38Pilate saith unto him, What is truth? (John 18:)

1Now the serpent was more subtle than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said unto the woman,. . .4And the serpent said unto the woman,. . . ye shall be as gods, knowing good and evil. . . 6And when the woman saw that the tree was. . .to be desired to make one wise, she took of the fruit thereof, and did eat, and gave also unto her husband with her; and he did eat. (Gen 3:)

Pilot asked for truth; Eve was offered wisdom. Did either of the twain receive what they were after?

We tend to think of Truth and Wisdom as the same thing. If we have wisdom, then we are in possession of Truth as well. But this is not necessarily so. I will give you some examples:

In the examples at the top of the page, Truth stood before Pilot in the form of Jesus who Pilot must make a decision concerning. Make the wrong decision and it would be fatal for him and for the world (End Times). Pilot heard the truth, he knew that what he had heard was true, not only because of who the words came from but because he certainly had heard of the reputation of Jesus. Wisdom was needed to decide between the whims of the people and the justice that he and Rome stood for. Did Pilot make a wise decision?

Eve had the knowledge of right and wrong as was given her by Adam (Adam received the knowledge as Eve had yet to be "born"). Eve may have had a somewhat corrupt understanding of what is right and what is wrong, but by her own admission she knew the difference, and the consequences for making the wrong choice. However rather than be satisfied with the knowledge of right and wrong, Eve sought wisdom, which in her mind, as was planted by the serpent, meant knowing good and evil. ("Evil" by the way in the Hebrew means "adversity, trouble, sorrow, grief, harm, calamity", etc. See Psalm 10:6; 88:3; 141:5; Gen 31:52; 44:29; Jonah 4:6 for such usage of the same Hebrew word interpreted as the foregoing.)

Did Eve (and Adam) make a wise choice? They already had the "good," and what the serpent promised them was the "bad" (Evil). Did they receive what they wanted? Did they (and us) receive what they were promised?

Here are some examples closer to home, that is, what you and I face on a more regular basis.

A woman (or a man) is having problems with her marriage. She seeks advise from a marriage counselor, a wise decision on the surface. The councilor gives the woman advise which she follows, and the advice turns out to be akin to the advise Eve received from the serpent. Later she finds that the councilor has been married five times and is in trouble both with his sixth wife and the law as well. Did the woman make a wise decision to visit the councilor? Did she make a wise decision when she chose to follow the councilor's advise? Is there something that might have been added to this scenario to cause her decision to be wiser, such as researching the one she sought advice from, or considering if such advice was appropriate for her own situation?

You have a friend who is a whizz with motors, that is, with jet engines. Your friend has 50 years experience working on jet engines. You have a washing machine that's on the fritz. You ask your friend, who by the way has never owned a washing machine, for advise. How much value would you place on that master mechanic's advice?

Situations change, and as situations change, so does our outlook and our advice.

You are in love with this girl (or boy) You are considering marriage. You visit your friend who has been married for 30 years and seek that person's advise. This person had just returned from a fabulous second honeymoon in Paradise. The advice you receive is very favorable, and therefore you make arrangements for a wedding.

A week later you visit your friends, and you find them at each other's throat, with names and furniture being thrown from and at one another throughout the house. The kids are screaming at one another, police sirens are heard in the distance approaching your location, and you find that the well-established family you sought advice from are heading for divorce court.

What is truth for one person is not necessarily true for another.

I call my friend in Alaska from my residence in Australia. I tell my friend what a warm, beautiful day it is, and ask him if he has his sun block on. My friend, being on the opposite hemisphere and the other side of the world is upset with me because I have awakened him in the middle of the night and it's the dead of winter where he lives.

We are told that 40,000 Frenchmen can't be wrong. We find by looking through history that this is not a true statement. How many people trusted Jim Jones and followed him to Guyana? How many people trusted in Stalin, in Hitler? How many people follow religions contrary to your own, the which you see as condemned to hell forever?

I hope my efforts to show you where Truth is not has been somewhat successful. Truth can not be found with the experts, nor with friends, nor with politicians or the educational systems of the world. Each of these have their own brand of truth. They all claim to have the truth. And they may firmly believe that what they teach as truth is true.

But it is not.

Although it might even be true for them, and their truth might work for them, it is not true for you, nor can it be.

Truth can not be found in another. Truth is a personal thing. What is true for you may not be true for me.

