The Bible Is God’s Word [Questions That Haunt]

I was at a conference on Friday, so I missed my chance to answer Jake’s question. So there’s no new QTHC this week, giving you more time to weigh in on that question and me more time to compose my answer.

I do still believe that the Bible is God’s word. But how I think that’s the case is complex, and difficult to explain.

Let me know how you answer it — I’ll read all the responses before I write my own.

  • Kevin

    I happened to come across a two part series of posts on this very topic, taken from a book called “Come Out of Her My People,” written by Peter Whyte. I think it’s a very balanced perspective, though he clearly does not support the idea that the Bible is “the word of God.”

    http://anewcreation33.wordpress.com/2013/04/09/come-out-of-her-my-people-by-peter-whyte-chapter-7-part-1/

    http://anewcreation33.wordpress.com/2013/04/09/come-out-of-her-my-people-by-peter-whyte-chapter-7-part-2/

  • Lanny

    I feel it can be shown why the Bible is truly Gods word by comparing first,. what we see around us and working our way to the bible and the God spoken of in the bible..
    First the foundation, do we believe there is a God? if yes, I feel its pretty self explanatory that we cannot naturally pop into existence from nothing and magically self assemble with out any help ..take light in light that by scientific standards and biblical standards was here before man regardless of what time frame on uses light was before man now how is it that light has in it the ability transmit by way of photons images of the surrounding environment to an eye that can transfer this information to our brains that can decode it and allow us to see..without our brain being able to understand light we are blind and it shows light was intended or predetermined to carry images of its surroundings so we who were created after it could see,that shows intent. .. reminds me of a scripture about darkness not comprehending the light if our brains did not understand light (being able to decode it) we would be blind .
    this is no coincidence and there are many such things that allows me to clearly believe in GOD..now what GOD ..we can clear out any fluffy all loving no punishing God just from one look at nature..and we can also rule out any God that would do this for no punishment he would be quite a sadistic God so this type of GOD would be extremely cruel at best to have his creation suffer and suffer every day for thousands of years through sicknesses and death..hopefully most would agree on that point if they simply looked around ..
    this leaves us with a God that would only be “cleared” of wrong doing in my mind if death and sickness and all manner of hurts that befall us was a punishment for a crime .
    if you take out bias and emotion this fits the old testament God and when man fell and this is his punishment..
    now if you read genesis in this light it matches what we see and makes sense even though we may not like it or say well why didn’t he make us to be this or that all those questions are irrelevant to the fact that the only God i can see existing matches perfectly with the bible. and we see mans constant struggle through out it and the leading up of the predicted messiah which is matched perfectly in the 70 weeks of Daniel it predicts to the exact time that the messiah was to come this is not a coincidence the odds of a prediction like this to pinpoint a man that is to be born so many many years later seems ridiculous to disbelieve its the truth but people still try and defend their nay saying ways ..but if you look there is much much more evidences than this ….However this line of thought is enough for me i find no other religion or God that can match what i see around us than the one of the bible

    • Jim Armstrong

      On the other hand, this same scripture says that God looked at ALL of Creation and said it was “good”, yea even, “very good”. Yet, the story that we have traditionally from drawn from Genesis is that man – in his diminutive form and place in this incomprehensibly large Creation – somehow corrupted a part (and we think an important part!) of this divinely executed work of Creation. What hubris! But the narration of Genesis does what was evidently intended, …to explain (though naively from our perspective) why bad things happen to men in this Creation.

      OK. I know intimately both the tradition and rationale for taking exception to this view.

      But this Creation has a voice as well. Moreover, it is patient and constant WAY beyond the life-span of a person, or even human-kind. Its message requires no words (which are arguably inadequate, and susceptible to all manner of other influences and limitations. And yet its ways of communicating its story to us are myriad. The miracle is that the more able we are to plumb its depths, the more of its complex and elegant story is revealed, taking nothing from the awe due the Creator. Rather quite the opposite, each new understanding revealing yet more of that we don’t yet know.

      And yet, we somehow “know” that this printed word of man somehow supersedes the voice of the Creation itself, as I see it basically because our man-tradition favors a fixed (and now scientifically out-dated) understanding, rather than a continuously unfolding one as is being continuously revealed to us through our explorations of Creation.

      There are all kinds of reasons that collisions will result between these ancient texts and the additional insights gained day by day in our own time. I subscribe to this part of what you said: “…what we see and makes sense even though we may not like it … “. But I obviously see it in a different way than yourself.

      But the bottom line in this discussion is that none of this new insight really takes away from God, or our place to stand dumbstruck before the Creator and Creation. And that includes respecting the early writings of our own kind – in their own time, and their own understanding – telling of their sense of the divine. It is inspired by their own encounters with God. Ergo, it is inspired.

      But when we attempt to make scripture be more than that, we do a disservice to both the writers and the writings, IMHO. Worse than that, we manage to confuse the hell out of our young as they try to find their own relationship to God in this conflicted space between the today they live in, and the simplified and naive faith (lovingly in most cases) shared with them in the yesterday of their childhood.

  • nick

    The word “inspired” is used so strangely in Christian circles. If I write a poem and someone asks, “What is your inspiration for this poem?” and I say, “My wife,” no one will think that my wife wrote the poem.

    Every time my close friend starts questioning me on the authority of scripture, he always says, “Well, let me give you a couple of verses, Nick” and he goes on to quote 2 Timothy 3, “all scripture is god-breathed,” as if that settles it. This sums up everything I think Jake is concerned about in his question, people make an assumption about the Bible, use proof texts to back up that assumption, and then run in circles. That verse doesn’t mean anything all alone like that.

