Presley - 30 No1 Hits - 26 - In The Ghetto
I've tried to imagine what it would be like if I was in Israel, a Palestinian or
Israeli person, with an agreement of peace and co-existence. And I imagine that it even
works. And I wonder, even so, would I actually be able to live side by side with people
who had been my worst enemy for whatever reason, and actually forgive them as I would have
them forgive me, trust them and, as the Bible says, love them as I would myself.
It's a tough question, isn't it? It's like racism in the United States. You could
actually end it, or you could just declare we're all color blind, and ignore it like it
doesn't exist. Like an advertising campaign to convince you that eating lots of corn silk
will cure a common cold.. until they come up with something new next week.
If you found out tomorrow that the media was lying to you about important things, how
long would it take until you trusted them again, and what would they have to do to prove
they were trustworthy?
Talk about "feeling your pain".
Sometimes, I think about some of the people who have been involved in criminal acts
against me, knowing one day, under some circumstance, I'm going to have the opportunity as
well as the necessity to face some of them, an ask for the full, true story, to fill in
some details that I believe I have a right to know. Some of them are truly brilliant
people, and even if I found out they were "good guys" all along, I wonder if I
could trust them. Professionally and personally.
It's like the Palestinians and the Israelis. Ask the people. On both sides. They don't
want the hostilities and even the Israeli people are increasingly opposing their own
Even these people know that the conflict between their peoples is not personal, except
that it affects them personally.
So, if you were a Palestinian or Israeli citizen, and true peace was declared and
established, what would it take for them to actually become at peace with each other. One
example of what I mean is, like, let's say one person says to the other person, "I'm
sorry for the suffering it caused you". Would the person receiving the apology be
able to accept it without being distracted by the anguish and emotional wounds left by the
tragedies of their lives?
I want you to seriously think about that, because it's something that must be empowered
soon. You think it's all about the Israelis and Palestinians.
There's a reason I decided to use "In the Ghetto" for this chapter. First,
because everyone loves Elvis, and I thought it would be interesting for people to realize
that Willie Nelson wrote the song.
But, mostly, it describes the kind of thing I'm talking about in a short song, how
things happen, how circumstances put us in situations, and how extreme situations lead
people to extreme actions. As well as how every mother and father knows that despite the
crimes their children may commit, there's a part of them that is pure and good. That's not
to defend their crimes.
People who speak of Christianity, of believing in Christianity, and agreeing to the
teachings of the last great Christ, Jesus, need to really take on that Christianity, and
the judgment of the Christs, inspired and guided by God, is superceded by the
"current Christ", recognized or not. And you need to realize, certain
religious and political leaders have been aware of the existence of a Christ for
centuries. And have ignored and purposefully suppressed them.
That said, I say, to this day, the teachings of Jesus are still just as valid and
universal as they were back then, even though verbiage and descriptions of His instruction
were sometimes suited to the ways and mores of that time.
To this day - and I keep looking to see if I disagree or thought something may have
been incorrect in the context of today - and I only find one thing I believe I can make
clearer, and one other thing that I believe has been obscured by losses in translations
and philology of words. There is one other passage I want to research with someone in
original texts to see if it was inserted or reinterpreted to suit King James that leads to
an abstract conversation that inevitably becomes a discussion regarding polygamy and
Now, the meat of this conversation. The integrity of a covenant.
In a nation, we make a constitution and some laws, conduct ourselves in ways that we
say are consistent and appropriate. In effect, we make a covenant with our fellow
citizens, and whether or not we keep that covenant often translates into whether we live
in a safe or dangerous, friendly or unfriendly, and even, bigoted communities. We make
covenants, come to agreements, make deals, decide on a social contract.
Being true to those covenants, having integrity toward keeping those covenants, has
benefits, just as breaking them can have unwanted consequences.
Of course, the value of the covenant from the beginning is derived from the honest
intent and facilitation of the parties making the agreement. For example, if a government
of laws breaks its own laws, it can not expect the citizens to respect it or the justice
system that enforces illegal laws. If a citizen, without criminal intent, breaks a legal
law, they should not expect benefit of the government. By a legal law, I'm not saying that
just because a legislature passes legislation it should be respected or considered legal.
