THE GNOSTIC PAUL
The One Teacher
If a great teacher
was to come and instruct mankind into the Mysteries of God, and a
person desiring to hear this great teacher asks for directions, then the job of
those who are sent to call the people is to stand in The Way and direct those
seeking to hear the teacher to go by the shortest route. If, on the other hand, instead of giving directions to
the teacher, the servant attempts to convey their own perception of the words of
the teacher -- second hand -- then such a person is a false servant.
If this servant then attempts to teach his own doctrine, instead of
guiding the seeker to the Master himself, then such a man is a teacher of
apostasy and error.
Jesus condemned the Sadducees and Pharisees because they
were not the people of Israel -- but rather, they were counterfeit religious authorities who refused to live in accordance with
the teachings of The Way, and at the same time they taught the multitudes their
own traditions and interpretations of the scriptures. That the Sadducees and Pharisees were themselves
self-condemned, and should have known the truth, is seen in the fact that not
once did Jesus condemn the Essenes. Why?
Because the Essenes focused on the manner in which the individual must
live in order to open their minds to the indwelling Word.
In a truly spiritual religion, the One Teacher is always
accessible and ever present to meet with and instruct the genuine disciple.
The job of the servant who is sent forth among the people to gather the
flock is not to teach -- but rather, to give direction and demonstrate to the
seeker The Way in which to go, in order to arrive at the place where the Teacher
can be found. This concept of a Living Revelation is the defining
embodiment of what we refer to as mysticism, Gnosticism, and is the true essence
of a spiritual religion. Moreover,
it is this defining factor that is continually demonstrated in the writings of
all the early Christians, and is summarized by Origen when he explains that
Christ will appear to, and teach, each individual who will be his disciple and
follow in His footsteps: “…which appearing [of the Christ] is manifested
to each one of those who are perfect, and which enlightens the reason in the
true knowledge of things”.
The Christ cannot appear to the carnally minded and sense bound person whose thinking is of this world. Why? Because those segments of mind that are necessary to explore and comprehend man's spiritual reality, are simply undeveloped. When the Apostle Paul spoke of his visions of man's spiritual reality and said that he "heard things so astounding that they are beyond a man's power to describe or put in words (and anyway I am not allowed to tell them to others)" (2 Cor 12:4 TLB); these words should have prepared the flock of believers to open their minds to a reality beyond their carnal perception of the elementary Gospel message.
The purpose of the teachings of The Way is to develop the believer and bring about a necessary spiritual transformation. For the help of carnal believers, the milk of the gospel has been given until which time they are ready to have a change in mind and heart, and be healed from the defilements of this realm that inhibit their growth. Since man's own spiritual reality is beyond his carnal perception, and there is only One Source of all Truth and Light, then the purpose of the journey in The Way is to prepare and develop the seeker as he advances to a state of maturity that is his ultimate destiny.
a religious/philosophical perspective, the problem is seen in the fact that the Christ
cannot appear to those who are unfaithful in doctrine -- i.e., those who
are referred to in scripture as spiritual adulterers.
It is these people who, though they call upon the name of the Lord,
attempt to come to the alter of God carrying the baggage of the doctrines of
men. The Christ can only
instruct those who are of his fold. And
who are they? Those who have been healed from the defilements of the world, and
look only to the Lord as their teacher.
As modern Christians it is important that we understand
the doctrine of faith that Paul said was the focal point of his teachings.
It must first be remembered that in all his Epistles, Paul was writing to
congregation of very carnal believers -- not Christians who had grown in maturity and
perfection. To the carnal
believer, faith is the most important element of his religious experience.
The Apostle Paul himself defines faith in the biblical
sense: “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of
things not seen” (Heb 11:1 NAS).
From a New Covenant perspective, if one's religious experience is founded
upon faith alone, then such a state must be understood as indicative of a
pre-Christian condition. The
word Christian when properly translated into the English language, can only be
defined as a person who strives after the Anointing of God.
Again, the word Christ is not the last name of Jesus -- but rather, it is
descriptive of the immersion of the mind with the active principle of Creation
that we call Light. This
condition which is referred to as Anointed (Christ), is synonymous with the term
illumination. In reference to
this Anointed state of mind, the Apostle writes: “But call to remembrance
the former days, in which, after ye were illuminated, ye endured a great fight
of afflictions” (Heb 10:32 KJV).
A person whose mind has been illuminated by the Anointing
of the Logos, cannot be a believer whose faith is the foundation of their
religious experience. Yes,
they have faith, but once the mind is illumined and is able to gaze beyond the
barrier of this world, and they can observe God and the essence of Creation,
that condition which Paul defines as “the assurance of things hoped for,
the conviction of things not seen” (Heb 11:1 NAS), is no longer the moving
force in the life of the disciple. When
this term is fully understood, then it can also be applied to the body of
believers. Prior to being
Anointed -- i.e., a pre-Christian state -- the believer is in a state where they
are seeking to become Anointed -- which means that they cannot be called the
Anointed (Christian), until which time they have perfected their walk with the
Lord, and they have achieved that condition of illumination of mind and being.
From this more correct perspective we can then understand
that the Gentiles who the Apostle was writing to were a body of believers who
were striving to become Christian. Those
who possess only what the Apostle calls the milk of the gospel, have not yet
overcome their carnal nature, and cannot therefore be the Anointed (Christian).
The Apostle says of them that one of the main obstacles to their becoming
a genuine Christian, is that the genuine spiritual concepts of the teachings of
the New Covenant would appear to be foolishness to their natural mindset. Why? Because
so long as their thinking is of this world, they have not yet become Christian
-- i.e., Anointed and Illumined -- and whether they will in fact attain the goal
of becoming a Christian will be dependent upon whether they can overcome their
natural, carnal nature, and manifest their soul and spiritual natures.
The doctrine of faith which is expressed by Paul in his
Epistles must be understood as being written to the wannabe Christians.
What is expressed by Paul is the assurance that if they follow in The
Way, the Son of God will come to them -- that he will teach them the Truth and
the Mysteries of the Father -- and that the Son of God will sanctify and Anoint
them. This is the article of
faith that the true believer in the Lord expresses -- i.e., that the Son of God
will fulfill the promises of the Gospel, and not leave them orphans in this
From a biblical perspective, faith itself is transformed
as the disciple matures in Christ. This
can be compared to a woman who has faith that she can conceive and bear a child.
Prior to conception, she has faith that she can become pregnant.
After conception, and during that time when she feels life being formed
with her womb, she has faith that she will give birth.
It is not until after she endures labor, and holds her infant in her
arms, that she can be called a mother.
The same is true with respect to a Christian.
When one hears the Good News which is the Gospel of the simple faith, one
has faith that if they believe, and embrace the Word, that the spiritual
conception will take place within them.
In the same way that a woman is only an expectant mother until after the
birth of the infant, neither is a person of the simple faith a Christian, until
after their minds have been Anointed by the Light.
As the believer begins to take on a greater measure of
Godliness, they experience a series of spiritual cleansings -- or baptisms --
that opens the inner door of the soul-mind.
From a spiritual perspective, it is the disciple who has travailed the “narrow
path”, and is moving through the “straight gate”, that is in
fact immerging out of the womb of Mother God, and into the Kingdom of Paradise.
What is referred to by the Apostle Paul as the Mysteries
of God, is as the sustenance that nourishes the disciple as he develops in the
womb of this world. Writing
about this process of spiritual transformation, Origen explains who can be a
recipient of the Mysteries of God: “Whoever has clean hands, and therefore
lifts up holy hands to God… let him come to us… Whoever is pure, not only
from all defilement, but from what are regarded as lesser transgressions, let
him be boldly initiated into the mysteries of Jesus, which properly are made
known only to the holy and the pure… To those who have been purified in heart,
he whose soul has for a long time, been conscious of no evil, especially since
he yielded himself to the healing of the Word, let such a one hear the doctrines
which were spoken in private by Jesus to his genuine disciples”.
Thus, the true Gospel of God can only be taught to those who have become
pure, “not only from all defilement, but from what are regarded as lesser
transgressions”. The Gospel of God can only be revealed to those who are
“holy and pure… and have been purified in heart”. Disciples whose “soul has for a long time been
conscious of no evil”. Only
such a disciple can “hear the doctrines which were spoken in private by
Jesus to his genuine disciples”.
