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"THE KEEPER OF THE WAY"
HAS THE BIBLE BEEN FAITHFULLY PRESERVED?
Modern day Christian doctrine rests upon the premise that God preserved the Bible in an absolute infallible and pure state, in order that all men should know the (historical) truth and believe in the Son of God. Their doctrinal position is that if God permitted the Bible to have been altered, then the present day church could not be genuine. Based upon this dogmatic presumption that the Christian Church must be maintained in order for man to be saved, they reason that God would not allow the written word of the scriptures to be corrupted. Thus, modern Christians cling to this doctrine -- ignoring overwhelming evidence to the contrary -- evidence that demonstrates conclusively that our Bible has been severely altered and edited -- because they fail to grasp the very foundational principles of the New Covenant itself -- principles that are not historical, but spiritual. It is not until we understand that the Bible is a road-map that leads us to the Gate of the Kingdom, and the Word that is written in our hearts -- rather than a final revelation from God to man -- that we are able to even begin to come to terms with the Spiritual Gospel of Christ that can never be corrupted.
The very assertion of Christian Church Authority that either the Church or the scriptures must be preserved in order for man to obtain salvation not only demonstrates a total inability to perceive the essence of the Gospel message -- but perhaps more importantly, has already been historically disproven and demonstrated to be in error. Once the Church was adopted by Rome in the fourth century, it became unlawful for the scriptures to be given into the hands of the common believer -- thus, throughout most of Christian history the written text of the scriptures was not available to the people. Furthermore, the Church itself became so Pagan and corrupt, that it was often referred to throughout history as the "synagogue of Satan" (Rev 2:9;3:9). In a letter to Pope Leo X on September 6th, 1520, Martin Luther wrote of the Christianity of his day that the church, "…once the holiest of all, has become the most licentious den of thieves, the most shameless of all brothels, the kingdom of sin, death, and hell. It is so bad that even Antichrist himself, if he should come, could think of nothing to add to its wickedness" (Quoted in: The Great Thoughts; compiled by George Seldes).
When it is realized that Martin Luther was merely confirming the very biblical prediction made by none other than the Apostle Paul, when he wrote that in the near future the Prince of Darkness would be worshiped as God in the church which would call itself of Christ, the theological position of the modern church is totally undermined. Of this future ruler of the church, the Apostle writes that he "…opposes and exalts himself above all that is called God or that is worshiped, so that he sits as God in the temple of God, showing himself that he is God" (2 Th 2:4 NKJ).
If this prediction of the Apostle is true, and from a first-century perspective it would soon come to pass when the very Prince of Darkness would sit in the "…temple of God, showing himself that he is God", and be worshiped by a disillusioned people who would falsely believe they were calling upon the name of the Lord, then all people who consider themselves to be sincere believers today had better rethink their position with respect to the purity with which the scriptures has been preserved. Moreover, in view of the fact that the Apostle warns that the church would be guided by false apostles -- some of whom were the very scribes who copied the biblical manuscripts we use to make our translations today -- then for the sincere believer to blindly accept the position of the modern church that the scriptures were preserved in a pure state, is merely asking to be deceived and misled. In our search today for Truth and Light, it is imperative that we recognize the warning in the Apostle’s own Epistles where we can clearly see that Paul predicts that counterfeit apostles and ministers would arise, and would control the church of this world which the masses of people will mistakenly believe is the genuine church of God. Of these false apostles and their leader, the Apostle warned the faithful flock: "For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into apostles of Christ. And no wonder! For Satan himself transforms himself into an angel of light. Therefore it is no great thing if his ministers also transform themselves into ministers of righteousness, whose end will be according to their works" (2 Cor 11:13-15 NKJ).
The problem is that, regardless of how much evidence is shown to the majority of modern Christians -- evidence which demonstrates conclusively that the New Testament scriptures were severely altered by the Church of Rome -- they will refuse to acknowledge the facts. Why? Because the majority of modern Christians are a disenfranchised people -- severed from the presence of the indwelling Spirit which is given to the truly faithful disciples in order to teach them -- and they are afraid to deviate from their present-day doctrine and church dogma. In the Living Spiritual Church of the New Covenant that was ordained by the Son of God, all revelation is made directly from God to the faithful congregation. But because the modern believer has been alienated from the very essence of the fundamentals of New Covenant teachings, they fear the spiritual journey associated with the beginning of the walk in The Way. The Son of God calls out to them -- but because they are anchored to this world by the doctrines and traditions of men, they are afraid to actually pick up their own crosses and follow in the Master’s footsteps in The Way..
When directly confronted with the overwhelming evidence and facts with respect to the wholesale corruption of the scriptures, the fundamentalist defensively responds with the rather absurd assertion that "God wrote the King James Version of the Bible". Thus, no amount of rationale will convince them that because we are the prodigal sons of our Heavenly Father, and the Kingdom is within us (Luke 17:21), that all those who truly live a consecrated life will be shown the undefiled Word of God that can be accessed by journeying along the narrow path that opens the "strait gate" that leads to the indwelling Temple (1 Cor 3:16). The great truth which the modern Christian fails to comprehend is that, even in its corrupted form, the Bible as it has been passed down to us is sufficient to manifest the Living Word of God in the life of the individual believer. One only has to open the New Testament to almost any page to find the message: If the believer consecrates their lives -- becomes teachable by releasing their minds from an adherence to the doctrines of men -- forgive and judge no one -- live a simple life that is unencumbered -- do no harm to any of God’s creatures -- and seek in solitude the companionship of the Lord in the inner Temple -- that the Holy Spirit will Anoint and Teach you all the Mysteries of God as the believer begins the journey home to the Kingdom. If the believer begins to live the consecrated Christian life -- free of the thinking and entanglements of this world -- then the indwelling Word will reveal all things to those who are sincere in their search for the Truth.
If it is true that the fourth century Roman Church severely altered the written word of the scriptures, then it is absolutely necessary for the modern believer to search out the facts. Faith in the Word means that if we are a truly faithful people, that the Son of God will open our minds and enlighten us to the Truth. When we therefore ignore the facts, and blindly cling to the error of the corrupt church of Rome, then we inhibit the Lord from teaching us the truth.
If Satan is the god of darkness, then it is Satan who seduces Christians into believing that our scriptures were protected from being altered. Contrary to our many assertions of denial, the historical evidence shows conclusively that this is not the case -- and the Bible no longer represents the original form of the text. Yet, it is only because the modern church no longer possesses the spiritual essence and vision of the original Church that was established in the first century, that the corruption of our scriptures creates a hindrance to the believer in our present time.
One of the most common biblical manuscripts used to make our modern English translations is known today as the Nestle Text. Yet it was Prof. Eberhard Nestle himself who warned us in his Einfhrung in die Textkritik des griechischen Testaments: "Learned men, so called Correctores were, following the church meeting at Nicea 325 AD, selected by the church authorities to scrutinize the sacred texts and rewrite them in order to correct their meaning in accordance with the views which the church had just sanctioned." When the Church of Constantine endeavored to make the teachings of the New Covenant in sync with fourth century Roman Pagan thought and culture, to ignore the facts with respect to the manner in which the corrupters of the Word recreated the message of the scriptures in order to make it compatible to church doctrine, is to make oneself disingenuous to the very Son of God to whom we proclaim to be faithful to.
The truth and the facts to the matter is very clearly expressed in the words of Prof. Bart D. Ehrman in his book, The Orthodox Corruption of Scripture, where he warns us that: "...theological disputes, specifically disputes over Christology, prompted Christian scribes to alter the words of scripture in order to make them more serviceable for the polemical task. Scribes modified their manuscripts to make them more patently ‘orthodox’ and less susceptible to ‘abuse’ by the opponents of orthodoxy" -- which orthodoxy was to bring the text of the Bible into conformity with the doctrines and tenets of the Church of the Roman Emperor Constantine. To close our hearts and minds to the facts, and ignore the truth, is from a New Covenant perspective synonymous with relinquishing any claim whatsoever with respect to being a follower of Jesus.
With regard to the condition of the Bible we presently use: The surviving Greek texts of the book of Acts are so radically different from each other, that it has been suggested that perhaps there were multiple versions written. In his book The Text of the New Testament, Dr. Vincent Taylor writes that "The manuscripts of the New Testament preserve traces of two kinds of dogmatic alterations: those which involve the elimination or alteration of what was regarded as doctrinally unacceptable or inconvenient, and those which introduce into the Scriptures proof for a favorite theological tenet or practice".
To put Dr. Taylor's words in perspective: What Dr. Taylor is stating is that, whatever doctrine Jesus taught which the Church of the Roman Empire did not agree with, there is overwhelming evidence that the church corrupters removed what was objectionable from their perspective. In like manner, whatever doctrines the Church regarded as being true, regardless of whether that belief was supported in the scriptures, the Church inserted this belief into the Bible in an attempt to make it authentic. What Dr. Taylor is warning us is there is good reason to conclude that our scriptures have been rewritten by the Church of Constantine. Now the question that is being posed here is whether you believe the theological tenets of Rome, or the disciples of Christ -- because the two are not the same.
In the year 1707, John Mill shattered all faith in the infallibility of the Bible by demonstrating 30,000 various readings which were produced from 80 manuscripts. The findings of, first Mill, and then Wetstein (1751), proved once and for all that the variations in the biblical texts, many of which were quite serious, had existed from the earliest of times.
In the Preface to the Revised Standard Version of the bible this notable statement is made regarding the need for a revision of the English translation: "Yet the King James Version has grave defects... was based upon a Greek text that was marred by mistakes, containing the accumulated errors of fourteen centuries of manuscript copying. It was essentially the Greek text of the New Testament as edited by Beza, 1589, who closely followed that published by Erasmus, 1516-1535, which was based upon a few medieval manuscripts. The earliest and best of the eight manuscripts which Erasmus consulted was from the tenth century, and he made the least use of it because it differed most from the commonly received text; Beza had access to two manuscripts of great value dating from the fifth and sixth centuries, but he made very little use of them because they differed from the text published by Erasmus".
One of the oldest copies of the Bible which dates back to the fifth century is the Codex Bezae, of which the Britannica writes: "Codex Bezae… has a text that is very different from other witnesses. Codex Bezae has many distinctive longer and shorter readings and seems almost to be a separate edition. Its 'Acts, for example, is one-tenth longer than usual’". How can we have a Bible that is said to be "almost… a separate edition"? If this is true, it is important for us to know which edition is the correct one? And in answering this question, we must also determine the criteria we should employ in our effort to choose which of these separate editions we should use in our Bible translations? The traditional answer to this question is very simple -- i.e., we choose the biblical texts that support our doctrines of belief, and reject the texts that do not -- but is this the means by which we are able to be certain that we have chosen the correct edition?
Regarding this serious problem presented by Codex Bezae, Dr. Vincent Taylor writes that: "It is characterized by a series of remarkable omissions in Luke, especially in chapters XXII and XXIV, and by many striking additions and variations in the Acts" (The Text of the New Testament, Dr. Vincent Taylor). How would these "remarkable omissions" and "striking additions and variations" effect our doctrines of belief? We don't know, because we only translate what supports church doctrine and agrees with what we want to believe. From a biblical perspective, this is not only spiritually dishonest, but could well be detrimental to our spiritual well-being!
Christians who desire truth over error will want to know when the problem of scriptural alteration began? Something which no sincere believer today should take lightly is the charge against Christians by Celsus, the second century Epicurean philosopher, who alleged that: "Certain Christians, like men who are overcome by the fumes of wine and care not in the least what they say, alter the original text of the Gospels so that they admit of various and almost indefinite readings. And this, I suppose, they have done out of worldly policy, so that when we press an argument home, they might have the more scope for their pitiful evasions". To which allegation the third century Church Father Origen replied: "Besides, it is not at all fair to bring this charge against the Christian religion as a crime unworthy of its pretended purity; only those persons who were concerned in the fraud should, in equity, be held answerable for it" (Origen, Contra Celsus).
What we see is that the words of Origen -- which were composed in the third century when he was commissioned by the church to answer the allegations of Celsus that were written in the second century -- is an acknowledgement that there: "are some who corrupt the Gospel histories, and who introduce heresies opposed to the meaning of the doctrine of Jesus". In this statement we can thus readily see that Origen not only admits to the alteration of the scriptures -- alterations made for purely doctrinal reasons -- is a fact, and that many of these heresies that have been introduced into the text of the Bible are intended to oppose the genuine "doctrine of Jesus". Further, Origen’s reply also verifies that this wholesale corruption of the scriptures took place as early as the second century when Celsus originally made this allegation against the Church. And what was it that Celsus alleged? That the Christian scriptures "admit of various and almost indefinite readings" because "the original text of the Gospels" has been altered to coincide and substantiate the doctrines of the Gentile converts in an attempt to prove their tenets of belief.
Quoting the early Church Father Rufinus: "Origen pointed out by certain marks of his own, namely, the signs of asterisks and obeli, which words had been, so to speak, killed by other translators, and those which had been superfluously introduced. But he put in no single word of his own, nor did he make it appear that the certainty of our copies was in any point shaken; but those things which, as the actual words run, seemed wanting in plainness and clearness, he showed to be full of the mysteries of a spiritual meaning. What comfort then can the conduct of Origen give you in this matter, when your work is shown to be quite unlike his, and when all your labor is spent upon making one letter kill the next, whereas his endeavor, on the contrary, is to vindicate the Spirit which giveth life?" (Apology Of Rufinus).
of the altered text in Jerome's Vulgate, Rufinus then writes: "Last of
all I have
How can we claim today that our Bibles accurately portray what the Lord spoke, when in the second century it was alleged that our scriptures "admit of various and almost indefinite readings"? Thus we must ask: On what basis do we choose which reading we will put in our Bibles, and which we will ignore? Again, the answer is simple: We choose the readings that say what we want to hear. The problem is that there is strong evidence to support the position that many of the most important original passages of scripture have been so cleansed from all the surviving Greek Manuscripts, that they no longer exist in the texts we use to make our modern-day translations.
The fact that the very people who copied the scriptures often altered the original words and meaning in accordance with their own beliefs is confirmed by St. Jerome when he wrote: "They write down not what they find but what they think is the meaning; and while they attempt to rectify the errors of others, they merely expose their own" (Jerome, Epist. lxxi.5). Thus, each copy was edited to clarify the beliefs of the copyist. Each scribe who copied the manuscripts and found something he did not agree with, viewed the offending verse of scripture as an error of the previous copyist.
Under the title Versions of the Scriptures, The New Unger's Bible Dictionary states that: "Jerome had not been long in Rome (A.D. 383) when Damasus asked him to make a revision of the current Latin version of the New Testament with the help of the Greek original. 'There were,' he says, 'almost as many forms of text as copies.' The gospels had naturally suffered most. Jerome therefore applied himself to these first. But his aim was to revise the Old Latin and not to make a new version. Yet, although he had this limited objective, the various forms of corruption that had been introduced were, as he describes them, so numerous that the difference of the old and revised (Hieronymian) text is clear and striking throughout. Some of the changes Jerome introduced were made purely on linguistic grounds, but it is impossible to ascertain on what principle he proceeded in this respect. Others involved questions of interpretation. But the greater number consisted in the removal of the interpolations by which especially the synoptic gospels were disfigured".
It is true that many interpolations were inserted into the scriptures by men who attempted to prove the validity of their beliefs. The problem was that many genuine passages of text were removed because they did not conform to the beliefs of the Roman Church -- and what was considered an interpolation, were in many instances the most important passages of the original scriptures from the position of a Spiritual Church vs an Institutionalized one.
What we fail to realize today is that during this period, every single document was edited and revised to confirm the doctrine of the Roman Church. The noted Church Historian Eusebius quotes the Church Father Dionysius (Hist. Eccl., Bk. 4. 23), who reports that his own epistles had been tampered with: "When my fellow Christians invited me to write letters to them I did so. These the devil's apostles have filled with tares, taking away some things and adding others. For them the woe is reserved. Small wonder then if some have dared to tamper even with the word of the Lord Himself, when they have conspired to mutilate my own humble efforts".
Eusebius writes of a number of sects of Christians of his day: "Therefore they have laid their hands boldly upon the Divine Scriptures, alleging that they have corrected them. That I am not speaking falsely of them in this matter, whoever wishes may learn. For if any one will collect their respective copies, and compare them one with another, he will find that they differ greatly. Those of Asclepiades, for example, do not agree with those of Theodotus. And many of these can be obtained, because their disciples have assiduously written the corrections, as they call them, that is the corruptions, of each of them. Again, those of Hermophilus do not agree with these, and those of Apollonides are not consistent with themselves. For you can compare those prepared by them at an earlier date with those which they corrupted later, and you will find them widely different. But how daring this offense is, it is not likely that they themselves are ignorant. For either they do not believe that the Divine Scriptures were spoken by the Holy Spirit, and thus are unbelievers, or else they think themselves wiser than the Holy Spirit, and in that case what else are they than demoniacs? For they cannot deny the commission of the crime, since the copies have been written by their own hands. For they did not receive such Scriptures from their instructors, nor can they produce any copies from which they were transcribed".
Writing about the text of the Bible in his day, St. Augustine wrote: "For those who are anxious to know the Scriptures ought in the first place to use their skill in the correction of the texts, so that the uncorrected ones should give way to the corrected" (De Doctrina Christ., II. 14). With regard to the sect of the Manicheans who refused to accept the doctrine of original sin, Augustine wrote: "Which argument must be regarded as against the Manicheans, who do not receive the holy Scriptures of the Old Testament, in which original sin is narrated; and whatever thence is read in the apostolic epistles, they contend was introduced with a detestable impudence by the corrupters of the Scriptures". Thus, every group and every sect accused the others of corrupting the scriptures with interpolations to prove their own particular brand and flavor of beliefs.