Particularly these days, as many illegal laws are passed that, enable the commission of
crimes by the government against its own citizens. Once again, I stress, I am not speaking
solely of the United States.
The ways of government, since the invention of radio and TV in particular, has been to
use mass communications in order to tell "the story" their way. We're told of
truth commissions and investigations, of people who are the assumed wise stewards of our
nations, learning lessons, and then the only people who are criminalized are the citizens
or professionals taking orders from the people who gave the orders and conducted the truth
commissions. Congress. I've come to the conclusion that a commission by the government is
a code word for the "commission of a cover-up".
When's the last time you heard an apology from a politician or a government that wasn't
more than trite words required to provide the facade of concern for the consequences
of unethical or immoral acts. Dick Cheney has admitted to international crimes against
humanity on TV. Why isn't he in jail?
George W. Bush perpetrated at least one public hoax by leading us to war in Iraq,
scaring us with the threat of terror to launch a war he told a reporter he was going to
start 2 years before GW ever ran for president. People died. If you perpetrated such a
hoax that lead to the deaths of over 1,000,000 people, would you be in jail?
And the United States Congress ignored the facts of the case proving that we were lead
to war on false premises, all of which could have been known if only they'd watched CNN.
And instead of apologizing to the soldiers and families who lost their lives, and loved
ones, and those who suffer their wounds, the Department of Homeland Security identifies
our Iraqi veterans as potential homegrown terrorists.
It's like our government all but shunning Viet Nam Veterans because to honor them would
mean Congress having to constantly remind citizens of the way our government was being
controlled by the military industrial complex, and how the government had sold out to
If you don't apologize for your crimes or sins, how can you be forgiven for them? If
you apologize for something and then turn around and do it again, how can you claim the
expectation of forgiveness, or even trust of any sort?
Every once in a while we hear of a death bed confession of people known in the past to
be involved in political or criminal dirty dealings. The media plays it up like a big
story of uncovering something they likely knew long ago but weren't allowed to mention in
order to protect the criminals still living. We're told of a mystery finally solved, and
the confession conjures up images of a sinner making peace with God before dying.
I don't mean to be insensitive, but I can't help thinking it's just like governments,
and the phrase, governments do the right things when all else fails.
When people are doing things, evil things, things that cause others to suffer and
destroy lives for reasons other than to protect the lives of those they have pledged to
protect... people know when they're doing wrong things, I'm talking fundamental right and
So when they make careers out of taking orders and appeasing people of lawlessness, and
then confess on their death beds, it only appears to me to be the same as a congressional
commission: doing the least they think they can have to do or admit to get away with it.
And worse: who cares what happens to the people they have harmed and continue to be
harmed, so long as they get to be famous, rich and powerful. And undeserving of
When Jesus died on the cross, He said, forgive them, for they know not what they do.
And God forgave them all. And a new covenant was made. And that covenant was that from
that day on, for every spirit in existence and the elders of this world, that whatever you
do from here on out will be held against you. God is keeping score. And Jesus is the
referee. He'll decide what crimes or sins are forgivable based on the times and based on
You could easily say that the key to forgiveness on the spiritual plane, with God, is
simple, because if you confess your sins and so forth, you'll be forgiven. It's not really
that simple. It sort of is. But what about those you've harmed? Those you've
In my world, in my circumstances, in regard to the people who have committed crimes
against me... in the worlds of people, like South Africans, and people of all races in the
United States and other nations who have been victimized... for the most part, they'd be
glad to simply have the harm and oppression removed from their lives so they could
continue on make the most of their futures.
But they'd have a problem with the people who committed the crimes continuing to have
power over them.
Gaye - Motown's Love Songs - 202 - Anger
Forgiveness - it's part of a covenant - one that says I agree to certain rules in a
"culture" of one sort or another, an no one expects perfection, but there is a
reasonable expectation of honorable intent, whether there are specific rules or not.
Part of what that covenant - the agreement to play by the rules - includes, is the
willingness of a person to be willing to examine their own lives and admit to themselves
and God, where they have failed to live up to their own expectations in living their
principles in the world, as well as by the standards they believe in and agree to as
Christians or any other faith.
