London, England – A Brief History 1529AD To The Present

Since its founding as little more than a Roman fort, London slowly prospered and expanded. Such is its resilience, it survived the Norman invasion, the Dark Ages and the Black Death in the following 1,500 years.

It’s greatest period of prosperity started during the time of Henry VIII, in the sixteenth century, who — despite his shortcomings as a loyal husband — did lay the foundations for massive global expansion in Britain’s influence and empire.

A fortunate by-product of Henry’s split with the Roman Catholic Church was the arrival in England of Protestant Huguenot refugees, from the nearby continent of Europe. England has always benefited from the skills of its immigrants and none more so than from the Huguenots, who brought with them their secret skills in silk weaving. Silk cloth was a highly prized product and proved to be a massive boost for the trade and wealth of the country — and London, in particular.

The increasing population and wealth lead to a great deal of new building. Being an island gave Britain an extra layer of protection from invasion. So London was able to expand well beyond the confines of the original walled city without fear, and this it did.

Queen Elizabeth I, daughter of Henry VIII, sought to curb this expansion without effect. Indeed her own encouragement to empire building in the form of Sir Walter Raleigh and Sir Francis Drake, only gave new impetus to London’s wealth and power.

Due to the restrictions on building new property, many of the existing properties were bizarrely extended upwards, with floors which jettied beyond the original walls. This lead to situations where the upper floors of houses almost touched, forming archways over the streets, with the occupants able to lean out of the upper floor windows and shake hands with the people opposite!

After the civil war and the execution of Charles I, Oliver Cromwell eventually relinquished his position as Lord Protector and England once more had a monarch, in the person of Charles II. During his reign, there was a dramatic flowering of science, lead by Sir Isaac Newton.

London also experienced the Great Fire of London, in 1666, which destroyed most of the wooden buildings in the old city of London. It also, conveniently, destroyed the last vestiges of the plague, which had decimated the area the previous year.

Sir Christopher Wren, who designed and built St Paul’s Cathedral, drew up a grand design for the replacement of the whole area, to avoid the unsanitary conditions that had lead to the plague. However, such a dramatic transformation would require wholesale acquisition of the land in the area and, due to the difficulty in tracing all the various owners, time ran out and new buildings were put up. These were of more fireproof materials, mainly brick, but still following the higgledy piggledy lines of the old city. Thus the organic charm of the old city of London was not swept away by Wren’s grand vision, and still survives to delight visitors in the 21st century.

Until the seventeenth century, London had grown on east-west lines, along the River Thames, using the river itself as the main highway. What minor inconvenience the River Thames presented to north-south travel was overcome by the provision of ferries, both in the London Bridge area and up river at Putney. However, as London expanded to the north and south, the need for swift transport across the river became apparent and this period was the start of the building of London’s many bridges.

During the Georgian period, London — by then the center of a growing worldwide empire — expanded even more dramatically, with many of the fine and sought after terraces so admired today, being built very rapidly.

As the latest in technology — the railway — developed, there was pressure to keep these away from the center of London. This is why present day London is ringed with railway termini, which originally stopped at the then edge of the city.

With no major railway line cutting right through the city, it was left to the ingenuity of engineers to provide an alternative. This they did by digging a cutting to take the railway, which was then covered over and built on. Thus was created the world’s first underground (or subway) railway. This technique of “cut and cover” as it was known, proved such a success other lines were created in the same fashion. When the railways reached the outer areas of London, they were permitted to rise to ground level, which was considerably cheaper. This, in turn, led to the springing up of new suburbs, clustered around the new railway lines, which offered fast, comfortable and safe transport into the center of London.

Finally, “the commuter” was born.

The most popular suburbs were to the west of London, as they were downwind from the smoke and pollution arising from the city. In the 1930s many cleaner, new “high tech” industries — many American owned, such as Gillette and Firestone — sprang up along The Great West Road, originally the old coaching road to Bath, the ancient Roman city in the far west. Also at this time, several movie studios were built in the western suburbs of London.

World War two came right to the center of London with almost nightly raids by heavy bombers of the Nazi Luftwaffe. These were targeted mainly on the east of London, where the mighty Pool of London docks and factories were situated. Many of these devices were incendiary bombs, designed to maximize damage by starting massive fires. There is a famous picture of St Paul’s Cathedral, surrounded on all sides by raging infernos, yet unscathed and defiant against the very worst that could be thrown at London.

