The Disregarded Books: Part Three

Moving through my choice of five disregarded books of the Bible, today, I will review The Infancy Gospel and Acts of Paul and Thecla. I want to mention many more discovered books were never chosen to be included in the modern-day Bible. I encourage everyone to read these books because early Christians used them to understand Jesus. Yes, we may have to read between the lines, but open your mind to the possibility a lot of the passages could be genuine.

The Infancy Gospel

The Infancy Gospel of Thomas was written at some point in the late second century CE. I found this book very intriguing because it speaks about the young childhood of Jesus. The Books of Mark, Matthew, Luke, and John only begins in the Bible with His young adulthood years. The Infancy Gospel tells of His childhood miracle stories from the age of five to twelve.

It portrays Jesus as a normal child playing, jumping, and laughing. At five years old, His description is written in the book:

“This little child Jesus when he was five years old was playing at the ford of a brook: and he gathered together the waters that flowed there into pools, and made them straightway clean, and commanded them by his word alone. And having made soft clay, he fashioned thereof twelve sparrows. And it was the Sabbath when he did these things (or made them). And there were also many other little children playing with him.”

One day, along came the son of Annas, who drained His pools of water. He threw rocks at Jesus and punched Him. Jesus cursed him:

“Your fruit shall be without root and your shoot shall be dried up like a branch scorched by a strong wind”

The boy withered away, and Jesus returned home. In another story, Jesus killed a child who bumped into him while running, and He cursed the adults of His village. Jesus blinded them, although He later restored their sight.

Other stories tell of Jesus healing His brother, James, from a snake bite, resurrecting a friend who is killed when he falls from a roof, and the healing of another who cuts his foot with an ax.

Image courtesy of LUMO Project/

According to The Infancy Gospel, Jesus’ superior knowledge and power over all mankind were very evident at a young age. Many teachers and Joseph and Mary struggled to control His passions and supernatural powers throughout the book.

As I think about the Infancy Gospel’s many incidents, it suddenly makes sense why Mary and Joseph were adamant about keeping a low profile with their baby, Jesus.  So, why was this book eliminated from our Bible?

They considered the Infancy Gospel absurd and full of too many mystical events to be published in a Bible. In my opinion, this book is worth reading. If only a section of the book is correct, what a great insight into Jesus’ childhood!

Acts of Paul and Thecla

The Acts of Paul and Thecla are looked upon as genuine by early Christians. In their decree against apocryphal books, Pope Gelasius and Cardinal Baronius inserted it anyway amongst the first Bibles. They felt it contained nothing superstitious, nor did it disagree with those times’ opinions and beliefs. In this book, Paul the Apostle and his follower, Thecla, are the principal characters. It details the life of the young Christian convert, Thecla.

Thecla was a young virgin, engaged to a wealthy and powerful man in the city of Iconium. She often visited Paul when he was in town preaching his sermons. In one of his lectures, he discussed chastity, and it incensed her to break off her engagement. To shorten the story, she was sentenced to burn at the stake, but God intervened to save her life.

Image of Paul the Apostle courtesy of

This young Christian joined Paul on his journey to Antioch. But a few miraculous incidents occurred during her time in the city. Antioch’s magistrate begged her to sleep with him, and when she refused, he ordered to have her killed several times. Each time God saved Thecla from death.

Her last trial involved throwing herself into water filled with sharks. The Lord came down and destroyed the sharks, and she baptized herself in the bloody waters.

Thecla was considered too powerful and unacceptable for a woman in biblical days, thus eliminating it from our modern Bible. They considered such women a threat to the Roman Empire, and sexual continence was the way for women to be active in the church. Yet Catholics celebrated her fierce determination and faithfulness, inducting her to sainthood.

With Paul’s blessing, she became a missionary and enlightened many in the Word of God. I believe the Acts of Paul and Thecla would be great to share with our current generations. It sets an example for all humanity to follow. What do you think?