    So that’s just a quick and dirty critique.

    Personally, here’s where I’m at. I’m going to go with the popular belief that the Bible is not a direct record of literal historical events that God literally participated in, but it is a collection of very real personal and communal encounters with the divine. The Bible is a record of people trying to work out and make sense of encountering God in their lives. So does that mean that I can look back on the Hebrew Scriptures and say, “that was the impression that premodern tribal people had of God, and it might have been progressive for its day, but for us this picture of a god who tells people to stone disobedient children and adulterers is barbaric and irrelevant”? Kind of.

    I’m much less interested in what the Bible explicitly says, and more interested in the activity the writers participate in. I’ll start with a modern Jewish perspective and move backward through history and then move forward through history toward Christianity. Modern Orthodox Jews would say that modern Reform Jews do a lot to abolish to Torah, they don’t follow the law. Reform Jews will look at some of the more conservative teachings from the Torah of stuff like dietary restrictions and homosexuality, and say, “Ehh… not really working for me.” To that the Orthodox Jew says, “Not okay, because that’s Halakha, the law.”

    But Orthodox Jews follow Talmud. Talmud is a collection of Rabbinic writings responding to the Torah. When someone would have a question about a law, leaders would talk about it, and eventually it all started to get written down. When you have a question, you go to the Torah, if it’s not answered in the Torah, look at what the Rabbis say in the Talmud. In some ways the Talmud does a lot to ensure the Torah is followed. There’s a phrase called, “putting a fence around the Torah.” This means, let’s add some extra parameters to make sure we don’t break the law. So the Torah says don’t work on the Sabbath. What’s work? Well the Talmud says you can only walk this far, and can only participate in these activities. However, in other cases, the Talmud actually encourages people to not follow the Torah. For example, there are loads of laws that require someone to be stoned, but the Talmud sets up tons of parameters to make sure that never happens. The Orthodox response would probably be that the Talmud is based in the Oral Torah that was given by God on Mt Sinai, so God set up those parameters. I’ll go with that to an extent, but the problem is throughout the history of the Talmud the Rabbis became more and more strict and more and more progressive about capital punishment. The Law changes.

    WWhat does this have to do with Christianity? Christians don’t beleive in the Talmud, they believe in the Bible. The problem is, you see this same activity happening in the Bible. There are laws about slavery that contradict. In one place it says pierce their ear at home, the other pierce their ear at a shrine. We also see the law developing and changing. In Exodus it says cook the Paschal lamb over fire, do not boil it! In Deuteronomy it says boil the lamb, do not cook it over fire! So which do you believe? Later, in Chronicles it think, they do a very Rabbinic move and say, boil it over fire. They tried, but clearly that violates Exodus. My friend said, oh well that’s probably just depending on the context. But it’s God’s law! This is how God said to do it! Right? The law changes. Even in the Bible.

    Fast forward to Jesus. Sermon on the Mount? Jesus commands them to no longer follow eye for an eye. Now that law is not just about personal retaliation. The law is not, “You are free to taake vengeance if you want,” and Jesus says, “Now you can’t.” The law is a command to the ccommunity to upohold justice in this way, and Jesus says the community is no longer to follow that law.

    Or how about the book of Acts? The Church is deciding what laws the Gentiles should or should not follow. It says they did what “seemed best” to them. At least for the nonJewish members of the early Church, you could kind of pick and choose what laws to follow. It was more about unity and less about following God’s orders. And this is still the case today. One of the four laws the Church concluded that Gentiles must follow is not eating blood. Anybody eat rare steak? Martin Luther is the only Christian I know of who decided to stop eating blood sausage not because it’s gross but because it’s unbiblical.

    Are we left in the dark then? Does the Bible have any role? Of course! Like I said, I think it’s less about what the Bible says explicitly and more about the activity the writer’s participate in. The Bible moves me towards seeking God, it moves me toward unity my community. And it moves me toward being more progressive. My father in law always complains that society only gets more and more progressive, as a whole we never become more conservative. I don’t think that’s a bad thing if we live according to a biblical narrative.

    • nick

      Not that I haven’t written enough already, but as far as the point about the Bible being a record of very real personal and communal experience of the divine versus a literal historical record compare the execution and resurrection of Jesus in all four accounts. A few years back my now wife and I were directing an easter play at church and we had a real hard time determining when Mary came to the disciples after Jesus’s execution. We tried to harmonize all four, but ultimately had to ignore a little of each telling in order to do so. If you need to cut out parts of the Bible to make sense of it, then your reading is wrong.

  • http://www.brgulker.wordpress.com brgulker

    In Genesis, humanity is created through God’s ruach, breath or spirit.

    In Timothy, Tue same language is uses to describe Scripture.

    I personally believe this is a rich and powerful analogy for understanding what it means for scripture to be God’s word, and it doesn’t require inerrancy or anything like it.

    • Ric Shewell

      agree!

  • http://www.brgulker.wordpress.com brgulker

    Sorry. Auto correct.

  • http://www.turridesign.com Jesse

    I think the Bible is pretty clear that Jesus is God’s word ;)

    • Ric Shewell

      I think John is clear that Jesus is the Logos, but I’m pretty sure that the Psalms and the Pauline Epistles are referring to the Hebrew Scriptures when they mention God’s Word, or word of God.

