Origins and Destinies

  The Dark Powers That Bind - Destiner Press Titles

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Section 3. CANAAN

The House of Baal ~ Astarte/Asherah ~ The House of Dagon ~ Tree Worship ~ Acknowledgements.


The House of Baal

The four sons of Ham and the lands to which they migrated were Cush (Ethiopia), Egypt, Phut (Libya), and the youngest son, Canaan. With their offspring, such as Canaan’s firstborn, Sidon, “these are the sons of Ham, by their families, their (post-Babel) languages, their lands, and their nations.” (Genesis 10: 6,20) Canaan was cursed by his grandfather Noah, on account of his father Ham’s perverse behaviour as a sodomite. (Genesis 9:25-27, see extra notes on this often misunderstood passage) The land of Canaan would later become known as the land of the Philistine (Palestine) and both under the Canaanites and Philistines it figures very prominently in the books of the Bible. This was the land where the people worshipped not Canaan but his brother Cush; originally deified in Mesopotamia as Enlil or Bel, in this territory he was known as Baal .

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Fig.3a. Baal, Storm God, 1. gold, silver and copper figurine from Ugarit, 1400 BC, Paris Louvre. 2. Canaanite monument c900 BC.

"Baal, god worshipped in many ancient Middle Eastern communities, especially among the Canaanites, who apparently considered him a fertility deity and one of the most important gods in the pantheon. As a Semitic common noun baal (Hebrew ba’al) meant "owner" or "lord"...Baal designated the universal god of fertility, and in that capacity his title was Prince, Lord of the Earth…In Ugaritic and Old Testament Hebrew, Baal’s epithet as the storm god was He Who Rides on the Clouds. In Phoenician he was called Baal Shamen, Lord of the Heavens…Ugaritic texts tell of other fertility aspects of Baal, such as his relations with Anath, his consort and sister, and also his siring a divine bull calf from a heifer." (Encyclopedia Britannica, Baal, Std.Ver.1999)

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Fig.3b. Map of Canaan, c.1400 BC

The ancient city of Ugarit, now Ras Shamra, was a very important Mediterranean seaport, rediscovered as recently as 1928. Excavation of the site revealed several deposits of cuneiform clay tablets written in four languages: Sumerian, Akkadian, Hurrian and Ugaritic, as well as scripts in Egyptian and Hittite hieroglyphics. Ugarit may be the oldest city of Canaan, “cradle” of society for this territory, a culture cloned straight from Mesopotamia.

This is the land that was promised to Abram the Hebrew (descendant of Heber) when God called Abram (later renamed Abraham) and his father Terah to leave the Chaldean city of Ur in Sumeria around 2000 BC. (Genesis 11:31-12:5; 15:7) Baal is the god who arrived in Canaan from Sumeria one thousand years before Abraham, the same Bel whose name simply meant "lord" and whose priests strove most eagerly to substitute him for the real LORD in Scripture. "The whole religious history of the Hebrews is a constant fight against the Baal worshippers who not only continued in their old ways but many times practically succeeded in luring the invaders away from their God and converting them to Baal." (They Wrote on Clay, Chiera, p.207)

This is a continual battle waged by a priesthood that has never ceased. It originated in Mesopotamia, thrived in Egypt and Canaan, and ruled so supreme in the Greek empire that the temple of Bel-Zeus in Pergamon was named as "Satan’s throne" by Christ in the vision given to his apostle John. (Revelation 2:12,13) This throne and priesthood was moved via its Greco-Roman connections to its ultimate dwelling place in the neo-Babylon of Rome, portrayed so vividly as the great religious whore of the seven-hilled city in the Book of Revelation, and also described as the fourth and final beast of world history in the Book of the prophet Daniel. This same throne and priesthood will remain until Christ himself appears to destroy the entire satanic counterfeit that reigns in his name, the harlot mother and every one of her offspring. Being denominational, non-denominational or inter-denominational will not protect anyone, reader. If you belong to a church, that name for the pagan house of god so deviously inserted in Bible mistranslations to replace the name of the elect, then be advised that a great shock is coming, the likes of which the world has never seen nor will ever see again. The house of Baal is condemned to utter destruction.

In the land of Canaan, all of the ancient city kings would have been Baal worshippers, including those of the Salt Sea (Dead Sea, notably Sodom and Gomorrah). Except one. In Genesis 14 many of these kings are named in their various pacts, rebellions and wars. In one skirmish Abram’s nephew, Lot, was captured and taken into slavery. Abram took his best-trained men and went in pursuit as far north as Damascus to rescue Lot and bring him back with all his goods. On his return he was met by the exceptional king, Melchizedek. "Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was the priest of God Most High. And he blessed him and said: ‘Blessed be Abram of God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth; And blessed be God Most High, Who has delivered your enemies into your hand.’ And he (Abram) gave him a tenth of everything." (Genesis 14:18-20)

Melchizedek was a figure of great importance, yet Scripture tells us this in just a few sentences. Little more is said about this righteous man than is mentioned concerning the wicked person of Nimrod in Genesis. Yet both figures are critical because they represent two kingdoms as far apart as heaven and hell. Amongst all the kings who worshipped the Babylonian “host of heaven,” Melchizedek is a first in Scripture’s post-Flood history, a combination of king and high priest of the Almighty, a prototype and forerunner of the one King and Priest yet to come. There were Egyptian pharaohs and Babylonian zzars who knew about the real God, just as they knew all about Adam and Noah, but they did not worship or represent the Lord as Melchizedek did. Abram was from Ur. He knew the difference between Baal and the LORD, and he gave a tithe to Melchizedek, the king of ancient Jerusalem who had greeted him with bread and wine. But to the king of Sodom he gave nothing, nor would he accept anything from him. (Genesis 14:21-24)

And so, in this brief encounter, we meet the opposite of Nimrod and his Babylonian religion, the first foreshadow of the coming King, the Son of God, "High Priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek." (Psalm 110:4; Hebrews 5:6,10; 6:20; 7:1,10,11) Examine this glorious truth, repeatedly spelled out in the awe-inspiring Book of Hebrews in the New Testament. Jesus Christ was and is the complete and final replacement for all that went beforehand, not only obliterating the priests of the counterfeit Baal but also rendering the Hebrew replica in Aaron completely and utterly obsolete. God promised Abram that his descendants would possess the Promised Land, but not until they had been held in captivity for more than 400 years. (Genesis 15; Exodus 12:40) There they would be under the heel of the god-king pharaoh and the priests of Osiris. Then Moses, a shadow of the Redeemer to come, would lead them out of Egypt, along with his brother Aaron, a shadow of the Priest to come. And now that is all done away with, finished. There is a royal priesthood in the New Testament, to be sure, but it does not remotely resemble these forerunners. There is no legitimate priesthood of that kind remaining on earth, reader. None. So if you belong to one, or sit listening to one, especially if it appears in Jesus’ name, you are in the House of Baal.


"Astarte, great goddess of the Western Semitic pantheon and chief deity of the city of Sidon. Her cult as a goddess of fertility and reproduction was widespread throughout Palestine…identified with the Egyptian deities Isis and Hathor, and in the Greco-Roman world she was assimilated to Aphrodite and Artemis, Diana and Juno…rendered Asherah in the Septuagint (Greek) version of the Bible and Ashtoreth in the Hebrew." (Encyclopedia Britannica, Micropedia, Astarte)

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Fig.3c. 1. Astarte, 2000 BC. 2. Asherah, c.1000 BC. 3 Asherah, Phoenician, c.900-600 BC.

The great seaport of Sidon (named after the son of Canaan) was a major cult city of Astarte. Jesus visited both Tyre and Sidon and had many follow him from those cities. (Mark 7:24; Luke 6:17) He declared that they would fare far better on Judgment Day than the children of Israel who did not hear and repent; that even Sodom’s inhabitants would have believed if they had they seen what the Jews of his day had the privilege to witness. (Matthew 11:20-24) There was of course no such reprieve for Sodom. God did not send a redeemer there except to extract the family of Lot, just four people, literally dragging them out in a classic illustration of salvation by sovereign grace, God rescuing the reluctant and hesitant ones of his choice. (Genesis 9:16)

Strictly speaking, only Lot himself was truly redeemed; his family merely gained a temporary benefit from being with him. The LORD executed his wife almost immediately for disobedience, for her “looking back” toward Sodom as it was obliterated, no doubt with some yearning or homesickness in her heart. (Genesis 19:26) Lot’s two daughters behaved no better than the Sodomites had done. As a result of their deceit and sexual immorality they were given the Moabites and Ammonites for their descendants, two of the main Baal-worshipping nations of Canaan. (Genesis 19:30-38) They were spared in the same manner as the sailors in the boat with the apostle Paul survived a deadly and impending shipwreck, not because of their own faith but because they happened to be with God’s chosen servant whose life and work was not yet over. (Acts 27:21-44) Ham was likewise spared because he accompanied his father Noah in the Ark, even though he was destined to be the prototype of the Sodomites, and his family was to be cursed forever through the likes of Canaan, Cush and Nimrod. The apostle Peter mentions the seven people saved along with Noah (though they were not all wicked, Noah alone is called the herald of righteousness) but only Lot is named in his description of the destruction of Sodom. Only Lot is cited with approval for his vexation with the sin of Sodom, a single man rescued from the darkness. (2 Peter 5-8)

It was precisely because of this fundamental truth that Jesus immediately went on to explain his comparison between the hearers from Tyre and Sidon and the deaf Israelites who mistakenly thought that they were children of God. "No one knows the Son except the Father, and no one knows the Father except the Son, and any to whom the Son chooses to reveal him." (Matthew 11:25-30) Even though "the people who walked in darkness" and who "sat in the shadow of death" had "seen a great Light" (Isaiah 9:2, Matthew 4:16) very few of them were actually granted inner enlightenment. The same situation of the lost Israelites is just as applicable today, especially to Christians walking in that nether gloom in willful ignorance. How glibly they name the Light and yet in reality adore the "lights" of the gods and goddesses of Canaan and Babylon, being so eager to keep their traditions and festivals, and teach them to their children.

Astarte was simply the Canaanite version of the Lady Madonna. In Sumeria they called her Belit, the “Lady of Bel.” In the language of Canaan (the brother of Cush, deified as Bel), the sound of her name was only changed a little from the original confusion at Babel, and thus she was known as Baalat, the “Lady of Baal.” In both Palestine and Syria she was one and the same as the fertility goddess Anath (the wife of Baal), and named in the Bible as Asherah or Ashtoreth. (Judges 2:13; 1 Samuel 7:3,4) Figurines of Astarte or Asherah in ancient Ugarit date from before 2000 BC when Abraham arrived from Sumer, and he would have easily recognized her as a clone of Ishtar. Her symbols were the lion, horse, sphinx, dove and the star of Venus. If you have any doubt about the wrath that the LORD has in store for those caught up with this counterfeit Lord and his Madonna then consider these Scriptures which show that no one, not even a Solomon, will escape the penalty for dabbling in this religion.

"So the children of Israel did evil in the sight of the LORD. They forgot the LORD their God, and served the Baals and Asherahs. Therefore the anger of the LORD was hot against Israel, and He sold them into the hand of Cushan-Rishathaim king of Mesopotamia; and the children of Israel served Cushan-Rishathaim eight years." (Judges 3:7,8)

"Then the children of Israel again did evil in the sight of the LORD, and served the Baals and the Ashtoreths, the gods of Syria, the gods of Sidon, the gods of Moab, the gods of the people of Ammon, and the gods of the Philistines; and they forsook the LORD and did not serve Him." (Judges 10:6)

"For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Sidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites." (1 Kings 11:5)

“Now therefore, send and gather all Israel to me on Mount Carmel, the four hundred and fifty prophets of Baal, and the four hundred prophets of Asherah, who eat at Jezebel’s table...And Elijah said, ‘Seize the prophets of Baal, let not one of them escape.’ And they seized them; and Elijah brought them down to the brook of Kishon and killed them there…And the LORD said to him…‘he who escapes from the sword of Hazael shall Jehu slay, and he who escapes from the sword of Jehu shall Elisha slay. Yet I will leave seven thousand in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.’” (1 Kings 18:19,40; 19:17,18)

"Manasseh was twelve years old when he became king, and he reigned fifty-five years in Jerusalem…And he did evil in the sight of the LORD, according to the abominations of the nations whom the LORD had cast out before the children of Israel…he raised up altars for Baal, and made a wooden image, as Ahab king of Israel had done; and he worshipped all the host of heaven and served them…Also he made his son pass through the fire, practiced soothsaying, used witchcraft, and consulted spiritists and mediums. He did much evil in the sight of the LORD, to provoke Him to anger. He even set a carved image of Asherah that he had made, in the house..." (2 Kings 21:1-7)

"And the king (Josiah) commanded Hilkiah the high priest, the priests of the second order, and the doorkeepers, to bring out of the temple of the LORD all the articles that were made for Baal, for Asherah, and for all the host of heaven; and he burned them outside…Then he removed the idolatrous priests...the altars that Manasseh had made in the two courts of the house of the LORD the king broke down and pulverized there, and threw their dust into the Brook Kidron. Then the king defiled the high places…which Solomon king of Israel had built for Ashtoreth the abomination of the Sidonians..." (2 Kings 23: 4-13)

Does this strike you as old hat or irrelevant, reader? Then listen carefully. Making a crucifix or putting your Madonna in an alcove is no different. Neither is bowing the knee and kissing the hand of your pope or cardinal. They are the same priesthood, often wearing the very same clothes, and substituting a lord for the LORD. They will continually strive to convince you that God is Love without telling you that God is Light. He hates this counterfeit system and has reserved for it His eternal wrath. But they will tell you that you can get away with it, that Jesus loves you no matter what. Even pop stars and Christian rappers are singing that feeble delusion, that you are “born innocent” or that “Jesus walks for you” whether you have changed your ways or not; so you can still be a hooker or dealer, just like the temple prostitutes of Ishtar or the priests of Baal drugging men’s minds with a deadly potion. The dark lord will offer you this parcel in every wrapping he can invent. If this package does not yet reek to you, it should do. Here it is again, delivered to the Philistines, and quite literally something smells very fishy.

The House of Dagon

"Dagan, also spelled Dagon, West Semitic god of crop fertility, worshipped extensively throughout the ancient Middle East. Dagan was the Hebrew and Ugaritic common noun for "grain," and the god Dagan was the legendary inventor of the plow. His cult is attested as early as about 2500 BC, and, according to texts found at Ras Shamra (ancient Ugarit), he was the father of the god Baal. Dagan had an important temple at Ras Shamra, and in Palestine, where he was particularly known as a god of the Philistines, he had several sanctuaries, including those at Beth-dagon in Asher (Joshua 19:27), Gaza (Judges 16:23), and Ashdod (I Samuel 5:2-7)." (Encyclopedia Britannica, Dagon, Std.Ver.1999)

Dagon is a mixture, firstly of Ham (the father of Cush, Bel, Baal) and Noah, the father of Ham. As the "inventor of the plow" he is clearly based on the Mesopotamian versions of a deified Noah, the real man whom we know was actually "the first tiller of the soil" after the Flood. (Genesis 9:20) In Ugaritic the word dgn means grain, as does the Hebrew d’g’n and archaic Samaritan dgan. This agricultural association also links Dagon to Nimrod deified as Tammuz of the Grain. But there is more. In Arabic dagn means rain-cloud. The Semitic root dag also means fish. This also connects him to the real person of Noah who survived the Flood when the heavens rained down upon the earth, and to the deified Noah, the Sumerian sky-god Anu. Dagon was the foremost deity of such maritime cities as Azotus, Gaza, Ascalon, and Arvad, and in monuments he was sometimes associated with a female half-fish deity, Atargatis, who was often identified with Astarte.

The historian Philo Byblius (c.64-141 AD) mentioned that, "Dagon, after he had discovered corn and the plough, was called Zeus of the plough" (Phoenician History, ii, 16) and that according to the Phoenicians, "Dagon was one of the four sons born of the marriage of Anu, the lord of heaven, and his sister." (Praeparatio Evangelica, i, 6, Eusebius citing Philo Byblius) So here we see Dagon blended not only with Ham, one of the three sons of Noah (Anu), but also with Ham’s son Cush (Zeus) and Cush’s son Nimrod in the recurring brother-sister marriage. Indeed, it can be said that Dagon is a bit of Noah, Ham, Cush and Nimrod, four generations rolled into one. But it is as a fish god that we know him best, sometimes as a man crowned with the head of a fish, sometimes portrayed with the upper body of a man and lower body of a fish, an image found on many coins. He was also deified in the night sky as Capricorn and Pisces. The Sumerians called him Enki and the Akkadians called him Ea. His worship is traced to the Sumerian city of Eridu, founded very soon after the great Flood.

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Fig.3d. Enki-Ea, the original of Dagon. 1. As half fish, an amulet dug from the lowest level of the temple of Enki, Eridu, c.3200 BC.
2. A double image, with fish streaming to his waters from the waves and also reaping crops beside a thunderstorm deity and a sacred tree, cylinder seal of Adda, c.2300 BC, British Museum.
3&4. Wearing the fish cape and headpiece & again as a water god, reliefs, royal palace at Nimrud (Kalhu, Calah), Assyrian, c.720 BC.

"Ea (Akkadian), Sumerian Enki, Mesopotamian god of water and a member of the triad of deities completed by Anu and Bel (Enlil)...worshipped in the city of Eridu…Enki means literally ‘lord of the earth’…He was commonly represented as a half-goat, half-fish creature, from which the modern astrological figure for Capricorn is derived…Ea, the Akkadian counterpart of Enki...appears frequently as a clever mediator who could be devious and cunning." (Encyclopedia Britannica, Ea, Enki, Std.Ver.1999) Enki-Ea (Ham deified) was the father of Bel-Enlil (Cush deified) who became the most revered god of Babylon, but Enki's own home city was Eridu in Sumer, as old as ancient Erech (Uruk). It is noteworthy that Enki-Ea was associated equally with earth and water, both land and sea life. Sumerian words like Eridu and Eresh are found today in the German (erde) and English words for earth. Enki’s Akkadian name Ea is found in eau, French for water. The Sumerian word ensi (first) is the same word in Finland. Indeed, Ham was one of the "firsts" who came out of the Ark to repopulate the earth, the youngest son of Noah whose family produced this religion and spread it to the whole word after the confusion at Babel.

In Canaan, Enki became Dagon. Further west in Greece and Rome he would become Poseidon and Neptune. His female consorts were the early prototypes of mermaids. To the east he would even become associated with the myth of Buddha. This is not idle conjecture, as the section on India will prove. The people of the Indus Valley, who originally came from the dispersion of Babel, brought with them every detail of the deified family of Nimrod and blended it into their own mythical figures such as the black lord Krishna or the lord Buddha and his eightfold sunwheel. The Phoenicians were master mariners and it has long been suspected that they sailed not only beyond the Straits of Gibraltar but also all the way around Africa to Arabia and the Orient. Whether Dagon’s name reached Asia via land trade routes or in ships steered by the Phoenicians, who most certainly would have shared the identity of their chief deity, he is represented in Southeast Asia.

In fact both the water god Dagon and the sun god Shamash have been known in the Far East since the so-called "pre-historical" (pre-writing) era and their names are still given to sorcerer-healer-priests today, especially in Indonesia, where "dukun is the Indonesian term for shaman." (Indonesian-English Dictionary, Echols & Shadily, 3rd edition, PT Gramedia Pustaka Utama, Jakarta, 1994, p. 151) The dukun act as spiritual mediums and masters of religious rituals, just like their predecessors, the animistic priests of the gods of Sumeria. Like all priests descended from the Mesopotamian mold, they perform their "services" for money and are often tolerated as costly frauds or necessary social burdens by their superstitious customers who crave a physical cure or promise of a better future.

