Category Archives: Jesus

The two creations of the devil

introduction

A brother of mine once said “The religion is a invention of the Devil”

I have long thought about the consequences of the Genesis story. About all the women who have suffered and died because of this story, about the masculine ideal of superiority being the “image of God”, about the masculine suppression of women in all kinds of activities during millennia.

Reading the book “Chiara di Assisi” by Dacia Maraini,  the idea came up that Moses was inspired by the Devil when he wrote about Genesis.

Inner voice

How many have not killed following an inner voice and therefore regarded as psychotic or even without any empathy?

We have some kind of inner moral that helps us distinguish between bad and good advice.

About the existence of God and the devil

I am humble about judgeing and making conclusions. I am agnostic and I can not say that God exists. Nor can I say that the devil exists. But I believe that God and a black angel may exist both talking to us in our inner voice.

The Devil

If there is some truth in the Genesis and later in the Quran and in the Gospel, the Devil talks with convincing words, like he did to the intelligent woman who wanted to know more about good and evil and to many others after her. If the devil exists then:

  • it is an intellígent beast.
  • He has a masculine character that loves power. But it was intelligent enough not imposing and commanding even with use of violence. Others did that for this beast.
  • it is a jealous type that wants to be like God
  • it is a sadistic type that loves others to suffer, because he himself probably did being lower than God.
  • it is an egocentric type that likes to brag about his knowledge (he knew about the Creation process and observed God with comments like “And God saw that it was good” (1:18,1:21,1:25)
  • It likes to brag about his power (to convince Eve and indirectly Adam who loved Eve like he did in the story of Genesis.

Moses and Genesis.

Moses was most probably a good man. He did maybe listened to his inner voice. Also, several scientists like Cantor and Einstein seem to have done so. I have done so too. But who did talk to Moses? Could he distinguish between the voices? I have my doubts about that.

I am more and more convinced that the devil now and then talked to Moses. The devil told the Genesis story to Moses who believed in it and wrote it (many believes he did this) down in his first book.

The first part as mentioned above is a true one, but of course simplified for the reasons I shared above.

The story about the tree of the knowledge of good and evil is a strange one probably added by the Devil to create the right scenario for his evilness and power bragging. God as all-knowing and loving would have known about the weakness of humans, being image of God, and therefore having an obvious wish to know and distinguish between evil and good. Who would not?
God would therefore not have tempted these first human beings with some impossible obstacle, like a “tree of the knowledge of good and evil” (2:9 2:17)

The devil told that Eden was between Tigris and the Euphrates 2-14 something that was told differently to the prophet Mohammad. This Tigris story is one of the pillars of conflict between Science (among others anthropology) and Hebrews and Christians. God does not induce to evilness 

so God had no reason and intention to confuse human beings and have many of them using reason, burned for heresy like e.g. Giordano Bruno.

The creation of woman is another one evil story (2:18) The woman to become  “a helper suitable for him”.

God that is a loving spirit, would never share a story that create damage.

Reading Genesis again

The devil was able to tell the simplified stories of the creation of the Universe (1:1-2:2) and the creation of human beings (2:7- ). These were easy enough to be understood by Moses and the humans 4000 years ago. It was fully acceptable for men who did not want to abandon their power over women.

With this in mind I went back, reading Genesis again.

Good looking story and its evil consequenses

2:18 “It is not good for the man to be alone. I will make a helper suitable for him.” +2:20 “for Adam no suitable helper was found.”
Lead to this evilness —> women to be married to men whenever a man or family find it convenient
2:22 the LORD God made a woman from the rib he had taken out of the man, and he brought her to the man.”
Lead to this evilness —> gave men the reason to regard themselves superior in the likeness to God which the woman lacks
2:24 That is why a man leaves his father and mother and is united to his wife, and they become one flesh.”
Leads to this evilness —> marriage dogmas and injustices – women obliged to marry men for conveniences and not for love and not able to divorce without being discriminated.

3.1 Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, “Did God really say, ‘You must not eat from any tree in the garden’?”
Leads to this evilness —>  the human view of serpents and right to kill these despite they are an important part of the ecosystem eating rats and other =evilness against nature.
3:4 “You will not certainly die,” the serpent said to the woman.” about eating from the tree. The devil shows knowledge about the soul.
Leads to this evilness —>  the view about death as something bad to be afraid of..

3:6 “When the woman saw that the fruit of the tree was good for food and pleasing to the eye, and also desirable for gaining wisdom, she took some and ate it. She also gave some to her husband, who was with her, and he ate it.”
Leads to this evilness —>the view of woman as allied to the devil is here “prooved”
Leads also to this evilness —>reason to control regard women as dangerous and to control women’s sexuality and knowledge , giving the right to burn them if they show knowledge and are therefore felt as a danger for mans power.

2:25 “Adam and his wife were both naked, and they felt no shame.”
+ 3:7 “Then the eyes of both of them were opened, and they realized they were naked; so they sewed fig leaves together and made coverings for themselves.”
Leads to this evilness —> the vision of the body to be sinful and to be covered and suppressed – obliging naked indigenous people to wear clothes or otherwise give man right to rape or kill – the sexistic perverse Christian view of sexuality as something dirty and sinful allowing murder in case a woman get in love with someone else or have sex.

Only a devil would have wanted all this evilness, certainly not God.

Lack of basic knowledge about the female body and procreation.