With regard to the doctrine of faith in relation to sure
spiritual knowledge, quoting Clement of Alexandria in Smith & Wace's Bible
dictionary: “Faith is the
foundation; knowledge the superstructure, by knowledge faith is perfected, for
to know is more than to believe. Faith
is a summary knowledge of urgent truths; knowledge a sure demonstration of what
has been received through faith, being itself reared upon faith through the
teachings of the Lord. Thus the
Gnostic grasps the complete truth of all revelation from the beginning of the
world to the end, piercing to the depths of scripture, of which the believer
tastes the surface only. As a
consequence of this intelligent sympathy with the Divine Will, the Gnostic
becomes in perfect unity in himself, and as far as possible like God.
Definite outward observances cease to have any value for one whose being
is brought into abiding harmony with that which is eternal; he has no wants, no
passions; he rests in the contemplation of God, which is and will be his
When Clement portrays the Gnostic Christian as being in “…unity
in himself”, and developing to where they have become “…like God”
and “…brought into abiding harmony with that which is eternal”, it
is at that time when the disciple becomes the True Christian by entering the
final stage of spiritual development, and fulfills the biblical requirement as
set forth by Jesus in the words: “You, therefore, must be perfect, as your
heavenly Father is perfect” (Matt 5:48 RSV)
With respect to the Gospel, what Clement is stating in
the above quotation is that faith is the foundation, or the beginning of one’s
walk with the Lord. This is
as true in the first century, as it remain true in our present time. Without faith in the validity of the Word, there can be
no growth and salvation. What
we must understand is that, from the perspective of the Gentile converts to whom
Paul was writing his Epistles to, faith was the essence of their religious
experience. In Romans 11:24,
Paul speaks of the Gentiles as branches of a wild olive that was in the process
of being “grafted into a cultivated olive tree” (NIV).
It is important that we take note that in his words, there is no
suggestion that there was a flaw in the cultivated olive tree -- which he
defines as Israel. Only that
God wanted to bring this same level of spiritual cultivation to the Gentiles who
in Paul’s words were “wild by nature”, in order that the Gentiles
would be given the opportunity to turn from their Pagan and Heathen ways, and
enter into the Kingdom. The
problem was that in not being a part of the cultivated spiritual foundation of
Israel, they had to be a people of faith -- faith that God would look kindly
upon them, and graft them into the cultivated olive tree of Israel.
In the same way that a fetus is not born into adulthood,
the road to spiritual birth is a process -- and as one progresses in the journey
along The Way, faith is superseded by Knowledge -- and if it is not, then one's
faith is not only misdirected and in vain, but is spiritually sterile.
In the same way that it is an expression of faith that people invest in
the stock market in the hope that they will receive a return on their
investment, faith in the Lord means that you believe in the teachings of the New
Covenant, and are willing to invest your life in the Word, in the hope that you
will be found worthy to enter the Kingdom.
Like the stock market, you would not have invested your money if you were
told that some time after death you might receive a return on your money.
Thus, in like manner, there is nothing in the Gospels that suggest that
you will enter into the Kingdom after you die.
Which means that, if you have not yet gained access -- or at the least
opened a direct line of communication with the Lord -- then something is wrong
with the manner in which you are putting your faith.
In the words of Clement which are quoted above, the
Gnostic -- or the Christian who has developed that spiritual root within himself
that connects his outer person to the Divine Tabernacle within his being --
finds himself being nourished by the Word in the manner of a fetus through the
umbilical cord of it’s mother. It
is these disciples who have begun to move beyond the simple faith, who are those
who develop spiritually, and as a faithful infant in Christ, begin to “grasp
the complete truth of all revelation from the beginning of the world to the
end”. The Gnostic, or
spiritual Christian, has the ability to pierce “to the depths of scripture”
because he has himself pierced to the depths of his own being while walking in
As a warning to those who read God's Word, and see only
the body, Clement writes of the scriptures that “the believer tastes the
surface only”. Thus,
the “genuine disciple” of the Christ understands that, in the same
way he must go beyond the body of the written narrative to uncover the essence
of truth, so must he go beyond his own physical and carnal nature.
Clement then says of the Gnostic, or spiritual Christian that, “as a
consequence of this intelligent sympathy with the Divine Will, the Gnostic
becomes in perfect unity in himself, and as far as possible like God”.
If we truly have faith in Jesus and the early church, then we must
believe that Clement is speaking from his own personal experiences -- which
means that the true Christian definition of faith must be understood with the
promise that if we follow in The Way, that we will experience these same
Mysteries of God within ourselves.
In our modern day understanding of the word, the term
Gnostic is used to denote a group of heretics in the early church -- and in view
of this fact, we should question why Clement would refer to the most Spiritual
of Christians as Gnostics? In
the true sense of the word, one cannot be a Christian -- or Anointed -- without
being a Gnostic. The name
Gnostic denotes one who has become spiritual, and is able to receive the gnosis
-- or knowledge of the Mysteries spoken of by Paul -- directly from God. In order to receive the knowledge of the Kingdom, the
disciple must become Anointed, and his mind must be Illumined by the Light.
The term gnosis, or Gnostic, denotes that condition where one becomes the
Anointed -- which in Greek, means the Christ -- and is then able to be taught
directly from the Son of God.
Clement himself ties this great spiritual truth to the
scriptures when he quotes various passages in the Bible and writes: “It
therefore follows that it is the opinion of the wise among the Jews which the
apostle inveighs against it. Wherefore he adds, 'But we preach, as it is
written, what eye hath not seen, and ear hath not heard, and hath not entered
into the heart of man, what God hath prepared for them that love Him. For God
hath revealed it to us by the Spirit. For the Spirit searcheth all things, even
the deep things of God.' For he recognizes the spiritual man and the Gnostic as
the disciple of the Holy Spirit dispensed by God, which is the mind of Christ”.
Clement then goes on to quote the Apostle directly, and
explain: “‘But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit,
for they are foolishness to him.' Now the apostle, in contradistinction to
Gnostic perfection, calls the common faith the foundation, and sometimes milk,
writing on this wise: 'Brethren, I could not speak to you as to spiritual, but
as to carnal, to babes in Christ. I have fed you with milk, not with meat: for
ye were not able. Neither yet are ye now able. For ye are yet carnal: for
whereas there is among you envy and strife, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?'
Which things are the choice of those men who are sinners. But those who abstain
from these things give their thoughts to divine things, and partake of Gnostic
food. 'According to the grace,' it is said, 'given to me as a wise master
builder, I have laid the foundation. And another buildeth on it gold and silver,
precious stones.' Such is the Gnostic superstructure on the foundation of faith
in Christ Jesus. But 'the stubble, and the wood, and the hay,' are the additions
of heresies. 'But the fire shall try every man's work, of what sort it is.' In
allusion to the Gnostic edifice also in the Epistle to the Romans, he says, 'For
I desire to see you, that I may impart unto you a spiritual gift, that ye may be
established.' It was impossible that gifts of this sort could be written without
It is important to recognize that Clement does not say
that grace is given to the people who remain of the simple faith, because grace
cannot be given to those who continue to live a sinful life. Grace is the gift that is given to those who embrace
the Word, and change their life, so as to cease to live a life of sin.
Unless one is willing to change, and walk in The Way, then they neither
believe, nor do they have faith in the Lord.
Being unfaithful, they will be rejected!
Clement then goes on to demonstrate that there is only
one Church -- and it is the same Christ that is the foundation of the carnal
Christians who possess only the simple faith, as well as the mature Gnostic
Christians, who have received knowledge directly from God: “But it is not
doubting in reference to God, but believing, that is the foundation of
knowledge. But Christ is both the foundation and the superstructure, by whom are
both the beginning and the ends. And the extreme points, the beginning and the
end -- I mean faith and love -- are not taught. But knowledge, conveyed from
communication through the grace of God as a deposit, is entrusted to those who
show themselves worthy of it; and from it the worth of love beams forth from
light to light. For it is said, 'To him that hath shall be given:' to faith,
knowledge; and to knowledge, love; and to love, the inheritance”.
In his wisdom Clement conveys the importance of the
acquisition of knowledge when he writes: “Knowledge is therefore quick in
purifying, and fit for that acceptable transformation to the better. Whence also
with ease it removes [the soul] to what is akin to the soul, divine and holy,
and by its own light conveys man through the mystic stages of advancement; till
it restores the pure in heart to the crowning place of rest; teaching to gaze on
God, face to face, with knowledge and comprehension. For in this consists the
perfection of the Gnostic soul, in its being with the Lord, where it is in
immediate subjection to Him, after rising above all purification and service”.
