For many years on this day, though trying to be more secular, I would discuss the definition of “faith” as it is understood by devoted activist Christians.
Recall that since April 1994 – when this column was so “young” – I would quote Hebrews 11:1 from the Christians’ Holy Bible: “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for; the evidence of things not seen”. Like the virgin birth, Christians just have to believe in the Resurrection after the Roman capital punishment execution known as the crucifixion. If they don’t, by pure conviction and faith, fully accept those two miracle like events, there is really little basis for the religion they chose.
That same portion of Hebrews challenges me a bit by going to “explain” that “through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear” wow! I’ll grapple with that later but today I invite believers of and in Jesus, the Christ to consider the Jehovah Witnesses’ position that at the final feast of the Jewish Passover, that last supper or dinner, Jesus asked his closest followers, the disciples to commemorate his death. (“Mischievous”/ fierce witnesses will continuously dare other Christians to find anywhere in the Holy Bible where any advice or instruction speaks about celebrating his birth.)
Since that last meal was used by Jesus to make some pivotal points even as he used bread and wine to symbolize his everlasting presence and to instruct about his need for his messengers to forever remember him – “ this do in remembrance of me”, so to this day Christians commune through the body and the blood at various altars.
So in this special Friday offering I dwell a little more on how Christ used that meal – meeting.
Luke, Jesus, (Pope) Peter
Of all the accounts by the four Gospel chronicles and others, I choose Luke the evangelist. Christian scholars have deemed his account – indeed his acts (of the other apostles) to be geographically accurate and as authentic as they come. As if he was actually there.
And interestingly, Luke is the patron saint of artists, physicians, surgeons, students and butchers! Signifi-cantly too Luke is regarded as a professional historian.
Luke’s style captures attention as he reports about Jesus revealing that one of his faithful breaking bread with him would betray him; would disown him for fear of the authorities and even the priests who all wanted the rebellious Rabbi eliminated. That turned out to be none other than Peter. Who swore at the meal that “Lord I am ready to go with thee both into prison and into death!“ Of course the Great Betrayal did happen. Yet Peter the Fisherman, who had otherwise stuck to Jesus’ evangelism and mission later repented. Jesus did tell Petros that he was the rock upon which the church would be built and sustained. The Christian world, eventually the splintered Catholics of Rome, had their original Pope.
I invite Christians to reflect upon the above, through truncated. But assist me too: Why is there so much sustained conflict and bloodshed right now – in all those lands where Jesus walked?
On prison labour, health care…
This is merely a brief but strongly–felt endorsement of and support for the call from Mr Roshan Khan (senior) to bring back hard–labour prison sentences for certain convictions.
Instead of whole–day relaxation at our expense some prisoners, in the distant past had to toil from six to six. (Elsewhere they were shackled in chain gangs!) Now we’ve signed on to international labour conventions. The prisoners smile knowingly.
I support also whippings for those recidivist, hard–core murderers convicted. But no! Guyana’s rehabilitators have signed on to those conventions. His Excellency will never condone any judicial execution. We did not give life. We are Christian and civilized now. The hardened murderers laugh knowingly.
And just as I’ve called on His Excellency to be the President to leave us a legacy of continuous light – meaning 21st century electricity – I also now ask him to inspire the drastic upgrade of all regional hospitals.
From Linden to Mabaruma to West Dem to Diamond, to Skeldon and Suddie, let these hospitals be capable – personnel, supplies and equipment – comprehensive health care and treatment. For your poor Sir.
The senior doctor/ spokesman at Linden did his best, the other day to explain away that lovely lady’s delivery death. But the stark fact is they had to get to Georgetown; there were delays. Better hospitals, even as Oil and Gas cometh.
Historian Granger on (his) Burnham?
I must hasten to agree with all loading commentators that the full length feature on Dr Cheddi Jagan, last week Thursday (22nd) by Emeritus Professor Clem Seecharan, was dispassionately objective and written as a non–partisan professional historian should.
Congrats to Stabroek News for facilitating this. Cheddi Jagan has left an abundance of literature written by himself based on his own beliefs and perspectives. Not so Burnham! But who today can write a Seecharan–type biography of LFSB? A visionary leader, even as autocrat. Someone must do it.
But not disciple Vincent Alexander nor historian David Granger. These qualified devotees can write but I’ve heard them explain away all of Forbes mistakes and excesses.
Festus Brotherson, Ferguson, Mc David and Field–Ridley have all transitioned to loftier libraries. So I nominate former PNC ideologue and former PPP education minister Henry Jeffrey to write Burnham’s biography. If Sophia and His Excellency would allow. Ho – ho…
Ponder, then decide…
● 1) Was Thomas/Didymus unreasonable to ask for some physical evidence before believing that Christ had returned from being dead?
● 2) Frankly speaking, Cheddi’s PPP was not defeated at the 1964 elections.
● 3) When you are the “supreme executive authority” as His Excellency is, you can be audacious enough to compare Arthur Chung with Cheddi Jagan?
● 4) First, evicting the Corentyne PPP flag raising officials and children; second, postponing, diluting the Cheddi Jagan stamps. Last, social what!?
● 5) What does the new Jamaican CEO of GPL think of his new lucrative post?
‘Till next week