Knocking Over the Sacred Cow of Biblolatry

"And he said, "Whoever finds the meaning of these sayings will not taste death." Jesus said, "Those who seek should not stop seeking until they find. When they find, they will be disturbed. When they are disturbed, they will marvel, and will reign over all." Gospel of Thomas 2,3

I remember meditating on saying 3 a year or so back and really asking myself what we should be seeking and finding.  God?  God within?  Last night exhausted from the day's activities I was reading and contemplating sayings 2 and 3 together and had a small epiphany..(a piff if you will).  I am sure minds greater than my own have made the connection between the two sayings long before I, but it is a new realization to me.  Saying 2 suggests any who find the meaning of these sayings will have eternal life.  Then the saying 3 says to seek until you find.  So what we are to find is the meaning of these sayings. Easy right? No.

At the beginning of the Gospel of Thomas we read that these are the secret saying of Jesus.  What this means is not that they are hidden or kept from people, for only the elite to understand.  Rather these words are not easily understood.  These are not verses to memorize and be done with.  They require contemplation.  They require one to meditate and think on them.  It is not the words themselves that are reverenced.  Rather it is their meaning...the words within the words.

Suddenly the Gospel of Thomas becomes the finger pointing at the moon.  Even the text itself tells you this in these sayings.  But what good is the finger pointing at the moon?  It is a tool to get you to see or look at something else.

I live in the Bible Belt.  There are many, many fantastic and deeply spiritual Christian people here.  The culture where I live is culturally Christian for the most part.  One of the sacred cows of the culture I live in is to reverence the Bible.  In many people's homes there is a family Bible, often on a stand on the coffee table or shelf.  The Bible becomes a idol.  For some people they use it to beat others over the head based on their own prejudice.  Some it is found on that shelf, their spiritual understanding still going back to Sunday School when they were a kid..perhaps one of the last times they had attended church.  But for both of these people, the Bible is an idol.

I believe that God is truth, and truth can be found in any scripture, including the scripture of nature and life.  But each one of us must find its meaning, and its interpretation ourselves.  It is only through internal realization that change happens.  Part of what must happen is laying aside our many mindless "Biblolatries."


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