Journal of Heresies

My search for truth in a world of deceit.

Location: United States

I have what is probably an insatiable desire to search out the answers to what may be impossible questions.

Friday, July 28, 2006

The Da Vinci Code's Tragic Flaw

I have finally picked up and read the popular novel, The Da Vinci Code. On pages 251 through 254 of the book, the author Dan Brown tells history as it was. I suspect that these pages are among those about which many Christians have been so disturbed. Discovering that we have been practicing pagan customs and that we have been lied to (or at least misguided) by people who supposedly are the church fathers can not only be shocking but sometimes faith shattering. The important question to ask ourselves when our eyes are opened is this: Who is our faith built on? Have we trusted in the so-called church fathers and their man-made articles of faith? Or, have we trusted in the one true God, Creator of the Universe and His holy promises?

The answer to that question will direct our ultimate response to information like that presented on pages 251-254 of The Da Vinci Code. If we love YHVH our God, with all our heart, mind and soul, then we will turn away from practices and teachings that have been added to those giving to us by YHVH. If we are unwilling to conform to His will, then we have not put our faith in Him, but rather in some man-made image.

The irony of The Da Vinci Code is that while pointing out erroneous beliefs, practices and teachings of the church, it simultaneously presents alternative erroneous beliefs as truth. How is it that Jesus cannot be God (or a god), yet Mary Magdalene can be? The text on page 274 says: "The threat that Mary Magdalene posed to the men of the early church was potentially ruinous... she also had physical proof that the Church's newly proclaimed deity had spawned a mortal bloodline." Yet, the text on the bottom of page 275 says of the books heroic sect: "The Priory of Sion, to this day, still worships Mary Magdalene as the Goddess, the Holy Grail, the Rose, and the Divine Mother." How is what the church has done be any different than what the Priory has done? If Mary was a goddess, how is it then that she and her offspring are mortal?

The greatest asset of Dan Brown's novel is that it will hopefully challenge people to seek out what is true. The quest for truth can be both frightening and exhilarating, but it will never be in vain.

I have seen both the movie, and read the book. I found the book far more interesting than the movie. Dan Brown has artfully woven together very intriguing historical references and viewpoints to take us on an intense journey that is as much about us as it is about his characters. It is thought provoking as well as entertaining, but perhaps not a book for just anyone.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Warning to Those Who Keep YHVH's Feasts

I desire to keep the feasts and celebrations which YHVH set forth for us in the Torah (the first five books of the bible). He gave to us these feasts as reminders of what He has done and promised, and to teach us about His relationship with us. For me, keeping the feasts is a blessing.

Recently, I have been doing internet searches to find what groups might be gathering to keep Sukkot (the Feast of Tabernacles) this year. It is nice to be able to celebrate with others. However, I discovered during my search that there are some anti-semitic groups who also hold gatherings for Sukkot. The Anti-Defamation League terms these as "Christian Identity" groups and gives the following description which can be found at the ADL website:

Christian Identity is a religious ideology popular in extreme right-wing circles. Adherents believe that whites of European descent can be traced back to the "Lost Tribes of Israel." Many consider Jews to be the Satanic offspring of Eve and the Serpent, while non-whites are "mud peoples" created before Adam and Eve. Its virulent racist and anti-Semitic beliefs are usually accompanied by extreme anti-government sentiments. Despite its small size, Christian Identity influences virtually all white supremacist and extreme anti-government movements. It has also informed criminal behavior ranging from hate crimes to acts of terrorism.

The ADL website also contains a list of events held by known Christian Identity groups, and a history of the movement.

While there is nothing wrong with some people thinking that they are descended from the lost tribes of Israel, an attitude of racial supremacy is gravely erroneous. Ironically, Joseph (father of Ephraim and Mannasseh, two of the lost tribes)was married to an Egyptian woman who was very likely dark-skinned. This of course means that Ephraim and Mannasseh and all their offspring were/are racially mixed.

Anyway, I want fellow feast keepers to be careful as they look for others with whom to celebrate.