Please join us next week as we uncover one last disregarded book of the Bible. It will be sure to please!

If you missed Part One and Part Two of this series click here:

The Disregarded Books: Part One  (The Gospel of Thomas)

The Disregarded Books: Part Two  (The Gospel of Mary)

Christmas in September

It’s Christmas in September… or at least it seems so in my household. I wrote a Christmas list and said, Lord, here is what I’m praying for… I can’t tell you what it is because it would spoil the story. Some months have passed now, and yes, my thoughts dimmed a bit, but I never gave up hope. If God wanted me to have this, He would see a way to make it happen. Reality set in, and I wondered if I wished my life away. And then wham!

Going a step further, let me share a fact of this event that happened to us last Sunday. Not one person we encountered on this day was someone we knew, nor was it possible for us to connect with them daily. God was totally in control of the situation. It was just our turn for God’s will to be done. We waited patiently for the Holy Spirit to connect the dots.

I know God supplies our needs, not our wants. It should be no surprise that if we honor His name, He will shower us with more blessings than we can handle. For my wife and me, today was another example of the Lord’s pat on the back. He proved, beyond our wildest imagination, that He, in fact, will do precisely what He promises His followers.

I understand a little more about the power of God. If we believe and have faith, then fate is undoubtedly your destination. His designs for our future are always perfect and beyond our imagination. In reality, we’d like to believe miracles are not possible, but in fact, quite the opposite is true.

Every day I witness God placing an encounter of new horizons for me to tackle, an obstacle course of twists and turns. But seek, and ye shall find… quite literally!

“Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” Matthew 7:7

As in having Christmas in September, I feel the rejuvenating emotions of Christ move my spirit. Simply stated, God is positioning me for my future, both at home and in the world.

We serve an amazing God in heaven! His Son watches over us. He moves in us, if we allow the Holy Spirit to be prevalent in our human nature. So, Merry Christmas… even if it is September. May the blessings of God fall upon you like the autumn leaves. And hopefully, you, too, will find your desires and the destinations God is leading you to in His graciousness. Be not afraid, but stay in faith, for our Father creates our every encounter in life.

The Disregarded Books: Part One

As most Christians are aware, many versions of the Bible exist today. But most intriguing are the biblical books (known as canon), not placed in our modern-day Bible. I asked myself “why,” and what was the purpose of eliminating them. These gospels were a collection of about 50 ancient texts written from the 2nd to the 4th century AD. The Jews and the Christians already knew these so-called lost books and enjoyed their stories in ancient days. Still, they are held back from today’s public eye.

After some investigation, I discovered several reasons for their abolishment from the Bible:

  • The books are claimed not to be the Word of God
  • They contained nonbiblical concepts or serious historical inaccuracies
  • Jewish Prophets nor the Christian Apostles did not write them

Despite their removal, there is a rise in Christians that prefers the extra books, known as the Apocrypha or Apocryphal Books, to be included in our current Bible. In this four-part series, we will examine five of the disregarded books.

The Gospel of Thomas

Composed between 60-140 AD and discovered in 1945, this book is the sayings of Jesus, as documented by Didymos Judas Thomas, known as Thomas the Apostle. It includes Jesus’ parables and short dialogues.

To refresh your memory, Thomas demanded to see the nail marks put in Jesus’ hand and side at the crucifixion before he would believe He was the Son of God. When he witnessed His resurrection, Thomas said, “My Lord and my God! (John 20:28). Thomas was also one of the disciples to whom Jesus appeared on the shore of Galilee.

“You believe because you have seen me…” Image courtesy of the LUMO Project/

This book has so many secret sayings that it is impossible to share them all in this blog. But allow me to reveal a few of the interpretations as translated by Stephen Patterson and Marvin Meyer:

Jesus said, “Lucky is the lion that the human will eat, so that the lion becomes human. And foul is the human that the lion will eat, and the lion still will become human.”