At the time of Jesus, noone knew that women had ovulations and that, to be able to host a new creature, had to prepare the uterus for pregnancynad that both a egg and semen were necessary. So the woman was just a receiver of the mans semen. No eggs were needed.

 Being the woman a friend of the devil according to Genesis, it was easy to associate a menstrual flow with dirt and Sinn.

Not knowing about the woman ovulation and about the genetic content of semen it was not difficult to convince human beings about the story of a virgin getting a son. This myth was already known in Greek mythology with woman divinities have sons without being with a man. So Mary could not be less valued.

Conclusions

The Genesis must be the creation of the Devil. The Chrisian religion that is based on the Genesis story, is therefore indirectly the invention of the Devil too.

A few exceptions.

I don’t know about the same consequences in Hebrew and Samaritan communities.

Mohammad got a different story about the Creation that did not have the same evil consequences.

When I wrote my illuministic Genesis it was obvious for me to  take inspiration from the  Quranic version of the creation.

 

I am gentle and humble in heart

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INTRODUCTION

Today at Catholic Mass, Mt 11,25-30 (in iItalian)  is read.

Jesus himself tells that teaches with a humble hearth. He does not yell and impose with “tooth”.

INDEX

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The text

( N:B. The texts below are copied from www.christianwritingtoday.com/free_downloads/WebNT_CWTedition.pdf )

 

Matthew 11: 25-30 says 

 11:25 At that time, Jesus answered, “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you hid these things from the wise and understanding, and revealed them to infants.
11:26 Yes, Father, for so it was well-pleasing in your sight.
11:27 All things have been delivered to me by my Father. No one knows the Son, except the Father; neither does anyone know the Father, except the Son, and he to whom the Son desires to reveal him.
11:28 “Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, andI will give you rest.
11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart; and you will find rest for your souls.
11:30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

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The message

Jesus gave the following  messages after having denounced the cities of Chorazin, Bethsaida, Betsaida and Capernaum, “in which most of his mighty works had been done, because they didn’t repent”. (Matthew (11:20-24)

11:25 … “I thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that you hid these things from the wise and understanding, and revealed them to infants.

The word infants sounds like a metaphor for people who like children, have no higher understanding nor wisdom, humans who had to fight to survive, like poors and oppressed, those “who labor and are heavily burdened” (11:28). Jesus talked to and teached these humans about the Kingdom of God.

11:26 Yes, Father, for so it was well-pleasing in your sight.

11:27 All things have been delivered to me by my Father. No one knows the Son, except the Father; neither does anyone know the Father, except the Son, and he to whom the Son desires to reveal him.

Why did Jesus said “my Father” for God?
His father was most probably Joseph who later became father for several  brothers and sisters of Jesus.

At the cross Jesus called God “Eloi” as in Aramaic Eloì Eloì, lamà sabachtanì”. 

May the Gospel authors have changed his word for God to “Father” to emphasize the dogma of Jesus’ physical origin and the horrible sexistic dogma of virginity in the Mariology? But for anyone, especially for Jesus, God can be a spiritual father.

So may he have used the name Father to indicate “Spiritual father”?

Another interesting part is the last verse:

neither does anyone know the Father, .… and he to whom the Son desires to reveal him.

masculine “he” is not used.
The greek version that says:

neither does anyone know the Father, …. and the one to whom the Son desires to reveal him.”

So not only Jesus knows God but also the  one whom the Jesus desires to reveal him.

11:28 “Come to me, all you who labor and are heavily burdened, and I will give you rest.

,Many came to him because of this also later in the Roman Empire where many poor Romans suffered martyrship following Jesus commandments.

11:29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly (humble) in heart; and you will find rest for your souls.
11:30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

He reminds that his teaching comes with a humble voice, not with a threatening one like tooth for tooth as he said in Matthew 5:38

for I am gentle and humble in heart;

This is my criterium for evaluating the Gospel texts. If the supposed words of Jesus, does not sound humble and intelligent, I reject these.

This is the reason I am skeptic about this bragging part:

11:27 ….neither does anyone know the Father, except the Son and…

11:30 For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

To follow his teaching is not easy or light.

But Jesus feels maybe his yoke as easy as he feels support from God.

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conclusion

Many Christians do not follow Jesus when he says:

  • I am gentle and humble in heart
  • I will give you rest.

I have tried to be humble as a teacher, my last years before retirement, with my student. And that had surprising effects. One of my students who did many bad things in class once said to me
“I love you”.

Pope Francis uses the same approach and we see the results. A friend of mine who is a atheist said about Pope Francis “He talks like Jesus”.

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love me more than and get rewards from heaven

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INTRODUCTION

Today Catholic mass read Mt 10,37-42 (Italian) See English version below 

Jesus said according to Matthew that he is to be loved “more than” any once mother and father.

It is a extraordinary message that is difficult for many to accept. Even for me. But I came to think about what the word “love” really means.

INDEX

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The text

( N:B. The texts below are copied from www.christianwritingtoday.com/free_downloads/WebNT_CWTedition.pdf ). 10:37-42 says:

10:37 He who loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and he who loves son or daughter more than me isn’t worthy of me.
10:38 He who doesn’t take his cross and follow after me, isn’t worthy of me.
10:39 He who seeks his life will lose it; and he who loses his life for my sake will find it.
10:40 He who receives you receives me, and he who receives me receives him who sent me.
10:41 He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward. He who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man will receive a righteous man’s reward.
10:42 Whoever gives one of these little ones just a cup of cold water to drink in the name of a disciple, most certainly I tell you he will in no way lose his reward.”