Irenaeus said of those he called heretics that they "certainly recognize the Scriptures; but they pervert the interpretations" (Adv. Haer. III.12). These perversions often rested on a corrupt biblical text. Tertullian attributes the intentional contaminations of the text to the heretics when he wrote "Now, inasmuch as all interpolation must believed to be a later process… One man perverts the scriptures with his hand, another their meaning by his exposition… Marcion expressly and openly used the knife, not the pen, since he made such an excision of the scriptures as suits his own subject matter" (De Praescript. 38). What Tertullian makes reference to is the fact that Marcion removed whole sections of scripture because he did not agree with what was written.
Fraudulent scriptures and epistles were so rampant in the early church, that no two copies were the same. This fact is especially seen in the Introduction to Ignatius in the Anti-Nicean Library where it reads: "There are, in all, fifteen Epistles which bear the name of Ignatius. These are the following: One to the Virgin Mary, two to the Apostle John, one to Mary of Cassobelae, one to the Tarsians, one to the Antiochians, one to Hero, a deacon of Antioch, one to the Philippians; one to the Ephesians, one to the Magnesians, one to the Trallians, one to the Romans, one to the Philadelphians, one to the Smyrnaeans, and one to Polycarp. The first three exist only in Latin: all the rest are extant also in Greek. It is now the universal opinion of critics, that the first eight of these professedly Ignatian letters are spurious. They bear in themselves indubitable proofs of being the production of a later age than that in which Ignatius lived. Neither Eusebius nor Jerome makes the least reference to them; and they are now by common consent set aside as forgeries, which were at various dates, and to serve special purposes, put forth under the name of the celebrated Bishop of Antioch".
With regard to those epistles which are acknowledged as the genuine writings of Ignatius, even among this group there are numerous intentional additions and interpolations that were introduced into the text to make them support the doctrine of the later Church of the Roman Empire. With regard to the variations in the readings, the Introduction to Ignatius in the Anti-Nicean Library states: "But after the question has been thus simplified, it still remains sufficiently complex. Of the seven Epistles which are acknowledge by Eusebius (Hist. Eccl., iii. 36), we possess two Greek recensions, a shorter and a longer. It is plain that one or other of these exhibits a corrupt text, and scholars have for the most part agreed to accept the shorter form as representing the genuine letters of Ignatius. This was the opinion generally acquiesced in, from the time when critical editions of these Epistles began to be issued, down to our own day. Criticism, indeed, fluctuated a good deal as to which Epistles should be accepted and which rejected. Archp. Usher (1644), Isaac Vossius (1646), J. B. Cotelerius (1672), Dr. T. Smith (1709), and others, edited the writings ascribed to Ignatius in forms differing very considerably as to the order in which they were arranged, and the degree of authority assigned them, until at length, from about the beginning of the eighteenth century, the seven Greek Epistles, of which a translation is here given, came to be generally accepted in their shorter form as the genuine writings of Ignatius".
Under the heading of Apostolic Fathers - Ignatius, the 1968 edition of the Britannica states: "In the 4th century (or perhaps later) his letters suffered interpolation, and six more were added by someone who found Ignatian theology hard to reconcile with the conclusions of the council of Nicaea (or of Chalcedon)".
The Council of Nicaea was convened by the Emperor Constantine, and was called for the express purpose of requiring all Christians throughout the empire to adhere to the doctrine of the Trinity -- which doctrine was founded upon the writings of Plato -- and is the doctrine that Jesus, the Father and Holy Spirit are all one and the same being. We know today that interpolations were added to most of the early Christian writings to find support for this doctrine that had always been part of the Pagan world, but absent from Jewish and early Christian teachings.
As just one example of an interpolation to support the doctrine of the Trinity, Ignatius writes in the shorter version: "For if I be truly found [a Christian], I may also be called one, and be then deemed faithful, when I shall no longer appear to the world. Nothing visible is eternal. 'For the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal’". To this text which is taken from the shorter version, the longer version of Ignatius adds: "For our God, Jesus Christ, now that He is with the Father, is all the more revealed [in His glory]". The Church of the Roman Empire then used these interpolations in an attempt to bring their favorite doctrines which were of a Pagan origin into the new synthesized religion inaugurated by the Emperor Constantine.
Why were these epistles corrupted? Ignatius was a first century Christian. If the Roman Church could demonstrate that Ignatius believed that Jesus was God, then the many Christian’s who held dissenting opinions could more readily be silenced.
In the endeavor to recreate New Covenant teachings as a secular institution -- an anti-Gnostic redemptive religion with its focus on the control of the masses -- many essential elements of the spiritual essence of the scriptures had to be modified and changed. There is nothing in the original Gospels that would affirm the opinion that Jesus had any great respect for secular authorities. In view of the fact that we now can demonstrate the link between the Gnostic Essenes and Jesus through the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls, we can easily support the claim that Jesus viewed the governments of this world as being empowered by Satan. Therefore, in order to make Christianity compatible with the secular environment of Rome, certain additions to the scriptures were intended to bring the more radical anti-secular elements of the religion under control by the use of biblical edicts to obey the government. These numerous interpolations are found throughout the epistles, and can often be easily detected, as is the case in 1 Peter 2: 12-20:
(12) Having your behavior honest among the Gentiles, that, whereas they speak against you as evildoers, they may by your good works, which they shall behold, glorify God in the day of visitation. (15) For so is the will of God, that with well-doing ye may put to silence the ignorance of foolish men; (16) As free, and not using your liberty for a cloak of maliciousness, but as the servants of God. (19) For this is thankworthy, if a man for conscience toward God endure grief, suffering wrongfully. (20) For what glory is it if, when ye are buffeted for your faults, ye shall take it patiently? But if, when ye do well and suffer for it, ye take it patiently, this is acceptable with God"
Verses 13-14 and 17-18, which instruct the reader to submit themselves to the ordinances of man and honor the kings and governors was put there to exert political and social control over the people by the secular authorities of the Roman Empire. This type of interpolation is easily seen in the Epistles of Ignatius.
Moreover, it is in accordance with reason that we should return to soberness [of conduct], and, while yet we have opportunity, exercise repentance towards God. It is well to reverence both God and the bishop. He who honors the bishop has been honored by God; he who does anything without the knowledge of the bishop, does [in reality] serve the devil. Let all things, then, abound to you through grace, for ye are worthy. Ye have refreshed me in all things, and Jesus Christ [shall refresh] you. Ye have loved me when absent as well as when present. May God recompense you, for whose sake, while ye endure all things, ye shall attain unto Him.
Interpolated Long Version:
Moreover, it is in accordance with reason that we should return to soberness [of conduct], and, while yet we have opportunity, exercise repentance towards God. For "in Hades there is no one who can confess his sins." For "behold the man, and his work is before him." And [the Scripture saith], "My son, honor thou God and the king." And say I, Honor thou God indeed, as the Author and Lord of all things, but the bishop as the high-priest, who bears the image of God - inasmuch as he is a ruler, and of Christ, in his capacity of a priest. After Him, we must also honor the king. For there is no one superior to God, or even like to Him, among all the beings that exist. Nor is there any one in the Church greater than the bishop, who ministers as a priest to God for the salvation of the whole world. Nor, again, is there any one among rulers to be compared with the king, who secures peace and good order to those over whom he rules. He who honors the bishop shall be honored by God, even as he that dishonors him shall be punished by God. For if he that rises up against kings is justly held worthy of punishment, inasmuch as he dissolves public order, of how much sorer punishment, suppose ye, shall he be thought worthy, who presumes to do anything without the bishop, thus both destroying the [Church's] unity, and throwing its order into confusion? For the priesthood is the very highest point of all good things among men, against which whosoever is mad enough to strive, dishonors not man, but God, and Christ Jesus, the First-born, and the only High Priest, by nature, of the Father. Let all things therefore be done by you with good order in Christ. Let the laity be subject to the deacons; the deacons to the presbyters; the presbyters to the bishop; the bishop to Christ, even as He is to the Father. As ye, brethren, have refreshed me, so will Jesus Christ refresh you. Ye have loved me when absent, as well as when present. God will recompense you, for whose sake ye have shown such kindness towards His prisoner. For even if I am not worthy of it, yet your zeal [to help me] is an admirable thing. For "he who honors a prophet in the name of a prophet, shall receive a prophet's reward." It is manifest also, that he who honors a prisoner of Jesus Christ shall receive the reward of the martyrs.
In addition to the concept of submission to the king, emperor, or more appropriately, any government official, we also see the addition of the doctrine of hell in the words: "In Hades there is no one who can confess his sins". This doctrine was of the utmost importance to the Roman Institutionalized Church because the doctrine of hell was a necessary foundational concept which was then used to control the masses and bringing them into subjection to the secular authorities.
Through the power of both the sword and the pen, the new religion of the Roman Empire took total control of the people. In every instance, the emperor was the highest, and often the sole authority on acceptable doctrine and all church matters. With the force of his armies, Constantine crushed all Ecclestical resistance, set his opinions up as the only valid doctrinal positions of the Church -- and in the process, put the spiritual essence of the Church to death in the creation of an institutionalized church. In those instances where the Bible was at variance with the religious tenets ordained by the Roman Church, the scriptures were altered to support and affirm church doctrine.
Moving on to other early church writers, under the heading of Apostolic Fathers - Polycarp, the Britannica writes: "These apparent contradictions have led many scholars to suppose that they are two letters rather than one. It is also possible, though uncertain, that like Ignatius' letters, that of Polycarp has undergone later revision. The Monophysites, who were quite careful in citing authorities, provided quotations from Polycarp that do not exactly correspond with the existing text (much of which is available in a late Latin translation)". Quoting from the Introduction to Polycarp in the Anti-Nicean Library: "That this Epistle has been interpolated can hardly be doubted, when we compare it with the unvarnished specimen, in Eusebius... A great part of it has been engrossed by Eusebius in his Ecclesiastical History (iv. 15); and it is instructive to observe, that some of the most startling miraculous phenomena recorded in the text as it now stands, have no place in the narrative as given by that early historian of the Church".
Under Clementine Literature, the Britannica states that "It became the starting point of the most momentous and gigantic of medieval forgeries, the Isidorian Decretals', where it stands at the head of the pontifical letters, extended to more than twice its original length. This extension perhaps occurred during the 5th century".
In his book, Introduction to the New Testament, B.W. Bacon wrote: "The Christian can only mitigate the disrespect he feels for plagiarists and impostors by the reflection that the conscience of the second century had practically no recognition for those literary crimes, rampant as they then were in the Church" (p. 168). Yet it is the product of these "literary crimes" that believers put their faith in when they read their Bibles today!
In his Introduction to the Criticism of the New Testament, by Dr. F. H. Scrivener, he writes that: "In the second century we have seen too many instances of attempts to tamper with the text of Scripture, some merely injudicious, others positively dishonest". Scrivener states that "it is no less true to fact than paradoxical in sound, that the worst corruptions to which the New Testament has ever been subjected, originated within 100 years after it was composed: and that Irenaeus and the African Fathers, and the whole Western, with a portion of the Syrian Church" used inferior manuscripts.
Of what is called the Great Unicals, Scrivener writes of Codex Sinaititus (4th Century): "From the number of errors, one cannot affirm that it is very carefully written. The whole manuscript is disfigured by corrections, a few by the original scribe, very many by an ancient and elegant hand of the 6th Century whose emendations are of great importance, some again by a hand a little later, for the greatest number by a scholar of the 7th Century who often cancels the changes by the 6th Century amender, others by as many as eight (8) different later writers" (Scrivener, Page 93, Vol. I). Regarding the Codex Vaticanus (4th Century) he writes: "One marked feature is the great number of omissions which induced Dr. Dobbin to speak of it as an abbreviated text of the New Testament. He calculates that whole words or clauses are left out no less than 2556 times" (Scrivener, Page 120, Volume I).
In his book The Revision Revised, Dean Burgon asks "Ought it not sensibly to detract from our opinion of the value of their evidence, (Codex B and Codex Aleph) to discover that it is easier to find two consecutive verses in which the two manuscripts differ, the one from the other, than two consecutive verses in which they entirely agree? …On every such occasion only one of them can possibly be speaking the truth. Shall I be thought unreasonable if I confess that these perpetual inconsistencies, between Codd B and Aleph -- grave inconsistencies and occasionally even gross ones -- altogether destroy my confidence in either?"
Or, in the words of Scrivener: "The point on which we insist is briefly this: that the evidence of ancient authorities is anything but unanimous, that they are perpetually at variance with each other, even if we limit the term ancient within the narrowest bounds. Shalt it include, among the manuscripts of the Gospels, none but the five oldest copies of Codd, Aleph A B C D? The reader has but to open the first recent critical work he shalt meet with, to see them scarcely ever in unison, perpetually divided two against three, or perhaps four against one."
With regard to the textual problems of the King James Version, Dr. Tischendorf writes: "…this text (the Received Text) differs in many places from the oldest authorities of the 4th, 5th and 6th centuries, and, therefore, must be replaced by a text which is really drawn from the oldest sources discoverable. THE DIFFICULTY OF FINDING SUCH A TEXT LIES IN THIS THAT THERE IS A GREAT DIVERSITY AMONG THESE TEXTS" (Codex Sinaiticus; by Dr. C. Tischendorf, p. 85).
Dean John W. Burgon, one of the most respected of scholars, is cited by Dr. David O. Fuller in his book WHICH BIBLE?, when he wrote in reference to Codexes B, Aleph, D, and L: "I insist and am prepared to prove that the text of these two Codexes (B and Aleph) is very nearly the foulest in existence" (Pp. 126-127); and "That they exhibit fabricated texts is demonstratable… B and Aleph are covered all over with blots -- Aleph even more than B.... We suspect that these two manuscripts are indebted for their preservation, SOLELY TO THEIR ASCERTAINED EVIL CHARACTER" (Pg. 93, 128). Burgon then goes on further and states: "No amount of honest copying -- persevered in for any number of centuries -- could possibility have resulted in two such documents" (Pg. 93). Burgon also said: "By far the most depraved text is that exhibited by CODEX D" (Pg. 93).
How can a copy of the scriptures be said to be preserved "solely to their ascertained evil character"? What if biblical scholars Wescott and Hort are correct in their conclusion that the "original texts are forever lost" -- and all the remaining texts have been preserved solely because of their evil character, while the texts that more faithfully preserved the purity of the Gospel have all been destroyed because they did not agree with the doctrines of the Roman Church? Moreover, what is in the text that would cause a biblical scholar to call the copy "depraved"? Are they depraved, or are these passages just contrary to accepted church doctrine? These are important questions that faithful believers should be asking. Do these Caudexes really contain "fabricated texts", or are they said to be fabricated and depraved simply because they fail to support modern Christian beliefs and dogma?
In its Introduction to the Books of the New Testament, THE NEW AMERICAN BIBLE (p. xxxiv) states that there were probably several different Greek translations of the early collection attributed to Matthew. With regard to the Gospel according to John, even more bolder statements are made by the authors: "It should be remembered that for the ancients authorship was a much broader concept than it is today. In their time a man could be called the ‘author’ of a work if he was the authority behind it, even though he did not write it. Modern critical analysis makes it difficult to accept that the fourth gospel as it now stands was written by one man. Chapter 21 seems to have been added after the gospel was completed; it exhibits a Greek style somewhat different from the rest of the work… Within the gospel itself there are signs of some disorder; e.g., there are two endings to Jesus' discourse at the Last Supper" (NEW AMERICAN BIBLE, p.xxxvii). The footnote goes on to state a widely accepted theory that the Gospel of John was probably written by a disciple of John, and then edited later by others. How much of the gospel is actually from John is impossible to know. The text then goes on to state that the "inconsistencies were probably produced by subsequent editing in which homogeneous materials were added to a shorter original" (THE NEW AMERICAN BIBLE, p. xxxvii).
By using the term "homogeneous materials", the introduction is stating that, like the Epistles of Ignatius, certain passages were inserted by later copyists in an attempt to prove the doctrine of the Trinity. In view of the fact that it is well documented in early church history that the very disciples and Jewish followers of Jesus did not believe in the Trinity -- and in view of the many witnesses regarding the alteration of the scriptures to suit the doctrines of the Roman Church, it is easily understood that these "homogeneous materials" were added at a time well after the original gospel was composed.
In order to demonstrate just one example of this attempt to insert material to prove the doctrine of the Trinity, we read in the Authorized or King James Bible: "For there are three that bear record in heaven, the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost: and these three are one" (1 Jn 5:7 KJV). In modern translations that are made from much older biblical manuscripts, this verse reads in the manner of the New American Standard: "And it is the Spirit who bears witness, because the Spirit is the truth".
Regarding the validity of 1 John 5:7, the Adam Clarke Commentary states that: "But it is likely this verse is not genuine. It is wanting in every manuscript of this letter written before the invention of printing, one excepted, the Codex Montfortii, in Trinity College, Dublin: the others which omit this verse amount to one hundred and twelve. It is missing in both the Syriac, all the Arabic, Aethiopic, the Coptic, Sahidic, Armenian, Slavonian, etc., in a word, in all the ancient versions but the Vulgate; and even of this version many of the most ancient and correct MSS. have it not. It is wanting also in all the ancient Greek fathers; and in most even of the Latin".
