‘Church fathers’ distorted Jesus’ Aramaic words

Lost to the awareness of humanity for over 1,700 years is what Jesus said in his native tongue, Aramaic. This has been unavailable since the early church fathers, and later the Roman Catholic Church, purposely destroyed the earliest texts after “translating” them and vastly changing them. A study of history proves this beyond any doubt. Most Christians are not even aware that Jesus spoke Aramaic.

The Bible written in Aramaic. Photo courtesy of  Sylvia beth Yakub/Creative Commons

The Bible written in Aramaic. Photo courtesy of Sylvia beth Yakub/Creative Commons

One of the greatest tragedies put on the human race by the “church fathers” is their planned distortions of Jesus’ words. When they took his words away and focused on Greek and English, they denied the one they call “lord” and exchanged his truth for theological beliefs instead. Theology leads to control!

If the earliest texts were “God’s Word,” as the church teaches, why would they need to be changed? After changing the texts, how could their new versions still be “God’s Word?” Did human alterations make God’s Word more authentic? More true? More what? Who’s playing God in all this?

The audacity and sheer dishonesty screams in the ears of anyone who is seeking truth. I’ve written elsewhere in much more detail about the history of manipulating “God’s Word.” Now, we come along hundreds of years later and think we’ve been told the truth! Printing words on fancy paper, wrapping it in black leather and then stamping gold letters on it doesn’t make it more authentic.

Statue of Constantine the Great courtesy of York Minster/Creative Commons

Statue of Constantine the Great./Photo courtesy of York Minster/Creative Commons

It was none other than Constantine, the pagan emperor of Rome, who said, “The Canon (the selected texts that were labeled “God’s word”) must be what I say it is.” And, right there, at the Council of Nicaea in 325 CE, “God’s Word” was determined by a non-Christian man who just happened to be ruling the known world. The Roman Empire ruled with fear and massive bloodshed.

The Roman Catholic Church followed suit as they burned tens of thousands of people for “heresy.” What was heresy? It was believing anything different than the church council and the pagan emperor had decided was the “only truth.” Believe our way or die became the hallmark of Christianity for many centuries of what was called The Dark Ages. The fact is that all the changes in “God’s Word” were for one purpose and one purpose only — control of the masses with fabricated theology. It took another 900 years for the church to decide what “God” had said and what “he” hadn’t. This is still debated between the Eastern Orthodox Church, the Roman Catholic Church and the Syrian Christian Church. Strange? Even the concept of a Trinity (one God in three persons) was not conceived and taught until about 500 years after Jesus was here on the planet.

Photo of one of the Dead Sea Scrolls courtesy of KOREphoto/Creative Commons

Photo of one of the Dead Sea Scrolls courtesy of KOREphoto/Creative Commons

Then, just three years before the Dead Sea Scrolls were found in 1948, an amazing discovery was made in the Nag Hammadi region of Egypt. More ancient scrolls were found in a cave there. And these were not the scrolls of the Qumran community, but scrolls held to be sacred by the earliest followers of Jesus who were focused on practicing what Jesus had taught instead of beliefs only. Today those scrolls are available in English (The Nag Hammadi Library) but the church has been completely silent about this part of history. I’ve read the whole volume. I’ve studied it for years. The Gospel of Thomas and The Gospel of Mary Magdalene are my favorites. More on this later.

I’ve been studying the Aramaic language for 14 years. I’ve found deep personal healing in the discovery, application, and practice of what the Aramaic Jesus taught. Theology cannot heal. Spiritual practice does. Theology teaches that we are separate from The Divine. Jesus taught the opposite. He said: “The kingdom of heaven is WITHIN you.” (Luke 17:21) Theology says you are born guilty and deserve to burn! Jesus said we are One with The Divine! Why isn’t the church known for teaching what Jesus said? You get to decide.

Another misunderstood text is found in John 14:6. The famous “I am the way, the truth, and the life…” But this is not how Jesus said it. The first two words — I am — hold the key. “Ena ena or I-I” 1 is the sound that came from Jesus’ mouth. The Aramaic reveals: “When you both understand and experience that the Greater I AM is within you, the smaller I am, you are then on your way back home.” The “way” (urha) means the Light that reveals the right path to take. The “truth” (sherara) is the right direction on that path. And “life” (hayye) is the strength or the energy to walk that path all the way back home. According to Jesus, our greatest challenge is to learn of our own Divinity — the I Am within! The reason it is so difficult is because we’ve been lied to. The Divine within speaks to us in far different ways than theology if only we learn how to listen.

