Category Archives: GSM

An Ode to Papa Jerry

Jerry and Bettie Mitchell
Jerry and Bettie Mitchell

Earlier this year in the class on Luke, we collectively learned that death is a form of healing. This being the case, our friend Jerry Mitchell was healed on January 28th, 2015. In terms dear to us as Samaritans, it may be said that Jerry graduated to heaven on that day.

Jerry Mitchell, or Papa Jerry, as we knew him, taught in the Beaverton School District until his retirement. He was already retired when we met him. We came to know Jerry as the cornerstone of Good Samaritan Ministries (GSM), a ministry with a call to “teach nothing but the Kingdom of God,” a call which continues to this day at GSM in Beaverton.

While Jerry’s wife, Bettie Mitchell, is recognized as the founder of the Ministry, she is always quick to recognize that Jerry, by giving permission for Bettie to leave her teaching job to pursue the Ministry full time, was the one who released the calling into action. It was he who supported and accompanied her through the years as the Ministry grew to touch lives not only in Beaverton but also in some 32 countries throughout the world.

Jerry was a veteran of World War II and a member of what Tom Brokaw famously referred to as “The Greatest Generation.” Jerry was a great fan of the Portland Trailblazers and was always quick with a smile and a joke. He was honest and approachable and loved children. It may truly be said that he never lost touch with the child within himself.

His positive impact as a soldier, teacher, and Samaritan can be seen today on four continents, and we count ourselves blessed to have had our hearts warmed by knowing Papa Jerry towards the twilight of his wonderful life. The world is a better place because Papa Jerry lived.

Rest in peace Papa Jerry, and thank you for your many sacrifices this side of heaven. We look forward to the time when we will meet again on the other side.

A Teaching on Deuteronomy

Those who have followed The Mint over the past several years are familiar with an annual assignment which we take very seriously.  The assignment is to open the Bible as if we have never seen it before for the first 10 weeks of the year.  The assignment is given each year by Bettie Mitchell, the Founder of Good Samaritan Ministries in Beaverton, where the classes are held.

Over the past four years, we have been fortunate to explore Hosea, Matthew, Isaiah, and John.  This past February 19th and 26th we were privileged to assist in teaching the book of Deuteronomy, a book of staggering importance.

Below is a clip from the class on the 19th: 

You can see the entire teaching at the following link:

If you are interested in teaching on Deuteronomy, you can access our notes, with the introduction and conclusion from James Michener’s The Source, at the following link:

A Teaching on Deuteronomy

You can also download them in here:  Deuteronomy Class Notes 2-16-2014

You can access the Powerpoint slides here:  Deuteronomy Slides

You will quickly notice two things if you take time to watch the video of the teaching and look  over the slides.  First, you will notice that there are only three slides for what will be four hours of teaching.  Second, the pace of speaking may seem slow.

We assure you that you are not imagining things.  There are indeed very few slides and our pace is purposefully slow.  On the internet, where one is accustomed to information coming at a rapid fire rate, it will feel slow.

The reason is the following:  If one is to allow the Word of the Living God to teach them, it must come out of one’s mouth, travel around the room, and be heard back into one’s own ear to assure that it has been heard and understood by all.  Only then, when it has been heard and understood by all, can it bring the people in the room together, as they were some 3,500 years ago at Kadesh Barnea, listening to Moses give his bittersweet farewell address to a people who were about to become a nation for the very first time.

It is a nation that has withstood the test of time and distance ever since that moment, and has spread from the Promised Land throughout the world, and yet remains one:  Israel.

Regardless of one’s faith or ancestry, Deuteronomy is important, for it holds the key to a number of mysteries.  As Bettie Mitchell put it:

In the cities there is confusion, in the wilderness, there is something different, something to be learned. In the wilderness, the question is not about human relationships, it is about God

Deuteronomy takes mankind to the wilderness.


Its 2014: Just do it

1/7/2014 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

The New Year has come according to the Gregorian calendar, and we wish our fellow taxpayers a happy and healthy 2014.  We can hardly contain our excitement, as the calendar change seems to have awoken the slumbering giants of economic progress who have been holed up the past five years.

As an aside, if you are in the Portland area, tomorrow evening at Good Samaritan Ministries in Beaverton there will begin an important series of Bible classes at 6:30 pm.  For those who are just now joining us, at the beginning of each calendar year, we choose approximately ten books of the Bible to be taught on and teach one of them each Wednesday evening until the 10 are complete, wrapping up the series of classes sometime in March.

The classes are unique in that each year we are opening the Bible as if we have never opened it before, throwing out preconceived notions and opinions and letting the Bible study us, not the other way around as is the common practice in much of Christendom, where the faithful study the Bible, as if we had something to add to it or the Bible required our approval.  It is a simple juxtaposition of subjects that makes all the difference.  We do not study the Bible, the Bible studies us.

Starting from this place, the teaching is fresh and earth shattering every time, for all who are in attendance become both teacher and student in this unique format.  Again, the series begins tomorrow evening, January 8th at Good Samaritan Ministries in Beaverton.  Our assignment this season is on Deuteronomy, and we will be allowing it to study us in mid February.

Its 2014:  Just do it


Janet Yellen becomes the first woman to chair the Federal Reserve
Janet Yellen becomes the first woman to chair the Federal Reserve

2014 is setting up to be an extremely prosperous year, and, now that Janet Yellen has been confirmed as the Federal Reserve’s first Chairwoman, what could possibly go wrong?

The answer, of course, is many things.  The world’s economy is built upon a shaky premise and the obligation to use debt-based currency brings with it a whole slew of unknowns that may become known over the next several months, such as, “what happens when borrowing and lending of a debt based currency become so disjointed that trading in said currency becomes not just unpalatable, but nearly impossible?” or “what happens when a $2.2 trillion dollar corporate cash hoard gets deployed all at once?”

The answers to these and other burning questions are likely to reveal themselves over the next several months.

Here at The Mint, we have been busy churning out proposals and other documents in hopes of attracting a portion of the downpour of cash that awaits those of us just beyond the spigot of the Federal Reserve System, hence the lapses in our faithful correspondence.

As we alluded to above, it will be an exciting year and one in which our broad advice is once again best encompassed in the three words made famous by a neighboring company:

Just do it.

If there is something you have put off, a dream, an idea, a plan, 2014 seems like as good of a time as any to execute it, the wind is at your back in terms of monetary measures.  There is more than enough of it to go around, and were the money supplies of the world not centrally managed in what is an essentially Socialist system, it would be more evenly distributed throughout the economy by now.

As this is decidedly not the case, prepare to see large scale dislocations exacerbated by the widespread confusion surrounding the newest provisions of the health care law taking effect which will be most noticeable in the fact that getting an appointment with a medical provider will simply not be as easy as it has been in the past.

In other words, you can give everyone the right to health care but you can’t create doctors and nurses to provide said care out of thin air.

For this reason, we drink to the health of all our fellow taxpayers as the earth begins its latest run around the sun on the Gregorian calendar.  The odds are it may be the only thing one needs to maintain in order to prosper this year.

Janet Yellen is taking care of the rest.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint


Key Indicators for January 7, 2014

Copper Price per Lb: $3.35
Oil Price per Barrel:  $94.00

Corn Price per Bushel:  $4.26
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  2.94%
Mt Gox Bitcoin price in US:  $909.00
Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,232

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  0.25%
Unemployment Rate:  7.0%
Inflation Rate (CPI):   0.0%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  16,531
M1 Monetary Base:  $2,758,400,000,000

M2 Monetary Base:  $11,062,600,000,000

It is Christmas, God created a Child

12/24/2013 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

It is Christmas, God Created a Child – A Christmas Poem inspired by a revelation given to Bettie Mitchell regarding why God saved humankind in the most unusual manner that we celebrate during Christmas.


It is Christmas, God Created a Child

It is Christmas,

a babe in a manger lay,

Why has He come?

The reason of the mystery revealed.

"Adoration of the Shepherds" by Gerard van Honthorst, 1622
“Adoration of the Shepherds” by Gerard van Honthorst, 1622


In the beginning,

God created them, man, then woman,

What would they do?

He walked with them in the garden.




Their betrayal,

broke His heart, and He sent them away,

with a gift of clothing,

the first sacrifice, but not the last.



God left them,

He pondered what went wrong,

and how to make it right again.

He watched them from afar, as a nervous parent.