  • Jonnie

    The Bible is a collection of words about the affect of God’s word (see Jesse’s comment ^^^) on particular communities, which has a life in the process of the community making use of it, wrestling with God in an through it. We ‘make it’ Godly when we use it rightly: as a prophetic prodding to live into the story. Anything more, anything that places an inherent static power in it, is idolatry.

  • Jesus Without Baggage

    I believe the various portions of the Bible were written by people. They were people who felt they had a connection with God, and I am sure that that some of them were inspired by God in some way and to some extent, but they were not inerrant or even authoritative.

    I believe the clearest access we have to God is in the story of Jesus written from the memories of his earliest followers. They were energized by Jesus and so am I. Even though their memories may not have been perfect, and they had a certain amount of agenda in writing, the Jesus I see there is intensely compelling. I am drawn to him as the foundation of all my religious beliefs.

    All of the Bible should be evaluated by what we know of Jesus and this includes the Father. The Old Testament portrayal of an angry and violent God, as imagined by the writers, does not square with what Jesus says of the Father. This does not mean that the writers were false, but they were imperfect in their understanding.

    We should approach the Bible with respect and discernment, but we should not consider it the written ‘word of God.’

  • Ric Shewell

    I’m a proponent of calling the Scriptures the Word of God!

    I’m not an inerrantist or a fundamentalist or a biblicist or anything like that. The biggest issue I see in this conversation is the temptation to flatten out the books that compose the Bible into saying one thing or the same thing. They do not. The Scriptures are beautiful, diverse, and complex. They do not hide their inconsistencies or problems. They have been manhandled by history. Yet, they continue to communicate profoundly of the Divine, and the Divine’s crazy interactions with this little troubled nation and this little troubled community that is trying to understand Christ’s death.

    The reasons why I think we should continue to call these books the Word of God are 1) the works of the Old and New Testament contain content about God revealed to Moses and later fully revealed in Jesus Christ that is not found elsewhere, this makes the Scriptures unique and special, and 2) Israel and the Church have utilized and confirmed that these books contain a special revelation from God about God through the very human means of flawed human writers.

    Scripture contains something special about God, Scripture calls Scripture the Word of God, our fathers and mothers in the faith worked diligently to see that the right books were in and not other, and our fathers and mothers throughout time have called it the Word of God.

    We don’t call it the Word of God because it is flawless. We call it the Word of God because God communicated to us through this flawed and messy collection of books. I said in the other comment threads this for my final answer:

    “Let’s call it the Word of God, we have reasons to believe (and stand in a long tradition of a community that believes) that it is a special revelation from God.”

    • Jonnie

      n both 1) and 2) of your reasons, it seems like unique or exclusive is the substance of your reasoning for what makes it the word of God. Is this what you mean by “special”? If so, why is this the criterion? What if it wasn’t the only thing that claimed what it claimed about God, would this destabilize its being the word of God?

      • Ric Shewell

        Well, yeah, unique is one criterion, but it doesn’t work without the other criterion: Trusted and used by the Community. Obviously, there’s a lot of unique stuff written about God. Uniqueness alone doesn’t amount to the Word of God, but together with its use by the community that has collected it together and been formed by it, we confidently call it the Word of God.

        The uniqueness of Scripture is one criterion, and that criterion doesn’t stand on its own.

        • Jonnie

          But do you see how ‘unique’ ‘special’ and ‘conformed or used by the community’ are virtually the same thing? The two reasons collapse into each other–circularly. It’s considered unique because it’s chosen, used, and called special. This is by no means a bad thing. Special is a function of being picked or having worked.

          • Ric Shewell

            Okay, let me step back. I think the two criterion are different, but i did misspeak.

            1. The Scriptures are Unique (not special) in what they say about God.
            2. The community has gathered them, used them, and have seen them as beneficial and foundational for the formation of the community (I know it’s circular, but it is what it is).

            Therefore: The Scriptures are Special.

            I am trying to work on this a little bit. But I think that if some writings fit criterion 1 but not 2, it wouldn’t be “special,” and vice versa.

            I think in this sense, unique and special are different. The Scriptures are unique in content, and used in a unique way by the Church, and therefore are special.

            There’s probably more criteria than that, I’m sure. But I think its a good starting point. I call it the Word of God because the psalmists, prophets, and apostles call it that, and they didn’t have the baggage of biblicism that maybe the phrase carries today.

            • Ric Shewell

              I’m still thinking about this. I might be wrong by trying to go down this line of reasoning. I don’t know if or how exactly the letters of the New Testament are unique in content against other early works like the Didache and the Letters of Clement.

              • Jonnie

                Yeah, you’re thrown into a bind by trying to account for the uniqueness as something inherent to it (the word of God) apart from it’s use in and by the community. That’s fine I think. It’s more an admission I think…one I’m more than fine with. :)

                • Ric Shewell

                  The thing i like best about the comment section is an opportunity to sharpen our theological positions in a (more or less) safe community!

                  • Jonnie

                    Amen brother.

      • http://deadheroesdontsave.com/ MikeB (@g1antfan)

        in terms of unique in content – there would likely be several factors and here are some to think about
        1) unique in claims of being written by prophet/apostle/associate of one of those
        2) unique in being widely recognized as being written and verified by Israel/church
        3) unique in content – if you are going to consider this as part of the criterion then it would only have to be the original source of newly revealed information.