True spiritual knowledge, conveyed from the Source of
Light within our soul, has a profound purifying effect upon every aspect of our
being. What is generally not
understood by the carnal believer who is unable to even relate to man's
spiritual reality, is we do not gain knowledge by instruction -- as is taught in
the manner of the pseudo-teachers in this world -- but rather, we gain spiritual
knowledge by a process that enables us to use a greater part of our own minds
and being which is brought about by the Anointing of the Lord.
Regardless of how many times this fundamental concept of
the essence of New Covenant teachings is presented to them, carnal believers
have never been able to understand this great spiritual truth.
When someone attempts to explain to them the spiritual reality of these
simple truths, they say: If there is a higher Christian knowledge, then tell us,
or teach me! What they fail to understand is that if Jesus and his
Apostles could not do what they request, then how could anyone else do what
Jesus could not, and attempt to convey a higher understanding of man's spiritual
reality? Thus, the Spiritual
Christian cannot do as they request -- not so much because of some commandment
to keep the mysteries of God a secret -- but rather, because natural man is
unable to comprehend his own spiritual reality using only his physical-mental
attributes of mind.
True faith in Jesus means that you believe that you do
not need a teacher in this world -- only a guide who can assist you in finding
the Teacher. When you embrace
the gospel, you already possess the potential to know all things through the
process of walking in The Way. As
your spiritual awareness expands, you will begin to understand that your mind
and being is imbued with life as a result of the vital organic energy that
originates with God, our true Source of Being -- and it is this life-force
received from God upon which your mind and body moves, thinks, and has its being
(Acts 17:28). As you become aware
of this higher reality, you will begin to comprehend that your body and mind is
like an antenna -- i.e., if we do not perceive and comprehend the Mysteries of
God, it is because our antenna cannot receive that spectrum of the frequency
that is being transmitted.
In the same way that a radio that can only be tuned to
the standard broadcast frequencies is limited to receiving only a fraction of
what is actually being transmitted, our physical body in which we dwell only
bestows upon natural man the ability to receive a very limited and narrow
band-width of the spectrum of life-force that powers every aspect of Creation.
In the same way that if we desire to receive short-wave and other
extra-broadcast frequencies on our radio, it is necessary to modify the tuner,
the same is true of the mind of man who desires to gaze beyond the limitations
of this physical realm.
No one is concealing anything from us. Comprehending the Divine Word is not a matter of belief
or philosophy -- but rather, using the proper antenna, and making ourselves able
to receive and display the heavenly frequencies in our daily lives.
If we only have an A.M. Broadcast radio, the resolution to the problem is
not to listen to someone else tell us their perception of what is being
transmitted on the higher frequencies -- especially when they cannot listen and
hear themselves. The
teachings of the New Covenant is the guide book for those who desire to know the
Truth, and are willing to modify their receiver in order to enable it to
function on the higher frequencies of Creation. What this means is that we will have to make change in
our lives in order to accomplish the goal.
Only when we begin to understand that our failure to perceive and
understand is due to the organic limitation of our physical mind and body in
which we are presently dwelling, are we then able to comprehend why the
Spiritual Christian cannot teach a man the Mysteries that are beyond the scope
of the believers comprehension. To
understand, carnal man must expand his consciousness to utilize the other
aspects of his being that are capable of receiving the heavenly frequencies of
In the same way that we cannot use an automobile to fly,
and ultimately travel in outer space, we cannot use the parts of our mind that
correspond to the physical, to explore man's spiritual reality.
In understanding this analogy, let us also remember that a vehicle
intended to travel in outer space would make a very bad choice in vehicles to
travel our system of roads and highways.
If a believer is to truly become a Christian -- i.e., one whose mind is
opened and illumed by the Anointing of the Light -- then they must begin to
embrace a multidimensional perception and understanding of Creation and Life.
This concept should not be too difficult for modern
believers to comprehend, whereas it was a great stumbling block for carnal
believers in the past. There
is no question regarding the validity of the findings of modern science that we
only utilize a fraction of our mental resources.
No informed person today could doubt this fact.
Yet, what our modern scientist fails to understand is that holy men and
women were never dependent upon science in their quest to comprehend the meaning
of Life, and the essence of spiritual religion bestows upon man the Secrets of
Creation in the form of practical knowledge known only by the Gnostic Israel.
Man has the innate power to comprehend the wonders of
Creation -- and man was not given these great mental resources by his Creator
without also being given the ability to use them.
All spiritual knowledge and gifts are the direct result of man's capacity
to gain use of these other areas of mind -- and this can only be accomplished by
man bringing himself into harmony with the Laws of man's Creator and Source of
If we can at this point grasp the difference between the
entry level teachings that the Apostle Paul referred to as the milk of the
gospel, and the Gospel of God that was embraced by spiritually mature
Christians, we must then understand not only the differences between Gentile and
Messianic Jewish Christianity, but also the reasons why it appeared on the
surface that Paul preached a different doctrine than what was taught by the
disciples of Jesus. We need
to know this because both traditions have been placed in our Bibles -- and it is
difficult to harmonize the two, without understanding the reasons why on the
surface they appeared different. In
this respect, we must not fall into the error of men such as Martin Luther who
embraced Paul and rejected the gospels because he could not perceive the
uniformity between the two.
In the same way that Paul spoke of the Gentile converts
as a wild olive that was in the process of being “grafted into a cultivated
olive tree” (Rom 11:24 NIV), a great many of the misconceptions and
conflicts that arose over the first three centuries between the Messianic Jewish
believers known as the Ebionites and Nazarenes, was the result of the fact that
the Gentiles were not of the same heritage.
Because the Gentiles lacked the Hebrew biblical
foundation that was prevalent in the scriptures, Paul correctly understood that
it would be futile if he was to attempt to convert them to the religion of the
Jews. The immediate problem
that confronted Paul was that neither Jewish mysticism, nor Jewish culture was
applicable in the life of the Gentile convert.
Thus, to be successful, Paul was forced to remove traditional Jewish
culture, and present the essence of the Gospel in a more universal understanding
-- and it was for this reason that the Hand of God used Paul, a Pharisee
convert, instead of an Essene-Ebionite as the Apostle to the Gentiles. The misconception that prevails among today's believers
that Paul was the only one who understood the true doctrine of Christ is not
only false, be detrimental to the spiritual development of modern-day Christians
-- especially in view of the fact that our Bible contains Jewish-Christian
Gospels, rather than the Gentile-Christian Gospels that were authored for the
In the life of the disciple, time is very important.
Because every aspect of man's existence in this world is itself
established firmly upon the Universal Laws of God, Paul rightly taught the
Gentiles not to embrace an alien (Jewish) culture -- but rather, understand the
deeper meaning of their own. The pathway to God is not walked with rituals and
words, but more truly with the desires of the heart and the faith that one has
in the Lord. Paul’s manner
of preaching the Gospel to the Gentiles was therefore founded upon an elevated
understanding of the threefold nature of man -- i.e., in view of the fact that
the pre-existent soul of man is not Jewish, why should the Gentiles be made to
first embrace Jewish customs in order to walk in The Way.
The answer is that they should not.
Once the disciple in search of truth begins to realize that every one of
us is equally the offspring of the One God and Supreme Power of Creation, and
each one of us is literally swimming in God's ocean of Universal Law, what Paul
wrote must be seen in a new light as it is realized that God's Truth is generic
to all cultures and people.
That the Hebrews possessed a culture that enabled them to
more easily transition from the physical to the soul and spiritual realities of
man, was the primary reason Paul referred to Israel as a “cultivated
olive”, and the people of the Nations as a “wild olive”.
What Paul set out to do, then, was to assist the Gentiles in their walk
in The Way by taking the knowledge of the Israelite, and making it applicable to
the Greeks and Romans.
Paul took Universal Truths and conveyed this knowledge to
the Gentiles who were worthy to embrace the Word of God. In the same way that life as we know it cannot exist
without the air we breathe, neither can we sever our intimate connection with
the Law's of God. In his
writings, Paul attempted to convey this great truth, but the full reality of
what Paul wrote was beyond the comprehension of the carnal minds of the Gentile
believers who claimed to be his followers, as well as the carnal minds of the
(spiritually immature) Jews who condemned him.
One of the major faults in carnal man's reasoning lies in
the idea that mankind is separate and even independent of his Creator.
No greater profound truth was ever spoken than where it is written that “…we
live, and move, and have our being” (Acts 17:28 KJV) within the very
body-mind of God “in whose hand is the soul of every living thing, and the
breath of all mankind” (Job 12:10 KJV).
