In today’s episode of “Healing from Within” your host Sheryl Glick author of “Life Is No Coincidence-The Life and Afterlife Connection” welcomes special guest Joe Wenke author of “You Got to Be Kidding.”
As Joe states, when it comes to the Bible, as an author, satirist and cultural arsonist Joe has a lot of questions. Joe seeks to provoke deeper thinking through an engaging and provocative investigation into the many inconsistencies and exaggerations of stories written by different authors as they added additional stories for the compilation of the Bible. These authors relayed what they believed long ago to be messages from the Divine. Of course, like all stories relayed from one story teller to the next, there is obviously personal interpretation and often inaccuracies and unproven speculation. The Bible, which is the oldest book recorded, is certainly no different. Joe Wenke, a marketing executive, former corporate speechwriter and professed observer of human gullibility, suggests we take a closer look at what the stories in the Bible offer modern day readers. The questions Joe explores may help us recognize the strengths and or fabrications of fundamentalist religious interpretation. A new examination may reveal a more realistic view of the intentions of the various writers contributing to the writing of the Bible. Much like any mythological story- part factual – part fictional, the moral value of the stories can be appreciated but not necessarily adhered to as law or unchallengeable reality.
Following stories from both the Old to the New Testament, Joe points out the impossible, the illogical and the unrealistic elements of many tales hoping readers who are thinking individuals will reassess some of their beliefs from childhood religious training, so they may be more in tune with a spiritual and personal approach to connecting with the Universal Source. Connecting to Source and the beginnings of life from one’s heart or soul should be the true focus of any personal look or religious practice that seeks a finer understanding of God, nature, life, death and our expanding higher consciousness.
Some of the stories laid bare, are: Noah’s Ark: How big was that boat-and who cleaned up after the animals?
Jonah and the Whale: Just how does one survive being digested for three days?
The Three Wise Men: If they were so wise, why did they get lost?
Jesus, Miracle Worker: Where did Jesus learn how to perform miracles-at Hogwarts?
From the first story in Joe’s book about Adam and Eve to Cain and Able, and then to Noah’s Ark, it is suggested that perhaps it is not God’s action or response to human behavior and people’s lack of judgment, but some other response that challenges the human population. We will discuss how an understanding of free will, choice and the spiritual laws of energy are responsible for many events and problems that we create and then have to resolve. The Law of Attraction: cause and effect responses, are created due to our own lower expressions of emotions such as anger, greed, and jealousy or conversely our higher emotions of love, compassion and joy drawing to us many of the experiences we have in life. This output of energy generated through our actions and reactions. create either positive or negative outcomes. God or Divine Energy may observe us but does not control or judge us in this earth plane experience. That is left to each soul who is experiencing this physical life. Perhaps the reason we choose a physical life is to grow closer to an alignment with a loving compassionate Source of Eternal Life on a personal soul level. So learning not to blame God or anyone else for any injustice or difficult time in life is the first step towards understanding ourselves and God’s Intention for an evolving human and soul life effort.
In the story of Abraham and the Covenant of Circumcision might the reason be that a medical procedure might have been neceessary rather than God asking for a show of sacrifice for his helping Abraham and Sarah conceive a baby late in life. Nowadays there are many fertility choices including an In Vitro procedure.
In the story of “The Sacrifice of Issac” Joe suggests, “The right answer to the question whether there can ever be a theological suspension of the ethical and any justification for conceivable attrocities perpetrated by dictators, terrorists and psycho killers in a dysfunctional society or seen as a higher purpose of God to be served by these indiscretions”. It might accurately be observed that it is in fact the selfish and ego efforts of competitive and “Ungodly people.” Perhaps God has given us everything necessary to live a divine and Godlike life and it is within our remembrance of our soul nature and our connection to God that we awaken to the possibilites for our most prosperous and healthy physical life. We are given the environment and spiritual tools but must do the work on our own. This reminds me of Charles Dicken’s story, “A Christmas Carol” when the angels of past,present, and future show Scrooge how he lived his life without love and honor for himself and others, and created dire consequences as a result of his incessant need for material success. Scrooge closed himself off from reaping the real rewards of a productive life which are self-love and good relationships with others.
In other stories in the Bible that reflect this lack of human kindness or appreciation for all, we see how Cain kills his brother Abel and then later in the story of Issac, Rebekah, Easu and Jacob, we see the themes of twins being born to represent two nations divided which leads to favoritism for one child over another. Parents today who should have learned the effects of this behavior from this story in the Bible continue to do the same thing with their children now, creating the same problems as in ancient days. So why does the Bible stories speak of these traumas and dysfunctional family issues? Was it man relating stories of the ever present challenges for man to overcome, or God showing he accepted and loved us regardless of our human weaknesses? Personally, Sheryl as a Reiki Master healer, chooses to believe after years of meditation and receiving messages from spiritual energy knows that everything is possible to correct and improve, as we allow God’s loving essence to filter through our body and mind and reflect the values and virtures of Divine wisdom and a higher regard for life.
Joe, in a chapter in the book entitled The Bad Guys, discusses issues that perhaps Jesus and the stories about him in the bible tried to clearly represent. Jesus expressed dissatisfaction with the power structure and limiting ideas of the male politicians and religious leaders of the time who showed high regard for some and no regard at all for the many. So when Joe writes that the “bad guys then and now are those that know they are saved and hope you are not—they are the hypocrites who do as they please when they are out of sight and behind closed doors—they are the politicians who tell you what you want to hear but believe nothing themselves—they choose laws and rules over people—they are the ones who think they win when others lose—they are the ones who are so ignorant and close minded and think they are smart—they are the holier than thou bigots—they are the users—they are the abusers—they are the ones who look down on good works”.
Joe goes on to thank Jesus for being a cool guy for being gentle but right in your face if the situation called for it and for not discriminating and for hanging out with all kinds of people. Joe thanks Jesus for being a healer and curing people of pain and for actually feeling their pain or having heightened empathy. Joes thanks Jesus for advocating the golden rule and blessing peace makers. Joe thanks Jesus for his love of children and women and treating them equal to men. Joe also thanks Jesus for not judging, for being fearless and for expecting nothing in return for love and doing the right thing. Joe, Sheryl believes, means that by reading the stories in the bible and finding the courage to emulate and be the example for the best that the stories show such as truth, love, and goodness, you will make the Bible the example it was meant to be – a living plan for God’s real vision of the human race.
Joe Wenke’s book and Sheryl have in this episode talked about the many ways to interpret the antiquated, limited rules and beliefs of religious systems which rely on the Bible exclusively, often losing the greatest gift God has given us—means for thinking through life’s situations and the personal power to know him intimately with trust and faith for eternal love.