He watched,

as they conceived and bore children,

outside of the garden,

the results were disastrous, murder, betrayal




He sent a flood,

to destroy them all, to wipe the earth clean,

for the earth was innocent,

He wrestled with the implications, and saw Noah.




He would allow them to live,

Abraham confirmed what he saw in Noah,

Humankind still loved Him,

Yet they were so evil, how could He come close?




Then it came to Him,

Like a muse from below, for in the beginning,

In the garden,

They were perfect, they were His, and they were adults.




He would create a child,

not cursed, as those outside of the garden,

but perfect,

As Adam and Eve were, in the beginning




He inhaled,

and breathed life into the darkness,

it was perfect,

They must see how to live, from cradle to grave, our perfect union




The perfect end,

The only way to blot out, the transgression in the garden,

for in the beginning,

it was good.




The baby arrived,

to teach us how to live, and take the punishment,

once and for all,

to perfect the creation and human hearts.




His will be done,

His Kingdom come, then, now, and forever more,

God created a child,

at Christmas, to make things right.



God created a child.

Merry Christmas!

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

Do The Right Thing

10/22/2013 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

The financial world took a big step closer towards a new currency over the past week.  First came revelations that the US Treasury increased its net debt by $1 Trillion in ONE MONTH, which, in and of itself is shocking.  Perhaps not coincidentally, Bitcoin prices blew through the $200 mark once again.  We have written extensively on why Bitcoin is likely to rise, you can purchase a copy of what is now our most popular ebook on a number of ereading platforms here:

Bitcoins: What they are and how to use them
Bitcoins: What they are and how to use them

Bitcoins:  What they are and how to use them

Today, we turn our attention to the area of morality here at The Mint.  We must warn you, however, that what you are about to read may turn everything that you once understood about ethics and morality on its head. Read on at your own risk.

Do the Right Thing

“Ask not what you are to do, for you are called to do the right thing, not the expedient thing, not the easy thing, but the right thing.  You will know what the right thing to do is when you learn to see your neighbor not as a rival, but as a brother.”

From our youth, when we were confronted with a form of temptation or, perhaps more commonly, the opportunity to choose between selfish gain or pursuing the good of others, we were often exhorted by our elders with a phrase that is both etched in our memory and charged with meaning: “Do the right thing.”

The phrase is alive and well today and continues to drip with authority, for it implies that in the situation that is being confronted, there exists a common body of knowledge which, if consulted, would lead the person confronted with the opportunity to “Do the right thing,” with an obvious course of action.

When this phrase is uttered, more often than not it is uttered by a person whose good intentions are matched only by their complete lack of a direct interest in the outcome of whatever is transpiring.  It is also often uttered by someone who, if they were to be in your shoes, would more often than not be completely incapable of “doing the right thing” that they benevolently have advised you to do.

Today, we hear the phrase in discourses by those charged with national government. In this context, even the feigned benevolence which is the hallmark of the way the phrase is delivered in political settings is overshadowed by the fact that by “doing the right thing,” the politician invariably means “submit to my will and ask no questions.”

Imperial governance, which is the form that the world labors under today, is paradoxically predicated on categoric refusal to “do the right thing,” as, at its base, modern governance results in the enslavement of men and women via a myriad of rules and threats in order to convince them to render tribute and allegiance.  We have explored this phenomenon thoroughly in our volume entitled “What is Truth?  On the Nature of Empire.”  The inescapable irony which engulfs every utterance of the phrase by a public official means that, at this point, we cannot hold a straight face when we hear it.

To draw on a recent example, when the President states that Congress must “Do the right thing” and fund the government, the statement may have been the most presumptuous ever to escape human lips, for the underlying assumption is that whatever the government does is right, which is, from most rational and religious standpoints, absolutely incorrect.

Politics aside, at its base, even the seemingly disinterested “do the right thing” offered by a friend,a parent, or colleague is a thinly cloaked act of moral superiority on display, for the phrase is all too often offered as thinly veiled advice which, once decrypted, is read to imply “do what I want you to do.”

If the term has indeed been hijacked to lay claim to the moral high ground in a debate, shaky as it may be, humankind must strive to understand the noble origins of this seemingly important and universal saying.

Life is complicated, and, contrary to what many would say, it does not come with an instruction manual which tells humanity what is categorically right and wrong in all situations which we may encounter.

For this reason, the Bible, which we believe to be the closest thing to a users manual, reads not like a how to or self-help book, but a series of events where people, both individually and corporately, are thrown into unimaginably complex and dire situations (once one looks beyond the surface to understand the Biblical settings) ostensibly to see what they will do.  The question that is being asked constantly of the Biblical characters as well as each and every human being today is this:

Will we do the right thing?

Doing the right thing is beyond important, it is imperative that anyone who is genuinely seeking God and His Kingdom Do the right Thing at all times that the circumstances demand them to choose a course of action.

However, what constitutes doing the right thing in any given circumstance is not a matter of democratic preference or legislative action, it is purely a mater left to God and the individual of whom the right thing is required, for it is they and they alone to whom the ability and intuition has been given to make these life and death determinations.

The right thing cannot be legislated or encouraged, it can only be done or not done.  Each time it is done, the Kingdom of God draws near to us all.  Each time it is neglected, we all suffer the consequences.

So Do the right thing and, more importantly, be close to God, for it is He who is the only judge of such matters. The logic can be carried further to imply that everyone who utters the phrase “do the right thing,” to someone who is faced with a difficult situation is, perhaps unknowingly, both usurping God’s role as well as inhibiting that person’s ability to learn for themselves how to choose the right thing, which is an ability that all of mankind must learn deeply and permanently.  The right thing is a lesson that can only be learned through personal experience and exercise of one’s own decision-making processes.

This however, does not mean that the right thing must be learned on the field of battle.  There are more often than not subtle clues which will guide us as to which situations demand us to respond by doing the right thing as well as what the right thing to do is.  For instance, in our observation doing the right thing often involves an initial sacrifice to be made of time or resources.  It is often a choice to pay the cost.  While it is not universal, this minor detail is often a clue that one is doing the right thing.

Only those with a perfect knowledge of all of the circumstances involved are qualified to ultimately judge what is right or wrong.  Even in the hypothetical case that the actors are in a position to understand all of the circumstances involved, the observation is limited by our über short human timelines which ignore the concept of eternal justice.

Doing the right thing is imperative, and all human judgement as to what the right thing is in any specific circumstance is null and void unless it is agreed upon by all parties who are directly (not indirectly) affected by a course of action.

Perhaps the distinction is best illustrated in the Gospels.  While the religious leaders were left legislating the right thing, Jesus was doing it.  It is a contrast that is emphasized for a reason, for the doing the right thing is deeply personal and immensely powerful.

There is one thing and one thing only that one can be absolutely certain that is always the right thing to do from an eternal perspective:  Forgive

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus!

Stay Fresh!

David Mint


Key Indicators for October 22, 2013

Copper Price per Lb: $3.28
Oil Price per Barrel: $97.78
Corn Price per Bushel: $4.38
10 Yr US Treasury Bond: 2.51%
Mt Gox Bitcoin price in US: $208.76
Gold Price Per Ounce: $1,341
MINT Perceived Target Rate*: 0.25%
Unemployment Rate: 7.2%
Inflation Rate (CPI): 0.1%
Dow Jones Industrial Average: 15,468
M1 Monetary Base: $2,515,000,000,000
M2 Monetary Base: $10,867,000,000,000

On the Passover, it is finished

As the Passover nears and we paint the blood of the lamb over our doorway (figuratively, of course, our better half just painted the doorway a gorgeous blue and let’s just say that literal blood would be frowned upon), we await, along with the rest of the world, the promises of our Lord, the I AM, revealed to us in Jesus Christ.

"Ce que voyait Notre-Seigneur sur la Croix" (What Our Lord Saw from the Cross) - by James Tissot
“Ce que voyait Notre-Seigneur sur la Croix” (What Our Lord Saw from the Cross) – by James Tissot

We will celebrate the New Year tomorrow at the GSM Good Friday service, where we step out of time for the three hours that our Lord hung on the cross, pouring Himself out to bring mankind the only thing it truly needs.

The forgiveness of sins.

Yes, on the Passover, our thoughts are Jesus and the forgiveness of sins.  Not the forgiveness of just mine or yours, but the forgiveness of the sins of all of humanity.

