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This stone carving (above) was found in Iraq [1988] near the ancient city of Babylon (Bagdad) [the ancient city of Babylon, located 85 kilometers (53 miles) south of Baghdad - wiki.com]. Historians falsely interpret this illustration so I invite you to look at it carefully. There are clearly two suns in the sky and everyone is looking up at them. The tallest figure (wearing the horns of the bull... Nimrod's old crown) appears to be a giant. Giants in the Bible were roughly 18 feet tall. The dome-shaped object is too perfect to be a mountain peak. Instead, imagine that it's the "top" of the Tower of Babel. [article link]

Ancient Egypt Temples-Home to the Gods

In ancient Egypt temples were constructed to house the numerous deities, both male and female, that were at the center of Egyptian mythology and religion. The beliefs held by the ancient Egyptians were more than just the foundation of a religion, these beliefs were central to the everyday life of Egyptian citizens. ... Inside these ancient Egyptian temples, there existed a segregated system of sanctuaries. The sanctuaries were divided by the spiritual level of the persons allowed to enter them. Those who had not yet reached a spiritual worthiness were not allowed to enter the innermost chambers. In ancient Egypt temples there was also sometimes an exterior complex comprised of gardens and courtyards. Through the years in ancient Egypt temples served a variety of purposes. Without a doubt, it appears that the primary purpose of most temples in ancient Egypt was to house and care for the gods to which they were dedicated. It seemed the very existence and good fortune of the entire land of Egypt rested upon tending the gods. The worst fate that could befall a city was failing to care for the temple of the patron god. A god who lacked attention would become angry and flee the temple, leaving the citizens of that town open to all kinds of disasters. Beyond serving the needs of the god who resided in the temple, some temples also served other purposes. No king could rule the Egyptian nation without first becoming a god. In an elaborate ceremony the new pharaoh would enter the temple, along with the high priests. Once inside the most exclusive chambers of the temple, rites would be performed which would transform the mere mortal pharaoh into a deity to be revered and worshipped by the Egyptian people. Still yet, some temples in Egypt were reserved for the worship of the king, who was also considered a deity, after his death. The wealth and sophistication in design of the temples in ancient Egypt vary greatly. The Temple of Karnak at Luxor and the Temple of Deir El Bahari are two of the most well known ancient Egypt temples. [article link]

The Pyramids of Giza - Each of the three [great] pyramids had a complete monumental complex of mortuary temples, Mastabas tombs, smaller subsidiary pyramids, in which members of the royal family and officials were buried - The whole complex was connected, by a causeway, to three valley temples and the sphinx - These in turn were linked, by a cannel, to the Nile [river]

There are three pyramids at Giza, each of which once had an adjoining mortuary temple. Attached to this temple would have been a covered causeway descending down to a valley temple, near the Nile. The 'great' pyramid itself is truly an astonishing work of engineering skill - for over four thousands years, until the modern era, it was the tallest building in the world. [article link]

Wikipedia.org: Great Pyramid of Giza, Egypt - The Great Pyramid of Giza (also called the Pyramid of Khufu and the Pyramid of Cheops) is the oldest and largest of the three pyramids in the Giza Necropolis bordering what is now El Giza, Egypt - It is the oldest of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and the only one to remain largely intact - It is believed the pyramid was built as a tomb for fourth dynasty Egyptian Pharaoh Khufu

