Neighbors and Strangers, and Ted Weiland and other supposed Christian Identity pastors who cannot tell them apart

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Neighbors and Strangers, and Ted Weiland and other supposed Christian Identity pastors who cannot tell them apart.

The opening remarks concerning symbols and words have been moved to the Christogenea Forum.

The terms neighbor and stranger are among the most abused words found in the Holy Bible. The abuse is possible because these English words are void of the richer meanings of the Hebrew or Greek words from which they are translated. But of course, most all denominational Christians are unaware that the Hebrew or Greek terms have meanings which are far more specific than the English words which are typically employed to represent them. We have discussed these words in the past in certain of our Biblical commentaries, and now we will summarize those discussions here.

We will begin with the term neighbour. The following explanation is adapted from our presentations of Acts chapter 7 given here in June of 2013, and Romans chapter 13 given here in August of 2014.

It is fully evident that in this day and age most Christians are locked in the paradigms of this world, and they interpret their Bibles through those paradigms. But the patterns of thought were far different in ancient times, and it is there that we should endeavor to interpret Biblical language, in the context of the time that the words were used, as best as we can determine how words were originally employed. Christian attitudes concerning race and righteousness have been artificially manufactured by the international elite, which consists mostly of Jews, who control the media and publishing industries for over 200 years now. The concept of political correctness which holds sway over their minds is an invention of these global elites – these mostly Jewish masters who rule over them, that they may retain that rule without difficulty. So as we often like to say, the result is that today Christians worship Jews instead of Jesus.

Now we are going to read part of an account related in Acts chapter 7 of the life of Moses, and we are doing this in order to illustrate the meaning of the word neighbor:

23 “And as forty years’ time were completed by him [Moses], he put up in his heart to visit his brethren the sons of Israel. 24 And seeing one being done wrong he defended him, and made an avenging for him being subdued, smiting the Egyptian. 25 And he expected the brethren to understand that Yahweh through his hand gives deliverance to them, but they did not understand. 26 Then the next day he appeared to those who were fighting and he reconciled them in peace saying ‘Men! You are brothers! For what reason do you do wrong to one another?’ 27 But he doing wrong to he near to him [referring to the Israelite who was the aggressor against his brother] rejected him saying ‘Who appointed you ruler and judge over us? 28 Do you not desire to kill me in the manner that you killed the Egyptian yesterday?’

And here we see that an Israelite in bondage would despise another Israelite who had delivered him, meaning Moses, rather than be grateful for any relief he was granted from his Egyptian oppressor. Our people are little different today. Verses 27 and 28 of Acts chapter 7 quote from Exodus 2:14. As it is today, it was then also, that the righteousness of the children of Israel was after the reckoning of man rather than of God, and this man expressed more concern for his dead oppressor than he had for the men of his own race. Of course, this man had an agenda, as he did not want to cease from oppressing his own brother, which Moses tried to prevent him from doing.

According to Stephen, who told this account, Moses was already somehow cognizant of his mission to free his people Israel. However the people having rejected him, Moses would have to flee from Egypt, and it would be another forty years before he fulfilled his mission. Our people have much the same attitude today, where because the churches teach them lies, when they are informed of their sins they respond, “Who appointed you ruler and judge over us?”

The phrase “but he doing wrong [the Israelite aggressor] to he near to him [the Israelite being fought with by his kinsman] rejected him [meaning the admonishment of Moses]” is a little difficult to read as we have translated it. It would be easier to read if it were rendered “But he doing wrong to his neighbor rejected him”. But translating the Christogenea New Testament, we avoided the word neighbour because it is so poorly understood, and we opted instead for a literal interpretation of the Greek phrase.

