The Bible Backs Science Over Faith; or
THE DESTRUCTION OF HEAVEN or
THE DAY WHEN JUDGEMENT COMES, 10 vols.
Vol. 5: No Miracles,
No Sermons, Are True
Chapter 4: Belief in “Miracles”
Belief in Magic;
The Foretold “Enchantment”
By False Sorcerer-Priests
The “World,” it’s “Worship,” and Christianity, Were Deceived,
A False Idea of Christ – As Magician
[Author’s Draft: edited to p. 43 END; but double-check & fix numbers – on Aug 13, 2007.
Written first in AppleWorks WP: Word Processing. Based on Claris? Then trans. to MSWord Apple.
CONTENTS: Sec. 1, Intro to 9; Sect. 2 Bible Warns of Magic, to p. 43 END?; Stage Magic p. 43-66, -END OF BOOK 2. More Jesus as magic]
The Traditional Views of “Jesus Christ”
– As Miracle-Worker, And As “Spiritual” Person –
Were the Foretold, False Christs …
The Only True Christ
Is Christ as Practical Man, Worker
In our volumes here, we will have been showing that 1) the Bible warned that there would always be many false things, in our holiest Christian priests and angels, and their inspired doctrines. While 2) one day in the end especially, we are supposed to see this clearly. Then, 3) to fix these false things, God told us to apply “science” to our religion (Dan. 1.4.-15 KJE; Mal. 3); to find out which elements were false (1 Kings 18.20-39). Here, 4) we now add that God specifically warned about false elements of particularly, Magic. God warned there will have been “sorcery,” “magicians,” “necromancers,” “augurs,” intermixing within Judeo-Christianity, its priests and prophets. So here therefore, 5) as commanded by the Bible, we begin applying science to traditional Christianity. To try to locate the “false” things in it. And 6) here especially, to see if there elements of Magic, sorcery, in traditional Christianity. Looking for elements of Magic and magical thinking in Christianity, immediately we find our attention especially drawn to …”miracles”; making bread appear out of thin air, closely resembles making a rabbit appear in a magician’s hat. And indeed, 7) applying the Science of God to our mainstream Christianity, confirms that a) its “miracles” do not hold up in science; they are really natural things misunderstood, or seen falsely, through the eyes of bad priests, ministers. Specifically, b) most Christian preachers have seen things in magical terms; wonders appearing out of thin air. Historically therefore, c) our “Christian” miracle-promisers, are the foretold false prophets, bad priests; who were infected long ago, by magic, Magical thinking, sorcerers. The million “Christian” preachers who have stressed “miracles,” are actually the foretold false priests; entranced by “illusions” of magic. And enchanting the world in turn, with “sorceries,” magical “illusions,” and physical fatal “delusions” of magical powers that no one actually has.
No one today is literally, walking on real physical water; the idea that they can, is just a delusion of bad, vain preachers entranced by the magical “delusions,” that God warned about. It is the result of a false interpretation of the “wonders” of the Bible. A false reading influenced by magical thinking. Thus just as the Bible foretold, our “worship,” our prophets, the whole world, worship a False Christ – partially because of the influence of evil magicians (Rev. 13, etc.). And we need a new, “Second Coming,” a second and better, more accurate vision of Christ, to fix this: Christ advocating Science, over blind “faith” in magical delusions.
Our preachers and churches traditionally promised us many huge, wonderful, spectacular miracles. Things that are much, much larger than life; much larger than a mere carpenter’s son, and his “plain” words, might have offered. Indeed, we were promised the power to walk on water; the power to move real actual “mountains” with just faith and a prayer. But we will have found, the traditional promises of might huge “miracles,” made by almost all Christian preachers until about 1969 or so … were not really from God at all; but, we will have found, were mostly, false. Were the foretold false promises; false prophesies. While furthermore, the dozens, hundreds of apologetics sermons, that were designed to try to explain this away or excuse the lack of gigantic physical miracles, wonders in our lives, were found here to all be untrue.
Is this possible? It seems as if half of the Christianity we were taught in church, traditionally, is untrue or false. And furthermore, none of the various sermons that try to explain this away, are true. Our preachers have delivered dozens of excuses to explain away their failures. Especially, the heart of Christianity today, “faith,” was originally an apologetic for the lack of miracles: preachers told us that if they cannot deliver all the material wonders that they promised, then this means we should just have more and more “faith” in our preachers, or in their ideas and sermons about God. And yet we will have found here and elsewhere, that this was not what the Bible itself really, fully said. Actually the Bible itself said over and over, that 1) essentially “all” our holiest men and angels have sinned; in their personal behavior, and in their most Holy Spirit “inspired” sermons too. So that 2) God firmly told us not to have much “faith” in any of that; but to 3) if anything, trust far more to a critical science of God. And 4) if science says there are no miracles? Then rather than continuing to try to believe the Bible, instead we are supposed to … deduce our preachers and holy men were simply, largely, false. But then indeed, science and experience tell us that most of the promises of miracles of preachers, were indeed false.
Could all our holiest men and angels have been wrong, or deceitful? This seems impossible to for believers to face or bear. Indeed, how can we face or believe something so shattering? Finally, most believers don’t really face this; they remain lost in illusions all their lives. Or, if they try to face signs of fundamental errors in their religion, they suffer great contradictions and disillusionments and pain and confusion and dysfunctionality; even death.
How indeed can someone trained all their lives, from infancy, to absolutely trust and believe and follow something …deal with countless “signs” that their beliefs just are not true? That all our holiest men were often simply, false and deceitful? In many ways, all that seems all but impossible. But finally, it is one of the major points of our present books, that all this can be at last faced by those who firmly believe in their Bibles. By showing that all this was actually foretold, authorized … in the Bible itself. And furthermore, far from telling us to ignore all this, or to continue blindly believing and having faith, actually the Bible told us to simply accept that our priests and ministers were often false and deceitful. We should simply accept that … in order to move on to a second, better idea of God and Good. We should move beyond blind faith, to the science of God.
In fact, there are dozens, hundreds of passages in the Bible, that we now find, described this awful discovery. In particular, the parts of the Bible that warned that … one “day” we are supposed to discover that the whole earth was deceived, even in its “worship,” even in its best idea of “Christ.” And furthermore, more specifically, as it turns out, the Bible told us part of the specific nature of the “false” ideas, the “deceit,” the “delusions” and “illusion”s that were to fool our holy men and angels; much of the falsity in religion that we see, is supposed to come from … “magic,” “magicians,” “sorcerers,” and so forth. While here we recall that indeed, promises of miracles can now be shown to have been made under the influence of magic; or what Anthropologists call, “magical thinking.” So that, more simply put in popular language: the traditional, miracle-promising Christianity that billions of people traditionally got in church, was actually, a false Christianity; presented a false idea of Christ; one that was heavily influenced by magical thinking; or simply, by Magic and magicians.
So that actually, we show here, the old Christianity of miracles (and for that matter, of “Spirit”uality and “faith” too), was the foretold, takeover of the earth, by false “worship”; specifically, by a worship, a false idea of Christ, heavily influenced by … magic, magicians; or magical thinking.
But while this is so – while the whole world, and nearly all our preachers, have long been under the influence of a false, magic-influenced idea of Christ and truth; particularly in the belief in “miracles” – then after all, to”day” is the day we begin to uncover, reveal, and deal with all of this. We are about to expose the magical influence in traditional miracle-promising Christianity – “bear swift witness against the sorcerers.” And then recall after all, the “second,” better, “full”er, truer, vision, coming, of God; in the vision of God and Christ that is supported by the science of God.
Shatteringly, we will show here that though many ordinary people believe Christ promised “supernatural” “miracles,” this is because most ordinary believers are actually still under the influence of ancient magical beliefs. While, when we actually read our Bibles a little closer, we will actually find that the Bible itself, did not promise so much “supernatural” “miracles,” as actually, natural and technological “wonders.” Things that can be supported by science.
And therefore, while the simple vision of God and good that you got historically, or as “child”ren in church, was actually, a radically over-simplified, substantially false idea of Christianity, a “false Christ,” a false ideas created by belief in Magic – by magicians – still however, we can at last now, expose the deception … and move on. To at last, the first hints, signs, of the foretold second and better vision, Coming, of God. In a defensible, scientific view of God. As offered already in part, in contemporary science-based theology, Religious Studies, biblical scholarship.
Earlier, we went looking for supernatural miracles … and found that the evidence was overwhelmingly, against them.
At first, it seems impossible; that traditional Christianity, could have been partially wrong, deceived. It seems impossible, because many of our preachers promised miracles; and they proudly told us, often enough, that they themselves are all but perfect, holy sacred; that they were the voicepieces of God. Yet to be sure, among other things, our priests and churches solemnly made to us many, many promises of huge, gigantic miracles – while today, many of us have found out that we ourselves today, don’t see anyone actually getting most of the specific miracles, that our holy men promised. Few of us have personally seen anyone at all, for example: 1) walk on water; or 2) make bread appear out of thin air; or 3) move real, physical “mountains” with just faith and a prayer. Few of us recently, have personally seen any of these things happen … yet all these things and more, were promised to us, over and over, by our holy men. And we were constantly assured, by many preachers in the past – until about 1969 or so – that such things were the absolutely holy, sacred, word of God.
Many huge promises were made to us even by preachers, for centuries. When we look back at numerous old sermons, we find our preachers definitely pretended to promise us huge, amazing miracles: bread out of thin air, the power to walk on water. These and “greater things than these,” they said, would be ours; if only we would trust and have “faith” in our preachers, or in their idea, their image, of God. God, Christ, as miracle-worker. But many of us have noticed casually, that we ourselves, don’t really see the bigger, more spectacular miracles, happening today. Now and then a preacher on TV claims to be working faith-healings. But we ourselves, if we are honest, would have to admit that we have never seen, personally, anyone at all walking on water; or even claiming to be able to do that. So that in effect, there have been countless “signs” that … something in ordinary, traditional Christianity … was not quite right. That specifically, its promises of miracles, were not quite right.
But while there have been many signs of something wrong even in mainstream Christianity, to date, millions of ordinary Christians, have not really been able to “see.” and believe these signs. Because they have been taught, that the essence of true Christianity, is to ignore all “signs,” and to simply trust and believe and have “faith” in, traditional Christianity, even when the things it promised do not seem to be coming true in any timely way. And yet, we will be finding here and now, that there is a way to “face” this, that is consistent with the Bible itself. That in fact, amazingly, the Bible itself, God himself warned that 1) there would always be great sins and errors in our holiest men and angels, and in their understanding of God; and 2) therefore, rather than have total “faith” in them, we are supposed to very, very critically examine all their claims, with science; to see if they really are producing all the wonderful things God promised … or not. While, if when we apply science to traditional religious beliefs, we suddenly find that there are things that are wrong, then in fact, the Bible itself foretold and authorized this finding. Indeed, 3) one “day” we are supposed to discover … that the whole earth was in fact, “deceived,” under and “strong delusion,” even in what it “worship”ed; even in its idea of “Christ.” And on the “day,” our childhood heaven itself, is supposed to be destroyed. But 4) all in order for God to reveal to us at last, the foretold “second,” more “mature,” “full”er vision of God and good.
(Regarding “full”ness, some have suggested that the first coming of Christ “fulfilled” all the old promises; yet if Christ was “full”y God, many have more rightly understood that not all things are completely fulfilled, until the End of Time, Judgement Day, the Second Coming. So, though at times we are told Christ is the fulfillment of many things – of the “fullness of Christ” Eph. 4.13; “in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily” Col. 2.9 – there will have been many things yet left to learn and see, after Christ’s first coming: “I hope you will understand fully,” 2 Corin. 1.13; “when the time had fully come” Gal 4.4; “set you hope fully upon the grace that is coming” 1 Peter 1.13; “with the best gifts of the earth and its fulness” Deut. 33.16; “In the fulness of his sufficiency he will be ” Job 20.22; “The earth is the LORD’S and the fulness thereof” Ps. 24.1; “And from his fulness have we all received grace” Joh. 1.16; “as a plan for the fulness of time” Eph. 1.10. And we should be careful of people “full” of false things: “full of bribes” Ps. 26.10; with souls “full of troubles” Ps. 88.3; watching ut for a “full end” Ezk. 11.13; of “transgressors” who “have reached their full measure,” Dan. 8.23; for indeed the “full, yea, sudden end he will make” Zep. 1.18 of many who think they have already gotten the “full” measure of God and God, but who are “full of deadly poison” James 3.8; and merit the “bowls full of the wrath of God” yet to come, Rev. 15.7. Finding that many were just full of … false things. “Until full day” Prov. 4.18?).
Most preachers and believers have declared themselves, and their knowledge of God, to be “full”er than it is. Preachers and believers have indeed, seemed superficially “humble” before God; and yet their humility was superficial, and false; deeper down, our holy men and angels were massively arrogant and proud – in that they believed themselves to be the chosen voicepieces of God; and already “full” of all wisdom, already.
But indeed, we are finding here, that our holy men were often all too “proud” and “vain,” and not really humble enough. That our holy men new quite adequately read, or learned to “face” or “bear,” many parts of the Bible itself. Parts of the Bible first of all, that warned there have, indeed, always been many huge, literally fatal sins and errors, in our holiest men and angels; in our preachers and churches; and even their most “inspired,” “holy” “doctrines.” And that one “day” we are supposed to find that the whole earth, even the “elect, if possible,” are to find they have been “worship”ing (Rev. 13), false things; even “magicians.” And even our preachers have not – until now – really known the parts of the Bible, that tells us that on the “day” – even today – our childhood “heaven” itself, our heaven that seemed to promise “supernatural” “miracles” especially; even our heaven of “faith” and “spirituality” – is supposed to collapse. But all in order that we can see next, the science of God. And the second and more mature understanding, vision, of God, that it begins to offer.
Is all this possible? Can we “face” or “bear” – or even “believe” – all this heaven-shattering information? That our preachers were deceived? That they were deceived themselves – and then they deceived us all, in turn? That ultimately, most of the world was mistaken, in its outline of Christianity? Its idea of what Christianity is about? Could the whole earth have been following, a false idea of God? A false idea of Christ?
Can this be possible? Can believers, the faithful, believe, or face or bear this heaven-shattering moment? In fact, indeed they can. As we show them that actually, this discovery is not against the Bible itself. In fact, we will find here, all this is foretold, authorized, in hundreds of quotes, from the Bible itself. From God, himself. Especially, one “day” we are supposed to find that even our Religion, our idea of Christ, was dominated by magical thinking; or in effect, by magicians. And yet we can at last learn to face this and similar negative findings on Religion by science and science-based Theology, Religious Studies, biblical scholarship … on discovering here, that after all, the Bible itself prophesied, predicted, all of this. Indeed, amazingly, a long series of very negative findings on traditional religion, by Theology, Religious Studies, and science, are here justified at last, in terms that should be acceptable to the average believer: as we find here, that over and over, the one document that believers trust – the Bible itself – warned that actually, one “day,” we are supposed to pass through all of this. We are supposed to see that the whole earth was deceived, even in what it “worship”ed; even in its idea of Christ.
Indeed, the Bible itself particularly warned that one “day” it would be time to “bear swift witness, against the magicians in our priesthoods:
“I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers,” (Mal. 3.5).
“An appalling and horrible thing has happened in the land: the prophets prophesy falsely, and the priests rule at their direction; my people love to have it so, but what will you do when the end comes?” (Jer. 5.31; 6.13).
“And I took my staff Grace, and I broke it, annulling the covenant which I had made with all the peoples” (Zech. 11.10).
“And now, O priests, this command is for you” (Mal. 2.1).
“Both prophet and priest are ungodly” (Jer. 23.11).
“I reject you from being a priest to me” (Hos. 4.6).
“The dreamers tell false dreams, and give empty consolation” (Zech. 1.2).
“If the heavens about an be measured, and the foundations of the earth below can be explored, then I will cast off all the descendants of Israel for all that they have done, says the LORD” (Jer. 31.37).
“Set forth your case, says the LORD; bring your proofs, says the King of Jacob…. Behold, you are nothing, and your work is nought; an abomination is he who chooses you” (Isa. 41.21-24).
All this is as according to the Bible itself. One “day,” we are supposed to discover great sins and errors, deep in our holiest things; and furthermore, we are supposed to discover specifically, that much of the world was deceived, specifically, by magicians, sorcerers. While today in fact, is a good start on that “day”; as even here and now, we show that indeed, core Christian beliefs in “miracles,” was really not what the Bible itself wanted; but was a false Christianity, influenced by magical thinking … or in effect, by magicians, sorcerers. As foretold.
But again, frightening as this is, there is an immensely positive side to this. If the whole world, even most of Christianity, was captured by false magic, then after all, one “day” we are supposed to be released from that magic. And here and now at last, is one of the “day”s that we can begin to do this. Even, here and now. As we review the Bible’s many warnings about “magic” and so forth; and then correlate promises of miracles to traditional magical beliefs. And then … as we move beyond the influence of magical thinking; to discover the truer essence of Christianity and God, at last. Moving beyond magical thinking, to the science of God; and the beginnings of the promised “second” and more “mature” vision, coming, of God.
The Bible Itself, Was Constantly Worried
About Magicians, Sorcerers, Delusions,
Influencing, Taking Over, Judeo-Christianity
We are saying something shocking, unbelievable here: that the earth, much of religion, even most of Christianity, has long been deceived by magical thinking; or in effect, by sorcerers, magicians.
At first, it seems silly; or impossible; or heretical. Yet one “day” or another, the Bible itself said, you are supposed to see that the whole world was “deceived” by a false kind of worship; by a false sense of Christ. But more specifically, by … magicians; magical thinking. And though many preachers speak of that moment as coming in the far distant future, in fact, many of us are coming to see that … the prophesied deception even of Christians, by magical thinking – “magicians,” “sorcerers” – started long ago; even in the time of Jesus himself. And remained to this day; even here and now, today. As we look at our preachers who promise miracles, bread out of thin air, in fact, we are reminded of nothing so much as … stage magicians making rabbits appear in empty hats. In fact, the whole interpretation of Jesus as “miracle” worker, is actually a “corruption” you might call it, of true religion, true Christianity, by … magical ideas; magicians. A corruption (or lack of “refine”ment of existing traditions) which began long, long ago. Which in fact, came to falsely dominate Christianity itself, long ago; and right up to the present.
Could Christianity itself have been taken over early on, by magical beliefs? “Magicians,” “sorcerers,” “witches,” “soothsayers,” so to speak? At first, it seems impossible. But remember: the Bible warned over and over that the world would be taken over, “deceived,” put “under a strong delusion,” by a false religious leader; who would be “worshipped” by the whole earth (Rev. 13); by a false religious leader and … and his magician friends. Who, we were told explicitly, could and would … dominate the world with their “sorcery”:
“And authority was given it over every tribe and people and tongue and nation, and all who dwell on earth will worship it” (Rev. 13.7).
“It deceives those who dwell on earth” (Rev. 3.13).
“And all nations were deceived by thy sorcery” (Rev. 18. 23).
This is depressing. Yet finally of course, remember too, that there is a way through this. There is a way to guide you safely through this, if you should notice magical beliefs around you, one day. First note especially, that the Bible also told us, that even if the whole world or earth is to be found deceived in its faith, by “magic,” still, one day, all these false, magical elements in religion, are to be overthrown.
Specifically, those who followed magical religion, were thrown down over and over, throughout history. And if to be sure, they often partially recovered, if there have always been elements of magical thinking that have crept into religion, even into Christianity, even today (as the Church says, “syncretistic”ally), then note that finally one “day,” we and God, are supposed to finally weed out the elements of magic, magical thinking, from of our faith:
“So shall Babylon the great city be thrown down….. For thy merchants were the great men of the earth, and all nations were deceived by sorcery” (Rev. 18.21, 23).
At that time, God will expose the sorcerers in our midst:
“I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers” (Mal. 3.5).
Indeed we will find here, the Bible warned that magicians, sorcerers, and many others related to them – enchanters, witches, soothsayers, necromancers, and so forth – have existed deep in our faith; but one “day” they are to be decisively exposed; and “swift”ly defeated.
And in the end, sorcerers and others, are to be left out of the city, out of the kingdom, of God:
“Outside are the dogs and sorcerers” (Rev. 22.15).
“The false prophet who … had worked the signs” (Rev. 20. 20).
“I will remove from the land the prophets and the unclean spirit. And if any prophets appear again, their fathers and mothers who bore them will say to them, ‘You shall not life, for you speak lies in the name of the LORD’; and their fathers and their mothers who bore them shall pierce them through when they prophesy” (Zech. 13.2-3).
“I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers” (Mal. 3.5).
Facing science and practical experience, uncovering sins and errors – and magical beliefs – in our holiest men and “prophets” and so forth – is a difficult, even devastating moment, to be sure. Yet believers, the faithful, should find the courage and conviction to face this at last … since amazingly enough, we are not here witnessing the demolition of our traditional beliefs, but rather, the fulfillment of them. Actually, the Bible itself foretold all this. Actually, we are 1) supposed to discover that the ideas of even our very holiest men – even our understanding of Christ himself – were often “false.” And 2) we are supposed to find that many have been infected by magical ideas. So 3) that one “day,” God is supposed to show us sins and errors, even in our image of God, of Christ; even our image or idea, of the “shepherd” standing next to God himself. So that in effect, one “day,” we are to see False Christs and allied magicians – even the “star” and the “shepherd” standing next to God himself, it seems, God said – dissolved. Kicked out of heaven, out of the city, out of the kingdom, of God. As even our heaven itself, begins to fall, with “al” in it:
“The stars are not clean in your sight” (Job 25.5).
“Above the stars of God I will set my throne” (Isa. 14.13).
“Above all heavens”
“The stars will fall from heaven” (Mat. 24.29; Mark 13.25).
“All the host of heaven shall rot away, and the skies roll up like a scroll. All their host shall fall, as leaves fall from the vine, likes leaves falling from the fig tree. For my sword has drunk its fill in the heavens “(Isa. 34.4).
“And I will place on his shoulder the key of the house of David; he shall open, and none shall shut; and he shall shut, and none shall open. And I will fasten him like a peg in a sure place… And they will hang on him the whole weight of his father’s house …. every small vessel, from the cups to all the flagons. In that day, says the LORD of hosts, the peg that was fastened in a sure place will give way; and it will be cut down and fall, and the burden that was upon it will be cut off, for the LORD has spoken” (Isa. 22.22-25; see Mat. 16.23 on Peter;).
