BEFORE BIRTH OF JESUS
Today we call ourselves by the Greek word Christian -- but have we ever questioned where the term originated? And what does it mean? The New Schaff-Herzog Encyclopedia of Religious Knowledge confirms that the name "originated outside of Christian and Jewish circles". The Mercer Dictionary of the Bible states that: "By the late first and early second centuries the name ‘Christian,’ which early believers avoided using of themselves, was beginning to be accepted".
If modern believers were truly sincere in their desire for a more intimate relationship with the Lord, they would immediately want to know and question why "early believers avoided" using the name Christian? When it is realized that even the very name Christian was in use prior to the time of Jesus, we truly begin to grasp the Pagan connection. The name Christian was a term employed to describe one who was an initiate, and understood the inner meaning of the Greek and Roman mystery religions. Thus, the early followers of Jesus refused to be called Christian, and call Jesus the Christ, because the word was used in reference to enlightened Pagans and their gods.
In order to understand the origin of the name Christian, one must begin to perceive the manner in which the sacred writings of all people are written. The fact that the scriptures have more than one meaning is well documented in the Bible itself. As has been fully revealed in the preceding chapters, the inner, spiritual meaning of the Bible, can only be observed by those disciples who the Lord opens the mind -- which opening enables the disciple to perceive the veiled meaning: "Then opened he their understanding, that they might understand the scriptures" (Luke 24:45 KJV). Without this opening of the mind, the person reading the Bible will not understand the true message -- which is seen in Jesus’ statement to the Pharisees: "You search the Scriptures, because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is these that bear witness of Me" (John 5:39 NAS). The Pharisees did not see this inner meaning because their minds were not opened. Regarding Christ and the scriptures, Jesus taught his disciples: "And beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures" (Luke 24:27 NAS).
In the same way that the Anointing of the mind (Christ) was the main theme in the Old Testament scriptures, and those whose mind had not been enlightened by the Light could not perceive the inner spiritual meaning, so also was the scriptures of the people we today call the Pagans. Under the heading of Approach to the Study of Myth and Mythology in the Encyclopedia Britannica it reads: "Thus, the gods Apollo, Helios, and Hephaestus represent fire, and the god Poseidon and the river Scamander represent water. Similarly, the goddess Athena is interpreted as wisdom/sense, the god Ares as the absence of that quality, the goddess Aphrodite as desire, and the god Hermes as reason. An allegorical interpretation of a myth could be said to posit a one-to-one correspondence between mythical ‘clothing’ and the ideas being so clothed. This approach tends to limit the meaning of a myth, whereas that meaning may in reality be multiple, operating on several levels".
In the first century writings known as the Clementine Homilies which is a discourse between the Apostle Peter and his disciple Clement, it is written of the religious writings of the Greeks: "The wisest of the ancients, men who had by hard labor learned all truth, kept the path of knowledge hid from those who were unworthy and had no taste for lessons in divine things. For it is not really true that from Ouranos and his mother Ge were born twelve children, as the myth counts them: six sons, Okeanos, Koios, Krios, Hyperion, Japetos, Kronos; and six daughters, Thea, Themis, Mnemosyne, Demeter, Tethys, and Rhea. Nor that Kronos, with the knife of adamant, mutilated his father Ouranos, as you say, and threw the part into the sea; nor that Aphrodite sprang from the drops of blood which flowed from it; nor that Kronos associated with Rhea, and devoured his first-begotten son Pluto, because a certain saying of Prometheus led him to fear that a child born from him would wax stronger than himself, and spoil him of his kingdom... But, my son, as I said, such stories have a peculiar and philosophical meaning, which can be allegorically set forth in such a way that you yourself would listen with wonder."
What is being revealed here is that what is written literally in the sacred writings of the people we call Pagans, is not the true and genuine message that is being conveyed to the enlightened members of the Pagan religions -- who by reason of their enlightenment, were called Christians. All these many stories and myths pertaining to gods and goddesses were in reality pertaining to the manifestation of the laws and divine powers throughout all of Creation. Thus, if we are truly perceptive, we must begin to admit that we haven’t the slightest idea what the true Pagan initiate believed. Moreover, what we should really take to heart and be concerned about from our own religious perspective is the fact that these initiates were referred to as Christians prior to the time of Jesus -- and their gods where spoken of as the Christos, or Christ.
That the true meaning of the sacred writings of the Greeks was concealed from the multitude of people is further established in the writings of the early Church Father Clement of Alexandria who writes: "It was not only the Pythagoreans and Plato then, that concealed many things; but the Epicureans too say that they have things that may not be uttered, and do not allow all to peruse those writings. The Stoics also say that by the first Zeno things were written which they do not readily allow disciples to read, without their first giving proof whether or not they are genuine philosophers. And the disciples of Aristotle say that some of their treatises are esoteric, and others common and exoteric. Further, those who instituted the mysteries, being philosophers, buried their doctrines in myths, so as not to be obvious to all. Did they then, by veiling human opinions, prevent the ignorant from handling them; and was it not more beneficial for the holy and blessed contemplation of realities to be concealed? But it was not only the tenets of the Barbarian philosophy, or the Pythagorean myths. But even those myths in Plato (in the Republic, that of Hero the Armenian; and in the Gorgias, that of Aeacus and Rhadamanthus; and in the Phoedo, that of Tartarus; and in the Protagoras, that of Prometheus and Epimetheus; and besides these, that of the war between the Atlantini and the Athenians in the Atlanticum) are to be expounded allegorically, not absolutely in all their expressions, but in those which ex-press the general sense. And these we shall find indicated by symbols under the veil of allegory. Also the association of Pythagoras, and the twofold intercourse with the associates which designates the majority, hearers), and the others that have a genuine attachment to philosophy, disciples, yet signified that something was spoken to the multitude, and something concealed from them. Perchance, too, the twofold species of the Peripatetic teaching - that called probable, and that called knowable - came very near the distinction between opinion on the one hand, and glory and truth on the other. To win the flowers of fair renown from men, Be not induced to speak aught more than right."
In explanation of why the inner meaning of the mysteries are concealed from the masses, Clement writes: "The Ionic muses accordingly expressly say, ‘That the majority of people, wise in their own estimation, follow minstrels and make use of laws, knowing that many are bad, few good; but that the best pursue glory: for the best make choice of the everlasting glory of men above all. But the multitude cram themselves like brutes, measuring happiness by the belly and the pudenda, and the basest things in us.’ And the great Parmenides of Elea is introduced describing thus the teaching of the two ways: ‘The one is the dauntless heart of convincing truth; The other is in the opinions of men, in whom is no true faith’".
Because we fail to understand the reason and essence of life itself, it is near impossible for the modern Christian to understand the nature of the ancient religions and their relationship to the teachings of the New Covenant. Moreover, because of our inability to comprehend the very elementary significance of religion itself, neither can we perceive the reason why the adoption of Pagan religious symbols were so readily embraced by the more mature Christians over the first four centuries. The problem is that we have slammed the door to higher knowledge by virtue of our own arrogance, which manifests itself in the Christian dogma that we are right and everyone else is ignorant. What we fail to realize is that all the religions of the world possess a degree of truth -- and it was the people of the New Covenant who were holy enough to embrace Truth in its Ultimate Reality.
What is expressed in these words with regard to the inner meaning of what we call the Pagan religious symbols, is a sure demonstration of Universal Truth. In all religions the world over there is "the teaching of the two ways". To the disciple with the "dauntless heart" who, with his whole life, seeks out the truth, the inner spiritual meaning is revealed. All the rest, who are the majority -- whose lives are driven by sensual desires and brute carnal appetites -- the wise men of all time have provided religious symbols that entice the masses, and yet conceal the true spiritual meaning from the eyes of the profane.
The reality of mankind is portrayed in the words of Clement when he wrote in the above quotation: "But the multitude cram themselves like brutes, measuring happiness by the belly and the pudenda, and the basest things in us". This is true -- true when these words were written, and true of the people in our own time. The multitude of people do not care about Truth! They have no desire to embrace the Pure Word! Being carnal, they relate everything to the fulfillment of their sensual desires and appetites. Knowing this fact, the holy men the world over have embedded the teachings of the Two Way into whatever form the multitude of people would accept. This very important knowledge is beyond our comprehension today, because we ignore the words of the Apostle Paul when we worship the historical Jesus, while giving very little attention to the Marriage with the indwelling Christ.
Clement explains that the ancient sources of philosophy were spiritual and true, and the great confusion among the Greeks is a result of false philosophers who are of a later time when he writes: "But the most ancient of the philosophers were not carried away to disputing and doubting, much less are we, who are attached to the really true philosophy, on whom the Scripture enjoins examination and investigation. For it is the more recent of the Hellenic philosophers who, by empty and futile love of fame, are led into useless babbling in refuting and wrangling. But, on the contrary, the Barbarian philosophy, expelling all contention, said, ‘Seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you; ask, and it shall be given you.’ Accordingly, by investigation, the point proposed for inquiry and answer knocks at the door of truth, according to what appears. And on an opening being made through the obstacle in the process of investigation, there results scientific contemplation. To those who thus knock, according to my view, the subject under investigation is opened. And to those who thus ask questions, in the Scriptures, there is given from God (that at which they aim) the gift of the God-given knowledge, by way of comprehension, through the true illumination of logical investigation. For it is impossible to find, without having sought; or to have sought, without having examined; or to have examined, without having unfolded and opened up the question by interrogation, to produce distinctness; or again, to have gone through the whole investigation, without thereafter receiving as the prize the knowledge of the point in question. But it belongs to him who has sought, to find; and to him to seek, who thinks previously that he does not know. Hence drawn by desire to the discovery of what is good, he seeks thoughtfully, without love of strife or glory, asking, answering, and besides considering the statements made. For it is incumbent, in applying ourselves not only to the divine Scriptures, but also to common notions, to institute investigations, the discovery ceasing at some useful end. For another place and crowd await turbulent people, and forensic sophistries. But it is suitable for him, who is at once a lover and disciple of the truth, to be pacific even in investigations, advancing by scientific demonstration, without love of self, but with love of truth, to comprehensive knowledge".
Modern Christians today pray for a greater understanding of the Word, and yet the term "scientific investigations" is totally alien to our perception of the Word. Perhaps the key phrase is presented to us in the words: "Knowledge... belongs to him who has sought, to find; and to him to seek, who thinks previously that he does not know". Is this any different than the words of the Apostle when he wrote: "if anyone thinks that he knows anything, he knows nothing yet as he ought to know" (1 Cor 8:2 NKJ). So long as we think we know the meaning of the Pagan religious writings -- the Bible -- and even the meaning of purpose of life itself, the words of the Apostle will continue to plague us when he said of us that we know: "nothing yet as we ought to know".
The blindness is our own! If we had so formed our life that we were able to fulfill the Word and become the bride of Christ, and were truly the people of an Anointed and Illumined mind, we would see that concealed within the body of the narrative, the philosophers spoke of Christ in the form of the Logos -- in the manner of the Gospel of John -- and this is seen when Clement writes: "Thus in the Philebus, Plato, who had been the disciple of the barbarian philosophy, mystically called those Atheists who destroy and pollute, as far as in them lies, the Deity dwelling in them - that is, the Logos - by association with their vices".
Thus, the message of Clement is threefold: Clement writes that the true source and inner revelation of the writings of Plato, is the same Logos attested to in the Gospel of John. Moreover, we observe the continual statement that the Logos represents the Deity that is indwelling within all of mankind. Clement then describes our own present-day condition when he refers to multitude of people as "Atheists who destroy and pollute, as far as in them lies, the Deity dwelling in them - that is, the Logos -- by association with their vices". This is true of natural man throughout all time -- i.e., people who have failed to make themselves an acceptable vessel for them to enter into the Divine Marriage with the indwelling Logos.
What we are presented with are two major themes that need our careful attention. First it is demonstrated that Plato knew, and wrote about the Logos. From our modern-day doctrinal perspective that can only mean that Plato wrote about Jesus prior to the time of Jesus’ incarnation. Moreover, this is the same Logos that is written about in the Gospel of John where it reads: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God" (John 1:1 KJV). Contrary, then, to our present-day doctrines, we must conclude that Christ was written about by the philosophers prior to the time of Jesus. Further, unless be begin to comprehend the difference between the name Jesus and the term Christ, the only conclusion that can be arrived at is that Jesus wrote through Plato in the same manner that he wrote through the Hebrew prophets.
The Encyclopedia Britannica (1998 edition) writes of the word Logos: "In Greek philosophy and theology, the divine reason implicit in the cosmos, ordering it and giving it form and meaning. Though the concept defined by the term logos is found in Greek, Indian, Egyptian, and Persian philosophical and theological systems... The idea of the logos in Greek thought harks back at least to the 6th-century-BC philosopher Heracleitus, who discerned in the cosmic process a logos analogous to the reasoning power in man. Later, the Stoics, philosophers who followed the teachings of the thinker Zeno of Citium (4th-3rd century BC), defined the logos as an active rational and spiritual principle that permeated all reality... Philo of Alexandria, a 1st-century-AD Jewish philosopher, taught that the logos was the intermediary between God and the cosmos, being both the agent of creation and the agent through which the human mind can apprehend and comprehend God. According to Philo and the Middle Platonists, philosophers who interpreted in religious terms the teachings of the 4th-century-BC Greek master philosopher Plato, the logos was both immanent in the world and at the same time the transcendent divine mind... The identification of Jesus with the logos, which is implied in various places in the New Testament but stated specifically in the Fourth Gospel, was further developed in the early church but more on the basis of Greek philosophical ideas... the early Christian Fathers stated that Christ as the preexistent logos (1) reveals the Father to mankind and is the subject of the Old Testament manifestations of God; (2) is the divine reason in which the whole human race shares, so that the 6th-century-BC philosopher and others who lived with reason were Christians before Christ; and (3) is the divine will and word by which the worlds were framed".
The concept of the Logos is so deeply imbedded in Greek thought, that the Eleventh, or Scholars Edition of the Britannica which was published prior to the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls writes that: "Among the influences that shaped the Fourth Gospel that of the Alexandrian philosophy must be assigned a distinct... importance". Because of this very distinct Hellenic influence, many Bible experts believed that the Gospel of John had been written by a Greek convert. This is especially seen in the statement by the Britannica where it writes: "What John thus does is to take the Logos idea of Philo and use it for a practical purpose -- to make more intelligible to himself and his readers the divine nature of Jesus Christ. That this endeavor to work into the historical tradition of the life and teaching of Jesus -- a hypothesis which had a distinctly foreign origin -- led him into serious difficulties...".
The idea that John borrowed the concept of the Logos from the Greeks, or even that the Gospel was written by a Greek convert, was widely accepted by biblical scholars, and this opinion was only proved faulty with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls. From the perspective of better understanding what we believe, this whole concept that is being presented is important for modern Christians to comprehend. What the scholars are stating is that John borrowed Greek Hellenistic ideas about the Christ of Plato and the Greek philosophers, and then incorporated these foreign ideas into his gospel. This includes the idea of the pre-existent Word that is the creator of the universe -- which when understood in this light, is as much a concealed doctrine of the Pagans, as is the biblical teaching that one must be born again. Because these ideas are absent from the other three gospels -- was more appropriately used in the Greek mystery religions than in Judaism -- and were then incorporated in the gospel, biblical scholars and theologians have long thought that John’s Gospel was founded upon the same Hellenistic theology responsible for Platonic thought and the writings of the poets.
What we are presented here is one of the core reasons why most biblical scholars did not believe the religion of the simple faith, or in the traditional manner of the very churches they served. Evangelical and Born again Christians often use the first chapter of John to prove that Jesus was the pre-existent God who came into the world. What the Evangelical Christians failed to understand was the fact that the more informed biblical scholar understood the connection between the Logos of John and the Logos of Plato and the Pagan world. Moreover, the scholar also understood the universal doctrine of the Logos throughout all the religions of the world, as seen in the above words: "the concept defined by the term logos is found in Greek, Indian, Egyptian, and Persian philosophical and theological systems..."
Unlike the people of the simple faith, the biblical scholars knew that many Pagan concepts were added into the text of the New Testament in order to better bring the text into harmony with traditional Greek and Roman religious ideas. With good reason it has even been speculated that the verse most used by modern Evangelical Christians to prove that Jesus was God, was added to the beginning of John at a later date by the Roman Church in the endeavor to Paganize the gospel. What this means is that Christians today could in every way be calling upon the god of Plato, and the Christ of the Pagan philosophers.
The great change that literally pulled the proverbial rug out from under the Christian world was brought about with the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls. Everything that biblical scholars and theologians thought they knew, had to re-evaluated when the scrolls gave them the ability to transcend time itself -- and for the first time in almost two thousand years, they were able to perceive the true foundation of Christian thought. The ramifications were literally astounding -- i.e., what this meant was that all their theories, as well as everything that was ever written about the Gospel of John prior to that time, was in error. It did not matter that Luther, Calvin and the common believers quoted and used John, often to the exclusion of the other gospels. The problem was that the anti-Gnostic church which evolved out of the Roman Empire was incapable of understanding even the elementary aspects of the gospel, because they did not comprehend the tradition in which it was founded. The scholar understood this fact – whereas, even today the preacher of the simple faith does not.
With the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls biblical scholars and theologians realized for the first time that the true foundation of the teachings of Jesus was Jewish Essene Gnosticism. From a religious perspective, this was not good news. With this revelation was born a whole host of issues that our experts were simply not prepared to cope with. The problem was that the people we rely upon for answers -- i.e., the biblical scholar, the theologian, the clergy and priest, as well as all the books and reference material written on Christianity -- was suddenly rendered useless and ineffectual.
No doubt many will be immediately offended by this statement. They will reason: How can I say that all the books, commentaries, and reference material that the church uses daily is useless and ineffectual? The answer is simple once it is realized that the books which we rely upon to guide us, are in fact written from an opposite perspective -- and actually in conflict, with the essence of genuine biblical thought.
The problem all stems from the teaching of the two ways and the manner in which the sacred writings are written. I am literally amazed every time I pick up a book that deals with gnosticism, written by many of our experts and theologians, where they begin by stating: "Gnostics have a system of writing where they do not reveal their doctrines literally, but rather conceal their tenets within a language of symbols". No sooner do they write this great truth, when they ignore their own warning, and commence to explain to their readers the beliefs of the Gnostics based upon the written literal word. Every time they do this, there is no finer example of gross ignorance. If the Gnostics do not write their doctrines literally, and what they do write is an allegorical representation that is composed in a coded set of symbols that is unknown outside of their inner circle of initiates, then how can we begin by ascertaining what they believe based upon what is literally written?
Rational people would have to conclude that, unless you understand the code or tradition which the writings are written in, there is no way that you will be able to decipher the true message. In fact, what the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls confirms to us is this reality: Modern believers would stand a greater chance of understanding Gnostic writings by going to the CIA (Central Intelligence Agency), rather than the majority of religious authorities and sources to which they turn. But even in this the solution is not so simple -- i.e., the problem is made even more complex because even the CIA would fail because they do not comprehend man’s spiritual nature and reality.
This great truth is verified in the first century Clementine Recognitions, where it is written: "Hence, O beloved Clement, if you would know the things pertaining to God, you have to learn them from Him alone, because He alone knows the truth. For if any one else knows anything, he has received it from Him or from His disciples." Why? Why can’t we just read what it says? Fundamentally, we are unable to decipher the writings because we are of a natural organic state of mind -- and we naturally apply everything in our life in a quasi-Darwinist manner.
If we begin to open our minds to the greater reality -- i.e., that both the Old and New Testament Scriptures, as well as the writings of the Greek poets have a common Gnostic theme in Christ -- or more accurately, "Christ in you" (Col 1:27 KJV), we must totally embrace the words of the Apostle Peter to his disciple Clement: "if you would know the things pertaining to God, you have to learn them from Him alone".
This is the pure essence of Gnostic thought: That man can only learn about the things pertaining to God, from God alone. It is for this reason that those who search for God, and succeed in their endeavor to know God, cannot write -- and do not write the things of God for carnal man to read. Such a thing is impossible because the Apostle is correct in his assertion that the "…natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned" (1 Cor 2:14 KJV).
This inability of carnal man to comprehend the Mysteries of God is true with respect to what is reveled within the body of the text of the Greek philosophical mystery religions, as well as the very scriptures that modern Christians base their doctrines of belief upon. Moreover, the second part of the Apostle Peter’s message conveys another great truth in the words: "For if any one else knows anything, he has received it from Him or from His disciples". What Peter is stating is a truth that believers today do not understand -- i.e., either the person in search of God’s Truth has learned directly from God, or has been guided into The Way by one of His Genuine Disciples. Without direction, the natural mind of man will always interpret spiritual truths in a carnal sense -- a quasi-Darwinist perception -- and always fail to perceive the full impact of what is being revealed. If, then, we are serious in our search for the answers to life, we must ask the question: What is it that the Genuine Disciples can teach you? The answer is very simple: What you must learn from the disciple is the code and tradition that must first be understood, in order to begin to decipher the true inner meaning of the sacred writings.
