Why are these things of the utmost importance for us to know today? Because the path of Ultimate Truth lies in the Universal Teachings of TheWay -- which teachings having been obstructed by manmade doctrines of belief, and are no longer understood by either Christians or Jews in our present time. And herein lies the ultimate paradoxical dilemma! The true problem is not whether the Romans or the Jews were right or wrong -- but rather, both were right, and the masses and quasi-secular leaders and priests of both religions lacked the spiritual depth to comprehend the essence of their own respective religions which were equally of a Divine Expression. The problem is that the higher spiritual truth became obscured as Yeshua was renamed Jesus, and was abducted by the Romans in an attempt to renew the political control of the Emperor over the people of the empire. Sadly, this has obscured the true accomplishments of Yeshua/Jesus which were so great among mankind, that he became the pattern for all of man as the first of the prodigal sons who so fulfilled the Royal Law of God within himself, that he arose to an Absolute state of Perfection on all three levels of Being. Literally, he was a true holy man who so walked with God, that he manifest God among us. But as our elder brother, he would condemn those who call themselves Christian today who worship rather than imitate him. That the modern Church which very much remains the offspring of Pagan Rome, is openly condemned in the very Bible that Christians blindly preach to the world, is demonstrated conclusively in TheLie. But even the more sincere clergy of the modern Church cannot even begin to comprehend how their own Bibles can openly condemn the very beliefs that Christians attempt to preach and convert the world to, because they totally lack the foundational mindset to understand the teachings of Yeshua and TheWay. And in like manner, the spiritual disenfranchisement of all three religions -- i.e., Judaism, Christianity and Islam -- is all based upon three major lies that have not only alienated believers from the Truth -- but is the source of the self-destructive conflict in the world today (see The Three Lies).
The original New Covenant scriptures were correct in the assertion that Yeshua/Jesus became the Anointed (Messiah/Christ) at his baptism, and the Son of God at the crucifixion (see http://TheTenWords.com ). Thus, the heresy of the modern Jews and Christians is seen in the fact that as the pattern, each of us must so embrace Messiah/Christ in our lives, that we follow in TheWay and fulfill the Royal Law in the same way as Yeshua/Jesus. The problem is that we cannot even begin to walk the path to our eventual destiny, so long as we consider Yeshua/Jesus to be either just a man in the manner of the modern Jew and unbeliever, or a god in accordance with the Christian tradition. To rectify this paradoxical quagmire that obstructs our own return to the Edenic Kingdom of Origination (see http://GateOfEden.com ), what will be presented herein will not only be an answer to the dilemma, but also a means for each and every person to prove the truth for themselves. And while I realize that neither my own humble efforts -- or the words of the Lord Himself -- will have any effect upon the hardened hearts of most Fundamentalist Christians today, there are many others who deserve to know the Truth, so they can contemplate the ramifications, and begin the process of seeking the Light and TheWay for themselves.
As an example of the facts: In the early Christian writing known as THE INSTRUCTOR, a second century work by Clement of Alexandria, it is written: "For at the moment of the Lord's baptism there sounded a voice from heaven, as a testimony to the Beloved, 'Thou art My beloved Son, to-day have I begotten Thee’". In the words of Methodtus (A.D. 260-312), in his works THE BANQUET OF THE TEN VIRGINS; OR, CONCERNING CHASTITY, he writes: "Now, in perfect agreement and correspondence with what has been said, seems to be this which was spoken by the Father from above to Christ when He came to be baptized in the water of the Jordan, 'Thou art my son: this day have I begotten thee’". In the words of Lactantius (A.D. 260-330.), in his THE DIVINE INSTITUTES, he writes: "Then a voice from heaven was heard: 'Thou art my Son, today have I begotten Thee'. Which voice is found to have been foretold by David. And the Spirit of God descended upon Him, formed after the appearance of a white dove. From that time He began to perform the greatest miracles, not by magical tricks, which display nothing true and substantial, but by heavenly strength and power, which were foretold even long ago by the prophets who announced Him; which works are so many, that a single book is not sufficient to comprise them all".
The Old Testament prediction made reference to in the above quotation by Lactantius is found at Ps 2:7 which reads: "I will declare the decree: the Lord has said to me, 'You are My Son, today I have begotten You'" (NKJ). And what few Christians today realize is that most ancient copies of the New Testament scriptures does in fact confirm the prophesy that these words were indeed spoken at his baptism when the Father said of Jesus: "Thou art My beloved Son, to-day have I begotten Thee". Moreover, these words which were spoken to Jesus are actually confirmed at two other places in the New Testament. At the very beginning of Paul's Epistle to the Hebrews (1:5) we find the statement with respect to what was spoken to Jesus: “For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son”. Contrary to the Apostle's conclusions upon which the Epistle to the Hebrews is founded, because this statement which was reportedly spoken from heaven was altered by the later church, nowhere in our present day translations are these words said to Jesus. Yet, there is a parallel account in Acts that speaks of the disciples of Jesus being adopted by God in the same manner as Jesus himself was adopted as the very first of the prodigal sons to return to the Edenic Kingdom of Origination: “God hath fulfilled the same unto us their children, in that he hath raised up Jesus again; as it is also written in the second psalm, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee” (Acts 13:33 KJV).
Were these the actual words which were spoken to Jesus? If they were, what are the religious and spiritual implications for the modern Christian in search of a more intimate relationship with the Lord. This very serious doctrinal problem is raised in the Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary where it is written: “[Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee.] Augustine, with some moderns, apply this to Christ's external generations from the Father. `The expression (says Alexander) 'I have begotten thee' means, I am thy Father: 'Today' refers to the date of the decree itself: but this, as a divine act, was eternal, and so must be the Sonship it affirms. This, however, is a forced way of interpreting the words, and not at all consistent with the context, which clearly connects the Sonship with the resurrection of Christ. Does the apostle, then; mean to say that Christ became God's Son -- for the first time and in the only sense in which He was the Son of God -- by His resurrection from the dead? That cannot be; for, besides that it would contradict the whole, strain of the New Testament regarding Christ's relation to the Father” (Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary).
problem is seen in the fact that the Bible means exactly what is says: Jesus
became the Son of God -- initially, by the Anointing (Messiah/Christ) of the
Holy Spirit at his baptism -- and permanently, with his resurrection. In fact, because they believed what Jesus himself taught them
-- i.e., that Jesus was a man who had so fulfilled the Law of God within
himself, and had so purified and consecrated himself that he became One with God
-- the original (Jewish) followers of Jesus were condemned as heretics by the
later Gentile Church. Thus
In fact, because they believed what Jesus himself taught them -- i.e., that Jesus was a man who had so fulfilled the Law of God within himself, and had so purified and consecrated himself that he became One with God -- the original (Jewish) followers of Jesus were condemned as heretics by the later Gentile Church. Thus, the second century writer Irenaeus states that they: “represented Jesus as having not been born of a virgin, but as being the son of Joseph and Mary according to the ordinary course of human generation, while he nevertheless was more righteous, prudent, and wise than other men. Moreover, after his baptism, Christ descended upon him in the form of a dove from the Supreme Ruler, and that then he proclaimed the unknown Father, and performed miracles” (Irenaeus, Bk 1, Ch 26, doctrines of Cerinthus).
From a biblical perspective, there is nothing in the Old
Testament that even remotely implies or predicts that the Eternal God will come
in the form of man. The
prediction was that God would raise up a prophet from among the Jews, like
Moses, as seen where it is written: “The LORD your God will raise up for
you a prophet like me from among your own brothers. You must listen to
him” (Deut 18:15 NIV).
When Peter spoke before the Jews, he stated that this prediction applied
to Jesus -- and in so doing, himself called Jesus a prophet:
‘The Lord God will raise up for you a prophet from your brethren as he raised me
up. You shall listen to him in whatever he tells you... This is the Moses who
said to the Israelites, ‘God will raise up for you a prophet from your brethren
as he raised me up’” (Acts 3:22;7:37 RSV).
Perhaps more importantly is the fact that Jesus referred to
himself as a prophet, as seen in the words: “But Jesus said to them, ‘A
prophet is not without honor except in his own country and in his own
house’” (Matt 13:57 RSV).
When conversing about his crucifixion, Jesus again spoke of himself as a
prophet, as seen where it is written: “Yes, today, tomorrow, and the next
day I must proceed on my way. For it wouldn’t do for a prophet of God to be
killed except in Jerusalem!” (Luke 13:33 NLT). Thus, Jesus told his disciples and
followers that he was a prophet.
In Jesus’ prayer to the Father prior to his crucifixion it
is written: “And he went a little further, and fell on his face, and
prayed, saying, O my Father, if it be possible, let this cup pass from me:
nevertheless not as I will, but as thou wilt” (Matt 26:39 KJV). If Jesus was God, and the Father
and the Son were not separate and distinct individuals, such a prayer would have
been meaningless. In these
many such instances where Jesus prays to God -- or the Father -- if they were
one and the same, Jesus would have been praying to himself -- and his will,
would of necessity have been the Father’s will. Moreover, neither could God call
his disciples his brothers, and make the statement: “Go instead to my
brothers and tell them, ‘I am returning to my Father and your Father, to my God
and your God’” (John 20:17 NIV).
What Jesus taught his disciples was that he and the Father
were One -- but this same Oneness was also applied to his disciples, as seen in
the words: “That they may all be one; even as Thou, Father, art in Me, and
I in Thee, that they also may be in Us; that the world may believe that Thou
didst send Me. And the glory which Thou hast given Me I have given to them; that
they may be one, just as We are one; I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be
perfected in unity, that the world may know that Thou didst send Me, and didst
love them, even as Thou didst love Me” (John 17:21-23 NAS). The problem is that we cannot even
begin to understand the essence and meaning of this spiritual concept, until we
are first able to comprehend our own divided nature -- the reality of our
pre-existent soul -- and our vision has been opened to where we are able to see
beyond the natural barriers of this world. What Jesus is saying, though, is
that in the same way that he and the Father are One, they too are One.
If Jesus was God -- or even coequal with God as in the
foundation of the doctrine of the Trinity -- Jesus could never have said to his
disciples: “You heard me say, I am going away and I am coming back to you.
If you loved me, you would be glad that I am going to the Father, for the Father
is greater than I. I have told you now before it happens, so that when it does
happen you will believe. I will not speak with you much longer, for the prince
of this world is coming. He has no hold on me, but the world must learn that I
love the Father and that I do exactly what my Father has commanded me”
(John 14:28-31 NIV). How
could a coequal God say that God was greater than he was? Moreover, if they were one and the
same personage, how could Jesus say that he must do
“exactly what my
Father has commanded me”.
It is a widely accepted doctrine among Christians today that the disciples and Ebionite Nazirene followers did not comprehend the true nature of Jesus, because they did not proclaim that he was God -- as did the later Gentile converts. Even today the problem remains with respect to our inability to understand why Jesus was different than we are. Because Christians cling to the doctrines of Rome, they are unable to answer many important foundational questions that would permit their thinking to evolve beyond what Paul portrayed as the entry-level doctrines of the simple faith that are elementary in their understanding. And while Paul warns that the "natural" (organic) mind of man is incapable of understanding the higher reality of the soul and the Inner Kingdom (see Limitations of Organic Consciousness), -- warning that committed and baptized believers will reject the Mysteries of God as utter "foolishness" -- yet, the modern Church to their own destruction continues to ignore this all-important warning. What enabled Jesus to perform miracles? What enabled him to be able to communicate with the Father? Surely, we conclude, he could not have been a normal man. Therefore, we arrive at the only possible answer from our very limited perspective and conclude that the Jewish disciples and earliest followers of Jesus must have been wrong, and he had to have been God to know all that he knew, and be able to do all that he did. Thus, the flaw in the thinking of the Church is in their inability to envision and comprehend the manner in which mankind grows and evolves to a state of spiritual maturity -- how man, the prodigal son, who was created in the image and likeness of God, his Heavenly Father, begins to take on all the attributes of his Creator and Parent. In not understanding the process by which each of us embraces our eventual destiny, we worship instead of imitating the pattern that Yeshua/Jesus provided for all the prodigal sons and daughters of the Most High to follow.
What Yeshua taught his disciples with regard to who he was, is exactly what was stated by Peter after he was totally enlightened by the Holy Spirit: “Men of Israel, listen to this: Jesus of Nazareth was a man accredited by God to you by miracles, wonders and signs, which God did among you through him, as you yourselves know” (Acts 2:22 NIV). Where did Peter get the notion that Jesus was a man -- a man "accredited by God"??? A man that God performed miracles, wonders and signs through? Didn’t Jesus himself say that “Truly, truly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself...” (John 5:19 NAS); “The words that I speak to you I do not speak on My own authority; but the Father who dwells in Me does the works” (John 14:10 NKJ); “I can of Myself do nothing. As I hear, I judge; and My judgment is righteous, because I do not seek My own will but the will of the Father who sent Me” (John 5:30 NKJ); “...I do nothing on my own but speak just what the Father has taught me. The one who sent me is with me; he has not left me alone, for I always do what pleases him” (John 8:28-29 NIV); “for the works which the Father has given Me to finish -- the very works that I do -- bear witness of Me, that the Father has sent Me” (John 5:36 NKJ); “I have manifested Your name to the men whom You have given Me out of the world. They were Yours, You gave them to Me, and they have kept Your word. Now they have known that all things which You have given Me are from You” (John 17:6-7 NKJ).
How could God give God works to finish? How could God know nothing except
what God taught him?
Moreover, why would God -- a Being that cannot be defiled -- consecrate
himself as seen in the words: “They are not of the world, even as I am not
of the world. Sanctify them in the truth; thy word is truth. As thou didst send
me into the world, so I have sent them into the world. And for their sake I
consecrate myself, that they also may be consecrated in truth” (John
Are these just words -- or did Yeshua truly mean that his disciples were not of this world? When Yeshua states that he is At-One with God, does that mean that he is God? And when Yeshua states that his disciples are at-one with both him and God, does that make them God? These are questions which the Apostle warns that the mind of man in his natural state is incapable of answering – incapable, until they have themselves attained this same level of oneness which is portrayed as the ultimate goal of the disciple who walks in TheWay (see http://ebionite.com/defeat.htm ).
In view of what Jesus taught his disciples and followers, again let us review the direct witness of the Apostle Peter as found in the Clementine Holily number sixteen, Chapter fifteen, where he opposed Simon Magus and states: “Our Lord neither asserted that there were gods except the Creator of all, nor did He proclaim Himself to be God...”.
It is a well recorded fact of history that the disciples of
Yeshua, his brother Jacob who is known as James (see
http://BrotherOfYeshua.org ), and the Ebionite Nazirene
Disciples and believers who were his
friends, brothers and followers, did not believe that Yeshua was God. Those people who spoke to him --
ate with him -- traveled with him -- and were taught by him -- and was even his
brother -- believed exactly as it is written in the scriptures:
the multitudes saw it, they marvelled, and glorified God, which had given such
power unto men” (Matt 9:8 KJV). And whatever
works that the Father did through Yeshua, even greater works would be
accomplished through his genuine disciples and believers who followed in his
footsteps: "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who
believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than
these he will do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My
name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you
ask anything in My name, I will do it. If you love Me, keep My
commandments" ( John
14:12-15 NKJ). But the modern Christian neither understands the Works
of the Spirit (see The Epistle
of Christ), and in clinging to the lifestyle of the heathen of this world,
and the doctrines of pagan Rome, the modern Christian does not even understand
the Commandments of Yeshua and the teachings of TheWay.
And whatever works that the Father did through Yeshua, even greater works would be accomplished through his genuine disciples and believers who followed in his footsteps: "Most assuredly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do he will do also; and greater works than these he will do, because I go to My Father. And whatever you ask in My name, that I will do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you ask anything in My name, I will do it. If you love Me, keep My commandments" (
NKJ). But the modern Christian neither understands the Works of the Spirit (see The Epistle of Christ), and in clinging to the lifestyle of the heathen of this world, and the doctrines of pagan Rome, the modern Christian does not even understand the Commandments of Yeshua and the teachings of TheWay.
Fundamentally, every person who was taught directly by
Yeshua held a common belief which was documented by Edward Gibbon that Yeshua
was in a state of
“supernatural union of a man and a God; and this mystic doctrine was
adopted with many fanciful improvements by Carpocrates, Basilides, and
Valentine... In their eyes, Jesus of Nazareth was a mere mortal, the legitimate
son of Joseph and Mary: but he was the best and wisest of the human race,
selected as the worthy instrument to restore upon earth the worship of the true
and supreme Deity. When he was baptized in the Jordan, the Christ, the first of
the aeons, the Son of God himself, descended on Jesus in the form of a dove, to
inhabit his mind, and direct his actions during the allotted period of his
ministry” (Gibbon; The Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire, V.4,
This belief -- that “the Christ, the first of the aeons, the Son of God himself, descended on Jesus in the form of a dove, to inhabit his mind, and direct his actions during the allotted period of his ministry”, is simply not understood by the carnal mind of natural man -- as is very clearly stated in the Bible itself. We can only start to comprehend this belief that was held commonly by ALL the faithful believers who were taught directly by Jesus himself, as well as those who were closest to him in the first century, when we begin to apply what the Apostle Paul put forth in the first chapter of Romans, and explore the belief in relation to our own entrance into this world.
In many of the ancient texts we find the Sadducees and Pharisees becoming outraged when Yeshua called them a scorpion! Why? According to first century tradition it was believed that at conception the female scorpion killed the male -- and was herself killed by the young scorpions who literally ate their way out of her. Thus, a scorpion was said to not only be an orphan in this world because its very birth caused the death of its parents, but a scorpion is one of the few creatures that -- like man -- has the power to kill itself. If you take a scorpion and deposit it in a circle of burning gasoline, it is said that the scorpion will literally sting itself in the head rather than face a fiery death. In many ways the modern Christian is as the proverbial scorpion which has not only brought about the death of its parents -- and thereby exists as a spiritual orphan in this world -- but by its adherence to ancient doctrines of the Nations that the believer has little understanding of, the church has become as the scorpion that brings about its own demise.
How can this possibly be, the modern Christian will respond? Actually, it is very simple once properly understood. The modern Christian has two (historical) parental roots from which it has emerged -- and yet the Church rejects the doctrinal heritage of both! The Doctrine of the Trinity is a belief which was accepted by all the non-Jewish Mystery religions of the ancient world prior to the birth of Jesus -- and yet, modern Christianity condemns these people as heathen and pagan. In like manner, the Church believes that Yeshua was the Messiah of Israel -- and yet, modern Christians reject the biblical portrayal of the Messiah, as well as the very teachings and beliefs which were attested to by Yeshua's original disciples and followers. The result is that while Christians today adhere to the Doctrine of the Trinity which was the foundational thinking of a people they condemn as pagan, they in like manner condemn as heretics the very people who believed in the manner that Yeshua himself taught on the grounds that they were too Jewish! Thus, like the proverbial scorpion, the modern Christian has made itself a spiritual orphan of this world -- rejecting its very own parental roots -- and in the creation of a series of bastardized doctrines that have little in common with the people from which the religion is supposedly derived, the modern believer actually brings about his own spiritual death.
Was Yeshua God? What is the meaning of the term the Son of God? Few Christians today realize that the Jewish disciples and followers of Yeshua were condemned as heretics by the later Gentile Church because they did not believe that Yeshua was God. Martin Luther rejected the Synoptic Gospels of Matthew, Mark and Luke, as well as Paul's Epistle to the Hebrews and the Epistle of James (the brother of Yeshua and first leader of the New Covenant Community), because Luther found it very difficult to read the Trinitarian doctrine and concept of God into these writings.
