am broken so you can be whole.”
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Only if you see him doing this all for you— does that begin to change your heart. He suffered and died for your sake. Now out of joy we can love him just for his sake, just for the beauty of who he is and what he has done. You
can’t force your heart to love. A kind of vague god, a god of love, an abstract god will never change your heart. This is what will change it, draw it off its inordinate attachments to other things, and turn it away from the food that spoils. Someday, then, you will be able to say, “Because your love is better than life . . . I will be fully satisfied as with the richest of foods; with singing lips my mouth will praise you” (Psalm 63: 3a, 5). This is “it”— or at least its foretaste (1 John 3: 1– 3).
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The answer to find meaning in life is found in putting your faith and trust in Jesus Christ. The Bible is true from cover to cover and can be trusted.

Thank you again for your time and I know how busy you are.

Sincerely,

Everette Hatcher, everettehatcher@gmail.comhttp://www.thedailyhatch.org, cell ph 501-920-5733, 13900 Cottontail Lane, Alexander, AR 72002

PS: What is the meaning of life? Find it in the end of the open letter I wrote to you on April 23, 2020. 

Below is the workforce of THE TAMBURY GAZETTE 

Seen below is the third episode of AFTERLIFE (season 1) when Matt takes Tony to a comedy club with front row seats to cheer him up but it turns into disaster!!!

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Part 1 “Why have integrity in Godless Darwinian Universe where Might makes Right?”

Part 2 “My April 14, 2016 Letter to Ricky mentioned Book of Ecclesiastes and the Meaninglessness of Life”

Part 3 Letter about Brandon Burlsworth concerning suffering and pain and evil in the world.  “Why didn’t Jesus save her [from cancer]?” (Tony’s 10 year old nephew George in episode 2)

Part 4 Letter on Solomon on Death Tony in episode one, “It should be everyone’s moral duty to kill themselves.”

Part 5 Letter on subject of Learning in Ecclesiastes “I don’t read books of fiction but mainly science and philosophy”

Part 6 Letter on Luxuries in Ecclesiastes Part 6, The Music of AFTERLIFE (Part A)

Part 7 Letter on Labor in Ecclesiastes My Letter to Ricky on Easter in 2017 concerning Book of Ecclesiastes and the legacy of a person’s life work

Part 8 Letter on Liquor in Ecclesiastes Tony’s late wife Lisa told him, “Don’t get drunk all the time alright? It will only make you feel worse in the log run!”

Part 9 Letter on Laughter in Ecclesiastes , I said of laughter, “It is foolishness;” and of mirth, “What does it accomplish?” Ecclesiastes 2:2

Part 10 Final letter to Ricky on Ladies in Ecclesiastes “I gathered a chorus of singers to entertain me with song, and—most exquisite of all pleasures— voluptuous maidens for my bed…behold, all was vanity and a striving after wind, and there was nothing to be gained under the sun” Ecclesiastes 2:8-11.

Part 11 Letter about Daniel Stanhope and optimistic humanism  “If man has been kicked up out of that which is only impersonal by chance , then those things that make him man-hope of purpose and significance, love, motions of morality and rationality, beauty and verbal communication-are ultimately unfulfillable and thus meaningless.” (Francis Schaeffer)

Part 12 Letter on how pursuit of God is only way to get Satisfaction Dan Jarrell “[In Ecclesiastes] if one seeks satisfaction they will never find it. In fact, every pleasure will be fleeting and can not be sustained, BUT IF ONE SEEKS GOD THEN ONE FINDS SATISFACTION”

Part 13 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon realizing he will die just as a dog will die “For men and animals both breathe the same air, and both die. So mankind has no real advantage over the beasts; what an absurdity!” Ecclesiastes

Part 14 Letter to Stephen Hawking on 3 conclusions of humanism and Bertrand Russell destruction of optimistic humanism. “That Man is the product of causes which had no prevision of the end they were achieving; that his origin, his growth, his hopes and fears, his loves and his beliefs, are but the outcome of accidental collocations of atoms—no philosophy which rejects them can hope to stand. Only within the scaffolding of these truths, only on the firm foundation of unyielding despair, can the soul’s habitation henceforth be safely built.”(Bertrand Russell, Free Man’s Worship)

Part 15 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Leonardo da Vinci and Solomon and Meaningless of life “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes Book of Ecclesiastes Part 15 “I hate life. As far as I can see, what happens on earth is a bad business. It’s smoke—and spitting into the wind” Ecclesiastes 2:17

Part 16 Letter to Stephen Hawking on Solomon’s longing for death but still fear of death and 5 conclusions of humanism on life UNDER THE SUN. Francis Schaeffer “Life is just a series of continual and unending cycles and man is stuck in the middle of the cycle. Youth, old age, Death. Does Solomon at this point embrace nihilism? Yes!!! He exclaims that the hates life (Ecclesiastes 2:17), he longs for death (4:2-3) Yet he stills has a fear of death (2:14-16)”

Mandeep Dhillon as Sandy on her first assignment in ‘After Life’. (Twitter)

A still from ‘After Life’ that captures the vibe of the Tambury Gazette. (Twitter)

Michael Scott of THE OFFICE (USA) with Ricky Gervais 

After Life on Netflix

After Life on Netflix stars Ricky Gervais as a bereaved husband (Image: Netflix)

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Psychiatrist played by Paul Kaye seen below.

The sandy beach walk

Tony Johnson with his dog Brandi seen below:

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Francis Schaeffer THE AGE of FRAGMENTATION

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