Banned From The Bible (Again)

07/22/2013

Some people might think that most Christian writings deserve to be in a holy book somewhere.  However the Church, in its infinite wisdom (remember, the Pope is infallible), felt that Christians would be better off not knowing about certain scriptures.  So they destroyed those writings that they didn’t like (i.e. did not agree with its own dogma) and burned at the stake anyone who objected.  How Christ-like!

That’s what happens when religion is based on dogma.  The process goes something like this.  First, you decide on the dogma.  In the case of Christianity, that would be the Council of Nicaea in 325 AD (some three hundred years after Jesus).  That’s tantamount to writing the U.S. Constitution 300 years after the Revolution; in which case, there would still be no Constitution in place today.

Once you have a dogma, the rest is relatively easy.  You get rid of the competition; to wit, make sure that the holy books include only what you want.  As I said in my recent post “Banned From The Bible”, there is no Book of Enoch, Dead Sea Scrolls or Gospel of Judas, among many others, in the Bible. The process of deciding which books were “divinely inspired” took yet another 72 years after the Council of Nicaea.  Yes, it took 72 years to figure out exactly what constituted divine inspiration.

Actually, a number of gospels are not included in the Bible either, like those of Philip, Peter and Thomas.  Like I said, you get rid of opposing views.  With respect to the Gospel of Philip, it would be embarrassing, to say the least, if people found out that Mary Magdalene was the “companion” of Jesus with all that that implies.  So the Gospel of Philip was…

banned from the Bible.

The Gospel of Thomas supposedly contains the secret sayings of Jesus.  However according to the Gospel of Thomas, Jesus believed that God lives in every human being rather than in just himself only. That might have changed history so the Gospel of Thomas was…

banned from the Bible.

The original Bible included the Book of the Wisdom of Solomon. The Wisdom of Solomon was considered to be the Word of God for over 1,000 years. However with the Reformation, the Protestants decided that the Book of the Wisdom of Solomon, among others, was no longer divinely inspired.  So for Protestants, and Protestants only, those books were…

banned from the Bible.

Most bibles are based on any one of three scriptural sources, namely the Masoretic Text, the Vulgate or the Septuagint.  All of these texts have shortcomings.  For example, the Masoretic Text dates only to the 9th century and the Vulgate (a Latin Bible) to the late 4th century.  On the other hand, The Dead Sea Scrolls which predate Christianity are contemporary writings which showed what the life of Jesus must have been like. The Scrolls also demonstrate something totally unexpected, if not altogether shocking. Religious scriptures of the day had textual diversity. Scribes apparently would choose from different sources and then insert their own personal preferences. So which version of the Bible is the true Word of God?  Is it all of them or, as some believe, none of them?

If God wanted to write a bible, most Christians would probably say that He has the power to do just that. So why didn’t He? If God had written the Bible himself we could have dispensed with 2,000 years of debate over the matter.  What we’re left with is what I call the inspired Word of God. Even if the Bible, any Bible, is truly a work inspired by God, there’s still one problem.  Inspiration from God does not necessarily equate with the Word of God. There’s a big difference.  As I sit at my computer and write these words, I too am inspired by God – inspired to write what I think is the truth; the truth based on God having “whispered in my ear”.  To make matters worse, we don’t even know who wrote most of the Bible so how could we possibly know that God inspired men to write stories about Him; even if He did, is it the true Word of God or rather man’s word about God?

So how are we supposed to know who whispered in the ear of the scribe that wrote the Book of Enoch. Written approximately 200 years before Jesus, this work was quoted in the New Testament Book of Jude and by many of the early church fathers.  Enoch manuscripts were found among the Dead Sea Scrolls so we know that these writings were used and respected by the early Christians.  An apocryphal work, the Epistle of Barnabas, goes so far as to call Enoch the inspired Word of God.  Now, where I have I heard that term before?  The thing that makes Enoch stand out from all of the other religious scriptures is its identification of the exact source of evil in the world. The Book of Enoch specifically identifies the Fallen Angels as the source of evil and corruption in the world (rather than Original Sin via Adam and Eve).  Enoch goes on to say that in the End of Days only the wicked will be judged by God. It’s easy to see why the Book of Enoch was…

banned from the Bible.

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11 Responses to “Banned From The Bible (Again)”

  1. I’m loving your posts more and more!:-)

    • chicagoja said

      My objective is to get people to expand their minds as it’s the only path to personal growth. As Socrates once said,”All I know is that I know nothing.” Thanks for visiting.

      • Indeed. There’s blind faith and there is faith that is blinded by wrong information. Or based on terrible dogmas. As responsible, intelligent human beings it is a gift to be able to question, think and understand the world around us on deeper levels. Knowledge is powerful. I think my problem has been that I have based most of my beliefs from the experiences I have had and how I tend to ‘feel’ about things. I trust my intuition a lot. And mistrust historians and great thinking books to some level no matter how enlightening they are for the human mind. I’m learning though!!:-)

      • chicagoja said

        Just remember that history is written by the victors while intuition is the voice of God “talking” to you.

      • So you’re saying intuitive thinking and faith is more credible?

      • chicagoja said

        Intuitive thinking – a qualified yes. Faith, perhaps not depending on how you arrived at your belief system as most peoples’ belief systems are based on someone else’s opinion.

  2. You make a powerful point comparing the timeframe for deciding the canon with that of the Constitution. 300 years seems like an acceptable number for many, but when you drill it down as you have it becomes obvious how long the time removed from the source was when the compilation was determined, and how easy it was to cast aside a large amount of Christian history.

    I watched a documentary several months ago on the Dead Sea Scrolls which claimed that the Catholic Church attempted to conceal the scrolls and disperse to the public selected texts. If not for a university reviewing the scrolls and refusing to return them, the entirety of the scrolls would have been kept in the Vatican never to see the light of day.

  3. Mike said

    And you (and me) my friend will be…
    Banned from heaven…
    How scary is that? Aren’t you? 🙂

    Thankd for the lovely post

    • chicagoja said

      Here’s a story that sort of parallels your comment. A man dies and goes to heaven (or so he thinks). He’s given a tour of the place and during the tour enters a room where there’s lot of people involved in different activities. He sees a very old man with a beautiful young woman on his lap, entertaining him. He approaches the young woman and asks, “Is this heaven?” The young woman replies, “It’s heaven for him but it sure is hell for me.”

      • Mike said

        Speechless… Thanks mate, you made me think a lot. I am posting a new blog post on child abuse in few moments…

  4. babarahs said

    Good…real good.

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