Many are under the impression that the early church knew nothing concerning the doctrine of Two Seedline, and that it is not a Biblical doctrine. Nothing could be further from the truth! The Celtic Church of Britain (a church not dominated by Rome) was well aware of the doctrine of Two Seedline! And the Celtic Church was the second assembly after Jerusalem.
I get this testimony from the book The Celtic Church In Britain by Leslie Hardinge, in a chapter entitled “The Role of the Scriptures”, page 48. Though Hardinge does not trace the Celtic Church back to the Church set up at Glastonbury by Joseph of Arimathea about five years after the Passion, he does, however, quite well after 400 A.D., and proficiently documents his material. In this chapter he demonstrates the various methods of teaching used by the Celtic clergy. One must remember that the common people didn’t have Bibles in those days, and a good many couldn’t have read a Bible had they had one, so the clergy of that day had to use innovative methods of teaching what the Word said. One of those methods was a question and answer liturgy, of which the following is an authentic specimen (answers in parentheses):
“Who died but was never born? (Adam).
Who gave but did not receive? (Eve, milk).
Who was born but did not die? (Elias and Enoch)
Who was born twice and died once? (Jonas the prophet, who for three days and three nights prayed in the belly of the whale. He neither saw the heavens nor touched the earth).
How many languages are there? (Seventy-two).
Who spoke with a dog? (St. Peter).
Who spoke with an ass? (Balaam the prophet).
Who was the first woman to commit adultery? (Eve with the serpent).
How were the Apostles baptized? (The Saviour washed their feet).”
(Hardinge cites from R. E. McNally, The Bible in the Early Middle Ages, 38-9, a translation of Ms. 908, “The Ioca monachorum”, an eighth-century Celtic text.)
It is important to point out that this evidence presented by Leslie Hardinge is not mere hearsay, but an historical fact that this type of catechism was used by the ministers of the early Celtic Church, and the aforesaid is an excerpt of some of the exact words used.
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One of the questions asked and answered in this liturgy was: “How many languages are there? (Seventy-two).” It is important here to understand that the Celtic Church wasn’t the only source to declare there were seventy-two languages. Another reference which essentially declares the same thing is found in: The Russian Primary Chronicle, Laurentian Text, Translated and edited by Samuel Hazzard Cross & Olgerd P. Sherbowitz-Wetzor; Note: The columns of the diplomatic text of the Povest’ (ed. E. F. Karsky, in P.S.R.L., 1, 2nd ed., [Leningrad, 1926], and referred to in the Introduction as L2) are indicated in parentheses in the translation:
“After the destruction of the tower [of Babel] and the division of the nations, the sons of Shem occupied the eastern regions, and the sons of Ham those of the south, and the sons of Japheth the western and the northern lands. Among these seventy-two nations, the Slavic race is derived from the line of Japheth, since they are the Noricians, who are identical with the Slavs.” Although the Celtic Church said “seventy-two languages” while The Russian Primary Chronicle says “seventy-two nations”, it simply means seventy-two different nations speaking seventy-two different languages! Although “languages” and “nations” is not our topic here, it does show that peoples living a thousand miles or better apart had a similar belief system.
While this reference to The Russian Primary Chronicle has nothing to do with Genesis 3:15, it does, however, show there were similar belief systems (truthful or fallacious) spread among the early Christians in various locations of the then-known world, and Two Seedline doctrine was one that was true. We find another source concerning the seventy-two nations or languages as follows:
In the Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers, 1st series: vol. II under chapter II titled “That the Original Language in Use Among Men Was that Which Was Afterwards Called Hebrew, from Heber, in Whose Family It Was Preserved When the Confusion of Tongues Occurred”: “But yet another question is mooted: How did Heber and his son Peleg each found a nation, if they had but one language? For no doubt the Hebrew nation propagated from Heber through Abraham, and becoming through him a great people, is one nation. How, then, are all the sons of the three branches of Noah’s family enumerated as founding a nation each, if Heber and Peleg did not [do] so? It is very probable that the giant Nimrod founded also his nation, and that Scripture has named him separately on account of the extraordinary dimensions of his empire and of his body, so that the number of seventy-two nations remains. But Peleg was mentioned, not because he founded a nation (for his race and language are Hebrew), but on account of the critical time at which he was born, all the earth being then divided.”
