We desperately need to demystify some of these words that sound so abstract and intellectual.
Peter was talking about the Gnostic Heresy.
The Gnostic Heresy is alive and well today and this needs explaining clearly and simply.
The Gnostic Heresy in early Christianity was what I call Wordism today.
The Gnostic Heresy was simply the idea that the only people who got to Heaven were the scholars. You obtained salvation by spending all your time digging through the Old Testament finding the most obscure passages and learning the Hidden Truth, the Key to Salvation, that was hidden in them.
What Gnosticism condemned was the idea that you could attain Heaven by common sense and common decency. What Gnosticism condemned was the concept that one could attain salvation by getting out among the sinners and telling them the simple truth.
Gnosticism said that Heaven was for the Learned, not for the masses.
We call those same Gnostics today “professors.” The common sense and decency of the Founding Fathers is not for them. They do not see the practical cornerstone we call the Constitution. They believe the true statement of what America is all about is in the Declaration of Independence, a propaganda document written right in the middle of a war in a city the enemy was about to occupy.
Today’s professor-priesthood, the clergy of our established religion of Political Correctness, love the thundering words of the Declaration that dedicate America to the French radical idea that all men are created equal. Liberals insist that America’s whole purpose is to found a New World Order for all mankind, and to cram it down their throats.
For today’s Gnostics it is absolutely repellant to even consider that the Founding Fathers who wrote the Constitution in peacetime and for us, meant what they said. The Constitution states flatly that the only people it was written for was the people of the United States and OUR posterity. The Constitution states flatly that the only AUTHORITY it rests on is we the people of the United States and OUR posterity.
The Constitution says simply that we the people of THIS country are doing what we have a right to do, and no more. It says we are setting up our own government ON OUR OWN, not because of some obscure Gnostic principle of a World Mission.
Abraham Lincoln said, “Our fathers founded upon this continent a great nation, dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal.”
They did no such thing and they said so. The Soviet Union was dedicated to the proposition that all men are created equal and it meant to enforce that on every human being on the planet.
No wonder today’s Gnostics of this world despise George Washington and love Karl Marx, just as the Gnostics of the next world despised Jesus Christ and worshipped the Old Testament.
No Gnostic will tell you he despises Jesus Christ or George Washington. But if there were two men in all of history you could not possibly twist into Gnostics, those were the two.
Jesus never told anyone to read the Bible. He spoke in Aramaic and He quoted the scriptures his listeners knew about. He specifically condemned the High Priest to Hell who knew every word of those Scriptures and who PRACTICED them. Jesus said very, very specifically that the sinful tax gatherer in the back of the Temple who admitted he was a sinner and SIMPLY asked for forgiveness was the one who attained salvation.
There is no way that anybody can reject what was later called Gnosticism any more clearly than Jesus did. He repudiated it repeatedly, blatantly, plainly, obviously, openly – you could exhaust any Thesaurus with this.
In my little way, I try to do what Jesus did. I study so I can explain the truths of decency and good sense to the people, and discredit Gnosticism in any form.
I have read those huge tomes for the specific purpose of discrediting the idea that reading and studying Karl Marx or the Old Testament is the key to salvation in this world or the next.
And the more I study the more I realize that Jesus was dead right, and the closeted Old Testament scholars and professors, the High Priests of yesterday and today, were dead wrong and ARE dead wrong.