For three holy hours tomorrow, we will remember, embrace, and look ahead without fear.  For the blood of the lamb has washed away the sins of the world.

At 3pm Pacific time, the Shofar Horn will blow, ushering in the new year.  There is much turmoil to come, as well as much opportunity.  May the Lord’s will be done, and may His Kingdom come.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Trust Jesus: On God’s Grace

1/31/2013 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

If you have followed The Mint for any amount of time, you will no doubt have taken note of our closing exhortation:

“Stay tuned and Trust Jesus

The stay tuned part speaks for itself, but what does it mean to trust Jesus?  The answer to this inquiry is to be found in the immutable truth or ultimate given, if one prefers, which is embodied by the Greek word χαρις, or, as it is more easily read and pronounced in western characters, charis, which is often translated in early Christian writings as grace.

χαρις – the concept of grace revealed

Yet the word grace, as it is understood today, does a great disservice to the concept of charis that the early Christian writers were attempting to convey.  So what does charis mean if not grace?

Charis means that you, fellow taxpayer, are the One True God’s greatest delight, joy, and happiness imaginable, and it is His greatest delight, joy, and happiness imaginable to give you, who are His greatest delight, joy, and happiness imaginable, freely, without conditions, your greatest delight, joy, and happiness imaginable in never-ending abundance.

This is what Jesus came to reveal to us, and it is as simple as believing in YHWH and believing in yourself.

For those who are suffering persecution, Jesus says, “I am there with you.”

For those who are trying to please YHWH with their thoughts and deeds, Jesus says “quit trying to please me, because you already do.”

Do you believe it?  For if you do, you will live with in peace and freedom with Jesus forever, starting today, no matter what happens.  Charis is the only way that mankind can hope to attain peace with God and with their fellow man.

If you believe this, you will quickly begin to understand that the same charis that you live in is available to all of humanity with no strings attached, no matter what they are doing or have done.

More importantly, you will begin to forgive people, no matter what, and this forgiveness will turn your world into a place that your greatest delight, joy, and happiness imaginable occur daily in never-ending abundance.

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint


Key Indicators for January 31 2013

Copper Price per Lb: $3.69
Oil Price per Barrel:  $97.48
Corn Price per Bushel:  $7.41
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  1.99%
Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,663 THE GOLD RUSH IS ON!
MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  0.25%
Unemployment Rate:  7.8%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.0%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  13,894
M1 Monetary Base:  $2,397,900,000,000 LOTS OF DOUGH ON THE STREET!
M2 Monetary Base:  $10,501,100,000,000

The raising of Lazarus from the dead after the Feast of the Dedication, a prelude to the Passion: The seventh sign

1/3/2013 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

Today, we begin the new year with the conclusion of our series on the seven signs that Jesus performed which are related in the Gospel of John.  What is taught through these seven signs is of eternal significance.  If you have just now joined us, we recommend reading the following for additional context:

  1. Changing water into wine
  2. Healing of the Official’s son
  3. Healing of the paralytic at Bethesda: parts I and II
  4. The Feeding of the 5000
  5. A hard teaching at Capernaum, Jesus walks on water
  6. The healing of the man blind at birth

Those who have followed the Mint for any time now know that our word is far from the final one on this or any subject.  Rather, we encourage every one of you to allow yourself to be studied by the Holy Scriptures, for if we simply study the scriptures, we will have gained nothing worth saving, but if we allow the scriptures to study us, our lives will be miraculously purified and enriched.  We will leave changed by the power of the Living God at work in us.

With this in mind, we encourage those of you in the Portland area to join us at 6:30pm on Wednesday, January 9th, at Good Samaritan Ministries in Beaverton (click here for a map), where we will attempt to present a portion of this series in a two-hour class format.  It is little time and we can only hope to scratch the surface, but at the same time, gathering in the synagogue, as it were, allows the Holy Spirit to move among us and transform us in ways that are impossible through individual study.

We now move into the seventh sign, the sign that proved once and for all that Jesus Christ is the promised Messiah, foretold by the prophets and seen by Isaiah 700 years earlier, and that all of humanity can have eternal life in Him.

Again, Jesus had performed many signs, of which John, the disciple who shared Isaiah’s spirit and was perhaps closer to Jesus than any other disciple, witnessed more than any other person.  Of the many, John chose to relate seven of them when he penned his Gospel some 60 years later.  While the previous six signs are important, none was more important in John’s eyes than the seventh sign.

It was the sign that proved He is YHWH, and the sign that sealed His fate on earth:  The raising of Lazarus from the dead.

After Jesus’ decision to attend the Festival of Booths, it is not clear in the Gospel of John whether or not He ever returned to the Galilee.  From what we can tell, His initial reluctance and subsequent decision to attend the Festival of Booths were an indication that Jesus was assenting to complete His mission, the salvation of the world, on the upcoming Passover.

The air in Judea and Jerusalem was thick with tension.  In Palestine, politics and religion are deeply intertwined, and it is impossible to understand what is occurring in one sphere without recognizing the influences of the other upon it.

After walking on water to His Disciples and healing the man blind from birth, Jesus had set Himself on a collision course with the Jewish authorities.  With the benefit of hindsight, it may seem obvious that the Jews would want to eliminate Jesus.

Why the animosity towards Jesus?

However, to the casual observer, both in first century Palestine and today, it is difficult to understand why the Jewish leadership would seek to kill the Messiah.  Was not He the one who would remove the oppressors, set the captives free, and declare the year of the Lord’s favor for them?  Was this not the fulfillment of YHWH’s promise which had been proclaimed by Israel’s greatest prophets seven centuries before?

The answer to this question can be found by examining the condition of the Jewish leadership of the day.  In the first century, Palestine was under Roman control.  The Romans ruled with an iron fist, and moved quickly to squash rebellion.  The Jewish leadership, down to the priesthood, which had previously been bestowed by virtue of heredity, was now a post appointed by the Roman authorities.  As such, the hand picked Jewish leaders in Judea found themselves responsible for managing the delicate balance of Jewish nationalism and submission to Roman authorities.

Naturally, those appointed were those who had mastered the art of compromise, and used their appointments to play one side off of the other, often to great personal advantage.

As the Maccabeans had done nearly two centuries earlier, Jesus was exposing the hypocrisy and extortion which was rampant in the ranks of the Jewish priesthood.  At the same time, He was restoring the faith of the people in YHWH.

The Jewish leaders began to fear another revolt of the type which had temporarily freed the Jews from the Seleucid Empire and overthrew the Jewish elite of the day, who had compromised the Jewish religion to the point of allowing Greek gods to be erected in the Temple and pigs to be butchered on the altar, on the Sabbath.

The Feast of the Dedication: Hanukkah

In 168 BCE, roughly 200 years earlier, Antiochus IV, then ruler of the Seleucid empire, had Judaism outlawed.  This sparked a revolt of devout Jews against the empire which would become known as the Maccabean revolt of 167-160 BCE.  The Maccabeans were successful in establishing a Jewish commonwealth which would last for 100 years.

A Menorah in Donetsk Ukraine Photo by Andrew Butko
A Menorah in Donetsk Ukraine
Photo by Andrew Butko

The celebration of the success of the Maccabean revolt is celebrated today.  It is known as Hanukkah, the Festival of lights.  In Jesus’ day, it was known by its Greek name, The Feast of the Dedication, acknowledging the re dedication of the Temple to YHWH by the Maccabeans.

Then, in 63 BCE, the Romans annexed Judea into their Empire in violent fashion.  When Jesus arrived on the scene, the Jewish elite, not unlike their counterparts under the Seleucid rule of Judea, had assumed a position of compromise, appealing to the people to tolerate the Roman rule in exchange for a measure of religious autonomy.  An autonomy that both the Jewish ruling class and the Romans used to exploit the population under the cover of religious observances, among other things.

At this point we call to the reader’s attention the incident where Jesus clears the Temple, related by John in chapter 2 of his Gospel:

12 After this, he went down to Capernaum, he, and his mother, his brothers, and his disciples; and they stayed there a few days. 13 The Passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. 14 He found in the temple those who sold oxen, sheep, and doves, and the changers of money sitting. 15 He made a whip of cords, and threw all out of the temple, both the sheep and the oxen; and he poured out the changers’ money, and overthrew their tables. 16 To those who sold the doves, he said, “Take these things out of here! Don’t make my Father’s house a marketplace!” 17 His disciples remembered that it was written, “Zeal for your house will eat me up.”
18 The Jews therefore answered him, “What sign do you show us, seeing that you do these things?”
19 Jesus answered them, “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.”
20 The Jews therefore said, “It took forty-six years to build this temple! Will you raise it up in three days?” 21 But he spoke of the temple of his body. 22 When therefore he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he said this, and they believed the Scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.