Oh yes, we do have some shadow stuff to work on! Jesus spoke to us lovingly about that issue rather than condemning us. He said to Nicodemus, “You must give birth to a new self continuously by calling forth Light out of your dark places and let your Light shine!” He did not say we needed a theological “born again” facade! Our Light (you are the Light of the world in Matthew 5:14) is always our Divinity, however faint or brightly shining, according to the Aramaic. Jesus said this to non-Christians!

Birthing a new Self is choosing to be much more than before. Birthing a new Self is to enter the kingdom that is already within us. Choosing love over condemnation, compassion over blame, acceptance over shame and so much more. It is loving by actions instead of mouthing words only.

Even in the famous Lord’s Prayer, the Aramaic comes through to teach us of our Divinity. Jesus said, “O Birthing One, mother and father of all that is, focus the Light of your Divinity within us and make it useful.”2 (The English says: “Hallowed be thy name.”)

Why is not all this truth about our Divinity more obvious in the Bible? The need to change and edit so theology would control our thinking — remember! But don’t take my word for all this. Check it out for yourself. Turn off the TV and read. Burn some midnight oil and study the many books out there that will prove to be life-changing.

The quest is yours — if you want to know rather than just believe. I will provide a list of books for anyone who wants to explore for themselves.

==================

1This is from The Hidden Gospel, by Neil Douglas-Klotz, p. 155. Neil was my Aramaic mentor when I began my doctoral studies in 2003. Most the Aramaic renderings herein are from his scholarly work. Others meanings are from other Aramaic scholars and my own study.

2From Prayers of the Cosmos, by Douglas-Klotz, p. 16

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46 Responses to “‘Church fathers’ distorted Jesus’ Aramaic words”

  1. Michele Joseph

    Thanks, Christy.

    Reply
  2. Christy Besozzi

    Romans 8:38-39

    Reply
  3. Michele Joseph

    I forget where that is, perhaps someone can provide the reference- Galations?
    Romans? Lost track. also, something about “principalities” ???
    Please provide reference, I missed something.

    Reply
  4. Michele Joseph

    In addition, I would like to point out-
    If you have dedicated your life to anybody or to Jesus, for example.
    it’s like being married.
    You know His walk from a distance, or His voice from far away or his smell
    from far behind you, from when He first entered the room.
    So, if you know Him , or anyone in such an intimate way, you recognize
    Him.
    Is he wearing blue or orange or prints or embroidery or polyester-
    you know.
    So don’t be afraid to read or explore or doubt or travel.
    ” For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord”
    So, read on, study on, question on, no matter how far you go- don’t worry,because,- you have spent your whole life in His service-in the end- no matter by what vehicle or thought system- He will bring you home.

    Reply
  5. Michele Joseph

    Thank you, Denis.

    I would like to state that just because people are interested in Apocrypha, or any unauthorized writings, does not mean that they don’t love Jesus.
    Sometimes, it’s because they will read anything & everything that has His name in it. But, I’ve been told, Jesus loves His sheep,and will find them no matter how far they have strayed.
    Do you think that might be true ??
    Life is a long & circuitous route- And I believe that the eternally merciful God
    loves us and will meet us where we are.
    Do you ?
    I hope so. It’s been a long road for me !

    Reply
    • Denis Eble

      True? Yes, in fact the further back in time one goes, the more pure the and true the writings become. Of course, illiteracy was widespread in those early days and as a result, oral tradition was the means of keeping the words, actions and memories of Jesus alive in the hearts of his followers.

      When these were put into written form years later, it became obvious that material was both lost from and added to the story. Details become blurred and the present was reflected back onto the past.

