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Understanding Gnosticism; or, a quest for accurate knowledge

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posted on Mar, 15 2012 @ 09:59 PM
"You are not yet fifty years old," the Jews said to him, "and you have seen Abraham!"
John 8:57
This could mean something completely different than what we normally think.
Jesus was expounding on a gnostic (or substitute in the term, Merkavah) experience which normally only people over the age of 50 were allowed to have the knowledge of, and to make use of, to go into a state to where they see Abraham. The name, Abraham, itself seems to have an esoteric meaning. (or my interpretation of what this book is informing me on)

Maybe I should take back what I said earlier, and if you have an extra $29 lying around that you don't know what to do with, then get Revelation and Mystery in Ancient Judaism and Pauline Christianity, by Markus Bockmuehl, since there are bits here and there that may be interesting to people who want to know about things that are a little off the beaten path.
edit on 15-3-2012 by jmdewey60 because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 16 2012 @ 10:35 AM
reply to post by jmdewey60

The idea I get is that it says that the difference between pre-Christian Gnosticism and Jewish mysticism is the use of Hebrew terminology instead of Greek.

Yes, just this morning I posted an ex-text from about.christianity that gave a sleek little summary of the Jewish Christians, the Pauline Christians, and the other "flavors" of Christianity immediately after Jesus was "removed" from the territory.

There were protestants right from the very beginning. I'm beginning to see Paul as a business man with ambitions...
and not so much an Apostle who preached Jesus' teachings. He added his own flair and extended the proselytizing to the Gentiles, where Jesus was talking only to the Jews.


posted on Mar, 16 2012 @ 04:36 PM
reply to post by wildtimes

paul states in one passage "he has become all things to all people" depending on which translation you read...

22To the weak became I as weak, that I might gain the weak: I am made all things to all men, that I might by all means save some.

22 To the weak I became weak, to win the weak. I have become all things to all people so that by all possible means I might save some

It gives the impression that he is "in business for himself"... and will do anything he can to gain followers...

edit on 16-3-2012 by Akragon because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 16 2012 @ 05:20 PM
reply to post by Akragon
If you go a little past the verses you quoted you find Paul explaining why he is doing all these things.

I do all this for the sake of the gospel, that I may share in its blessings.

In the book on Mystery (see my last post) I am reading, there is a term, Heilsgüter, and good luck with that.
It is German and the literal meaning is simple enough, it is the fruits of salvation.
The people in Paul's circles understood that to get the highest Gnosis, you have to actually do things.
The mysteries of God do not come from just thinking about it, according to the philosophy Paul was following, but by living a certain way, which he took to mean busting his butt to win people over to Christ.
It was not salvation itself he was striving for but the knowledge that was gifted to those who lived the Gospel.

edit on 16-3-2012 by jmdewey60 because: (no reason given)

posted on Mar, 16 2012 @ 05:29 PM
reply to post by jmdewey60

Yes i understand that... his meaning becomes clear when you read the entire chapter. Though it brings his character into question... How far was he willing to go to get converts?

Its clear that many "paganistic rituals" have been squeezed into the religion... "sun" worship seems to be a pain theme...

I've also considered the possiblity that paul associated with Gnostics as well though...

posted on May, 26 2012 @ 02:31 AM
I found this book three weeks ago, at my local county library:

Gnostic Truth and Christian Heresy: A Study in the History of Gnosticism, by Alastair H. B. Logan

I checked it out and read the introductory material, and realized that it was published some time after the book I was discussing on this thread, Gnosticism, Judaism, and Egyptian Christianity by Birger A. Pearson.
More than that, it is a refutation of some of the conclusions that Pearson made in his book. I found that interesting, and thought I fell into a bit of luck having this book in my library. As it turned out, I had several other books I was studying at that time and did not have a chance to delve further into it by the time I was due to return it. I did decide to look for an innexpensive copy on Amazon. I did, and ordered it, and will go ahead and share some of my findings here, as a suppliment to what I have already brought up from Pearson's book.

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