Jesus was passionate about Judaism and true worship of YHWH.  After the events which took place during the Festival of Booths, is should come as no surprise that Jesus would again show up in Jerusalem at the Temple, openly declaring that He is the Son of God, at the Feast of the Dedication.

Jesus had declared sternly that the religious leaders of the day are, “not my sheep.”  He seemed to affirm the line that was already drawn in the sand, pitting the devout Jews against the Jewish elite.  In doing so, the devout Jews assumed that Jesus was going to stir up the next Maccabean revolt and once again, “re dedicate” the Temple to YHWH.  The ruling elite took this threat of revolt, along with the increasingly personal attacks against them which Jesus explicitly and implicitly implied in His teachings, and began to plot in earnest to eliminate Jesus before He gained a wider following among the people.

For even if He was the Messiah, Jesus, through righteousness and the power of God, posed a direct threat to the status quo, a status quo which had allowed the Jewish elite not only to maintain the semblance of a Jewish quasi state and religious system, but more importantly, their appointed position as religious leaders and intermediaries between the Jewish nation and Rome.  It was a system that had made them very wealthy and at the same time extremely vulnerable.  Were the system to crash, it would come toppling down directly on top of them.

Enter Caiaphas

This seemingly complex relationship between a nation awaiting their promised Messiah and the leaders of that nation taking great pains to prevent the Messiah from appearing is embodied in a man named Caiaphas.

Christ before Caiaphas by Mattias Stom
Christ before Caiaphas by Mattias Stom

Caiaphas was the Roman appointed high priest during this tempestuous time.  He was appointed in a semi-nepotistic way, as is the custom in most corrupt leadership structures.  While attempting to maintain the status quo and at the same time appear religious, Caiaphas, as high priest, had famously prophesied that:

“…Jesus would die for the nation, 52 and not for the nation only, but that he might also gather together into one the children of God who are scattered abroad.” – John 11:52

Such was the state of mind of the Jewish leadership of the day.  Their vulnerability and greed had ultimately pitted their will against the will of YHWH, the God whose observances they were charged with carrying out.

It is important to note that Caiaphas, as were most of the Jewish elite of the day, was a member of the Sadducee sect, a line of Judaism which denied spiritual phenomena associated with the afterlife.  This put them in opposition to many other branches of Judaism as well as Jesus, as they did not believe in the resurrection of the dead, a belief system which lends itself to a situational system of morality in which the right thing is more often than not what is expedient at the moment.

It was Caiaphas who was involved in the Sanhedrin trial of Jesus, likely as chief prosecutor.

The Raising of Lazarus

After the Feast of Dedication, Jesus again left Jerusalem, presumably under the threat of detention and physical harm.  He went not home to Galilee but beyond the Jordan where John the Baptist had baptized Him just three short years before.  It was the place where His earthly ministry had begun.  Many people came to Jesus in that holy place, and put their faith in Him.

It is there, in the wilderness, that we find Jesus in the days before He performs what John, and this author believe to be the most important miracle of His earthly ministry.  We pick up the narrative in John 11:1-54:

Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus from Bethany, of the village of Mary and her sister, Martha. It was that Mary who had anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his feet with her hair, whose brother, Lazarus, was sick. The sisters therefore sent to him, saying, “Lord, behold, he for whom you have great affection is sick.” But when Jesus heard it, he said, “This sickness is not to death, but for the glory of God, that God’s Son may be glorified by it.” Now Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. When therefore he heard that he was sick, he stayed two days in the place where he was. Then after this he said to the disciples, “Let’s go into Judea again.”

The disciples told him, “Rabbi, the Jews were just trying to stone you, and are you going there again?”

Jesus answered, “Aren’t there twelve hours of daylight? If a man walks in the day, he doesn’t stumble, because he sees the light of this world. 10  But if a man walks in the night, he stumbles, because the light isn’t in him.” 11 He said these things, and after that, he said to them, “Our friend, Lazarus, has fallen asleep, but I am going so that I may awake him out of sleep.”

12 The disciples therefore said, “Lord, if he has fallen asleep, he will recover.”

13 Now Jesus had spoken of his death, but they thought that he spoke of taking rest in sleep. 14 So Jesus said to them plainly then, “Lazarus is dead. 15  I am glad for your sakes that I was not there, so that you may believe. Nevertheless, let’s go to him.”

16 Thomas therefore, who is called Didymus,*{Note: “Didymus” means “Twin”}. said to his fellow disciples, “Let’s go also, that we may die with him.”

17 So when Jesus came, he found that he had been in the tomb four days already. 18 Now Bethany was near Jerusalem, about fifteen stadia†{Note: 15 stadia is about 2.8 kilometers or 1.7 miles} away. 19 Many of the Jews had joined the women around Martha and Mary, to console them concerning their brother. 20 Then when Martha heard that Jesus was coming, she went and met him, but Mary stayed in the house. 21 Therefore Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you would have been here, my brother wouldn’t have died. 22 Even now I know that, whatever you ask of God, God will give you.” 23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”

24 Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”

25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will still live, even if he dies. 26  Whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”

27 She said to him, “Yes, Lord. I have come to believe that you are the Christ, God’s Son, he who comes into the world.”

28 When she had said this, she went away, and called Mary, her sister, secretly, saying, “The Teacher is here, and is calling you.”

29 When she heard this, she arose quickly, and went to him. 30 Now Jesus had not yet come into the village, but was in the place where Martha met him. 31 Then the Jews who were with her in the house, and were consoling her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up quickly and went out, followed her, saying, “She is going to the tomb to weep there.” 32 Therefore when Mary came to where Jesus was, and saw him, she fell down at his feet, saying to him, “Lord, if you would have been here, my brother wouldn’t have died.”

33 When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and the Jews weeping who came with her, he groaned in the spirit, and was troubled, 34 and said, “Where have you laid him?”

They told him, “Lord, come and see.”

35 Jesus wept.

36 The Jews therefore said, “See how much affection he had for him!” 37 Some of them said, “Couldn’t this man, who opened the eyes of him who was blind, have also kept this man from dying?”

38 Jesus therefore, again groaning in himself, came to the tomb. Now it was a cave, and a stone lay against it. 39 Jesus said, “Take away the stone.”

Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to him, “Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.”

40 Jesus said to her, “Didn’t I tell you that if you believed, you would see God’s glory?”

The Raising of Lazarus by Duccio di Buoninsegna 1310-11 Kimball Art Museum
The Raising of Lazarus by Duccio di Buoninsegna 1310-11

41 So they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, “Father, I thank you that you listened to me. 42  I know that you always listen to me, but because of the multitude that stands around I said this, that they may believe that you sent me.” 43 When he had said this, he cried with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come out!”

44 He who was dead came out, bound hand and foot with wrappings, and his face was wrapped around with a cloth.

Jesus said to them, “Free him, and let him go.”

45 Therefore many of the Jews, who came to Mary and saw what Jesus did, believed in him. 46 But some of them went away to the Pharisees, and told them the things which Jesus had done. 47 The chief priests therefore and the Pharisees gathered a council, and said, “What are we doing? For this man does many signs. 48 If we leave him alone like this, everyone will believe in him, and the Romans will come and take away both our place and our nation.”

49 But a certain one of them, Caiaphas, being high priest that year, said to them, “You know nothing at all, 50 nor do you consider that it is advantageous for us that one man should die for the people, and that the whole nation not perish.” 51 Now he didn’t say this of himself, but being high priest that year, he prophesied that Jesus would die for the nation, 52 and not for the nation only, but that he might also gather together into one the children of God who are scattered abroad. 53 So from that day forward they took counsel that they might put him to death. 54 Jesus therefore walked no more openly among the Jews, but departed from there into the country near the wilderness, to a city called Ephraim. He stayed there with his disciples.

While in Barcelona, we had the opportunity to play the role of Lazarus in a stage adaptation of the book “The Jesus I never knew,” by Philip Yancey.  As you can imagine, there was not much to do.  The people mourned and I lay there in bandages from head to foot.  They filmed a video short which showed one of the disciples kneeling at my side.  He then abruptly rose and ran off to locate Jesus.  It was a helpless feeling, yet the faith of the disciple, however far fetched, gave us cause for hope.

