The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) estimates that only approximately 15-20% of electronic waste is recycled. The remainder goes directly into landfills and incinerators. The United Nations estimated the amount of worldwide electronic waste discarded each year to be 50 million metric tons. The reason this is a problem for landfills and the environment, is due to the potentially harmful materials such as lead, cadmium, beryllium, or brominated flame retardants that may leach into the environment. Both recycling and disposal of electronic waste can involve significant risk to health as in landfills these harmful elements may be leached out, and in incinerators, these may be gasified as organic components and released into the atmosphere.
- Manuel Pietsch et al. Biodegradable inkjet-printed electrochromic display for sustainable short-lifecycle electronics, Journal of Materials Chemistry C (2020). DOI: 10.1039/d0tc04627b
Because of the dangers of electronic waste materials, researchers are working on new technologies in order to decrease the amount of electronic scrap. Scientists at the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) have shown the ability to produce displays which are biodegradable. Their product and biodegradability has been tested by an independent office and the results are reported in the Journal of Materials Chemistry C.  These researchers are able to manufacture sustainable displays that are based on natural materials. The manufacturing process also utilizes standard industrial production methods. When finished using the displays, there is no electronic scrap, in fact, the displays can be composted and digested to return it to its base elements for reuse. This new technology may help to totally eliminate the environmental impact of electronic scrap.
The technology used in the manufacturing of the display is called the electrochromic effect of the initial organic material. When voltage is applied, the light absorption of the material is modified and the material changes color. They arrange the organic material in a similar fashion as that of LED or LCD displays as pixels such that the individual pixels can be controlled by applying a voltage. The electrochromic displays are very low energy consumption and have a simple architecture as compared to their commercially available counterparts (LED/LCD, etc). These displays can be manufactured using inkjet printing methods using inexpensive materials. Due to the inkjet printing method, this technology has a huge ability for scale up manufacturing. The materials are biocompatible and use gelatine as a sealant so the display can adhere to surfaces and is flexible so it can be worn directly on skin.
Some applications for this are in the medical field and in food packaging. The display is suited for short-lifecycle applications, such as in the use of medical diagnostics, sensors can be disposed of easily and safely after use. The food industry does not allow items to be reused, so these displays are highly suited for this application, such as in quality monitoring in food packaging. The inkjet printing technology allows for the manufacturing on complex surfaces and shapes without needing to modify expensive process related technology. This reduces costs of manufacturing, etc. This is the first demonstration of a biodegradable display produced by inkjet printing. This new innovative technology goes a long way towards more eco-friendly electronics and saving the environment.
The Spiritual Insights that we receive from this type of research are related to this idea of creating new materials which are biodegradable and more environmentally friendly. This draws in the concept of what I have heard said before, that there are things in the NT that are fabricated, made up, or as is a common claim, Paul created a new religion. It is often claimed that the Founder of Christianity was the apostle Paul, or at least that he was the co-Founder, along with Yeshua (Jesus). The idea behind this claim is that Christianity is not really about the historical Jesus. Generally those who make these claims appeal to the book of Romans. The major questions are whether what Paul wrote was contrary to what Yeshua taught and to what is taught in the Tanach? If Paul really did come up with a new religion, then one would expect that his teachings would be different from what Yeshua and his disciples taught, and what we find in the Tanach. Below is a comparison of Scriptures across the teachings of the Tanakh, Yeshua, Paul and the Disciples.
|Atonement in blood||Isaiah 53:5-12||Matthew 10:38, 16:24, 26:28, Mark 8:34, 14:24, Luke 9:23, 14:27, 22:20, John 12:32-33||1 Corinthians 1:18, 11:25, Ephesians 2:8, 16, Colossians 1:20, 2:14||John 1:29, 36, Acts 8:32, 1 Peter 1:18-19, 2:24, Revelation 5:12-14, 7:14|
|Believing in the Redeemer for Eternal Life||Job 19:25-26||Matthew 19:29, Mark 10:29-30, Luke 9:24, John 3:16||Romans 5:21, 6:23, 1 Timothy 1:16, Jude 1:21||Acts 11:17-18, 1 John 5:11|
|Righteous because of our faith||Genesis 15:6, Habakkuk 2:4||Mark 11:22, Luke 7:50||Romans 1:17, 3:22, 3:25-26, 4:3, 9, 11, 13, 5:17, 9:30, 10:4, 10:10, Galatians 3:6, 11, Philippians 3:9||Hebrews 11:4, 7, 2 Peter 1:1|
|Being Justified because of our faith||Genesis 15:6, Isaiah 53:11||Luke 7:50, 8:12 Mark 16:16, John 3:18, 5:24||Romans 3:28, 30, 5:1, 18, Galatians 2:16, 3:8, 24||James 2:23|
|Forgiveness of sin because of our faith||2 Chronicles 7:14, Psalm 86:5, Jeremiah 31:33-34||Matthew 9:2, 9:6, 26:27-28, Mark 2:5, 2:10-11, Luke 5:20, 24, Acts 26:18||Acts 26:18, Ephesians 1:7, 4:32, Colossians 1:13-14, 2:13, 3:13||Luke 1:76-77, Acts 2:38, 5:31, 10:43, 13:38, Hebrews 10:18-20, James 5:15, 1 John 1:7-9, 2:12|