While modern Christians readily embrace the doctrine of the Trinity -- i.e., that God exits in three divine personifications as the Father, Son and Holy Spirit -- and that these three are One -- few Christians are able to comprehend how or why the doctrine of the Trinity was embraced by the Greek philosophers and poets -- written about by Plato and and openly embraced by the ancient Mystery religions -- and yet this doctrine which is championed by the Christian world today, is fundamentally absent from the Bible and rejected by the Jews. Did Plato meet with Yeshua prior to his birth as the Son of God? Did Yeshua teach the ancient Greek philosophers and poets that they knew of his existence prior to his birth in Bethlehem? Or did the Doctrine of the Trinity mean something entirely different than what is commonly understood by the modern Christian today?
Under the heading of A Trinity Statute, The Encyclopedia
Britannica says: “Neither the word Trinity, nor the explicit doctrine as
such, appears in the New Testament, nor did Jesus and his followers intend to
contradict the Shema in the Old Testament: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God is
one Lord’ (Deut. 6:4). . . . The doctrine developed gradually over several
centuries and through many controversies. . . . By the end of the 4th
century . . . the doctrine of the Trinity took substantially the form it has
maintained ever since” (1976, Micropedia, Vol. X, p. 126).
The New Catholic Encyclopedia states:
formulation ‘one God in three Persons’ was not solidly established, certainly
not fully assimilated into Christian life and its profession of faith, prior to
the end of the 4th century. But it is precisely this formulation that
has first claim to the title the Trinitarian dogma. Among the Apostolic Fathers,
there had been nothing even remotely approaching such a mentality or
perspective” (1967, Vol. XIV, p. 299).
In The Encyclopedia Americana we read:
derived from Judaism and Judaism was strictly Unitarian [believing that God is
one person]. The road which led from Jerusalem to Nicea was scarcely a straight
one. Fourth century Trinitarianism did not reflect accurately early Christian
teaching regarding the nature of God; it was, on the contrary, a deviation from
this teaching” (1956, Vol. XXVII, p. 294L).
According to the Nouveau Dictionnaire Universel,
Platonic trinity, itself merely a rearrangement of older trinities dating back
to earlier peoples, appears to be the rational philosophic trinity of attributes
that gave birth to the three hypostases or divine persons taught by the
Christian churches. . . . This Greek philosopher’s [Plato, fourth century
B.C.E.] conception of the divine trinity . . . can be found in all the ancient
[pagan] religions” (Paris, 1865-1870, edited by M. Lachâtre, Vol. 2, p.
In his Dictionary of the Bible, John L. McKenzie, S.J., writes that: “The trinity of persons within the unity of nature is defined in terms of ‘person’ and ‘nature’ which are Greek philosophical terms; actually the terms do not appear in the Bible. The trinitarian definitions arose as the result of long controversies in which these terms and others such as ‘essence’ and ‘substance’ were erroneously applied to God by some theologians” (New York, 1965, p. 899).
What is it that these respected reference authorities -- one the Roman Catholic Church itself -- is saying to the modern believer? Fundamentally, in the fourth century the church entered into a covenant with Rome under the leadership of the Emperor Constantine -- a sun worshiper who ascribed to the Doctrine of the Trinity. Under the heading of Constantine, in the eleventh edition of the Britannica, we find that: “Constantine showed a determination to assert his Supremacy in ecclesiastical affairs, holding no doubt that, as the office of pontifex maximus gave him the supreme control of religious matters throughout the empire, the regulation of Christianity fell within his province... and it is significant that from hence forth we meet with the undisguised assertion that the will of the emperor, in whatever form expressed, is the sole foundation of the law. Constantine, in fact, embodies the spirit of absolute authority which, both in church and state, was to prevail for many centuries”. In other words, the religion that was associated with the name of Jesus of Nazareth, was now under the total control of the Roman Imperial Government.
What should strike fear in the hearts of the modern believer is the fact that it is clear from his own writings that Constantine truly believed he was a prophet. As an initiate into the Pagan mysteries, he believed that he was ordained by God to inaugurate the true religion of Christ in the empire. Like most Pagans of his day, he adhered to the general belief that the original Jewish Disciples who were the followers of Jesus -- who were at that time known as Ebionites and Nazirenes -- were blinded by their Jewish heritage, and were a blight to the religion of Jesus. As an initiate in the Pagan Mystery religions, Constantine understood that the writings of the philosophers and poets had an inner message that revealed Christ to those who had the capacity to comprehend the true meaning of the writings.
What is clear is that Constantine believed that the coming of Christ had been predicted in the writings of the poets -- and especially those known as the oracles of the prophetess Sibyl. Of the poet Cicero, Constantine writes: “We perceive that these words are spoken plainly and at the same time darkly, by way of allegory. Those who search deeply for the import of the words, are able to discern the Divinity of Christ. But lest any of the powerful in the imperial city might be able to accuse the poet of writing anything contrary to the laws of the country, and subverting the religious sentiments which had prevailed from ancient times, he intentionally obscures the truth. For he was acquainted, as I believe, with that blessed mystery which gave to our Lord the name of Savior: but, that he might avoid the severity of cruel men, he drew the thoughts of his hearers to objects with which they were familiar, saying that altars must be erected, temples raised, and sacrifices offered to the new-born child. His concluding words also are adapted to the sentiments of those who were accustomed to such a creed” (The Oration of Constantine).
In the same writing Constantine confirms that the
historical coming of Christ was further written about by the poet Virgilius
Maro, and writes of him: “Cautiously, therefore, and securely, as far as
possible, he presents the truth to those who have faculties to understand it;
and while he denounces the munitions and conflicts of war (which indeed are
still to be found in the course of human life), he describes our Savior as
proceeding to the war against Troy, understanding by Troy the world
itself” (The Oration of Constantine).
Of the writings of the poet Maro, Constantine writes: “Again, the Assyrian race is gone, which first led the way to faith in God. But when he speaks of the growth of amomum every where, he alludes to the multitude of the true worshipers of God. For it is as though a multitude of branches, crowned with fragrant flowers, and fitly watered, sprung from the self-same root. Most justly said, Maro, thou wisest of poets! and with this all that follows is consistent” (The Oration of Constantine).
It is clear in his own writings that Constantine believed that he perceived the true teachings, and could harmonize the writings of the philosophers and poets with the coming of Christ. What is important to comprehend from the perspective of the modern Christian, is to understand that Constantine brought forth his very Pagan beliefs -- beliefs which in his mind revealed God and Christ -- and incorporated them into his new religion -- i.e., Constantine’s Church from which our present churches have evolved from.
In order to grasp the big picture of what transpired, the
modern believer must understand that what Constantine professed was not unique,
and was a common belief among the Pagans of his day. Constantine, though he believed
himself to be a prophet of Christ, was not the source of the doctrine with
regard to the opinion that the Greek poets predicted the coming of Christ. The Gentile converts had held this
belief for hundreds of years.
The second century Church Father Clement of Alexandria writes that:
“And further, that the same God that furnished both the Covenants was the
giver of Greek philosophy to the Greeks, by which the Almighty is glorified
among the Greeks, he shows. And it is clear from this. Accordingly, then, from
the Hellenic training, and also from that of the law are gathered into the one
race of the saved people those who accept faith: not that the three peoples are
separated by time, so that one might suppose three natures, but trained in
different Covenants of the one Lord, by the word of the one Lord. For that, as
God wished to save the Jews by giving to them prophets, so also by raising up
prophets of their own in their own tongue, as they were able to receive God’s
beneficence, He distinguished the most excellent of the Greeks from the common
herd, in addition to ‘Peter’s Preaching,’ the Apostle Paul will show, saying:
‘Take also the Hellenic books, read the Sibyl, how it is shown that God is one,
and how the future is indicated. And taking Hystaspes, read, and you will find
much more luminously and distinctly the Son of God described, and how many kings
shall draw up their forces against Christ, hating Him and those that bear His
name, and His faithful ones, and His patience, and His coming.’ Then in one word
he asks us, ‘Whose is the world, and all that is in the world? Are they not
God’s? ‘ Wherefore Peter says, that the Lord said to the apostles: ‘If any one
of Israel then, wishes to repent, and by my name to believe in God, his sins
shall be forgiven him, after twelve years. Go forth into the world, that no one
may say, We have not heard’”.
Notice that Clement refers to both the Hebrews and the
initiates of the Greek Mystery religions as being “…gathered into the one
race of the saved people those who accept faith… trained in different Covenants
of the one Lord, by the word of one Lord”. Thus, these people who were
the initiates in the Greek Mystery religions, and were referred to as Christian,
viewed themselves as the saved people of the God of Jesus.
Throughout the writings of the second and third century Church Fathers there are scriptural quotations that either no longer exist in our Bibles today, or have been altered from their more ancient context. Every modern Christian should look seriously at the words of Clement when he wrote: “the Apostle Paul will show, saying: ‘Take also the Hellenic books, read the Sibyl, how it is shown that God is one, and how the future is indicated. And taking Hystaspes, read, and you will find much more luminously and distinctly the Son of God described, and how many kings shall draw up their forces against Christ, hating Him and those that bear His name, and His faithful ones, and His patience, and His coming’”.
The modern Christian should be in awe with respect to what is being stated by this second-third century authority. What Clement writes is that in the original writings of the Apostle Paul that existed in the first and second centuries, Paul made reference to the writings of the Sibyl -- but this and perhaps other references were edited out of our Bibles that we have today. Further, when Clement writes about the prediction pertaining to the Son of God by Hystaspes, we must ask who he is referring to? Hystaspes was a Persian ruler in the 6th to 7th century B.C..
Constantine Viewed Jesus and Hebrew Prophets as Anti-Jewish
One of the grave misunderstandings of the modern believer is seen in
their failure to understand the thinking of the early church with respect to the
religions of the Nations. A
core belief that is not realized today is that, from a Pagan perspective,
Constantine viewed Moses, Jesus and the Hebrew Prophets in the same exact manner
as did Muhammad -- the Islamic Prophet -- who regarded them as Muslims, rather
than Jews. Moreover, it is
because of this doctrine that the Koran views both Christians and Jews as
heretics who must be either converted to the true religion of Islam, or
This fact is of the utmost importance, because we can never have a correct perception of the events of history that have molded our beliefs today, until we fully understand that Constantine and the early church viewed Moses, Jesus and the prophets as Christians -- not as of a Hebrew heritage -- but rather, from the perspective of the religion of the philosophers and poets. What we call the heathen religions, Constantine viewed as the true religion of Christ.
It is important that we understand this concept of belief
that was embraced by both the Christians and Muslims alike. When Muhammad speaks of the
biblical prophets, he considers them to be Muslim holy men who were sent to
condemn the Jews, and tell them that they were not the people of God. In much the same way, Muhammad
viewed Jesus’ birth among the Jews as the means by which God would condemn the
Hebrews as heretics, because he believed that Jesus was truly a Muslim holy
man. What we fail to grasp
today is that the Gentile Christians embraced this same exact belief before it
was later adopted by Muhammad. The
Christians -- or more appropriately the enlightened Pagans -- believed that all
their scriptures revealed Christ in their inner concealed meaning. The Old Testament prophets where
therefore not Hebrews, but Christian.
From this long held and universal perspective among the Gentiles,
Jesus came to the Jews first, in order to condemn them -- and then came
to the people of the Nations, who were from the beginning of time the true
people of God.
In the eyes of the new religion, the Jews were heretics,
and were to be hated and scorned.
Constantine, like most of the Gentile world, falsely believed that the
Jews killed Christ, and that God looked revengefully upon them, and sought their
demise. This same position
was later adopted by Adolph Hitler, and was used as an excuse in his holocaust
of the Jews. Constantine,
like Hitler, believed he was doing God a great service by ridding the world of
Martin Luther -- a man totally ignorant with respect to the true
meaning of the scriptures with respect to the universal usage and portrayal of
the Jew, in his book written in
Martin Luther -- a man totally ignorant with respect to the true meaning of the scriptures with respect to the universal usage and portrayal of the Jew, in his book written in1543 entitled On The Jews And Their Lies, suggested that all Christians should set fire to their synagogues and schools, take away their homes, forbad them to pray or teach, or even to utter God's name. Luther wanted to "be rid of them" and requested that the government and ministers deal with the religious blight they presented. He requested pastors and preachers to follow his example of issuing warnings against the Jews. He goes so far as to claim that "We are at fault in not slaying them" for avenging the death of Jesus.
From Constantine’s perspective, chief among the heretics were the Ebionite (Jewish) believers who he condemned as Judaizers, and considered them to be a blight to the (his) church. Why? Because they steadfastly held to the religious principles of the scriptures, they were viewed as heretics who could not understand the true teachings of Christ. This anti-Jewish climate flourished a distain for the Old Testament -- and even to some degree, the New Testament scriptures. This mindset was of course nourished by many of the seemingly misinterpreted anti-Jewish statements found in the Epistles of Paul -- many of which were written by Greeks, as demonstrated at http://BibleCorruption.com .
The written word of the scriptures came to be associated
with the Jews, and whatever did not reveal Christ, was to be rejected. It was no longer God’s Sabbath or
God's New Year, but rather the Jewish Sabbath, New Year or Passover. This mentality was born out of the
doctrine that the Pagan religions of the Gentiles were superior to the religion
of the Jews -- and remains with us as a very dangerous religious foundation to
this very day.
In the mindset of a very large body of the Gentile
Christians, the Jews were never the people of God. The Gentile Christians, on the
other hand, were revealed as the true people of God who had always existed, and the Christ came so they
could inherit their own spiritual destiny. The Gentile Christians believed
that Jesus had come to the Jews first -- not to save them -- but rather, to reprove
and chastise them. After this
first mission of condemnation was accomplished, the Gospel message was then taken to the
Gentiles -- who in their vision of the Gospel, always were the true people of
Constantine saw himself as a true prophet and anointed one
of the Lord. In him the
teachings of the Christ were to have their fulfillment with the conversion of
the world to the true religion.
In him was the final triumph of light over darkness, and he
wholeheartedly embraced his destiny.
The true religion of mankind that was prophetically spoken of from
antiquity, was his to inaugurate.
It was Constantine who would write the final chapter of Christian
history, and bring about the Lord’s kingdom upon the earth.
Like most Gentile believers, Constantine saw the continuity
of Christianity from the earliest of times to the present. In the second century writing of
Theophilus to the philosopher Autolycus, we again see the doctrine of Christian
antiquity that pre-dated the birth of the historical Jesus:
“But I wish
now to give you a more accurate demonstration, God helping me, of the historical
periods, that you may see that our doctrine is not modern nor fabulous, but more
ancient and true than all poets and authors who have written in
Plato, the Source of the Christian Doctrine of the Trinity
This most ancient of religions -- the theology of the philosophers -- was now openly called Christian. As one who was an initiate in the Pagan Mystery religions, Constantine believed in Plato’s doctrine of the Trinity -- which is the doctrine that states the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are three personages in one. The true source of this doctrine is not the Bible -- but rather, the theology and doctrines of the philosophers. This is readily demonstrated in the article by the Encyclopedia Britannica (1998 electronic edition) under the heading of Trinity, Introduction of Neoplatonic themes, where it states: “In the Johannine literature in the Bible there appeared the first traces of the concept of Christ as the Logos, the ‘word’ or ‘principle’ that issues from eternity. Under the influence of subsequent Neoplatonic philosophy, this tradition became central in speculative theology. There was interest in the relationship of the ‘oneness’ of God to the ‘triplicity’ of divine manifestations. This question was answered through the Neoplatonic metaphysics of being. The transcendent God, who is beyond all being, all rationality, and all conceptuality, is divested of divine transcendence. In a first act of becoming self-conscious the Logos recognizes itself as the divine mind (Greek: nous), or divine world reason, which was characterized by the Neoplatonic philosopher Plotinus as the ‘Son’ who goes forth from the Father. The next step by which the transcendent God becomes self-conscious consists in the appearance in the divine nous of the divine world, the idea of the world in its individual forms as the content of the divine consciousness. In Neoplatonic philosophy both the nous and the idea of the world are designated the hypostases of the transcendent God. Christian theology took the Neoplatonic metaphysics of substance as well as its doctrine of hypostases as the departure point for interpreting the relationship of the ‘Father’ to the ‘Son’ in terms of the Neoplatonic hypostases doctrine. This process stands in direct relationship with a speculative interpretation of Christology in connection with Neoplatonic Logos speculation”.
The Britannica then concludes: “The assumption of the Neoplatonic hypostases doctrine meant from the beginning a certain evaluation of the relationships of the three divine figures to one another, because for Neoplatonism the process of hypostatization is at the same time a process that includes a diminishing of being. Thus, in flowing forth from the transcendent source, the divine being is progressively weakened with the distance from the transcendent origin. Diminution of being, on these terms, is brought about through approach to matter, which for its part is understood in Neoplatonism as nonbeing. In transferring the Neoplatonic hypostases doctrine to the Christian interpretation of the Trinity there existed the danger that the different manifestations of God--as known by the Christian experience of faith: Father, Son, Holy Spirit--would be transformed into a hierarchy of gods graduated among themselves and thus into a polytheism. Though this danger was consciously avoided and, proceeding from a Logos Christology, the complete sameness of essence of the three manifestations of God was emphasized, there arose the danger of a relapse into a triplicity of equally ranked gods, which would displace the idea of the oneness of God”.
It can readily be seen by the modern believer why the
doctrine of the Trinity is totally absent from Jewish and Ebionite Nazirene
theology. Speaking of the
connection between the Logos of the Gospel of John, and that of the Pagan world,
Gibbon writes of the Platonic source of the doctrine of the Trinity:
divine sanction which the Apostle had bestowed on the fundamental principle of
the theology of Plato encouraged the learned proselytes of the second and third
centuries to admire and study the writings of the Athenian sage, who has thus
marvelously anticipated one of the most surprising discoveries of the Christian
revelation. The respectable name of Plato was used by the orthodox, and abused
by the heretics, as the common support of truth and error; the authority of his
skilful commentators and the science of dialectics were employed to justify the
remote consequences of his opinions, and to supply the discreet silence of the
inspired writers. The same subtle and profound questions concerning the nature,
the generation, the distinction, and the equality of the three divine persons of
the mysterious Triad, or Trinity, were agitated in the philosophical and in the
Christian schools of Alexandria” (The Decline and Fall of the Roman
Adoption of Jesus as the Son of God
When Gibbon writes of the “silence of the inspired writers”, he is making reference to the fact that the Trinity is not found in the Bible -- but rather, as was demonstrated by the Encyclopedia Britannica, the theology of Plato. From a biblical standpoint, there is no way to justify the very Gnostic Gospel of John with the Gospel of Mark, which declares Jesus to be a man who became the Son of God by perfecting fulfilling the Word in his life. Of this doctrinal conflict the Britannica writes: “The Gospel According to Mark, however, did not proceed from a theology of incarnation but instead understood the baptism of Jesus Christ as the adoption of the man Jesus Christ into the Sonship of God, accomplished through the descent of the Holy Spirit. The situation became further aggravated by the conceptions of the special personal character of the manifestation of God developed by way of the historical figure of Jesus Christ; the Holy Spirit was viewed not as a personal figure but rather as a power and appeared graphically only in the form of the dove and thus receded, to a large extent, in the Trinitarian speculation”.