Rebuilding and expansion after the war, lead to the creation of the Green Belt: a notional belt of undeveloped land surrounding London to limit further expansion. With it’s “green lungs” — the massive parks right at its center — the green belt sourrounding it, plus the thousands of trees within, London, despite being one of the largest cities in the world, still retains a village feel, with each former village, now swallowed up by the great metropolis, still retaining much of their own particular character and charm.

In the 1950s the pollution, particularly from thousands of household coal fires, coupled with London’s famous autumnal fogs, combined to create “smog”. The government brought in a Clean Air Act, to force the use of processed coal — called smokeless fuel — which cleared up the smog.

In the 21st century of its existence, London is not resting on its laurels and is, right now, busy re-inventing itself. It already boasts the world’s busiest airport, to the west and is hard at work regenerating the eastern area of London ready to stage the Olympic Games in 2012.

Debt Negotiation – Should You Rather Go For Professional Negotiation Or Self Negotiation

The recent events in the US economy have opened up many new avenues to manage finances, such as debt negotiation. Debt negotiation is one way of getting rid of accumulated arrears. By adopting a proper course of action a person with unpaid bills can easily manage to reduce a major chunk of his or her unpaid bills so that they can get a fresh start and move on with their lives without much worry about paying a colossal pending interest from their previous transactions.

Why Would Anyone Need To Negotiate a Debt Reduction?

The answer is simply the fact that people have recently faced much mayhem in their lives owing to the current economic recession. Many lost jobs and many watched their businesses go down as unprecedented events in global and local economy took place. Many hardworking people lost their jobs and were left without much hope for an early revival. The only way they had was to continue spending on their credit cards just to survive. Such people now require a fresh start so that they can again get back on their feet without a lurking bill collector in the shadows.

Why Would Banks Agree To Negotiate?

Considering the fact that people owe to the banks and other financial companies, it would be legal for them to force an individual to pay back and chances are that the law will also side with them. But the other side of the coin shows that people aren’t in a position to pay back. This puts everyone in an awkward situation, especially the financiers as without cash they are bound to collapse. Banks need cash flow to continue business as usual, so they find this as a better option to reduce the payable amount so that people pay something instead of nothing.

Will The Banks Negotiate With Everyone?

The answer is simply “NO.” They will attempt to get the maximum out of their clients and as long as the client is under legal pressure of some sort they will give in at some point. So they will try their best to deny a reduction by all legal means. To manage a reduction a person has to know all the legal rules and regulations so that they can handle their case in a manner that the creditor is unable to deny their demand.

What Makes Professional Settlement Companies Better Choice than Self Negotiation

The fact that financial cases, especially bankruptcy are dealt under federal law amply highlights the importance of the matter. When we prefer to employ professional legal aid to resolve any legal matter then this makes a professional settlement company the first choice to handle a negotiation on your behalf. Professional negotiation is conducted by qualified attorneys who know the ins and outs of financial laws and offer anyone a better chance of striking a great deal which self negotiation can never get.

Considering all the above facts it is up to you to decide what is best for you!

The Confession of Sins – Is 1 John 1:9 a Part of God’s Will for the Present Dispensation of Grace?

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).

Guilt is a killer. A killer of our joy, our peace, our enjoyment of intimacy with God. It is one of Satan’s most effective weapons against the sons of men. Psychiatrists and doctors tell us that unresolved guilt is the number one cause of mental illness and suicide. Over half of all hospital beds are filled by people who have emotional illnesses. Guilt kills relationships, both among people and with God. We cannot freely forgive others until we first receive that forgiveness from God.

Our gracious and loving Father has provided a full and complete deliverance from sin and guilt. But if we believe a lie and fail to deal with guilt in the way God has dealt with it, we fall into a snare and
it becomes a most grievous and cruel weapon against us.

Guilt is that moral sense of blameworthiness that each of us feels when we know that we have done wrong. It is not necessarily bad, for it tells us that we have sinned and that something must be done about it. Just as our bodies should hurt when they are diseased or injured, so our God-given conscience should hurt when we violate what we know is right.

