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Chinese Characters Have Biblical Meaning – There Is A God

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The Lamb of God hidden in the ancient Chinese characters.

the familyThe Chinese invented the ancient Chinese characters nearly 4500 years ago. They invented the characters independent of the ancient Sumerian and Egyptian writings. The earliest forms of the characters, ‘wen’ , were pictures of objects and symbols. The ancient Chinese combined the ‘wen’ to make up compound characters in order to express complex ideas. Analysis of these two forms of the ancient Chinese characters that are associated with the sheep suggests that the Chinese recognised the spiritual representation of the sheep as the source of truthfulness, kindness, beauty, righteousness and eternity. These attributes are the same as those of God’s sacrificial Lamb, the Lord Jesus Christ.

the family While many consider early Chinese history to be composed of myths, fables, and legends, in Finding God in Ancient China author and scholar Chan Kei Thong the familybelieves that the language, stories, and rituals actually occurred during this time period and honored a creator who has since been forgotten in modern Chinese culture.

The ancient Chinese worshiped a montheistic God whom they called ShangDi, the same God the Hebrews of the Bible worshiped as Yahweh.

the familyAccording to Thong, after the division of nations at the Tower of Babel one of the groups journeyed across the Asian continent and settled in what is today the region of China.

It was this group of people who established the first Chinese culture known as the Long Shan. And from this culture the first ruling dynasty, the Xia Dynasty, would emerge. Thong claims that the writings, beliefs, actions, and language conventions that were employed by the Xia Dynasty all point to a belief in the one true God; the family

the same God who confused the languages at Babel and is today the God of the Christian faith. “Finding God in Ancient China is a remarkable achievement, a profound examination of China’s cultural origins and history as a reflection of a continuous Chinese cultural sense of a connection with the divine.

Mystery concerns the 450-year-old Temple of Heaven complex in Beijing, China.

the familyWhy did the emperors sacrifice a bull on the great white marble Altar of Heaven at an annual ceremony, the year’s most important and colourful celebration, the so-called ‘Border Sacrifice’? This rite ended in 1911 when the last emperor was deposed. However, the sacrifice did not begin a mere 450 years ago. The ceremony goes back 4,000 years. One of the earliest accounts of the Border Sacrifice is found in the Shu Jing (Book of History), compiled by Confucius, where it is recorded of Emperor Shun (who ruled from about 2256 BC to 2205 BC when the first recorded dynasty began) that ‘he sacrificed to ShangDi.’

Who is ShangDi? This name literally means ‘the Heavenly Ruler.’ By reviewing recitations used at the Border Sacrifice, recorded in the Statutes of the Ming Dynasty (AD 1368), one may begin to understand the ancient Chinese reverence for ShangDi. Participating in this rite, the emperor first meditated at the Temple of Heaven (the Imperial Vault), while costumed singers, accompanied by musicians, intoned:

‘To Thee, O mysteriously-working Maker, I look up in thought. … With the great ceremonies I reverently honor Thee. Thy servant, I am but a reed or willow; my heart is but that of an ant; yet have I received Thy favouring decree, appointing me to the government of the empire. I deeply cherish a sense of my ignorance and blindness, and am afraid, lest I prove unworthy of Thy great favours. Therefore will I observe all the rules and statutes, striving, insignificant as I am, to discharge my loyal duty. Far distant here, I look up to Thy heavenly palace. Come in Thy precious chariot to the altar. Thy servant, I bow my head to the earth reverently, expecting Thine abundant grace. … O that Thou wouldest vouchsafe to accept our offerings, and regard us, while thus we worship Thee, whose goodness is inexhaustible!’

Thus we find the emperor worshipping ShangDi. Can we possible trace the original intention of this magnificent ceremony of antiquity? As the emperor took part in this annual service dedicated to ShangDi, the following words were recited, clearly showing that he considered ShangDi the Creator of the world.the family

‘Of old in the beginning, there was the great chaos, without form and dark. The five elements [planets] had not begun to revolve, nor the sun and moon to shine. You, O Spiritual Sovereign, first divided the grosser parts from the purer. You made heaven. You made earth. You made man. All things with their reproducing power got their being’.