“‘Awake, O sword, against my shepherd, against the man show stands next to me,’ says the LORD of hosts” (Zech. 13.7).
“Outside are the dogs and sorcerers and fornicators and murders and idolaters, and everyone who loves and practices falsehood. ‘It is I Jesus, who sent my angel to you with this testimony for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star’ ” (Rev. 22.15-16).
“The stars of the sky fell to earth (Rev. 6.13).
“Great star fell form heaven, blazing like a torch” (Rev. 8.10).
“How far you have fallen from heaven, O Day Star” (Isa. 14.12).
It seems impossible to believe at first then. But actually, one “day” we are supposed to discover sins, evils, even in our idea of the holiest beings in heaven itself. Even our idea of Christ it seems, is to be found false, and ejected from heaven. While specifically, we will find, most of the illusions and delusions, that we had of our holiest figures, are found to have been influenced heavily, by … magical thinking; or simply put, sorcerers. But if so, to be sure, one “day” we are supposed to expose and eject the false ideas of Religion, the False Christ that dominated the whole earth; in order to discover, after all, a “second” and “fuller” vision, Coming, of God and good.
How distant is that “day”? In fact, it is said, no one knows the exact day … until it comes, presumably. But many of use surely, are experiencing at least a foretaste – and indeed, perhaps the first moments of – will be partially … witnessing moment of the exposure of false things, even …now. Even today. As we read this very book.
In fact, we will reveal to the world much of the incursion of magical beliefs, magical thinking, into much of traditional Christianity, here and now. And we will show the believer how to get through this, with his belief in God intact. Finding that even if our old vision of Christ – as being primarily a worker of “miracles,” and “faith,” and “spirituality” – begins to collapse, then after all, all this does not deny the Bible, but in fact realizes, fulfills it. While further, we will also be finding, here and now in fact, some of the promised rewards to those who get through all this; beginning to see a better, “fuller” theology; a second and better … vision, coming, of Christ and God.
As we begin to use the Science of God to at last expose elements of false, magical thinking in traditional Christianity, we will be opening the way to indeed, the first glimmerings of the promised second, better understanding, vision, of God and good.
So that we find the Bible to be wholly true; but true in a way that our preachers have not, until now, understood. True even down to the foretold Destruction of Heaven; a moment that was found over and over in the Bible. And though our preachers have not been able to face this moment, until now, finally … preachers should be able to face this at last; armed with the knowledge that this is not the end, but the fulfillment, of the religion they have tried to follow for so many centuries. That every word of this is authorized by … the Bible itself. By God, himself.
The Bible Warned About
Many Aspects of
In ancient times, there were many people who were called – and perhaps at times even called themselves – “magicians,” “witches,” “sorcerers,” and so forth. People from Persia and other countries, who at times had some real wisdom; wisdom mixed however with many confused and false ideas. And such people were always close to Judah and Israel; in fact, often deep inside them.
The Bible often mentioned times when belief in magic, infested Judeo-Christianity. Indeed, the Bible warned constantly of magical thinking, “magicians” and others, infiltrating Jewish and Christian communities and beliefs, right from the very start. Throughout the entire Bible, we were warned constantly of “1) magicians”, “sorcerers,” “witches,” “soothsayers” or “prophet”s of the future; “demons,” with their “enchant”ments, “illusions” and “enchantments,” “lies,” and “delusions.” And then too, 2) the Bible warned continuously about elements of magic, magicians, continuously infiltrating the religion of Judah and Israel, from the most ancient times.
Many would say that belief in magic, magicians, was kept out of the authentic Judeo-Christian “tradition.” But actually, anthropology suggests that many religious beliefs, originated in ancient beliefs in magic; so that magical thinking was there, right from the start.
While then too, the Bible itself warned constantly, that “false prophets” and other false elements – finally, especially, influences from magical traditions – kept finding their way into the core of Israel. Indeed, the Bible warned constantly that such things existed in Israel, and had great influence on the people of Judah and Israel, and their sense of religion, right from the very start. So that often, a “house” “cleaning” of our temples, was in order; in order to rid Judeo-Christianity of magical thinking.
1) The Old Testament warned specifically about that there were indeed, “magicians,”
2) “mediums,” and
3) “wizards” and so forth – with their false “visions,” “delusions,” “illusions,” and so forth – in ancient Israel. The Old Testament warning the people, clearly, not to turn to magic and magicians, over and over.
“Do not turn to mediums or wizards; do not seek them” (Lev. 19.31; 20.6-27).
“The sorcerers, and the mediums and the wizards” (Isa. 19.3)..
4) Many parts of the Bible had attempted to ban magic. And as part of that, to ban especially those who claim to foretell, prophesy, the future. And
5) related to them, those who claim to speak with – or for that matter, “raise” – the dead; called “necromancers.” And then many other related magical professions:
“You shall not learn to follow the abominable practices of those nations. There shall not be found among you any one who burns his son or his daughter as an offering, any one who practices  divination, a  soothsayer, or an
 augur, or a sorcerer, or a charmer, or a medium, or a wizard, or a necromancer. For whoever does these things is an abomination to the LORD; and because of these abominable practices the LORD you God is driving them out before you” (Deut. 18.9-12).
9) Related to a ban on these specific professions that try to foretell the future, were also the bans, (which we already explored at length) on “false prophets.
10) Among many other warnings, we were warned of false magical workers – like “charmers” and 11) “enchanters” in the religion of Judah, Israel, Christianity. All along, throughout most of history:
“Voice of charmers or of the cunning enchanter” (Ps. 58.5).
11) Related to these “charmers,” and “enchanter”ers, we will add – who after all, cause people to see delusions and so forth – are, we add, therefore, warnings about the words of liars, and deceivers; those whose words “delu”de others, with 12) “illusions,” 13) lies,” 14) “empty wind,” 15) “false dreams,” and so forth.
16) Especially, we were warned about words, from people, that cause “delusion”:
“They are all a delusion; their works are nothing” (Isa. 41.29).
“They are worthless, a work of delusion” (Jer. 10.15).
“You have uttered delusions and seen lies” (Ezk. 13.8).
Many would think that, as they say, “God would not allow” such evil persons to infect our very religion. Yet remember that God does allow evil into the world … and even often specifically warns of evil be allowed, even into the heart of our most holy things. (As we found in our earlier writings). Indeed, at times God even seems to personally direct evil things at people, it almost seems in the Bible. In any case, at times curiously, God seems to allow – and even send – liars (above) and illusionists or their “delusions” – to sway us:
“God sent upon them a strong delusion” (2 Thess. 2.11).
“Speak to us smooth things, prophesy illusions” (Is. 30.10).
17) Related to this, we are told in the Bible that at times, God sent an “evil spirit” to bother us (q.v., concordance).
18) Were such magical influences successfully weeded out? To be sure, various Jewish kings like Josiah Saul were said to have, at times, partially put away mediums and wizards:
“Josiah put away the mediums and the wizards” (2 Kings 23.24).
“Saul had put the mediums and the wizards out” (1 Sam. 28.3).
But then, after having tried to push them out of Israel and its religion, often even kings like Saul, then brought the witches and wizards and so forth, back, and consulted them:
“Saul … also consulted a medium” (1 Chron. 10.13; 2 Ch. 33.6).
“‘Seek out for me a woman who is a medium, that I may go to her and inquire of her.’ And his servants said to him, ‘Behold, there is a medium at Endor.’ So Saul disguised himself … and went…. And he said, ‘Divine for me by a spirit, and bring up for me whomever I shall name to you.’ The woman said to him, ‘Surely you know what Saul has done, how he has cut off the mediums and the wizards from the land. Why then are you laying a snare for my life…?’ But Saul swore to her by the LORD, ‘As the LORD lives, no punishment shall come upon you for this thing'” (1 Sam. 28.7-10).
19) In fact, remember, bad magicians, soothsayers, false prophets – and specifically, “sorcer”ers; people doing “sorcery” – we are finally told in the Bible itself, are to persist until the end of time. 14) While in fact, they are even to deceive “all nations“:
“And all nations were deceived by thy sorcery” (Rev. 18.23; etc.).
20) One might think, that the false wisdom of magicians, would deceive say, only the other “nations” of the world; and not Israel, or Christianity, themselves. Yet remember first of all, that a) if many “nations” are deceived, then after all, most of Christianity is in other “nations” than Israel, today. While b) indeed, Israel itself is a nation, as of about 1947 AD or so.
While furthermore, c) remember all those Biblical warnings elsewhere, about false things – like false prophets – even in the prophets, priests “of Israel” (Q.v. See also “false dreams”).
Magical Influences, In Judah and Israel,
To the End of Time
Magical influences therefore, the Bible warned, were found again and again throughout the history of Judeo-Christianity.
21) And furthermore, those elements were not to be found just in past history; the Bible warned that these and other false elements, even in Judeo-Christianity, would persist, and even partially dominate, in the religion of Judeo-Christianity … until the very end, the “day” of “judgement.” When “sorcerers” are at last dealt with.
“I will be swift to bear witness against the sorcerers, against the adulterers, against those who swear falsely, against those who oppress the hired workers in their wages” (Mal. 3.5).
“And the false prophet who … had worked the signs by which he deceived” (Rev. 19.20).
22) Is this possible? Could even most of religion to this very day, have had “false” elements in it? Indeed it could; as we showed earlier. While now we add that among those false elements are specifically, magical elements.
How deep is the incursion? Consider this: most Jews and Christians embrace their “prophets” But consider: in effect, prophets are very much like … fortunetellers, soothsayers, augurs. In that the essential function of a “prophet,” is that they foretold, augur – or “prophesy” – the future. While many would say that no one at all can really accurately predict the future (unless they know some science); so that in effect, “prophets” are just as false, as any of the other professions; part of the same false group of people.
So: were auguring and fortune-telling, really successfully banned – and successfully eliminated – from Judeo-Christianity? Some might well say that “soothsaying,” “augur”ing were officially banned; yet fortunetelling slipped back into Judeo Christianity (just as the witches slipped back into the life of Saul, in spite of ban); just under a different name: “prophets.”
Parts of the Bible itself to be sure, seemed to b) support prophets firmly. As perhaps, many apologists will say, the authentic, good, Judeo-Christian version of “soothsayers” and fortunetellers and “augers.”
But to be sure, remember, c) parts of the Bible seemed to criticize even the prophets too; to tell us that there have been many false prophets, both in Old Testament Judaism and Christianity. In fact, d) parts of the Bible – especially the last books of the Old Testament – seem to oppose, even it seems, all “prophets” (see False Priests):
“Every prophet will be ashamed of his vision” (Zech. 13.2).
“Beware of false prophets” (Mat. 7.15).
“Many false prophets will arise” (Mat. 24.11).
“False prophets also arose among the people” (2 Peter 2.1).
“The prophet is a fool, the man of the spirit is mad” (Hos. 9.7).
“Many false prophets have gone out into the world” (2 Peter 2.1).
Exposing Magic in Religion, Judeo-Christianity,
23) And so, elements of magic have again and again been found at the heart of Judeo-Christianity; and are to persist to the end of time. Yet to be sure, if there have always been elements of false, deceitful magic, and their practitioner – “magicians” – in Christianity, and if they are allowed by God, to dominate even “all nations” – and even deep into the Judeo-Christian tradition itself – note that however, one “Day” their lies and enchantments and false “images” and “dreams,” and the sorcerers themselves, are to be exposed, and dispelled. Pushed out of the kingdom of God, and even into “fire”; by people better than them; from the book of Daniel, etc.:
“Better than all the magicians and enchanters” (Daniel: Dan. 1.20).
Those better than magicians and enchanters will come. To help God end elements of magic in religion:
“I will draw near to you for judgement; I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers” (Mal. 3.5).
“Behold, the day comes, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble; the day that comes shall burn them up, says the LORD of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch” (Mal. 4.1).
“Have you not see a delusive vision” (Ezk 13.7).
“Images they broke in pieces” (2 Chron. 23.17).
“You shall have no more soothsayers” (Mic. 5.12).
“Outside are the dogs and sorcerers” (Rev. 22.15).
“No one shall be found among you who makes a son or daughter pass through fire [real literal fire], or who practices divination, or is a soothsayer, or an augur, or a sorcerer, or one who casts spells, or who consults ghosts or spirits, or who seeks oracles from the dead. For whoever does these things is abhorrent to the LORD” (Deut. 18.10-12 NRSV).
“As for murderers, fornicators, sorcerers, idolaters, and all liars, their lot shall be in the lake that burns with fire” (Rev. 21.8; 22.15).
“And you shall have no more soothsayers” (Mic. 5.12; Deuet. 18.10-14, Isa. 2.6; Jer. 27.9).
“Charmer, or a medium, or a wizard, or a necromancer” (Deut. 18.11 RSV).
“And if any prophets appear again, their fathers and mothers who bore them will say to them, ‘You shall not live, for you speak lies in the name of the LORD’; and their fathers and their mothers who bore them shall pierce them through when they prophesy. On that day the prophets will be ashamed, every one, of their visions when they prophesy; they will not put on a hairy mantle in order to deceive, but each of them will say, ‘I am no prophet, I am a tiller of the soil…’ ‘Awake, O sword, against my shepherd’ … says the LORD of hosts…. And I will put this third into the fire, refine them … and test them…. See, a day is coming for the LORD ” (Zech. 13. 3-14.1).
Infinitely destructive as elements of magical thinking have been in even Judeo-Christian religion then, it all works out in the end. First, many of us were forewarned and forearmed: God constantly warned that magic, sorcerers, fortunetellers and prophets and soothsayers, would take over religion; even elements of Christianity; and it is evident that they were to persist. But, that is, persist … only until the final “day” in fact; the “day” when “judgement” comes.
While to “day,” some of us may be acquiring “mature” “judgement,” even … right now. And suddenly, seeing the “light.”
24) No doubt, to be sure, to suddenly notice the influence of magical thinking, and those who believe in it and spread those beliefs – “magic”; “magicians”; “enchanters” – even in the very midst of our most sacred things, might seem utterly frightening, and impossible to “face” or “bear.” And yet however, one of the main purposes of our writing here, is to guide you the ordinary reader, safely through this literally heaven-shattering, Apocalyptic moment of disillusionment. First by describing the problem, as being not against the Bible or God, but actually, foretold by the Bible itself. So that if we should suddenly notice great evils – like magical thinking and its delusions – even deep inside our own churches, even in the very core of Christianity – then after all, believers and the faithful, should have the courage and conviction to simply face this at last; on discovering with us there that after all, this is an insight that is not against God or the Bible itself; in fact, all this was foretold over and over, by the Bible itself.
25) Then too we might add, this Apocalyptic revelation, should be easier to face or bear … on being told that there is no need for a violent physical Apocalypse here. In fact, the whole legend of “the Day,” of the “Apocalypse” – or especially of the “Destruction of Heaven” our major subject here – can be seen as a metaphor. A metaphor for a “spiritual” moment. For the simple moment when you grow up, attain the age of good, mature judgement … and begin to notice ancient magical superstitions even in our highest holy men.
Like say, their promises of miracles?
Miracles Are Magic
One day we are supposed to notice elements of magic in our holiest men therefore. But where are they?
26) Especially, consider … promises of “miracles,” (and of the miracle of prophesy, say?). They, actually, are an example, of an intrusion, infection, corruption of the right Judeo-Christian tradition … by false belief in Magic. At first, it seems impossible to “face” or “bear” this. But as will be seen here, there are in fact, many very, very close structural similarities, between traditional beliefs from magic, and belief in miracles: believing that a holy man can say a few holy words, and make bread appear out of thin air, in mostly empty baskets, is very, very, very similar – many would reasonably say, identical – to the belief that a magician can pull a rabbit out of a hat.
Is it possible? Could a core belief in Christianity – and many claim, the Bible itself (though we reject that) – be really, just a false belief, in Magic? At first, it seems impossible to believe or face this. But remember, after all, we are not disproving the Bible here; we are in fact, following it very, very, very closely. If we find elements of magic, even in the Christianity that historically dominated the whole earth for centuries, then after all, the Bible itself told us, one “day,” we are supposed to discover, precisely that.
So that here, we are not “debunking” or denying or “disproving” the Bible; far from it. In point of fact, we are … “fulfilling” it.
While moving on next, to a “second,” higher, better, more mature understanding of God and Good. One more compatible with real life, and what we see “come to pass” in real life around us. Moving past belief in Magic; to the higher, better, science of God.
27) In any case, note that the Bible itself at times, seemed willing to compare beliefs in magic, with some of its own beliefs. One famous text in particular, noted a strange similarity between the miracles of Moses, and the magic of magicians:
“Aaron cast down his rod before Pharaoh and his servants, and it became a serpent” (Ex. 7. 9).
But then the magicians do exactly the same thing:
“They also, the magicians of Egypt, did the same by their secret arts. For every man cast down his rod, and they became serpents’ (Ex. 7.11; though Aaron’s rod swallowed up their rods).
Here the text even sets up a contest between magicians, and Jewish prophets like Moses. And for much of the time, their feats are identical.
In fact finally, if Moses’s miracles were different than magicians’ feats, it was in large part, the text suggests, because they were merely, bigger: Moses’ snake eats the magicians’ snakes:
“But Aaron’s rod swallowed up their rods” (Ex. 7.12).
Herein, the Bible acknowledged that there was a considerable overlap between the claims of magic and religion. To the point that it appears that even the Bible itself a times explicitly says that many Judeo-Christian “miracles,” were all but exactly the same as common magicians’ tricks. (Indeed, we are told by observers, that modern stage magicians often work the same trick today). As in the case of Moses and Aaron – and the magicians too – turning their rods to snakes.
To be sure, it was often said that the magic “miracles” of the Jews, to be sure, were (only) finally, slightly better or bigger, than the work of previous magicians, to be sure. That the magic of Jews “swallowed up” the magic of previous magicians:
“But Aaron’s rod swallowed up their rods” (Ex. 7.12).
And many preachers will try to make much of minor differences; saying that the tricks of Moses were done in a different spirit, in the “name” of God and so forth. Yet given all the warnings by God, that there were magical elements even deep in the Judeo-Christian traditions, we might for a moment, call attention to …. the deep identities between the two.
Many priests will try to say that the miracles of Moses were very different, in that they were inspired by the Holy Spirit or some such; but remember from earlier discussion, that the Bible warned that there were many “false spirits” out there; while Paul noted that at times, even the spirit of God failed to really protect and be with Moses and his people in the wilderness (1 Corin. 10.5).
While we noted that therefore, even those miracles done in the name of the Holy Spirit can be deceived – or rather magical – too. (Since many think they have the Holy Spirit, who actually have a deceitful, false spirit in them, posing as the Holy Spirit).
Indeed, Paul was later to note many bad things, it seems to many, in the “law” or “Torah” of “Moses.”
So could even Moses have been deceived? At times, Paul seemed to think so. Many note that because of his sins, Moses was allowed to view the promised land … but never to actually enter it, himself.
28) Here we are finding that the Bible itself – God himself – warned constantly in dozens of parts of the Bible, about magic and magicians; and even warned specifically, that even the people of Judah and Israel, and their religion, their prophets, were infiltrated by Magic, magicians; many, many years ago.
Note incidentally however too, that even the Bible’s attitude toward magicians, was not always, entirely negative. Usually, old texts put down sorcerers and so forth, very strongly. But there were always deep leanings toward magic among Jews, and in the Bible. If King Saul for example, had at first condemned witches, later on, he himself consulted one. Then too, other times, magicians, diviners, are even spoken of rather wistfully; almost as a perhaps valuable asset. Whose banishment, is almost (if not quite) implied to be a lack (Isa. 3.3-5, below). Rather like the taking away of “bread” from the community; and replacing mature leaders with “child”ren or “babes”:
“For, behold, the Lord, the LORD of hosts, is taking away from Jerusalem and from Judah stay and staff, the whole stay of bread…; the diviner and the elder, the captain of fifty and the man of rank, the counselor and the skillful magician and the expert in charms. And I will make boys their princes, and babes shall rule over them” (Isa. 3.3-5).
Eventually of course, Christianity was to hint that being blindly faithful to priests, being like a “child,” was good; and even absolutely necessary to enter the “kingdom of God.” Though to be sure here and elsewhere, curiously, having children rule over your kingdom, is not fully regarded as a good thing. Indeed, Paul was later to suggest that if we enter the kingdom of heaven only as children, one day after all, we are supposed to “mature.”
It is hard to say what this means.
The Possible Influence of Magical Thinking,
On The New Testament…
And The Common Vision of Jesus Christ
As Worker of Miracles
Moving past the Old Testament … many say that later-day Judaism – or say, Christianity, the New Testament – were finally, perfect. And immune to corruption. Yet was even Christianity itself, strictly immune to sins? And magical beliefs? Note that historically, most of Christianity accepts most of the Jewish tradition of Moses; including the doctrine of the absolute verity of Moses’ miracles. Even if Paul might have questioned the same. (Paul questioning Moses … and then asking, “Do all work miracles?”).
Significantly, in the New Testament … there are many concepts that are all but structurally identical to ancient magical beliefs. While there are even many encounters with magic, magicians. Both of which are, furthermore, sometimes, presented in an amazingly positive light.
29) We noted above, the Bible itself, noting an overlap between the trick of magicians, and the miracles of Moses. Consider as another major example of a significant overlap between ancient magical/animistic beliefs, and Judeo-Christianity, consider for example, the fact that many kinds of magicians – necromancers, enchanters, prophets – often communicated with “spirits.” While indeed, the Bible a) accepts the existence of “spirits.” While in fact, b) Judeo Christian “spirit”uality champions, specifically a “Holy Spirit.”
Then too (as above), Christianity accepts at times, “prophets,” who are essentially people who say they see the future; like “soothsayers,” and “seers,” and other forbidden professions; though finally parts of the Bible condemn prophets.
30) Indeed, there are times when magicians explicitly joined Christianity. And if at times, it was said or implied, that they abandoned magic after that; but the text does not always make that clear.
