Jesus, Christ, God and You: What’s the Difference?

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Who was Jesus and was he the only son of God? What was Jesus really teaching and where did that wisdom come from? Beyond the mainstream interpretations we learned in Sunday school, who does Jesus say we are?

Many people use all or some of these words — Jesus, Christ, Jesus Christ, and God — interchangeably. Yet, they are not identical and the differences might really surprise you!

If we look more deeply, with open eyes, minds and hearts, we can find a rich and empowering understanding of who each of these entities actually is. This understanding also helps us to see who we are. Jesus’ mystical teachings point us to our inner divinity and power, to our own divine heritage. We understand who we really are and what we’re capable of.

This is not a “new” interpretation. Quite the contrary! This is a core understanding from Jesus’ original mystical teachings that became lost through ego power dynamics.

I respect this great master, Jesus, a lot. As I’ve progressed in my spiritual and mystical path, I have come to know him well and have learned many things through him. Perhaps you have a current relationship with Catholic or Christian teachings or were brought up in a household that did. Or perhaps you are on your spiritual path, but never studied Jesus’ teaching personally. Whatever your relationship to Catholicism or Christianity, this new understanding of who Jesus, Christ, Jesus Christ, God and You are throws a whole new light on the sacred mystical text of the Holy Bible.

The Difference
So, what is the difference between Jesus, Christ, Jesus Christ and God?

Jesus was a high master. He was a man, born from a mother, Mary. He was human like you and me, with a physical body and blood. Jesus went to the state of realization, Christhood/Buddhahood. He was a man who realized his mission in his incarnation.

Christ is the divine presence in you and in everyone, everything, everywhere. Christ has different names in different traditions. In the Bwiti tradition, Christ is known as Mbomba Eyano, among many other names. In other traditions it’s called the Higher Self, Eternal Self, Krishna Consciousness, Buddha Consciousness, God Consciousness, Atma, Fire Snake, Winged Snake, etc. Although they have different names, all religions and spiritual paths talk about this consciousness, because all these paths lead to the same place.

Jesus Christ is the composition of Jesus and Christ working collaboratively: Christ talked and acted through Jesus, freely. This began when Jesus received the Holy Spirit during his baptism by John the Baptist. That was his moment of illumination. From that point, Jesus Christ could do all that He could do: miracles, healings and profound teachings. This is also when Christ began to talk through Jesus in first person at different times.

This is a really important point: this is Jesus with Christ. It is Christ who worked through Jesus.

God is the Mother-Father Divine, Source, Unified Consciousness and the many, many other names for God! This is the big ocean of the All, and Christ is a drop within this vast ocean. This drop contains the whole ocean, too. It’s impossible to study, to connect, with the full ocean at once, but you can begin to study the ocean in one drop. Christ offers a clear way for us to connect deeply with Source.

This is why Christ says through the mouth of Jesus, “I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No person will meet the Father except through me” (John 14:6).

It’s not Jesus who says this: it’s Christ. Christ is giving us the super clear clue that in order to begin to merge with the ocean of the All, God, we need the Atma, Higher Self, Christ consciousness to get there. We need to wake up to our true nature.

Who is talking
When you read the Bible, or hear a quote from Jesus, ask yourself, “Who’s actually talking?”

Is it Jesus? Christ? Or God, directly?

When Jesus said, “Anyone who has seen me has seen the Father” (John 14.9), who is speaking? It’s an important distinction. Christ is speaking through the mouth of Jesus.

When Jesus says, “Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you are not just my own. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work” (John 14.10), who is speaking?

And who is speaking here: “For I have come down from heaven, not to do My own will, but to do the will of Him who sent Me” (John 6:38)?

Understanding Jesus as the mouthpiece and Christ and God as the speakers really shifts how we understand Jesus’ message.

You have this Power, this Christ-Consciousness, in you. It’s not just “out there.”

Jesus was the son of God — and so are you. We are all children of God, “I say, ‘You are gods; you are all children of the Most High” (Psalm 82:6).

As Joshua David Stone writes in Soul Psychology, “God created you, and your true identity is the Christ. In other words, you are all sons and daughters of God, made in God’s image. God is love, so you are love. You don’t have to become love; love is what you are.”

Just like Jesus, we are souls incarnated into flesh and blood bodies for this lifetime. We came here with a mission and with the ability to access our Christ nature.

Stone continues, “Your true identity as the Christ or Buddha or Atma or Eternal Self cannot be changed. That is how God created you. You can think you are something other than this, but that does not change reality. You are the Christ, the Buddha, the Atma, the Eternal Self, whether you believe it or not.”