If this smacks of the modern view that says "You're ok, I'm ok," or "Do your own thing," then you're missing my point. None of these are true.

Is there truth to be found anywhere? Yes, of course there is. The truth is in the Bible. But you will not find truth in the Bible. Truth can not be found, and it can not be found even where it exists. Evidence of this is the over 30,000 different denominations all having a different view of the very same "Truth," and each firmly believing that their view is correct and all others are dead wrong. Then if you add to these 30,000 opinions the beliefs of the ever-expanding views of the world and other religions, even religions so sincere as to destroy themselves and anyone who gets in their way, Truth can become more heavily camouflaged than a veteran duck hunter in the rushes.

We seek Truth. Yet it is not Truth we seek, but rather we seek a quick answer. We want someone to tell us what the Truth is. We don't want to know the processes that someone has taken to arrive at their understanding of the Truth. Nor do we want to hear that there is a road by which we can arrive at Truth. We want to know if there is a fast jet to Truth, a commute we can make to get there while we sleep. Lose wight while lounging on the sofa watching TV and nibbling on French fries. We seek the easy way, the words that will make us sound wise when we know nothing but the headlines of a subject.

But Truth is not a destination. Truth is a journey. Truth is revealed to us in a step-by-step manner. Jump a step, and the next step we take will be away from the road to Truth, but we will firmly believe we are still on the road because of the road signs we saw along the road behind us.

1In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. (John 1:)

1Teach me thy way, O LORD; I will walk in thy truth: (Psalm 86:)

105Thy word is a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path. 106I have sworn, and I will perform it, that I will keep thy righteous judgments. (Psalm 119:)

Knowing where Truth is does not give us Truth. Knowing the right foods to eat that will keep me healthy will not give me good health. In order to have Truth be effective in my life I have to apply what Truth has been given to me:

18Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have. (Luke 8:)

This principle we understand full well. We know that if we don't exercise what we have, we will lose it. And if we continue to exercise what we now have, we will attain more. This applies to what we have learned such as languages, and exercise (muscle, endurance), and relationships, and every other aspect of our life. The more we put into a thing, the more we will get out of it:

7Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. (Gal 6:)

6But this I say, He which soweth sparingly shall reap also sparingly; and he which soweth bountifully shall reap also bountifully. (2Cor 9:)

If you seek information on how to be a world class runner you don't consult the little girl playing hop-scotch on the sidewalk. Although both are essentially in the same field, that is they both require exercise, the goals of each are very different. Yet this is precisely what we do: we ask people who have very little to no knowledge in the field we are interested in for their advice, which they are all too willing to supply, especially if a fee is offered.

An example of this might be someone who is seeking to get the monkey off his back asking advise of his drug dealer. Although that dealer might have more knowledge of the subject of drugs than anyone, he certainly is not going to give you advise that is going to bite into his own profits..

Another example of this type of reasoning is asking the used car salesman if the car he is trying to sell you is in good shape. He may know, but he is not going to tell you all he knows.

Consider asking a politician which candidate you should vote for, him or his opponent.

Or ask a Catholic if you would be better off joining the Catholic church, the Mormon, or the Baptist.

We tend to walk in the direction we are facing. If we're facing south, the chances are very slim that we will end up at some point north of where we stand.

We must face the direction we wish to find Truth. And we must walk in what Truth we have thus far attained. If we do not walk in what we know, that is exercise and experience what we have learned so far, we will not gain any more, but rather we will lose that which we have seemingly discovered so far.

We do not understand what we have just learned. Understanding comes with experience and practice. We only think we know what we've learned. This is the most dangerous period, that is, when we have head knowledge and think we have all knowledge. To see this principle in action, watch any teenager. They know all things, and they can be told nothing because they already have all the answers. And where did they get these answers they trust in? They got them from other teenagers who think they already have all the answers, and from those (especially those associated with the media) whose business it is to sell as many people their beliefs and products as they possibly can.

This brings to mind the long line of aged cigarette manufacturers who testified on oath that they believe cigarettes are not hazardous to a person's health; and the CEO's who testify that their failing business is doing well in order to sell their worthless stocks to trusting investors.

