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Wednesday, February 07, 2018

Universal Truth; 'You are Gods'!

In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
Genesis 1:1

Then the Lord God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of Us, to know good and evil.
Genesis 3:22

Jesus answered them, “Is it not written in your law, ‘I said, “You are gods”’?
John 10:34 ( Psalm 82:6 )

First things first; 'who/what is 'God?' According to the Hebrew ( 'elohiym ) & Greek ( theos) the word refers to 'mighty ones' or 'a deity'. Looking into the etymology of the Hebrew word, one might even find that it has reference to a certain 'El'. Although this was simply an ancient ( Proto-Semitic ) word, meaning 'god', or 'deity', it was also used by an assortment of gods, including a Canaanite deity. This may be where the Hebrew usage stemmed from ( very likely, in fact ), with names like Samuel, Daniel, even Israel. As the Hebrew Scriptures morphed with the Greek, we may note that the meaning remains essentially the same & interestingly enough, both instances ( Greek & Hebrew ) employ the same word in referring to both 'God' & 'man' ( on the Land )!

Speaking of 'man on the Land', this in itself should be noted as a reference to the genesis of the Hebrews as a special nation. The second quote above, from John 10:34 ( Psalm 82:6 ), then, in context, is speaking primarily of the religious leaders of the Hebrews ( broadly 'Jews' ), although it may be noted as being a universal truth, in essence, that even though it may have referred in the first case to certain Hebrews, it applies to people of all times & nations. The Scriptures, both Greek & Hebrew, because they were written to a people long ago & far away, were written primarily for their instruction, thus applying ONLY to them & their current situation ( audience relevance ), still hold certain universal truths that apply to all humanity.

One of these universal truths, as we've discussed before on this blog, is found in probably THE most-quoted verse in the Bible, John 3:16. 'For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.' In other words, one might say, the Creator God, the Source of all Life, took upon Himself, biblically speaking, humanity, not so much as one ancient theologian stated, 'that man might become God', but that man ( kind-humanity ) might realize they are, in essence, in their innermost BEing, God ( A 'god', if that makes it easier to digest )!

This is not to say that we ARE the Creator God, though we ARE creators ( on a much smaller scale )! We ARE, however, from the same Source ( Essence ) as Jesus! As Jesus was the Christ ( Anointed or Sent One ), so WE are the Christ to our 'world'. As we are creators, we also, to some extent, create our 'worlds', just as we are ( to be ) the Christ to them. Not only do we create our 'world' through the choices we make ( thus our God-hood ), but we ourselves, through what we call 'procreation' ( Seed ) in this sense cause the formation of human beings. All this, of course, is based solidly on the fact that there is one Supreme Being, one ( common? ) Source of all Life, the Energy that motivates us all!

It is common, among Christians especially, to refer to the Energy that motivates us as Spirit, in particular, the Holy Spirit. Biblically speaking, however, we differentiate between what some call 'covenant life' &merely biological life. These interpret the formation of man ( Adam ) in 'the Image of God' as indicative of 'covenant life', whereas others simply read this passage as a record of the creation of the human race. Maybe it's not 'either or', but 'both and'! Rather than being just a record of the Creator God's dealings with Israel ( as some have supposed  ), it is indicative of the genesis of humanity, as retold through Hebraic lenses!

The Spirit of a Man ( I Corinthians 2:11 ) is not only a biblical phrase, but one which is universally familiar. We often, almost haphazardly refer to this Spirit ( 'spirit', if that goes down easier ) as that which 'drives' a person; it is back of all ones decisions, though some choose to allow their biology to rule over their Spirit. A biblical example of this is Cain, who allowed his fleshly passions to override the Spirit Within & murdered his brother because of his own jealousy. Modern examples include, from relatively recent history, Charles Lindbergh's famous flight in 'The Spirit of St. Louis'. Although it was just a plane, to Lindbergh it embodied a certain Spirit; among others, no doubt, the Spirit of Freedom, It is the Spirit Within, our Godhood if you will, that motivates & so, it is by our choices that we show, or prove, that Godhood!

Terms like 'theosis' & 'deification' have long been a rather taboo subject among most Christians, although it is by no means a modern concept. In fact, it is a very biblical concept, if one reads certain Scriptures honestly & openly ( without bias )! The very fact that a mere Man could be God as well was outrageously shocking to many of the Hebrews ( Jews ); today is no different: most if not all Christians today will immediately, metaphorically or otherwise, employ the Sign of the Cross when faced with the absurd notion that mere humanity could be God. BEing God, however, simply means, according to the Scriptures, our ability to choose, to judge for ourselves. The choices we make however, determine, not our deification, but the manifestation, or revelation of our deification!

Charles Haddon Shank


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