In our quest for a greater understanding of the Word we must ask the question: Did Martin Luther and the Protestant Reformers in the Middle-Ages know this code and spiritual language? How could they? They were priests of the Roman Church who protested against the corruption that was rampant in their time. Their doctrine was reactionary -- i.e., reject the apostate church and cling only to the Bible. That these well-meaning men did not have the slightest clue as to the nature of the spiritual language which the scriptures were written in, is well proven in the many flaws in the many Protestant sects that emerged.
Like Luther and the Middle-age reformers, one of the problems that confronts the modern believer is the fact that, neither is this original code and tradition known by our religious authorities and clergy today. Why? Because they have neither received it from God, or His disciples of the Light. How can they? In the fourth century Christianity was recreated as an institutionalized, anti-Gnostic religion! In the same way that Jesus said you cannot have "two masters" (Mt 6:24), neither can you comprehend the Spiritual Kingdom, when your beliefs are founded upon the doctrines of men. It is for this reason that the author of the Imitation of Christ wrote to those who seek the Truth of God: "Blessed indeed are the ears that listen, not to the voice which sounds without, but to the truth which teaches within. Blessed are the eyes which are closed to exterior things and are fixed upon those which are interior. Blessed are they who penetrate inwardly, who try daily to prepare themselves more and more to understand mysteries. Blessed are they who long to give their time to God, and who cut themselves off from the hindrances of the world. Consider these things, my soul, and close the door of your senses, so that you can hear what the Lord your God speaks within you."
This message, written in a widely acclaimed and accepted Christian book, is perhaps one of the finest examples of Gnosticism known to the modern-day religious world. What the author is stating -- based upon his own experiences -- is that only when you shut off your mind to the error of the outer world, are you able to perceive the inner world where man must come to find truth. With regard to this inner world, spiritual men and women have long witnessed to the fact that the Bible uses symbols to convey the language of the soul to the reader. The problem is that our present-day experts, theologians and clergy, do not understand the code and tradition of the scriptures. How can they? This code cannot be taught in theology or seminary training. And herein lies the issue: We have disconnected ourselves from the One True Source of Knowledge, and no longer can learn from God, because we worship the god of Constantine and the christ of Plato. Neither can we, being anti-Gnostic, embrace the writings of His disciples -- the authors of our Bible -- because they wrote their sacred truths in a spiritual language that is alien to our carnal minds.
The reason that the modern church cannot comprehend the true inner meaning of the scriptures is closely related to the second important point in the statement of Clement regarding the assertion that Plato considered anyone an "Atheists who destroy and pollute... the Deity dwelling in them... the Logos - by association with their vices". This not only pertains to the common sinners who do not attempt to live God-centered lives, but also those who cling to the doctrines of men instead of seeking the Pure Word from the Lord. The reality that is being portrayed will be viewed as very unkind to the modern believer -- i.e., all those who either live a carnal lifestyle, or look to other men in their search for God, are Atheists from a Gospel and Spiritual perspective.
Lets put reality into its proper perspective: The Sadducees and Pharisees who Jesus condemned were Atheists masquerading as God’s people. The Pagans who worshiped the things of this world, instead of seeking out the true meaning of the writings of the poets, were Atheists. The Church of Constantine that killed the spirit of Christianity in the endeavor to institutionalize the Church and bring it under secular control, were Atheists. The very religious authorities of the past who formed our modern-day doctrines of belief, were in fact Atheists. In many respects, it is because we have embraced Christian Atheism, that we cling to the doctrines of men who think in the manner of Darwin. In the true definition of the word: Whoever is not a disciple of the Lord, and is not ardently following in his footsteps in total imitation of the Master, are Atheists -- regardless of the allegiance or philosophy they profess with their lips.
Ultimately, what this means is that many people today who think they are saved because they have called upon the name of the Lord, are in fact Atheists in the genuine definition of the word. The true believers and disciples are not the people of the simple faith -- but rather, the ones who so live their life that they have become the Spouse of Christ.
Like the Sadducees and Pharisees, many of our modern church authorities will reject this statement on the basis they believe that God would not permit them to fall into a doctrine of Christian Atheism. Is their philosophical position valid? The great truth which we are unable to come to terms with is this: God has permitted modern Christianity to deviate from His Standards and biblical requirements as both an outreach to those who are lost, and to assist the disciple seeking truth to ascertain that the church has gone in another way than that ordained by God. We claim to believe in the Bible, and profess to be the people of God, and yet we do not call upon the name of the Lord using his correct name -- we call him the Christ, a name used in reference to Pagan gods -- we call ourselves Christian, a name used to describe enlightened Pagans -- we worship on the day of the sun-god -- we celebrate the Pagan festival of the moon goddess, Easter -- we celebrate the Saturnalia, a festival to the god Saturn -- we believe in Plato’s doctrine of the Trinity -- we do not observe the Commandments and Laws of God as set forth in the scriptures -- we disregard the many references to the Mysteries of God -- we ignore the biblical mandate to reject the doctrines of men, and learn only from God. In defense of our adulterous lives, we claim that our unbiblical manner of life does not matter -- that we are saved by faith -- and yet, everything we now know about Christian foundings has demonstrated that we are very much in error.
When it is realized that the list which we view as being of no consequence is endless, we must entertain the frightening possibility that God permits us to embrace what is Pagan, in order to convey to the genuine disciple not to go in the way of the church. Moreover, when our modern-day religious authorities claim they talk to God -- and they not only embrace the ways of Pagan Rome, but call upon the Lord using the very names the Pagan’s used to call upon their gods -- we must pose the crucial question as to what god our religious authorities are communicating with?
Before you proclaim that what I am stating is pure blasphemy, consider the fact that this same exact statement was made against Jesus -- and Jesus warned that in the future this same statement would be made against his genuine disciples! Jesus condemned the Sadducees and Pharisees because they were Atheists -- impostors who did not guide the lost sheep into the Kingdom -- but instead worshiped in the ways of the flesh, rather then the Spirit.
If we begin to acknowledge that a common thread exists between the Christ and Logos as represented in the thinking of both the Hebrew and Greek sacred writings, then we must also recognize the immerging reality that is largely ignored in our modern world -- i.e., the truth is found through the moral manner in which one lives their lives -- and this is expressed by Clement of Alexandra where he writes of those disciples of the philosophers who were seeking the Logos: "Those, therefore, who are consecrated to God must never live mortally. ‘Nor,’ as Paul says, ‘is it meet to make the members of Christ the members of an harlot; nor must the temple of God be made the temple of base affections.’ Remember the four and twenty thousand that were rejected for fornication. But the experiences of those who have committed fornication, as I have already said, are types which correct our lusts. Moreover, the Paedagogue warns us most distinctly: ‘Go not after thy lusts, and abstain from thine appetites; for wine and women will remove the wise; and he that cleaves to harlots will become more daring. Corruption and the worm shall inherit him, and he shall be held up as public example to greater shame.’ And again - for he wearies not of doing good ‘He who averts his eyes from pleasure crowns his life.’"
These religious concepts which, from a doctrinal perspective, are too disturbing for the modern Christian, was none the less the mindset of the true disciples of the Greek Mystery Religions at the beginning of our Common Era. Perhaps even more distressing is the fact that the Gentile converts viewed the writings of the philosophers in the same manner, and sometimes with a higher spiritual authority than the writings of Moses and the prophets in the Bible. This is expressly seen when Clement writes: "Accordingly, before the advent of the Lord, philosophy was necessary to the Greeks for righteousness. And now it becomes conducive to piety; being a kind of preparatory training to those who attain to faith through demonstration. ‘For thy foot,’ it is said, ‘will not stumble, if thou refer what is good, whether belonging to the Greeks or to us, to Providence.’ For God is the cause of all good things; but of some primarily, as of the Old and the New Testament; and of others by consequence, as philosophy. Perchance, too, philosophy was given to the Greeks directly and primarily, till the Lord should call the Greeks. For this was a schoolmaster to bring ‘the Hellenic mind,’ as the law, the Hebrews, ‘to Christ.’ Philosophy, therefore, was a preparation, paving the way for him who is perfected in Christ".
In our search for the Pure Gospel today, it is important for us to recognize that the first and second century church, as represented in the writings of Clement of Alexandria, perceived the philosophy of the Greeks to be as a "schoolmaster". Perhaps even more shocking to the modern Christian is the belief held by the Gentile converts that there are many separate paths which can lead a person to Christ. To demonstrate this, Clement explains how the Greek Philosophy, which was synonymous with the Hebrew Law, was spoken of in the Old Testament: "‘Now,’ says Solomon, ‘defend wisdom, and it will exalt thee, and it will shield thee with a crown of pleasure.’ For when thou hast strengthened wisdom with a cope by philosophy, and with right expenditure, thou wilt preserve it unassailable by sophists. The way of truth is therefore one. But into it, as into a perennial river, streams flow from all sides. It has been therefore said by inspiration: ‘Hear, my son, and receive my words; that thine may be the many ways of life. For I teach thee the ways of wisdom; that the fountains fail thee not,’ which gush forth from the earth itself. Not only did He enumerate several ways of salvation for any one righteous man, but He added many other ways of many righteous, speaking thus: ‘The paths of the righteous shine like the light.’ The commandments and the modes of preparatory training are to be regarded as the ways and appliances of life... For philosophy is the study of wisdom, and wisdom is the knowledge of things divine and human; and their causes.’ Wisdom is therefore queen of philosophy, as philosophy is of preparatory culture... if cultivated for the honor and knowledge of God".
The Gentile converts who called themselves Christian, believed that the writings of the philosophers were of Divine inspiration, and the true source was God’s Wisdom: "The Greek preparatory culture, therefore, with philosophy itself, is shown to have come down from God to men, not with a definite direction but in the way in which showers fall down on the good land, and on the dunghill, and on the houses. And similarly both the grass and the wheat sprout; and the figs and any other reckless trees grow on sepulchers. And things that grow, appear as a type of truths. For they enjoy the same influence of the rain. But they have not the same grace as those which spring up in rich soil, inasmuch as they are withered or plucked up".
This statement is perhaps one of the most profound insights into the essence of the Gospel message that is generally ignored and not understood by the modern Christian today. Moreover, it is drawn directly from the parable of the sower and the seed -- i.e., the Word is given to all people the world over, and it is up to each individual to nurture the Word through one’s morality -- which is the very essence of the good ground that bears fruit one hundred fold.
Clement then demonstrates that from the perspective of the Gentile Converts, it was the same Christ that was revealed in the Bible, as is also revealed in the writings of the poets: "And here we are aided by the parable of the sower, which the Lord interpreted. For the husbandman of the soil which is among men is one; He who from the beginning, from the foundation of the world, sowed nutritious seeds; He who in each age rained down the Lord, the Word. But the times and places which received [such gifts], created the differences which exist. Further, the husbandman sows not only wheat (of which there are many varieties), but also other seeds - barley, and bean, and peas, and vetches, and vegetable and flower seeds. And to the same husbandry belongs both planting and the operations necessary in the nurseries, and gardens, and orchards, and the planning and rearing of all sorts of trees. In like manner, not only the care of sheep, but the care of herds, and breeding of horses, and dogs, and bee-craft, all arts, and to speak comprehensively, the care of flocks and the rearing of animals, differ from each other more or less, but are all useful for life. And philosophy - I do not mean the Stoic, or the Platonic, or the Epicurean, or the Aristotelian, but whatever has been well said by each of those sects, which teach righteousness along with a science pervaded by piety, - this eclectic whole I call philosophy. But such conclusions of human reasoning’s, as men have cut away and falsified, I would never call divine".
When we talk about Christian doctrine today, the looming reality that modern believers fail to realize, is that they are practicing the fifth major revision of Christianity -- with each revision constituting a new and almost separate religion. Because we are five times removed from the original message of Jesus, we are simply unable to even relate to the second century Christianity of the Gentile Converts. Unlike the post-Constantine Christians who worshiped the historical man Jesus in the manner of a Pagan god, the Christ of the first and second century Gentile converts was the transcendental universal Logos that dwells within the mind of all people as the result of being the offspring of God. Perhaps even more important is the fact that everything in the New Testament confirms that the Gentile converts were not wrong -- the problem is that there was a great deal more to the equation that they failed to comprehend.
In understanding both God and the Logos as universal forces working both within and outside of man throughout every aspect of his life, the Gentile converts grasped the universal message of Jesus’ words, and understood the far-reaching reality that there were an infinite number of paths that lead to Christ. This truth is seen in their doctrine that those who exercise faith, and do the will of God, will find the Christ, or universal path: "And now we must look also at this, that if ever those who know not how to do well, live well; for they have lighted on well-doing. Some, too, have aimed well at the word of truth through understanding. ‘But Abraham was not justified by works, but by faith’... The guessing at truth is one thing, and truth itself is another. Resemblance is one thing, the thing itself is another. And the one results from learning and practice, the other from power and faith. For the teaching of piety is a gift, but faith is grace. ‘For by doing the will of God we know the will of God.’ ‘Open, then,’ says the Scripture, ‘the gates of righteousness; and I will enter in, and confess to the LORD.’ But the paths to righteousness (since God saves in many ways, for He is good) are many and various, and lead to the Lord’s way and gate. And if you ask the royal and true entrance, you will hear, ‘This is the gate of the LORD, the righteous shall enter in by it.’ While there are many gates open, that in righteousness is in Christ, by which all the blessed enter, and direct their steps in the sanctity of knowledge" (Clement of Alexandria; The Stromata).
It is important for the modern believer to recognize a key thought which is quoted by Clement that, like many other passages of scripture, no longer appear in our present-day Bibles. Clement writes that: "For by doing the will of God we know the will of God" -- which means that the faith envisioned by Paul and the second century Gentile Church was an active faith. Moreover, what Clement is writing confirms the statement in the first chapter of Romans where the Apostle writes that any man or woman, dwelling anywhere in the world, can understand all there is to know about God by observing the manifest forces of Creation itself. Further, when such a person begins to surrender his life to the Will of God, then the Christ will come to him -- teach him -- sanctify him -- and enlighten him. This is the essence of the doctrine of faith that was preached by the Apostle Paul -- and it is founded upon pure spiritual and Gnostic principles.
In the reinterpretation of New Covenant teachings by the Roman Church, the very essence of the Gospel was not only rejected, but actually a totally opposite doctrine of salvation was adopted. Instead of man being saved by permitting the indwelling Word to manifest in his life by becoming the good ground that nurtures and engenders the growth of the Word, the message of salvation was altered, and man became saved by membership in the church. When the church was eventually rejected after the Reformation, man became saved by belief in Jesus. The important element that was never restored was the knowledge of the pre-existent soul -- the reality of the indwelling Word -- and that all Truth and Spiritual Revelation can only come to those who make themselves the good ground that permits the Word to manifest.
All genuine scripture -- whether those of the Hebrew Prophets, or the Gentile poets, or any of the other religious writings the world over -- all speak universally of the doctrine of the two ways. In this respect, a further example of the two ways is demonstrated by the attack on the second century church by the Pagan Philosopher Celsus as being a secret system -- where the multitude of believers were taught a very simple doctrine, while the more advanced disciples were taught a secret doctrine not revealed to the common believer who was unable to comprehend the true depth of the Gospel message. Acknowledging the truth to the allegations of Celsus, the Church Father Origen explained: "But that there should be certain doctrines, not made known to the multitude, which are after the exoteric ones having been taught, is not a peculiarity of Christianity alone, but also of philosophic systems, in which certain truths are exoteric and others are esoteric. Some of the heroes of Pythagoras were content with his ipse dixit; while others were taught in secret those doctrines which were not deemed fit to be communicated to the profane and insufficiently prepared ears. Moreover, all the mysteries that are celebrated everywhere throughout Greece and the barbarous countries, although held in secret, have no discredit thrown upon them, so that it is in vain he endeavors to calmniate the secret doctrines of Christianity, seeing that he does not correctly understand its nature".
What Origen is confirming is the fact that Christianity was instituted in accordance with the same teachings of the Two Ways, as was both the Jewish and the Greek religions. Moreover, the Two Ways are indigenous to every spiritual religion throughout all time. I have previously demonstrated that within the writings of the poets was concealed the deeper truths of the spirit -- or the Logos/Christ -- the mysteries of which did not and cannot belong to the carnal masses. This is again seen when Origen wrote that while some of the followers of "Pythagoras were content with his ipse dixit; others were taught in secret those doctrines which were not deemed fit to be communicated to the profane and insufficiently prepared ears".
What we see in this statement of Origen provides an example of the two levels of believers of Pythagoras -- the profane who were the idol worshipers, and the initiates who were the serious disciples who received the secret doctrines of the Logos. Further, it is these initiates and their teachers -- the seekers of the Logos/Christ who where the enlightened of the Pagans -- who were the original people who were called Christians -- and they were referred to by this name before the advent of Jesus.
More importantly, though, is the fact that in Origen’s words we see that this was the case with all of the religions in biblical times at the beginning of our Common Era -- Greek, Roman, Egyptian -- and this is seen in the words: "Moreover, all the mysteries that are celebrated everywhere throughout Greece and the barbarous countries, although held in secret, have no discredit thrown upon them". The initiates who comprehended the "mysteries that [were]... held in secret", were in effect, the disciples of the Logos, or Christ -- and they referred to themselves as Christians.
What Origen is stating is a universal truth that is valid throughout every era of human history: There were Pagans who were carnal -- and as with all carnal people, they did not comprehend the mysteries of God. There were also a group of very select people who were the initiates into the mysteries of God -- disciples of the Greek masters who understood the inner meaning of the sacred religious writings. As with all genuine religions, there was the exoteric doctrine for the ignorant masses of idol worshipers, and there was the esoteric doctrine of the Logos/Christ for the initiates. Which means that when we read mythology today, in looking only at the body of the text, we fail to comprehend the true inner meaning of the written word. Ultimately this means that if we were truly Christian, and of an Anointed Mind, we would perceive the presence of Christ throughout the sacred writings of all religious people the world over.
If one is a student of the science of how language is formed, it is understood that when a new term is embraced, the term crosses over the language barriers. This can be observed in our own English language in the many instances where we see words that are common to French, Spanish, Italian, etc. and vice versa, because that concept or term did not exist in the language when it came into common use. For instance, no person of Jewish heritage could be named Jesus; and neither could he have a brother named James, or a mother named Mary. These names do not exist in the Hebrew language. In the transposition between Hebrew and Greek, the meaning of Jacob is seen as being synonymous with James, and Miriam becomes Mary. What this means is that because the meaning of the Hebrew word Messiah already existed, and was in common usage among the Greeks, they translated the word Messiah into Christ, which in English means Anointed.
From a modern-day perspective, what this also means is that if the concept of the Lord’s Anointed did not already exist, and was not already in common use among the Greeks, then the Hebrew word Messiah would have found its place into the Greek language. That it did not, is because those who were enlightened to the true spiritual meaning of the Pagan mysteries were known as Christians -- which by their understanding was indicative of one whose mind is illumined by the indwelling Light written about extensively by the philosophers and called the Logos -- which is the exact same term employed by the disciple John in his Gospel.
What this means to the enlightened mind is that the Logos is not a man -- but rather, a Universal Consciousness that exists within the minds of all people. That the Logos can manifest as a person, as was the case with Jesus, does not negate the fact that the Logos exists within each and every one of us at the core of our being. Once this fact is understood, the objective of genuine spiritual religion is not to believe in the Logos, but to become a dwelling place for the Light of the indwelling Logos to inhabit.
In our public schools today it would be against the law to teach the Christian religion. If a language arts teacher was to open the Bible to one of the gospels, and start reading the text to the class, the defenders of separation of church and state would have an immediate injunction on the teacher to cease and desist from such an unconstitutional action. Why? Probably for the same reason that the U.S. Supreme Court gave for the reason the Ten Commandments were banished from the public school environment in the 60’s -- i.e., if the children were to read the Commandments, the Court wrote, they might begin to do them. Yet, because the minds of the teachers are too carnal to comprehend the true meaning of the sacred writings in their many forms, teachers every day are instructing public school students about Christ but fail to realize it. The Greek Mythology that they teach as literature is scripture, and the inner meaning that they do not perceive, is about the Logos and the Anointing of the Light -- which means the Word of God and the Christ.
Carl Jung sheds light on our understanding of Mythology in the book Psyche and Symbol where the author states that the "...unconscious has at its disposal a language of its own"; and goes on to state: "Remembering the ever-recurring themes in the religious mythologies, the motifs of initiation, of death and rebirth, of expiation and redemption and of the superhuman labors and sufferings of the redeemer-hero, one is led to the conviction that these mythologies express the ultimate concerns of the psyche in its search for spiritual fulfillment".
The insight of Dr. Jung is important when he states that the gods and goddesses and the themes of mythology are universal symbols that find their expression in man’s search for God. We fail to realize this because we are unaware of our own indwelling soul and spiritual nature, and these writings are written in a language employing a system of symbols that we are not accustomed to hearing. What is equally important is the realization that Dr. Jung did not came to this understanding by devoting his life to the search for religious symbolism -- but rather, by devoting his life to understanding the human mind -- and especially the minds of his patients.
