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Challenge in the Middle East trade deals

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LIFE’S INSPIRATIONS: “… But remember the Lord your God, for it is he who gives you the ability to produce wealth…” (Deuteronomy 8:18, the Holy Bible).

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IT IS “RESURRECTION SUNDAY”, NOT EASTER:Here’s a short point on what Christendom should really be celebrating on the Sunday that Jesus, our God and Savior, rose from the dead, as per the message forwarded to me by lawyer and La Union Integrated Bar of the Philippines director Doroteo Baluyut Aguila II: calling this Sunday as “Easter Sunday” appears paganistic.

Aguila, quoting Rev. Isagani Deslate, said: “According to ancient Church historian and scholar Benerable Bede,  and Jacob Grimm, a 19th century linguistic scholar and historian, the word `Easter’ has its origin with the Anglo-Saxon `Eastre’ or Northumbrian `Eostre’, the goddess of fertility and spring, whose feast was celebrated at dawn in spring.

“Bunnies or rabbits, which are prolific and symbols of fertility, are carryovers from the pagan goddess’ celebrations.As Christians, we should give honor to Jesus, the one who rose from the grave, not to the pagan goddess of spring and fertility named Easter. Thus, let us call the day when our Lord rose from the dead `RESURRECTION SUNDAY’ instead of `Easter’…”

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CHALLENGE IN THE TRADE DEALS SIGNED IN THE MIDDLE EAST:Part of the joyous celebrations of Resurrection Sunday 2017 should be the four agreements which the Philippines and Bahrain signed in the course of second leg of the state visit to the Middle East of President Duterte, then the three agreements which our country signed with Saud Arabia earlier, and the World Bank forecast that the Philippines will remain a top economic performer in the East Asia and Pacific regions.

In all, these developments signify robust economic growth from bustling business activities between the Philippines and Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, which previously were unheard of. I could only agree with what Malacanang Spokesman Ernesto Abella said, that Duterte is bringing the Filipino to a place of self-worth, self-rule, and self-support.

But be that as it may, the real challenge for the Office of the President now, with these expected influx of business investments from Middle East countries, is how to allow the economic benefits from these trade deals to trickle down to the greater number of the Filipino people. I pray that, unlike in past governments where the deals benefitted only the rich, this time the masses can feel the benefits themselves.

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BECOMING WEALTHY IS A MATTER OF SPIRITUALITY:This, however, is not a one-way challenge, which Malacanang and Duterte alone must respond to. Filipinos must have to do their share in ensuring that material prosperity comes down to their level. And while many say the vast majority of Filipinos who are poor can not really do something to compel a more equitable distribution of wealth to favor them, I say there is something that can be done.

First, poor Filipinos must realize, and have to inculcate deeply into their minds, that wealth is principally a matter of spiritual strength. It is to God that they must depend on totally if they wish to experience economic turn-around or material blessings. They must forever remember the truth that they “must not forget the Lord their God because it is He who gives the ability to acquire wealth.”

Second, depending on God means knowing His Word and obeying His commands. Filipinos must therefore acquire the habit of reading the Bible, and then applying what they read to their daily lives. They must do this everyday without let-up and, even when it is difficult at first, things will start changing for the better. Let’s try this now, keeping the faith that God is faithful in His promises!

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WATCH “ANG TANGING DAAN”, “KAKAMPI MO ANG BATAS”, AT FB LIVE: Please watch “Ang Tanging Daan”, a round-the-clock Bible Exposition and prayer session at  www.facebook.com/angtangingdaan; and  ”Kakampi Mo Ang Batas”, a legal counseling and news commentary program at www.facebook.com/kakampimoangbatas. Reactions: 0917 984 24 68, 0918 574 0193, 0977 805 9058. Email: batasmauricio@yahoo.com.  (By Atty. Batas Mauricio) -30-




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