Entrance: The entrance of the Pyramid - Today tourists enter the Great Pyramid via the Robbers' Tunnel dug by workmen employed by Caliph al-Ma'mun around AD 820. The tunnel is cut straight through the masonry of the pyramid for approximately 27 metres (89 ft), then turns sharply left to encounter the blocking stones in the Ascending Passage. Unable to remove these stones, the workmen tunnelled up beside them through the softer limestone of the Pyramid until they reached the Ascending Passage. It is possible to enter the Descending Passage from this point, but access is usually forbidden. ... [afterlife] Boats: Khufu ship - There are three boat-shaped pits around the pyramid, of a size and shape to have held complete boats, though so shallow that any superstructure, if there ever was one, must have been removed or disassembled. In May, 1954, the Egyptian archaeologist Kamal el-Mallakh discovered a fourth pit, a long, narrow rectangle, still covered with slabs of stone weighing up to 15 tons. Inside were 1,224 pieces of wood, the longest 23 metres (75 ft) long, the shortest 10 centimetres (0.33 ft). These were entrusted to a native boat builder, Haj Ahmed Yusuf, who slowly and methodically worked out how the pieces fit together. The entire process, including conservation and straightening of the warped wood, took fourteen years. The result is a spectacular cedar-wood boat 43.6 metres (143 ft) long, its timbers held together by ropes, which is now currently housed in a special boat-shaped, air-conditioned museum beside the pyramid. During construction of this museum, which stands above the boat pit, a second sealed boat pit was discovered. It was deliberately left unopened in the hope that future excavation techniques will allow more information to be recovered. Looting: Although succeeding pyramids were smaller, pyramid building continued until the end of the Middle Kingdom. However, as authors Briar and Hobbs claim, "all the pyramids were robbed" by the New Kingdom, when the construction of royal tombs in a desert valley, now known as the Valley of the Kings, began. Joyce Tyldesley states that the Great Pyramid itself "is known to have been opened and emptied by the Middle Kingdom", before the Arab caliph Abdullah al-Mamun entered the pyramid around AD 820. [article link]

Wikipedia.org: Pyramid - A pyramid's design, with the majority of the weight closer to the ground, and with the pyramidion on top means that less material higher up on the pyramid will be pushing down from above: this distribution of weight allowed early civilizations to create stable monumental structures

Ancient monuments: Pyramid-shaped structures were built by many ancient civilizations. Mesopotamia [Iraq]: The Mesopotamians built the earliest pyramidal structures, called ziggurats. In ancient times, these were brightly painted. Since they were constructed of sun-dried mud-brick, little remains of them. Egypt: Egyptian pyramids The ancient pyramids of Egypt. The most famous pyramids are the Egyptian pyramids - huge structures built of brick or stone, some of which are among the world's largest constructions. The age of the pyramids reached its zenith at Giza in 2575-2150 B.C. As of 2008, some 138 pyramids have been discovered in Egypt. The Great Pyramid of Giza is the largest in Egypt and one of the largest in the world. Until Lincoln Cathedral was finished in AD 1311, it was the tallest building in the world. The base is over 52,600 square meters in area. While pyramids are associated with Egypt, the nation of Sudan has 220 extant pyramids, the most numerous in the world. The Great Pyramid of Giza was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World. It is the only one to survive into modern times. The Ancient Egyptians covered the faces of pyramids with polished white limestone, containing great quantities of fossilized seashells. Many of the facing stones have fallen or have been removed and used to build the mosques of Cairo. ... Mesoamerica [central America]: Pyramid in the Mayan city of Chichen Itza, Mexico. A number of Mesoamerican cultures also built pyramid-shaped structures. Mesoamerican pyramids were usually stepped, with temples on top, more similar to the Mesopotamian ziggurat than the Egyptian pyramid. The largest pyramid by volume is the Great Pyramid of Cholula, in the Mexican state of Puebla. This pyramid is considered the largest monument ever constructed anywhere in the world, and is still being excavated. The third largest pyramid in the world, the Pyramid of the Sun, at Teotihuacan is also located in Mexico. There is an unusual pyramid with a circular plan at the site of Cuicuilco, now inside Mexico City and mostly covered with lava from an eruption of the Xitle Volcano in the first century BC. There are several circular stepped pyramids called Guachimontones in Teuchitlán, Jalisco as well. Pyramids in Mexico were often used as places of human sacrifice. North America: Many mound-building societies of ancient North America built large pyramidal earth structures known as platform mounds. Among the largest and best-known of these structures is Monk's Mound at the site of Cahokia, which has a base larger than that of the Great Pyramid at Giza. While the North American mounds' precise function is not known, they are believed to have played a central role in the mound-building people's religious life. Roman Empire: Pyramid of Cestius in Rome. The 27-metre-high Pyramid of Cestius was built by the end of the first century BC and still exists today, close to the Porta San Paolo. Another one, named Meta Romuli, standing in the Ager Vaticanus (today's Borgo), was destroyed at the end of the 15th century. There is also a Roman era pyramid built in Falicon, France. There were many more pyramids built in France in this period. [article link]