        #1 and #3 that would help you out in how NT documents differs from very early Christian writings (Didache or Clement). They are different b/c of who and when they were written (#1) yet may not vary much in content (#3). The reason for not varying much in content is b/c they cite and rely on the Scriptural documents as basis for points they are making. Yet they are not considered Scripture b/c of who/when written. Yet they are also considered worth reading by the church.

    • Jim Armstrong

      Our Jewish friends (and we are followers of Jesus, who was a Jew) would assure us that only the Torah is the word of God.

      • nick

        Just to be clear, are you implying that Jews would not consider the Prophets or the Psalms to be the from God? ( i hesitate to say word of god because as i understand it that is a uniquely christian phrase).

      • Ric Shewell

        I’m pretty ignorant on Jewish studies or Jewish interpretations of Scripture. But Paul uses the phrase “Word of God” interchangeably between the Hebrew Scriptures (I guess he could be referring only to the Torah) and the message preached about Jesus.

        “This is the Word of YHWH” is a phrase repeated throughout the prophets. It seems that people could easily call at least portions of the prophets the word of God.

        And finally, in Romans 9, Paul says the word of God hasn’t failed and then does some exegetical work with the Hebrew Scriptures that include Hosea, Isaiah, and Jeremiah. Maybe Paul is doing it differently from modern day Jewish scholarship, but it seems to me that Paul means the whole TNK when he says Word of God.

        • nick

          Ditto

          I wonder if maybe we should start being clear on a distinguishing “The Word of God” from “The Word of YHWH/the LORD” aside from the whole “Jesus is the Word of God” thing. Maybe I’m splitting hairs, but I feel like there’s a difference. Not sure what though.

  • http://deadheroesdontsave.com/ MikeB (@g1antfan)

    Jake’s question has many parts as noted by Tony’s OP. But seems Jake had two main areas that troubled him:

    1. I’m having trouble with believing that the Bible is God’s actually intended message to humanity.
    2. I’m also having trouble with taking the Bible as my sole authority.

    In thinking about the first issue, we must remember that the Bible itself is primarily written by people who claim to have been given messages by God (ie. prophets and apostles or those closely associated with them). They certainly believed that they were delivering a message that God intended to share with other people. First through being spoken and proclaimed and later through writing.

    Setting aside how inspiration of the written words might work for the moment, the question is how does anyone know anything about God and what He desires of us if the Bible is not God’s intended message to us?

    As to the question is the Bible my sole authority? That is an easy no. God is. He is the Creator and posseses authority. Anything else has authority only b/c He delegated it to them. However, God has chosen to communicate primarily through prophets and apostles confirming them with signs and wonders. He left them the task to make disciples and teach all that was commanded. That task was accomplished through writing down the messages that were given.

    The Wesley Quadrilateral – Scripture, Reason, Tradition, and Experience – is a reasonable approach to how to approach theology and make decisions. However the latter 3 are to be tested against Scripture.

    • nick

      WesleyQuad!

    • Jim Armstrong

      But isn’t there a problem here in that we use all kinds of criteria in our own time to decide who to listen to. And yet in comparison, we know very little about the speakers, or the choosers of the contents of the canon(s) to whom we grant great credibility. Also, our criteria for such granting rests for many of us on buliding blocks of a robust worldview, again shaped by relatively unvetted say-so of our early influences (e.g., parents and teachers).

      Bottom line – Quadrilateral good! At least, very helpful. But there is an implicit element of an active (and open) user making use of that quadrilateral, that is a seeker posessing an evolving (and ultimately personal and possibly idiosyncratic) understanding/faith.

      • http://deadheroesdontsave.com/ MikeB (@g1antfan)

        Jim

        Can you elaborate on the problem you see. Historical studies of the canon give us a good idea of how and when the NT was written and collected. And to a lessor degree of the OT. A logical and reasonable case can be made as to their credibility. That one can build on.

        As for an active, growing understanding of God and of our faith, I can only hope that all Christians are actively pursuing that.

        MikeB

  • http://gravatar.com/pilgrimperson Brandon Colbert

    What K. Barth said…

  • http://gravatar.com/sstudham Scott

    The Bible is the best collection of Jesus’ teachings. I think of Jesus as divine… but is the Bible inerrant and “the literal WORD OF GOD” … I highly doubt it. But that doesn’t mean it isn’t valuable. I just don’t worship it or make an idol out of a book. For me the bible is not without error because people are not without error and people wrote it in a different time, place and culture. I use the bible to study about Jesus teachings to “Love God/Others”…. I use it for inspiration … but I don’t worship it.

  • http://www.sarahcunningham.org Sarah

    I still see the Bible as the word of God, even though when I say that I’m not envisioning God inscribing the Ten Commandments onto stone, and even though the phrase “Word of God” makes me a little uncomfortable as it is often wielded by those who in my opinion abuse its use.

    Nevertheless, I still see the Bible as the sacred writings that communicate the nature and yes, word, of God to us as collectively captured by a variety of human voices who participated in an age where he was unveiling himself to the humankind. I still believe the whole text–even when accounting for various author angles, genre, embeddedness in antiquated cultures or slight variations in translations–is true. But of course I don’t think true necessarily means we are to replicate or reconstruct the exact life or society of the ancient world, but rather that even this text still bears truth about God to us that is informing to our lives today.

    The Bible has been the starting point of many of my ideas about God and a trustworthy voice to immerse myself in as our world and my own beliefs grow and evolve. I can’t bring myself to downplay it at all despite many friends who’ve written off the majority as akin to Bronze Age mythology.

