Author Topic: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?  (Read 21105 times)

Offline cerakoter

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Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« on: December 05, 2010, 10:21:02 AM »
Here's an issue I struggle with as a Christian.  I spend time and money prepping, build up a food storage, fuel, water, guns & ammo and for what? 

When SHTF I will have 2 choices...
1. Give it to anyone that asks for a handout, eventually depleting my supply and starving my family.
2. Defend it with deadly force, raising moral issues.

What's the proper Christian thing to do given the above two choices.  You can wrangle the question around, but in the end those are the only two choices.  Sure, I will give what I can, but the demand will easily overcome the supply I have.

So can anyone show me Biblical evidence to support either position?

Offline Sweethearts Mom

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #1 on: December 05, 2010, 10:49:03 AM »
Jack talks a lot about prepping for others as well. I am a christian also and I am prepping of course for my family and extended family, but also for my immediate neighbors too.

Beyond that I do believe in deadly force to protect my family. I truly believe that if I am ever in that postion, I will hear God and know what to do.

I truly hope I am never put in a situation to prove that though.

Offline rustyknife

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #2 on: December 05, 2010, 01:41:27 PM »
Good question. I strugle somewhat with those questions also. My wife and I have been prepping for years and much to my frustration my brothers and her brothers and sisters do not.

I will reasearch this better and provide a Biblical answer to the best of my understanding. In the meantime if the SHTF I will help where I can, however, roving groups of zombies that try to take stuff or hurt my family or me will be met with deadly force. At that point it will be their choice to advance or retreat.

Offline Dainty

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2010, 01:45:08 PM »
I truly believe that if I am ever in that postion, I will hear God and know what to do.

This.

I do not have a cut and dried answer for you. But I have pondered the matter, so here are a few of my thoughts.

The Biblical response in times of famine or other food shortage is often miraculous provision. Pharaoh was given the dreams and Joseph to interpret them so that they would store up sufficient food that the region would not starve. (BTW, note that Joseph didn't hand out the food for nothing.) Elijah was provided bread and meat twice a day by ravens, and later he and a widow and her son miraculously had barely enough flour and oil of one more meal--day after day after day. (Note that in this story the miracle did not happen until after the widow had given Elijah the very last of her food to eat.) Jesus fed large crowds of thousands with just a few loaves and fish--twice--and provided the fisherman with nets so full they were breaking after fishing all night and catching nothing. In other words, the Biblical answer is that in times of impossible need, God will miraculously provide.

The answer goes against all earthly logic, but it's spelled out clearly in Scripture. Jesus says, "Ask, and it will be given to you...which of you, if his son asks for bread, will give him a stone? Or if he asks for a fish, will give him a snake? If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!" He also says, "Do not worry about your body, what you will eat...for the pagans run after all these things and your heavenly father knows that you need them. But seek first His Kingdom, and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." In other words, we are called to trust God and pursue Him above our earthly needs, and He will provide them.

That isn't to say we shouldn't prepare. I wouldn't be on this forum if I believed that. :) But what it is saying is that when there's an impossible situation regarding legitimate needs such as food, put your hope in God first, and He will resolve it.

I'm reminded of a story I read about Corrie Ten Boom. Her sister, Nollie, firmly believed that it was immoral to lie, no matter what the consequences. It was inevitable, then, when the Nazis came searching for the Jews they were hiding that Nollie was asked a direct question. She answered it truthfully, and as a result she was arrested and the Jew she was protecting at the time, Annaliese, was taken to a location where people were then transported to concentration camps. Corrie and others were appalled at what her commitment to honesty had cost and were even more upset that Nollie seemed not the slightest bit bothered by it. By way of explanation she reassured them: "No ill will happen to Annaliese. God will not let them take her to Germany. He will not let her suffer because I obeyed Him."

Six days later they learned there had been a breakout at the location. 40 Jews had been rescued--among them was Annaliese.

Now personally, I would have lied and I believe it is moral to lie in such situations. But the point of the story was that God did protect miraculously when people sought first to obey Him even when that resulted in what seemed like certain death for an innocent person.