Regarding this and other such verses, the New Unger's Bible Dictionary says: "The New Testament teaching upon this subject is not given in the way of formal statement… Reliance, it is held by many competent critics, is not to be placed upon the passages in Acts 20:28 and 1 Tim. 3:16; and 1 John 5:7 is commonly regarded as spurious". In the case of 1 Timothy 3:16, the King James reads: "And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh, justified in the Spirit, seen of angels, preached unto the Gentiles, believed on in the world, received up into glory". There is no doubt that this passage proves that Jesus was God in the words "God was manifest in the flesh". But, in more accurate translations, such as the New International Version, this verse reads: "Beyond all question, the mystery of godliness is great: He appeared in a body, was vindicated by the Spirit, was seen by angels, was preached among the nations, was believed on in the world, was taken up in glory". What you have just witnessed is the creation of a god with the power of the pen.
Another such doctrinal corruption is found at Matthew 28:19, where it reads: "Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you" (Matt 28:19-20 KJV). Of this verse The Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics writes: "It is the central piece of evidence for the traditional view. If it were undisputed, this would, of course, be decisive, but its trustworthiness is impugned on the grounds of textual criticism, literary criticism and historical criticism".
In the Hibbert Journal (1902), F.C. Conybeare is quoted regarding the spurious verse: "In the course of my reading I have been able to substantiate these doubts of the authenticity of the text Mathew 28:19 by adducing patristic evidence against it, so weighty that in future the most conservative of divines will shrink from resting on it any dogmatic fabric at all, while the more enlightened will discard it as completely as they have its fellow-test of the three witnesses".
Conybeare then goes on and quotes the biblical scholar Dr. C.R. Gregory, and writes: "In the case just examined (Matthew 28:19), it is to be noticed that not a single manuscript or ancient version has preserved to us the true reading. But that is not surprising, for as Dr. C.R. Gregory, one of the greatest of our textual critics, reminds us, 'The Greek MSS of the Text of the New Testament were often altered by the scribes, who put into them the readings which were familiar to them, and which they held to be the right readings' (Canon and Text of the New Testament, 1907, p. 424)".
Conybeare then writes: "These facts speak for themselves. Our Greek texts, not only of the Gospels, but of the Epistles as well, have been revised and interpolated by orthodox copyists. We can trace their perversions of the text in a few cases, with the aid of patristic citations and ancient versions. But there must remain many passages which have been so corrected, but where we cannot today expose the fraud". With regard to the assertion of those many scholars who claim that the New Testament has not been interpolated to support what is known as orthodox doctrines, Conybeare goes on to write: "This is just the opposite of the truth, and such distinguished scholars as Alfred Loisy, K. Wellhausen, Eberhard Nestle, Adolf Harnack, to mention only four names, do not scruple to recognize the fact".
The fact that he speaks of is that the text of the New Testament has been severely altered and revised by the so-called orthodox church of the past. Of the interpolation of Matthew 28:19 where the Church of Constantine attempted to prove the doctrine of the Trinity by inserting it into the text, The Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics writes: "The facts are, in summary, that Eusebius quotes Matthew 28:19 twenty one times, either omitting everything between 'nations' 'and teaching', or in the form 'make disciples of all nations in my name,' the later form being the more frequent". Quoting Eusebius directly, his text reads: "Go ye and make disciples of all nations in my name, teaching them to observe all things, whatsoever I commanded you".
In the publication, The Fraternal Visitor, this assessment was made concerning the falsification of the scriptures: "Codex B (Vaticanus) would be the best of all existing MSS, …if it were completely preserved, less damaged, (less) corrected, more easily legible, and not altered by a later hand in more than two thousand places. Eusebius, therefore, is not without grounds for accusing the adherents of Athanasius and the newly-risen doctrine of the trinity of falsifying the Bible even more than once" (Fraternal Visitor 1924, p. 148; translated from Christadelphian Monatshefte).
Sir William Whiston in his Second letter to the Bishop of London, 1719, p. 15, further confirms that it was the so-called orthodox church which was directly responsible for all the interpolations and corruptions: "We certainly know of a greater number of interpolations and corruptions brought into the Scriptures by the Athanasians, and relating to the Doctrine of the Trinity, than in any other case whatsoever. While we have not, that I know of, any such interpolation or corruption made in any one of them by either the Eusebians or Arians".
When the text of the Bible reads in the book of Acts regarding the relationship of David to Jesus: "Therefore being a prophet, and knowing that God had sworn with an oath to him, that of the fruit of his loins, according to the flesh, he would raise up Christ to sit on his throne" (Acts 2:30 KJV) -- the words "according to the flesh" are not found in all the manuscripts. The defenders of the Trinity will state that someone must have added these words, but if this is so, then why did Paul write: "regarding his Son, who as to his human nature was a descendant of David, and who through the Spirit of holiness was declared with power to be the Son of God by his resurrection from the dead: Jesus Christ our Lord" (Rom 1:3-4 NIV). This would then tell us that Jesus was born of the linage of David, and because of his holiness was declared the Son of God by his resurrection. Further, Mary herself calls Jesus the son of Joseph at Luke 2:48. When it is remembered that the Messianic Jewish Christians who knew Jesus personally, including those who wrote our scriptures, did not believe that Jesus was God, perhaps the Lord is saying to us: The time has come where we should do as the Bible says and "Prove all things" (1 Thes 5:21 KJV) before we blindly believe the doctrines of Constantine.
Every Christian today who desires to know the Mysteries of God should be alarmed by the fact that neither Jesus nor his disciples taught the concepts of the Trinity. From a doctrinal standpoint with regard to the manner we must live in order to approach the alter of the Lord, one's adherence to this doctrine is an obstruction that inhibits the modern church from embracing the spiritual essence of what Jesus actually taught. When one reads the scriptures through the doctrinal filter of the Trinity, the majority of the Bible is negated and rendered useless. Nowhere in the New Testament does the text even hint that Jesus is to be worshiped in any other manner than as a pattern for each of us to imitate.
In our quest to understand how the Bible was altered, we know that in numerous documented instances the commentaries of early Christians that were often made in the margins were in many instances incorporated into the body of the text by later copyist. Under the heading of Andrew of Caesarea, the Encyclopedia Britannica writes: "Critical scholarship has suggested that Andrew's glosses frequently became part of the book of Revelation's text, resulting in some of its enigmatic passages". Are you therefore reading the words of the disciple John, or are you reading the words of Andrew of Caesarea?
Under the title of Bible in the Church, the Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics writes: "In the first two centuries nearly all the various readings of the New Testament came into existence, the majority of them by deliberate alteration of the text, many for the sake of style, and several in the interests of dogma… Often readings were rejected as falsifications of heretics, but often the heretics were right in their counter-complaint… Every province, every order, every monastery, has a tradition of its own…"
If every province, every order, and every monastery in the first two centuries had their own version of the scriptures which supported their favorite doctrines of belief, then we must seriously ask the question as to what has been passed down to us today? Show me the modern Christian who promotes the idea that their beliefs are from God because they are supported by the scriptures, and I will show you believers who have failed to follow the advice of the Apostle and "Test all things".
The problem is that believing Christians today have no means to deal with the issue of the corrupted biblical texts, so they have adopted the doctrine that God wrote the Authorized, or King James Version of the Bible. It does not matter that the Authorized Version is founded upon the most corrupted manuscripts in existence. It does not matter to this group of believers that the Authorized Version is at many important points in opposition to the original teachings of Jesus. What matters is that the Authorized Version which was composed in the year 1611, says what they want to hear, and therefore they reason that God must have written it. Thus, what this ultimately means, is that the faithful flock expects God to be in subjection to man, and conform to the doctrines contained in the believer’s version of the Bible. What they in fact proclaim, is that since the church wrote it, then God must accept it!
One of our greatest obstacles today is the fact that a very large amount of scripture alteration was performed by the Roman Church in their quest to rid the texts of what was labeled Gnostic interpolations. When it is remembered that the Greek word gnosis is used to describe the knowledge received via a spiritual revelation directly from God -- that the teachings of the New Covenant are very Gnostic indeed -- and the Gentile Churches that were ordained by the Apostle Paul were all Gnostic in nature -- the folly of these assertions begins to manifest. If Jesus taught Gnostic concepts, and the Churches started by Paul were also Gnostic, and the later Pagan Church removed all the Gnostic interpolations, then we must recognize the fact that it was the most important verses of the Bible which where were edited out by the later Roman Church in their endeavor to suppress Gnostic thought. Why would they remove these passages? The answer is simple once it is realized that as the church was transitioned into a secular institution where all revelation and interpretation was made by the political hierarchy, the idea that man would be taught directly by the indwelling Word was very quickly done away with.
The historical Christian Gnostics were people who believed that each person has a direct inner connection to God. They held that Christ's Church was a spiritual, rather than a worldly institution, and that each person individually could learn directly from God. Because these Christians refused to support the later Roman Church, they were condemned as heretics and wiped out by the force of Constantine's sword.
The problem with regard to our present day scriptures, as reported in the Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics above, is that "Often readings were rejected as falsifications of heretics, but often the heretics were right". There is nothing in the message of Jesus that supports an institutionalized church. In the teachings of Jesus, the Christ retains authority, and all disciples have it within their power to learn at the feet of the Master -- which concept represents Gnosticism in its purist sense of the word. With regard to the True Spiritual Temple, the Apostle writes: "We have such a high priest, who has taken His seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens, a minister in the sanctuary, and in the true tabernacle, which the Lord pitched, not man" (Heb 8:1-2 NAS).
The Church of Jesus was a spiritual Church -- one where each of its disciples who were "in the world and not of it" could enter, and would learn the Truth directly from God. This teaching represents pure Gnostic thought! It is because the Bible requires that each follower of the Christ should be taught only by God, that Jesus commanded his followers not to be called teacher: "But you, do not be called 'Rabbi'; for One is your Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brethren" (Matt 23:8 NKJ). The followers of Christ should not be called Rabbi, which means teacher, because in the genuine spiritual teachings of The Way that Jesus taught, all will learn from the One Teacher. What is represented in these words is in fact a core concept in the foundation of all Gnostic theology.
The Teacher of Truth dwells in the Genuine Church -- and it is via this Spiritual Church where all things are revealed to the disciple where the promise of the New Covenant is fulfilled: "I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life" (John 8:12 KJV). There is no thought in the teachings of Jesus that one must physically die to either enter the kingdom, or worship in God's Spiritual Tabernacle.
In time, though, as the Gospel became infused with Paganism, and the True followers of Jesus were put to death, believers could no longer enter God's Tabernacle because the Spiritual Path known as The Way became obscured with Pagan dogma and conceptions of life, man and God. When the later Roman Church either removed, or supported biblical manuscripts that had the "falsifications of heretics" removed, when in fact these falsifications were often the most important verses of scripture, what remained was biblical manuscripts devoid of its original spiritual essence and keys.
When it is realized today that the scriptures were conceived in the Gnostic bedrock of the mystical Jews known as the Essenes, then we must also realize that when the Roman Church expunged gnosticism from the texts, they in effect cut out the heart of the message, and what we have left today is a corpse devoid of spirit. In this respect, what I am about to reveal to you there is no documented proof of in our own time: In the fourth century, when the alteration of the scriptures for doctrinal purification was at its height, and the scriptures of the Roman Church were advanced with the power of the sword, the true Christians took to hiding and concealing their scriptures in the endeavor to preserve them, and halt their destruction.
As these collections of ancient scriptures are recovered through archaeological discoveries, they continue to demonstrate the existence of an entirely different Christianity that is totally foreign to the Church that enlists under the name of Christ today. In fact, even with the documentation long possessed by the church today, it is easy to literally pull the proverbial rug right out from under the very foundation of modern Christian thought. In a surviving excerpts of what has been historically known as the Gospel According to the Hebrews, which was reported to be the "original version of Matthew" that was composed in the Hebrew language, of which our present day gospel is a Greek translation of, it was written: "If ye be in my bosom and do not the will of my Father which is in heaven, out of my bosom will I cast you away". In the late nineteenth century a library of scriptures was uncovered which is today known as the Oxyrhynchus Papyri -- wherein this verse is found reading: "Though ye be gathered together with me in my bosom, if ye do not my commandants, I will cast you forth". And to the horror of modern Christians who reject the Gospel of the Nazirenes (see Gospel Of Light) and all its strange readings, we once again find this same verse: And I say to you, "Though you be gathered together in my bosom, if you keep not my commandments I will cast you forth. For if you keep not the lesser mysteries, who shall give you the greater."
This same verse of scripture is quoted in what is historically known as the 2nd Epistle of Clement, where it is written: "Let us, then, not only call Him Lord, for that will not save us. For He saith, 'Not every one that saith to me, Lord, Lord, shall be saved, but he that worketh righteousness' …For this reason… the Lord hath said, 'Even though ye were gathered together to me in my very bosom, yet if ye were not to keep my commandments, I would cast you off, and say unto you, Depart from me; I know you not whence ye are, ye workers of iniquity’".
It must be understood today that natural man who is possessed by sensual gratification and carnal thought, has no use for a spiritual religion that leads them along the path of transformation. Such men do not desire change -- but rather, a license to live in the manner they are accustomed to. Because they are like a drug addict, possessed by the thinking and material things of this world, their perception of religion is that of an insurance policy -- a means of obtaining immunity from the result of their actions. From their perception, the idea that if they do not hold fast to a series of commandments that restricted their very carnal manner of living, was simply unacceptable. Therefore, the solution to the problem was seen in the removal of the above very important concept taught by Jesus from the series of scriptures that was eventually passed down to the modern church.
From these verses it is easily seen that the present day doctrine of perpetual redemption, as well as the popular idea that once you profess that the Lord is you personal savoir you are forever saved, is invalid from an early Christian perspective. It is easily demonstrated that the teachings of Jesus were not intended for the sinner to continue to wallow in the mire of sin -- but rather, for those who truly repented through change -- and the process of "opening and unloosing the mind" in order to enter the Heavenly Kingdom. Clement, who was himself a disciple of the Apostle Peter, states that "…calling Him Lord… will not save us"!
The problem is seen in the fact that this message is totally contrary to what is being preached in the majority of our Evangelical churches today. It is quite common for the preacher to say to the congregation that all that is needed is to accept Jesus Christ as one's personal Lord and Savior, and you will be assured of your salvation. It is further commonly taught today that even those believers who fall away from the Gospel, and return to lives of sin, are said to remain saved, because they repeated the magic prayer. In defense of this position it will be said that man, whose natural nature is sinful because of the fall of Adam, is not saved by what he does, but solely by his faith in Jesus Christ. Yet, this earliest of Gospel tradition is at odds with the very concepts which Jesus actually taught. These verses which strongly convey the message that the believer is cast out of the bosom of Christ, were at one time in our scriptures, but were removed because they did not support the doctrine of perpetual redemption that was embraced by Constantine’s church.
It can be easily demonstrated that the first followers of Jesus continued to observe the Sabbath on the seventh day of the week in accordance with the scriptures. Constantine, who was a sun worshiper, changed the day of worship from the biblical Sabbath to the Pagan Sunday, or day of the Sun. It should alarm modern Christians that in one of the ancient codexes is found a statement of Jesus that has also recently been confirmed in the newly discovered Gospel of Thomas in what is now known as the Nag Hammidi Library. In this codex the Gospel of Luke contains the verses: "On the same day, He (Jesus) beholding a man laboring on the Sabbath, said to him: Man if thou knowest what thou doest, blessed art thou; if however thou dost not know, cursed art thou and a transgressor of the law". And this verse is again found in the Gospel Of The Nazirenes: "And Yeshua beheld a man working on the Sabbath, and He said to him, man, if you know what you are doing, you are blessed, for you are not breaking the law in the spirit; but if you don't know, you are accursed and a transgressor of the law."
Doctrinally, this was removed by the Gentile church for two reasons -- i.e., because of its affirmation of the Sabbath as the day of the Lord; and also because it demonstrated Jesus' ratification of the Law of Moses with perhaps a very Gnostic twist with regard to the acquisition of knowledge. What Jesus is saying is that, if one possesses the Divine Knowledge to understand the true spiritual meaning of the Sabbath, and labors on the Sabbath, he is blessed -- but, if one does not possess the Divine Knowledge of the Sabbath, and labors on the Sabbath, they are cursed and have made themselves a transgressor of the law. In view of the fact that Christians today have no understanding at all with regard to the true spiritual meaning of the Sabbath, from the perspective of what Jesus taught, they would be deemed to be transgressors of the Law -- a Law that they fail to even realize they are under. In light of our current knowledge derived from the Dead Sea Scrolls, with the possible exception of the Seventh Day Adventists, there is good reason to assert that Jesus would call the modern believer a "transgressor of the law".
All Biblical Evidence Reveals that Jesus became the Son of God at his baptism -- in the manner that the original disciples and followers of Jesus believed. I have already demonstrated through the witness of biblical experts that many verses of scripture were added to our Bibles in an attempt to confirm the doctrine of the Trinity. Knowing this fact should be of the greatest concern to modern Christians who would want to know what teachings of Jesus were removed because it was against the doctrine of the Trinity -- a doctrine that is native to the philosophy and religion of Plato and the Greek poets. At Hebrews 1:5 we find the statement: "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 statement, nowhere in our present day scriptures is this said to Jesus. There is an account in Acts that speaks of the disciples of Jesus being adopted by God in the same manner as Jesus himself was: "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).