Jesus said, “I have cast fire upon the world, and look, I’m guarding it until it blazes.”

Jesus said to them, “If you fast, you will bring sin upon yourselves, and if you pray, you will be condemned, and if you give to charity, you will harm your spirits.

When you go into any region and walk about in the countryside, when people take you in, eat what they serve you and heal the sick among them.

After all, what goes into your mouth will not defile you; rather, it’s what comes out of your mouth that will defile you.”

His disciples said to him, “When will the rest for the dead take place, and when will the new world come?” He said to them, “What you are looking forward to has come, but you don’t know it.”

In summation of the Gospel of Thomas, it appears to trash the church and invalidates all things man considers to be true. It was disregarded in the Bible because scholars deemed it to be Gnostic text. Gnosticism was a religious movement that began before Christ’s time and extended into the first few centuries of the Christian era. They considered Christ to be an illusion and evil. This movement is similar in some ways to the beliefs of today’s New Age movement.

The early church never considered the Gospel of Thomas to be Scriptures because Jesus’s character looked too strange and too unfamiliar to Christians. The book is more a description of the different religious movements competing after Jesus left the earth. Sure sounds like a noble reason not to include it in our Bible!

Please join us again next week as review the second of five disregarded books of the Bible!

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Fly’n With Jesus

Have you ever thought about the childhood of our Lord and Savior? The Book of Luke tells us that at twelve, Jesus became separated from Joseph and Mary. They found Him in the temple courts, sitting among the teachers, and contributing to the conversation about His Father. Jesus knew from his mother, I’m sure, that He was the great Messiah. As He grew, I wonder what He learned about His power and God?

I can imagine Jesus as a small child, sitting at a table, and praying to His Father. I envision Him moving the Old Testament back and forth with His little finger. Now you can laugh at me, but if you had supernatural powers as a small child, what else would you do?

As my thoughts grow, I come to understand what life would be like fly’n with Jesus. Visualize where you are at this moment, and in an instant, you’re in some other place. Your spirit would be fully cognizant as you transform into the Holy Spirit of God. Suddenly, a line of sinners stands before you, waiting to receive your judgment. I couldn’t think of a heavier weight to carry than to decide who is worthy of God’s blessings and the heavenly gates!

Who knows what’s going on upstairs above the radiant blue? A lot of unexpected deaths in 2020 occurred so far. Little babies were cast to the wind, and children too young to know the difference joined authors, musicians, and other legends. They now sit on the wings of Christ. Don’t you think it would be a blessing of a miracle if you could fly with Jesus to save those who are truly worthy of His eternal life?

In a dream, we’re on the wings of Jesus, and in a wink hither and yon. It’s important to understand materialistic fame is not conceived by our Heavenly Father. In a split second, it will be gone when we jump on the wings of Jesus, so make it right, today, with our Lord!

And for those who look at our future as a stepping stone, the wings of Jesus will soon sweep down. We will all soon be with Jesus. I pray God will reserve a spot for those who see and believe in the Holy Spirit’s magic, resting with our brother in heaven, Jesus.

The Lord abounds! His presence is never-ending, and in these sad times of disillusion and isolation, hope in this dream is all we have – the thoughts of being on wings, someday… fly’n with Jesus!

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Do You Fear God or Fear the World?

I wrote about the fear of God recently and what this concept should mean to Christians. The quote I said was, “He wants us to understand we should run to Him when the enemy approaches us.” So, today, I would like all my readers to take a closer look at your environment. Do you observe fear in many people’s eyes? It’s prevalent, too, in Christians who are supposed to be a model of God’s being.

Satan and the antichrist have joined forces to create havoc in the world, so we are submissive and live in fear, just as Satan likes us to do. Hiding in our homes, we stripped ourselves of freedom, isolated from society. Spiritually disconnected congregations are not fearing God and His promise to protect us. Instead, we’ve converted to the dictionary meaning of “an unpleasant often strong emotion caused by anticipation or awareness of danger.” This kind of fear is the opposite of faith!

