A COMPASSIONATE CHRIST
tells the Western World
BUT NEGLECTS TO TELL US CLEARLY AND OUTRIGHTLY ABOUT
THE INVISIBLE ESSENES
The Real Theology of the
Only True God!
I had been to Israel before, in 1983, 9 years before Thiering published her book. I and my wife Edie had taken the standard Christian tourist tour, riding an air-conditioned bus from the airport to Jerusalem and from there all over Israel from Galilee in the north to Masada and the southern salt flats of the Dead Sea.
I had seen on this previous trip also all the important churches and sites that supposedly mark the places where Jesus was born and preached his important sermons, died, and was resurrected.
The bus load of Seventh-day Adventist Christians in 1983 had also traveled north to the Sea of Galilee. Galilee, where Jesus was supposed to have spent a lot of his time according to a surface reading of the 4 Gospels.
Since 1967, when Israel regained control of Jerusalem, it has been possible for tourists from the United States (and all the western world) to visit Jerusalem and walk the supposed route along the VIA DOLOROSA that Jesus walked carrying his cross from his trial to his crucifixion (at the "Church of the Holy Sepulcre"). Thousands have walked this route, and no doubt many have assumed it was genuine.
But Protestants generally DO NOT accept these traditional sites, and especially doubt the location of Jesus' death and burial, choosing instead to visit the "Garden Tomb" not far from the Damascus Gate and "outside the walls" of the Jerusalem of Herod's time.
I returned to Jerusalem in 1989 with Ron Wyatt and spent much of my time helping him to excavate at his archaelogical "dig" sites at the Garden Tomb in Jerusalem and in the Negev desert, where we found what may have been the mountain where Aaron was buried (in the Wilderness of Zin). And in 1990 I went with Dave Fasold to the Mount Ararat region of Turkey. Where Wyatt and Fasold thought they had found all that remains of Noah's Ark.
It was not until the summer and fall of 1992 that I purchased Dr. Barbara Thiering's new book and discovered that people had been looking for Jesus all these years in all the wrong places. Jesus and all his disciples were ESSENES, and one must look for Jesus in those places the ESSENES frequented.
Since 1993, after numerous visits to Egypt, the Sinai, Jordan, Syria, Greece, Turkey, and especially Israel and the Dead Sea area, I have now become somewhat of a expert on the INVISIBLE ESSENES, the "Dead Sea Scrolls", and the "Gospel Pesher". One would think the world, and especially Christian ministers, would be beating a path to my door. Definately NOT TRUE! Myth is more comfortable than TRUTH. And "Eternal Life" is at stake!
To put it extremely bluntly, Job Security is much more important to ministers than is historically accurate "truth".
Back now to my 1992-1993 visits to the Qumran area - in search of the HISTORICAL JESUS -- who was, indeed, one of the INVISIBLE ESSENES!
The Essenes were not INVISIBLE to Flavius Josephus, the world-renowned Jewish historian, who wrote about them in both of his historical works,
"The Antiquities of the Jews"
"The Wars of the Jews."
(Show me a minister who does not own and read a copy of "Josephus" and I will show you a minister who should NOT be preaching to people with even a high-school education, never mind college graduates!)
"Antiquities of the Jews" 13-5-9 (171) "At this time there were three sects among the Jews, who had different opinions concerning human actions; the one was called the sect of the Pharisees, another the sect of the Sadducees, and the other the sect of the Essenes. (172) Now for the Pharisees, they say that some actions, but not all, are the work of fate, and some of them are in our own power, and that they are liable to fate, but are not caused by fate. But the sect of the Essenes affirm, that fate governs all things, and that nothing befalls men but that which is according to its determination. (173) And for the Sadducees, they take away fate, and say there is no such thing, and that human affairs are not at its disposal: but they suppose that all our actions are in our own power, so that we are ourselves the cause of what is good, and receive what is evil from our own folly."