In Romans chapter 13, in verse 9, Paul quotes from the ten commandments and then says that they are summed up in the saying “You shall love him near to you as yourself”, or “... love they neighbor as thyself”, a commandment which may be found only at Leviticus 19:18, which reads “18 Thou shalt not avenge, nor bear any grudge against the children of thy people, but thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself: I am the LORD.” In that passage alone, where the command first appears in Scripture, we see that the concept of neighbor must be limited to the scope of the reference to “the children of thy people”, or the people of one's own race. Since the children of Israel were to be a separate people, in the eyes of God nobody else but a racial kinsman could possibly be one's neighbor.

The word which is translated as neighbor from Greek is most frequently the adverb πλησίον (Strong's # 4139), the neuter form of πλησίος, which literally means near or close to, and accompanied with the definite article it is a Substantive, which means that it functions as a noun. The word πλησίος itself is a derivative of another adverb, πέλας, which also means “near, hard by, [or] close...(Liddell & Scott), and either of these three words used as a Substantive means one who is near, or, as the King James Version has it, a neighbor. But by themselves these words do not readily distinguish between nearness in relationship or in geographical proximity. Because of the way that the English word neighbor is perceived in modern times, understood only in the geographical sense, I have refrained from using that word in my translations. However the corresponding Hebrew word from which these were often translated in the Septuagint certainly does bear a distinction, and so does the context of scripture on occasions where the word πλησίον is found.

First, in secular Greek there are other words used by authors contemporary to the New Testament period, and which also appear in the New Testament, which are often translated as neighbor. These are γείτων (1069), which is explicitly “one of the same land, a neighbour” (Liddell & Scott) a word found at Luke 14:12; 15:6, 9; and John 9:8, and περίοικος (4040) which is “dwelling round...οἱ περίοικοι neighbours...” (ibid.), which is found only at Luke 1:58. Both of these words have an explicitly geographical meaning, since they refer to physical proximity. But πλησίον describes only one who is close or near without any explicit inference of location.

It can surely be demonstrated from historical sources such as Strabo of Cappadocia, that in Palestine and throughout the οἰκουμένη, the word used to describe the physical Greco-Roman world, one’s neighbor was most often, and was expected to be, of one’s own tribe. That this is the true meaning of τὸν πλησίον in the New Testament is evident in other ways, besides the use of those other words, γείτων or περίοικος, where it was appropriate. Strabo had marveled that in Egypt, there were cities that were inhabited by people from different tribes. Therefore we see that diverse cities were not the norm in the other countries.

Here in Acts 7:27, an account of the events recorded in Exodus 2:11-14, one Israelite is referred to as τὸν πλησίον, or the neighbor as the King James Version has it, in relation to another Israelite, but certainly not in reference to the dead Egyptian. Yet Moses, as it is evidenced in the Exodus account, could not have known that these men lived in close geographic proximity to one another, as we currently understand the meaning of the term neighbor. He only could have known that the men had a tribal relationship. Now some may think this is conjectural, but it surely is the circumstance and it must therefore be considered.

Another example is found in Matthew 5:43, where Yahshua Christ is credited with the words “Thou shalt love thy neighbor (τὸν πλησίον), and hate thine enemy”, and what meaning would the saying have if one’s enemy lived in the house next door, as is so often the case in modern society? So therefore it should be evident that τὸν πλησίον is one near in relation to another, but not necessarily in the geographical sense. Rather, one near in relationship is how the word should be understood in the Bible.

The Hebrew word in the original text of the command that “thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself”, which is found at Leviticus 19:18, is Strong’s Hebrew #7453, reya', which is “an associate (more or less close)” and Strong lists the King James Version translations of the word as “brother, companion, fellow, friend, husband, lover, neighbor … [or sometimes as] (an-) other” and therefore it should certainly be evident that τὸν πλησίον, the Greek phrase used in the Septuagint and in the New Testament to translate this Hebrew word, is not merely someone who lives nearby.

