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Middle aged heterosexual, WASP male. Semi retired, semi-sane and semi-serious. And endangered species and I'm not going quietly!!!!

Monday, March 10, 2008

The Chuch of Allan - The Plain Truth About God

A serialization of the book, The Plain Truth About God.

Chapter 11. “THE JESUS TAPES”

Here we have, after decades and even centuries of research, what can be defined as the core sayings of Jesus.

These sayings -at least- can be directly attributed to Jesus.

Researchers have considered many variables to gain an insight into what Jesus actually said to his disciples and followers. All of the sayings had to have the ring of authenticity of having originally come from the historical Jesus.

They also had to be in character with Jesus and not something that was obviously added later by one of his “Christian” followers.

In other words, it had to be historically appropriate rather than something that was obviously a product of early Christianity or borrowed from the contemporary world! (His or Ours)

It was also helpful to have it confirmed by being included in two or more Gospels.

1.**-“The kingdom of God is not coming with signs to be observed; nor will they say, ‘Lo, here it is!’ or ‘There! ‘For behold, the kingdom of God (Father) is in the midst of you.” (Luke 17:20)

2.**-“From the days of John the Baptist until now the kingdom of God (Father) has suffered violence, and men of violence take it by force.” (Matt 11:12; cf., Luke 16:16.)

3.**-“But to what shall I compare this generation? It is like children sitting in the market places and calling to their playmates, ‘we piped to you, and you did not dance; we wailed, and you did not mourn.’ For John came neither eating nor drinking, and they say, ‘He has a demon’; I came eating and drinking, and they say, ‘Behold, a glutton and a drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners!” (Matt11:16-19; Luke 7:31-34)

4.**-“Truly I say to you, whoever does not receive the kingdom of God (Father) like a child shall not enter it!” (Mark 10:15 = Luke 18:17)

5.**-“If it is by the finger of God that I cast out demons, then the kingdom of God
(Father) has come to you!” (Luke 11:20)

6.**-“No one who puts his hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom
of God (Father).” (Luke 9:62)

7.**-“It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God (Father)!” (Mark 10:25 = Matt 19:24 = Luke 18:25)

8.**-“Father. Hallowed by thy name. Thy kingdom come. Give us this day our daily bread. Forgive us what we owe those whom we have injured. As we ourselves forgive what is owing from those who have injured us. Put us not to the test!” (Luke 11:2-4 Matt 6:9-10)

There is one other saying attributed to Jesus but not one of the core sayings because it was widely used in antiquity and is know from both pagan and Jewish sources - but the thrust of it coheres with the meaning of Jesus’ core sayings.

**“The gate is wide and the way is easy, that leads to destruction, and those who enter it are many”! “The gate is narrow and the way is hard, that leads to life, and those that find it are few.” (Mat 7:13-14: cf., Luke 13:24)

This saying, whether a core saying or not, is in the tradition of a neutral observer of the human condition. An observer who notices that most people lead lives that end in destruction. (As well as quiet desperation)

Only a few “find” the way to life, a way that involves hardship, and presumably, courage. The saying, if authentic, promises to those who choose to enter the realm of the power of God nothing more than life itself!

A life in the here and now, that if properly lived, opens the door to whatever may come after!

There are no transcendental promises, no rewards, or punishments.

It is an eloquent expression of the fulfillment or destruction of human existence.
It depends entirely on the mode of being human that one chooses.

“Hell” then would be the wasting of human existence, and “Heaven” would be life fulfilled!

This sounds very interesting from an Eastern viewpoint, since, as we speculated before, there are hints that Jesus was exposed to Hinduism and other eastern philosophies.

It also relates to a belief among North American Indians that the way to live is to be in the “Now.”

That is, life is meant to be lived moment by moment in the present, not wondering abut what is to come, or remorse about what has happened.

We are rather to fully experience, and if possible, enjoy life, from one moment to the next.

