Chapter 6 in God is Love, is about Spiritual Literature. As a Christian I was taught to rely on the Bible as the authority on God and on anything spiritual or supernatural. However, while on this spiritual journey I started reading works from other religious or spiritual orientations and realized there was so much more to learn, some of which aligned with the teachings in the Bible, some of which did not, and some of which brought greater clarity to the biblical message. For the purposes of this book I narrowed all this down to four literary sources: the Bible, the Book of Enoch, the Nag Hammadi Scriptures, and A Course in Miracles.
The gospel of John concludes by saying, “Jesus did many other things as well. If every one of them were written down, I suppose that even the whole world would not have room for the books that would be written” (John 21:25). Jesus was a controversial figure, so it would make sense that everyone who lived when he did would have something to say about him and that other people, in addition to Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John, would pass things down orally or in written form. I also had to ask myself how one book could hold everything there is to know about the God who created the universe and everything in it.
When I started reading literature outside of the Bible and the Christian world, I was fearful. What if others saw me buying or reading these books? What would they think? Would they question if I was a real Christian? Would they try to convince me how wrong this was and how I would be led astray and fall into heresy? Then I had to stop and ask myself why I cared so much about what everyone else thought of me. My spiritual journey was between myself and God. I would listen to their concerns, but ultimately, I would follow the leading of the Holy Spirit. As I read, I asked the Spirit to lead me into truth (one of her jobs) and to tell me when I was not reading it, and when she did I quit reading. I also compared what I read with the Bible’s teaching to help me understand if it was truth. I had to ask myself additional questions.
- Why are people so afraid to admit that there is truth outside the Bible or Christian thought?
- Why is it so difficult for denominations to admit that some of their beliefs may be outdated and no longer relevant? Have we made our denominational truth more important than spiritual truth?
- Why is it so hard to acknowledge that people who do not know Jesus can receive spiritual truth from God?
We tend to understand what we read through the lens of what we have been taught and believe. However, in the process we sometimes miss the deeper and hidden meanings in what is being expressed in the writing. Most of us like to have our beliefs neatly packaged in a form we can easily understand and explain. And when they are challenged by reading something unfamiliar to us our first reaction is usually to defend what we believe rather than to remain open, and allow the Holy Spirit to reveal things to us and expand our understanding about God and the spiritual world he created.
You can purchase God is Love, A Spiritual Journey from Fear to Love at: