Here are the remarks as well as I was able to transcribe them:
Professor Darrell Bock says the major subject of the Gnostic gospels is the inner human being, not God. The major problem spiritual problem was ignorance, not sin. Ignorance of the mystery caused people to suffer. In the Gospel of thomas, Spirituality is merely understanding who one is and what God has already placed in you. (reading from the Gospel of Thomas) "If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you." that sounds like the Sphinx in the movie Mystery Men. "When you come to know yourselves, then you will be known and you will see that it's in you who are the children of the living Father. But, if you will not know yourselves, you dwell in poverty. And it is you who are in that poverty."
He writes "In this view spirituality is not driven by an alliance, allegiance to the living God in response to His love and care for us, rather spirituality merely means understanding who one is and then seeking what God has already placed in us."
I gotta tell you "That pseudo-spiritual self-actualization babble is not what jesus died on the cross for. And it's not what the apostles were martyred for. Your inner child is going to hell, unless you get that thing right with Jesus. (inaudible remark from the audience) Thank you, I'm doing my best."
After watching the replay, I was more upset about parts of it and less upset about others. I don't recall in the service I went to the qualification of the hell remark (the "unless you get that thing right with Jesus" part). Maybe he said it at the earlier service and I just missed it.
As I mentioned in my earlier post, the major problem I had with this talk is the fact that our church doesn't talk openly about hell and our beliefs concerning it. I have to assume from a remark here or there that the church doctrine is that those don't "accept Jesus" in this lifetime are going to be tormented eternally. But, this remark is the clearest one I can recall in the almost nine years I've been attending. There was another reference toward the end of the sermon about if we go through this life and don't accept the witness of the New Testament, we will end up "missing a piece" (of the puzzle). I can only assume that we are to take it that missing that piece means our inner child goes to hell because this was not made clear in the sermon.
The second part of my problem with this passage from the talk was the dismissive way Dave talks about "self-actualization". He poo-pooed the Gnostics and the passage from the Gospel of Thomas. I want to make it clear I do not think any of the Gnostic gospels carries the same credibility of any of the canonical gospels. But, I do see some parallels in some of the things there. Dave made fun of some of the miracles claimed in some of the other non-canonical gospels. Granted, some of them are outlandish. But, isn't a talking donkey (Balaam's ass) pretty wild? How about Jesus walking on water? How about Jesus raising a man from the dead after three days? All of these things most Christians accept without question. So, miracles in the non-canonical gospels, in and of themselves, are no reason to dismiss the gospels.
I can think of a couple of passages, in the New Testament, where Jesus said things similar to the passage in the Gospel of Thomas. Things about cleaning up our insides and bringing forth what is in us. Is this "pseudo-spiritual self-actualization babble"?
Check these out:
Mark 7: 14 Again Jesus called the crowd to him and said, "Listen to me, everyone, and understand this. 15 Nothing outside a man can make him 'unclean' by going into him. Rather, it is what comes out of a man that makes him 'unclean.' " 17After he had left the crowd and entered the house, his disciples asked him about this parable. 18"Are you so dull?" he asked. "Don't you see that nothing that enters a man from the outside can make him 'unclean'? 19For it doesn't go into his heart but into his stomach, and then out of his body." (In saying this, Jesus declared all foods "clean.") 20 He went on: "What comes out of a man is what makes him 'unclean.' 21 For from within, out of men's hearts, come evil thoughts, sexual immorality, theft, murder, adultery, 22 greed, malice, deceit, lewdness, envy, slander, arrogance and folly. 23 All these evils come from inside and make a man 'unclean.' "
Matthew 23:25 "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You clean the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of greed and self-indulgence. 26 Blind Pharisee! First clean the inside of the cup and dish, and then the outside also will be clean. 27 "Woe to you, teachers of the law and Pharisees, you hypocrites! You are like whitewashed tombs, which look beautiful on the outside but on the inside are full of dead men's bones and everything unclean. 28 In the same way, on the outside you appear to people as righteous but on the inside you are full of hypocrisy and wickedness.
Until I started looking for God inside of myself, manifested as the still small voice of the Holy Spirit and got into counseling that helped me deprogram from the years of crap loaded into me by the church, I was a basket case. I was full of fear, self-loathing and doubt. And, I felt guilty about being that way because Christian shouldn't feel all of that stuff. And all of the stuff the church was feeding me about just reading my Bible more and praying more wasn't helping one bit. My inner child wasn't going to hell, my inner child was in hell- tormented on a daily basis.
Thank God I found the babble that led me to finally be able to find Him right where He had been hiding all along- deep inside of me.
If you'd like to see the video, it's here. You'll need RealPlayer. The part I'm talking about begins about 50 minutes in.