John 14:5-6 “Thomas saith unto him, Lord, we know not whither thou goest; and how can we know the way? :6 Jesus saith unto him, I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me.”
The above verse(s) of John (KJV) seem to me to be the basis or foundation upon which the church has instilled upon humanity the belief that because Yeshua said you don’t get to the father unless it is through him, and that the church is the way to Yeshua, therefore the church is the earthly platform through which every man, woman and child must go in order to attain that ultimate goal.
The church has removed any possibility that a human can find YHWH without its (church’s) intercession; that none can approach the Father directly. If you look at the wording as found in the KJV bible Yeshua appears to be saying that to get to the Father we do have to go through him. Have you ever questioned that wording, and is it the same wording elsewhere in published and unpublished Scriptures.
Keep in mind that it was the church, starting with Iraneaus, that determined which books became our Bible.
Gospel of Thomas
We see in the above verse it was Thomas who asked this question of Yeshua. Yet, though there is a Gospel of Thomas, the church determined it did not belong in our Bible.
The Gospel of Thomas relates that when the disciples asked Yeshua where they should go, he said only,
“There is light within a man of light, and it lights up the whole world. If he does not shine, he is darkness.”
At the end of this blog there is a listing of additional Scriptures that speak of you and me and the light(s) we are and must be. Let it shine, I need you.
Dialogue of the Saviour
Again, as I noted about Thomas, the verse the church relies on is a conversation between Yeshua and Thomas, and yet the church did not deem fit to include the book (gospel) “Dialogue of the Saviour.”
According to the Dialogue of the Saviour, when the disciples asked Yeshua the same question (“What is the place to which we shall go?”) he answered,
“the place which you can reach, stand there!”
In other words, right here, right now, precisely where you and I find ourselves standing (or sitting), this is the place! Not in a building or through the prayers of some intermediary like a pastor, priest or confessor – but through our own individual hearts in
this place in this space, in this moment – right here, right now!
Tomorrow, in our individual understanding we may reach a little further and there we will stand, but that is tomorrow and this is the here and the now and the place, so stand here!
Chosen Books of Bible
As you can see, contrary to the wording of John, the extant and extrapolated sayings and words of Yeshua in those books left out of the Bible are telling each person that s/he is to find the way within themselves. He is not telling them to find a church or a religious organization and they will show you the way.
Yeshua quite clearly is telling each and every one of us that this is a personal journey, that we must look within ourselves to find this “way” and that there is a “light within” each of us that will light the way for each at every step of their personal journey.
Body of Yeshua is Not a Building
The beacon of light that now shines for me within the heart of this body is a bright light for me, but it is not your bright light or my neighbour’s bright light. We must each find our own flickering flame within, and begin to nurture it and grow it and fuel it with the fuel of love that is truth, that is Yeshua.
It is this person’s absolute belief that the organization(s) we call church have deliberately put together a puzzle of Words that suit their organizational needs in order to grow their numbers, and sadly to increase their financial gains in this world, gains that are built upon false and misleading teachings and doctrines.
This gain financially isn’t one just for the sake of having money. It is one for the sake of having power; power to dictate and to rule and to determine what is best for humanity.
Is the church that I grew up in simply a false structure built on lies of all who have become her members? Do I believe that every man, woman and child who took the oath to serve Yeshua did so for personal gain? No, this is NOT what I believe.
To the contrary I believe that most men and women who have chosen a life of service to Yeshua (we say the church) have done so out of an inordinate love, honour, respect and sense of family; to serve humankind, just as Yeshua did over 2000 years ago.
The lie is not the people who have come from their hearts, minds and souls and made that life changing decision to join a religious group. The lie is the foundation laid thousands of years ago and into which they have unwittingly become pawns in its chess game of life.
The lie is the structure that was so craftily built on a false foundation, for motives that do not fit my idea and the ideals I believe to be Yeshua. He is a Light and we are Lights.
A modern day example of what I am trying to explain here is my years in the legal profession in Toronto as a paralegal/law clerk. Year in and year out I saw new lawyers starting with the firms; men and women who became lawyers because they wanted to help the men and women who really needed help. However, it didn’t take too long for them to see that what they wanted and why they became lawyers didn’t fit the agenda of the firm they were working at.
I worked for several Bay Street law firms in Toronto (I equate Bay Street in Toronto with Wall Street in New York City – lawyers and bankers) and the driving force of big law firms is what we call “billable hours.” As a junior or associate lawyer you are expected to bill so many hours a month for the firm, netting a certain dollar value. If all your hours were spent helping clients who couldn’t pay (i.e. they were a pro bono case or on legal aid), you wouldn’t meet your quota and chances are your life at the firm would soon be terminated, or if not terminated, your growth and step up the corporate ladder wouldn’t happen.
I am not denigrating the law firms or any big businesses of Toronto or any city. I am just explaining that law firms are a big business and they have financial responsibilities to their organization, their employees, etc. Many of the firms I worked with did do pro bono work, that is they worked for clients for no fee. They were amazing firms as were all of the people who ran them from the top to the bottom. They were like family to me and to the communities where they were established.
But churches, why, and in fact are they big businesses? Certainly this is how they operate. Aren’t their clients you and I, the men and women of the community? Is whether or not I am a member of the community determined by whether or not I live in a house, or does it include those who live on the streets and sidewalks?
If law firms stopped serving their customers, they’d be out of business. When a church stops serving their customers, shouldn’t they be closing their wooden doors, tearing down their structures, and getting back out into the communities and streets to serve their people?
When money becomes the factor to determine whether a business is a success, then you have chosen to serve “manna”. It’s that simple. Like Scripture tells us, you can’t serve YHWH and money; you’ll love one and hate the other.
Matthew 6:24 “No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”
Luke 16:13 “No servant can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one, and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.”
Take all that money for all those fancy churches and use it to build affordable housing, to drill wells and plant crops; to teach men, women and children in poverty stricken countries how to grow their own crops, dig their own wells, build their own schools, educate their own people and then raise and nurture their own communities.
This is what my Yeshua would be doing if he were still here, physically with us, on this earth. I say, “If” and I am wrong in using this word, because Yeshua “IS Here” in and with you and me.
Do you belong to some religious structure, one like my parents’ former parish in Florida that so happily announced they raised $5 million dollars to put away for expansion of their church 10 years from then, as the church grew – and as we drove out of the parking lot we passed men and women lying and begging on the streets and the sidewalks of that church? Is this your church, your organization?
If it is, is there something you as the “body” of that church can do to convince the pastor or priest to tear down the structures walls, stop collecting money for a “finer” building, and start using the money to build affordable housing in your community?
You Are the Light
Matthew 5:14 “Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid.”
Matthew 6:22 “The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light.”
Luke 11:34 “The light of the body is the eye: therefore when thine eye is single, thy whole body also is full of light; but when thine eye is evil, thy body also is full of darkness.”
John 8:12 “Then spake Jesus again unto them, saying, I am the light of the world: he that followeth me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.”
Perhaps we can work with our communities and church fellowships to start feeding the hungry, the widow and the children; to build structures that house the family of YHWH, not just the priests and those who serve directly within the organization, but the entire family of YHWH.
If we, though small, commit to allowing our light to shine, one tiny step at a time, working together with the Father, imagine how great a work He can do through just one, just as He did through just one 2000 years ago, Yeshua.