I must ask, how much faith do you have in God’s power? Are you afraid to be in public or do you show anxiety walking outside your home? Are you scared to live by yourself? Do you fear losing a job, your home, or a loved one? Why live in fear?

When we truly know God’s love, our life is transformed, and fear is nonexistent. We must understand that mankind does not have control over any circumstances, for only the Lord develops our future. The love He instills in us is not weak. He does not want us to walk through life full of fear, worry, and anxiety.

The dictionary word fear begins with a thought, and where the mind goes, man will surely follow. For this reason, studying the Bible and meditating on its words is crucial for Christians. Fearing only God will give Him the respect He deserves, and in return, He will protect you from harm.

If God is on your side, what can man do to you? We must trust Him that all things will work together for His glory. You can’t fear God and fear the world at the same time. You are peaceful or fearful, but you can’t have both states of mind.

Today, stand against the evil forces at every corner and fear the God who keeps you whole, undivided, and safe. Have faith in His words! Be vigilante in prayer and prepare yourself for His second coming, not on the fears of this world.

Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man. For God shall bring every work into judgment, with every secret thing, whether it be good, or whether it be evil” Ecclesiastes 12:13–14.

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The Lost Sheep

Let’s explore an imaginary scenario today. You own a large farm with a hundred sheep milling about the fields. One morning, as you rounded up the sheep and returned them to their stalls, you noticed one was missing. What would you do? Would you say, “Oh well,” and mark it off as lost or dead? Or out of compassion and concern, would you seek help to find the missing animal?

Last month, my wife wrote a story about the Mustard Seed parable. In the theme of Jesus’ ministry, my story, today, tells of the Parable of the Lost Sheep:

1 Now the tax collectors and sinners were all gathering around to hear Jesus. 2 But the Pharisees and the teachers of the law muttered, “This man welcomes sinners and eats with them.” 3 Then Jesus told them this parable: 4 “Suppose one of you has a hundred sheep and loses one of them. Doesn’t he leave the ninety-nine in the open country and go after the lost sheep until he finds it? 5 And when he finds it, he joyfully puts it on his shoulders 6 and goes home. Then he calls his friends and neighbors together and says, ‘Rejoice with me; I have found my lost sheep.’ 7 I tell you that in the same way there will be more rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents than over ninety-nine righteous persons who do not need to repent.  Luke 15:1-7

Many people are reserved when sharing their faith with others, but Jesus claimed Christians are to reach the lost with the hope of Christ. As the parable describes, Jesus spoke to the tax collectors and sinners despite the hissing Pharisees mocking Him. God focuses on the lost, not just believers.

The work of salvation was not intended to end with Christians, but to go out to the other “sheep.” All believers are His chosen ambassadors. Jesus no longer walks on the earth, so He asks us to speak on His behalf, for we have a ministry of reconciliation. He requires us to leave our comfort zones and selfish desires behind and seek the lost sheep in the field, and believe me, many have vanished from their Christian beliefs today.

What causes a Christian to lose their faith? Perhaps their faith was shallow from the start, or they doubt the Bible. Sometimes lost men feel they cannot compare to holier people, creating a weak soul. The negative news and social media can persuade fragile minds. This is the reason Christians need to study the Bible continually and memorize its words.

It is important to tell all sinners Jesus Christ will forgive their sins. Spend your time with them, just as Jesus spent time with the lost. Answer their questions and concerns of faith. Be an example of the goodness and mercy His forgiveness can bestow on their life. Never close the door on a friendship with a floundering soul, for you are subtly (re)planting the seed.

Now, go find that one lost sheep and hoist him upon your shoulders. Carry him back to the Lord’s arms with unconditional and non-judgmental love. Will you seek to follow Jesus’ example?

