Saturday, April 21, 2007
Babylonia, named for its capital city, Babylon, was an ancient state in the south part of Mesopotamia (in modern Iraq), combining the territories of Sumer and Akkad. The earliest mention of Babylon can be found in a tablet of the reign of Sargon of Akkad, dating back to the 23rd century BC.
Historically, two ethnic groups, the Sumerians and Akkadians, had dominated the region. An area rich in natural resources, and strategically located for trade routes and commerce, it was often under threat from outsiders throughout the region's history.
Old Babylonian period
At around 1900 BC, following the Sumerian revival under Ur-III, Semitic Amorites from west of the Euphrates gained control over most of Mesopotamia. During the first centuries of their rule, Mesopotamia was not unified, and the most powerful city state was Isin. Some Amorites eventually formed a monarchical government in the city-state of Babylon, which would ultimatly take over the Amorite kingdoms and form the first Babylonian empire. The three centuries of their rule is known as the Old Babylonian Period. The Babylonians engaged in regular trade and influence with Western city-states; with Babylonian officials and troops passing to Syria and Canaan. Further, "Amorite" colonists were established in Babylonia for the purposes of trade.
Friday, April 20, 2007
Assyria in earliest historical times referred to a region on the Upper Tigris river, named for its original capital, the ancient city of Assur. Later, as a nation and Empire, it also came to include roughly the northern half of Mesopotamia (the southern half being Babylonia). The capital is Nineveh.
Assyria proper was located in a mountainous region, extending along the Tigris as far as the high Gordiaean or Carduchian mountain range of Armenia, sometimes called the "Mountains of Ashur".
The Assyrian kings controlled a large kingdom at three different times in history. These are called the Old, Middle, and Neo-Assyrian kingdoms, or periods. The most powerful and best-known nation of these periods is the Neo-Assyrian kingdom, 911-612 BC.
Wednesday, April 18, 2007
The Garden of Eden (from Hebrew Gan Ēden, "גַּן עֵדֶן") is described by the Book of Genesis as being the place where the first man - Adam - and woman - Eve - lived after they were created by God. The past physical existence of this garden forms part of the creation belief of the Abrahamic religions.
The Genesis account (specifically, the Jahwist version of the creation story) supplies the geographical location of Eden in relation to four major rivers. However, because the identification of these rivers has been the subject of much controversy and speculation, a substantial consensus now exists that the knowledge of the location of Eden has been lost.
There have been a number of claims as to the actual geographic location of the Garden of Eden, though many of these have little or no connection to the text of Genesis. Most put the Garden somewhere in the Middle East near Mesopotamia. Locations as diverse as Ethiopia, Java, Sri Lanka, the Seychelles, Brabant, and Bristol, Florida have all been proposed as locations for the garden. Some Christian theologians believe that the Garden never had a terrestrial existence, but was instead an adjunct to heaven as it became identified with Paradise.
The text asserts that from Eden the river divided into four branches: Hiddekel a.k.a. Tigris, Euphrates, Pishon and Gihon. The identity of the former two are commonly accepted, though the latter two rivers have been the subject of endless argument. But if the Garden of Eden had really been near the sources of the Tigris and the Euphrates, then the original narrators in the land of Canaan would have identified it as located generally in the Taurus Mountains, in Anatolia. Satellite photos reveal two dry riverbeds flowing toward the Persian Gulf near where the Tigris and Euphrates also terminate. While this accounts for four rivers in the vicinity, that area is the mouth of those rivers rather than their source.
Tuesday, April 17, 2007
Ur was an ancient city in southern Mesopotamia, located near the original mouth of the Euphrates and Tigris rivers on the Persian Gulf and close to Eridu. Because of marine regression, the remains are now well inland in present-day Iraq, south of the Euphrates on its right bank , and named Tell el-Mukayyar, near the city of Nasiriyah south of Baghdad.
6Abram believed the LORD, and he credited it to him as righteousness. 7He also said to him, "I am the LORD, who brought you out of Ur of the Chaldeans to give you this land to take possession of it." 8But Abram said, "O Sovereign LORD, how can I know that I will gain possession of it?" -Genesis 15:6-8
The site is marked by the ruins of a ziggurat (right), still largely intact, and by a settlement mound. The ziggurat is a temple of Nanna, the moon deity in Sumerian mythology.
It has has two stages constructed from brick: in the lower stage the bricks are joined together with bitumen, in the upper stage they are joined with mortar. Ur at its height had around 30,000 residents.
Monday, April 16, 2007
The Euphrates (the traditional Greek name, Arabic: الفرات; Al-Furat, Hebrew: פְּרָת) is the westernmost of the two great rivers that define Mesopotamia (the other being the Tigris).