When it is remembered that the original of Matthew did not contain the first two chapters, and there is good historical reason to believe that neither did the original Luke, we must understand that from the perspective of Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus was the adopted Son of God. With regard to Luke, this is especially seen in the admission of the footnote in the Revised Standard Version which confirms that many of the more ancient manuscripts read: “Today I have begotten thee”, instead of “In thee I am well pleased” at Luke 3:22.
Again let us remember that in Origen’s Commentary on the
Gospel of John, Origen writes that: “None of these testimonies, however,
sets forth distinctly the Savior’s exalted birth; but when the words are
addressed to Him, ‘Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee’, this is
spoken to Him by God”.
When it is realized that Origen inherited many of his copies of scripture
from his teacher, Clement of Alexandria, what we can determine is that Origen’s
second century scriptures contained this same verse that was completely removed
from third and fourth century copies of John, from which our versions are
In view of these facts, we also have the direct witness of the Apostle Peter as found in the Clementine Homily number sixteen, Chapter fifteen, where he opposed Simon Magus and states: “Our Lord neither asserted that there were gods except the Creator of all, nor did He proclaim Himself to be God...”.
Regarding the concepts of the Trinity as embraced by the
Pagan Christians, Peter goes on to explain the difference between the Father and
the Son: “In addition to this, it is the peculiarity of the Father not to
have been begotten, but of the Son to have been begotten; but what is begotten
cannot be compared with that which is unbegotten or self-begotten... He who is
not the same in all respects as some one, cannot have all the same appellations
applied to him as that person.... if the one happens to be self-begotten or
unbegotten, they cannot be called the same; nor can it be asserted of him who
has been begotten that he is of the same substance as he is who has begotten
him? Learn this also: The booties of men have immortal souls, which have been
clothed with the breath of God; and having come forth from Cool, they are of the
same substance, but they are not gods. But if they are gods, then in this way
the souls of all men, both those who have died, and those who are alive, and
those who shall come into being, are gods. But if in a spirit of controversy you
maintain that these also are gods, what great matter is it, then, for Christ to
be called God? for He has only what all have”.
Peter, then, provides a discourse on the nature of God and
states: “We call Him God whose peculiar attributes cannot belong to the
nature of any other; for, as He is called the Unbounded because He is boundless
on every side, it must of necessity be the case that it is no other one’s
peculiar attribute to be called unbounded, as another cannot in like manner be
boundless. But if any one says that it is possible, he is wrong; for two things
boundless on every side cannot co-exist, for the one is bounded by the other.
Thus it is in the nature of things that the unbegotten is one. But if he
possesses a figure, even in this case the figure is one and incomparable.
Wherefore He is called the Most High, because, being higher than all, He has the
universe subject to Him”.
Enlightened Pagans were called Christians Prior to Jesus
In order to recreate Jesus as the pre-existent Logos and apply the ancient doctrine of the Trinity to Judaism and the New Testament, one of the most important elements of the teachings of Jesus had to be altered from it's original context. This necessary change to the message of the scriptures not only permitted traditional Roman and Greek Trinitarian thinking to be applied to Jesus where he was perceived as the present incarnation of Osiris, Attis, Indra, Prometheus, Mithra, Dionysius, Hesus and all the gods of the ancient world, but it also opened the door to the modern New Age and Theosophical concept that the soul of Jesus had previously lived as Krishna, Buddha, Melchezidek, and even the original Adam. While this may appear to be heresy to the modern Christian who often thinks of the word Christ as Jesus' last name -- and is quite ignorant of the historical usage of the words Messiah and Christ which mean the Anointed in English -- to the non-Jewish people of the Roman Empire this universal concept made perfect sense. And while the application of the Doctrine of the Trinity to Jesus initially enabled the non-Jew at the beginning of our Common Era to unify all the many religions of the empire under the name of Christianity and proclaim the great diversity of God, as the Church slowly evolved over the course of time and re-emerged out of the period known as the Dark Ages, this application of the Trinitarian concept has had the completely opposite effect on the mind of the modern believer who views Jesus as God -- period! Their reasoning is that God's Name is Jesus -- and if God had previously lived as Mithra, Krishna, Buddha and others, that he would have proclaimed a universal message to all mankind, and required all people to believe in the God of the Jews.
It is a well established fact that the disciples and early followers of Jesus did not believe that he was God. Moreover, it is well documented that prior to being altered, the original New Testament scriptures clearly proclaimed that Jesus became the Messiah/Christ at the time of his baptism. This fact could neither be reconciled in the mind of the non-Jewish converts who viewed Jesus as the perpetually recurring birth of the sun-god in greatly varying forms, or the modern Christian who views Jesus as the one and only incarnation of God in this world. Thus, regardless of the fact that it is well established by numerous authorities that at his baptism in the Jordan the voice from heaven said: "Thou art My Son: this day have I begotten Thee" (see The Ten Words ) -- this fact is universally rejected by Christians today because they are unable to reconcile how Jesus became the Messiah/Christ for the first time at his baptism, if he had always existed as the pre-existent God who was the Creator of the Universe and all that exists.
The greater majority of Christians today do not even understand the meaning of the word Christ. In fact, most people are under the grave misconception that Christ was Jesus’ last name. They fail to realize that the word Christ is a Greek word synonymous with the Hebrew word Messiah, and both words in English mean the Anointing of the Lord, or the Lord’s Anointed. Because our translators fail to render the word the same throughout the scriptures, present day bible readers are generally unaware that twenty-three other men in the Old Testament are referred to as the Lord’s Anointed or Christ. When the scriptures state that "Thus saith the LORD to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden..." (Isa 45:1 KJV), it is the same as stating "Thus saith the LORD to his Christ, to Cyrus".
Quoting Nelson’s Bible Dictionary: "In the Old Testament, Messiah is used more than 30 times to describe kings (2 Sam. 1:14,16), priests (Lev. 4:3,5, 16), the patriarchs (Ps. 105:15), and even the Persian King Cyrus (Is. 45:1)." In the case of the New Testament, Christians simply do not translate the Greek word Christ into its English equivalent Anointed. Why? The answer to that is simple. Joshua, the Anointed one of the Lord, does not have the same mystique to the uninformed believer as Jesus Christ -- and does not present the picture that conforms to the design of their beliefs. The word Anointed is a universal religious term used the world over -- and so, our Bible translators choose not to render the word into its proper English form. In the case of the Old Testament, they translate the word into English so as not to draw attention to all the many people who are called the Christ or Messiah throughout the scriptures. What truly disturbs the modern believer is when they are informed of the fact that there were people who were called Christians prior to the birth of the historical Jesus!
In the tradition of the Hebrews, the source of all knowledge is the Messiah. The word Messiah was not carried over into the Greek, because the word Christ has a parallel meaning that was in use by the Greeks long before the advent of the historical man Jesus. Going one-step further, the word Messiah/Christ has its equivalent within all the major religions of the world.
In the same way that the followers of Jesus were Messianic believers -- a Christian, in accordance with Greek understanding, was in the true sense of the word, an enlightened initiate into the underlying secrets of what we call the Greek and Ancient Mystery religions. In the same way that there was a dividing line between an Essene or Messianic believer that separated the Spiritual Hebrew from a Jew, this same dividing line existed in the religions of the Nations. A Christian, therefore, was a Spiritual believer who was an initiate into the doctrine of the indwelling Logos/Christ written about by Plato and the Poets, and were those whose minds were enlightened to the degree where they were able to understand the inner meaning of the Greek mystery religions.
The problem is that the Church fails to understand these spiritual terms because they view life and the scriptures with a quasi-Darwinist mindset -- i.e., three-dimensionally. Christians, therefore, fail to comprehend the very essence of the word they use to describe themselves, because they are unaware of the realms beyond the three dimensions of this world. They are for the most part unaware of their pre-existent soul and spirit, and they therefore relate the word Christ to an historical person -- i.e., Jesus. Further, because Christians have such a limited understanding of the meaning of the word Christ, it is therefore impossible for modern believers to perceive the manner in which God reveals Himself to people the world over. In failing to understand that the religion which Jesus proclaimed was/is not only Universal, but is in fact indigenous to man himself, they attempt to narrow down the teachings of the New Covenant. That Jesus became the First Son of God -- and that his followers should themselves be the Anointed Ones, and be the very embodiment of the manifested Light in the world -- is the fulfillment of the Word that each and every person who calls themselves Christian should strive to be. That Christians at present are imprisoned by spiritual shackles, and cannot live up to their spiritual potential and Name because of the reinterpretation of the gospel by the Roman Church, is in fact the reason why the world today dwells in darkness.
With regard to the historical people who were called the people of Christ before the time of Jesus, it did not mean anything to an enlightened Christian that the masses of people worshiped the sun, moon, stars or idols. Because the people of the Nations were carnal, they were unable to perceive the inner meaning of the writings of the poets. In the far-reaching vision of the greater reality, they viewed these things as the worship of the Logos, or Christ, by the ignorant masses of people.
That the initiates of the ancient mystery religions were called Christians prior to the time of Jesus is demonstrated in a letter from the Emperor Adrian to Servianus, written in 134 A.D., wherein it is stated: "Egypt, which you commended to me, my dearest Servianus, I have found to be wholly fickle and inconsistent, and continually wafted about by every breath of fame. The worshipers of Serapis are called Christians, and those who are devoted to the god Serapis, call themselves Bishops of Christ". What is confirmed is that, with the advent of Jesus, the Christ or Christos was not a new term, and there were people throughout the empire who were called Christians prior to the time when the name came to be associated with the followers of Jesus. More important, though, is the fact that they brought their ideas and beliefs pertaining to Christ into the religion of Yeshua and TheWay -- which teachings in their original form possessed an essence and spiritual reality that few of these Pagan Christians could perceive.
Archaeologists have demonstrated that the word Christos, which we render Christ, has been found not only on Pagan temples, and used in relation to those who were said to be the sons of the Pagan gods, but the term was also engraved on tombstones and other Pagan artifacts prior to the time of Jesus. In the Greek and Roman mystery religions of the time, the Christos was the Anointing of the Logos, and the Christian was the follower of the Anointed. In the writings of Clement of Alexandria we find it explained that: "Those who lived according to the Logos were really Christians, though they have been thought to be atheists; as Socrates and Heraclitus were among the Greeks, and such as resembled them" (Strom. bk. i, ch xix).
Eusebius, the great historian of the early Church, admits that the religion that is called Christianity was known to the ancients (Eccl. Hist., 1, ch iv) and writes that the religion of Jesus had "...been known among all nations, nevertheless our life and our conduct, with our doctrines of religion, have not been lately invented by us, but from the first creation of man, so to speak, have been established by the natural understanding of divinely favored men of old... What then should prevent the confession that we who are of Christ practice one and the same mode of life and have one and the same religion as those divinely favored men of old? Whence it is evident that the perfect religion committed to us by the teaching of Christ is not new and strange, but, if the truth must be spoken, it is the first and the true religion".
Modern Christians who erroneously believe that Christianity started with Jesus, will be unable to relate to the words that "our doctrines of religion... have been established by the natural understanding... and [is] the same religion as those divinely favored men of old". The early Gentile Christians knew this fact, and it was for this reason that a copy of Plato’s Republic and other such writings was contained among the writings preserved in the recently discovered Nag Hammadi Library of early Christian writings.
St. Augustine wrote: "That, in our times, is the Christian religion, which to know and follow is the most sure and certain health, called according to that name, but not according to the thing itself, of which it is the name; for the thing itself which is now called the Christian religion, really was known to the ancients, nor was wanting at any time from the beginning of the human race, until the time when Christ came in the flesh, from whence the true religion, which had previously existed, began to be called Christian; and this in our days is the Christian religion, not as having been wanting in former times, but as having in later times received this name" (Opera Augustini, vol. i, p.12).
When we begin to understand the common root of all religion, only then are we able to comprehend with clarity that it wasn’t so much that the Greek and Roman world was converted to the teachings of Jesus, but more appropriately, the teachings of Yeshua came to be a part of the existing religious world which came to be outwardly known as Christian. After Constantine silenced the true followers of Jesus with the power of the sword in the fourth century because they refused to accept the religion of the emperor (see The Death Of The Religion Of Jesus), all that was left was the Gentile church which was very Pagan in nature, that had come to be known as Christian.
In a letter from Faustus to St. Augustine this Pagan-Christian connection is embellished upon: "You have substituted your agape for the sacrifices of the Pagans; for their idols your martyrs, whom you serve with the very same honors. You appease the shades of the dead with wine and feasts; you celebrate the solemn festivities of the Gentiles, their calends, and their solstices; and, as to their manners, those you have retained without any alteration. Nothing distinguishes you from the Pagans, except that you hold your assemblies apart from them" (Quoted in Draper: Science and Religion, p.48).
How could "nothing" distinguish Christians from the Pagans, with the exception of where they hold their assemblies? How could Christians "retain" the manners of the Pagans, "without any alteration"? If their lifestyle, celebrations, festivities and manner of worship are the same, then how could they be called the followers of Yeshua and TheWay?
In many instances, conversion was the result of Jesus being installed as the replacement for the former Pagan gods. In his book, Jesus, The Evidence, Ian Wilson writes: "A third-century mosaic from the Mausoleum of the Julii underneath present-day St. Peter’s in Rome actually portrays Jesus as Sol Invictus, driving the horses of the sun’s chariot. That Constantine himself mixed Christianity and the Sol Invictus cult is clear from a second commemorative medallion issued by him within two years of the first, on which he represented himself with a Chi-Rho monogram on his helmet, and with a leaping Los chariot below".
Speaking of Constantine, Ian Wilson writes: "It was only when he was approaching death that he asked for, or was accepted for, Christian baptism. As was still the custom, he received this naked, thereafter renouncing forever the purple of his imperial rank" (Ian Wilson, Jesus, The Evidence). This means that the leader and head of the Gentile Church, as well as many of the present day doctrines which remain with us today, were inaugurated into the church by a man of a very Pagan mindset who was not even baptized.
Present day Christians are under the erroneous and grave belief that the tenets and beliefs of their religion are unique. In reality, nothing could be farther from the truth. What is unknown to the believer today is that the world has known countless other crucified Saviors who were: Born from a virgin mother in a cave or underground chamber on or near Christmas Day -- each led a life of sacrifice for mankind, and were called by the names of Light-bringer, Healer, Mediator, Savior and Deliverer -- they were vanquished by the powers of darkness, and descended into hell or the underworld -- they each rose again from the dead and became the means for mankind to enter into the heavenly world -- they founded communities of saints, and churches into which disciples were received by baptism -- and they were commemorated by Eucharistic meals. Thus, every element of modern-day Christianity was present in the Pagan world prior to the advent of Jesus.
In his book, The Christian Conspiracy: The Orthodox Suppression of Original Christianity, Joseph P. Macchio writes: "We find no less than twelve mythical-historical personages before the advent of Christ, who are said to have suffered crucifixion/death and to have risen from the dead. Among them are: Krishna, Wittoba, Osiris, Attis, Indra, Prometheus, Mithra, Dionysius, Hesus, Aesculapius, Adonis, Apollonius of Tyana. Several of these figures are said to have been crucified at the spring equinox and to have risen on the third day".
Many attempts have been made to explain the Pagan-Christian connection. In his book Aryan Mythology, by the Rev Geo. W. Cox, it is explained that: "The wailing of the Hebrew women at the death of Tammuz, the crucifixion and resurrection of Osiris, the adoration of the Babylonian Mylitta, the Sacti ministers of Hindu temples, the cross and the crescent of Isis, the rites of the Jewish altar of Baal-Peor, wholly preclude all doubt of the real nature of the great festivals and mysteries of Phoenicians, Jews, Assyrians, Egyptians, and Hindus" (Aryan Mythology, vol. ii.p.125).
The same concept that the Christ of all Pagan religions was manifest in anticipation of Jesus, was used to bring the Pagan world together under the one banner of Christianity. Thus, it has been concluded that: "The Church, at an early date, selected the heathen festivals of Sun worship for its own, ordering the birth at Christmas, a fixed time, and the resurrection at Easter, a varying time, as in all Pagan religions; since, though the Sun rose directly after the vernal equinox, the festival, to be correct in a heathen point of view, had to be associated with the new moon" (Egyptian Belief, p.182). Thus, we begin to understand why the enlightened Pagans -- who were known as Christians -- adopted the Jewish Ebionite Messiah Yeshua as the personification of their sun-god, renamed him the Christ, and altered the scriptures in the endeavor to sever Jesus from the foundation of Jewish thought -- thereby bringing completion and unity to the Pagan Christian world.
In further explanation of the Pagan Christian connection, the Rev. J.P. Lundy writes in his work, Monumental Christianity, that: "Is there no bright Sun of Righteousness - no personal and loving Son of God, of whom the material Sun has been the type of symbol, in all ages and among all nations?" Thus, we see here that the physical sun is a type, or symbol, among the Pagans, for Jesus, the Son of God. Rev. Lundy then goes on to further explain: "What power is it that comes from the Sun to give light and heat to all created things. If the symbolical Sun leads such a great earthly and heavenly flock, what must be said to the true and only begotten Son of God? If Apollo was adopted by early Christian art as a type of the Good Shepherd of the New Testament, then this interpretation of the Sun-god among all nations must be the solution of the universal mythos, or what other solution can it have? To what other historical personage but Christ can it apply? If this mythos has no spiritual meaning, then all religion becomes mere idolatry, or the worship of material things" (Monumental Christianity, p.117).
Under the heading of Mystery Religions in the Encyclopedia Britannica (1998 electronic edition), the intimate connection between the religion of the poets and that of what evolved into what came to be called Christianity is readily seen in the words: "Christianity originated during the time of the Roman Empire, which was also the time at which the mysteries reached their height of popularity. This was by no means an accident. The Christian theologian Origen wrote in the 3rd century that it was part of the divine plan that Christ was born under the emperor Augustus: the whole Mediterranean world was united by the Romans, and the conditions for missionary work were more favorable than ever before. The simultaneousness of the propagation of the mystery religions and of Christianity and the striking similarities between them, however, demand some explanation of their relationship. The hypothesis of a mutual dependence has been proposed by scholars --especially a dependence of Christianity upon the mysteries... The parallel development was fostered by the new conditions prevailing in the Roman Empire, in which the old political units were dissolved, and the whole civilized world was ruled by one monarch . People were free to move from one country to another and became cosmopolitan. The ideas of Greek philosophy penetrated everywhere in this society. Thus, under identical conditions, new forms of religious communities sprang from similar roots. The mystery religions and Christianity had many similar features--e.g., a time of preparation before initiation and periods of fasting; baptism and banquets; vigils and early-morning ceremonies; pilgrimages and new names for the initiates. The purity demanded in the worship of Sol and in the Chaldean fire rites was similar to Christian standards. The first Christian communities resembled the mystery communities in big cities and seaports by providing social security and the feeling of brotherhood. In the Christian congregations of the first two centuries, the variety of rites and creeds was almost as great as in the mystery communities; few of the early Christian congregations could have been called orthodox according to later standards. The date of Christmas was purposely fixed on December 25 to push into the background the great festival of the sun god, and Epiphany on January 6 to supplant an Egyptian festival of the same day. The Easter ceremonies rivaled the pagan spring festivals. The religious art of the Christians continued the pagan art of the preceding generations. The Christian representations of the Madonna and child are clearly the continuation of the representations of Isis and her son suckling her breast. The statue of the Good Shepherd carrying his lost sheep and the pastoral themes on Christian sarcophagi were also taken over from pagan craftsmanship".
