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Art and Symbolism


I find Roman mysticism directly influencing architecture during the time of Augustus and with a little searching probably well before that too. The Romans loved their mysticism of the stars and what they might tell through their birth signs. As it has been mentioned Augustus was keen on propaganda and it seems he went as far as publicising the propitious nature of his personal birth stars in a number of monuments, including his mausoleum which was planned and built according to his star signs. The Pantheon was likewise influenced and oriented towards the rising sun on his birth date. A similar inspiration was included within the design of the Ara Pacis(altar to peace). The sun cast its shadow on the altar at the exact time and date of Augustus' birth by way of an enormous obelisk-cum-sundial. Using Augustus and his biblical connection with the birth of Jesus is my best example of how architecture played a symbolic role in constructing buildings. As we learn about the mausoleum, Pantheon, and other building structures built by orders of Augustus to show his time of birth we can also use this to help us see how God also used architecture  and yearly festivals to show us his time of birth. God is the ultimate architect who has given us this talent to build whether man uses his talent for God or not or even chooses to believe in God,  All talent or abilities come from God who created us in his image. When we study our bibles we find out that man is not the architect who designed the temple. God himself gave the architectural design unto King David and he gave Gods structural plans to his son Solomon to build it for God himself. With the same intentions   as Augustus,to tell the people the time of his sons birth and other messages within his architectural design. God does the same thing with the second temple being the architect of that temple giving the design to the people through Ezekiel. God has given us all the symbolic messages that describe a unique timing of future events to occur within our bibles. We as Christians need only to see this creativity within our creator as we are not superior to God when it comes to talking to us symbolically through architecture and art. In the book of acts chapter 15:16-17 giving us further evidence of how the first temple was symbolic for a future event being the birth and ministry of Jesus. Jesus referred to his own body as being a temple when talking with the Pharisees telling them that when they destroy this temple he would rebuild it in three days. This chapter and verse's should be re-examined by leaders for these two verses  give us new testament evidence when compared with other books of the bible to support that Jesus was born in the the fall feast of Tabernacles. This is what the apostle James was telling everyone present at his formal church meeting,  with James saying, "After this I will return, and will build again the tabernacle of David, Which is fallen down; and I will build again the ruins thereof , and I  will set it up,that the residue of men might seek after the Lord, and all the Gentiles, on whom my name is called, saith the lord, who doeth all these things. These two verses are referring to the birth, death, and resurrection of Jesus. Jesus is speaking about King David in the form of being a tabernacle as he did with himself talking to the Pharisees by saying destroy this temple and I shall rebuild it in three days." The first temple was destroyed and the glory of the lord left this temple that he refers to as the tabernacle of Dad. The creative mind of God is also letting us know that the tabernacle that Solomon built was and  is symbolic of the actual  birth of Jesus, for with the conception, birth, and growing into a man to present himself as the long awaited Messiah and being the true lamb of God is the fulfillment of these two verses which can be read again in the book of Amos. Verse 16 begins with these words, "after this I shall return," with Jesus saying this , meaning that he was here before he was born a man. From these two verses we know which time he was referring to. When the Glory of the Lord filled the first temple which you can read about in 1st Kings chapter 8:10-11. When Solomon celebrates in the seventh month the work that God through King David was ordered to build is the same month in which Jesus will start to build again the tabernacle of King David in Bethlehem through his birth. Luke's Gospel is one that should be re-examined by the 21st century church. When Luke mentions Ceasar Augustus at the time of the birth of Jesus he does so by giving us his name of authority over the Romans which was given to him by the people of Rome. Luke does not do this when he mentions Tiberias Ceasar. Ceasar is only a family name and does not give meaning as being in supreme rule over the Romans. We need to study Roman history in order to form a better understanding of what is written in our bible. Tiberias and Ceasar Augustus had what is called a co-regent of power, with the Roman people calling Tiberias  emperor while Augustus was still alive. Tiberias did what is called ante-dating his career by fifteen years before he actually became Emperor in 14c.e. .Octavius Ceasar Augustus was still alive  when John the baptist was preaching. Most people place the birth of Jesus towards the end of Octavius Ceasar Auguutus's career. Once again Luke informs us that a world wide decree that the whole world should be taxed was issued by Ceasar at the time of the birth of Jesus. I did some reading and researching on the Internet to study the divine deeds of Augustus. According to Augustus he never imposed a tax on the Jewish people,  Only Roman citizens were taxed. Augustus put an end to farm taxing the people and started taxing people with a census. Records of these taxing, were dated 28 b.c., 8 b.c. and 14 c.e. . Taxing the people was listed as being eighth on his list of accomplishments. If Octavius Ceasar waited unto the end of his career, he would never  accomplish what he did for Rome, as he made known publicly that Rome was a city of brick and he made it a city of marble. The dates given are important to Augustus, but the Romans carried out a taxation on the people every five years with this new system. The reason that he wrote about 28 b.c. was because this dates the great change in taxing the people and doing away with farm taxing. So naturally Augustus would send out a decree to inform the Roman people of this change whether they lived in Rome or some other country under Roman authority. In the Gospel of Matthew we are given more information about the birth of Jesus with Herod the great being King of the Jewish people. Herod was not favored by the people to be their King. Herod had to take this position by force and with help from the Roman army loyal unto Mark Athony. It was a slaughter of children and women along with their men, the killing by the Romans and Herod was so terrible  that Herod gave money to the Romans to stop the killing for fear that he would not have a people to rule over. This terrible event is recorded by early historians. All fellow Christians can certainly believe without doubt that Herod carried out that evil campaign we read about in the Gospel of Matthew. Once again people are placing this tragedy at the end of Herod's life as King in order to find out what year Jesus was born. Herod also placed a heavy taxation of the people in order to fund his building projects. While researching about the birth of Jesus I learned that Calvin did not believe himself that Jesus was born between 6 and 4 b.c., he dated the birth of Jesus to be around 17 b.c. . Herod soon lost the favor of Ceasar Augustus and made a statement that it would be better to be one of Herod's pigs than to be one of his children. After the death of Herod Ceasar Augustus did not allow Herod's sons to be known as kings but were called Tetrarchs and Augustus gave them equal power in three different areas of Israel. Archelaus was given the land of Judah to govern the people but was exiled in 6 b.c. because of the cruel ruling over the people and Augustus did not allow another Jewish man to rule as Tetrarchs in the land of Judah. Augustus and Archelaus were fulfilling the blessing that Jacob gave to his son Judah. Jacob tells Judah that the scepter shall not depart from Judah until Shiloh comes, meaning the Messiah. This is when Jesus shows up to be baptized by John the Baptist. Jacobs words do not mean that the Messiah would come years after the land of Judah had no King. Jacobs words meant that when Jesus appears to begin his ministry the Sceptor will be taken from Judah and that was done sometime in 6 B.C. . Concerning the birth of Jesus, John the Baptist called Jesus not by his name but called him the word. Every seventh year the Jewish people were to have a special reading of the word during the fall feast called the feast of tabernacles. John the Baptist in verse 14 stated, "and the word was made flesh. The first chapter of John is very educational and poetic in the describing of who Jesus is and also solves an issue that exist in the minds of many Christians that believe God is not in three persons. The Gospel of John first chapter is very clear in written speech of the relationship being Father and son with the Holy Spirit upon and within our Lord and King. This involves critical thinking on the part of Christians to really understand when Jesus was born and started his career. There was so much suppression and deceit from both the Romans and Jews that caused our present situation of wondering about this issue. Records were changed by the Jewish officials and Romans who feared the life of Jesus, in order to create confusion concerning the life of Jesus. 

 

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