The name Euphrates may have originated from Old Persian Ufratu, as it were from Avestan *hu-perethuua, meaning "good to cross over" (from hu-, meaning "good", and peretu, meaning "ford"). Alternatively, some suggest that the name Euphrates is possibly of Kurdish origin.
Euphrates in the Bible
The river Euphrates is one of the four rivers that flow from the Garden of Eden according to Genesis 2:13-15. It is the fourth river, after the Pishon, the Gihon, and the Tigris, to form from the river flowing out of the garden. The river also marked one of the boundaries of the land promised by God to Abraham and his descendants. In the Hebrew Bible, it is often referred to simply as "The River" (ha-nahar).
The word Euphrates is a translation for the word "Gush forth" or "break forth". It has always been assumed to mean "river" but this is not explicitly stated. It literally means "breaking forth of liquid". The river Euphrates was named from this root word, "To gush forth".
In the Book of Revelation, it is prophesied that in the "near future the Potamos Euphrates or "breaking forth like water" of the middle east will dry up in preparation for the Battle of Armageddon.
Clare Cottage 1724 Crescent Drive Beloit, WI 53511 USA
Phone:(608) 365-7322 Fax:(608) 365-7322
Dear Friends and Partners,
When we returned from the overseas last August, we had two giant decisions to make; one had to do with our beloved Shopiere ministry here in Wisconsin and the other had to do with obeying God in funding Timothy Ministries. After months of prayer and searching the Bible, we made both decisions.
On 29 May, we will hand over the work ion Shopiere, WI so we can concentrate more effectively on the Bible Teaching and Revival missions that God has given s in Africa, Europe, and North America. The invitations to other nations and even right here in America are increasing monthly. The Shopiere people are on a solid Biblical footing and have become an exciting mission-hearted congregation. Now, we will be “on the road” even more than in the past. It is as though Timothy Ministries is starting to “rev up” even faster than before.
Concerning the funding of Timothy Ministries, we have always subscribed to the teachings of George Muller, the German minister who cared for over 2000 orphans in the 19th Century England. He said he never asked a man for money… he only asked God. And God put in the hearts of people to support the work that Muller and his wife did among the down-and-out British society. We’ve felt that he was right, that’s why we have tried not to inundate you with financial requests.
Last autumn, several of our partners asked us “What do you specifically need for 2007?” Finally, we made up the “Wish List” with the itemized costs for our work this year. As we write today, 85% of those needs have been met by the generosity and “big hearts” of many of YOU who are reading this letter right now. THANK YOU! THANK YOU! BLESS YOU! We just know that God will finish the job (English carhire & African cell phone) so we will go in June funded at 100%.
The one other project that has been on the “back burner” for three years is buying a used Toyota truck for our mission at Six Trees, South Africa. The time has come for us to do that. We believe God for the remainder of the money before we fly out in June. He knows what is needed and we know God will touch hearts (as He already has just this month) to complete the fund before we head across the ocean once more. We’ve told God! Now, if you’re interested, we’ll tell you. Just ask!
Pray for us. We count on that. We cannot launch a new mission offensive without your prayers. You’ll hear from us, again, right before we go to Africa in June. God loves you…so do we!
-Larry and Sue
Sunday, April 15, 2007
Mesopotamia refers to the region now occupied by modern Iraq, eastern Syria, and southern Turkey. The name comes from the Greek words μέσος "between" and ποταμός "river", referring to the area between the Euphrates and the Tigris (the Arabic term is بين نهرين Bayn Nahrain "between two rivers"). The fertile area watered by these two rivers is known as the "Cradle of Civilization," (see also cradle of humanity) and it was here that the first literate societies developed.
The biblical Patriarch Abraham was from Ur in Mesopotamia.
Acts 7:22 To this he replied: "Brothers and fathers, listen to me! The God of glory appeared to our father Abraham while he was still in Mesopotamia, before he lived in Haran.
Genesis 11:28-3128 While his father Terah was still alive, Haran died in Ur of the Chaldeans (see Chaldea), in the land of his birth. 29 Abram and Nahor both married. The name of Abram's wife was Sarai, and the name of Nahor's wife was Milcah; she was the daughter of Haran, the father of both Milcah and Iscah. 30 Now Sarai was barren; she had no children. 31 Terah took his son Abram, his grandson Lot son of Haran, and his daughter-in-law Sarai, the wife of his son Abram, and together they set out from Ur of the Chaldeans to go to Canaan. But when they came to Haran, they settled there.