Bible Study is a wonderful experience, especially when it is done in group.
Ideally, the group reads the Texts for discussion and comments, first one and then another, and revelation emerges; a new thought or understanding to us, the earth's newest inhabitants, from the Book of Ancient time. It is then that the, "O I see!" moments occur. That does often happen and how enriching an experience it is to have life's Old Tools to become discovered by new people.
"There is nothing new under the sun," said King Solomon. We think we disagree with him because we now have cars and airplanes and the internet, x-ray, even computerized tomography. We may think King Solomon was perhaps correct for his day, but there are certainly new things now.
Actually the newest thing under the sun may be earth's new human beings, us. The oldest thing under the sun is religion.
I suspect that King Solomon referred to the real stuff of which life is composed such as living and dying; such as water, blood, air and breathing. Perhaps things like God, and the world of the spirit in which we continue to live today, and as man has always lived. None of those things have changed.
There are so many things that have not changed. Most of life is the way it was when we came here and will be the same way when we are gone from the earth.
Wisdom and knowledge and understanding are gained from the Scriptures, and studying the Bible together is enriching, but there are generally those who want to bring to the classroom the philosophies of the human mind, so they surmise, to correct the Scriptures and enlighten the students about "how it really was," (not that they were eyewitnesses at all.)
New Age religion is not at all New; it is as old as the Garden of Eden.
One of the most sensitive discomforts of studying the Scriptures with covert New Agers in the class, is that they are covert in their presentations.
They say things like, "Oh, don't you think it is interesting how the Israelites formed their religious beliefs from the pagan nations around them?" They persist in rehearsing how this pagan nation did thus and so in their religious practices, and dog-gone it, so did the Jews!
Oh, great wise thinker, think in two directions: why can't you understand that GOD told man how to worship from the very beginning?
Indeed the world of the unseen spirits also know what God expects in worship forms.
Not only is that true, but the head of the spirit world, that hates God, wants to be god and so infiltrates into human thinking little bits of truth about how to properly worship, but not God, rather to worship yourself and so him.
Believe it, Satan knows about worship because he worshipped at the Throne of God for who know how long a time.
Therefore, even according to the contaminated worship over which hell officiates, there should be commonality in worship ideas and forms, because it would be too obvious if some parts of Satan's perverted philosophies did not coincide at some few points with what we all know as humanity, to be truth. We know it because it is written in our God created DNA.
The perversion of truth is sweetened with just a little truth, enough to fool the one tasting it; just enough to deceive the thinker who looks for another way than the God Way.
This being truth, why are so few understanding, or even considering, that the commonalities found in religious practices are because the pagans formed their religious practices incorporating into those practices some of the things God told everyone from the beginning?
The Israelites however, were doing more correctly what God said; it was not they who copied, it was the pagan's who copied God's instructions which were given to all mankind in the beginning. Same God, then, now and always.
But today, as then, man looks for a way to save himself and to be like God. The only thing New about New Age is the name; it continues to be Paganism of the past, a path to bondage and ultimately to hell because it's followers will not bend their knee to Jesus Christ and confess their sin, asking for the assured forgiveness.
Is there no ability to think in two directions? Could it be the same old trick used on earth's new thinkers of Eden's Garden, Adam and Eve? The question is always, "has God really said?"
The Devil is always present to cast doubt on the Word of God: but God is always present to expose the Devil and his deceitful lies.
"Let God arise and His enemies be scattered!"
Ramona, Master in Ministry Arts, BA in Biblical Studies, I am an Ordained Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
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