    I do, however, think it is important to acknowledge that God interacted with people prior to the Bible’s existence and since the Bible’s existence, so it is disproportionate to treat it as the only expression of God’s interactivity. I believe there’s something transcendent and awe-ing, and God-bearing, about the starry skies, the expansive waters, the deep woods. And in addition, I believe God equipped us with intellect, reasons and instincts that help us draw meaning from our experiences. And that he placed us on a continuum of tradition that holds our ideas in balance, which includes the global community of faith of this time.

    And yes, like some have already said, that means I’m grateful for the quadrilateral which was one of the most reasonable approaches to spirituality I’d encountered on my side of Protestantism (I don’t consider myself a Wesleyan by identity, but we attend a Wesleyan church plant).

    And I’ll say one more thing. I think there is a central thread of God-with-human story that runs through the Bible in its entirety and still rings true to my experience of God today. This is the presentation of a God born to be Emmanuel, a savior who embraced society’s margins (the life and death of whom taught us more about the inklings of God we already had), and who intentionally invited people to a new way of with-God living.

    After that seemingly easy central takeaway, I think it’s important to acknowledge that the Bible is a complex book. That it is often divided differently by its readers so that people looking at the same book can, even with genuine God-following motives, believe it supports different–even opposing–points of view. There are some cases where I believe it is useful and important to engage interpretations of these sorts of passages (like, say, if I were a theologian and that was my field of expertise and practice), but since I’m CLEARLY not, I try to hold enough humility to understand that even if I think I’m a pretty smart cookie, that just by the nature and breadth of the book (the nuances of original language, the removed geographical and time context etc), there are of course going to be multiple viewpoints on many passages. And it would be pretty arrogant and also illogical to assume that in each and every one of those, that my own viewpoint is superior. So I allow room for possibility of my own reading and application being sometimes inferior.

    I wrap that all up by saying I think a good idea about how to live graciously and avoid foolishness when applying the Bible is the Shema, obviously drawn from Jesus’ own take on what command was most important. And after that, my own personal rule lies here: yell where Jesus yell and whisper where Jesus whispered.

  • http://gravatar.com/joel1976 walter klockers

    I view the bible as a *collection of books* that cover a span of human history. As such, I often use the word “they” or “them” when talking about scripture. To me, they are best describes as a history of our interpretation of God. They are “inspired” by God but written by human beings. They are filled with wonderful displays of faith and flaws. They are just as messy as we are with disagreements and inconsistencies.

  • http://www.facebook.com/scot.miller.547 Scot Miller

    My two cents: The Bible is not “objectively” the Word of God, any more than the Koran or the Bhagavad Gita or the Hindu Vedas or any other religious text is “objectively” the Word of God. (By “objective” I mean “what is the case independently of what an individual or group believes to be the case.”) In other words, the “objective” evidence suggests that religious texts are just like other texts, the creation of particular human beings and communities in particular places and times and cultures.

    However, these texts can become the Word of God subjectively in the lives of individuals and groups. Somehow, some people experience the divine speaking through the Bible (or the Koran or the Vedas, etc.) So the Bible is “subjectively” the Word of God whenever an individual or group “recognizes” or “encounters” the divine speaking through the text. (And by “subjective,” I mean “what depends upon an individual or group to be true.” It is subjectively true when I say that “Templeton Rye is delicious,” because I really think it is delicious. Alas, my wife would be lying if she said “Templeton Rye is delicious,” because she does not like the taste of whiskey or rye. But it is objectively true to say, “Templeton Rye became Al Capone’s whisky of choice.”)

    • http://biomystic.org Steve Lewis

      All Christians need to understand that the Bible can no longer be used for spiritual authority. You cannot get spiritual authority from lies and liars. All Christians need to read or see the video, The Bible Unearthed, which shows the work of Israeli archeologist Israel Finkelstein and Israeli historian Neil Silberman. Armageddon has literally come as these two working the Megiddo site show that the Hebrew authors of the Torah/Tanakh were myth-makers, creating a false history of themselves with tall tales of fabulous Hebrew ancestors and powerful kingdoms and fantastic events that never were. Pauline Christianity that Progressive Christians and their leadership still embrace even though they all know there’s major problems with Pauline Christian theology with it’s reliance on the Bible stories, is still a dead horse trying to be ridden. There is a “Golden Thread” of spiritual truth embedded in the Bible stories but it must be extracted from the gross matrix of Jewish tribal nationalism that attempted to own God for Jews alone. God provided the Christian movement to start the correction and univeralize God-consciousness and actually recover the true spiritual Celestial Torah that was lost in the Jewish earthly Torah.

      As a modern Jewish Christian religious visionary, you guys have no idea how frustrating it is to not be able to communicate the spiritual truth to people with enough education to understand why a new spiritual vision is necessary in our times of transition from one Age to another. God won’t leave believers bereft of spiritual guidance so a new spiritual vision has been given for ours and future generations: Celestial Torah Christianity–it cannot be touched by earthly Jewish and Pauline Christian priesthoods that have corrupted the earthly Torah. http://biomystic.org/celestialtorah.htm reveals why Christianity is far older than the Abrahamic religions with roots going back over 4000 years in Mesopotamia and ancient Egypt. But will Progressives pay any attention? Not so far as they cannot leave their traditions without their leaders telling them its OK, not fully comprehending that their leaders make their livings on keeping the old Pauline Christian traditions going so radical change is the last thing they want to see happen.