The Britannica then goes on to demonstrate that the intimate connection is just as close in doctrine, as it was in outward observance: "In theology the differences between early Christians, Gnostics (members--often Christian--of dualistic sects of the 2nd century AD), and pagan Hermetists were slight. In the large Gnostic library discovered at Nag Hammadi, in upper Egypt, in 1945, Hermetic writings were found side by-side with Christian Gnostic texts. The doctrine of the soul taught in Gnostic communities was almost identical to that taught in the mysteries: the soul emanated from the Father, fell into the body, and had to return to its former home. The Greeks interpreted the national religions of the Greek Orient chiefly in terms of Plato’s philosophical and religious concepts. Interpretation in Platonic concepts was also the means by which the Judeo-Christian set of creeds was thoroughly assimilated to Greek ideas by the early Christian thinkers Clement of Alexandria and Origen. Thus, the religions had a common conceptual framework. The doctrinal similarity is exemplified in the case of the pagan writer and philosopher Synesius. The people of Cyrene selected him as the most able man of the city to be their bishop, and he was able to accept the election without sacrificing his intellectual honesty. In his pagan period he wrote hymns that closely follow the fire theology of the Chaldean Oracles; later he wrote hymns to Christ. The doctrine is almost identical".
What the Britannica is stating is that the doctrine between what is known as the religion of the philosophers, the Gnostics, and the Gentile Christians, was so close, that the Pagan philosopher Synesius was selected as a Christian Bishop. Further, the "hymns to Christ" that this philosopher wrote, was so compatible with Gentile Christianity, that the Britannica states "the doctrine is almost identical". These facts should be paramount in the minds of modern Christians seeking the true teachings of Jesus.
The intimate connection is further explored by the Britannica when it writes: "The similarity of the religious vocabulary is also great. Greek life was characterized by such things as democratic institutions, seafaring, gymnasium and athletic games, theatre, and philosophy. The mystery religions adopted many expressions from these domains: they spoke of the assembly (ekklesia) of the mystai; the voyage of life; the ship, the anchor, and the port of religion; and the wreath of the initiate; life was a stage and man the actor. The Christians took over the entire terminology; but many pagan words were strangely twisted in order to fit into the Christian world: the service of the state (leitourgia) became the ritual, or liturgy, of the church; the decree of the assembly and the opinions of the philosophers (dogma) became the fixed doctrine of Christianity; the correct opinion (orthe doxa) about things became orthodoxy".
What modern Christians fail to understand is that within the worship of the sun, is the worship of the one god -- which was brought together in the worship of Jesus the Christ -- and ultimately the enlistment of the Pagans under the one banner. All other pagan deities were, in reality, aspects of the sun -- which was seen as their physical source of life. The Pagan initiates who understood the mysteries of their religion, also knew that the sun was a type of pattern of profound spiritual truths that exist in the heavenly realms. This same religious concept is found in the Bible where it states that the Jews "serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things, just as Moses was warned by God when he was about to erect the tabernacle; for, ‘See,’ He says, ‘that you make all things according to the pattern which was shown you on the mountain’" (Heb 8:5 NAS).
The initiate into what we view as the Pagan Mystery religions, understood that whatever exists in the physical realm in which we presently dwell, is a "copy and shadow of heavenly things". What this means is that, whatever exists in this physical realm is both an illusion, and an allusion to deeper truths that exist in the spiritual reality of Creation. The secret to the spiritual development of the masses of the people who do not understand heavenly things, is that when they invoke these allusionary "patterns" in their daily lives, they begin to crack open the door of communication between the physical and heavenly realms.
Because we do not comprehend the symbols and their allusion to heavenly truths, and we do not understand the inner meaning of the sacred writings of the nations, we erroneously believe that these writings promote the worship of many gods. On the surface this would appear to be true -- but this is not the case with the real inner meaning of these scriptures. This fact is brought together in the words of Sir William Jones who wrote: "We must not be surprised at finding, on close examination, that the characters of all the Pagan deities, male and female, melt into each other, and at last into one or two; for it seems as well founded opinion, that the whole crowd of gods and goddesses of ancient Rome, and modern Varanes, mean only the powers of nature, and principally those of the SUN, expressed in a variety of ways, and by a multitude of fanciful names" (Asiatic Researches, vol.1.p.267).
Men and women who have developed themselves, and possess a true spiritual vision, understand the connectedness of all of Creation -- and perceive that from the One Source of Being, all has emanated. Creation means that God, from within Himself, brought forth all there ever was, is, and will be. Each level of creation is the result of the higher level giving birth from within itself to a more divided level of reality. The more we move out into the lower levels of Creation, the more the Divine Powers of God are divided into lesser powers and states of being. The gods and goddesses that we associate with Greek and Roman Mythology, present to the reader the manner in which these divided powers manifest themselves throughout all of Creation, and especially within our own body-mind. That when the division is overcome, and everything is brought into oneness, we begin to move within the essence of our True Source of Being, and the prodigal son returns home to the Kingdom, is the main focus of all genuine religious philosophies the world over. The true religious dilemma is this: How this is accomplished, is a matter of conjecture, and is what differentiates one religion from the next.
That we fail to understand the true meaning of the sacred writings of the philosophers, and we then condemn what we do not understand, is founded upon the fact that we are not truly Christian -- i.e., the Anointed and Illumed disciples of the Light. If we were indeed Christian, in the genuine sense of the word, then we would be able to see Christ in the writings of the Nations, as easily as we think we see Christ in the Old Testament. The fact that we judge what we do not understand, means that we have violated the first principles of the one great commandment of Jesus -- which commandment was not to judge others -- with the result of our failure to abide by the Lord’s Commandments being turned upon us as unfaithful servants. The consequence is that, the same judgment we invoke upon others, is turned back upon ourselves, with the result being that we inhibit our own spiritual maturity.
One of the greatest of profound truths to understand is that all sacred writings are ultimately a blueprint of the initiates own mind. In what appears to be heavenly dramas about the gods and their interaction with carnal man, what is being portrayed is the interaction of higher mind, powers and laws, with our own physical body and mind. Behind the scenes exists not only the triune powers of Creation, but also that Great Supreme Power that is beyond the Trinity, and is the source of all Life and Being. In the same way that all of life appears to be made up of an abundance of variations in physical attributes and characteristics, yet at their essence they emanate from the One Source, the same thing can be said of the gods and goddesses in mythology -- wherein the powers that harness the diversity of Creation appear separate and distinct in this physical realm of existence, but at a deeper level they meld into twelve, six, three, and ultimately the One Source of Being.
If we were truly Christian, we would be sufficiently Illumined to perceive that all scripture reveals mind and its interaction between higher and lower planes of existence -- the symbols are universal to mankind throughout all of Creation. Where it is said that Jesus was born of a virgin, so too was most of man’s savior-gods. In this respect, even the virgin is represented in the zodiac, and is always the mother of the sun-god: "We have in the first decade the Sign of the Virgin, following the most ancient tradition of the Persians, the Chaldeans, the Egyptians, Hermes and Esculapius, a young woman called in the Persian language, Seclinidos de Darzama; in the Arabic, Aderenedesa -- that is to say, a chaste, pure, immaculate virgin, suckling an infant, which some nations call Jesus (i.e., Savior), but which we in Greek call Christ" (Kircher, Edipus Egypticus). Thus we not only see the virgin birth, but also the relationship of the Jewish Messiah Jesus to the Christ of the Pagan religions of Greece.
Knowing these things, Ammonius Saccus, a Greek philosopher and founder of a Neo-platonic school taught that: "Christianity and Paganism, when rightly understood, differ in no essential points, but had a common origin, and are really one and the same thing" (see Taylor’s Diegesis, p.329). The problem is that modern believers do not "rightly understand" either Christianity, or the religious writings of the philosophers. Why? Because the sacred writings of each are derived from a different culture, the uniform underlying message is not perceived by the uninitiated believers.
A Reply To Bishop Spong
On Christians Before The Birth Of Jesus
I'm a writer of Study Guides and Bible Studies for such authors as Tom Harpur, Bishop Spong, Matthew Fox. Would you mind expanding on your claim that the word Christian was avoided by early Christians because the term was in common use. Are you referring to the two words "Christos" and "Chrestus"?
You ask an excellent question -- and I would expect this out of an open minded organization associated with Bishop Spong who seems willing to look beyond the limitations of the traditional Church doctrine.
To understand why the disciples and followers of Yeshua, who people call Jesus, did not call themselves Christian ( http://nazirene.org/unfaithful2.htm ), one's understanding of the word must not be limited by the modern doctrines of the Church. The words Christ/Messiah, of course in English means Anointed -- and what is being portrayed is not a title as the Church uses the word -- but rather, a condition of mind. If you were to interpret the Old Testament historically, then it denotes that 21 men were the Messiah/Christ. And the fact that the Hebrew word Messiah, was not brought directly into the Greek language, correctly indicates that the Greek equivalent of Messiah in the word Christ or Christos, already existed. Quoting the above link: That the initiates of the ancient mystery religions were called Christians prior to the time of Jesus is demonstrated in a letter from the Emperor Adrian to Servianus, written in 134 A.D., wherein it is stated: "Egypt, which you commended to me, my dearest Servianus, I have found to be wholly fickle and inconsistent, and continually wafted about by every breath of fame. The worshipers of Serapis are called Christians, and those who are devoted to the god Serapis, call themselves Bishops of Christ". What is confirmed is that, with the advent of Jesus, the Christ or Christos was not a new term, and there were people throughout the empire who were called Christians prior to the time when the name came to be associated with the followers of Jesus... In the writings of Clement of Alexandria we find it explained that: "Those who lived according to the Logos were really Christians, though they have been thought to be atheists; as Socrates and Heraclitus were among the Greeks, and such as resembled them" (Strom. bk. i, ch xix).
This is also why Celsus, the Epicurean philosopher, wrote that: "The Christian religion contains nothing but what Christians hold in common with heathens; nothing new, or truly great" (see Origen, Contra Celsus). And why Ammonius Saccus, a Greek philosopher and founder of a Neo-platonic school taught that: "Christianity and Paganism, when rightly understood, differ in no essential points, but had a common origin, and are really one and the same thing" (see Taylor’s Diegesis, p.329). The initiates of Mithraism, and all the ancient Mystery Religions, who were of an Anointed (Christ/Messiah) mind, were all referred to as Christian. In much the same way that the 21 men in the Old Testament were said to be the Anointed. And it is this same Power of Enlightenment that is spoken of in the Epistle of John: "As for you, the anointing you received from him remains in you, and you do not need anyone to teach you. But as his anointing teaches you about all things and as that anointing is real, not counterfeit-- just as it has taught you, remain in him" (I Jn 2:27 NIV).
There are levels of this Anointing -- and in the same way that there are levels of education, and levels of enlightenment, the man Yeshua so fulfilled the Royal Law within himself, that he became One with that principle known as the Logos/Son of God at his baptism (see http://TheTenWords.com ). And of the Ebionites it is therefore written that with respect to Yeshua, they taught that he was in “supernatural union of a man and God... In their eyes, Jesus of Nazareth was a mere mortal, the legitimate son of Joseph and Mary: but he was the best and wisest of the human race, selected as the worthy instrument to restore upon earth the worship of the true and supreme Deity. When he was baptized in the Jordan, the Christ, the first of the aeons, the Son of God himself, descended on Jesus in the form of a dove, to inhabit his mind, and direct his actions during the allotted period of his ministry” (Gibbon; The Decline & Fall of the Roman Empire, V.4, P.366 -- see http://Ebionite.com ). And there is a vast difference between the various degrees of Anointing that seekers attain to, and becoming At-One with the Logos. And this is presented in the baptism sequence of the Gospel of the Hebrews/Ebionites in the words: "And it came to pass when the Lord was come up out of the water, the whole fount of the Holy Spirit descended and rested upon him, and said unto him: My son, in all the prophets was I waiting for thee that thou shouldst come, and I might rest in thee. For thou art my rest, thou art my first begotten son, that reignest for ever." To which Jerome correctly explains "not partially as in the case of other holy men." And the allegorical portrayal of the resurrection is the final or fourth stage of birth that is presented in the return of the Prodigal Son to the Father in the Kingdom ( http://GateOfEden.com ), or what is presented in the completion of the cycle from the Alpha to the Omega as portrayed in Jewish Mysticism in the Zohar: “All souls are subject to the trials of transmigration; and men do not know the designs of the Most High with regard to them… The souls must re-enter the absolute substance whence they have emerged. But to accomplish this end they must develop all the perfections, the germ of which is planted in them; and if they have not fulfilled this condition during one life, they must commence another, a third, and so forth, until they have acquired the condition which fits them for reunion with God”.
As the disciple or seeker of Truth draws near to what Yeshua portrayed as the Kingdom within ( http://GateOfEden.com ), they would receive various levels of the Anointing which would open their minds and teach and reveal to them the Mysteries of God that Yeshua concealed within the parables -- and remains concealed within the allegorical symbols of the scriptures that few modern Christians see or understand. This inner essence of God that exists within each of us which is referred to as the Logos/Son of God, was referred to as the True Prophet by the disciples and early followers of Yeshua and TheWay. And this is why Yeshua stated that there is only One Teacher, and all of mankind are equally brothers and sisters who must learn from the True Prophet within them. And in the Homilies, this is why Peter is quoted as saying to his own disciple: “Hence, O beloved Clement, if you would know the things pertaining to God, you have to learn them from Him alone, because He alone knows the truth. For if any one else knows anything, he has received it from Him or from His disciples”. And it is this spiritual reality that is presented in the words: "It is written in the Prophets: 'They will all be taught by God.' Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me" (John 6:45 NIV). So the question then becomes: How is one taught by God? Directly? Which is why it is written in the New Testament that there is only one way -- but this is not understood by the modern Church which continues to embrace the doctrines of Constantine. With respect to the One Teacher (Mt 23:8), or True Prophet, this same Truth can be demonstrated using the first century witness known as the Recognitions of Clement, where St. Clement quotes the teachings of the Apostle Peter. In chapter 59, under the heading of The True Prophet, Clement writes: “But I would not have you think, that in saying this I take away the power of judging concerning things; but I give counsel that no one walk through devious places, and rush into errors without end. And therefore I advise not only wise men, but indeed all men who have a desire of knowing what is advantageous to them, that they seek after the true Prophet; for it is He alone who knoweth all things, and who knoweth what and how every man is seeking. For He is within the mind of every one of us, but in those who have no desire of the knowledge of God and His righteousness, He is inoperative; but He works in those who seek after that which is profitable to their souls, and kindles in them the light of knowledge. Wherefore seek Him first of all; and if you do not find Him, expect not that you shall learn anything from any other. But He is soon found by those who diligently seek Him through love of the truth, and whose souls are not taken possession of by wickedness. For He is present with those who desire Him in the innocence of their spirits, who bear patiently, and draw sighs from the bottom of their hearts through love of the truth; but He deserts malevolent minds, because as a prophet He knows the thoughts of every one. And therefore let no one think that he can find Him by his own wisdom, unless, as we have said, he empty his mind of all wickedness, and conceive a pure and faithful desire to know Him. For when any one has so prepared himself, He Himself as a prophet, seeing a mind prepared for Him, of His own accord offers Himself to his knowledge”.
What does Peter
say to us in these words? That the True Prophet “is within the
mind of every one of us”. This concept is Spiritual -- it was
condemned as Gnostic heresy by the Church of Rome -- and is the foundation of
the Living Church that the Lord inaugurated. Yeshua warned his followers not
to go to a teacher or religious authority in this world -- even when that
teacher or authority says that he knows the Messiah/Christ. What is very clear
in these words which are parallel and in harmony with the New Testament, is the
followers of Yeshua were not to learn from men -- who themselves do not know --
and in true Spiritual-Gnostic fashion, they were only to go to the Source of all
Knowledge, the True Prophet (see
Apostle Paul wrote that the baptized entry-level believers at Corinth did not
know the Gospel of God, and could not be taught the Mysteries and of the
Kingdom, because they were too carnal to receive them. Quoting the Being of
Light web site ( http://BeingOfLight.com
Paul states: I will
“...tell about the visions I've had, and revelations from
the Lord. Fourteen years ago I was taken up to heaven for a visit. Don't ask me
whether my body was there or just my spirit, for I don't know; only God can
answer that. But anyway, there I was in paradise, and heard things so astounding
that they are beyond a man's power to describe or put in words (and anyway I am
not allowed to tell them to others)”
(2 Cor 12:1-4 TLB).
What did Paul see
and experience that was not only beyond natural man's ability to comprehend, but
was not lawful to tell what he saw to others? In
the Martyrdom of Ignatius (first Century Overseer of Antioch), Ignatius
speaks of himself as a disciple of John. In his Epistle to the Ephesians he
writes that he has been “initiated into the
mysteries of the Gospel with Paul, the holy, the martyred”.
In his Epistle to the Trallaus he speaks of the mysteries and writes:
“Might I not write to you things more full of mystery?
But I fear to do so, lest I should inflict injury on you who are babes. Pardon
me in this respect, lest, as not being able to receive their weighty import, ye
should be strangled by them”. Ignatius also
writes that though he is aware of the mysteries, he is not yet
“by any means perfect, nor am I such a disciple as Paul or
dilemma that Paul wrote about -- and has been continually ignored by the
majority of Christians throughout history -- was explained by Peter when his
disciple Clement wrote his warning to believers: “…and if you do
not find Him, expect not that you shall learn anything from any other”.
From a first century Christian perspective, there is only one way that you can learn and know the truth, and that is through your own inner dormant spiritual nature. “Expect not that you shall learn anything”, says Peter, if you attempt to learn from the doctrines of men -- even when these men are the leaders of your church, synagogue, mosque, or temple. Why? Because Yeshua himself commanded: “But you, do not be called 'Rabbi'; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren” (Matt 23:8 NKJ). And when rightly understood, the teachings of Yeshua and TheWay present to the true seeker how they each may be "...taught by God" (John 6:45 NIV). The problem is that in order to bring this condition about, the Prodigal Sons must arise from the ways of this world, release themselves from the control of what is portrayed as the "citizen of the far country", which Paul portrayed as the god of this world, and they must themselves accomplish the required completion that Yeshua did within himself, which is noted at Matt. 5:48. In the words of Gregory, Bishop of Nyssa: “…it is imperative on all those who have an equally earnest desire for the Good as He has, to be followers by the path of an exact imitation of Him Who leads the way to salvation, and to carry into action what He has shown them. It is, in fact impossible for persons to reach the same goal unless they travel by the same ways”.
This is why it is written in the Gospel of Thomas ( http://DivineManna.org ): "But if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty and it is you who are that poverty... Whoever finds himself is superior to the world". And the finding of self is the primary objective of all scriptures. And when we add to this the statement from the Gospel of Philip that "Those who say that first they shall die and (then) they shall arise are confused. If they do not first receive the resurrection (while) they live,¹ they will not receive anything (when) they die" Quoting the Being of Light ( http://BeingOfLight.com ) web site: It is for this reason that the second-century Church Father Clement of Alexandria said that it is “…the greatest of all lessons to know one's self. For if one knows himself, he will know God; and knowing God, he will be made like God… and that man becomes God, since God so wills”. In his treaties on The Soul and the Resurrection, St Gregory writes that “the Resurrection is no other thing than 'the re-constitution of our nature in its original form’”, and states that there will come a time “…when the complete whole of our race shall have been perfected from the first man to the last”.
