21 Authentic Teachings of Jesus
Jesus the Magic Crafter
(July 9, 2022) These mathematically derived teachings of Jesus show he was using ancient emotion magic concepts to argue against the whole idea of the imminent arrival of a violent end-times apocalypse. The mathematics of decision theory is used to extract twenty-one authentic Jesus’ teachings in four main themes.
Mathematics was applied to this historical problem because earlier non-mathematical attempts have failed to produce consistent results. The main themes are:
- Divine Home Energy (Kingdom of God) is Here and Must Grow Slowly (6 Teachings),
- Consequences of Living in an Interconnected Spiritual/Emotional Network or Logos (7 Teachings),
- Heal by Connecting with the Divine Powers (4 Teachings),
- Magical and Rule-Based Religions Do Not Mix (4 Teachings).
Jesus would have been exposed to the ancient magical tradition while he lived at Capernaum. This new town was a customs stop on the new Mesopotamia to Egypt trade route established by Herod the Great by his building of the harbor at Caesarea Maritima. Paper with all the details online at: https://www.academia.edu/79886608/Twenty_One_Authentic_Jesus_Sayings_Extracted_by_Mathematical_Decision_Theory
Previous Non- Quantitative Attempts to Find the Historical Jesus
(July 9, 2022) The main problem with historical Jesus research has been its completely subjective nature. Authors tend to have some mental model of Jesus then all sayings which fit that model are authentic and all others are not. Some previous quality non-quantitative attempts were:
- John Dominic Crossan, The Birth of Christianity: Discovering What Happened in the Years Immediately after the Execution of Jesus (San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 1998)
- John P. Meier, A Marginal Jew - Rethinking the Historical Jesus volumes 1 & 2 (New York: Doubleday, 1991)
- Robert W. Funk & Roy W. Hoover, The Five Gospels, What Did Jesus Really Say? (New York: MacMillan, 1993)
- E.P. Sanders, The Historical Figure of Jesus (London: Penguin Press, 1993)
- Marcus Borg, Meeting Jesus Again for the First Time: The Historical Jesus and the Heart of Contemporary Faith (New York: HarperColllins, 1994)
- Morton Smith, Jesus the Magician (Hampton Roads Publishing, 2014)
Then summarizing the subjective nature of previous non-quantitative research is:
- Dale C. Jr., Allison, Historical Christ and the Theological Jesus (Grand Rapids, MI: Eerdmans, 2009)
- Marcus Knight, “The Jesus We’ll Never Know”, Christianity Today (April, 2010)
- Stephen J. Patterson, “Apocalypticism of Prophecy and the Problem of Poly-valence: Lessons from the Gospel of Thomas”, Journal of Biblical Literature 130, no. 4 (2011): 795-817
Extraction of Jesus Teaching Signals
(July 9, 2022) Historical information can be treated as signals traveling through time. So, think of each source document as a noisy communication channel transmitting information from the past. Each channel has a certain probability of correctly transmitting a valid signal.
The source documents with their probabilities of validity are listed below from earliest to latest. The numbers in parenthesis are confidence level percentages which indicate what percentage of the teachings from that source are expected to be valid, that is, which actually go back to the time of Jesus. The closer a source is to the time of Jesus the more valid it tends to be. These validity probability numbers come from the declining exponential curve shown in figure 2:
- 1 Thessalonians - 53 CE, validity = 0.59 (59%)
- Galatians - 55 CE; validity = 0.56 (56%)
- 1 & 2 Corinthians - 56 and 57 CE: validity 0.55 (55%)
- Q source - 69 CE; validity = 0.4 (40%)
- Mark - 70 CE; validity = 0.39 (39%)
- Matthew, Luke, Acts - 80 CE; validity = 0.30 (30%)
- Thomas, John, Josephus - 90 CE; validity = 0.23 (23%)
A perfectly valid signal is one having a 100% confidence level and none of these sources meets that level by itself. This means that in order for a Jesus teaching to valid it has to be found in two or more sources. If the sources confidence levels exceeds 100% then the teaching is considered to be valid, that is, it goes back to the time of Jesus.
In the military, stealthy radio communication methods use spread spectrum techniques because they use several low powered signal transmissions which are spread out over many different radio frequency channels. Individually, each real signal is hidden in the noise but if the receiver knows when and where to look for the real signals then they can be extracted using methods analogous to those used to extract the real Jesus teachings.
For most of its short history, signal engineering was a rather specialized field existing mostly in radar engineering. Signal engineering also comes under the heading of “decision theory” and a good conceptual introduction can be found in the book by Peterson (2009).