      • Lanny

        Steve Lewis, it sounds like you have some undertones of the new age religious movement which is seems to be growing, am i correct in this thought?
        To listen to a few people cloud painting the past to fit an agenda they were not there to actually see and write about I’ve seen people construct a whole culture out of little and they where dead wrong with the end results, this is why it needs to be done with out preconceived ideas, the people who wrote the bible had witnesses, allot of these people gave up their very lives for what they actually saw and witnessed which can be re verified by outside sources .. i will believe these testimonies because they backed it up, not “evidence tainted by fortune and fame.

  • http://biomystic.org Steve Lewis

    No, you are not correct but projecting I think from the anti-New Age evangelical Christian agenda that saw and still sees the devil in my generation’s affection for Aquarian Age transformation. I do have supporters, e.g. Melkite Catholics in Nazareth, some Palestinian peace activists in West Bank and Bethlehem, Paxcalibur, the Sword of Peace, next Keeper will be Tent of Nations, a Palestinian peace activist group. What’s shows Pax’s spiritual power is the fact that it is a flat out pagan/New Age hippie icon that somehow was instantly accepted into orthodox Catholic ritual and honor. Pax and I were sung to by those 500+ Nazarean Christians in the courtyard of the Church of St. John. It was the happiest day of my entire life, so unexpected a reception that could only be of God’s blessing.

    And now, my Vision of Christ Josephine, also filled with unusual spiritual correspondence that prophesies a return of the Spirit of Christ in feminine form coming as well to fulfill the Lakota expectation of the return of White Buffalo Calf Woman. In a week or so I will be meeting for the first time a Northern Cheyenne woman who stumbled across the Vision of Christ Josephine and was completely astounded because she got to the website in a Google search on ankhs–she’s glass craftswomen and made a glass ankh that she found seem to have strange healing powers at dawn and dusk. Then she found the Horus of the Horizon connection where his powers are greatest at dawn. Then she found Josephine.

    I’m in that same old position prophets get into where they have these wondrous visions and revelations and just HAVE to tell people about them but being brand new spiritual visions and carrying new information that radically changes interpretation of the old spirituality, we are met with various degrees of hostility. I think I hold the world’s record for being the most banned person on internet religious discussion forums. Here I am ignored because Progressive Christianity is still completely Pauline Christian and Bible based while mine has its roots in Jewish Gnosticism coming out Alexandria where the Library was used by Jewish Gnostics to re-learn Egyptian religious ideas which I believe actually began the Christian movement.

    I just want Christians and all peoples to know that God has placed the proper guiding Signs in the heavens that point always to the Humanitarian Model, the Man (and remember that that “Man” has become significantly feminized because he/she must represent all Humanity, just as Jesus Christ does, because in the Sign of Aquarius, ruled by Saturn who is EL (Canaanite name for the planet Saturn and God commanded us Jews to worship God Most High on Saturn’s Day) there is the Living Waters to be poured over the ones consecrated to rule, Living Waters which symbolize the beneficence and bounty and blessing and purification of human beings. All this is explained in image progression form in the pages of Celestial Torah Christianity. While earthly religions will come and go as man-made products, these celestial Signs will always be there as God’s Sign-Nature. And there’s no need to fret over “orthodox” or “reform” or this or that interpretation because God’s done the heavy lifting and spread the proper interpretation already: The Age of Aquarius gives God’s blueprint for peace, love and harmony. It is universally known now and It only has to be recognized as truly spiritually based from God and manifested in our reality. Will you help me do it? Help spread the word, there is a new Christianity and one brought into the world the way Jesus said it must done, with “signs and wonders”, not intellectual effort of men.

    • Lanny

      Hi Steve, I grew up with reading the Bible and yes i believe there is power and much more to God and in God than has been told in the bible,however i attempt to follow what i read and understand of the bible through my faith, If you are correct and your faith and conscience is clean and you are sure this is what God wants then good , yet if i was to join you my faith and conscience is not clean, i would feel i may be doing or joining something that may or may not be right. So i am declining ..but if you have materials i can look at i would like to understand what it is you would like to accomplish and possibly change my opinion ..the “You cannot get spiritual authority from lies and liars” part of your statement is what would make people a bit.. hmm..”uncomfortable” and set a rather large red flag in my head since we read the bible as truth or at least i do lol..

  • http://biomystic.org Steve Lewis

    I’m sorry but I cannot follow the Spirit of Christ in good conscience and allow myself to keep silent about the truthfulness of the writers of the Bible stories and all the priesthoods following those writers and continuing to peddle their stories as real history. People have died because of these stories. Millions of people. The religious wars these Bible stories have generated for the past 2500 years kill people. Should people die for stories? Would you die to protect King Arthur’s reputation? Would you kill to defend the honor of Zeus?

    This is why I can’t just go along with the crowd on this one. The Bible must be exposed as a collection of stories that are not true to stop the religious madness that ensues when the Bible stories are taken as truthful foundation for Abrahamic beliefs.