With regard to the passage at Hebrews 1:5, The Adam Clark Commentary writes: "This most important use of this saying has passed unnoticed by almost every Christian writer which I have seen; and yet it lies here at the foundation of all the apostle's proofs. If Jesus was not thus the Son of God, the whole Christian system is vain and baseless: but his resurrection demonstrates him to have been the Son of God; therefore everything built on this foundation is more durable than the foundations of heaven, and as inexpugnable as the throne of the eternal King".
No one throughout Christian history has ever questioned the resurrection and the Sonship of Jesus -- though what has been questioned is when Jesus became the Christ -- or Anointed One of God -- as well as what it means to be the Anointed of God. With regard to when these words were spoken, Christian history also tells us that these words were in fact said to Jesus: "Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee". The problem is that, with the exception of a footnote at the baptism of Jesus in the Revised Standard Version, these words are no longer contained in our Bibles today. What the footnote states is 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.
What, then, is the ramifications to Christians today? If this passage was again restored to its original form, we could rewrite the Adam Clark Commentary this way: If Jesus became the Son of God at his baptism, when the Holy Spirit descended upon him in the form of a dove and Anointed him (made him the Christ), "the whole Christian system is vain and baseless". Why? The answer is simple: If Jesus was born a man -- a man whose soul had attained the highest level of perfection prior to his again entering into his life as Jesus -- and he became the Messiah or Anointed by fulfilling God's Law, as the disciples and Jewish Messianic Christians who were taught directly from him proclaimed, then Christians must totally alter their position on an uncountable number of important points -- wherein, each of us would then look to Jesus as the pattern that we must follow.
Because the concept of the Trinity is totally undermined by Paul in his Epistle to the Hebrews, Martin Luther rejected the authorship, and condemned the epistle. Luther was offended by such statements as: "Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus; Who was faithful to him that appointed him, as also Moses was faithful in all his house. For this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses, inasmuch as he who hath builded the house hath more honor than the house" (Heb 3:1-3 KJV)
Luther rightfully questioned how God could be called a High Priest -- how Jesus could be appointed to the position of High Priest -- and how Jesus could be compared to Moses? How could it be said of God that "this man was counted worthy of more glory than Moses"? What is absolutely clear in these thoughts expressed by Paul in this epistle is that he did not believe in the doctrine of the Trinity -- or that Jesus was God. There can be no other explanation!
How important is this? The Adam Clark Commentary put the problem in its proper perspective in the words that if this position of Paul is true, then "the whole Christian system is vain and baseless". Why? Because the whole focus of our present-day ideas of religion is founded upon the concept of believing in Jesus because he is God -- whereas, Paul's assertion that Jesus was a man of such holiness that he became the Son of God totally undermines the very foundation of modern Christian doctrine. Moreover, this is confirmed when we ask the question as to how it could ever be said of God that: "So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee"(Heb 5:5). What this means is that our whole modern-day concept of the New Covenant is defective when it is recognized that according to the Apostle, there existed a time in the life of Jesus where his status was changed, and God found Jesus worthy enough to adopt him as His Son.
If the Epistle to the Hebrews was truly written by the Apostle Paul, as is commonly believed, then our whole perception of what Jesus taught must be radically altered. And even if we do as Luther, and reject this epistle because it does not conform to what we choose to believe, there are a whole host of other witnesses that fundamentally convey the same exact message. If Jesus was God he would never have said: "to the extent that you did it to one of these brothers of Mine, even the least of them, you did it to Me" (Matt 25:40 NAS) -- God would never refer to other men as his brothers. After the crucifixion Jesus said: "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).
That Jesus himself directly taught us that he was our brother -- albeit, the first of the Prodigal Sons to return to the Kingdom and be crowned the First Son of God -- is very clearly represented by Paul in the words: "For both He who sanctifies and those who are sanctified are all from one Father for which reason He is not ashamed to call them brethren, saying, I will proclaim Thy name to My brethren, in the midst of the congregation I will sing Thy praise" (Heb 2:11-12 NAS). The Revised Standard Version interprets this passage to say that Jesus and the rest of mankind "…have all one origin. That is why he is not ashamed to call them brethren".
The problem is that because of our present-day doctrines of belief that became infused upon our religion by the Emperor Constantine in the fourth century, this whole concept expressed by the Apostle Paul makes absolutely no sense to us today. Moreover, it is not until we begin to understand that our soul not only pre-existed the physical body in which we presently dwell -- and is in fact the offspring of our Heavenly Father -- and we begin to recognize that we are the prodigal sons that Jesus spoke of -- can we begin to even comprehend what the Apostle is conveying to us when he wrote that we are all of one common Origin, and Jesus is our brother.
The problem was that men like Martin Luther, who was himself a priest of the Roman Church, could not come to terms with the original beliefs of the Christian Church as expressed in these many passages of the Bible. What Luther was unable to deal with was the fact that when we begin to embrace even this one doctrine alone, our whole perspective of New Testament theology must be radically revised and altered. Mere faith and belief in a Holy Man who fulfilled the Law and became the Anointed Son of God, means nothing -- and confirms the words of Clement, the disciple of the Apostle Peter, when he wrote that "…calling Him Lord… will not save us"!
If the soul of Jesus is of a like substance to our own -- and he is in fact the first of the prodigal sons to return to the Father -- and because he so fulfilled the Law of God that he virtually blazed the trail of what came to be called The Way -- thereby becoming the Divine Pattern for all mankind to follow -- then casual belief in the modernized Jesus of today will not benefit us whatsoever. In fact, isn't this the exact understanding being set before those who would be called Christians where it is commanded and warned: "Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple" (Luke 14:27 NAS).
If we begin the process of returning to Christian first principles, Jesus becomes the standard of excellence -- or, in the words of the Apostle: "that the Christ was to suffer, and that by reason of His resurrection from the dead He should be the first to proclaim light both to the Jewish people and to the Gentiles" (Acts 26:23 NAS). As it continually states in the scriptures: Jesus was and is the "firstborn among many brethren" (Rom 8:29 KJV). This is impossible under the doctrine of the Trinity, because it cannot be said that Jesus is our brother. Thus these biblical questions raise the issue: When was he born? The answer is that he was born when he was begotten.
This biblical fact, in and of itself, has created great problems for Christians who have incorporated the doctrine of the Trinity -- a doctrine of Pagan origin which was originally espoused by Plato -- into the teachings of Jesus and the scriptures. 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). The problem is that it means exactly what is says -- Jesus became the Son of God -- initially, by the Anointing (Christ) of the Holy Spirit at his baptism; and permanently, with his resurrection.
Going still one step further, the Adam Clarke Commentary writes: "…it is demonstrated that the doctrine of the eternal Sonship of Christ is absolutely irreconcilable to reason, and contradictory to itself. ETERNITY is that which has had no beginning, nor stands in any reference to time: SON supposes time, generation, and father; and time also antecedent to such generation: therefore the rational conjunction of these two terms, Son and eternity, is absolutely impossible, as they imply essentially different and opposite ideas" (Adam Clarke Commentary).
What is being said is true -- i.e., you cannot believe in the Trinity and talk about the relationship of the Father and the Son -- they simply do not work. In order for someone to be a son, they must have both a father and a mother. In order to be a father, one must have a female counterpart, and both would have had to have existed prior to the birth of the son. Thus, unless you wish to read the scriptures with the mind of the Pagans who in the manner of Luther simply stated that the Mysteries of God are beyond human reason and comprehension, you will embrace the words of Jesus when he said: "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).
Throughout the New Testament scriptures it can be observed that Jesus looked upon the wisdom and doctrines of the Nations as being inferior to that of the Hebrews. What we call the Mysteries of God that both Luther and the Roman Church placed beyond the reasoning and comprehension of man, Jesus said could be envisioned with an Anointed (Christ) Mind. The problem is that in order to perceive and embrace the Mysteries of God, one had to become a disciple of the Light, and approach the alter of God in a certain manner -- i.e., the manner that Jesus, the Master of The Way, inaugurated. What this means is that the more we embrace the doctrines and thinking of Rome, and the culture of this world, the more we alienate ourselves from the only means to overcome this world and enter into the Kingdom. It is therefore also true, that the more we embrace the mindset, thinking, and original teachings of the New Covenant in a state of purity, the easier it is to open the door to the Kingdom.
The disciples and first followers of Jesus saw him as the Divine Pattern that all men must emulate. Their view of him was that he was the firstborn -- or the first resurrected to the Kingdom -- the first of the prodigal sons to return home from among us, his brothers. This is especially seen in the words of the Lord where he said: "For whosoever shall do the will of my Father which is in heaven, the same is my brother, and sister, and mother" (Matt 12:50 KJV).
It is plain in the scriptures that Jesus is "a pattern to them which should hereafter believe on him to life everlasting" (1 Tim 1:16 KJV). A pattern is not something that you casually believe in -- but rather, something that you mold your life after. Moreover, if Jesus is the pattern, then Jesus is the very standard by which all men are to be judged. Why? Because if Jesus was able to perfect himself, and be resurrected into the Kingdom, then all our excuses for leading carnal and immoral lives are without merit -- i.e., because this same standard would then be expected of us -- the Lord's brothers.
The Apostle tells us: "Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children" (Eph 5:1 NAS). If we were created as inferior beings who were nothing more than the natural offspring of Adam, as Christians believe today, then the Apostle would never have told a race of inferior beings to imitate God. The basis of Paul's words is seen in the fact that man is created in the image and likeness of God, and is God's own offspring. If we were inferior beings, neither would God command us: "ye shall therefore be holy, for I am holy" (Lev 11:45 KJV), if we did not possess this innate ability. What is written here is no different than what St. Gregory said when he wrote that we must walk the "path of an exact imitation of Him Who leads the way to salvation" -- which path in the words of St. Nazianzen, reveals to us our true nature and makes "us like God".
When the prodigal son returns home, and matures to his full potential and stature, is he inferior to his father? What is important is for us to realize that we do not know our true potential, and neither do we understand the process that gives us the ability to "imitate God", and makes us "like God". The undeniable Christian Truth that no one who claims to be a believer should deny, is that we don't know the answer to these questions. How can we? As Christians, we have faith that Jesus meant what he said when he promised that he would teach us -- and reveal to us all the Mysteries of God -- if we become his faithful disciple.
Perhaps one of the most important elements of New Covenant thought is the recognition that admitting we do not know is actually a necessary form of repentance -- in that, it opens the door for God to teach us. Clinging to the doctrines of men sets us apart from God, and recreates us in the vision of the secular Jewish sects of the Sadducees and Pharisees of whom Jesus condemned. From a New Covenant perspective, it is our present mindset that only serves to sever and alienate us from God, separate us from our inheritance, and obstruct our entrance into the Kingdom.
The most powerful witness against the doctrine of the Trinity -- as we presently understand it -- is the very scriptures themselves. If Jesus was God, then the scriptures would be written from an entirely different perspective. The second century Church Father Tertullian makes a brief examination of what the mindset of the Bible would be if the Trinity were in fact a valid doctrine: "I bid you also observe, that on my side I advance the passage where the Father said to the Son, 'Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten Thee.' If you want me to believe Him to be both the Father and the Son, show me some other passage where it is declared, 'The Lord said unto Himself, I am my own Son, to-day have I begotten myself;' or again, 'Before the morning did I beget myself;' and likewise, 'I the Lord possessed Myself in the beginning of my ways for my own works; before all the hills, too, did I beget myself;' and whatever other passages are to the same effect. Why, moreover, could God the Lord of all things, have hesitated to speak thus of Himself, if the fact had been so?"
The question that Tertullian raises is both valid and of the utmost importance -- i.e., if Jesus was God, then he would have said to his disciples: I am God. Pray to me. Worship me.
The mindset of the Gospels is that each of us must follow in the Lord's footsteps and become the Christ, which in the English language means the Anointed of God. Westcott, Hort, and numerous other biblical scholars have all stated that if believers are to begin to find the true meaning of the scriptures, they must rid themselves of Constantine's doctrine of the Trinity. It is a spiritual hindrance, and has no genuine biblical foundation. This same conclusion has been recognized by the scholars who have studied the Dead Sea Scrolls. Fundamentally, the scriptures are from the mindset of becoming, and being born spiritually, rather than passively believing. If Jesus became the Christ -- or Anointed of God at his baptism -- and he was at that time adopted by the Father as His First Son, then there is nothing inhibiting us from also becoming Christs, or the Anointed of the Lord. In fact, it would become our true destiny -- which destiny is confirmed to us in the parable of the prodigal son.
Modern-day Christians should ask: What proof do I have that these words speaking of adoption were the genuine words spoken to Jesus at his baptism: "Thou art My Son: this day have I begotten Thee". This is a good question that every believer in search of Truth should ask? I can think of no other words more appropriate than to say: The impact from a Christian perspective is horrific! When it is realized that if just this one passage of scripture is true, then the whole complexion of present-day Christian thought must be seriously re-evaluated, the genuine flock of believers would want to know the answer to this question. Desiring to be people of the Light, rather than bound by the traditions and thinking of carnal men, they know that it is Truth that brings the disciple into The Way, and not the doctrines of men.
Ask yourself the question as to what will you accept as proof? There are my people who consider themselves Christian today of whom it can be said that no amount of proof will alter the way they believe. Thus, only death will begin the process of releasing these people from the shackles of manmade doctrines that hold them bound to the thinking of this world.
Demonstrating that the words: "Thou art My Son: this day have I begotten Thee" is the genuine passage of scripture reflecting the words which were said to Jesus at his baptism is an easy task, especially in view of the fact that this verse is well documented throughout the first four centuries. In the First Epistle of Clement to the Corinthians, a man who was a direct disciple of the Apostle Peter, and was declared a Saint, it reads: "But concerning His Son the Lord spoke thus: 'Thou art my Son, to-day have I begotten Thee’". In the First Apology of Justin, a work written in the first century, it reads: "Yet have I been set by Him a King on Zion His holy hill, declaring the decree of the Lord. The Lord said to Me, 'Thou art My Son; this day have I begotten Thee’". In the writing by the same author known as the DIALOGUE OF JUSTIN WITH TRYPHO, A JEW, Justin writes about Jesus: "He was in the habit of working as a carpenter when among men, making ploughs and yokes; by which He taught the symbols of righteousness and an active life; but then the Holy Ghost, and for man's sake, as I formerly stated, lighted on Him in the form of a dove, and there came at the same instant from the heavens a voice, which was uttered also by David when he spoke, personating Christ, what the Father would say to Him: `Thou art My Son: this day have I begotten Thee’" Justin then goes on to explain to Trypho the Jew: "For this devil, when [Jesus] went up from the river Jordan, at the time when the voice spake to Him, `Thou art my Son: this day have I begotten Thee,' is recorded in the memoirs of the apostles to have come to Him and tempted Him, even so far as to say to Him, 'Worship me;' and Christ answered him, 'Get thee behind me, Satan: thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and Him only shalt thou serve’". What is clear from these words is that the text of our Bibles has been altered, and no longer records what was written by the Apostles.
In 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".
In an early Christian gospel called the ACTS OF THE HOLY APOSTLES PETER AND PAUL, it is written: "Him therefore to whom the Father said, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten Thee, the chief priests through envy crucified". 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". Unless Origen was somehow commenting on the wrong gospel, this verse was completely removed from our present-day versions of John. In view of this fact, modern believers should seriously ask the question as to what else was removed from John.
If it is true that the birth narrative was removed from the beginning of the Gospel of John, and the present chapter that utilizes the term Logos, which only appears in the writings of Plato and Greek Mythology was added in its place, then this fact would shed great light on the statement made by Prof. Allegro in the August 1966 issue of Harpers Magazine where he is quoted as saying: "The very scholars who should be most capable of working on the documents and interpreting them have displayed a not altogether surprising, but nonetheless curious, reluctance to go to the heart of their matter. The scholars appear to have held back from making discoveries which, there is evidence to believe, may upset a great many basic teachings of the Christian Church. This in turn would greatly upset many Christian Theologians and believers. The heart of the matter is, in fact, the source and originality of Christian doctrine".
In view of the fact that there are numerous sightings by the earliest of Christian writers that God said to Jesus at his baptism: "Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee", and not one word is spoken to support the phrase in our bibles which reads "In thee I am well pleased". It is therefore easy to see that this verse was altered by the later Church of the Roman Empire to support their doctrines of belief -- beliefs which inhibit Christians today from entering the kingdom.
In our churches today faithful Christians incessantly beseech God to open their minds to a higher understanding of His Truth. This is good -- and the Lord has placed great knowledge in their hands that was not available to previous generations of believers. It is a useless endeavor, though, to pray for this Truth -- to petition the Lord to grant you the privilege of gazing upon the Mysteries of God that Jesus said only a very few chosen people who were worthy of even the opportunity of seeing: "For I tell you the truth, many prophets and righteous men longed to see what you see but did not see it, and to hear what you hear but did not hear it" (Matt 13:17 NIV) -- while holding fast to the doctrines of men. In fact, it can be said that because this generation of Christians have been given so much with respect to understanding the original spiritual nature of the early church, that it is outright sinful when they continue to cling to the doctrines of Pagan Rome.