With Christ awake within, you can do the miracles that Jesus did!

Spirit moves
In all traditions, you’ll find people whom Spirit moves through to do different healings. We are channels for divine power. It’s very usual that the Spirit can move and talk through you — it’s not unusual, like people have been taught to think. Jesus says, “Don’t you believe that I am in the Father, and that the Father is in me? The words I say to you I do not speak on my own authority. Rather, it is the Father, living in me, who is doing his work” (John 14:10). It’s not “you” doing the healing, it’s Spirit.

Jesus said that all that he did, we can do, and more, “Very truly I tell you, whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father” (John 14:12). Many people think that only Jesus can do miracles and that humans are impotent in divine matters. Jesus said the opposite! He pointed to the fact that the Divine is inside us, that we are all children of God. We have divine inheritance. Think about what divine inheritance means for us.

The question is how open are your mind and heart to remember your inherent Christ nature? How much are you cultivating your system to be able to receive this love, peace, wisdom and power that comes with this consciousness? How are you transcending the separative, fear-based mind of the ego that gets in the way of this? Are you over-identifying with matter and building your castle on the sand, or building your castle on the rock, in Spirit?

Remembering
Joshua David Stone describes the process of remembering our Christ consciousness precisely. “The spiritual path is really not about trying to get anyplace,” he writes. “It is just the reawakening to who you are. The second step is the practice of being the true Self in daily life.”

“When I point at the moon, don’t look at my finger, look at the moon.” Do you know this saying? It’s a pithy way of telling us to pay attention to the matter of consequence, not the means of communication. The moon is what I’m showing you and my finger is just the way I can help you see where it is.

You could say that Jesus was the finger pointing to the “moon,” the Eternal nature of life within us all. Most people instead look at Jesus’ pointing finger only and few actually looked to where he was pointing.

As Thich Nhat Hanh says, we must not “mistake it for the truth itself.

“A finger pointing at the moon,” he says, “is not the moon. The finger is needed to know where to look for the moon, but if you mistake the finger for the moon itself, you will never know the real moon. The teaching is like a raft that carries you to the other shore. The raft is needed, but the raft is not the other shore. An intelligent person would not carry the raft around on his head after making it across to the other shore…. Use the raft to cross to the other shore, but don’t hang onto it as your property.”

When a person, place or experience points us toward something profound and holy, we must be sure not to get stuck on the medium. Once we receive the transmission, we can let go of the vehicle we used to get there, because now we are free. We’ve arrived. Now, we know.

Yet, this is exactly the opposite of what mainstream religion has done. It is obsessed with Jesus, the man, who touched Infinity and said, “Hey, look, this is the Way!” For many, Jesus has become praised as God.

This misses the point of claiming our power and true nature. To awaken to ourselves, we need to remember our Atma, our Eternal Self.

Spiritual Knowledge
This is not a judgment of people who worship Jesus as God. All religions are a school of spiritual knowledge and I respect them all. There is something to learn whichever way you go. What I’m offering here is a clarification for the people who are ready and open enough to hear it.

Reflect on these words of Jesus…(and you can discern “who” is speaking):

• “Abide in me and I will abide in you” (John 15:4).

• “And know that I am with you always; yes, to the end of time” (Matthew 28:20).

• “Little children, you are of God…the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in this world” (1 John 4:4 ).

• “Do not hold on to me, for I have not yet ascended to the Father. Go instead to my brothers and tell them, ‘I am ascending to my Father and your Father, to my God and your God’” (John 20:17).

And Paul’s words, “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20).

What are your thoughts and feelings about these definitions? Do they resonate? How does this affect your understanding of Jesus’ teachings, power, religion and spirituality?

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Grégory Puente is a Nima (consecrated shaman) in the Bwiti tradition. Grégory met the Bwitist Tradition in May 1999 while doing his military service in Gabon. After several visits, he came to live full-time in Gabon to deepen his training in 2002. For 11 years he studied with Master Atome Ribenga, a well-known and highly respected Bwiti Nima in Gabon who is featured in the documentary, The Twelve. Grégory was consecrated as Nima in the Bwitist tradition by Master Atome Ribenga in 2013. Grégory’s mission is to help seekers find themselves through initiations and healing. As well as serving as a ‘bridge’ between worlds and a ‘bridge’ between continents and cultures, he sets up sessions of “Discovery of the Bwiti tradition and African plant medicine.” Explore Bwiti de l'Ame at Youtu.be/6NVzcmUH79s. To find out about upcoming Bwiti retreats, contact Gregory at [email protected]

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