      The earliest sayings in the memories of the followers of Jesus are in a collection called ‘Q.’ Q doesn’t exist but scholars find Q in Matthew and Luke but not Mark. The Gospel of Thomas was excluded from the canon even though it is dated earlier than Mark. Why? Perhaps because there is no story, no biography, merely sayings of Jesus. “Jesus said” and “His disciples asked” is the form the writing takes. No place names, no action, no characters- just a collection of 114 sayings- many we recognize from the canonical gospels. Others not.

      Were the ‘others’ deemed too radical, too countercultural? Take, for example # 53: “when you make the male and the female one and the same, so that the male not be male nor the female… then will you enter the kingdom.”

      Further, in Thomas there is no Communion, no betrayal, no Crucifixion, no Resurrection. That would never do for those in charge of fixing doctrine.

      An altogether different problem that we face in picking and choosing written works is translation and editing. We read the New Standard English derived from King James which was translated from Greek and Latin. Oddly, discussion among the KJ translations was done in the Latin language. Further, The translators took the English translation of an earlier English work, the Bishop’s Bible, as their source text. The Greek source for the KJ translators was a specific text of Theodore Beza- his Greek New Testament. His text was based on a text by Robert Estinne which was based on a version by Desiderius Erasmus in the 15th century.

      Fourteen centuries earlier, monks were copying the Literary Koine Greek of the Evangelists who were writing the Aramaic words of Jesus. How many errors and substitutions did these monks make? Of course, the monks were reading copies of copies of the original works which no longer exist.

      Reply
  6. Denis Eble

    The website, http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/ has several interesting articles on writings which do not/did not included in the ‘official’ writings of the church.

    Reply
  7. Christy Besozzi

    People occasionally disagree with me on Bible prophecy interpretation – they’re wrong, of course – but it is par for the course.

    Disagreeing with me is OK; it’s their loss, not mine.

    Reader(s) of these comments – to see a video about the meanings of the prophecies in the Book of Revelation, go to:
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gRUmZdfmt-Y —- Be forewarned that it is 2 hours long – get a snack ready before you start and have some notepaper ready.

    Islam is prophesied in the Bible. In Genesis 17:20 — “17,20 And as for Ishmael, I have heard thee; behold, I have blessed him, and will make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly; twelve princes shall he beget, and I will make him a great nation.”

    The 12 princes are the 12 Imams of Shi’ih Islam. The ‘great nation’ is Islam.

    Also, Muhammad and His cousin (and spiritual assistant) ‘Ali are foretold in the Book of Revelation, primarily in Chapters 11, 12, & 13. Muhammad and ‘Ali are the referenced ‘two witnesses’. Both Muhammad and ‘Ali were descendants of Ishmael – the Arabic people trace their ancestry back to him.

    Reply
  8. Michele Joseph

    In addition,———- Christy, who has studied for 30 THIRTY years in the field of her passion- and you treat her as some might treat her as someone standing on the street with a sandwich board across her shoulders?
    Who I would not make a serious life decision without at least a couple of lunch dates ???
    What are earth i the matter with you guys ?
    You have no respect for anyone.
    Excuse me, but—— shut up.

    Reply
  9. Michele Joseph

    My dear Patrick,
    Let me instruct you, as I would my son, about what is polite & respectful
    #1. The idea that GENUINE curiosity & interest can satisfy itself in such a brief
    forum can only indicate that the questioner knows nothing about true scholarship.
    Jim has provided me with the book list I requested and I do not expect to
    have a srrious question which would justify a demand on his time for many months.
    Jim, himself, has given guidance as to how to proceed.
    “But, don’t take my word for this, Check it out for yourself. Turn off the T.V.
    and read. Burn some midnight oil and study the many books that will prove to be life-changing. The quest is yours – if you want to know more than just believe.
    I will provide a list of books for anyone who wants to explore for the selves”
    I asked for the list- and obtained it in short order.
    I feel confident, that should I have any SINCERE questions, Jim will be happy
    to answer an e- mail.
    There is no excuse for public flippancy.

    Reply
  10. Patrick

    “…his sensational pronouncement, in the manner of a czar’s ukase (sic)”. You call that polite ? ”

    Yes, Michele.
    There is nothing even remotely impolite about it. You (or Jim, indeed) might argue that it is an inaccurate comment.
    …But that is another thing.

