A New Concept in Programmable Synthetic Materials – A Spiritual Insight

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This latest research [1] describes the development of a multivariate metal organic framework material. Most metal organic framework (MOF) materials contain only one type of metal in the nodes connecting the organic linkers. These multivariate MOFs contain multiple metals, opening the possibility of greater selectivity in absorption and catalytic properties. The paper reports the development of MOF-74 single crystals with combinations of cobalt, cadmium, lead, and manganese ions. These artificial structures could one day form the building blocks for a new type of computer as the information may be encoded as a sequence of information, very similar to DNA base pairs determining the information content of DNA. Researchers at the University of California Berkely and Ruhr-Universitat Bochum have moved a little closer to the realization of this technology. They demonstrated that atom probe tomography can be used to read a complex spatial arrangement of metal ions in multivariate MOFs.

References

  1. Zhe Ji, Tong Li, Omar M. Yaghi, Sequencing of metals in multivariate metal-organic frameworks, Science 07 Aug 2020, Vol. 369, Issue 6504, pp. 674-680, DOI: 10.1126/science.aaz4304, https://science.sciencemag.org/content/369/6504/674

In the development of computer hardware, it is important to be able to write and read data. To encode data using a sequence of metals, it is essential to also have the capability to read the metal arrangement. Reading the arrangement of metals in a material however is quite challenging. The interest in characterizing metal sequences is growing as this idea of the atomic arrangement of atoms in multivariate structures would offer opportunities in catalysis and data storage. There is no straightforward method to read atom sequences in MOFs. The researchers used a technique known as atom probe tomography (APT) to achieve this. The concept and application of the atom probe was introduced at the 14th Field Emission Symposium in 1967 by Erwin Wilhelm Müller and J. A. Panitz. It combined a field ion microscope with a mass spectrometer having a single particle detection capability and, for the first time, an instrument could “… determine the nature of one single atom seen on a metal surface and selected from neighboring atoms at the discretion of the observer.” The researchers used the MOF-74 with differing combinations of cobalt, cadmium, lead, and manganese, and the APT technique to understand the spatial structure of the material.

In the future, MOFs could form the basis of programmable chemical molecules, the application would be towards using this material to introduce an active pharmaceutical ingredient into the body to target infected cells. Once the active molecule had been delivered, the remainder of the structure could be broken down into harmless substances. It is envisioned that MOFs could deliver different drugs at different times depending on the treatment. It is envisioned that different molecules could be programmed to be released at different times. These materials could also be used as CO2 sorbents to capture and convert CO2 for the chemical industry. The concept of programmable atomic sequences is an interesting and challenging topic. This level of precision is a long way off however, but these new insights into materials synthesis, development, and characterization will inspire researchers for years to come!

The Spiritual Insight that we receive from this type of research is related to the visualization technique. Those who are in the materials development field of research know there are no straightforward methods to read atom sequences in Metal Organic Framework materials. The research paper [1] describes how scientists used a technique known as atom probe tomography (APT) which combines a field ion microscope with a mass spectrometer enabling the capability of single particle detection. This parallels the way that we understand the Scriptures as also being related to a visualization technique. The visualization of the Scriptures is related to how and what we are taught about the Bible, the Theologies that we embrace, and our culture all have a significant impact on our understanding the message of the Scriptures. Paul understood these things as he was born in a Greek city, and while observing the pagan world of the Greek culture. In the book of Romans, Paul writes that God is the author and creator of all things. The Lord God has given us the power to live, to move, and to be who we are as being created in His image. This is important specifically since this enables us to seek His will, and to live our lives for him, to take hold of His words and to order our lives accordingly, so that we will love the Lord God because He first loved us giving us reason to obey Him. This concept of having all of our being in the Lord has philosophical significance. Jewish and Christian philosophical and Biblical hermeneutics have some overlap and dialogue, but they have distinctly separate interpretative traditions. This is a significant point as it can and does have a significant impact on how one views scripture and applies the Scriptures to one’s life. The Talmudic (Rabbinic) hermeneutic that is used by Jewish scholars include the investigation and determination of the meaning of the Hebrew Bible, as well as rules by which Jewish law could be established. The Talmudic method of study, the starting point is the principle that any text that is deemed worthy of serious study must be assumed to have been written with such care and precision that every letter, word, expression, generalization, or exception is significant not so much for what it states as for what it implies. For example, the rabbis as we have them written in the Talmud, were the receivers and transmitters of the Mishnah (the Oral Torah) providing us with an early interpretive method on the meaning and the application of the scriptures. Judaism’s view on the significance of the Mishnah is found in the oral tradition which is believed to set forth the precise, original meanings of the words, revealed at the same time and by the same means as the original scriptures themselves. This is the weightiness of the Mishnah in the rabbinic sources. Note that the typical interpretive methods utilized by the rabbis such as word play and the gematria (letter counting) were never used as a logical proof for the meaning or teaching of a passage in scripture. These things were used to draw out a particular aspect of our physical / spiritual relationship with God for discussion. The weightiness of Scripture, or the sanctity or sacredness of the scriptures is readily apparent in the rabbinic sources.

