There are those who read the Bible through ever year, by reading three chapters each weekday and five on Sunday. Through these readings they gain their own knowledge and concepts of the Bible. The Bible can come alive for them. However, we do not learn so much by reading the Bible as history, but by living it. It has been said that the books of the Bible are a story of our soul's journey. Before the foundations of the earth, some believe that our first existence was as spiritual beings in a spiritual world. We moved in the consciousness of oneness and awakened in a state of separateness. We will always retain the essence of the divine image giving: us a creative, conscious spirit with freedom of choice.

In the Garden of Eden, we are taught about loss, betrayal, temptation, separateness, weakness, strength, confusion, clarity and of pain caused by the disobedience of the goodness of God. The readings of the Bible tell us that Adam is of the same soul as Jesus. Jesus, the man, becomes the Christ who will, through the Holy Spirit, guide us step by step back to the oneness from whence we came. It is, then, our destiny to find our way back from our self-created, bewildering, deceiving ego.

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The Bible is described as the Book of Life and all life leads back to God. It is possible to experience everything in the Bible and that is why it is holy. In verses (John 10-34; Psalm 82.6), Jesus tells us we are all gods ... in the making. Within our soul is the image of God. We are spiritual beings living in our body in a material world. Men's souls inspired them to write the Bible. We are all potential Christs; we can read, write, and live in the same consciousness as those holy people who came before us.

Today we are introduced to many seemingly 'new teachings' but when we delve into their origin, we find that there is nothing new under the sun. Even passages from the Bible can be traced to earlier ancient writings. All trues are true and always have been and always will be. They have been told since the beginning of time. But many don't understand. I heard it just said recently that science is finally catching up to religion.

I had to giggle recently when I read a quote from Elvis Presley that went something like this: 'When you talk about things that people don't understand, they think you are crazy.' Even Elvis began to see life anew ... apart from his local upbringing. The learning is within where God says He will meet us. No matter what house, what city, what country we live in or how much we have in our bank account, God will meet us where we are. Where we are depends or whether or not you have opened that Garden door to let Jesus in. He is always there. You must open the door.

Know that everyone has their own door to open to let holiness in, to return to the Garden. Be patient with those who are not as far along as you. You may find that can surpass you in a split second. Consciousness is not a race. So, whether you read the Bible ever year of your life, study more ancient scriptures or "seemly newer" readings, open up your consciousness understanding that there is no difference in any of us. These holy writings are for all of us, no matter what language, or what year they were written. Open that Garden door and saturate your spirit with these truths.

The Rev. Ellin M. Dize is executive director of nonprofit NRS Inc. and facilitates A Course in Miracles spiritual discussion group at St. Paul's UCC. She can be contacted at NRSsolutions@yahoo.com.

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