    “…is it possible (Jim) knows a least a BIT more than you ?”
    I think it’s a certainty that he knows a great deal more than I.
    …Which is why I’d appreciate him following up, and expanding a bit, on his original comment.

    Reply
  11. Michele Joseph

    Nick, you, too.
    You have forgotten whatever manners your mother taught you,
    unless, perhaps, she didn’t ????

    Reply
  12. Michele Joseph

    Further, Patrick- “his sensational pronouncement, in the manner of of czars’
    ukase (sic)”.
    You call that polite ?
    Did your mother raise you, or drag you up by the hair on your head ?
    He’s a scholar- a minister, a university professor—-is it possible he
    knows a least a BIT more than you ?
    You are boring with your perpetual rebellion & impudence.
    I understand problems with the Church & it’s negative response to authority,
    but, more importantly, I undrestand manners & respect for your fellow human being.

    Reply
  13. Patrick

    Well and kindly put, Christy.
    …I suspect a “troll” is someone with a different opinion to the designator.

    David, isn’t it time something was done about this?
    I’ll quit commenting tomorrow, if you think it will help any.

    Just say the word.

    Reply
  14. nick batt

    Wow! another interpretation of Revelation. I’ve heard the passage being a prophecy being about the rise of Islam; the Chernobyl (wormwood in Russian) reactor melt down; and Nero but this is a new` one. I realize that some Protestants make this “Constantine corrupted Christianity” claim as has been made here but As I wrote in my blog, taking over existing feasts, practices, and locations by “Christianizing” them was a common method of evangelizing a people. Early Christianity did it with Christmas and Easter; St. Patrick did it in Ireland. Muslims did it in Jerusalem when they built a Mosque in the site of the Jewish temple. I see nothing sinister about it. Further, there is ample evidence in pre-Nicaean writings that the beliefs codified there were not new.

    Reply
  15. Michele Joseph

    Let me educate you as to what is a troll & what is not.
    A person who is simply sharing their opinion or knowledge is not a troll.
    People who are here on a religion site to rip up religious people because
    “being a skeptic is fun” or because they want to have some ” vicious fun”,
    THAT is a troll.
    You come on here and insult people & ridicule them & their articles or
    likes playground bullies, cannot express your opinions without throwing a barb
    at others, that is not intelligent conversation, it’s the act of a troll.
    Grow up.

    Reply
  16. Michele Joseph

    Self- lacerating honesty–…
    Because I am unsure as to the proper usage of a hyphen when you
    are writing in almost completely indecipherable HTML ??
    You need to calm down and collect yourself.
    Take a deep breath….. please.

    Reply
  17. Christy Besozzi

    RE: Michele’s comment – “If Jim has gone silent, I suspect it’s because he has identified you for what you are (trolls)”

    I suspect, perhaps, we are ALL ‘trolls’ here in the Comments section…

    Reply
  18. Christy Besozzi

    Just something to consider in discussions about Emperor Constantine’s effects on Christianity…

    The negative effects of Emperor Constantine on Christianity as mentioned in a prophecy from the Book of Revelation (8:10-11):

    “The third angel sounded his trumpet, and a great star, blazing like a torch, fell from the sky on a third of the rivers and on the springs of water— the name of the star is WORMWOOD. A third of the waters turned bitter, and many people died from the waters that had become bitter.”

    The actual word “Wormwood” in the Greek text is ‘absinthe’ – a bitter substance from a root plant translated into English as a type of absinthe called wormwood.

    The meaning of these verses in this prophecy:

    1) Emperor Constantine was the ‘great star’ that fell from the sky onto the waters.
    2) The ‘waters’ means the sources of spiritual teachings and life.
    3) The ‘third of’ rivers and springs means that his ‘bitter’ influence fell upon a third of the early Christian community.

    Thus, the effects of the changes Emperor Constantine had on early Christianity turned the teachings of Christ into something not considered pure which rendered negative changes to the teachings of the church. Those poisonous changes included injection of pagan symbols and holidays into the faith; use of violence to spread the faith; making the clergy ‘report to’ the state (the state ‘employed’ the bishops, thus called the shots); and, in setting up the ‘standards’ for being a good Christian through the Nicene Creed, led ultimately to the ensuing repeated inquisitions in the quest to eliminate the perceived wrong types of people.