In signal engineering, a true signal is different from a valid signal which has met the 100% confidence threshold requirement. A true signal is what is put into the communication channel. A valid detected signal may or may not be true. For example, a perfectly valid but still false signal may have been placed onto the channel by a foe using electronic warfare techniques. Generally valid signals are assumed to be true unless other tests indicate falsity. The same reasoning holds true for historical signals. A valid signal is one which meets the threshold requirement of going back to the time of Jesus. It is assumed to be true unless other tests show it is false. These other tests are “audience relevance” and “coherency of thought.”
The source weigh curve shown in the figure assigns weighting values to each Jesus signal source based upon their date of composition. All curves need three points for their definition.
One point is 32 CE with a validity of 1.0. This is the death date of Jesus which is justified in section ?. All teaching signals dated to when Jesus was alive are defined as authentic with a validity number of 1.0. (yet some few could be false from deliberate lies).
The second point is 150 CE with a validity of 0.0. Teaching signals dated after the death of Jesus have a decreasing probability of validity. The time when all teaching signals are invalid with would be when all possible eye-witnesses are dead along with the people with whom they talked. This would take about 120 years (60 + 60) or 150 BCE. This is confirmed by the apocryphal "Gospel According to the Hebrews" which was written about that time and which all scholars believe is a complete fabrication.
The third (actually 3rd, 4th, 5th) point is found using an iterative optimization process to find the validity of the sources which are associated with the known false saying “take up your cross” discussed in section 1.2 below. By assigning a validity of 1.0 to this teaching the validities of its sources can be determined if we assumed the shape of the curve is a declining exponential.
We can determine the shape of the curve based upon how information is propagated from person to person. Each person is like a link in a chain and each person has a certain probability of correctly passing along a short piece information to the next person. As an example of saying transmission, assume each person in the chain has a 0.9 probability of passing on some piece of information accurately. This person tells another person so the probability of this second person passing on this same piece of information drops to 0.81 (0.9 x 0.9 = 0.81). For a third person the probability drops to 0.729 (0.9 x 0.9 x 0.9) and so on. This sort of repeating procedure produces a declining exponential function. The exponential function is found in all sorts of phenomena which grow or decay at a rate proportional to its value at any given point.
Valid but False Teaching "Whoever wants to be my Disciple must Take Up the Cross"
(July 9, 2022) This false teaching is important for defining the validity curve of section 1.1. It is the only teaching signal of Jesus which is valid meaning it goes back to near his lifetime but which has to be false because it lacks audience relevance. If Jesus had actually said this his audience would not know what he was talking about. The symbol of the cross only became relevant after Jesus was crucified.
- Mark 8:34-35
- Q (Matthew 10:37-39 and Luke 14:26-27)
- Thomas 55
- Luke 9:23-25 (copied from Mark so not counted)
- Matthew 16: 24-26 (copied from Mark so not counted)
Validity = Mark (0.39) + Q (0.4) + Thomas (0.23) = 1.02(Galatians 1:13-14, NIV, Paul speaking) For you have heard of my previous way of life in Judaism, how intensely I persecuted the church of God and tried to destroy it. 14 I was advancing in Judaism beyond many of my own age among my people and was extremely zealous for the traditions of my fathers.
“Kingdom of God” Should Really be Translated as “Divine Home Energy”
(July 9, 2022) A significant problem is determining the authentic teaching of Jesus is whether Jesus really used the word "kingdom" in the phrases “Kingdom of Heaven” (Basileia Ouranos in Greek) as recorded in Matthew, or “Kingdom of God” (Basileia Theos in Greek) as recorded in the other gospels.
The grammar of ancient (not modern) Greek is actually more similar to that of Akkadian word role grammar instead of with later developing and more complex Latin case grammar into which it has been forced by moderns. Akkadian and Ancient Greek use word endings on the roots of words to to indicate a word’s role or function in a sentence. For example, the root of basileia is basil which means “govern.” The ancient Greek noun role endings are:
- “eu” ending means the noun is the actor in the sentence
- “iς” (iota, sigma /s/) ending means the noun is a place
- “εi” ending means the noun represents an abstract power instead of an actual person or place (thus the “power of Socrates” as the power of critical philosophy)
- “oη” (omicron, eta) ending indicates noun is a participle
Noun Gender Endings (which come after noun role endings)
- “ς” (sigma /s/) ending means noun is singular masculine, plural ending is “ούς”
- “α” ending means noun is singular feminine, plural ending is “ες”
- “o” ending means noun is singular neutral, plural ending is “α”
Words without role endings but with gender endings are adjectives.
Consequently, the word basileus is a masculine governing actor and so it means “king, ruler or governor.” The word basilica is a feminine place so it means “home of governance” and was a place where courts and other official government duties were performed in ancient times. The word basileia then is a feminine governing power which means “home energy.”