In turn, the root word of reya', or neighbor (Strong's # 7453), is a word said to be derived from another Hebrew word which is found at Strong's #7462, ra'ah, which is defined by Strong as “a primitive root; to tend a flock, i.e. pasture it; intransitive to graze (literally or figuratively); generally to rule [in the sense of tending a flock]; [and] by extension to associate with (as a friend)...” and so it is apparent that if one is a member of the flock, then one’s πλησίον, or neighbor, can only be a fellow sheep! This leads us right back to the original appearance of the word in this context in Leviticus 19:18, where we have seen that the word neighbor can only refer back to one of “the children of thy people” according to the commandment as it is given.

So we see that if one is of your flock, he is a neighbor. But if one is not of your flock, he cannot ever be a neighbor. A wolf who moves into the sheepfold can never be a sheep, and therefore he can never be a neighbor to the sheep! Men do not gather grapes from thorns, nor figs from thistles. We cannot imagine the Word of God to be insisting that a wolf can be neighbor to a sheep.

Next we are going to discuss the word stranger, and we will use several sources from both Clifton Emahiser's writings and my own in order to do this.

A person of another tribe or race who was living among the children of Israel was never considered a neighbor in the Old Testament, but a sojourner or stranger. The references to sojourners or strangers among the children of Israel which are in the law also proves that aliens among the people were not considered neighbors, or there would not have been a separate designation of sojourner or stranger for such people! Likewise, White Christians today should see aliens living among them as sojourners or strangers, but never as neighbors. However in Hebrew there were a handful of different words for stranger, and each of them had a different meaning. Likewise in Greek, there were mainly two words which referred to strangers, and they had different meanings.

In Part 18 of our commentary on Hebrews given here this past January we said the following, in relation to Hebrews 13:2 where it says “2 Do not be forgetful of hospitality. For in this some being unaware have been hospitable to messengers” and we wrote: “There are several words in the Hebrew language of the Bible which were all translated into English as stranger. Among these are geyr (1616), zuwr (2114), maguwr (4033), nekar (5236) or nokriy (5237), or towshab (8453), and they all had different nuances of meaning. One must also be careful, as it is apparent that the usage of these words was not entirely consistent throughout the Old Testament. The colloquial use of words in the books which were written a thousand years after Moses is not necessarily the same as it was in the time when the Pentateuch was written. But in the writings of the law of Moses, the word geyr, which signifies an acceptable sort of stranger, seems to be closest to the meaning of the Greek word ξένος. Here in Hebrews we must discern that Paul distinguishes the ξένος who is deserving of hospitality from the aliens who were turned to flight which he mentions in chapter 11 of the epistle, and the bastards which he despises in chapter 12. There are also several different Greek words translated as stranger, which do not have the meaning which ξένος has.”

Then, speaking of the word hospitality in that same place, we continued: “The Greek word is φιλοξενία, which according to Liddell & Scott means hospitality. The word comes from φίλος which may be dear or loved or in this case, friendly, and ξένος, which is often translated as stranger. But a stranger was not merely an alien, and in the large 9th edition of their Greek-English Lexicon, Liddell & Scott give the primary definition as a “guest-friend, applied to persons and states bound by a treaty or tie of hospitality...” and this is the way in which Paul’s words here must be interpreted. We cannot accept an interpretation which advances the idea that Paul is contradicting his own earlier statements concerning bastards, the fornication of Esau and the armies of the aliens.”

So aliens, according to Paul of Tarsus, really have no place among us as he lauded the fact that the ancient children of Israel had turned to flight the armies of the aliens. Neither do bastards have any place among us, as Paul certainly attested to the acceptance of sons, and the rejection of bastards. But since the Hebrew words for stranger were sometimes used colloquially in a different manner in the later books of Scripture than they were in the time of Moses, when we consider the law in relation to strangers we should really only consider how Moses himself had used these terms wherever they appear in the law. It is unfair to take the use of a term by Ezra or Nehemiah and force such an application on Moses, who wrote nearly a thousand years earlier. With this perspective, Clifton Emahiser mentioned in one of his papers that after the children of Israel were put off by Yahweh in the Assyrian and Babylonian captivities, even they were considered strangers, which is fully evident in places in the prophets, such as in Isaiah chapter 56.