    The Book of Revelation gives a vision of things that were, are, and would be (the future). These verses were about part of the future of Christianity – our past, now, of course.

    Reply
  19. Patrick

    “Or, perhaps, he had better things to do than read this adolescent drivel.”

    Well, Michele – your self-lacerating honesty is at least refreshing.

    And you think me wrong to ask Jim, politely, for a little more detail?

    Reply
  20. Michele Joseph

    My goodness !
    Such hysteria !
    ” You’ve ceased to be a Christian !”
    “Being deceitful ” !
    “We” are waiting for this list…..
    Such drama ! Such disrespectful treatment of a fellow human being !”
    No sir. YOU are waiting for a list…. what have you got,
    a mouse in your pocket ???
    If Jim has gone silent, I suspect it’s because he has identified you for
    what you are (trolls) or
    perhaps, he is saying, he has read ” because we are all divine”,
    and is saying to himself ” I know divine, and you, sirs, are not divine”
    Or, perhaps, he had better things to do than read this adolescent
    drivel.

    Reply
  21. Patrick

    Well – that would seem to be that, then.

    Having delivered his sensational pronouncement – in the manner of a czar’s ukase – Jim seems to have gone silent.
    I take it, though, that he believes Jesus is divine, because we all are. (If I read it right.)

    “If the earliest texts were “God’s Word,” as the church teaches, why would they need to be changed? After changing the texts, how could their new versions still be “God’s Word?” Did human alterations make God’s Word more authentic? More true? More what? Who’s playing God in all this? “

    …That’s exactly what I’d like you to tell us, Jim. I have no idea, myself.

    Reply
  22. nick batt

    PS Constantine was a pagan who converted to Christianity.

    Reply
  23. nick batt

    We’re all waiting for the list and for the evidence that Nicaea corrupted anything. In fact the canon wasn’t settled until councils in Hippo and Carthage and ratified by the Pope 80-100 years later. The existence of non-canonical texts proves nothing except the wisdom of the Church’s leaders. The are discussed by the fathers and some like The Shepard of Hermass almost made the cut. The Shepard is still an interesting read and it was read all through the centuries. The Nag Hammadi texts were so Gnostic that it is clear why they never made it. You can be a Gnostic today but you are following “another Gospel” that Paul warns against. You’ve ceased to be Christian which is not a comment on your soul. During the Arian heresy most of the folks were Arian. Being Arian didn’t damn them. Being deceitful about things can.

    Reply
  24. Denis Eble

    Imagine that book-burning idiocy! I can’t.

    Reply
  25. Michele Joseph

    I would like that list of books, Jim

    Reply
  26. Michele Joseph

    Jim, your article is a comfort to me.
    It has clarified that, just because i struggle at times with “God’s Word”,
    it does not mean that I have to ditrust my love for Jesus.
    Thank you.

    Reply
  27. Michele Joseph

    I knew you would disagree. :P

    Reply
  28. Patrick

    No “sceptic” with any kind of brain between his, or her, ears would ever ask anyone to “prove,” anything.
    Some people clearly don’t know what “prove” means.

    If you persist in publicly working out your familial neuroses, coupled with inanity, bickering, and name-calling on here, Michele, while the rest of us are trying to discuss – in this case – the putative hazards of translation, there very soon won’t be any blog called anything.

    (…Or so I suspect. But I might be wrong.)
    But you are having the effect you desire. I’m beginning to weary of it all. And yes, it’s a bore.

    Reply
  29. Michele Joseph

    I knew you would disagree.

    Reply
  30. nick batt

    It’s interesting that an old school Catholic and an agnostic can disagree on a lot but you pair us and we aggravate you?

    Reply
  31. Michele Joseph

    I think that if we were to get a new logo, it should look like this :
    TOLEDO FAITH & VALUES
    ( Patrick & Nick disagree)
    Then you guys could go do something constructive & save us all a lot
    of aggravation.

