Teacher-Brother Dave's initial comments: I am presenting some of my Topical Studies from the fully public domain, 2097 page, Fifth Epochal Revelation of Truth and with my added comments. The Revealed text is free of copyright, so you may freely share individually these supernal quotes with your friends and relatives. But my order of selections, font types for emphasis and my added comments are Copyright 2015 by Dave@PureChristians.org All Rights Reserved. Contact me first about using the whole Study or group of Studies.
[My added comments of explanation below are in these square brackets]
Topical Study 94 "NEW ! -- Gospel, Ideas, Ideals, Life,
Light, Message, Reality, Spirit, Teacher, Teaching, Truth, Values, Way"
Compiled 4/13/2016 by Dave@PureChristians.org
[Part 26 of many]
PAPER 184 BEFORE THE SANHEDRIN COURT
4. THE HOUR OF HUMILIATION
184:4.6 [Early Friday morning, April 07, A.D. 30] [Important:] These are the moments of the Master’s greatest victories in all his long and eventful career as maker, upholder, and savior of a vast and far-flung universe. [His and our local universe named Nebadon] Having lived to the full a life of Revealing God to man, Jesus is now engaged in making a new and unprecedented Revelation of man to God. [!!] Jesus is now Revealing to the worlds the final triumph over all fears of creature personality isolation. The Son of Man has finally achieved the realization of identity as the Son of God. Jesus does not hesitate to assert that He and the Father are One; and on the basis of the fact and Truth of that Supreme and supernal experience, He admonishes every Kingdom believer to become One with him even as He and his Father are One. The living experience in the religion of Jesus thus becomes the sure and certain technique whereby the spiritually isolated and cosmically lonely mortals of Earth are enabled to escape personality isolation, with all its consequences of fear and associated feelings of helplessness. In the fraternal realities of the Kingdom of Heaven the faith sons of God find final deliverance from the isolation of the self, both personal and planetary. The God-knowing believer increasingly experiences the ecstasy and grandeur of spiritual socialization on a universe scale — citizenship on high in association with the eternal realization of the divine destiny of perfection attainment.
PAPER 186 JUST BEFORE THE CRUCIFIXION
2. THE MASTER’S ATTITUDE
186:2.11 Pilate spoke more truly than he knew when, after Jesus had been scourged, he presented him before the multitude, exclaiming, “Behold the man!” Indeed, the fear-ridden Roman governor little dreamed that at just that moment the universe stood at attention, gazing upon this unique scene of its beloved Sovereign thus subjected in humiliation to the taunts and blows of his darkened and degraded mortal subjects. And as Pilate spoke, there echoed throughout all Nebadon, “Behold God and man!” Throughout a universe, untold millions have ever since that day continued to behold that man, while the God of Havona, the supreme ruler of the universe of universes, accepts the man of Nazareth as the satisfaction of the ideal of the mortal creatures of this local universe of time and space. In his matchless life he never failed to reveal God to man. Now, in these final episodes of his mortal career and in his subsequent death, he made a new and touching revelation of man to God.
5. JESUS’ DEATH IN RELATION TO THE PASSOVER
[All of this is important and is presented here:]
186:5.1 There is no direct relation between the death of Jesus and the Jewish Passover. True, the Master did lay down his life in the flesh on this day, the day of the preparation for the Jewish Passover, and at about the time of the sacrificing of the Passover lambs in the temple. But this coincidental occurrence does not in any manner indicate that the death of the Son of Man on earth has any connection with the Jewish sacrificial system. Jesus was a Jew, but as the Son of Man he was a mortal of the realms. The events already narrated and leading up to this hour of the Master’s impending crucifixion are sufficient to indicate that his death at about this time was a purely natural and man-managed affair.
186:5.2 It was man and not God who planned and executed the death of Jesus on the cross. True, the Father refused to interfere with the march of human events on Earth, but the Father in Paradise did not decree, demand, or require the death of his Son as it was carried out on Earth. It is a fact that in some manner, sooner or later, Jesus would have had to divest himself of his mortal body, his incarnation in the flesh, but he could have executed such a task in countless ways without dying on a cross between two thieves. All of this was man’s doing, not God’s. [God is Absolute; He never changes. To believe that seeing his innocent Son of God Jesus Christ bleed and physically die was necessary to change our infinitely loving Universal Father God is totally unreal, unspiritual, sub-human, barbaric, reprehensible and worse !]
186:5.3 At the time of the Master’s baptism he had already completed the technique of the required experience on earth and in the flesh which was necessary for the completion of his seventh and last universe bestowal. At this very time Jesus’ duty on Earth was done. All the life he lived thereafter, and even the manner of his death, was a purely personal ministry on his part for the welfare and uplifting of his mortal creatures on this world and on other worlds.
