On this, page 4 of a 5 page series, I'll first give a very short
review the previous 3 pages, which you are free to skip if you have
read and understand them all. First we considered a Latin
Infancy Gospel in which Christ was born fully aware that he was God,
the "light of the World," shining so brightly in a cave that
a Jewish mid-wife was unable to enter the cave until Christ, by some
process or other, shaped himself into the form of a human baby.
But when the midwife looked into the baby's eyes, Suddenly,
a great light came forth from his eyes like a great flash of
considered another Infancy Gospel in which Jesus as a child discovered
that all he needed to do was speak, and whatever he said happened
immediately. He could not control his temper, however, and
a lot of his playmates died who angered him. An embarrassed
teacher discovered that he could not teach Christ anything, because
Jesus knew much more than he did about even the alphabet.
Next we read about the Child Jesus in the Seventh-day Adventist
prophetess' book Desire of Ages who was absolutely
"perfect" (for his age) as a child and youth.
The only sinless person who ever walked on earth (except perhaps for
some angels). As a twelve-year-old he visited Jerusalem and saw in the
Passover lamb his own future. But he had constant
temptations from the evil people in Nazareth, and even from his own
supposed brothers, who were older than him and not really his
brothers, but children of Joseph by a previous marriage. Since God,
not Joseph, was Jesus' "Father", Jesus had no choice but to
smile sweetly through all this, to avoid sinning and spoiling our
normal Jesus was presented to us by Professor Norman Bull MA
PhD in Jesus of Nazareth, a
school book published in Great Britain by Hutton Books. Certain
that Jesus was indeed a "Carpenter" and the "son of a
Carpenter" with a mother and six other children to feed besides
paying both Roman and Temple taxes after Joseph died, Bull presents a Jesus
who was too
busy working at his trade to do much sinning. He is sure Jesus attended
synagogue school which was free to Jewish boys from age 5 to 13, but
after that had no money for continued schooling. The
"Silent Years" from age 13 to 30 were filled with hard labor
in Nazareth, but then the younger brothers of Jesus were old enough to
run the Carpenter shop, and Jesus was free to get baptized by John and
become the new "Messiah of the World".
weakness of Dr. Norman Bull's argument and proposal that Jesus was
indeed a "Carpenter" and the son of a carpenter is in the
fact that this is supported by only two texts, Mark 6:3 and Matthew
13:55,56 which are both phrased as questions. These are the same two
texts that list Jesus' brothers and sisters, but we can check on them
because they appear in many other texts. Nowhere else in the New
Testament, however do we see Jesus lifting a board or helping to
construct a building. However, as a symbolic "builder"
of a religion and even the astrological "House" of Pisces,
there is considerable support.
contrast to those "Silent Years", supposedly spent in hard
labor at a tiny Galilee village called Nazareth is the unanimity with
which all the gospels proclaim that Jesus' real ministry started at a
place geographically quite close to Qumran, Bethabara on
the Jordan River, near the city of Jericho. A place where
one can visit when political conditions are favorable, but not a
tourist attraction because it is on the border between Israel and
John the Baptist
John 1:28 "These
things were done in Bethabara beyond
Jordan, where John was
29 The next day John seeth
Jesus coming unto him, and saith,
Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh
away the sin of the world.
30 This is
he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred
before me: for he is before
Baptist describes what he apparently saw the day before,
when Jesus came to be baptized by him
among others --)
32 "And John bare record,
saying, I saw the Spirit descending
from heaven like a dove, and it abode
In one of the gospels, but
not in John's account here, everyone
present saw the dove,
and in three gospels, but
not in John's
account here, also saw the heavens split open, and God's voice
proclaiming "Thou art My beloved Son, in whom
I am well
pleased." Matthew 3:16-17, Mark 1:7-11, Luke 3:21-22
THE THIRD DAY
Those of us trying to
get an accurate account here, possible
with stenographer John's
account, but not with the others, we
now have 1) Day 1:
Baptism (with or without a split-open heaven)
2) Day 2: (next day) The
first "Lamb of God" remark by the Baptist
3) Day 3: (again the
next day after) Another "Lamb of God" remark.
John 1:35 "Again
the next day after John stood, and two of his
disciples; 36 And
looking upon Jesus as he walked, he said,
Behold the Lamb of God.'
37 And the two disciples heard him
speak, and they followed Jesus."
Where lived the "Lambs of
time Norman Bull published his book in 1968, he knew about the
discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls and the Qumran monastery. He
did speculate that John the Baptist may have been an Essene, but
failed to make the connection that Jesus also might have been one.
Even though the teachings of John the Baptist in Luke 3:7-15 and in
Matthew chapter 3 are identical with those of Jesus throughout
the Gospels and quite similar to those in the Dead Sea Scrolls.
in the 21st century are quite used to Jesus being called a "Lamb
of God", particularly so since the author of Revelation calls
him that repeatedly. Indeed 26 times clearly, and perhaps
a 27th time. But at Qumran to be a "Lamb of God" was
Here's what Dr. Barbara Thiering has to say about John the Baptist's
remark in Jesus and the Riddle of the Dead Sea Scrolls (Harpur
1992). In this book Dr. Thiering, among other things,
presents a good case for Jesus being an Essene, and living parts of
his life at or near the Qumran monastery. She also
insists that a lot of practices common in the Roman Catholic church
after Constantine and the Council of Nicea in 325 AD had their
beginnings among the Essenes at Qumran.