"Antiquities of the Jews" 15-10-4 (371) " The Essenes also, as we call a sect of ours, were excused from this imposition (to take an oath to Herod) . These men live the same kind of life as do those whom the Greeks call Pythagoreans; concerning whom I shall discourse more fully elsewhere. (373) However, it is but fit to set down here the reasons wherefore Herod had these Essenes in such honor, and thought higher of them than their mortal nature required: nor will this account be unsuitable to the nature of this history, as it will show the opinion men had of these Essenes. 15-10-5 (373) Now there was one of these Essenes, whose name was Manahem, who had this testimony, that he not only conducted his life after an excellent manner, but had foreknowledge of future events given him by God also. This man once saw Herod when he was a child, and going to school, and saluted him as king of the Jews; (374) but he, thinking that either he did not know him, or that he was in jest, put him in mind that he was but a private man; but Manahem smiled to himself, and clapped him on the backside with his hand, and said, 'However that may be, thou wilt be king, and will begin thy reign happily, for God finds thee worthy of it; an do thou remember the blows that Manahem hath given thee, as being the signal of the change of thy fortune;---etc. (much more-- read it for yourself in Josephus)
"Antiquities of the Jews" 18-1-5 (18) "The doctrine of the Essenes is this: That all things are best ascribed to God. They teach the immortality of souls, and esteem that the rewards of righteousness are to be earnestly striven for; (19) and when they send what they have dedicated to God into the temple, they do not offer sacrifices, because they have more pure lustrations of their own; on which account they are excluded from the common court of the temple, but offer their sacrifices themselves; yet is their course of life better than that of other men; and they entirely addict themselves to husbandry. (20) It also deserves our admiration, how much they exceed all other men that addict themselves to virtue, and this in righteousness; and indeed to such a degree, that it has never appeared among any other man, neither Greeks nor barbarians, no, not for a little time, so hath it endured for a long time while among them. This is demonstrated by that institution of theirs which will not suffer anything to hinder them from having all things in common; so that a rich man enjoys no more of his own wealth than he who hath nothing at all. There are about four thousand men that live in this way, (21) and neither marry wives, nor are desirous to keep servants; as thinking the latter temps men to be unjust, and the former gives the handle to domestic quarrels; but as they live by themselves, they minister one to another."--- etc. (much more-- read it for yourself in Josephus).
"Wars of the Jews" 2-8-2 (119) "For there are three philosophical sects among the Jews. The followers of the first of whom are the Pharisees; of the second the Sadducees; and the third sect, who pretends to a severer discipline, are called Essenes. These last are Jews by birth, and seem to have a greater affection for one another than the other sects have. (120) These Essenes reject pleasures as an evil, but esteem continence, and the conquest over our passions, to be virtue. They neglect wedlock, but choose out other persons' children, while they are pliable, and fit for learning; and esteem them to be their kindred, and form them according to their own manners. (121) They do not absolutely deny the fitness of marriage, and the succession of mankind thereby continued; but they guard against the lascivous behavior of women, and are persuaded that none of them preserve their fidelity to one man."
"Wars of the Jews" 2-8-3 (122) "These men are despisers of riches, and so very communicative as raises our admiration. Nor is there any to be found among them who hath more than another; for it is a law among them, that those who come to them must let what they have be common to the whole order, -- insomuch, that among them all there is no appearance of poverty or excess of riches, but every man's possessions are intermingled with every other's possessions: and so there is, as it were, one patrimony among all the brethren. --etc. (much more -- read it for yourself in Josephus)
"Wars of the Jews" 2-8-6 (134) "And truly, as for other things, they do nothing but according to the injunctions of their curators; only these two things are done among them at every one's own free will, which are, to assist those who want it, and to show mercy; for they are permitted of their own accord to afford succor to such as deserve it, when they stand in need of it, and to bestow food on those that are in distress; but they cannot give any thing to their kindred without the curators. (135) They dispense their anger in a just manner, and restrain their passion. They are eminent for fidelity, and are the ministers of peace; whatsoever they say is also firmer than an oath; but swearing is avoided by them, and they esteem it worse than perjury; for they say, that he who cannot be believed without [swearing by] God, is already condemned. (136) They also take great pains in studying the writings of the ancients, and choose out of them what is most for the advantage of their soul and body; and they inquire after such roots and medicinal stones as may cure their distempers." --etc. (much more -- read it for yourself in Josephus.)