Egyptian Afterlife Ceremonies, Sarcophagi, Burial Masks - Ancient Egyptian civilization was based on religion; their belief in the rebirth after death became their driving force behind their funeral practices. Death was simply a temporary interruption, rather than complete cessation, of life, and that eternal life could be ensured by means like piety to the gods, preservation of the physical form through Mummification, and the provision of statuary and other funerary equipment

Ancient Egyptian civilization was based on religion; their belief in the rebirth after death became their driving force behind their funeral practices. Death was simply a temporary interruption, rather than complete cessation, of life, and that eternal life could be ensured by means like piety to the gods, preservation of the physical form through Mummification, and the provision of statuary and other funerary equipment. Each human consisted of the physical body, the 'ka', the 'ba', and the 'akh'. The Name and Shadow were also living entities. To enjoy the afterlife, all these elements had to be sustained and protected from harm. Before the Old Kingdom, bodies buried in desert pits were naturally preserved by desiccation. The arid, desert conditions continued to be a boon throughout the history of ancient Egypt for the burials of the poor, who could not afford the elaborate burial preparations available to the elite. Wealthier Egyptians began to bury their dead in stone tombs and, as a result, they made use of artificial mummification, which involved removing the internal organs, wrapping the body in linen, and burying it in a rectangular stone sarcophagus or wooden coffin. Beginning in the Fourth Dynasty, some parts were preserved separately in canopic jars. By the New Kingdom, the ancient Egyptians had perfected the art of mummification; the best technique took 70 days and involved removing the internal organs, removing the brain through the nose, and desiccating the body in a mixture of salts called natron. The body was then wrapped in linen with protective amulets inserted between layers and placed in a decorated anthropoid coffin. Mummies of the Late Period were also placed in painted cartonnage mummy cases. Actual preservation practices declined during the Ptolemaic and Roman eras, while greater emphasis was placed on the outer appearance of the mummy, which was decorated. Wealthy Egyptians were buried with larger quantities of luxury items, but all burials, regardless of social status, included goods for the deceased. Beginning in the New Kingdom, books of the dead were included in the grave, along with shabti statues that were believed to perform manual labor for them in the afterlife Rituals in which the deceased was magically re-animated accompanied burials. After burial, living relatives were expected to occasionally bring food to the tomb and recite prayers on behalf of the deceased. Egyptians also believed that being mummified was the only way to have an afterlife. Only if the corpse had been properly embalmed and entombed in a mastaba, could the dead live again in the Fields of Yalu and accompany the Sun on its daily ride. ... Arriving at one's reward in afterlife was a demanding ordeal, requiring a sin-free heart and the ability to recite the spells, passwords, and formulae of the Book of the Dead. ... Much of what we know about art and life in ancient Egypt has been preserved in the tombs that were prepared for the protection of the dead. The Egyptians believed that the next life had to be provided for in every detail and, as a result, tombs were decorated with depictions of the deceased at his funerary meal, activities of the estate and countryside, and the abundant offerings necessary to sustain the spirit. Many surviving Egyptian works of art were created to be placed in the tombs of officials and their families. Through the ritual of "opening the mouth," a statue of the deceased (known as a "ka statue") was thought to become a living repository of a person's spirit. Wall paintings, reliefs, and models depict pleasurable pastimes and occupations of daily life. Always these images have deeper meanings of magical protection, sustenance, and rebirth. The mummy was surrounded with magic spells, amulets, and representations of protective deities. [article link]