The word Christian, or the Anointing of the mind, can in many ways be thought of as elementary. The lesser levels of this Anointing represents the initial stages of the Spiritual Path of TheWay -- which while not rightly understood, is the foundation of Gnosticism. To accomplish what the historical man Yeshua did in his total fulfillment of the Royal Law within himself -- and achieving total Oneness with the indwelling Logos/Son of God, can in no way be likened to the lesser levels of the Anointing of the mind.
I hope I have answered your question,
GodSpeed in TheWay,
Long Island, NY
Followers of Jesus Rejected the Name Christian
Celsus, the Epicurean philosopher, wrote that: "The Christian religion contains nothing but what Christians hold in common with heathens; nothing new, or truly great" (see Origen, Contra Celsus). Though such opinions on the surface appear to be radical by today’s standards, they are basically correct from the perspective of the Pagan Christianity that evolved out of the Greek and Roman cultures. Yet this was not true of the religion Jesus himself taught when he walked the earth.
Today we call ourselves by the Greek word Christian -- but have we ever questioned where the term originated? And what does it mean? The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge confirms that the name "originated outside of Christian and Jewish circles". The Mercer Dictionary of the Bible states that: "By the late first and early second centuries the name ‘Christian,’ which early believers avoided using of themselves, was beginning to be accepted".
If modern believers were truly sincere in their desire for a more intimate relationship with the Lord, they would immediately want to know and question why "early believers avoided" using the name Christian? When it is realized that even the very name Christian was in use prior to the time of Jesus, we truly begin to grasp the Pagan connection. The name Christian was a term employed to describe one who was an initiate, and understood the inner meaning of the Greek and Roman mystery religions. Thus, the early followers of Jesus refused to be called Christian, and call Jesus the Christ, because the word was used in reference to enlightened Pagans and their gods.
In order to understand the origin of the name Christian, one must begin to perceive the manner in which the sacred writings of all people are written. The fact that the scriptures have more than one meaning is well documented in the Bible itself. As has been fully revealed in the preceding chapters, the inner, spiritual meaning of the Bible, can only be observed by those disciples who the Lord opens the mind -- which opening enables the disciple to perceive the veiled meaning: "Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures" (Luke 24:45 KJV). Without this opening of the mind, the person reading the Bible will not understand the true message -- which is seen in Jesus’ statement to the Pharisees: "You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is these that bear witness of Me" (John 5:39 NAS). The Pharisees did not see this inner meaning because their minds were not opened. Regarding Christ and the scriptures, Jesus taught his disciples: "And beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures" (Luke 24:27 NAS).
In the same way that the Anointing of the mind (Christ) was the main theme in the Old Testament scriptures, and those whose mind had not been enlightened by the Light could not perceive the inner spiritual meaning, so also was the scriptures of the people we today call the Pagans. Under the heading of Approach to the Study of Myth and Mythology in the Encyclopedia Britannica it reads: "Thus, the gods Apollo, Helios, and Hephaestus represent fire, and the god Poseidon and the river Scamander represent water. Similarly, the goddess Athena is interpreted as wisdom/sense, the god Ares as the absence of that quality, the goddess Aphrodite as desire, and the god Hermes as reason. An allegorical interpretation of a myth could be said to posit a one-to-one correspondence between mythical ‘clothing’ and the ideas being so clothed. This approach tends to limit the meaning of a myth, whereas that meaning may in reality be multiple, operating on several levels".
In the first century writings known as the Clementine Homilies which is a discourse between the Apostle Peter and his disciple Clement, it is written of the religious writings of the Greeks: "The wisest of the ancients, men who had by hard labor learned all truth, kept the path of knowledge hid from those who were unworthy and had no taste for lessons in divine things. For it is not really true that from Ouranos and his mother Ge were born twelve children, as the myth counts them: six sons, Okeanos, Koios, Krios, Hyperion, Japetos, Kronos; and six daughters, Thea, Themis, Mnemosyne, Demeter, Tethys, and Rhea. Nor that Kronos, with the knife of adamant, mutilated his father Ouranos, as you say, and threw the part into the sea; nor that Aphrodite sprang from the drops of blood which flowed from it; nor that Kronos associated with Rhea, and devoured his first-begotten son Pluto, because a certain saying of Prometheus led him to fear that a child born from him would wax stronger than himself, and spoil him of his kingdom... But, my son, as I said, such stories have a peculiar and philosophical meaning, which can be allegorically set forth in such a way that you yourself would listen with wonder."
What is being revealed here is that what is written literally in the sacred writings of the people we call Pagans, is not the true and genuine message that is being conveyed to the enlightened members of the Pagan religions -- who by reason of their enlightenment, were called Christians. All these many stories and myths pertaining to gods and goddesses were in reality pertaining to the manifestation of the laws and divine powers throughout all of Creation. Thus, if we are truly perceptive, we must begin to admit that we haven’t the slightest idea what the true Pagan initiate believed. Moreover, what we should really take to heart and be concerned about from our own religious perspective is the fact that these initiates were referred to as Christians prior to the time of Jesus -- and their gods where spoken of as the Christos, or Christ.
That the true meaning of the sacred writings of the Greeks was concealed from the multitude of people is further established in the writings of the early Church Father Clement of Alexandria who writes: "It was not only the Pythagoreans and Plato then, that concealed many things; but the Epicureans too say that they have things that may not be uttered, and do not allow all to peruse those writings. The Stoics also say that by the first Zeno things were written which they do not readily allow disciples to read, without their first giving proof whether or not they are genuine philosophers. And the disciples of Aristotle say that some of their treatises are esoteric, and others common and exoteric. Further, those who instituted the mysteries, being philosophers, buried their doctrines in myths, so as not to be obvious to all. Did they then, by veiling human opinions, prevent the ignorant from handling them; and was it not more beneficial for the holy and blessed contemplation of realities to be concealed? But it was not only the tenets of the Barbarian philosophy, or the Pythagorean myths. But even those myths in Plato (in the Republic, that of Hero the Armenian; and in the Gorgias, that of Aeacus and Rhadamanthus; and in the Phoedo, that of Tartarus; and in the Protagoras, that of Prometheus and Epimetheus; and besides these, that of the war between the Atlantini and the Athenians in the Atlanticum) are to be expounded allegorically, not absolutely in all their expressions, but in those which ex-press the general sense. And these we shall find indicated by symbols under the veil of allegory. Also the association of Pythagoras, and the twofold intercourse with the associates which designates the majority, hearers), and the others that have a genuine attachment to philosophy, disciples, yet signified that something was spoken to the multitude, and something concealed from them. Perchance, too, the twofold species of the Peripatetic teaching - that called probable, and that called knowable - came very near the distinction between opinion on the one hand, and glory and truth on the other. To win the flowers of fair renown from men, Be not induced to speak aught more than right."
In explanation of why the inner meaning of the mysteries are concealed from the masses, Clement writes: "The Ionic muses accordingly expressly say, ‘That the majority of people, wise in their own estimation, follow minstrels and make use of laws, knowing that many are bad, few good; but that the best pursue glory: for the best make choice of the everlasting glory of men above all. But the multitude cram themselves like brutes, measuring happiness by the belly and the pudenda, and the basest things in us.’ And the great Parmenides of Elea is introduced describing thus the teaching of the two ways: ‘The one is the dauntless heart of convincing truth; The other is in the opinions of men, in whom is no true faith’".
Because we fail to understand the reason and essence of life itself, it is near impossible for the modern Christian to understand the nature of the ancient religions and their relationship to the teachings of the New Covenant. Moreover, because of our inability to comprehend the very elementary significance of religion itself, neither can we perceive the reason why the adoption of Pagan religious symbols were so readily embraced by the more mature Christians over the first four centuries. The problem is that we have slammed the door to higher knowledge by virtue of our own arrogance, which manifests itself in the Christian dogma that we are right and everyone else is ignorant. What we fail to realize is that all the religions of the world possess a degree of truth -- and it was the people of the New Covenant who were holy enough to embrace Truth in its Ultimate Reality.
What is expressed in these words with regard to the inner meaning of what we call the Pagan religious symbols, is a sure demonstration of Universal Truth. In all religions the world over there is "the teaching of the two ways". To the disciple with the "dauntless heart" who, with his whole life, seeks out the truth, the inner spiritual meaning is revealed. All the rest, who are the majority -- whose lives are driven by sensual desires and brute carnal appetites -- the wise men of all time have provided religious symbols that entice the masses, and yet conceal the true spiritual meaning from the eyes of the profane.
The reality of mankind is portrayed in the words of Clement when he wrote in the above quotation: "But the multitude cram themselves like brutes, measuring happiness by the belly and the pudenda, and the basest things in us". This is true -- true when these words were written, and true of the people in our own time. The multitude of people do not care about Truth! They have no desire to embrace the Pure Word! Being carnal, they relate everything to the fulfillment of their sensual desires and appetites. Knowing this fact, the holy men the world over have embedded the teachings of the Two Way into whatever form the multitude of people would accept. This very important knowledge is beyond our comprehension today, because we ignore the words of the Apostle Paul when we worship the historical Jesus, while giving very little attention to the Marriage with the indwelling Christ.
Clement explains that the ancient sources of philosophy were spiritual and true, and the great confusion among the Greeks is a result of false philosophers who are of a later time when he writes: "But the most ancient of the philosophers were not carried away to disputing and doubting, much less are we, who are attached to the really true philosophy, on whom the Scripture enjoins examination and investigation. For it is the more recent of the Hellenic philosophers who, by empty and futile love of fame, are led into useless babbling in refuting and wrangling. But, on the contrary, the Barbarian philosophy, expelling all contention, said, ‘Seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; ask, and it shall be given you.’ Accordingly, by investigation, the point proposed for inquiry and answer knocks at the door of truth, according to what appears. And on an opening being made through the obstacle in the process of investigation, there results scientific contemplation. To those who thus knock, according to my view, the subject under investigation is opened. And to those who thus ask questions, in the Scriptures, there is given from God (that at which they aim) the gift of the God-given knowledge, by way of comprehension, through the true illumination of logical investigation. For it is impossible to find, without having sought; or to have sought, without having examined; or to have examined, without having unfolded and opened up the question by interrogation, to produce distinctness; or again, to have gone through the whole investigation, without thereafter receiving as the prize the knowledge of the point in question. But it belongs to him who has sought, to find; and to him to seek, who thinks previously that he does not know. Hence drawn by desire to the discovery of what is good, he seeks thoughtfully, without love of strife or glory, asking, answering, and besides considering the statements made. For it is incumbent, in applying ourselves not only to the divine Scriptures, but also to common notions, to institute investigations, the discovery ceasing at some useful end. For another place and crowd await turbulent people, and forensic sophistries. But it is suitable for him, who is at once a lover and disciple of the truth, to be pacific even in investigations, advancing by scientific demonstration, without love of self, but with love of truth, to comprehensive knowledge".
Modern Christians today pray for a greater understanding of the Word, and yet the term "scientific investigations" is totally alien to our perception of the Word. Perhaps the key phrase is presented to us in the words: "Knowledge... belongs to him who has sought, to find; and to him to seek, who thinks previously that he does not know". Is this any different than the words of the Apostle when he wrote: "if anyone thinks that he knows anything, he knows nothing yet as he ought to know" (1 Cor 8:2 NKJ). So long as we think we know the meaning of the Pagan religious writings -- the Bible -- and even the meaning of purpose of life itself, the words of the Apostle will continue to plague us when he said of us that we know: "nothing yet as we ought to know".
The blindness is our own! If we had so formed our life that we were able to fulfill the Word and become the bride of Christ, and were truly the people of an Anointed and Illumined mind, we would see that concealed within the body of the narrative, the philosophers spoke of Christ in the form of the Logos -- in the manner of the Gospel of John -- and this is seen when Clement writes: "Thus in the Philebus, Plato, who had been the disciple of the barbarian philosophy, mystically called those Atheists who destroy and pollute, as far as in them lies, the Deity dwelling in them - that is, the Logos - by association with their vices".
Thus, the message of Clement is threefold: Clement writes that the true source and inner revelation of the writings of Plato, is the same Logos attested to in the Gospel of John. Moreover, we observe the continual statement that the Logos represents the Deity that is indwelling within all of mankind. Clement then describes our own present-day condition when he refers to multitude of people as "Atheists who destroy and pollute, as far as in them lies, the Deity dwelling in them - that is, the Logos -- by association with their vices". This is true of natural man throughout all time -- i.e., people who have failed to make themselves an acceptable vessel for them to enter into the Divine Marriage with the indwelling Logos.
What we are presented with are two major themes that need our careful attention. First it is demonstrated that Plato knew, and wrote about the Logos. From our modern-day doctrinal perspective that can only mean that Plato wrote about Jesus prior to the time of Jesus’ incarnation. Moreover, this is the same Logos that is written about in the Gospel of John where it reads: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" (John 1:1 KJV). Contrary, then, to our present-day doctrines, we must conclude that Christ was written about by the philosophers prior to the time of Jesus. Further, unless be begin to comprehend the difference between the name Jesus and the term Christ, the only conclusion that can be arrived at is that Jesus wrote through Plato in the same manner that he wrote through the Hebrew prophets.
The Encyclopedia Britannica (1998 edition) writes of the word Logos: "In Greek philosophy and theology, the divine reason implicit in the cosmos, ordering it and giving it form and meaning. Though the concept defined by the term logos is found in Greek, Indian, Egyptian, and Persian philosophical and theological systems... The idea of the logos in Greek thought harks back at least to the 6th-century-BC philosopher Heracleitus, who discerned in the cosmic process a logos analogous to the reasoning power in man. Later, the Stoics, philosophers who followed the teachings of the thinker Zeno of Citium (4th-3rd century BC), defined the logos as an active rational and spiritual principle that permeated all reality... Philo of Alexandria, a 1st-century-AD Jewish philosopher, taught that the logos was the intermediary between God and the cosmos, being both the agent of creation and the agent through which the human mind can apprehend and comprehend God. According to Philo and the Middle Platonists, philosophers who interpreted in religious terms the teachings of the 4th-century-BC Greek master philosopher Plato, the logos was both immanent in the world and at the same time the transcendent divine mind... The identification of Jesus with the logos, which is implied in various places in the New Testament but stated specifically in the Fourth Gospel, was further developed in the early church but more on the basis of Greek philosophical ideas... the early Christian Fathers stated that Christ as the preexistent logos (1) reveals the Father to mankind and is the subject of the Old Testament manifestations of God; (2) is the divine reason in which the whole human race shares, so that the 6th-century-BC philosopher and others who lived with reason were Christians before Christ; and (3) is the divine will and word by which the worlds were framed".
The concept of the Logos is so deeply imbedded in Greek thought, that the Eleventh, or Scholars Edition of the Britannica which was published prior to the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls writes that: "Among the influences that shaped the Fourth Gospel that of the Alexandrian philosophy must be assigned a distinct... importance". Because of this very distinct Hellenic influence, many Bible experts believed that the Gospel of John had been written by a Greek convert. This is especially seen in the statement by the Britannica where it writes: "What John thus does is to take the Logos idea of Philo and use it for a practical purpose -- to make more intelligible to himself and his readers the divine nature of Jesus Christ. That this endeavor to work into the historical tradition of the life and teaching of Jesus -- a hypothesis which had a distinctly foreign origin -- led him into serious difficulties...".
The idea that John borrowed the concept of the Logos from the Greeks, or even that the Gospel was written by a Greek convert, was widely accepted by biblical scholars, and this opinion was only proved faulty with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls. From the perspective of better understanding what we believe, this whole concept that is being presented is important for modern Christians to comprehend. What the scholars are stating is that John borrowed Greek Hellenistic ideas about the Christ of Plato and the Greek philosophers, and then incorporated these foreign ideas into his gospel. This includes the idea of the pre-existent Word that is the creator of the universe -- which, when understood in this light, is as much a concealed doctrine of the Pagans, as is the biblical teaching that one must be born again. Because these ideas are absent from the other three gospels -- was more appropriately used in the Greek mystery religions than in Judaism -- and were then incorporated in the gospel, biblical scholars and theologians have long thought that John’s Gospel was founded upon the same Hellenistic theology responsible for Platonic thought and the writings of the poets.
What we are presented here is one of the core reasons why most biblical scholars did not believe the religion of the simple faith, or in the traditional manner of the very churches they served. Evangelical and Born again Christians often use the first chapter of John to prove that Jesus was the pre-existent God who came into the world. What the Evangelical Christians failed to understand was the fact that the more informed biblical scholar understood the connection between the Logos of John and the Logos of Plato and the Pagan world. Moreover, the scholar also understood the universal doctrine of the Logos throughout all the religions of the world, as seen in the above words: "the concept defined by the term logos is found in Greek, Indian, Egyptian, and Persian philosophical and theological systems..."
Essene/Ebionite Gnosticism is Foundation of New Testament Teachings
What is Gnosis? When Peter warned in the writings of his disciple Clement that there is only One Source of Spiritual Knowledge -- and that if you fail to learn from this One Source -- then you are spiritually ignorant -- this is Gnosticism in it's purest form: “Hence, O beloved Clement, if you would know the things pertaining to God, you have to learn them from Him alone, because He alone knows the truth. For if any one else knows anything, he has received it from Him or from His disciples”. And it is this spiritual reality that is presented in the words: "It is written in the Prophets: 'They will all be taught by God.' Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me" (John 6:45 NIV). The objective of Spirituality is to prepare one's self to receive the Divine Manna of the Kingdom -- and this Divine Manna is Gnosis, or experiential spiritual knowledge that transcends the understanding and reality of this world.
Ernest Renan proclaimed that Christianity is Essenism that survived. And it was observed by historian John Fiske that "The sect of Ebionites, who represented the earliest doctrine and practice of Christianity before it had been modified by Paul, differed from the Essenes in no essential respect save in the acknowledgment of Jesus as the Messiah, and the expectation of his speedy return to the earth." (The Unseen World And Other Essays). The problem was that the Essenes and Ebioites were Gnostic -- and they had little in common with the dogma of the later Church which came to adopt the doctrines of Pagan Rome.
Unlike the people of the simple faith, the biblical scholars knew that many Pagan concepts were added into the text of the New Testament in order to better bring the text into harmony with traditional Greek and Roman religious ideas. With good reason it has even been speculated that the verse most used by modern Evangelical Christians to prove that Jesus was God, was added to the beginning of John at a later date by the Roman Church in the endeavor to Paganize the gospel. What this means is that Christians today could in every way be calling upon the god of Plato, and the Christ of the Pagan philosophers.
The great change that literally pulled the proverbial rug out from under the Christian world was brought about with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Everything that biblical scholars and theologians thought they knew, had to be re-evaluated when the scrolls gave them the ability to transcend time itself -- and for the first time in almost two thousand years, they were able to perceive the true foundation of New Covenant thought. The ramifications were literally astounding -- i.e., what this meant was that all their theories, as well as everything that was ever written about the Gospel of John prior to that time, was in error. It did not matter that Luther, Calvin and the common believers quoted and used John, often to the exclusion of the other gospels. The problem was that the anti-Gnostic church which evolved out of the Roman Empire was incapable of understanding even the elementary aspects of the gospel, because they did not comprehend the tradition in which it was founded. The scholar understood this fact – whereas, even today the preacher of the simple faith does not.