As one example, consider Simon: who is explicitly a magician in Acts. 8.9 ff. Who explicitly, enters Christianity; all without very clearly renouncing magic either, it seems:
“There was a man named Simon who had previously practiced magic…. But … Even Simon himself believed, and after being baptized he continued with Philip. And seeing signs and great miracles [wonders, etc.] performed, he was amazed” (Acts 8.9, 12, 13).
Sometimes magicians and so forth became Christians. And though we like to think they had only “previously” practice it, and that they gave up or “renounced” all their magic to do this, there is no clear statement here, that they did so. Perhaps after all, in any case, some of the magicians who entered Christianity, partially reverted back to their earlier ways. Or in any case, without knowing what they were doing, automatically, inadvertently, carried into Christianity, some of their patterns of magical thinking.
So that they – or other simple superstitious people – re-infused some Magic into Judeo-Christianity, inadvertently or deliberately.
31) Historically in fact, as the Roman Catholic Church spread around the world, it often sent Christian missionaries, priests, missions, to many very, very primitive peoples of the world; and it is often claimed by Protestants especially, that in their eagerness to be more effective – or just by popular pressure – Catholic priests often adapted Christianity to local religions; to the degree of a) incorporating local gods and goddesses as “saints”; b) and/or perhaps to the extent of allowing local magical traditions to backwash into Christianity.
Then too, c) in any case, many early Christians were still influenced by ancient beliefs in magic. Then too d) many conservative priests too, might have been very resistant to eliminating any residual elements of magical thinking that might have remained from early Christian history. To be sure, the Church today warns of such “syncretistic” elements. Though since even churches can be corrupted, it is certain that the Church has not successfully eliminated all such elements of magical thinking from its own core.
e) But especially, Christianity inevitably degenerated into belief in magic, as the church spread to many parts of the world that spoke other languages than Italian or Latin, or to parts of the world that were illiterate. Consider how it happened: what would be the attitude of an illiterate Indian toward say, the Bible, if he could not read it? For him, it was say, a sacred object. One that was revered by priests; and that seemed to have strange powers. And so the illiterate peasant or Indian, who could not read the Bible, probably treated it, say, as a magic object; perhaps hoping that by touching the Bible, say, he would be blessed. As if the Bible was a magical object; like a pill or something; just touching it, rather than reading it, was enough. The illiterate person never quite realizing that merely having (and being able to touch) a Bible, was only the first step of a more complicated process; that next, you had to learn to read it (or have it interpreted to you)… before it finally could do its work. Without that, it was actually a potentially valuable, but just in itself valueless, object; it only acquired value, effectiveness, when you added to that your own “work” in learning to read it. The great value of the Bible, is that it contains an outline of moral, civilized behavior, written in words. But if you don’t understand the language, and can’t read, then … the object itself cannot do you much good; it is not a magical object, that all you have to do is touch it, or rub it on your body say, and it can work that way. Thus the Bible and Christianity, were radically misunderstood by many superstitious people.
But the Church, spread to an illiterate world, eventually gave in to this. Until well after the Protestant Reformation, the Church resisted translating or disseminating the Bible in any language other than Greek, or Latin. The Mass was given in Latin all over the world; so that the people did not even understand the language of the Bible, or the Mass; thus, since Christianity was being delivered in an alien tongue, since its “tongue” was confused and all but eliminated, its real nature was all but destroyed. Those many primitive people who came to the church, perhaps superstitiously revered it, and heard word-of-mouth rumors perhaps about what it stood for; and perhaps respected the local “father,” with superstitious awe; but all without ever really understanding how it all worked. Without having a complete picture of the full process. But relying on the priest to perhaps say a few garbled words in his own language after Mass perhaps. Or hoping that just physically touching some of the tools of Christianity – like the Bible; or especially say by eating the bread of the Eucharist – he would be saved.
The tongue of Christ was half destroyed thereby; and Christianity presented itself to say, 3/4 of the world, as a form of Magic; possessing sacred objects with magical powers; objects that could just be touched or swallowed, and that would save you that way. So aa) you could buy bits of paper with sacred Christian names on them, or scripture, which you could swallow; in the belief that you would be saved by the word this way. Or bb) you could touch the Bible, and be cured of disease; or cc) you could touch the remains of a saint, and be cured. And such beliefs did not exist just on the edges of Christianity; early on, one of them became the very central core of it: dd) you were firmly told by priests, that you could eat a piece of bread blessed by a priest, said to be the body of God, and thus be saved. ee) All without ever really being able to read the Bible; or ff) without being able to understand the words of the Mass; without ever really hearing the words of Jesus much at all; but only as it were, physically touching them. Indeed until Vatican II, the Mass was delivered all over the world, primarily in Latin; as if you could be saved listening to words you did not understand. Christianity completely forgetting, misunderstanding, the importance of language, “tongues.”
Eventually – or perhaps from the very start – the magical beliefs of the people, backwashed into the Church itself; in its efforts to adapt to an illiterate population or world, the Church itself inevitably, largely, lost the meaning of itself; lost the “knowledge” of how it really worked. To the point that today, most priests themselves believe not in God, but in magic; the magical effectiveness of sacred objects; like relics, the piece of bread or the “host,” and so forth. Believing that all one needs to do to be saved, is touch – or say, swallow – sacred objects. To be sure, technically, in the fine print of his doctrines, the Church somewhere is aware that most such objects are not at all effective, unless at the very least when touching them, you also have a mental resolve, to be good: you touch them in a “State of Grace”; or with a “pure heart,” or with “faith.” Then at least your “belief” or “faith” in such things, will probably be enough to help you somewhat; even if you cannot read. Even if you never really heard or read the words of God clearly, yourself. Yet to be sure, this simple Catholicism was never quite right. Though it dominated the whole earth. Basically in fact, this was Christianity … degenerated into, merging with, belief in Magic.
Belief in the magical powers of objects. Without understanding the importance, the use of, language, writing.
Thus the “tongue” of Christianity, the means by which culture, intelligence, ideas are primarily disseminated … was all but destroyed, all but totally corrupted. And Christianity actually became, for 9/10 of its followers, just another form of Magic. As if you could be saved by merely, physically touching the Bible, rather than reading it.
The world was therefore, deceived by magic; a false Christ, presented as in effect a magician. Working not through language, tongues … but merely magical objects. The host; relics; touchable magical objects. Objects thought to have an aura around them, that would influence you directly; even when you could not understand the ritual words around them.
To be sure, merely having some respect for, or “faith” in, priests, Christianity, even without understanding them, created some civility. And so along with reverence for sacred objects and priests, the church also stressed simple “faith.” And to be sure, it was better than nothing. And yet at the same time, eventually the compromises our holy men made with primitive mankind, the world, with illiteracy and belief in Magic, seriously undermined Christianity; and over time, made it increasingly obsolescent; a detriment to humanity as much as an asset. Indeed, as the rest of the world move past magic, Magical thinking lingered on in the Church; so that the Church became the last remaining major institution to believe in magic. Ironically, transformed by its corrupted “members,” as the false beliefs of its primitive population backwashed into the church, the church itself became the last surviving bastion, of many of very beliefs it was formed to combat. To the point that today, there is no major institution in the world, that so perfectly expresses belief in Magic. The magical effectiveness of objects, apart from our own “internal disposition” (as the Church acknowledges in the fine print somewhere), or knowledge of the words of the Bible.
Today, many Catholic priests still cater to such beliefs; stressing the Eucharist and so forth. Without noting that after all, most of them themselves, in their education as priests, did not actually center themselves so strongly on even the Eucharist; rather instead, priests go to seminaries, and read many books. Today, priests often speak of the Eucharist, taking the “host” or bread, as the be-all-and-end-all of Christianity. Indeed the 1997-2000 edition of the Catechism, spoke of the Eucharist as the “source and summit” of Christian life. But there were many problems with this position; isn’t God the source? And more importantly, if the Eucharist communion really is the “summit” of our experience, or if Jesus is fully present in the bread and wine … then aa) there is heaven, or no point in one; since we don’t need Heaven, having already achieved the “summit” in the Eucharist. Presumably, if we went to heaven when we died, we will look around and say, “Gee, this is nice! But not quite as good as the Eucharist, back on earth; which was the real summit!”. Then too, bb) if the Eucharist is the full “presence” of Jesus, then there is no point in the Second Coming; what do we need Jesus for again, if we already fully have him? Presumably, when God comes to earth again in the Second Coming, Catholics will look at him and say; “Nice to see you again Jeeze! But what are you doing here again? We already had you fully, in the Eucharist last week!” There is a rumor that, after hearing such objections, the Church made an amendment in its doctrine; and that future Catechisms will correct this. Yet to be sure, the belief in Magic – as for example, belief in the piece of bread – remains so strong in elements of the Church, that even the Second Coming will not correct them.
32) Elements close to magic can be found to be sure in Christianity right from the start. In the book of Acts – right after the death of Jesus – there are for example, “exorcists” who are working in the name of Lord Jesus (Acts. 19.13-17). Though this was an early form of Psychiatry, in effect. No doubt, our mind or “spirit” can often be troubled by false, troubling ideas or “spirits”; and just by believing such “demons” or “spirits” can be quelled, can help control or dispel them. While then too, if a priest can intellectually defeat, disprove false ideas, that is even better; assisting in the process. So that there is a kind of reality in exorcism. Though one better addressed in other ways, today; with intellectual debate, and psychiatry.
33) Early Christianity though, made some efforts to stay away from Magic. To be sure, after the exorcists, for example, “a number of those who practiced magic collected their books and burned them publicly” (Acts 19. 19).
34) Today, we think of Jesus as a miracle-worker. And parts of the New Testament seem at times to support that belief in “miracles” … which is really, an idea from magic. The whole idea of “miracles” being from Magic: that you can get some benefit from being exposed to sacred objects, words, even without understanding them, or without any work on your own part; like waving a magic wand.
a) But of course, those of us who actually read our Bibles, note their natural aspects. (As we noted in our longer discussions on miracles.)
b) Remember too, there were many key parts of the Bible that backed “science” – which says there are no miracles.
c) While there were parts that explicitly questioned whether all work miracles after all:
“Do all work miracles?” (1 Corin. 12.29).
d) And while accounts of apparent miracles are apparently found in many of the gospels themselves, this does not assure us that they are good – even if they are in a “gospel.” Because indeed, St. Paul more or less warned that only his writings or gospels – which did not stress miracles – were reliable. While he added that turning to any of those other gospels – that by the way stressed miracles – might not be good. That even “gospels” might present “another Jesus” or Christ, than the right one:
“I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the face of Christ and turning to a different gospel – not that there is another gospel, but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But if anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed” (Gal. 1.6-8).
“I betrothed you to Christ to present you as a pure bride to her one husband. But I am afraid that as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts ill be led astray from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes and preaches another Jesus than the one we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel fom the one you accepted, you submit to it readily enough. I think that I am not in the least inferior to these superlative apostles. Even if I am unskilled in speaking, I am not in knowledge” (2 Corin. 11.2-5).
35) But if Paul did not stress miracles or Magic, Paul did also say that it is indeed possible – and even inevitable – for bad things to enter and even take over, even Judeo-Christianity. Indeed, God said there had always been such things; even “another Jesus” than the right one, a False Christ; infecting even the first Christian churches, even those under direct supervision of major Apostles; like Paul.
And indeed, we will finally find, in effect, the most common idea the people have had, of a Jesus Christ as a miracle-worker, worker of supernatural miracles, is in effect, one of the foretold aa) False Christs, and of the bb) false magicians that we were warned were already, beginning even in the first days of Christianity itself (1 John 4, etc.).
36) To be sure, there are deep signs of magical influence, all around Jesus himself. Suggesting there were many simple, superstitious people, who came after Jesus, who tried to make him into, see him as, in effect, a magician. Consider Matthew’s account for example; which recounts a visit at the birth of Jesus, by three “Wise Men”; or in the original Greek, the “Three Magi.”
Curiously, in Matthew’s account, Jesus himself, at birth, was said to have been visited – and even given “gifts” – by three men. Who are variously called a) the “Three Wise Men”; but b) who were also called, in the original Greek transliterated in context, the “magoys”; or in many English translations, the “Magi.” A word that comes from the same root, as “magician.”
Who were the “Magi”?
The word is sometimes translated “wise men.” But more exactly, the word “Magi” is from a Persian word, “Magus.” Being a Persian word for a “wise” man to be sure. But in ancient times, “wise men” – plural, “magi” – meant … mostly “magicians.” Persia, the country to the “East” of Israel, was full of magi … or magicians. Wise men whose beliefs contained many elements we would today call magical thinking. (Including alchemy, and so forth?).
a) There are therefore, attempts in the New Testament to suggest that Jesus was a magician. First the “Three Magi” – were from the same word as “Magic.” Both are derived from the word “Magus.” Which was used in Persia, etc., to stand for any kind of local “wise man” – but especially in effect, magicians. (See also cognate “maghdim,” “a Chaldean term meaning wisdom and philosophy”; Ency. Brit., 1998, v. 7, p. 672. The Bible refers specifically to Chaldeans often, and refers specifically to their “magicians,” in Dan. 4.7, 5.11).
b) Thus, although the Bible often condemned magicians, other times – especially in the beginning of the New Testament, curiously – it began to indirectly, almost admit them; and allow them influence.
c) Shockingly in fact, the Gospel of Matthew suggests that these “Magi” gave Jesus himself, some of their “gifts.” (Mat. 2.1-12). First of all then, we have Magicians giving Jesus “gifts.” Of materials that had symbolic – and magical? – significance.
d) And then too, it is not certain these gifts were limited to these physical objects. The “gifts” were taken traditionally, to be merely physical objects – “gold and Frankincense and myrrh” (Mat. 2.11). But if you look at the wording of the text in some translations, these three gifts might not have exhausted the list of what Jesus was given by the Magi. The text in English, does not make it clear that Jesus was being offered, say, just three gifts: gifts in effect, of gold and frankincense and Myrrh; rather than, say, or gifts … and then, gold, frankincense and Myrrh. So that we cannot be sure just exactly what gifts Jesus got from Magicians; perhaps Matthew intended to hint, Jesus was getting magical powers, or similar wisdom from the East, or Persia, etc… In order to attract Easterners to Christianity?
In any case: in one gospel therefore, Jesus himself was given “gifts” by the Magi … or given gifts that is to say, by magicians.
e) To be sure, no doubt, this incident might have been an embarrassment to many Christians. As evidenced by the fact that most Bibles do not translate “Magi” as magicians; or even leave it untranslated just as “Magi”: but instead, most Bibles interpret it “Wise Men.” Thus hiding all this from us.
No doubt it was embarrassing to many Christians to have Jesus meeting with magicians and getting gifts from them. So that this was typically hidden from the people.
f) Indeed, strikingly, amazingly, confirming a desire by much of Christianity to leave out signs of magical influence on Jesus, actually, amazingly, this is one of the places where even the so-called synoptic gospels, differ strikingly in their account. Note that the other gospels do not mention the Magis or Wise Men either; they leave the Magi out.
In fact, not only do they not have the Magi in them; the other gospels even went to the extraordinary lengths of … changing this incident or emphasis entirely. The Gospels of Mark and Luke not mentioning it at all in their first pages; (having only an “angel” Gabriel of the “Lord” addressing Mary early before conception Luke 1.26; the babe in Luke, merely hearing John the Baptist, in the womb; while the “Rich he has sent empty away” Luke 1.53. With no embarrassing or revealing mention of the Magicians. Indeed amazingly, the Magi are very conspicuously absent in other gospels (especially surprising, given their huge popularity in Christmas pageants).
g) Even more shockingly, not are the Magi not mentioned outside the Gospel of Matthew; in fact, suddenly, the Gospel of Luke even changes the whole magical moment around; not only does Luke not have any wise men or magi in it, but indeed, rather than being visited by three “magi,” something completely different happens; in Luke the Magi are gone … and Mary is visited by … three “shepherds” (Luke 2. 8-19).
(While for that matter, in the beginning of the Gospel of John, there is no specific account of the physical, birth of Jesus at all; who only seems to spring full-born, straight from the “Word.”)
And so, there were signs of magical influence on our perception of Jesus; but those signs were not consistent. And by one means or another, in nearly all contemporary Bibles, the magicians – and you might say, the magician Jesus – have apparently, all but disappeared. Or made themselves invisible, you might say. Indeed, they all but disappeared even in their one occurrence in Matthew. Thanks to some semantic sleight-of-hand and often deliberate “confusions” of “tongue,” no doubt few if any ordinary Bible readers, would ever have the etymological acumen, to note the original Greek word “magi,” instead of “Wise Men.” And fewer still, would recognize the relation of that word, to the word, “magician.”
Thus, whatever magicians there might be in early Christianity, soon managed to make themselves invisible. By some semantic illusionism, and some semantic “twists.” Simply translating “magi” as “wise men” – or leaving “magi” un-translated – was enough to render the term opaque, and thus hide the magicians from plain sight. Thanks to our very subtle “scribes,” no doubt, in large part. Who oversaw the writing and translation of the Bible. Disappeared into a “word.”
Thus the connection between Jesus and the name or word “magician,” does not officially appear therefore, intimately connected with Jesus, from birth, in most translations; the connection has been disappeared, conjured away, by our religious translators. Though Matthew apparently, once tried to mention this connection; to connect Jesus to magic. (And/or ancient Persian wisdom).
One is left wondering what kind of “shepherds” do we have here, though, to be sure? Are they actually the foretold “false shepherds” … who were really magis? Who were really magicians?
In any case, we do have here, signs of attempts to connect Jesus to the magical tradition. What you should make of these signs, is left to the reader. In any case, it is clear that there were attempts in the rest of the New Testament, to disappear these connections. Perhaps as an attempt to distance the legacy of Jesus, from any connection with … magic.
37) Yet was the magical view of Jesus, ever totally suppressed? If you look at the “works” he does, just like Moses, Jesus worked many miracles, which (like Moses), looked very much like typical magic tricks, often.
Making bread appear in mostly empty baskets, sounds exactly like a typical magicians’ tricks: making rabbits appear in empty hats. (See also the Bible noting ressemblances between miracles of Moses and Aaron, and magicians).
Today a) of course, the very faithful believer, will not want to face the possibility that the Biblical view of Jesus is or was, partially connected to belief in magic, at times. And b) indeed, we should not call Jesus himself a magician here at all. More likely, we should say, many around him were interested in connecting Jesus to magic; and c) many of these were very, very good at making things appear, or disappear, at will, in our texts, and in our minds.
In any case, what about the d) miracles said to be worked by Jesus? We will not deny them at all; but suggest that our linguistic conjurers, enchanters, might better translate such things in the future; translated them in a way to make them less magical, and more compatible with natural phenomena, that can be “confirmed” at last, by science. For example, e) Jesus himself at times said he was working no “signs” for an Evil Generation but one. Other times, f) told his disciples not to tell anyone he was working miracles, or that he was the Messiah; while g) at times Jesus attempted to metaphoricalize or spiritualize those old promises, suggesting that making “bread” appear out of thin air, might be a metaphor for the way the thought and spirit of Jesus is spiritual nourishment for us. Or then too, h) there are various naturalistic interpretations of all his miracles too. As we will find.
So that if at times, Jesus appeared to be magic, or a magician, other times, he does not. So that we await his “second” “parousia” or “appearance,” or “Second Coming”; to be more definitive.
38) There were other ties between Jesus and magic, in some texts. It seems likely that there were in fact, magical ideas in the minds of many of the early editors of the Bible; even though they took the time to (partially) eliminate traces of them. Consider for example, the common interpretation of the Bible, that Jesus was raising the dead; and had been himself raised from the dead, “resurrected,” late in life. We will later show how these incidents can be taken as natural, scientifically-verifiable events. Even with close conformity to the Bible itself.
a) But the most common idea of resurrection though in any case – literally, physically dead people, rising out of their graves, like Lazarus – really recalls the influence of belief in “necromancers” and other magicians; or persons who likewise, were said to raise the dead, in order to consult with them (about the future, etc.).
And to be sure, necromancers were often firmly forbidden by the more educated elements of Judaism (Saduccess?); in the Bible itself. But early Christians were not quite fully under the authority of Jewish “law” any more; thanks to Pharisees, and Gentile influence; and later Paul and others. And so we see many scenes with Jesus, acting very much like a necromancer;
raising Lazarus, etc.. Which seems to raise the dead too.
b) Was the image of Jesus the miracle-worker, then – and especially, as raiser of the dead – really a popular misunderstanding, confused by residual belief in magic? Specifically, necromancy? In fact, when we look later into the details of the Biblical text, we will find that the text is absolutely, consistently, readable, as something else than a simple raising of dead bodies; or necromancy. The popular vision then is undoubtedly influenced by magic.
c) Yet the Biblical text itself, we will find, appears rather more sophisticated. There are many questions in the account of Lazarus, whether he is really physically dead, actually. Jesus himself says his illness is not fatal; and if he later says he is “dead,” then Jesus is in the habit of using the word “dead” as a metaphor; to mean “dead to” this or that (as the Prodigal Son was “dead” to his father when he was bad).
Technically then, we will find that if we look at the text of the Bible itself, as we have it today, it never quite even firmly portrays any wonder as a supernatural miracle; and it never labels Jesus as a miracle-worker at all. Technically, it could all be metaphors, and so forth.
e) While indeed, the account of the resurrection of Lazarus, is examined in great naturalistic detail; Jesus telling us first that the disease that Lazarus has, is not usually fatal; Jesus then suggesting Laz was not even really dead; or perhaps only spiritually dead; and so forth. So that we cannot be sure whether a case of magic – specifically, necromancy, or raising the dead – took place here.
f) Yet, given the superstitions of his day, no doubt manh of the common people around him, no doubt usually interpreted Jesus as a miracle-worker – in effect a magician. And indeed, the New Testament accounts, are always close to magical beliefs; probably in reflection not of educated (say, Sanhedran or Sadducee) traditions, but of popular beliefs. Which would have made sure that there would have been, in Jesus’ time, many rumors that in effect, Jesus was after all, really, merely, a magician. (Taking literally, talk of raising the spiritually dead, and so forth; taking metaphors literally, no doubt).
f) Today, the Bible seems to want to entertain two different interpretations; that Jesus was working miracles … to reflect the popular tradition. But then to hint that such miracles were either just spiritual metaphors, or metaphors for natural things.