The ancient temple of Shwe Dagon in Myanmar (Burma), refurbished in gold in the 18th century AD, was actually begun as early as 500 BC to house eight hairs of the Buddha’s head. The "sea-cow" of this part of the world, sometimes portrayed as a mermaid in sailors’ fantasies, is directly associated with Dagon’s female consorts and called the dugong. But it is in Canaan that we know this deity best. Like the Phoenicians, the Philistines considered him their national god, even more important than Baal. He is encountered in several key Scriptures, when the Ark of the Covenant (containing the Ten Commandments) was temporarily held in Dagon’s house (temple, church) and also with regards to the deaths of both Samson and King Saul.

"When the Philistines took the ark of God, they brought it into the house of Dagon and set it by Dagon. And when the people of Ashdod arose early in the morning, there was Dagon, fallen on its face to the earth before the ark of the LORD. So they took Dagon and set it in its place again. And when they arose early the next morning, there was Dagon, fallen on its face to the ground before the ark of the LORD. The head of Dagon and both the palms of its hands were broken off on the threshold; only Dagon’s torso was left of it. Therefore neither the priests of Dagon nor any who come into Dagon’s house tread on the threshold of Dagon in Ashdod to this day. And when the men of Ashdod saw how it was, they said, ‘The ark of the God of Israel must not remain with us, for His hand is harsh toward us and Dagon our god.’" (1 Samuel 5:2-7)

"Now the lords of the Philistines gathered together to offer a great sacrifice to Dagon their god, and to rejoice. And they said: "Our god has delivered into our hands Samson our enemy!" (Judges 16:23)

"Then they put his (Saul’s) armor in the temple of their gods, and fastened his head in the temple of Dagon." (1 Chronicles 10:10)

Ancient Syrians abstained from eating fish because of this god. Others ate fish only once a week, on Fridays. Yes, reader, this custom is still alive and practised by many adherents to that cunning blend of pagan traditions with the Word of God. Not only that, the early Christians also used the Babylonian astrological sign of Pisces to identify themselves, and they wrote the name of Christ inside the outline of that fish. The apostles and other elect disciples would never have used a graven image of a creature to identify themselves or their Lord; not the picture of a fish, bird or any other animal, let alone one from the Zodiac. They would not have mixed up Jesus’ description of them as "fishers of men" with a literal image of a fish, any more than they would have portrayed themselves as sheep or doves. The words of the apostles make this quite clear. "For the wrath of God is revealed from heaven against all ungodliness and wickedness of men who by their wickedness suppress the truth…they are without excuse, for although they knew God they did not honor him as God…Claiming themselves to be wise they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man or birds or animals or reptiles." (Romans 2:18-23)

This is as clear as any description could ever be of the suppression of truth that took place in Babel and would eventually spread to the whole world. Just look at the gods of ancient Egypt or modern India. It is also clear that God hates those who take part in these antics, and has reserved for them a terrible fate. This is playing with fire, eternal fire. This blending of the identities of men with animals originated in Mesopotamia, and it began so soon after the Flood was sent to destroy the previous population of evil men. They knew who the real God was, but chose to substitute another. They should have known better. So too should the early Christians, the counterfeit cult that resurrected this religion in every aspect which they could possibly reclaim, and who deviously tried to justify their act by associating it with Scripture. Despite the terrible lesson of the Flood, men turned again to what was popular. And what was fashionable in ancient Babylon became just as trendy in neo-Babylon, Christians eagerly embracing these traditions despite the sentence of death hanging over them.

The priests of Rome still wear the headdress of Dagon. In fact it is a blend of the hats of Tammuz, Osiris, Baal and Dagon. All can be seen in the Pope’s mitre, especially the open-mouthed fish-head, and his clothes and staff are the same as that of Tammuz and Osiris the Shepherd. The real Lord did not carry a literal shepherd’s staff, reader, nor did his elect disciples ever portray him that way. It is the counterfeits, the substitutes, the fishy goats who do this. The cloak of Rome is no better than the mantle of Tammuz-Osiris or the fish scale cape of Dagon; they represent the dark lord, not the Light of the world. Hear this, you cannot afford to have a trace of this system concealed in your life. God executed an entire Israelite family for secretly keeping a cloak from Shinar, the southern plain of Babylon, and for treasuring a few Mesopotamian coins. They were put to death by stoning, every man, woman and child, and their livestock incinerated. (Joshua 7)