If modern psychology truly understood the philosophy of mind that they study, they would understand the inner meaning of the sacred writings they call mythology. The ultimate meaning of both is one and the same. In many respects, though, mythology is more real than we are -- in that mythology is the revelation of the science of higher mind and man’s ultimate search for his Creator.
The initiate understands the mysteries, and is able to use this knowledge in his search for spiritual fulfillment. It is called the teachings of the two ways because it is common to every man who has ever existed the world over. Even though the masses do not understand the true meaning of the symbols which they worship, in making these symbols a part of their lives, the symbols themselves open the door of communication with what Dr. Jung calls the unconscious -- which "language of its own" relates to these patterns of universal mythological symbolism. As I continue to expand this concept throughout this book, it will be seen that these universal symbols are present in all religions the world over -- not because they are historically true, but rather because they are spiritually true, and connect the outer man with the inner through the language of the soul.
What is it that the initiate into the mystery religions would see when he reads Mythology? The Dictionary Of All Scriptures And Myths defines Mythology as containing: "...the symbolism of Divine emanation from the Absolute, and manifestation of Sprit and Matter in Time and Space throughout the cycle of Life: the symbolism of the origin and growth of the Soul, the descent of Spirit into Matter in the process of Involution, followed by the ascent of Spirit from Matter in the process of Evolution: the symbolism of the five planes of being, and of the higher and lower natures, and of the four soul-bodies: the symbolism of the struggle in the soul between the Divine principle of Self and the lower principle of not-Self; and also of the great variety of unapparent activities..."
The uninitiated public school teacher who does not understand the real meaning of what they are instructing their class in, is in fact actually preaching the Word of God -- and more appropriately, the Word of the Logos or Christ -- without knowing it. Further, unbeknown to the public school teacher, the student who has the capacity, and is in touch with their own spiritual nature, will perceive on a deeper level that the public school teacher is preaching Christ. Meanwhile, all the other students whose minds are carnal, will hear only the myths which make up the body. Thus, even though the much more excellent New Testament scriptures are banned in the public school, Christ is still being taught and preached by our teachers in our secular public education schools.
In the same way that Christ is the main theme in the Old Testament, Christ is also the main theme in Greek Mythology, as well all the major religions the world over. How can I say this? If it was the Logos that created the world, as Christians believe, then the DNA of the Logos remains throughout every aspect of Creation. Moreover, these same universal religious symbols are present in Shakespeare, the stories of King Arthur and the Order of the Knights of the Round Table, as well as an uncountable number of other writings.
The first Christians understood that Christ was not a man -- but rather, is the Anointing of the Logos or universal mind of God that illumines the understanding of not only the disciple who opens the door to the spirit, but also the Light of every man and woman that has ever walked the face of the earth -- and beyond. It is also true that the being we truly are -- i.e., our indwelling pre-existent soul which is neither male nor female -- is in like manner not a man in our vision of the word.
That the masses of people see only the literal symbols, and are incapable of looking beyond the body of the narrative into the spirit, is because in embracing their carnal reality, they walk what the Bible portrays as the broad-way, and have cut themselves off from the Kingdom and the source of all true knowledge. That the masses of idol worshiping Pagans at the beginning of our Common Era did not perceive the underlying message of their own religious writings, is also true with respect to the majority of Jews, Christians, Muslims, as well as the rest of the religions of the world to this very day. Moreover, it is also demonstrated in the fact that, every day our public schools teach Christ, and don’t even know it.
It is true that on the surface these sacred writings appear different. Different people write the themes -- or body -- of their sacred writings using the symbols of their own culture. That each group writes their sacred writings in accordance with their culture and understanding of their own people, does not negate the fact that the essence of all people are the same, and at the core of their sacred writings will be the universal message -- the indwelling Logos or Christ.
In the course of a conversation with my daughters I once picked up the classic book on Buddha entitled The Light of Asia. Supposedly the book was written by Sir Edward Arnold as a historical documentary about the life of Buddha. I had never studied Buddhism; and I am not familiar with their sacred writings. As I began to read, I realized that the book contained many of the same universal symbols as the Bible, and all the rest of the religious writings the world over. I immediately put the book down and said to my daughter: I am not sure there ever was an historical man Buddha -- but rather, what we read of the Buddha is merely describing the road that one must walk in order to become The Enlightened One -- which is the definition of the word Buddha. Therefore, what is written about the Buddha, may be no different than the writings of the Greek poets, or the inner message of the majority of the other religions of mankind the world over. The objective, then, is not to believe in the Buddha -- or enlightened one -- or to worship the historical Buddha -- but to become the enlightened one.
The question then becomes whether we are to fault the author of these sacred writings because they did not use the same exact set of symbols as found in the Bible? If the assertion of the first Greek Christians is correct, and it is true that the Logos is universal to all people, then we must recognize the fact that when the Logos stirred the soul of the Buddha, he spoke in the language of the people. Paul did this same thing when he taught the Gentiles.
It is because we are imbued with a quasi-Darwinist mindset that we fail to realize that different people, from different cultures, write the narrative of their religious writings differently. This can be likened to the fact that all mankind -- black, white, yellow, red, etc. -- appear different, but at their essence, emanate from the same Source -- God. Mankind lives and moves within a Divine Pattern -- and though he expresses himself differently, the core expressions are always in accordance with the Divine Pattern, and always reveal the same inherent truths. The problem is that, only the disciple in search of Truth, can perceive the inner meaning of his own religious writings, and only the spiritual sage or true mature man of God can perceive the Godly essence of every religious writing the world over. In fact, the true Christian cannot help but understand the traditions of other people, because the Logos is the common thread upon which the thinking of the minds of all men are dependent upon for their very Force of Life itself.
The greater majority of Christians today do not even understand the meaning of the word Christ. In fact, most people are under the grave misconception that Christ was Jesus’ last name. They fail to realize that the word Christ is a Greek word synonymous with the Hebrew word Messiah, and both words in English mean the Anointing of the Lord, or the Lord’s Anointed. Because our translators fail to render the word the same throughout the scriptures, present day bible readers are generally unaware that twenty-three other men in the Old Testament are referred to as the Lord’s Anointed or Christ. When the scriptures state that "Thus saith the LORD to his anointed, to Cyrus, whose right hand I have holden..." (Isa 45:1 KJV), it is the same as stating "Thus saith the LORD to his Christ, to Cyrus".
Quoting Nelson’s Bible Dictionary: "In the Old Testament, Messiah is used more than 30 times to describe kings (2 Sam. 1:14,16), priests (Lev. 4:3,5, 16), the patriarchs (Ps. 105:15), and even the Persian King Cyrus (Is. 45:1)." In the case of the New Testament, Christians simply do not translate the Greek word Christ into its English equivalent Anointed. Why? The answer to that is simple. Joshua, the Anointed one of the Lord, does not have the same mystique to the uninformed believer as Jesus Christ -- and does not present the picture that conforms to the design of their beliefs. The word Anointed is a universal religious term used the world over -- and so, our Bible translators choose not to render the word into its proper English form. In the case of the Old Testament, they translate the word into English so as not to draw attention to all the many people who are called the Christ or Messiah throughout the scriptures.
Going one step further, the word Christ is more of a verb than a noun. It depicts one who is Anointed (Christ) by the Lord with the Light of God. By its very nature, the word Christian cannot depict one who merely believes -- in that a believer by today’s standards is seen as a static person of faith.
We can better understand this by posing the question: When is a person a runner? Is a spectator watching a running event a runner? Is a person a runner when they are not running? Is a person who believes that runners exist a runner? Being a runner, then, is a noun that is dependent upon an action. In like manner, the name Christian can only apply as a noun, or a name, so long as the disciple is actively following in the footsteps of the Christ.
The Anointing is the movement of Spirit into the mind of the disciple as they seek to be At-One with the Lord. It is not indicative of a faith-based philosophy -- but rather, the result of a Truly Moving Creative Force of a Spiritual Marriage between the disciple and God. Faith can be compared to that of a bride who awaits the coming of the bridegroom -- i.e., the true Christian has faith that the Word will come and make a home within them. Without this Marriage, and the resulting Anointing, one cannot accurately be called a Christian -- but rather, one who is striving to become a Christian.
In the tradition of the Hebrews, the source of all knowledge is the Messiah. As I have already demonstrated, the word Christ is a Greek word, and it was in use by the Greeks long before the advent of the historical man Jesus. Going one-step further, the word Messiah/Christ has its equivalent within all the major religions of the world.
In the same way that the followers of Jesus were Messianic believers -- a Christian, in accordance with Greek understanding, was in the true sense of the word, an enlightened initiate into the underlying secrets of what we call the Greek Mystery religions. In the same way that there was a dividing line between an Essene or Messianic believer that separated the Spiritual Hebrew from a Jew, this same dividing line existed in the religions of the Nations. A Christian, therefore, was a Spiritual believer who was an initiate into the doctrine of the indwelling Logos/Christ written about by Plato and the Poets, and were those whose minds were enlightened to the degree where they were able to understand the inner meaning of the Greek mystery religions.
The problem is that we fail to understand these spiritual terms because we view life and the scriptures with a quasi-Darwinist mindset -- i.e., three-dimensionally. As Christians, we fail to comprehend the very essence of the word we use to describe ourselves, because we are unaware of the realms beyond these three dimensions -- we are unaware of our pre-existent soul and spirit -- and we relate the word Christ to an historical person. Further, it is impossible for us to perceive the manner in which God reveals Himself to people the world over, because we fail to understand that the religion that Jesus proclaimed is not only Universal, but is in fact indigenous to man himself. That Jesus became the First Son of God -- and that his followers should themselves be the Anointed Ones, and be the very embodiment of the manifested Light in the world -- is the fulfillment of the Word that each and every person who calls themselves Christian should strive to be. That Christians at present are imprisoned by spiritual shackles, and cannot live up to their spiritual potential and Name because of the reinterpretation of the gospel by the Roman Church, is in fact the reason why the world today dwells in darkness.
With regard to the historical people who were called the people of Christ before the time of Jesus, it did not mean anything to an enlightened Christian that the masses of people worshiped the sun, moon, stars or idols. Because the people of the Nations were carnal, they were unable to perceive the inner meaning of the writings of the poets. In the far-reaching vision of the greater reality, they viewed these things as the worship of the Logos, or Christ, by the ignorant masses of people.
That the initiates of the ancient mystery religions were called Christians prior to the time of Jesus is demonstrated in a letter from the Emperor Adrian to Servianus, written in 134 A.D., wherein it is stated: "Egypt, which you commended to me, my dearest Servianus, I have found to be wholly fickle and inconsistent, and continually wafted about by every breath of fame. The worshipers of Serapis are called Christians, and those who are devoted to the god Serapis, call themselves Bishops of Christ". What is confirmed is that, with the advent of Jesus, the Christ or Christos was not a new term, and there were people throughout the empire who were called Christians prior to the time when the name came to be associated with the followers of Jesus. More important, though, is the fact that they brought their ideas and beliefs pertaining to Christ into the religion of Jesus -- which teachings in their original form possessed an essence and spiritual reality that few of these Pagan Christians could perceive.
Archaeologists have demonstrated that the word Christos, which we render Christ, has been found not only on Pagan temples, and used in relation to those who were said to be the sons of the Pagan gods, but the term was also engraved on tombstones and other Pagan artifacts prior to the time of Jesus. In the Greek and Roman mystery religions of the time, the Christos was the Anointing of the Logos, and the Christian was the follower of the Anointed. In the writings of Clement of Alexandria we find it explained that: "Those who lived according to the Logos were really Christians, though they have been thought to be atheists; as Socrates and Heraclitus were among the Greeks, and such as resembled them" (Strom. bk. i, ch xix).
Eusebius, the great historian of the early Church, admits that the religion that is called Christianity was known to the ancients (Eccl. Hist., 1, ch iv) and writes that the religion of Jesus had "...been known among all nations, nevertheless our life and our conduct, with our doctrines of religion, have not been lately invented by us, but from the first creation of man, so to speak, have been established by the natural understanding of divinely favored men of old... What then should prevent the confession that we who are of Christ practice one and the same mode of life and have one and the same religion as those divinely favored men of old? Whence it is evident that the perfect religion committed to us by the teaching of Christ is not new and strange, but, if the truth must be spoken, it is the first and the true religion".
Modern Christians who erroneously believe that Christianity started with Jesus, will be unable to relate to the words that "our doctrines of religion... have been established by the natural understanding... and [is] the same religion as those divinely favored men of old". The early Gentile Christians knew this fact, and it was for this reason that a copy of Plato’s Republic and other such writings was contained among the writings preserved in the recently discovered Nag Hammadi Library of early Christian writings.
St. Augustine wrote: "That, in our times, is the Christian religion, which to know and follow is the most sure and certain health, called according to that name, but not according to the thing itself, of which it is the name; for the thing itself which is now called the Christian religion, really was known to the ancients, nor was wanting at any time from the beginning of the human race, until the time when Christ came in the flesh, from whence the true religion, which had previously existed, began to be called Christian; and this in our days is the Christian religion, not as having been wanting in former times, but as having in later times received this name" (Opera Augustini, vol. i, p.12).
When we begin to understand the common root of all religion, only then are we able to comprehend with clarity that it wasn’t so much that the Greek and Roman world was converted to the teachings of Jesus, but more appropriately, the teachings of Jesus came to be a part of the existing religious world, which came to be outwardly known as Christian. After Constantine silenced the true followers of Jesus with the power of the sword in the fourth century because they refused to accept the religion of the emperor, all that was left was the Gentile church which was very Pagan in nature, that had come to be known as Christian.
In a letter from Faustus to St. Augustine this Pagan-Christian connection is embellished upon: "You have substituted your agape for the sacrifices of the Pagans; for their idols your martyrs, whom you serve with the very same honors. You appease the shades of the dead with wine and feasts; you celebrate the solemn festivities of the Gentiles, their calends, and their solstices; and, as to their manners, those you have retained without any alteration. Nothing distinguishes you from the Pagans, except that you hold your assemblies apart from them" (Quoted in Draper: Science and Religion, p.48).
How could "nothing" distinguish Christians from the Pagans, with the exception of where they hold their assemblies? How could Christians "retain" the manners of the Pagans, "without any alteration"? If their lifestyle, celebrations, festivities and manner of worship are the same, then how could they be called the followers of Jesus?
In many instances, conversion was the result of Jesus being installed as the replacement for the former Pagan gods. In his book, Jesus, The Evidence, Ian Wilson writes: "A third-century mosaic from the Mausoleum of the Julii underneath present-day St. Peter’s in Rome actually portrays Jesus as Sol Invictus, driving the horses of the sun’s chariot. That Constantine himself mixed Christianity and the Sol Invictus cult is clear from a second commemorative medallion issued by him within two years of the first, on which he represented himself with a Chi-Rho monogram on his helmet, and with a leaping Los chariot below".
Speaking of Constantine, Ian Wilson writes: "It was only when he was approaching death that he asked for, or was accepted for, Christian baptism. As was still the custom, he received this naked, thereafter renouncing forever the purple of his imperial rank" (Ian Wilson, Jesus, The Evidence). This means that the leader and head of the Gentile Church, as well as many of the present day doctrines which remain with us today, were inaugurated into the church by a man of a very Pagan mindset who was not even baptized.
Present day Christians are under the erroneous and grave belief that the tenets and beliefs of their religion are unique. In reality, nothing could be farther from the truth. What is unknown to the believer today is that the world has known countless other crucified Saviors who were: Born from a virgin mother in a cave or underground chamber on or near Christmas Day -- each led a life of sacrifice for mankind, and were called by the names of Light-bringer, Healer, Mediator, Savior and Deliverer -- they were vanquished by the powers of darkness, and descended into hell or the underworld -- they each rose again from the dead and became the means for mankind to enter into the heavenly world -- they founded communities of saints, and churches into which disciples were received by baptism -- and they were commemorated by Eucharistic meals. Thus, every element of modern-day Christianity was present in the Pagan world prior to the advent of Jesus.
In his book, The Christian Conspiracy: The Orthodox Suppression of Original Christianity, Joseph P. Macchio writes: "We find no less than twelve mythical-historical personages before the advent of Christ, who are said to have suffered crucifixion/death and to have risen from the dead. Among them are: Krishna, Wittoba, Osiris, Attis, Indra, Prometheus, Mithra, Dionysius, Hesus, Aesculapius, Adonis, Apollonius of Tyana. Several of these figures are said to have been crucified at the spring equinox and to have risen on the third day".
Many attempts have been made to explain the Pagan-Christian connection. In his book Aryan Mythology, by the Rev Geo. W. Cox, it is explained that: "The wailing of the Hebrew women at the death of Tammuz, the crucifixion and resurrection of Osiris, the adoration of the Babylonian Mylitta, the Sacti ministers of Hindu temples, the cross and the crescent of Isis, the rites of the Jewish altar of Baal-Peor, wholly preclude all doubt of the real nature of the great festivals and mysteries of Phoenicians, Jews, Assyrians, Egyptians, and Hindus" (Aryan Mythology, vol. ii.p.125).
The same concept that the Christ of all Pagan religions was manifest in anticipation of Jesus, was used to bring the Pagan world together under the one banner of Christianity. Thus, it has been concluded that: "The Church, at an early date, selected the heathen festivals of Sun worship for its own, ordering the birth at Christmas, a fixed time, and the resurrection at Easter, a varying time, as in all Pagan religions; since, though the Sun rose directly after the vernal equinox, the festival, to be correct in a heathen point of view, had to be associated with the new moon" (Egyptian Belief, p.182). Thus, we begin to understand why the enlightened Pagans -- who were known as Christians -- adopted the Jewish Messiah Jesus as the personification of their sun-god, renamed him the Christ, and altered the scriptures in the endeavor to sever Jesus from the foundation of Jewish thought -- thereby bringing completion and unity to the Pagan Christian world.
In further explanation of the Pagan Christian connection, the Rev. J.P. Lundy writes in his work, Monumental Christianity, that: "Is there no bright Sun of Righteousness - no personal and loving Son of God, of whom the material Sun has been the type of symbol, in all ages and among all nations?" Thus, we see here that the physical sun is a type, or symbol, among the Pagans, for Jesus, the Son of God. Rev. Lundy then goes on to further explain: "What power is it that comes from the Sun to give light and heat to all created things. If the symbolical Sun leads such a great earthly and heavenly flock, what must be said to the true and only begotten Son of God? If Apollo was adopted by early Christian art as a type of the Good Shepherd of the New Testament, then this interpretation of the Sun-god among all nations must be the solution of the universal mythos, or what other solution can it have? To what other historical personage but Christ can it apply? If this mythos has no spiritual meaning, then all religion becomes mere idolatry, or the worship of material things" (Monumental Christianity, p.117).
Under the heading of Mystery Religions in the Encyclopedia Britannica (1998 electronic edition), the intimate connection between the religion of the poets and that of what evolved into what came to be called Christianity is readily seen in the words: "Christianity originated during the time of the Roman Empire, which was also the time at which the mysteries reached their height of popularity. This was by no means an accident. The Christian theologian Origen wrote in the 3rd century that it was part of the divine plan that Christ was born under the emperor Augustus: the whole Mediterranean world was united by the Romans, and the conditions for missionary work were more favorable than ever before. The simultaneousness of the propagation of the mystery religions and of Christianity and the striking similarities between them, however, demand some explanation of their relationship. The hypothesis of a mutual dependence has been proposed by scholars --especially a dependence of Christianity upon the mysteries... The parallel development was fostered by the new conditions prevailing in the Roman Empire, in which the old political units were dissolved, and the whole civilized world was ruled by one monarch . People were free to move from one country to another and became cosmopolitan. The ideas of Greek philosophy penetrated everywhere in this society. Thus, under identical conditions, new forms of religious communities sprang from similar roots. The mystery religions and Christianity had many similar features--e.g., a time of preparation before initiation and periods of fasting; baptism and banquets; vigils and early-morning ceremonies; pilgrimages and new names for the initiates. The purity demanded in the worship of Sol and in the Chaldean fire rites was similar to Christian standards. The first Christian communities resembled the mystery communities in big cities and seaports by providing social security and the feeling of brotherhood. In the Christian congregations of the first two centuries, the variety of rites and creeds was almost as great as in the mystery communities; few of the early Christian congregations could have been called orthodox according to later standards. The date of Christmas was purposely fixed on December 25 to push into the background the great festival of the sun god, and Epiphany on January 6 to supplant an Egyptian festival of the same day. The Easter ceremonies rivaled the pagan spring festivals. The religious art of the Christians continued the pagan art of the preceding generations. The Christian representations of the Madonna and child are clearly the continuation of the representations of Isis and her son suckling her breast. The statue of the Good Shepherd carrying his lost sheep and the pastoral themes on Christian sarcophagi were also taken over from pagan craftsmanship".