39) Indeed, the Bible seems to never have wanted the notion of Jesus himself as “magi” or magician, to become too prominent. However, the early authors of the Bible, undoubtedly had to deal with popular rumors of Jesus, as miracle-worker, or even magician. And so, undoubtedly, to indirectly at least address or mention such rumors, but to also suggest that any such vision of Jesus was not approved, in the New Testament there appears a story about someone quite like Jesus in many ways; but who appears to be the magician version of him. A magician with at times one name – “Elymas” (also meaning “sage” or “wise man” some sources say) – but other times, with the same name in part in fact; a “Jesus” who is a magician, and is also called …. “Bar Jesus.” (“Brother of Jesus”? Acts 13.6-12). But after noting this Jesus, the New Testament clearly rejects this vision of Jesus, the magician; as not being the true Jesus. (You might call him the “barred” Jesus, to make a pun in English).
And as usual, the text is at pains to hint at various magical related aspects surrounding the name and environment of “Jesus” … but also to deny or all but totally disappear those traces. So to be sure, here, a) this
magician “Jesus,” was firmly condemned; as opposed to Christianity; and indeed, he was not favored, but was made “blind” by Saul/Paul (Acts. 13. 9 ff). Yet b) the Biblical subtext that presented Jesus Christ himself as miracle-working magician, was not firmly condemned or eliminated.
So to this day, in the popular tradition, in popular Christianity, there are rumors of magical activity around Jesus himself; and popularly Jesus is thought of as being in effect a magician; a worker of “miracles.” But finally, though such ideas can be found in parts of the Bible, eventually we will have seen, they are all-but entirely effaced from the text of the Bible itself; and regarded as aa) metaphors. Or bb) as a false Jesus; a different person entirely.
Yet to be sure, to this very day, those interested in finding the true Jesus, might want to further pursue how the magical Jesus was rejected; who is perhaps related after all to the miracle-working Jesus. Deep inside the Bible, there are some interesting hints burried there; note that Paul himself, on confronting Bar-Jesus, chastised him for some kind of strange slight of hand; of “making crooked the straight paths of the Lord” (Acts 13.12). So that raising the issue of straight story-telling – or say, a straight representation of Jesus – seems structurally indicated here. (Note that Peter warned, when speaking of Paul and his readers, about those who “twist” the meaning of scripture).
[Then too by the way, the word “Bar” means “son of”; (cf. “Barabbas,” “Son of Abba,” or “Son of Father”; yet another bad version of Jesus?). So that this story of “Bar Jesus” many also be intended to deal in a veiled, alternate universe, doppleganger way, with those occasional persons who would claim to be the “son of” Jesus himself; and therefore, heir to the throne of Christianity. And who might try to change doctrine and so forth. But who here are rejected in effect, as mere magicians.
All attempts to make Jesus the founder of an hereditary dynasty, to try to deify his descendants, would run into the problem of monarchies; that often the descendants of a king are not as capable as the king himself was; ability is not always inherited. For this reason too, then, the “Son of Jesus” would have been denigrated. While indeed, there were no clear accounts of Jesus being married, or having children. (And no clear unequivocal account of brothers, other than spiritual brothers). Thus breaking up any possible monarchy.]
In any case, the Bible does indirectly address any popular associations between Jesus and magicians here again … and again, rather rejects them. Though it leaves in faint hints that some once made this connection.
There are some curious gifts here though; just as Saul (remembering too that King Saul who believed in magic?) sees Jesus and suffers “blind”ness and becomes Paul, so likewise, Bar Jesus the magician, when confronted by Paul, becomes Elymas, and becomes “blind” for a moment. In Acts 13.11. So that oddly those who meet Jesus or Christianity become … the seeing, but blind, and in the “dark.” At least a while. While in the meantime, all around, names and people and roles, are shifting constantly; winking in and out of existence and status. Probably reflecting the still-chaotic and not yet jelled state of Christianity; as it dealt with many various rumors and characterizations of even its holiest characters.
In any case though, again, the element of all this magical linguistic chaos and shape-shifting, that interests us here, is that – just as in the case of Jesus getting “gifts” from the “Magi” – yet another rumor of a “magician” Jesus, very nearly surfaces into the text … but is kept down by carefully leaving critical titles untranslated and therefore appearing opaque, proper names; while then, soon even those signs are then immediately buried. Though perhaps, if there is a resurrection to be seen again, then indeed, we are even now unearthing many things; “another Jesus” as Paul said, than many have been allowed to clearly “see” previously. One that is to be rejected though, the surface of the text often seems to want to say (except the apparent surface of apparent miracles).
40) At times to be sure, the scribes that wrote our Bibles, seem to play word games, semantics, “double-“language: or “tongues”; semantic conjuring, semantic sleight-of-hand, with us. And particularly, with the issue of miracles; whether they are real or not, natural or not, metaphors, or not, magical or not. At times, looking at all the times the Bible mentions magic, we find it often lending itself to two or three interpretations on the subject; seeming at times on the surface to a) ban magic at least from sight; giving it a proper name. Or b) only faintly hint at its presence in Christianity; or say, c) other times, to re-admit magic; albeit under a new “whitewash”ed name; as “miracle.” Yet to be sure, going back to the original Greek, we find that the original terms were more like “powers,” or “portents,” not “miracle.” And not “supernatural” either (q.v. our earlier discussion on Paul noting the inadequacy of the “supernatural”).
Yet finally, the New Testament did not fully endorse magic; or its correlate, “supernatural” “miracle” either.
41) So that those many billions who see Jesus as a magician, or miracle-worker, are looking at a buried, abandoned, Jesus. One that no doubt, should remain buried, and not be resurrected. While in contrast, it is rather Jesus as practical scientist, that finally shows the most signs of being fruitful; and deserving of resurrection. Whatever that is, viewed naturalistically; having its main outline, live on in our hearts and minds, no doubt, among other things. (See our Resurrection and Immortality).
42) To be sure finally, as noted above, there are many signs in the Bible of an effort to re-admit belief in magic, under other names. So for example, the Bible at first condemns, but then re-admits under another name, the basic but banned idea of magical “conjuring,” making things appearing out of thin air. a) Not as “magic,” but renamed, whitewashed, as “miracle.” Or then b) the Bible bans the idea of “necromancy,” or “conjuring” up the dead … but then readmits it after a name change, in a Christianized, sanitized form … as “raising the dead,” and “resurrection.” And c) then, as for the – often banned – idea of telling the future, “augur”ing, “soothsaying,” and so forth, fortune-telling, that too is re-admitted under a new whitewashed name; as “prophesy.” While in the priesthood, d) “spiritualism” is readmitted … as “spirituality.” Just as e) the acts of magicians in Egypt are readmitted as the “miracles” of Moses; and f) the magical aspects of Jesus, are readmitted (partially) as the acceptance of gifts from the “Magi.”
To be sure, g) no doubt, there are minor differences between ancient magical beliefs and Christianity; which priests will always make a great deal about. Or indeed, in any case, h) the Bible finally shows signs of rejecting even the sanitized versions of magic miracles; calling them spiritual metaphors. (Above?)
Or i) calling for the destruction of even Judeo-Christian soothsayers, “prophets.” (Above?)
Or finally j) calling for the destruction of the very heaven in which they were spoken of. (Above?)
So that there are no firm assertions, advocacies in the Bible itself, of ties between Jesus and magic or miracle either. Though there were once many signs of such ties, finally the Bible says any such Jesus, was a false Christ.
43) While the Bible finally attempts to move Christianity firmly past, ancient beliefs in magic. Toward after all, “science.” As we found in many more quotes even from Jesus himself; Jesus stressing real “fruits,” “works,” “signs,” “deeds,” “proofs,” as proven by reliable “witness”es; and as the rest of the Old Testament says, “science.” And science rejects miracles.
So finally therefore, the magical – or miracle-working – Jesus, is rejected, by the Bible itself. Just as it is rejected by science too.
44) Obviously though, there was a problem with the radical indecisiveness of the Bible, which expressed itself in radical ambiguity in the text; as translators of the Bible, tried to cover up, conceal this intrusion of Magic into our holiest traditions, our texts, by changing the words a bit; and trying to make “distinctions without a difference,” as Logic calls them. As noted above, they call magical tricks “Miracles” instead of “magic”; necromancy, “raising the dead,” etc..
No doubt, retaining belief in magical powers, was useful to appeal to the masses. At the same time though, at some point, as the people become better educated, the retention of magical ideas, actively holds the people back. As we will see (in the Harm Done).
45) But now it is time to expose, and further eliminate, all the false ideas of Jesus as magician – or miracle-worker – from our esteem.
46) That is what our investigations here suggest. While for that matter, science – and especially Anthropology – we will have seen, really tells us in effect, that most current religion, derived historically from ancient magical beliefs. And that probably
all Christian promises of miracles, spirits, are absolutely continuous with – even the same as – ancient promises of spirits, and bad Magic. (As opposed to good magic which was proto-science).
47) Indeed, we will see later, just as the Bible noted similarities, even occasional identities, between the tricks of magicians and the miracles of say, Moses, modern observers will note that there is another striking resemblance between promises of “miracles” and modern stage magic tricks; in that neither of them really work, the way they presented themselves. Today, conjuring things out of thin air and so forth, can neither can be duplicated, or confirmed … except by way of mere stage magician tricks: sleight-of-hand tricks, “smoke and mirrors” as they say; springs and hidden compartments. Which alone allow us to appear to make rabbits appear in empty hats. (Cf. however, invisible radio waves, etc.).
48) Can the people face the disappearance of the magical Christ? As a false Christ? In fact, the Church at times hints that miracles are merely signs, proofs, for ordinary people; not for educated people. (Cf. “Signs” for “Gentiles”?).
49) In any case, if the old heaven of miracles crumbles, then to be sure, the Bible itself noted that one day or another, we are supposed to … uncover sorceries, many false things, enchantments and delusions, in our churches. And indeed, one “day” we are supposed to discover that the whole earth has been “deceived,” in its “worship” (Rev. 13).
And a) some would say, some of us are seeing this, right now.
While b) next, we are to ask our preachers to also “refine” their own vision – or their catering to the popular tradition. And publicly throw the sorcerers and their false Christ and illusions, at last, out of our Temples. To cut those who believe in Magic, off from our truer traditions.
In fact it is time to simply say to the people, that belief in miracles, is belief in magic. (Cf. the song or saying, “Jesus is Magic”). But finally, to see or say this, is not to destroy religion; but rather, many would say, to pass through the fire of self-criticism of one’s childhood beliefs; and to begin to attain “judgement.”
c) To learn to separate the good and true things in religion, at last. To separate the false things, from the things really from God. The False Christ, from the true one.
d) And thus to be at last released from bondage to false ideas, a false Lord.
e) To find the second and better vision, Coming, of Jesus, at last.
50) To be sure, though, some preachers, and many New Agers, and many secular believers in supernatural things, will simply admit that elements of Christianity were infected by popular magical belief … but then simply go on to defend both miracles, and magic, and other “supernatural” powers.
Yet a) we have found that the Bible itself warned about that. (Paul noting problems with the “supernatural” in 1 Corin, in the Revised Standard Version).
While then b) too, we add now the Bible told us to honor “science.” While science has shown that most magical beliefs are mostly false, or untrue to the natural world, as is has meaning to us today.
While indeed too, historically, many very early scientific investigators outside the Bible itself, often investigated early claims of “miracles,” “magic,” “healings” and other miracles. In both aa) Religion and bb) Magic, and cc) pseudo medicine, faith-healings, etc… And these investigators found that most faith healers, of whatever ilk – be they religious, or magical, or pseudo-scientific – were usually wrong, and false. Those who promised they were working miracles in fact, were d) at best honestly mistake or deluded; or were e) often even deliberate, conscious cheats and scam artists.
So that the “supernatural” is not good. Indeed, f) we will have found that the wonders of the bible are natural, not supernatural.
51) Most importantly though, we will find that such beliefs in Christianity as derive from belief in Magic, are not only mostly false, but also, we will show, more importantly … they have done an immense amount of very real, physical damage, “harm,” to those who believed in them. As we show in our section on “The Harm Done” by false Christianity.
So finally, there is really no defense of miracles. Those who wish to retain some sense that there is truth in them still, should be encouraged to see them naturalistically.
Surprisingly (see above?), we can condemn the whole idea of supernatural miracles, without ever violating, leaving behind, condemning, the Bible itself. Which a) always warned there would be false things, magicians, in the midst of our holiest things. And b) if the Bible presented wonders, after all, we will have seen in our writing on Natural Christianity, always presented them in such a way that they could be interpreted as natural wonders, rather than magic. If the Red Sea was moved, a “wind” blew it … says part of the Bible, itself (Ex. 14.21):
“The LORD drove the sea back by a strong east wind all night, and turned the sea into dry land; and the waters were divided. The Israelites went into the sea on dry ground” (Ex. 14.21).
Though many preachers look down on such mere, humble, mundane wonders, and like to make much bigger, grander, supernatural promises, their promises, we find, do not come true; “do not come to pass,” and must therefore be condemned as false. While in contrast, the natural understanding of wonders, is verified not only by a closer reading of the Bible itself, but also of course by science; which confirms that indeed, the “wind” often blows water in Venice for example, in just the other side of the Mediterranean, so high, that the famous “aqua alta” (SP?) or “high water,” often floods the city.
So strictly speaking, the Bible itself as presently translated, never firmly presented Jesus as magic; but it left in the finer print, qualifications, details and so forth … that allow us to discover a truer, non-magical view of each and every event or wonder in the Bible; views that conform to science. (As we note in our chapters on Natural Religion).
52) While as for those many preachers who still insist on miracles and magic, and who still follow the magical Christ? The false magician? No doubt of course, they and their false spirit, will go to Hell forever; as specified according to their own doctrines, for those who believe in a False Christ.
Belief in bread out of thin air, is essentially the same as belief that rabbits can appear out of thin air, in empty hats. Belief in miracles is therefore actually, not real Christianity … but is belief in Magic. Or belief in sorcerers, and magicians. Our miracle-promising preachers were really … the foretold false magicians. While even our “spiritual” preachers were still under illusions and delusions, too.
And so now, we are moving on. To a second and better vision of Christ; Christ not as magician, or miracle-worker; but the real Christ, as a scientist.
Moving beyond Scientology and Christian Science … to the full science of God, today. Borrowing on the full expertise of Anthropology, Biology, Sociology, Psychology, and so forth. In order to find God, as he really is, at last.
There were always many elements of false belief in magic, magicians, throughout much of popular Christianity. Just as King Saul once banned and then recalled witches, there were always elements of magic passing in and out of Judeo-Christian religion. Or in fact, there have always been many fatal elements of magical thinking in Judeo-Christian religion all along; elements that were firmly rooted out, at all. That were there from the start … and are still there. Working their evil influence.
Fortunately though, to be sure, eventually the Catholic Church itself has begun to note that many false traditions from other religions, had indeed entered Christianity, the Church; it called them “syncretisms,” in effect. While indeed, the science of Anthropology – which was recently embraced by the Church – is able to increasingly trace and expose the links between traditional religion, and ancient magical thinking.
The fact is, it appears there were many elements of magic in Christianity. But finally, our science of God – allied with Anthropology, Sociology, Biology, honest History, etc. – can also now help separate plausible events, from magical thinking. To separate the valid elements of religion, from false magical thinking; and thus, separate the a) wheat from the chaff; the b) sheep from the goats; c) the fruitful branches, from the unfruitful branches, of our holiest institutions.
With science, we can now separate the true representatives of God … from the miracle-promising ministers; who were, without exactly knowing it, really magicians; magicians that deceived themselves, and then the whole earth. But who can now be exposed. And left behind.
To be sure:
“All nations were deceived by thy sorcery” (Rev. 18. 23).
Yet while we now find here, that as the Bible foretold, the whole earth has indeed, been deceived for two thousand years and more, by false priests who were really, actually, (sometimes without knowing it), magicians … or victims of magic, illusions, then after all, today, here and now, we have a way of exposing all this. Through the science of God. As we are exposing it – for those who can see – here and now.
As even now:
“I will be a swift witness against the sorcerers” (Mal. 3.5).
As indeed, we are bearing, here and now, very swift witness indeed; against our miracle-promising ministers. We will now ask them to “refine” themselves … or else, step down as ministers. Or be loudly, publicly, continuously denounced, by true believers and sensible people, as the “magicians” they are; as believers in “magic.”
Our religion, Christianity, was long ago taken over by magicians, who thought they were priests and ministers. Indeed, our entire religion, the priesthoods, were all but utterly taken over by magicians, even in the time of Jesus, or slightly thereafter; while magicians have dominated historical Christianity, almost to this very day, c. 2011. But? Today it is finally time to kick them out; the magicians with their false promises, and false spirits.
As foretold, so long ago. By the Bible itself. By God, himself.
END OF CHAPTER 3
Stage Magicians –
And Found Them False
The Bible warned constantly about magic, magicians, infecting Judeo-Christianity, right from the start. This is obviously a bad thing. But now and then a few people, will admit this – and try to defend it. On hearing that their Christianity was really believe in Magic,some will just say next, that this is fine; that “magic” – or more often, belief in the “supernatural” – is simply itself in turn, good and true. Some will say, even if Jesus was a magician, then that is … good. Since Magic itself is good. And so, many will simply go and now just simply and more openly than ever, embrace magic again; this time, more explicitly.
Yet to be sure, many of those persons who embrace Magic, may not be really clear on what it is. Or indeed, many are simply mislead by it. Therefore, we need to look into Magic, here. To show exactly what it was and is. In order to show in turn, why we all need to move beyond 1) magical thinking, and the 2) illusions of sorcerers and 3) stage magicians, and 4) magic-entranced preachers for example.
First: the word “magic,” the dictionary tells us, probably comes from, ultimately, the Iranian word, ” “Magos,” or “magus” (plural “Magi”?); like the Old Persian “mogush,” or “sorcerer.” (See Webster’s Seventh Collegiate Dictionary; and the OED; Oxford English Dictionary). Some will say that basically, the word “Magus” is probably the old Persian word for any and all kinds of “wise man”; it probably referred to all kinds of people who were considered wise, and that seemed to be able to do amazing things, in ancient times. But note that the wise men of the past, include a wide range of ancient persons, nearly all of whom believed in things we would today call, “magic.”
Some of the old magical beliefs might have had some truth in them, and others not; in ancient times there were many early, proto-medical doctors, healers, including witch-doctors, with regiments and potions … that were sometimes bunkum, but were at times the prototypes of pharmacology; some ancient remedies were shown later to have real medical value. So that in ancient magical beliefs, we find a surreal mixture of some true and false beliefs, some would say. Ancient alchemists for example, were constantly talking of “spirits” and so forth … but were also the forerunners of real chemists. Likewise, early astrologers, were the early version of astronomy professors, and so forth. Many of these early wise men, magicians, were involved in what would eventually become refined as science. Though to be sure, in ancient times, whatever valid learning there was in them, was intermixed with many false leads, many false notions about “spirits,” and so forth. And no doubt, many of the more mistaken “wise men,” are among the “wise” men and “magicians,” found false in the Bible.
In any case though, there were many problems with magicians. The first “magicians” were 1) just ancient wise men; some of whom knew some valid things, some form of early science and technology. Yet 2) to be sure, most their knowledge, in ancient times, was very imperfect, and intermixed with many ideas that later, more advanced science would find to be false. And in fact, these early forms of knowledge, were so imperfect that, out of their unreliability – and out of rivalry from other forms of knowledge – eventually, these wise men or magicians, got a very bad reputation. Or better said, what happened was that 3) those elements of ancient wisdom that were good, were further refined, and then split off to become real, natural sciences … like Chemistry and Medicine. While 4) those bits that were not good, were left to conservatives, who would not let go the old wisdom, the old magic, or all its confused half-truths. And who for some time continued to call themselves magicians.
Even as knowledge progressed, many people held on to the earlier forms of confused “wisdom” and “magic”; many people still trying to claim to have “super”natural powers. And many even seriously retaining the name “magicians.” Until very late in history. Eventually though 5) by about the 17th or 18th century or so, science was well enough advanced, to firmly refute many false elements of ancient “wisdom” and magical lore. 6) So that by about 1600, those people who still believed in “witches” for example, though numerous, were looked down on by many educated people. Though 7) many people continued to believe that religion, priests, would make bread appear out of thin air, that was only in the special, limited realm of “Religion” only. While as 8) for normal everyday life, by about 1850 or so, most educated adults did not believe anyone short of a priest or holy man could make things appear out of thin air; and 9) as for the self-styled “magicians,” there remained virtually no educated person, in the West, who seriously called himself a “magician” or “sorcerer”; seriously claiming to have “supernatural” powers. Indeed, by about that time (very roughly speaking; guesstimating); the only people who called themselves “magicians,” were stage magicians; who normally knew that their alleged feats of magic – making rabbits appear in empty hats – were not really real, but were tricks; using secret compartments in their hats and clothes, and so forth.
Therefore, there were in effect, really no serious “magicians” in the West; by about 1900 or so especially, all had been exposed by science. And mostly any “magicians” that remained, were people who knew themselves, that they really had no supernatural powers; but that they were just pretending to do so. Though 10)to be sure, if most magicians themselves knew they were most tricksters or “entertainers,” many children and common, uneducated people, did not quite know. Many saw stage magicians on through to about 1967 or so … and still half believed; believed that the magician was really making things appear out of thin air.
And so 11) some magicians and others, exploited these beliefs; and pretended to have real powers – especially, to get money from credulous people, to work wonders. While 12) a few still continue to do this, to this very day.
13) Accordingly, since there are still some unscrupulous persons who still claim to have supernatural powers, we still need to tell many uneducated people – and children – even today, that no one can make things appear out of thin air; that all magicians are tricksters, frauds, or mere entertainers. Not people with real powers.
Indeed, science has long since, investigated magical ideas, for many centuries; and found most of them (if not all of them) false. Indeed, around 1900 or so, one of the most famous stage magicans of all – Harry Houdini – had publicly tried to remove the veil, and tell everyone frankly, that there were no real magicians; that it was all just stage tricks, smoke and mirrors and secret compartments and so forth.
