Gnostic Doctrine

Tuesday, 8 November 2022

Gnosis is to Know Thyself Gospel of Thomas Saying 3

Gnosis is to Know Thyself Gospel of Thomas Saying 3

The Gospel of Thomas Saying 3:

Jesus said, "[If] those who lead you [say to you, 'See], the kingdom is in the sky,' then the birds of the sky [will precede you. If they say that] it is under the earth, then the fish of the sea [will enter it, preceding] you. And, the [kingdom of God] is inside of you, [and it is outside of you. Whoever] knows [himself] will discover this. [And when you] come to know yourselves, [you will realize that] you are [sons] of the [living] father. [But if you] will [not] know yourselves, [you dwell] in [poverty] and it is you who are that poverty." Oxyrhynchus Text

The first part of this saying is about the location of the Kingdom the second part of this saying is about how to find the kingdom by self knowledge:

Whoever] knows [himself] will discover this, (then you will be known). [And when you] come to know yourselves, [you will realize that] you are [sons] of the [living] father. [But if you] will [not] know yourselves, [you dwell] in [poverty] and it is you who are that poverty."

Philo of Alexandria defines self knowledge or knowing yourself as "Take heed to Thyself."
Philo On the Migration of Abraham: 

know yourself all your life, as Moses teaches us in many passages where he says, "Take heed to Thyself."{4}{#ex 34:12.}

Take heed to Thyself this is another re-occurring phrase throughout Deuteronomy, emphasising the personal responsibility (See Deut. 2:4; 4:9,15,23; 11:16; 12:13,19,30; 27:9.)

It is a believer's personal responsibility to learn the Gospel message its teachings these teachings are only of benefit if acknowledged and applied.

know thyself is a biblical exhortation about self-examination 

The Lord Jesus himself in the NT use the phrase “take heed to yourselves” or "pay attention to yourselves" see:

Luke 21:34 “But pay attention to yourselves that YOUR hearts never become weighed down with overeating and heavy drinking and anxieties of life, and suddenly that day be instantly upon YOU (NWT)

And so does Paul: Acts 20: 28 Pay attention to yourselves and to all the flock, among which the holy spirit has appointed YOU overseers, to shepherd the congregation of God, which he purchased with the blood of his own [Son]. (NWT)

1 Timothy 4:16 Pay attention to yourself, and to your teaching. Continue in these things, for in doing this you will save both yourself and those who hear you.

And John use the phrase as well: 2Jo 1:8 Look to yourselves, that we lose not those things which we have wrought, but that we receive a full reward. (KJ)

know thyself may also have a mystical interpretation. 'Thyself', is not meant in reference to the egotist, but the ego within self, the Christ consciousness.

Gnosis is the fulfillment of faith realizing that in the secret unknown self the believer is one with the Father the fruit of that union is love

2 cor 13:5  examine your own selves if ye be in the faith; prove your own selves: do ye not recognise yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you, unless indeed ye be reprobates?

1 Cor. 3:16 Do you not know that you are the temple of God and that the Spirit of God dwells in you?

Colossians 1:27  To whom God would make known what [is] the riches of the glory of this mystery among the Gentiles; which is Christ in you, the hope of glory:

Lu 17:21  Neither shall they say, Lo here! or, lo there! for, behold, the kingdom of God is within you.

Eph 3:17  That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; that ye, being rooted and grounded in love,

Ga 2:20  I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.

Saying 82 Jesus said, Whoever is near me is near fire, and whoever is far from me is far from the kingdom.

In Saying 82 fire and the kingdom are equivalent terms just as Jesus is equivalent with the Kingdom so here in saying 3 with the location of the Kingdom being inside of the believers it is the son of man who is inside us

This is confirmed in the The Testimony of Truth and the The Gospel of Mary

he has to come to know the Son of Man, that is, he has come to know himself. This is the perfect life, that man know himself by means of the All. (The Testimony of Truth)

33) When the Blessed One had said this, He greeted them all,saying, Peace be with you. Receive my peace unto yourselves.
34) Beware that no one lead you astray saying Lo here or lo there! For the Son of Man is within you.
35) Follow after Him!
36) Those who seek Him will find Him. (The Gospel of Mary chapter 4)

Yet there is one little caveat here; we must come to know our TRUE self. Our true self is not the person of THIS world, but the one who was born of God that came into this world. All of you Christians of traditional beliefs should read the words of the Bible more carefully. This teaching should not be foreign to you if you have been given the eyes to see it. Consider how this passage from Thomas spiritually aligns with what Paul wrote to the Corinthians.

1 Corinthians 13:9-12

For we know in part and we prophesy in part, 10 but when perfection comes, the imperfect disappears. 11 When I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put childish ways behind me. 12 Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I am fully known.

Paul is speaking about us becoming and knowing our true, perfect self. This is nearly identical to what Jesus said: “When you know yourselves, then you will be known, and you will understand that you are children of the living Father.” Do you understand the spiritual essence of what Jesus and Paul are saying here? They are saying we are spiritually maturing and growing in knowledge of who we are. 

We may not be clearly seeing our true self (who is Christ) right now, but we will once we come to fully know and BE our TRUE self! They are both saying that one day we shall fully know our true self, even as I AM (God) is fully known. We are God’s image that must become perfect like our Father to show God the image of Himself. This is our purpose- to reflect the glory and be the image of God! We can only do this in Christ where our true self (life) has been kept hidden and safe for ages and ages. So in this light, real “poverty” is when we don’t know our true self in Christ. 

This is spiritual poverty where the soul is lost in deception and the spirit feels homeless because he hasn’t returned to his Father’s house. Finally, Jesus says, “You are the poverty.” Paul said that nothing good could come from him. He said that “Paul” had died and CHRIST now lived in and through him. Paul knew that his true life was found in the spirit (in Christ), not in the natural (or worldly) Paul. 

Self-knowledge is the true self of the Christ consciousness. Without real self-knowledge other knowledge often becomes a kind of clutter in the mind. With correct self knowledge, however, other knowledge reveals its meaning and ripens into wisdom.

There is a contrast between “personal consciousness, self-will, self, me and I” and “spiritual awareness, the divine self, or the Christ consciousness”.

One of the most effective ways to gain greater self knowledge is to realize that you have a dimension of your mind that is even greater than your "thinking self." This greater level of your mind can actually OBSERVE your thinking self. It can evaluate what it observes. It can make decisions about what it observes. If it chooses it can control, change, and adjust what the thinking self is doing. It is from this higher level of your mind that true self knowledge is attained.

The key to self-knowledge is the awareness that true knowledge comes from within. We must keep in mind that the gaining of wisdom is not merely the result of pouring a sufficient number of facts into our heads; rather, it is the process of "remembering" or calling forth the spiritual truths that are written on our heart

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