The key word here is worthy! Are you worthy to see and understand what has been concealed from the eyes and ears of "many prophets and righteous men"? Worthiness is judged by your willingness to use what God has placed into your hands, magnify it a hundredfold, and manifest it as Truth and Light in the world. Worthiness is demonstrated in your desire to surrender to Truth -- and then manifest this Truth as Light in your Life. In this respect, I have overwhelmingly demonstrated that Jesus became the adopted Son of God when, at his baptism, the Father said these words to him: "Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee".
Again, let us revisit the reasoning of The Adam Clark Commentary with regard to the passage at Hebrews 1:5: "This most important use of this saying has passed unnoticed by almost every Christian writer which I have seen; and yet it lies here at the foundation of all the apostle's proofs. If Jesus was not thus the Son of God, the whole Christian system is vain and baseless: but his resurrection demonstrates him to have been the Son of God; therefore everything built on this foundation is more durable than the foundations of heaven, and as inexpugnable as the throne of the eternal King".
Are you truly a Christian? Do you truly want to know the truth? If you pray and desire God to reveal the Sacred Mysteries of Creation to you, and you hunger with a passion to embrace the Gospel in its fullness, then you cannot ignore this great stumbling block that has the capacity to inhibit every aspect of your genuine walk the Lord. If the foundation of not only your perception of the Bible, but also life itself is based upon a "vain and baseless" vision of both the very nature and destiny of mankind, and you are searching for the answers to life under a great cloud of misconception, then regardless of your effort, your results will not only be limited, but can never rise to any height because of the weight of the great obstacle that you are attempting to carry with you.
When Jesus warned that "The Way", is straight and narrow, what he cautioned his followers was that we cannot attempt to carry the great weight of the doctrines of this world along with us in our walk with the Lord. In the writings of the fifth century monk John Cassian, he often quotes the scriptures as he explored the idea of who is even worthy of being given the opportunity of Walking in The Way in the Imitation of Christ: "Wherefore, as Scripture says, 'when you go forth to serve the Lord stand in the fear of the Lord, and prepare your mind' not for repose or carelessness or delights, but for temptations and troubles. For 'through much tribulation we must enter into the kingdom of God.' For 'strait is the gate and narrow is the way which leadeth unto life, and few there be which find it.' Consider therefore that you belong to the few and elect; and do not grow cold after the examples of the lukewarmness of many: but live as the few, that with the few you may be worthy of a place in the kingdom of God: for 'many are called, but few chosen', and it is a 'little flock to which it is the Father's good pleasure to give' an inheritance. You should therefore realize that it is no light sin for one who has made profession of perfection to follow after what is imperfect" (Church Fathers, Nicene & Post-Nicene, Vol. 11, Page 467).
With great spiritual insight John Cassian wrote that it is "no light sin" for you to profess your allegiance to Christ -- and to Christ alone -- and yet, cling to, and follow after, the doctrines of carnal men. The religious concept that was formalized by Plato, and later grafted into the religion of Christ in the doctrine of the Trinity, and edited into the very pages of the Bible itself by the alteration of the original words that the Father spoke at the time of the baptism of Jesus, is an anchor that the believer attaches to himself when he attempts to walk in The Way. Why? Because this doctrine is the foundation of an entirely different (carnal ) mindset than what was taught by the Lord himself -- and it is this (spiritual) mindset that the Lord made reference to as the "good ground" within which the seed of the Word must be planted in order to mature and multiply by a hundred fold.
The importance is demonstrated in the Lord's teaching of what is elementary and fundamental in order to even begin to be called a Christian. In the parable of the sower and the seed (Mt 13:1-23; Mk 4:1-34; Lk 8:4-15), it is this ground -- or mindset attached to a consecrated lifestyle -- that is the key factor that determines the effectiveness of the Word. Anyone who toils in the earth in the endeavor to bring forth a mature and developed plant, knows that the conditions of the earth within which the seed is planted is what makes the difference in the eventual results.
In view of the fact that you are the ground upon which the Sacred Word is planted, the results of the harvest will be directly proportionate to your ability to become molded into the necessary spiritual environment that is required to bring forth a manifestation of the Living Word. If the soil conditions are rocky with the fossilized, petrified and solidified doctrines of men -- or the materialistic thorns of this world -- then the harvest that you seek -- the harvest of spiritual fruit that is magnified a hundred times -- can never come to pass.
In these great truths that were revealed in the parables that Jesus taught to the multitudes of mankind, we must understand all that is being said to us, and comprehend that the revelation made in these teachings demonstrated stages of growth that transported the disciple from the realms of this world, into the full unveiling of the Kingdom. Unlike modern church doctrine, where one either joins up, or professes their allegiance to the Lord, with the result being that one is instantly saved and converted into a full-fledged Christian, what the Lord taught was that there was a process -- a process that must be fully embraced -- in order to transcend this world and emerge at the Kingdom side of where following in The Way transports the genuine disciple.
When Jesus spoke of the believer as the soil -- and the condition of the soil was paramount to the eventual manifestation of the Word -- what Jesus was stating was that the good ground can be defined as a certain state of mind -- or mindset -- of the believer. In grasping the full dimensions of what Jesus taught, we must see the parable through the eyes of one who himself toils in the earth. If we did not know what a mature field of wheat looked like, and have never seen a carefully cultured agricultural plantation that has been groomed and made ready for the harvest, it would be difficult to envision the final results prior to the time that the field was cultivated and prepared for the planting of the seed.
There is an often told story of the preacher from the city who visited his brother in the country. As the preacher came upon a farm where the crops were growing in fine orderly rows for as far as the eye could see, the preacher leaned over the fence and said to the farmer: Isn't the wonders of God glorious to see and behold. And with that, the farmer scratched his head, and thought for a moment as he gazed out upon the field, and said to the preacher: You should have seen this place when God had it all by himself.
God provided the potential for that wondrous field. But before it evolved into its present condition, it was the farmer who labored to clear it of the trees and stumps, rubble, ploughed it, fertilized it, manicured it, and transformed it from a wilderness, to a place that provided food and nourishment for man. The wise man knows that God not only provided the potential, but also the very elements and seeds that the farmer used to transform the once rocky and overgrown field. In this little story we must understand that there are two paramount truths at work here -- i.e., that success is achieved when man and God move together to subdue and perfect the potential of this reality. In his respect, the opinion that either God or man separately accomplished the final result, is each in error -- and this merging of the two realities is one of the founding principles upon which New Covenant teachings are based.
If the farmer did not have faith, he never would have begun the process of cultivating the wild wildness that was placed in his hands. And in the same way that James opposes Paul in the statement: "For just as the body without the spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead" (James 2:26 NAS). In the same way that the farmer proves his faith by the work he does to transform the field, it is the work of the disciple in his endeavor to fulfill God's Commandments that grows the Word a hundred times more than what the Lord originally bestowed upon him.
In the parable of the sower and the seed, the transformation of the disciple of the Light is understood in much the same fashion. In the same way that the farmer did not create either the field, the seed, nor the sun and rain and organic matter that produced the great crop, it was the labor of the farmer that was a necessary ingredient in order to bring about the transformation. This same exact balance is present throughout the teachings of Jesus -- and especially the parable of the sower and the seed.
God supplied the Word -- and His Laws and supernatural forces can be invoked to bring about the transformation that is envisioned throughout the scriptures -- but the necessary ingredient is seen in the fact that, it is man that must create the necessary environment which Jesus refers to as the good ground that permits the Word to first grow, mature, and multiply what was originally given in the form of fruit manifest in the life of the disciple.
Each of us has the potential to become part of the transformational process that God has ordained -- a process that was referred to by a group of mystical Jews as the New Covenant, and which process was more clearly refined by Jesus in the teachings and concepts of what came to be called The Way. But the problem is that we are again presented with another great paradox -- in that, all these things exist in potential, and it is man that must fulfill the Commandments of the Word in order to make himself the finely cultivated field which Jesus referred to as the good ground within which the Word of God must be planted in order to bring about the transformation.
In the parables and teachings of Jesus, the potential of man to embrace the Mysteries of God is only limited by one thing -- i.e., the mindset of the person who first hears the Word, and then works to assist God in bringing about the Divine Vision of God for Mankind in his Life. Jesus came to speak to mankind about the Truth -- but this Truth can only be realized by the mature spiritual mind -- and this state of spiritual maturity can never be manifest without man's willingness to act upon the Truth that was given.
What modern believers today do not realize is that the Words of the Father to Jesus at the baptism is one of those essential concepts that is absolutely necessary in order for the disciple to first become the good ground, and then provide the fertile environment, in order to be a coworker with God in bringing about the transformation and vision of the New Covenant teachings and reality. It is indigenous to the Pagan mindset to worship the elemental objects of this world. When the pattern of spiritual transformation in the form of the New Covenant scriptures was placed in the hands of the Pagan Gentiles, they did as they were accustomed to doing -- i.e., they made Jesus a god, and worshiped him in the manner of their other gods.
When the disciples of Constantine altered the scriptures to say: "in thee I am well pleased", instead of "today I have begotten thee"; this, and many other such scriptural revisions, altered the very mindset and thinking of the Christian faith. From a New Covenant perspective, each and every person is seen as the offspring of the One God, and it is their innate ability to open a direct channel of communication to the One Source of Knowledge and Being. With the Paganization of the gospel, the mindset of the flock of believers was changed from that of a sovereign and free Divinely ordained people, to that of subjects in a monarchy type of governing reality. It is understandable that this change is absolutely necessary in the creation of a secularized church, a hierarchy of government ordained priests, that can only be founded upon a fixed dogmatically based doctrine. In later chapters I will revisit and add to the many reasons of why the gospel message had to be converted from a spiritual to a secular institutionalized format, in order to make it acceptable from a government perspective -- but at this point it is important to understand the very change in mindset that was accomplished in order to create an institutionalized church that embraced a secular Pagan mindset -- and convert it from the bedrock of a very Gnostic, Jewish mystical church that existed in spiritual dimensions that are of a parallel reality that Jesus referred to as the Kingdom -- and not of this world.
Very briefly, one of the essential and paramount differences can be seen in the mindset of an English born child vs a child who is raised in the United States. Unlike the proverbial saying of American mothers, an English born child of common origin is never taught that they too can grow up and become the king or queen of England. The common child is not born of the royal family, and can never become the king or queen. Thus, we are presented with a subject type of mindset that is common to any of the worlds monarchies.
Because of today’s modern Christian mindset that was imposed upon the church by Constantine and the Imperial Roman Government, Christian children today are not taught that they, too, can grow up to become the Son of God. In accordance with our modern doctrine, the best we can achieve is to become subjects in good standing in the divine government and monarchy of God the Father, God the Son, and God the Holy Spirit. The result is that we view God with a slave, subject, and ghetto mentality that inhibits and nullifies our walk with the Lord. Like the people of England who are not born of royal bloodlines, and can never themselves become king or queen, their role is limited to the praise and support the royal family. Because the alteration of the scriptures to accommodate the government of Pagan Rome has brought about this same mindset, our religious experience never evolves past praising, supplicating, and making ourselves good subjects of the heavenly royal family. From a spiritual perspective, our modern mindset that we inherited from the Church of the Roman Empire is natural to a secularized, institutionalized, Pagan form of religion -- and is not only detrimental, but is a life-inhibiting poison to a spiritual religion such as the teachings of The Way and the New Covenant.
In this example we can also perceive the true reason why the so-called orthodox church objected to the Gnostic foundation of the original teachings of the New Covenant. What the Gnostic professes is that each one of us is the offspring of the Royal Family of the Eternal God. We do not need a royal family of priests and clergy in this world, because each of us has a direct inner connection to God. As a member of God's Royal Family, all we need to do is make ourselves the good ground, and the seed of the Word that is already planted in our hearts and minds will grow and mature into Spiritual Fruit. This great Spiritual Truth is not arbitrary -- it is controlled by the indigenous Laws of Creation within which everything moves. Once properly understood, the personal spiritual evolution of man is as predictable as the sun that rises and sets each day. In this respect, the Truths that Jesus revealed to mankind were not of a philosophical nature -- but rather, were guaranteed.
Since we are comparing the difference in the mindset of a monarchy vs a democratic republic, what I will demonstrate in later chapters is that the foundation of the government of the United States was not only a declaration of Spiritual-Gnostic Christian concepts, but can be used to demonstrate the differences between the church of this world (England), and the True Gnostic Church of the Spirit. The foundational principle of the government of the United States is that every person is imbued with God-given rights -- and the purpose of government is to secure and protect these inherent rights. On the other hand, the government in England at the time of the revolution was a religiously based monarchy -- the king was literally declared to be the vicar of God, and the people were his subjects that he ruled over. All communication with God came through the king, the royal family, and the appointed rulers. That this type of mindset is detrimental to the spiritual growth of the people, is the very reason that religious men and women traveled to the new world in order to serve God, and not the false religion of the king.
The problem that we are confronted with is again demonstrated in the reasoning of The Adam Clark Commentary with regard to the passage at Hebrews 1:5, which was at one time the words spoken by the Father to Jesus at his baptism: "This most important use of this saying has passed unnoticed by almost every Christian writer which I have seen; and yet it lies here at the foundation of all the apostle's proofs. If Jesus was not thus the Son of God, the whole Christian system is vain and baseless: but his resurrection demonstrates him to have been the Son of God; therefore everything built on this foundation is more durable than the foundations of heaven, and as inexpugnable as the throne of the eternal King".
If Jesus is the pattern for all of mankind, then the crucial question that makes all the difference in the life of the believer and disciple is an understanding of when Jesus first became the Son of God. If the original translations of the Bible are correct, and Jesus became the Son of God at his baptism, then our whole vision of the New Covenant must be re-evaluated from a spiritual, rather than a carnal perspective. In this respect, the missing ingredient to our thinking is the process that was invoked by Jesus in order to attain to the exalted position of him being adopted as the first Son of God -- the "forerunner" (Heb 6:20) in whose footsteps we must follow -- because he became "the first-born among many brethren" (Rom 8:29) -- Jesus, our brother, who is born from the same Father and God (Jn 20:17; Mt. 12:50).
Thus, we cannot even begin to perceive the scriptures in their original spiritual reality -- grasping how Jesus came to be different than us -- when we are spiritually inhibited by our present-day mindset. In this respect, we cannot conceive of how Jesus could speak of himself at Luke 13:32 as being in the process of achieving perfection: "…and the third day I shall be perfected" (KJV).
We again see this same thought in the Epistle to the Hebrews, a writing that Luther rejected because it not only contained verses that placed all mankind on a somewhat even keel with Jesus, but it again spoke of the perfection of Jesus in order for him to be made the captain of salvation for his brothers, as seen in the words: "For it became him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the captain of their salvation perfect through sufferings" (Heb 2:10 KJV).
When Christians were again permitted to view the scriptures, which was a crime punishable by death in accordance with the law of the Roman Church for over a thousand years, Middle Age reformers such as Luther realized that the doctrine that Jesus was God, unbegotten, and always existed in a perfect state of being, simply could not coexist with biblical statements such as those at Hebrews 5:9-10, where the Apostle wrote about Jesus: "And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him; Called of God an high priest after the order of Melchisedec" (KJV). How could God, through his sufferings, become perfect? How could God be called an high priest, after the manner of the high priests of the Jews? How could God be compared to the historical figure of Melchisedec, who was said to be the king of Salem?
Taking a broader look at the quotation in the second chapter of Hebrews, Jesus is not presented as God, but rather the brother of all of us: "In bringing many sons to glory, it was fitting that God, for whom and through whom everything exists, should make the author of their salvation perfect through suffering. Both the one who makes men holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers. He says, 'I will declare your name to my brothers; in the presence of the congregation I will sing your praises’" (NIV).
At Hebrews 6:19-20, Jesus is presented to the reader as a forerunner -- a forerunner who became perfected, and this perfection has permitted him to enter behind the curtain of the inner shrine -- which inner shrine is the Kingdom within us that Jesus declared we can only enter with a total change of mind: "We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner shrine behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf, having become a high priest for ever after the order of Melchiz'edek" (Heb 2:10-12 RSV). God, as envisioned in accordance with the doctrine of the Trinity, cannot be called a forerunner, because a forerunner is one who is the same who goes first -- ahead of the rest. Neither could God ever be called a high priest. What the Apostle Paul is speaking of with regard to Jesus, is a perfected man -- because these words are terms that can only be used regarding a created being of the same substance as we are.
These verses which present Jesus as the forerunner who, through his struggles and sufferings became perfected -- and by virtue of his holiness, became the forerunner and pattern by which all men are to follow, was Ordained the first Son of God. It must then be comprehended that these terms can only be understood when the correct words -- the words quoted by the disciple Peter as having been said to Jesus -- the words quoted by the Apostle Paul as having been said to Jesus -- the words which were predicted in the Book of Psalms -- the words which were confirmed throughout the writings of the first and second century Christian authors as having been said to Jesus at his baptism, are restored to their rightful place when the Spirit came upon Jesus as a dove, and the voice of the Heavenly Father said to Jesus at the baptism: "Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee". Open your copy of the Revised Standard Version of the Bible to Luke 3:22, and read the footnote in order to see what the correct words are in all the most ancient of manuscripts.
What this means is that if Jesus is the pattern that all of us must follow, then relying upon faith apart from deeds and accomplishments -- or words of praise and adoration as one would appease a god -- will be meaningless without picking up one's cross and bearing the burden of the Christ while one is still in the body in this present life. What these words mean is that we must live our lives in a manner that would anticipate the Anointing (Christ) of the Light, and cause our Father-God to say these same exact words about us -- i.e., "Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee".