One might think that there might be some of these Essenes who were homosexuals, since most of them at the Qumran monastery were celibate, living without female companionship, and indeed some of them WERE homosexual. That this is so is betrayed by three of Jesus' sayings, one in Revelation, and two in the Gospels. But the most provocative situation outside of these three sayings is the relationship between Jesus and "John the Beloved Disciple" -- the author of the "Gospel of John".
The first saying is a jest on the location of the Qumran monastery itself, which Jesus characterized as "Sodom".
Revelation 11:8 "And their dead bodies shall lie in the street of the great city, which spiritually is called Sodom and Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified." Revelation 11:1-12 is a symbolic representation of Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection in two unclean areas at the Qumran complex, and one of several major clues that this is where a lot of Gospel happenings occurred. Since Sodom had a homosexual reputation in Genesis, Jesus is here suggesting that there were indeed homosexuals here when he lived at Qumran, and was crucified there.
Matthew 19:12 "For there are some eunuchs, which were so born from their mother's womb (might not some homosexuals be in this group?); and there are some eunuchs, who have been made eunuchs of men (surgically castrated men, mostly household servants in Greek and Roman society), and there be eunuchs, which have made themselves eunuchs for the kingdom of heaven's sake (this is a direct reference to those Essenes who were voluntarily celibate, some of which Jesus knew to be homosexual) (and now for Jesus' opinion) He that is able to receive it, let him receive it. (a completely tolerant view.)
Luke 17:34 "I tell you, in that night there shall be two men in one bed; the one shall be taken and the other left."
That this is just a coincidence, and that Luke is not here referring to both homosexuality and to Sodom is decreased in probability by the closeness of this saying to Luke 17:26-30.
Luke 17:26 "And as it was in the days of Noe (Noah), so shall it be also in the days of the Son of man. 27 They did eat, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day when Noe entered into the ark, and the flood came, and destroyed them all."
Luke 17:28 Likewise also as it was in the days of Lot; they did eat, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they builded; 29 But the same day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven, and destroyed them all. 30 Even thus shall it be in the day that the Son of man is revealed." (Note that here, in the second of two examples, Luke has omitted the two phrases "they married wives, they were given in marriage")-- we can rightly assume he expected us to notice also that one of the "two men in a bed" was taken, and the other left --- no difference than the other examples! Again, the TOLERANT view, not a homophobic view.
When I visited the ruins of the Qumran Monastery in the Fall of 1992, after reading Dr. Barbara Thiering's book "Jesus and the Riddle of the Dead Sea Scrolls" , one of the first things I looked for was the remains of the fire-place where Simon Peter was warming his hands when he was accosted by the servant girl in the dialog between Erin Miller and Bryan Aalborg, two of the majority of ministers who cannot (by choice) see the INVISIBLE ESSENES. Here, below, is my photograph of this fireplace -- dated 1992.
And the "oath" that Peter was mouthing as he turned his back on Jesus before 3 AM (cock-crowing) on Friday, March 20, 33 AD is worded as follows: "Be cursed because of all your guilty wickedness! May He deliver you up for torture at the hands of the vengeful Avengers! May He visit you with destruction by the hand of all the wreakers of Revenge! Be cursed without mercy because of the darkness of your deeds! Be damned in the shadowy place of everlasting fire! May God not heed when you call on Him, nor pardon you by blotting out your sin! May he raise His angry face towards you for vengeance! May there be no "Peace" for you in the mouth of those who hold fast to the Fathers!"
This curse is recorded on page 63 of The Dead Sea Scrolls in English by Geza Vermes, 3rd Edition 1987
These words were part of the prayer that Simon Peter was required to pray that night at that specific time, and there was no way he could avoid saying them, if, indeed, anyone was listening!
IN THIS SERIES