With the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls biblical scholars and theologians realized for the first time that the true foundation of the teachings of Jesus was Jewish Essene/Ebionite Gnosticism. In the words of Dead Sea Scroll expert Prof. John Allegro in is book, The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Origins of Christianity, he writes: “It is a fact that the Qumran Library has profoundly affected the study of the Johannine writings and many longheld conceptions have had to be radically revised. No longer can John be regarded as the most Hellenistic of the Evangelists; his gnosticism, and the whole framework of his thought is seen now to spring directly from a Jewish sectarianism rooted in palestinian soil, and his material recognized as founded in the earliest layers of Gospel traditions.”
What is the meaning of the word mysticism? Briefly, mysticism is descriptive of the ability of man to look beyond the limitations of the five senses in order to gain a better understanding of life, God and Creation. The word Gnostic, as used by Prof. Allegro, is the Greek word used to describe the acquisition of knowledge gained through the mystical process of man's inner and direct connection with God. While Christians today embrace the doctrine of faith that was defined by the Apostle Paul, the flaw in their many perception is seen in their inability to understand that Paul’s doctrine of faith was based upon the foundation of mysticism that was laid by the Apostle when he wrote: “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Cor 2:14 NKJ).
What is the meaning of this phrase “…spiritually discerned”? There are different types of knowledge -- i.e., knowledge gained through formal instruction, and knowledge gained through personal experience. The Greek word for knowledge which is gained through the receiving of direct impressions from the “Spirit of God”, is called Gnosticism -- meaning a knowledge received through man’s spiritual nature. It is this type of knowledge that the Paul is making reference to in the above quotation.
From a religious perspective, this was not good news. With this revelation was born a whole host of issues that our experts were simply not prepared to cope with. The problem was that the people who the faithful flock relies upon for answers -- i.e., the biblical scholar, the theologian, the clergy and priest, as well as all the books and reference material written on Christianity -- was suddenly rendered useless and ineffectual.
No doubt many will be immediately offended by this statement. They will reason: How can I say that all the books, commentaries, and reference material that the church uses daily is useless and ineffectual? The answer is simple once it is realized that the books which we rely upon to guide us, are in fact written from an opposite perspective -- and actually in conflict, with the essence of genuine biblical thought.
The problem all stems from the teaching of the two ways and the manner in which the sacred writings are written. I am literally amazed every time I pick up a book that deals with Gnosticism, written by many of our experts and theologians, where they begin by stating: "Gnostics have a system of writing where they do not reveal their doctrines literally, but rather conceal their tenets within a language of symbols". No sooner do they write this great truth, when they ignore their own warning, and commence to explain to their readers the beliefs of the Gnostics based upon the written literal word. Every time they do this, there is no finer example of gross ignorance. If the Gnostics do not write their doctrines literally, and what they do write is an allegorical representation that is composed in a coded set of symbols that is unknown outside of their inner circle of initiates, then how can we begin by ascertaining what they believe based upon what is literally written?
Rational people would have to conclude that, unless you understand the code or tradition which the writings are written in, there is no way that you will be able to decipher the true message. In fact, what the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls confirms to us is this reality: Modern believers would stand a greater chance of understanding Gnostic writings by going to the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency), rather than the majority of religious authorities and sources to which they turn. But even in this the solution is not so simple -- i.e., the problem is made even more complex because even the CIA would fail because they do not comprehend man’s spiritual nature and reality.
This great truth is verified in the first century Clementine Recognitions, where it is written: "Hence, O beloved Clement, if you would know the things pertaining to God, you have to learn them from Him alone, because He alone knows the truth. For if any one else knows anything, he has received it from Him or from His disciples." Why? Why can’t we just read what it says? Fundamentally, we are unable to decipher the writings because we are of a natural organic state of mind -- and we naturally apply everything in our life in a quasi-Darwinist manner.
If we begin to open our minds to the greater reality -- i.e., that both the Old and New Testament Scriptures, as well as the writings of the Greek poets have a common Gnostic theme in Christ -- or more accurately, "Christ in you" (Col 1:27 KJV), we must totally embrace the words of the Apostle Peter to his disciple Clement: "if you would know the things pertaining to God, you have to learn them from Him alone".
This is the pure essence of Gnostic thought: That man can only learn about the things pertaining to God, from God alone. It is for this reason that those who search for God, and succeed in their endeavor to know God, cannot write -- and do not write the things of God for carnal man to read. Such a thing is impossible because the Apostle is correct in his assertion that the "…natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned" (1 Cor 2:14 KJV).
The Christian world which has been peddling the doctrines of Rome to a flock of believers who lack any real understanding of the spiritual essence of the very religious teachings they proclaim, lack the necessary depth of perception and comprehension to understand why Paul warns that they will look upon the Mysteries of God as "foolishness". Moreover, the faith of Paul, over the Pharisaic rituals of the Law, is preparatory -- and is based upon the reality that if you live a consecrated life, that what is called the Kingdom of God will begin to manifest within you. In pure Spiritual/Gnostic thinking Paul writes: "For as many as have sinned without law will also perish without law, and as many as have sinned in the law will be judged by the law (for not the hearers of the law are just in the sight of God, but the doers of the law will be justified; for when Gentiles, who do not have the law, by nature do the things in the law, these, although not having the law, are a law to themselves, who show the work of the law written in their hearts..." (Rom 2:12-15 NKJ). Because, as Yeshua taught, we all have an inner portal to the Kingdom within us ( http://GateOfEden.com ), if a man who lived on a remote island was to tap into this inner Source of Knowledge and Spiritual Reality -- and lived the necessary life that permits the indwelling Logos/Son of God to manifest in the person's life -- that they would fulfill the words spoken by both Paul and John: "It is written in the Prophets: 'They will all be taught by God.' Everyone who listens to the Father and learns from him comes to me" (John 6:45 NIV) -- and they would in essence dwell with Messiah/Christ. And while Paul reject the ritual observance of the Law in the manner of the Pharisees, Paul taught that every thought had to be directed inwardly toward the Kingdom -- i.e., "…take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ" (2 Cor 10:5 NIV). And this necessary transformation had to be brought about to the degree that the Christian was required to "…beat my body and make it my slave..." (1 Cor 9:27 NIV). Moreover, that faith meant an entirely different thing to the Apostle Paul than what is being preached from our pulpits today, can be seen in Paul’s commandment to all who would call themselves a Christian to "Put to death, therefore, whatever belongs to your earthly nature" (Col 3:5 NIV). To the degree that Paul warned: “For if ye live after the flesh, ye shall die: but if ye through the Spirit do mortify the deeds of the body, ye shall live” (Rom 8:13 KJV).
Contrary to the doctrines of the modern Church, Paul taught the necessity of living a life that was sinless -- i.e., "What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace may abound? Certainly not! How shall we who died to sin live any longer in it?" (Rom 6:1-2 NKJ). Paul understood that there were Two Powers -- the one of the Left Hand that is the god of this world -- and the one of the Right Hand, that is the sustaining Power that guides the seeker inwardly toward the Inner Kingdom. And thus, Paul warned: "Do you not know that to whom you present yourselves slaves to obey, you are that one's slaves whom you obey, whether of sin leading to death, or of obedience leading to righteousness?" (Rom 6:16 NKJ). Or, in the words of Yeshua: "Jesus answered them, Most assuredly, I say to you, whoever commits sin is a slave of sin" (John 8:34 NKJ). Which means that the disciple of Yeshua must not only refrain from sin, but totally transform their body -- i.e., "Therefore do not let sin reign in your mortal body, that you should obey it in its lusts. And do not present your members as instruments of unrighteousness to sin, but present yourselves to God as being alive from the dead, and your members as instruments of righteousness to God" (Rom 6:12-13 NKJ). Where Christians celebrate the Lord's Supper for the remission of sins, Paul warns that those who continue to sin, bring greater judgment upon themselves: "Therefore whoever eats this bread or drinks this cup of the Lord in an unworthy manner will be guilty of the body and blood of the Lord. But let a man examine himself, and so let him eat of the bread and drink of the cup. For he who eats and drinks in an unworthy manner eats and drinks judgment to himself, not discerning the Lord's body. For this reason many are weak and sick among you, and many sleep" (1 Cor 11:27-30 NKJ).
While Christians who have been imbued with the doctrines of Constantine and Pagan Rome, promote the dogma that they are saved by faith regardless of their actions, they ignore the warning of Paul that they not only crucify Christ afresh -- i.e., "if they fall away, to renew them again to repentance, since they crucify again for themselves the Son of God, and put Him to an open shame" (Heb 6:6 NKJ) -- and because they make themselves servants of sin and the god of this world, they totally negate the sacrifice of Yeshua and the Law of Grace. The result is that the modern Christian world has made themselves apostates to the Inner Kingdom -- and by rejecting the sacrifice of Yeshua with their actions, they are not only incapable of understanding the inner spiritual meaning of the scriptures -- but they condemn themselves to what Paul called the judgment of those who are incapable of receiving salvation: "For if we sin willfully after we have received the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, but a certain fearful expectation of judgment, and fiery indignation which will devour the adversaries" (Heb 10:26-27 NKJ).
Yeshua warned those who attempted to live in accord with the ways of this world, while calling upon his name with their lips: "And why call ye me, Lord, Lord, and do not the things which I say?" (Luke 6:46 KJV). That those who continue to sin, dwell under the power of the Left Hand and the unclean spirits that inhibit their understanding of the inner meaning of the scriptures -- making them apostates to the Inner Kingdom -- is demonstrated in an alternate ending of the Gospel of Mark which Jerome stated was the original and correct ending where Yeshua proclaims: "This Age of lawlessness and unbelieving lies under the sway of Satan, who will not allow what lies under the unclean spirits to understand the truth and power of God; therefore, they said to Christ, reveal your righteousness now. Christ answered them, The term of years for Satan's power has now expired, but other terrors are at hand. I was delivered to death on behalf of sinners, that they might return to the truth and sin no more, that they might inherit that glory of righteousness which is spiritual and imperishable in heaven" (Moffatt, quoting Gospel Of Mark in Codex W Also quoted by St. Jerome as being the authentic ending of the Gospel of Mark).
We are all the prodigal sons and
daughters of our Heavenly Father. Because, as Yeshua taught, the
Kingdom is within us (Luke 17:20-21 @
http://GateOfEden.com ), the indwelling Logos or Son of God will teach
whoever sanctifies their body-Temple, and seeks the Inner Kingdom.
With respect to the One Teacher
(Mt 23:8), or what the Essenes referred to as the Teacher of Righteousness,
and the Ebionites called the True Prophet, this same Truth can be demonstrated using the
first century witness known as the Recognitions of Clement, where St.
Clement quotes the teachings of the Apostle Peter. In chapter 59, under
the heading of The True Prophet, Clement writes:
“But I would
not have you think, that in saying this I take away the power of judging
concerning things; but I give counsel that no one walk through devious
places, and rush into errors without end. And therefore I advise not only
wise men, but indeed all men who have a desire of knowing what is
advantageous to them, that they seek after the true Prophet; for it is He
alone who knoweth all things, and who knoweth what and how every man is
seeking. For He is within the mind of every one of us,
but in those who have no desire of the knowledge of God and His
righteousness, He is inoperative; but He works in those who seek after that
which is profitable to their souls, and kindles in them the light of
knowledge. Wherefore seek Him first of all; and if you do not find
Him, expect not that you shall learn anything from any other. But He is soon
found by those who diligently seek Him through love of the truth, and whose
souls are not taken possession of by wickedness. For He is present with
those who desire Him in the innocence of their spirits, who bear patiently,
and draw sighs from the bottom of their hearts through love of the truth;
but He deserts malevolent minds, because as a prophet He knows the thoughts
of every one. And therefore let no one think that he can find Him by his own
wisdom, unless, as we have said, he empty his mind of all wickedness, and
conceive a pure and faithful desire to know Him. For when any one has so
prepared himself, He Himself as a prophet, seeing a mind prepared for Him,
of His own accord offers Himself to his knowledge”.
What the opening verses in the
Gospel of John declares, is exactly the same as what Peter states in the above.
"And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness
comprehended it not" (John 1:5) -- i.e.,
He is within the mind of every one of us, but in those who have no desire of the
knowledge of God and His righteousness, He is inoperative"
-- and the Light of the Logos is
within each of us: "That was the true Light, which
lighteth every man that cometh into the world." And
that those prodigal sons and daughters who seek the Inner Light of the Kingdom
by living in accord with the Power of the Right Hand,
"But as many as received him, to them gave he power to become the sons of God"
(John 1:12 KJV)
In The House With Messiah
Christians today have been so severed from the essence of the teachings of Yeshua and TheWay, that they totally fail to perceive and comprehend the primary objective when they open their Bibles. Because they cling to manmade doctrines of belief and corrupted scriptures (http://BibleCorruption.com ), they totally fail to understand that the Primary Objective is to become a disciple who is able to enter the House with the Messiah/Christ, and learn privately from the One Teacher the Mysteries of God that cannot be revealed to the people of a natural organic consciousness. In the same way that the disciples asked Yeshua why he taught the people in parables, so too is the reader of the scriptures supposed to ask this question. And if Yeshua is the revealer of Truth to the world, the modern believer is supposed to question why Yeshua replied: “Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables: That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand” (Mark 4:11-12 KJV). Why didn't Yeshua speak plainly to all people -- so they could understand the truth? And know what to believe? And the fact that Christians fail to ask these questions, is because the manmade doctrines of the quasi-secular Church of Rome has alienated the flock of believers from their own higher soul and spiritual reality as the prodigal sons and daughters of the Most High, and they don't understand the very original intent of the scriptures themselves. Moreover, without understanding why these words were spoken, then you cannot know anything with respect to the meaning, purpose and objective of the scriptures. And this is readily seen in the warning: “And he said unto them, Know ye not this parable? and how then will ye know all parables?” (Mark 4:13 KJV). And to put this great biblical truth in the more modern language of the New Living Translation: “But if you can't understand this story, how will you understand all the others I am going to tell?”
If you fail to understand the meaning of this parable, then you can never comprehend a single truth of any great importance. Moreover, I confirm this well defined biblical statement with respect to all of man’s endeavors in his quest to know himself and his true role in the vision of Creation. It makes no difference if you are a man of faith, science, or philosophy, unless you understand the meaning of this parable in relation to your own life, then you can never know anything of a genuine value and significance.
The organic mind of man represents a people of very limited perception who dwell in a confusing world. It has been formulated that organic man uses less than ten percent of his potential of mind -- and he is limited to this small amount, because the other areas of mind don't correspond to the vibrational spectrum of frequencies associated with this physical realm. Yeshua said that while they see, they do not perceive, and they neither hear or understand -- because organic man dwells in what is portrayed in the parable of the Marriage Feast as the "outer darkness". And if he is to be able to utilize the other ninety percent of mind that he presently can't access, then he will have to consciously evolve the mind beyond organic limitations. The body-vessel which we are presently dwelling in, is comprised of earth-matter -- it's vibration is of the earth -- and it will only permit those aspects of mind that are associated with the earth to develop. In it's natural state, the body-vessel simply does not support any vibrational frequencies that are not of the earth. In the same way that Peter stated with respect to the True Prophet that "For He is within the mind of every one of us, but in those who have no desire of the knowledge of God and His righteousness, He is inoperative" -- within us are many levels of mind and being that organic man is totally unaware of -- and the inner barrier to each level must be overcome one segment at a time.
In the approximate year of 178 of our Common Era, Celsus, the Epicurean Philosopher and opponent of Christianity, published a rather embarrassing work in opposition to Christianity known as The True Word or Discourse (see The Secret Doctrine). It is said that this work was widely published and used by the Pagan world as an attack on the Church. Seventy years after its publication The True Word was still so widely circulated, that the Church Father Origen was commissioned by St. Ambrosius to refute this attack by Celsus. In this work, Celsus accused the Church of being a secret system -- teaching the inner core of elect a totally different doctrinal reality than the people of the simple faith. One of the more important concepts that Origen presented, was the fact that each person exists on a differing level -- and must be provided the appropriate teachings of the level they are at. Why? Why do people exist on greatly varying levels? It has to do with the development of the mind beyond the organic limitations. And when Paul warned that the people of the simple faith will look upon the Mysteries of God as "foolishness", this is because the areas of mind associated with the frequencies of the earth, cannot vibrate at those levels associated with the heavens -- the realm of souls -- or that which Yeshua called the Inner Kingdom of God. And what this means is exactly what Paul stated -- i.e., that it is impossible for those of a "natural" mind to even begin to conceive of man's own higher reality that because his organic consciousness cannot access those areas of mind beyond what corresponds to the vibration of the earth, anything beyond the physical spectrum of frequencies is beyond his comprehension.
In the Homilies of Clement, the disciple of Peter, he writes of what the Bible portrays as the Mysteries of God: “James the Righteous, John and Peter were entrusted by the Lord after his resurrection with the higher knowledge. They imparted it to the other apostles, to the seventy…” . This higher knowledge that was entrusted only to his brother Jacob/James, and the disciples, is what Christians today are in search of, and what was thrown away by the Church of the Roman Empire. With regard to these inner teachings that could only be reveled to the very few, Origen writes that Yeshua “conversed with His disciples in private, and especially in their sacred retreats, concerning the Gospel of God; but the words which He uttered have not been preserved, because it appeared to the evangelists that they could not be adequately conveyed to the multitude in writing or in speech… and they saw… what things were to be committed to writing, and how this was to be done, and what was by no means to be written to the multitude, and what was to be expressed in words, and what was not to be so conveyed”. Why were these Sacred Teachings never written down? Primarily because they can't be comprehended by the untransformed organic consciousness of man, and his languages are for the most part totally insufficient to portray these inner realities of mind, soul and being. The original scriptures of the New Covenant was written in Hebrew Characters which has the power to open the mind of those who understood the sacred writing with spiritual depth (see Hebrew Characters). But the scriptures lost their spiritual essence and power of transformation, once they were translated into Greek (see The Scribe of Jacob). But these original and more spiritual Gospels remained preserved among the Ebionites ( http://Ebionite.com ), while those used by the Gentile Church became very corrupted ( http://BibleCorruption.com ) -- and eventually destroyed by the Church of Constantine (see http://Ebionite.com/prologue.htm ).
More important from the perspective of the modern seeker who has not yet read the uncorrupted scriptures that were safeguarded from the Church of Rome (see http://ebionite.com/#purescriptures ), is the reality portrayed by Origen in the above statement that Yeshua “...conversed with His disciples in private, and especially in their sacred retreats, concerning the Gospel of God." In the above Yeshua speaks of those who are "outside" -- i.e., “Unto you it is given to know the mystery of the kingdom of God: but unto them that are without, all these things are done in parables: That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand” (Mark 4:11-12 KJV). In many of the early scriptures there was a reference to those "without" -- or "outside the House" -- as being of a carnal mind and dwelling is what was called in the parable of the Wedding Feast the "outer darkness", are the people of an organic consciousness who are blind to their own higher soul and spiritual realities. They are the prodigal sons and daughters who dwell in that state of mind which Yeshua portrayed as the "far country" -- and their thinking is shackled by what Yeshua portrayed as the "citizen... of the far country" -- which Paul portrayed as the "god of this world" -- and which the Spiritual Christians who were called Gnostics portrayed as the Demiurge. The term "outside", or "without", portrays those who are said to be outside the House.