On the other hand, throughout the history of the Church, for example, from modern Christianity in the 19th century, it became increasingly common to read the Scriptures just like any other writing as opposed to a holy and sacred text. As a result, different interpretations were developed and often disputed. Both the philosophical and hermeneutic methods were hotly debated in the early church. Today, more or less, Biblical studies are geared towards understanding the Bible purely as a human and historical document as opposed to being inspired by God Himself. The way we consider the Scriptures (the Word of God) as holy and sacred and as a guide for life can significantly affect our perception of what is truth. These things have led to the study of the Torah being put on the wayside, as something less significant compared to the Apostolic Writings (NT). This can lead to many problems on interpreting the Scriptures or more specifically, to what a particular apostle was trying to teach in his epistle, or what Yeshua was teaching in the gospels. One example may be taken from 1 Corinthians 10.

1 Corinthians 10:1-33
אַחַי, אֵינֶנִּי רוֹצֶה שֶׁיֵּעָלֵם מִכֶּם שֶׁאֲבוֹתֵינוּ כֻּלָּם הָיוּ תַּחַת הֶעָנָן, וְכֻלָּם עָבְרוּ בְּתוֹךְ הַיָּם, 2וְכֻלָּם נִטְבְּלוּ לְמֺשֶׁה בֶּעָנָן וּבַיָּם. 3כֻּלָּם אָכְלוּ אוֹתוֹ מַאֲכָל רוּחָנִי, 4וְכֻלָּם שָׁתוּ אוֹתוֹ מַשְׁקֶה רוּחָנִי, כִּי שָׁתוּ מִן הַצּוּר הָרוּחָנִי הַהוֹלֵךְ עִמָּהֶם וְהַצּוּר הוּא הַמָּשִׁיחַ. 5אֲבָל בְּרֻבָּם לֹא רָצָה אֱלֹהִים וְהֵם הוּמְתוּ בַּמִּדְבָּר. 6כָּל זֶה הָיָה דֻּגְמָה לָנוּ, לְמַעַן לֹא נִתְאַוֶּה לְרָעוֹת כְּשֵׁם שֶׁהִתְאַוּוּ הֵם. 7אַל תִּהְיוּ עוֹבְדֵי אֱלִילִים כְּשֵׁם שֶׁהָיוּ כַּמָּה מֵהֶם, כַּכָּתוּב: “וַיֵּשֶׁב הָעָם לֶאֱכֺל וְשָׁתוֹ וַיָּקֻמוּ לְצַחֵק.” 8גַּם אַל נִזְנֶה כְּשֵׁם שֶׁזָּנוּ כַּמָּה מֵהֶם וּבְיוֹם אֶחָד נָפְלוּ עֶשְׂרִים וּשְׁלוֹשָׁה אֶלֶף. 9וְאַל נְנַסֶּה אֶת יהוה כְּשֵׁם שֶׁנִּסּוּהוּ אֲנָשִׁים מֵהֶם וְהוּמְתוּ עַל־יְדֵי הַנְּחָשִׁים. 10אַף אַל תִּתְלוֹנְנוּ כְּשֵׁם שֶׁהִתְלוֹנְנוּ כַּמָּה מֵהֶם וּמֵתוּ בִּידֵי הַמַלְאָךָ הַמַּשְׁחִית. 11מַה שֶּׁקָּרָה לָהֶם הָיָה לֶקַח לְדֻגְמָה וְזֶה נִכְתַּב כְּדֵי לְהַזְהִיר אוֹתָנוּ, אֲנַחְנוּ אֲשֶׁר קִצֵּי הָעוֹלָמִים הִגִּיעוּ אֵלֵינוּ. 12לָכֵן מִי שֶׁחוֹשֵׁב כִּי עֲמִידָתוֹ אֵיתָנָה, יִזָּהֵר פֶּן יִפֺּל. 13שׁוּם נִסָּיוֹן לֹא בָּא עֲלֵיכֶם מִלְּבַד נִסָּיוֹן אֱנוֹשִׁי רָגִיל. נֶאֱמָן הוּא הָאֱלֹהִים וְלֹא יַנִּיחַ לָכֶם לְהִתְנַסּוֹת לְמַעְלָה מִיכָלְתְּכֶם, אֶלָּא עִם הַנִּסָּיוֹן יָכִין גַּם אֶת דֶּרֶךְ הַמּוֹצָא כְּדֵי שֶׁתּוּכְלוּ לַעֲמֺד בּוֹ 14 עַל כֵּן, חֲבִיבַי, תִּבְרְחוּ מֵעֲבוֹדַת אֱלִילִים. 15כְּאֶל אֲנָשִׁים נְבוֹנִים אֲנִי מְדַבֵּר; שִׁפְטוּ אַתֶּם מַה שֶּׁאֲנִי אוֹמֵר: 16כּוֹס הַבְּרָכָה שֶׁאָנוּ מְבָרְכִים עָלֶיהָ, הַאֵין הִיא הִתְחַבְּרוּת לְדַם הַמָּשִׁיחַ? הַלֶּחֶם שֶׁאָנוּ בּוֹצְעִים, הַאֵין הוּא הִתְחַבְּרוּת לְגוּף הַמָּשִׁיחַ? 