Ibid. ch. 9 reads in part: “Wherefore let us seek if we can find the city of God that sojourns on earth among those human races who are catalogued as having been divided into seventy-two nations and as many languages. For it continued down to the deluge and the ark, and is proved to have existed still among the sons of Noah by their blessings, and chiefly in the eldest son Shem; for Japheth received this blessing, that he should dwell in the tents of Shem.”
Ibid. ch. 10 reads in part: “When, therefore, we look for the city of God in these seventy-two nations, we cannot affirm that while they had but one lip, that is, one language, the human race had departed from the worship of the true God, and that genuine godliness had survived o UnhideWhenUsed=false Name=Light List Accent 6/falseDefaultText, 1nly in those generations which descend from Shem through Arphaxad and reach to Abraham; but from the time when they proudly built a tower to heaven, a symbol of godless exaltation, the city or society of the wicked becomes apparent.”
Again I will repeat, these seventy-two nations have nothing to do with Genesis 3:15 and the doctrine of Two Seedline, but if the story of the seventy-two nations has credence, in like manner Two Seedline can also be credible! My object here is not to show anything pro or con concerning the Celtic teaching of the seventy-two nations, but to demonstrate that they were not alone in such a teaching. At the time of this writing, I have not delved deeply into the seventy-two-nations teaching. I’m merely aware that it existed among the Celtic Church and was made mention of by The Russian Primary Chronicle and the Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers. The object here is to reveal how these teachings of the Celtic Church also existed at other places.
Another source which shows that the Celtic Church was not alone on Two Seedline can be found Is not the history of Adam exactly accomplished in me? 6For in the very instant of his glory, the serpent came and found Eve alone, and seduced her. 7Just after the same manner it has happened to me. 8 Then Joseph arising from the ground, called her, and said, O thou who hast been so much favoured by God, why hast thou done this? 9 Why hast thou thus debased thy soul, who wast educated in the Holy of Holies, and received thy food from the hand of angels? 10 But she, with a flood of tears, replied, I am innocent, and have known no man ...”“1 And when her sixth month was come, Joseph returned from his building houses abroad, which was his trade, and entering into the house, found the Virgin grown big: 2 Then smiting upon his face, he said, With what face can I look up to the Lord my God? or, what shall I say concerning this young woman? 3 For I received her a Virgin out of the temple of the Lord my God! and have not preserved her such! 4 Who has thus deceived me? Who has committed this evil in my house, and seducing the Virgin from me, hath defiled her? 5
I do not know of a single source that connects the with the Celtic Church! It surely is strange how these sources, though distant from each other both in space and time seem to declare the same message! I will now cite the Gospel Of Philip as another source strengthening the Two Seedline position:
The Gospel Of Philip, dating to the 3rd century A.D., is a collection of sayings, ostensibly of Christ. It focuses a great deal on the “sacrament of marriage” as a “sacred mystery.” It does not claim to have been written by Yahshua’s disciple Philip. The most complete manuscript of the Gospel Of Philip was discovered in the Nag Hammadi library in Egypt, written in the Coptic language. It is viewed as a Gnostic gospel, (a modern term unknown in this context to ancient writers). The phony “history” utilized in The Da Vinci Code cites the Gospel Of Philip as evidence that Yahshua had an intimate relationship with Mary Magdalene, however such a claim is without substantiation. The section in question is heavily damaged, with several portions unreadable, and implies only a friendly relationship! But what we are really interested in here, is how the true story of the Satanic seduction of
I will now cite a few verses translated by Wesley W. Isenberg from the Gospel Of Philip, and the reader can decide whether or not it is pertinent to our subject:
V. 63: “If one goes down into the water and comes up without having received anything, and says ‘I am a Christian,’ he has borrowed the name at interest. But if he receives the Holy Spirit, he has the name as a gift. He who has received a gift does not have to give it back, but of him who has borrowed it at interest, payment is demanded. This is the way it happens to one when he experiences a mystery.”