For the scenario of either give away all your food or defend with deadly force, I can see myself doing one or the other depending on a multitude of factors. I would seek out alternative options whenever possible, for example give away all your food but have hidden caches of more so that you and your family don't starve, or convince the community to come to an agreement about rationing the volunteered food stores (the Chilean minors survived due to strict rationing), or, ideally, preparing your community so well that the ants outnumber the grasshoppers. But if the chips were down and there were no alternative options, I would do what I was certain God was calling me to do at that time, being prepared for both possibilities.

The best that we can do is prepare as much as possible and trust God will lead us when it comes to those impossible decisions, and that He is capable of providing for our needs even out of thin air.

Offline cerakoter

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2010, 04:19:54 PM »
Dainty,
Thanks for a well thought out reply.  There definitely is no "cut and dry" answer to the question, but it still bears pondering.

I can't put it so eloquently as you did, but as I told my wife today at breakfast (I told her about this thread), I've been taught and feel it is 100% correct that a man's duty is to God, Family, Country in that order.

My natural inclination will be to defend my family from all harm to the death, so God will need to yell to get my attention if he wants me to lay down. 

I don't believe he would allow me to do what's right in my own mind unless I have closed him out of my life.  Knowing that I'm counted as one of his, Jesus says no man can take me from his flock so if I believe that I'm doing right all the while asking God's guidance... I gotta believe he will correct me as one of his own at that moment if I'm indeed doing my will and not his.

Until He tells me his will is not to protect my family, I would advise against any roaming thugs to try and take this ants stash. :)

Unfortunately I live in the middle of "Injun Country" and they all know I was LEO and have been prepping for the past 2 years. 

I'm under surveillance all the time by my "neighbors" (scroats) whom consider me the enemy and will have no issue with combining toward the common interest of taking what I have.

I know how paranoid that sounds, but it's the way it is. 

Offline Sister Wolf

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2010, 04:36:06 PM »
Do you grow your own food?  Didn't God command farmers NOT to reap the edges of their field for this very purpose?  The Bible DOES talk about this... something about providing for aliens (wanderers) and widows... it's in the old testament, and I'm not Christian, but I'm SURE it's there.

Offline phuttan

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2010, 04:43:21 PM »
I was raised Catholic and have researched the old Catholic Catecism (spelling) on my own. According to that you are not morally obligated to use deadly force to defend your life, etc unless not using it would cause harm to others. In other words, if you are the only doctor, provider, etc for others, you have a moral obligation to use deadly force if necessary to defend yourself, etc. I apply this to a lot of things. If by inaction you cause someone dependant on you to suffer harm, you have done a moral wrong. If the food you have is necessary to keep your loved ones alive, you must defend it. On the other hand, if you have extra, you also have a moral obligation to help.

I'd say that if possible, store extra of some things that are cheap and long term storable like bulk grains and grow a bigger garden than you need. Then, give out some of the bulk grains and extra produce to those in need and keep your normal food stocks for your family. This will allow you to fulfil both moral obligations without inviting a welfare mentality. Also, offerring to help them get a garden, etc going when they come asking for food, etc should help to satisfy any moral obligation to help them. If they refuse to start there own garden with your help, then you really can't be morally obligated to help those that refuse to help themselves in time of need.

Just my opinion.

Pat

Offline Sister Wolf

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #7 on: December 05, 2010, 04:45:39 PM »
Ah - I found what I was talking about.  It's in Leviticus.

 22 “‘When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Leave them for the poor and for the foreigner residing among you. I am the LORD your God.’”

So the LORD does talk about providing others with some of your food.  If you drop it (gleanings are stuff dropped by reapers), you leave it for the hungry mother who might find it (or hell, even the thief who is hungry), and you leave the edges of your field in tact for the same reason.

God seems to believe (if people interpreted him correctly) that THAT would be the Christian thing to do.

Offline phuttan

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #8 on: December 05, 2010, 04:53:03 PM »
Very nice Sister Wolf. It's no wonder that your karma is so high.