****To be fully human there is nothing more or less than to live “now.”


1.-The Sower. - “The kingdom of heaven can be compared to a man who sowed good seed. Some fell on the path and did not grow, some fell amongst thorns and were choked, and some fell on good ground and increased a hundredfold.”
** -This tells us that in a ministry not everyone will be converted. Those that do multiply!

2.-The Mustard Seed. “The kingdom of God is like a mustard seed, which, when sown upon the ground, is the smallest of seeds, but grows to be the greatest of all shrubs, giving shade to the birds of the air.”
** -In spreading the word of a ministry, it may start out small indeed, but has the potential to grow beyond all bounds.

3.-The Leaven. “There was a woman who took leaven, and hid it in three measures of meal, till it was all leavened.”
**-In a ministry, scatter or hide the faithful amongst the masses and they will eventually “leaven” the rest.

4.-The Hidden Treasure. There was a man who found treasure hidden in a field, which he covered up; he then went and sold all that he had and bought that field.
**-The kingdom of God is like a treasure hidden in a field. If you find it, give all you have to posses it!

5.-The Lost Sheep. “The Kingdom of God is like a shepherd who has one hundred sheep. If one goes astray he will leave the other 99 to seek the one.”
**-Everyone is important. If 99 are safe, go after the one who wandered.

6.-The Lost Coin. “What woman, having ten silver coins, if she looses one coin, does she not light a lamp and sweep until she finds it? And when she finds it, she calls her friends to rejoice with her. Likewise when God finds one sinner who repents, there is joy in heaven.”
**-God rejoices in finding a sinner who repents and comes back into the fold.

7.-The Unjust Steward. (servant) There was a rich man who had a steward. He said to him, “what is this I hear about you?” “You are no longer able to steward!” The man then went to his master’s debtors one by one and said, “Write down half of what you owe (1/2, 4/5, ¾ etc.) so that they might be ingratiated to him in the future when he no longer was a steward.”
**-This parable is about trust.

8.-The Great Supper. There was a man who once gave a dinner and invited guests. At the time of the dinner, he sent his servants to call those who had been invited. They all made excuses why they could not come so the master said; “Go outside to the streets and bring back the first people you meet.”
**-Share your bounty with those who appreciate it.

9.-The Laborers in the Vineyard. A man went into the town market at dawn and hired men for his vineyard. He agreed to pay them one (1) denarius for the days work. He went back at mid morning and hired more and again in the early afternoon and hired more. All for one denarius per day. When we wanted to pay them at suppertime, the ones who had been there since early morning complained, saying: “We worked many more hours for the same pay as those that started in the afternoon and it’s not fair.” The man said: “Of course it’s fair, you agreed to work for a denarius, and how I pay my money is my business!”
**-Life is not fair!

10.-The Prodigal Son. A son asked his father for an early share of his inheritance and then went out into the world. He did not do well and thought: “Even my father’s servants are better off than me. I will go back to my father and ask to be treated as one of the servants so that I may at least eat.” While he was still some distance off, his father saw him and came running saying: “Bring a robe for my son and kill a fated calf for him, for my son was dead but now he is alive and returned to me!”
** - What we have done is in the past. A father will always love his son.

11.-The Good Samaritan. A man fell amongst robbers who beat him and departed, leaving him half-dead. Several men who passed him walked to the other side of the road until a Samaritan stopped and helped him. He dressed his wounds and then took him to an Inn. As he left he said to the Innkeeper: “Here are two denarii’s, give him what he needs till he is better!”
** -Two lessons here! First, it is our responsibility to look after each other. Secondly, the Samaritans were considered outcasts at the time, so the lesson was also do not judge a person by what he is, rather by what he does!

Allan W Janssen is the author of the book The Plain Truth About God (What the mainstream religions don't want you to know!) and is available at the web site www.God-101.com

Visit the blog "Perspective" at http://God-101.blogspot.com

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