The second word in the phrase mistranslated as “Kingdom of Heaven” is ouranos which is also translated in English as uranus and it means “sky-bound” or “divine” or “heavenly” as a masculine adjective. “Sky” or the “heavens” was an epithet for the higher divine powers because they were located in the sky. According to the earliest Greek text describing their gods by Hesiod (500 BCE), Uranus was the son and husband of Gaia (Earth), with whom he fathered the first generation of Titans.
The second word in the phrase “mistranslated as “Kingdom of God” is “theos” which means “divine” as an adjective. Consequently, the two phrases are actually identical if translated as “divine home-energy.”
Main Theme 1: Divine Home Energy is Here Yet Must Grow Slowly (6 Teachings)
1.1 Divine Home-Energy is Here But Unseen by Most
Mature mustard tree
1.1.1 Divine home-energy is like a mustard seed which when planted grows into a large plant with branches for the birds.
(July 9, 2022) Mark 4:30-32, Q (Matthew 13:31-32, Luke 13:18-19), Thomas 20: Validity = 1.02
Jesus taught that the Divine home energy was already here but unseen by the spiritually blind because so few people really followed the path of God. The statue prophecy in Daniel chapter 2 had already been fulfilled. The Divine-home-energy indicating God’s presence was still small like a mustard seed but it would grow if more people would align themselves with the will of God and not be seduced by haters, blind rule followers, and power seekers.
In the statue prophecy, the Daniel interprets the dream of the Persian king. This dream describes a statue made of four metals representing four earthly empires and how after the fall of the Hellenistic fourth empire an eternal kingdom of God will be established. These four kingdoms were the Mesopotamian (Babylon/Assyria - Gold), the Medes (silver), the Persians (Bronze), and the Hellenistic (Iron and clay) which was divided against itself because after the death of Alexander it was divided between his top generals.
If this prophecy was true then the apocalyptic Kingdom of God should be here but it was nowhere to be seen. So where was it? Hence the general expectation that the apocalypse was due any day …. but Jesus had a different idea.
1.1.2 For whatever is hidden is meant to be disclosed, and whatever is concealed is meant to be brought out into the open - Do you bring in a lamp to put it under a bowl or a bed? Instead, don't you put it on its stand?
(July 9, 2022) Mark 4:21-23, Q (Matthew 5:14-16, Luke 8:16-17), Luke 11:33-36, Thomas 5, Thomas 6, Thomas 33; Validity = 1.02
1.1.3 There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed - what you have whispered in the ear will be proclaimed.
(July 9, 2022) Mark 4:21-23, Q (Matthew 10:26-27, Luke 12:2-3, Thomas (first part in 5 and second part in 33); Validity = 1.02
(Proverbs 20:27, NIV) The human spirit is (or a person’s words are) the lamp of the Lord that sheds light on one’s inmost being.
(Psalm 18:27-28, NIV) You save the humble but bring low those whose eyes are haughty. You, Lord, keep my lamp burning; my God turns my darkness into light.
1.2 Divine Home-Energy Must Grow Slowly in Order to Avoid Violent Resistance
1.2.1 Divine home-energy will come like a thief in the night. One cannot enter a strongman’s house without first tying up the strong man because he would resist.
(July 9, 2022) 1 Thessalonians 5:1-5, Mark 3:25-27, Q (Matthew 24:42-44, Luke 12:39-40), John 10:1-5, Thomas 35: Validity = 1.84. [Copied from Mark so not counted: Matthew 12:29, Luke 11:21-22]
God’s energy could not be like another Roman empire based upon coercion and fear. Therefore, it had to grow slowly otherwise humans trapped by their own culture would instinctively react against it in a blind antagonistic fear. God’s way in not the human way. Divine home energy had to come silently yet deliberately like a thief in the night.
The apocalyptic idea entered Jewish culture from the Zoroastrian Persian Achaemenid Empire after the Persians conquered the Babylonian Empire and ended the Jewish exile in 539 BCE. An early manifestation of this new ideology was the book of Daniel with its statue prophecy of verses 2:31-45. This prophecy implied that the apocalyptic Kingdom of God would arrive after the fall of all the Hellenistic empires. The last Hellenistic kingdom to fall was the Egyptian Ptolemaic dynasty of Queen Cleopatra when she and Roman General Marc Antony were defeated by the future Roman emperor Octavian Caesar in 30 BCE.
Like many other anti-apocalyptic teachings from Jesus, the original meaning of this was lost on the apocalyptic Christians so they spun it in many different ways trying to make sense of it. For example, Paul thinks this teaching means no one really knows the exact day when the Day of Judgment will occur. Mark interprets this teaching as indicating that Satan is internally divided and thus his power will not last much longer allowing him to be tied up and robbed. The Q source takes a view similar to Paul in that no one knows when the apocalyptic Son of Man will arrive. Only Thomas seems to preserve some sense of the original meaning. Consequently, this teaching was orphaned because it made no sense when everyone thought that Jesus would arrive again in a sudden violent apocalypse bringing in the empire of God.