Judge not lest ye be judged. In one context, it means, don't jugs other people of their
righteousness in God's eyes lest you be judged for judging others, in one way, deciding
you have the right to play God, and be held accountable for their actions because after
all, if you're a true servant of God, then as a peacemaker, it is partly your
responsibility to reconcile the situation, much like a material witness to a crime is a
criminal if they don't report crimes.
In terms of forgiveness, this same phrase, judge not lest ye be judged... it's
interesting how we can "turn the tables" a bit and say that, because
reconciliation and atonement requires us to judge ourselves, to consider how God would
judge us and then do what's right in order to reconcile the situation... whatever that
might be and may be possible... that if we judge not ourselves, we will be judged by God,
and He is much more of a perfectionist when people who know the difference between right
and wrong try to fool Him into thinking they've done good when they know they haven't.
He's particularly irritated when people believe confession is a process one can do, like a
magic incantation or going to a car wash, that absolves you, even when you don't really
care and only do it because it makes you appear to be righteous.
And, ministers who believe that actual apostasy will be overlooked because they've
saved souls... please look at what apostasy means and how you're actually conducting
yourselves and representing truth, and where you are gathering it from, and understand
that the rippling effect of misleading people after knowing you erred or knowing you've
been too lazy to know the truth by your own education could lead to your flock being
misled, and in these times, could mean their deaths... you can understand why the
Bible instructs us that God hates apostates and will show them no mercy. Because
He's trusting you, He's having faith in you, and your faithfulness to the covenants you
made with God will be reflected in your actions, in your example as a leader and teacher
of the ways of Christ Jesus, you want to understand God is trusting the care of His
children to you... and so part of your judgment will be regarding your faith in Him by
following His ways, always seeking truth in order to care for His children, with the same
passion and concern you would have for your own children. And so, you need to be honest
with yourselves about that. Because this is no time to be lackadaisical about what God
expects from you.
That last paragraph was God's words.
The biggest part of forgiveness and being forgiven is forgiving yourselves. If you
can't acknowledge to your selves, acknowledge that you know the difference between right
and wrong to your self, and admit it even to your self, how can you forgive your self for
continuing to do something you know is wrong when you keep doing it? And then, how could
anyone forgive you.
It's an endless cycle that must be broken.
Only you can break it.
And if you want someone's forgiveness, if you expect someone to forgive you, it's up to
you to offer them something to forgive. And if you're being sincere, it will be what there
is to forgive. And if you mean it, you'll do your best to never do it again, even though
you might, though it will be less likely to occur over time.
Forgiveness becomes easier and easier as there becomes less to forgive. But we should
never forget the lessons of what lead to the need for forgiveness, or we will simply
repeat them, which is what we've been doing for centuries.
and Crofts - The Longest Road - A01 - Egypt, Israel and America
God wants to forgive everyone. He sent Jesus the first time to show people what He
expected of them. This time, He's looking for reasons despite making His expectations
clear. If that isn't clear to you, consider that the Bible clearly says the
Israeli-Palestinian conflict was to be settled by 1996. 48 Years after the establishment
of the Nation of Israel. And in God's mind, more than enough proof that His instructions
are being ignored, and that His children are being harmed, which He will tolerate no
While negotiators continue the charade of seeking peace by force, reconciliation can
not be achieved without forgiveness, and forgiveness can not be granted without
reconciliation. Reconciliation can not occur without an honest broker, and there can be no
honest broker if they are committed to an outcome that favors one side or another.
And that is the history of the world that God will bring to an end, through
forgiveness. That is the justice of God, and part of the the promised He said He would
The first thing you need to forgive yourself for is being human in every way that you
are. Lose your self to save your self. By forgiving yourself first.. not absolving
yourself of responsibility or liability or anything, but forgiving yourself.. you will, in
time, find less and less to forgive yourself for.
Consider why that would be true, as the web of lies, to yourselves and others and God
unravels and is undone.
The way to destroy the world as it is, as the Bible speaks of, God's way, would be to
destroy according to the Biblical definition.. to undo... to unravel the mess and
straighten it out... and it begins with forgiveness.
There's a great deal more that could be said on this subject with far greater
implications encompassing more than you can imagine it would apply to. But that's
why an era, not a year or a weekend, but an era of reconciliation begins with forgiveness,
and the forgiveness begins with the guilty, and not the acceptance of harm by the victims.
Morissette - Are You Still Mad