Monday, 30 January 2012

Who Was Peter's Successor‭?

Mark is commonly recognised as the first Evangelist, but was he Catholic?

The Official Papal View
Following one line of thought, the popes are Catholic because they are the successors of Peter the Apostle. According to the papal lineage, the second pope, Linus, received his authority as head of the Church during the first century from Peter, who is considered by the Vatican to be the first pope. The result of this line of thought is that Peter the Apostle is Catholic.

The line of popes as presented in the Vatican's Liber pontificalis (the book of the popes), starts in the first century with Peter the Apostle and continues with Linus, but does not include any of the Evangelists. The book of the popes is considered by the Catholic Church as the only authority concerning Peter's successors.

An Alternative Christian View
The Evangelists are the authors of the four versions of the Gospel and also of a number of other books in the New Testament. They are the authors of the first written translation of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, for they translated into Greek script his oral teachings, which were in Aramaic.

The four Evangelists professed the Faith in Jesus Christ, commonly known as the Christian Faith. They did not call themselves popes, and did not claim that Peter the Apostle was a pope. Of the four, Mark has been universally recognised by researchers of the New Testament as the first of the three synoptic Evangelists, followed in order by Matthew and Luke. The fourth Evangelist is John, Jesus' youngest disciple.

The alternative Christian view to the claim that the popes are Peter's successors is that the three synoptic Evangelists are his successors. Matthew and Luke followed the basic outlines of Mark's gospel when writing each their own respective version, and Mark wrote his gospel according to the testimony of Peter, disciple of Jesus. The Evangelist John, who, as Peter, was a direct witness of Jesus, wrote his gospel following his own memory, and therefore did not need to base his accounts on Peter's testimony.

Peter's Successor Mark and the Synoptic Gospels
The term synoptic gospels, referring to those of Mark, Matthew and Luke, indicates their correlation based on one original script, which is the gospel according to St. Mark. They follow a line of succession, as the two longer gospels, those of Matthew and Luke, each include many details not found in Mark, thus completing a cycle of information, yet using Mark's gospel as a basic outline.

Considering the succession of detail in the three synoptic gospels, and taking into account that it serves to present to all nations the spoken Word and the deeds of Jesus, the following question arises: where did Mark receive his information from? The answer is given by Peter the Apostle in person, in his first epistle 5: 13, in which he writes: "Your sister church in Babylon, also chosen by God, sends you greetings, and so does my son Mark."

According to the alternative view, not Linus, but Mark is Peter's successor, as he has been nominated by Peter to be his son. Peter did not write a gospel, but he did tell the people around him all that he knew of Jesus, having been one of his disciples. Mark was not one of Jesus' disciples, but wrote his gospel according to Peter's testimony of Jesus, as he knew Peter and was with him when he wrote his first epistle.

The result of this line of thought is that Peter the Apostle preached the Word of the Gospel, Mark wrote his words in the form of a written gospel in Greek, and Matthew and Luke each picked up on Mark's written account and built upon it, completing a synoptic line of succession of written testimony. The Evangelist John later added his own gospel towards the end of the first century.

The question remains: was Saint Mark the Evangelist Catholic? The answer is, he is not even considered by the Catholic Church as Saint Peter's successor. 

  •  the first letter from Peter, Rainbow Good News Bible, The Bible   Societies/Collins.

Written by D. Alexander

Read about Saint Mark the Evangelist and the great controversy between the Apostolic Church and the popes who do not recognise St. Mark's evangelic Priesthood, having chosen to place another as Simon Peter's successor. Having excluded the Evangelist Mark from the line of apostolic succession, the Catholic Church has excluded itself from the Priesthood that is from Zion in High:

Follow up on the meaning of St. Peter's primacy from Zion the High City, where Jesus is the eternal High Priest:

Read about the High Priest Jesus, whose Mother, the Virgin Mary, may be from the priestly tribe of the Levites:

Monday, 16 January 2012

The New Temple in Jerusalem

The Spirit descended upon a new Temple in Jerusalem while the old one was still standing.

First and Second Temple
The Temple in Jerusalem was the house of God, the place where the designated priests offered sacrifices at the Altar. It was the place where the Israelites, following the laws of Moses, gathered several times a year to worship the Lord. The first Temple was built during the reign of King Solomon around 960 B.C., but it was destroyed in the year 587 B.C. by the Babylonians. The second Temple was founded in its place some seventy years later and remained standing until the fall of Jerusalem in the year 70 A.D.