1.2.2 If anyone says “Look Here” or “Look There,” don't believe It.
(July 9, 2022) Mark 13:19-21, Q (Matthew 24:26-27, Luke 17:22-24), Luke 17:20-21, Thomas 3, Thomas 113. Validity = 1.55. [Copied from Mark so not used: Matthew 24:22-25]
1.2.3 No Sign Will be Given.
(July 9, 2022) Mark 8:11-13, Q (Matthew 12:38-41, Luke 11:29-30), Luke 11:14-16, Validity = 1.09. [Copied from Mark so not used: Matthew 16:1-4]
Many Jews during the time of Jesus expected the arrival of an apocalyptic kingdom any day and many saw signs of the imminent arrival everywhere (Look, Look, Look!). Jesus was telling them no such signs exist. This fascination with the end times has continued to this day among both Christians (who supposedly read their Bible) and non-Christians.
The earliest gospel of Mark properly wraps this teaching within a slow growing dive home-energy context which was the story about "feeding the multitude." Here people Jesus shared their food with strangers in a miraculous act of love.
In contrast, the Q (Matthew, Luke) source places this teaching within an apocalyptic context by stating that the only sign will be the sign of Jonah in a reference to the apocalyptic resurrection of Jesus who like Jonah came back to life after three days (Jonah after three days in the belly of a whale). The author of Matthew liked this explanation so much that he even added it to the end of his Mark copied passage. That this passage was copied from Mark is also indicated by how both passages end with Jesus leaving the crowd.
Main Theme 2: Consequences of Living within a Spiritual/Emotional Network or Logos (7 Teachings)
2.1 Law of Attraction/Law of Return
2.1.1 Whoever has will gain more, whoever does not have will gain less.
(July 9, 2022) 2 Corinthians 9:5-7, Mark 4:24-25, Q (Matthew 25:28-29, Luke 19:24-26), Thomas 41: Validity = 1.59. (Copied from Mark: Matthew 13:11-12, Luke 8:18)
The Law of Return, which is also called Law of Attraction is a manifestation of emotional propagation through a group. Non-verbal emotional signals move through a group and eventually circle around back to the source. Thus those who love get more love while those who hate get more hate. This has the evolutionary purpose of group coordination in social mammals. Yawning is a classic example of this sort of emotional propagation as it tends to go around a group telling the group that now is the time to rest.
Emotional propagation even at the subconscious, non-verbal level has been found in human societies (Christakis and Fowler 2009). The best model to describe its properties is that of a bi-directional network. Their assumption is that emotional propagation relies on physical signals. However, Jesus and ancient philosophers assumed that emotions were also propagated via spiritual means.
The Law of Return within a bi-directional network seems to have been first stated by Zoroaster who lived around 850 BCE and whose ideas became part of the official religion of the Persian Achaemenid empire. He stated that his good thoughts increase God’s kingdom (Yasna 31, verse 6). Previous to Zoroaster the ancient idea of a network was unidirectional similar to that of a river delta. Such a network was thought to distribute the divinely generated, life-triggering fertility fluids to the earth. The fertility fluids were manifested directly as rain, sun light, and sun heat.
Logos and Greek Philosopher Heraclitus
(July 9, 2022) The Greek philosopher Heraclitus introduced the concept of the bi-directional emotional/spiritual network into the Greek language within 30 years after the Persians conquered his home city of Ephesus in 522 BCE. He would have been exposed to Zoroaster’s ideas then. He called this emotional network Logos and it is best translated as “conscious connections” or “conscious network” because all emotions are conscious sensations.
(Heraclitus, quoted in Sextus Empiricus, Against Professors 7.133 4-7) And so one ought to follow what is common. Although the Logos is common, the majority of people live as though they had a private understanding. (F6 in Waterfield, 2000)
(Heraclitus, quoted in Sextus Empiricus, Against Professors 7.132) But this Logos which holds forever, people prove ignorant, not only before they hear it, but also once they have heard it. For although everything happens in accordance with Logos, they resemble those with no familiarity with it, even after they have become familiar with the kinds of accounts and events I discuss as I distinguish each thing according to its nature and explain its constitution. (F1 in Waterfield, 2000)(Epictetus Discourses 2.8) God brings benefit but the good also brings benefit. I would seem therefore, that is where the true nature of God is to be found. There too will be that of the good. Then what is the nature of God? Flesh, in no way whatever. Land, in no way. Fame, in no way. He is nous (reasoning), ettistnun (knowledge), and logos. (Hard 2014)
(Marcus Aurelius Book 4 of Meditations) Constantly regard the universe as one living being, having one substance and one soul; and observe how all things have reference to one perception, the perception of this one living being; and how all things act with one movement; and how all things are the cooperating causes of all things which exist; observe too the continuous spinning of the thread and the contexture of the web(John 1:1) In the beginning was the Logos, and the Logos was with God (Theos), and the Logos was God (Theos). (1 Corinthians 12:7-11, NIV) 7 Now to each one the manifestation of the Spirit is given for the common good. 8 To one there is given through the Spirit a message (logos) of wisdom, to another a message (logos) of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, 9 to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, 10 to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues, and to still another the interpretation of tongues. 11 All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he distributes them to each one, just as he determines.