Page 350. "As the institution of lay celibacy grew and
diversified (among the Qumran Essenes), several classes
were formed. Vows of varying lengths were taken,
indicating different degrees of discipline. Those who took
the hardest and highest vows of periodic abstinence from marriage
belonged to the Essene order of Judah, under the David, while
those who took lesser degrees belonged to the order of Zebulun, whose
meeting place was at the literal Nazareth in
Galilee. Their superior was the David prince. ---they
used the route from Mar Saba through the Wilderness, and were
given the image of "sheep" as they were
"shorn" (had a hair-cut
and shaved) on resumption of marriage."
"Although the prince was the chief Nazirite, the king in
his peaceful role could act under the Nazirite rule, so being
called the "Lamb" (arnion). Thus the David was
both the Lion and the Lamb (Rev. 5:5-7)"
man in the (Essene) village could act in the place of Raphael
as if he was a levitical cardinal. This was a
graduate of a celibate community, one of the "orphans", often
illegitimate children who had been handed over at birth and
brought up to the higher discipline of the order of Levi, renouncing
marriage altogether. He also was called a "Lamb",
but the word amnos was used. His immediate
supervisor was Sariel (another angel), the superior of Raphael, so, as Sariel
was called "God", he was called the "lamb of
God" (John 1:36). His full celibate order held the ideal of
the Suffering Servant, the "lamb led to the slaughter",
who atoned for the sins of the others by his severe suffering under
ascetic discipline (Isaiah 53:4-9 , amnos v. 7; 1QS 8:1-4)."
"Consequently, when John the Baptist hailed Jesus as the
"lamb of God" (ho amnos tou theou) who takes away the
sins of the world" (John 1:29), he meant that he was illegitimate,
one who should be under full celibate discipline, and so could act as
a levitical cardinal in a village, atoning for others, and having
the right to give absolution. When John said the next
day "behold the lamb of God" , leaving out the following
phrase (John 1:36), he meant that he had deprived him of the right to give
absolution, as the schism ("heavens opened" in other than
John's account) had occurred."
The schism is shown in John's gospel in 1: 37
"And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed
Jesus." And 40-51 in which
Jesus also attracts Andrew, Simon Peter, Philip, and Nathaniel to follow
him as their new "Messiah" instead of John the Baptist. By
being critical and precise in the way she was reading these texts that had
puzzled scholars for centuries Dr. Barbara Thiering was starting to
understand where the pieces fit in a puzzle which, when solved, revealed a
Jesus that lived at and near Qumran, not in far away Nazareth of Galilee. Note
that Jesus was meeting Andrew, (John), Simon Peter, Philip, and Nathaniel
here at the Jordan near Jericho and Qumran, not on the shore of the Sea of
The Gospel of John and
To all modern scholars like Professor Norman Bull the writer of the
Gospel of John does not seem to know his geography. Nor
how long it would take to walk from John the Baptist's baptizing
site near Jericho to Jerusalem and then to Galilee. Here's some
examples. Professor Bull has already told us in his book
that Nazareth in Galilee is 128 km from Jerusalem. That's
a week's walk under ideal conditions. Yet we read in John
1:28 "These things were done in Bethabara beyond Jordan,
where John was baptizing." 29 (still at Bethabara) "The
next day John seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith---'" 35
(still at Bethabara) "Again the next day after John stood,
and two of his disciples ---" 43 (starts walking toward
Galilee, perhaps reaching Jerusalem)"The day following
Jesus would go forth into Galilee, and findeth Philip, and said unto
him, Follow me." 2:1 (and in two days is 128 km
north, in Galilee) "And the third day there was a marriage
in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there---" (possible
in a modern car, difficult on horseback, but walking? virtually
Note that Cana on
the above map is even farther from Jerusalem on the above map of Galilee
than Nazareth and might take even more time to walk to by Jesus and
his now 4 followers than the 128 km shown by Norman Bull in his book Jesus
the Nazarene. Jesus at Qumran could, according to Thiering's
explanation, be from Nazareth in Galilee because that's where the
Essene order of Zebulun had their actual geographical headquarters, and
still be at Qumran. And Mar Saba could also be thought
of as a part of Nazareth because it was on the route this particular group
of Celibate Nazirites took to go from Qumran to Jerusalem.
Thiering comments on this in her book on page 37-38. "This
gospel is strangely inconsistent about locations: it can be bafflingly
vague about where things happened, yet give exact distances in stadia
where they do not seem to be needed. In one place it says
that the disciples, rowing in a boat to Capernaum, travelled to a spot
at 'twenty-five or thirty stadia". Mazin is thirty stadia
from Qumran and twenty-five from the Queen's house, which acted as an
outer boundary to Qumran."