We go the direction we face. Just as it is of no value to ask for Truth from someone who is ahead of us and has something to gain from the answer they give (and what they have to gain might just be an ego boosts rather than a monetary one), it is of no value to ask someone who is behind us who is also new to the road for advise on what lies ahead. It would be of much greater value to ask someone who is going the other way what lies ahead, since that person has already seemingly been where you are headed. Something to consider is why that person is now heading toward the location from wince you and he came. Is it that what he sought was not where he thought it would be? Or maybe he gained all he could from that place and now seeks a new challenge, such as a football player who has reached his peak in football, and now desires to start at the bottom and work his way up in baseball. Or maybe he had a different goal than you have, and discovered that his desires were elsewhere than what lies ahead for you. You can not assume that because what he has not found where you are going is a lose for you as well. However, you can gain much knowledge (not necessarily Truth) from such a person that might be of value to you, such as dangers that lie ahead and false paths that should be avoided.

Everyone on the same road does not have the same purposes, the same destination in mind, nor the same amount of effort they wish to expend on the journey. Many people had tried to invent the light bulb, but none desired to do so to the same degree, nor were they willing to apply the same effort as did Edison. Many reached a point where they decided that it could not be done. And for such a person, it indeed could not be done. They had a limit of possibility far below that of Edison. And many who will offer you advise will not have the capacity for success you, hopefully, possess. In this same way you can't judge quality, direction or ultimate reward by what someone else places on the same endeavor. Your's is a road you must travel alone, even though you are part of a great crowd supposedly all going the same direction.

6Eat thou not the bread of him that hath an evil eye, neither desire thou his dainty meats: 7For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he: Eat and drink, saith he to thee; but his heart is not with thee. (Prov 23:)

14But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed. 15Then when lust hath conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death. (James 1:)

8But those things which proceed out of the mouth come forth from the heart; and they defile the man. 19For out of the heart proceed evil thoughts, murders, adulteries, fornications, thefts, false witness, blasphemies: (Mat 15:)

We are what we think. In the beginning of a thought, if we consider it wrong, we rebel against the thought. If we are successful at rebelling against the thought, then our conscience builds a wall around that thought and we do not venture in that area again without confronting that wall. But if we proceed into that thought, and we nourish that thought, then the wall becomes weaker and smaller until it disappears altogether. At this point we build another wall further out that we imagine we will not pass over. But in time, as we become discontent with the small pasture we've built beyond our wall of conscience, we again surmount the wall, and the process begins again.

Eventually we have gone so far beyond what we consider as "right," we no longer build a wall, but rather we justify our new position, and we find others with the same bent to their warped lives, thus giving credulity to our new stance. In this new society we have formed we believe all who are not a part of our society is wrong, and possibly even condemned by their own ignorance.

13Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in thereat: 14Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. (Mat 7)

"And few there be that find it." Few there be that are even looking for the narrow, the "right" way. The "many" are looking for the brightly lit freeway that everyone else is on. And they listen to those who tell them that the brightly lit road with the many people is the one on which to be if they seek Truth. Meanwhile, the preachers of the broad way, and those who follow, condemn those on the narrow way that Jesus has designated as "The Way."

It is our assumption that if most, or at least many people are heading our direction, than we are on the right road. Jesus seems to think otherwise. If many people are on the road we are on, then the chances are we're going the same direction as the rest of the mindless masses of people who are not looking for Truth, but rather they're just seeking a mind-numbing answer. They seek an answer that requires no thought, no consideration, nor any effort on their part.

This I have said above is not necessarily a fact in itself. I say it is not necessarily a fact. It could be that many people are starting out on the correct path, but they will not have the required dedication or the hope of reaching a goal needed to complete such a venture. Rather they may just be there in order to be a part of the crowd. It might be that the beginning is correct, but that the crowd will become thinner and thinner as the road progresses (see Ten Gates for more on this topic).

We see from the above that the "Narrow Gate," the "Straight way" is the right one to be on. However, finding our self on a straight and narrow road is not a sure sign that the road we are on is the correct one. We see from history that there are many narrow and lonely roads that lead to oblivion. Of this I can speak from experience because I have had to come back from many such roads with my tail between my legs, and on occasion with a ball and chain around my ankle.

For this reason it is wise to ask those who are returning what lies ahead, because that person might just be someone like me who has had their head bashed in by what lies ahead.

We're told that there is safety in numbers. In this modern culture we are particularly accustomed to hear that being part of the "in crowd" is the thing to be, and if we are an outsider, then we are nothing at all.