Image courtesy of Pinterest

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The Quality of Life

What is the value of your quality of life? Perhaps as Christians, it’s understanding we do not do spontaneous things without putting God first into the equation. Does your quality of life reflect the image of our Holy God? Can we have a good quality of life if we are living in constant sin?

In my childhood years, I thought the quality of life only depended on attending church. We dressed in our finest apparel and polished loafers. Socializing with other members of the church created encouragement and acceptance. But was that ‘quality,’ or was it just an hour of mingling?

Christian living isn’t easy, but challenges and difficulties of life help us grow to have Jesus Christ’s mind and the character of God. He gave us the Bible to teach us the best way to live. However, very few Christians rarely make time to comprehend it. It is a wealth of information on the quality of life because it addresses fruitfulness, success, happiness, joy, purpose, and blessings. So, allow me to highlight some points on today’s topic.

In the New Testament, God relates the quality of life to an assurance of His favor and a sense of doing His will. In some circumstances, material blessings imply much, but the focus is not on physical possessions. Personal greed, lust, and pride are explicitly mentioned as the adversaries of a quality of life, for they create selfishness.

“And he said to them, “Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.”  Luke 12:15

So, what is a real quality of life for Christians? It is spending our days in the expectation and hope of eternal life in God’s kingdom. We can start by abiding by the Ten Commandments, which is a firm guideline for morals. Let’s add unity, harmony, and peace with the Lord and others into the equation. It is loving all God’s children, and sometimes using ‘tough love’ in His image. We should remain in constant prayer and often praise His Holy name.

I ask, is there peace inside your heart, soul, and mind? It’s about time that all Christians get off the fence and plow their ground. Respect the written Word of God, for your salvation is at risk. Do not attempt to minimize or change the Laws of God to suit your own needs.

Take this moment to ask God to come and enter your body of flesh and heal your spirit. It’s a temple, so dust off your soul, vacuum your spirit, and cleanse the ungodly thoughts. Now you will begin to find the Christian quality of life.

God bless you!

Why did God send His Son to earth when He did? Why then? Why not now? Let me explain to you how things were 2,000 years ago, and maybe you won’t lose hope in His return. Join me in Blogging 2 Believers on You Tube for “The Era of Jesus.”

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The Perfect 10

As society sways in and out of the going tide, I reach for answers deep inside my soul. Hatred brands many minds as their evil destruction is so uncharacteristic of God’s original creation. Today we are at the mercy of the town criers who scream, “The world is ending!” Funny, it’s only the unbelievers who are running scared and to such wild extremes. God set on stone tablets the instructional directions that we are to follow – the perfect 10, known as the Commandments.

While rereading these moral laws, can we understand that if everyone lived by them, then crime, hatred, and deplorable sins would barely exist? And of all the alterations to the Bible and God’s Words, never have these laws been touched. Interesting! So, they are my perfect ten, for they are the only laws we need to live a godly life.

In my reverence, I consider what man has done to the essence of society. They removed the Lord from schools; very few believe in Him or attend church, churches are burned down, and social media placed bans on Christian posts. Among the battle cries, we have hateful, godless children and adults who wave their artillery, damning everyone’s life. In their rightful mind, no man will find peace and harmony without the Lord seated in their soul!

As history repeats itself, God sent the perfect ten for the Israelites, His chosen people, to follow because riots and upheavals were commonplace. His commandments, handed to Moses, defined their sin and revealed the difference between the holy and a commoner.

“Now then, if you will indeed obey My voice and keep My covenant, then you shall be My own possession among all the peoples, for all the earth is Mine; and you shall be to Me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ (Exodus 19:5-6) …”

The Lord also clarified that those defiant in His laws will forever carry the guilt because it is blasphemy. Need I clarify that society, today, doesn’t want any standard of righteousness, rules, or Commandments? People do not recognize their bondage of sin, and sadly, they are doomed. Satan has deceived the inhabitants of this world!