Because each of us has a soul -- which soul is not only from God, but
remains as a spark of the Great Light in the body-mind of the One God --
nourished and cared for by the very currents of life of the Divine Body in which
we dwell -- the path to Life that Jesus cleared for us out of this world was not
external to our being -- but rather, the path to Life that we must travel was
cleared within our own body-mind and being.
This truth is difficult for natural man to even envision, because this
world appears to him as an external reality -- rather than a projected reality
that is a reflection of his inner state of being.
What he fails to understand is that there are countless other realities
that are within his ability of observe and interact with in a similar manner
that he does in the present life he is living in this world.
One of these realms leads to what Jesus called the Kingdom of God -- and
it was here that Jesus cleared the path for all those who believed and would
follow in his footsteps.
If man “lives and moves and has his being”
within God, and the soul -- the spark of life -- within man remains part of God,
then our initial spiritual objective is for each of us to become the person we
are at the depth of our soul. Jesus,
then, representing the highest expression of Creation, is the pattern which each
of us must adhere to in order to return home to our Heavenly Father.
Thus, in understanding this great universal truth, Paul
attempted to convey to carnal minds that they should not seek God outside of
themselves, nor permit themselves to be burdened by embracing alien rituals and
customs of a foreign people -- but rather, seek the essence of the Gospel of
Christ, and purify the desires of the heart with regard to the true and accurate
knowledge of the spirit. No
greater truth was ever written -- and in like manner, no greater truth has ever
been misunderstood by the carnal minds of men.
Regardless of where the footsteps of mankind walks in
this world, the intimate connection between man and God remains. People are not converted with words or with rhetoric
they are taught to recite -- but rather, with an intimate connection with the
Light of Life that dwells universally in the hearts of all men.
It is because all mankind is of one fundamental body-mind at our essence
of ultimate being, when we are able to manifest the One Light in our own lives,
we actually connect the people in whose presence we come into contact with, with
the same One Light that exists within their own mind and being.
It is from this perspective -- that Jesus had the capacity to manifest
God in the world -- that he was said to be himself God.
Moreover, from this higher perspective, Jesus was God.
Only because Paul was of an elevated mindset -- a mindset
that enabled him to grasp the higher universal presence of Christ in the life of
all of Creation -- was he able to write the words: “So from now on we
regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in
this way, we do so no longer” (2 Cor 5:16 NIV).
Again, no finer commentary on these words of Paul exist that surpasses
those of biblical scholar Rudolf Bultmann when he concluded that the “…Christian
faith is, and should be, comparatively uninterested in the historical Jesus and
centered instead on the transcendent Christ” (Encyclopedia Britannica,
1998 electronic edition). The
problem is that it is almost congenital that carnal man fears the very concept
of what the word transcendent conveys.
Why? Because it places him in an inferior position to the higher powers
of Creation, and it is beyond his ability control and understand. He therefore continues to cling to carnal perceptions
of realities that he is incapable of comprehending.
Even today we fail to understand this most important
aspect of Paul's teachings. One
of the obstacles that confront us is seen in the fact that we do not perceive
the essence of New Covent thought -- which is the pre-existence of the soul of
man, and the revelation of the Inner Light and Kingdom -- universally -- within
the mind of mankind. In fact,
it is this great flaw that prompts many modern translations of the Bible to
render Luke 17:21 “in your midst”, rather than “within you”. Because of their adherence to manmade doctrines, they
simply cannot come to terms with an inner Kingdom that can be accessed in a
similar fashion as that when we move about and dwell in this present world.
One only has to look at a number of Bible commentaries on Luke 17:21 to
find the explanation that Jesus could not have meant that the Kingdom of God was
inside the Pharisees -- yet, the original text states just that!
What Paul preached to the Gentile converts was that it
was not the (historical) Jesus who walked the shores of Galilee that can save
you, but rather the Christ who shares an intimate connection with you through
God -- the Father of us all -- within your very own heart and mind.
When you read your scriptures, then, do not read them to learn about the
past -- but rather, read them to learn about yourself in relation to the Kingdom
-- for it is the genuine Christian who is cognizant of the reality that we are
truly dwelling in biblical times.
This great eminent truth that Paul was conveying to his
Gentile converts was that even if you lived on an island in a far-away land, and
never heard either the formal Law of God given to mankind by Moses, or the name
Christ, you could still walk the path of Life that Jesus cleared for our return
to our Father. “For it is not
those who hear the law who are righteous in God's sight”, writes Paul, “but
it is those who obey the law who will be declared righteous” (Rom 2:13 NIV).
Paul then goes on to explain this great universal truth when he writes: “Indeed,
when Gentiles, who do not have the law, do by nature things required by the law,
they are a law for themselves, even though they do not have the law, since they
show that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts, their
consciences also bearing witness, and their thoughts now accusing, now even
defending them” (Rom 2:13-15 NIV).
What Paul attempts to convey to the Gentile readers is
the fact that whenever man begins to live in accordance with the Royal Law of
God -- which Law is indigenous to man’s own spiritual nature -- that such a
man or group of likeminded people will inherit the promise of the Word.
What Paul very clearly stated was this: When the people of the Nations
begin to do -- “by nature things required by the law” -- the
universal door to the Lord that each of us has within our own mind and being
begins to open. Thus, it is
important that we recognize the universal truth expressed by the Apostle when he
wrote that the disciples of Christ are not recognized by the words and rhetoric
that they speak -- the church they attend -- or even whether they know the name
of the historical Jesus -- but rather, the intensity and the volume of the Light
that they manifest in their daily lives.
It is for this reason that Paul wrote to the believers at Corinith that
they are no longer to know the historical Christ in accordance with the flesh,
but more truthfully the spiritual Christ that dwells within the hearts and minds
of all men (2 Cor 5:16).
Natural man has great difficulty coming to terms with the
essence of the Gospel message, because he attempts to interpret the idea that
the essence of the Gospel message is beyond his comprehension.
Moreover, since only the most dedicated and sincere of the flock of
believers are even prepared to begin to embrace the higher concepts of the
Mysteries of God, they tend to reject the idea expressed by the Apostle in the
words: “We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God”
(Acts 14:22 NKJ). Thus,
while the majority of believers desire to inherit salvation and the promise of
the scriptures, they are not prepared to make the journey into The Way their
single focus in life.
When it is realized that it was Paul, the Apostle of
faith, who reportedly spoke the words that the Kingdom of God can only be
entered through many tribulations, the flock of believes become confused.
On the one hand it appears that Paul states that works means absolutely
nothing, and man is saved by faith. Thus,
because we do not understand the reality of life from the enlightened perception
of Paul, we fail to understand the essence of his doctrine of faith and the
absolute need for the works of the spirit, as demonstrated in his words: “That
the man of God may be perfect, throughly furnished unto all good works” (2
Tim 3:17 KJV). That in
Paul’s vision faith and works are intimately related, can be further seen in
the words: “To the pure all things are pure, but to those who are defiled
and unbelieving nothing is pure; but even their mind and conscience are defiled.
They profess to know God, but in works they deny Him, being abominable,
disobedient, and disqualified for every good work” (Titus 1:15-16 NKJ).
Because we read the Epistles of Paul through our very
limited cultural and quasi-Darwinist vision of life, we are not able to
understand the foundation of faith which he wrote about, and neither are we able
to comprehend the absolute need for the proper works that is the very means
which brings us to the gate of the Kingdom of Life.
Paul was a man who had been permitted to see into spiritual realms that
lie beyond the three-dimensional barrier of this natural world.
He was a man who understood that the scriptures were written in a
spiritual language -- i.e., a language of forms and symbols that must be
perceived as pertaining to inner realities -- and with this knowledge he warned
the unenlightened Gentile converts that the scriptures of the Jews were an “allegory”
(Gal 4:24). Rightfully Paul warns the Gentile converts that the
rituals of the Jews in which they attempt to practice their allegorical
scriptures outwardly, is impossible to bring the salvation they desire.
Man is saved by faith -- i.e., faith in the teachings and covenant of The
Way -- that by doing the works of the spirit, the disciple will arrive at the
feet of the Master, and be taught by the Source of all Knowledge and Truth.
Very quickly after Paul’s departure from the various
congregations to whom he preached the testimony of Christ, many of the believers
who did not possess the Apostle’s enlightened vision of reality, immediately
looked to other men as their leaders.