The Britannica then goes on to demonstrate that the intimate connection is just as close in doctrine, as it was in outward observance: "In theology the differences between early Christians, Gnostics (members--often Christian--of dualistic sects of the 2nd century AD), and pagan Hermetists were slight. In the large Gnostic library discovered at Nag Hammadi, in upper Egypt, in 1945, Hermetic writings were found side by-side with Christian Gnostic texts. The doctrine of the soul taught in Gnostic communities was almost identical to that taught in the mysteries: the soul emanated from the Father, fell into the body, and had to return to its former home. The Greeks interpreted the national religions of the Greek Orient chiefly in terms of Plato’s philosophical and religious concepts. Interpretation in Platonic concepts was also the means by which the Judeo-Christian set of creeds was thoroughly assimilated to Greek ideas by the early Christian thinkers Clement of Alexandria and Origen. Thus, the religions had a common conceptual framework. The doctrinal similarity is exemplified in the case of the pagan writer and philosopher Synesius. The people of Cyrene selected him as the most able man of the city to be their bishop, and he was able to accept the election without sacrificing his intellectual honesty. In his pagan period he wrote hymns that closely follow the fire theology of the Chaldean Oracles; later he wrote hymns to Christ. The doctrine is almost identical".
What the Britannica is stating is that the doctrine between what is known as the religion of the philosophers, the Gnostics, and the Gentile Christians, was so close, that the Pagan philosopher Synesius was selected as a Christian Bishop. Further, the "hymns to Christ" that this philosopher wrote, was so compatible with Gentile Christianity, that the Britannica states "the doctrine is almost identical". These facts should be paramount in the minds of modern Christians seeking the true teachings of Jesus.
The intimate connection is further explored by the Britannica when it writes: "The similarity of the religious vocabulary is also great. Greek life was characterized by such things as democratic institutions, seafaring, gymnasium and athletic games, theatre, and philosophy. The mystery religions adopted many expressions from these domains: they spoke of the assembly (ekklesia) of the mystai; the voyage of life; the ship, the anchor, and the port of religion; and the wreath of the initiate; life was a stage and man the actor. The Christians took over the entire terminology; but many pagan words were strangely twisted in order to fit into the Christian world: the service of the state (leitourgia) became the ritual, or liturgy, of the church; the decree of the assembly and the opinions of the philosophers (dogma) became the fixed doctrine of Christianity; the correct opinion (orthe doxa) about things became orthodoxy".
What modern Christians fail to understand is that within the worship of the sun, is the worship of the one god -- which was brought together in the worship of Jesus the Christ -- and ultimately the enlistment of the Pagans under the one banner. All other pagan deities were, in reality, aspects of the sun -- which was seen as their physical source of life. The Pagan initiates who understood the mysteries of their religion, also knew that the sun was a type of pattern of profound spiritual truths that exist in the heavenly realms. This same religious concept is found in the Bible where it states that the Jews "serve a copy and shadow of the heavenly things, just as Moses was warned by God when he was about to erect the tabernacle; for, ‘See,’ He says, ‘that you make all things according to the pattern which was shown you on the mountain’" (Heb 8:5 NAS).
The initiate into what we view as the Pagan Mystery religions, understood that whatever exists in the physical realm in which we presently dwell, is a "copy and shadow of heavenly things". What this means is that, whatever exists in this physical realm is both an illusion, and an allusion to deeper truths that exist in the spiritual reality of Creation. The secret to the spiritual development of the masses of the people who do not understand heavenly things, is that when they invoke these allusionary "patterns" in their daily lives, they begin to crack open the door of communication between the physical and heavenly realms.
Because we do not comprehend the symbols and their allusion to heavenly truths, and we do not understand the inner meaning of the sacred writings of the nations, we erroneously believe that these writings promote the worship of many gods. On the surface this would appear to be true -- but this is not the case with the real inner meaning of these scriptures. This fact is brought together in the words of Sir William Jones who wrote: "We must not be surprised at finding, on close examination, that the characters of all the Pagan deities, male and female, melt into each other, and at last into one or two; for it seems as well founded opinion, that the whole crowd of gods and goddesses of ancient Rome, and modern Varanes, mean only the powers of nature, and principally those of the SUN, expressed in a variety of ways, and by a multitude of fanciful names" (Asiatic Researches, vol.1.p.267).
Men and women who have developed themselves, and possess a true spiritual vision, understand the connectedness of all of Creation -- and perceive that from the One Source of Being, all has emanated. Creation means that God, from within Himself, brought forth all there ever was, is, and will be. Each level of creation is the result of the higher level giving birth from within itself to a more divided level of reality. The more we move out into the lower levels of Creation, the more the Divine Powers of God are divided into lesser powers and states of being. The gods and goddesses that we associate with Greek and Roman Mythology, present to the reader the manner in which these divided powers manifest themselves throughout all of Creation, and especially within our own body-mind. That when the division is overcome, and everything is brought into oneness, we begin to move within the essence of our True Source of Being, and the prodigal son returns home to the Kingdom, is the main focus of all genuine religious philosophies the world over. The true religious dilemma is this: How this is accomplished, is a matter of conjecture, and is what differentiates one religion from the next.
That we fail to understand the true meaning of the sacred writings of the philosophers, and we then condemn what we do not understand, is founded upon the fact that we are not truly Christian -- i.e., the Anointed and Illumed disciples of the Light. If we were indeed Christian, in the genuine sense of the word, then we would be able to see Christ in the writings of the Nations, as easily as we think we see Christ in the Old Testament. The fact that we judge what we do not understand, means that we have violated the first principles of the one great commandment of Jesus -- which commandment was not to judge others -- with the result of our failure to abide by the Lord’s Commandments being turned upon us as unfaithful servants. The consequence is that, the same judgment we invoke upon others, is turned back upon ourselves, with the result being that we inhibit our own spiritual maturity.
One of the greatest of profound truths to understand is that all sacred writings are ultimately a blueprint of the initiates own mind. In what appears to be heavenly dramas about the gods and their interaction with carnal man, what is being portrayed is the interaction of higher mind, powers and laws, with our own physical body and mind. Behind the scenes exists not only the triune powers of Creation, but also that Great Supreme Power that is beyond the Trinity, and is the source of all Life and Being. In the same way that all of life appears to be made up of an abundance of variations in physical attributes and characteristics, yet at their essence they emanate from the One Source, the same thing can be said of the gods and goddesses in mythology -- wherein the powers that harness the diversity of Creation appear separate and distinct in this physical realm of existence, but at a deeper level they meld into twelve, six, three, and ultimately the One Source of Being.
If we were truly Christian, we would be sufficiently Illumined to perceive that all scripture reveals mind and its interaction between higher and lower planes of existence -- the symbols are universal to mankind throughout all of Creation. Where it is said that Jesus was born of a virgin, so too was most of man’s savior-gods. In this respect, even the virgin is represented in the zodiac, and is always the mother of the sun-god: "We have in the first decade the Sign of the Virgin, following the most ancient tradition of the Persians, the Chaldeans, the Egyptians, Hermes and Esculapius, a young woman called in the Persian language, Seclinidos de Darzama; in the Arabic, Aderenedesa -- that is to say, a chaste, pure, immaculate virgin, suckling an infant, which some nations call Jesus (i.e., Savior), but which we in Greek call Christ" (Kircher, Edipus Egypticus). Thus we not only see the virgin birth, but also the relationship of the Jewish Messiah Jesus to the Christ of the Pagan religions of Greece.
Knowing these things, Ammonius Saccus, a Greek philosopher and founder of a Neo-platonic school taught that: "Christianity and Paganism, when rightly understood, differ in no essential points, but had a common origin, and are really one and the same thing" (see Taylor’s Diegesis, p.329). The problem is that modern believers do not "rightly understand" either Christianity, or the religious writings of the philosophers. Why? Because the sacred writings of each are derived from a different culture, the uniform underlying message is not perceived by the uninitiated believers.
Celsus, the Epicurean philosopher, wrote that: "The Christian religion contains nothing but what Christians hold in common with heathens; nothing new, or truly great" (see Origen, Contra Celsus). Though such opinions on the surface appear to be radical by today’s standards, they are basically correct from the perspective of the Pagan Christianity that evolved out of the Greek and Roman cultures. Yet this was not true of the religion Jesus himself taught when he walked the earth.
There were major differences between the Christos of the Pagan world, and the Messiah -- the Lord’s Anointed -- of the Bible and the Hebrew world. These major differences, though, cannot even be understood today, because we threw away the Hebrew Messiah, and adopted the Pagan Christos -- and the Pagan thinking and customs replaced the sacred teachings that Jesus imparted to his disciples. This major difference is seen in the original Hebrew version of Matthew preserved in fragments by Jerome, who wrote on Isaiah 11: 2 where it reads "The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon him" -- wherein Jerome writes: "not partially as in the case of other holy men". Jerome then quotes the original Hebrew Matthew and writes: "And it came to pass when the Lord was come up out of the water, the whole fount of the Holy Spirit descended and rested upon him, and said unto him: My son, in all the prophets was I waiting for thee that thou shouldst come, and I might rest in thee. For thou art my rest, thou art my first begotten son, that reignest for ever".
Where the inner meaning of the writings of the poets spoke about the theology of heavenly things, and the partial anointing by the Light, or Logos -- in Jesus, these theological declarations became manifested in the highest example of mankind. The life of Jesus was not founded upon religious theory and speculation based upon partial experience and knowledge of divine things -- Jesus took what was carnal, perfected it, transmuted his lower nature, and made it his true and complete spiritual foundation. Therefore, Jesus was not only the fulfillment of the Law of Moses, but also the realization of the whole of the Gentile world and all of Creation.
The problem, from a modern-day Christian perspective, is that the Pagan concept of the Christ fell far short of the Messianic perfection that the Son of God attained to. Why? Because the way of the Nations was more in tune with the Hindu and eastern perspective of God -- and though they were of a common vision of God, the approach was in reverse. The New Covenant path of The Way that was ordained by the Hebrew Prophets produced not only the first, but many other Sons of God, because it was traveled via a totally different perspective than the philosophy of the Nations and their eastern counterparts. The result is that, in not comprehending either the differences, or the enormity of what the historical Jesus accomplished, modern believers today rarely even appreciate his true greatness.
Even though all scriptures have a common theme, and all are inspired from God, each set of individual scriptures can never be at a higher level than their authors. It is for this reason that the poets who wrote the sacred writings of the Greeks are spoken of as philosophers -- in that they were writing about things that they perceived and understood as spiritual theory -- Divine Truths they had not fully experienced. In the same way, the writings of the Old Testament was the work of the Prophets -- or those who were able to see and predict man’s end and completion.
In contradistinction, the New Covenant writings were able to reveal greater truths, because they were written under the direct influence of the First and Genuine Son of God -- and they were composed by men who had themselves achieved a much higher level of spiritual realization. Therefore, there were profound differences in the Messianic traditions and writings of the people of the New Covenant. The problem is that, in clinging to the symbolism and thinking of the Poets, the Gentile Church surrendered what was truly Perfect, and in the words of the disciple Peter: "But it is happened unto them according to the true proverb, The dog is turned to his own vomit again; and the sow that was washed to her wallowing in the mire" (2 Pet 2:22 KJV) -- they rejected what was Perfect, and reinterpreted the Word in the understanding and theology of the philosophers and Pagan religions.
As I have thoroughly demonstrated, in Jesus’ own day the term Christos or Christ was in use in the Greek and Roman world, and many of the enlightened Pagans were referred to as Christians -- or Anointed disciples of the Logos. Because the culture and traditions of the Nations were inferior, the followers of Jesus were commanded: "Learn not the way of the heathen", and were expected to be the Light of Israel. In the Book of the Revelation, the Lord says: "I know the blasphemy of them who say they are Jews, and are not" (Rev 2:9). What is important to understand is that he was not talking to the Sadducees and Pharisees of Palestine -- but rather, to those who claimed to be his followers, and were members of the churches of the New Covenant. He did not say: Those who claim to be my followers, and are not! Neither did he say: Those who claim to be Christians, and are not! He made reference to those who were claiming to be his followers and said: Those who say they are Jews, and are not! Jesus viewed the Sadducees and Pharisees as impostor Jews who were Atheists, and regardless of their claim, were not the people of God. More importantly, as can be seen, the followers of the Lord were called Jews, and in no way were expected to embrace the inferior doctrines of the Nations.
Ultimately, what this means is that every time Christians today step into a church, at one level it is a reenactment of Paradise Lost and Adam and Eve being thrown out of the garden. The very essence of New Covenant theology is the teachings of the two ways. When one attends a church built with the hands of men, and worships a carnal perception of Christ, and embraces the doctrines of the Roman Pagan world, this is in every understanding of the word, walking in the broad-way that leads to destruction. In fact, the Apostle Paul called worshiping in the manner of the Nations, giving oneself over to a harlot! It is not until man perceives that as a being who is Created in the Image of God -- that he is himself a Church -- and the Lord is calling out to him to come, be healed, learn of him, and become a bearer of the Light, that one is able to begin to walk in The Way.
In an attempt to justify our present day religious customs and beliefs, we endeavor to portray the Pagan elements of our religion as insignificant -- after all, we say, it’s our belief in, and praise of the Lord, that is important. In one respect it would be true to say that a name means nothing -- and it matters more what is in the heart of the believer -- but to our own demise we ignore the warning of the Apostle: "What communion hath light with darkness? And what concord hath Christ with Belial?" (2 Cor 6:14-15). Paganism, and the mindset of the Nations, is a preparatory phase of the Word, and being incomplete, has no place in the Kingdom. It does not impress the Lord that we have learned the ways of the heathen, adopted their thinking and manner of worship, and installed the heathen gods in place of the Messianic Truths that we threw away.
We have failed to comprehend the message of the Bible: We cannot take the customs and the thinking of the Nations, and rededicate them to the Lord. "Wherefore, come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you" (2 Cor 6:17). In every instance that the Jews embraced a Pagan custom, they were condemned and cut off from the Lord. The unclean thing warned about in the scriptures, and spoken of by the Apostle Paul, is the ways, the thinking of the Nations, and their Pagan concepts of religion that modern-day Christianity is thoroughly immersed in. Was it a sin, then, for the Jews to worship as the heathen, and not us? Was it a sin, the, for the carnal Jews to be the impostor people of the Lord, and not us?
From a spiritual perspective, it is important for each of us to relate to God in our own individual way. This is especially true in our manner of prayer. But to this end, the teachings of Jesus was intended to raise us above the mundane that is biblically associated with the thinking of either the Pagans, or the impostor Jews known as the Sadducees and Pharisees. Because we attempt today to come to God with a carnal mindset, even our present-day concept of prayer is derived more from the ways of the Nations, than from the teachings of the New Covenant.
When we enter many of our churches today we often hear long and arduous prayers that could easily resemble a sort of wish list. We ask God for what seems to be everything under the sun -- and because of our carnal mindset, few Christians today even comprehend what Jesus instructed us to pray for. In many instances our approach to prayer is demonstrated in the idea that we somehow think that God is unaware of what goes on in this world. To this end, many prayer groups attempt to enlighten God as to the needs of the people. Some prayer groups appear to even provide Him with all the gossip He may have missed, and they go to great lengths to appraise God of all that is going on in the congregation. In still other instances, prayer sessions enter the verbal olympics, and become a competitive environment where it appears that members of the congregation are involved in some sort of prayer contest to see who can deliver the longest and most superb prayer.
In view of these things, we must question where the words of Jesus fit into he picture when he said in the sixth chapter of Matthew: "And when thou prayest, thou shalt not be as the hypocrites are; for they love to pray standing in the synagogues and at the corners of the streets, that they may be seen by men... and use not vain repetitions, as the Pagans do; for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking." The followers of Jesus were taught to "enter into thy room, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father, who is in secret; and thy Father, who seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly".
The idea of entering into your room and shutting the door has a twofold meaning. What is plain in the above, is that prayer is a private matter between man and God. "Be not as the hypoctites", Jesus said, who revel in the act of standing in the churches, and in front of other people where they can be seen of en. The other idea is that prayer must be turned inward -- directed into the kingdom within -- and this is seen in the words: "when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father, who is in secret; and thy Father, who seeth in secret, shall reward thee openly".
With regard to prayer, perhaps the most important biblical concept which set the followers of Jesus apart from the ways of the Nations is found in the words: "Do not be like them, for your Father knows what you need before you ask him" (Matt 6:8 NIV). This concept of God which is unlike that of the Pagan world, is seen in the scriptural passage that we "live, and move, and have our being" within God, and we are at our essence, the "offspring of God" (Acts 17: 22-29). For the most part, modern Christians pray from a Pagan and secular Jewish perspective -- in that, prayer and worship is directed outwardly, and focused on appeasing the gods, nourishing their (the gods) super egos, telling the gods how great they are, and petitioning and thanking the gods for the fulfillment of their carnal needs. Jesus commanded us not to have this type of mindset -- for it is one of spiritual death.
What did Jesus teach his followers? As in all things Jesus taught that we must utilize our opportunity of life to focus on opening the door to the Kingdom. This fact is presented in the words: "Therefore, take no thought saying, What shall we eat? or, What shall we drink? or, With what shall we be clothed? For after all these things do the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knoweth that ye have need of all these things". In contemplation of these words we must ask: How does the Lord know what we need? Does He sit on His thrown and watch each one of us, deciding which of our needs He will grant, and which He will deny?
Pagans and secular Jews appease and communicate with the gods in the sky, whereas the true followers of Jesus have been enlightened, and they see reality from beyond the limitations of this world. Having been enlightened by the illumination of their minds, they understand that the kingdom is within us -- that God is our Source of Consciousness that exists at the very essence of our being -- and it is God’s Divine Vital Life-force that is the sustenance upon which we depend for our experience of life. Our thoughts can be compared to a surfer riding the wave. The very energy upon which our thoughts ride and take their individual form originates from God. Therefore, every experience, fantasy and concept that our mind entertains, we intimately share with God. How? Because the very life-force that we use to experience life, and the very energy-flow that we stamp with the mark of our own token of individuality, originates and returns to the One Source. Therefore, God knows our every need -- in the same way that we feel the needs of our physical bodies, we are ultimately an extension of God’s Body/Mind.
The Apostle tells us in many places that we are of one body: "But now are they many members, yet but one body... For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ" (1 Cor 12:20,12 KJV). This Divine connection is further demonstrated when the Lord warns us that: "Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me... for I was hungry and you gave Me no food; I was thirsty and you gave Me no drink; I was a stranger and you did not take Me in, naked and you did not clothe Me, sick and in prison and you did not visit Me. Then they also will answer Him, saying, Lord, when did we see You hungry or thirsty or a stranger or naked or sick or in prison, and did not minister to You? Then He will answer them, saying, Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did not do it to one of the least of these, you did not do it to Me" (Matt 25:40-45 NKJ).
If we could see beyond the barrier of this physical realm, to the depths of our being, we would understand that God not only furnishes the very power and vital energy upon which our consciousness and personality rests; but further, all of mankind are intimately linked through the same Divine Source of Creation. The problem is that, in order to understand the Divine connection that each of us has with our Creator, as well as the very real connection that each of us has with one another, we must overcome the three-dimensional barrier of this world, and go beyond our own physical limitations. If, or more appropriately, when we are able to overcome, and go beyond our carnal nature, we would immediately see the great truth in the words of the Lord, and we would understand that what we therefore do to others, we not only do to ourselves, but in like manner we do to the Lord himself.
This energy that originates with God and streams down into our minds and being is very similar to our own nerve energy that provides feeling to every cell in our outer body. In our present carnal condition, we have limitations placed upon us as to how far towards the Source of our life-force we can position ourselves. In the same way that every touch, emotion and sensation is immediately returned to our own source of nerve energy, the brain -- ultimately, there is no experience – i.e., even what we think, do or say -- that God is not aware of, a part of, or separated from. In fact, it has been expressed by many mystics that God experiences Creation through us.
Jesus came to teach people the path to the kingdom. He warned us to neither go in the way of the Nations, or the impostor Jews. Why did he say this? One of the most spiritually destructive mindsets that modern Christians have adopted from the Gentile converts is the Pagan relationship of the people as subjects to the gods, rather than the children of God. In everything that Jesus taught us he conveyed that we are the Divine Emanation and Offspring of God. When he taught us to pray, he instructed us to say "Our Father" -- not Jesus’ Father, or Supreme God of all gods, or ruler of heaven and earth -- but rather, "Our Father". The problem is that in practice, we do not believe him.
Did he lie to us? Did Jesus tell us an untruth? As children of the Kingdom, we were told not to pray in the manner of the Pagans -- as inferior subjects. The followers of Jesus were to look upon God as their Father, and Jesus as an elder brother. This mindset that Jesus taught, and is absent among Christians today, is of the utmost importance if we are to follow in The Way. So important is this mindset, that the whole spiritual essence of original Christian teachings is based upon the brotherhood of man.
When the original Messianic followers of Jesus were questioned as to what they believed with respect to the person of Jesus, they replied that he is our brother -- an older brother who has come to show us The Way. To profess faith in the Gospel message, is to affirm that Jesus not only taught his followers the Truth and The Way, but that he opened their minds to man’s higher reality -- a reality that was beyond the comprehension of the heathen Gentile converts that inaugurated Jesus as one of their gods. With respect to the nature of Jesus, we need not believe this opinion or that opinion -- we too have it within our ability to know the Truth for ourselves if we take the yoke of the Son of God upon us, and walk in The Way. To the detriment of modern Christians, we are lost because we grope for God with the mindset of the Pagans, and not the children of the New Covenant.