It used to be, when buffalo roamed the plains, that the Indians would take a blanket, and on horseback they would entice the lead buffalo toward a cliff where he and all those that followed would fall to their death. Because buffalo are followers, those at the rear of the herd would force, by their momentum, the ones in the lead, those that see the danger coming upon them but are unable to stop, over the cliff. We see this with flocks of birds as well. Get one member of the flock moving, and they all move after that one on the move. If one bird changes direction, they all change direction with it. This is called a "Herding Mentality," and most of us humans have such a nature. If we did not have such a nature, civilization as we know it could not exist.

There are some individuals who do not have such a nature. Some are leaders rather than followers. But there are still others who, for what ever the reason, must go their own way, be it right or wrong. I am one of these.

I have found that the "Go it aloners" usually make the biggest mistakes, but they are also more prone to eventually learn from those mistake and wish to share what they have learned from the pitfalls of the failed road they've taken. Those of the "herd" on the other hand tend to hide their mistakes and pretend it never happened. By doing such they not only deceive themselves, but others of their association as well. Thus neither they, nor those around them learn from one another's mistakes. And those with such an attitude are ever on the ready to preach the validity of such thinking. Those willing themselves to strive for the utmost will teach action. Those desiring to do as little as possible to attain much, will teach the doing of little in order to justify their own behavior. "By their fruits ye shall know them" (Mat 7:20; John 3:11).

We see this problem in the churches, especially of late. Leaders of the churches are discovered committing some of the worst of sins that they preach so heavily against. And when they are discovered, it is found that they have been more and more obsessed with their "problem" because they could never admit it, nor deal with it openly without being cast out of their position.

9Whom shall he teach knowledge? and whom shall he make to understand doctrine? them that are weaned from the milk, and drawn from the breasts. 10For precept must be upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little: (Isaiah 28:).

We learn step by step. If we stumble on a step and remain in a fallen state, or we take a wrong step and don't correct our direction, we are led astray. Because of the way a society works, whether it be a country, a church, or a sewing circle: everyone in that group will be of the same mind. If the leader goes in a different direction than that which has been established, then the group either goes along with that decision, or the individual who opposes such decision leaves the group. But all who remain, remain of one mind.

Because of our nature to grasp on to a portion of truth and claim it to be total and complete, and because those who do not know otherwise support such a venture, we end up with many partial Truths spread throughout all of the world's little clicks. This is never more clearly demonstrated than in the Christian church of today. Every conceivable opinion is expressed and defended unto death in some cases. We choose up sides in a casual manner, then we convince ourselves that it is the only possible decision to make and that all other attitudes are condemned....until me change our mind and join one of those "condemned" organizations, which we then again defend unto death.

The herd societies will forever be locked in their own falsehood, and without a miracle, they will very likely never escape. Jesus called this syndrome "The blind leading the blind" (Mat 15:14).

Step-by-step. The principle of the herd instinct is to take no further step than what has already been established by someone who has very likely sprung up from nowhere during the dark ages of human knowledge and understanding (which we are still in). No steps into the light, no Truth revealed. When we learn no more, what did Jesus say? What we have will be taken away, and we will become as those in the rest of Isaiah's statement:

12To whom he said, This is the rest wherewith ye may cause the weary to rest; and this is the refreshing: yet they would not hear. 13But the word of the LORD was unto them precept upon precept, precept upon precept; line upon line, line upon line; here a little, and there a little; that they might go, and fall backward, and be broken, and snared, and taken. (Isaiah 28:)

3For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (2Tim 4:)

It is not in man's nature to sit still. Even the compulsively lazy will continue to grow more and more lazy. We must have movement or die. If we do not move into the light of Truth, we fall backwards into deeper and deeper darkness ... until we are snared. Jim Jones is an excellent example of this very process. Those 900 who followed Jones into the wilderness did not do so because Jones was a devil to them. Quite the contrary: he was a respected Methodist minister at one time. But he had the people isolated and trapped. Jim Jones was himself deceived. He became a blind leader. And those who blindly followed Jones, fell into the same ditch he himself found himself in.

Judas, who Jesus called a devil from the beginning of His ministry, was apparently highly respected by those whom he had lived with and worked with for over three years. When Jesus announced that one of the twelve would betray Him, all suspected themselves before they suspected Judas, even though all the signs pointing to the fact were clearly visible. How many disciples would have followed Judas had he survived? What kind of Apostle would Judas have made, and what do you suppose he would have taught, and how many do you think he would have led astray?

Although the herd mentality can lead to nowhere but a cliff, there are dangers with being a loner as well. Loners are not adverse to heading for cliffs, however, without the crowd behind them, they are more likely to find that they are heading the wrong way before taking the plunge to oblivion. Loners tend to be seekers. They are not inclined to settle for the obvious answers. They want to dig deeper into a matter and find out what's behind the answer. Because of this tendency a loner is more apt to correct his or her error if they find such an error confronting them. This is not true of everyone, of course, but there is more a chance of the loner finding Truth than will a part of some herd that has settled into a green pasture somewhere in Guyana or Denominationalism.

11These were more noble than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness of mind, and searched the scriptures daily, whether those things were so. (Acts 17:)

Truth does not lie in answers. Truth is only found in questions. Answers are barriers to Truth. Once we have an answer we will run off, build a fence around what we've settled on, and claim it as our own, and an all-and-all fact. We see this in every aspect of life, from the personal to the political to the religious.

But Truth is not a piece, it is an entity. A piecesof Truth is what we strive for. We want just that sliver of Truth that applies to our supposed needs of the moment. But even should we find such a truth, it will only serve for that moment, and when that moment is passed, a new piece of Truth must be found to fit our new circumstance. Remember the man on the honeymoon, and the Marriage counselor in divorce court.

Edison is said to have had 10,000 failed attempts in his effort to invent the light bulb. That would mean 9,999 failures. At what point in that effort would you have given up and said it just can't be done? Most people who "advised" Edison said he should give up before he even began. It just couldn't be done.

We have the Wright Bothers and their ridiculous idea that man can fly.

We have Columbus and his idiotic attempt to find India by sailing west instead of east. He refused to take the "expert" warning that he, his ships and all his crew would fall off the earth if he continued his bazaar plan.

19This spake he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, Follow me. 20Then Peter, turning about, seeth the disciple whom Jesus loved following; which also leaned on his breast at supper, and said, Lord, which is he that betrayeth thee? 21Peter seeing him saith to Jesus, Lord, and what shall this man do? 22Jesus saith unto him, If I will that he tarry till I come, what is that to thee? follow thou me. (John 21:)

What we find to be true for ourselves we assume to be true for others as well. Peter heard it from the Master Himself that he was to go and follow Jesus. And isn't this the message Jesus had been preaching for over three years? Naturally Peter assumed that John was in error for not doing as he was doing. But Peter discovered that he was wrong. What is right for one person, even if the instruction came from God Himself, is not necessarily right for another. We have other examples of this principle besides the one above. A rich young ruler came to Jesus and asked what he must do in order to attain Heaven. Jesus told him to sell all and follow Him (Mat 9:18-). But a former demon possessed man who seemingly begged to follow Jesus was sent away (Mark 5:18-19). It is not our prerogative to judge another man's road, nor to judge where along that road he is. That man (or woman) who is at the beginning of their road might be far ahead of us on the same road in the future. Then who is to be judged?

We do not trust our own judgement. Because of this complex we seek out someone who claims to have the answer to the problem we're having. When we locate such a person, we tend to cling to them and hang on to their every word, even searching out more of what that person has to say. If that person says something that seems to particularly fit our situation, and/or has helped us with a given problem, we turn all our faith over to that person.

This is a part of the herd instinct.

Herein lies one of our greatest dangers. And this applies to the loner who is a Doubting Thomas as much as it does the herd, perhaps even more so.

Someone who has satisfied us in a certain area seems to have Truth. They have touched upon a particular desire or need we have. We have a nature which requires that we be right. And if we find someone who gives us the answer that agrees with our own, or that satisfies our desires, we attribute great credibility to that person. We do not consider someone as intelligent if they are telling us that we are wrong, or that we are going to suffer for the decisions we are making. One or the other has to be wrong, and we know it's not us. Because if it was us that is wrong, then we would have to change in order to remain right, so we discount the other person and all they have to say in order to retain our appearance of being right, even though it be in our own eyes only (John 12:10; Mark 15:10). And in the process we cling ever stronger to the person who tells us we are fine and beautiful and perfect just they way we are - even though we have looked in the mirror (of our soul) and know better.

Those who have partial truth are, in my mind, the bane of society. Because they have some truth, and that truth fits our desires and our understandings, we assume that all else that person says is true as well. And this even if we know in our heart that it doesn't make sense what they are saying. We just attribute our disagreement to our lack of knowledge or our lack of education in that area.