The New Temple
From the Christian perspective, the Old Testament leads to the New Testament, and so the old house of God, in the form of the stone Temple in Jerusalem, gave way to a new house. On the day of Pentecost, several days after Jesus had ascended to Heaven, the Spirit descended upon a house in Jerusalem where his followers had gathered. On receiving the Spirit, they began talking in many tongues, preaching the Gospel of Jesus to all the people passing near the house.
The words they spoke were the first translation of the Gospel, and it was the Spirit that spoke through them, talking in many languages to the Jews who had come to Jerusalem. The followers of Jesus, including the eleven faithful disciples, were talking under inspiration in as many languages as were known to all the Jews present in the streets. Many heard the words coming from the house, each in their own tongue, and stopped to listen. The Evangelist Luke wrote in the book of Acts of the Apostles that thousands were converted to Jesus.

The Church of Jesus Christ
The Spirit did not descend upon the old Temple that day, for Jesus had founded a new house, with a new altar, which was not the one the Jews had previously known. The people within the house, however, were all Jews, including the eleven faithful disciples, as too were those to whom they spoke while under the influence of the Spirit. In the years that followed, the Gospel of Jesus Christ spread far and wide, and wherever the Word was made known, there the new Temple was established, in the heart of the followers of Jesus.
One of Jesus' disciples, Simon Peter, who was the chief apostle, wrote two letters to the faithful, and in the first of these he designated Mark as his son, with the meaning of successor. Mark subsequently wrote his version of the Gospel according to the testimony that he had received from Peter.
Saint Mark's book became the basis for the gospels of Matthew and Luke, hence the term synoptic gospels when referring to the first three versions of the Gospel. Saint Luke also wrote the book of Acts, while John the Evangelist wrote his own version of the Gospel and the book of Revelations. All these books, together with numerous epistles, form the New Testament.
This book, the New Testament, is eternal testimony to Jesus Christ, and has been translated into many languages. The Gospel as we know it could only be considered complete after Jesus had given his life in sacrifice to save mankind from the sin of the world, to then return on the third day and ascend to the Father in Heaven. Only then did Jesus the High Priest send the Spirit from Heaven for the dedication of the new Temple, which is the Church of the followers in Christ.

Sources: Rainbow Good News Bible, The Bible Societies, Collins:
  • Book of Acts of the Apostles;
  • First letter from St. Peter.

Written by D. Alexander

Read on to find out more about Jesus and the Temple before the year 70 AD:

Read also about St. Peter's Primacy from Zion:

The High Priest Jesus

The High Priest Jesus may be descended from the tribe of Levi by way of his Mother the Virgin Mary

Messiah King and Messiah Priest
Both the Old and the New Testament testify to the High Priest Jesus Christ. The title Christ is of Greek origin and translates the Hebrew word Messiah, meaning the anointed one. In the biblical laws of ancient Israel it is written that only two people can be anointed as Messiah, one being the king, the other the high priest. According to Scripture, the King has to descend from David and the tribe of Judah, whereas the high priest has to descend from the tribe of Levi. Following the Evangelist Luke, it appears that Jesus was born to both of these tribes.

Melchizedek King and Priest
In chapter 14 of the book of Genesis it is written that King Melchizedek appeared to Abram, whom God was later to name Abraham. He makes himself known to Abram as king of Salem and priest of the Most High God. The city of Salem cannot be attributed to any known place in history, but it may refer to Jerusalem within a prophetic context.
This encounter occurred many centuries before the foundation of the biblical priesthood of the Levites on Mount Sinai, and so the priesthood of the One God in the person of King Melchizedek could not have been of human origin. According to the Christian Faith, Melchizedek's appearance to Abram was a prophetic manifestation of Jesus as King and High Priest.
The name is composed of the Hebrew words melech and zadek, meaning respectively king and justice. It is of profound interest to note that he is a king and at the same time a priest of the One God, these being the two messianic titles pertaining to Jesus.
David King of Israel lived 800 years after Abraham and 1000 years before the birth of Jesus. In Psalm 110, David made a prophetic reference to a divine Person whose authority comes directly from God. The first words of the Psalm, in verse 1, are: "The Lord said to my Lord: sit here at my right." According to the Christian interpretation of these words, God spoke to His Son, who is Jesus Christ, giving him divine authority. King David recognised the authority of God's Son by calling him Lord.
In verse 4 of the same Psalm it is written: "You will be a priest for ever in the priestly order of Melchizedek." According to this prophecy, David's Lord, who is divinely seated next to the Throne of God, received from the Father the title of High Priest, while at the same time being King of justice.