Pat

Offline Sister Wolf

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #9 on: December 05, 2010, 04:57:22 PM »
Very nice Sister Wolf. It's no wonder that your karma is so high.

Pat

LOL!  Thanks.  I think that was my favorite commandment... or at least the one that stuck with me the most.  We always leave "the edges" of EVERYTHING for somebody else. 

Even if we're shooting, we only pick up most of our brass.   Never all of it.

That's probably taking it a bit far, but as far as I'm concerned, it's a DAMN good rule of thumb for EVERYTHING you do and/or use.  I'm not one to try to interpret your God's mind, but it seems like God was saying (in that whole part of Leviticus) that yeah, some people are gonna die from starvation, or from breaking fundamental rules of law.  But if you at least do SOMETHING to help them, then you're doing what I want.

I like that and I agree with it.

Offline phuttan

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #10 on: December 05, 2010, 05:15:06 PM »
Yah. Also, if we can plant a little extra where it's easier for others to get to, it may be kind of the same. Have extra for others that is easier for them to take and they won't have to take from your main stuff. A small curbside plot so they don't have to come into the yard and take.

Pat

Offline Nicodemus

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #11 on: December 05, 2010, 05:15:23 PM »
Ah - I found what I was talking about.  It's in Leviticus.

 22 “‘When you reap the harvest of your land, do not reap to the very edges of your field or gather the gleanings of your harvest. Leave them for the poor and for the foreigner residing among you. I am the LORD your God.’”

So the LORD does talk about providing others with some of your food.  If you drop it (gleanings are stuff dropped by reapers), you leave it for the hungry mother who might find it (or hell, even the thief who is hungry), and you leave the edges of your field in tact for the same reason.

God seems to believe (if people interpreted him correctly) that THAT would be the Christian thing to do.

But Leviticus is pre-New Testament. Did God consider it to be Christian before Jesus showed up, or what?  ;D

Offline phuttan

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #12 on: December 05, 2010, 05:26:55 PM »
Jesus was a Jew that preached his message to followers that were Jews. The Old Testament is from the  Jewish tradition that Christianity was born from. He called for certain changes to things but never said to throw away everything from Jewish tradition. It is definitely part of Christianity. If the spirit of the New Testament doesn't change it, then it is still valid for Christians.

Pat

Offline cerakoter

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #13 on: December 05, 2010, 05:31:29 PM »
Sister Wolf,
That is a reference I am familiar with and yes it's good practice and God's way to leave the "edges" for the poor.  Take a look at who those edges were suppose to be for... they weren't the neighboring tribes that came in to ransack the place. :)

Nicodemus,
God changes not.  There is nothing in the OT that is not as true today as it was then.  I like the expression that the OT is a shadow of what Christ came to show us.  The sacrifices of animals begin a shadow of Christ's sacrifice being a key image.

Many want to claim that God would never justify a war like he did in Israels day and take "love thy enemy" to an extreme that is in direct contradiction with the OT and the "ensamples" as Paul said it was to us.

Like I said in the OP... I'm not talking about not having charity, that is a core tenement to the faith.  I'm talking about being a "lamb led to the slaughter" situation.

Our Farther in heaven shows his love to his own in that they are blessed when they follow him.  We as a nation no longer do that and thus are not being blessed with his grace, but punished by our own sin just as Israel did so many times in the OT.

Remember Phineous? (sp?) who ran the adulterers in the temple door through with the spear?  Deadly force my friend over perverting God's house.  How much greater would DF be appropriate to prevent the starvation of your family?

Offline Nicodemus

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #14 on: December 05, 2010, 05:36:30 PM »
I guess I'll leave the joking out of this thread...

Offline cerakoter

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #15 on: December 05, 2010, 05:39:25 PM »
LOL, best done with Religious and Political topics I find. :)

Offline phuttan

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #16 on: December 05, 2010, 05:43:23 PM »
Also, text can come out so dry and not portray the smile on my face.