|Teshuvah (Repentance)||Isaiah 1:27, 30:15, Ezekiel 18:32||Matthew 4:17, Mark 1:15, Luke 5:32, 13:3, 24:46-47||Romans 2:4, 2 Corinthians 7:9-10||Matthew 3:2, Mark 1:4, Luke 3:3, Acts 2:38, 17:30, 20:21, 2 Peter 3:9|
The basis of the gospel message is revealed in the Torah as the Lord God delivering His people because of His grace, bringing the people to His sacred place (Sinai), giving them His Word, His dwelling in their midst, and providing a way to draw near and receive atonement through blood. These are the Torah centric principles that are being revealed to us of a life-for-a-life principle, and the intimacy of having a relationship with God! The Torah reveals to us how Abraham was counted righteous and being justified because of his faith. Forgiveness of sin was through faith and Teshuvah (Repentance). In the table above, we parallel the teachings of Paul to that of Yeshua and his disciples. Paul’s teachings are consistent and in addition to this, he taught similar concepts, such as, the Parable of the Sower (Matthew 13, 1 Corinthians 3), a stumbling stone (Matthew 18, Romans 9), the ruling concerning divorce (Mark 10, 1 Corinthians 7), The significance of the passover meal (Matthew 26, 1 Corinthians 11), the significance of the prophets (Matthew 23, 1 Corinthians 14), the return of Yeshua on the clouds (Matthew 24, 1 Thessalonians 4), those who are persecuted are blessed by God (Luke 6, Romans 12), do not repay evil with evil (Matthew 5, Luke 6, Romans 12, 1 Thessalonians 5), paying our taxes (Mark 12, Romans 13), about the thief in the night (Luke 12, 1 Thessalonians 5), peace from within (Mark 9, 1 Thessalonians 5), peace with others (Mark 9, Romans 12), and not to judge others (Luke 6, Romans 13). Studying these few scriptures references reveals the claim that Paul taught differently from Yeshua holds very little weight. The primary issue many have is in relation to understanding Paul’s stance on the Torah. Most read Paul’s teachings and believe Paul was teaching against the Torah. What Paul was doing was teaching how man does not earn his salvation before God through maasim tovim (good works, or the works of the Law). Paul recognized that salvation comes by faith, and the indwelling of God’s Spirit is what produces the desire and will to obey the Lord according to His Word and the indwelling of God’s Holy Spirit produces the fruits of the spirit that are consistent with God’s Torah! Paul taught that Yeshua came into the world, that he saw him on the road to Damascus, that Yeshua was a man made of flesh, he ate and drank, he bled, he was tempted like we were, he was crucified and died, and was raised from the dead. This is consistent with what we read in the Gospel accounts of Yeshua’s life. Paul was educated in Judaism having sat at the foot of Gamaliel. (Acts 22:3) Gamaliel was a Pharisee in the tradition of the great Hillel, the rabbi that taught the generation right before Yeshua was born. Paul claims to have been educated by Gamaliel, one of the premier teachers of the Torah in the first century. Gamaliel taught between 22-55 AD, giving us an approximate early date for Paul’s education. If Paul began study at the latest age of 16, we can guess a birth year of about 6 AD at the earliest. So Paul was very familiar with the life of Yeshua and his ministry. Paul was not teaching what he did in a vacuum that is without merit. As we read the book of Romans, we see many instances where Paul used the Torah as a teaching tool to the gentiles. So Paul did not make up doctrines to create a new religion. Paul taught many Jewish concepts in Romans and elsewhere that reflect Judaism and the teachings Yeshua himself taught.
We have to be careful to be discerning and evaluate the spirit behind the theologies that teach contrary to the Torah. Remember according to Devarim / Deuteronomy 18, any prophet or teacher that comes speaking contrary to the Torah is a false prophet! The scriptures are very plain and straight to the point on this matter. False teachers abound in the world today and so we are obligated to test them to see if they line up with the truth (1 John 2:27, 4:1). The primary way we do this is by comparing what the Scriptures say, and for this we must have read all of Scripture many times! Relying on Google or Logos software to search through the scriptures to make comparisons is not as reliable as our actually having knowledge of what God’s Word says! It is not until we have read the Scriptures many times from beginning to end do we begin to recognize the errors of modern theologies. It is said that we are to contend for the truth of the faith! (Jude 1:3) We are also told to always be ready to provide a reason for the hope that is within us! (1 Peter 3:5) This is God calling us to be witnesses to His work in our lives, as a testimony to the world. We are commanded to ask God for heavenly wisdom. (James 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you. NASB) This is not referring to the wisdom of the world. We are responsible to walk in the Spirit of Truth and to reject what is false! (1 John 4:6) This implies that we have a moral and spiritual duty to think clearly and to not cloud our minds with drugs or alcohol, pornography, or anything that is evil! (Philippians 4:8, Romans 12:2) It is the Lord God Almighty Himself that helps us to walk in His ways (John 14:16-17). It is the Lord God who gives us the Spirit of truth so that we can know the truth. There is a caveat however to this, because there are doctrines that are taught which can warp and spin the truth making it much more difficult to “discern what is the will of God, what is good, acceptable, and perfect.” (Romans 12:2) These are the things the scientific research is drawing out for us in relation to those who claim the NT is a fabrication, made up, or what some claim, Paul created a new religion.