We must come to terms with the reality today that Yeshua was not -- and could not be all-inclusive. In the first place, it is impossible to reveal to the people of an organic consciousness who are portrayed as the prodigal sons who are under the control of the god of this world, the Mysteries of God -- because their minds will only perceive the vibratory frequencies of the earth. Further, it is clearly seen in the Bible that Yeshua commanded his disciples not to reveal even the elementary precepts of what Origen calls the Gospel of God to those people who can be likened to dogs and swine -- even when they profess with their mouths their allegiance to the Lord. If they were true believers, then they would know the Mysteries first hand. For this reason the Sacred Secrets that bring the believer to maturity, are simply not written where the carnal and unworthy can view them. This is confirmed in the words of Clement, the 1st century disciple of Peter, who wrote: “We remember that our Lord and teacher, as commanding, said to us, guard the mysteries for me, and the sons of my house. Wherefore also he explained to his disciples, privately, the mysteries of the kingdoms of the heavens.” (Clementine Homilies). More important is to be cognizant of the word House as it is used in the above. While those without can only be taught in parables, to those who dwelt privately with Yeshua in The House, all realities of the Higher Mysteries of the Kingdom was revealed.
What is important is for us to realize that Yeshua taught two gospels -- the good news or elementary Gospel teachings which Yeshua proclaimed to the masses, and the Gospel of God, which were the Mysteries of the Kingdom that was taught only to his disciples. This is seen expressly in the words of Clement when said regarding the commandment of the Lord that the disciples must “guard the mysteries for me, and the sons of my house”. Those who are in the house, are the disciples who have gained entrance into the Inner Spiritual Kingdom that he declared. While those who were said to be “outside”, or sense bound in this world and of an organic consciousness, received only the good news announcing the existence of the Spiritual Kingdom that they must seek with a purified body and mind as portrayed in the parable of the Sower and the Seed (see http://SowerAndSeed.com ).
From a New Covenant perspective, knowledge that is conveyed in the manner of instruction must be understood to be the manner in which we must prepare ourselves -- road markers that we will perceive as we travel -- changes in consciousness that we will observe -- and the route that we must follow in our journey through the inner "narrow gate" that provides access into the Kingdom (see Gate Of Eden). The whole concept of the coming of the Kingdom is not from the perspective that a physical kingdom will be inaugurated in this world -- but rather, that the divide between the inner Kingdom (Lk 17:21) will be bridged, and we will then exist in both realms simultaneously -- and this is the meaning of those who were taught privately in The House. When the Bible states that we must pick up our own cross and walk in The Way, what it is conveying is the need to purify the body and expand the mind in preparation for the Kingdom to come within the consciousness that we are using in this realm. Thus, we must begin to access that over 90% of the mind that men of an organic consciousness cannot utilize.
With regard to the spiritual term “house”, Origen wrote in Contra Celsum: “I have not yet spoken of the observances of all that is written in the gospel, each one of which contains much doctrine difficult to be understood, not merely by the multitude, but even by certain of the more intelligent, including a very profound explanation of the parables, which Jesus delivered to ‘those without' while reserving the exhibition of their full meaning for those who have passed beyond the stage of exoteric teachings, and who came to him privately in the house. And when he comes to understand it, he will admire the reason why some are said to be without, and others in the house”. And this should be the objective of everyone who opens the pages of the Bible -- i.e., to bring about that condition of mind and being that permits entrance In The House -- where the Logos within the mind of the Disciple of TheWay will become active, and reveal to the seeker the Mysteries of God that organic man is incapable of comprehending.
With respect to not giving to people who are portrayed as dogs and swine the Mysteries of God, this same understanding is explained in the scriptures when it states that one should “Speak not in the ears of a fool: for he will despise the wisdom of thy words” (Prov 23:9 KJV). In the words of Origen, the true meaning of the parables and the scriptures belongs only to “those who have passed beyond the stage of exoteric teachings, and who came to him privately in the house”. What the modern believer fails to understand because they have been so alienated by corrupted scriptures ( http://BibleCorruption.com ), is the fact that it is within their power to fulfill the primary purpose and objective of the scriptures, and enter in the House with the Lord. And a very important parable teaching has been preserved in the Gospel of the Nazirenes which reads: "The kingdom of heaven is like to a city built four-square on the top of a high hill, and established on a rock, and strong in its surrounding wall, and its towers and its gates, which lie to the north, and to the south, and to the east, and to the west. Such a city does not fall, neither can it to be hidden. Its gates are open to all, who, having the keys, will enter therein." The Keys which are made reference to, are the Key of Knowledge that both the Pharisees and the Gentile Church threw away -- thereby alienating the Christians from the Mysteries of God that can only be revealed to those who enter in the House with the Lord -- and obstructing the path of those who are seeking entrance into the Inner Kingdom ( http://GateOfEden.com ).
What, then, is exoteric teachings that Origen makes note of? Paul calls it the “milk of the Gospel” designed for the nourishment of immature believers who he calls “babes in Christ” (1 Cor 3:1-2). These entry-level teachings have to do with the cleansing and purification of the mind and body from the defilements of this realm because “Nothing impure will ever enter it, nor will anyone who does what is shameful or deceitful” (Rev 21:27 NIV). In our assessment of these statements, we must understand that spiritual wisdom and understanding is not derived from the memorization of manmade concepts -- but rather, it is the result of our endeavor to utilize a greater potential of our mind.
The second century Church Father Clement of Alexandria expressed this same message when he wrote that: “For the prophet saith: Who shall understand a parable of the Lord save he that is wise and knowledgeable and loveth his Lord? For it is given to few to contain all things: For it is not as grudging that the Lord commanded in a certain Gospel: ‘My secret mystery for me and for the sons of mine house’” (Clement of Alexandria, Strom. V.10.63). It is not that anything is concealed from mankind -- and the believers who Paul calls those of the simple faith -- but rather, they have never made the
Any student of history must conclude that the most intelligent men throughout every age, have continually been wrong in their ideas pertaining to every aspect of life. Both the world of science and religion in our own time are as little ships afloat on a sea of confusion. The truly intelligent person must ask why? Why has the mind of man dwelled in the darkness of this world for so long? If the universe is indeed the work of a Supreme Being, then it is reasonable to ask where the answer to man’s great dilemma lies? In the parable of the Wedding Feast, Yeshua portrayed those who failed to put on the Wedding Garment, as being cast into the "outer darkness" -- and this is representative of the mind of man who dwells at a level of organic consciousness. In the parable of the Prodigal Son, mankind is portrayed as having surrendered his Divine Birth Right, and is presently under the power and control of what is portrayed as the "citizen of the far country" -- which Paul portrays as the god of this world -- and which the Spiritual Christians who were known as Gnostics, portrayed as the Demiurge that seduces man with the illusions of this world. All of these realities are directly related to the above words of Yeshua where the organic people of this world who remain "...without [the House], all these things are done in parables: That seeing they may see, and not perceive; and hearing they may hear, and not understand”
What Jesus declared to the wise and prudent was this great truth: There exist Keys of Knowledge that when possessed by a man or woman in search of the Truth, and used to open the doors within the mind that enables man to gaze beyond the limitations of this world, that man or woman has the capacity to know all the Ultimate Truths of Creation, because man is a great deal more than he appears. What the Bible states is that because all of mankind is the offspring of the Eternal God, he is congenitally endowed with the capacity to embrace the Ultimate Truths of Creation -- i.e., as written in the Psalms: “I said, 'You are ‘gods’; you are all sons of the Most High.'” (Ps 82:6 NIV). The problem is that instead of taking hold of these Keys of Knowledge, we listen to secular and quasi-religious carnally minded philosophers who do not possess the Keys of Knowledge, and thus they see and hear with the congenital and natural limitations of this world, instead of learning directly from our Heavenly Father.
The very revelation of these words will immediately cause many people to react in abhorrence. They will reason that every garden verity of heretic and cult leader throughout all of man’s history has claimed to have spoken directly with God in an attempt to create a following -- and they are correct in their assertion. From a Christian perspective, the problem is that Jesus not only claimed to be able to talk directly to God, but he said that all of his genuine followers will also be able to talk directly with God -- i.e., “I tell you the truth, anyone who has faith in me will do what I have been doing. He will do even greater things than these…” (John 14:12 NIV)
The key, then, is in the understanding that if a prophet teaches us the true revelation of the Word of God, then he will not teach people about God -- but rather, teach mankind what they must do in order to learn directly from God firsthand. Thus, based upon this definition, the majority of our churches, synagogues and houses of worship today are little more than cults -- some larger and more politically powerful than others that are defined as a cult. One of the fundamental premises upon which this book is written is that the genuine church in this world is functioning in accordance with its true purpose, it becomes a gateway that leads the people to the True Church that is Spiritual, and not of this world. It does this by embracing a pure revelation of the Word that embodies every aspect of life as we know it.
In recognition of what the Bible actually proclaims, the question should be rightly asked: What are the Keys of Knowledge that are possessed by the true people of the One Eternal God? The Keys of Knowledge are first made reference to at Isaiah 22:22, and are spoke of as the key which opens the house of David. The Key of Knowledge is again spoken of in the Book of the Revelation in the words: “To the angel of the church in Philadelphia write: These are the words of him who is holy and true, who holds the key of David. What he opens no one can shut, and what he shuts no one can open” (Rev 3:7 NIV). Thus, it is the possession of these Keys that enables the believer to open the gate and enter the Kingdom that Jesus declared exists in a parallel realm of Creation.
In quest to understand the Keys, it is important to comprehend why Jesus condemned the carnally minded religious authorities in his day when he said to those who professed to be experts in the Law: “Woe to you experts in the law, because you have taken away the key to knowledge. You yourselves have not entered, and you have hindered those who were entering” (Luke 11:52 NIV). In our examination of these words of condemnation we must ask a number of important questions: (1) How is it that the leaders among the Jews who Jesus condemned were said to have possessed the Key of Knowledge? (2) What is it that Jesus said they were supposed to enter? (3) In what manner did these religious authorities hinder other people who were themselves attempting to enter in? Enter in what? (4) And perhaps most importantly from a modern-day Christian perspective we must question how, if one must believe in the historical man Jesus in order to enter into the Kingdom, could the leaders of the Jews have possessed the Key of Knowledge prior to his birth and advent?
What the authors of the Scriptures were attempting to convey to the reader was the reality that there existed certain essential truths that once correctly understood, and properly applied in the life of the believer, had the ability to unlock the secrets embedded within both the written and spiritual Law of God. Further, it is equally important to recognize that the possession and application of these Keys was absolutely essential to open the door, and enter therein. With respect to these Keys, one of the major difficulties that confronts the modern believer is the fact that we cannot answer these questions today because we no longer possess the Key of Knowledge. Why? The answer is very simple: Because it was thrown away by the fourth-century Roman Church of the Emperor Constantine who desired only the keys and power to rule this world.
When a soul embraces what the Bible refers to as the Keys of Knowledge, and then applies these Keys in their life as they endeavor to make themselves the good ground that is portrayed in the parable of the sower and the seed -- and in their search for truth that soul then permits this Spiritual Knowledge that can only be imparted to them by the Son of God to mold their life in their quest to walk in The Way -- then the blessings and grace of the Lord are bestowed upon them, and they are able to transcend the barrier of this realm and enter into the Life that has been promised to them by our Eternal Father. What the Bible proclaims to man is that he has the ability to be all things, and accomplish all things, because he is a god -- i.e., a supernatural being who is dwelling in this world which is the place of spiritual development -- the University of God -- and we dwell in this world to pursuit of the destiny of man as he endeavors to grow to his true state of maturity as the Sons of God as seen in the words: “I said, 'You are ‘gods’; you are all sons of the Most High.'” (Ps 82:6 NIV).
Unknowingly, we have permitted ourselves to become disenfranchised from our own soul, because the people we listen to and permit to mold our thinking do not believe these words which are declared throughout the scriptures. We are led by social and secular philosophers who possess no genuine knowledge of man’s spiritual nature. We cling to the doctrines of the quasi-religious philosophers of the past who were imbued with the thinking of the Pagan Church of Rome.
This inability of carnal man to comprehend the Mysteries of God is true with respect to what is reveled within the body of the text of the Greek philosophical mystery religions, as well as the very scriptures that modern Christians base their doctrines of belief upon. Moreover, the second part of the Apostle Peter’s message conveys another great truth in the words: "For if any one else knows anything, he has received it from Him or from His disciples". What Peter is stating is a truth that believers today do not understand -- i.e., either the person in search of God’s Truth has learned directly from God, or has been guided into The Way by one of His Genuine Disciples. Without direction, the natural mind of man will always interpret spiritual truths in a carnal sense -- a quasi-Darwinist perception -- and always fail to perceive the full impact of what is being revealed. If, then, we are serious in our search for the answers to life, we must ask the question: What is it that the Genuine Disciples can teach you? The answer is very simple: What you must learn from the disciple is the code and tradition that must first be understood, in order to begin to decipher the true inner meaning of the sacred writings.
In our quest for a greater understanding of the Word we must ask the question: Did Martin Luther and the Protestant Reformers in the Middle-Ages know this code and spiritual language? How could they? They were priests of the Roman Church who protested against the corruption that was rampant in their time. Their doctrine was reactionary -- i.e., reject the apostate church and cling only to the Bible. That these well-meaning men did not have the slightest clue as to the nature of the spiritual language which the scriptures were written in, is well proven in the many flaws in the many Protestant sects that emerged.
Like Luther and the Middle-age reformers, one of the problems that confronts the modern believer is the fact that, neither is this original code and tradition known by our religious authorities and clergy today. Why? Because they have neither received it from God, or His disciples of the Light. How can they? In the fourth century Christianity was recreated as an institutionalized, anti-Gnostic religion! In the same way that Jesus said you cannot have "two masters" (Mt 6:24), neither can you comprehend the Spiritual Kingdom, when your beliefs are founded upon the doctrines of men. It is for this reason that the author of the Imitation of Christ wrote to those who seek the Truth of God: "Blessed indeed are the ears that listen, not to the voice which sounds without, but to the truth which teaches within. Blessed are the eyes which are closed to exterior things and are fixed upon those which are interior. Blessed are they who penetrate inwardly, who try daily to prepare themselves more and more to understand mysteries. Blessed are they who long to give their time to God, and who cut themselves off from the hindrances of the world. Consider these things, my soul, and close the door of your senses, so that you can hear what the Lord your God speaks within you."
This message, written in a widely acclaimed and accepted Christian book, is perhaps one of the finest examples of Gnosticism known to the modern-day religious world. What the author is stating -- based upon his own experiences -- is that only when you shut off your mind to the error of the outer world, are you able to perceive the inner world where man must come to find truth. With regard to this inner world, spiritual men and women have long witnessed to the fact that the Bible uses symbols to convey the language of the soul to the reader. The problem is that our present-day experts, theologians and clergy, do not understand the code and tradition of the scriptures. How can they? This code cannot be taught in theology or seminary training. And herein lies the issue: We have disconnected ourselves from the One True Source of Knowledge, and no longer can learn from God, because we worship the god of Constantine and the christ of Plato. Neither can we, being anti-Gnostic, embrace the writings of His disciples -- the authors of our Bible -- because they wrote their sacred truths in a spiritual language that is alien to our carnal minds.
The reason that the modern church cannot comprehend the true inner meaning of the scriptures is closely related to the second important point in the statement of Clement regarding the assertion that Plato considered anyone an "Atheists who destroy and pollute... the Deity dwelling in them... the Logos - by association with their vices". This not only pertains to the common sinners who do not attempt to live God-centered lives, but also those who cling to the doctrines of men instead of seeking the Pure Word from the Lord. The reality that is being portrayed will be viewed as very unkind to the modern believer -- i.e., all those who either live a carnal lifestyle, or look to other men in their search for God, are Atheists from a Gospel and Spiritual perspective.
Lets put reality into its proper perspective: The Sadducees and Pharisees who Jesus condemned were Atheists masquerading as God’s people. The Pagans who worshiped the things of this world, instead of seeking out the true meaning of the writings of the poets, were Atheists. The Church of Constantine that killed the spirit of Christianity in the endeavor to institutionalize the Church and bring it under secular control, were Atheists. The very religious authorities of the past who formed our modern-day doctrines of belief, were in fact Atheists. In many respects, it is because we have embraced Christian Atheism, that we cling to the doctrines of men who think in the manner of Darwin. In the true definition of the word: Whoever is not a disciple of the Lord, and is not ardently following in his footsteps in total imitation of the Master, are Atheists -- regardless of the allegiance or philosophy they profess with their lips. Ultimately, what this means is that many people today who think they are saved because they have called upon the name of the Lord, are in fact Atheists in the genuine definition of the word. The true believers and disciples are not the people of the simple faith -- but rather, the ones who so live their life that they have become At-One -- or in biblical terminology, the Spouse of Christ.
The Answer to the
does this leave us? The answer is preserved in many places and by many
authorities, but few are accustomed to thinking in the necessary spiritual
manner that is necessary to comprehend the full picture and pattern that is
presented. We can see it in the words of Edward Gibbon who documented the beliefs of those who were
taught directly by Jesus himself when he wrote that they believed in a
“supernatural union of a man and God... In their eyes, Jesus of Nazareth
was a mere mortal, the legitimate son of Joseph and Mary: but he was the best
and wisest of the human race, selected as the worthy instrument to restore upon
earth the worship of the true and supreme Deity. When he was baptized in the
Jordan, the Christ, the first of the aeons, the Son of God himself, descended on
Jesus in the form of a dove, to inhabit his mind, and direct his actions during
the allotted period of his ministry” (Gibbon; The Decline & Fall of
the Roman Empire, V.4, P.366).
If we were to present this truth in a slightly different way, we would have to acknowledge and recognize the importance of those spiritual foundational concepts that were actively suppressed by the Roman Church in our endeavor to comprehend how these well documented words at Jesus' baptism not only demonstrate that he became the Messiah when the Son of God manifest through him in the Jordan, but more importantly how this same process of Anointing (Messiah/Christ) applies to us in the life we are presently living. The answer to the dilemma is found in the following quotation taken from The Universal Jewish Encyclopedia, under the heading of Souls, Transmigration of: “The doctrine of transmigration of souls, which was especially accepted by the Karaites… is generally attacked by Jewish philosophers, but is defended by Isaac Abravanel and Manasseh ben Israel. It appears often in Cabala; it is found in organized form in the Zohar, it is further developed in the teachings of Isaac Luria (1534-1572), and in Hasidism it becomes a universal belief. According to these teachings, all human souls have a common origin in the spiritual unity of the primordial man, sparks of which form the individual souls... The sin of Adam brought higher and lower souls into confusion; as a result, every soul has to pass through a series of incarnations... The soul itself has no sex, which is determined by the body and may vary from incarnation to incarnation”.
From a biblical perspective, when it is written that God rested on the seventh day -- and that all of Creation had been completed, it is also understood that all souls were created in the beginning, and the fall of Adam and Eve has more to do with our own wanderings as the prodigal sons of our Heavenly Father, than any portrayal of historical truth with respect to the physical formation of the visible material world. Once the soul and scriptures are perceived in this manner, then the world that "...all human souls have a common origin in the spiritual unity of the primordial man, sparks of which form the individual souls..." begins to take on a truly enlightened meaning when realized in conjunction with the words spoken at Jesus' baptism when it was said by the voice from the Heavens: "Thou art My beloved Son, to-day have I begotten Thee".
One of the primary truths which the very first followers of Christ professed was that each of us is the Child of God -- not philosophically, as believed today -- but rather, in the very genuine sense and realization that our soul, which is the inner being that we truly are, is as much the direct offspring of God, as in the case of our bodies that are drawn from the genetics and vital substances of our physical parents. From the perspective of modern science, if we performed a DNA test on our soul, what we would find is that it is not born of earthly matter -- but rather, it is the direct emanation from God -- our true Father.