Substitute the word “connection” for “message” to get a more accurate translation.
2.2 How Law of Attraction/Return Works
2.2.1 Ask and seek, and then you will receive.
(July 9, 2022) Mark 11:24, Q (Matthew 7:7-8, Luke 11:9-19), John 14:13-14, John 15:5-8, John 16:22-24, Thomas 92, Thomas 94: Validity = 1.94. (Copied from Mark so not used in validity calculation: Matthew 21:22)
This is a statement of the law of attraction. Put some focused feelings out on the spiritual/emotional network and related things will tend to come back at you.Happiness is like a butterfly.The more you chase it, the more it eludes you.But if you turn your attention to other things,It comes and sits softly on your shoulder
To find happiness start small with specific, short term desires and go from there.
This teaching of Jesus is another one which has been orphaned because it did not make sense within an apocalyptic framework. Consequently, each gospel added their own spin. The gospel of Mark associates this with the power of prayer. Q associates it with the process of “seeking.” John associates it with the power of the apocalyptic “Son of Man” from the book of Daniel in the Hebrew Scriptures, while both of Thomas’ entries associate it with the process of “seeking,” just like Q.
References O’Tool, G. (2014) The Quote Investigator. Online at: http://quoteinvestigator.com/2014/04/17/butterfly
2.2.2 The measure you use will be applied to you (over 75% confident)
(July 9, 2022) Mark 4:24, Matthew 7:1-2, Luke 6:37-38: Validity = 0.79
This is another statement of the law of attraction/return. Open emotional channels are bi-directional as evidenced by emotional propagation studies. The word measure here means the instrument used to make the measurement. In this case it refers to a person's mental framework or paradigm. So, if you are a fearful person you will see a lot of things which scare you. If you assume people are rude in general you will see a lot of rude people. If you hate some leader, institution, or race then you will connect every bad event to them.
2.3 Grow Divine Home-Energy by Nurturing Connections
2.3.1 Love Others.
(July 9, 2022) 1 Thessalonians 4:9-10, Galatians 5:22-23, 1 Corinthians 14:1, Q (Matthew 5:43-47, Luke 6:27-32): Validity = 2.1
Love is the human connective emotion and the main one for building up the spiritual network (Logos).(Proverbs 3:3-4, NIV) 3 Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart. 4 Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.
(Hosea 12:6, NIV) But you must return to your God; maintain love and justice, and wait for your God always.
(Micah 67-8, NIV) 7 Will the Lord be pleased with thousands of rams, with ten thousand rivers of olive oil? Shall I offer my firstborn for my transgression, the fruit of my body for the sin of my soul? 8 He has shown you, O mortal, what is good. And what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.
(Proverbs 15:17, NIV) Better a small serving of vegetables with love than a fattened calf with hatred.
A news headline on the famous feud between the Hatfields and McCoys in the Appalachian hillbilly country of Kentucky.
2.3.2 Do not return wrong for wrong. If anyone slaps you on the right cheek then turn the other cheek also.
(July 9, 2022) 1 Thessalonians 5:15, Q (Matthew 5:38-42, Luke 6:27-31): Validity = 0.99
Humans have a tendency to escalate slight wrongs into feuds and revenge. This pollutes the spiritual/emotional network
2.3.3 Love your neighbor as yourself (over 75% confident)
(July 9, 2022) Mark 12:28-31, Matthew 19:17-19, Thomas 25: Validity = 0.92 (Copied from Mark so not used: Matthew 22:36-40, Luke 10:25-27)
This teaching was pulled from the law book of Leviticus in the Hebrew Scriptures. It is not as broad as the first teaching of "Love others" because it is mainly focused on fellow citizens and the nation of Israel. Yet it must have been a popular statement which Jesus likely repeated.
2.3.4 If salt loses its saltiness how can it be made salty again? (over 75% confident)
(July 9, 2022) Mark 9:49-50, Q (Matthew 5:13-6, Luke 14:35-35): Validity = 0.79
Once the emotional/spiritual network has been polluted with hate it propagates around and it is hard to eliminate it. It becomes like dirt in salt. If salt gets dirty and loses its saltiness, how can it become pure again?
