The Synthesis Test – Analysis, Part 2
Question Six: What do you think of religions other than your own? (a) Some of them may have been inspired by God. (b) They are either the creations of men’s minds or from the devil. (c) Some may contain some sound doctrine, but God recognizes only my religion.
(a) This answer rates a positive score, for it shows open-mindedness and the ability to see a larger part of the elephant than the mere leg he is holding on to.
(b) Again we have an extremely closed view. This person thinks the elephant is like a tree.
(c) This person is open-minded enough to see some truth in other religions, but is blinded to the fact that God is willing to work through them as well as his own.
Question Seven: What do you think of scriptures other than the Bible, such as the Koran or the Buddhist scriptures?
(a) Inspired by the devil.
(b) All could have some inspiration from God in them. I’d have to read them and see.
(c) I do not even have to read them to know they are not true.
(a)&(c) are extremely closed-minded. It is very unlikely that one who answers such could be a Synthesizer. (b) reveals open-mindedness.
Question Eight: What do you think of the devil?
(a) No semblance of any such being exists. (b) He is a being totally evil that puts all my evil thoughts in my mind. (c) There is a devil, but most of my evil thoughts are my own. (d) The devil is a symbol of the evil that confronts us, no such being exists. (e) The devil is indeed a symbol, but there is a reality behind all symbols and beings of great evil do exist, but they are not responsible for all the evil we do
(a) This attitude is closed-minded. To the Synthesizer, anything may be possible.
(b) This answer reveals great ignorance and even contradicts the Bible:” But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.” James 1:14.
“When He (God) made man He made him straightforward, but man invents endless subtleties on his own.” Eccl 7:29 New English Version.
Man is responsible for his own thoughts and evil intentions, not the devil.
(c) This is closer to the truth, but only rates two points, as it reveals no great insight.
(d) This person is closer to the truth than (b) but his mind is still closed to the possibility that such a being exists. We should be open to all possibilities.
(e) It is logical that the “devil” and “Satan” as described in the scriptures are often symbolic, but, on the other hand, it is also reasonable to assume that beings of great evil do exist in this universe and the battles of good versus evil continues on a cosmic plane higher than our own.
The word devil as it is used in the Bible comes from the Greek word DIABOLOS. This word is used in the following scripture: “Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be tempted of the devil.” Matt. 4:1. But the word literally means “accuser” or “adversary”. What then was the adversary that tempted Jesus? Was it an evil being, or his carnal self?
DIABOLOS is translated in the King James version to other words than “DEVIL”. Paul advised: “The aged women likewise, that they be in behavior as becometh holiness, not false accusers…”Tim. 2:3. The Greek word for “false accusers” is the same DIABOLOS.
If DIABOLOS were translated consistently then we have Paul here telling old women not to be devils. He uses the same words concerning wives in I Timothy 3:11. It is there translated: “slanderers”.
The word “Satan” comes from the Hebrew word SATAN and similarly means “accuser, attacker or adversary”. SATAN is not translated literally in a number of passages. If it were, the Christian world would look upon the word in a different perspective. In several instances in I Kings Chapter eleven, we have God Himself stirring up the devil: “And the Lord stirred up an adversary (From the Hebrew ‘SATAN’) unto Solomon.” I Kings 11:14 “And God stirred up another adversary (SATAN) Rezon the son of Eliadah.” Verse 23 “And he was an adversary (SATAN) to Israel all the days of Solomon.” Verse 25.
The most amazing antithesis to the accepted meaning of SATAN is found in the story of Balaam: “And God’s anger was kindled because he went: and the ANGEL OF THE LORD STOOD IN THE WAY FOR AN ADVERSARY (SATAN) against him.” Numbers 22:22.
First we have God stirring up Satan and then we have an angel of the Lord actually becoming Satan. It is obvious that the word has come down to us with a distorted meaning, thanks to the crude belief in the devil that was common during the Middle Ages when the King James Version was produced.
The only other word with the connotation of “devil” is Lucifer. This is mentioned only once in the entire Bible in Isaiah 14:12 and this is not intended to refer to some horned devil, but to the King of Babylon! The word itself comes from the Hebrew HEYLEL which means “the morning star” or “the day star”, It has an implied meaning of “lightbringer”.. The planet Venus has often been called the morning star and that may have been the original Lucifer.
In speaking of Lucifer, God told Isaiah to “take up this proverb against the King of Babylon, and say, How hath the oppressor ceased! The golden city ceased!” Isa 14:4.
