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Does the Bible Teach Reincarnation???

 

This is information taken from a paper distributed by The Children of the Law of One concerning reincarnation. I have taken both paragraphs and their connecting scriptures underlined and enclosed them in {}to distinguish them form my own comments. Following each paragraph I have given what I feel are justifiable responses to questions raised by John Peniel, the spiritual leader of TCLO.

{First of all who is Adam? Is Adam the first man created by God? Or is Adam both male and the female that God first made. Some people say Adam was a city, or the first group of people created by God. We know today, that it is biologically impossible for just two people to create a civilization. It requires 30 people to supply the ample genetics to create society as we know it today. But looking at the Bible and the Qur-an, there is more to "Adam" than what you will hear in the church.

Gen 5:1 KJV This is the book of the generations of Adam. In the day that God created man, in the likeness of God made he him; 2 Male and female created he them; and blessed them, and called their name Adam, in the day when they were created. }

This is used to suggest that Adam and his soulmate were one being until they fell to the earth. It is suggested that there is possibly reference to more than one Adam here as in a group of people or a city.

This is an example of the confusion created when trying to understand the older dialect of the English language used in the KJV. Here is a point that might clear this up a bit. Adam is simply the Hebrew word for "man". This is a verse which has been made more clear through modern science of linguistics and scholarship, which have made amazing improvements in the nearly 400 years since 1611 when the KJV was first translated. Also we simply speak and understand the English language much differently than people did in 1611. Here I have attached the New American Bible and the New International Version texts.

Gen 5:1 NAB This is the record of the descendents of Adam. When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God; 2 he created them male and female. When they were created, he blessed them and named them "man."

Gen 5:1 NIV this is a written account of Adam's line. When God created man, he made him in the likeness of God. 2He created them male and female and blessed them. And when they were created he called them "man."
As you can see it is widely accepted that the Bible is speaking of mankind in this passage. Of course the logic kind of follows that the progeny will be named for the first. We are essentially being called Adamkind or "man"kind. We could have just as easily been called Bobkind or Samkind. So when this scripture speaks of man in its plural form he is referring to Adam and Eve referring to them as the species man, mankind or even human if you prefer. If you could see the Hebrew text I have to take the word of my pastor on this, but he says in texts that refer to Adam the person versus Adam referring to humans in general that they put a little swooshy mark in front of the Hebrew word to show the difference.

The rest of the text here then demonstrates how Adam the person lives a long full life, has many sons and daughters, and dies. In response to the statement that we know that it is required to have at least 30 individuals to have an ample genetic pool I have to bring the length of Adam's life as evidence. If life spans were so much longer then it shows that their genetic makeup was far superior. I also bring as evidence what happens when the gene pool is too small. Genetics deteriorate thus causing any number of genetic disorders like for instance shorter life spans, deformities, genetic diseases, etc. these genetic disorders can in turn take many thousands of generations to breed themselves out of the DNA. Hence the average life span has climbed from 20 to 85 in the last 3000 years. My personal believe is that the gene pool was indeed to small In fact there are descriptions of weird abnormalities mentioned in Genesis before the flood like "Giants being born" and stuff. I think that after Noah and the flood the gene pool was once again narrowed. That in combination with the change of environment probably explains the severe change in life spans described before and after the flood. This is of course all just a possible theory for explanation.

Gen 5:3 NAB Adam was one hundred and thirty years old when he begot a son in his likeness, after his image; and he named him Seth. 4 Adam lived eight hundred years after the birth of Seth, and he had other sons and daughters. 5 The whole lifetime of Adam was nine hundred and thirty years; then he died.

Another complaint that people make about the Genesis story is the mention of other cities and stuff. Recently I went to my wife's Grandmother's funeral. She was 88 years old she had 13 children and was survived by 166 living relatives. Think about it, if Adam and Eve survived and produced children for 900+ years how many children could they have? This one woman in the short period of 88 years was survived by 166 people. That's children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, great great grandchildren, and even 3 great great great grandchildren. Considering that Adam spent nearly ten times as long popping out children he may have had thirty children of his own. Consider how much the population of the United States has grown in a mere 240 or so years. I think that if Adam really did live to be 909 years that there would have been plenty of time for the family line to have built up enough for other cities to exist within the lifetime of Cain and Able.