    How many Abrahamic believers do not have any idea that the Story of Abraham and Isaac makes Abraham a sadistic madman who if caught doing what was written in Genesis would be locked away in a mental hospital prison. And the god that demanded such a show of loyalty too must be exposed as a monster, a manipulative madman of a god. Add to this when one researches the timing and placement of these so-called Abraham events and the languages and religious beliefs of the area, there comes up a disturbing connection between Moloch demands for passing a firstborn son through the fire as a test of loyalty to the “Great Moloch of War”, meaning the Great King of War. The name “Melchizedek” too is connected to Moloch and his connection to Abraham is to honor Abe for his war victory. No one researches these things in Abrahamic religions because they are put into Taboo category to do so. Yet 2500 years of Abrahamic warfare has happened with Zero end in sight as the Abrahamic religionists get better armed and cause more destruction. It has to stop. God’s sick and tired of all the needless bloodshed for fables—lies. And the liars who continue to promote the old lies that kill.

    That’s all there is to it bottom line. Dethrone the Bible and its spawn, the Quran, so people can live in peace and harmony, good will to ALL. Am I wrong to espouse this truth as one inspired to action by the Spirit of Christ?

    • Lanny

      IF your research of this is correct then of course you should try to show this and expose lies i do have to say that even if everything you know makes sense and “fits” you still have a percent that you may be wrong because you were not there to witness the past first hand what if for instance people in close proximity to the Jewish community and hear they sacrifice animals for their sins and now the people worshiping other gods try to do a one up for their God for instance and making the bible passage true even still as God did not have Abraham sacrifice his son and did give a Lamb for that …but because of people mimicking all of a sudden it looks like its a type of thing others did for other gods around that time ..just brainstorming a bit but ,yes i agree it was a heavy demand for Abraham psycologically and i did not research the background of other religions at that time.
      the bible is not the only reason wars are fought plenty of wars with mega blood shed has happened without religious influence just from greed power that’s the heart of it and does not matter what tools a blood thirsty power crazed person uses they will find other tools to use. NOW if what you say about the bible is your belief then yes you should do what you can to expose it..it will either justify the truth of the bible or expose it, as you say, but this will not in any way make things better, because you end up with a moral problem and take away belief that may very well be holding back allot of people from behaving what ever way they feel since there would no god of the bible to worry about how a person behaves or since the bible is not true then y shouldn’t we do what we want to, God never said it was wrong and the “because i said so” wont work nor will because “we as a whole group say so and forbid it” it doesn’t matter its a slippery slope ..you cannot at this point keep and hold any bible based moral principles at all because your disproving it and because your disproving it you would only have what you feel could be what god would want or not .

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  • http://biomystic.org Steve Lewis

    I was an atheist until age 35 and I was a good person then, e.g. conscientious objector to the Vietnam War, and still am as a Christian who finally read the Bible at age 35–and found it so ethically mixed up no one can use it for a moral foundation. I mean that Bible tells Jews to kill their own kids if they don’t obey, to kill women who use natural spirituality for healing purposes, to kill homosexuals, to kill fortune tellers and diviners, so that when you match up say, the three wise men Magi, they would be killed according to Talmudic law if caught intermingling with Jewish people’s religion, and then we get to that mythical Deed to Canaan that Abraham supposedly receives from the Moloch-like god of Abraham, certainly not EL Elyon that the Canaanites worshiped even though Abe’s grandson, Jacob builds an altar to EL, at Bethel, House of EL.

    I’ve managed now for 34 years to live morally without a shred of worship to the Jewish god, YHWH who I view as many Gnostic Christians have, as an imposter god, a fraudulent poseur, a man-made god created by priests and scribes of Judah. I am spiritually guided by God Most High and the Spirit of Christ and I tell in all truth you don’t need the Bible as spiritual authority when you have the Spirit itself there to teach you, lead you to the right information that will help you manifest that little Jesus inside you, your conscience. It’s in most everyone, built in, but must be cherished and nurtured to come to expression and there is a Key to opening it: Baptism.

    I don’t mean that we should burn Bibles because I fully agree with Jesus that “not one tittle will be lost” of the Old Testament because without it, one cannot fully understand Jesus Christ’s place in the unfolding of God’s Plan. It’s like you can’t really know what a human being is until you know the evolutionary trail that produce homo sapiens. The O.T. is like all those genes on a DNA molecule that are recessive and suppressed because they make species form that is no longer appropriate to the advancement of the species. Same thing with O.T. teachings. They produced the Judaism and Jewish culture that in turn produced Jesus but Jesus and his teachings are a new species of the Spirit in humanity. Still you need to know where he came from and why he couldn’t stay there in that same theological milieu.

    Here’s something that reflects what I mean: I find the Gospel of John to hold the most spiritual truth of any ancient religious text I have ever read. Yet it has the same problem of promoting a fictitious event and demanding Christian belief hinge on accepting that event as historical that the other Gospels have, because to the Gospel writers loyalty to the Story of Jesus Christ equaled loyalty to Jesus Christ and to God. It requires blind faith to accept this type of belief and of course, us Gnostics could never do the blind faith path, needing as we do, Knowledge of God, to verify the foundation of our Christian beliefs.

    • Lanny

      Jesus Christ never condemned the OT or the Laws of them and he came to fulfill them because we could not.
      Back then there did not seem to be the forgiveness afforded to us by Christ as you know, sins and crimes could not be let go of without some form of punishment for them.
      All the talk about the God of the OT and wanting jews to kill children because of disobeying or women who were into natural healing meaning( witchcraft i assume?) or any of the other things ..One look at all this death diseases and destruction in nature in men in animals ..something matches quite well with the old testament God , GOD allowed this ..we just do not have a big enough picture to understand it all ..Christ came and presented us through his sacrifice a way to have forgiveness and to be forgiven yet he had to Sacrifice himself and showed that yes sacrifices are needed but he had to come at the right time to do this and i am quite certain the God in charge of all we see around us knew and knows and allowed for everything up till and beyond this moment for whatever reason even if we do not understand fully the why of it..