So that by about 1850 to 1920 or so, serious belief in “magic” and “magicians,” as such, was pretty much subsided. And most of those who took the name “magicians,” began to take the name merely as an admitted, often self-confessed, transparent deception; they pretended to work supernatural wonders for purposes of “entertainment” only, as they said. They were stage magicians, “conjurers,” who knew themselves, that most of what they claimed to do was a false trick.
Today, anyone can buy a manual on how to be a stage magician; and they just tell you how to do many of the most common tricks. Mostly, it is done by way of things like secret compartments in their sleeves, hats. And so forth. By the time of Houdini, the famous stage magician, there were many “Magic books” for sale; books explaining how exactly how apparent miracles were done – by way of secret compartments, smoke and mirrors, springs, and so forth. Using mirrors and smoke and sleight-of-hand, to create illusions and delusions.
And after Houdini in particular, confessed all this, at length, in a book or two, finally, most educated people knew that there was nothing left that was real, in the tradition of Magic. (Though to be sure, some uneducated people still believe in spiritualism, supernatural things, magic, astrology, most know that science proved much of magic to be false; and that indeed, many stage magicians finally confessed that they were deceiving people; that they were not really making rabbits appear out of thin air for example).
So the world of “magic” and magicians, really includes at least three different kinds of people. First there were the original 1) ancient wise men, Magis; some of whom actually knew some valid knowledge or science, though that knowledge was intermixed with many confused and wrong ideas. But since some of their ideas were right, 2) many people called “magicians” were actually, possibly in effect, fairly competent early scientists and technicians. Yet alongside whatever real competence was found in some magicians, there were also many others, who were full of mostly false superstitions. And 3) outright frauds; who knew they did not really have magical powers, but who were “charlatans” and frauds, liars, that could get others to believe in them, in order to get money from them. (cf. priests, ministers, who say they are working miracles today). But then 4) especially after Houdini, more and more stage magicians would admit now and then, that they did not actually have any supernatural powers; but were only pretending to have them, to entertain people.
Though to be sure, 5) there are a few people who claim to be serious investigators of the “supernatural” or “para-normal.” And 6) indeed there are always people who still claim to be able to talk to the dead on TV and so forth (like Sylvia what’s her name). (And then too – 7 – we still have many ministers and priests, that claim much the same thing, in the name of Jesus however.)
Therefore, we need to once again, clearly tell the people that so far, by far, all such claims have been proven false, time after time after time. That “magic” is not real. Or, if it has real effects, they are not quite what the magician tells you. If rabbits appear suddenly in “empty” hats, they were actually hidden in secret compartments. And so forth. So that ultimately, there is actually a natural or technological explanation, for nearly all “magic.”
Magic – Spirit; Miracle – In the Bible?
Yet to be sure, beliefs very similar to beliefs in magic, have persisted in popular Christianity. Among not only common people, but most priests. So suppose we take a long look at conjuring – making bread appear out of thin air, and so forth – in Christianity. In order to hopefully, split off what is likely real, from what is not.
First though, a quick history of religious beliefs in spirits, and life after death, resurrections, and so forth.
First indeed, it was already known to some, even by the time of the Old Testament, that there were sins and errors or shortfalls, at least in “magicians”; Moses to be sure, accepts that magicians are actually turning their staffs into real snakes, it seems … but in any case however, Moses claims to have even bigger powers than they do. While likewise, King Saul at least for a time, banishes witches from his kingdom; though he later himself consulted one. Yet the upshot is that by the time of the Old and then New Testaments – c. 1,300 BC to 190 AD – “magic” and “magicians” and “sorcerers” and “witches” and so forth, were normally under attack by Jews, and others. And were often banished from the kingdom. Though to be sure, curiously at times, Jews would allow them to work within their cities and traditions, too. Saul for example, at first banned consulting witches, under pain of death … but then Saul went on to consult a witch himself.
Overall however, by about the time of Greece and Rome, and people like Aristotle, practical reason and technology were well enough advanced, to know how to build say, an aqueduct. And so many people knew more or less what really “comes to pass” in nature, in real life; what works, and what does not. And so many begin splitting away the wheat from the chaff; separating ancient but false beliefs, from what was proving to be true and useful. Separating old-fashioned, confused, half-true lore of “magi”s or magicians, from valid, respected technicians and tradespeople; people who knew important, powerful, and valid knowledge of blacksmithing, farming, housebuilding, and so forth. Splitting away confused beliefs in early “alchemists,” for example, from their truer beliefs; to form the early forms of … pharmacology and chemistry.
To be sure, it was to be a long time before the wheat was separated from the chaff; though various trades guilds and other organizations taught the “secrets” and “mysteries” that included much realistic, practical knowledge, in schools and temples and guilds, still, the knowledge taught was an odd mix of practical and impractical balderdash and confusion. (Cf. Masonry; and our writing on Persephone as relaying the basics of agriculture). Increasingly, valid and useful knowledge was growing; and there were many in various organizations, who were in part being taught a great deal of fairly solid, practical knowledge; early forms of science and technology. Thanks to various trades organizations especially, there were coopers, millers, farmers, blacksmiths, and others; who knew a great deal of real, useful, true information about the natural world, and technology. People who might have appeared to uncivilized savages to be oddly possessed of strange ideas and spirits; and to be working amazing “miracles”; but who were actually working by and through nature.
(Imagine by the way, what a very primitive man with no technology, would have thought of a Roman making concrete: he would had said he had seen, a magician consulting a magic formula; then putting various powders together, with water; then stirring them with a magic wand; to turn it all into a Rock. So indeed, many natural wonders still appeared to be magic, to the uninitiated or ignorant).
But to those who knew, more wonders were being worked not by those who believed vaguely in magic, but by those who had more carefully observed the ways of nature, what “comes to pass” in real life; and who learned to work with that, to make better things; technology and so forth. And as early science and technology progressed, as we learned what “work”ed and what did not, gradually, the practical and true, split away into trade schools and sciences. Leaving behind the chaff; the largely (if not completely) confused people and frauds still calling themselves “magicians,” “wise men,” “witches,” and the like; while relying confusedly on the “super”nature. Or concepts thought to be “super” or “superior,” “above” nature.
To be sure, no doubt, there have remained some real things in life, that science at the time, could not describe or see; things that were not yet clearly visible, but were nevertheless real: like electricity; atomic structure; and indeed, our own minds or “spirits.” And so, there was still some room, for people who believed in invisible things, even without visible material evidence. Indeed, there were many things that were both real, and “super”natural. In that there remained many things that were real enough – like the human mind or spirit – but that were for a long time, beyond, above – or “super” – nature as primitive science could it explain it. Indeed, the human mind is definitely real; and yet it was invisible to early science; it was something vague, in our head.
Thus indeed, there were real things, that however, were supernatural; or beyond, above, the ability of current science to explain or verify. Like, say, atomic structures, and electricity. And the human mind or spirit. Things that were real, but were still “super”natural in that there were as yet beyond the ability of primitive science to fully outline and explain. The human mind for example, now seems real enough; though for many centuries, the human mind or “spirit” was literally “invisible,” and spiritual.
Therefore, we should be cautious in condemning all “magic” and belief in spirits (and even magicians and priests) and so forth; since much of what they claimed, we find later, was half true. Indeed, much of what they claimed, amounted to early, intuitive, half-science, and other semi-valid forms of “wisdom.” Much of what ancient talked about, was vaguely grasping, vaguely (/metaphorically, in effect; “figure”atively) at things that would later be found to have been indeed, partially real. (As we here will eventually find of “wonders” and some “spirit”).
However, at the same time, if some of the old ideas – even ideas of some still invisible, or supernatural things – were half true, they were also, half false. And indeed, as science and technology progressed mightily, one after another of the old beliefs was found false; and thrown into the fire. So that, in spite of some valid elements in them, by the time of the Bible, or of Rome, the old knowledge of the Magis, magic, was not so well respected by everyone. While by the 19th century, supernaturalism was increasingly left behind by civilization and scientists. Who had developed enough, to call attention clearly, to many invalid, false elements in Magic.
Indeed, by 1870 or so, most of those who still clung too completely, to old forms of knowledge, were clearly seen by most “modern” people, to be simply, 1) rather “backward,” confused, and “superstitious” “fools” or “child”ren. Or in some cases, 2) those who claimed to be working wonders for example, were thought to know better, and to be merely pretending to have powers, in order to cheat others; to be often, outright frauds or cheats or liars; also called “snake oil salesmen,” “charlatans.”
It was in this climate, that Houdini wrote his books; to 3) try to honestly establish himself as a magician who was honest; who admitted that he was not really using magical powers. But who was merely, semi-transparently pretending to have them; for purposes of “entertainment” only.
Yet finally to be sure, 4) there have always been a few people who have seen that a) there are perhaps some valid elements in the old beliefs. And b) who are interesting in separating the wheat from the chaff. To “refine” the old ideas, and find out what was really, solidly true; and what was not.
5) Though to be sure, any attempt to find anything at all valid in ancient ideas, needs to advance cautiously; since there are always many who are all too ready to fall completely back into the old confused, half-true beliefs, wholesale; or who indeed, never fully emerged from them. Indeed for such people, who already all-too-firmly “believe” in the old ways, it is best to give them the negative critique of their beliefs; to help them achieve a more balanced perspective.
Though perhaps at times, it would be better still, to continually acknowledge some validity to what they feel. Even as we separate the wheat, from the chaff. The sheep, from the goats. The “fruit”ful from the “unfruitful” branches of thought … and religion.
Much of magic to be sure, was simply, false and wrong. And often, workers of magic and miracle, knew themselves, that they were not working real wonders; but continued to promise them; in order to defraud others of money and land.
Indeed, many “magicians” and “healers” were deliberate frauds, cheats. Sometimes such things involved accomplices. Often for example, alleged miracle workers might have an accomplice, who would pretend to be sick … and then, when the miracle-worker did his thing, the accomplice would pretend to be cured; casting off his crutches and so forth. Then the dollars would flood in … from sick people hoping they were buying miraculous cures.
There has been much deliberate fraud in miracle working, then. Indeed one can imagine any number of ways people could have consciously defrauded the public.
Stage magicians for example, know how to make it look as if they have chopped off someone’s hand … and then re-grow it. Sometimes therefore, it might claimed by alleged miracle-workers, that someone had chopped off someone’s hand; but then it was claimed that the hand had re-attached.
Thus, the techniques of false magic, deception, would be used by “unscrupulous” people … to defraud many. Many miracle-workers indeed, are often deliberately deceiving the public; the same as stage magicians. But with even less ethics. They would do common stage tricks – with the implication and often the explicitly claim – that they were working real miracles, and that if you just had enough faith in them, and gave them enough money, then you could be healed of your illnesses, too. Many do that …and then leave town quickly, before anyone finds out it was all a fraud. That they were only using fraud, to take lots of money from simple people, to “cure” them. Before leaving town.
So intermixed with some real abilities, there was much fakery in magic and miracles. Indeed, from ancient times, there were some fairly legitimate healers, with some useful healing techniques for example; but there were also many dishonest religious fakers (cf. “fakirs”) and false remedies, “snake-oil salesmen.” Many ancient healers, were working with 1) ancient, partially-effective pharmaceuticals. But in other cases, healers and miracle-workers, were using 2) dishonest tricks; the same as stage magicians. Or 3) using other forms of outright, simple fraud.
Sometimes a “miracle-worker” might perform in fact, a few dishonest magic stunts, like making a rabbit appear in a hat; and then move on … to claiming to miraculously cure this or that sick person, with a religious chant or prayer. And eventually, serious investigators found that indeed, many religious “miracles” by miracle-workers, were, just like stage magic, deliberate deceptions.
Not Fraud, However, But Stupidity Rules
In Religion, Miracles, Faith-Healing;
Teach the People Knowledge of Science;
“My People Perish for Lack of Knowledge’
To be sure though … it may be that some current faith-healing ministers, really believe, even themselves, that they are working real wonders. So that we will need to look at them carefully (see our writing on that). But as it turns out, we will find that … there is very little wheat, and a great deal of “chaff,” straw, in such promises. First of all, the vast majority of promises of “miracles,” are false. While finally, there is only a tiny percentage of claims, that deserve serious attention; promises of faith healings perhaps, among others. Though even there, the vast majority of alleged miracle healings are mistakes; if not deliberate frauds.
And if people believe they have been commanded to believe in them – by the command of God to “have faith” – in fact we will have found here, God actually did not stress faith as much as St. Paul; in fact God himself finally ordered us to have far more respect for what science says. Especially in a day when science at last has advanced enough, to deal with the formerly “invisible” human spirit and so forth.
In the meantime though, until they learn science, people will not know to separate the wheat from the chaff; and many will all too blindly believe and trust and believe in … frauds and liars and what some would call “fools.”
And their error is not a harmless one by any means. As we have found elsewhere, millions, billions of people, have devoted enormous time and money for remedies that did not work. While diverting all that time and money, to more scientific efforts that would in fact, have worked far, far better. In fact, because of this diversion of our efforts from more useful and true forms of knowledge and action, this false “shepherd”ing, we can reasonably surmise, millions of sick people stayed sick for example, and even died. For lack of competent, real medical care.
Or they died waiting for bread to fall out of thin air; whereas if they had only planted real seeds in real fields, they could have fed themselves.
More Fraud, Deceit, in Christian Spirituality;
More Magical Thinking
So what about, Christian “miracles”? The fact is, we will have found, overwhelmingly, the vast majority of promises of big physical miracles -bread out of thin air – were largely, false. Or at best, half true; metaphorically true. And indeed, the Bible itself began to try to reinterpret old promises of “miracles” as being not about real physical things, but as being spiritual metaphors. At best. Though we will find that better said, the old promises were vague descriptions – in effect, metaphors, “figures” of speech – for obscure but partially real, things in nature. If the “breath” or “spirit” of the Lord, was said to have parted the Red Sea, then after all, the “wind” regularly blows back the Mediterranean (away from the south coast in fact; toward the north, and Venice and its “aqua alta”).
Many preachers gave up on any physical truth to miracles; and tried to say the old promises were entirely metaphors for “spiritual” things. Though we will have found here that there were great sins and errors in “spiritual”ity too. As St. James began to see, faintly.
(In fact, we will need to see in great detail, how promises of miracles did indeed work spiritual effects in our minds: false hopes. But since those hopes of future miracles were largely (if not totally; see Immortality) false, then those spirits were also false; were in fact the foretold “illusions,” “delusions,” “enchantments,” “false dreams,” of “sorcerers” and so forth … that the Bible also warned about. So that indeed, the “spirit” and “hopes” that we got from Christianity, were also, bad Magic; not really from God at all. (See more on this elsewhere).
Indeed then, nearly all aspects of Christianity have long since been taken over, infected, by the worst, invalid elements of magic; magical thinking. So that we will need to closely re-evaluate and actively “refine,” our religion, Christianity itself; before we at last get a truer, more productive sense of what God really talking about; separating the truth from the myth; separating at last the science of God, the true and provable sayings of God, understandings of the Bible … from the merely “religious” or superstitious, magical, false ideas that have dominated so much of Christianity.
Then Converting Them
What should we say about miracles? Our priests to be sure, have been coddled and flattered by everyone for centuries; as “sacred” and “holy”; and so, in spite of a certain superficial humility, have not really learned the faculty of self-criticism. Therefore, indeed, we may need to confront our priests very dramatically, with some very negative information.
Much of Christianity holds on to concepts that are best described as belief in magic. Like promises of miracles. Therefore, the exposure of fraud achieved in much of “magic” proper some time ago, is to some extend appropriate to the Church. Over the last century or two, there were many scientific investigations – and many warnings about – such people; who were exposed as “charlatans,” “frauds,” “quacks,” “deceivers,” “flim-flam men,” tent-revivalists, bunko artists, scam artists, and so forth.
Yet there have been far fewer warnings about priests who are really magicians; our warnings that now need to be heard. Though now at last, in any case, it is time. It is time … to apply the Science of God to our priests too; to the very “household of God”; and to at last “refine” even the priestly class, the titular heirs of the priestly tribe of “Levi” (Mal. 2-3). To show our superstitious priests, what parts of what they believed was true … and what was “chaff.” Which beliefs can be retained after one has obtained good “judgement” – and which must be painfully burned off. Burned off as false ideas, cherished but false “delusions,” “illusions,” “enchantments,” of ancient thinkers who were in effect, more false “magicians” or “sorcerers.”
And what is chief among the false religious ideas that must not be seen as being in infestation of “Magic” belief into Christianity? It is belief in … “miracles.” (And in many “spirits”).
But to be sure, we will also find, while we must chastise and rebuke many priests, ministers, churches, and believers, we do not have to stray from … the Bible itself. Since the Bible itself … authorized this finding; and showed us how to see “wonders” rightly; not as “supernatural” “miracles,” but as natural and technological wonders, after all; things confirm-able by science. As we will have begun now and then, here, to see. And as we will see even more clearly in other full book-length treatments of Immortality … as a natural/technological wonder.
In the meantime finally though, “miracles” per se, are found here to be false; and so is the common idea of Jesus as “miracle”-worker. If you know enough to read the Bible closely and well enough, you will find that his allegedly supernatural miracles, if you read the fine print, are actually, readable as natural events, consistent with what we know is possible in nature, from science.
Therefore, those preachers who still promise supernatural miracles, should simply be denounced as in effect, false, bad “magicians.” And their beliefs as being simply, belief not in God, but in Magic.
What should we do about our preachers, worldwide? Even though magic proper, has been exposed over and over, there are still televangelists and others, that make millions, billions of dollars from TV viewers – by promising them lots of miracles. Especially, faith-healings. In this way, preachers make much of their money; by convincing sick people that if they send “contributions” to the preacher, the preacher will make them well. In fact, it is undoubtedly the promises of miracles, that have kept religion, ministries, alive financially; many people want miracles and miracle powers; and this kept many of them coming back to church … and putting money in the collection plate or basket.
But has money given to preachers, been money wisely spent? Has if gotten us miracles? Or has it supported the truth? Or has it just gone to keep rather satanic deceivers, well funded? Has it just finally supported, a lie? In fact, it seems, unfortunately, such contributions have gone not to God or truth … but to vast but essentially demonically false ministries. When you send your money to a preacher that promises miracles, you are only supporting a false ministry; ministries that live off false promises; and deceiving sick people. Taking their money in exchange for false, mostly empty promises. While diverting money from the more serious, scientific medical research, that has been far more successful in curing illnesses; and that otherwise no doubt, would have saved so many more lives.
Such things as promising miracles in general, indeed, ought to be illegal. And normally indeed, those persons who promise things they don’t deliver, can be sued; for “fraud, or “false advertising, or “non-performance of contract,’ or “bunko,” or some such. But unfortunately, to date, any magician – or alleged miracle-worker preacher – who works within a religious tradition, is so far, protected from legal prosecution, by “religious freedom.” Though almost any other profession would easily be sued and put out of business, if they made as many false promises as preachers do, religion somehow, long ago, managed to get special protections for itself from the law of the land. Which is positive in some ways – in that we get freedom of religion; but negative in others; in that anyone can work almost any kind of fraud in the name of religion, and get away with it; be immune to legal prosecution.
So that today, though normally frauds can be prosecuted legally, there are still many fabulously successful false priests, dishonest magicians, making huge amounts of money, by deceiving the public. [Like Pat Robertson; Benny Hinn and TBN; Rod Parsley; etc..?]
So what can we do about this? Finally, a) we need our public – and those preachers who are truly honest – to become far, far more scientific and honest. To b) look particularly, at the old promises of miracles, with an objective eye. Particularly, c) promises of big, huge miracles; “all” and “whatever” we “ask.” And, d) with the failure of such promises now firmly in mind, we need all good and honest preachers and believers to now, at last, stop promising miracles they cannot reliably deliver. Preachers henceforth, should promise no more or less, than what they indeed, reliably deliver. Indeed, e) further, we need them not only to merely stop promising them, but also – to prevent further damage from being done by false promises still apparently (to some) on the books – we need … preachers to actively renounce, “rebuke,” the old promises. As the illusions, delusions, tricks, “snares,” of essentially, “magicians” and “sorcerers.”
Today, most of us already secretly know that our preachers cannot really produce miracles, as regularly or reliably, or on the full scale, they often promised. Indeed, the belief that they could conjure things out of thin air, was a remnant of false belief in magic, magicians; a fatal bit of superstition that contaminated true thought and science and religion and Christianity, right from the start.
But now, as we attain better judgement, we are in position to eliminate false magic and magicians from our religion, at last. By insisting that all preachers stop promising miracles; or interpreting the Bible as promising them. Or else be “rebuked” as false preachers, as being in fact, “magicians.” Following not the true, Christ, but a False Christ; Christ as miracle-worker, and magician.
While, among more honest people in contrast, the Bible should be read as promising more natural things for now; not supernatural miracles.
In the past, preachers have not wanted to do this; because to be sure, even science itself was too crude to do justice to whatever elements of religion are true. But here at last, we are in possession of a truer, fuller science of God; one that is good enough to see what was false in religion … but also, what was true. And all this should be even easier now too; as we will find in our later works, that many things that were once thought impossible and scientifically indefensible – like immortality even – can be shown to be defensible in scientific terms. In natural terms. (As we will see in our writings on Immortality, Resurrection).
In fact finally, in the end, we don’t here “disprove” the Bible itself; indeed, we are now finding that the whole Bible – so far as we can see here and now – is true; albeit true in a way that only somehow trained to respect God’s fuller Nature, his material universe, can see.
Indeed, it is time for any honest preachers there may be, to tell everyone that – just as the Bible warned – such persons, even the whole earth – “all nations,” “all tongues,” “all peoples” (Rev. 13) – were indeed deceived. By magicians, sorcerers, necromancers, augurs; who presented themselves in our Christianity, under merely different names: as “miracle-workers,” people “raisin”g others from the dead, and “prophets.” Indeed, the promises these miracle workers delivered, their interpretations of them, offered a false vision that was really, Magic. And deception. But now it is time to move on past them; to something better.
Most of Christianity was long ago taken over by – or failed to emerge from – belief in magic, and magicians. Magic – magicians and sorcerers and soothsayers and enchanters – long ago, found their way into, had infected, our Religion, our Faith. But finally, now we are in a position to expose this at last … and then move on to the foretold “second,” “fuller,” more scientific, factual – and truer – vision, coming, of God.