When we encounter a ministry, we need to ask some very important questions, which can help in discerning the truth and prevent ourselves from being deceived. The first thing we should ask is who does the teacher, denomination, ministry say that Yeshua is? (Matthew 16:15) The role of the Holy Spirit is to glorify our father in heaven through glorifying Yeshua, God’s son (John 16:14) so if such a ministry teaches that Yeshua is not being honored and glorified as directing us to the Father in heaven, that should be a red flag regarding that ministry! Test also whether that ministry or teacher confesses that Yeshua is Lord, the one through whom God created the heavens and the earth, and the only way to eternal life as believing on him for our salvation as the savior of the world. (John 1:1-14) Test also whether the ministry or teacher teaches against the Torah, which is a direct indicator of a false prophet or ministry according to Devarim / Deuteronomy 18. For example, teaching that the Law of Messiah does away with the Torah. Also question about a ministry that makes the claim to a special name for God over and above Yeshua such as what we find in the Sacred Name movement. Do they openly confess that Yeshua is the Name above all Names (Acts 4:12, Philippians 2:9-11)? Does the ministry or teacher have disrespect for the name of Yeshua or ridicule Christians who use the name Jesus or Christ claiming these are pagan or Gentile? Does the teacher or ministry try to impress you with the sacred meaning of the Hebrew words and spurious intellectualism? And as important as the rest, does the ministry disparage or otherwise minimize the writings of the Apostle Paul? I have always said as we read the Scriptures, we have to be very careful how we read Paul as his teachings are very difficult to understand and not as straight forward as some would suggest, were even Peter makes the statement that Paul is difficult. (2 Peter 3:15-17) Peter makes the very strong statement saying, 3:15 and regard the patience of our Lord as salvation; just as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given him, wrote to you, 3:16 as also in all his letters, speaking in them of these things, in which there are some things that are hard to understand, which the untaught and unstable distort, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures, to their own destruction. (NASB) Do the ministry or teacher teach against the finished work of the Messiah, or do they try to mix things together? The grace of God is what grants us the ability to even have faith and live and walk in God’s ways. The indwelling of the Holy Spirit is what leads us to righteousness and truth, and helps us to overcome sin in our lives. Note sin is a violation of the mitzvot / commands of God, and so the Holy Spirit is who helps us to obey God’s Word! Here is a big one, does the ministry or teacher believe LGBTQ is a sin? Many believers today are on the fence on that one!
These are the things the Scripture teaches us! That all things are due to the grace and glory of God in our lives, and why Paul wrote “for by grace have ye been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, `it is’ the gift of God.” (Ephesians 2:8) Does the ministry or teacher teach that the Law was given so man could earn his salvation before God? Are they confused about the Law that was given at Sinai, its purpose, and what it actually means? Do they believe the Torah is a shadow of things to come, setting the foundation for atonement in blood and demonstrating ultimately these things were pointing to the Messiah of God and what he would do, laying down his life for ours? How do they understand the “Law of the Messiah” (Galatians 6:2) or are they offended or stumble over the cross of Christ / Messiah / Yeshua? How do these ministries regard the idea of the “church?” Do they understand that the body of gentile believers are also a called out assembly from every tribe, tongue, and language, having a destiny and purpose that is different than ethnic Israel? This means gentile believers do not convert to become Jews or replace Israel. Note how this explains Revelation 22:2 which states, “In the middle of its street, and on either side of the river, was the tree of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month. The leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.” (NASB) If the gentiles who believe become Jews or replace Israel, what is the meaning of this verse for the leaves were meant to heal the nations? This is a good question isn’t it? There are many additional things that may be asked to discern a false ministry or a false theology that leads men away from the power of God in the lives of His people! (i.e. Dispensationalism) The Scriptures state that Yeshua the Messiah is the same yesterday, today, and forever! (Hebrews 13:8) The Word of God will never fade nor change. In Isaiah 40:8, the Bible states, “The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever.” These things speak to the truth and the everlasting nature of God and His Word, and the power of God in the midst of His people! So we can have faith, we can trust in the promises of God, we can believe in Yeshua for the salvation of our souls, all of these truths are what the scientific research tends to draw out for us today. God Himself helps us to walk in the Spirit of Truth by His dwelling in our hearts and lives. And for this we can praise the God in heaven and His Messiah Yeshua for the grace of knowing them and for the mercy of their dwelling in our hearts, because of the great love that He has for us!