For the Christian, the above recitation sounds somewhat familiar. How closely it reads to the opening chapter of the biblical Genesis! Note the similarity with excerpts from the more detailed story as recorded in the Hebrew writings:

‘In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. The earth was without form, and void; and darkness was on the face of the deep. …

‘And God said, “Let the waters under the heaven be gathered together unto one place, and let the dry land appear”; and it was so. And God called the dry land Earth, and the gathering together of the waters called He Seas. …the family

‘And God made two great lights: the greater light to rule the day, and the lesser light to rule the night: He made the stars also. …

‘So God created man in His own image; …’ (Genesis 1:1-2, 9-10, 16, 27-28)

the familyShangDi, the Creator-God of the Chinese, surely appears to be one and the same as the Creator-God of the Hebrews. In fact, one of the Hebrew names for God is El Shaddai, which is phonetically similar to ShangDi. Even more similar is the Early Zhou pronunciation of ShangDi which is ‘djanh-tigh’ [Zhan-dai].4 Another name for their God which the ancient Chinese used inter-changeable with ShangDi was Heaven (Tian). Zheng Xuan, a scholar of the early Han dynasty said, “ShangDi is another name for Heaven (Tian)”.5 The great philosopher Motze (408-382 BC) also thought of Heaven (Tian) as the Creator-God:

‘I know Heaven loves men dearly not without reason. Heaven ordered the sun, the moon, and the stars to enlighten and guide them.Heaven ordained the four seasons, Spring, Autumn, Winter, and Summer, to regulate them. Heaven sent down snow, frost, rain, and dew to grow the five grains and flax and silk so that the people could use and enjoy them. Heavenestablished the hills and river, ravines and valleys, and arranged many things to minister to man’s good or bring him evil.’

Here are seven Chinese Characters that show that the ancient Chinese knew the Gospel message found in the book of Genesis. In the book God’s Promise to the Chinese by Ethel R. Nelson and Richard E. Broadberry, hundreds more are revealed.

Find out:

  • Do the mysterious, ancient Chinese characters have a biblical meaning little understood before?

  • What was the meaning of the 4,000-year-old Border Sacrifice that the Chinese emperors observed annually?

  • Who was Shang Ti, worshiped in the Border Sacrifice?

Shangdi, ( Chinese: “Lord-on-High”) Wade-Giles romanization Shang-ti, also called Di ,  ancient Chinese deity, the greatest ancestor and deity who controlled victory in battle, harvest, the fate of the capital, and the weather. He had no cultic following, however, and was probably considered too distant and inscrutable to be influenced by mortals. Shangdi was considered to be the supreme deity during the Shang dynasty (1600–1046 century bce), but during the Zhou dynasty (1046–256 bce) he was gradually supplanted by heaven (tian).

Shangdi (上帝, pinyinShàngdìWade-Giles Shang Ti, lit. “High Sovereign”) refers to a god or a power regarded as the spiritual ultimate by the Chinese people during the Shang Dynasty. According to Yanxia Zhao, evidence shows that Shangdi was probably more transcendental than immanent, only working through lesser gods. During the Zhou Dynasty, Shangdi was associated with Heaven (天 Tiān). By the time of the Han dynasty, the influential Confucian scholar Zheng Xuan declared that “Shangdi is another name for Tian.” Shangdi remains chiefly synonymous with Heaven in modern Chinese thought.

Painstaking analysis of the most ancient forms of Chinese writing reveals the original thoughts and beliefs of their inventor.

Using many examples, the authors show that the inventor of the originalthe family Chinese characters knew and believed the account of creation as well as the promise of the Savior to come. Shang Ti, worshiped at the Border Sacrifice, was the Triune God.

  • To Create (World, Light, Water, Land, Plants, Life)

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  • Garden (The Garden of Eden – Breath of Life)

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  • Forbidden (Forbidden Fruit and Tree of Life)

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  • There are also many more examples found in Genesis and the Mystery Confucius Couldn’t Solve.
The Border Sacrifice

The Vastness and unique quality of this architectural wonder suggest the great importance the emperors placed on the act of worship performed there.  Confucius, who highly esteemed these rites in the worship of Shang Di, said,

the family“The ceremonies of the celestial and terrestrial sacrifices are those by which men serve Shang Di.

This most important of ceremonies was performed by the emperor and was called the Border Sacrifice, because it usually took place on the southern outskirts (border) of the imperial city.  It was also called the Ji Tian, that is, the Ceremony of Sacrifice to Heaven.  The history of the Han Dynasty, one of the 26 volumes of the official dynastic histories dating back to approximately 1100 B.B., uncerscores the profound importance of this ceremony:

“To an emperor, the most important thing is to follow the principles of Tian [Heaven].  In following Tian, nothing is important than the sacrifice at the border.”

This all important ceremony can be traced to the most ancient of Chinese emperors.  Grand Historian Sima Qian confirmed in the Historical Records that sacrifices were performed at Mount Tai in coastal Shandong provice by many ancient rulers.  He also explained why it was called the Border Sacrifice:  “In ancient times, the Son of Heaven [i.e. the emperor] of the Xia Dynasty personally reverentially sacrificed to Shang Di at the border, that’s why it is called the Border [Sacrifice].”

China’s own historical records show that active worship of the supreme God, Shang Di, goes back to some of the earliest Chinese emperors and continued through several thousand years until collapse of the last dynasty in 1911.

“Wo be unto him that rejecteth the word of God! 2 Ne. 27: 14, 2 Ne. 28: 29; Ether 4: 8.

Larry Browning
For The Family