{"Their" name Adam? consider fere the Children's teachings that Adam and his soulmate, like all soulmate's were one being, until they fell to the earth. But wait, that's just the KJV Bible. The Quran says that eden was not even on the earth, and that Adam was not of the earth, but among angels in heaven.

S2:A34-36 And Behold, We said to the Angels: "Bow down to Adam:" and they bowed down: Not so Iblis: he refused and was haughty: He was of those who reject Faith. And We said: "O Adam! Dwell thou And thy wife in the Garden; and eat of the bountiful things therein As (where and when) ye will; but approach not this tree, Or ye run into harm and transgression." then did Satan make them slip From the (Garden), and get them out of the state (of felicity) in which they had been. And we said: "Get ye down, all (ye people), with enmity between yourselves. On earth will be your dwelling place and your means of livelihood for a time."

Note the "We" instead of "God". The "We" is the reference to our oneness, that we are all one. Also not Adam was put to the earth, that he was not originally of the earth. and notice that Adam is treated as "ye people", and not as a singular being. unlike the KJV, the Quran is explicit about all this. Odd, don't you think? And by the way, Iblis is Islam for Satan. Also note that they transgressed, or fell to earth. The opposite of transgression, is transcendance. The CLO is all about getting back to "heaven", and helping transgressors.}


I cannot comment on the verses from the Quran I don't own a copy and I have never read it. I did notice that this is the only scripture from the Quran used in the CLO's paper. My impression after reading John Peniel's book The Lost Teachings of Atlantis, checking out his web pages, and reading this scripture is that he has an issue with Christianity. So it is not suprising to me that he focuses the majority of his attention on the Bible and some Catholic edicts I am not going to include in this review.

{Notice also that Adam is called the son of God. I thought only Jesus had that title?

Luke 3:38 Which was the son of Enos, which was the son of Seth, which was the son of Adam, which was the Son of God.

Why would a culture hold that Adam was the son of God, and then turn around and call the messiah the son of God??? A little confusing, eh? Maybe it's all verbage? God made Adam out of dirt, and God made Mary pregnant, so they both are "sons of God" by verbage, so this doesn't mean that it's the same person. But wait a minute, what is this saying?}

He then asks why would culture hold that Adam is the Son of God and the Messiah is the Son of God. To that I have to say why would I call my son Robert my child and my daughter Kyla my child. Duh, like God cannot have more than one son. There is a differentiation between Adam, Jesus Christ and all the rest of us who consider ourselves the children of God.

John 3:16 KJV For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

John 3:16 NIV For God so loved the world, that he gave his one and only son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Actually there is a reason that I used this parallel between my children and the Adam and Christ comparison. Robert is not my biological child yet I call him my child while Kyla is my one and only child or my only begotten child. So yes it is a matter of verbiage and it is dealt with in other scripture. In fact in one of Paul's later writings he referred to Christians as God's adopted children who can legally call themselves sons and daughters of God.

{Romans 5:14 KJV Nevertheless death reigned from Adam to Moses, even over them that had not sinned after the similitude of Adam's transgression, who is the figure of him that was to come. 15But not as the offense, so also is the free gift. For if through the offense of one many be dead, much more the grace of God, and the gift by grace, which is by one man, Jesus Christ, hath abounded unto many.16
And not as it was by one that sinned, so is the gift: for the judgement was by one to condemnation, but the free gift is of many offences unto justification. 17 For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ.) 18 Therefore as by the offence of one judgement came upon all men to condemnation; even so by the righteousness of one the free gift came upon all men unto the justification of life. 19 For as by one man's disobedience many were made sinners, so by the obedience of one shall many be made righteous. 20 moreover the law entered, that the offence might abound. But where sin abounded, grace did much more abound: 21 That as sin hath reigned unto death, even so might grace reign through righteousness unto eternal life by Jesus Christ our Lord.

Notice the "who is the figure of him that was to come." What do you suppose that means? And what about this verse?}

He then asks what the "who is the figure of him that was to come." Means. Ok lets look at the entire text in a language that is understandable to both of us. After all context without pretext is like pretext without syntax.

Romans 5:12 NIV Therefore, just as sin entered the world through one man, and death through sin, and in this way death came to all men, because all sinned- 13 for before the law was given, sin was in the world. But sin is not taken into account when there is no law. 14 Never the less death reigned from the time of Adam to the time of Moses, even over those who did not sin by breaking a command, as did Adam, who was a pattern of the one to come.