And indeed, once the full power of the Bible, good religion, is rejoined to the full earthly powers of science and practical reason, we should be able to get at last, the ability that is far greater than the sum of the parts; a moral vision with real material abilities at last. (Or to put it the other way around too: the material abilities of science, with a well-integrated moral vision). Which should make in fact, the promised “kingdom” of peace or prosperity for all, possible.
So that, when we find faults in religion, Christianity, the Bible itself is not being refuted, or “debunked”; in fact, Biblical prophesy is being fulfilled. Even here and now, for many of us.
In doing this, we do not “disprove” or “debunk” the Bible or Christianity; but instead indeed, prove it to be true. Though true in a way our priests have not, until now, “full”y understood. Not in terms of its heavenly, but also earthly and practical and scientific – in the flesh, on this material earth – implications. As true spirit at last finds, its real, fuller material body, in fact. Not so much a “church”; but the whole material and good-spiritual universe; with all of mankind in it. A new and better heaven, religion; one that knows now at last now to … come down, to join with our earth, in fact. By showing how the old, formerly dematerialized, etherealized concepts of religion, can be matched up with their body at last; with real material phenomena. How the true spirit, now finds its material body, again.
Here on earth, in the flesh, again. Even now.
Even now, first of all, we have begin to show how the old religious ideas, are found to meet, merge with, the earth again … by showing how we derive a practical science, from the Bible itself. So that the old spirits are firming up, suddenly.
While in some of our other books (on Resurrection, Immortality, the Nature of God or Natural Christianity), we will further show how, after all, we can see at last, God, Good, here, in a scientifically-verifiable way, on this material earth again.
As foretold, as authorized, by the Bible itself. By God, himself.
“Spirituality” as Magic Too;
Belief in “Spirits”
Promises of “miracles” therefore appear to have actually been structurally all but identical to belief in Magic tricks. And now let’s look at “spirituality” too.
i) There are some obvious relations between belief in spirituality, the invisible Holy Spirit, and animistic/magical beliefs in “invisible spirits”; both believe that invisible spirits effect life here on earth. Indeed, the Bible often refers not only to the Holy Spirit, but to “spirits.” Later to be sure, we will defend a naturalistic vision of spirits; but still, Christianity often used a rather primitive vision of them; as behaving quite magically, supernaturally.
j) Then too, the Bible noted many problems with “spirits”; as it should. Since many are “false.”
k) But indeed, we will have been showing here, elements of even “Christian” spirituality were false, as St. James began to note: most specifically, the idea that we can live on mere spirits, and not physical food … was a false idea; that lead many to their deaths, we will be finding here.
So what should we say? Rather than continue to have faith in promises of miracles, and spirituality and so forth, instead, we should just accept that what we are now seeing is just exactly what the Bible warned about: that there have always been sins in even our holiest things; and that one “Day” God would however, take care of all that. And now in fact, furthermore, we now add more specifically, parts of the Bible even suggested that among the bad, false that will have infected the Judeo-Christian tradition, were not just “false prophets” and a “false Christ,” and various “liar”s and “false witnesses”; but more specifically …many, many evil things from Magic: “magicians,” “sorcerers,” “enchanters,” “witches,” “soothsayers,” and so forth.
Indeed we will finally add here, promises of miracles – and then even spirituality with its semantic games and mind games and semantic sleight of hand (now you see it, now you don’t; now it is physical and now it is gone) – are best seen now as the bad foretold “enchantments” or “delusions”; of “magic” and “illusions” and “sorcery” and “dreams” and “lies.” They were false ideas. Delusions. Especially the delusion that we could live on spirit alone; and didn’t need material things.
Over-Spirituality especially, was an enchantment and delusion, forced on us by bad priests who were in effect, creating false word pictures; who were in effect, illusionists, delusion-ists. Or in a word, magicians; especially, enchanters. Since they use mere words, to create the illusion of having an image of something in our mind … when we don’t have it at all. Insisting that “faith” or mental sensation, spirit, hope of something, is as good as having real things. Or is enough. That having mental “fruit” or “bread” is as good as having real eatable fruit or bread. Which though commonly attributed to Jesus himself, are actually, we will see, delusions; a false Christ that leads us literally, to starvation. As St. James began to see.
l) So that we will need to re-read the passages where Jesus seemed to support spiritualization. To see if there are better readings; that give us at last a real, defensible Christ. One that is not over-spiritual to the point of causing our deaths, from lack of attention to physical things.
Thus we are finding here that there are many similar, even practically identical things in “magic” and “miracle.” Leading increasingly to the suspicion that in effect, our longstanding traditions of promises of miracles, per se, really are, an intrusion of false magical beliefs, into our faith.
So that indeed, i) our priests, prophets, who promised miracles, were really false witches, magicians, or especially enchanters (see Isa. 47.12-14); people who make false promises, that give us pleasant sensations, images in our minds. But images, hopes, that are delusions, false hopes.
And amazingly, indeed, the Bible itself warned that this would happen: that there would be “delusion” and “magicians” and so forth that would have infected Judeo-Christian religion; right through to the End of Time (when at last however, those “sorcerers” are exposed).
m) But would God allow this? In fact, God often allowed evil into all kinds of things; at times the Bible even has our good god, ordering evil to do things (q.v).
Indeed, shatteringly enough, by the way, the Bibles we have today, when speaking of enchanters and religious liars, adopt a curious way of speaking; one where it and God seem to allow – and even command – enchanters to work:
“You felt secure in your wickedness” (Isa. 47.10 NRSV). “Stand fast in your enchantments and your many sorceries, from which you have labored from your youth; perhaps you may be able to succeed, perhaps you many be able to succeed. You are wearied with your many consultation; let those who study the heavens stand up and save you, those who gaze at the stars ” (Isa. 47.12-13 NRSV; see also Mat. 2, Luke 2 below).
“Be ye therefore wise as serpents” (Mat. 10.16 Auth. and Revised V?).
“The dreamers tell false dreams, and give empty consolation. Therefore the people wander like sheep; they suffer for lack of a shepherd. My anger is hot against the shepherds” (Zech. 10.2 NRSV). But: “Thus said the LORD my God: ‘become shepherd of the flock doomed to slaughter'” (Zech 11.4 RSV).
Here amazingly, God often commands apparent deceivers to continue. But this might not be surprising; since in parts of the Bible indeed, God commands evil; bringing it down on us to punish us.
Or it might appears to some that it speaks sarcastically; saying the opposite of what it really means, or what we think God should say. Perhaps God is being … Saturnine? Sardonic?
Ominously, shatteringly, in any case, the Bible criticizes such persons as enchanters… but then also tells them to continue their work. (Along with at times they say, by the way, those who believe in the “heavens” and “stars” and so forth).
Shatteringly, amazingly, at times God himself allows magicians, astrologers,
“Magi” – and related to them, false “shepherds” (compare Mat. 2, “Magi,” to “shepherd” Luke 2.8) and even snakes (Mat. 10.16) – to infect his holiest traditions. Even worse, God not only allows, but even above, commands bad magicians in religion to continue.
One might call this sarcasm. But it is not certain that is what it is. God in fact often allows, even commands evil spirits and so forth to not just leave, but also infect, others (see “evil” in Bible: “I will heap evils upon them” Deut. 32.23; “The LORD will bring upon you all the evil things” Jos. 23.15; “An evil spirit from the LORD tormented him”; also 1 Sam. 16.14-15; “I will bring evil” 1 Kings 14.10, 21.21, 21.29, 22.23; 2 Kings 22.16-20; 2 Chron. 20.9, 34.24-28; Job 42.11; Ps. 54.4; Jer. 16.10).
God in any case, allows evil things to happen. Even in the heart of religion and Christianity. Though some say that the Holy Spirit protects some infallibly, God warned that there were many false spirits; so that we add, no one can really be sure it is the Holy Spirit, or a false spirit pretending to be that Holy Spirit.
In any case, amazingly, specifically, bad magicians and enchanters, are commanded by God, to continue. So what is happening here? God at times orders evil on a people, and tells evil doers to continue; in order to punish other evil people it seems.
Spirits As Fatal
o) So that in any case, God allows evil “enchantments” to exist in religion. As we see from his many warnings they would infect it.
p) And if so, then where might we look for evil enchanters, in Christianity? First of all, in aa) false promises of miracles. And then in the therefore equally false bb) “faith” and cc) “hope” and dd) delusions and ee) illusions, they engendered.
Our preachers sometimes imply, that even if miracles are not forthcoming all the time, if promises of miracles are not real, then after all, thinking and hoping that they are, at least give us a pleasant mental sensation: “hope,” for example. And that is good enough; the heart of the theories of “spirituality” is that if the promises bring us mental or spiritual sensation, that is good enough.
But first: aa) if promises of miracles were false, then the “hope” of them in the future, was equally false. And bb) furthermore, to be filled with false hopes and expectations can be good for a short time. Though to be sure, in the long run, reliance on false hopes, usually makes your life far worse than it would have been otherwise. Consider (as we noted in The Harm Done) the person who for example, quits his regular job, in the hope and expectation that God will give him bread from heaven “soon”; for a while, he has a pleasant mental or “spiritual” sensation in fact; but then what happens after days and weeks …. and the miracle bread does not appear out of the sky? Either the person will be fed by others or – if there are no others still farming – then he will starve to death.
So that mere pleasant mental sensation, spiritual results, are often literally fatal. In fact, the spirits we get from these false hopes of miracles, are the foretold “illusions,” “false dreams,” “delusions,” “empty words,” and “enchantments,” “wind”; others called them “Opium Dreams,” or “Lotus Land.” The problem with all of these is that when we have the image of something we want or need, in our mind, or spirit, that can be a pleasant day dream for a while; but ultimately, if we try living on say, dreams or mere mental images or hopes of food, that is not enough to keep our physical body alive. As James saw.
So that mere mental hopes, dreams, spirituality, is delusion itself, and a great evil; if it is not followed by real material results. As promises of miracles were not.
q) Generations of priests believed their promises of miracles were good; yet
r) Many of our more intelligent priests came to see that their own Christian promises of miracles, were false things, lies, illusions, empty consolations, false dreams.
s) Yet some thought them a “white” lie. Many believing their lies though, were a necessary, “white” lie. People believed in miracles … and so were drawn to the church; where they could be taught truer things, like “faith.”
t) Yet we will find it was not white at all; our preachers “whitewash”ed it; that no good spiritual things come from false pretenses. Not only were the promises of miracles false; but the spiritual effects were false too. As we will be seeing here.
u) Indeed, many of our more intelligent preachers and theologians, have come to believe that false promises of miracles, were a “snare,” a bad and false lure.
v) That we will see, almost ruined more lives than it saved. As when for example, starving people became convinced that having a mental bread was all they needed, and did not bother to farm for and eat, real crops; thus starving to death. Because of illusions, false spirit.
w) To be sure, many thought promises of miracles were false; but one designed to bring vulgar people into religion, and docility, and spirituality, and “hope.” For the better, they thought. But if so, then after all, our priests were still lying in effect; using false images and promises, to create false impressions, false hopes, in peoples’ minds. To enslave them – as the Bible foretold of many – to false “dreams,” “enchantments,” “delusions.
As it turns out, many “hopes” about even the afterlife were wrong … and destructive in real life too. (As we see in our books on Immortality and Resurrection).
Therefore indeed, even much of traditional “spirituality” is really, following false spirits; and is really the same error as those who believed in Magical supernatural spirits, too.
Many preachers tolerated false promises of miracles, because they believed that these were false, but white lies; lies that god people into church, where they could then be taught a “higher” spirituality. And so they decided to shift the emphasis in religion to spiritual things instead. Yet we just found that their spirit, and spiritual things, were bad too.
the Great, Foretold
“Delusion,” Lie, “Illusion”
So what should we say? We should say that both our miracle-promising preachers – and spiritual preachers too – indeed, really were the foretold intrusion of false magicians, “sorcerers,” “witches,” “enchanters,” into the Jewish tradition. posing to us as our priests, ministers. The false shepherds that issue “false dreams” and lies, to entice poor and stupid people to be docile for a while, by promising them pie in the sky.
To be sure, our miracle-promising preachers, are desperate to defend themselves against such charges. To assert in numerous sermons, that they themselves are not in effect, the foretold false magicians, false shepherds, “heaven”- and “star” gazers and “illusionists” warned about by the Bible.
x) Desperate to defend themselves against this charge, our preachers have for some time have tried to assert any number of defensive arguments. One of them is the claim that there are critical differences between “magic” and “miracles.” Indeed, aa) translators of the Bible have done this, in part by presenting in the Bible, Christian “miracles” and magical tricks, somewhat differently. Or at least, presenting Judeo-Christian soothsayers or fortune-tellers and so forth, under different names; as “prophets” and so forth. Yet we note here, the function of both prophets and soothsaysers – telling the future – was essentially the same: telling the future.
Then, to bb) further try to set up a distinction between their own promises and dreams, and the illusions fostered by bad magicians, our preachers themselves expanded on what our Biblical translators or “scribes” did when translating the Bibles (see “the false pen of scribes” Jer. 8.8), by priests suggesting that such things as “miracles” proper, are done, at least, in the name of God; whereas, it is said, magic is done in the name of other gods or powers. But after all, perhaps there is less importance than some thing, to speeches, to the names some give things; what matters are the works , as Jesus said; while the works of magicians and miracle-promisers, are so much alike.
So could the common priestly image of Christ, as worker of say, physical miracles, be simply … preachers having been deceived, by a magician-Christ? A false Christ? Biblically, this is quote possible: the Bible often warned about magicians, working with a False Christ, and false prophets, in the end (q.v.). Jesus himself warned that many false unreliable persons would invoke his name – either “Christ” or cc) “Lord, Lord,” and so forth .. and yet still be false.
So that what is in a name? Almost nothing. What matters is not words, or thoughts or spirits, but works, deeds. Is the traditional “Christ” that preachers gave us in church therefore, a False Christ, allied to “magician”s? Indeed, he has been.
There were always links between even our holiest men, and magic. Scholars often note that cc) even in Exodus. While Exodus itself did not really make a huge distinction between miracles and magic; but all but simply said that the miracles worked in the name of God, are bigger and stronger than other magic tricks. Indeed in Exodus 8.19, finally Moses simply works bigger wonders than magicians; and thus some might say, this implies that his “miracles” are more than “magic.” In one case, Moses throws down his staff and it becomes a snake … that swallows the other snakes:
“The LORD said to Moses and Aaron, ‘When Pharaoh says to you, ‘Perform a wonder,’ then you shall….’ Then Pharaoh summoned the wise men and the sorcerers; and they also, the magicians of Egypt, did the same by their secret arts. Each one threw down his staff, and they became snakes; but Aaron’s staff swallowed up theirs” (Ex. 7.9-12 NRSV).
Here the Bible itself, calls one miracle by Moses, “the same” as the acts of magicians. The main difference that the text might later note, is merely that Moses’ snake is just bigger than the rest; and swallows up the other snakes. (By the way, there are often strange hints in the Bible, of a relation of alleged holy men, to evil things like snakes: if Satan is sometimes portrayed as a “snake,” and if a snake caused the fall of man, note that Moses lifts up a serpent in the wilderness. Then Moses turns things into snakes. While even Jesus, in common translation, commands his followers to be sly or “wise” as “serpents.” These seem like directions for preachers … and for evil ones especially.)
Finally there are so many, many, very, very close relations – really, functional identities – between allegedly Christian miracles, and black, snaky magic. The only difference for now, seems to be that Judeo-Christian magic was for the time, slightly bigger, stronger magic. Though of course there seems to be much relation still; indeed, making bread appear in empty baskets, seems rather exactly like modern stage magicians making rabbits appear in empty hats. Though examples of magic and magician-like activity were given different names in the Bible, when worked in the name of God – “soothsayers” were renamed “prophets” and so forth – a rose by any other name would smell as sweet (as Shakespeare said); and a pile of dung would basically smell the same, no matter what the name (Poststructuralism to the contrary).
So how many sins are there, in promises of physical miracles? How closely specifically, were they always related to – and really, simply a version of – belief in magic and miracles? In fact, we must here and now simply declare that “Christian” belief in physical miracles, was simply, a false Christianity, that believed really, not in God, but in Magic. It was a false Christianity, following a false idea of Christ. An idea of Christ that borrowed far too much, from belief in Magic. So that traditional Christianity was really, following a false Christ; and a Magician, a sorcerer.
y) How firm is this? Can even the churches learn to see and confess this? Pope John Paul II it seems to some, began to embrace “Anthropology”; while Anthropology insists that most religion came historically, from magic, “magical thinking.”
Often in fact, the encounters of Magicians and Jews and so forth, look merely like a contest between magicians.
Jesus Christ – as Magician?
z) Promises of miracles – as we will be seeing here and elsewhere – are not entirely reliable. In fact, the historically, massively popular idea of priests and holy men, as miracle-workers, really mistakes them for, mixes them up with, sees them as … magicians. Those preachers who presented themselves as miracle-workers merely accepted a popular delusion. And became sinful deceivers, magicians; worse than stage-magicians, in that preachers’ false delusions and deceptions and illusions, were usually presented very, very seriously; as the word of God himself.
So that, finally? We must find that the Bible’s warnings of “magicians” taking over religion, deceiving the whole world, were quite true: and most of historical Christianity – Catholicism, Orthodoxy, and Protestantism included; with their promises of miracles, and spirits – was the fulfillment of that warning.
And finally? Shatteringly? Could even the common image most believers have of Jesus Christ – as miracle-worker after all; and/or as “spiritual” leader – be … a magician? A False Christ? In fact, they are. The common idea people have of a miracle-working Jesus Christ, is actually a False Christ; a magician.
By the way first note that God allows magicians – and bad “shepherds” – to co-exist (above).
Surprisingly too, part of the Bible – or at least one gospel, Matthew – allows that “wise men” – or as they were often called, “Magi” – gave Jesus “gifts.” But while you read the following remember that the word “Magi” is from the same word as “magic”; the root being the “magus” or wise man … or magician:
“Wise men [“or astrologers; Greek magi] from the East came to Jerusalem, asking, ‘Where is the child who has been born king of the Jews? For we observed his star at its rising'” (Mat. 2.1-2). “It is I, Jesus.… I am the root of the descendent of David, the bright morning star” (Rev. 22.16 NRSV).
Preachers have tried to hide this. To establish that our holy men – and they themselves – are not magicians, sorcerers – they have tried for example, asserting – as a red herring – that any references to Jesus for example, as a false “magician,” refer specifically and only, to one “Bar-Jesus” (Acts 13.6):
“As far as Paphos, they met a certain magician, a Jewish false prophet, named Bar-Jesus…. The magician Elymas (for that is the translation of his name) opposed them… But Paul, filled with the Holy Spirit, looked intently at him and said ‘you will be blind for a while, unable to see the sun.’ Immediately mist and darkness came over him…'” (Acts. 13.6-8; cf. temporary psychological blindness from stress).
Yet to be sure, the regular understanding of Jesus himself, that we got in church, was definitely a miracle-worker; and therefore, was in effect, of a magician.
Thus, shatteringly, the main Jesus Christ that most Christians, have been following all over the world, was a False Christ.
Just as the Bible warned, the whole world – and most holy men too – were long ago deceived by “false prophet”s and “magician”s, and a False Chrsit; the historical, mainstream priestly idea of Jesus as a worker of physical miracles, or a dealer in “spirit”s, was in effect, a presentation of a False Christ; of a magician Christ. But while the whole world was thus deceived, we can now go on and simply pass through this painful moment – to learn to see at last, the second, truer, more “mature” and productive vision or understanding of Christ; not as worker of giant miracles, but as a more humble working, practical man; the “Son of Man,” more than anything.
But what about those events? The events that appear to be miracles in the Bible itself? We will find that the Bible itself began to all but take away promises of miracles in some passages; as when St. Paul asked, “do all work miracles?” But then too, the Bible itself agreed that things in the Bible could be taken as “figures,” “allegories,” “parables” – which are all related to, versions of, extended metaphors in effect. But we will find that metaphors were not metaphors for “spiritual” things; actually, they metaphors for natural things. (See Bulfinch’s Mythology; Chapter XXXV, Origin of Mythology, “the Physical Theory”); Modern Library/Random House, p. 241).
But is the Bible itself then, false? In fact we will see, the Bible is true … but true in a way our priests have not until now, seen. In fact, we will find that if we look more closely at the old descriptions of alleged miracles, we will find that the Bible offered descriptions, which shows that the old wonders could be natural, rather than supernatural. As we will see in our writing on Lazarus, and immortality. If “fire” came from the sky, then … after all, that was about meteors; or volcanoes; or burning oil and other liquids, often poured over high walls; from the heights.
Many priests will try to continue to hold to their ideas of God as supernatural. But as it turns out, this kind of natural explanation, is the only solution consistent with the whole, full Bible itself; that is consistent with every word of the Bible itself, and with the Science that it advocated. And this is not to refute the Bible; indeed in fact, the Bible is coming true. Our old sense of God is suddenly … coming down to earth again. We are beginning to see God, good, in the world, flesh, around us; as foretold, at last.
As foretold, we can get to a “new” and better understanding, appearance (cf. “parousia”) of God and good.
But to be sure, we first have to “see” that there were some problems, sins, errors, in much traditional Christianity. In many of the old promises of miracles; errors if not in scripture itself, then in our priests’ understanding of scripture. The fact is, we will have found earlier, anyone who promised supernatural miracles, was just wrong. The informal and scientific evidence, the “witness,” the “signs,” against miracles, we have shown, is overwhelming. Look around you: do you see anyone at all walking on water? Or moving real actual literal physical “mountains”? Or making bread appear out of thin air? Today, we don’t see these things happening at all; even though parts of the Bible that seemed to promise such things all the time, were quoted to us constantly in church, over and over. Parts of the Bible described all these miracles and more – and told us that we ourselves, “whosoever” just trusted and “believ”ed and followed, would be able to all these things, whatever “works” Jesus did … “great things than these”; including “whatever” we “ask” in fact. So that we should be able, if the promises of many sermons are true, to ask for a huge miracle, “now,” and get it. Right now; today. Though any intelligent and honest person would admit, that they themselves have never seen such things, of the full size and scale millions of sermons said or implied.