Admittedly, these biblical and historical facts can only begin to make sense when we perceive the reality of our pre-existent soul and the foundation of New Covenant teachings with regard to the Kingdom coming within the mind and being of the disciple. In two important recent Christian archeological discoveries known as the Oxyrhynchus Papyri and the Gospel of Thomas, there is a vital teaching that Jesus conveyed to those who asked him about the coming of the Kingdom: "When the Lord was asked by a certain man, when should his kingdom come, he said unto him, when two shall be one and the without as the within, and the male with the female, neither male nor female". That this is an authentic saying of the Lord which was at one time in our scriptures is affirmed by St. Clement, the disciple of Peter, in his The Second Epistle of Clement’ where he writes: "Let us expect, therefore, hour by hour, the kingdom of God in love and righteousness, since we know not the day of the appearing of God. For the Lord Himself, being asked by one when His kingdom would come, replied, 'When two shall be one, that which is without as that which is within, and the male with the female, neither male nor female’". This same verse is again repeated in other works attributed to the same author.
In our search for the essence of Christian teachings, this important concept must stand at the very forefront with respect to its urgency in the life of the modern believer. If it is our goal to overcome (Rev 3:12), and enter the Kingdom (Rev 22:14), then we would want to know when it would come, and what we have to do in order to enter therein. What this teaching about the Kingdom conveys to us is that we can only enter into Life when we have accomplished specific goals that Jesus spoke about to the people.
In our quest to understand these great spiritual truths that Jesus spoke of, we must ask the question as to why an important teaching such as this would be offensive to the Roman Church and be edited out of our Bible? The problem is that the great truth which is revealed in these words -- words that are of the utmost importance to the disciple -- fails to support the doctrine that the kingdom of God will come upon the earth as is believed by a secular institutionalized church. What these verses of scripture that were removed from our Bibles confirm, is what Jesus clearly taught at Luke 17:21, that the Kingdom is within us. Thus, because the priests of the Roman Church could not control the religious thought of a body of believers in search of the inner Church, and the inner Kingdom, these very Gnostic and Spiritual concepts had to be rejected by the Church of Constantine.
From the perspective of the church which called itself orthodox: What Jesus truly taught was too Gnostic, and undermines the establishment of a secularly based institutionalized church. What these spiritual concepts declare is that the coming of the kingdom is not an event which will take place in the physical world -- so as to be seen (Lk 17:20) -- but rather, within ourselves. The kingdom will come when we make the two within us into one -- the person we are without (in the world) the same as the Divine Person we are within -- and when we have eliminated -- by merging into oneness -- the feminine and masculine polarities within us. In the words of Jesus: Only when we have accomplished these things within and without ourselves, can the Kingdom come.
The genuine Christian doctrine is easy to confirm. Jesus never ordained a class of priests whose job it was to perform rituals and prayers on behalf of the people. The religious principles that Jesus taught were purely spiritual -- i.e., his disciples were to go forth and proclaim to the people that if they changed their direction, and walked in The Way, they could enter into the Kingdom of God, and be saved from the fate of death that this world holds. The disciples and apostles were not to teach, as our religious authorities teach today -- but rather, they were to lead the people to the One Teacher -- the True Prophet -- that is the only Genuine Source of Knowledge for the disciple of the Light.
In addition to the scriptures where Jesus commands the disciples not to be called teacher, for there is only One Teacher (Mt 23:8), 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 -- and is the foundation of the Living Church that the Lord inaugurated. Jesus 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 Christ. What is very clear in these words which are parallel and in harmony with the Bible, is the followers of Jesus 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.
The Apostle Paul wrote that the baptized believers at Corinith did not know the Gospel of God, and could not be taught the Mysteries and true Christian teachings because they were too carnal to receive them. This great 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 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 Jesus 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). Therefore, whoever will teach you -- except by example and the manifestation of the Light in their own lives -- from the perspective of the New Covenant, is a disciple of the anti-christ.
Peter embodies the very essence of the genuine teachings of The Way in the words: "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".
In this statement you will find the dividing line between the genuine Christian and the Christian of the flesh -- i.e., the genuine Christians are those who are willing to embrace the Light, and learn only from the True Prophet which they manifest in their lives by only doing what is of the Light -- whereas, the Christians of the flesh calls upon the name of the Lord, but they adhere to the teachings of men, and live in accordance with the culture of this world. Once these words of Peter are realized in the life of the believer, only then is it comprehended that it is the desire for the Truth -- and the Truth alone -- that will turn you in the direction of The Way. It is this desire that must rule your hearts and minds in such an all encompassing manner, that the believer rejoices in the labors of clearing the rubble of this world out of our lives, and strives to make themselves the good ground that is the only consecrated environment which the Lord will recognize as being genuine. In this respect, the True Prophet can only be found by those who cultivate and prepare themselves -- physically, mentally and spiritually, for the coming of the Lord.
From a New Covenant perspective as set forth in the parable of the sower and the seed, you already have the Word planted in the essence of your heart and mind. Throughout the parables, the Word is spoken of as being male, and the disciple as female. What this means is that one only has to apply a practical knowledge to the equation in order to understand the process that is taught in the parable of the sower and the seed. In the same way that a woman attracts a man to her, the disciple attracts the manifestation of the Word into his life by preparing the environment of his mind and body in the endeavor to make it the good ground. In the same way that a man is seeking an attractive woman in which to place his seed, the Word is seeking an attractive environment in this world in which to manifest the Light.
All the confusion and conflict of religious doctrine that is present in the world today can be attributed to one dominant cause -- i.e., for the believer to prepare themselves does not mean that the True Prophet can be found by those who search for him holding firm to the doctrines of men, or the lifestyle and culture of this world -- but rather, one must prepare themselves to make their life so it will be in conformity with the Will of God. Peter warns that those who do not become disciples of the Light, and fail to cleanse themselves from the defilements of this world, the True Prophet remains "inoperative" -- they cannot see him, hear him, or even conceive of his existence, even though he dwells in the spiritual kingdom within each and every one of us. The True Prophet can only be revealed to those who truly desire the knowledge of God, and reject everything else. But what is the knowledge of God? The knowledge of God is Truth and Light, and can be possessed only by those who are prepared to move beyond this world of carnal opinion and dogma.
In chapter 62, Clement then goes on in his quotation of the Apostle's teachings: "And, therefore, since amongst these philosophers are things uncertain, we must come to the true Prophet. Him God the Father wished to be loved by all, and accordingly He has been pleased wholly to extinguish those opinions which have originated with men, and in regard to which there is nothing like certainty - that He the true Prophet might be the more sought after, and that He whom they had obscured should show to men the way of truth. For on this account also God made the world, and by Him the world is filled; whence also He is everywhere near to them who seek Him, though He be sought in the remotest ends of the earth. But if any one seek Him not purely, nor holily, nor faithfully, He is indeed within him, because He is everywhere, and is found within the minds of all men; but, as we have said before, He is dormant to the unbelieving, and is held to be absent from those by whom His existence is not believed".
The importance of this statement to the people of the simple faith is the very essence of the New Covenant promise! What Clement is stating is that you -- you the reader of this book -- regardless of who you are, or your present station in this life -- have the ability to find the True Prophet and know the Truth -- but, so long as you continue to cling to the doctrines of men, and the philosophy and materialism of this world, the True Prophet will remain dormant as to an unbeliever. A believer in Christ, then, cannot be defined as someone who believes in the manner of their choosing -- in what is culturally correct -- or in the doctrines of their church -- but rather, genuine belief in Christ means that the person believes that if they incorporate the teachings of Christ in their life -- and then live them in word, thought and deed -- that they will begin the process of opening the inner door to the Kingdom and learn directly from the True Prophet.
What we must therefore recognize is the fact that, many who call upon the name of the Lord are in reality unbelievers, because they attempt to call upon the Lord while holding fast to the doctrines of Constantine, Justinian, Darwin, and a whole host of other prophets and servants of the anti-christ. It is in reference to these false teachers and their flocks that the Lord spoke of when he said: "These people draw near to Me with their mouth, and honor Me with their lips, but their heart is far from Me" (Matt 15:8 NKJ). Why? It is because the doors to the Kingdom are only opened with the desires of the purified heart, and not with the lips. What you say means little -- but what you do and accomplish with your life is of paramount importance in the eyes of the Lord.
If one truly loves the Lord, then they will rid themselves of all falseness, and cling only to the Truth. Whoever is therefore not willing to surrender to the truth, are the unrighteous people that the Apostle speaks about: "And with all deceivableness of unrighteousness in them that perish; because they received not the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this cause God shall send them strong delusion, that they should believe a lie: That they all might be damned who believed not the truth, but had pleasure in unrighteousness" (2 Th 2:10-12 KJV).
What the Apostle is here stating is that only those who rid themselves of the baggage of this world, and truly walk in The Way, will perceive the reality of Life -- all others, regardless of how well-meaning they are, regardless of how they praise the Lord with their lips, will be given a "strong delusion". In our analysis of this great truth it is important for us to comprehend the flaw that the authors of the scriptures saw in the people of the Nations -- i.e., they called upon the name of the Lord, but they lived their lives in accordance with their culture -- and thus, they denied God in their actions and deeds.
In recognition of this often repeated biblical fact, we must pose the question: Was the King James Bible written by God, or is this a "strong delusion"? Was Jesus God, in accordance with the doctrines of Constantine, or is this just another "strong delusion"? Does man have a pre-existent soul in the manner of the parable of the prodigal son, or is the present modern-day church doctrine that opposes this biblical teaching a "strong delusion" that is based upon the philosophy of the Emperor Justinian, and his disciple Darwin? Did God abandon His Laws, and permit the Gentile followers of Jesus to be sanctified, even though they often dwell in enmity against the very foundation of spiritual precepts that the Lord spoke, or is this again a "strong delusion". Is what you believe the Truth, or is it just another "strong delusion"?
It is congenitally inherent in man to defend his position and cling to the idea that he is on the winning side. It is a part of his genetic makeup. Yet, what the Bible clearly warns the reader is to beware of the reality of the Prince of Darkness -- and to understand that all but a very few will dwell under the "strong delusion" of this world. One of the great seductions that has been continually employed to lead the people of faith astray, has been the idea that one can merely believe, and does not have to live in strict conformity with the precepts of the Word.
If, then, you desire to see clearly, and know the difference between "strong delusion" and the Truth, then the Bible states that there is only one safeguard -- which safeguard is to come to Christ, and Christ alone. The first century disciples of Christ who knew the Lord when he physically walked this earth, uniformly proclaim that you must seek the Truth only from the Hand of God -- as revealed through personal interaction with the True Prophet -- and reject all others. We no longer possess this foundational message because it is Gnostic, and embraces the path of Mysticism -- which in essence is the manifestation of man's Spiritual Nature.
In much the same way as in the first century, we live today in a world of confusion. There are many philosophers and men we consider authorities -- religious and secular -- who preach and teach many things that conflict with the Truth. They teach in schools and educational institutions -- in our vast media -- they speak and preach their doctrines using every modality conceivable -- they open their arms and say: I know the truth -- come and listen, and I will teach you. The great truth which the Bible continually warns you of is that if you follow the doctrines of these men, you will walk upon the broad-way that leads to darkness and despair.
Regardless of what version of the Bible you choose, a very clear alert to all readers is seen in the warning that we dwell in a world of confusion -- i.e., that it is impossible for us to know the truth by virtue of our own very limited carnal wisdom, and we need a much wider scope of vision and understanding in order to comprehend the reality of Life and Creation. What the Bible conveys to all who open its pages for guidance, is that we need Divine guidance and assistance if we are to know what is right and wrong -- and ultimately, the Truth. Let us therefore embrace the wisdom of the Light, take the words of Clement and Peter to heart, and seek this guidance from the only True Source of Knowledge, God's True Prophet. This is the promise of the New Covenant: That whosoever should seek the Lord with a holy and pure life, the True Prophet will be found dwelling within the very spiritual depths of the disciple's own heart and mind. The acquisition of Truth, then, is not a matter of belief and faith in unproven philosophy that sounds good to our carnal ears and understanding -- but rather, the process of overcoming our own disconnection from the Source of all Knowledge that lies within us.
Was the King James version of the Bible written by God, as many Christians believe today? Has the New Testament been preserved in a pure form by the Hand of God, even when it was under the control of a church that was said to be the servant of the anti-christ? Men of wisdom will heed the warning of the scriptures where it reveals to us that when the Word of God is sown, that the Prince of Darkness will always plant tares in the same field that the fine grain has been planted in (Mat 13:24-30). What this means is that the genuine Christian will overcome the work of the god of this world because the True Prophet will reveal to him the Pure Word that is Spiritual, and can only be received by those who are themselves of the Light. Therefore, the many tares that the Prince of Darkness and his church which called itself orthodox and Christian has planted in our scriptures, will have no effect on those who desire only the Truth directly from the True Prophet.
In the New Testament, the Lord pays particular attention and importance to Children, who are often referred to as the "little ones". We are warned that if we do not "turn about", and become as little children, we cannot enter into the kingdom of heaven (Mt 18:3; 19:14). In Mark 10:24 Jesus refers to his disciples as children when he explains: "Children, how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God! It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God" (NIV).
If all that was required was to say a prayer accepting Jesus as ones personal Lord and Savior, then why would the scriptures make reference to "how hard it is to enter the kingdom of God"? The reference to being rich, in this instance, can as much mean the customs, ways, thinking and teaching of man's worldly culture, as of material wealth. Spiritually, many believers of little financial means can qualify as a rich man. In fact, they could have taken a vow of poverty, and if they have embraced the mindset of this world, and possess a great many manmade doctrines of error, it would be easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for them to enter the Kingdom of God. The children of the Kingdom are those who are in the world and not of it.
Of great importance from a spiritual perspective was the understanding of children that was conveyed by the Lord to the hearer or reader of the Gospel. This understanding, as with numerous other important spiritual truths, was removed from the scriptures by the church of Constantine. In Mt 18:6 and Mk 9:42 we see a key verse that states: "But whosoever shall offend one of these little ones who believe in me, it were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and that he were drowned in the depth of the sea". In the ninth chapter of Mark a series of important verses that the Church of Constantine did not agree with, and did not want in the scriptures, was removed, and other verses that had nothing to do with the original text were inserted in their place. In fact, in many ancient biblical manuscripts, all or some of these inserted verses are missing.
What remains in our Bibles today should fool no one -- and is so out of character with the surrounding text, that it appears more like the switching of television stations than the revelation of a scriptural message. What we see can in fact be likened to a person with a remote control switching between two channels -- and as they channel serf, they listen to one program, then press the remote and briefly listen to another, and then switch back to the original program.
In verse thirty seven Jesus states to his disciples: "Whosoever shall receive one of such little children in my name, receiveth me; and whosoever receiveth me, receiveth not me, but him that sent me". Instead of responding within the context of the message, the removal and insertion of verses makes the text appear to be a channel change on a radio or television: Picture Jesus standing with a child in his arms, teaching His disciples about the "little ones"; and John, totally ignoring what Jesus was saying, changes the subject, and instead replies: "Teacher, we saw one casting out demons in thy name; and we forbade him, because he followed not us. But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man who shall do a mighty work in my name, and be able quickly to speak evil of me. For he that is not against us is for us". Then, as if the channel gets switched back to the original station, the message reverts back to the first script and reads: "And, whosoever shall cause one of these little ones that believe on me to stumble, it were better for him if a great millstone were hanged about his neck, and he were cast into the sea".
In the case of Luke, the blatant editing and rewriting of the scriptures is even more apparent. There are presently eight chapters separating the initial reference to the children in Luke 9:47-48, with the remaining verses pertaining to the children which now are found in the seventeenth chapter of Luke. Without any discussion whatsoever regarding the children, Luke 17:1-2 reads: "Then said he unto the disciples, It is impossible but that offenses will come: but woe unto him, through whom they come! It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones".
What few Christians realize today is that during the second century the gospel of Luke was put though an extensive rewrite in order to obscure certain teachings of Jesus and create an anti-Jewish environment. Under the heading of Marcion (c.100-160) in the Encyclopedia Britannica we read that he was the "founder of a Christian sect, born in Sinope, Pontus (now Sinop, Turkey), and probably the son of the bishop of that city. He went to Rome about 140", where he was for a time received as orthodox in his beliefs. It is important to realize that Marcion received his anti-Jewish sentiment from his father who was an authority in the Gentile church, and that Marcion himself was viewed as being orthodox by many Christians.
The Britannica then goes on to write that "The Marcionite sect, highly ascetic and celibate, grew rapidly until it was second in strength only to the original church; it had churches and an episcopal hierarchy and practiced the sacraments of baptism and the Eucharist… Marcion rejected the Old Testament and almost all of the New Testament… basing his teachings on ten of the Epistles of St. Paul and on an altered version of the Gospel of Luke… Marcionism flourished in the West until about the 4th century…"
What is very important for us to recognize today is the fact that Marcion in some ways was a predecessor of Martin Luther -- in that, both embraced Paul, and rejected the disciples of Jesus as being too Jewish. What we also must understand is that the core reason that Marcion was eventually rejected was not because of his doctrine with regard to the acceptance of Paul and the rejection of the disciples of Christ, but because of his asceticism and celibacy that could not be universally embraced by the Gentile converts.