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The message

10:37 He who loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and he who loves son or daughter more than me isn’t worthy of me.

What did Jesus  mean with “love more than”? Is it related to time or to the way you are in love?

“To love” means many things. According to Jesus love means to forgive like God does. Certainly Jesus do not ask us to forgive him more often than our parents.
So what did he mean with love more than? Maybe it is to be understood reading 10:38.

10:38 He who doesn’t take his cross and follow after me, isn’t worthy of me.

I think that the “love more than” has to be related to this last sentence. That means “love more Jesus” in the sense that we follow Jesus’ teaching rather that or more than our own parents teaching.

10:39 He who seeks his life will lose it; and he who loses his life for my sake will find it.
10:40 He who receives you receives me, and he who receives me receives him who sent me.
10:41 He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet will receive a prophet’s reward. He who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man will receive a righteous man’s reward.

What is a prophets’s or a righteous man’s reward? 

orahportions.ffoz.org offers a reasonable answer to this question:

n the days of the apostles, Jewish families considered it a great privilege to be able to host a priest, a teacher, or a rabbi in their home. By providing hospitality to the servants of God, one could hope for some commensurate blessing from God….
About 10:41-42 https://torahportions.ffoz.org/  continues “That is not to say that hosting a prophet or righteous man will earn a person the reward due to the prophet or the righteous man. Rather, it will earn the gratitude of God’s servant, and God’s servant will bestow a reward in the form of a spiritual blessing. With these words,” 

“the Master alluded to the story of Elisha the prophet and the Shunnamite woman. A childless woman from Shunem hosted the prophet Elisha in her home. As a reward for her hospitality, Elisha bestowed a blessing upon her, granting her a son (2 Kings 4).” 

10:42 Whoever gives one of these little ones just a cup of cold water to drink in the name of a disciple, most certainly I tell you he will in no way lose his reward.”

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conclusion

I had to think about the meaning of “love” and “reward”.

I love my mother and father but I love Jesus too. But I have listened to and read Jesus Kerygma for more than 30 years now.  And I follow jesus kerygma more than the reaching of my parents. I even do not remember the teachings of my parents.

Todays reading has teached me about the meaning of love and about my relation to Jesus.

I do not act in a certain way because Jesus says to to do so.
Nor do i act driven by a hope of reward or a fear of punishment. I act as I do,  more because of he feelings following my act. Sometimes I repent actings of mine driven by my amygdala and limbic system. Following Jesus Kerygma is sometimes difficult like the “loving your enemie” and “forgive 7×77 times” but when I do it I feel well having done it.

 


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two not understood kerygma

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INTRODUCTION

Jesus shared several metaphores and messages sometime finishing with:
 
“He who has ears to hear, let him hear.”
 
What is hearing really?
 
Dacia Maraini shares a beautiful metaphore (in Italian) about hearing in her book “La lunga vita di Marianna Ucrìa”, (The long life of Marianna Ucriá).
In English, freely translated, the metaphore sounds like this: 
 
“With your ears and with you eyes, collect the words like grapes from the bunch,
squeeze them with your thoughts
and let the juice flow through your veins.”
 
To Jesus words there is reason to add
 
“He who has a brain to think with, think.”
 
But we have a problem. Jesus made according to the Gospels a lot of magic and the Gospels blend it with fairy tales about his life. These were necessary 2000 years ago but are rather distracting today. Jesus never exalted himself nor wanted to do miracles. That is the reason I rewrote for myself the Gospels into so called “demythologized gospels”. I shared these on my site.

But we have a problem. Jesus made according to the Gospels a lot of magic blended with fairy tales about his life. These were necessary 2000 years ago but are rather distracting today. That is the reason I rewrote for myself the Gospels into so called “demythologized gospels”. I shared these on my site.

Today we read another two of Jesus messages we should think about. They are in John 6,51-58 (in Italian.  Read the English version below.

6:52 The Jews therefore contended with one another, saying,

“How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”

The Jews at least were sincere about their not understanding.
I am sure they also wondered:

“How can we get eternal life by eating his flesh and drinking his blood?”

The priests today are not better than the Jews.

INDEX

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The text

( N:B. The texts below are copied from www.christianwritingtoday.com/free_downloads/WebNT_CWTedition.pdf )

John 6:51-58 says:

6:51 I am the living bread which came down out of heaven. If anyone eats of this bread, he will live forever. Yes, the bread which I will give for the life of the world is my flesh.”  06:52 The Jews therefore contended one another, saying, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?” 6:53 Jesus therefore said to them, “Most certainly I tell you, unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you don’t have life in yourselves. 6:54 He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life, and I will raise him up at the last day. 6:55 For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed. 6:56 He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood lives in me, and I in him. 6:57 As the living Father sent me, and I live because of the Father; so he who feeds on me, he will also live because of me. 

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The message

6:54 He who eats my flesh and drinks my blood has eternal life,
6:55 For my flesh is food indeed, and my blood is drink indeed.

My questions are 

  1. “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”
  2. “How can we get eternal life by eating Jesus flesh and drinking his blood?”

My simple answer is that:

  1. We eat “Jesus flesh and blood” when we listen and think about his words.
    Remind that Jesus words were spread around the world thanks to Jesus letting himself be offered on the stake.
  2. If we listen to Jesus kerygma, our soul, whatever it is, will continue to live after our death.