    Reply
  32. Michele Joseph

    The thing with “skeptical ” the adjective- everyone is skeptical sometimes.
    It’s a temporary feeling, often appropriate.
    But, if someone identifies themselves as “a skeptic” NOUN, it means that it has beecome their IDENTITY.
    Now, they have no more choice or comtrol over their responses than they would have a choice about their response to a double-dose of Ex-LAX.
    A conversation with such a person is similar to a conversation with a sixteen year old girl.
    It goes like this:
    STATEMENT- xyz
    RESPONSE- I think you’re wrong ! Prove it !
    STATEMENT – lmnop
    RESPONSE – I think you’re wrong ! Prove it !
    STATEMENT – efg
    RESPONSE – I think you’re wrong ! Prove it!
    STATEMENT- qrst
    RESPONSE – I think you’re wrong ! Prove it !

    It’s like having a conversation with a trained bird .
    I can be easily drawn into such conversations out of pity.
    How lonely & attention starved this person must be !
    But, I get annoyed. It’s boring.
    To have nothing but the compusion to dispute.
    It’s hostile. It’s motivation is to try to make of fool of the other person.
    As I said, it’s a bore

    Reply
  33. Patrick

    Jim, this is hard for me to follow, but fascinating.
    “…the Roman Catholic Church, purposely destroyed the earliest texts after “translating” them and vastly changing them.”

    What texts have you seen,then, that have not been destroyed? I presume the ones found in Nag Hammadi?
    And you have read them in Aramaic?

    (By the way, do you, or the texts, (or both,) believe that Jesus is God?)

    What would be the Catholic Church’s motive for changing the meaning of the texts? Money?

    “A translation is not subjective. It’s word for word, meaning for meaning.”

    It’s very far from “not subjective”, Michele, how could it be?

    For example: I took this simple news paragraph at random, Google translated it into Spanish, then back to English.

    And got…

    “After an acrimonious debate over more aggressive action – including a pair of two-day strikes later in the year – the conference backed an amendment that stiffened the language to include consultations on “a series of strikes through the autumn term and into 2015″.”

    “After an acrimonious debate on more aggressive action – including a pair of attacks two days later in the year – the conference supported an amendment that tensed language to include consultations on “a series of strikes throughout the fall semester and in 2015 “. ”

    A considerable, and subtle, difference on the two-day strike bit, you will agree.

    Imagine if if was about God? Would it matter? Not much, possibly.

    “Fun to be a sceptic,” eh, Nick? Good.

    Reply
  34. Michele Joseph

    Just saw your comment.
    Fun to be a skeptic….
    Hmm……
    Nobody knows what they are talking about but you ……
    How convenient !
    Your data storage is impressive , Nick.
    Dust off your processor.

    Reply
  35. Michele Joseph

    In regard to above chart- I already know it’s incomplete.
    It doesn’t include the Bible I have always favored Thompson’s Chain Reference.
    I hope you can see from the chart that the average hunan life-span is not long
    enough to study enough to provide you with what you keep demanding.
    I mean, you have to eat & sleep, right?
    Something to note – the position you keep taking ensures that very few people know what they are talking about except for you.
    Hmmmmmmm…..

    Reply
  36. nick batt

    “Reality” involves more than the creed which only speaks to the essence of the Christian Faith. Nothing about gravity, biology or the nature of societies. Here the assertion has been made that the creed is a distortion. I just want evidence (gee, it’s fun to be the skeptic).

    Reply
  37. Michele Joseph

    http://www.apbrown2.net/web/TranslationComparisonChart.htm
    Which ones are interpretations ? Which ones are translations?
    What was the agenda of those involved ? What was their bias?
    Nick, when you haved mastered Aramaic, Hebrew, Greek & Latin,
    then it might be possible to give you what you want.
    The fact that you think that any credible explanation could fit on this site, says something about your conclusions.
    I wish reality could be distilled into something as brief as the Nicene Creed, but it can’t.
    But, thinking and claiming that it can sure eliminates the need for the labor of study.
    Doesn’t it ?
    All of reality fits into half a page.
    How easy !
    Just memorize it & you’re done!
    Then you just go & buy a big-screen TV.

    Reply
  38. nick batt

    I’m still waiting for evidence.