Some huge promises were definitely made to us by millions of preachers … but clearly it now seems, many of – most of – those promises – of huge, reliable miracles especially – were simply, false. Clearly, some mistakes were made in our “Faith” and/or Religion/ and/or Judeo-Christianity; some delusions and even lies have ruled major parts of Religion, including Christianity.
Is this possible? At first this seems impossible, or heretical, to say this. But in fact, we will have found here, the Bible itself allows us to say this. Indeed, the Bible itself warned constantly that there would be many bad mistakes and sins in essentially “all” our holiest men and angels, and their prophesies, promises; even in their words and sayings and promises, which they said came from the Lord.
But we have said this before; mentioned biblical warnings about false things in essentially all of Christianity. So let us be more specific now: the Bible warned specifically about … “magicians,” “sorcerers,” “enchantments,” and so forth, infecting our religion. In fact, we will find that magical thinking and “delusions” in fact, long ago infected Christianity, right from the start; and were deeply integrated into our “faith”; even in our idea of Christ Jesus, as a worker of “miracles.”
But while in fact, the whole world has long been dominated by a false idea of Christ – a False or anti-Christ in effect, who is essentially actually, a vision from Magic – we can now expose that. And move on. To a second and better vision, coming, of Christ.
Can there be magicians, sorcerers, infecting Christianity itself? The Bible itself warned us specifically, that among the many false things that will have infected Christianity, were especially, things from Magic: “magicians,” “witch”es, “sorcerers,” “soothsayers,” “augurs,” “fortune-tellers” and associated “false prophets”; “enchant”erers, “necromancers,” and so forth. Specifically then, the Bible warned that elements of belief in Magic would have infected religion, Christianity. And so now, suppose we go looking for specifically, just exactly that: signs, evidence of the influence of belief in Magic and what Anthropologists call “magical thinking,” or of “sorcerers” and magicians …. in traditional Christianity. Or more specifically, in promises of …miracles.
Indeed, as it turns out, even the Catholic Church has admitted and warned against “syncretism,” or the incorporation of elements of other false belief systems, other religions, into Christianity; and it now appears certain, we will show here and now, that among the many other beliefs that were in Christianity even from ancient times, were specifically, we will show, from Magic; belief in sorcerers, magicians, and so forth.
First, we will 1) note there are in point of fact, many Biblical warnings that various magical persons had often been found infiltrating Jewish, Israeli culture and religion. Then we show that 2) in fact, those magicians and so forth, were not entirely, successfully excluded from Christian religion … and even the Bible itself. First, a) even Jewish kings like Saul, at times banned “witches” and so forth … but then, other times employed their services. While b) indeed, many of the mainstream Jewish holy men – like “prophets” and their doctrines of a “holy spirit.,” doctrines even of “resurrection” and so forth, bear striking structural similarities … to classic doctrines from Magical lore. Indeed, c) Jesus himself was said to have gotten “gifts” from the “Magi”; another early word for all wise men, including “magicians” especially. And indeed too, c) many early “miracles” are clearly, Judeo-Christian versions of in effect, some classic magical tricks: not only Moses’ turning his staff into a “snake,” rather exactly like the magicians around him as the Bible itself noted; but also indeed, d) the miracles attributed by many to even Jesus himself – like making lots of bread appear in mostly empty baskets – bear very, very close relations to the classic, archetypal magical trick: making a rabbit appear in an empty hat.
So what will we say here? Actually, we will find that 3) to be sure, (most of?) the Bible itself, seems to have just managed to avoid endorsing Magic; indeed, 4) most of the Bible rigorously condemns magic, sorcerers, enchantments, and so forth.
And yet at the same time, as we noted here first of all, the Bible also often warned that there were already magicians and so forth, all around Jews and Christians; and the Bible therefore had to work hard, to keep them out of the Judeo-Christian canon. Indeed in fact, sadly, the Bible itself finally warned that 5) eventually, deceitful “false” figures, including known magicians and others who knew “sorcery,” would eventually, take over the religion of essentially “all” the earth (Rev. 13 & 18.23: “And all nations were deceived by thy sorcery”).
So the whole earth is supposed to be seen one “day” to have been hypnotized in its religion, in what it “worships,” in part, by a “false Christ,” an “antichrist” – and by sorcery. 6) But while this is so, one day, we are to be allowed to see this; see that the whole world and what it “worships” has been “deceived,” under a strong delusion or illusion or false dream or lie; or a sorcerer’s “enchantment.” And 7) at that time, at last, the old false holy men and angels – including the False Christ, and his various “sorcer”ies – are supposed to be exposed, and defeated. While 8) we are about to note here and now, that in fact, the most common idea of Jesus Christ that we got from many preachers in church, was in fact, a false idea of Christ; in fact, a False Christ. More 9) specifically, the old belief in a Christ that worked “miracles” – making bread appear out of thin air and so forth – was actually, an infestation, a takeover, of false magical beliefs, magical thinking, by sorcerers, of the Judeo Christian Tradition.
Nearly all of 10) Christianity was taken over from the start, we will find, by magical thinking; or by indeed, the foretold “sorcerers” and “magicians.” But while this is so, at the same time, devastating as this is – our finding that in fact most of the world has already been following the foretold false, magical Christ, for two thousand years – finally, we can here and now at last expose the magicians, examples of magical thinking in Christianity. And begin to see, here and now, the foretold second, better, more accurate vision, coming of Christ, at last. Here and now.
The Bible long ago warned that there were elements of magic all around Jews and Christians; and that indeed finally magicians would deceive nearly all the world, including Christianity. (Among many other “false” things; see false priests, prophets, churches, etc.). And in fact, we will say here that in effect, promises of miracles really were in effect, elements of magic: the common (if mistaken) picture of Jesus as making bread appear out of thin air, is very much an idea from magical thinking, and stage magic: it is actually essentially the same as making a rabbit appear out of an allegedly empty hat; this specific example of bread appear out of thin air for example, is “conjuring”; appearing to make material things appear out of thin air.
In fact we will find here a startling fact; elements of magic – or just say, magicians, sorcerers – as foretold, long since entered Judeo-Christian religion. And took over Christianity itself. Indeed, Anthropology would probably assert they were there at the very origins of Christianity; belief in magic being at the root of Religion. Indeed, we will show here, magicians long ago entered Christianity, especially its priesthood … and were never successfully, fully, eliminated. In fact, specifically, essentially all the promises of “miracles” – which remain a prominent element of many Christian sermons … are essentially, elements of the ancient belief in Magic and magicians and sorcerers. So that nearly all our priests – who promised miracles after all – have been in effect, worshipers not of God, but of magic and magicians. And those who see Jesus Christ as worker of supernatural miracles, are actually, the foretold worshipers of a foretold, False Christ. (Cf. “Bar Jesus,” who is not who we are talking about here).
It seems impossible. But as foretold, we will show here, the whole world has been dominated by a False Christ; and his “sorcerer” and “magical” associates. Since in effect, when our preachers saw Jesus as a worker or “miracles,” and promised us “miracles” on their own, in effect, their concept of Jesus was heavily influenced, hypnotized, by ancient magical beliefs. So that our priests did not present us with God and truth; but with a vision of magical things; with magic. With a Jesus who was, basically, a magician. With a Jesus who – they improperly claimed the Bible originally said – made real material bread appear out of thin air … exactly like a stage magician making rabbits appear in ostensibly empty hats.
Thus indeed, our miracle-promising priests gave us a false, magical-influenced picture or image of Jesus. But while this is so, we here and now can finally, escape from the false image of Jesus they gave us and themselves. To discover at last, the second, better vision, coming, of Christ. As foretold, most of preachers were long ago, essentially deceived by … Magic and magicians. But while this is so, now we can expose this, the great deception of the world … and go on to see as foretold, the right and better idea of God and good.
Long ago, evil magicians took over Christianity. But now it is time to at last put them aside, and come to another, second, better vision of God. One based not on traditional Magic, and magicians, enchanters, miracles and evil spirits; but on the science of God.
END OF BOOK 5
JESUS AS A MAGICIAN?
Resemblances Between Jesus as
Worker of “Miracles,”
Working Tricks/”False Signs”
Until recently, most preachers worldwide, in nearly every Christian church, presented Jesus as a miracle-worker. But aa) remember, that there were many key parts of the Bible that backed science – which says there are no miracles. While there were parts that explicitly questioned whether all work miracles after all:
“Do all work miracles?” (1 Corin. 12.29).
And while accounts of apparent miracles are apparently found in many of the gospels themselves, bb) this does not assure us that they are good – even if they are in a “gospel.” Because indeed, St. Paul – more or less; in his usual equivocal language – warned that only his writings or gospels – which did not stress miracles – were reliable. While he added that turning to any of those other gospels – that by the way stressed miracles – might not be good. That even cc) “gospels” might present “another Jesus” or Christ, than the right one:
“I am astonished that you are so quickly deserting him who called you in the face of Christ and turning to a different gospel – not that there is another gospel, but there are some who trouble you and want to pervert the gospel of Christ. But if anyone is preaching to you a gospel contrary to that which you received, let him be accursed” (Gal. 1.6-8).
“I betrothed you to Christ to present you as a pure bride to her one husband. But I am afraid that
as the serpent deceived Eve by his cunning, your thoughts will be led astray
from a sincere and pure devotion to Christ. For if someone comes and preaches another Jesus than the one we preached, or if you receive a different spirit from the one you received, or if you accept a different gospel from the one you accepted, you submit to it readily enough. I think that I am not in the least inferior to these superlative apostles. Even if I am unskilled in speaking, I am not in knowledge” (2 Corin. 11.2-5).
It is indeed possible and inevitable, for bad things to enter and even take over, even Judeo-Christianity. Indeed, God said there had always been such things; even “another Jesus” than the right one, dd) a False Christ; infecting even the first Christian churches, even those under direct supervision of major Apostles; like Paul.
And indeed, too, ee) we were warned that related to this, the Bible warned that magic and magicians would be entering Judeo-Christianity. And ff) the story of Exodus shows Moses’ miracles and the acts of magicians, in a similar light.
Indeed, gg) we will soon show, on looking at what they were like, structurally, that promises of “miracles” were in effect, the foretold intrusion of “magic,” “sorcery,” into Christianity. Supernatural interpretations of the wonders of the Bible, were the foretold insertion of false magical tricks, evil magical thinking, deep into the heart of the Christian tradition.
And so hh) indeed, we will finally find, in effect, the most common idea the people have had, of a Jesus Christ as a miracle-worker, worker of supernatural miracles, is in effect, one of the foretold False Christs, the false magicians that we were warned were already, beginning even in the first days of Christianity itself (1 John 4, etc.).
But ii) if so, then after all, one “day” we are to “see” through the delusions, lies, deceptions. And many of us are beginning even now to see through them. Indeed, we will expose the false Christ next; and reveal the right one, at last. The Jesus who advocated … science.
jj) Indeed, there were many simple, superstitious people and preachers, who came after Jesus – who tried to make him into, see him as, in effect, a magician. Consider Matthew’s account for example.
Curiously for example, in Matthew’s account, Jesus himself, at birth, was said to have been visited – and even given “gifts” – by three men. Who are variously called the “Three Wise Men”; but who were also called, in the original Greek transliterated in context, the “magoys”; or in many English translations, the “Magi.” A word that comes from the same root, as “magician.”
Who were the “Magi”?
The word is sometimes translated “wise men.” But more exactly, the word “Magi” is from a Persian word, “Magus.” Being a Persian word for a “wise” man to be sure. But in ancient times, “wise men” – plural, “magi” – meant … mostly “magicians.” Persia indeed, the country to the “East” of Israel, was full of magi … or magicians. Wise men whose beliefs contained many elements we would today call magical thinking. (Including alchemy, and so forth?).
First therefore, the “Three Magi” – were from the same word as “Magic.”
Both are derived from the word “Magus.” Which was used in Persia, etc., to stand for any kind of local “wise man” – but especially in effect, magicians. (See also cognate “maghdim,” “a Chaldean term meaning wisdom and philosophy”; Ency. Brit., 1998, v. 7, p. 672. The Bible refers specifically to Chaldeans often, and refers specifically to their “magicians,” in Dan. 4.7, 5.11).
Although the Bible often condemned magicians, other times – especially in the beginning of the New Testament, curiously – it began to indirectly, almost admit them; and allow them influence.
kk) Shockingly in fact, the Gospel of Matthew suggests that these “Magi” gave Jesus himself, some of their “gifts.” (Mat. 2.1-12). Which were taken to be merely physical objects – “gold and Frankincense and myrrh” (Mat. 2.11). But if you look at the wording of the text in some translations, these gifts might night have exhausted the list of what Jesus was given. (Jesus being offered “Gifts, gold and frankincense and Myrrh”; or gifts of gold, frankincense and Myrrh?). Perhaps in any case, these objects had magical significance for their culture. In any case there is nothing in the English text that suggests that the category of “gifts” was exhausted by this short list; perhaps there were hints of other “gifts” too.
In any case: Jesus himself was given “gifts” by the Magi … or give gifts by magicians.
ll) To be sure no doubt, this incident might have been an embarrassment to many Christians. As evidenced by the fact that most Bibles do not translate “Magi” as magicians; or even leave it untranslated just as “Magi”: but instead interpret it “Wise Men.” Thus hiding all this from us.
mm) No doubt it was embarrassing to many Christians to have Jesus meeting with magicians and getting gifts from them. So that this was typically hidden from the people. Indeed, strikingly, amazingly, the other gospels – as suggested by the fact that the other gospels, leave the Magi out. They do not mention them; they did not really have the Magi in them. The other gospels went to the extraordinary lengths of … changing this incident or emphasis; the Gospels of Mark and Luke not mentioning it at all in their first pages; only an “angel” Gabriel of the “Lord” addressing Mary early before conception (Luke 1.26); the babe in Luke, merely hearing John the Baptist, in the womb; while the “Rich he has sent empty away” (Luke 1.53). With no embarrassing or revealing mention of the Magicians; indeed they are very conspicuously absent (given their huge popularity in Christmas pageants).
Indeed suddenly, Luke changes the whole magical moment around; rather than being visited by three “magi,” in Luke the Magi are gone … and Mary is visited by … three “shepherds” (Luke 2. 8-19).
While in the (beginning of?) the Gospel of John, there is no specific account of the physical, birth of Jesus at all; who only seems to spring full-born, straight from the “Word.”
And so, by one means or another, in nearly all contemporary Bibles, the magicians – and you might say, the magician Jesus – have apparently, disappeared. Or made themselves invisible, you might say. Indeed, they all but disappeared even in Matthew, thanks to some semantic sleight-of-hand and often deliberate “confusions” of “tongue”; few if any ordinary Bible readers would ever have the etymological acumen, to note the original word “magi,” instead of “Wise Men”; and fewer still would recognize its relation to the word, “magician.”
Thus, whatever magicians there might be in early Christianity, soon managed to make themselves invisible. By some semantic illusionism, and some semantic “twists.” Simply translating “magi” as “wise men” – or leaving “magi” untranslated – was enough to render the term opaque, and thus hide the magicians from plain sight. Thanks to our very subtle “scribes,” no doubt, in large part. Who oversaw the writing and translation of the Bible. Disappeared into a “word.”
The name or word “magician” thereby, does not officially appear therefore, intimately connected with Jesus, from birth; the connection has been disappeared by our religious translators. Though Matthew apparently, tried to put it in. To connect Jesus to magic. (And/or ancient Persian wisdom).
nn) Yet was the magical view of Jesus, ever totally suppressed? If you look at the “works” he does, just like Moses, Jesus worked many miracles, which (like Moses), looked very much like typical magic tricks, often.
Making bread appear in mostly empty baskets, sounds exactly like a typical magicians’ tricks: making rabbits appear in empty hats. (See also the Bible noting resemblances between miracles of Moses and Aaron, and magicians).
oo) Today of course, the very faithful believer, will not want to face the possibility that the Biblical view of Jesus is or was, partially connected to belief in magic, at times. And indeed, we will not call Jesus himself a magician, here; not at all. More likely we should say, that many around Jesus were interested in connecting him to conventional magical ideas, common in the ancient world. And many of those who wanted to do this, were very, very good at making things appear, or disappear, at will, in our texts, and in our minds.
pp) In any case, what about the miracles said to be worked by Jesus? We will not deny them at all; but suggest that our linguistic conjurors, enchanterers, might better translate such things in the future; translate them in such a way as to make them less magical. And more compatible with natural phenomena, that can be “confirmed” at last, by science. They should not translate them as being simple physical phenenomena or miracles, nor as spiritual things; but as say, metaphors for natural and technological things.
qq) How many of the alleged miracles of Jesus were really related to, derived from, magical thinking? Consider especially, the idea of resurrection. It seems likely that there were in fact, magical ideas in the minds of many of the early editors of the Bible; even though they took the time to (partially) eliminate traces of them. Consider for example, the common interpretation of the Bible, that Jesus was raising the dead; and had been himself raised from the dead, “resurrected,” late in life. We will later show how these incidents can be taken as natural, scientifically-verifiable events. Even with close conformity to the Bible itself.
But the most common idea of resurrection though in any case – literally, physically dead people, rising out of their graves, like Lazarus – really recalls the influence of belief in “necromancers” and other magicians; or persons who likewise, were said to raise the dead, in order to consult with them (about the future, etc.).
To be sure, necromancers were often firmly forbidden by the more educated elements of Judaism (Saduccess?); in the Bible itself. But early Christians were not quite fully under the authority of Jewish “law” any more; thanks to Pharisees, and Gentile influence; and later Paul and others. And so we see many scenes with Jesus, acting very much like a necromancer; raising Lazarus, etc.. Which seems to raise the dead too.
Was the image of Jesus the miracle-worker, then – and especially, as raiser of the dead – really a popular misunderstanding, confused by residual belief in magic? Specifically, necromancy? In fact, when we look later into the details of the Biblical text, we will find that the text is absolutely, consistently, readable, as something else than a simple raising of dead bodies; or necromancy. The popular vision then is undoubtedly influenced by magic.
Yet the Biblical text itself, we will find, appears rather more sophisticated. There are many questions in the account of Lazarus, whether he is really physically dead, actually. Jesus himself says his illness is not fatal; and if he later says he is “dead,” then Jesus is in the habit of using the word “dead” as a metaphor; to mean “dead to” this or that (as the Prodigal Son was “dead” to his father when he was bad).
Technically then, we will find that if we look at the text of the Bible itself, as we have it today, it never quite even firmly portrays any wonder as a supernatural miracle; and it never labels Jesus as a miracle-worker at all. Technically, it could all be metaphors, and so forth. Though finally we need to see these things not as metaphors for spiritual things, but for natural and technological processes. (As we will see them; in our books on Immortality and Resurrection).
rr) Given all those common people who usually interpreted Jesus as a miracle-worker – in effect a magician- though, there would have been, in Jesus’ time, many rumors that in effect, Jesus was after all, really, merely, a magician. And early authors of the Bible, undoubtedly had to deal with, refute, such rumors. And so, perhaps to indirectly at least address or mention such rumors, to try to distract us from criticism of Jesus as a magician, significantly, in the New Testament there appears a story, about someone rather like Jesus in many ways; a “Jesus” who is a magician in fact. But one who is ultimately, carefully noted to be, not the true Jesus. But a “barred” Jesus, you might call him: the magician “Elymas,” (Acts 13.6-12); who was also called … “Bar-Jesus”
To be sure, here, the magician “Jesus,” was firmly condemned; as opposed to Christianity, and made “blind” by Saul/Paul (Acts. 13. 9 ff). Yet perhaps the name was built up here, to deal with persistent rumors, a popular rumor of Jesus himself; that there was a “Jesus” who was just a magician and necromancer. Thus this story attempted to disappear any criticism of or tales of Jesus as a magician – presenting all such stories as being about in effect, someone else other than Jesus himself; someone with a similar “name.” Thus, any bad tradition about Jesus, was partially acknowledged to be sure – but gotten rid of, or disappeared, by way of a ringer, a red herring or distraction; a story that firmly suggested that any such rumors of any magical Jesus, was about another person, entirely.
But we should not be taken in; not allow anyone to “bar” any nascent criticism of Jesus himself, or the image we were given of Jesus, practicing “miracles” or in effect, magic. We need to look beyond “Bar-Jesus,” and carefully examine even the common images of Jesus Christ himself, and his many appearances in the Bible; to see if any of them are also bad. Or magical. Note that Paul himself, on confronting Bar-Jesus, chastised him for some kind of strange slight of hand; of “making crooked the straight paths of the Lord” (Acts 13.12); so that the issue of straight story-telling, a straight representation of Jesus, seems structurally indicated here again.
Then too by the way, the word “Bar” means “son of”; (cf. “Barabbas,” “Son of Abba,” or “Son of Father”; yet another bad version of Jesus?). So that this story of “Bar Jesus” many also be intended to deal in a veiled, alternate universe, doppleganger way, with occasional persons who would claim to be the “son of” Jesus himself; and therefore, heir to the throne of Christianity. And who might try to change doctrine and so forth.
All such occasions of course, would have been troublesome for establishing a clean reputation for Jesus himself; and so they were in effect, only very indirectly mentioned, and in very veiled format. In particular, the names or titles were left untranslated, so as to appear to be proper names with no meaning; few today known that “Bar Jesus” means “son of Jesus”; while then too, even that name was immediately effaced; as the magician is next given another name entirely; “Elymas” (meaning perhaps “sage” or “wise man” one source speculates). While the next honestly to be sure notes a translation issue here:
“But the magician Elymas (for that is the translation of his name) opposed them” (Acts.l 13.8).
When there is an issue about a title, or description, for a man, often titles are left untranslated, so that they will be opaque and look to most people like a mere proper name with no meaning to it. (Cf. controversy and spindoctoring over “Simon”/”Petra”s name; translated “Peter,” or “Rock,” and not – another common Hebrew/Aramaic name – “Head.” To imply, head of the church). Yet even Paul himself of course, has his name shifting back and forth from “Saul” – reputedly the opponent of the Jewish church, and perhaps of early Christianity – to “Paul” – the great advocate. Indeed, to Jewish Christians he might appear bad; attacking Jewish “law”; but in Gentile Christianity, a good person; hence again, two different “names” to deal with this. In this case, we are told – in a more accurate way – that these are not two different persons, but merely one person … who has two different sides. Or (less accurately?) one with … a transforming moment. In any case, there are some strange shifts going on, in similar ways, all around. Just as Saul (remembering too that King Saul who believes in magic?) sees Jesus and suffers blindness and becomes Paul, so likewise, Bar Jesus the magician, when confronted by Paul, Elymas, and becomes blind for a moment. In Acts 13.11.