We are body and soul. Our soul whatever it is, will continue to live maybe in another Universe after our body is recycled here on earth. Our body will be consumed but our soul will have eternal life.

Jesus was according to me suggested/inspired by God. Jesus was highly entangled with God.

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conclusion

Reading the Gospels without being distracted by magic and fairy tales, has given me much.

The eternal life question has been in my mind several years. yesterday the idea came up that “We will live what we believe in”. So if I believe in Jesus Kerygma maybe I and my consciousness will continue to live after my death. That would be great.

Dr Kubler Ross has shared several after death experiences that support such a hypothesis. Read more about this in my previous post about after life


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Son of Man

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INTRODUCTION

June 7 Gv 3,16-18 in Italian is read.See English text below.

Again a text that shows a bragging Jesus and a support of the triniity dogma. I am disappointed with Johns Gospels authors. I loved the first part but then….

I wrote about the trinity dogma in another post.

Miguel Serveto was convicted of heresy and sentenced to death 16 october 1553 by Protestants because he wrote “De trinitatis erroribus” .

The text of today is maybe a early Church adding the Johns Gospel to support this trinity dogma and the Mariology to deny that Joseph was his real father.

I emphasize in this post tehe fequent us of the  “Son of man” title, that Jesus gave himself according to the Gospels. a title that appears in several Gospels and also in John 3:13-14.

As the early Church wanted Jesus to be the incarnation of God, it is understandable that they mistranslated the Aramaic and Hebrew title to “Son of Man”

I came to the same conclusion as Geza Vermes. “that the use of “the Son of man” in the Christian Gospels is unrelated to Hebrew Torah usages” that Jesus followed strictly.

The frequent use of “Be-Adam” (in Aramaic) shows that Jesus was a man that did not want to exalt himself over human beings. He was  a “wise genious” that did not need to brag.

INDEX

 

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The text

Here is the text of John 3:8-18.

( N:B. The text below is  copied from www.christianwritingtoday.com/free_downloads/WebNT_CWTedition.pdf )

I paste in from verse 3:8-9 to see the reading of today 3:16-18 in a correct context as John describes it.

John 3:09-21:

03:09 Nicodemus answered him, “How can these things be?” Jesus answered him,

03:10 “Are you the teacher of Israel, and don’t understand these things?

03:11 Most certainly I tell you, we speak that which we know, and testify of that which we have seen, and you don’t receive our witness.

03:12 If I told you earthly things and you don’t believe, how will you believe if I tell you heavenly things?

03:13 No one has  scended into heaven, but he who descended out of heaven, the Son of Man, who is in heaven.

03:14 As Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, even so must the Son of Man be lifted up, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life. 

03:16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish, but have eternal life.

3:17 For God didn’t send his Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world should be saved through him.

03:18 He who believes in him is not judged. He who doesn’t believe has been judged already, because he has not believed in the name of the one and only Son of God.

03:19 This is the judgment, that the light has come into the world, and men loved the darkness rather than the light; for their works were evil.  For everyone who does evil hates the light, and doesn’t come to the light, lest his works would be exposed.

03:21 But  he who does the truth comes to the light, that his works may be revealed, that they have been done in God.”

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The message

 

03:09 Nicodemus answered him, “How can these things be?” Jesus answered him,

Who did listen to this dialog? it is not reasonable that Nicodemos shared his dialog with Jesus disciples. “He came to Jesus at night” for a good reason as he was was a member of the Jewish ruling council. (John 3:3 ) Nicodemus did most probably not want to have witnesses about his dialog with Jesus.

But Johns authors for some strange reason are able to share this secret night dialog.

So according to John, Jesus answered:

03:13 No one has  scended into heaven, but he who descended out of heaven, the Son of Man, who is in heaven.

This verse and the following 3:14-18 are in my opinion not the  true words of Jesus for two reasons. Noone could have listened to his dialog with Nicodemus.  And he had no reason to brag about himself with Nicodemus.

Son of man – be-adam

This title that Jesus used about himself is used several times in Jogn and the the other Gospels.

“Son of man”  In Hebrew, the term is ben-adam, while in Aramaic  its equivalent bar-adam is used. (Source: Wiki )

It is most reasonable that Jesus used the Aramaic “Be-Adam” about himself to emphasize his being a  human, son of Adam and keeping at the same time a connection to the Hebrew tests. “The Hebrew expression “son of man” (בן–אדם i.e. ben-‘adam) appears one hundred and seven times in the Hebrew Bible.” (SOurce: Wiki )

The title “Son of man” has later been used  “more than eighty times in the New Testament.” Read more at  biblehub.com/topical ).The Hebrew Ben-adam has been translate by the authors of John to “Huios tou anthrōpou”. See Biblehub interlingual. ).

This Greek translation is of course not a correct translation from Hebrew nor Aramaic. I have never heard a Catholic priest deepen the meaning of “Son of man”

In verse 3:13 we read again that Jesus call himself the “Son of man”. 