17מִשּׁוּם שֶׁהַלֶּחֶם אֶחָד, אֲנַחְנוּ הָרַבִּים גּוּף אֶחָד; שֶׁכֵּן כֻּלָּנוּ מִשְׁתַּתְּפִים בַּלֶּחֶם הָאֶחָד. 18רְאוּ נָא אֶת עַם יִשְׂרָאֵל. הַאִם אֵין הָאוֹכְלִים מִן הַקָּרְבָּנוֹת שֻׁתָּפִים בַּמִּזְבֵּחַ? 19וּבְכֵן מָה אֲנִי אוֹמֵר – שֶׁיֵּשׁ מַמָּשׁ בְּזִבְחֵי אֱלִילִים? שֶׁיֵּשׁ מַמָּשׁ בָּאֱלִיל? 20לֹא! אֶלָּא מַה שֶּׁהַגּוֹיִם מַקְרִיבִים, לְשֵׁדִים הֵם מַקְרִיבִים וְלֹא לֵאלֹהִים; וְאֵינֶנִּי רוֹצֶה שֶׁתִּהְיוּ שֻׁתָּפִים לַשֵּׁדִים. 21אֵינְכֶם יְכוֹלִים לִשְׁתּוֹת מִכּוֹס הָאָדוֹן וּמִכּוֹס הַשֵּׁדִים; אֵינְכֶם יְכוֹלִים לְהִשְׁתַּתֵּף בְּשֻׁלְחַן הָאָדוֹן וּבְשֻׁלְחַן הַשֵּׁדִים. 22הַאִם נָעֵז לְעוֹרֵר אֶת קִנְאַת הָאָדוֹן? כְּלוּם חֲזָקִים אֲנַחְנוּ מִמֶּנּוּ 23 הַכֺּל מֻתָּר, אַךְ לֹא הַכֺּל מוֹעִיל; הַכֺּל מֻתָּר, אַךְ לֹא הַכֺּל בּוֹנֶה. 24אִישׁ אַל יְבַקֵּשׁ אֶת טוֹבַת עַצְמוֹ אֶלָּא אֶת טוֹבַת זוּלָתוֹ. 25אִכְלוּ כָּל מַה שֶּׁנִּמְכָּר בַּשּׁוּק וְאַל תִּשְׁאֲלוּ שׁוּם שְׁאֵלָה שֶׁל מַצְפּוּן, 26כִּי לַיהוה הָאָרֶץ וּמְלוֹאָהּ. 27אִם יַזְמִינְכֶם אִישׁ בִּלְתִּי מַאֲמִין וּרְצוֹנְכֶם לָלֶכֶת אֵלָיו, אִכְלוּ כָּל מַה שֶּׁיֻּגַּשׁ לָכֶם וְאַל תִּשְׁאֲלוּ שׁוּם שְׁאֵלָה שֶׁל מַצְפּוּן. 28אֲבָל אִם מִישֶׁהוּ יֺאמַר לָכֶם: “זֶה נִזְבַּח לֶאֱלִיל”, אַל תֺּאכְלוּ לְמַעַן הָאִישׁ שֶׁהוֹדִיעַ לָכֶם וּלְמַעַן הַמַּצְפּוּן. 29מַצְפּוּן, אֲנִי אוֹמֵר – לֹא זֶה שֶׁלְּךָ אֶלָּא שֶׁל הָאַחֵר, שֶׁכֵּן לָמָּה שֶׁתִּשָּׁפֵט חֵרוּתִי עַל־יְדֵי מַצְפּוּנוֹ שֶׁל אַחֵר? 30אִם אֲנִי מְבָרֵךְ וְאוֹכֵל לָמָּה שֶׁיְּדֻבַּר בִּי רָעוֹת בִּגְלַל מַה שֶּׁאֲנִי מְבָרֵךְ עָלָיו? 31וּבְכֵן אִם תֺּאכְלוּ אוֹ תִּשְׁתּוּ, אוֹ כָּל מַה שֶּׁתַּעֲשׂוּ – עֲשׂוּ אֶת הַכֺּל לְמַעַן כְּבוֹד אֱלֹהִים. 32אַל תִּהְיוּ מִכְשׁוֹל לֹא לַיְּהוּדִים וְלֹא לַגּוֹיִם וְלֹא לִקְהִלַּת אֱלֹהִים, 33כְּדֶרֶךְ שֶׁגַּם אֲנִי מִשְׁתַּדֵּל לִהְיוֹת רָצוּי לְכֻלָּם בְּכָל דָּבָר וְאֵינֶנִּי מְבַקֵּשׁ אֶת טוֹבָתִי אֲנִי, אֶלָּא אֶת טוֹבַת הָרַבִּים לְמַעַן יִוָּשְׁעוּ.
10:1 For I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea; 10:2 and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea; 10:3 and all ate the same spiritual food; 10:4 and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ. 10:5 Nevertheless, with most of them God was not well-pleased; for they were laid low in the wilderness. 10:6 Now these things happened as examples for us, so that we would not crave evil things as they also craved. 