At the beginning, we must realize that God has not dealt with the guilt problem in the same way throughout Bible history. This is of utmost importance to know, for so many of the problems regarding guilt are made worse by people trying to obey God’s commands given to people of other dispensations. For example, under the law of Moses, the children of Israel were commanded to “afflict your souls” as the high priest made atonement for their sins through animal sacrifice (Lev. 16:29-31). The writer of Hebrews elaborates on this Day of Atonement and the inability of the law to provide complete forgiveness.

“For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things, can never with those sacrifices which they offered year by year continually make the comers thereunto perfect.

“For then would they not have ceased to be offered? Because that the worshippers once purged should have had no more conscience of sins.

“But in those sacrifices there is a remembrance again made of sins every year.

“For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins” (Heb. 10:1-4).

Although this was a merciful provision in Israel for the time then present, the law was inadequate to make the worshippers perfect in conscience in relation to the guilt problem. The very fact that the sacrifices had to be repeated was a constant reminder that God’s forgiveness was given out piecemeal, i.e., on an installment plan. It was never completed. God’s people were expected to lament and afflict their souls, which is the antithesis of a perfected conscience. Indeed, far from being a satisfactory answer for guilt, Paul tells us in no uncertain terms why the law was given.

“Now we know that what things soever the law saith, it saith to them who are under the law: that every mouth may be stopped, and all the world may become guilty before God” (Rom. 3:19).

God graciously provided the sacrificial system of the law to temporarily atone (cover) the sins of his people until the “precious blood of Christ” could be shed to purchase eternal redemption for us.
Those living before the Cross were “saved on credit,” so to speak, until the fullness of time arrived for the complete removal of our sins. Even in portions of what we call the New Testament, forgiveness was conditional and therefore not complete (Matt. 6:12,14,15; 18:34,35; Mark 11:25,26; Luke 6:37c). The revelation of the Mystery through the Apostle Paul by the ascended, glorified Christ was yet future from the perspective of Matthew-John. And so the capstone of divine revelation concerning the total forgiveness of sins remained missing until that time. All of this is essential to understand throughout the remainder of our study.

With this in mind, there is one Scripture which in this writer’s view has caused untold harm and detriment to the people of God. Not because the verse itself is faulty, for all Scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable, but because religious leaders have so miserably misinterpreted and misapplied its original intent. What makes this all the more tragic is that it comes not from the enemies of Christ but from sincere, well respected, Bible-believing Christians. The verse I speak of is 1 John 1:9.

In order to view the verse within its context, I ask you simply to prayerfully consider the following passage from 1 John 1:1-10.

1. That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life;

2. (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and show unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;)

3. That which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with His Son Jesus Christ.

4. And these things write we unto you, that your joy may be full.

5. This then is the message which we have heard of Him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in Him is no darkness at all.

6. If we say that we have fellowship with Him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth.

7. But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin.

8. If we say that we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

9. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

10. If we say that we have not sinned, we make Him a liar, and His Word is not in us.

Are you confident that you understand verse 9 in context? Let us see. Although men have many variations of interpretation on this verse, we will mention here only three of the most popular.

1. It is a salvation verse which tells the sinner how to receive the forgiveness of sins today.

2. It is a restoration verse.

a. Restoring one to salvation or,

b. Restoring one to fellowship

3. It is a verse pertaining to the Jews under the Kingdom program of Prophecy and has little if any application to the Gentiles today under the Body of Christ program of the Mystery.

For the time being, I would like to pass over numbers 1 and 3 and deal directly with number 2. The other two will take care of themselves as we come to understand the passage. Part 2-a is the most easily answered. This is the view that a saved person can become lost again through backsliding, carnality, losing faith, etc.

Often a person is told that his sins are forgiven up to the time he is saved. From that point forward the merits of Christ’s death are beneficial to him only as he is faithful to confess his sins to God and thus stay cleansed in His sight.

First of all, regeneration or the new birth is spoken of as a one time experience. No Bible passage speaks of being born again and again and again. During my college years, I attended a tent meeting for three nights with some friends. I couldn’t help noticing that the same people went forward each night after the sermon to receive forgiveness. One night the evangelist quoted 1 John 1:9 and made the statement that no one with unconfessed sin will enter heaven. When I pressed him about this after the meeting, he finally conceded that John probably meant the grosser forms of sin. This underscores another problem with this view. How many sins did God allow Adam and Eve before they were cast out from His presence in the garden of Eden? Only one. And all they did was eat a piece of fruit that the Lord told them not to. How many unforgiven sins do you suppose it will take to banish you to the everlasting burnings? Only one. God is holy and of purer eyes than to behold evil, and cannot look on iniquity. If your forgiveness depends on your confession of sins, you better be diligent not to forget even one.