Jesus used this title (ben-Adam or  Be-Adam) in many other contexts, and it became one of the main ways he referred to himself. Here are some examples:

“But that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins” – he then said to the paralytic – “Rise, pick up your bed and go home.” (Matthew 9:6)

“For the Son of Man is lord of the Sabbath.” (Matthew 12:8)

“The Son of Man will send his angels, and they will gather out of his kingdom all causes of sin and all law-breakers.” (Matthew 13:41)

Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” (Matthew 16:13)

“For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done.” (Matthew 16:27)

He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again. (Mark 8:31)

“Blessed are you when people hate you and when they exclude you and revile you and spurn your name as evil, on account of the Son of Man!” (Luke 6:22)

“The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.” (Luke 9:22)

He said to him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, you will see heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending on the Son of Man.” (John 1:51)

“No one has ascended into heaven except he who descended from heaven, the Son of Man. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of Man be lifted up.” (John 3:13-14)

He said, “Behold, I see the heavens opened, and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God.” (Acts 7:56) (Source  https://jewsforjesus.org

As he called himself Be-Adam (in Aramaic) shows clearly his humility in front of God.

Jesus called God, his father. Jesus never called himself “Son of God” but “Be-Adam).  God is the father (grand grandfather or whatever) of all human beings but that does not imply that Jesus is the physical genomeic son of God as the early Church wanted him to be with its Trinity and Mariology dogma.

Son of Man is also the title of a song of Phil Collins

Oh, the power to be strong
And the wisdom to be wise
All these things will
Come to you in time
On this journey that you’re making
There’ll be answers that you’ll seek
And it’s you who’ll climb the mountain
It’s you who’ll reach the peak…

His song makes me think about Jesus as a child and how he grew up with Joseph, his brothers and sisters and his mother.

But Jesus were not alone but guided by God, God he met when he went apart from the crowd.

As Wiki authors write “The meaning of the expression is controversial. Interpretation of the use of “the Son of man” in the New Testament has remained challenging and after 150 years of debate no consensus on the issue has emerged among scholars.The expression “the Son of man” occurs 81 times in the Greek text of the four Canonical gospels, and is used only in the sayings of Jesus. The Hebrew expression “son of man” (בן–אדם i.e. ben-‘adam) also appears in the Torah over a hundred times. Geza Vermes has stated that the use of “the Son of man” in the Christian gospels is unrelated to Hebrew Torah usages.”

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conclusion

I am happy that i learned bout the “Son of man” title that Jesus often used.

This title gave me a new light about the man Jesus.

 


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Pentecost with peace and Spirit

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INTRODUCTION

Today is the seventh Sunday  after Easter and Christian Pentecost is celebrated. It should be celebrated tomorrow Monday that is fifthieth day after Passover.

“The term Pentecost comes from the Greek Πεντηκοστή (Pentēkostē) meaning “fiftieth”. It refers to the festival celebrated on the fiftieth day after Passover,” ( Wiki )

John (  Gv 20,19-23 in Italian is therefore read.

 Jesus comes to into a closed house in Jerusalem that hosted  the Apostles and other followers of Jesus. They were in Jerusalem celebrating the Feast of Weeks Shavuot, as described in the Acts of the Apostles (Acts 2:1–31)

Yo understand the message i think it is important to know what Pentecost and most important of all, what Shavout really is.

INDEX

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Pentecost etymology

The term Pentecost comes from the Greek Πεντηκοστή (Pentēkostē) meaning “fiftieth”. It refers to the festival celebrated on the fiftieth day after Passover, also known as the “Feast of Weeks” and the “Feast of 50 days” in rabbinic tradition.

The Septuagint uses the term Pentēkostē to refer to the “Feast of Pentecost” only twice, in the deuterocanonical Book of Tobit and 2 MaccabeesThe Septuagint writers also used the word in two other senses: to signify the year of Jubilee (Leviticus 25:10),  an event which occurs every 50th year, and in several passages of chronology as an ordinal number.[ii] The term has also been used in the literature of Hellenistic Judaism by Philo of Alexandria and Josephus (  Read more in  Wiki

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Shavout

I paste here the text in Wikipedia as I think it gives the information needed.

Shavuot (About this soundlisten ), Yiddish Shovues (About this soundlisten ) in Ashkenazi usage, (Hebrewשָׁבוּעוֹת, lit. “Weeks”), is known as the Feast of Weeks or Pentecost (Koinē GreekΠεντηκοστή) in English. It is a Jewish holiday that occurs on the sixth day of the Hebrew month of Sivan (it may fall between May 15 and June 14 on the Gregorian calendar).[Note 1][2]

Shavuot has a double significance, agricultural and spiritual. Agriculturally it marks the all-important wheat harvest in the Land of Israel (Exodus 34:22), and spiritually it commemorates the anniversary of the day when God gave the Torah to the nation of Israel assembled at Mount Sinai—although the association is not explicit in the Biblical text between the giving of the Torah (Matan Torah) and Shavuot.

The holiday is one of the Three Pilgrimage Festivals of the Bible. The word Shavuot means “weeks” and it marks the conclusion of the Counting of the Omer. Its date is directly linked to that of Passover; the Torah mandates the seven-week Counting of the Omer, beginning on the second day of Passover, to be immediately followed by Shavuot. This counting of days and weeks is understood to express anticipation and desire for the giving of the Torah. On Passover, the people of Israel were freed from their enslavement to Pharaoh; on Shavuot, they were given the Torah and became a nation committed to serving God.[3] The yahrzeit of King David is traditionally observed on Shavuot. Hasidic Jews also observe the yahrzeit of the Baal Shem Tov.[4]

Shavuot is one of the Jewish holidays which is less familiar to secular Jews in the Jewish diaspora, while those in Israel and the Orthodox community are more aware of it.[5][6]

Shavuot is celebrated in Israel by all congregations for one day including Conservative and Orthodox. As with other biblical holidays however Shavuot is celebrated by Conservative and Orthodox congregations in the Diaspora for two days (Yom tov sheni shel galuyot), however Reform congregations celebrate for a single day regardless of location.[7]

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The text

( N:B. The texts below are copied from www.christianwritingtoday.com/free_downloads/WebNT_CWTedition.pdf )

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The message

 

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conclusion

 

 

 


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Baptize in the name of the Father and of the Holy Spirit

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INTRODUCTION

Today Mt 28,16-20 is read. it is about Jesus last message to his disciples.
It is a pity that only Matthew share this.