The ancient Babylon spoken of here is both literal and symbolic. In one sense it refers to that ancient city Babylon that fell, and also to that materialistic system at the end of the age, epitomized by Hitler, that is to fall. This Babylon was to fall in a symbolic period of “one hour” according to Revelations Chapter 18. It was to be utterly destroyed. For further enlightenment, read this whole chapter. It has many similarities to Isaiah 14
The ancient Babylon was indeed the morning star of the earth at one time. Daniel saw it in his image as the head of gold, or the morning star of all the political kingdoms of the earth. The original Babylon or Babel was built by Nimrod contrary to the commandment of God to spread abroad on the face of the earth. All of the various kings of the literal and symbolic Babylons are exemplified in Lucifer: “How art thou fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How art thou cut down to the ground, which didst weaken the nations!” Isa 14:12.
Hitler, a modern king of Babylon, fulfills this description. He weakened the nations, but was cut down. As one reads the whole chapter, one can see how Hitler or other characters of an Anti-Christ nature can fit this description.
The symbolism could also extend to the heavenly spheres. Perhaps there is a great Babylon challenging the heavenly realms with a morning star, Lucifer, at the helm.
A possible reference to this is found in the book of Revelation: “And there was war in heaven: Michael and his angels fought against the dragon: and the dragon fought and his angels, and prevailed not; neither was their place found any more in heaven. And that great dragon was cast out, that old serpent, called the devil, and Satan, which deceiveth the whole world: He was cast out into the earth, and his angels were cast out with him.” Rev 12:7-9.
This does not mean that there were real serpents and dragons and medieval devils involved here, but there do exist beings that are best described with this symbolism. We are told that these beings are right here on the earth. Is it not logical to assume that many of them have the bodies of men walking around in the flesh? Are not men themselves capable of being great adversaries, accusers, and devils? It is true that many similar beings may exist in an unseen world, but you have to go a long way to find a better devil than Hitler, for instance.
The Victorian concept of the devil is not correct, even by Bible standards, but there are adversaries (Satans) to the truth on every hand that must be defeated by the word of truth.
Question Nine: How do your religious beliefs compare with the way you were taught as a child?
(a) I am still a member of the same religion. (b) I have changed religious beliefs. My philosophy is much different now than I was taught as a child.
(c) I have changed religions, but my basic philosophy of life is about the same.
A Synthesizer is one who can change and adapt as truth is presented to him. He never reaches the plateau of self-satisfaction; therefore his basic philosophy will often change several times in his life. He may even find himself in the position of Winston Churchhill, who went through all the political parties and added one of his own. Many of his peers, observing this change, thought him to be a traitor to their cause. He had enemies within the whole round of political belief because they could not understand the motivation behind his constant changing. An enlightened person will usually change philosophies several times in his life and never find an ultimate truth to keep him permanently satisfied. On the other hand, as he undergoes this change he will sift the good from the bad, the true from the false, and keep that which is beneficial, discarding the unusable.
Question Ten: What do you think of evolution?
(a) It is a doctrine inspired by the devil. (b) There is no truth to it at all, (c) It could be basically true and still not conflict with the Bible. (d) The Bible and evolution cannot both be true.
It is interesting to observe people’s reaction to the word “evolution”. Those who answer (a) or (b) usually are not even aware of the definition of the word, which is “The process of unfolding or gradual development.” We can even use the word in connection with the origin of the Bible, for this book was not created by some spontaneous means by God, but was gradually compiled and evolved. Thus, the Bible is a product of evolution. However, because a feeling person is likely to associate evolution with Darwin alone he may not be caught dead using the word favorably at all.
We shall not go into a dissertation on the truth of evolution here. All thinking people realize that some points of Darwin’s theory is a fait accompli, proven beyond argument. By selective breeding scientists have caused both the plant and animal kingdom to evolve better strains and higher quality species.
The Bible even directly tells us that God did not create by a direct spontaneous creation, as many fundamentalists suppose. It is written: “And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind…” Gen 1:11. Here we see that God let the earth itself “bring forth”, or evolve, the plant kingdom.
We are told that the fish and bird kingdom came from the waters: “And God said, let the waters bring forth abundantly the moving creature that hath life, and fowl that may fly above the earth in the open firmament of heaven.” Gen 1:20.
Again we are told that the earth brought forth the animal kingdom: “And God said, Let the earth bring forth the living creature after his kind, cattle, and creeping thing, and beast of the earth after his kind: and it was so.” Gen 1:24.
Contrary, then, to the belief that God directly made all living things, the Bible tells us that he had the earth and waters bring them forth, or evolve them. This is in harmony with scientific thought.
The only thing that God claimed to make Himself is man, and this idea may explain the missing links in man’s evolution. It is quite possible that God-like beings from other planets visited the earth in earlier times and left their seed upon it. Whatever the case, the thinking person will not discard the logical elements of any theory. A Synthesizer must be open-minded.
May 31, 2004
Copyright by J J Dewey
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