    Reply
  39. Michele Joseph

    Here is a story about a spiritual experience I had in 1983.
    It involves the accuracy of translation, gnosis, a near-near death experience, and the phrase ” Wives, submit to your husbands”
    At that time, I liked that phrase because it relieved me of the responsibilty of decision- making.
    My first marriage. Only been married about a year or so.
    Hurricane Alicia.
    We were in Kemah,Texas,a block and a half off the waters of Galveston Bay.
    In a trailer with no tie-downs.
    The hurricane barreling in.
    Even 14 hours before landfall, it was already the most terrifying thing I ever experienced.
    All my girlfriends were fleeing to Austin.
    I wanted to go to Austin, too.
    He wanted to stay because of his stinking Mazda RX7.
    We fought like crazy- for the first time.
    Screaming crying fight.
    We stayed.
    I said “Park the cars over there, the ground looks higher”
    He said “No it doesn’t” “Yes it does” “No, it doesn’t”
    He left his where it wanted it. Gorgeous expensive new car.
    I put my beat-up Toyota where I wanted it.
    The wind ! Walked almost horizontal into the trailer.
    An hour later- the lights went out.
    Not much later- pitch black couldn’t see your hand in front of your face- couldn’t hear if you were screaming
    It was like all the demons from hell screaming at the top of their lungs.
    It was like being in the belly of the whale
    Trailer pitching back & forth- shingles from the house around hitting the trailer like gun-shots
    Next morning, his car underwater- Mine was high & dry.
    We ran out of food before the police boats got there.
    It took three weeks before we were rescued.
    And I never obeyed a man again.
    Six months later, he wanted a divorce.
    I know what Paul said, but I heard God loud & clear.
    What does He need to do- hit me upside the head with a two-by-four ?
    So much for absolutely %100 accurate Scripture.
    Some things are just common sense.

    Reply
  40. Michele Joseph

    Another thing that affects interpretation, maybe the most important is bias.
    The reader will see what he wants to see, hear what he wants to hear, read what he wants to read- very subjective.
    If one is invested- especially heavily invested in believing something, they might continue flying in the face of all evidence.
    Or they may change what they believe secretly, and not share their change with anyone.
    If the possiblities include the loss of all your friends, your wife leaving and taking the kids, or even, burning at the stake, you might very well decide to say “the
    Emperor has clothes”.
    Translation is risky & dangerous and might ask you to lose everything you love, tangible & invisible.
    But, translation is more trst-worthy.
    It is what it is and doesn’t care if you believe it or not & doesn’t care what the result might cost you.

    Reply
  41. Michele Joseph

    What Jim is offering here is not INTERPRETATION , but TRANSLATION.
    A persons’ INTEPRETATION is their subjective understanding.
    It is subject to change due to misunderstanding, deliberate distortion and differece in language.
    A translation is not subjective. It’s word for word, meaning for meaning.
    It’s replacing the word with a word that means as close as is humanly possible it meaning.
    It is also verifiable through cross-reference and context.
    If the nuance of connotation mean the same time after time after time every time they appear-you have a match.
    Oral transmission through multiple languages & over a long stretch of time, will inevitably change the message with no “conspiracy theory” required.
    Geez, hasn’t everybody played the “telephone game “?

    Reply
  42. nick batt

    Where’s the evidence for the so-called corruption at Nicaea? Wasn’t it just a reduction to a written creed of what was already believed? Wasn’t it consistent with the teachings of Polycarp, Ignatius of Antioch and the other early Church Fathers?

    Reply
    • Denis Eble

      I know, Nick, you are a true defender of the ‘faith and dogma’ of the Roman Catholic Church. I would expect this kind of reply, sword of righteous in hand, slaying any who dare question the grand authority of the church!

      Reply
  43. Denis Eble

    Jim Stacey says, “The reason it is so difficult is because we’ve been lied to.”

    That Council of Nicaea was the point at which, I think, everything took a turn for the worse. Sadly, at that get-together, spirituality was cooped for dogma. Power over free expression. Hierarchy over individual grace. Law over love.

    How ironic that the same evil empire that crucified Jesus was now in charge of spreading a counterfeit faith named in his honor. The pity of it all.

    Reply
  44. nick batt

    Talk about conspiracy theories; and not a shred of evidence to support it. just the author’s interpretations.

    Reply

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