INDEX

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The text

( N:B. The texts below are copied from www.christianwritingtoday.com/free_downloads/WebNT_CWTedition.pdf )

28:16 But the eleven disciples went into Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had sent them.
28:17 When they saw him, they bowed down to him, but some doubted.
28:18 Jesus came to them and spoke to them, saying, “All authority has been given to me in heaven and on earth.
28:19 Go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
28:20 teaching them to observe all things that I commanded you. Behold, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” 

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The message

in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit,
original Greek: εἰς τὸ ὄνομα τοῦ Πατρὸς καὶ τοῦ Υἱοῦ καὶ τοῦ Ἁγίου Πνεύματοςeis to ónoma toû Patros kaì toû Huioû kai toû Hagíou Pneúmatos, ( Biblehub

The trinitarian formula

This saying apparently looks to support the trinity dogma. But  many discussions have been made about this dogma and some were killed by  Christians like Miguel Serveto. I wrote about it in this site  1919 in a separate post. I wrote among others:

Servetus published “De trinitatis erroribus” and “Dialogorum de Trinitate” in Switzerland. In these books, Servetus built a theology which maintains that the belief of the Trinity is not based on biblical teachings but rather on what he saw as deceiving teachings of (Greek) philosophers.

Despite the jehovas witness do not recognize the idea of trinity they have included this verse in their bible.
They say “Many Christian denominations teach that God is a Trinity. However, note what the Encyclopædia Britannica states: Neither the word Trinity nor the explicit doctrine appears in the New Testament . . . I
Jehovah our God is one Jehovah.”—Deuteronomy 6:4. “ ( Source: www.jw.org )

It is strange that only Matthew share this saying. May it have been added or manipulated later by the Church? 

A change in Matthew 29:19 to the trinitarian formula may be a case of Eisegesis. The text may have been changed to produce a ‘Jesus’ wholly ‘congenial’ to the Early church” (  Wiki   The Jesus Chrisis )

If Jesus invited to to baptize he for sure said it in Aramaic and he would not have mentioned himself putting himself  to be like God.
I think that he would have said instead:

Baptize
in the name of the Father and of the Holy Spirit

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conclusion

 

 

 


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20200517 Follow Jesus commandments.

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INTRODUCTION

Today a nice text of Johns Gospel i read. My preferred Gospel is Matthew but John’s has given me a lot of inspiration.

The text of todays text is taken from Gv 14,15-21

As I can not go to mass because of Corona lock down I listen to the mass on television.

I eat sourdough bread in memory of Jesus.

INDEX

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The text

( N:B. The texts below are copied from www.christianwritingtoday.com/free_downloads/WebNT_CWTedition.pdf )

14:15 Whatever you will ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you will ask anything in my name, I will do it.
14:16 If you love me, keep my commandments.

14:17 I will pray to the Father, and he will give you another  Counselor,  that he may be with you forever,  the Spirit of truth, whom the world can’t receive; for it doesn’t see him, neither knows him. 14:18 You know him, for he lives with you, and will be in you.
14:19 I will not leave you 
orphans.
14:20 I will come to you.
14:20 Yet a 
little while, and the world will see me no more; but you will see me.
14:21 Because I live, 
you will live also.
14:22 In that day you 
will know that I am in my Father, and you in me, and I in you.
14:22 One who has 
my commandments, and keeps them, that person is one who loves me.
14:23 One who 
loves me will be loved by my Father, and I will love him, and will reveal myself to him.”

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The message

14:15 Whatever you will ask in my name, that will I do, that the Father may be glorified in the Son. If you will ask anything in my name, I will do it.

I never ask in the name of Jesus. I ask God for help. But maybe I coult try what Jesus has said according to John. But I am always doubtful when Jesus raises himself over the last. He said the last will be first, the first will be last. As you know I this part looks for me like bragging.

14:16 If you love me, keep my commandments.

14:22 One who has my commandments, and keeps them, that person is one who loves me.

This is without any doubt Jesus words. He gave his hearth and life for us. he shared commandments that are invaluable. And some of them have been invaluable for me as a human and as a teacher.
if we do not follow these, we do not rely no him, we do not listen to him. he said “those who have ears, listen”
As pope Francis said today “Jesus did not want us to love him” He wanted us to love each other, even our enemies.

14:19 I will not leave you orphans.
14:20 I will come to you.
14:20 Yet
little while,

and the world will see me no more;

Many did not listen to this thinking that Jesus would soon be back. We do not see Jesus but we can feel Jesus presence.

What is important is to follow his commandments without the need of miracles. Jesus did not want to make miracles and many were for sure not done as described in the Gospels.