Jesus as Messiah King
In the days of Jesus, many Jewish families had records tracing back their forefathers to one or the other of the tribes of Israel. Joseph, the husband of Jesus' Mother Mary, was from the tribe of Judah, as was his ancestor King David. The Old Testament reveals that the Messiah would be born to the House of David. In the book of Jeremiah, chapter 23, verse 5, it is written: "The Lord says: the time is coming when I will choose as king a righteous descendant of David." Jeremiah writes that this king will be called: "The Lord Our Salvation."
The Gospel according to St. Luke narrates how the Angel Gabriel appeared to the Virgin Mary and announced that she would conceive by the Spirit and give birth to a male child, whose name would be Jesus. The divine origin of Jesus Christ born from the Virgin Mary indicates that he is the Son of God in High. He was born into David's royal line, for Joseph, Mary's husband, descended from the house of King David.

Jesus as Messiah Priest
Following the Law of Moses, the Messiah of Israel, in order to be the High Priest, would have to descend from the tribe of Levi. The Gospel according to St. Luke gives information regarding the origins of Mary Mother of Jesus. In the first chapter of his Gospel, Luke writes that Mary is a relative of John the Baptist's mother Elizabeth, who belonged to a priestly family. Being of a family associated to the priesthood, Elizabeth descended from the tribe of Levi. Elizabeth's husband, Zechariah, who served as a priest, is from the same tribe, and so their son, John, who was to become the Baptist, is a Levite. His duties as Prophet among the Judaeans, to whom he preached a baptism of conversion, is a prophetic mission inherent to the priesthood.
The physical relationship of Jesus to all peoples on Earth is evident in his biblical title of Son of Man, which is in addition to his being Son of God. Being born from the Virgin Mary but not from Joseph, Jesus' human relationship to people of all nations derives from his Mother, Mary, of whom it can be reasonably suggested that she descends from the tribe of Levi owing to her family ties with John the Baptist.
The origin of Jesus' Mother in relation to the tribe of Levi is essential in order to confer on Jesus the title of priest among the Judaeans. Only as a member of the tribe of Levi could he become High Priest. The New Testament testifies to Jesus being the rightful Messiah as King and High Priest and upholds his divine origin as Son of God.
The spiritual dedication of the Church is recorded in the book of Acts of the Apostles, written by St. Luke. On the day of Pentecost, not long after Jesus had ascended to the Father in Heaven, the Spirit came to a house in Jerusalem where his adherents had all gathered, and at that very moment this house became the place of the new Altar in Jerusalem. At that hour Jesus conferred the priesthood upon his adherents, who then immediately started preaching the Gospel to the multitudes gathered in the streets.
The Rainbow Good News Bible, the Bible Societies/Collins:
  • Book of Acts of the Apostles;
  • Book of Genesis;
  • Book of Jeremiah;
  • Gospel according to St. Luke;
  • Psalm 110.
Written by D. Alexander

Where did the Spirit descend in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost? On the house where the followers of Jesus were gathered. This was the foundation of the New Altar and the new Temple. Read on:
The new Temple in Jerusalem and the Church of Jesus Christ:

Do you know the real meaning of Zion?
Read about St. Peter's primacy from Zion the High City:

Who is St. Peter's successor? Is he really the pope, or is he the Evangelist St. Mark?

Sunday, 15 January 2012

The Messiah Visited the Temple in Jerusalem Before 70 A.D.

According to a number of Old Testament prophecies, the Messiah was to visit the second Temple in Jerusalem. This building was destroyed in the year 70 A.D., and so the Old Testament prophecies heralding the coming of the Chosen One to the second Temple have been fulfilled before its destruction.