10:7 Do not be idolaters, as some of them were; as it is written, ‘The people sat down to eat and drink, and stood up to play.’ 10:8 Nor let us act immorally, as some of them did, and twenty-three thousand fell in one day. 10:9 Nor let us try the Lord, as some of them did, and were destroyed by the serpents. 10:10 Nor grumble, as some of them did, and were destroyed by the destroyer. 10:11 Now these things happened to them as an example, and they were written for our instruction, upon whom the ends of the ages have come. 10:12 Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed that he does not fall. 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it. 10:14 Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry. 10:15 I speak as to wise men; you judge what I say. 10:16 Is not the cup of blessing which we bless a sharing in the blood of Christ? Is not the bread which we break a sharing in the body of Christ? 10:17 Since there is one bread, we who are many are one body; for we all partake of the one bread. 10:18 Look at the nation Israel; are not those who eat the sacrifices sharers in the altar? 10:19 What do I mean then? That a thing sacrificed to idols is anything, or that an idol is anything? 10:20 No, but I say that the things which the Gentiles sacrifice, they sacrifice to demons and not to God; and I do not want you to become sharers in demons. 10:21 You cannot drink the cup of the Lord and the cup of demons; you cannot partake of the table of the Lord and the table of demons. 10:22 Or do we provoke the Lord to jealousy? We are not stronger than He, are we? 10:23 All things are lawful, but not all things are profitable. All things are lawful, but not all things edify. 10:24 Let no one seek his own good, but that of his neighbor. 10:25 Eat anything that is sold in the meat market without asking questions for conscience’ sake; 10:26 for the earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains. 10:27 If one of the unbelievers invites you and you want to go, eat anything that is set before you without asking questions for conscience’ sake. 10:28 But if anyone says to you, ‘This is meat sacrificed to idols,’ do not eat it, for the sake of the one who informed you, and for conscience’ sake; 10:29 I mean not your own conscience, but the other man’s for why is my freedom judged by another’s conscience? 10:30 If I partake with thankfulness, why am I slandered concerning that for which I give thanks? 10:31 Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God. 10:32 Give no offense either to Jews or to Greeks or to the church of God; 10:33 just as I also please all men in all things, not seeking my own profit but the profit of the many, so that they may be saved. (NASB)