14:17 I will pray to the Father, and he will give you another  Counselor,  that he may be with you forever,  the Spirit of truth, whom the world can’t receive; for it doesn’t see him, neither knows him. 14:18 You know him, for he lives with you, and will be in you.

4:17 …., and he (ed. God) will give you another  Counselor,  that he may be with you forever,  the Spirit of truth.

This is a key message. If we ask God in the name of Jesus, Jesus, is with God. But God has many Counselors around that can talk to us. The Spirit of truth is probably what is talking to us in our inner voice. it tells us when we do right or wrong. We must listen to it as it may be God that talks to you.

Without forgetting that sometime the words may be the word of the evil. But we know the difference between who is talking to you.

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conclusion

God is with us in his temple, the temple that is inside us.

If the voice tells you to not follow the kerygma (commandments) of Jesus then we know that it is the evil who talks to you.

 

 


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God, the shepherd of the Creation

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INTRODUCTION

Todaya we read John 10,1-10 the parable about the  shepherd of the sheep. The parable tells how a good shepherd should behave. is is a nice parable that allows important interpretations but I wonder about the explanation that Jesus gave according to John. May John have put his own interpretation in Jesus explication?

INDEX

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The text

( N:B. The texts below are copied from www.christianwritingtoday.com/free_downloads/WebNT_CWTedition.pdf )

10:01 “Most certainly, I tell you, one who doesn’t enter by the door into the sheep fold, but climbs up some other way, the same is a thief and a robber. But one who enters in by the door is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name, and leads them out. Whenever he brings out his own sheep, he goes before them, and the sheep follow him, for they know his voice. They will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him; for they don’t know the voice of strangers.” Jesus spoke this parable to them, but they didn’t understand what he was telling them.

10:7 Jesus therefore said to them again, “Most certainly, I tell you, I am the sheep’s door. All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep didn’t listen to them. I am the door. If anyone enters in by me, he will be saved, and will go in and go out, and will find pasture. The thief only comes to steal, kill, and destroy. I came that they may have life, and may have it abundantly. 

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The message

Before dealing with this part it is important to remember that

God is the good shepherd

 at Jesus time, God was known as the good shepherd. 

Starting in the book of Genesis, God has always been known as a “good shepherd.” The Old Testament is full of verses that describe God has a “good shepherd.”Read more in aleteia.org

“I tell you, I am the sheep’s door. All who came before me are thieves and robbers, but the sheep didn’t listen to them. I am the door. If anyone enters in by me, he will be saved,

Jesus was not a bragger

Did really Jesus say “ I am the sheep’s door. and repeated again “I am the door.”

Jesus is and has been a door for me as for many others, like the authors of Johns Gospel.

But the language is not Jesus language. He did not like to do miracles and he did not want his disciples to tell the world about is power. He was not a bragger shouting out “I am” this and that. he followed his own teaching “The last will be first… the first will be last”

I am rather convinced that the John Gospel authors, added their own interpretation to spice up the text for their own purposes and to add the dogma that Jesus is God.

Jesus was a good Jew.

He referred many times to previous prophets, like Moses, Jeremiah etc. Now he says All who came before me are thieves and robbers,” ? Some interpret this a referring to the priests of his time.

This is a unintelligent not Jesus alike sentence as it undermines religious tollerance and peace. A sign that these are probably not the words of Jesus. 
Again, a most probably, adding from the Gospel authors, with the goal to to give the early Church the right to “cast out”, kill Hebrews or any other prophet followers and  give themselves the title “shepherd”

Johns author may have found Mark’s description in  06:35 very useful:

“Jesus came out, saw a great multitude, and he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a Shepherd,”

Jesus never regarded himself equal to God. God was his father. John MacArthur talks about the OT (Old Testament) importance in the Shepherd image issue. Even if I do not agree about his conclusions, I think it is worth listening to:

the parable

Let us instead focus on the parable to understand its hidden messages.

The shepherd could be a  metaphore for any leader, a king, a president, a politician, a chairman, a doctor, a headmaster,  a teacher, a mother or the owner of  a garden, a dog or a cat.  All of us has something to take care of. All humans must be good shepherds.

many “sheeps” followed Hitler and Stalin but for other reasons. If these sheeps would have been able to, they would have fled, like Einstein and many others did.

The parable tells among others that: 

he goes before them,  and they will by no means follow a stranger, but will flee from him;”

So does your “sheeps” follow behind you by their own will and don’t they flee from you? if yes, then you are probably a good shepherd. I say “probably” as you are not only the owner of your own garden and house. you are also a kind of “owner” of the Creation.

A good shepherd loves his sheeps, He does not damage, use violence nor he shouts or treathens. he makes them stay safe and cured.

As Pope Francis reminded “We are not owners of the Creation” in the “bad owner” sense, we can not do whatever we want with it.

So we could say “We must take care of the Creation that was given to us. We must not behave like a bad owner or human.

A good friend of mine, reminded me about another shepherd parable, the one where the shepherd left the sheep flock to save a sheep left behind. (Matthew 18:12–14) and Luke (Luke 15:3–7) A good shepherd does non abandon anyone. This is also a parable of “Love your next”.

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conclusion

This was the first time that I could not listen to a parable explanation in a Gospel. I think that it is important especially this time, to focus on the parable. It may be interpreted in many ways, the power of a good parable.

Jesus guided us to God. To be a good shepherd is obviously a important way to love God. if you do not love the Creation (animals and enemies included) you do not love God who created it.