This is a normal occurrence that can be observed throughout every aspect
of life. Thus, these leaders who
were still very much of a carnal mindset -- even in those cases where they were
sincere -- interpreted faith from a totally different perspective than did Paul
and the few who had successfully made the transition between carnal and
spiritual. In fact, this flaw
in the human religious experience is the very theme of the beginning of Paul’s
First Epistle to the Corinthians where he admonishes the congregation not to be
followers of men -- but only of Christ.
Men and women whose perception, thinking and
understanding are bound to this three dimensional world have great difficulty in
perceiving the higher reality that Paul speaks of as the Mysteries of God that
can only be revealed to those who have matured to a state of spiritual
perfection. It is easy for
the sincerely religious person to observe that biblical and spiritual truths
mean very little to the unbelievers whose thinking is totally dominated by the
sensual and elemental things of this world.
He therefore reasons that Paul must be speaking about the unbelievers
when he writes that they are blind and cannot comprehend the true meaning of the
gospel, and not himself. After
all, the sincere believer reasons, I can see and understand what these other men
cannot. What he fails to
comprehend is the fact that Paul was speaking about baptized and confirmed
believers who had received all the knowledge and spiritual gifts of the
testimony of Christ, and that only the very few who overcome the trials and
tribulations of the process of metamorphose as the physical is transformed and
transmuted into spiritual, are the ones who the Apostle said are able to
comprehend the True and Genuine Gospel of Christ.
How, then, could these few spiritual Christians who had
successfully made the transition, accomplish what the Apostle himself could not
-- i.e., convey to the masses of people that they were spiritually blind -- and
though their spiritual blindness is not a personal fault -- i.e., it is natural
for all men and women to fail to understand the fundamental truths of the
scriptures because their minds are embryonic, and can only perceive a very
incomplete perception of man’s reality, and that man’s limited perception
and understanding is a natural obstacle that each of us must overcome.
In the same way that it is not a defect that an elementary school child
does not comprehend calculus, trigonometry, and the higher concepts of
philosophy and theology, neither is it a flaw that carnal beings who are born
from human parents, are not spiritually mature enough to perceive the Mysteries
of God and Creation. When Jesus warned that one must turn about and become
as a child in order to enter the Kingdom of Heaven, it is important for us to
recognize that children are teachable because they know that they do not know --
whereas, it is a truly difficult thing for a mature man or woman who has
dedicated their life to God and the acquisition of truth, to recognize that they
do not yet know as they ought to know -- as seen in the words of the Apostle: “And
if anyone thinks that he knows anything, he knows nothing yet as he ought to
know” (1 Cor 8:2 NKJ).
In order to open our minds to a higher understanding and
enlightened perception of Life, we must first realize that we cannot know the
things pertaining to man’s higher soul and spiritual realities until after we
have undergone the process of transformation of walking in The Way.
Paramount is the realization that each and every one of us are the direct
offspring and expression of the One Universal Source, and genuine religion has
little to do with belief -- but rather, is the means by which our True Reality
is realized through our own personal transcendental experiences.
The scriptures tell us that there are two fundamental
powers in this world -- the light and the darkness.
What this means is that, regardless of where we live, the cultural
customs we adopt, our language or our beliefs pertaining to the things known and
unknown, or the images of things seen or not seen, everything we think, do, and
say, is just ripples and vibrational movements within the structural pattern of
these two fundamental powers of Creation. The result of this fact is twofold: Our freedom that
many liberal thinking people believe they possess is nothing more than an
illusion -- in that, like fish, we cannot get out of the water.
On the other side of the coin, though, is the fact that because every
aspect of our being maintains an all encompassing intimate connection with the
Divine Powers of Creation, regardless of what we do, any time that we desire to
embrace the ultimate truth of reality, we only have to open our eyes to it -- as
it is written: “God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach
out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. 'For in him
we live and move and have our being’” (Acts 17:27-28 NIV).
This often ignored truth that Paul is stating has a
profound meaning when properly understood: Because each of us is literally
swimming in the sea of God's Universal Law, when the man or woman who dwells on
a far away island begins to instinctively choose the Light over the darkness,
the streams of Light that enter their mind begins to widen as more Light is
given from the Universal Source. Moreover,
Paul is correct when he writes that it is not the Christ “after the
flesh” (2 Cor 5:16 KJV) that will save him -- but rather, of the spirit,
as it is written: “Whoever has my commands and obeys them, he is the one
who loves me. He who loves me will be loved by my Father, and I too will love
him and show myself to him” (John 14:21 NIV).
The command of the Lord is not a spoken word of the
flesh, but more truly the Universal Love of the Spirit.
Jesus promises that whoever manifests this love in their life, Jesus will
love, and “show myself to him”.
In view of the fact that Jesus does not say that he will show himself to
the world -- but rather, only those who love him and keep God's Commandments --
we must understand the manner in which Christ will appear to the faithful
The Lord has witnessed to the fact that “…you are
in me, and I am in you” (John 14:20 NIV).
Thus, the Lord has promised: “Behold, I stand at the door and knock.
If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and dine with
him, and he with Me” (Rev 3:20 NKJ).
Jesus is making reference to the spiritual door that is the gateway to
the Kingdom which exists in another dimension within the minds and being of each
and every one of us.
The problem is that to rhetorically repeat this fact
means absolutely nothing! What
is important for us to understand is the manner in which this inner door is
opened. What good is it to
know that the door or gateway exists, if we do not possess the knowledge to open
it! From a biblical
perspective, the beginning of the process is when we embrace the natural Laws of
God in our quest to immerse our lives in the Truth and Light.
In the words of Paul: “Indeed, when Gentiles… do by nature things
required by the law… even though they do not have the law, since they show
that the requirements of the law are written on their hearts…” (Rom
2:13-15 NIV). With the
elevation of their being to a higher level, and the desire in their hearts for
the higher good, they become the “good ground” in the parable of the
sower and the seed (Mat 13:3-23; Mk 4:2-20; Lk 8:5-15), and the True Teacher is
then able to enter into their lives and show them The Way Home.
In the text of the Revelation (Rev 3:20), the question
should be asked what the reference to food is in the statement that “I will
come in to him and dine with him, and he with Me”.
In view of the fact that this door is accessed through the mind and
spirit of man, the food that Jesus speaks of is Knowledge that nourishes and
strengthens the mind -- which Knowledge gives birth to the Anointing of the Holy
Spirit that purifies and elevates the disciple to a higher spiritual level.
In view of the fact that Jesus does not promote cannibalism, it is to
these two things -- Knowledge and Spirit -- that Jesus makes reference to when
he states: “I tell you the truth, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of
Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. Whoever eats my flesh and
drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. For
my flesh is real food and my blood is real drink. Whoever eats my flesh and
drinks my blood remains in me, and I in him. Just as the living Father sent me
and I live because of the Father, so the one who feeds on me will live because
of me” (John 6:53-57 NIV).
We cannot “open the door” (Rev 3:20) that the
scriptures speak about, without the Knowledge and the Spirit that only the True
Teacher can give us when we eat his body and drink his blood. Therefore, when we cling to manmade doctrines and
perceptions of the Word, we place an obstacle between us and the Truth.
The result is that we inhibit the process of spiritual development, and
the Lord is unable to teach and mold us.
When we fail to purify the physical vessel (body) that we inhabit --
i.e., “Everyone who has this hope in him purifies himself, just as he is
pure” (1 Jn 3:3 NIV) -- we cannot drink the blood of the Lord that is
absolutely necessary in order to enter into Life.
To those who make themselves genuine followers of the
Christ, and permit the Light to enter their lives in word, thought, and deed,
with the opening of the mind to the greater reality of the Kingdom, the disciple
not only quickly learns the truth to the words that we are the “offspring
of God” (Acts 17:28-29), but that we are in fact the prodigal sons (Luke
15:11-32) who have previously emerged from the Kingdom of our Father.
In light of this revelation, the disciple begins to understand that,
within his own mind and being there is an innate knowledge of the road he must
travel in his return home. Suddenly,
everything in his life begins to take on new meaning -- a meaning that he had
previously been blind to.
When Paul preached to the Gentiles that the Kingdom was
at Hand, he did not place the burden upon them of having them learn the Old
Testament scriptures and embrace Jewish culture.
Paul correctly taught that God is universal to all mankind -- and it is
the Light within the heart and mind of man that the genuine Christian must move
into harmony with. That Jesus
was the “forerunner” (Heb 6:20) in whose footsteps we must follow --
because he became “the first-born among many brethren” (Rom 8:29),
was true -- but from a spiritual perspective, it would have been a great burden
placed upon the Gentiles if Paul required them to first become Jews, in order to
walk in The Way.