Tree Worship

"The theme of the Sacred Tree combined with the Royal Shepherd and the protector of life is a Sumerian concept which had never been lost in the Near East from the beginning of the protohistoric period around 3000 BC…in late Assyrian rites the tree of life received the same consecration as the king himself…the concept of the sacred tree, which together with the king had become the symbol of life, originated in ancient Sumer. It is a religious political idea…made up by a few pictorial elements - tree, king, ministering attendants, as well as the winged sun." (The Art and Architecture of the Ancient Orient, Frankfort, pp.133, 134) These sacred trees were "particularly associated with Bel or Enlil." (Encyclopedia of Mythology, Larousse, p.70)

Since Baal and Asherah were simply the Canaanite versions of the Sumerian Bel and Ishtar, it is not surprising that worship of these deities in Canaan was closely associated with sacred trees, particularly evergreen cedars and firs. Such trees symbolized the life of the gods dwelling in them, becoming in themselves living idols, and many shrines were built under single trees or in hallowed groves. This was the LORD’s command to the Israelites when he gave them the land of Canaan: "You shall surely destroy all the places where the nations whom you shall dispossess served their gods, upon the high mountains and under every green tree; you shall tear down their altars, and dash in pieces their pillars, and burn their Asherim with fire; you shall hew down the graven images of their gods, and destroy their name out of that place." (Deuteronomy 12:2,3) The wicked king Ahaz of Judah later returned to these "abominable practices" in detail, the LORD sending upon him the scourge of captivity and slaughter, including the death of his son, because he had "made molten images for the Baals…and burned incense on the high places, and on the hills, and under every green tree." (2 Chronicles 28:1-7)

"People have always worshipped trees…recorded in numerous Greek and Sumerian classics…Trees are still venerated today in many countries, including Iraq, Israel, Lebanon and the Syrian Arab Republic. Among Druze and Muslim Arabs, certain individual trees are considered holy. These trees are often near the tombs of holy men or women where visitors come to make requests. They pledge to do good if the requests are fulfilled, and tie cloth, cloth strips, or rags on to the trees as a solemn indication of their promise to implement these vows…One of the reserves, called ‘The Cedars of the Lord’, a remnant of a few hundred hectares on Mount Lebanon, has been considered sacred by the Maronite Christians who have lived in the region for a millennium." (L.J. Musselman, Professor of Botany, Old Dominion University, Virginia, Unasylva journal issue 213, 2003)

Tree worship is also a hallmark of both ancient and modern Hinduism. "I do not defend tree worship because I consider it to be a necessary aid to devotion, but only because I recognize that God manifests Himself in innumerable forms, in this universe, and every such manifestation commands my spontaneous reverence." (Mohandas K. Gandhi, Young India journal, Navajivan Publishing House, 26/9/1929, p.320) In fact the "great soul" Gandhi vocally supported all forms of idol worship, as the section on India will confirm, and his justification for this was every bit as subtle as Christian excuses for their love affair with tree of life icons, everything from crucifixes to Christmas firs, wreaths and branches. Such superstition is as inane as the belief that possessing a splinter from the original timber on which Christ died has beneficial value (the combined weight of these fake wooden relics treasured by the churches weighs several tons) and Christians have always adored such spiritual fantasy and fabrication.

The Christmas evergreen is, of course, the most venerated tree of all, held precious by hundreds of millions who cannot resist having one in their house every year, and will continue to do so even when told of its demonic source. From its original association with Nimrod-Dumuzi of Sumeria it became the tree representing Osiris in Egypt, the tree of Baal in Canaan, and the same tree brought into the houses of Rome during the great Saturnalia festival in late December. Early Christians were quick to blend this potent tradition with God’s Word, as avid as Ahaz to go back to the counterfeit lord, every bit as enthusiastic as the Israelites who once made a golden calf and then associated it with the LORD to rationalize their sin. This is a death penalty offence, reader. If you are still walking in the dark and do not yet grasp the significance of the fact that Jesus was not born in December, that his elect never celebrated such a thing, let alone decorated a tree with golden suns or silver stars of Shamash and Adonis, then read Chapter 13, Church Festivals, The Truth Which Sets Free, by this same author.

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