Jesus portrayed himself as our older brother who overcame the limitations of the flesh, and taught mankind The Way into the Kingdom. Nothing in the New Testament suggests that we are to remain stagnant in this, the far country, applauding Jesus’ efforts while we continue to dwell in the darkness of this world. His followers were supposed to walk in the footsteps of their brother Jesus, and focus their lives on the acquisition of the Kingdom.
In the teachings of Jesus the doors to heaven would be opened to his disciples when they would be found righteous enough to enter into the Kingdom and experience direct unity with God. There is no test -- i.e., neither God, Jesus, nor the angels sit back and decide who will be permitted into the Kingdom, and who will not. It is all a matter of our state of maturity and completion. When we were born into this world, only a very small part of our true soul-spirit nature could manifest in this physical vessel in which we presently dwell, and this three-dimensional realm in which we live. The objective, then, is to manifest all of our soul-self, and all of our Spiritual Nature, which is the very essence of our being.
From the perspective of the New Covenant, Luther’s assertion that man’s reason "...is the greatest enemy that faith has", is Pagan in nature -- and in total conflict with the religion that Jesus taught. The whole thrust of the original concepts of New Covenant teachings was to live in such a way that the disciple could manifest his complete self in the body-vessel in which we presently dwell -- as seen in the many assertions that a house divided cannot stand -- and then re-unify our undivided consciousness with our Heavenly Father.
To this end the Lord said: "But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you". When his disciples asked him to teach them to pray, the focal point was again the concept of "Thy kingdom come" (Lk 11:2). The message of Jesus says nothing about entering into the Kingdom after you have died -- but instead conveys the concept of entering into the Kingdom while you are still in this life -- and this was intended to be the all-pervading element in our prayers to our Father.
The problem is that we have been alienated from the essence of the Gospel message by the Church of Rome, and we no longer perceive the Kingdom as a spiritual realm that we have the ability to enter. How? In the same way that Jesus taught not to pray for the things of this world, but to pray for the Kingdom to come, we must cease to focus our minds on this world, and actively live our lives in the endeavor of opening the door to the Kingdom. How do we accomplish this? By becoming the good ground within which the Word of God has been implanted.
It is not until we understand both the means by which man enters the Kingdom, and the universality of religious symbols with regard to walking in The Way, that we can begin to perceive the great error of the Gentile Church. I fully realize that this statement will be very difficult for the modern believer to comprehend, but if we truly desire to restore God’s True Church, it is a statement that we as Christians must come to terms with.
In view of the fact that there already exists a large number of comparative studies on religion, for our purposes here, we only have to acknowledge that if anyone desires to prove the universality of religious symbolism, then the subject is easily researched. A phenomena that has long been recognized by anthropologists, historians, theologians, and any informed person who makes an effort to investigate the matter, is the fact that, in our study of the worlds religions, we are constantly presented with a set of uniform symbols that immerge from every corner of the world -- even from indigenous people who have had little or no contact with the cultures outside their own.
Every religious culture has their own creation account with very real similarities to that found in Genesis. The story of Moses is not unique. The portrayal of the twelve, the seven, and the savior who is born from a virgin, battles with the forces of evil, and is crucified and resurrected on the third day. It is my position that the person in search of a higher understanding of life should immediately question the how and why of these unmistakable similarities between the peoples of the world.
Atheists and secular minded people who have lost touch with their own intuitive nature, view this phenomena in a very Darwinist mindset -- and it is this mindset that represents the holy-grail of their thinking -- a holy-grail that has become to them a great limitation and the source of their folly. In their extremely limited perception of life and creation, it is simply beyond their ability to contemplate the means that man embraces a uniform set of religious symbols throughout the whole of creation. Not wanting to disturb their manner of thinking, they therefore simply refuse to speculate.
The Atheist and carnal-Christians who refuses to admit that there is a universal Power at work within the minds of all men who seek a higher understanding of life, attempt to explain away the phenomena of a universal set of religious symbols by portraying men of religious wisdom as plagiarizers who endlessly copy the ideas of others. Thus, they reason that this belief was copied from this group -- and that belief was copied from another group -- and by seeing the religious world in this fashion, they can steadfastly hold to a Darwinist mindset.
Prior to the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls the Essenes were viewed by many church authorities as Jews who had deviated from the tradition of the scriptures. It was reasoned that the Essenes had adopted the tenets of Persian Dualism -- or the idea that all of creation is the struggle of the powers of light and darkness. It was reasoned that the Essenes had adopted a form of Buddhism that caused them to reject everything in this physical world as the manifestation of the darkness. It was further reasoned that they adopted the belief in reincarnation from the Greek mystery religions.
What we are presented with is the typical Atheistic perception of religion -- wherein, tenets of religious belief are viewed as either being borrowed, or as a philosophical explanation with respect to the mysteries of life. Though many of these authorities are viewed as experts in religion, the very essence of religion is beyond their ability to even contemplate.
The fundamental purpose of religion is to bridge the great divide between this world and the parallel realms that we call spirit. This is accomplished by accessing those sections of mind that do not relate to this world, and are fundamentally in a dormant condition in the great majority of people. Once properly understood, the error of these supposed experts is in fact synonymous with the error of the Sadducees and Pharisees who Jesus condemned -- in that, it is beyond their Darwinist perception that the Essenes did not need to copy other religious doctrines, but instead learned these many sacred truths directly from their own pre-existent soul and spiritual natures.
It is truly important that every person today understands what is being presented here. Prior to the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls it was the Sadducees and Pharisees who were viewed as being orthodox, and the Essenes as being the ones who had deviated from the scriptures. This perception had to be radically altered when it was demonstrated that what eventually emerged as the Christian religion was founded upon the religious precepts of the Essenes -- and what the theme of the New Testament scriptures truly represent is the conflict between the darkness of the Sadducees and Pharisees, and that of the Light as represented in the religious tenets of the Essenes.
Jesus condemned the Sadducees and the Pharisees because they were the counterfeit Nation of Israel! They were carnal in their thinking, and in their ritualizing of the Law, they used religion to place themselves in a position of prominence among the people. Once our biblical scholars views the Dead Sea Scrolls, and for the first time gazed into the very essence of the people of the New Covenant, they realized that it was Jesus the Essene who condemned the impostor Jews as charlatans who misled the people.
What we fail to perceive in the greater picture that has emerged, is the very essence and purpose of religion itself -- i.e., to first merge the mind of natural man with his pre-existent soul, and then open the door of man’s spiritual nature to the indwelling Word -- which enlightens the understanding of the disciple to all the Mysteries of Creation. To the modern believer, understanding this fact is absolutely necessary if we are to completely restore the original Gospel message.
What the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls confirmed was that when the Gospel fell into the hands of the carnal-thinking Gentiles, and was then controlled by the Roman Government, the spiritual teachings of The Way began to be interpreted by Atheists -- Atheists who did not understand that man has a pre-existent soul and a spiritual nature. What history conclusively demonstrates with regard to these carnal-Christians, is the fact that the very essence of New Covenant thinking was beyond their ability to even envision, and could not be embraced in its pure form. The result was that they re-created the religion of the Sadducees under a new name, with a New Covenant and Pagan flavor.
Both the Atheist and the carnal-Christians would immediately reject the words of the early church historian Eusebius when he wrote that: "our doctrines of religion... have been established by the natural understanding... and [is] the same religion as those divinely favored men of old". As to the reason why they would reject this statement? Because they worship a man instead of the Creator God. In their limitations that has been brought upon them by embracing the mindset of the Pagan-Christians, they only possess what the Apostle refers to as the "milk" of the gospel. They therefore reason that it is impossible for a person to merely observe the world around us, and see and embrace Jesus by virtue of what is observed, and be born again so they will be saved.
Was Eusebius in error? What exactly was he saying about the universality of what has come to be known today as the Christian religion? From a biblical perspective, he is saying nothing more than the great truth expressed by the Apostle Paul in the first chapter of his Epistle to the Romans in the words: "Since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities -- his eternal power and divine nature -- have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse" (Rom 1:19-20 NIV).
It is impossible for Atheists, and Atheist-Christians, to even conceive of the essence of what Jesus taught, because they are imbued with a Darwinist mindset. It is in vain that they read the Bible, or the sacred writings of any religious people, because without first becoming the spouse of Christ, they are blind to the true spiritual meaning of the Word.
Contrary to their manner of thinking, man possesses universal religious symbols because the same Divine Force is moving all of mankind towards his ultimate destiny -- as portrayed in the parable of the prodigal son. Each of us not only has a pre-existent soul, but also a spiritual nature that remains very much attached to our Creator and Source of being. In the same way that regardless of our race, there remains a genetic uniformity among all of mankind, we are all confronted with the same obstacles with regard to breaking down the natural barrier that exists between us and our pre-existent soul. That this barrier is universal, means that the problem is also approached universally, which further means that the solution is also universal. The very fact that we are all imbued with the Universal Genetics of our Creator and Source of Life -- and the fact that we are all intimately connected through the One -- means that the symbolism that we use to relate the means by which we must overcome the barrier and obstacle that sets before each of us in our search for our Universal Source of Being, will also be perceived as universal symbols in the mind of man.
From the very limited Darwinist vision of creation, this pre-existent soul and spiritual nature of man does not exist. Because Darwin saw only the physical vessel in which man journeys in this world -- the far country -- the words of the Apostle had no place in Darwin’s perception of creation when Paul said: "For in him we live, and move, and have our being" (Acts 17:28 KJV). Darwin, as with all men of a carnal mind, attempted to explain the reality of man from the very limited perception of this world, without recognizing that man is a great deal more than what we see with our physical eyes.
Embracing the same error as Darwin, carnal Christians have a great problem with the preceding verse in their comprehension of the words of the Apostle when he said that if "men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us" (Acts 17:27 NIV). We can observe that the Greek philosophers, as well as all men who reach out for God the world over, all possess a universal set of symbols -- symbols that not only portray a universal barrier and obstacle in man’s quest to know God, but also a universal Light that illuminates man’s understanding, and a universal destiny that is shown to man by this indwelling Light.
The problem was that neither Plato and the (religious) philosophers the world over, or the prophets of the Old Testament, were able to become Masters of The Way, because they had only partially completed their journey. Thus, their vision of the Kingdom remained clouded and incomplete. This, though, was not the case with Jesus -- who not only became re-unified with the Father, but in becoming Master of The Way, had the Power to draw his disciples and genuine believers into the Kingdom with him. It is therefore because Jesus himself became complete and perfect, that his very presence had the Power to make his genuine disciples complete and perfect. This great truth is expressed by the Apostle Paul throughout his epistles, but is not understood by Christians in our present time.
In truth, because they were manifest in the Power of Completion, the teachings of the Lord were unique and superior to anything in the Gentile world. Though in many instances the religion of the philosophers embraced the same exact symbols as did the religion of the Spiritual Jews, it was these Jewish Mystics that were more pure in their walk with God, and could see and move beyond the level and limitations of the Gentiles. It was for this reason that Jesus said to the woman from Samaria: "Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews" (John 4:22 KJV).
Because modern Christians no longer possess a clear vision of man’s spiritual reality, they simply do not believe Jesus’ words when he said that "salvation is of the Jews". What Jews? Not the impostor Jews that he condemned, but the Spiritual Jews who he called his brothers.
When Christendom traded the biblical Messiah for the Greek Christ -- embraced the celebrations of the nations instead of the designs and higher patterns of the scriptures -- and took upon themselves the religious concepts of Plato and the Poets, while throwing away the Keys to the Kingdom that Jesus placed in their hands -- they lost that important element that set the disciples of Jesus apart from the rest of the world. In light of this fact, the question that every Christian should ask is this: If this is true, then how do we Christians again become the Light of the world, and restore the great truths of the Master -- truths that were first defiled when the Messiah Jesus was installed as the god of the Pagans, and then thrown away by the Emperor Constantine and his institutionalized church? The answer is very clear: If we, as a body of religious people, seek the essence of our religion -- and, like the Son of Man coming in his Kingdom (Mt 3:12), throw out the chaff and retain the elements of truth, we can again restore what was lost, and resume our role in the world as the people of the Light. To accomplish this, we must first rid ourselves of what is carnal and false, renew our discipleship with the Lord in our endeavor to enter within the Temple of our souls, and again learn to hear the words directly from the Master.
In order to get a clear picture, we must understand what separates the modern believer from the Living Messiah? Very simply, we are presently members of the anti-church, rather than the Living Church. In the same way that there were impostor Jews, there was -- and continues to be -- impostor Christians who embraced an impostor church. Lets put things in their proper perspective: In the fourth century the Emperor Constantine inaugurated and started his own Church. This church -- the Church of Constantine -- has come to be known to us today as Christianity. How could he do this, we might ask? The answer is very simple: He was the sole ruler of the empire. If he wanted his own church, who was going to stop him?
At the time that Constantine began his (own) church, there was great diversity within the existing church that has come to be known as Christian. Foremost, there was the Messianic (Jewish) believers who were known as the Ebionites and Nazarenes -- there was the Gentile believers who had embraced the Spirit and Essence of Jesus’ teachings in a very Greek Hellenistic manner, and were known as Gnostic Christians -- and lastly there was the very worldly and carnal believers who were deeply entrenched in the Paganism and culture of the empire. This last group called themselves Orthodox -- and because they were too carnal to understand the spiritual aspects of the Gospel, they viewed the Gnostic Christians as heretics. Since neither the carnal (Orthodox) or the spiritual (Gnostic) Christians understood the design and foundation of the original first century church of the Apostles, they condemned the original Messianic Jewish Church as Judaizers, and labeled them heretics.
This may surprise modern believers, but within the foundation of this church as a whole, the perfect Church had emerged. What I will present here is a very brief outline of what the True Church should look like. I can’t convey the entire design at this time because we need to examine certain spiritual concepts from a more in-depth perspective before the big picture can truly unfold.
The sole purpose of the church is an outreach in this world -- and its function is to assist those who attempt to bridge the great divide between the physical and spiritual dimensions of being. God did not abandon the Jews like modern believers falsely believe. In the same way that the Ebionites and Nazarenes provided the secular Jews with a door to the spirit, so did the Spiritual, or Gnostic Christians provide this same door for the Pagan converts.
The road from physical to spiritual is one of many small incremental steps -- and, as one begins to arrive at the door to the Kingdom, there will come a time when all allegiance to worldly sects will have to be severed and done away with. Because of the cultural differences, the Gentiles were unable to walk the same path as the Jews -- and neither could the Jews embrace the path of the Gentiles. When we understand this, we will quickly come to realize that because of cultural differences, the quickest way to Christ was to create parallel paths. In the same way that the Gentile converts did not have to observe the portions of the Law that were imposed upon the Jew -- such as circumcision and the kosher dietary restrictions -- neither did it benefit the Jew to be involved in the festivals of the Pagans, as was the case with the Gentile converts. In the same way that the leaders of the Gentile Church realized that it would be detrimental to remove the converts from their native culture, so too did the leaders of the Messianic Jewish movement understand that they could not help the secular Jews unless they continued to embrace the Jewish culture. Both groups continued to outwardly embrace their own culture in order to effectively assist their own people on the road from the physical to the spiritual.
We see the same thing happening today that transpired in the first three centuries of the Christian Church. In order to assist the masses in making the transition, we now see religious services that resemble rock concerts -- others that embrace an African-American, a Spanish-American, or an Asian-American culture. In order to embrace the needs of the people, and become an intimate element in the life of the people, religion must be interpreted in the language and culture of the individual group. The ultimate agenda is to bridge the gap between God and mankind. Because there was no central control over the church of the first three centuries, there was enough flexibility for the teachings of Jesus to accommodate the individual needs of the people.
The majority of believers being themselves carnal in their mindset, did not understand the Divine Plan that was inaugurated. The result was that the Gentile Christians condemned the Messianic believers as Judaizers, while the Messianic believers condemned the Gentile Christians as idol worshiping Pagans. Ultimately, each side was correct, and each side was in error. More importantly, though, was the fact that the Divine Precepts that Jesus taught was being carried to the people in a way that they could grasp. It did not matter whether the Jew was converted to a Messianic believer, or the Pagans were converted to Christian, the Church provided parallel paths to the same Source that bridged the gap from physical to spiritual.
This truly universal Christian Church met its demise in the fourth century. It is noteworthy that one of the great second and third century champions of Orthodox Christianity, the Church Father Terullian (145-220 CE), who was the founder of what is today called Latin Christianity, eventually left the Church to become a Montanist. Why did he leave the Orthodox Church? Because a very large body of the Church had become so deeply immersed in the Greek and Roman culture of the time, that they had degenerated into a very worldly and corrupt condition from a spiritual perspective. The Montanists, on the other hand, were a charismatic group of believers who actively sought the coming of the Holy Spirit and the gifts of prophecy by living a spiritually consecrated life.
In the development of the church, the man known today as St. Constantine the Great, was the political door that brought about the destruction of the genuine Christian Church. Constantine was a sun worshiper -- believing that the Roman sun god, Sol, was the visible manifestation of an invisible "Highest God", who was the ultimate creative principle behind the universe. It was a general belief held by the subjects of the empire that this god was the companion of the Roman emperor -- who was himself looked upon and worshiped as a god. It is said that Constantine underwent a religious conversion in the year 310 with his claim of having had a vision of the sun god while in a grove of Apollo in Gaul. In 312, on the eve of a battle against Maxentius (c. 250-312), Constantine is reported to have dreamed that Christ appeared to him and told him to inscribe the first two letters of his name (XP in Greek) on the shields of his troops. The next day he is said to have seen a cross superimposed on the sun, and the words "in this sign you will be the victor". One of the major problems is that the cross that Constantine used was not that of the Christians.
What Christ did Constantine see in his vision? As the Encyclopedia Britannica (1998 electronic edition) tells us that it was: "suggested also by a pagan orator, who in a speech of 310 referred to a vision of Apollo received by Constantine at a shrine in Gaul". In his Life of Constantine, the church historian Eusebius attempts to portray the vision as being of Christ -- but in perception of the blur that existed between the Christ of the Pagan world, and the Christ of Pagan Christianity, it is difficult to say exactly what Constantine saw -- if anything at all. It is accurate to say that even after Constantine’s supposed conversion, he continued to mint coins in commemoration to Sol the sun god -- who to him represented another one of the many manifestations of Christ.
In every respect, Constantine was a barbarian who ruled the empire with a forceful hand. The historian, Edward Gibbon, describes him as a "cruel but dissolute monarch" combining "the vices of rapaciousness and prodigality". Constantine became emperor by making war and destroying his every opponent. At the very time he presided over the Council of Nice where he ultimately decided the official doctrine of his church, he had his own son murdered. In addition to the great number of people he slaughtered for political, and semi-political religious reasons, he was also responsible for killing his brother in law, his nephew and his second wife.
In church matters it is a well established fact that Constantine believed that all schism was inspired by the devil. Therefore, Constantine dealt with all who opposed his church and brand of doctrine and theology in the same manner that he did with all who opposed him on the battlefield. In the same fervor of Hitler, who sought to purify his people through the total elimination of the Jews, homosexuals, handicapped, and anyone who did not agree with him, Constantine was in many ways the Hitler of the fourth century.
Those bishops who permitted Constantine -- a man who was not at the time even baptized -- any role at all in the decision-making of the council and the affairs of the church, bring the credibility of their own Christianity into question. Genuine disciples of Jesus would have nothing to do with Constantine’s Church, or the new very Pagan religion of the Empire which adopted the name Christian. When Jesus said: "Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s, and to God the things that are God’s" (Mark 12:17 NAS) -- this, in and of itself, requires a strict understanding and adherence of the principles of separation of church and state. In fact, for good reason the framers of the Constitution of the United States understood the fallacy of government rule of religious matters, and placed an injunction upon such a course of action in the First Amendment. Any time a central, secular government, is permitted to adopt a religion, actively involve itself in the doctrine and affairs of that religion, and exclude all other religious opinions, then the adopted religion ceases to serve God, and can no longer be considered a genuine religion. Such was the fate of the Christian Church beginning in the fourth century.
Religious communities are good -- in that they are necessary for the spiritual growth of the people. Ideally, these communities should be limited to a certain size, and people must be free to leave the community when it no longer serves their needs. The problem is that, what is good on a small scale, is detrimental to spiritual growth on a large scale -- and proof of this is readily seen when Constantine inaugurated his new church, and the marriage of church and state under the name of Christian was conceived.
Paul Of Samosata
Typical Clergy Of The Church
With this fact in mind, it can easily be demonstrated that the clergy and believers who, in the fourth century, embraced the emperor’s new church, were in every way a league of Pagan barbarians -- and entered in this secular covenant because they had a great deal in common with their master Constantine. This fact is readily confirmed: "The story of Paul of Samosata", writes Edward Gibbon in his The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire, "may serve to illustrate the condition and character of the times". As we read Gibbon’s description of this illustrious bishop, it is important to keep in mind that Gibbon was using Paul of Samosata not as a case in point of an individual heresy, but rather as an example to demonstrate "the condition and character of the times". Paul, who was Bishop of Antioch from 260 to 268, was very much like the rest of the bishops and clergy of the so-called Orthodox Church in the third and fourth centuries.