This great misconception with regard to what Paul taught,
and why, is again the result of our failure to understand the reality of our
pre-existent soul, as well as the inner Kingdom. In order to overcome the division that both Jesus and
Paul warned was the thing most detrimental to man's salvation, each of us must
endeavor to discover the true being that we are. In previous chapters I made the statement that the
majority of people neither reincarnate or go to glory as the majority of
Christians today believe -- but this does not mean that we do not survive death
-- whereas, the statement is made from the perspective that we are not genuine
and real. One of the
interpretations of the great revelation that Jesus taught with regard to
children -- i.e., “And he said: I tell you the truth, unless you change and
become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven”
(Matt 18:3 NIV) -- and this word “change” is again founded upon one
of those Greek words that we are unable to properly translate into the English
language because of the manner in which we believe.
The idea conveyed is to change from the perspective of
reversing the direction we have been traveling.
The essence of the problem is born from the fact that when the soul
manifests itself in life, it only develops to about the age of three to five
years, before the child becomes culturized -- imbued with ideas of it’s
parents -- the political correctness of the society in which it dwells, and the
child begins to take on the falseness of its civilization that each person
becomes a part of in that life.
If the pre-existent soul of man is neither male nor
female -- is not race specific -- and is not a part of any given culture -- then
we must conclude that the more the child embraces and adopts these parochial and
provincial elements of life, the more he becomes alienated from his soul and
true self. If I pose the
question: What am I? If I
answer the question from a soul perspective, I would have to conclude that I am
the sum total of all the things I have been throughout the uncountable lives my
soul has lived -- i.e., my soul has lived as a Jew, Essene, Nazarene, Ebionite,
Gentile Christian, Muslim, Deist, Atheist, Druid, and an uncountable number of
other religious and philosophical persuasions.
I have been both a man and woman.
I have been every race. I
have lived on continents and been a part of cultures that no longer exist.
If my soul is the sum of all my experiences, and perceives all of life
from an elevated vision of reality, then it would be very difficult to find my
true self by embracing any of the very limited cultures or perceptions of life
that exist in our present-day world.
In fact, it would be impossible.
The result is that the schools and institutions of
learning which we send our children to in order to educate them, actually dumb
them down in relation to the true knowledge of the child's own pre-existent
soul. The religions and
philosophies we embrace are so limited in scope, that they alienate us from God. The more we perceive ourselves as a man, woman, black,
white, yellow, red or brown, the more we polarize ourselves with religious and
philosophical doctrines, the more we move out of harmony with our true nature.
It is for this reason that Jesus said: Unless we turn around, and become
as we were when we were a child -- prior to being indoctrinated into the
thinking of our false culture -- and open our minds to the instruction from our
One Genuine Teacher, the more it is impossible for us to discover who we truly
are, and enter the Kingdom of God.
As on who was chosen to fulfill a prescribed mission in
the world, the Apostle Paul had been bestowed with a much more illuminated
vision of life and Creation, and he knew that it would be a useless endeavor to
convert the Gentiles to Jews in order for them to perceive the essence of the
scriptures. Paul wisely knew
that the Old Testament scriptures were written in accordance with the culture
and thinking of the Jews, and its universal truths were declared in order to
assist Jews in first finding themselves, and then finding God.
This statement is of the greatest importance because it is impossible to
find God without first finding the true person who we are from the perspective
of our pre-existent soul.
Once we begin to understand this great truth -- i.e.,
that we cannot even begin to find God, until we first find ourselves -- then our
whole perception of religion must change.
In the first place, we must begin to open our minds to a more universal
reality than that associated with the physical body in which we presently dwell
-- the culture that we have become a part of -- and we must begin to see life
from a vision that is beyond the limitations of this world. Admittedly, this is not easy!
Then, in order to harness the forces of Creation, we must begin to
understand that all of life is controlled by the natural laws that form it.
What we fail to realize is this great fact: If the
universe was not regulated and governed by these natural laws that continue to
move and effect every element of Creation, then chaos would result.
If the planet earth did not predictably move around the sun, and instead
just freely traveled throughout the solar system, then it could not support life
as we know it today. Thus, this same order that we observe in the universe,
extends to every aspect of Creation -- with the result being that we must begin
to understand that the paradoxical nature of Creation causes opposing
perspectives -- and what is perceived as good from one perception, and bad from
another, is neither! In fact,
they exist to balance their opposite polarity, and to give birth to the higher
truth that is always born from their merger into one complete manifestation.
One of the more perplexing problems this creates for the mind of carnal
man who attempts to see everything in black and white, is the reality that what
was good for the conversion of the carnal Jews, was not necessarily good for the
carnal Gentiles, and vice versa. If this world did not have its limits, it could not exist
-- and yet it is these very limits that both bring about our own growth, as well
as hinder our search for truth. How,
the, can the limits be deemed either good or bad?
If this world did not have its limits, it could not exist
-- and yet it is these very limits that both bring about our own growth, as well
as hinder our search for truth. How,
the, can the limits be deemed either good or bad?
There were early Christian (Gnostic) sects which viewed
all of physical Creation as being the work of an evil god -- and their
perception was both right and wrong.
Where did this belief originate?
Scholars have realized that it is indigenous to man himself, and has
always existed among the religions of the world.
More importantly, though, is that this indigenous belief was in fact
amplified by the Apostle Paul to new heights among his Greek Gnostic followers.
His many references to the evil nature of the god of this world, imbued
his Gentile followers with a mindset that perceived everything in this realm as
the product of evil.
Within the holy books of the Hebrews, all of reality was
represented. But because of
the great culture gap that existed between the Jews and Gentiles, Paul could not
use the Old Testament. Thus,
Paul had no other choice than to reject the Old Testament, and present a
non-biblical reality that was more appropriate to the people he served in order
that the Gentile mind would more easily understand the essence of spiritual
thought that he was attempting to convey.
Yet, what Paul was teaching to the Gentiles was never meant for the Jews
-- and from a Jewish perspective, was not only damaging, but was detrimental to
the spiritual development of the Hebrew people.
This, again, is the demonstration of one of those paradoxes that is
difficult for the carnal mind to envision.
If we are to begin to understand the great gulf that
existed, then we must begin to realize that from the Jewish perspective, Paul
truly was the creator of heresy -- and as such, was correctly characterized by
the historical personage of Simon Magus.
Thus, let us review the conclusion of the Encyclopedia Britannica which
states pertaining to the writings attributed to Clement, the disciple of Peter: “…the
common source of these documents may be as early as the 1st century, and must
have consisted in a polemic against Paul, emanating from the Jewish side of
Christianity. Paul being thus
identified with Simon, it was argued that Simon's visit to Rome had no other
basis than Paul's presence there, and, further, that the tradition of Peter's
residence in Rome rests on the assumed necessity of his resisting the arch-enemy
of Judaism there as elsewhere”.
Returning once again to the writings of Clement, we can
now see that Peter's explanation should make perfect sense in the confrontation
that is to take place with Paul, who is portrayed as Simon Magus: “Therefore
Simon, who is going to discuss in public with us tomorrow, is bold against the
monarchy of God, wishing to produce many statements from these Scriptures, to
the effect that there are many gods, and a certain one who is not He who made
this world, but who is superior to Him; and, at the same time, he is going to
offer many scriptural proofs. But we also can easily show many passages from
them that He who made the world alone is God, and that there is none other
In the first place we must understand that even the more
enlightened Jews did not believe that an accurate portrayal of God could be
perceived in the literal reading of the Old Testament.
Moses Maimonedes, one of the most respected Jewish theologians,
historian, and Talmudist, writes about the nature of scripture: “Every time
that you find in our books a tale the reality of which seems impossible, a story
which is repugnant to both reason and common sense, then be sure that the tale
contains a profound allegory veiling a deeply mysterious truth; and the greater
the absurdity of the letter, the deeper the wisdom of the spirit”.
What Moses Maimonedes is stating, then, is that there
exist many parts of the scriptures that are literally and historically not true.
Isn't Paul stating this exact same truth when he writes to the Galatians
who are attempting to embrace Jewish ways, and states: “Tell me, ye that
desire to be under the law, do ye not hear the law?”
And then Paul goes on to explain to those who want to attempt to read the
written word literally, in an historical context as Christians do today: “For
it is written, that Abraham had two sons, the one by a bondmaid, the other by a
freewoman. But he who was of the
bondwoman was born after the flesh; but he of the freewoman was by promise.
Which things are an allegory” (Gal 4:21-24 KJV).