In this dramatization, we saw that the disciple’s faith in who Jesus was raised us from the dead, and that it was this same faith in YHWH that raised Jesus from the dead.

Will we listen when He calls us out?  Will we call others out from death to life?

In raising Lazarus from the dead, Jesus put to rest any latent speculation that He was the Son of God.  Lazarus had been dead for four days.  The situation was so hopeless that Martha, Lazarus’ sister, was compelled to give a canned religious answer, as many of us do when faced with a seemingly impossible situation, in order that Jesus might save face (verses 21-26 above):

Martha said to Jesus, “Lord, if you would have been here, my brother wouldn’t have died. 22 Even now I know that, whatever you ask of God, God will give you.” 23 Jesus said to her, “Your brother will rise again.”

24 Martha said to him, “I know that he will rise again in the resurrection at the last day.”

25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will still live, even if he dies. 26  Whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”

The resurrection is here and now.  The seven signs presented by John bear a unique witness to this, for John had known this all along.  Both the religious leaders, who feared Jesus, and the devout Jews, who were disappointed in Him, missed the point, and in the end condemned Jesus and abandoned Him in turn.

In contrast, the disciple that Jesus loved stayed by Him through the trial and to the very end on the cross.  Jesus asks John to take care of His mother, Mary, perhaps the highest honor that He could bestow on earth.  While Peter got the church and all of its issues, John would get to continue to know Jesus through His mother’s eyes.

Will we stay by Jesus through accusations and disappointments?  Will he give us something to care for, or a unique gift of insight?

We pray that you have been both blessed and challenged in your faith as we have in exploring the seven signs.

We leave you with the words or our Lord Jesus:

“I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will still live, even if he dies. 26 Whoever lives and believes in me will never die. Do you believe this?”

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint


Key Indicators for January 3, 2013

Copper Price per Lb: $3.67
Oil Price per Barrel:  $92.81
Corn Price per Bushel:  $6.89
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  1.90%
Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,664
MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  0.25%
Unemployment Rate:  7.7%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  -0.3%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  13,391
M1 Monetary Base:  $2,555,200,000,000 LOTS OF DOUGH ON THE STREET!
M2 Monetary Base:  $10,516,400,000,000

Healing of the paralytic at Bethesda: The third sign

12/17/2012 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

If you have just recently joined us here at The Mint, we are exploring the seven signs that Jesus performed which are related in the Gospel of John.  We recommend that you begin by reading Changing water into wine:  The first sign, and Healing of the Official’s son:  The second sign, for additional context, as well as bookmarking or subscribing to The Mint for updates as we move through this important series.

We are finding that each sign appears to have a central theme, an overarching lesson that Jesus was teaching.  Perhaps this is why John chose these seven out of the seemingly infinite miracles of Jesus that he had witnessed.  In Changing water into wine, Obedience appears to be central to the operation of the Miracle, in the words of Mary, the mother of Jesus, “Whatever he says to you, do it.”

In healing the Official’s son, the operation of blind faith, believing without seeing, is required, “Go your way. Your son lives.” is Jesus’s response as the Official pleads with Him to journey from Cana to Capernaum to heal his son.

Today, as we begin to examine the third sign, the healing of the paralytic at Bethesda, we must be attentive to the presence of an underlying theme, for it is becoming clear that John selected each miracle carefully, and is recounting each one in order to give us something of eternal value, something that we can use today.

In the book of John, the narrative of the third sign immediately follows that of the second sign, beginning in John, Chapter 5, verses 1 – 17.  It begins with Jesus returning to Jerusalem.

The return to Jerusalem

As we pick up the narrative, we find that Jesus has gone to Jerusalem for the second time during his earthly ministry (we know that he went once before with his parents at twelve years of age, making it technically the third time).  This time, Jesus goes to Jerusalem in full view of the religious authorities.  The observant reader will recall that after His Passover first visit, Jesus and his disciples were run out of Jerusalem by the Pharisees for what may be called “excessive baptisms.”  This time, Jesus would have the first of what would be many direct confrontations with the Jewish religious authorities.

Which Feast?

In relating this sign, John does something that at first appears to be an uncharacteristic oversight, he forgets to tell the reader which particular feast of the Jews that Jesus is attending.  This apparent oversight has led come commentators to conclude that Jesus had gone to Jerusalem to celebrate Purim, which would have occurred in early March.

However, it is more likely that the feast that John referred to, or didn’t refer to, as it were, is actually the second Passover that Jesus attended during his earthly ministry.  This can be inferred both positively, in that the Passover was referred to as the “Feast of the Jews” and that the explicit Passovers mentioned in John 2:13 and 6:4 require an extra year between them.  This interpretation also allows for the harvest seasons mentioned in Mark 2:23 and 6:39.

It can be inferred negatively as well, in that Purim was not considered a religious feast of the Jews (it would be akin to the 4th of July, in a very stretched metaphor), and that it is unlikely that, due to the climate in Palestine in early March, that the sick persons by the pool would be lying in the open air.

The final arguments against the feast being Purim lie in the narrative itself.  As Jesus performs the sign on the Sabbath, for which the religious take exception to Him, and the feast of Purim cannot be celebrated on the Sabbath.

The greater question, perhaps, is why did John, who meticulously recorded the name of the other Jewish feasts in his gospel, omit the name of this particular feast?  For an answer, as well as beautiful insight into the importance of John, we turn to Dr. William Milligan in the “International Lesson Commentary”, who is here quoted in Volume III–John of B.W. Johnson’s “The New Testament Commentary,”

Why did John, whose custom it is to mark clearly each festival of which he speaks (see 2:13, 23; 6:4; 7:2; 10:22; 11:55; 12:1; 13:1; 18:39; 19:14), write so indefinitely here? The only reply that it is possible is that the indefiniteness is the result of design. The Evangelist omits the name of the feast, that the reader may not attach to it a significance that was not intended. To John,–through clearness of insight, not from power of fancy,–every action of his Master was fraught with deep significance; and no one who receives the Lord Jesus as he received him can hesitate to admit in all his words and deeds a fulness of meaning, a perfection of fitness, immeasurably beyond what can be attributed to the highest of human prophets. Our Lord’s relation to the whole Jewish economy is never absent from John’s thought. Jesus enters the Jewish temple (chapter 2:4). His words can be understood only by those who recognize that he is himself the true temple of God. The ordained feasts of the nation find their fulfillment in him. Never, we may say, is any festival named in this Gospel in connection with our Lord, without an intention on the author’s part that we should see the truth which he saw, and behold in it a type of his Master or his work. If this be true, the indefiniteness of the language here is designed to prevent our resting upon the thought of this particular festival as fulfilled in Jesus, and lead to the concentration of our thought on the Sabbath shortly to be mentioned, which in this chapter has an importance altogether exceptional.”

The significance of the Pool

The Pool of Bethesda.  Up until the 19th century, when archeologists uncovered the site of the pool where Jesus performed this sign, there was no evidence outside of the Gospel of John that the pool existed.  This lack of evidence caused some to argue that the Gospel was written later by someone who did not have first hand knowledge of Jerusalem and chose to use the pool in a metaphorical sense.

The discovery of the pool by archeologists in 1856 did wonders for the credibility of the Gospel of John.

As it turns out, the pool, which was first mentioned in the 8th century BCE, was formed when a dam was built across the short Beth Zeta Valley, creating a reservoir.  The pool is mentioned in two other Biblical texts 2 Kings 18:17 and Isaiah 36:2, where it is referred to as the “upper pool”:

17 The king of Assyria sent Tartan and Rabsaris and Rabshakeh from Lachish to king Hezekiah with a great army to Jerusalem. They went up and came to Jerusalem. When they had come up, they came and stood by the conduit of the upper pool, which is in the highway of the fuller’s field.


The king of Assyria sent Rabshakeh from Lachish to Jerusalem to king Hezekiah with a large army. He stood by the aqueduct from the upper pool in the fuller’s field highway.

As well as in Isaiah 7:3:

Then Yahweh said to Isaiah, “Go out now to meet Ahaz, you, and Shearjashub your son, at the end of the conduit of the upper pool, on the highway of the fuller’s field.