It is not easy to be a good shepherd. You have to be patient and teach the right way. This man has not succeeded yet.

This man is obviously a good shepherd. Like Jesus talked about, he is going first and the sheeps follow him.

 

 


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Jesus lovely surprise

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Introduction

I wrote about this story April 20 2019 in this post.

Saturday evening April 26 we read Luke 24,13-35 that Jesus appeared with two of the disciples in a funny way.  He was resurrected and he made  two disciples  believe he was a stranger to have them tell how they  experienced and saw his death. That gave him the opportunity to tell them about the many signs given in the scriptures by the old prophets.

Index

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The NT text

The texts below are copied from a pdf in www.christianwritingtoday.com

Luke 24,13-35 tells about a funny way for Jesus to appear after his death.

24:13 Behold, two of them were going that very day to a village named Emmaus, which was sixty stadiai from Jerusalem.
24:14 They talked with each other about all of these things which had happened.
24:15 It happened, while they talked and questioned together, that Jesus himself came near, and went with them. But their eyes were kept from recognizing him.
24:17 He said to them, “What are you talking about as you walk, and are sad?”
24:18 One of them, named Cleopas, an swered him, “Are you the only stranger in Jerusalem who doesn’t know the things which have happened there in these days?”
24:19 He said to them, “What things?” They said to him, “The things concerning Jesus, the Nazarene, who was a prophetmighty in deed and word before God and all the people; and how the chief priests and our rulers delivered him up to be condemned to death, and crucified him.
24:21 But we were hoping that it was he who would redeem Israel. Yes, and besides all this, it is now the third day since these things happened. Also, certain women of our company amazed us, having arrived early at the tomb; and when they didn’t find his body, they came saying that they
had also seen a vision of angels, who said that he was alive. Some of us went to the tomb, and found it just like the women had said, but they didn’t see him.”
24:25 He said to them, “Foolish men, and slow of heart to believe in all that the prophets have spoken! Didn’t the Christ have to suffer these things and to enter into his glory?” ‘

24:27Beginning from Moses and from all the prophets, he explained to them in all the Scriptures the 8things concerning himself. They drew near to the village, where they were going, and he acted like he would go further.

24:29 They urged him, saying, “Stay with us, for it is almost evening, and the day is almost over.”
24:30He went in to stay with them. It happened, that when he had sat down at the table with them, he took the bread and gave thanks. Breaking it, he gave to them. Their eyes were opened, and they recognized him, and he vanished out of their sight. They said one
to another, “Weren’t our hearts burning within us, while he spoke to us along the way, and while he opened the Scriptures to us?” They rose up that very hour, returned to Jerusalem, and found the eleven gathered together, and those who were with them, saying, “The Lord is risen indeed, and has appeared to Simon!”

24:35 They related the things that happened along the way, and how he was recognized by them in the breaking of the bread.

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The Message

Emmaus

As this story according to Luke happened on the road to Emmaus, I want to see the place. Greek: Ἐμμαούς, Emmaous; Latin: Emmaus; Hebrew: אֶמָּאוֹם, Emmaom; Arabic: عمواس‎, ʻImwas.

I could not find Emmaus in Google maps. Emmaus got a new name obviously today. I finally found in Wiki the name Al-Qubeiba That is near Amaos Church on the hill in this photo

Emmaus is described as being 60 stadia (10.4 to 12 km depending on what definition of stadion is used, from Jerusalem. Emmaus, today Al_Qubeiba is at the red spot north from Jerusalem.

They for sure found shorter ways that cars cant take today, taking less time to cover without going to far north.

Going north was maybe a first step in seeking security in Samaria  (Sychar probably called todaay “Tell balata” (see Wiki photo below) 16 hours walk from Jerusalem, near Nablos and the mount Gerizim today) where Jesus and his disciples with the Samaritan woman found a faithful people.

According to Wiki research “The built structure shows evidence of considerable damage dated to the 190s BC, and attributed to Antiochus III‘s conquest of Israel. Habitation continued until the final destruction of the city at this site in the late 2nd century BC. ”

So the town of Sychar as told about in the the Samaritan woman may not be correct. However it is clear that north of Jerusalem we find Samariaa more secure site for the disciples of Jesus.

About the text

This is a wonderful piece of text where Jesus is making a clever joke having the two disciples believe he is a foreigner to have them tell what happened. Indeed a clever joke. it is simply to nice and clever  to have been invented by Luke.

There is no reason for Jesus to ask about what happened in Jerusalem. But he probably want to know what they understood and believed in.

Jesus shows his love, empathy and sympathy with the disciples. No signs of rage for their fleeing away from him when he was arrested.

Like Jesus showed up on the road to Emmaus so he can appear to us all like the more scaring metaphore “robber in the night”. Most probably he appears inside you. he didn’t like to make miracles and big eye catching shows. If we keep silence and listen carefully you may be able to talk with Jesus.

Mark 16:12–13 has a similar but very undetailed version

16:12disbelieved. After these things he was
revealed in another form to two of them, as
they walked, on their way into the country.
16:13 They went away and told it to the rest.
They didn’t believe them, either.

Luke probably wanted to add more details to show a different image of the personality of Jesus,.

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Conclusions

It was good to rewrite my previous year post and meditate over the text of Luke.

I wonder if Luke was right with his picture, Jesus had a good sense of humor despite we never read about a laughing Jesus.

Maybe he laughed while being a child.