Cults are notorious for procuring the loner who is seeking (I'm not referring here to churches who have a different view from the mainstream churches, but those who focus their trust and their allegiance to one man or one ideal: which, of course is the definition of a cult, and which fits every denomination and religion in the world). Such cults prey on the lonely and the outcast, allowing them to be a part of something bigger than they are, yet feel they are still a loner and accepted as such. Those with the herd instinct are more inclined to be wary of such groups, but the seeker who has not found his or her path is apt to be seduced into such a group, and there to become entangled and cease their searching.

Truth is elusive. Any searcher of Truth has discovered this for themself. Yet we know where Truth resides. We know that Truth can only be found in our Maker, the one Who created us and gave us our life, and Who can take that life from us at any moment. We know that Truth must either be in the Bible, the Word of God, or it does not exist. No other person or any other book of any credibility seems to possess the Truth, or to claim the words therein to be from God Himself.

But if the Truth is in the Bible, then why can't we find it in the Bible? And if the Bible holds the Truth, and it is clear to all as is claimed by the churches, then why are there thousands upon thousands of different views of that Truth?

Why? Because Truth is not for the masses, it is for the individual. Truth is found by each person as they take a step at a time into the Truth that has been revealed to them, and has not been swayed off track of that Truth by the thousands of voices yelling at the seeker, all trying to sell them their own brand of truth.

It's too easy for us to pay more attention to the signs along our road, and the voices of advice along our road, then to pay close heed to the road itself, and our own experience of the road we have chosen.

And it's too easy to demand that the road we're on be made right, than it is to recognize before it's too late that the road we have chosen is not the one that will lead us to where we want ourselves to be.

And the greatest danger, for those of us in the Church seeking Truth, is to become sidetracked from the Truth of the Gospel. Everywhere we turn we are given the importance of the doctrine of that church, that denomination we attend. It is not in the words we use, or in the doctrines we believe in: it is what we do with what we are given that we will be judged by, and that gives us purpose in this life. All else is just chaff to be thrown to the wind or burned in the fires (Mat 25:14-30; Luke 12:47-49).

To find Truth we must move forward on the road we have been given. That road might result in failure, but that failure is made a success by the fact that you took that road and learned what it had to teach you. True failure is in not taking the risk of failure and doing nothing. And this is the failure of the world today, we do nothing, and claim that the less we do, and the more he have for doing less, the more successful we are.

If you have a many failures to look back upon, then you are a success as one who is in search of Truth. If you have a trail of minor successes, or nothing at all to look back upon, then you have been a failure in your search for Truth.

And the one who has the least failures, but the most education in a given area, is the one who is most likely to be the one teaching Truth, and the one who stresses the importance of information over experience.

Your road is your own. Your Truth is for you alone. And what you do with that Truth you have attained is what determines the value of that Truth.

21Not every one that saith unto me, Lord, Lord, shall enter into the kingdom of heaven; but he that doeth the will of my Father which is in heaven. 22Many will say to me in that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in thy name? and in thy name have cast out devils? and in thy name done many wonderful works? 23And then will I profess unto them, I never knew you: depart from me, ye that work iniquity. 24Therefore whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock: 25And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell not: for it was founded upon a rock. 26And every one that heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them not, shall be likened unto a foolish man, which built his house upon the sand: 27And the rain descended, and the floods came, and the winds blew, and beat upon that house; and it fell: and great was the fall of it. (Mat 7:)

9And his disciples asked him, saying, What might this parable be? 10And he said, Unto you it is given to know the mysteries of the kingdom of God: but to others in parables; that seeing they might not see, and hearing they might not understand. 11Now the parable is this: The seed is the word of God. 12Those by the way side are they that hear; then cometh the devil, and taketh away the word out of their hearts, lest they should believe and be saved.. . . . 18Take heed therefore how ye hear: for whosoever hath, to him shall be given; and whosoever hath not, from him shall be taken even that which he seemeth to have. (Luke 8:)

9Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace; not with meats, which have not profited them that have been occupied therein. (Heb 13:)

1Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; 2Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; 3Forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from meats, which God hath created to be received with thanksgiving of them which believe and know the truth. (1Tim 4:)

1Therefore leaving the principles of the doctrine of Christ, let us go on unto perfection; not laying again the foundation of repentance from dead works, and of faith toward God, 2Of the doctrine of baptisms, and of laying on of hands, and of resurrection of the dead, and of eternal judgment. from God: (Heb 6:)