Main Theme 3: Heal by Connecting with the Divine Powers (4 Teachings)
3.1 Bring down a divine-contact and make a living from whole-healing with good-divine-contacts.
(July 9, 2022) 1 Corinthians 9:14, Mark 6:7,12-13, Q (Matthew 10:7-8, Luke 9:2, 10:4 -12), Thomas 14: Validity = 1.57 [Copied from Mark: Matthew 10:1, Luke 9:1-Luke 9:3-6)(Josephus, Antiquities, Book 18, chapter 3, paragraph 3 with possible Christian additions eliminated by Meier, 1991) Now there was about this time Jesus, a wise man, for he was a doer of wonderful works. He drew over to him both many of the Jews and many of the Gentiles. And when Pilate, at the suggestion of the principal men amongst us, had condemned him to the cross those that loved him at the first did not forsake him. And the tribe of Christians, so named from him, are not extinct at this day.
The Greek words for healing attributed to Jesus and the disciples are iama and therapeuo. Iama means "to heal by making whole" while therapeuo means "to nurse" or "to physically cure." If therapeuo is combined with the psychological healing phrase about driving out demons then sentence has the same healing range as iama.(1 Corinthians 12:28, NIV) And God has placed in the church first of all apostles (apostolos), second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of iama, of helping, of guidance, and of different kinds of tongues.(1 Corinthians 9:14, NIV) In the same way, the Lord (Jesus) has commanded that those who preach (kat-aggello) should receive their living from the gospel (eu-aggelion).
Here the root word aggello is incorrectly assigned two different words “preach” and “gospel.” Word change-outs like this indicate a biased and sloppy translation. Proper ancient word meanings are found by examining how they are used in all sentences. If the ancients used one word, then so should we. The best English word to use for aggello covering all its uses is “divine contact.” The Greek word aggelion is personified by its variant spelling of angelion which is translated in the Bible as "angel." In this case it could also be translated as divine-connector which is more descriptive of an angel’s function.
The word anggello (angelion) is used with the following two prefixes:
- eu means “good” in Greek.
- kat, kata means “bring down” in Greek as in some dream or influence from the divine powers coming down to earth
When translated properly into English the sentence is:
Euuangelium (Greek word), that is, good divine-connector (Latin words), is a substitute (Old English word).
The word “godspel” in this sentence comes from the Old English word gespelia meaning "substitute.” In time this was shortened to “spelled” which was used when a worker "spelled" another and which in time became the phrase “rest a spell.”
The word “spell” has a complex history having other meanings deriving from other similar sounding source words. One source word comes from Old Norse spjalla via Old English spellian and it means “speech” including a magical speech. Another meaning comes from Old French espelir which means “explaining” things such as describing a word letter by letter. This French meaning replaced the old English meaning around 1400 BCE. (Online Etymological Dictionary).
The Latin word nuntium which the copyist indicated was a substitute word also means “divine connection.” An official of the Catholic church who speaks for the Pope is a "papal nuncio." The Pope was thought of as God’s divine connection on earth and his envoys were therefore also divine connectors.
Other possible meanings for godspel have been suggested by many in the past which involve treating it as a compound word. These are “good spell” and “God spell” but those are not verbs and do not result in a sentence.
ReferencesLogemen, H. (1893) The Etymology of Gospel Modern Language Notes Vol. 8, No. 2 (Feb., 1893), pp. 45-47 Published by: The Johns Hopkins University Press DOI: 10.2307/2918325.
Meier J.P. (1991) A Marginal Jew - Rethinking the Historical Jesus - volume 1, Doubleday, New York
3.2 Have confidence because confidence can move mountains.
(July 9, 2022) Mark 11:22-23, Q (Matthew 17:20, Luke 17:6, Thomas 48, Thomas 106: Validity = 1.25 [Copied from Mark: Matthew 21:21]
Hard to know if this teaching was aimed at Jesus’ disciples or the patients. Placebo healing requires the patients have confidence in the healer at a deep emotional conditioning level. The Greek noun for "confidence" is pistis while its verb is peitho. Christian translations incorrectly translate it into English as the word “faith.” Confidence is not faith because it is not something which can be gained by willful belief. Like all conditioned habits it is only established by repeated successful observations enhanced by reason, peer pressure and statements from “authoritative” sources.
In this teaching Jesus is giving a hyperbolic example about the importance of confidence in healing. Whether Jesus really thought confidence could move mountains or he was using hyperbole to make a point is unknown (but the teaching was remembered!)