The Bethesda Pool Today
The Bethesda Pool Today

A second pool was then added on the south side of the dam around 200 BCE.  In the first century BC, caves to the east of these pools were turned into baths as part of what was know as an asclepieion, a Roman healing temple dedicated to the god Asclepius.  The symbol for this god of medicine, healing, rejuvenation, and physicians is used today as the symbol for the American Medical Association and is ubiquitous in medical settings.

The site was brought inside the walls of Jerusalem by the expansion of Herod Agrippa around 50 BCE.  The pools, which had been constructed to bring living water into Jerusalem, had been turned into a pagan bath house whose waters are thought to have healing powers.  Naturally, it was crowded with those hoping to become well.

Today, the site of these pools is in the Muslim East Jerusalem near the ruins of a Crusader church which was completed in 1138 CE on a site that what was thought to be the birthplace of Jesus’ grandmother, Saint Anne.

So Jesus, on the Passover, the holiest of all Sabbaths, goes to the pagan bath house, which also happens to be the site that representatives of the Assyrian army stood and publicly humiliated Hezekiah, the King of Judah, before Jerusalem was invaded by them in 701 BCE.  Furthermore, according to later tradition, is near the grotto where his grandmother was believed to have born.

The pool at Bethesda ia a very interesting place, and Jesus has chosen to go there on the Passover.  What would he do?

Stay tuned for more of the third sign and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint


Key Indicators for December 17, 2012

Copper Price per Lb: $3.64
Oil Price per Barrel:  $87.48
Corn Price per Bushel:  $7.24
10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  1.76%
Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,698
MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  0.25%
Unemployment Rate:  7.7%
Inflation Rate (CPI):  -0.3%
Dow Jones Industrial Average:  13,235
M1 Monetary Base:  $2,527,700,000,000 LOTS OF DOUGH ON THE STREET!
M2 Monetary Base:  $10,375,100,000,000

Never Compromise: Murder, Robbery, Decriminalization, and the Slippery Slope

6/8/2012 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

As the world continues to hurtle towards a form of financial armageddon, at The Mint, we have become increasingly reflective.  Ed Harrision of Credit Writedowns, recently posted regarding the causes and effects of the current financial crisis/recession/depression which much of the western world now finds itself in.

In the essay, Mr. Harrison observes that one of the root causes of the financial crisis is the combining of financial deregulation with desupervision and the decriminalization of financial crimes.

The most notable example of this phenomenon has been the MF Global Bankruptcy.  On the surface, it would appear that the firm purposely helped itself to its clients’ segregated funds in order to cover the firms margin calls which it received in those gloomy days in late October of 2011.

In layman’s terms, this is robbery.  Yet in the parallel universe of the insane “debt is money” monetary system in which we live, John Corzine, the CEO of MF Global at the time and supposedly the one who is ultimately responsible for the firms actions, is able to freely walk the streets after telling a series of Congressional committees that He had no knowledge of the “transfers” (read: theft) of client’s funds which were illegally used by MF Global in a desperate attempt to stave off the firms imminent collapse in late October of 2011.

We do not wish to further flog Mr. Corzine, or for that matter, Jamie Dimon, who, as the CEO of JPMorgan, served as an accomplice to the theft (for JPM happily took the missing client funds as collateral in the fateful transfer), for their consciences, if indeed they have one, must be flogging them daily without mercy.

We do, however, wish to flog the idea of decriminalization when it comes to the financial industry.  Like sending remotely controlled drones into war, the digitalization of the world in financial matters gives the actors involved a false sense that they are operating not in the real world, but in a virtual world where they alone are acting.

How does this false perception of reality play out and, more importantly, differ from what is commonly understood as real life?

In the example of the remote controlled drone, the drone facilitates acts which more resemble murder than self defense, for it is much easier to convince a teenager, who has been raised playing video games where the actions taken on the screen have no real world consequences (save wasting otherwise valuable time), to kill someone if it can be done by giving them a video game control and a sofa from which to guide their armed drone into real world combat over half the world away.

The experience for the teenager on the sofa is similar to that of the video game and, as such, has the effect of removing the real world consequences of having murdered persons who posed them no existential threat.  It is as if the distance both dehumanizes the very real interaction which is taking place.

So it is with financial crimes.  As persons begin to conduct a great portion of their financial transactions, especially those involving large sums of money, in a virtual world with little or no human contact, it becomes easier for persons who have access to the funds of others to shun their fiduciary duty and use the funds of others for their purposes without their consent.

While the technical medium employed is an electronic transfer, the actions similar to those taken by Mr. Corzine are more accurately described as robbery.

Yet as of today, Mr. Corzine has not been accused of a crime.

The problem is not that crimes such as murder via remote controlled drone and robbery via wire transfer take place, for robbery and murder have been unfortunate parts of the human experience since the dawn of time.

Nor is it a problem that the means to commit these crimes exist and are used as a normal part of life.  For remote controlled airplanes and electronic wire transfers may have great benefits.

No, they problem is that the misuse of these mediums has been largely decriminalized.  Those who use them to commit crimes can now justify their actions behind a smokescreen of words and those who should be holding these persons accountable appeal to some good greater than Justice that is being served:  Security and Financial stability.

However, without Justice, security and financial stability are mere illusions.

What is important is to have a belief in one’s principles which is firm enough so that it is impossible to compromise them, even when holding to them causes one personal injury.

Bettie Mitchell, the founder of Good Samaritan Ministries, recently shared the story of how her father visited her one day, unannounced, when he was 70 years of age.  This was unusual because she knew that her mother had not sent him, which had always been the case in the past.

She knew that what he was to say was important, and that it did not come from him, but from the Holy Spirit.

Her father arrived at her house, she let him in.  He entered, sat down and told her the following:

“When I was your age, I had all of the spiritual gifts that you have.  Then I began to compromise.  Never Compromise.”

With that, Bettie’s father got up, and walked out.  There was nothing more to be said, the message had been delivered.

There are principles by which one must live their lives which cannot be compromised upon.  Put a different way, it is much easier to stand by one’s principles 100% of the time that 95% of the time.

Once one compromises on their principles 5%, or even 1% of the time, they begin to go down a slippery slope.  They are constantly searching for the next patch of firm ground upon which to stand as they find themselves caught sliding down an increasingly unstable incline.

How easy it would have been to simply stay on the level path, even if it did take a little longer to get to one’s destination.

Today, while lawmakers, Judges, and central bankers struggle to find their moral compass as they slide further down the slippery slope they have set out on, we challenge each and every one of you, fellow taxpayers, to stay on the path, where it has always been wrong to steal, and it has always been wrong to murder.

For it is this increasingly narrow path that leads to life.

Stay tuned for further sections and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint


Key Indicators for June 8, 2012

Copper Price per Lb: $3.30

Oil Price per Barrel:  $84.10

Corn Price per Bushel:  $5.92

10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  1.64%


Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,595

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  0.25% AWAY WE GO!

Unemployment Rate:  8.2%

Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.0%

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 12,554

M1 Monetary Base:  $2,306,000,000,000

M2 Monetary Base:  $9,790,100,000,000


The following is yet another excerpt of a book which we have recently completed about teaching the Bible which focuses on some techniques that may be little known and are certainly seldom practiced today.  Here we present “Teaching Hosea,”  Enjoy!

Taken from “Hosea: A teacher’s guide for those who are lead to teach the book of Hosea”


With these teaching tools in your tool belt, it is now time to approach Hosea.  The following sections are tools designed to acquaint you with the prophet and the world in which he lived.  It is by no means exhaustive and is no substitute for your own investigation on the subject.

Keep in mind that teaching the Word of God is not a journalistic exercise, nor is it similar to writing an academic paper.  As such, there are no formal rules with regards to citing your sources or using previous academic work to support your statements.  In fact, citing sources in an attempt to gain credibility with your class may have just the opposite effect.

The Word of God is its own authority, and you, who have humbly submitted yourself to guide the class through the Word of God, will speak on its authority to the degree that you allow the Holy Spirit to operate both in your life and in the class that you are guiding.

An 18th century Russian icon of the prophet Hosea located in the Iconostasis of Transfiguration church, Kizhi monastery, Karelia, Northern Russia, painted by an unidentified artist during the first quarter of the 18th century.

It will be obvious to all when you state an opinion that is purely your own, and you should not be afraid to speak into the class that which you are lead to say simply because you cannot find it cited somewhere else.  For what you are to speak is something new, and many may be healed by what you say at the Lord’s direction. Again I say, do not be afraid to speak it.