The Marcionite churches, who are said to be "second in strength" to the original church, called themselves Christian, and enlisted under the banner of Christ. Marcion, the son of a first-second century Christian Bishop, was said to have used an "altered version of the Gospel of Luke" -- and, like Luther, used the Epistles of Paul exclusively. In the case of the Gospel of Luke, Marcion, as well as Irenaeus and Tertullian who attacked him on doctrinal grounds, each accused the others of altering the scriptures to support their own point of view.
Something we should be genuinely concerned about today is the question regarding which of these two factions of the Gentile church -- factions which were almost equal in strength -- possessed the unaltered version of the scriptures? In our search for doctrinal purity this is an important question for believers today to answer. In view of the fact that when the Gospel of Luke was originally written, Luke 9:47-48 was connected with what is now Luke 17:1-2, it must be realized that the copy of Luke that we read today has been severely altered from its original context, and is very different than what was used in the first century. What was removed? What was inserted? What was altered? In answering these important questions, we must be ever cognizant that blind belief in Constantine's corrupted biblical texts does not equate to faith in God! In fact, the Bible clearly states that blind belief could doom your soul to hell!
Based upon the extensive research of the biblical scholars Wescott and Hort, both the versions that Marcion was using, as well as the versions that Irenaeus and Tertullian were using, could have been equally corrupted, and both sides were correct in their allegations that each was using a corrupt copy of the gospel of Luke. In like manner, Wescott and Hort has also warned believers that their own Bibles are translated from corrupt manuscripts -- manuscripts wherein the original text of the scripture has been lost, and no longer exists in any of the manuscripts existing today. See for yourself: You need not be a biblical scholar to realize that Luke 17:1-2 did not begin in the middle of the dissertation about the children, and in its original form it was connected with Luke 9:47-48.
Further proof that Luke 9:47-48 was at one time connected with Luke 17:1-2 is seen in Origen's Commentary on Matthew. In comparing the narratives pertaining to the little ones in Matthew with their corresponding verses in Mark and Luke, Origen writes: "Next we must test accurately the meaning of the word 'necessity' in the passage, 'For there is a necessity that the occasions come,' and to the like effect in Luke, 'It is `inadmissible' but that occasions of stumbling should come,' instead of 'impossible’"
In comparing the verses, Origen clearly speaks of the parallel between Matthew, Mark and Luke, and those in Luke 9:47-48 as being connected with those at Luke 17:1-2. We can then conclude that in the scriptures that Origen used, these verses were not separated by eight chapters as they are in our scriptures today. Modern Christians, therefore, have no other choice than to admit there can be no explanation other than the Bibles which we use today have been severely revised by the Church of Constantine, and all copies of the scriptures that did not conform to Constantine's Bible -- such as those used by early church authorities such as Origen -- were subsequently destroyed.
In view of these facts, Christians today have no other choice than to ask the question: Did God protect the scriptures from being altered and corrupted by the forces of darkness, or did God insure that sufficient evidence remained to point the truly faithful believer towards the place in spirit where the Genuine Scriptures are beyond the reach of the Prince of Darkness? In answering this crucial and all-important question, I believe the facts regarding the corruption of the scriptures are there for you to see -- and our very own Bibles have been used to demonstrate the corruption of the biblical text. If you choose, then, to ignore all the extra-biblical proofs that I have provided, you cannot close your eyes to the truth, because every Bible you pick up today contains the same mark of corruption in the Gospel of Luke. Moreover, any reasonable person would immediately question the authenticity of these scriptures that were handed down to the present flock of believers by a very corrupt Pagan Roman Church. Knowing this to be a fact, only those who either want to be deceived, or are totally under the power of discarnate spirits, will continue to maintain that our Bibles today have not been corrupted.
If you truly believe that the Bible is the word of God, then it is the word of God that is attempting to reach out to you this very day and open your mind to the reality of the situation. The very Bibles you hold in your hand are speaking out to you and saying: "The hands of ruthless and evil men of the past has corrupted my message from the pure meaning of the Word". Heed the words of the Lord, and seek a genuine knowledge -- a knowledge that can only be received directly from the True Prophet.
What is also important for the modern believer to acknowledge is that this flagrant corruption of the Word is demonstrated in a teaching that the Lord warned is absolutely necessary for each of us to become -- i.e., a little one -- one of his genuine followers, in order to enter the Kingdom of heaven. From the perspective of the revelation of the Word and the absolute necessity of being in the world and not of it, what has been demonstrated is that this all-important teaching about the little ones, and the many other such corruptions, are all a part of the tares that the devil has sown among the Word of God. This warning is presented in the scriptures in the words of the Lord when he said: "But while men were sleeping, his enemy came and sowed tares also among the wheat, and went away" (Matt 13:25 NAS). What, then, should the modern believer do? This also is found in the scriptures where the Lord said: "First gather up the tares and bind them in bundles to burn them up; but gather the wheat into my barn" (Matt 13:30 NAS).
So long as we remain in denial, we continue to provide Satan with the ability to maintain control over our lives. Being faithful to the Lord does not mean that we should blindly believe the opinions expressed by other men -- especially when those men are evil. While it is true that there is no amount of evidence that will alter the position of many who believe that the Bible, as it exists today, is the pure word of God. Being a Christian, though, means that if we truly desire to know the Truth of the matter, we have it within our ability to transcend the error of this world, and learn the Truth directly from the True Prophet that is spoken of by both Peter and Paul.
In order to even begin to gather up the tares that Jesus warned us about, it is necessary that we acknowledge their presence. So long as we naively sit back in denial, and refuse to admit what every unbiased biblical scholar has warned us about, we are permitting ourselves to be seduced by Satan, and we are willingly eating of the forbidden fruit that will cause our own demise.
God has neither abandoned us, and neither does He require His faithful flock to blindly believe other men! As the people of the promise of the New Covenant, the Lord does not expect you to believe either me, the clergy of your church or synagogue, or anyone else -- God only expects you to "prove all things" (1 Thes 5:21 KJV). Faith and belief in the Lord, means that you believe that you are able to embrace all truths with respect to the Gospel, because God gives you this ability at any time you truly begin to investigate and seek Him out. From a biblical perspective, the thing you should fear is to ignore what the Lord has plainly set before you -- i.e., seeing the tares that the evil one has planted -- failing to investigate the truth of the matter -- and permitting one's mind to remain under the control of the ruler of this world.
In view of the blatant corruption of the Gospel of Luke with regard to the message of the little children, it can then be accurately asserted that if you are listening to the advice or the preaching of someone who attempts to tell you that the scriptures have not been corrupted by the work of the devil, and you accept their word that this is the way it was originally written, and disregard the evidence, then you are only asking to be deceived and lied to. In like manner, if you are following a religious authority that attempts to portray the clear corruption of the scriptures as having no effect on your salvation, then you are again only asking to be deceived and lied to. The scriptures were corrupted in order to support the creation of an institutionalized church -- and it is the church of this world that remains as an obstacle to the believer today.
Moreover, if you are a Christian, there is a whole other dimension to the problem: In ignoring the evidence of what the Lord himself has placed in your hands, what will be your excuse for not investigating the matter? How will you defend yourself when the time comes that you stand before the Judgment Seat of God, and must give an accounting of what you accomplished in this life? In view of the fact that The Way to the Truth and the Light is still very clearly defined even in our present-day Bibles, if you fail to pick up your cross and follow, what will be your excuse?
The truth is that Christians have no excuse -- the corruption of both the church and the written word has been well predicted in the Bible itself. What the scriptures very clearly warn us about is that these tares in the field where the Word has been planted are the work of the evil one. They have been put there to entrap us, and keep us in subjection to the devil. The initial problem is that only when we begin to acknowledge that the tares exist, can the Lord direct us beyond these entrapments that have been put there to ensnare us. If we are workers in the Lord's harvest, then faith means that we believe the Lord will guide us into what is right. If we allow him, the Lord will show us what are the tares, and what is the wheat that we are to gather and store in the Lord's barns. The problem is that the Lord cannot teach us, so long as we remain in denial, and continue to ignore the very examples of the devil's work that plainly exists for us to see. If, then, we continue to choose to ignore the Lord, it is not only an almost worthless endeavor that we call ourselves Christians, but it is a sinful violation of the Ten Commandments with respect to calling on the name of the Lord in vain.
Do we need more proof? Further evidence that has been preserved for us in our evaluation of the passages of scripture pertaining to the little ones is seen in the fact that, in his commentary, Origen makes no mention of the inserted verses: "Teacher, we saw one casting out demons in thy name; and we forbade him, because he followed not us. But Jesus said, Forbid him not: for there is no man who shall do a mighty work in my name, and be able quickly to speak evil of me. For he that is not against us is for us". Why wouldn’t Origen comment on the placement of these verses? In view of the facts, it is a no brainer to conclude that this separate and alien teaching does not belong in the middle of the Lord's discourse pertaining to children. If these verses were present in the scriptures that Origen used in the second and third century, then he would have noted them when he compared the differences between Matthew, Mark and Luke in his commentary on Matthew, which we still have today.
Going still one step further: As with all writings pertinent to the Christian religion, even the copy of Origen's Commentary of Matthew has verses removed, as can be seen in the following:
And next to that He says, that "He," - Jesus to-wit - "took a little child, and set him in the midst of His own disciples, and taking him in His arms, He said unto them, Whosoever shall receive one of the little children in My name receiveth Me." But what was the little child which Jesus took and placed in His arms, according to the deeper meaning in the passage?
it the Holy Spirit? And to this little child, indeed, some were likened, of whom He said, "Whosoever shall receive one of such little children in My name receiveth Me." According to Luke, however, the reasoning did not arise spontaneously in the disciples, but was suggested to them by the question, "which of them should be greatest."
Origen did not end one sentence with a question mark, and then write "in the Holy Spirit?" In the same exact place where Origen poses the question pertaining to the "deeper meaning in the passage", is the insertion in our Bibles of the alien verses beginning with "Teacher, we saw one casting out demons in thy name". Thus, in the same way that the Church of Constantine did not what you to see the verses that were originally written in the scriptures with respect to the little ones, neither did they want you to see what Origen wrote about these verses that were removed from our scriptures, as well as what Origen called the "deeper meaning in the passage". What can be clearly seen is that whatever was at one time was contained in Origen's commentary between the words: "the deeper meaning in the passage?" and "it the Holy Spirit?", has been edited out of the text by the censors of the Roman Church.
In view of the fact that we can easily demonstrate the corruption of the written word of the biblical text, it is also simple to understand why Origen and the first Christians believed differently than we do today. When the Church of Constantine edited our scriptures, they removed those verses that contained the teachings which were most offensive to their very Pagan doctrines of belief. With these verses removed -- not only from our Bibles, but also from the writings of the earliest of church authorities such as the Church Father Origen -- is it little wonder that we believe differently than did the Christians who possessed a more pure copy of the scriptures?
Throughout this book I will demonstrate that Origen and many other early Church Fathers wrote openly about the Christian teaching on reincarnation. I have already demonstrated that the scriptures which Origen used in the second and third centuries were very different than ours are today -- more pure -- and since we do not at present have the means to look into Origen's Bible, we are unable to know with certainty whether or not the scriptures that Origen used contained additional teachings such as the need to live in accordance with the Royal Law of God -- or verses that supported the belief in reincarnation and the pre-existence of the soul. We can say with certainty, though, that Origen -- a man who was known to many as the greatest Bible scholar in the history of the church -- saw many great truths in his copy of the scriptures that we fail to realize today.
It is a fact that the Christianity of the Church Father Origen was so different than what is commonly believed today, that the biblical scholar Wescott wrote: "We have not yet made good the positions which he marked out as belonging to the domain of Christian philosophy" (Wessott: Religious Thought In The West; p.252). In view of the fact that Origen was one of the most competent and respected biblical authorities in the history of the church, and he could prove every tenet of his theological positions by using the scriptures, the modern Christian should be greatly concerned with respect to why his (Origen’s) Bible was different than ours is today. This fact should alarm Christians who know that, without any doubt, the Bibles we use at present are very different than those used by all the Church Fathers prior to the fourth century.
One of the things that we can say with certainty, though, is that the Bibles that Church Fathers such as Tertullian used were the forerunner of our own corrupt copy of the scriptures. In fact, Tertullian, who places the verses pertaining to the millstone in the seventeenth chapter of Luke, like our scriptures today, does not even know that these misplaced verses belong to the little child, and references Jesus words as speaking instead of his disciples. This is seen in his writings pertaining to Luke: "Then, turning to His disciples, He says: 'Woe unto him through whom offenses come! It were better for him if he had not been born, or if a millstone were hanged about his neck and he were cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones,' that is, one of His disciples".
In the above we see that the Bible Tertullian used was altered in the same manner as ours is today, and both Tertullian's and our's are far more corrupt than was the bible that Origen used. That Tertullian accused Marcion, and Marcion accused Tertullian of possessing corrupt copies of the scriptures is seen in the words of Tertullian when he wrote: "We must follow, then, the clue of our discussion, meeting every effort of our opponents with reciprocal vigor. I say that my Gospel is the true one; Marcion, that his is. I affirm that Marcion's Gospel is adulterated; Marcion, that mine is".
Regarding Tertullian's assertion pertaining to the corruption of Marcion's scriptures he writes: "I will therefore advise his followers, that they either change these Gospels, however late to do so, into a conformity with their own, whereby they may seem to be in agreement with the apostolic writings (for they are daily retouching their work, as daily they are convicted by us)… or again subverts it by shameless tampering. Such are the summary arguments which we use, when we take up arms against heretics for the faith of the gospel, maintaining both that order of periods, which rules that a late date is the mark of forgers, and that authority of churches which lends support to the tradition of the apostles; because truth must needs precede the forgery, and proceed straight from those by whom it has been handed on".
Demonstrating that the statement regarding the millstone in Origen's Bible was in its original position connected with the teaching on the children in chapter 9:47-48, rather than 17:1-2, as is the case with ours and Tertullian's scriptures, it is now shown that Tertullian's scriptures were just as corrupt and deformed as is ours today. Further, we can also establish that Tertullian's scriptures contained verses that ours do not.
Tertullian quotes the passage found at Matthew 5:17, which reads: "Think not that I am come to destroy the law, or the prophets: I am not come to destroy, but to fulfill" as being contained in his version of Luke. This verse in Tertullian's scriptures preceded what remains in our Bibles at Luke 16:17, which reads: "And it is easier for heaven and earth to pass, than one tittle of the law to fail". Tertullian also quotes the verse at Matthew 15:24, which reads: "But he answered and said, I am not sent but unto the lost sheep of the house of Israel", as also contained in his copy of Luke.
In addition to all the many corruptions that each side accused the other of making, in the course of removing the offending teaching about the children that was unacceptable to at least one school of thought in the Gentile church, these verses in our Bibles are now separated by eighteen chapters. Perhaps, though, what is even more important than the corruption of the text is the question with regard to the dissertation pertaining to the "little ones" and the entrance into the kingdom of heaven! Why was Jesus censored? Why were these verses removed from Origen's Commentary on Matthew? What sacred truth did Jesus teach that those who wished to rewrite Christian doctrine in accordance with their own beliefs didn't want their perspective followers to know? Since present day Christians have inherited these profaned scriptures, the offending teachings of Jesus are missing from our Bibles also.
Only the most naive and misinformed believer today would fail to understand that Jesus was well aware of future events, and he knew full well of the wholesale corruption of the Word that would take place once the Gospel message was placed in the hands of the Gentiles. "Do not go among the Gentiles or enter any town of the Samaritans. Go rather to the lost sheep of Israel" (Matt 10:5-6 NIV), Jesus commanded his disciples. That the Gentile Church made an alliance with Pagan Rome, demonstrates conclusively that they placed political power, and the things of this world, above the purity of the Word.
In order to gaze upon the very essence of the Mysteries of God, and behold the true depth of the wonders of Creation, a person must themselves become a highly refined Spiritual Soul. Once this is realized, it is not difficult to understand that what is truly Sacred was not -- could not -- and never was given into the hands of the Gentile converts. Even the Apostle to the Gentiles -- the historical man known as Paul -- was chosen from among the worldly Jews -- converted by an extreme paranormal experience -- given only a certain level of knowledge that would enable him to serve the designs of the Lord -- and then sent among the heathen to begin the process of change.
From a New Covenant perspective, history records the fact that the Gentiles were not even given the more spiritual and genuine scriptures of The Way. When Edward Gibbon writes: "But the secret and authentic history has been recorded in several copies of the Gospel according to St. Matthew, which these sectaries long preserved in the original Hebrew, as the sole evidence of their faith" -- he is speaking about the fact that the original version of Matthew was written in Hebrew characters, rather than the Greek text that our Bibles are translated from today.
Of this Hebrew original of Matthew, St. Jerome wrote to the Bishops Chromatius and Heliodorus: "A difficult work is enjoined, since this translation has been commanded me by your Felicities, which St. Matthew himself, the Apostle and Evangelist, did not wish to be openly written. For if it had not been Secret, he would have added to the evangel that which he gave forth was his; but he made up this book sealed up in the Hebrew characters, which he put forth even in such a way that the book, written in Hebrew letters and by the hand of himself, might be possessed by the men most religious, who also, in the course of time, received it from those who preceded them. But this very book they never gave to any one to be transcribed, and its text they related some one way and some another".
