Saturday, February 01, 2014

"he entered into Capernaum"

Toward Ueno, an important railroad station of Tokyo

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Mar 2:1 And again he entered into Capernaum after some days; and it was noised that he was in the house.
Mar 2:2 And straightway many were gathered together, insomuch that there was no room to receive them, no, not so much as about the door: and he preached the word unto them.
Mar 2:3 And they come unto him, bringing one sick of the palsy, which was borne of four.
Mar 2:4 And when they could not come nigh unto him for the press, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed wherein the sick of the palsy lay.
Mar 2:5 When Jesus saw their faith, he said unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins be forgiven thee.

Friday, January 31, 2014

"made manifest to Israel"

Asakusa Street, Tokyo

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Joh 1:29 The next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world.
Joh 1:30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred before me: for he was before me.
Joh 1:31 And I knew him not: but that he should be made manifest to Israel, therefore am I come baptizing with water.
Joh 1:32 And John bare record, saying, I saw the Spirit descending from heaven like a dove, and it abode upon him.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

"And the angel said unto her" - Nuclear Plants Halt Lessons in Japan

Buddhist Temple in Asakusa, Tokyo

Nuclear Plants Halt Lessons in Japan

Some say that it is a big social experiment that Japan has stopped its all 50 some nuclear power plants.

How long can such a nation sustain its economy?

But what supplies electricity to households and businesses in Japan to fill the electricity supply-demand gap caused by the long-term emergency halt of nuclear power plants?  It is thermal power generation.  So, Japan has increased its import of liquid natural gas (LNG), as fuel, mostly from the Middle East.  In 2013, Japan spent $7 trillion for import of this single product.  In contrast it paid $3.5 trillion for LNG in 2010, one year before the occurrence of the 2011 Tsunami Disaster which triggered the Fukshima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant Accident.

Electricity charges also went up after the start of the Nuclear Accident.  Compared with rates before the Accident, the electricity rate in Japan increased by 20% or more.  In comparison with a rate in South Korea, it is twice or more higher.  It adversely contributed to the balance of trade of Japan, minus $110 billion.   This is one of major reasons why export from Japan has not expanded as expected due to the yen depreciation which was drastically realized by application of Abenomics.  

If the exchange rate of today between the Japanese yen and the US dollar was the same as that in 2010 or 2011, even the huge import of LNG to use as fuel for thermal power generation would not cause a huge deficit in trade balance of today.

However it should be noted why Abenomics worked well to avert the trend of the stronger yen which had become the norm after the Lehman Shock of 2008.

In the wake of the 2008 Financial Crisis, FRB supplied a huge amount of dollars to the US money sector, which increased the balance sheet of FRB by 214%.  Similarly, the UK central bank also expanded its balance sheet by 282%; ECB of Europe by 108%.  But the Bank of Japan did not supply yen so much partly because the Japanese financial sector was only relatively lightly hit by the Crisis set off in Wall Street.  BOJ increased its balance sheet only by 23%.  This huge imbalance of the amount of money available in market caused the higher yen.  Abenomics is an effort to correct it.  It is said that PM Shinzo Abe followed advice from veteran economist Koichi Hamada, a professor in Yale University in adopting this monetary policy.

Now the election for Tokyo Governor is going on in Japan.  The public strongly focuses on this election, since it is actually competition between pro-Abe candidate Masuzoe, an ex-state minister, and anti-nuclear ex-prime minister Morihiro Hosokawa.    

If Mr. Masuzoe should win this race, PM Abe, who has been busy selling Japanese nuclear technology to India, Turkey, Vietnam, etc., is expected to more explicitly promote recovery and restart of use of nuclear power plants.  If Mr. Hosokawa should defeat the Abe camp, the Government would be forced to take a more moderate stance in restoring unclear power generation in Japan.

Incidentally, this Tokyo gubernatorial election is needed urgently as former Governor Inose was forced to step down due to a money scandal though he was became a kind of hero in the Japanese society as he succeeded in inviting the 2020 Olympics to Tokyo.