[Ok taking a little pretext into account you can see that the "figure of him that was to come" means that Jesus Christ was going to fulfill a similar pattern to that of Adam. In that when Adam disobeyed God the many who came after him (his descendents) were trapped in a life of sin, but Jesus Christ through his obedience would redeem the many who come after him unto righteousness with the gift of grace. So now the following text actually makes sense and doesn't just sound like a lot of double talk as it did before without the pretext.]

15 But the gift is not like the trespass. For if the many died by the trespass of the one man, how much more did God's grace and the gift that came by the grace of one man, Jesus Christ, overflow to the many! 16 Again, the gift of God is not like the result of the one man's sin: The judgement followed many trespasses and brought justification. 17 For if, by the trespass of one man, death reigned through that one man, how much more will those who receive God's abundant provision of grace and of the gift of righteousness reign in life through the one man, Jesus Christ. 18 Consequently, just as the result of one trespass was condemnation for all men, so also the result of one act of righteousness was justification that brings life for all men. 19 For just as through the disobedience of the one man the many were made sinners, so also through the obedience of the one man the many will be made righteous.

The next scripture quoted does not list the book it came from. I had at first glance accepted it as being from the book of Romans. The verse appeared like this.

{15:45 And so it is written, The first Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. 46 Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. 47 The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is the Lord from heaven.

The first and last Adam? What is all this parallelling of Adam and Jesus about? Hmmm? This can't be right, the KJV Bible doesn't teach that reincarnation is right. There is nothing in the KJV Bible about reincarnation at all. That stuff is "cultic", and "of the devil". What's your premise? What does this mean?}

I looked in Romans 15 and went wait a minute there is no verse 45-47. Then I did a little looking around and found the verses in 1 Corinthians 15.

1 Corinthians 15:45 NIV So it is written: "The first man Adam became a living being"; the last Adam, a life-giving spirit. 46 The spiritual did not come first, but the natural and after that the spiritual. 47 The first man was of the dust of the earth, the second man from heaven.

You know if I didn't know the context of the scripture that I was reading I might be a little confused right now. It has already been established in Romans that Adam started a pattern. The pattern being that what he did affected all those who came after him. It is also known that the word Adam and the Hebrew word for man are simply the same word "Adam". I realize that 1 Corinthians was written in Greek, but I believe that Paul is just making the same comparison in summary that he made in the book of Romans more at length. If you read the pretext 1Corinthians 15:35-58 , which is a little lengthy for me to write out here. The entire text speaks of the resurrection of the dead. This is also talked about at length in 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18. So no I do not believe that he is saying that Adam is reincarnated as Jesus here. To say that would simply be ignoring all the other text which states that we are going to be resurrected, and it would be ignoring the fact that Paul compared Jesus to Adam earlier showing similarities in their effect on the world.

I then looked in my NAB, which is a study Bible. It gives these nice little explanations on the margin that can be very helpful at times.

1 Corinthians 15:45 NAB So it is written, "The first man, Adam, became a living being," the last Adam a life-giving spirit. 46 But the spiritual was not first; rather the natural and then the spiritual. 47 The first man was from the earth, earthly; the second man, from heaven.

In the margin is included this note. [15, 45 The analogy of the first man, Adam, is introduced by a citation from Gen 2, 7. Paul alters the text slightly, adding the adjective first. And translating the Hebrew adam twice, so as to give it its value both as a common noun (man) and as a proper name (Adam). Verse 45b then specifies the differences between the two Adams. The last Adam, Christ (cf 21-22) has become a …spirit (pneuma), a life-principle transcendent with respect to the natural soul (psyche) of the first Adam (on terminology here, cf the note on 3,1), Further, he is not just alive, but life-giving, a source of life for others.]

Gen 2:7 NAB the Lord God formed man out of the clay of the ground and blew into his nostrils the breath of life, and so man became a living being.

1 Corinthians 15:21 NAB For since death came through a human being, the resurrection of the dead came also through a human being. 22 For just as in Adam all die, so too in Christ shall all be brought to life,

Note on 3,1 [Spiritual people…fleshly people: Paul employs two clusters of concepts and terms to distinguish what later theology will call the "natural" and the "supernatural" (1) The natural person (2,14) is one whose existence, perceptions, and behavior are determined by purely natural principles, the psyche (2,14) and the sarx (flesh, a biblical term that connotes creatureliness, 1, 3). Such persons are only infants (1); They remain on a purely human level (anthropoi, 4). (2) On the other hand, they are called to be animated by a higher principle, the pneumena, and God's spirit. They are to become spiritual (pneumatikoi, 1) and mature (2, 6) in their perceptions and behaviour (cf Galatians 5, 16-26). The culmination of existence in the Spirit is described in 15, 44-49.]