At many times I have run into people who use this text to “prove” the dietary laws that are related to the holiness of God’s people (See Parashat Kedoshim, Vayikra / Leviticus 19) are done away with. The context however reveals that Paul is speaking about the issue of eating food sacrificed to idols. In his commentary, Paul opens by speaking about the Torah and uses a rabbinic midrash on the spiritual rock, and how those in the wilderness lived immorally and died. He says these things were preserved in writing for our instruction so that we would not die. He goes on to speak of faith and being faithful, and overcoming temptation and sin. He then leads into a discussion on the Lord’s Table (the passover meal) and speaks of eating whatever one finds in the meat market without asking a question and says that all things are lawful but not all things are profitable. It is interesting that at this point most Christian commentators will say that this means Jesus did away with the dietary commands in the Torah. As we continue to read, there is something very interesting in the Hebrew translation of 1 Corinthians 10:32 (אַל תִּהְיוּ מִכְשׁוֹל לֹא לַיְּהוּדִים וְלֹא לַגּוֹיִם וְלֹא לִקְהִלַּת אֱלֹהִים). Here paul says to not be a מִכְשׁוֹל (a stumbling block) this is interesting connection to Vayikra / Leviticus 19:14 (לֹא-תְקַלֵּל חֵרֵשׁ וְלִפְנֵי עִוֵּר לֹא תִתֵּן מִכְשֹׁל וְיָרֵאתָ מֵּאֱלֹהֶיךָ אֲנִי יְהוָֹה). The Scripture from Vayikra / Leviticus 19:14 states, יד לֹא-תְקַלֵּל חֵרֵשׁ וְלִפְנֵי עִוֵּר לֹא תִתֵּן מִכְשֹׁל וְיָרֵאתָ מֵּאֱלֹהֶיךָ אֲנִי יְהוָֹה “Do not curse the deaf or put a stumbling block in front of the blind, but fear your God. I am the LORD.” When studying the Scriptures in Hebrew, we begin to see the connections Paul is making to the Torah as we see his use of the word מִכְשׁוֹל (miḵšōl ). In the Hebrew Bible, the term for “stumbling block” is the word miḵšōl (מִכְשׁוֹל‎). In the Septuagint (Greek translation), מִכְשׁוֹל‎ is translated into the Koine Greek as skandalon (σκανδαλον), a word which occurs only in Hellenistic literature. This Greek word is used in the sense of “snare for an enemy; cause of moral stumbling.” This Hebrew word (מִכְשׁוֹל‎) connects the NT text to the Torah revealing to us what Paul is teaching about. He is teaching on Judaism’s position on לִפְנֵי עִוֵּר (Lifnei Iver). In addition, the Hebrew translation of 1 Corinthians 10:23 (הַכֺּל מֻתָּר, אַךְ לֹא הַכֺּל מוֹעִיל; הַכֺּל מֻתָּר, אַךְ לֹא הַכֺּל בּוֹנֶה) seems to say something completely different from what we read in the English translation “all things are lawful for me, but all things are not expedient, all things are lawful for me but all things deify not.” (NASB) The Hebrew word used here is is not “law” as we have seen used previously (תורה, חוק). The word that translates the Greek word ἔξεστι is מֻתָּר which means “allowable.” This suggests the verse says “all things allowed, but not all things are profitable.” This rendition of the text in Hebrew appears to be more consistent with the idea that the mitzvot (commands) in the Torah remain valid for us today.