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Luk 1:28 And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.
Luk 1:29 And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.
Luk 1:30 And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.
Luk 1:31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name JESUS.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

"his fame spread abroad" - The Shepherd and Eric Hoffer

Inside Tokyo Skytree Tower

The Shepherd and Eric Hoffer

According to Eric Hoffer, a man who loved sheep so much as the Bible described shepherds so much in a positive or respectful manner became insane finally.
Eric Hoffer (July 25, 1902 – May 21, 1983) was an American moral and social philosopher. He was the author of ten books and was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in February 1983. 
Hoffer was born in 1902 the Bronx, New York City, to Knut and Elsa (Goebel) Hoffer.[3] His parents were immigrants from Alsace, then part of Imperial Germany. By age five, Hoffer could already read in both English and his parents' native German.[4][5] When he was five, his mother fell down the stairs with him in her arms. He later recalled, "I lost my sight at the age of seven. Two years before, my mother and I fell down a flight of stairs. She did not recover and died in that second year after the fall. I lost my sight and for a time my memory."[6] He was raised by a live-in relative or servant, a German immigrant named Martha. His eyesight inexplicably returned when he was 15. Fearing he might lose it again, he seized on the opportunity to read as much as he could. His recovery proved permanent, but Hoffer never abandoned his reading habit. 
Hoffer was a young man when he also lost his father. The cabinetmaker's union paid for Knut Hoffer's funeral and gave Hoffer about three hundred dollars insurance money. He took a bus to Los Angeles, and spent the next 10 years on skid row, reading, occasionally writing, and working at odd jobs.[7]
The man returned from Europe as WWI ended.  Then he started to work as a hired shepherd in California.  He loved to read the Bible where sheep and shepherds were depicted so positively or rather respectfully.  His life consisted only of working in a field with sheep and his dogs and reading the Bible.  But he drank.  He drank much.

So, one day he failed in his duty of taking care of sheep as he was drunken to sleep in his duty hours.  Then, the owner of the farm who owned sheep advised him to leave the work for a while.  "You had better take a rest and go to a town to enjoy movies or something.  When you feel you are alright, come back here again," said the farmer.

Then the man met Hoffer, while he was living in a shack of a town in California, still drinking much.   One day, the drunken ex-shepherd sleeping on the street happened to be carried to his small but well tidied-up residence by Hoffer by chance.  The two men turned to be congenial to each other.  Hoffer listened to the ex-shepherd talking and talking for two weeks or so.   But their days ended suddenly.

One day the ex-shepherd was standing at a railroad crossing as a cargo train was passing.  But in a freight car sheep were loaded fully.  And among those sheep there was one which was very familiar with him when he had been working in the farm.  The sheep was wise and obeyed his instruction very wisely.

The ex-shepherd could spot the sheep he loved in a cargo train.   So, he understood that the owner of sheep betrayed him to sell those sheep.  It meant the sheep would be soon butchered.  Then he ran and jumped to the fright car and opened a door to let sheep run away.   The door was opened, sheep jumped away from the train, and great confusion happened along the railroad section.  Eventually, the man was arrested and sent to a mental hospital as he was judged to be insane.      

Eric Hoffer

Eric Hoffer himself was not a pious Christina; Hoffer did not go to church but rather to a public library on Sundays.  And, this incident especially didn't turn him to be a devout Christian.

Nonetheless it is apparent that the answer to any questions about Christianity is not in sheep in the US.   However the shepherd could be regarded as one sheep himself.  And an angel might have been taking care of him.  Then it was the angel sent by Heaven that lost his sheep.  The angel must have done something drastic to be alerted by this incident.  Maybe the angel opened the door of the mind of Hoffer who became a great author later.

And Erick Hoffer is said to have taken a dim view of the anti-Vietnam War movement.  Then it meant something more remote from the Bible was in the anti-Vietnam War movement than in battles in Vietnam in 1960s and early 1970s, very unexpectedly.

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Mar 1:28 And immediately his fame spread abroad throughout all the region round about Galilee.

Monday, January 27, 2014

"of the house of David" - China, Magog?

Tokyo Downtown Street

China, Magog?

Americans thought that they could earn big money by leveraging cheaper labor force and a huge scale of market China would offer.

But Japan is closer to China and Germany looks more experienced in export to China than the US.

Market Share of Domestic Foreign Automakers in China

0. China..........................40.3%

1. Germany...................18.8%

2. JAPAN......................16.4%

3. USA.............................12.4%

4. S. Korea.....................8.8%

5. France........................3.1%

6. Others........................0.2%


Let's see how sales of cars in China have changed in these decades.