The setting and character development which will greatly enrich the class can and must be investigated both inside and outside of the Bible.  The Bible did not take place in a vacuum, and neither should your teaching of the Bible take place in a vacuum.  There is a wealth of information being discovered today which is serving to support the Biblical narrative as God’s creation bears witness to His Word.  It is your job as the teacher to investigate and bring what is required of this information to your class.

The balance of this book is a summary of my own investigation into Hosea, and I pray that it will supplement your own study of Hosea.  You are free to use of it what you deem appropriate for your specific audience.

Stay tuned for more teaching tips and purchase the book itself hereTrust Jesus and stay fresh!

The Bible Play – Getting to Know the People of the Bible

The following is another excerpt of a book which we have recently completed about teaching the Bible which focuses on some techniques that may be little known and are certainly seldom practiced today.  Here we present “Getting to Know the People of the Bible,” a wonderful way to deeply explore the Biblical text in a participatory Group setting.  Enjoy!

Taken from “Hosea: A teacher’s guide for those who are lead to teach the book of Hosea

Getting to Know the People of the Bible

While reading the Bible is a great discipline, it is at least equally important that the Bible be understood through the eyes of the characters who are both explicitly and implicitly a part of the story. Many of the characters in the Bible are unnamed, such as the soldiers who guarded the tomb of Jesus.

While it is possible to read the Bible and focus on the main characters, there is a tremendous amount to be learned from a study of the Bible through the eyes of all of those who were actually present at the event.

How can this be accomplished? It is possible to read any number of commentaries, speak with pastors, friends, and read related histories with the goal of accomplishing a complete understanding of the event and the eternal truth that God is trying to teach.

However, there is a superior and much less time consuming way to intimately know the characters of the Bible. That is, to role play, or become them for a time, if you will, for yourself. This miracle can be accomplished by what we call a “Bible Play.”

The Bible Play is to be accomplished in a class or other type of group setting. The teacher or the group will decide which part of the Bible that they are to act for the play. This is usually done by the teacher, but in a smaller group can be done by prayerful consensus.

Once the part of the Bible to be explored has been decided, the teacher is to read the story once through, stopping each time a new character is introduced and acknowledging the character by name to the class. At this point, it is important to mention that characters can include animals and inanimate objects as well.

After the first reading, the teacher calls for a time of prayer, in which everyone, the teacher included, is to choose which character in that they are to become. The Holy Spirit will guide this process, for each person present has something unique to learn and be healed of in this exercise.

During the time of prayer, the Lord may reveal characters which are not explicitly mentioned in the Biblical text as being present as being there. This is completely valid as long as the group unanimously agrees to the inclusion of the up until now unmentioned character.

Once EVERYONE has a character (for none may be simply observers to this exercise), the teacher will identify the physical space in which the play will take place. The characters are to take their initial places in the physical space, collaborating with everyone in the group until there is agreement upon the basic starting places and areas for interactions amongst the characters as called for in the Biblical text. This does not have to be done in exhaustive detail, but there must be agreement as to the areas described to enable the interactions amongst characters in the Biblical text to occur.

If the story calls for two or more physical locations, such as Jonah on the boat, in the belly of the whale, and then in Nineveh, it is important to understand that these physical spaces should be completely separate from each other. You are not simply setting scenes on a stage, the entire Bible play and all involved must become alive.

After the characters and spaces are chosen, the play is to begin. Everyone must participate and there is no rehearsal. In the Bible there were no rehearsals, and to fully understand the character through the activity of the Bible play the events must be encountered naturally, without preparation or prior coordination other than the agreement as to spaces mentioned above.

An 18th century Russian icon of the prophet Hosea located in the Iconostasis of Transfiguration church, Kizhi monastery, Karelia, Northern Russia, painted by an unidentified artist during the first quarter of the 18th century.

The teacher or assigned narrator (which is also a valid and required character) begins to read the story and the action begins. If a character is to speak, the narrator may give the line to the character, but the person playing the character must speak it aloud. This detail is powerful and adds much to the play.

Once a character is completely done with their action, they may follow along with the narrator and watch what unfolds unless their character is specifically called to stay with the story. In many cases, the participant may find what their character did after the interaction called for by the Biblical text. This knowledge may be important and cannot be discounted. The participant is to be the character until the reading of the Biblical text is complete.

At this point it is important to mention that no one, not the teacher nor the narrator are to assume the role of a director, for it is the Holy Spirit who directs the play.

After the story is complete, all participants are to share what they learned about their character during the Bible Play. Much healing is accomplished by during this time of reflection.

The Bible Play is the best method by which to know the characters of the Bible, for during the play, they are truly there with us. There is cannot be accomplished any other way. One may read 1,000 books about Hosea but until you have actually seen, heard, or been him, you will never truly know him.

Stay tuned for more teaching tips and click here to purchase the bookTrust Jesus and stay fresh!


The following is another excerpt of a book which we have recently completed about teaching the Bible which focuses on some techniques that may be little known and are certainly seldom practiced today.  Here we present the all important element which we call the “Setting,” which, as you can imagine, is not what it seems.  Enjoy!

Taken from “Hosea: A teacher’s guide for those who are lead to teach the book of Hosea


As we alluded to earlier, there is a power that is unleashed by simply reading the Word of God as if you have never read it before.  A key to this power being released is the teacher’s ability to bring the class into the setting of the Biblical text.

An 18th century Russian icon of the prophet Hosea located in the Iconostasis of Transfiguration church, Kizhi monastery, Karelia, Northern Russia, painted by an unidentified artist during the first quarter of the 18th century.

Setting, in this sense, is more than historical facts and data. It is more than an understanding of the people, places, economic, religious, and geopolitical circumstances which are present at the time the text is taking place in.  All of these are important elements of setting and can be aids to the class’s understanding of the text, however, for the Power of The Living God to be released into the room, something more is required.

The class must miraculously be transported to the time and place of Biblical account to be transformed.  The teacher guides the class to this place by humble submission to the power of God at work in the room.  In this place, all of the class’s previously formed conclusions about the Biblical text are shattered as they are transported to the place and time where the Biblical text takes place.  It is no longer a story or lesson, the room is alive as each person through supernatural selection assumes their place in the Biblical account as it is actually taking place around them.

Each person in the class is healed as the Spirit of The Living God teaches through each one of us as we experience the text as is written, not as it is interpreted by the teacher, but as it is spoken aloud to the class.

The teacher must balance elements of timing, relationship, and content as the healing presence of the Holy Spirit moves through the room.  The setting is given by The Lord and communicated through the teacher to bring healing as we open the Bible as if we have never opened it before.

Stay tuned for more teaching tips and purchase a copy of the book itself hereTrust Jesus and stay fresh!

The Importance of the Bible, A Foray into E-Book publishing

2/27/2012 Portland, Oregon – Pop in your mints…

We have been busy here at The Mint publishing our first of what we hope will be many E-books.  To the surprise of many, it has nothing to do with Monetary Theory.  For Monetary Theory to have any coherence, a proper understanding of the world must first be established.  This E-Book is a humble attempt to begin this process for our dear fellow taxpayers.

Regardless of whether you believe that the Words of the Bible are true or if you are of the opinion that the Bible has nothing of relevance to say to the modern world, it is extremely urgent that you examine the Bible soon for it will provide the only coherent explanation for the events which are unfolding.

This particular E book deals with teaching the Bible, specifically the book of the prophet Hosea.  Fellow taxpayers who have an interest in the Bible are encouraged to take a peek at it here.  The book presents a method which is entirely different than any other teaching method which we have encountered, for it permits the Word of God to speak for itself, free of man’s distorted and too often self interested interpretations.

A book which teaches one to study the Bible may not be what one would expect from The Mint.  On the other hand, given that the Bible is our only hope of grasping a coherent, consistent truth from which all other events can be understood and put into perspective, there could perhaps be no more urgent or noble undertaking to which we must dedicate our lives

In the Bible, God did 10 amazing things: 

  1. He gave us a concrete understanding of our origins in a way so simple that a child can understand it.
  2. He gave us a historical narrative that can be archeologically corroborated should we have doubts that the events actually took place.
  3. He gave us 10 rules to live by which, if observed, would eradicate every social and many physical and mental ailments.
  4. He provided a number of other tips and suggestions which would further improve the general welfare.
  5. He gave us a brief summary so that we would not have to memorize the rules, tips, and suggestions in order to observe them.
  6. He gave us the choice whether to live by the rules and suggestions or not.
  7. He sent His Son to accept all of the natural consequences for failing to observe the rules and suggestions and in the process He vanquished the inevitability of death.
  8. He gave examples of every problem imaginable with regards to family and other human relationships, and then some.
  9. He laid down the division between good and evil which had nothing to do with observed behavior and everything to do with intent.
  10. He gave us a promise the He would physically return to dwell with us.