186:5.4 The gospel of the good news that mortal man may, by faith, become Spirit-conscious that he is a son of God, is not dependent on the death of Jesus. True, indeed, all this gospel of the Kingdom has been tremendously illuminated by the Master’s death, but even more so by his life. [We follow and serve our Living Jesus here as He the Father-Son Union Spirit of Truth,not a dead, historical, blood-sacrificed Jesus !!]
186:5.5 All that the Son of Man said or did on Earth greatly embellished the doctrines of sonship with God and of the brotherhood of men, but these essential relationships of God and men are inherent in the universe facts of God’s love for his creatures and the innate mercy of the divine Sons. These touching and divinely beautiful relations between man and his Maker, on this world and on all others throughout the universe of universes, have existed from eternity; and they are not in any sense dependent on these periodic bestowal enactments of the Creator Sons of God, who thus assume the nature and likeness of their created intelligences as a part of the price which they must pay for the final acquirement of unlimited Sovereignty over their respective local universes.
186:5.6 The Father in heaven loved mortal man on Earth just as much before the life and death of Jesus on Earth as he did after this transcendent exhibition of the copartnership of man and God. This mighty transaction of the Incarnation of the God of Nebadon as a man on Earth could not augment the attributes of the Eternal, Infinite, and Universal Father, but it did enrich and enlighten all other administrators and creatures of the universe of Nebadon. While the Father in Heaven loves us no more because of this bestowal of [Christ] Michael, all other celestial intelligences do. And this is because Jesus not only made a Revelation of God to man, but he also likewise made a New Revelation of man to the Gods [Paradise Trinity] and to the celestial intelligences of the universe of universes.
186:5.7 Jesus is not about to die as a sacrifice for sin. He is not going to atone for the inborn moral guilt of the human race. Mankind has no such racial guilt before God. Guilt is purely a matter of personal sin and knowing, deliberate rebellion against the will of the Father and the administration of his Sons. [The purely Jewish religious doctrine of "blood atonement" and "blood sacrifice" must be rejected !!]
186:5.8 Sin and rebellion have nothing to do with the fundamental bestowal plan of the Paradise Sons of God, albeit it does appear to us that the salvage plan is a provisional feature of the bestowal plan.
186:5.9 The salvation of God for the mortals of Earth would have been just as effective and unerringly certain if Jesus had not been put to death by the cruel hands of ignorant mortals. If the Master had been favorably received by the mortals of Earth and had departed from Earth by the voluntary relinquishment of his life in the flesh, the fact of the love of God and the mercy of the Son — the fact of sonship with God — would have in no wise been affected. You mortals [All mortals] are the sons of God, and only one thing is required to make such a truth factual in your personal experience, and that is your Spirit-born faith.
PAPER 188 THE TIME OF THE TOMB
5. LESSONS FROM THE CROSS
188:5.2 The cross forever shows that the attitude of Jesus toward sinners was neither condemnation nor condonation, but rather eternal and loving salvation. Jesus is truly a Savior in the sense that his Life and death do win men over to goodness and righteous survival. Jesus loves men so much that his love awakens the response of love in the human heart. Love is truly contagious and eternally creative. Jesus’ death on the cross exemplifies a love which is sufficiently strong and divine to forgive sin and swallow up all evil-doing. Jesus disclosed to this world a higher quality of righteousness than justice — mere technical right and wrong. Divine love does not merely forgive wrongs; it absorbs and actually destroys them. The forgiveness of love utterly transcends the forgiveness of mercy. Mercy sets the guilt of evil-doing to one side; but love destroys forever the sin and all weakness resulting therefrom. Jesus brought a new method of living to Earth. He taught us not to resist evil but to find through him a goodness which effectually destroys evil. The forgiveness of Jesus is not condonation; it is salvation from condemnation. Salvation does not slight wrongs; it makes them right. True love does not compromise nor condone hate; it destroys it. The love of Jesus is never satisfied with mere forgiveness. The Master’s love implies rehabilitation, eternal survival. It is altogether proper to speak of salvation as redemption if you mean this eternal rehabilitation.