V. 71: “When Eve was still with Adam, death did not exist. When she was separated from him, death came into being. If he enters again and attains his former self, death will be no more.”
V. 73: “A bridal chamber is not for the animals, nor is it for the slaves, nor for defiled women; but it is for free men and virgins.”
V. 78: “If the woman had not separated from the man, she should not die with the man. His separation became the beginning of death. Because of this, Christ came to repair the separation, which was from the beginning, and again unite the two, and to give life to those who died as a result of the separation, and unite them. But the woman is united to her husband in the bridal chamber. Indeed, those who have united in the bridal chamber will no longer be separated. Thus Eve separated from Adam because it was not in the bridal chamber that she united with him.”
V. 84: “There are two trees growing in Paradise. The one bears animals, the other bears men. Adam[’s rib Eve] ate from the tree which bore animals. [Eve being of Adam] He [through her] became an animal and he [through her] brought forth animals. For this reason the children of Adam[’s rib (Eve)] worship animals.”
V. 112: “The children a woman bears resemble the man who loves her. If her husband loves her, then they resemble her husband. If it is an adulterer, then they resemble the adulterer.”
V. 113: “The human being has intercourse with the human being. The horse has intercourse with the horse, the ass with the ass. Members of a race usually have associated with those of like race.”
V. 119: “There are many animals in the world which are in a human form.”
V. 123: “For so long as the root of wickedness [Satan’s descendants mothered by Eve] is hidden, it is strong. But when it is recognized, it is dissolved. When it is revealed, it perishes. That is why the Word says, ‘Already the axe is laid at the root of the trees’ (Mt 3:10). It will not merely cut – what is cut sprouts again – but the ax penetrates deeply, until it brings up the root.”
V. 126: “Then the [Israelite] slaves will be free and the [Israelite] captives ransomed. ‘Every [non-Adamite] plant which my father who is in heaven has not planted will be plucked out’ (Mt 15:13).” [Items added in brackets by myself in these ten verses are for a better understanding.]
These ten verses are hardly un-Scriptural, and whoever wrote them must have been familiar with Paul’s writings, as well as those of the other apostles! Now that we have a better idea of what the Gospel Of Philip is all about, let’s take a look at verse 42, in five different translations, which spells out quite graphically the story of Eve’s seduction by the serpent. The following represents five different translations from the same source, that being the scrolls found in the Nag Hammadi library in Egypt on The Gospel of Philip:
From Wesley W. Isenberg: “First, adultery came into being, afterward murder. And he was begotten in adultery, for he was the child of the Serpent. So he became a murderer, just like his father, and he killed his brother. Indeed, every act of sexual intercourse which has occurred between those unlike one another is adultery.”
From Paterson Brown: “Adultery occurred first, then murder. And (Cain) was begotten in adultery, (for) he was the son of the serpent. Therefore he became a manslayer just like his other father [Satan genetic, Adam legal], and he killed his brother. Yet every mating which has occurred between those who are dissimilar is adultery.”
From Jean-Yves Leloup: “First came adultery, then murder; murder is the son of adultery, son of the serpent; he is a murderer like his father, and killed his brother. The mating [koinonia] of those who are dissimilar is adultery.”
From Marvin Meyer: “First came adultery, then murder. One was born of adultery, for he was the son of the serpent. He became a murderer, like his father, and he killed his brother. Every act of sexual intercourse between those unlike each other is adultery.”
From Bentley Layton: “First adultery occurred, then murder! And he was born of adultery; for he was the son of the snake. Therefore he became a murderer like his father, and slew his brother. Every act of sexual intercourse that has occurred between things that do not resemble one another is adultery.”