Spiritual power was very important to the early Christians. That was at the heart of the Apostle Paul’s theology. As evidenced by Pentecost, people could only do miracles and acquire gifts of the spirit by believing Jesus rose from the dead (but that turned out not to be true). That belief is what brought them the spiritual power to do miracles like healing, speaking in tongues, and doing other things. That was the evidence of salvation as Paul says in Galatians: (Galatians 3:1-4, NIV) You foolish Galatians! Who has bewitched (baskaino) you? Before your very eyes Jesus Christ was clearly portrayed as crucified. 2 I would like to learn just one thing from you: Did you receive the Spirit by the works of the law, or by believing what you heard? 3 Are you so foolish? After beginning by means of the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by means of the flesh? 4 Have you experienced so much in vain—if it really was in vain? 5 So again I ask, does God give you his Spirit and work miracles among you by the works of the law, or by your believing what you heard?
The observation that Gentiles could receive the Spirit was the main reason for admitting them into early Christianity as mentioned in Paul’s letter to the Galatians chapter 2 and 3:1-5. The following passage in Acts explicitly records this justification:
(Acts 10:44-47, NIV) 44 While Peter was still speaking these words, the Holy Spirit came on all who heard the message. 45 The circumcised believers who had come with Peter were astonished that the gift of the Holy Spirit had been poured out even on Gentiles. 46 For they heard them speaking in tongues and praising God. Then Peter said, 47 “Surely no one can stand in the way of their being baptized with water. They have received the Holy Spirit just as we have.” 48 So he ordered that they be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ.
3.3 Whoever vilifies the sacred spirit(s) will not find emotional release
(July 9, 2022) Mark 3:28-29, Q (Matthew 12:32, Luke 12:10, Thomas 44: Validity = 1.02 [Copied from Mark Matthew 12:31
In order to use the spiritual powers involved home energy a person must first unblock any emotional/spiritual channels conflicting with those powers. This involves identifying those conflicting emotions such as envy, fear, blame, and anger and then letting them go (releasing) them.
Apparently one of the most common emotional problems addressed by Jesus was people blaming others for their own issues, specifically blaming the Divine powers/spirits for their failures in spiritual energy work. Jesus had to remind them that many possible reasons existed for this failure but that a person should not get angry and start blaming others. They had to release and let go of negative emotions.aphisis - ἄφεσις, εως, ἡ, (ἀφίημι) letting go, release, b. (of persons) dismissal: (in ritual) release "Whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgiven (aphisis)."
The word “forgiven” is not used. Instead, Jesus used the more magical “emotional-release.” Forgiving someone first requires blaming someone and Jesus did not promote playing the blame game.
The placebo only effects body functions which are also affected by stress hormones so it has a core innate component. It was initially called "Animal Magnetism" after a hypothesis proposed by Anton Mesmer.
The placebo effect is strongly affected by culture and only be changed by emotional conditioning learning which takes time and many repeated examples. It is not changeable due to a strong willful belief (faith). Even if people are told a pill is a placebo it will still have a statistical effect based upon deep emotional conditioning.
How the Placebo effect works is unknown. Just because a phenomena is given a name and can be detected statistically does not mean it is understood.
3.4 A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown. [over 75% confident]
(July 9, 2022) Mark 6:1-6, John 4:43-45, Thomas 31: Validity = 0.85
Jesus and his disciples were healers of body and soul. At the minimum they were counselors with their promotion of divine home energy and placebo effect healers for the body. Lacking modern medicine, this was really some of the best doctoring most ancients had. The placebo effect should not be assumed to be an effect only of the material realm. How its works remains unknown.
Yet this healing did not always work and this evidence was deliberately suppressed by Matthew and Luke because it shows that Jesus was not the all-powerful apocalyptic Messiah they wanted him to be be.
This teaching is good evidence that the healing of Jesus was mostly based upon the placebo effect. The Gospel of Mark clearly states the healing failure was due to a lack of confidence (pistis) on the part of the those being healed. In contrast to Mark, Thomas has Jesus being unwilling, instead of being unable, to do miracles in his hometown.
The placebo effect was the most effective healing method the ancients had. The word “placebo” means “I shall please” and it derives from the Latin verb placere meaning “to please.” Due to the effectiveness of placebos all new medical drugs are tested against placebos as a test of material effectiveness. Only if a new drug is statistically better than the placebo effect is it considered to be “effective” in a material sense although the placebo effect is often quite effective in its own right.
A now classic example of the placebo effect is its effect on the irritable bowel syndrome. Drug studies involving the drug Alosetron showed that 51% of patients treated with Alosetron had adequate relief as compared to 38% of patients treated with placebo (Kaptchuk and all 2010). A 38% success rate is still very significant. The drug only added another 13% to patient relief meaning that the placebo effect was the main healing mechanism.