Next he quotes from the KJV Matthew 17:1-13. As a personal preference I enjoy the NIV for clarity and understanding. Given the length of the text I decided to just write the quote from this translation for the sake of brevity.

Matthew 17:1 (The Transfiguration) After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. 2 There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. 3 Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus. 4 Peter said to Jesus, "Lord, it is good for us to be here, If you wish, I will put up three shelters-one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah." 5 While he was still speaking a bright cloud enveloped them, and a voice from the cloud said, "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!" 6 When the disciples heard this, they fell facedown to the ground, terrified. 7 But Jesus came and touched them. "Get up," he said. "Don't be afraid." 8 When they looked up, they saw no one expect Jesus. 9 As they were coming down the mountain, Jesus instructed them, "Don't tell anyone what you have seen, until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead." 10 The disciples asked him, "Why then do the teachers of the law say that Elijah must come first?" 11 Jesus replied, "To be sure, Elijah comes and will restore all things. 12 But I tell you, Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but have done to him everything they wished. In the same way the Son of Man is going to suffer at their hands." 13 Then the disciples understood that he was talking to them about John the Baptist.

He follows the KJV version of this text by saying {Hey wait a minute, Jesus himself is admitting here that John the Baptist was Elias??? If that is true, then why does this verse vividly say that Jesus was talking to both Moses and Elias, who both at the time were very dead? Hmm, something just isn't adding up.}

The note on the margin of the NAB says [In response to the disciples question about the expected return of Elijah, Jesus interprets the mission of the Baptist as the fulfillment of that expectation. But that was not suspected by those who opposed and finally killed him, and Jesus predicts a similar fate for himself.

Matthew 3:4 NAB John wore clothing made of camel's hair and had a leather belt around his waist. His food was locusts and wild honey.

Note [The clothing of John recalls the dress of the prophet Elijah as described in (2 kings 1:8) The expectation of the return of Elijah from heaven to prepare Israel for the final manifestation of God's kingdom was widespread, and according to Matthew this expectation was fulfilled in the Baptists ministry.

Matthew 16:13 NAB When Jesus went into the region of Caesarea Phillippi he asked his disciples, "Who do people say that the Son of Man is?" 14 They replied, "some say John the Baptist, others Elijah, still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets." 15 He said to them, "But who do you say that I am?" 16 Simian Peter said in reply, "You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God." 17 Jesus said, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah. For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my heavenly Father.

In 2 Kings 2:9-18 is told the story of Elijah being taken up to heaven in a whirlwind. In verse 9 Elisha requests that Elijah give him a double portion of his spirit. It was a tradition of the first born son to inherit a double portion of his fathers property, so Elisha asks to inherit a double portion of Elijah's prophetic spirit in the degree befitting his principle disciple. In Numbers 11:17 and 25 God bestows the spirit of Moses on others.

Numbers 11:25 NIV Then the Lord came down in the cloud and spoke with him, and he took of the Spirit that was on him and put the Spirit on the seventy elders. When the Spirit rested on them, they prophesied, but they did not do so again.

Here we have examples of people receiving the Spirit of Moses and the Spirit of Elijah while the people who lay claim to the Spirit are still alive and well. I do not know if Elijah remained alive while the Lord was taking him up in a whirlwind. However, I did note that no where in the text about Elijah being taken does it mention him physically returning. However Elisha receives his Spirit while both are still alive thus saying to me that for someone to have another's Spirit does not mean that they are that person reincarnated according to Bible terminology. I personally believe that it simply means that the same Spirit, which influenced the ministry of the Prophet, has also given his influence to another as well. I believe we are simply talking about the Spirit of God.

And now for the last scripture Romans 9:10-13 I'll quote from the NAB here with a little pretext.