In 1995, the amount of cars sold in China was just 1,450,000.  But in 2005, total 5,870,000 cars were sold.  It grew to 18,060,000 in 2010.

So, the years from 2005 to 2010 was really a drastic period of time for China in terms of economic growth.

But money invites crimes.  The number of Chinese who came to be involved in criminal acts increased so much in the above economically high-growth rate period.

Further statistics show that the number of those who commit a suicide every year is about 290,000 in China.  China is the only country where more female citizens kill themselves than men do.

Moreover, 100 million Chinese have some sort of mental disease.  And serious mental illness is found in 16 million Chinese.  China is now building more and more new mental hospitals.  It is also suspected that the Chinese Government put anti-government activists into mental hospitals in a compulsory manner.

What's more, according to a report of WHO, there are six million prostitutes in China.

Consequently some Christians are afraid that China will become anti-Christian superpower soon or later since China might be linked to some prophecies in the Bible

Again, the Bible deals primarily with Israel. Since Magog’s descendants migrated to an area largely independent of the civilizations developing in the Middle East, no sons of Magog are listed in Scripture.

However, Jewish historian Josephus indicated where Magog’s descendants settled. He wrote in the first century, “Magog founded those that from him were named Magogites, but who are by the Greeks called Scythians” (The Complete Works of Josephus).

Today the land the Bible calls Magog is dominated in the west by Russia—which is reasserting control over the region it once possessed through the USSR—and China in the east.

While the Mongols’ connection to Magog is most obvious, they were just one tribe of a related people that carry the biblical name Magog. Ezekiel 38 is a prophecy about the land of Magog and all the distant “cousins” that live there and are associated with each other, such as the Russians and Chinese. One of the Mongolic nomadic tribes in this area bears a special relationship with China. They are the Khitan, a people responsible for China’s modern name and one of China’s biblical names, Chittim.

Jewish historian Josephus records that some descendants of Japheth—such as the families of Gomer, Tubal and Togarmah—first settled in southern Europe before migrating east into Asia. Kittim was one such family, originally settling lands to the west of Mesopotamia before moving to the Far East.

After their migration through Central Asia, the Kittim made their appearance in modern-day northern China and Mongolia under the name Khitan in the fourth century A.D. In the 10th century, the Khitan people managed to create a dynasty that subjugated the peoples, including the Chinese, in modern-day northern China. Their territory stretched from what is now Korea to eastern Kazakhstan, including Beijing, the seat of government in China today.

Because the Khitans controlled the overland trade and communication route from China through Central Asia to Europe, China was called Cathay, after the Khitans. The designation first applied to north China, but later designated all of China. It is a name the Russians still use for China today.

The history of these nomads shows just how strong a connection China has with biblical Magog.

Every prophetic indication is that China has a strong connection with Gog and Magog. Ezekiel 38:2 refers to China. Along with Russia, China dominates the entire area of Magog and is associated with the nations listed in subsequent verses.

Any map will show that north and east of Jerusalem are Russia and China, the two dominant powers of the land biblically referred to as Magog!

So back to our original question: Will China become the world’s next dominating superpower after the decline of the U.S.? The answer is no!

Though it will grow to tremendous world power, even superpower status—especially through economic means, as indicated in Isaiah 23—it will not rise to the top spot. That position will be filled by the European power led by Germany! After a short economic partnership, China will violently contend with the king of the north for global dominance.

But this war will end when Jesus Christ returns and destroys both powers!

After that, according to biblical prophecy, Christ will restore His government on Earth, a government that will bring peace and prosperity for 1,000 years. Yet Ezekiel 38 prophesies that not every nation will submit to Christ’s rule voluntarily. Soon after the Second Coming, the people of Asia will form an army in order to attack the people living in Jerusalem!
This will be the last great rebellion in the 1,000-year period. Christ will utterly destroy it and deliver His people. It is a grand statement from God: “Thus will I magnify myself, and sanctify myself; and I will be known in the eyes of many nations, and they shall know that I am the Lord” (Ezekiel 38:23).
Anyway, nobody thinks that China is now being guided by a holy spirit God sends to it.

Indeed today's Chinese success has relied on decades-long support from Japan which has provided a huge amount of funds and technologies for China while 20,000 Japanese businesses and industrial facilities have moved to China.  

Some Chinese expressions of Biblical Characters

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Luk 1:26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,
Luk 1:27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.
Luk 1:28 And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.