Ramadan year 1442 has begun, but not in Iran, a Limerick.

In Mecca, but not Teheran

begun the new month Ramadan

the new moon must be seen

in Iran, they must spy

the new moon with their eye

they follow the strictest Quran.

Ramadan, year 1442 begun at sunset April 12 in Saudi Arabia and in 45 other Islamic countries. Iran has to wait another day, since they still hold on to the old way that the new moon has to be seen by the naked eye before a new moon can be proclaimed. Iran is alone in adopting April 13 at sunset as the beginning of Ramadan.

The Sunni nations and the Shia nation really do hate each other, so much so that some Arab nations would rather make peace with Israel than to cooperate with Iran. Former President Trump actually got three Nobel Peace Prize nominations for arranging these peace deals. The hate for president Trump is still so intense that the Biden administration would rather return to the old Iran deal than work towards Mideast peace.

Islam follow a strictly lunar calendar where each 12 month year is either 364 or 365 days. Their time of beginning was the year their Prophet Muhammed died, and so they are now in year 1442 after Muhammad. The Jews are in year 5781 after creation, and they have a lunisolar calendar, where they add a leap month five year of every 19 to sync. up with the solar year. The rest of the world have a solar year, and Christianity and other religions follow the solar calendar, the start of the year may vary.

To get a glimpse of the differences of the three monotheistic faiths, let us go through the last days of Moses, Jesus and Muhammad and see what a message they delivered to us.

Moses had delivered his people out of Egypt and was now, at the ripe old age of 120 years ready to enter the promised land. But because of Moses disobedience God (YHWH) had told him that he was not allowed to enter into the promised land. He was however permitted to see it. So Moses recited his song and the blessings  on the tribes of Israel (Found in chapters 32 and 33 of Deuteronomy) ending with:

mosestombstone

Deuteronomy 33:28-29 (King James Version) Israel then shall dwell in safety alone: the fountain of Jacob shall be upon a land of corn and wine; also his heavens shall drop down dew. Happy art thou, O Israel: who is like unto thee, O people saved by the LORD, the shield of thy help, and who is the sword of thy excellency! and thine enemies shall be found liars unto thee; and thou shalt tread upon their high places.

After that Moses went up Mount Nebo and saw the promised land Deuteronomy 34:4 (King James Version) And the LORD said unto him, This is the land which I sware unto Abraham, unto Isaac, and unto Jacob, saying, I will give it unto thy seed: I have caused thee to see it with thine eyes, but thou shalt not go over thither.

After that Moses died and to this day no one knows the place he was buried. The Bible goes on to record: Deuteronomy 34:10-12 (King James Version) And there arose not a prophet since in Israel like unto Moses, whom the LORD knew face to face, In all the signs and the wonders, which the LORD sent him to do in the land of Egypt to Pharaoh, and to all his servants, and to all his land, And in all that mighty hand, and in all the great terror which Moses shewed in the sight of all Israel.

This indicates there never was another prophet like Moses. But Moses promised another prophet was to come after him. This is found in Deuteronomy 18:14-18 (New International Version, ©2010) 14 The nations you will dispossess listen to those who practice sorcery or divination. But as for you, the LORD your God has not permitted you to do so. 15 The LORD your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your fellow Israelites. You must listen to him. 16 For this is what you asked of the LORD your God at Horeb on the day of the assembly when you said, “Let us not hear the voice of the LORD our God nor see this great fire anymore, or we will die.” 17 The LORD said to me: “What they say is good. 18 I will raise up for them a prophet like you from among their fellow Israelites, and I will put my words in his mouth. He will tell them everything I command him.

We have two candidates: Jesus and Muhammad.

What about Jesus? Was Jesus a prophet?

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The first reaction is: Of course, he was a prophet. Look at all he did and predicted. But that totally misses the point. Was He a prophet? Or was he more than a Prophet?

In the Old Testament of the Bible there is an old book called Job. We do not know much about him except he was before Moses and has a reputation of being “patient as Job”, refusing to turn from God when a series of misfortunes happened to him. He was looking forward to a redeemer: Job 19:25-26 (King James Version) For I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand at the latter day upon the earth: And though after my skin worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God:

Was Jesus that redeemer? What does “redemption” mean? Christian belief is that the reason Jesus came to earth was to redeem mankind back to God. Because of sin man is incapable to do it himself, so God had to do it. For this reason Jesus came as God incarnate to die on a cross for our sins. According to prophesies given by Isaiah about 800 B.C. in chapter 53 Jesus rejection and crucifixion was described. The earliest preserved copy of Isaiah dates back to second century B.C. so the prophecy is secure. These are Jesus last words on the cross. They confirm it was Jesus that died on the cross and not someone else.

“Father, forgive them, for they know not what they do.” (Luke 23:34). The word of divine forgiveness.

“My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?” (Matthew 27:46.) Jesus became sin for us.

He said to his mother, “Woman, behold your son!” Then he said to the disciple, “Behold your mother!” (John 19:26-27). The word of love.

I thirst!” (John 19:28) The word of humanness.

“Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise.” (Luke 23:43) The word of promise.

“It is finished!” (John 19:30). The word of redemption.

“Father, into thy hands I commit my spirit.” (Luke 23:46). The word of death.

Many people stop there, as if these were Jesus’ last words. But death was not the end of Jesus. On the third day Jesus rose again and gave instructions to his faithful for forty days.

Jesus last recorded words were:    “It is not for you to know times or seasons (of his return) that the Father has fixed by his own authority. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth.”After that Jesus was taken up to heaven.

Muhammadtomb

The last person in the trio was Muhammad. He had received messages from the angel Gabriel, very complimentary  about the Jewish people, the people of the Book, but while in Mecca he was not accepted as a Prophet so he moved on to Medina where he was accepted by some followers.

They asked the Jews whether he was the Prophet Moses spoke of, but the Jews said, No, not at all, he is an imposter and not the Prophet.

That changed things and the angel Gabriel told him to change the direction of their prayers from Jerusalem to Mecca, since they are in opposite direction of each other if you are in Medina. This forced people to disclose their true adherence.

From that moment on Gabriel changed his instructions to Muhammad and the feud was on. Muhammad and his team started to attack Jewish villages and force them into subservience. After a raid on a Jewish village a young Jewish girl poisoned Mohammed’s food. He never saw it coming (what a Prophet!), nor did the angel Gabriel warn him, so he ate it. He never recovered from it and died two years later.

Muhammad’s last recorded words before he died was: Volume 2, Book 23, Number 414: Narrated ‘Urwa: Aisha said, “The Prophet in his fatal illness said,‘Allah cursed the Jews and the Christians because they took the graves of their Prophets as places for praying.”‘ Aisha added, “Had it not been for that the grave of the Prophet (peace be upon him) would have been made prominent but I am afraid it might be taken (as a) place for praying.

So Muhammad chose to curse Christians and Jews and join with his fellow martyrs.

You can judge for yourself which message to believe, which message is peaceful, and which message is the true message from God.

I have decided to follow Jesus. He is the risen Savior, his tomb is empty. All the others are dead, And I am glad I live in the year of our Lord 2021 and not 1442

March 26: Read through the Holy Bible in a year

Mark 1:1-11 starts, not with the birth of Jesus, but with the beginning of Jesus’ ministry. John the Baptist prepared the way for Jesus, baptized many for repentance and the forgiveness of sins, and he also baptized Jesus.

Deuteronomy 33. Moses’ gave his final blessing on each of the tribes of Israel.

Deuteronomy 34. Moses died on Mount Nebo. Epilogue: “And there arose not a prophet since in Israel like unto Moses, whom the Lord knew face to face”. This ends the firsr five books of the Bible, also called the Torah.

March 25: Read through the Holy Bible in a year

Matthew 28 begins with Jesus being in the grave for the two adjoining sabbaths, the first day of unleavened bread followed by the normal sabbath. There was an earthquake and the stone was rolled away. Jesus was no longer in the grave. The guards were bribed to tell the story that the disciples took the body, but two  women, the two Marys met the resurrected Jesus. He told them to tell the remaining disciples that he was risen from the dead. The Gospel of Matthew ends with Jesus giving us the great commission: “All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.  Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost:  Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: and, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Amen.”

Deuteronomy 32 gives us the Song of Moses. At the end of the chapter the LORD told Moses he would only see the promised land from a distance and die on Mount Nebo.

March 24: Read through the Holy Bible in a year

Matthew 27:32-66,  After Jesus was flogged he was too weak to carry his own cross, so the Roman soldiers forced Simon from Cyrene to carry Jesus cross all the way to the place of the skull, and there Jesus was crucified together  with two criminals. To identify Jesus they put an  inscription on the top of the cross: “This is Jesus, the King of the Jews.” A number of prophecies were fulfilled during the crucifixion, and Jesus died on the cross. At that very moment the Temple veil was torn in two, from top to bottom and for the first time the holy of holiest was revealed. Jesus, now being dead was taken down from the cross and put in a tomb, a stone was rolled in front of the entrance and the tomb was sealed, and – this is important, they put up a guard to secure the tomb. Why did they do that? Think about that.

Deuteronomy 30, The Blessings of turning to God is pro-life, but if not, God is pro-choice with all its consequences.  See v 15:   “I have set before thee this day life and good, and death and evil“. (KJV)

Deuteronomy 31 Moses declared Joshua to be the new leader of Israel, “Be strong and of good courage”. The Law was to be read every seven years, Israel’s rebellion was predicted and, as a reminder Moses recorded his song, which is recited in the next chapter.

March 23: Read through the Holy Bible in a year

Matthew 27:1-31 depicts the first half of the longest day, beginning with Jesus being handed over to Pilate, the Roman governor; since the Jews did not have right to execute capital punishment. Judas hanged himself and the thirty pieces of silver given him in exchange for the betrayal of Jesus was used to buy the Potter’s field. Pilate tried to wiggle out of his role as judge; his wife had warned him, so he used his privilege to release one prisoner at Passover which was the custom at that time. Pilate chose Jesus or Barabbas to be released and of the two the people chose Barabbas, a known insurrectionist to be released and Jesus to be crucified. Pilate acquiesced to the mob and so Jesus was flogged by the soldiers for a public spectacle and then he was led away to be crucified.

