By John Litteral
I get questions sometimes like, “Is the rapture Biblical?” Or is this Biblical, or is that Biblical, etc. That is a very common thing that I have come across for many years. And when it comes to various doctrines and dogmas that Christians hold such as the rapture, once in grace always in grace, the Trinity, sacraments, deity of Christ, etc., there is a spectrum that these doctrines are in concerning how Biblically sound they are. Most Christian dogmas and doctrines have some level of Biblical basis. Some are fully spelled out in the Bible, while some are partially evident in the Bible but have been developed upon by way of church traditions, while some doctrines have a very small trace or no Biblical content to back them up but have been developed through various ways by theologians, clergy, etc. There are numerous doctrines and beliefs that have been spawned by the enemies of the Christian faith who covertly create dogmas and doctrines from within “Christian” institutions for geopolitical reasons, which are ultimately for a Satanic agenda. I have written a lot about this in my latest book called CONFESSIONS OF A FREE-THINKING CHRISTIAN.
But the point that I want to present in this article is that just because something is Biblical may not necessarily mean that it comes from God. Many Christians have been taught to assume that everything in the Bible is as if it comes straight from God. But let’s examine that idea for a moment. Ask yourself why you believe that everything in the Bible is inspired and infallible and comes straight from God. The main reason that people assume that, is because they were told that it is, or that they were taught to assume that it is because of parents, clergy, other Christians, etc. But when you really take time to think about why it is infallible and comes straight from God, it usually doesn’t go beyond any other reason than personal conviction based upon indoctrination. The definition of “indoctrination” is, “the process of repeating an idea or belief to someone until they accept it without criticism or question: religious/political/ideological indoctrination.” Indoctrination is most effective when it gets programmed into the mind at a young age. But it can also be effective for people who are searching for answers and are questioning their own beliefs and they start finding truths in another ideology or belief system; therefore, they embrace the new set of beliefs in its entirety. Embracing the entire set of beliefs is something that many ideologies and beliefs systems expect by way of default. Every ideology and belief system has required dogma that is expected to be believed, and if it is not fully embraced then those people are usually considered to be outsiders who have “missed the mark” and fallen short. Sadly, many people want to fit into groups and not be an outsider and out of the clique, so they will embrace the entire set of beliefs and required dogma without question. Humans are tribal by nature, and they sadly put too much value upon having a social identity, and less value upon what is true vs false and right vs wrong. Free-thinkers and truth seekers put truth above fitting into groupthink and following the crowd. A freethinker will not submit to things like peer pressure at the cost of personal integrity to follow the truth no matter where it leads you.
When it comes to determining what is from God and what is not, why does many sincere Christians believe that the Bible is the ultimate authority? Some act like the Bible fell out of the sky from Heaven one day. Many believe that every word of it is God-breathed and fully inspired and infallible. Why? Some say “because the Bible says so” (2 Timothy 3:16-17)! Ha ha ha! That logic is like plugging a power strip into itself!
In my personal opinion, the Bible does contain many things in it that comes from God! But on the other hand, there are plenty of other things in the Bible that does not come from God. There have been many dogmas and doctrines that Christians have embraced that come from the Bible, but I would strongly argue that they do not come from God. I have written about sections in the Bible that can be argued to be forgeries and even enemy provisions to mislead Christians to submit to Satanic authorities, such as Romans chapter 13 and 1 Peter 2:13-17. As a freethinker, it is vital to use our brains to discern between what comes from God and what does not, even within the very pages of the Bible itself.
Q1) So, what is the Bible?
Q2) How was it put together?
Q3) Who determined what books were to be in the Bible and what books were to be rejected?
Q4) And who had the authority to make those decisions?
These are vital questions to ask if you are going to make a claim that the Bible is infallible and the complete word of God. Below are answers to those questions.
A1) The Bible is a book made up of a collection of different books written by many different authors within a span of 1600 years. The Protestant Bible has 66 books. The Catholic Bible has 72. And the Eastern Orthodox Bible has even more. I recently heard Jordan Peterson in an interview saying that the Bible is not a book but a library. That is actually a good way of describing it.
A2) The Bible was compiled over many centuries and never took the form of a single volume until centuries after the last book of the New Testament was written (95AD). This is often referred to as the formation of the Biblical canon. It was through church councils, local and ecumenical, where bishops and theologians debated and decided upon what books were to be consider Scripture. The list of books that were considered canonical varied throughout the Christian world, and it wasn’t until after the Protestant Reformation (16th century) until various groups of Christians decided to define the Biblical canon once and for all.
A3) Those who had the greatest influence upon defining the canon of Scripture were bishops of the Catholic and Orthodox churches. In my book CONFESSIONS OF A FREE-THINKING CHRISTIAN, I explained how church councils defined Christian dogmas, not only by the priest-class of the church, but also by the ruling class of the Roman Empire. There is no doubt that early on in the church, the ruling class had an influence upon what books were to be selected that would best benefit them and their geopolitical agenda.
A4) The basic idea behind institutionalized Christianity such as Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy is that the Bible is the product of the Church. Which is completely true because it was the Church that put it together. Therefore, if the Bible is the Word of God and infallible and the authority behind the Christian belief, then it took authority to determine what books were to be defined as canonical. Catholicism and Eastern Orthodoxy both claim that they have apostolic authority and that their institution was established by Christ Himself, therefore giving them the authority to define dogmas and define the canon of Scripture. This makes more sense than the Protestant position that the Bible is the sole authority to your faith and that there is no authority outside of the Bible, because that does not take in consideration that the Bible was put together by the Catholic and Eastern Orthodox churches. Whether anyone likes it or not, the Bible is a product of those Christian institutions.
Therefore, I consider myself a freethinking Christian. This means to not subscribe (by default) to entire institutionalized dogmas woven together in the form of belief systems. A freethinker should be willing to have an open mind and analyze and discern all things in search for truth; not feel bound to embrace dogmatic systems in its entirety, but be willing to glean truths and omit untruths in many areas. A freethinker should be willing to admit that they don’t have it all figured out, especially when it comes to the ways of God and spirituality. In my opinion, while we are in these human bodies it will not be possible to be able to comprehend many deep spiritual things while we have the limitations of humanity. But there are certain criteria that we can look for in order to help us to discern right from wrong and good from bad. Truth is not relative. There are certain universal truths that must be acknowledged in order for truth and freedom to exist. God in His very essence is TRUTH, and FREEDOM is His desire for His creation. Christ did not come to establish belief systems designed to bind people to a bunch of trivial dogmas that do nothing to make a difference in the world and our lives. Sadly, most Christians follow an exoteric religion based upon man’s interpretation of passages from the Bible and institutionalized religious dogmas, which have no actual positive effects in the world, but rather division. True Christianity is very simple and practical, and is based upon the Moral Laws of God (Natural Law). These are the laws of God that is actually written upon the hearts of mankind (Romans 2:15). It can be followed very simply by taking the Golden Rule very seriously, that is, treat others the way that you want to be treated (Matthew 7:12). We must understand that we all have been created by God and we are sovereign beings. We have rights given to us by God, not from government nor anybody else. We have the right to live however we want to live as long as we do not bring harm to others. There are some things that we have no right to do to other people, such as murder, assault, theft, lie, rape, trespass, and coerce. Each one of those sins is basically theft of others basic God-given rights. True morality is what Christ teaches us, not religious dogmas and creeds based upon man’s interpretations of a book (Bible) that was put together by institutionalized Christianity. Don’t get me wrong, the Bible has many teachings that can help us understand God better, and you will find the words of God within it. But on the other hand, there are plenty of teachings and words from man that are in the Bible that are posing as coming from God.