1But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them, and bring upon themselves swift destruction. 2And many shall follow their pernicious ways; by reason of whom the way of truth shall be evil spoken of. `(2Peter 2:)

1This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. 2For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, 3Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good, 4Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God; 5Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. 6For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts, 7Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth. 8Now as Jannes and Jambres withstood Moses, so do these also resist the truth: men of corrupt minds, reprobate concerning the faith. (2Tim 3:)

7Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. 8For he that soweth to his flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth to the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap life everlasting. 9And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. (Gal 6:)

3But he answered and said, Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up. 14Let them alone: they be blind leaders of the blind. And if the blind lead the blind, both shall fall into the ditch. (Mat 15:)

9Much people of the Jews therefore knew that he was there: and they came not for Jesus' sake only, but that they might see Lazarus also, whom he had raised from the dead. 10But the chief priests consulted that they might put Lazarus also to death; 11Because that by reason of him many of the Jews went away, and believed on Jesus. (John 12:)

9But Pilate answered them, saying, Will ye that I release unto you the King of the Jews? 10For he knew that the chief priests had delivered him for envy. (Mark 15:)

5This then is the message which we have heard of him, and declare unto you, that God is light, and in him is no darkness at all. 6If we say that we have fellowship with him, and walk in darkness, we lie, and do not the truth: 7But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the blood of Jesus Christ his Son cleanseth us from all sin. (1John 1:)

17Bow down thine ear, and hear the words of the wise, and apply thine heart unto my knowledge. 18For it is a pleasant thing if thou keep them within thee; they shall withal be fitted in thy lips. 19That thy trust may be in the LORD, I have made known to thee this day, even to thee. 20Have not I written to thee excellent things in counsels and knowledge, 21That I might make thee know the certainty of the words of truth; that thou mightest answer the words of truth to them that send unto thee? (Proverbs 22:)

17Ye have wearied the LORD with your words. Yet ye say, Wherein have we wearied him? When ye say, Every one that doeth evil is good in the sight of the LORD, and he delighteth in them; or, Where is the God of judgment? (Mal 2:)

1Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; 2Speaking lies in hypocrisy; having their conscience seared with a hot iron; (1Tim 4)

2Preach the word; be instant in season, out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort with all longsuffering and doctrine. 3For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine; but after their own lusts shall they heap to themselves teachers, having itching ears; 4And they shall turn away their ears from the truth, and shall be turned unto fables. (2Tim 4:)

3Beloved, when I gave all diligence to write unto you of the common salvation, it was needful for me to write unto you, and exhort you that ye should earnestly contend for the faith which was once delivered unto the saints. 4For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ. 5I will therefore put you in remembrance, though ye once knew this, how that the Lord, having saved the people out of the land of Egypt, afterward destroyed them that believed not. (Jude)

6Though the LORD be high, yet hath he respect unto the lowly: but the proud he knoweth afar off. (Psalm 38:)

32For the froward [Perverse, depart from ] is abomination to the LORD: but his secret is with the righteous. 33The curse of the LORD is in the house of the wicked: but he blesseth the habitation of the just. 34Surely he scorneth the scorners: but he giveth grace unto the lowly. 35The wise shall inherit glory: but shame shall be the promotion of fools. (Prov 3:)

2When pride cometh, then cometh shame: but with the lowly is wisdom. (Prov 2:)

18Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall. 19Better it is to be of an humble spirit with the lowly, than to divide the spoil with the proud. (Prov 16:)

9Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem: behold, thy King cometh unto thee: he is just, and having salvation; lowly, and riding upon an ass, and upon a colt the foal of an ass. (Zech 9:)

25At that time Jesus answered and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, because thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes. 26Even so, Father: for so it seemed good in thy sight. 27All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. 28Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. 29Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. 30For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. (Mat 11:)

15If ye love me, keep my commandments. 16And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; 17Even the Spirit of truth; whom the world cannot receive, because it seeth him not, neither knoweth him: but ye know him; for he dwelleth with you, and shall be in you.