That the carnal Jew could not see beyond the symbols of
the allegory, and their eyes and hearts were hardened so they could not
comprehend the true meaning of the scriptures, is readily understood where Paul
states that “their minds were blinded” by God, “for until this
day remaineth the same vail untaken away in the reading of the old testament…
even unto this day, when Moses is read, the vail is upon their heart” (2
Cor 3:14-15 KJV).
When they therefore worship the god of the literal word
-- with rituals, animal sacrifices, incense, in a temple made with the hands of
men -- then it can truly be said that the Jews worshiped a false god.
This truth the Apostle Paul confirmed to the Gentiles, and the Gentiles
then incorporated this understanding into their own sacred writings.
The problem is that from this false perception of the Hebrew scriptures
was born the Christian Gnostic doctrine that the god of the Jews was a demiurge
-- a lower god -- and not the same god that Jesus declared.
Again the problem was that the Christian Gnostics were neither right nor
wrong, and from this limited perception was born an even greater error which
gave birth to the Gentile doctrine that Christians were exempt from living in
accordance with the Law of Moses and the Commandments of God as revealed in the
It is a fact that the Gnostic Christians whose number
flourished over the first four centuries were cursed as heretics by the fourth
century Roman Church. Why?
What the church of the simple faith who called themselves orthodox could
not comprehend, is that the Spiritual Christians could write scriptures that had
nothing to do with the Jewish heritage of the Gospel, and these scriptures were
still in many instances of a higher order than the traditional Old Testament
writings. The Spiritual
Christians who were labeled Gnostics -- because they claimed to possess a higher
knowledge of the Word handed down directly from Paul -- had no reason to base
their scriptures on the Hebrew traditions.
Why should they when Jewish tradition was not a part of their culture.
They therefore encoded their truths in stories of angels and powers that
controlled the elemental and heavenly realms of this and all other worlds.
In their condemnation of these scriptures, it was the people of the
simple faith who were in error when they ignored a very important teaching of
Paul -- i.e., “So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of
view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer” (2
Cor 5:16 NIV) -- and judged the validity of the writings in the same manner as
the Sadducees and Pharisees by their literal, historical content. To their own loss they therefore viewed many of the
most spiritual writings of the Gnostic (Spiritual) Christians as heresy.
The (Gnostic) Christian Valentinus claimed to have
learned Paul's secret traditions directly from his own teacher Theudas, who was
himself a disciple of Paul. In
adapting their scriptures to the concept that Paul taught: (1) that it was the
transcendental Christ of the Spirit that could save them, and not the belief in
an historical man; and (2) the Jews were blind to the true meaning of both the
scriptures and the higher revelation that Jesus taught -- they often began their
gospels where the Spiritual Christ appeared to his disciples in order to
instruct them in the knowledge of the Mysteries of God.
By doing this, they were able to convey universal truths to the Gentile
Christians, without dealing with the Jewish heritage that was an integral part
of the Hebrew Gospels.
In view of the fact that the disciples of Paul totally
ignored the historical factor in both their scriptures and their foundational
doctrines of belief, the Christians of the simple faith condemned them as
heretics -- but what they were in fact condemning was their own ignorance.
If it is true what the Apostle taught in Romans that man innately knows
God -- and he can learn all there is to know about God by observing what has
been created -- and if we examine the words of Paul when he taught that “For
when Gentiles who do not have the Law do instinctively the things of the Law,
these, not having the Law, are a law to themselves” (Rom 2:14 NAS) -- we
must ask the question as to how could the Gentiles who did not have the Law,
keep the precepts of the Law? Paul
answers this question when he wrote: “For the truth about God is known to
them instinctively; God has put this knowledge in their hearts” (Rom 1:19
What is clear is that Paul preached a gospel where the
believer was taught the means to transcend this physical realm in their quest to
open their minds to the Spiritual Christ.
The problem is that the people who were carnal and of the simple faith,
simply were unable to relate to the Spiritual Christ, and continued to cling to
what Paul called the testimony of the historical Jesus that the Apostle called
the milk of the gospel.
In what is arguably one of the best works on Christian
Gnosticism by G.R.S. Mead entitled Fragments of a Faith Forgotten, this
explanation is put forth: “…what the Gnostics projected onto the
screen… [in the form of a ] picture of the universe was in reality a picture
of their own minds. Its mythology is a symbolic portrayal, almost a deliberate
one, of the forces which operate in the structuring and evolution of the human
personality”. It was
for this reason that Carl Jung called the Gnostic Christians the worlds first
and foremost psychologists who understood the very fabric of human
If it is true what the Apostle wrote:
“For the truth
about God is known to them instinctively; God has put this knowledge in their
hearts” (Rom 1:19 TLB) -- then the anti-Jewish religion that Paul preached
must be seen as a means to tap into this deposit of “instinctual…
knowledge [that God deposited] in their hearts”.
Moreover, his doctrine of faith can only be understood as seen in the
ability of the disciple to tap this inner resource and learn the Mysteries of
God directly from their Source. From
the perspective of the disciples of Paul who came to be called Gnostic
Christians, to compose scriptures that were based upon Jewish history, would
simply be inappropriate from a Gentile perspective.
To those who possessed the eyes to see and the mind to
understand, what the Gnostic or Spiritual Gentile Christians wrote about was the
laws that control the workings of our mind.
Why? Because it was
the workings of these laws that inhibited man’s entrance into the Kingdom!
From their perspective, then, the workings of these laws and the means to
overcome them were the most important aspect in the life of the disciple in
search of Truth.
Unlike the people of the simple faith, the Spiritual
Christians saw the problem very clearly: We cannot use the greater part of our
consciousness because of physical, mental and spiritual blockages that restrict
us. What Jesus taught his
faithful disciples who came to him “in the house”, was the means to
overcome these carnal restrictions by bringing our mind and being into harmony
with God's Laws. When we
begin to understand ourselves as the Prodigal Sons of our Father, and we
perceive that life is a great deal more than what we see here in this physical
realm, it is only then that we begin to spiritually mature and develop.
When we are yet “babes in Christ”, it must be
understood that our faith in the power of our Teacher and Master Jesus is of the
highest importance. We cannot
learn the Sacred Truths of God and the spiritual reality of Creation from the
teachers in this world, because their theories are based only upon a
quasi-Darwinism -- which theories embrace the idea that man originates from the
elements of this world. While
it is true that man’s physical body is the product of the elements of this
world, the Bible continually warns us that man possess a soul and a spirit that
is not of this world. Thus,
because these quasi-Darwinist theories are three-dimensional, they amount to
little more than incomplete carnal perceptions of higher truths not fully
understood. In fact, once our
spiritual eyes begin to open, we can easily perceive the fallacy of their mode
of instruction. True
knowledge cannot come to us through theory and philosophy -- but rather, through
the acquisition of a greater portion of our own mental resources that cannot be
accessed through the carnal powers of perception.
What G.R.S. Mead wrote with regard to the Gnostic
scriptures was that “…what the Gnostics projected onto the screen… of
the universe was in reality a picture of their own minds” (Fragments of a
Faith Forgotten). The Greek
Christians who had no foundation in Judaism or the Old Testament, simply did as
Paul instructed throughout his epistles, and wrote about the Spirit of the Word
in the manner of their own way of thinking.
As G.R.S. Mead concludes on page 176: “The claim of
the Gnostics was that a man might so perfect himself that he became a conscious
worker with the Logos; all those who did so, became 'Christs,' and as such were
Saviors, but not in the sense of being the Logos Himself”.
Where the people of the simple faith looked upon the word
“Christ”, as Jesus' last name, the Spiritual Christians understood
that what this term meant was the Anointing of the Logos -- i.e., the Mind of
God. In the revelation of his
spiritual Gospel, it was this receiving of the Anointing that Paul speaks about
throughout his epistles. When
the disciple receives the Anointing -- this Anointing of the mind of the
disciple in the Greek, denotes one who is Anointed, or the Christ.
It is for this reason that I previously wrote that from a
definitive perspective, the people of the simple faith are not yet Christians
because they have not yet received the Anointing of the Logos.
Moreover, the Anointing is not philosophical or rhetorical -- as becoming
a believer -- but is an actual illumination of higher consciousness that permits
the disciple to use more of their mind that the natural man.
A person cannot be a genuine Christian -- i.e., an
Anointed one -- without possessing the knowledge of their pre-existent soul.
A person cannot possess the knowledge of the soul, without knowing the
previous lives that the soul has lived.