It should come as no surprise, then, that a correct understanding of the present state of the economy and of cause and effect can only be achieved by first understanding the essence of life, the world in which we live, and most importantly, who is ultimately in charge.

There is a need for understanding that can only be found in the Bible.  While reading the Bible is a good way to start, listening to the spoken word of the Bible in the presence of others is a much better way to gain the aforementioned understanding of life itself.

This E Book is an attempt to open the Word of God to be understood by many.  There is a deep need for people to take the hard assignments that are given to them as they gain this aforementioned understanding for themselves.

Are you ready, fellow taxpayer?

Stay tuned and Trust Jesus.

Stay Fresh!

David Mint



Key Indicators for February 27, 2012

Copper Price per Lb: $3.84

Oil Price per Barrel:  $107.96

Corn Price per Bushel:  $6.44

10 Yr US Treasury Bond:  1.92%


Gold Price Per Ounce:  $1,768

MINT Perceived Target Rate*:  1.00% AWAY WE GO!

Unemployment Rate:  8.3%

Inflation Rate (CPI):  0.2%

Dow Jones Industrial Average: 12,981

M1 Monetary Base:  $2,137,600,000,000

M2 Monetary Base:  $9,763,200,000,000

Everybody Has a Voice

The following is another excerpt of a book which we have recently completed about teaching the Bible which focuses on some techniques that may be little known and are certainly seldom practiced today.  Here we present two more, “Everybody has a voice,” and an additional note on preparation.  Enjoy!

Taken from “Hosea: A brief guide for those who are lead to teach the book of Hosea

Everybody Has a Voice

The person who is teaching must recognize that they are not truly the teacher, per se, rather, that they are the intermediary who is delivering the Word of God afresh to minister to thirsty souls, amongst which they must find their own.  As such, it is important to ask open ended questions of the audience and to give everyone in the room an opportunity to respond.  It is equally important to understand that some questions do not have answers, in fact, the best questions tend to lead to further questions rather than answers.

And it is good.  Remember, as you are speaking the Word, the Holy Spirit is ministering about the room.  As the audience listens to the Word of God and the Holy Spirit is ministering, it becomes apparent that everyone in the room is a teacher and one person’s response to your question or comment may minister to another in the room without either of you being aware of it.  The healing that occurs when this take place is amazing, and should be expected to be a constant part of the class when the Holy Spirit is leading.

There are no set rules, but as the intermediary (read teacher), the person in charge of the class has the responsibility to maintain the classroom environment as holy.  If a question or comment carries on it can become more of a distraction than an aid to the healing that is taking place.

There is a fine line between teaching the Word of God and expressing one’s own opinions.  It will be clear when it has been crossed, as the teacher, you are responsible for discerning when it has been crossed and steering the class back to the Holy Place.

A Brief Note on Preparation

While we have provided a number of questions and historical background to facilitate the study, we encourage you to read the entire Biblical text which you will teach, in this case Hosea, at least five times before presenting it.  Each time, write down key questions which the Word begs the reader to answer.  We have provided space for you to do this on page 19, and it is expected that this space will not be adequate.

Some of these questions will simply appear verbatim in the Biblical text, as is often the case when Jesus is teaching.  Some of them will come to you through the Holy Spirit as you read and prepare.  All of these questions are valid, and the Holy Spirit will guide you as to which questions to ask.  Even simple questions such as, “what are you hearing?” or “what is happening out there, would anyone like to comment?” can lead to great healing amongst those in the class.

Stay tuned for more teaching tips and the release of the book itself here at The Mint.  Trust Jesus and stay fresh!

Opening the Bible as if You have Never Read It Before

The following is an excerpt of a book which we have recently completed about teaching the Bible, focusing on some techniques that may be little known and are certainly seldom practiced today.  We pray that it will be a blessing to you and encourage you to open the Bible as if you have never read it before.  Enjoy!

Taken from “Hosea: A brief guide for those who are lead to teach the book of Hosea


You do not need to be an expert to teach the Word of God.  In fact, some would argue that an advanced degree in a Seminary actually hinders your ability to teach.  Sound strange?  In our experience, we have found that a great majority of sermons and Bible studies tend to drive the audience to a somewhat premeditated conclusion.

There is generally nothing wrong with this.  From our childhood we are taught to structure our essays and messages concisely so that at the beginning, the audience knows what your talking points will be and what they are supposed to get out of it.

This approach may work well in academic circles and “how to” books, yet it is a complete and total disaster when employed in an attempt to teach the Words of the Living God.

Open the Bible as if You have Never Read It Before

The holiness and perfection of the Bible allow us to learn something new each time that we read it.

For this reason, we would like to encourage you and your audience, beginning with this study, to open the Bible as if they have never read it before.  Many Christians have preconceived notions and prejudices regarding the parts of the Bible which must be overcome for the Word of God to move in a new way in their lives.  Opening the Bible as if you have never read it before accomplishes this goal for most people.

Read Slowly: Let the Word Of God Resonate in the Room

Another necessity when teaching the Word of God is to read slowly.  When teaching the Word of God, it is important to both read aloud and to listen to your own voice.  Far from being ridiculous, slowly reading the Word of God accomplishes two important purposes.  First, it allows everyone in the audience both to hear and to meditate on the words.  Second, you will immediately notice that the spoken words themselves have a power which resonates throughout the room.

Hearing is a deeply spiritual exercise.  Listening to yourself as you read will generally ensure that you maintain the proper pace and that the Holy Spirit moves about the room, ministering to everyone as they simply listen, for the Word of God does not ever return void.

Sound interesting?  Stay tuned for more teaching tips and the release of the book itself here at The Mint.  Trust Jesus and stay fresh!

The death of Isaiah

The following is a brief narrative loosely based on the “Ascension of Isaiah”, an early Christian text:

“You are around a campfire on a mountain after fleeing Bethlehem, which you had fled to after you’d fled Jerusalem.  You are with Isaiah and other prophets who have come under persecution by Manasseh, and you are overjoyed.  Not because of your current circumstances, but by what the Lord has spoken to you and your brethren who are sitting around the fire with you this cold night.

Isaiah has just told you and your brethren about his ascension to the seventh heaven, where he was permitted to see the Son of Man descend, undetected, through the heavens and down to earth to come to his own as a babe in a manger.  He then tells how he saw the Son of Man nailed to a tree and then descending into Sheol, only to return victoriously to the seventh heaven in unimaginable glory to sit at the right hand of the Eternal One.

Indeed, it is a terrible and wonderful time.

As you are rejoicing with your brethren over the promised Messiah and the Lord’s final victory over death, you see torches and hear shouts coming from the valley below, you and your brethren quickly extinguish the flames and run to hide wherever you can.  As you crouch behind a rock, out of the corner of your eye you watch Isaiah slip into a hollowed out tree. 

The men in torches appear and begin to search the area around the smoldering campfire.  You see that they are led by none other than Manasseh, the king of Judah.  You then recall that Isaiah had prophesied that indeed he would die by Manasseh’s hand.  As you are piecing this together in your mind, one of Manasseh’s men passes the by the rock which is your cover and strides up next to the tree in which Isaiah is hiding.  As he searches the branches above, he notices a light emanating from within the trunk of the tree.

It is Isaiah. 

You fix upon Isaiah’s face and watch as a holy calm and radiance comes over him.  A radiance that would later be recognized on the face of Stephen, the first Jew to be martyred for giving testimony to the messiah that Isaiah foresaw some 700 years earlier.

Then the unthinkable happens…

{Editor’s Note:  For those unfamiliar with the story, it is widely believed that Isaiah was sawn in two by Manasseh’s men while hiding in the tree.  This is testified to in the Jerusalem Talmud, the Babylonian Talmud, and the early Christian psuedepigrapha “The Ascension of Isaiah,”}