[Egypt - (Turquoise) Gems Kingdom] Egyptian Jewelry And Gems - Religious Use: Jewelry was valued not for beauty only, but for the magical protection it provided - Egyptians didn't make a distinction between amulets [protection - good luck charms] and ornamental [dress-up] jewelry - Amulets were worn from infancy through death - Due to this religious role, jewelry items were much needed by the deceased in his afterlife journey, and jewelry was buried with the dead - In fact ancient Egyptians prepared themselves from early life to their death day by collecting as much protective jewelry as possible to be buried with them

Design Rules: As with other forms of Egyptian art design of jewelry followed strict rules to fulfill it's religious role. Any change in the representation of religious symbols resulted in a loss of protective value. it was undesirable to change the designs of any objects such as the royal cartouches or crook and flail - Every material had a religious value - Minerals and metals were identified with specific deities as well as with specific spiritual and therapeutic values. - Color Code: Every Color had a certain mythological meaning, and the use of colored gems was confined to this code. -- Turquoise (Greenish blue) The oldest known mines of turquoise were quarried in the Sinai by about 3000 BC For the next two thousand years, great quantities of turquoise were mine in the peninsula. At Serabit el-Khadem Egyptians set up a large and systematic operation - This soft precious stone was the most popular gem in ancient Egypt, due to it's relatively easy workability and the abundance of local quarries - It was used for beads by the Egyptians. Combined with other ornamental stones, the turquoise was inlaid in gold to produce very sophisticated articles of jewelry - The bright mineral enamels of powdered turquoise were used to color everything from fine small statues to bricks. - The Eye of Horus amulet was commonly made from the green malachite - Sacred scarabs amulets were carved from this gem. Lapis Lazuli (Deep blue or violet in color and usually flecked with yellow iron pyrites) Imported from Badakhshan province of Afghanistan. Egyptian believed that this gem possessed life-giving powers. The Book of the dead describes Horus in a heavenly firmament in the form of a hawk and "his torso is made of blue stone" - Blue was the color of the heavens, water, and the primeval flood [creation myth - not the flood of Noah], and it represented creation and rebirth. Jasper (Red or reddish brown) - Red symbolized fire and blood of Isis - The gem was thought to be beneficial in the treatment of infertility. Malachite (Green, the colors in the individual bands range from a very light green to deep forest green with occasional irregular black banding) Malachite is a form of copper ore. Hydrous copper carbonate is responsible for the green color of tarnished copper and bronze. - Hathor was titled the "lady of Malachite", which was connected to health Reputed to have strong therapeutic properties, Egyptians believed that wearing malachite in bands around the head and arms protected the wearer from epidemics - Due to its opaque nature, malachite was usually cut and shaped into a cabochon or formed into beads. - The Egyptians used malachite primarily in collar beads - Malachite powder was used in eye makeup, which had a protective function in fighting eye infections. Carnelian (Varied from dark brown to light brown colors) Symbolized the warm blood of life - Carnelian's healing properties were thought to help purify the blood, and relieve the back pain. Amazonite (Pale pastel blue-green and may also exhibit fine white streaks) - Its light blue color symbolized good luck and fertility. It was associated with turquoise and lapis lazuli. Amethyst (Pale pinkish violet) This gem had no mythological importance in ancient Egypt, in contrast to the Greeks who believed that it helped to prevent drunkenness and intoxication. -- Roman Jewelry: - Secular Use - Function: Many of the jewelry accessories seen throughout ancient Rome had functional, as well as decorative value. A common jewelry item of Rome was the brooch, which was used to secure clothing items. Another utilitarian jewelry was the fibula, which was an ornately decorated clothing accessory resembling a large safety pin that was used as a clothing fastener. - Decoration: Roman decoration jewelry consisted mainly of bracelets, necklaces, pendants, earrings and rings - Unlike Egyptians, Roman practical jewelry items were inherited by family members, and never buried with the deceased. [article link]