Gibbon writes of Paul that: "The wealth of that prelate was a sufficient evidence of his guilt, since it was neither derived from the inheritance of his fathers, nor acquired by the arts of honest industry. But Paul considered the service of the church as a very lucrative profession. His ecclesiastical jurisdiction was venal and rapacious; he extorted frequent contributions from the most opulent of the faithful, and converted to his own use a considerable part of the public revenue. By his pride and luxury the Christian religion was rendered odious in the eyes of the Gentiles. His council chamber and his throne, the splendor with which he appeared in public, the suppliant to which he dictated his answers, and the perpetual hurry of business in which he was involved, were circumstances much better suited to a state of a civil magistrate than to the humility of a primitive bishop. When he harangued his people from the pulpit, Paul affected the figurative style and the theatrical gestures of an Asiatic sophist, while the cathedral resounded with the loudest and most extravagant acclamations in the praise of his divine eloquence. Against those who resisted his power, or refused to flatter his vanity, the prelate of Antioch was arrogant, rigid, and inexorable; but he relaxed the discipline, and lavished the treasures of the church on his dependent clergy, who were permitted to imitate their master in the gratification of every sensual appetite. For Paul indulged himself very freely in the pleasures of the table, and he had received into the episcopal palace two young and beautiful women, as the constant companions of his leisure moments".
To further "illustrate the condition and character of the times", Gibbon writes that "Simony", or the buying and selling of ecclesiastic positions within the church, "was not unknown in those times; and the clergy sometimes bought what they intended to sell. It appears that the bishopric of Carthage was purchased by a wealthy matron, named Lucilla, for her servant Majorinus". Regarding the wholesale immorality and depravity of the churches, Gibbon writes that: "Fraud, envy, and malice prevailed in every congregation. The presbyters aspired to the episcopal office, which every day became an object more worthy of their ambitions".
It is important to understand that when Constantine started his church, we must recognize the fact that the clergy and body of people who he drew into his church was very much like himself. And when we ask who these men were who enlisted in his church? I have already demonstrated that the words Christ and Christian were universal terms used throughout the empire.
In view of the fact that a body of true spiritual holy men would have nothing to do with a barbarian and spiritual infidel such as Constantine, it should be easy for the modern believer to perceive what sort of Christian enlisted in his church. In view of the fact that Christ was the true foundation of the religion of the philosophers, and every sort of Pagan doctrine enlisted itself under the banner of Christ, it is easy to understand how the members of Constantine’s Church called themselves Christian -- and yet, they had very little in common with the genuine teachings of Jesus in any form whatsoever. Further, whoever for a minute believes that Jesus would welcome the likes of Constantine as a disciple, or as a shepherd of the flock, simply has no perception of the ideals that Jesus taught.
In order for a Living religion to flourish, there must be a certain level of doctrinal freedom that permits believers from all walks of life to progress through the various stages of spiritual development. In the same way that God is the Alpha and Omega -- the beginning and the end -- a true spiritual church must be able to bring each and every person from the alpha of this world, into the omega of the New Jerusalem: "And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, ‘Behold, the dwelling of God is with men. He will dwell with them, and they shall be his people, and God himself will be with them; he will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning nor crying nor pain any more, for the former things have passed away.’ And he who sat upon the throne said, ‘Behold, I make all things new.’ Also he said, ‘Write this, for these words are trustworthy and true.’ And he said to me, ‘It is done! I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end. To the thirsty I will give from the fountain of the water of life without payment. He who conquers shall have this heritage, and I will be his God and he shall be my son’" (Rev 21:3-7 RSV).
The promise of life in the New Jerusalem as a Son of God is not given to those who believe -- but rather, those who conquer. Conquer what? Because everything in this world is both an illusion and an allusion, as one follows in the footsteps of Jesus, and conquers this world, they are in essence conquering their own carnal-animal nature. The problem is that this is not accomplished through violence or denial -- but rather, through the transformation and marriage of the lower nature to the higher, spiritual nature of man.
The True Church of Christ, then, can never have rigid doctrines that men believe and adhere to -- this is the way of the Sadducees and Pharisees who were the impostors in relation to the true people of God. In the same way that the various people are at different levels of spiritual maturity between the alpha and omega, so too must the Genuine Church serve the needs of the individual person at the level they are at. Thus, this (doctrinal-religious) freedom was manifest in the Church prior to Constantine because it served both the needs of the carnal believers, and yet there were true spiritual elders who were there to guide the seeker into a state of direct communion with God. Moreover, when the disciple of the Light who was of a Gentile heritage had progressed through the various stages of development, and was on the path to becoming a true spiritual being, the original people of the New Covenant -- the Essene-Ebionites -- were still there to reveal to his understanding the scriptures that were authored by the disciples of Jesus -- spiritual truths that the Bible states were too secret to ever be given to the people of the Nations.
In this respect, prior to the time of Constantine, the church was fulfilling its genuine mission in the world. At its essence, there was only one High Priest -- the Messiah-Christ -- who continued to reign in his Spiritual Church. His disciples who were in this physical realm of existence, remained his servants, and they fulfilled their duty of shepherding the flock into the True Church of Christ. These servants, therefore, were not those who created doctrines that insufficiently attempted to explain spiritual truths that must be experienced in order to be understood -- but rather, they were the elders who guided the faithful flock into the Kingdom where all Truths are revealed through the direct experience of the disciple of the Light.
This Spiritual Church with its physical annex in this world came to an end in the fourth century. As part of the political structure of Rome, there was no freedom of doctrine or thought in the church that Constantine created -- only doctrinal limitations as men with a very limited understanding attempted to reduce the unspeakable, unfathomable and unknowable mysteries of God, into dogma and doctrine that made sense to the carnal mind of unspiritual men. Then, when the genuine followers of Jesus refused to join Constantine’s Church, Constantine imposed his doctrinal limitations on mankind with the power of the sword.
To what extent was this very corrupt form of Pagan-Christianity controlled by Constantine and the Roman Government? Under the heading of Constantine, in the eleventh edition of the Britannica, we find that: "Constantine showed a determination to assert his Supremacy in ecclesiastical affairs, holding no doubt that, as the office of pontifex maximus gave him the supreme control of religious matters throughout the empire, the regulation of Christianity fell within his province... and it is significant that from hence forth we meet with the undisguised assertion that the will of the emperor, in whatever form expressed, is the sole foundation of the law. Constantine, in fact, embodies the spirit of absolute authority which, both in church and state, was to prevail for many centuries". In other words, the religion that was associated with the name of Jesus of Nazireth, was now under the total control of the Roman Imperial Government.
What should strike fear in the hearts of the modern believer is the fact that it is clear from his writings that Constantine truly believed he was a prophet. As an initiate into the Pagan mysteries, he believed that he was ordained by God to inaugurate the true religion of Christ in the empire. Like most Pagans of his day, he adhered to the general belief that the original Messianic Jews who were the followers of Jesus -- who were at that time known as Ebionites and Nazarenes -- were blinded by their Jewish heritage, and were a blight to the religion of Jesus. As an initiate in the Pagan Mystery religions, Constantine understood that the writings of the philosophers and poets had an inner message that revealed Christ to those who had the capacity to comprehend the true meaning of the writings.
What is clear is that Constantine believed that the coming of Christ had been predicted in the writings of the poets -- and especially those known as the oracles of the prophetess Sibyl. Of the poet Cicero, Constantine writes: "We perceive that these words are spoken plainly and at the same time darkly, by way of allegory. Those who search deeply for the import of the words, are able to discern the Divinity of Christ. But lest any of the powerful in the imperial city might be able to accuse the poet of writing anything contrary to the laws of the country, and subverting the religious sentiments which had prevailed from ancient times, he intentionally obscures the truth. For he was acquainted, as I believe, with that blessed mystery which gave to our Lord the name of Savior: but, that he might avoid the severity of cruel men, he drew the thoughts of his hearers to objects with which they were familiar, saying that altars must be erected, temples raised, and sacrifices offered to the new-born child. His concluding words also are adapted to the sentiments of those who were accustomed to such a creed" (The Oration of Constantine).
In the same writing Constantine confirms that the historical coming of Christ was further written about by the poet Virgilius Maro, and writes of him: "Cautiously, therefore, and securely, as far as possible, he presents the truth to those who have faculties to understand it; and while he denounces the munitions and conflicts of war (which indeed are still to be found in the course of human life), he describes our Savior as proceeding to the war against Troy, understanding by Troy the world itself" (The Oration of Constantine).
Of the writings of the poet Maro, Constantine writes: "Again, the Assyrian race is gone, which first led the way to faith in God. But when he speaks of the growth of amomum every where, he alludes to the multitude of the true worshipers of God. For it is as though a multitude of branches, crowned with fragrant flowers, and fitly watered, sprung from the self-same root. Most justly said, Maro, thou wisest of poets! and with this all that follows is consistent" (The Oration of Constantine).
It is clear in his own writings that Constantine believed that he perceived the true teachings, and could harmonize the writings of the philosophers and poets with the coming of Christ. What is important to comprehend from the perspective of the modern Christian, is to understand that Constantine brought forth his very Pagan beliefs -- beliefs which in his mind revealed God and Christ -- and incorporated them into his new religion -- i.e., Constantine’s Church from which our present churches have evolved from.
In order to grasp the big picture of what transpired, the modern believer must understand that what Constantine professed was not unique, and was a common belief among the Pagans of his day. Constantine, though he believed himself to be a prophet of Christ, was not the source of the doctrine with regard to the opinion that the Greek poets predicted the coming of Christ. The Gentile converts had held this belief for hundreds of years. The second century Church Father Clement of Alexandria writes that: "And further, that the same God that furnished both the Covenants was the giver of Greek philosophy to the Greeks, by which the Almighty is glorified among the Greeks, he shows. And it is clear from this. Accordingly, then, from the Hellenic training, and also from that of the law are gathered into the one race of the saved people those who accept faith: not that the three peoples are separated by time, so that one might suppose three natures, but trained in different Covenants of the one Lord, by the word of the one Lord. For that, as God wished to save the Jews by giving to them prophets, so also by raising up prophets of their own in their own tongue, as they were able to receive God’s beneficence, He distinguished the most excellent of the Greeks from the common herd, in addition to ‘Peter’s Preaching,’ the Apostle Paul will show, saying: ‘Take also the Hellenic books, read the Sibyl, how it is shown that God is one, and how the future is indicated. And taking Hystaspes, read, and you will find much more luminously and distinctly the Son of God described, and how many kings shall draw up their forces against Christ, hating Him and those that bear His name, and His faithful ones, and His patience, and His coming.’ Then in one word he asks us, ‘Whose is the world, and all that is in the world? Are they not God’s? ‘ Wherefore Peter says, that the Lord said to the apostles: ‘If any one of Israel then, wishes to repent, and by my name to believe in God, his sins shall be forgiven him, after twelve years. Go forth into the world, that no one may say, We have not heard’".
Notice that Clement refers to both the Hebrews and the initiates of the Greek Mystery religions as begin "…gathered into the one race of the saved people those who accept faith… trained in different Covenants of the one Lord, by the word of one Lord". Thus, these people who were the initiates in the Greek Mystery religions, and were referred to as Christian, viewed themselves as the saved people of the God of Jesus.
Throughout the writings of the second and third century Church Fathers there are scriptural quotations that either no longer exist in our Bibles today, or have been altered from their more ancient context. Every modern Christian should look seriously at the words of Clement when he wrote: "the Apostle Paul will show, saying: ‘Take also the Hellenic books, read the Sibyl, how it is shown that God is one, and how the future is indicated. And taking Hystaspes, read, and you will find much more luminously and distinctly the Son of God described, and how many kings shall draw up their forces against Christ, hating Him and those that bear His name, and His faithful ones, and His patience, and His coming’".
The modern Christian should be in awe with respect to what is being stated by this second-third century authority. What Clement writes is that in the original writings of the Apostle Paul that existed in the first and second centuries, Paul made reference to the writings of the Sibyl -- but this and perhaps other references were edited out of our Bibles that we have today. Further, when Clement writes about the prediction pertaining to the Son of God by Hystaspes, we must ask who he is referring to? Hystaspes was a Persian ruler in the 6th to 7th century B.C..
The fact that Paul writes to the Gentile Christians that they should read the writings of the Sibyl, would be sufficient to affirm the position of the Messianic (Jewish) followers of Jesus that Paul was a heretic who misled the people. Thus, we can see that it was Paul himself who fostered the anti-Semitic mindset that possessed the thinking of the later Gentile Church. Again, it is important to understand the position that is represented in the statement by the Encyclopedia Britannica under the heading of Jesus and Paul, where it is written: "In calling Paulinism ’Christocentric’, one raises the question as to its relation to the Gospel proclaimed by Jesus... how far he unconsciously modified the Gospel by making Christ its subject matter rather than its revealer.... Paul... put all into so fresh a perspective as to change the relative emphasis on points central to the teaching of Jesus, and so alter its spirit. A school of writers, by no means unappreciative of Paul as they understand him, of whom W. Wrede may be taken as example, answer that Paul so changed Christianity as to become its ‘second founder ‘ - the real founder of ecclesiastical Christianity as distinct from the Christianity of Jesus. They say, ‘either Jesus or Paul’ it cannot be both at once’".
Objectively, the Britannica states that the religion of Paul was not the same as the religion of Jesus. That Constantine’s Church which was founded upon Pagan concepts of religion could flourish, was just one more example of the grave misconceptions that have been derived from the Epistles of Paul -- as demonstrated in the Barnes’ Notes Commentary for James 2:26: "...all history has shown, the statements of Paul on the subject of justification are liable to great abuse. All the forms of Antinomianism have grown out of such abuse, and are only perverted statements of his doctrine. It has been said, that if Christ has freed us from the necessity of obeying the law in order to justification; if he has fulfilled it in our stead, and borne its penalty, then the law is no longer binding on those who are justified, and they are at liberty to live as they please. It has been further said, that if we are saved by faith alone, a man is safe the moment he believes, and good works are therefore not necessary. It is possible that such views as these began to prevail as early as the time of James, and, if so, it was proper that there should be an authoritative apostolic statement to correct them, and to check these growing abuses. If, therefore, James had, as it has been supposed he had, any reference to the sentiments of Paul, it was not to correct his sentiments, or to controvert them but it was to correct the abuses which began already to flow from his doctrines, and to show that the alleged inferences did not properly follow from the opinions which he held; or, in other words, to show that the Christian religion required men to lead holy lives, and that the faith by which it was acknowledged that the sinner must be justified, was a faith which was productive of good works".
That many were misled by misinterpreting the Epistles of Paul, is the reason why the Messianic (Jewish) followers of Jesus condemned him as an apostate. That Constantine was able to with great ease found his very Pagan church on the letters of Paul, and the fact that Constantine’s Church was later condemned as Satanic by Martin Luther and the Middle-Age Reformers, only serves to affirm the position of the Messianic Jews who were themselves silenced by Constantine’s sword.
The belief held by the Gentile Christians that the writings of the Sibyl were inspired by the Holy Spirit is further explored by Theophilus of Antioch (A.D. 115-181), who wrote: "But men of God carrying in them a Holy Spirit and becoming prophets, being inspired and made wise by God, became God-taught, and holy, and righteous. Wherefore they were also deemed worthy of receiving this reward, that they should become instruments of God, and contain the wisdom that is from Him, through which wisdom they uttered both what regarded the creation of the world and all other things. For they predicted also pestilences, and famines, and wars. And there was not one or two, but many, at various times and seasons among the Hebrews; and also among the Greeks there was the Sibyl; and they all have spoken things consistent and harmonious with each other, both what happened before them and what happened in their own time, and what things are now being fulfilled in our own day".
In the writings of the second century Church Father Justin Martyr (A.D. 110-165), the Sibyl is spoken of as an inspired prophetess: "But since, ye men of Greece, the matters of the true religion lie not in the metrical numbers of poetry, nor yet in that culture which is highly esteemed among you, do ye henceforward pay less devotion to accuracy of metres and of language; and giving heed without contentiousness to the words of the Sibyl, recognize how great are the benefits which she will confer upon you by predicting, as she does in a clear and patent manner, the advent of our Savior Jesus Christ".
One of the grave misunderstandings of the modern believer is seen in their failure to understand the thinking of the early church with respect to the religions of the Nations. A core belief that is not realized today is that, from a Pagan perspective, Constantine viewed Moses, Jesus and the Hebrew Prophets in the same exact manner as did Muhammad -- the Islamic Prophet -- who regarded them as Muslims, rather than Jews. Moreover, it is because of this doctrine that the Koran views both Christians and Jews as heretics who must be either converted to the true religion of Islam, or slain.
This fact is of the utmost importance because we can never have a correct perception of the events of history that have molded our beliefs today, until we fully understand that Constantine and the early church viewed Moses, Jesus and the prophets as Christians -- not as of a Hebrew heritage -- but rather, from the perspective of the religion of the philosophers and poets. What we call the heathen religions, Constantine viewed as the true religion of Christ.
The Adoption Of
The Doctrine Of The Trinity
It is important that we understand this concept of belief that was embraced by both the Christians and Muslims alike. When Muhammad speaks of the biblical prophets, he considers them to be Muslim holy men who were sent to condemn the Jews, and tell them that they were not the people of God. In much the same way, Muhammad viewed Jesus’ birth among the Jews as the means by which God would condemn the Hebrews as heretics, because he believed that Jesus was truly a Muslim holy man. What we fail to grasp today is that the Gentile Christians embraced this same exact belief before it was later adopted by Muhammad. The Christians -- or more appropriately the enlightened Pagans -- believed that all their scriptures revealed Christ in their inner concealed meaning. The Old Testament prophets where therefore not Hebrews, but Christian. Jesus came to the Jews first, in order to condemn them -- and then came to the people of the Nations, who were from the beginning of time the true people of God.
In the eyes of the new religion, the Jews were heretics, and were to be hated and scorned. Constantine, like most of the Gentile world, falsely believed that the Jews killed Christ, and that God looked revengefully upon them, and sought their demise. This same position was later adopted by Adolph Hitler, and was used as an excuse in his holocaust of the Jews. Constantine, like Hitler, believed he was doing God a great service by ridding the world of heretics.
From Constantine’s perspective, chief among the heretics were the Messianic (Jewish) believers who he condemned as Judiazers, and considered them to be a blight to the (his) church. Why? Because they steadfastly held to the religious principles of the scriptures, they were viewed as heretics who could not understand the true teachings of Christ. This anti-Jewish climate flourished a distain for the Old Testament -- and even to some degree, the New Testament scriptures. This mindset was of course nourished by the many anti-Jewish statements in the Epistles of the Apostle Paul.
The written word of the scriptures came to be associated with the Jews, and whatever did not reveal Christ, was to be rejected. It was no longer God’s Sabbath or New Year, but rather the Jewish Sabbath, New Year or Passover. This mentality was born out of the doctrine that the Pagan religions of the Gentiles were superior to the religion of the Jews -- and remains with us as a very dangerous religious foundation to this very day.
In the mindset of a very large body of the Gentile Christians, the Jews were never the people of God. The Gentile Christians, on the other hand, were revealed as the true people of God, and the Christ came so they could inherit their own spiritual destiny. The Gentile Christians believed that Jesus had come to the Jews first -- not to save them, but rather to reprove and chastise them. After this first mission of condemnation was accomplished, the gospel was then taken to the Gentiles -- who in their vision of the gospel, always were the true people of God.
Constantine saw himself as a true prophet and anointed one of the Lord. In him the teachings of the Christ were to have their fulfillment with the conversion of the world to the true religion. In him was the final triumph of light over darkness, and he wholeheartedly embraced his destiny. The true religion of mankind that was prophetically spoken of from antiquity, was his to inaugurate. It was Constantine who would write the final chapter of Christian history, and bring about the Lord’s kingdom upon the earth.
Like most Gentile believers, Constantine saw the continuity of Christianity from the earliest of times to the present. In the second century writing of Theophilus to the philosopher Autolycus, we again see the doctrine of Christian antiquity: "But I wish now to give you a more accurate demonstration, God helping me, of the historical periods, that you may see that our doctrine is not modern nor fabulous, but more ancient and true than all poets and authors who have written in uncertainty".