I believe Paul’s main emphasis here in 1 Corinthians 10 is on Judaism concept of Lifnei Iver (לִפְנֵי עִוֵּר) “Before the Blind” as a prohibition against misleading people by use of a “stumbling block.” This is related to the strength of one’s faith, as Paul is writing that we know idols are nothing, and meat sacrificed to idols is nothing, but we must be concerned with others who do not understand these things. This idea of preventing one from being a stumbling block to others, the origin comes from the commandment, וְלִפְנֵ֣י עִוֵּ֔ר לֹ֥א תִתֵּ֖ן מִכְשֹׁ֑ל “Before the blind, do not put a stumbling block.” (Vayikra / Leviticus 19:14) The reason we know this is what Paul is speaking about is in the way that he is writing the Epistle, he uses the Torah as a starting place. There are a large number of verses in the Torah that deal with causing injury to others, whether they are blind or not. This is why the rabbis in the Talmud gave more meaning to לִפְנֵי עִוֵּר (Lifnei Iver) as the “blind” as being also metaphorically applied to persons who are unaware, unsuspecting, ignorant, or morally blind, etc.

Judaism’s perspective on Lifnei Iver (לִפְנֵי עִוֵּר) is in regards to the moral obligation to not tempt someone to do wrong. The rabbis provide a broad range of examples for applying this command to one’s life. Here Paul is reasoning on the issue of eating meat that has been sacrificed to idols.

1 Corinthians 10:25-31
10:25 Eat anything that is sold in the meat market without asking questions for conscience’ sake; 10:26 for the earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains. 10:27 If one of the unbelievers invites you and you want to go, eat anything that is set before you without asking questions for conscience’ sake. 10:28 But if anyone says to you, ‘This is meat sacrificed to idols,’ do not eat it, for the sake of the one who informed you, and for conscience’ sake; 10:29 I mean not your own conscience, but the other man’s for why is my freedom judged by another’s conscience? 10:30 If I partake with thankfulness, why am I slandered concerning that for which I give thanks? 10:31 Whether, then, you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.

What Paul is saying is that idols are nothing, and one does not need to question the meat based upon whether it was placed before an idol prior. Note that Paul is not speaking about what “type” of meat that is being set before us. The context of 1 Corinthians 10 is on idolatry. Paul’s use of Lifnei Iver (לִפְנֵי עִוֵּר) is related to not giving bad advice to others in the situation when one’s conscious prevents him from eating meat sacrificed to idols. Paul was not writing concerning doing away with the command according to Parashat Kedoshim (Vayikra / Leviticus 19:1 – 20:27). The concept of Lifnei Iver (לִפְנֵי עִוֵּר) is quite broad including situations on building structures, personal or professional advice, sale of items (field, home, cattle), etc. In Midrash Sifra, Vayikra / Leviticus 19:14 the rabbis provide a reason why the Torah command ends with a warning to fear God. It is because only God knows the true motive of the advice giver. This single command relates to many applications in life, such as not setting prohibited food in front of one who has taken the vow of a nazarite. Or, entrusting animals to a shepherd who we know will allow the animals to graze on someone else’s property. Or, the potential of causing harm in any way to others, such as selling idols, building places of worship for pagans, selling bad food, selling sick animals without the others knowledge, selling wild animals that are used to kill people for sport, or doing anything that would strengthen the hand of sinners and evil people. People who do such things are said to have violated the command on Lifnei Iver (לִפְנֵי עִוֵּר). This is what Paul was referring to in having strong faith as opposed to having weak faith. Paul is explaining how one should constrain his or her behavior when considering the weak so as not to cause them to sin, or take advantage of someone who does not understand. Note that this command is a principle that is demanded of persons, individuals, communities, and society in general to do everything possible to protect the weak, the vulnerable, and the helpless. Note how huge a contrast today in how people treat each other not caring for the weak and vulnerable. 

