I’ve recently discovered the amazing revelations that can be made by taking a look at the best selling book in history, and reading it with new eyes. What is that book, you might ask? The Bible, of course! I know, I know…. it was forced down your throat as a child, especially if you live(d) down south in the ‘Bible Belt’. You “know” all of the popular stories and parables, as well as the “fact” that it is simply man’s interpretation of historical events with no real application for your life in today’s modern world. You might also know about the recently found Dead Sea Scrolls and other texts discovered within the past century that, lo and behold, have been excluded from the Bible as we currently know it today. Okay, so since you already know all of this, I would like to share a story with you, that you may not know…
Constantine “The Great” was the first Roman emperor to convert to Christianity, ultimately promoting its tolerance and overseeing its foundation within Roman Empire. He thought that by unifying the “rebel Christians,” whose varying beliefs were causing many divisions within the empire, and progressively threatening the power of the Roman State as a whole, that he would be able to regain control of the masses by using religion as his political tool. He aimed to accomplish his mission of unification, by calling the first ecumenical council, the Council of Nicaea.
At the Council of Nicaea, Constantine brought together leaders from various Christian factions, with the objective to standardize the religious beliefs of the time, into one unified Christian doctrine that was to be accepted by all people identifying themselves as Christians. While he did not actually write the words found in the Bible, Constantine did have final authority over its composition, whose fundamental context correlated with the unified vision of Christianity that was agreed upon at the Council of Nicaea. Any religious writings or beliefs opposed to the new, “unified” Christian doctrine were eventually erased from history, and people found spreading alternate interpretations were put to death. Hence the reason we are only today finding some of these ancient, hidden manuscripts buried in tombs with priests, and hidden in caves in clay jars.
Unfortunately, the intentions of Constantine’s declaration and his implementation of a unified Christian Doctrine, only led to further disagreements and divisions among the Church. Additional ecumenical councils convened in the pursuit of unity, but dissension only grew stronger as time passed, ultimately contributing to the fall of the Roman Empire altogether.
And this, my friends, is the foundation of present-day Christian doctrine – a faith built upon controversy, power over the masses, censorship, division, and disunity. Which familiarly, are the characteristics of Judaism that Jesus himself opposed, and was historically known to have been put to death in protest of, by the Romans.
Let’s take a look at the words and messages of the Bible with new eyes. Try to put preconceived notions out of your mind and just read it as you would this article. Keep an open mind and always cross-reference the New Testament with the Old Testament, as there is great significance in the correlation of the two. Let me know what kind of new discoveries you make, and we might be on to something, here! 😉
For more on the history of Constantine, Rome, and Christianity’s influence, check out these articles:
The History of Christian Sunday Keeping by Charlie Adams
*Find Beauty in New Sight!*