My best friend, my guide and my light with whom I consult in all things, especially those things that I am thinking about doing or saying that might impact others as well, is Yeshua. Over the years I have had a lot of serious questions come up within me about what I have heard from the teachers (i.e. priests, pastors, etc.) of the Word, including those under whom I sat in Bible College.
One of the big questions I had and still have is the one that the leaders of the flock rely upon in governing their fellowships; the word found in the Book of Revelation that warns us we aren’t supposed to change a single letter that has been written. More precisely I am speaking of Revelations 22:19. What I understood through those that were teaching me and others was that we were not to change a single word of the entire bible, from Genesis to Revelations. However, if you read this verse you will see it is speaking only about the Book of Revelations.
But, what is said in this verse differs, depending on which version of the Bible you are reading. That in and of itself causes confusion because if the very verse that threatens us not to change anything, is itself changed, then which version do we rely upon to suggest that it is true, accurate and unedited? Here is the wording of a few of the versions of the Bible, starting with the KJV:
King James Version “And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.”
New International Version “And if anyone takes words away from this scroll of prophecy, God will take away from that person any share in the tree of life and in the Holy City, which are described in this scroll.”
New Living Translation “And if anyone removes any of the words from this book of prophecy, God will remove that person’s share in the tree of life and in the holy city that are described in this book.”
English Standard Version “and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.”
Berean Study Bible “And if anyone takes away from the words of this book of prophecy, God will take away his share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book.”
Berean Literal Bible “And if anyone should take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life, and out of the holy city, of those having been written in this book.”
New American Standard Bible “and if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away his part from the tree of life and from the holy city, which are written in this book.”
Aramaic Bible in Plain English “And whoever subtracts from the words of the Scripture of this prophecy, God shall subtract his part from The Tree of Life and from The Holy City, those things which are written in this book.”
These different versions themselves have each removed and added words. They are different, so which one are we supposed to believe is the one and only, when every one of them has been put together by a flawed human being?
We cannot and must not reply upon anything that has been written or transcribed or transliterated by a human being. We are too prone to human error, and I have no doubt that some of the things we might call a mistake have been deliberately added or changed to suit some individual or group’s agenda – i.e., the agenda of the authoritarians of say a religious organization or a political agenda within a religious organization.
I will leave you, at this point, with something to consider that certainly I have never considered, by way of this question:
Were there political matters involved in Yeshua’s agenda and time here on earth? After all he was named both a king and a priest after the Order of Melchizedek. Certainly in my years Yeshua and politics were never two words used or coined together in any church teachings. Have we deliberately avoided any mention of politics so as not to question some of the things that took place during Yeshua’s short time on this planet?
In light of what is to follow in this blog, please consider the following verse from Matthew 10:
25 It is enough for a disciple to be like his teacher, and a servant like his master. If the head of the house has been called Beelzebul, how much more the members of his household! 26 So do not be afraid of them. For nothing is concealed that will not be uncovered, or hidden that will not be made known. 27 What I tell you in the dark, speak in the light; what is whispered in your ear, proclaim from the housetops.…
Look within your own heart, for therein slumbers what has been hidden and will be revealed. I believe there will be many documents and other artifacts revealed, but these too will be open to human error of interpretation and understanding. You and I are humans who house the Spirit of Truth. Seek and we will find.
Beneath the Vatican 25 Miles of Interconnecting Tunnels
For years I have been seeking to know more and more about Yeshua than what is contained in the different Bible versions. I have a lot of literature on hand from the Nag Hammadi Scriptures to the Gospel of Mary Magdalene, the secret Gospel of Thomas, the Dead Sea Scrolls, the Hidden Sayings of Jesus, the Essenes and the Gnostics. It is just mind blowing the amount of piecemeal information that is strewn all over the place.
I read somewhere the other day that there are approximately 25 miles of underground rooms containing ancient scriptures, writings, etc., beneath the Vatican. 25 miles of tunnels filled with heaven only knows what; oops, the Vatican knows, I am sure and perhaps has even forgotten just what it has underneath its floorboards.
Just try and visualize 25 miles of interconnecting webs of tunnels, filled from ceiling to floor with ancient biblical texts, pre-biblical teachings, writings, documents, doctrine. What an octopus of a maze it must form. Who, if anybody, has a complete record of what these documents and artifacts consist of and how they ended up hidden in those tunnels?
Disciples Contradict Themselves in Bible
Even those closest to Yeshua can’t seem to agree on some pretty basic and some very important facts about Yeshua:
- Yeshua’s Genealogy: Only Matthew and Luke say anything at all about Yeshua’s origins and birth, and they are at odds with one another.
- According to Matthew, Yeshua was an aristocrat, if not a rightful and legitimate king descended from David via Solomon.
- According to Luke, Yeshua’s family, though descended from the house of David, was of somewhat less exalted stock; and it is on the basis of Mark’s account that the legend of the “poor carpenter” came into being.
- Yeshua’s Birth: According to Luke, on Yeshua’s birth he was visited by shepherds. According to Matthew he was visited by wise men.
- According to Luke Yeshua’s family lived in Nazareth and from there they are said to have journeyed to Bethlehem for a census, which history apparently now tells us never took place. It is there that Yeshua was apparently born in the poverty of a manger.
- According to Matthew, Yeshua’s family had been fairly well-to-do residents of Bethlehem all along and Yeshua himself was born in a house. In Matthew’s version Herod’s persecution of the innocents prompts the family to flee into Egypt and only on their return do they make their home in Nazareth.
- Yeshua’s Crucifixion: The Gospels are not in agreement as to the day on which Yeshua was crucified.
- According to John’s gospel the crucifixion occurred on the day before Passover.
- According to the gospels of Mark, Luke and Matthew it occurred on the day after Passover
- Yeshua’s Last Words: The last words spoken by Yeshua on the cross are different according to the disciples.
- Matthew and Mark record them as being, “My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”
- Luke records them as being, “Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.”
- John records them as being, “It is finished.”
- Yeshua’s Personality: His disciples, those who walked with him and were so close to him, cannot even agree on the personality of Yeshua. Each disciple when writing depicts a personality totally at odds with that of the others:
- Luke portrays a meek, lamb-like saviour
- Matthew portrays a powerful and majestic sovereign who comes, “not to bring peace but a sword.”
Spirit Knows – Spirit is Truth
If you too are seeking to know Truth then you and I must rely upon Spirit, which is Truth. If you are convicted of a Truth it is very difficult for you or I to stand up and stand against thousands of years of church doctrines and traditions. For sanity sake, we have no other alternative if we seek truth.
We can only be certain of a Truth when it is given to us by Spirit, for only Spirit can know Spirit. The flesh cannot and will not ever understand and know truth. How can what is imperfect and flawed ever know what is perfection, truth and eternal? As a human being we have guides that are imperfect: our five natural senses, and these are products of the earthly environment which is not perfection.