This most ancient of religions -- the theology of the philosophers -- was now openly called Christian. As one who was an initiate in the Pagan Mystery religions, Constantine believed in Plato’s doctrine of the Trinity -- which is the doctrine which states that the Father, Son and Holy Spirit are three personages in one. The true source of this doctrine is not the Bible -- but rather, the Pagan doctrines of the philosophers. This is readily demonstrated in the article by the Encyclopedia Britannica (1998 electronic edition) under the heading of Trinity, Introduction of Neoplatonic themes, where it states: "In the Johannine literature in the Bible there appeared the first traces of the concept of Christ as the Logos, the ‘word’ or ‘principle’ that issues from eternity. Under the influence of subsequent Neoplatonic philosophy, this tradition became central in speculative theology. There was interest in the relationship of the ‘oneness’ of God to the ‘triplicity’ of divine manifestations. This question was answered through the Neoplatonic metaphysics of being. The transcendent God, who is beyond all being, all rationality, and all conceptuality, is divested of divine transcendence. In a first act of becoming self-conscious the Logos recognizes itself as the divine mind (Greek: nous), or divine world reason, which was characterized by the Neoplatonic philosopher Plotinus as the ‘Son’ who goes forth from the Father. The next step by which the transcendent God becomes self-conscious consists in the appearance in the divine nous of the divine world, the idea of the world in its individual forms as the content of the divine consciousness. In Neoplatonic philosophy both the nous and the idea of the world are designated the hypostases of the transcendent God. Christian theology took the Neoplatonic metaphysics of substance as well as its doctrine of hypostases as the departure point for interpreting the relationship of the ‘Father’ to the ‘Son’ in terms of the Neoplatonic hypostases doctrine. This process stands in direct relationship with a speculative interpretation of Christology in connection with Neoplatonic Logos speculation".
The Britannica then concludes: "The assumption of the Neoplatonic hypostases doctrine meant from the beginning a certain evaluation of the relationships of the three divine figures to one another, because for Neoplatonism the process of hypostatization is at the same time a process that includes a diminishing of being. Thus, in flowing forth from the transcendent source, the divine being is progressively weakened with the distance from the transcendent origin. Diminution of being, on these terms, is brought about through approach to matter, which for its part is understood in Neoplatonism as nonbeing. In transferring the Neoplatonic hypostases doctrine to the Christian interpretation of the Trinity there existed the danger that the different manifestations of God--as known by the Christian experience of faith: Father, Son, Holy Spirit--would be transformed into a hierarchy of gods graduated among themselves and thus into a polytheism. Though this danger was consciously avoided and, proceeding from a Logos Christology, the complete sameness of essence of the three manifestations of God was emphasized, there arose the danger of a relapse into a triplicity of equally ranked gods, which would displace the idea of the oneness of God".
It can readily be seen by the modern believer why the doctrine of the Trinity is totally absent from Jewish and Messianic Jewish theology. Speaking of the connection between the Logos of the Gospel of John, and that of the Pagan world, Gibbon writes of the Platonic source of the doctrine of the Trinity: "The divine sanction which the Apostle had bestowed on the fundamental principle of the theology of Plato encouraged the learned proselytes of the second and third centuries to admire and study the writings of the Athenian sage, who has thus marvelously anticipated one of the most surprising discoveries of the Christian revelation. The respectable name of Plato was used by the orthodox, and abused by the heretics, as the common support of truth and error; the authority of his skilful commentators and the science of dialectics were employed to justify the remote consequences of his opinions, and to supply the discreet silence of the inspired writers. The same subtle and profound questions concerning the nature, the generation, the distinction, and the equality of the three divine persons of the mysterious Triad, or Trinity, were agitated in the philosophical and in the Christian schools of Alexandria" (The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire).
When Gibbon writes of the "silence of the inspired writers", he is making reference to the fact that the Trinity is not found in the Bible -- but rather, as was demonstrated by the Encyclopedia Britannica, the theology of Plato. From a biblical standpoint, there is no way to justify the very Gnostic Gospel of John with the Gospel of Mark, which declares Jesus to be a man who became the Son of God by perfecting fulfilling the Word in his life. Of this doctrinal conflict the Britannica writes: "The Gospel According to Mark, however, did not proceed from a theology of incarnation but instead understood the baptism of Jesus Christ as the adoption of the man Jesus Christ into the Sonship of God, accomplished through the descent of the Holy Spirit. The situation became further aggravated by the conceptions of the special personal character of the manifestation of God developed by way of the historical figure of Jesus Christ; the Holy Spirit was viewed not as a personal figure but rather as a power and appeared graphically only in the form of the dove and thus receded, to a large extent, in the Trinitarian speculation".
When it is remembered that the original of Matthew did not contain the first two chapters, and there is good historical reason to believe that neither did the original Luke, we must understand that from the perspective of Matthew, Mark and Luke, Jesus was the adopted Son of God. With regard to Luke, this is especially seen in the admission of the footnote in the Revised Standard Version which confirms that many of the more ancient manuscripts read: "Today I have begotten thee", instead of "In thee I am well pleased" at Luke 3:22.
Again let us remember that in Origen’s Commentary on the Gospel of John, Origen writes that: "None of these testimonies, however, sets forth distinctly the Savior’s exalted birth; but when the words are addressed to Him, ‘Thou art My Son, this day have I begotten Thee’, this is spoken to Him by God". When it is realized that Origen inherited many of his copies of scripture from his teacher, Clement of Alexandria, what we can determine is that Origen’s second century scriptures contained this same verse that was completely removed from third and fourth century copies of John, from which our versions are derived.
In view of these facts, we also have the direct witness of the Apostle Peter as found in the Clementine Holily number sixteen, Chapter fifteen, where he opposed Simon Magus and states: "Our Lord neither asserted that there were gods except the Creator of all, nor did He proclaim Himself to be God, but He with reason pronounced blessed him who called Him the Son of that God who has arranged the universe".
Regarding the concepts of the Trinity as embraced by the Pagan Christians, Peter goes on to explain the difference between the Father and the Son: "In addition to this, it is the peculiarity of the Father not to have been begotten, but of the Son to have been begotten; but what is begotten cannot be compared with that which is unbegotten or self-begotten... He who is not the same in all respects as some one, cannot have all the same appellations applied to him as that person.... if the one happens to be self-begotten or unbegotten, they cannot be called the same; nor can it be asserted of him who has been begotten that he is of the same substance as he is who has begotten him? Learn this also: The booties of men have immortal souls, which have been clothed with the breath of God; and having come forth from Cool, they are of the same substance, but they are not gods. But if they are gods, then in this way the souls of all men, both those who have died, and those who are alive, and those who shall come into being, are gods. But if in a spirit of controversy you maintain that these also are gods, what great matter is it, then, for Christ to be called God? for He has only what all have".
Peter, then, provides a discourse on the nature of God and states: "We call Him God whose peculiar attributes cannot belong to the nature of any other; for, as He is called the Unbounded because He is boundless on every side, it must of necessity be the case that it is no other one’s peculiar attribute to be called unbounded, as another cannot in like manner be boundless. But if any one says that it is possible, he is wrong; for two things boundless on every side cannot co-exist, for the one is bounded by the other. Thus it is in the nature of things that the unbegotten is one. But if he possesses a figure, even in this case the figure is one and incomparable. Wherefore He is called the Most High, because, being higher than all, He has the universe subject to Him".
In our reading of the Gospel of John, our greatest stumbling block is in not understanding the deeper level of Gnosticism that is indigenous to the writing. We are thus warned of this by Prof. John Allegro in The Dead Sea Scrolls and the Origins of Christianity when he wrote: "It is a fact that the Qumran Library has profoundly affected the study of the Johannine writings and many longheld conceptions have had to be radically revised. No longer can John be regarded as the most Hellenistic of the Evangelists; his gnosticism, and the whole framework of his thought is seen now to spring directly from a Jewish sectarianism rooted in palestinian soil, and his material recognized as founded in the earliest layers of Gospel traditions."
Unless we possess a spiritual death wish, and we truly desire to be deceived, we have no other choice than to recognize that John’s gnosticism means that we have to take great care when we attempt to develop beliefs based upon what is literally written. When Prof. Allegro writes about John’s "gnosticism", what he is stating is that he recognizes that the common framework of John’s thought has been represented in the writings of the Mystical and Gnostic Essenes. What this means to us is embodied in the words of Paul when he warned the carnal believers at Corinth: "If any one imagines that he knows something, he does not yet know as he ought to know" (1 Cor 8:2 RSV).
It is well documented in the preceding chapters that both the Gnostic Messianic believers, as well as the Gnostic Christians, did not write about historical events -- but rather, they worded what appeared to be historical writings into a mystical revelation of the inner Kingdom. Therefore, when John writes about the Word -- or Logos -- as being "...the true Light, which lighteth every man that cometh into the world" (John 1:9 KJV), he was speaking of that Light that exists within every one of us -- and which had evolved into an all consuming Light in the person of Jesus -- the pattern of the Divine Perfected Soul and destiny of all mankind. Again, the words of G.R.S. Mead regarding the nature of Gnostic scriptures: "...what the Gnostics projected onto the screen... of the universe was in reality a picture of their own minds" (Fragments of a Faith Forgotten). If the words of Jesus are correct wherein he states that the Kingdom of God is within us (Luke 17:20-21), then the "picture of their own minds" would need to be mapped in order to find the Kingdom that Jesus declared.
The whole thrust of Gnostic thought which is clearly represented in the scriptures is Knowledge of God via the only true path, which is self-knowledge. This is readily seen in the words of Clement of Alexandria when he wrote: "...the greatest of all lessons is to know one’s self. For if one knows himself, he will know God; and knowing God, he will be made like God... and that man becomes God, since God so wills". When John writes that we must be "born again", the re-birth of the Gnostic is not philosophical in the manner of a prayer -- but rather, it is Spiritual, as seen in St Gregory’s treaties on The Soul and the Resurrection where he writes that "the Resurrection is no other thing than ‘the re-constitution of our nature in its original form’", and states that there will come a time "...when the complete whole of our race shall have been perfected from the first man to the last".
When God, in the words of St. Nazianzen, no longer is an "object of wonder", but rather an "object of desire" -- and we, desiring to be purified from the defilements of this world, make ourselves fit vessels for the Lord, the Spirit reveals to us our true nature and makes "us like God; so that when we have thus become like Himself, God may, to use a bold expression, hold converse with us as Gods, being united to us, and that perhaps to the same extent as He already knows those who are known to Him". St. Nazianzen then writes: "the Divine Nature then is boundless and hard to understand" by those who are yet carnal and think as beings of this world.
Was Jesus God? I have already demonstrated throughout my writings that this was neither the doctrine that Jesus’ taught to his disciples, or his first followers. What St. Nazianzen is saying confirms what was written by the Apostle when he wrote: "But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him" (1 Cor 2:9 KJV). Because carnal man neither knows his own soul, or his spiritual nature, he simply cannot envision man’s true relationship to God -- the Son of God -- and neither is he capable of understanding Jesus, who himself said he was our brother.
When Celsus, the second century Epicurean philosopher accused the Christians of copying the doctrine of the Greeks with regard to the Son of God, Origen admitted that the concept as expressed in Plato was one and the same. We must of course remember that Origen wrote that the resurrection is a symbol of a Divine Truth -- and the common perception and understanding in the physical resurrection is "preached in the Churches... for the simpleminded and for the ears of the common crowd who are led on to live better lives by their belief". If this is offensive to us today, then we should remember that the Apostle Paul fundamentally conveyed the same exact thing where it is written: "Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God, instruction about baptisms, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment" (Heb 6:1-2 NIV).
When, as St. Gregory states, a man participates in the mystery of the resurrection, what is being expressed in this mystery that cannot be comprehended by the carnal mind is that, in Gregory’s words, "the Resurrection is no other thing than ‘the re-constitution of our nature in its original form’". Thus, we cannot even begin to understand this symbol and mystery, until we begin to reject our quasi-Darwinist perceptions of life, and open our minds to the reality of our pre-existent soul, and perceive its "nature in its original form’". The prodigal son that returns to his Father is not only restored to his pre-existing heavenly nature, but by virtue of his overcoming the powers of darkness -- i.e., the citizen of the far country -- he has been transformed, and has been elevated to a state of spiritual perfection -- and as such, possesses the higher wisdom, virtues, and qualities of the Father.
The carnal mind that is born out of the three dimensional limitations of this world cannot conceive of mankind’s true divine generation, or his eventual destiny. Being born of the flesh, and very much of this world, his perception of things divine is in every manner of the word, from the perspective of a lower life-form. Therefore, when he is confronted by a matured and perfected soul such as Jesus, it is natural for him to worship this being that, himself being of a higher level of Creation, is as a god to him. In this respect, carnal man is not wrong -- he being a creature who is born of this world, is simply incapable of a genuine perception of reality -- and especially his own innate spiritual nature and reality that lies dormant within the essence of his soul.
Because carnal man’s perception is three dimensional -- limited by physical senses that are born out of earthly matter -- he is incapable of comprehending the spiritual connectedness of Creation. When Paul said to the people of Athens about God that "‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring’" (Acts 17:28 NIV), what he did was open the door to one of the most monumental paradoxes that has continually plagued the Christian world. In the first place, like Origen, Clement, and a whole host of other early Christian writers, Paul here affirms that certain philosophers among the Greeks possessed a valid perception of God. Moreover, when carnal man uses rhetoric, and states that all things are of God, the essence of the spiritual reality that is being revealed here, and is well documented in the writings of the poets that Paul quotes, is that we literally dwell in the body-mind of God.
Error and opinion prevails today because it is a truly difficult thing for carnal man to envision the multiple realities and paradoxes of Creation. Some believers envision what is called a personal God -- a being whom they can speak to, in the manner they speak to another person. These people tend to ignore and reject the rather pantheistic viewpoint of God expressed in the above quotation of Paul. Yet, what believers fail to understand is this great biblical truth: In a world where you are warned that reality is above and beyond your understanding, and the Bible itself affirms both positions, perhaps we should open our minds to the possibility that both of these paradoxical points of view many each possess their own element of truth.
Carnal man envisions God as a Being that is separate from himself, perceptible to the senses, that can be communicated with in the manner that people communicate with each other. Yet, the vision of the poets that Paul quotes is that known as pantheism -- the idea that we not only dwell in the body-mind of God, but that all things are actually made up of part of God’s body. This connection is documented in the Jamieson, Fausset, and Brown Commentary for this verse where it is written: "This is the first half of the fifth line, word for word, of an astronomical poem of Aratus, a Greek countryman of the apostle’s and his predecessor by about three centuries. It is found also (nearly as here) in a religious hymn of Cleanthes of Troas, a contemporary of Aratus. But, as our speaker hints, the same sentiment is to be found in other Greek poets. They meant it, doubtless, in a pantheistic sense".
We cannot understand what Paul is conveying because, with our singular carnal perception, we cannot embrace the reality of the very paradoxical and multidimensional nature of Creation. It is beyond our comprehension how the Supreme God -- referred to in the Book of Daniel and Jewish Mysticism as the Ancient of Days -- indicating, He who is unbegotten, and has no beginning -- can both exist in a perceptible singular form, and yet we are dwelling within His very Mind and Being. The problem is that the Bible is correct when it states that it is impossible for carnal man to contemplate God -- which is something that can only be done by highly evolved spiritual beings who have themselves become Complete.
In the same way that God is not limited by our understanding of life, as seen in the words: "and do not think to say to yourselves, We have Abraham as our father. For I say to you that God is able to raise up children to Abraham from these stones" (Matt 3:9 NKJ); what we fail to understand is that all of Creation was brought into manifestation by virtue of God thinking it -- and as such, remains a projection of God’s thoughts. What this means is that all Life not only remains dependent upon God for continuation, but it is God’s own vital life-force that continues to move throughout every level and aspect of Creation.
Literally, if God -- or the Source of all life who is referred to as the Ancient of Days -- ceased to provide vital life-force to what has come into existence through the manifestation of His thoughts, all of creation would simply cease to exist. It is from this perception of reality that the scriptures can proclaim that: "‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring’" (Acts 17:28 NIV). In the same way that the electricity that we use to power our appliances is generated from a remote place, we are the person we are because we take the very energy and vital force that we stamp with our own individual impressions, and make the expression of Divine Creation unique to our own experiences.
In the same way that when a child is conceived, it initially comes into being from one cell, which then multiplies in accordance with a series of predefined genetic laws that bring about the manifestation of the offspring of it’s parents, each and every one of us is as a cell in the body-mind of God -- a cell that has multiplied and developed all the unique complexities that make us the being that we are. This is demonstrated in the proclamation of the scriptures where it is written: "The God who made the world and everything in it is the Lord of heaven and earth and does not live in temples built by hands. And he is not served by human hands, as if he needed anything, because he himself gives all men life and breath and everything else... 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" (Acts 17:24,27 NIV). God is not far from each of us, and can be found by each of us, because at our essence, we are in fact a projection of His thoughts -- and the substance of our own being is as ripples upon the vital force of God. It is because of our continued intimate connection with our True Essence of Being, that we only have to seek out our own Source of Life to find God -- our true Creator and Parent.
It is this reality that Jesus declared to mankind when he said that the Kingdom which we seek will never be physically manifest in this reality, because it already exists within each and every one of us (Luke 17:20-21). That there are different levels and dimensions of Creation is well documented in the writings of the Essenes, as well as in the scriptures of the first Gentile Christians.
Again we must remember the words of Origen when he wrote: "No one, I think, can doubt that the statement that God walked in the afternoon in paradise, and that Adam lay hid under a tree, is related figuratively in Scripture, that some mystical meaning may be indicated by it. The departure of Cain from the presence of the Lord will manifestly cause a careful reader to inquire what is the presence of God, and how any one can go out from it". When the Ancient of Days projected His thoughts out from Himself, and as each level of creation was brought to its own level of development -- where, in order to move on to completion, it had to explore new dimensions of reality, it became divided into new manifestations of the triune force that has brought about all that exists.
The problem, from a Gentile perspective, was that the religion of Israel which held similar theological positions as the philosophers, was not only different, but was a giant step above anything known to the Nations. Unlike the poets who could only ponder and theorize about many aspects of the Divine, the differences were seen in the ability of the great Hebrew sages and prophets to be able to envision God at His Source of Being -- which is referred to in scripture as the Ancient of Days. At this point in Divine Consciousness, all is at ONE -- there is no Trinity as expressed by the philosophers -- and there is no division or separation.
In order for us to even begin to understand the reality that the Hebrews envisioned God in His Ultimate Form -- beyond the level associated with the doctrine of the Trinity -- we must first begin to comprehend the very nature of mind itself. What is important to understand is that thought can only exist where there are differences in potential. We do a terrible job of teaching our children in our present-day culture because we do not imbue within them the love of truth founded upon the necessary tools that are required to even think. Instead, we force feed them with information as if we are loading programs into a computer -- and then we judge the results on their ability to regurgitate the programmed data upon command.
A computer is neither intelligent, nor does it have a mind -- because it is little more than a complex manifestation of data storage and retrieval that is projected into an environment of virtual laws and limitations that give the illusion of form and reality. Thought, on the other hand, is the movement of mind between polarities -- opposite polarities -- wherein, mind is the balance -- or third force of the triune power of Creation.
What is referred to as the Trinity, then, is that initial level of creation where the projected thoughts of the Ancient of Days takes on differing dimensions of polarity -- positive and negative, or better understood to us as male and female -- along with the resulting third dimension which is the balance or product of the two opposing polarities -- which we call the Son of God -- or the very first act of creation. When both the disciple John and the philosophers speak of the Logos, they are in essence referring to the very Mind of God -- or that which creates by virtue of its movement between the Divine Opposite Polarities of the Triune force and manifestation of God. Thus, the religion of the Israelites contained all the higher understandings of Creation -- and yet, was based upon a superior revelation of God, and did not formally embrace the doctrine of the Trinity. Why? Because in the purity of their religious expression they were able to envision God at His Source -- a level of manifestation beyond the Trinity -- where there is no division or separation.
The dynamics of Creation can only be understood when one comes to understand that as each level of what is created moves out to its own level of fullness, it interacts with the opposite polarity, and gives birth to new levels and dimensions of Creation. That these Divine concepts of Creation can be embraced by man, is easily demonstrated in the statement of the Apostle when he wrote pertaining to the people of the Nations: "Since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities -- his eternal power and divine nature -- have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse" (Rom 1:19-20 NIV).
In our own lives we observe the positive and negative polarities of Creation in the manifest form of man and woman. When these polarities become full, the third force is brought forth in the form of the child. Now even though there appears to be a time lapse between the two which become three, we must also consider that in potential, this does not exist. In view of the fact that the child is born from the combining of the egg of the woman and the sperm of the male, it must be remembered that a woman is born with all the eggs that she will ever have, and the Divine Power that is manifest as sperm in the male is derived from a constant expression of Creative Force which is continually emanating from God. Thus, we must understand that in potential, the third force came into being along with its parents -- and could not make its developmental appearance until the two opposing polarities were themselves brought to the level of fullness where the balance -- or child -- could manifest a form of its own. It is for this reason that the philosophers who embraced the doctrine of the Trinity could say that each was of a common substance.
To demonstrate that the Apostle was correct when he made the assertion that "what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them", let us take this pattern of Creation into its next level. When the scriptures state that "Enoch walked with God: and he was not; for God took him" (Gen 5:24 KJV), this should stir the thinking of the reader to inquire why Enoch was not permitted to die before God took him? The key is found in the teaching of the Sabbath as the day of rest, and the fact that Enoch was the seventh from Adam. From the perspective of the disciple, he who manifests and completes the six days of labor in the work of spiritual regeneration, inherits the seventh, which is the rest and completion of the Lord. This level of creation in which the three become seven, is seen in the fact that each of the polarities acting within themselves are themselves manifest as the three, which makes the six, and with the addition of the root (third-force) balance of the original Trinity, which is the Son of God -- Logos or mind -- which is again brought forth into the next level of creation, we have the manifestation of the sacred seven spiritual centers of man, as seen in its state of completion in the seven churches -- the seven spirits -- the seven candle sticks -- the seven stars -- the seven seals -- and the manifestation of the varying aspects of the seven that is used throughout the Book of Revelations.