"In another episode at Capernaum in John's gospel, a net of fish
was dragged two hundred cubits (one hundred yards) to the shore.
This was the length of the channel at Mazin, leading up to the
"John's gospel also says that Bethany was fifteen stadia from
Jerusalem, using the plural form of the name. Ain Feshkha is
exactly this distance from Qumran. It reproduced the original
Bethany, at about this distance east of Jerusalem, when the locations
were moved to Qumran."
In 1992 and 1993, after reading Dr. Barbara
Thiering's book, I actually visited these Essene sites, and paced out the
measurements made by the author of John's Gospel 1900 years ago, as did
Dr. Barbara Thiering before she wrote her book. Below is my picture
of the ruins at Khirbet Mazin with is two hundred cubit channel, and my
hand-drawn picture of how it might have looked when Jesus'
"fishermen" fished for men, not fish, here along the shore of
the Dead Sea.
One 14 km from Qumran, One
Two Seas of Galilee
One near Qumran (the Dead
Sea), One 150 km distant from Qumran
One on the shore of the Sea
of Galilee, one on the shore of the Dead Sea
One 3 Km south of Qumran
monastery, One many km north of Jerusalem
One fifteen stadia south of
Qumran, one fifteen stadia south of Jerusalem
Jerusalem at Qumran, the "Old" Jerusalem 30 km
Dr. Thiering figured out that the author of John's gospel was
always, without deviation, speaking about the places near Qumran
renamed for their far-away counterparts, John's strange
geography made complete sense, and could be followed without any
difficulty. And the precise measurements in cubits and stadia
helped to identify which Essene site was being discussed.
"Walking on the Water"
"John's version - at Khirbet Mazin"
John 6:15 "When
Jesus therefore perceived that they would come and take him by
force, to make him a king (the David Messiah), he departed again
into a mountain alone."
16 "And when even was now come, his disciples (John
Mark) went down into the sea, 17 And entered into a
ship, and went over in the sea (the Dead Sea NOT Galilee) toward
Capernaum (Khirbet Mazin). And it was now dark (and as is
shown by "time codes", sundown Friday night), and Jesus
was not come to them."
the sea rose by reason of a great wind that blew. (the
"wind" was caused by Simon Peter, who was worried about
breaking the Sabbath!)
when they had rowed about five and twenty or thirty furlongs (about
3 km), they see Jesus walking on the sea, and drawing nigh unto the
ship: and they were afraid."
he said unto them, It is I; be not afraid."
they willingly received him into the ship: and immediately the ship
was at the land whither they went."
Barbara Thiering has shown in her book on page 37, 38, this 25 -30
furlongs is the distance from either the Qumran monastery or the
Queens House to Khirbet Mazin. A mountainous hill between Ain
Feshkha and Khirbet Mazin made it faster and easier to cover this
distance by rowboat than walking. Jesus walked over the
hill, the disciples rowed. He appeared to "walk on
water" the final 200 cubits because he was walking on the jetty
at the Essene building there which reached out into the Dead Sea.
Net Full of Fishes-John 21
John starts his gospel at John the Baptist's baptisms at the Jordan
river, the other 3 gospels start their stories at Khirbet Mazin with
Jesus inviting Andrew, Simon Peter, and James and John the "sons
of Zebedee" to become "Fishers of Men" instead of
fishes. In this artistic picture I drew and later colored
on 11-24-1992, I've tried to reconstruct what was there in 29
AD. The fishing boat is in the 200 cubit channel with its
accompanying jetty where priests (and sometimes Jesus) could
"walk on water".
Later, after Jesus crucifixion and resurrection, John did do a story
about Simon Peter and a "Net full of Fishes," --- hauled 200
cubits to shore.
21:3 "Simon Peter saith unto them, I go a fishing. They
say unto him, we also go with thee. They went forth, and entered
into a ship immediately; and that night they caught nothing.
when the morning was now come, Jesus stood on the shore: but the
disciples knew not that it was Jesus (supposedly dead, you know).
Jesus saith unto them, Children, have you any meat? They
answered him, No."
he said unto them, Cast the net on the right side of the ship, and ye
shall find. (That's where one of Herod's stewards was waiting to
be baptized). They cast therefore, and now they were not able to
draw it in for the multitude of fishes. (symbolically, the millions
that would become Christians are represented).
Therefore that disciple whom Jesus loved (John Mark, the author of
this story) saith unto Peter, It is the Lord. Now when Simon
Peter heard that it was the Lord, he girt his fisherman's coat unto
him, (for he was naked,) and did cast himself into the sea.
8 And the other disciples came in a little ship; (for they were
not far from land, but as it were two hundred cubits.) dragging
the net with fishes."
the distance the net was dragged was important in this Essene
baptismal system, because where you were baptized determined your rank
and authority in their hierarchy. Sort of like the
difference between being a "Lamb of God" and being a
"Lamb of God which taketh away the sin of the world."