PAPER 190 MORONTIA [SOUL] APPEARANCES OF JESUS
5. THE WALK WITH TWO BROTHERS
[I call this very important paragraph: "Jesus on Jesus"]
190:5.4 As they walked along, Jesus said to them: “How slow you are to comprehend the truth! When you tell me that it is about the teachings and work of this man [Jesus] that you have your discussions, then may I enlighten you since I am more than familiar with these teachings. Do you not remember that this Jesus always taught that his Kingdom was not of this world, and that all men, [ALL humans !!] being the sons of God, should find liberty and freedom in the spiritual joy of the fellowship of the brotherhood of loving service in this new Kingdom of the Truth of the heavenly Father’s love? Do you not recall how this Son of Man proclaimed the salvation of God for all [ALL !!] men, ministering to the sick and afflicted and setting free those who were bound by fear and enslaved by evil? Do you not know that this man of Nazareth told his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem, be delivered up to his enemies, who would put him to death, and that he would arise on the third day? [a common term then, meaning: "soon" or "presently", not three literal days] Have you not been told all this? And have you never read in the Scriptures concerning this day of salvation for Jew and Gentile, where it says that in him shall all the families of the Earth be blessed; that he will hear the cry of the needy and save the souls of the poor who seek him; that all nations shall call him blessed? That such a Deliverer shall be as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land. That he will feed the flock like a true shepherd, gathering the lambs in his arms and tenderly carrying them in his bosom. That he will open the eyes of the spiritually blind and bring the prisoners of despair out into full liberty and Light; that all who sit in darkness shall see the great Light of eternal salvation. That he will bind up the brokenhearted, proclaim liberty to the captives of sin, and open up the prison to those who are enslaved by fear and bound by evil. That he will comfort those who mourn and bestow upon them the joy of salvation in the place of sorrow and heaviness. That he shall be the desire of all nations and the everlasting joy of those who seek righteousness. That this Son of Truth and Righteousness shall rise upon the world with healing Light and saving power; even that he will save his people from their sins; that he will really seek and save those who are lost. That he will not destroy the weak but minister salvation to all who hunger and thirst for righteousness. That those who believe in him shall have eternal life. That he will pour out his Spirit upon all flesh, and that this Spirit of Truth shall be in each believer a well of water, springing up into everlasting life. Did you not understand how great was the gospel of the Kingdom which this man delivered to you? Do you not perceive how great a salvation has come upon you?” [Powerful Gospel Truths of Eternal Life in Jesus and his Light !!! Amen !]
PAPER 191 APPEARANCES TO THE APOSTLES AND OTHER LEADERS
1. THE APPEARANCE TO PETER
191:1.2 When Peter thought of the loving look of the Master as he passed by on Annas’s porch, and as he turned over in his mind that wonderful message brought him early that morning by the women who came from the empty tomb, “Go tell my apostles — and Peter” — as he contemplated these tokens of mercy, his faith began to surmount his doubts, and he stood still, clenching his fists, while he spoke aloud: “I believe he has risen from the dead; I will go and tell my brethren.” And as he said this, there suddenly appeared in front of him the form of a man, who spoke to him in familiar tones, saying: “Peter, the enemy desired to have you, but I would not give you up. I knew it was not from the heart that you disowned me; therefore I forgave you even before you asked; but now must you cease to think about yourself and the troubles of the hour while you prepare to carry the good news of the gospel to those who sit in darkness. No longer should you be concerned with what you may obtain from the Kingdom but rather be exercised about what you can give to those who live in dire spiritual poverty. Gird yourself, Simon, for the battle of a new day, the struggle with spiritual darkness and the evil doubtings of the natural minds of men.”
2. FIRST APPEARANCE TO THE APOSTLES
191:2.1 Shortly after nine o’clock that evening, after the departure of Cleopas and Jacob, while the Alpheus twins comforted Peter, and while Nathaniel remonstrated with Andrew, and as the ten apostles were there assembled in the upper chamber with all the doors bolted for fear of arrest, the Master, in morontia [soul] form, suddenly appeared in the midst of them, saying: “Peace be upon you. Why are you so frightened when I appear, as though you had seen a spirit? Did I not tell you about these things when I was present with you in the flesh? Did I not say to you that the chief priests and the rulers would deliver me up to be killed, that one of your own number would betray me, and that on the third day I would rise? Wherefore all your doubtings and all this discussion about the reports of the women, Cleopas and Jacob, and even Peter? How long will you doubt my words and refuse to believe my promises? And now that you actually see me, will you believe? Even now one of you [Thomas] is absent. When you are gathered together once more, and after all of you know of a certainty that the Son of Man has risen from the grave, go hence into Galilee. Have faith in God; have faith in one another; and so shall you enter into the new service of the Kingdom of Heaven. I will tarry in Jerusalem with you until you are ready to go into Galilee. My peace I leave with you.”