It is no wonder why the Ante-Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers had nothing to say about the Gospel Of Philip. For that story we will go to an article on the Internet entitled: “Discovery of the Nag Hammadi Library” which declares:
“It was on a December day in the year of 1945, near the town of Nag Hammadi in Upper Egypt, that the course of Gnostic studies was radically renewed and forever changed. An Arab peasant, digging around a boulder in search of fertilizer for his fields, happened upon an old, rather large red earthenware jar. Hoping to have found a buried treasure, and with due hesitation and apprehension about the jinn who might attend such a hoard, he smashed the jar open. Inside he discovered no treasure and no genie, but instead books: more than a dozen old codices bound in golden brown leather. Little did he realize that he had found an extraordinary collection of ancient texts, manuscripts hidden a millennium and a half before – probably by monks from the nearby monastery of St. Pachomius seeking to preserve them from a destruction ordered by the church as part of its violent expunging of heterodoxy and heresy.
“How the Nag Hammadi manuscripts eventually passed into scholarly hands is a fascinating story too lengthy to relate here. But today, now over fifty years since being unearthed and more than two decades after final translation and publication in English as The Nag Hammadi Library, their importance has become astoundingly clear: These thirteen papyrus codices containing fifty-two sacred texts are representatives of the long lost ‘Gnostic Gospels’, a last extant testament of what orthodox Christianity perceived to be its most dangerous and insidious challenge, the feared opponent that the Church Fathers had reviled under many different names, but most commonly as Gnosticism. The discovery of the Nag Hammadi texts has fundamentally revised our understanding of both Gnosticism and the early Christian church.” To find this on the Internet, enter “Nag Hammadi Library” into a search engine.
Here the question must be asked: “Is the Gospel Of Philip found at the Nag Hammadi library in Egypt a perfect source?” The answer is an obvious, “NO”! But neither are the Masoretic or Septuagint texts perfect sources, nor the translations we now have from them! That also goes for the Aramaic Targums and Dead Sea Scrolls. In short, we have no perfect sources! That’s why we have to take all of the sources we have collectively and compare one with all of the others, including archaeological sources of which The Gospel of Philip is a part!
When I first wrote a draft of this paper, I consulted with William Finck, and he commented on the subject of Gnostic literature thusly: “Aside from the fact that the document called The Gospel of Philip is known to us only from Nag Hammadi, as part of that collection generally recognized to be Gnostic documents, there are other criteria for wanting to classify it as such. For instance, and more importantly, it contains a blend of that philosophy and spiritualism, interlaced with the Hebrew Scriptures, which is a hallmark of both Philo Judaeus and the later sect known as ‘Gnostic’. Having now read Philip, I myself must classify it as a Gnostic document, although, like the others, it certainly contains the truths concerning Gen. 3:15 which were also known to diverse other Judaean scholars, Israelite writers of Scripture, et al., such as the authors of the Protevangelion, The Secrets of Enoch, 4 Maccabees, etc. ... I read the copy of The Gospel of Philip which you sent to me, and much of it does appear to be ‘gnostic’; especially those parts concerning the Holy Spirit, which consider that to be our ‘mother’ as opposed to Yahweh the Father. The gospel is also universalist and sacramental in nature, both contrary to the four canonical gospels and to Paul. While there are a lot of good things in Philip, there are also a lot of bad things ...”
What we can be very sure of is, whether we read the Masoretic or Septuagint texts at Genesis 3:15, there are two entities spoken of as having “seed” (“thy” and “her”). Many, if not most, will identify only one of these two seed (and “seed” like “sheep” can be either singular or plural, according to the context), and they will accept “her seed” and completely ignore “thy seed”. It is scholastically and intellectually dishonest to imply there is but one seed spoken of at this verse! And, who can “thy seed” be other than the children of the “serpent” at verse 14, known today as the Canaanite-Edomite-jews?