In the book of Genesis 3, we are introduced to the serpent in the bible for the very first time. Here its portrayal is not generally considered a complimentary one. In fact, it is one in which he is fingered as the one who is responsible for introducing sin into the world of mankind. Is it possible however that there could be another way of looking at this interaction between man and the serpent? Could this perhaps be one of the dark sayings found in the bible?
The Knowledge For The Masses
Before we take a look at an alternate view, let it be here stated that in all religions there are two separate and distinct sets of knowledge. The first is what is referred to as exoteric knowledge, this is the ‘knowledge’ that is feed to the masses as truth. It is, that which is shared with those whom it is believed are either not capable of or worthy to receive the ‘true knowledge’.
Jesus of course knew this. When his disciples asked him why he spoke to the people in parables and not clearly, he replied: “Because the knowledge of the secrets of the kingdom of heaven has been given to you, but not to them.” Here Jesus is openly acknowledging to his selected few, that there is truth that is not to be shared with the masses. There is occult (meaning secret not evil) knowledge which is only to be shared with a select few. There are things that, it is believed, the masses either do not have the capacity to grasp, or are not worthy to receive or both.
He further goes on to clarify by stating: “Whoever has will be given more, and he will have an abundance. Whoever does not have, even what he has will be taken away from him..” In other words, those with expanded minds will be given more. The more the mind is opened, the more knowledge will be dispensed. On the other hand, true knowledge will be withheld from those whose minds/eyes are forever closed. It is based on the principle that “you do not cast your pearls before swine, or give that which is holy (unique, different) to…”
The Knowledge For The Selected Few
The second set of knowledge is referred to as esoteric knowledge. Esoteric refers to that which is to be shared exclusively with a comparatively small group of people – the chosen few. Christ spoke to three groups of people:
- Firstly, he addressed the masses/the crowds.
- Secondly, he spoke to the (120) one hundred and twenty.
- Thirdly, he shared exclusively with the (12) twelve.
The only group he shared the meaning of the parables to were those belonging to the third group – the twelve (12). To these he shared the secrets; the mysteries of the kingdom; the dark sayings.
The Dark Sayings
What are dark sayings? ‘Dark sayings’ refers to the knowledge taught in the ancient mystery schools. These schools can be traced all the way back to ancient Egypt. It was in these schools that the ‘sacred knowledge’ was shared with the chosen few. This knowledge was shared though parables; riddles; puzzles and hard questions.
In the bible there are many references to these dark sayings. The bible is actually a collection of dark sayings passed along through out the ages. In Psalm 78:2 it says: “I will open my mouth in a parable: I will utter dark sayings of old…” The book of Proverbs 1:6 tells us that the purpose of the book is to give to the diligent/the seeker the ability: ‘To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.”
Referring to the wisdom of Solomon we are told, “...when the queen of Sheba heard of the fame of Solomon, she came to prove Solomon with hard questions (dark sayings) at Jerusalem…” In other words she tested his wisdom to see if he truly understood the ancient mysteries, the dark sayings.