So that oddly those who meet Jesus or Christianity become … the seeing, but blind, and in the “dark.” At least a while). While in the meantime, all around, names and people and roles, are shifting constantly; winking in and out of existence and status. Probably reflecting the still-chaotic and not yet jelled state of Christianity; as it dealt with many various rumors and characterizations of even its holiest characters.
In any case though, again, the element of all this magical linguistic chaos and shape-shifting that interests us here, is that – just as in the case of Jesus getting “gifts” from the “Magi” – yet another rumor of a “magician” Jesus, very nearly surfaces into the text … but is kept down by carefully leaving critical titles untranslated; while even those are then immediately buried. Though perhaps, if there is a resurrection to be seen again; indeed, we are even now unearthing many things; “another Jesus” as Paul said, than many have been allowed to clearly “see” previously.
ss) At times clearly, our holy men, the scribes that wrote our Bibles, played word games, semantics, “double-“language: or “tongues“; semantic conjuring, semantic sleight-of-hand, with us. Looking at all the times the Bible mentions magic, we find it often lending itself to two or three interpretations on the subject; seeming at times on the surface to ban magic at least from sight; giving it a proper name. Or only faintly hint at its presence in Christianity; or say, other times, to re-admit magic; albeit under a new “whitewash”ing name.
So for example, the Bible at first condemns, but then re-admits under another name, the basic but banned idea of magical “conjuring,” making things appearing out of thin air. aaa) Not as “magic,” but renamed, whitewashed, as “miracle.” Or then bbb) the Bible bans the idea of “necromancy,” or “conjuring” up the dead … but then readmits it after a name change, in a Christianized, sanitized form … as “raising the dead,” and “resurrection.” And cccc) then, as for the – often banned – idea of
telling the future, “augur”ing, “soothsaying,” and so forth, fortune-telling, that too is re-admitted under a new whitewashed name; as “prophesy.” While finally ddd) “spiritualism” is readmitted … as “spirituality.” Just as eee) the acts of magicians in Egypt are readmitted as the “miracles” of Moses; and fff) the magical aspects of Jesus, are readmitted (partially) as the acceptance of gifts from the “Magi.”
To be sure, ggg) no doubt, there are minor differences between ancient magical beliefs and Christianity; which priests will always dishonestly make a great deal about. Yet of course, God warned about priests; who killed Jesus. So that hhh) finally, on looking at the structural and historical relationships between magic and religion, this mere semantic name game, should not fool us any longer. We should be prepared to recognize the evidence of the text: that while much of Christianity – the elite authors of the Bible – made a definite effort to disguise or rid itself of connections to magic, there were evidently historically – and in the popular imagination many residual connections with it.
And to this very day, the fine print written by educated priests and scholars, in the Bible, attempts to distance itself from magic … and we will see, even “miracle.” Allowing that the “wind” for example, might have blown back the Red Sea for Moses; etc..
Yet to be sure, the magical Jesus is always just under the surface of the text. To be unearthed and revived, over and over, in fact, in the popular idea of Jesus: Jesus, making bread appear out of thin air, like a magician making a rabbit appear in an empty hat; Jesus walking on water; Jesus raising the dead like a good necromancer; and so on.
Finally, maybe the best thing to say here, is that there are many shifty, “twist”ing things going on in our holy texts; so that perhaps the best thing to say is to note that though the Bible marginally admitted say, fortune-telling as “prophesy,” finally, it began to condemn even, “prophets.” Finally then, even the whitewashed, Judaized, Christianized, marginally-acceptable titles of magical roles – of soothsayer, turned “prophet” for example. – were in turn, condemned. As the Bible itself coming to warn even of many “false” things even in “prophets.”
While indeed, even the “Good” Apostle Paul, confesses he still has a bad side; he is not yet “perfect.”
As indeed, they did.
Obviously though, there was a problem with the radical indecisiveness of the Bible, which expressed itself in radical ambiguity in the text; translators of the Bible, tried to cover up, conceal this intrusion of Magic into our holiest traditions, our texts, by changing the words a bit; and trying to make “distinctions without a difference,” as Logic calls them. Calling magical tricks “Miracles” instead of “magic”; necromancy, “raising the dead,” etc.. Yet … finally, all this did, was allow bad, false magic, into Christianity.
No doubt, it was useful to retain magical ideas, to appeal to the masses. At the same time though, at some point, as the people become better educated, the retention of magical ideas, actively holds the people back. As we will see (in the Harm Done).
tt) As for Jesus himself, and his status as miracle-worker or magician … or even, his status as Christ? When asked who he was, aaa) Jesus was extremely ambiguous; he by far most often asked others “who” they said he was. As far as his status as a miracle-worker or magician, Jesus was bbb) often pictured in the gospels, the writings of his apostles, as working wonders – that in one reading can be taken as supernatural magical miracles … but in another reading, not. Jesus is ccc) even pictured at times, telling his followers not to tell anyone that he is working miracles, and ddd) not to tell anyone that he is the Christ (Mat. 16.16-20; cf. ringer in Mat. 24.23). Those eee) who call him the Christ or Son of God or such, are therefore people who did not obey him. And indeed, they are normally “unclean” people, gentiles or people with “unclean spirits” or demons in them (including even Peter, Mat. 16.16-23); fff) then Jesus does his best to exorcise the demons from such people, ggg) telling people there are many false Christs and so forth (Mat. 24.24, Mark 13.22). Though hhh) many were to say that “faith commands us to believe he was the foretold Christ and Messiah, Jesus told us to have no more “faith” than a “grain of mustard seed,” and finally asks to be judged, evaluated, not by the words or testimonies of others, but by his “works,” telling us in fact we do not even need to believe in him, but only works (John 10.37-8).
The popular miracle-working or almost magical Jesus of the people and of many sermons therefore, is very, very different from the far more ambiguous and modest words of the Jesus in the Bible. While then too as above, iii) the text often hints at (warns about?) false magical beliefs, just under the surface. Clearly jjj) the text was designed by its authors, to be deeply poetic and ambiguous in its language, and open to several quite different understandings of Jesus. On the surface, he appears to some to be a miracle-worker; but just below that there is much fine print; and then below that in turn, are hints that some kind of enchantment or magic illusionism, is at work here. Today in fact, kkk) some scholars suggest the notion of Jesus and God, are really just outright fictions, “white lies,” like the story of Santa Claus; designed to keep “child”ren quiet; while the text itself both presents that tale, but at the same time, to those who can read well enough, it also selfdecontructs, confesses its own sins, and shows us an exit from the illusions and delusions.
For many, lll) there is therefore only one conclusion: that the pictures, vision of Christ as working “miracles,” was really an intrusion of the false traditions of Magic – of a magician in effect; with all his illusions – into our own religion. And many today might well prefer to be introduced to the Jesus who was far more ambiguous and modest, as to his own status and abilities. Or to indeed, the “son of Man“; who is supposed to work many wonders, but whose name after all, emphasizes in a way, not his divinity, but his humanness; the name often meaning in effect, “mortal.”
Today we should say that in an era of freedom of religion, the status of Jesus is still left as an open question, for you to decide. Though to be sure, preachers, “fathers,” are quite jealously protective of their “children,” and seem in no hurry to have them – or even allow them to – “mature” or grow up, to any point of view other than viewing Jesus as indeed, a miracle working Christ; though that means in effect, believing in Magic, and following a magician.
34) While for that matter, science – and especially Anthropology – we will have seen, really tells us in effect, that most current religion, derived historically from ancient magical beliefs. And that probably
all Christian promises of miracles, spirits, are absolutely continuous with – even the same as – ancient promises of spirits, and bad Magic. (As opposed to good magic which was proto-science).
35) Finally, we will see especially, just as the Bible noted similarities, even occasional identities, between the tricks of magicians and the miracles of say, Moses, modern observers will note that there is another striking resemblance between promises of “miracles” and modern stage magic tricks; in that neither of them really work, the way they presented themselves. Today, conjuring things out of thin air and so forth, can neither can be duplicated, or confirmed … except by way of mere stage magician tricks: sleight-of-hand tricks, smoke and mirrors, springs and hidden compartments. Which alone allow us to appear to make rabbits appear in empty hats. (Cf. however, invisible radio waves, etc.).
uu) Our solicitous preachers, self-appointed representatives of the Lord, have constantly assured us solemnly, that everything is fine – “sacred,” “holy” – in our churches. Yet to be sure, the Bible itself noted that one day or another, we are supposed to … uncover sorceries, many false things, enchantments and delusions, in our churches. And indeed, one “day” we are supposed to discover that the whole earth has been “deceived,” in its “worship” (Rev. 13). And a) some would say, some of us are seeing this, right now. While b) next, we are to ask our preachers to also “refine” their own vision … and throw the sorcerers and their false Christ and illusions, at last, out of our Temples. To cut those who believe in Magic, off from our truer traditions.
Many should simply say that belief in miracles, is belief in magic. (Cf. the song or saying, “Jesus is Magic”). But finally, to see or say this, is not to destroy religion; but rather, many would say, to pass through the fire of self-criticism of one’s childhood beliefs; and to begin to attain “judgement.” To learn to separate the good and true things in religion, at last. To separate the false things, from the things really from God. The False Christ, from the true one. And thus to be at last released from bondage to false ideas, a false Lord. To find the second and better vision, Coming, of Jesus, at last.
vv) To be sure, though, some preachers, and many New Agers, and many secular believers in supernatural things, will simply admit that elements of Christianity were infected by popular magical belief … but then simply go on to defend both miracles, and magic, and other “supernatural” powers.
Yet aaa) we have found that the Bible itself warned about that. While then bbb) too, we add now the Bible told us to honor “science.” While science has shown that most magical beliefs are mostly false, or untrue to the natural world, as is has meaning to us today.
While indeed ccc) too, historically, many very early scientific investigators outside the Bible itself, often investigated early claims of “healings” and other miracles. In both Religion and Magic, and pseudo medicine, faith-healings, etc… And these investigators found that most faith healers, of whatever ilk – be they religious, or magical, or pseudo-scientific – were usually wrong, and false. Those who promised they were working miracles in fact, were d) at best honestly mistake or deluded; or were e) often even deliberate, conscious cheats and scam artists.
ww) Indeed we will find, such beliefs as derive from belief in Magic, are not only mostly false; but we will show, they do immense, real, physical damage, “harm,” to those who believe them. (As we show in our section on The Harm Done).
xx) Surprisingly though, we can condemn miracles, without ever violating, leaving behind, condemning, the Bible itself. Which always warned there would be false things, magicians, in the midst of our holiest things. And if the Bible presented wonders, after all, we will have seen in our writing on Natural Christianity, always presented them in such a way that they could be interpreted as natural wonders, rather than magic. If the Red Sea was moved, a “wind” blew it … says part of the Bible, itself (Ex. 14.21):
“The LORD drove the sea back by a strong east wind all night, and turned the sea into dry land; and the waters were divided. The Israelites went into the sea on dry ground” (Ex. 14.21).
Though many preachers look down on such mere, humble, mundane wonders, and like to make much bigger, grander, supernatural promises, their promises, we find, do not come true; “do not come to pass,” and must therefore be condemned as false. While in contrast, the natural understanding of wonders, is verified not only by a closer reading of the Bible itself, but also of course by science; which confirms that indeed, the “wind” often blows water in Venice for example, in just the other side of the Mediterranean, so high, that the famous “aqua alta” (SP?) or “high water,” often floods the city.
So strictly speaking, the Bible itself as presently translated, never firmly presented Jesus as magic; but it left in the finer print, qualifications, details and so forth … that allow us to discover a truer, non-magical view of each and every event or wonder in the Bible; views that conform to science. (As we note in our chapters on Natural Religion).
And as for those many preachers who insist on miracles and magic, and who follow the magical Christ? No doubt of course, they and their spirit, will go to Hell forever; as specified according to their own doctrines, for those who believe in a False Christ.
yy) And not only promises of miracles, but also spirituality, promises of “spirit,” are false as well. As we will be showing in our books on over-spirituality.
Looking Ahead to the Second, Fuller Christ
Until today, as foretold, the whole earth remains entranced by a false vision of Christ, and a “magician.” Who works “miracles.” With his many magician, sorcerer, enchanter associates. Particularly perhaps, the ones who we were associated with “Babylon” … and the Persian Magi or magicians sorcery.
Yet that is to change. God told us that one “day” or another, huge sins, sorceries, would be exposed in our holy men. And they would be kicked out of the holy city.
“Outside are the dogs and sorcerers” (Rev. 22.15).
“The false prophet who… had worked the signs” (Rev. 20. 20).
“I will remove from the land the prophets and the unclean spirit. And
if any prophets appear again, their fathers and mothers who bore them will say to them, ‘You shall not life, for you speak lies in the name of the LORD’; and their fathers and their mothers who bore them shall pierce them through when they prophesy” (Zech. 13.2-3).
One day or another, we are supposed to see a “second” and better appearance to Christ and God; an appearance, in the End, in the Second Coming, in the Day of the Lord, in Judgement Day and so forth … that exposes great evils and specifically magicians are to be exposed, even among those who call on the “name” of “Christ,” of the “Lord.”
zz) But then who really, is the second coming, the fuller and better coming of Jesus? Finally, we will have seen earlier, it is the Jesus that gave us science; that told us that there would be a) many “false Christs” around; that told us therefore to b) have no more “faith” than a grain of mustard seed; the Jesus that c) hardly ever told us, himself, that even he himself was for sure, the promised final Christ, but instead far more often merely asked “who do you say I am”; and who told us indeed, to believe in him as the promised, final Christ, only if he produced d) “work,” e) “fruits,” f) “deeds,” g) “proofs,” as h) “observ”ed by opening our real material i) “eyes,” and j) “seeing”; etc..
God had firmly tell us to evaluate holy men by science; but by that standard, nearly all holy men – with their exaggerated promises of physical miracles – are found false. So what did Christianity do next? Next, our preachers attempted to come up with dozens, millions of sermons; sermons designed to be explanations, excuses, as to why miracles might not arrive. And among the most popular explanations was the idea that … maybe God never really promised material, physical wonders or miracles at all; maybe all those promises can be taken to be just metaphors, “figures” of speech, for spiritual things; for the “hope” and “faith” that hearing promises gives us.
The idea that religion, Christianity, should be “spiritual” and not “materialistic,” in fact, came to all but utterly dominate Christianity; to the point that to be religious and to be “spiritual,” are thought to be one and the same; synonyms for each other. And yet, we will have found elsewhere, earlier (in our writings on Over-Spirituality), that there are huge sins and errors and false things, not only in a) promises of miracles, but also b) spirituality. Because as it turns out, if man does not live by “bread alone,” he does live by real material bread, in part. And any theology that claims to guide us safely through all of life, (as they all do in effect, according to their rhetoric), but that is only “spiritual,” and does not take care of the physical side of life, too, actually leads us to physical dysfunctionality … and death. As St. James began to faintly see, in James 2.14-26. And as some have begun to barely see, in histories of asceticism and Gnosticism. (And as we will have seen even more clearly, in our works on the chronic Over-Spirituality of priests). And as we will have also found out earlier, what holds for spirituality, also holds for the main spiritual quality, “faith.”
While then too, we might add here that there is an obvious resemblance between belief in Christian “spirits,” even the “Holy Spirit,” and the countless early cultures that believed in invisible “spirits.” Indeed, some Anthropologists suggest that nearly all religions came from a common root, in Animism. A widespread, ancient superstition that thought that many material things (especially those that moved or were animated in life?), were moved by invisible, animal-like “spirits,” living inside of material things. Like a spirit living in an oak stump, or a ring, etc.. While in our books on over-spirituality, we show that the Bible itself began to note – in James 2.14-26, etc. – that a priestly religion that gives us only mental or spiritual things, turns out to be false – and literally, physically fatal – in real life. (See our books on Over-Spirituality).
Therefore, there are huge sins, in both promises of miracles … and also in the allegedly higher and better vision of God, in “spirituality” and “faith.” These sins were so great, that ultimately all our preachers, in nearly every church, presented a substantially false Christ to the entire world; and deceived themselves, and the entire world, for many centuries.
So what finally, should we now do about traditional Christianity? How can we make it better? How can we see Christ as he really, more fully is? See the true Christ?
First, 1) the way to make it better, is to get it to get over itself, get over its sins of massive Pride and Vanity; in declaring itself the infallible voice of God. Here, we should ask our Christians to read their Bibles a little more closely: the Bible often warned, itself, that there have almost always been great sins even in our holiest men. That there were to be many “dece”ptions, “delusions,” “lies,” “false dreams” – in the heart of our traditional ideas of Christianity, and what we “worship” (Rev. 13, etc.). And then next, 2) we should show Christians and priests, the parts of the Bible that told them not to have too much “faith” in traditional authority, therefore, but rather, instead, to learn the science of God. A science which is not too blindly faithful, but which critically examines things in religion … to root out hypocrisies and evils, even in our holiest saints and angels.
In fact, we have already started to do that here. And 3) even now amazingly, we are starting to see some of the sins of holy men, that God warned about, at last. First, we see what the main lies or errors of our holy men were: first a) our holy men’s promises of miracles. And then there are more sins: next there are our churches’ b) excuses or substitutes for lack of material miracles; especially, their spirituality.
There were great sins in our holiest men. And so what should we now say? We should now say, that one old prophesy or two from the Bible, can now be said to have taken place: 4) just as God warned, we have come to see that “all” our holy men have sinned; 5) and indeed as foretold, even the whole earth was “deceived” in what it worshipped (when it worshipped miracles, and spirituality).
But 6) now, what exactly was the more specific nature of the error, the sin … of say, promises of miracles, and spirituality? We will now show that in effect, these were the foretold … “delusions” and “illusions”; which can now be characterized as the foretold work of the foretold, deceitful, bad “magicians” and “sorcerers,” and “enchanter”ers. Indeed, the promise of miracles for example, is essentially from the influence of … Magic: belief in bread out of thin air, is essentially the same as belief that rabbits can appear out of thin air, in empty hats. Belief in miracles is actually, not real Christianity … but is belief in Magic. Or belief in sorcerers, and magicians. Our miracle-promising preachers were really … the foretold false magicians. While even our “spiritual” preachers were still under illusions and delusions, too.
So what should we say about the traditional preachers, who continuously promised us miracles, for example? Whose religion dominated the whole earth? We would have to say that, just as the Bible warned, the whole world was long ago deceived, by a false “worship”; a false idea of Christ. And by more specifically too, the illusions, delusions, of … magical thinking; magicians.
But if the whole world has long since been deceived, in its religion, by magical thinking – in effect, by magicians, who believed they were priests – then after all, one “day,” we and God are supposed to cast off the magicians. And in fact, many of us are beginning to do that; right now.
As we now find here, in effect then, yet another ancient Biblical prophesy was long ago fulfilled: exactly as Revelations and other books warned, the whole Christian world, was fooled, when it believed in miracles and spirit. Furthermore, it was fooled – exactly as foretold – by belief in Magic. Or in other words, fooled, decieved, as foretold, by in effect, sorcerers or magicians. Magicians who presented themselves to us as or in association with, holy men, leaders of “worship.” But while this is so, finally, When Christians mistakenly came to believe in “miracles” and then “spirituality,” they were undone, captured, by magical thinking; magicians. With their lies and “illusions” and verbal “enchantments,” and so forth.
Clearly in fact, we will find, a) the promise of bread out of thin air, is just a version of stage magicians’ rabbits out of a hat. While b) promises of wonderful “spirits,” mental sensations, merely champion, extoll mere mental sensations, dreams; which can be often not beneficial, but literally fatal illusion, delusion.
In the past, preachers have tried to deny all this; they have gone into Denial. But there is a way to simply face and accept this – and move on to see at last through the delusions, to the real vision of Christ. At last; in a way acceptible to, the Bible itself.
The fact is, first of all of course, aa) the Bible itself often warned that there would be false things even in our holiest men and doctrines. And bb) the Bible itself warned that one “day” we would discover that the whole earth had been deceived, even in what it “worship”ed (rev. 13); in part, by false “magicians” or “sorcerers,” and so forth. And so, if we find magic deep in the heart of our traditional religion today, then after all, all that is happening is that … this ancient prophesy of the Bible is being fulfilled. The Bible verifies – even insisted – that one day we would indeed discover precisely, this.
The Bible itself told us there would be sins and false things in Christianity … and today, we are discovering a few of them. Among others: the many promises of miracles in the Bible and/or many sermons, were not true. They were “false prophesies,” false promises, lies. Finally, there are no miracles … and there are no valid excuses for that. So that finally, we must simply say that … parts of our religious tradition, were simply, false. As foretold. Finally, our major point is that, amazingly … this is a conclusion authorized by the Bible itself; by God himself.
The Bible we say here, might be right … but most of Christianity is not. The Bible correctly warned that there would be sins and errors and delusions and so forth, even in those who said and even thought in their “heart” that they were following “Christ,” or “Lord, Lord.” And further it said that the nature of those sins and errors, was that they would be caused in part, by false “magicians,” “sorcerers.”
And so we are now finding nothing more or less than what the Bible itself told us one day, we would see. As foretold, as prophesied by the Bible itself – there is a huge error and deception in the religion that dominates the world (Rev. 13); in a “Christ”; in traditional Christianity. Specifically first of all, religion, Judeo-Christianity, often definitely promised us many huge miracles, often; even “all” we “ask” for. And yet God’s science and experience, observation of what does and “does not come to pass,” shows that whatever was said to happen in the past, religion, priests, are not reliably producing the miracles they promised, today. While furthermore, though our holy men attempt to offer dozens, millions of excuses for this, we will find here, almost none of the explanations for lack of miracles today, attempted by millions of sermons – like the attempt to suggest that mere mental or spiritual sensations of hope for miracles – is true to the entire Bible; or true to honest logic and science.
So what should we say and do next? We should simply expose the magical thinking in much of historical Christianity. And then recall the second, truer, vision of Christ and God. As advocating not magical conjuring and semantic/liturgical, repetitive hypnotism and illusionism; but real Science.