In Pistis Sophia, one of the sacred books used by the Spiritual (Gnostic)
Christians, which name in English means the Book of Faith-Wisdom, Jesus
states: “But if he shall have sinned once, twice, or thrice, they shall
reject that soul, sending it back again into the world according to the form of
the sins that it may have committed; the form whereof I will declare unto you
hereafter. But verily, verily
I say unto you, that even the righteous man that hath committed no sin at all
cannot be brought into the Kingdom of Light, forasmuch the seal of the mysteries
of that kingdom is not found upon him. Once
for all, I say unto you, a soul cannot be brought into the kingdom, if it be
without the mysteries of the Kingdom of the Light”.
In this quotation we not only see that the Spiritual
Christians understood that Jesus taught the reincarnation of the soul -- “sending
[the soul] back again into the world according to the form of the sins that it
may have committed” -- but what we have here is the genuine foundation of
Paul's doctrine that man can do nothing on his own, and can only be saved
through faith in Christ. The
problem arises when we do not understand the difference between Jesus -- the
historical man -- and Christ -- the Anointing of the Logos, or Mind of God.
It is this reason also that we fail to understand the declaration in the
beginning of the Epistle to the Romans where Paul writes that when the Gentiles
do the things of the Law, without the Law, they become a Law unto themselves,
and can be saved. It is further this reason that we do not understand
when Paul says not to seek the Jesus after the flesh, but rather the Christ of
In the article on Christian Mysticism, the Encyclopedia
Britannica writes regarding Valentinus, who was considered orthodox in the
beginning of the second century, and states: “He believed that human beings
are alienated from God because of their spiritual ignorance; Christ brings them
into the gnosis (esoteric revelatory knowledge) that is union with God.
Valentinus held that all human beings come from God and that all will in the end
return to God. Other Gnostic groups held that there were three types of people
-- 'spiritual,' 'psychic,' and 'material' -- and that only the first two can be
saved. The Pistis Sophia… is preoccupied with the question of who finally will
be saved. Those who are saved must renounce the world completely and follow the
pure ethic of love and compassion. They will then be identified with Jesus and
become rays of the divine Light”.
Once properly understood, what Valentinus was in fact
stating was no different than what was also clearly stated by the early church
authorities, Paul, Jesus, and the present-day Canon of Scriptures itself: That
there are three types of Christians -- i.e., the spiritual which are in union
with God, and are saved; the psychic, or disciple in search of the Truth, which
are still walking in The Way; and the material or physical, who are the people
of the simple faith.
The mysteries made reference to in Pistis Sohpia that,
according to the Jesus presented in this gospel states a person must the possess
the sacred Knowledge of the Kingdom in order to be saved, is the knowledge of
the laws that both preserve the natural barriers of this realm, as well as
restrict carnal man's access into the spiritual realms and the Kingdom.
When the disciple knows the workings of these natural laws of Creation,
they are then able to safely transcend the barriers between this and the other
worlds, and come into the presence of the Spiritual Christ.
Once we understand this important element in Paul's
Epistles, we then begin to comprehend why Paul considered it one of the greatest
of sins to promote a doctrine of belief -- as seen in the words: “Reject a
factious man after a first and second warning, knowing that such a man is
perverted and is sinning, being self-condemned” (Titus 3:10-11 NAS).
The essence of what Paul taught was that believers were to rid themselves
of all worldly thoughts and desires in order to embrace the indwelling Logos --
thereby becoming an Anointed One, or genuine Christian.
From Paul's perspective, beliefs and doctrines pertaining to mysteries
that are beyond the comprehension of natural man, were thorns and entanglements
that the god of this world used to imprison the believer.
In this respect, what Paul taught was asceticism -- i.e.,
a system of Christian Buddhism that brought about the enlightenment of the
believer through the Anointing and opening of the mind. He taught the Gentile converts to reject the Law of
Moses and the biblical traditions of the Jews -- reject all worldly attachments
-- reject all doctrines of belief -- reject all desires of the flesh.
When the Galatians observed their native Greek culture, Paul admonished
them and wrote: “Formerly, when you did not know God, you were slaves to
those who by nature are not gods… Do you wish to be enslaved by them all over
again? You are observing special days and months and seasons and years! I fear
for you, that somehow I have wasted my efforts on you” (Gal 4:8-11 NIV).
What Paul taught was to observe nothing in this world in the endeavor to
embrace only the Spiritual Christ who was not of this world.
While it is true that Jesus came to save the sinners --
he did not come to give them a license to continue to wallow in the mire of sin
-- but to repent from the mindset and thinking of this world. In the words of Paul: “But if, while we seek to be
justified by Christ, we ourselves also are found sinners, is therefore Christ
the minister of sin? God forbid. For if I build again the things which I
destroyed, I make myself a transgressor” (Gal 2:17-18 KJV). From the perspective of Paul, the genuine Christian did
not sin, because sin is founded upon an attachment to this world.
Jesus came to save sinners by leading them out of lives of slavery to the
Prince of Darkness who rules this world.
From a scriptural perspective, those who are slaves to
the god of this world are heathens, because they are bound and possessed by the
elemental powers of this world. With
respect to the people who are thus classified heathens, Clement of Alexandria
provides us a clear picture of the path of transformation when he writes: “Faith
is then, so to speak, a comprehensive knowledge of the essentials; and knowledge
is the strong and sure demonstration of what is received by faith, built upon
faith by the Lord's teaching, conveying [the soul] on to infallibility, science,
and comprehension. And, in my view, the first saving change is that from
heathenism to faith, as I said before; and the second, that from faith to
knowledge. And the latter terminating in love, thereafter gives the loving to
the loved, that which knows to that which is known. And, perchance, such an one
has already attained the condition of 'being equal to the angels.' Accordingly,
after the highest excellence in the flesh, changing always duly to the better,
he urges his flight to the ancestral hall, through the holy septenniad [of
heavenly abodes] to the Lord's own mansion; to be a light, steady, and
continuing eternally, entirely and in every part immutable”.
This is the essence of genuine Christian thought that was
taught by the Apostle Paul and imparted to the Gentile converts!
What Clement of Alexandria, Origen, St. Gregory and the Gnostic-Spiritual
Christians all professed was the absolute need to follow in the footsteps of the
Lord, and accomplish in one’s own life the same things that he did.
Does the Apostle say anything different when he advises Christians to: “Therefore
be imitators of God, as beloved children” (Eph 5:1 NAS).
If mankind has the ability to not only imitate God, but to move into
perfect unity with God, then we must come to the realization that what we
believe today has very little in common with the Christianity of the first four
centuries. When Clement
writes that “outward observances cease to have any value for one whose
being is brought into abiding harmony with that which is eternal”, he is
making reference to a person who has totally opened the inner door to the
Kingdom, and has moved in abiding harmony with the Light.
The solid food of the Mysteries of the kingdom are then
written only for the Gnostic Christian -- or, he who has cleansed himself from
the defilements of the world, and has opened the spiritual door deep within the
essence of their mind and being. What
Clement states with regard to the Word, remains true to this very day.
The foundation -- or milk -- is Christ and him crucified -- upon which
the Gnostic Christian builds a “superstructure on the foundation of faith
in Christ Jesus” which is made reference to with the addition of “gold
and silver, precious stones”.
The Christians who remain natural and carnal, are those
who build upon the foundation “stubble, and the wood, and the hay”.
When Constantine institutionalized the church, and added the doctrines of
the Pagans, these are “the additions of heresies” which Clement
writes about. When Christians
such as Calvin and Luther -- men with good intentions who meant well -- defined
the limits of belief of post-Reformation Christianity, and then narrowed the
message of the scriptures to conform to those beliefs, these limitations were
again the addition of heresies.
Perhaps a very clear picture that represents Christianity
over the first three centuries can be seen under the heading of Alexandria
in the Encyclopedia of Religion and Ethics - under Alexandrian Theology, where
it states of Origen's teachings: “Origen believes that the Logos enlightens
all men according to their capacities. Current
Christianity is the best that the average man can assimilate.
It includes mythical stories which exist both in Old Testament and New
Testament; it offers rewards and punishment as inducements to virtue, and
communicates truths in veiled forms and images.
But it is not a matter of indifference what symbols are presented to the
'common man'; it is the religion of Christ alone which must be accepted by all,
though under different aspects. The
Gnostic learns that the objects of religious knowledge have only a supramundane
history: The 'eternal' or 'spiritual' Gospel places clearly before men's minds
all things concerning the Son of God, both the mysteries shown by His words, and
the things of which His acts were the riddles” (In John 1:9).