Christians, I ask you to please pray for the lost who dominate our land. May we all soon, see the power of the Perfect Ten. Let us hold close God’s laws and never forget their meaning or value for our eternal salvation.

Did you miss my first episode of Blogging 2 Believers about God’s timing? Listen to this true story about a couple whose lives forever changed at the hands of God! Follow this link….

Life Is a Sherbet Sky

In our hurried day, we rarely capture the time to examine life. We have appointments to keep, bills to pay… a constant hustling from dawn to dusk. But I love to watch a campfire glowing as evening arrives over the treetops. The dark of night glows a sherbet sky. The silhouette of the trees makes a perfect outline against the impending darkness.

I thank God for my beautiful life, though sometimes it’s been tough. Having scuffles with Satan trying to alter my direction, I always seem to return to my point of center. I wish everyone knew God is the center of life.

Every day it seems a calamity of things needs changing in our world. In my prayerful mind, I know God reigns control of events. Life remains so viable… a splendorous touch between myself and the Holy Spirit. Some say it’s paranormal, but being one with my Maker is a resounding joy. I cherish the majestic evenings when I can sit outside and enjoy the fruits of my endeavors!

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.  Matthew 6:33

We often take life for granted until God teaches us its worth. Within a kiss, a hug, or maybe a sherbet sky, lie those precious, irreplaceable moments. All those family members who we wish were closer, or still, with us, are times gone forever. We’ve paved our road to the heavenly Father.

Life… what beautiful memories and a wonderful dream! The sherbet sky fills the imagination as God gives all mankind the right to survive in His name. Our almighty Lord and Creator is life. Never doubt or deny His existence, for, without Him, life on earth would be a black hole.

Praise God on this day for the sun rises, shining on our daily dreams. As sure as He exists, it will set tonight, and the heavens will look like the break of dawn. Life is a beautiful sherbet sky when the Lord and I can share it with you.

We know also that the Son of God has come and has given us understanding, so that we may know him who is true. And we are in him who is true by being in his Son Jesus Christ. He is the true God and eternal life. 1 John 5:20 (NIV)

God bless all our readers, followers, and friends!

The Pendulum Swings

I walked into an old clocksmith store, and I could hear the tick-tock movements of the pendulums. The walls were dark and aging plaster cracks appeared everywhere. The timber moaned that supported the weathered wood floor. Time never stops as the pendulum swings.

A frail elderly man heard me enter, and he scurried out from behind a lint-covered curtain. I wanted to run as my pores turned clammy. It was time to turn the thoughts of the past behind me. We started a dialog. Time grabbed my hands, and I was held in the bondage of yesterday’s movement.

Life is deeply portrayed by the movement of the inner workings of a clock. The gears continue to spin while God watches everything. So patiently, we wait for His perfect timing.

The tarnished faces of the clocks stared at each other. Their sounds mesmerized me. Feeling very minute, the store surrounded my every thought. I came to exchange a gift, but perhaps I’ll leave well enough alone.

And so life around me aggressively consumed my soul. The sounds of the pendulums resembled the printing presses of time. The clocks stamped out the worn-out news. Bewildered, I was frozen in time. I stood still on the uneven floor while… the pendulum swings.

Metaphorically, God is situated similarly within our souls. Just as the ticking clocks in the old store, we are standing face to face with our Maker. Even amidst His peace, our spirit is out of sync. Everyone has a choice and burying our heads will not stop time. All God’s children have an inborn clock, and soon we must realize the pendulum still swings.

Radical events surround my thoughts as the old floors are creaking where we walk today. Riot gear may protect our skin, but nothing protects our spirit. They leave us to wonder while… the pendulum still swings.

Our Lord, the old clock man Himself, determines our destiny with His watchful eyes. Hearts and minds break as we read and listen to the media’s deceitful lies, which do little to comfort our soul. It’s only God who will make the sun to rise again. The pendulum will still swing… bringing a new life.