18I will not leave you comfortless: I will come to you.. . .25These things have I spoken unto you, being yet present with you. 26But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. (John 14:)

17But as God hath distributed to every man, as the Lord hath called every one, so let him walk. And so ordain I in all churches. 18Is any man called being circumcised? let him not become uncircumcised. Is any called in uncircumcision? let him not be circumcised. 19Circumcision is nothing, and uncircumcision is nothing, but the keeping of the commandments of God. 20Let every man abide in the same calling wherein he was called. . . ..24Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God. (1Cor 7:)

4Now there are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit. 5And there are differences of administrations, but the same Lord. 6And there are diversities of operations, but it is the same God which worketh all in all. 7But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to every man to profit withal. 8For to one is given by the Spirit the word of wisdom; to another the word of knowledge by the same Spirit; 9To another faith by the same Spirit; to another the gifts of healing by the same Spirit; 10To another the working of miracles; to another prophecy; to another discerning of spirits; to another divers kinds of tongues; to another the interpretation of tongues: 11But all these worketh that one and the selfsame Spirit, dividing to every man severally as he will. 12For as the body is one, and hath many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body: so also is Christ. 13For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit. 14For the body is not one member, but many. 15If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? 16And if the ear shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it therefore not of the body? 17If the whole body were an eye, where were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling? 18But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him. 19And if they were all one member, where were the body? 20But now are they many members, yet but one body. 21And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee: nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you. 22Nay, much more those members of the body, which seem to be more feeble, are necessary: 23And those members of the body, which we think to be less honourable, upon these we bestow more abundant honour; and our uncomely parts have more abundant comeliness. 24For our comely parts have no need: but God hath tempered the body together, having given more abundant honour to that part which lacked: 25That there should be no schism in the body; but that the members should have the same care one for another. 26And whether one member suffer, all the members suffer with it; or one member be honoured, all the members rejoice with it.

27Now ye are the body of Christ, and members in particular. 28And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues. 29Are all apostles? are all prophets? are all teachers? are all workers of miracles? 30Have all the gifts of healing? do all speak with tongues? do all interpret? 31But covet earnestly the best gifts: and yet show I unto you a more excellent way. (1Cor 12:)

A final note: In one's search for Truth it must be kept in mind the difference between that which is instructional, whether it be right or wrong; and that which we take on as a lifestyle, a modus operandi. Few people or organizations or governments consider their own way of thinking, what they try to convince the world of, as mere opinion. Each will demand their view be accepted as "fact" that must not be questioned. This attitude is especially true of churches and other religious organizations. Where nations threaten one another with bombs if the other does not agree with their own stance, churches assault one another with the threat of eternal damnation. In order to find Truth it is imperative that the seeker not become entangled in this web of confusion. No, I repeat, no church or organization is in possession of Truth. However, each fragment of the Church has a sliver of Truth that it dangles as one dangles a carrot before a mule in order entice the mule in whatever direction that organization desires the mule to go.

Doctrine is the string by which the enticement hangs. The enticement might be the promise of Heaven, or avoidance of hell, or it might be social comradery. Whatever the enticement, it will be supported by the thinnest of thread called a doctrine. But doctrine is not "Truth," no matter how much force is applied behind such a notion. Doctrine is another word for "teaching, instruction." And if such a teaching is examined under the light of reason, we will discover that all doctrine is nothing more than opinion dressed in warrior's armor.

A seeker of Truth is a soldier. This concept has been portrayed through everything from the exploits of the Greek gods, to the humble searches of such as Saint Francis. Whatever may be the path upon which the seeker finds him or her self, it is the search that is battle, not the congregation of people we accompany for a time that seems to be heading the in same direction.

Beware chains. Take from each opinion, doctrine, philosophy, or religion what seems appropriate, and leave the rest for those who do not seek Truth, but are merely looking for answers.

Answer no question, and question all answers.

3If any man teach otherwise, and consent not to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ, and to the doctrine which is according to godliness; 4He is proud, knowing nothing, but doting about questions and strifes of words, whereof cometh envy, strife, railings, evil surmisings, 5Perverse disputings of men of corrupt minds, and destitute of the truth, supposing that gain is godliness: from such withdraw thyself. (1Tim 6:)

13Who is a wise man and endued with knowledge among you? let him show out of a good conversation his works with meekness of wisdom. 14But if ye have bitter envying and strife in your hearts, glory not, and lie not against the truth. 15This wisdom descendeth not from above, but is earthly, sensual, devilish. 16For where envying and strife is, there is confusion and every evil work. 17But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy. 18And the fruit of righteousness is sown in peace of them that make peace. (James 3:)

22Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart. 23But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes. 24And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient, 25In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth; 26And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will. (2Tim 2:)

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