The Spiritual Insight that we receive from this research on the visualization of atom sequences in MOF materials using atom probe tomography draws out these concepts. When we look closer at the biblical text, in a different language, we tend to be a little more critical of what we are reading and take with us fewer assumptions as we try to figure out what is being written. The way that we understand the Scriptures is related to a visualization technique in the sense of how we are being taught, and the theologies we embrace. Paul wrote in a particular way explaining how the Lord God is working to show His glory in both the Jew and the non-Jew. He had to present to the Greeks these principles in a way in which they would understand so that they would know the difference between two forms of righteousness (i) by faith, and (ii) without faith. In Romans 9:31-33 Paul explained that the stumbling stone that is before Israel, is not the Torah, but is related to this misunderstanding on righteousness, that obeying God’s Word must be coupled to faith with the right intention. As we know according to Israel’s history in the Tanakh (Torah, Prophets, Writings), the people at various times were simply going through the motions in relation to obedience to the mitzvot (commands of God). When we take the time to study these things, we begin to see the weightiness of the principle of Lifnei Iver (לִפְנֵי עִוֵּר). Paul spoke of his grief over Israel in relation to the Lord God dwelling in the heart to empower one to overcome sin (see Romans 10), and obey the commands, as opposed to the one who tries to keep the commands of God without the help of God’s indwelling Spirit. This is the point of holiness, drawing near to the Lord God of Israel by faith in His Messiah Yeshua, seeking God’s help to keep us according to His ways, such that we do not fall away. The God of Creation who dwells in our hearts leads us to His righteousness, holiness, justice, and truth. Having the desire to live our lives according to His Word is the evidence of His dwelling in our hearts and the righteous works He is moving our hearts towards. When we have this desire to do so, believing in Yeshua (Jesus) we are grasping hold of the righteousness of God and holding fast to His Messiah! These things cause us to turn from idolatry and grasp hold of the mitzvah of love (kjv: charity) and the principle of equality before God. The Spirit of God is who leads us to walk in God’s ways, trusting in God’s promises, walking in sexual morality, honesty, honoring parents, and believing in the sacredness of life. This is why Yeshua said the greatest command is to love God, and that the entire Torah rests upon this commentary: “Love your fellow as yourself.”

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Dr. Duane D. Miller received his Ph.D., M.S., and B.S. Degree in Chemical Engineering from The University of Akron Ohio. He is currently a Chemical Engineering Researcher. Duane’s research expertise has focused upon functional materials development for the control, conversion, and release of process gases in Energy production technologies. His R&D interests include computational chemistry, developing novel technologies for converting biomass to fuels and studying their fundamental interactions during the chemical conversion process. His past experience includes sorbent development for pre- and post-combustion CO2 and SO2 capture, selective absorption of H2S from methane streams, O2 capture for oxy-fuel combustion, photocatalytic reduction of alcohols, NOx reduction catalysis, the development of oxygen carriers to combust fossil fuels (CH4 and coal) for the chemical looping combustion processes, and the extraction of rare earth elements using patent pending sorbents. His research expertise has focused on operando-characterization using Infrared, Raman, and UV-Vis spectroscopy to observe the nature of the catalytic active sites and reaction intermediates under realistic reaction conditions, allowing direct correlation of molecular/electronic structures with catalyst performance during Gas-Solid / Liquid-Solid Adsorption and Photocatalytic Processes with real time online analysis of reaction products using ICP-MS and mass spectrometry. His current work involves a multi-disciplinary approach to developing, understanding, and improving the catalytic gasification of coal and methane, high temperature chemical looping combustion, and the catalytic decomposition and gasification of biomass and coal using novel microwave reactor.​ He has been studying the Hebrew Scriptures and the Torah for 20+ years and sharing what he has learned. The studies developed for MATSATI.COM are freely to be used by everyone, to God be the Glory!