If the genuine essence of the teachings of Jesus was little more than belief in the personage of Jesus -- and the purpose of the scriptures was to enlighten man with regard to the personage of Jesus so that they might have faith and believe -- which is the root concept upon which the modern church is founded -- then there would never have been a reason for the disciple Matthew to author a writing that was too secret to be placed into the hands of either the secular Jewish or Gentile converts. Once we truly begin to understand what is being conveyed in a statement such as this, then we would be forced to re-evaluate everything that we presently believe with regard to the very design and purpose of New Covenant teachings. Moreover, the whole foundational concept of Martin Luther that everything in the Gospel is simple and plain -- and meant to be understood by the common believer -- is very much in error.
Additional information regarding the original Hebrew Gospel of Matthew is provided by Jerome in his work, O Illustrious Men, on James the Lord's brother: "Further, the Hebrew itself (or original) is preserved to this day in the library at Caesarea which was collected with such care by the martyr Pamphilus. I also had an opportunity of copying it afforded me by the Nazarenes who use the book, at Beroea, a city of Syria".
Of the Hebrew original of Matthew, Gibbon writes: "the fact is attested by a chain of fathers - Papias, Irenaeus, Origen, Jerome, etc… But this Hebrew Gospel of St. Matthew is most unaccountably lost; and we may accuse the diligence or fidelity of the primitive churches, who have preferred the unauthorized version of some nameless Greek". Gibbon rightfully calls our copy of Matthew the "unauthorized version of some nameless Greek", because the only true Gospel attributed to Matthew is the original Hebrew version which was never given to the Gentile Church, and we no longer possess today.
In like manner, there is sufficient evidence to conclude that all of the original -- more spiritual -- signatures of the gospels were written in Hebrew. This fact is acknowledged by Montague Rhodes James in his book, The Apocryphal New Testament, when he wrote: "Epiphanius goes on to say that he had heard of Hebrew Versions of John and Acts kept privately in the treasuries (Geniza) at Tiberias".
Moreover, there is also reason to assert that when these gospels were re-written in Greek, they were transcribed in accordance with Greek ideas pertaining to religion -- and thus, they were diluted from their original highly spiritual context, and imbued with Gentile ideas in order to assist in transitioning the Pagan mindset to a more elevated spiritual awareness. Thus, Gibbon notes that "The two first chapters of St. Matthew did not exist in the Ebionite copies (Epiphan. Haeres. xxx. 13". These first two chapters of course deal with the immaculate conception and virgin birth -- a doctrine that was fundamental to Pagan thinking at the time.
The question must be asked why the disciples of Jesus would record in the scriptures the doctrine of the virgin birth, when it is a recorded fact of history that the Messianic Jewish followers of Jesus did not ascribe to the doctrine of the Immaculate Conception -- a doctrine which was clearly a Pagan tenet of belief long before the advent of Jesus? Why, also, would the Messianic Jewish believers not accept the virgin birth if it was true? It is a recorded fact of history that Jesus' mother and brothers were part of this same Messianic Essene-Ebionite community that rejected the virgin birth. It is also stated as such in the scriptures: "These all with one mind were continually devoting themselves to prayer, along with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers" (Acts 1:14 NAS).
What is the meaning of the virgin birth? In his book Pagan and Christian Creeds, Edward Carpenter writes: "But it is well known as a matter of history that the worship of Isis and Horus descended in the early Christian centuries to Alexandria, where it took the form of the worship of the Virgin Mary and the infant Savior, and so passed into the European ceremonial. We have therefore the Virgin Mary connected by linear succession and descent with that remote Zodiacal cluster in the sky" (Edward Carpenter, Pagan and Christian Creeds, New York: Harcourt, Brace and Co., 1920).
We must remember that both the Romans and Greeks were sun worshipers. All sun gods were born on the 25th of December, which is the first noticeably longer day after the Winter Solstice (Dec. 21st). The sun was at that time in the zodiacal sign of Capricorn, which was known as the Stable of Augeus -- and it was for this reason that all sun gods were born in a stable. Brightly shining on the meridian was Sirius, which was known as the Star from the East -- while rising in the east with the horizon passing through the center of the constellation was Virgo (the Virgin). Constellation Orion -- the Great Hunter -- was to the right of Sirius, with three stars in his belt. The three stars in a straight line point to Sirius, and were known to the ancients as the three kings -- which in the gospels was known as the Magi, astrologers, or wise men, depending upon which version of the English Bible you use.
Why would the genuine disciples of Jesus want to defile their pure concepts of religion with such a doctrine of Pagan Origin? For good reason the original (Hebrew) versions of the gospels did not contain the doctrine of the virgin birth -- and this doctrine was added at a later date to make Jesus compatible with the Pagan conceptions of the sun god by the Greeks when they transcribed the scriptures into their native tongue. These facts are attested to in the book, Egyptian Mythology and Egyptian Christianity, by Samuel Sharpe, who writes: "The infant Horus is shown receiving homage from gods and men, including the Three Kings, or Magi, who are tendering them gifts. In this scene the cross symbol again appears. 'In this picture,' as one Egyptologist noted, 'we have the Annunciation, the Conception, the Birth and the Adoration as described in the first and second chapters of Luke's Gospel, and as we have historical assurance that the chapters in Matthew's Gospel which contain the miraculous birth of Christ are after additions not in the earliest manuscripts, it seems probable that these two poetical chapters in Luke may also be unhistorical, and borrowed from the Egyptian accounts of the miraculous birth of their kings" (Samuel Sharpe, Egyptian Mythology and Egyptian Christianity, London: J.R. Smith, 1879)
Under Pagan Christianity, Mary was elevated to a goddess -- or mother of god -- when she took the place of Isis in the minds of the Gentile converts. This is documented in Everyman's Dictionary of Non-Classical Mythology, by Egerton Sykes, where he writes: "In Roman times the worship of Isis was widespread on all the main lines of communication in Europe, usually in ports and important market towns on rivers. With the advent of Christianity many of the chapels of Isis were taken over, and the representations of the goddess with the infant Horus in her arms became pictures of the Virgin Mary carrying the Holy Child. As Isis was dark-skinned, they became famous Black Virgins. Notre Dame in Paris was built on the remains of a Temple of Isis; the original name of the city was Para Isidos, the Grove of Isis. There are Black Virgins near Marseilles, near Barcelona, at Czestochowa in Poland, and in numerous other cities in Europe".
The truth of these Pagan origins was never hidden from Christians? One only has to ask: What is the meaning of Easter, in order to begin to understand the paganization of the word that took place. Regarding the incorporation of the celebration of Easter, the festival of the goddess of spring into Christianity, in his book, The Beginnings of Gnostic Christianity, by L. Gordon Rylands, he writes: "For in an astronomical chart, the sun is apparently crucified upon the intersecting lines of the Equator and the Ecliptic at the moment of his descent into the lower hemisphere, the hemisphere of darkness and death; and so again at the moment of his resurrection into the hemisphere of the light and life, while the period of transit is three days. At the time when the myth of the death of the sun-god originated, the sun, being in the constellation of Aries at the Spring Equinox, was identified with the Ram. That is the Lamb which has been slain from the foundation of the world. The custom of dressing the paschal lamb in the shape of a cross is referable to the same myth" (L. Gordon Rylands, The Beginnings of Gnostic Christianity, London: Watts and Co., 1940, p. 217).
We call ourselves Christians today -- but have we ever searched out the origin of the term? In view of the fact that the word Christ was associated with the anointing of the Pagan gods, we can begin to understand why the original followers of Jesus refused to use such the word Christ in place of the Hebrew word Messiah. In fact, they considered such an interconnection to be sacrilegious. To demonstrate the relationship of the sun god with Jesus, I will quote what was called an Ode to the Sun by the Roman philosopher Martianus Capella: "Latium invokes thee, Sol, because thou alone art in honor, after the Father, the centre of light; and they affirm that thy sacred head bears a golden brightness in twelve rays, because thou formest that number of months and that number of hours. They say that thou guidest four winged steeds, because thou alone rulest the chariot of the elements. For, dispelling the darkness, thou revealest the shining heavens. Hence they esteem them, Phoebus, the discoverer of the secrets of the future; or, because thou preventest nocturnal crimes. Egypt worships thee as Serapis, and Memphis as Osiris. Thou art worshipped by different rites as Mithra, Dis, and the cruel Typhon. Thou art alone the beautiful Atys, and the fostering son of the bent plough. Thou art the Ammon of arid Libya, and the Adonis of Byblus. Thus under a varied appellation the whole world worships thee. Hail! thou true image of the gods, and of thy father's face! Thou whose sacred name, surname, and omen, three letters make to agree with the number 608. Grant us, oh Father, to reach the eternal intercourse of mind, and to know the starry heaven under this sacred name. May the great and universally adorable Father increase these his favors" (quoted by TW Doane; Bible Myths p.507)
In a footnote Doane states that: "These three letters, the monogram of the Sun are the celebrated I.H.S., which are to be seen in Roman Catholic churches at the present day, and which are now the monogram of the Sun-god Christ Jesus".
The name Jesus is not Hebrew -- and was not the name of our Lord. In the first place there is no letter "J" in the Hebrew alphabet -- which means that the names Jesus, Jehovah, John, James, Jonah, and even Jew, are all mistranslations. Moreover, the real name of our Lord, Yehshua, simply does not translate into the name Jesus. In his book, Christianity before Christ, John G. Jackson writes: "The church authorities translated these symbols as Jesus Salvator Hominem (Jesus the Savior of Men). The ancient students of esoteric religion read them as the number 608; the time period of a solar-lunar cycle; the number of years which pass before the sun and moon occupy the same relative position in the heavens. The cycle 608 (or 600) years represented a messianic period, at the end of which a new savior or messiah appeared on earth. The letters IHS were the sacred monogram of the Greek god Bacchus. The Christians adopted them and made them the root of the name Jesus. The IHS when Latinized became IES, and adding the Latin masculine suffix -US, that is IES plus US, became IESUS. When anglicized, the 'I' became 'J' thus giving Jesus" (John G. Jackson, Christianity before Christ, p. 166). What is clearly seen is even the very name Jesus, in place of Yehshua, or Joshua, the real name of our Lord, when investigated, is again seen to be of Pagan origin. When Evangelical Christians therefore call upon Jesus, are they truly calling upon the name of the Lord?
When Sir Arthur Weigall wrote his book, The Paganism in our Christianity, he firmly believed that Jesus was both an historical man and the Savior. But he also realized that the doctrine of the Virgin birth was of Pagan origin when he wrote: "Firstly, as regards the cave; the cave shown at Bethlehem as the birthplace of Jesus was actually a rock shrine in which the god Tammuz or Adonis was worshipped as the early Christian Father, Jerome tells us; and its adoption as the scene of the birth of our Lord was one of those frequent instances of taking over by Christians of a pagan sacred site. The propriety of this appropriation was increased by the fact that the worship of a god in a cave was a commonplace in paganism: Apollo, Cybele, Demeter, Herakles, Hermes, Mithra and Poseidon were all adored in caves; Hermes, the Greek Logos, being actually born of Maia in a cave, and Mithra being rock-born."
Then as regards the stable: The author of the Gospel of Luke says that when the child was born, Mary wrapped him in swaddling clothes and laid him in a manger (phatne) -- that is to say a rough trough, like the Greek liknon, which was a sort of basket used either for hay or as an actual cradle, somewhat as the manger is represented in Botticelli's picture of the Nativity. The author of the Gospel of Luke, however, was here drawing upon Greek mythology; for the god Hermes was wrapped in swaddling clothes when he was born and placed in a liknon, or manger-basket. So also was the god Dionysus, who in Bithynia, gave his name to the month beginning at our Christmas, and who… was closely related to the popular conception of Jesus
Regarding the time of year that the biblical Jesus was born, Weigall writes: "I may add that the time of the year of which Jesus was born is completely unknown, the date of our Christmas Day, December 25th, having been adopted by the Church only in the Fourth Century A.D., this being the traditional date of the birth of the sun-god… Nothing, in fact, is known historically, about the early years of our Lord. All that can be said is that He was the son of a carpenter named Joseph and of his wife, probably called Mary, who seem to have lived at Nazareth, or the neighboring hamlet of Bethlehem. These two had at least seven children, there being five sons - Jesus, James, Joses, Judas and Simon, and two or more daughters whose names are not known; and we may therefore picture our Lord as growing up with his brothers and sisters in the usual rough manner of a middle-class native household, but gradually detaching Himself from them as his religious consciousness developed" (Sir Arthur Weigall, The Pagainism in our Christianity, p.53-54)
In view of the fact that the Bible records that at the beginning of his ministry, Jesus' own family knew nothing of his Messiahship, as seen in the words: "For not even His brothers were believing in Him" (John 7:5 NAS), we can say with a certainty that Weigall's assessment is correct. From a biblical perspective, are we to believe that Jesus' family forgot about the virgin birth, the visitation of angels, the jumping of John the Baptist in the womb of his mother when Mary came to visit, the star of Bethlehem, the visit of the shepherds and wise men to worship Jesus, the threat on Jesus' life that forced them to be exiled in Egypt, the teaching in the Temple at the age of twelve? Are we then to believe that these signs of a divine nature were never discussed? The only way that Jesus' family did not know of these things, is if the virgin birth narrative in both Matthew and Luke were added sometime after the gospels were originally written.
Quoting Edgar J. Goodspeed, who is said to be one of the greatest modern Bible scholars, writes: "It is noteworthy that none of Jesus' brothers was included, but the reason is very clear; they did not look upon his great ideas and lofty aims with sympathy and understanding, indeed, they made determined efforts to deter Him from His work and even came with his mother from Nazareth to Capernaum, to Peter's house, to persuade him to give it up".
We know that the original Hebrew version of Matthew did not contain the virgin birth. Without this doctrine, the same could be said of Matthew that is said of Mark -- as seen in the position by the Encyclopedia Britannica on The Holy Trinity: "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".
In view of the fact that many of the ancient manuscripts of Luke still read: "Today I have begotten thee", instead of "In thee I am well pleased" at Luke 3:22 -- and also the fact that the Gospel of Luke was severely edited by the very anti-Jewish Marconite Churches -- and even the mainline churches of Tertullian used a corrupt copy of Luke which is demonstrated in our bibles today in the form of the eight chapters that separate the beginning of the narrative about the little ones with its ending -- there is sufficient reason to question whether in its original form, Luke contained the narrative of the Virgin birth. That the original version of Luke did not contain the first two chapters of the birth narrative is further demonstrated in the allegation of Tertullian that the heretics used copies of Luke that did not contain these chapters.
If we add up the witnesses, there is great evidence to question the originality of the doctrine of the physical immaculate conception -- I use the qualifier "physical", because from a spiritual reality, each of us must be born from a virgin. With regard to our own Bibles, Luke is the most untrustworthy of all the gospels, because it was the favorite of the Marcionite Churches and the Gentile converts. It is well attested to that the original of Matthew did not contain the birth narrative. It is attested to that there were first century copies of Luke that did not contain the birth narrative. To this very day the version that we have of Mark does not contain the birth narrative -- without which, Jesus became the Christ at his baptism -- the Son of Man in his walk in The Way -- and the full stature of the Son of God at the crucifixion -- which is exactly as the first followers of Jesus believed.
If the author of Luke believed that Jesus was God, he never would have written the address of Peter in the following fashion: "Men of Israel, listen to these words: Jesus the Nazarene, a man attested to you by God with miracles and wonders and signs which God performed through Him in your midst, just as you yourselves know" (Acts 2:22 NAS). Luke never would have called Jesus "a man attested to you by God". If Jesus was God, Luke never would have written that "God performed through Him in your midst". If Jesus was God, he would not have been called "a man" -- neither would he have been "attested" to -- and he would have performed his own works.
In like manner, if the author of Luke believed that Jesus was God, he never would have written the following address: "You know of Jesus of Nazareth, how God anointed Him with the Holy Spirit and with power, and how He went about doing good, and healing all who were oppressed by the devil; for God was with Him" (Acts 10:38 NAS). If Jesus was God, he never would have needed to be anointed by God, and neither would it have been written that "God was with Him". If Jesus was God, he never would have spoken the words: "The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he hath anointed me to preach the gospel to the poor; he hath sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to preach deliverance to the captives, and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty them that are bruised" (Luke 4:18 KJV). The Spirit of the Lord cannot come upon God, and anoint God. Further, neither could the words be spoken: "For He whom God has sent speaks the words of God; for He gives the Spirit without measure" (John 3:34 NAS). God cannot send God, and neither can God give the Spirit to God without measure.
There exists very important "keys of knowledge" that the Lord accused the Sadducees and Pharisees of throwing away (Lk 11:52). These same keys of knowledge were eradicated and obscured -- first by the Gentile church, and later the church of Constantine during the process of secularization and the institutionalization of the gospel. The question must be asked: If these things are true, where does that leave us today?
When obstacles are presented to the faithful flock, the Lord sends them signs to follow in order to assist them in their quest to find the answer. The majority of Christians today ignore the fact that the original texts of the scriptures have been lost, and what we have has been severely altered from its original form. When believers are shown that the bible has been edited to reflect changes in doctrine and what was taught, they become hostile and condemn the experts who attempt to warn them of the corruptions. They fail to realize that God is attempting to communicate a vital message to the believer in order to assist them in their search for truth.
The fact that the manuscripts that we use to create our Bible translations are corrupt, is just one of the many ways in which the Lord has attempted to communicate with His lost sheep. It is not by chance that the Dead Sea Scrolls were discovered, or that they were discovered at a time in our history when these documents would not be burned and destroyed. All these facts and evidences were revealed to mankind by the Hand of God to assist us in our search for truth.