Offline Sister Wolf

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #17 on: December 05, 2010, 05:54:20 PM »
Sister Wolf,
That is a reference I am familiar with and yes it's good practice and God's way to leave the "edges" for the poor.  Take a look at who those edges were suppose to be for... they weren't the neighboring tribes that came in to ransack the place. :)

Right, but if the neighboring tribes had come in and JUST ransacked the edges of your field (out of hunger, rather than destructive BS)... it serves the same purpose.  I'm absolutely not an expert in the Bible.  I'm just sayin'.  I can't imagine a God who would be pissed at you for protecting your children.  Something tells me that there are numerous stories in the bible were "killing" happened to protect a tribe, a family, even a daughter or two.  NOT murder.  Killing.  There's a difference.

Offline Pathfinder

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #18 on: December 05, 2010, 06:00:07 PM »
One of the many things that became apparent in studying the Men's Fraternity course is that men have a responsibility to their families first and foremost. As Genesis 2 and 3 tell us, men are to be the leaders and the guides for their family, it is their responsibility. So preparing for a collapse or some need is clearly the man's responsibility, helped and aided by his wife, and the 2 of them working together as such a team to produce the results.

This responsibility extends to keeping them safe and secure as well, so if the hordes come, DF is clearly allowed. If the Nth family in need comes along, the same applies if supplies are running low or are in question for survival of the family.

It's been a long day, I have been on my feet for most of it, so I can't quote too much chapter and verse beyond that. There is one that is rather obvious for us preppers:

Proverbs 21:20 (Today’s New International Version, ©2005)

 20 The wise store up choice food and olive oil,
   but fools gulp theirs down.

Offline PAGUY

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #19 on: December 05, 2010, 06:04:49 PM »
Well anyone can put a spin on the bible to make it say anything that they want it to.  In the end you should help others  but, you should start at home.  At least that is how I feel about it.  My family and I come first.  We have stored away items for us but, at the same time we have put away a little extra for others.  If others that are close to us need then we will help but, there is a limit to it. 

Offline Storm

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #20 on: December 05, 2010, 06:09:20 PM »
Right, but if the neighboring tribes had come in and JUST ransacked the edges of your field (out of hunger, rather than destructive BS)... it serves the same purpose.  I'm absolutely not an expert in the Bible.  I'm just sayin'.  I can't imagine a God who would be pissed at you for protecting your children.  Something tells me that there are numerous stories in the bible were "killing" happened to protect a tribe, a family, even a daughter or two.  NOT murder.  Killing.  There's a difference.

I think there's some validity to this, but...I don't know. There are other ways to handle this question.
« Last Edit: December 05, 2010, 06:24:00 PM by Storm »

Offline cerakoter

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #21 on: December 05, 2010, 06:13:29 PM »
Right, but if the neighboring tribes had come in and JUST ransacked the edges of your field (out of hunger, rather than destructive BS)... it serves the same purpose.  I'm absolutely not an expert in the Bible.  I'm just sayin'.  I can't imagine a God who would be pissed at you for protecting your children.  Something tells me that there are numerous stories in the bible were "killing" happened to protect a tribe, a family, even a daughter or two.  NOT murder.  Killing.  There's a difference.

I might be twisting your words here and I apologize if that's the case as I'm not 100% sure of what you are trying to say, but we can use the argument of "sacking the edges" in justification that I'm fending for my family to go into the neighbor's field and steal food for them and kill for that food if I were to take it to the extreme.

Most dirt-bags will have no issues with using that rational, Christians should.  

Let's suppose that as a Christian I have not prepared by being a good steward of what God has given me, or have nothing to survive on for whatever reason then God will direct me to a field that is has surplus (providing out of nothing so to speak) I believe.

Problem is... my field ain't got any edges to gleem from, and to take away from the short harvest I have is to take food from the mouths of my family which I agree is not God's intent unless the situation is specific to me and he makes it clear that I'm to surrender what I have to others.

Offline cerakoter

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #22 on: December 05, 2010, 06:18:22 PM »
Can I make a request as the OP?

Can we please refrain from sidetracking the discussion as so often happens in threads about Christianity?