The second reason 1 John 1:9 cannot refer to a restoration to salvation is that eternal life is a free gift. It is given by God’s grace not merely to the undeserving, but to those who deserve the exact opposite. If God rescinded His gift, that would make Him more gracious to His enemies than to His own children. God does not take back the gift if you become unworthy. We were never worthy to begin with.

Thirdly, God wishes for us to enjoy the gift of salvation. Salvation is of the Lord. Man’s only responsibility is to believe. Does God want us to walk through our Christian lives with a cloud over our heads? Those who believe that their forgiveness depends on their continual confession of sins soon find that their Christian experience has turned into “a day of darkness and gloominess, a day of clouds and thick darkness.”

The Scriptures tell us that upon believing that the Lord Jesus died for us and rose again we are sealed by the Holy Spirit until the day of redemption. Nothing can separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord (Eph. 1:13,14; Rom. 8:31-38). With the gospel of the grace of God, we have the pleasure of declaring the total forgiveness of sins. This brings peace, joy, and stability. More about this later.

Number 2-b above also speaks of restoration, not to salvation or even to maintain it, but rather to fellowship. Those who hold this view understand clearly the teaching of eternal security and the
preservation of the saints. The issue this time is intimacy with their heavenly Father. Our relationship is like the Rock of Gibraltar, steadfast and immovable. On the other hand, our fellowship (we are told) is like a tiny thread which the slightest sin in thought, word, or deed can break. Perhaps the best illustration of this view is the fellowship between a father and son. If the son sins against his father, the intimacy formerly enjoyed by both is broken and the pleasure of each other’s company is strained. The blood relationship of father and son remains intact, but the fellowship must be
restored by confession of wrongdoing. Likewise, Christians have a blood relationship to our heavenly Father through His Son Jesus Christ. While nothing can break our relationship as sons of God, fellowship
can only be restored by acknowledging the sin and an apology made, preferably with a pledge not to repeat the offense. This re-establishes the sweetness of fellowship and the pleasure with which both
Father and son can relate to each other.

Believers who seek to practice this often speak of “keeping short accounts with God,” that is, making sure you confess sins regularly so your account does not build up with unconfessed sin. Psalms
32, 51, and John 13:1-20 are often quoted to confirm this position.

This view of 1 John 1:9 has more to commend it than the previous one. “Confession is good for the soul” is a truism which holds good for all ages and dispensations. Indeed, Proverbs 28:13 says,

“He that covereth his sins shall not prosper: but whoso confesseth1 and forsaketh them shall have mercy.”

In my formative years as a Christian, this view seemed to me to be logical, balanced and right. I knew many respected Bible teachers who taught this. Through the years, however, I believe the Spirit of God was pricking my conscience to show me things which revealed the shortcomings of this approach. Among them were:

1. It is based on a performance system of conditional blessing, and shifted my gaze away from Christ and His grace to my own faithfulness (or usually failure) to confess.

2. If what I believed concerning confession was true, I was probably “out of fellowship” much of the time, and so were most believers.

3. There were many things in 1 John Chapter 1 which are inconsistent with this view.

4. Concerning the popular father-son illustration, several rhetorical questions could be asked to show its weakness. What if the son fails to confess wrongdoing? Should the father continue to show him the cold shoulder until he does? What kind of father would that make him? Would this be a fitting picture of how our loving heavenly Father deals with His children today under grace? Further, the phrase “faithful and just” more aptly describes the judge in a courtroom than a father in the family room.

5. I had to honestly admit to myself that I found it extremely difficult to confess all my daily sins on a consistent basis.

6. This view of 1 John 1:9 must, of necessity, occupy a major plank in a person’s belief system. Without regular confession of sin, the promise of continual cleansing is rendered null and void resulting
in broken fellowship. And who wants to be out of fellowship with God?

7. Paul, the apostle of the Gentiles, is silent in all his writings on confession of sins for forgiveness, parental or otherwise.

8. Paul’s epistles give us a positive affirmation of total, complete and unconditional forgiveness for all those in Christ Jesus.

A few examples should suffice,