The Prophet Haggai and the Temple in Jerusalem
The Prophet Haggai made his appearance in Jerusalem around the year 520 B.C. Speaking in the Name of the Lord, he told the people to build a new Temple that would replace the former one. The former Temple in Jerusalem had been built in the tenth century B.C. during the reign of King Solomon, David's son, and it remained standing until the year 587 B.C.
The fall of the first Temple was the direct consequence of the Judaean king's rebellion against the Babylonians. When it was destroyed, the Ark of the Covenant, which was part of the holy Temple's Altar, disappeared, and the Jews were deported to Babylon.
In the year 538 B.C. and after forty-nine years of exile, the Jews in the regions of Babylon started returning to Jerusalem. This came about after the Persian overthrow of the Babylonian Empire. They built an Altar at the site of the first Temple for the purpose of worshipping God and offering sacrifices according to the Law of Moses. Some eighteen years later, around 520 B.C., the two prophets Haggai and Zechariah spoke in the Lord's name to the people in Jerusalem, telling them to start with the building of the second Temple.
While the people were completing the construction of the second Temple, Haggai spoke to them in the Lord's name, pointing out how the first Temple from King Solomon's reign had been so much greater in physical splendour. He then prophesied that the second Temple would become a place greater than the previous House of God, for all that it was more modest in structure. In the second chapter of Haggai's book, in verse 9, it is written, “The Glory of this latter House shall be greater than the former, says the Lord of Hosts.”
The Christian Faith teaches that this greater glory came about when Jesus entered the Temple in Jerusalem as Saviour among all nations. The Gospel that Jesus spoke, and the miracles he performed while preaching the Kingdom of Heaven, all came about during the period in which the second House of God was standing in Jerusalem.

The Spiritual Presence in the Temple
When Haggai prophesied to the people that the second House of worship would be greater than the former, he was referring to an event that would be greater than the spiritual presence witnessed during the dedication of the first Temple built under King Solomon.
The Old Testament gives an important account of how the Spirit of God filled the first Temple after the priests had carried the Ark of the Covenant into the Sanctuary. In first book of Kings, 8: 10-11, it is written: “As the priests were leaving the Temple, it was suddenly filled with a cloud shining with the dazzling light of the Lord's presence, and they could not go back in to perform their duties.”
This presence of the Lord had been a temporary manifestation, the like of which was not repeated four hundred years later in Haggai's days during the dedication of the second Temple. So if Haggai's words “The Glory of this latter House shall be greater than the former” were to come true, then a very special event was destined to take place within the second Temple, and this was to become manifest before the year 70 A.D., in a period when the building would still be standing.

The Prophet Malachi and the Temple in Jerusalem
The prophet Malachi lived and preached in the fifth century B.C., about one hundred years after the construction of the second Temple in Jerusalem. The books of both Haggai and Malachi are part of the Old Testament and count as Holy Scripture for Jews and Christians alike.
A prophecy from God on the coming of the Messiah to the Temple is recorded in Malachi's book, in verse 1 of the third chapter, where is written, “The Lord you are looking for will suddenly come to his Temple.”
These prophetic words are of great significance to people who believe that the Christ has already been among us to proclaim Salvation in the Name of God. And the prophet goes on to say: “The messenger you long to see will come and proclaim my covenant.” The covenant of God spoken of here is the Gospel that Jesus preached to the world, also known as the New Testament.
The Spirit from Heaven had descended upon Jesus at the time of his baptism in water, so when he entered the second Temple, he filled the place with a Glory even greater than had been witnessed during the dedication of the first House of God in 960 B.C.
Written by D. Alexander
  • book of Haggai, Modern King James Version;
  • book of Malachi, Rainbow Good News Bible 2004 edition, the Bible Societies/Collins;
  • first book of Kings, Rainbow Good News Bible 2004 edition, the Bible Societies/Collins.
Read also: The New Temple in Jerusalem. The New Temple founded in Jerusalem on the day of Pentecost is the foundation of the Church of Jesus Christ and the Apostolic Priesthood that comes from Zion in High.

Read more: The High Priest Jesus. The Virgin Mary, Mother of Jesus, may be descended from the priestly Tribe of Levi.

Saint Peter's primacy from Zion: The Apostle Peter received his priestly authority from Zion the High City on the day of Pentecost. His authority does not come from Rome.