Romans 9:6 But it is not that the word of God has failed. For not all who are of Israel are Israel, 7 nor are they all children of Abraham because they are his descendents; but "It is through Isaac that descendents shall bear your name." 8 This means that it is not the children of the flesh who are the children of God, but the children of the promise are counted as descendents. 9 For this is the wording of the promise," About this time I shall return and Sarah will have a son." 10 And not only that, but also when Rebecca had conceived children by one husband, our father Isaac- 11 before they had yet been born or had done anything, good or bad, in order that God's elective plan might continue, 12 not by works but by his call- she was told, "The older shall serve the younger." 13 As it is written: "I loved Jacob but hated Esau."

After quoting verses 10-13 from the KJV he makes this statement. {Why would God love one and hate the other, considering neither had yet been born? Reading onward the author says that who are you to question God, and that because God has formed them, he knows what they are. So god makes evil babies to hate? Hmm? Something doesn't add up. I don't think God makes evil babies to hate, do you? and it is not a matter of questioning God. It is a matter of being one with God, and understanding God. How else are you to conform to God's will?? Not through fear and ignorance. God isn't a mad and vengeful tyrant. God IS love.}

Note [the Semitic usage of "hate" means loved less not the suggested attitude of hostility we might place on the word today]

I really fail to see what this scripture or this statement has to do with the author's argument that the Bible teaches reincarnation. I personally believe that this is placed in his paper simply for the sake of confusing the reader in an attempt to deteriorate the validity of the scriptures in the eyes of his readers. Ironically his final statement "God is love" is a direct quote from the Bible whether he knows it or not he neglected to tell his readers where to find that scripture. (1 JN 4:16)

{But to answer the question of pre-existance, I fully believe original Christianity (yeah I said original, as in todays is modified, and we historically know this to be true) did believe in pre-existance (and thus reincarnation and enlightenment), It was removed, and we know this historically from the Fifth Ecumenical Council, the Second Council of Constantinople A.D. 553, as the Anathemas Against Origin, which I will supply you with a copy of.}

His final statement that he fully believes that original Christianity did believe in pre-existence and that the belief got modified out of the church by the Fifth Ecumenical Council, the Second Council of Constantinople in 553 AD is very interesting. It is completely true that there were people who called themselves "Christians" who taught creeds contrary to the original Christian creed within a very short time after the death, resurrection, and ascention of Christ. Thus we have the letters of Paul to the Galatians, Ephesians, Colossians, and Timothy. We also know that very early on there were false prophets. Thus the letters to the Thessalonians. Also there was factionalism over doctrine early on thus the letter to the Corinthians. The challenges against the original creed are nothing new. In fact the many direct denials of the Christian creed made by this particular person are similar to many used for centuries.

What we do know is the original Christian creed as stated in 1 Corinthians 15:1-11 which most modern historians and scholars consider to be the oldest written proclamation of the Christian creed. Modern historians and scholars date this proclamation of the Christian creed to within 2-6 years after the crucifixion of Jesus Christ. Note that he says that most of the people who saw Jesus alive are said to be still living as if he is saying, "If you don't believe me go ask one of them they are still around."

1 Corinthian 15:1 NIV Now, brothers, I want to remind you of the gospel I preached to you, which you received and on which you have taken your stand. 2 By this gospel you are saved, if you hold firmly to the word I preached to you. Otherwise, you have believed in vain. 3 For what I received I passed on to you as of first importance: that Christ died for our sins according to the scriptures, 4 that he was buried, that he was raised on the third day according to the scriptures, 5 and that he appeared to Peter, and then to the Twelve. 6 After that, he appeared to more than five hundred of the brothers at the same time, most of whom are still living, though some have fallen asleep. 7 Then he appeared to James, then to all the apostles, 8 and last of all he appeared to me also, as to one abnormally born. 9 For I am the least of the apostles and do not even deserve to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. 10 But by the grace of God I am what I am, and his grace to me was not without effect. No, I worked harder than all of them-yet not I, but the grace of God that was with me. 11 Whether, then, it was I or they, this is what we preach, and this is what you believed.

I decided not to include the Anethemas Against Origin. I read them and I really didn't see where it gave any gravity to CLO's case that the Bible teaches reincarnation. For one thing the AAO isn't part of the Bible, and for another it is really long and I'm tired of typing. Besides (and no offences intended to Catholics) I'm not Catholic. I feel that some 1500 year old tome from the Vatican has very little to do with my personal beliefs. If I was Catholic it would be a different story. Anyway make your own choice and take the pole. Does the Bible teach reincarnation? I think not.

 

 

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