Another study involving Alosetron in the same paper (Kaptchuk and all 2010) shows that placebo pills will even work if a doctor tells a patient to take pills which are labeled “placebo” and told they “are like sugar pills.” This is clear evidence that deep emotional conditioning about the effectiveness of pills is at work here and not the strength of a willful belief.
The final study in the same Alosetron paper (Kaptchuk and all 2010a) lasted three weeks and involved 80 people (70% of them women). It studied the effects of a caring healing environment on irritable bowel symptoms, 59% reported adequate symptom relief after taking placebo pills within a caring environment compared to 35% who did not take any pills yet who experienced the same caring environment. (Kaptchuk and all 2010b). This result of placebo in a caring environment is slightly better than the tests with the approved medicine Alosetron!
- The individual is listened to and receives an explanation for the illness that makes sense.
- The individual feels care and concern being expressed by the healer and others in the environment.
- The individual feels an enhanced sense of mastery or control over the illness or its symptoms.
Main Theme 4: Spiritual and Rule-Based Religions Do Not Mix (4 Teachings)
4.1 Only those like children will welcome me and experience Divine Home-Energy.
(July 9, 2022) Mark 9:33-37, Mark 10:13-16 (negative version), John 13:20, John 12:44-45, Thomas 46, Thomas 22; Validity = 1.7 (Mark copied in Matthew 10:40-42, Matthew 18:1-5, Luke 9:46-48, Luke 10:16)
This authentic teaching of Jesus comes in independent positive and negative forms with the negative form using the words "not" or "never." The two forms also come with different contextual spins. Yet both forms are associated with the example of a child except in the Gospel of John which does not accept the idea that the developing the sacred space is dependent on human action. In contrast, Thomas only has the children reference because that tradition could not imagine that Jesus would not be welcomed.
4.2 The New Path of the Spirit does not Mix with the Old Path of the Law.
(July 9, 2022) Mark 2:21-22, Q (Matthew 6:24, Luke 16:13), Thomas 47; Validity = 1.02
This teaching has thee components which have been clustered together in the sources. These are:
- An old patch is not sewn onto a new garment, since it would create a tear.
- Young wine is not poured into old wine-skins, or they might break
- No one can serve two masters
Only Thomas has all three. The other sources have two out of the three. Like many other authentic teachings of Jesus, this teaching became orphaned and could not be understood in the context of apocalyptic Christianity.
The Q source only preserved the teaching about serving two masters because it was spun in such a way so that is could be understood by apocalyptic Christians which is that a person cannot serve both money and God. In contrast, Thomas spins it as a slave who cannot honor each master equally. Because each spin is only attested in one source it is a product of that source's oral tradition and not part of a real Jesus teaching.
4.3 Watch out for the Teachers of the Law.
(July 9, 2022) Mark 12:38-40, Q (Matthew 23:1-6, Luke 11:42-46), Thomas 39, Thomas 102: Validity = 1.25 (Luke 20:45-47 is copied from Mark)
Jesus warned about the teachers of the law but why he did so is not exactly clear. Most likely he followed the explanation given in Thomas about how they actively opposed the spiritual path based teachings of Jesus in favor of their rule based approach. After Christians became rule based themselves this reasoning no longer made sense so Christians adopted other reasons such as the Pharasees being attention seekers and oppressors of the poor.
This idea of hypocrisy among the Pharisees became a popular one in the New Testament being further developed in Mark and Luke but mostly in Matthew (Mark 7:6, Matthew 6:2, 6:5, 6:16, 15:7, 22:18, 23:13-29, 24:51, Luke 12:56, Luke 13:15). None of these supposed teaching have enough validity to claim that Jesus actually taught them. Also, all these entries except for Matthew chapter 23 have an apocalyptic spin showing that they developed late. Yet even if we did not have this original teaching we could still discern that Jesus said something about the hypocrisy of Pharisees just from these many late developing oral traditions.
4.4 By their fruit you will recognize them. Good trees produce good fruit and bad trees produce bad fruit. People to not pick figs from thistles and grapes from thorn-bushes. [over 75% confident]
(July 9, 2022) Q (Matthew 12:33-37, Luke 6:43-45), Matthew 7:16-20, Thomas 45; Validity = 0.93
Both Matthew sources put an apocalyptic spin to this teaching not not found in the other sources. The Matthew Q source inserts a phrase about the Day of Judgement while Matthew's own oral tradition inserts a phrase about "bad trees" which represent Israel being cut down and thrown into the fire. The judicial murder of Jesus' brother James in 62 C.E. by the Jerusalem temple authorities poisoned this Jerusalem community's relationship with their fellow Jews and forced them into exile. This community's outlook is reflected in Matthew