Friday, 13 January 2012

Saint Peter's Primacy from Zion

One Phrase, Two Versions
Possibly the most contested phrase in the New Testament is in the first epistle of St. Peter, in 5:13, where the Apostle Peter makes known that he is in Babylon with his disciple Mark, whom he calls his son. Your sister church in Babylon, also chosen by God, sends you greetings, and so does my son Mark. This is the biblical passage indicating Mark as St. Peter's successor.

The Vatican, however, which officially asserts that Peter was not in Babylon when he wrote the first epistle, but in Rome, does not recognise the Evangelist Mark as Peter's successor. According to the Vatican, St. Peter's successor is Linus, not Mark the Evangelist.

Is Babylon Rome?
In the book of Acts of the Apostles, the Evangelist Luke describes how he and Paul arrived in Rome after departing from Galilee and wintering in Malta. Luke does not refer to Rome as Babylon, but calls the city by its name: Rome. Likewise, in his epistle to the Romans, Paul does not describe the Romans as being in Babylon.

The Evangelist Mark, who wrote the first version of the Gospel, did not write that Peter had lived in Rome. As for Linus, who is considered by the Vatican to be Saint Peter's successor, he did not write any biblical script. We may therefore ask ourselves: who is Linus and what is he famous for?

Zion The High City
Insight into the Church's history as presented in the New Testament is quite straight forward. Reading Peter's two epistles, it is clear that the Apostle's authority derives from Jesus Christ. So wherever Peter resided, he received his authority from the High City that is in Heaven, whose spiritual name is also Zion.

St. Peter's apostolic primacy lives on through the three synoptic gospels, the first of these being the gospel of St. Mark. The Evangelist Mark, known by the spiritual title of Son of Peter, was chosen to become the author of St. Peter's testimony to Jesus Christ.

St. Mark does not describe either Babylon or Rome as the city of spiritual power. The Spirit descends upon the Church from the High City, from the Throne of God, which is in Zion.

Written by D. Alexander

Read also: Mark son of Peter the Apostle

The great controversy between the Church of Saint Peter and the popes who do not recognise Saint Mark the Evangelist as the rightful successor to the Priesthood of Zion:

Jesus High Priest of Zion:

Celtic origins of the English Church: The Celts came to England from Scottish Iona

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Celtic Dover in Kent

Dover, Dubra, the Town by the Water
The name Dover derives from the ancient Celtic Dubra, meaning the waters. Among Dover’s ancient inhabitants are the Canti, a Celtic tribe belonging to the Britons who inhabited Britannia, the land that extended from Kent to Cornwall and all the way north to the lands of the Scots and the Picts.

Dover’s Position in Celtic Kent
Dover, the Celtic Dubra, was Kent’s main port, a natural haven situated around a wide river estuary between the cliffs and distancing only 22 miles from the European continent.

Dover’s river is the Dour, a name of ancient Celtic origin meaning literally river. The Dour is now a stream, but in days of old it was a navigable river with a wide outlet into the sea that included the area where Market Square is now situated in Dover’s town-centre. The river and the town both derive their name from the same word indicating water. The name Dubra, the waters, could have referred equally to the town’s position near the sea and near the river.

Ancient Britain’s Trade Through Dover
From very early times Britain’s population maintained economic ties with the Celtic tribes on the continent, and as the Dour estuary was a natural haven for ships crossing the channel between Britain and Gaul, a significant proportion of trade passed through Dover.

Over 350 Bronze Age tools have been discovered on the sea-bed just outside Dover Harbour, presumably part of a cargo that sank before reaching the port. These tools include axes, knives, spearheads, chisels and pins dating back to 1100 BC. All these items appear to be used tools and were probably being transported as metal for recycling.

The World’s Oldest Sea Vessel in Dover
The oldest existing sea-faring vessel in the world is the Dover Bronze Age boat, discovered in 1992 during excavations to build an underground passage.

The vessel is made of oak planks and is 9,5 metres long and 2,4 metres wide. Its original length is believed to have been about 12 metres. The boat was built around 1550 BC and, after being used for sea transport, was left to lie at the bottom of the Dour close to the shore, where mud formed a protective case around it, preserving the boat for three and a half thousand years.