In reference to strangers under the law, in Watchman's Teaching Letter # 145, in May of 2010, Clifton Emahiser wrote that “Probably the best passage to cross-reference to understand the Hebrew word for adultery, #5003, nâ’aph, would be Proverbs. 5:20: “And why wilt thou, my son, be ravished with a strange [H2114 zûwr] woman, and embrace the bosom of a stranger [H5237 nokrîy]?” Both of these Hebrew words for the definition of “strange” have connotations of a non-Adamic race. The KJV has correctly rendered #H5237, nokrîy as, “alien”, “foreigner”, and “outlandish”. So the command to not commit adultery can only mean not to have sexual relations with another race.”

Then in Watchman's Teaching Letter # 146, in June of 2010, Clifton wrote that “There are several Hebrew words translated as 'stranger' in the Old Testament which have various meanings. In some cases the Israelites were to show compassion, and at other times we were to avoid them at all cost as being unclean to us. The Strong’s numbers in the Hebrew for “stranger/s” are 1121 [ben, which is literally a son, does not really belong in this list except that sometimes it is rendered “son of a stranger”], 1482 [gur or goor, a whelp or a young one, probably does not belong here either except for odd King James translations], 1616 [geyr, properly a guest], 2114 [zuwr, or foreigner], 4033 [maguwr, a sojourning], 4038 [maggal, kindred or offspring, does not really belong here either but was sometimes used to refer to foreign offspring], 5235 [neker, a noun, a foreigner], 5236 [nekar, an adjective, foreign or strange], 5237 [nokri, an adjective, foreign or strange], & 8453 [towshab, a sojourner]. The “stranger” at Exodus 22:21 is Strong’s #1616 [gêyr] and is [defined as] “... a guest by implication...” Egypt appears to have been by-and-large peopled by the descendants of Ham, however the city of On (from whence Joseph received his wife) was [also] called Beth Shemesh, [which may mean] house of the people of Shem. It is my opinion that the “stranger” of Exodus 22:21 is more than likely one from Beth Shemesh, but the descendants of Ham were also White Adamites. Therefore, it is imperative, when one encounters the term “stranger/s”, to find out which Strong’s number applies; that is, its meaning and context! ”

The passage to which Clifton refers is Exodus 22:21 where it says “Thou shalt neither vex a stranger, nor oppress him: for ye were strangers in the land of Egypt.” In the Hebrew of that passage, both instances of the word for stranger are from geyr, Strong's # 1616, which is a guest. But in truth, the second reference refers to Israelites, and not to Egyptians.

Then in Watchman's Teaching Letter # 147, in July of 2010, Clifton Emahiser wrote that “While we are forbidden to revile or curse a true leader over us, we are admonished at Deut. 17:15: 'Thou shalt in any wise set him king over thee, whom Yahweh thy God shall choose: one from among thy brethren shalt thou set king over thee: thou mayest not set a stranger over thee, which is not thy brother.' The Hebrew word 'stranger' in this verse is Strong’s #5273, nokrîy, and is a stranger of the worst kind! There are several Hebrew words translated into the English as 'stranger'; some in a good sense and others in a very evil sense, and we have to be aware of the difference.”

This word nokrîy is Strong’s #5237, where it is defined as “... strange, in a variety of degrees and applications (foreign, non-relative, adulterous, different ...)”, and it is translated in the King James Version as alien, foreigner, outlandish, strange, stranger, or as woman where it sometimes fails to indicate an alien woman.

In Malachi chapter 4, verse 5, we read where the Word of Yahweh says: “5 And I will come near to you to judgment; and I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers, and against the adulterers, and against false swearers, and against those that oppress the hireling in his wages, the widow, and the fatherless, and that turn aside the stranger from his right, and fear not me, saith the LORD of hosts.” The words “from his right” were added to the text, and we will not comment on them here although it will become manifest that the King James translators understood the meaning of the phrase in relation to the stranger in the passage.