Gold (Turquoise) Eye of Horus Amulet Pendant [modern jewlery - $159.99] (Photo)

Eyes were particularly common as amulets, as were gemstones; the best-known eye amulet being the ancient Egyptian Eye of Horus which is associated with regeneration, health, and prosperity. It was very common as an amuletic talisman in ancient Egypt since ancient Egyptians were imbued with the belief that the Eye of Horus has magical properties to ward off the evil eye or evil and was worn for good health, protection and general well being. The left eye symbolises the Moon and the right eye symbolises the Sun. [article link]

[Secular] Egyptian Deities in the Garden of Eden - Presented at the annual meeting of the American Research Center in Egypt, St. Louis 1996 by Gary Greenberg - This paper attempts to introduce the idea that the biblical Creation stories, from the dawn of Creation through Noah’s Flood, derive from Egyptian cosmogony, more specifically, the Theban doctrine of Creation - The Theban doctrine holds that in the beginning there was the great primeval flood known as Nu or the Nun

This paper attempts to introduce the idea that the biblical Creation stories, from the dawn of Creation through Noah’s Flood, derive from Egyptian cosmogony, more specifically, the Theban doctrine of Creation. Thebes came late to the political scene in Egypt and its view of Creation attempted to incorporate the ideas of Memphis, Heliopolis and Hermopolis into a new cosmology that subordinated the chief deities of those cults to Amen, chief deity of Thebes. The Theban doctrine holds that in the beginning there was the great primeval flood known as Nu or the Nun. The god Amen then appeared in a series of forms, first as an Ogdoad, then as Tatenen (a Memphite name for Ptah identified with the primeval hill), then as Atum, who created the first gods, then as Re. After this he created humanity, organized the Ennead, appointed the four male members of the Hermopolitan Ogdoad as his divine fathers and priests, and appointed Shu as their leader. Another Theban tradition holds that Osiris built the first city at Thebes. To equate all these ideas with the biblical Creation stories would be a massive undertaking, far beyond the scope of this short paper. Therefore I will deal only with a small piece of this very large subject. In this paper I will just compare some elements of the Heliopolitan cycle with the biblical account of Adam and Eve and the second day of Creation. ... Summary: In conclusion, I note that the bible places Israel’s formative years as a cultural entity in Egypt, and its leading figures, Joseph and Moses, were educated in Egypt’s traditions. What they new about the origins of the world they learned in Egypt, and what they wrote about those origins should surely have had an Egyptian influence. Yet, while scholars are willing to admit all sorts of Semitic pagan influences on early Hebrew historical beliefs, they treat the idea of Egyptian influence as far too profane for intense examination. I hope in this paper I have been able to at least raise some interest in more closely examining the [false] idea that Egyptian ideas greatly influenced the writing of early biblical history. {Note: The concepts, practices, laws, medicines, religion, etc. that Moses wrote about in the Pentateuch [first five books of the Bible] were completely foreign [i.e. the 8 Feasts of Leviticus chapter 23] and in many cases the opposite of the traditional teachings of ancient Egypt.}
[article link]