These seven spiritual centers exist within the body and mind of all people and creation, and are as rivers or conduits through which the vital life-force of God’s energy flows out into Creation. Within the seven, we have an upper trinity which manifests what we call heaven -- a lower trinity which manifests what we call earth -- and a balance of mind that is the Creative Force of God which balances the upper and lower. We can perceive the nature of this great truth in the symbolism of the Star of David, with the seventh power being realized in the balance of the two triads.
These streams of vital life-force exist both within us, as well as throughout all of Creation. Music is comprised of a seven-note octave -- and like all things of a profound nature, this seven-note octave is not by chance. If music was properly understood, the whole course of Creation could be predicted by understanding the laws that the notes and octaves work upon us.
The great mathematician and philosopher Pythagoras, who lived from 500-580 BC, was said to have formulated the principles that influenced the thinking of Plato and Aristotle, and greatly contributed to the development of mathematics and Western rational philosophy. Under the heading of Pythagoreanism in the Encyclopedia Britannica it reads: "A philosophical school and religious brotherhood, believed to have been founded by Pythagoras about 525 BC, holding: (1) that at its deepest level, reality is mathematical in nature; (2) that philosophy can be used for spiritual purification; (3) that the soul can rise to union with the divine; (4) that certain symbols have a mystical significance; and (5) that all brothers of the order should observe strict loyalty and secrecy". What Pythagoras fundamentally taught to his disciples was that all the laws of Creation have a numeric foundation that can be used as a tool to understand all knowledge of both ones own self, and the universe.
When we look out at the world, what we are seeing is a lesson in New Covenant theology. When the scriptures state: "I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth" (Gen 9:13 NIV); what the rainbow displays to us is that light is made up of seven colors. These seven colors are one of the foundations of the Pythagorean system of mathematics -- the seven notes of a musical octave -- as well as the reason why God took Enoch, the seventh from Adam.
If we begin to understand the manner in which the laws of God work upon the seven, we then can begin to contemplate the significance of the number twelve. What the Bible refers to as Israel, is the manifestation of the next level of creation which is symbolically represented in the scriptures as the twelve sons of Israel. It must be remembered that Jacob received the name Israel when he wrestled with the angel -- or laws of his lower nature -- and prevailed. That the twelve is again brought forth into lower levels of creation is seen in the twelve tribes, as well as all the other scriptural expressions of the sacred number of the twelve. That the divided twelve was brought into harmony and oneness in the gospel symbolism of the twelve disciples, and is seen as pure expressions of mind in the twelve fruits of the Tree of Life in the Book of Revelation, is actually a portrayal of the revelation of Divine Truth that is embraced in the life of the disciple as he walks in The Way. We can then place the twelve in the Star of David as being represented by the six outer points and the six inner points.
Again, if we are to begin to comprehend fundamental biblical symbolism, we must understand that the thrust of the disciple’s quest is to overcome division. We must begin to perceive the reality of Jesus’ words when he said: "Every kingdom divided against itself is brought to desolation, and a house divided against a house falls" (Luke 11:17 NKJ).
When the scriptures speak of the twelve tribes throughout the Old Testament, what is being conveyed is a divided state in each of the separate spheres of mind -- spheres of mind that make up the very fabric of the Tree of Life. One of the major differences between the Old and New Testaments is seen in the portrayal of the twelve tribes as twelve disciples -- thereby making reference to a higher state of mental perfection -- in that, the spheres of mind are no longer divided (as in tribes), but exist in a state of oneness (as disciples).
In the case of the New Testament, by the numbers conveyed in the genealogy provided in the Gospel of Matthew -- i.e., fourteen, fourteen and thirteen -- there was yet only one blemish that had to be resolved -- which blemish was portrayed in the form of the disciple Judas. From a biblical perspective, the oneness and harmony of Israel -- the twelve spheres of mind that make up the Tree of Life -- is of paramount importance in the life of the disciple. Judas is a mistranslation of the name Judah, which in and of itself represents a condition of mind. When the Old Testament speaks of the lost tribes of Israel, what we are saying is that the mind is not only working at one twelfth of its potential, but that the very name Judah speaks to us about the manner in which the mind is functioning in relation to the perception of the inner Kingdom and the reality of man.
In the case of the Nations -- i.e., also referred to as heathen and Gentiles -- the twelve is made reference to in the form of mythological gods and the twelve signs of the zodiac. From a spiritual perspective, these people are controlled by the laws of the god of this world -- the culture of this world -- and because their whole frame of mind is functioning in an external mode, they are lost in the currents of this three-dimensional realm of gross matter. From a scriptural perspective, the Nations are descriptive of the true state of mind of the greater number of people who call themselves Jews and Christians today.
In the spiritual vision of the Bible, the Jew represents the dawning of salvation because, unlike the Nations, they are aware of the Oneness of God, and represent the disciples walk with the Lord in the beginning of The Way. The problem is that the Jew takes spiritual concepts and interprets them in the physical -- which is the continual theme of Jesus’ condemnation of the Jewish sects of the Sadducees and the Pharisees. Until the disciple begins the process of perceiving the symbols and rituals of the scriptures from the perspective of a spiritual mindset, rather than a carnal, then the disciple will continue to eat from the fruit of the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil, rather than the Tree of Life.
In this respect, if we were living at the beginning of our Common Era, it would be a personal insult to call an Essene a Jew -- which is representative of someone who is using only one twelfth of their mind. The Jew, though, was seen in a more elevated position than the people of the Nations -- a lawless people, who were totally controlled by the forces of this world. From a biblical perspective, the true chosen people of God was Israel -- which is representative of the undivided mind of man.
In scripture, the crucifixion represents the rebirth that Jesus spoke of in the Gospel of John. Paramount to this rebirth was the portrayal of the betrayal of Jesus for thirty silver pieces by Judas -- which eventually led to the death of Judas. The very presence of the three tens demonstrate a state of completion within the three minds of man.
From a scriptural perspective, the betrayal of Jesus by Judas was absolutely necessary in order for the spiritual rebirth to take place. This is represented in the words of the Apostle when he wrote: "For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace. Because the carnal mind is enmity against God; for it is not subject to the law of God, nor indeed can be. So then, those who are in the flesh cannot please God" (Rom 8:6-8 NKJ) -- and, "For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body, you will live. For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God" (Rom 8:13-14 NKJ). Therefore, in our walk with the Lord the Apostle warns: "...and make no provision for the flesh, to fulfill its lusts" (Rom 13:14 NKJ).
With the conversion of Judas by virtue of his death for the price of thirty pieces of gold, and the total destruction of what was carnal in the symbology of the crucifixion, the Son of God was truly born. In these things we see that the overcoming of the carnal by the spiritual is the meaning of Jesus’ words when he said: "Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple" (Luke 14:27 NAS). In this respect, a genuine Christian or Israelite cannot be one who believes -- but rather, one who overcomes their carnal nature in order to walk in The Way, and enter into the Kingdom of God.
Again it is important to understand the words of the Apostle when he warned that: "Anyone who lives on milk, being still an infant, is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness. But solid food is for the mature, who by constant use have trained themselves to distinguish good from evil" (Heb 5:13-14 NIV). The very words, "…who by constant use have trained themselves", implies a faith that is thoroughly incorporated into a spiritual mindset and manner of living in accordance with the Royal Law of the Most High. Further, with respect to the level of truth, what the Apostle is stating is this: If you are still living and believing the "milk" of the Gospel -- i.e., "Jesus Christ, and him crucified" (1 Cor 2:2 KJV); and in the words of the Apostle: "Therefore let us leave the elementary teachings about Christ and go on to maturity, not laying again the foundation of repentance from acts that lead to death, and of faith in God, instruction about baptisms, the laying on of hands, the resurrection of the dead, and eternal judgment" (Heb 6:1-2 NIV) -- then the Apostle states that such a person whose thinking is still bound by a carnal perception of the Word, "is still an infant, [and] is not acquainted with the teaching about righteousness" (Heb 5:13). Why? Because these are the doctrines that were given to the "babes in Christ" (1 Cor 3:1 KJV) -- entry-level believers who were yet too carnal to comprehend the genuine revelation of the Christ of the Spirit and the Mysteries of God. Moreover, from a biblical perspective, the most egregious of sin against the Holy Spirit was for the believer to be stagnant, and remain an entry level Christian -- as is the case in the modern church today.
These facts conveyed to us by the Apostle Paul go to the very core of why spiritual truths are embodied in physical symbols when they are set before the people of the simple faith? In the words of Origen, the resurrection was "preached in the Churches... for the simpleminded and for the ears of the common crowd who are led on to live better lives by their belief". When Jesus warned that: "Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple" (Luke 14:27 NAS); the overcoming of the flesh and the lower nature, which is represented in the resurrection, is the resurrection spoken of by St. Gregory’s when he wrote, "the Resurrection is no other thing than ‘the re-constitution of our nature in its original form’".
What is it that the Bible is conveying to us? It is the Jew -- or Judas the betrayer -- or that part of us that interprets spiritual reality in a carnal perception and mindset -- that must be overcome in order for this re-constitution of our spiritual nature to be brought about. In the symbology of the scriptures the Jew represents one twelfth of the potential of mind -- and it is the limitation of this one twelfth that corresponds to man in his natural organic state -- and the term Jew is therein used to describe that condition when a believer attempts to take what is spiritual and force it into a three-dimensional view of Creation. The Jew does this by creating hard and fast doctrines that are used to explain away the spiritual significance of both what is perceived in life, as well as the scriptures.
The Jew must take the Word, redirect it within himself, and become the seed sown on good ground -- thereby multiplying the Word by unifying the mind in the endeavor to become Israel -- which in the twelve spheres of mind brought into a state of balanced harmony -- thereby fulfilling the teachings of Jesus by overcoming the inner state of division. This brings about a regeneration and rebirth -- i.e., we are no longer limited to using one twelfth of our mind’s potential. Israel is born within us, and we can see God and the Mysteries of Creation with a spiritual clarity that is founded upon a complete perception of mind.
From a biblical perspective, we cannot even become a Jew until we first begin to convert what is represented in scripture as the Nations. Throughout what we call the Old Testament there are many references to a time when the heathen and the Nations will be converted to the worship of the God of Israel -- this all-important process must be accomplished within ourselves if we are to begin the walk in The Way. In the Bible the people of the Nations represent a divided state of mind that is controlled by the gods, goddesses and sensual appetites of this world. The people of the Nations are spoken of as being lawless -- meaning that they are undisciplined, unrestrained, and have very little control over their own being. One only has to take a step back and look at our present-day culture, to recognize the lawlessness and lack of control of the society of the people we live among. The leaders of Islam call us the great Satan -- and we become offended. Yet, we are totally consumed by a hunger for unrestrained sensual gratification and the material things of this world. Thus, even though we are offended, the leaders of Islam are not wrong in their assessment of us.
The people the Bible calls Jews, is actually representative of a turning point in the mind of the believer. Where the people of the Nations worship the god of this world -- i.e., sensuality, materialism, political power, their belly -- the Jew is the person who worships the One God -- and attempts to bring everything in his life in conformity with the higher aspects of Divine Law. The Jew is the person who possesses a genuine vision of religion and man’s quest to walk in The Way, but he has still not used the higher symbols and keys that have been placed in his hands to open the door to man’s spiritual reality -- thereby limiting himself to one twelfth of his potential of mind. It is these keys of knowledge that are possessed by one who has evolved their thinking from that of the Nations to a Jew, that Jesus condemned the Sadducees and Pharisees for throwing away (Luke 11:52). In their creation of manmade doctrines and traditions that were used to explain away (in carnal terms) truths that could only be perceived through man’s higher levels of mind as represented in the name of Israel -- or one who has the ability to use the whole twelve spheres of mind that is manifest in they symbolism of the Tree of Life -- they were viewed as impostors.
Does God have a covenant with a person who is a Jew? The answer is yes -- such a person is aware of the Oneness of God, and is attempting to live in accordance with the Divine Ordinances and Commandments of the Lord. Does God have a covenant with a person who is of the Nations -- a person who is controlled by the sensual and material things of this world -- a person who worships and professes an allegiance to the powers of this world? God can do very little to help such a person who interprets their standards of behavior in accordance with their sensual desires -- a people who are totally under the control of the citizen of the far country -- a people who refuse to live in accordance with Divine Principles and Ordinances.
When the issue of the conversion of the Gentiles was presented in the Book of Acts, James and the others conferred with the Holy Spirit and said: "Therefore it is my judgment that we do not trouble those who are turning to God from among the Gentiles, but that we write to them that they abstain from things contaminated by idols and from fornication and from what is strangled and from blood. For Moses from ancient generations has in every city those who preach him, since he is read in the synagogues every Sabbath" (Acts 15:19-21 NAS).
The path to walking in The Way was presented in steps -- i.e., cease to be controlled (worship) idols (material things of this world) -- keep from fornication (addiction to unrestrained sensuality) -- what is strangled (deprived of spiritual life) -- and from blood (the craving of flesh). When James then states that they are to embrace Moses, who is taught "in every city" in the "synagogues every Sabbath", he is conveying to the Gentiles the absolute need to live in accordance with what James referred to as the Royal Law of God (James 2:8) -- not in the manner of the Sadducees and Pharisees, but in the manner of the Essenes and Spiritual Jews in the endeavor to become Israel and the children of the New Covenant. What we are talking about here is the steps necessary for the transformation of mind from carnal-natural, to spiritual-Light.
This rebirth, then, is not only man’s destiny, but is also the ultimate reality spoken of when Jesus said: "I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me" (John 14:6 NKJ). This is also the reality of the words the Apostle affirmed: "It is written: ‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bow before me; every tongue will confess to God’" (Rom 14:11 NIV). What does this mean? Every soul that has ever been created will eventually walk in The Way, and in the manner of the prodigal son, return to the Father -- and the Kingdom from which each of us originally emerged from.
All these biblical symbols of wars and confrontations in this world have nothing to do with historical events -- but rather, convey to the disciples about the obstacles that confront him -- the states of mind that he must bring into harmony, in order to walk in The Way. From this perspective we can fully comprehend the words of St. Clement, written in his The Second Epistle of Clement, when, under the heading of We are Constantly to look for the Kingdom of God 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’".
What is important is for us to understand that all things portrayed in the scriptures are indicative of a spiritual reality that is within us. At the absolute essence of our being is the Oneness of God referred to in Hebrew Mysticism as the Ancient of Days. The more we move away from the Source of our Being, and permit ourselves to become entangled in this realm of detached and severed illusion, the greater this Oneness at our Source becomes divided through the process of the interaction of the dynamic polarities of Creation.
If what Jesus says is true, and "salvation is of the Jews" (John 4:22 KJV), one of the problems that confront us is that there are very few genuine Jews among us today. For the most part they have been conquered by the gods of the Nations, and are deeply enmeshed in the sensuality and the materialism of this world. From a biblical perspective, few people today even live at the heightened level that would be called a Jew -- even when the people call themselves by this name. Why? Like Israel, the name Jew is significant with regard to a state of mind -- one where the people have an awareness of the One God, and are striving to become complete. As man becomes more attached and possessed by the powers of this world, his levels of consciousness are reduced to that which is referred to in scripture as the people of the Nations. Such a man becomes overcome by the sea of illusion and reflected reality of this realm. In our present-day society we attempt to imbue our children with a politically correct way of thinking -- and yet, we fail to perceive that our intelligence is not heightened when it is possessed by a politically correct mindset. In speaking the rhetoric and traditions of our culture, we are viewed as intelligent and knowing -- but this is pseudo-intelligence and pseudo-knowledge because the false knowledge fails to develop our understanding to where it is able to embrace what is spiritual and genuine. Instead, we permit our children to become imbued with what is cultural and temporal, which is little more than the illusion of knowledge.
Genuine knowledge must embrace and convey to us an understanding of the destiny of all of mankind. It must teach us who we are -- what we are doing in this present life -- and what we must do to navigate our future path in the direction that we choose to go. In the same way that our educational institutions present to us the choices we can make in our life with respect to the relationship of family, career, and cultural options, without the knowledge of who we are from the perspective of our pre-existent soul, or the impact of our present choices with regard to our future, what we erroneously believe to be knowledge cannot be considered genuine.
Like the prodigal son, each of us in our own good time, will hunger and tire of the "severe famine in that whole country, and he began to be in need" (Luke 15:14 NIV). Moreover, we will recognize that in this world, we possess only the illusion of freedom because of our servitude to the "citizen" of the far country (Luke 15:15). As we become conscious of our spiritual poverty, and tire of our lives in slavery to the counterfeit reality of this world, we will start to be drawn to that which is real and genuine. Thus, we will begin to be converted from the mindset of the Nations, to that of the Jew, then to Israel, and lastly the mindset of the Messiah or Anointed One.
From the perception of the Nations, they are very liberal, and little really matters. Everything is subjective to their feelings and carnal desires -- they have no set standards -- and they define morality in accordance with their momentary sensual appetites. If it feels good, they do it. They reject standards, alter spiritual truths, understandings of the Law, and higher knowledge to suite their immediate needs and culture. When the sacred symbolism of the New Covenant was placed into their hands, they made Jesus a reincarnation of the sun god on December 25th -- they rejected the great symbolism and spiritual meanings of the Passover -- they recreated Jesus in the image of their sun-gods -- they changed the biblical resurrection to the traditional sun-god resurrection day of Easter -- i.e., Ishtar, the goddess of spring. They held fast to the ways of the heathen -- every one of their gods they continued to worship as a Christian saint -- praying and beseeching these saint-gods and saint-goddesses for their intersession and divine favors in the form of materialistic gifts -- retaining every element of their Pagan mindset. In every way they simply inaugurated Jesus as the latest appearance of the sun god -- a god that has continually appeared throughout all time in the form of a whole host of chosen vessels.
In this respect, it is for this reason that Celsus said: "The Christian religion contains nothing but what Christians hold in common with heathens; nothing new, or truly great" (see Origen, Contra Celsus). This same fact is again attested to by Ammonius Saccus, a Greek philosopher and founder of a Neo-platonic school who taught that: "Christianity and Paganism, when rightly understood, differ in no essential points, but had a common origin, and are really one and the same thing" (see Taylor’s Diegesis, p.329).
What this means is that all the elements of Christianity that believers today view as unique, was understood as an integral part of the religion of the philosophers. In this respect, their old religion and their old ways simply melded into an updated edition. The problem was that once Jesus was installed as the most up-to-date version -- or manifestation of their sun god -- he was no longer the great revealer of truth that transformed men into disciples of the Light -- but rather, the god that redeemed men’s souls. Thus, the whole focus of the religion was changed.
If, what the early Christians stated was true with regard to their assertion that the philosophy of the Gentiles had a common source and origin with the Old Testament -- and both in fact reveal Christ within the cloak of the allegory -- what we must then come to understand is this: That an important element was present among the people of the New Covenant -- i.e., the Spiritual Jews -- that made the difference between what the Apostle states was the wild olive of the Gentiles, and the cultivated olive of the Hebrews: "After all, if you were cut out of an olive tree that is wild by nature, and contrary to nature were grafted into a cultivated olive tree, how much more readily will these, the natural branches, be grafted into their own olive tree!" (Rom 11:24 NIV)
If both had a common origination, and both revealed Christ, then why would Jesus say: "Ye worship ye know not what: we know what we worship: for salvation is of the Jews" (John 4:22 KJV)? In view of the fact that what is referred to as Christian beliefs today already existed in the time of Jesus, and he portrayed these beliefs as being heathen and belonging to Nations, we must ask what the difference was between the Christ of the Pagans, and the Messiah of the (Spiritual) Jews? From a biblical perspective, what made the Jews a "cultivated olive tree" was the Law that was given to the people by Moses -- which Law affirmed a very rigid manner of life. Where the Gentiles were referred to as being lawless -- so much so that all truth that was given into their hands became defiled and contaminated by their heathen ways -- the Hebrews developed a system that would raise the mind of man above a carnal and sensual perception of the Word. If this difference between the Gentiles and the Hebrews was ever in question, the Dead Sea Scrolls demonstrate this fact beyond any doubt.
Where philosophy is just as the word affirms -- a system of thought that men ponder and speculate upon -- the Law of Moses contained the same essential truths beneath the veil of the written word, imposed upon the Hebrew as a way of life. The Law, then, was designed to overcome man’s divided nature. The problem with carnal man is he dwells in an unconscious state of mind -- i.e., with a constant flow of rambling and ever wandering thoughts streaming through his undisciplined mind. For the most part, carnal man is sense bound -- entertaining a seemingly endless current of thoughts about sex, material things, food, leisure pursuits, and an endless array of things of no real significance.
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