      • http://biomystic.org Steve Lewis

        Can you seriously worship a god who commanded this?

        “Utterly slay old and young men, maidens and little children and women; but do not come near anyone on whom is the mark; and begin at My sanctuary.” So the began with the elders who were before the temple.”—Ezekiel 9:6

        The god who commanded such was a monster, no better than Moloch which I, from my research, highly believe is part and parcel of the god of Abraham. I refuse to bow down to any such moral monstrosity and will never make excuses or apologies for what cannot be excused by any moral person, especially one who follows the teachings of Jesus Christ. Through God’s guidance I have found the problem which is a confusion of gods created when priests and scribes of Judah in their Sinai Covenant elevated their tribal god, Yahweh, to El Elyon’s position, God Most High, when Yahweh, being a lesser war god, never had the ethical qualifications for that role and could only be an imposter in it, as we Gnostics said of Yahweh, starting about 1700 years ago. The old Gnostics did not know about the Judah switcheroo of gods because there was no history of Canaan then and all the Canaanite priesthoods were long gone. But by pulling a Lucifer on everyone, Judaism broke the Celestial Torah which must keep the spiritual relationship between God Most High and the Messiah/Christ/Anointed One, in place as it constitutes the Humanitarian Model that God is evolving through the generations of Abrahamic/Gnostic Christian prophesy bearers, gospel writers and believers.

        As a modern Jewish Christian prophesy bearer I bear witness of the spiritual changeover that must occur and has occurred for the New Age conditions in which the old Abrahamic, Pauline Christian Bible dependent stories must be dethroned and never again excused from moral accountability. The Bible can only be used as allegorical references, not as spiritual authority in and of itself because there is no spiritual authority derived from fictitious mythological events and personages. I am assigned to reestablish spiritual authenticity by bringing new revelation, Celestial Torah Christianity (http://biomystic.org/celestialtorah/htm), the Gospel of Humanity (http://biomystic.org/gospelofhumanity.htm) and documented spiritual events that show God is is motion in our times, the Story of Paxcalibur (http://biomystic.org/paxstory.htm) and the Vision of Christ Josephine (http://biomystic.org/josephine.htm). Evangelical Christians cannot receive my gospel news but this one always hopes for more knowledgeable Christian minds to be able to receive it. But the veil of traditional Pauline Christian doctrines still holds sway and stops even Progressives from seeing what’s happening before their very eyes. Jewish prophesy is back.

        • Lanny

          Let me pose this question to you? Whatever God you assume is in charge allowed all of this to take place and you will worship that one? doesnt it make sense that the God who is in charge allowed this? do we know and understand how bad sin is?? this is where the point is lost ..if sin is bad enough to naturally cause the slow death of us all then it must be far worse than we can understand in our present corruptible bodies and fallen nature. The ones who were put to death what happens to them after death? ..it is not said …we all are being put to death slowly by the God in charge, its time to understand how bad sin actually is and that he knows what he is doing the God of the OT matches what is in nature what ever God is in charge that you believe in allowed for all of this and i assume he knows what he is doing ..and as now those laws are changed by christ who needed to fulfill them and Jesus knowing how Bad sin is allowed himself to be slain for sins he did not reject the OT he showed us that we cannot live up to the standards of “the Law” and being sinless. so why is it that Jesus never said the OT God is not the true God ..why did he accept his need to die on the cross? you say the stories are fakes yet christ did not not say this ..if your bringing christianity to a new awareness shouldnt you not call things mythical the things that christ himself never said were its such bold words you claim as truth about the bible which he knew very very well and made no such accusations

          • Lanny

            i did not meant changed by Christ those laws are fulfilled by christ is more accurate

  • beauty

    God is good all the time.He teaches us to choose right ftom wrong.he gives us the ultimate choice to select life over death,freedom over slavary under sin n laws..the ultimate awsome thing about bible is Jesus.take Him n be free from every confusion.

    • Lanny

      Hi Beauty ..Yes God is good all the time and i feel the old testament laws, part of the reason was to bring mankind into the awareness that they could not fulfill the tall order of being perfect and sin free,
      that they needed a savior and IF the savior was extremely important and he was, I can see that to bring about the right changes while at the time dealing with free will in humans some extreme things needed to be done to clear a path so to speak for the messiah .
      .take for instance Sodom and Gomorrah God judged that place, Now Lot lived there and it was stated his righteous soul was vexed, who is to say if lot remained it very well may have effected the timing of the messiah, because lots son had a daughter Ruth which was the great grandmother of king David (if memory is correct lol), Christ is all important over everyone, we are not intelligent enough to see it all and to say “God cud never do this or that he did not nor would judge such and such”, he is dealing with free will and bringing eternal life to mankind, so no one should look at the old testament at individual punishments because there is a much bigger picture with God, so a disconnected view, means you do not have all the pieces together in harmony and the understanding of the “why” of it would be lost and all of us lack understanding and can question when this happens just understand we sinned we are punished we have a way to be saved by Christ this is awesome and his ways are pure..and if you dig a bit you can understand partly sometimes completely or complete enough to satisfy a question you have and sometimes not but again that would be from lack of knowledge of Gods plans which is why some judgements people may think where harsh had to be..he is a multi multi layered God and his judgements can serve multiple reasons we don’t see..anyhow thanks for your words they are true :)


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