The river Dour’s original entrance into the sea became silted up some time during the early Middle Ages, and its course altered slightly towards the East of the town. The original port became the town’s market square, and a new strip of coast gradually formed between Dover’s Eastern and Western Heights, largely due to the natural movement of shingle on the sea-bed and to mud being washed into the sea from the Dour.

The Bronze Age Boat was found under Townwall Street, just several yards from a restaurant called the Britannia! Carefully preserved in Dover Museum, it is Britain’s oldest testimony to maritime trade, dating back to a period 750 years prior to the foundation of Rome.

Dover, Britain’s Oldest Known Port
Dover is probably Britain’s oldest settlement, and being situated by the water, as its ancient name reveals, Dover is Britain’s oldest known port.

Among the artefacts discovered in and around Dover are axes, chisels, knives and pins from 1600 to 1400 BC, similar to those found on the sea-bed near the harbour. There are also some beautiful items of gold from 1400 and 1300 BC, one being a bracelet and the other a torc made by interlacing four strips of gold.

The oldest items are two wonderful vases from 1800 BC, both found intact. One of these came to light near the Castle, indicating that Britain’s oldest settlement may have stood on the white cliffs of Dover.

Written by D. Alexander

Read more on the world's oldest sea vessel:

Read on to find out about Celtic origins:

Photo 1: Light Tower Church above the Port of Dover

Photo 2: The River Dour in Dover

Photo 3: Bronze Age tools, Dover Museum 

Sunday, 8 January 2012

British Government Suggests Prison for Reckless Bankers

Bankers may be sent to prison

Prison Doors Set to Open for Bankers
Sky News reports 08 January 2012 that the British Government has suggested reckless bankers in the UK could go to prison. Until now, it has been commonly believed that UK bankers are immune to prison and enjoy a law unto themselves, outside of the common Law.

But according to Sky News, “bank chiefs who put major institutions at risk and damage the economy could face jail under new laws being considered by ministers.”

The treasury is considering various options to punish reckless bankers, including the offence of corporate negligence. Consultations will take place starting around March 2012 to make corporate negligence a criminal offence.

Bankers Bonuses Again
The new move by the British Government comes just in time to attract people's attention to the annual bonus season, when, at the beginning of each year, city bankers and chief executives of shareholding companies give themselves large bonuses, collectively amounting to many billions of pounds.

Unlike most employees who either do not see a bonus or receive a moderate bonus, bankers and chief executives generally slap a 300-400% super bonus to their own top salary, taking the money from the bank or whichever other share-holding company employs them.

Being chief executives or otherwise present in the managing boardroom, they see themselves as employers and not employees, and so help themselves to the company's money as they see fit. As they declare this money as either top salary, golden bonus or golden handshake, it effectively becomes legalised theft, as there is no other authority, either on the part of the shareholders or the State, that can establish how much they can earn.

The company boardroom could in fact decide to give the chief executive a one million pound bonus, or a ten million pound bonus, or even one of fifty million pounds, with other top bankers seated in the same boardroom receiving each a bonus of one million pounds or any sum above that figure. The shareholders are excluded from any binding decision in the matter, as too is the Government.

Corporate Negligence
The new law that is being considered by the Government might not necessarily put an end to all this, as it is still not clear whether it means bankers will be held legally responsible only for bringing the company they work for into a state of financial ruin, or also for detracting enormous sums of the company's money for their own personal gain.

Salaries of top bankers may well be in the region of hundreds of thousands of pounds a year, whereas their bonuses may be, for example, 300% to 1000% higher than their salary. So if a new law on corporate negligence establishes that any sum of a bank's money being added to a banker's top salary is reckless and damaging to the banking company, whether or not the bank goes into a state of bankruptcy, then the practice of bankers in Britain giving themselves bonuses may become illegal.

At present it is still not clear whether bankers in Britain will be sent to prison for their part in the 2008 banking crisis, or whether they will be held to account for the remunerations they gave themselves that went beyond their established salary while directing the British banking system into sheer bankruptcy.

Should a new law on corporate negligence be retrospective, then possibly Britain's prison gates will open to those who evicted hundreds of thousands of people from their homes for failure to pay the mortgage, while busily giving themselves millions of pounds of the bank's money as personal remuneration.

Prosperity in Sight for Britain
Prosperity might come to Britain when the unjust are removed from their temporal position of power within the economy, when justice prevails in place of greed and speculation.

Written by D. Alexander