3 The Kingdom of Babylon

{Basic Christian: blog Bible Study} Daniel 5 - By the fall of Babylon 70 years later Nebuchadnezzar's son Nabonidus had made his son Belshazzar a co-ruler with himself [Belshazzar was the son of Nabonidus, who after ruling only three years, went to the oasis of Tayma and devoted himself to the worship of the moon god, Sin. He made Belshazzar co-regent in 553 B.C., leaving him in charge of Babylon's defense. - wiki.com] -- 'Daniel 5:30 In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain. And Darius the Median took the kingdom, being about threescore and two years old.' [Josephus lists Darius as the son of Astyages, and uncle of Cyrus - wiki.com]
Daniel 5:1-31 Belshazzar the king made a great feast to a thousand of his lords, and drank wine before the thousand. Belshazzar, whiles he tasted the wine, commanded to bring the golden and silver vessels which his father Nebuchadnezzar had taken out of the temple which was in Jerusalem; that the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, might drink therein. Then they brought the golden vessels that were taken out of the temple of the house of God which was at Jerusalem; and the king, and his princes, his wives, and his concubines, drank in them. They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone. In the same hour came forth fingers of a man's hand, and wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaister of the wall of the king's palace: and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote. Then the king's countenance was changed, and his thoughts troubled him, so that the joints of his loins were loosed, and his knees smote one against another. The king cried aloud to bring in the astrologers, the Chaldeans, and the soothsayers. And the king spake, and said to the wise men of Babylon, Whosoever shall read this writing, and shew me the interpretation thereof, shall be clothed with scarlet, and have a chain of gold about his neck, and shall be the third ruler in the kingdom. Then came in all the king's wise men: but they could not read the writing, nor make known to the king the interpretation thereof. ... Then Daniel answered and said before the king, Let thy gifts be to thyself, and give thy rewards to another; yet I will read the writing unto the king, and make known to him the interpretation. ... And thou his son, O Belshazzar, hast not humbled thine heart, though thou knewest all this; But hast lifted up thyself against the Lord of heaven; and they have brought the vessels of his house before thee, and thou, and thy lords, thy wives, and thy concubines, have drunk wine in them; and thou hast praised the gods of silver, and gold, of brass, iron, wood, and stone, which see not, nor hear, nor know: and the God in whose hand thy breath is, and whose are all thy ways, hast thou not glorified: Then was the part of the hand sent from him; and this writing was written. And this is the writing that was written [in Aramaic], MENE, MENE, TEKEL, UPHARSIN. This is the interpretation of the thing: MENE; God hath numbered thy kingdom, and finished it. TEKEL; Thou art weighed in the balances, and art found wanting. PERES; Thy kingdom is divided, and given to the Medes and Persians [Iran]. Then commanded Belshazzar, and they clothed Daniel with scarlet, and put a chain of gold about his neck, and made a proclamation concerning him, that he should be the third ruler [3rd after Nabonidus and his son Belshazzar] in the kingdom. In that night was Belshazzar the king of the Chaldeans slain. And Darius the Median took the kingdom, being about threescore and two years old. [Although usually left untranslated in English translations of Daniel, these words are known Aramaic names of measures of currency: MENE, a mina, TEKEL, a spelling of shekel, PERES, half a mina. - wiki.com] - God is able to set up and takedown each kingdom of mankind at any moment according to His choosing. Note: The Three (Trinity) Handwritings of God: The finger of God writing His 10 Commandments into stone tablets. 'Exodus 31:18 And He [God] gave unto Moses, when He had made an end of communing with him upon mount Sinai, two tables of testimony, tables of stone, written with the finger of God' - The finger of God writing the judgment decree of unrepentant men in the hardened plaster of a wall. 'Daniel 5:4-5 They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold, and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone. In the same hour came forth fingers of a man's hand, and wrote over against the candlestick upon the plaister [plaster] of the wall of the king's palace: and the king saw the part of the hand that wrote.' - The finger of God writing the sins of repentant men in the dust of the earth. 'John 8:6 This they said, tempting Him [Jesus], that they might have to accuse Him. But Jesus stooped down, and with His finger wrote on the ground, as though He heard them not.' [article link]

wikipedia.org: Nebuchadnezzar II ( 634 BC - 562 BC) was king of the Babylonian Empire [3rd Global Gentile Empire], who reigned 605 BC - 562 BC - According to the Bible, he conquered Judah and Jerusalem, and sent the Jews into exile - He is credited with the construction of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon and also known for the destruction of the First Temple - He is featured in the Book of Daniel and is also mentioned in several other books of the Bible

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