Great emphasis was placed on the two natures of man by the first Christians. At Genesis 2:7, the Wycliffe Commentary writes: “Man's body was fashioned from the dust of the ground, while his spirit came from the very ‘breath’ of God. He is literally a creature of two worlds; both earth and heaven can claim him”. More importantly, though, is for us to clarify our understanding of when the soul came into existence. Thus, the Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary notes the belief of both the Jews and early Church: “The... views of Origen and other Fathers, and the... Talmudists, that all souls had been created ‘in the beginning,’ and were lodged by God in a certain place, whence each one was taken out to inhabit the respective bodies of individuals”. In this respect, it can easily be demonstrated the first followers of Christ firmly believed that the soul pre-existed the body, and that our present physical forms are mere vessels that we inhabit during our sojourn in this life.
From the perspective of our understanding of the Word, if just this one belief about our true nature -- i.e., that our soul pre-existed the body, rather than coming into being at birth -- is true, then our whole perception of both Jesus and the Word would have to be radically altered in order to embrace the truth and higher knowledge that Jesus revealed to his disciples. In fact, the differences in perception are so crucial to a correct understanding of the Word, that it could easily be demonstrated that by clinging to the doctrines of the emperors and secular-priests of the Roman Church as modern Christianity has done, we have not only placed a great obstacle in our path along TheWay, but we can make no real progress until this doctrinal barrier is removed. Further, if the soul pre-existed the body, then this one difference alone would in fact cause us to worship and call upon the name of the Lord in vain.
Something that should greatly alarm the modern-day believer
is that not only did the disciples and first followers of Christ believe in the
pre-existence of the soul, but that a large segment of the church continued to
believe this doctrine -- i.e., that their soul pre-existed the body -- until the
belief was condemned by the Emperor Justinian in the year 553. What this means is that if this
very Christian perception of the soul portrays to us our true relationship to
God, and this understanding that is demonstrated in the parable of the prodigal
son represents an integral concept taught by Jesus as a foundational truth of
the New Covenant and TheWay, then everything we have built upon this
misconception -- all our doctrines of belief -- are manmade, and have led us in
the wrong direction. The
result is that we have Jesus, but our Jesus is not the same as the biblical
Jesus of the first century of our Common Era. Why? Because the Jesus of the first
century is our elder brother, rather than the god of the Pagan Roman
An interesting observation is made by Nemesius, the fourth
century Bishop of Emesa, who writes: “Moses does not say that the soul was
created at that moment at which it was put into the body, nor would it be
reasonable to suppose it... that the soul is not thus mortal and that man's
destiny is not bounded by his present life...”. How can we, a people who the
Bible warns that in our natural organic state are too carnal to understand the
Mysteries of God, say with any degree of certainty when the soul of man was
created? We can't! There is nothing in the scriptures
which states the soul was created at either the time of conception or birth --
and yet there is overwhelming biblical evidence that conveys to us that the soul
pre-existed the body. And
when we seek to know which doctrine is true, we are left with the reality that
this is one of the many things that we must learn directly from the Lord, rather
than adhere to the doctrines of such men as the Roman Emperor Constantine who
suppressed the teaching, and the Emperor Justinian who later outlawed it.
With respect to the recognition that the modern church no
longer understands the teaching that the soul pre-exists the body because of the
direct intervention of Roman Emperors into church affairs, we must ask the
question: Does this revelation mean that the religious authorities of our day
will recognize this truth, and re-evaluate modern Christian doctrine so as to
make it compatible with the thinking and mindset of the people who Jesus
personally taught the Mysteries of God? In view of the fact that the Dead
Sea Scrolls were placed in the hands of the church over fifty years ago, and
these sacred writings convey the same exact message that has been portrayed
here, the answer is that nothing can change the thinking of the majority of the
clergy of the church today, until the flock of believers as a congregation begin
to demand the truth.
In the same way that when Moses led the children of Israel out of Egypt, the people were forced to walk through the wilderness until all of the adults died because they were unable to change from their old manner of worldly thinking, and it was this worldly manner of thinking that inhibited them from entering into the promised land, it is likewise easy to predict that in our present-day understanding of the Word the majority of our modern religious leaders will reject the idea that the soul pre-existed the body. But when it is realized that our whole perception and understanding of life has been reared and molded on the idea that life begins at either conception or birth -- not only religiously, but from a non-religious philosophical perspective also -- it is not difficult to conclude that we would be unable to initially embrace an idea which would radically revise every concept and doctrine that we hold to be true.
Fundamentalist Christians today are in great opposition to
Darwinism and the teaching of evolution in our public schools. But what modern Christians fail to
realize is that Darwinism is an outgrowth of the Justinian anti-pre-existence
doctrine. What Darwin and the
Evolutionists have done is attempt to explain the gaping holes in the carnal
reasoning and understanding of man's limited logic -- holes that would not exist
in the Christian world today except for man's ignorance of himself and his
Divine Nature. The problem is
that Darwin merely composed the thinking of Pagan Rome into a formal theory, and
the foundation of these gaping holes were in fact truly conceived right in the
bedrock of the Roman Church.
Once this is truly comprehended, we are then able to see that the gaping
holes that Fundamentalists oppose actually originated in the religious doctrines
of the church -- doctrines that are used in an attempt to explain away sacred
truths that we are unable to even contemplate because we begin our understanding
of life and God on the wrong premise.
Fundamentally, the decree of the Emperor Justinian which outlawed the belief in the pre-existence of the soul, was literally forced upon the Christian religion in the sixth century. From a theological perspective, this control of Christian doctrine by the Roman Government has all but slammed the door to higher understanding within the body of the church -- and the detrimental effect continues to plague Christians even in our present day. As we read the Bible, we no longer have it within our ability to understand how Jesus could for the first time become the Messiah/Christ at his baptism, and how we can truly be the Children and Offspring of God. Like Darwin, we relate everything to the physical body, rather than to the Spirit.
In being severed from the knowledge of our soul's
beginning, and having no clear perception of our eventual destiny, neither are
we able to contemplate the means by which we can be raised up to the stature of
a true disciple of Jesus -- whom the Apostle states is “a pattern to those
who are going to believe on Him for everlasting life” (1 Tim 1:16
NKJ). With respect to the
Apostle’s words, we must as what is a pattern is? It is not something that we
philosophically believe in -- but rather, a pattern is something that we mold
our lives after.
Because we fail to comprehend the true Divine Nature of our very own
soul, it is impossible for us to grasp the far reaching spiritual implications
of what Jesus taught to his faithful disciples -- which disciples did indeed
hold totally opposite and conflicting views on many important points of the Word
than we do today.
In the manner of life itself, it is not that we are wrong in what we see in the scriptures with respect to interpreting the word from an historical perspective -- but in our vision the limitation of our carnal mindset is prevalent -- which mindset is the very essence of thinking that has given birth to Darwinism and the doctrine of evolution. The whole concept of parallel realms -- spiritual realms -- of which this realm in which we presently dwell is a pattern of its spiritual opposite -- simply does not exist in the thinking of Darwin. In fact, both the church and today’s form of science that we teach to school children totally ignore and censor the many instances where it has been documented and proven that there are children who are born with distant memory -- which is the ability to remember the past lives of their soul -- because both the church and Darwinism embrace the same flawed vision of man.
The Apostle Paul states that the things of the spirit are foolishness to the carnal mind of man, as seen in the words: “But the natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (1 Cor 2:14 NKJ). This inability to perceive the things of the spirit is not only an obstacle to the non-believer, but also the believers. Without realizing it, both the church, as well as the Darwinist theories of life that a great number of Christians oppose, all possess the same congenital flaw -- i.e., they see man as a three-dimensional being who does not possess a pre-existent soul. The problem is that both the church and Darwin sees man as nothing more than what is observed with the physical senses. Thus, what we fail to recognize is the fact that the Darwinist perception of creation is merely a secularized version of the doctrine of the church which was orchestrated under the rule of the Emperor Justinian -- whereby the physical is the source of all life and existence -- which is totally opposite to the truth.
The natural environment for the revelation of the Christ is that of a spiritual mindset which, for the lack of any other word, we call mysticism. Like the Bible itself, the root concept of mysticism embraces the idea that man has a nature that is not of this physical realm -- and he has within himself a source of knowledge that exceeds anything manifest in the outside world. In fact, the whole concept of first century New Covenant teachings is an acclamation that man possesses an intimate and direct connection with God, and he is not dependent upon a priest, church or religious organization for his salvation. The very idea that a force from God -- the Holy Spirit and Anointing of the Light -- can come upon a man, and open his mind to perceive and understand great truths that are not apparent to the normal person, is the very essence of Jesus' teachings -- which teachings are synonymous with mysticism and what has throughout history been called gnosticism.
When the Roman Government removed the sacred truths
revealed by Jesus from their natural mystical/spiritual environment, the result
was that Christianity was severed from the very source of truth and reality that
Jesus revealed. To replace
the essence of what was lost, artificial doctrines of belief were created which
were then used to explain away spiritual concepts that the carnal mind of man
does not possess the ability to understand. Thus, we must recognize that
Darwinism is nothing more than an attempt to explain Creation within the mindset
of the Emperor Justinian's doctrine that was imposed upon the church -- a
mindset that must be rejected today, if the church is to be born again into the
vital spiritual force that it has the potential to be.
Once these facts of history are acknowledged as valid, then all sincere Christians must question whether this fault that was imposed upon Christian thinking by the Roman Emperors of the past can be corrected today? This is a difficult question because of the obstacle seen in man's natural affinity to oppose change. Thus, the words of Jesus: “And no one after drinking old wine wants the new, for he says, The old is better” (Luke 5:39 NIV). The new wine is the timeless revelations received from spiritual realms; the old is the ideas of man that has been established by the philosophers and rulers of this world -- and is based upon a very carnal perception of Creation.
What Jesus' words ultimately proclaim is that in the same exact manner as the carnal Jews, a large number of modern Christians would immediately condemn the idea that the soul pre-existed the body. Why could such a prediction be made? Fundamentally, because everything that is preached today is based upon a quasi-Darwinist theology that the soul and spirit of man comes into existence at birth. From a doctrinal standpoint, present-day clergy and the body of believers would literally have to re-evaluate every element and concept of their thinking -- as well as its far-reaching implications -- on what they have come to believe since the time of their birth right up until the present. The concepts of Darwinism -- i.e., that we are the body, and we are nothing more than what we see -- has been culturally ingrained in the people's thinking from the time they spoke their first words. Their mental conditioning and cultural speculation has been so completely programmed into a Darwinist model of Creation, that without a superhuman effort, they simply could not delve that deeply into the essence of their present-day reasoning and vision of life with which they have been imbued with. Human nature, then, would not permit them to even entertain a true spiritual mindset -- a mindset that would require them to re-evaluate everything they ever believed to be the truth.
What should truly frighten modern believers, though, is the indisputable fact that the disciples and first followers of Jesus not only wholeheartedly embraced a very mystical mindset where they openly espoused the doctrine that the soul pre-existed the body, but it was their claim that their vision and understanding of the Word was taught to them directly by Jesus. Thus, the disciples and followers of Christ claimed that it was Jesus himself who revealed to them the truth that their soul existed prior to their being born into their life in this realm.
In one of the few remaining instances that the teaching of
the pre-existence of the soul was not removed from the Bible, we can observe
where the disciples asked Jesus whether the man himself had sinned prior to
being born into this life (Jn 9:2), we must understand that this question was
asked in clarification of Jesus' own teachings. Our modern religious authorities
do not see this very clearly because their perception is fragmentary, and they
are unable to connect the dots that would reveal the larger picture that Jesus
painted to those who possessed the eyes to see the Mysteries of God. Admittedly, when the scriptures
were in their original form prior to being re-written by the Church of Rome,
there existed a whole host of other readings that supported the teaching of the
pre-existence of the soul.
Because they were of a totally different and opposite mindset, the disciples of Jesus asked a question that would never be asked by a modern believer -- i.e., because unlike the modern believer who is of a Darwinist mindset, they understood that their soul is the mind that pre-existed, transcended, and survives the body. They perceived that their station in life -- i.e., the person they were -- was not an accident of nature as we believe today -- but rather, the result of what their own soul had achieved in their more distant past prior to being born into that life. In their realization that they were not the physical body/vessel, their vision of the Gospel was not only very different, but actually opposite from what modern Christians believe today. What, then, are the ramifications? Because they viewed Creation from an opposite perspective than what has today come to be associated with a Christian quasi-Darwinist vision of life, they were able to comprehend the great reality that we cannot -- i.e., how mankind can truly be the children and offspring of God. This knowledge that was taught to them by Jesus himself, represents one of the core reasons they were condemned by the later Gentile church which attempted to suppress any direct contact with the spiritual nature of man.
In their far-reaching vision of reality that is beyond our comprehension today, they understood that within their own mind and being they retained an intimate and direct connection with God -- portrayed in scripture as an inner door or gate where they could embrace the Source of all Knowledge, Wisdom and Understanding. Religion, then, was not belief in a man, or a god -- but rather, true religion was the imitation of the Divine Pattern of the Son of God, and the immersion of their consciousness in the Anointing of the Light. Because Jesus had opened the door to their own indwelling soul and spiritual natures, they were not burdened by quasi-Darwinist ideas of Creation, and their whole perception of the Word was entirely different than the doctrines which modern Christians embrace today -- doctrines that we now call Christian, that were founded upon the decrees of a series of Roman Emperors in an attempt to explain sacred truths from a carnal perspective, in support of an institutionalized church -- a church that these Pagan politicians used to rule the empire.
In Adam Clarke's Biblical Commentary for Second Chronicles, chapter thirty two, verse thirty one, it is written: “To know ourselves... is of the utmost importance to our religious growth and perfection... He who does not know ...becomes an easy prey to their enemies. Know thyself is a lesson which no man can learn but from the Spirit of God”. This is perhaps one of the most profound and important biblical concepts for the modern Christian to embrace -- i.e., one of the primary teachings of Jesus was to teach man about himself, and reveal to man his true relationship to God his Father. The problem is that we view ourselves in accordance with the ideas of Darwin. Again, we fail to perceive the reality of the words of Jesus when he commanded: “And do not call anyone on earth 'father,' for you have one Father, and he is in heaven” (Matt 23:9 NIV).
Jesus taught us to call no man on earth father, because each of us is equally the prodigal son of our Heavenly Father who has ventured into this, the "far country", and each of us must equally walk in TheWay on our return to the Edenic Kingdom of Origination. Thus, we begin to realize this great truth and destiny of man as we read the spiritual wisdom expressed in the Zohar, a doctrine of Jewish Mysticism, where it is written that: “All souls are subject to the trials of transmigration; and men do not know the designs of the Most High with regard to them… The souls must re-enter the absolute substance whence they have emerged. But to accomplish this end they must develop all the perfections, the germ of which is planted in them; and if they have not fulfilled this condition during one life, they must commence another, a third, and so forth, until they have acquired the condition which fits them for reunion with God”. This reunion with God is the rebirth that was spoken of by Jesus to the Pharisee Nicodemus, “a ruler of the Jews”.
In the reading of the scriptures, it is often important for us to grasp the essence of totality of thought that is expressed. One of the things that we should see is that Jesus expected a “ruler of the Jews” (Jn 3:1) to understand the objective and the purpose of the sacred writings. When Jesus said that “Verily I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God… Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God. That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit”; he was speaking of a sacred truth that a ruler of the Jews should know.
Finally, Jesus said to Nicodemus: “Marvel not that I
said unto thee, Ye must be born again”! Why? Because the rebirth is well
documented throughout the writings of the Spiritual Jews that “All souls…
must re-enter the absolute substance whence they have emerged. But to accomplish this end they must
develop all the perfections, the germ of which is planted in them... until they
have acquired the condition which fits them for reunion with God.”
What does it mean where the Zohar states that “All souls… must re-enter the absolute substance whence they have emerged”? Isn't the primary essence of what is being said in this writing of Jewish Mysticism the same exact vision of man's plight that is portrayed in the parable of the prodigal son? The “absolute substance” would be another way of saying the son went forth from his place of origination with his Father, and entered into this world -- wherein, the sons of the Father “must re-enter the absolute substance whence they have emerged”.
How, then, do we develop the necessary perfection to return
to God? Again the Zohar gives
us the same exact requirement as did Jesus when he commanded us at Matthew 5:48
to be as perfect as our Heavenly Father: “All souls are subject to the
trials of transmigration; and men do not know the designs of the Most High with
regard to them… to accomplish this end they must develop all the perfections… if
they have not fulfilled this condition during one life, they must commence
another, a third, and so forth, until they have acquired the condition which
fits them for reunion with God” -- which is seen in the return of the
prodigal son to his Father's Kingdom.
What is important is that we begin to see the connection
and uniformity of thought between the mindset of the Spiritual Jew and the
Moreover, it is important that we understand that what we perceive as two
religions, are truly only separated by cultural and political differences. The essence of both are one and
In his book Nishmath Hayem, Rabbi Manasseh ben Israel (1604-1657) wrote: “The belief or the doctrine of the transmigration of souls is a firm and infallible teaching accepted by the whole assemblage of our people with one accord, so that there is none to be found who would dare to deny it… Indeed, there are a great number of sages in Israel who hold firm to this doctrine so that they made it a teaching, a fundamental point of our religion. We are therefore in duty bound to obey and to accept this teaching with acclamation… as the truth of it has been incontestably demonstrated by the Zohar, and all books of the Kabalists.”
Interestingly enough, in Hasidism, in which the
pre-existence of the soul “becomes a universal belief” (The
Universal Jewish Encyclopedia), there is no salvation apart from the belief in
and advent of the Messiah in the life of the individual. In view of the fact that our
present-day ideas pertaining to the Messiah have been form and strongly
influenced by the Church of the Roman Empire, what if the Hasidic Jew has a more
pure perception of the Son of God than does the majority of Christians?
When the Zohar states that “men do not know the designs of the Most High with regard to them…”, we must recognize that this is the same exact message that is prevalent throughout the New Testament scriptures? In fact, isn't it because (carnal) men do not know what God requires, and (carnal) man can do nothing on his own, that prompts the Apostle Paul to write that (carnal) man is saved by faith alone. Why faith over the ritualized observances of the Law in the manner of the Sadducees and Pharisees? Because it is faith and the willingness to walk in TheWay that manifests the indwelling Son of God in our life.
What Jesus taught was that the Kingdom is within us as seen in the words: “The kingdom of God does not come with your careful observation, nor will people say, ‘Here it is,’ or ‘There it is,’ because the kingdom of God is within you” (Luke 17:20-21 NIV). What this means is that there is a natural barrier of mind that consciously separates us not only from our pre-existent indwelling soul and spiritual natures, but also from that essence which is the very spark of divinity which is referred to in scripture as the Son of God. Jesus taught that if we purify and consecrate ourselves, turn the scriptures within us where seemingly historical accounts become events of mind and spirit, and we embrace the Royal Law of the Most High in word, thought and deed as we pick up our own cross and walk in TheWay in imitation of the Pattern the Jesus set for us to follow, that we will ourselves receive the Anointing (Messiah/Christ) of the Holy Spirit, and that principle known as the Son of God will Indwell in us in the same manner that it Indwelled in our elder brother Jesus. That Jesus himself taught that this is accomplished over the course of many lives in the manner that we are presently living, can be readily demonstrated by going on to part II of the Unanswerable Question.