Deuteronomy 29. In preparation of the tribes entering the promised land God renews the Mosaic Covenant in Moab.

March 22: Read through the Holy Bible in a year

In Matthew 26:31-75 Jesus predicted Peter’s denial. After finishing the Last Supper they all moved on to the Mount of Olives, and there was the garden of Gethsemane. In the garden Jesus prayed “Not my will, but yours be done.”  Jesus prayed this prayer three times, and every time the disciples fell asleep. After that is recorded the betrayal and arrest of Jesus as he was taken to the Sanhedrin to be interrogated. The chapter ends with Peter’s denial.

Deuteronomy 28. The LORD through Moses specified many blessings for obedience and even more curses for disobedience.

March 21: Read through the Holy Bible in a year

Matthew 26:1-30 is very important. It begins with the plot against Jesus, continuing with his anointing at Bethany, then Judas agreeing to betray Jesus for thirty pieces of silver, continuing with the Lord’s supper being initiated, and Jesus predicting who is going to betray him.

Deuteronomy 25 tells of the marriage duty of a surviving brother, how to weigh with honest measures, and, totally unrelated, do not forget to destroy the Amalekites.

Deuteronomy 26 shows the regulations for offerings of firstfruits and tithes. Follow the LORD’s commands, you are a special people of God.

Deuteronomy 27 specifies that the Law should be inscribed on large stones on Mount Ebal. There six tribes shall declare curses, and on Mount Gerizim six tribes shall pronounce blessings.

March 20: Read through the Holy Bible in a year

Matthew 25: 31-46. Jesus will return to judge the nations, to illustrate how he told the parable of the sheep and the goats, and the sheep were defined as those who do God’s will “You did it for me.”

Deuteronomy 22 contains more instructions, protect your brother’s property, the LORD detests unisex clothing, protect nesting birds, do not yoke an ox and a donkey together. The chapter ends with various laws on sexual morality.

Deuteronomy 23 deals with shunning and exclusion from the assembly, how to deal or not to deal with certain foreigners. Make your relief stations outside the camp and do what you have to do and keep proper camping cleanliness. No harlots allowed and do not accept offerings from them. You may not charge interest to a fellow Israelite, but you can be a Shylock to a foreigner. If you make a vow to the Lord, you better fulfill it!

Deuteronomy 24 tells of divorce laws and limitations for remarriage, leprosy, lending laws, how to properly pay workmen, and after harvest please leave the gleanings.

March 19: Read through the Holy Bible in a year

Matthew 25:1-30 begins with the parable of the ten virgins, five with oil, five without oil. (Give me oil in my lamp, keep it burning). After that Jesus told the parable of the five, two and one talent given to three different people, the one with five made ten, the one with two doubled his talents, but the one with only one talent buried his. Jesus had his one talent taken away and be given to the one with ten talents. The moral of this parable is: Equal opportunity, not equal outcome.

Deuteronomy19. God commanded to set aside three Cities of Refuge, maybe three more as the land expands. Do not change property boundaries. There must be two or three witnesses for a conviction in court.  From this chapter also comes the saying “an eye for an eye”.

Deuteronomy 20. Rules for warfare: The Lord fights the battle for you. If you are too chicken or are building a house or are pledged to marry, you may be excused. For the rest of you, show no mercy unless they surrender, but above all, save the fruit trees.

Deuteronomy 21 deals with what to do with unsolved murders. Can you marry a female taken captive?  What are the rights of the firstborn? What to do with a rebellious Son? A man punished to death and hung on a tree, he must be buried the same day. From this we get “Cursed is every one that hangeth on a tree”.

March 18: Read through the Holy Bible in a year

Matthew 24:36-51. Nobody knows the time or the day of Christ’s coming, not even Jesus at that time. Many have tried to predict it, and so far all have failed. This makes sense since we are supposed to watch and wait, and with this admonition the chapter ends.

Deuteronomy 16 describes in detail how to celebrate the Passover, the Feast of Weeks and the Feast of Tabernacles. Bring an offering, no one can go empty handed. Appoint Judges so justice can be properly administered. Do not worship any Asherah poles ever.

Deuteronomy 17, Anyone worshiping other Gods must have justice administered, including stoning. The Israelites will elect a King after they have entered the promised land. He must be an Israelite, not gathering riches or take many wives. He must read the scroll of the Law all the days of his life. As long as he does all these things he will reign a long time.

Deuteronomy 18. The LORD is the Inheritance for Priests and Levites. No Wicked Customs such as child sacrifice, “ or that useth divination, or an observer of times, or an enchanter, or a witch. Or a charmer, or a consulter with familiar spirits, or a wizard, or a necromancer In other words: Thou shalt be perfect with the Lord thy God.” Then the LORD gave a promise. He will raise up a Prophet like Moses. There will also rise up many false prophets, and they are not to be listened to.