In Part 5 of our commentary on the prophecy of Malachi we wrote the following concerning that same passage: “The Hebrew word for stranger is geyr (Strong’s # 1616), which is a guest or sojourner who has an expectation of hospitality. So the stranger is not necessarily one of a different race or an alien culture, but rather is one of one’s own race and culture who would have such an expectation of hospitality. In both Greek and Hebrew culture it was a reproach for a man to mistreat such a stranger, or withhold kindness to such a sojourner. But in all of the passages of the law of Moses, where it is perceived that strangers are given some expectation of kindness or even acceptance, the word for stranger is Strong's # 1616 or geyr.”

But of a nokrîy stranger, Clifton wrote in Watchman's Teaching Letter # 176 for December of 2012, quoting Jeremiah chapter 2 where the Word of Yahweh said “21 Yet I had planted thee a noble [racially-pure] vine, wholly a right [racial] seed: how then art thou turned into the degenerate [race-mixed] plant of a strange [5237 nokrîy] vine unto me? 22 For though thou wash thee with nitre [c.f. strong lye], and take thee much soap, yet thine iniquity [mischievous miscegenation] is marked [indelibly inscribed] before me, saith Yahweh Elohim.”The Hebrew word “nokrîy”, Strong’s #5237, is strange/stranger in the very worst sense (i.e., foreigner, non-relative, adulterous, different, etc.), used with regard to illicit sexual intercourse.”

In Matthew 27:6 the King James Version describes the potter's field bought with the ill-gotten thirty pieces of silver from Judas Iscariot as a burial place for strangers, where we have described it as a burial place for visitors in the Christogenea New Testament. When we encountered that passage, this is what we said concerning that word, visitor or stranger, in Part 27 of our commentary on Matthew given here in September of 2011: “There is a Greek word here which in the Christogenea New Testament is translated visitor. That word is ξένος (xenos). In the King James Version it is always translated stranger. But the word does not refer to a stranger, as an alien or someone of another race, as we [in modern times may] perceive it to mean and where it is used as a prefix in English words such as xenophobia that indicate as much. [There is another Greek word which refers to someone of another race, ἀλλογενὴς (Strong's # 241), which is 'of another race, a stranger' (Liddell & Scott), and it appears only in Luke chapter 17 in the New Testament. But] rather, a ξένος is an outsider who has the expectation of hospitality by law or treaty. Therefore David Kovacs, a professional academic from Virginia, when he translated the writings of Euripides for the Loeb Classical Library at Harvard University, translated the same word ξένος, which appears quite often in Euripides' works, as 'guest-friend'. Liddell & Scott define the word, at least primarily, in this manner: 'a guest-friend, i.e. any citizen of a foreign state, with whom one has a treaty of hospitality for self and heirs, confirmed by mutual presents.... of one of the parties bound by ties of hospitality, i.e. either the guest … or the host … any one entitled to hospitality, a stranger, refugee....' So it is visitor here. As it has already been explained, the city [of Jerusalem] being visited by multitudes of people from all over the empire and beyond, and with the laws of the Judaeans requiring a quick burial for the dead regardless of where they were from, it is evident that there would always be a use for such a field.”

A geyr stranger, or in the New Testament a ξένος stranger, is a stranger who has an expectation, even a right, of hospitality in your land. But a nokriy stranger, someone of another race with whom there are no ties of kinship or fraternity, is an alien who should be despised and driven away.

This ends the first half of the presentation.

In the second half of this program we presented Ted R. Weiland’s Gift Of Bibles To Nigeria Brings Us “Twice As Much Evil”! by Clifton Emahiser and our own 2005 letter to Ted Weiland concerned with the same subject.