While I appreciate the opinions, Biblical backing (i.e. verses, examples) are what I'm looking for that you use to justify your position on the question.


Offline cerakoter

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #23 on: December 05, 2010, 06:20:10 PM »
Well anyone can put a spin on the bible to make it say anything that they want it to.  In the end you should help others  but, you should start at home.  At least that is how I feel about it.  My family and I come first.  We have stored away items for us but, at the same time we have put away a little extra for others.  If others that are close to us need then we will help but, there is a limit to it. 

What Biblical references do you as a Christian use to determine who is helped first and at what point do you justify killing to help others?

Offline Sister Wolf

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #24 on: December 05, 2010, 06:23:06 PM »
Umm, no... I never advocated stealing.  THOU SHALT NOT STEAL is a direct commandment from God.  I was saying that in your situation, and this is only if I understand God's words, you would not be out of line, protecting the food YOU have worked honestly to provide your family with.

oregon, you can most certainly make any request you want.  I'm sorry I got involved at all.

Offline Storm

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #25 on: December 05, 2010, 06:28:18 PM »
I know it isn't Biblical in nature, but I think it applies in this situation:

"Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime."


Supposing you meet someone during a SHTF scenario, of any kind, and initially don't have any bad feelings about them, I think this would be advantageous to both parties. Take some one on, if they're skilled that's even better, and SHOW them how to do for themselves. While you may initially use some of your preps to help them, think of what you can get back in return with the strength of another person's back. This is how I always see these scenarios ending, or at least to some extent, making a new beginning.

Preps aren't just food, and tools and guns and ammo. They're knowledge. Of which this particular forum is full of. Knowledge is a prep and "knowledge is of no value unless you put it into practice."



EDIT: Sorry Oregon, I didn't see your earlier request for Biblical references, I just thought this particular stance, for me, works in conjecture with my beliefs.

Offline PAGUY

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #26 on: December 05, 2010, 06:31:50 PM »
I do not claim to be the best person to quote the bible.  I am saying that I am a christian and as a christian I was always taught to help others that are not as fortunate as myself (and my family).  My own personnel morals and ethics tell me that family comes first and if that includes defending my families ability to survive with what ever force is necessary then that is what will happen.  If that makes me a bad christian then I guess that I will get in the "no Go" line with many others on here.  

Offline cerakoter

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #27 on: December 05, 2010, 06:39:19 PM »
Umm, no... I never advocated stealing.  THOU SHALT NOT STEAL is a direct commandment from God.  I was saying that in your situation, and this is only if I understand God's words, you would not be out of line, protecting the food YOU have worked honestly to provide your family with.

oregon, you can most certainly make any request you want.  I'm sorry I got involved at all.

Sister,
I was not referring to you and appreciate your input.  I'm not sure why me wanting to keep the thread on track would make you sorry for getting involved, but that is your right.

I thought that was what you were saying.  I wanted to be sure you weren't advocating that the "edges" references meant that the whole field was fair game for gleemers.  As only 10% was. 

The principle was eventually lost on Israel just are the 7th year rest period for the land and the area became waste land if I understand the history of the region.

PAGUY,
+1
That's how I feel, just looking for Biblical support that it's the Christian thang to do.

Offline cerakoter

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #28 on: December 05, 2010, 06:40:28 PM »
Storm,
I see you changed your response.  Please elaborate?  How would you handle the question?

Offline Sister Wolf

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Re: Christians: Mandated to give it all away and die?
« Reply #29 on: December 05, 2010, 06:47:42 PM »
Sister,
I was not referring to you and appreciate your input.  I'm not sure why me wanting to keep the thread on track would make you sorry for getting involved, but that is your right.

I thought you WERE referring to me.  I was apologizing for getting off track on a thread that you clearly were requesting Christian points of view on.

Quote
The principle was eventually lost on Israel just are the 7th year rest period for the land and the area became waste land if I understand the history of the region.

Yeah, that's too bad.  Greed and/or a lack of understanding.  Well... Now we have a clear idea of WHY that particular commandment was given.