4. THE TENTH APPEARANCE (AT PHILADELPHIA)
191:4.3 [Jesus:] “Peace be upon you. You all know that we have one [Universal] Father in Heaven, [in Paradise,] and that there is but one gospel of the Kingdom — the good news of the gift of eternal life which men receive by faith. [Faith is a gift from God to each and every human !!] As you rejoice in your loyalty to the gospel, pray the Father of Truth to shed abroad in your hearts a new and greater love for your brethren. You are to love all men as I have loved you; you are to serve all men as I have served you. With understanding sympathy and brotherly affection, fellowship all your brethren who are dedicated to the proclamation of the good news, whether they be Jew or Gentile, Greek or Roman, Persian or Ethiopian. John [the Baptist] proclaimed the Kingdom in advance; you have preached the gospel in power; the Greeks already teach the good news; and I am soon to send forth [my Spirit Self] the Spirit of Truth into the souls [!!] of all these, my brethren, who have so unselfishly dedicated their lives to the enlightenment of their fellows who sit in spiritual darkness. You are all the children of Light; therefore stumble not into the misunderstanding entanglements of mortal suspicion and human intolerance. If you are ennobled, by the grace of faith, to love unbelievers, should you not also equally love those who are your fellow believers in the far-spreading household of faith? Remember, as you love one another, all men will know that you are my disciples.
5. SECOND APPEARANCE TO THE APOSTLES
191:5.2 They [the eleven apostles] were having their evening meal a little after six o’clock, with Peter sitting on one side of Thomas and Nathaniel on the other, when the doubting apostle said: “I will not believe unless I see the Master with my own eyes and put my finger in the mark of the nails.” As they thus sat at supper, and while the doors were securely shut and barred, the morontia Master suddenly appeared inside the curvature of the table and, standing directly in front of Thomas, said:
191:5.3 “Peace be upon you. For a full week have I tarried that I might appear again when you were all present to hear once more the commission to go into all the world and preach this gospel of the Kingdom. Again I tell you: As the Father sent me into the world, so send I you. As I have Revealed the Father, so shall you reveal the divine love, not merely with words, but in your daily living. I send you forth, not to love the souls of men, but rather to love men. [Just as they are, with all of their difficulties and confusions !] You are not merely to proclaim the joys of Heaven but also to exhibit in your daily experience these Spirit realities of the divine life since you already have eternal life, as the gift of God, through faith. When you have faith, when power from on high, the Spirit of Truth, has come upon you, you will not hide your light here behind closed doors; you will make known the love and the mercy of God to all mankind. Through fear you now flee from the facts of a disagreeable experience, but when you shall have been baptized [gloriously Spirit-born !!] with the Spirit of Truth, you will bravely and joyously go forth to meet the new experiences of proclaiming the good news of eternal life in the Kingdom of God. You may tarry here and in Galilee for a short season while you recover from the shock of the transition from the false security of the authority of traditionalism to the new order of the authority of facts, truth, and faith in the supreme realities of living experience. Your mission to the world is founded on the fact that I lived a God-Revealing Life among you; on the [Living Gospel] Truth that you and all other men [ALL humans !] are the sons of God; and it shall consist in the life which you will live among men — the actual and living experience of loving men and serving them, even as I have loved and served you. Let faith reveal your light to the world; let the Revelation of Truth open the eyes blinded by tradition; let your loving service effectually destroy the prejudice engendered by ignorance. By so drawing close to your fellow men in understanding sympathy and with unselfish devotion, you will lead them into a saving knowledge of the Father’s love. The Jews have extolled goodness; the Greeks have exalted beauty; the Hindus preach devotion; the faraway ascetics teach reverence; the Romans demand loyalty; but I require of my disciples life, even a life of loving service for your brothers in the flesh.”
6. THE ALEXANDRIAN APPEARANCE
191:6.2 [Jesus:] “Peace be upon you. That which my Father sent me into the world to establish belongs not to a race, a nation, nor to a special group of teachers or preachers. This gospel of the Kingdom belongs to both Jew and Gentile, to rich and poor, to free and bond, to male and female, even to the little children. [to all humans !!] And you are all to proclaim this gospel of love and truth by the lives which you live in the flesh. You shall love one another with a new and startling affection, even as I have loved you. You will serve mankind with a new and amazing devotion, even as I have served you. And when men see you so love them, and when they behold how fervently you serve them, they will perceive that you have become faith-fellows of the Kingdom of Heaven, and they will follow after the Spirit of Truth which they see in your lives, to the finding of eternal salvation. [!!]
191:6.3 “As the Father sent me into this world, even so now send I you. You are all called to carry the good news to those who sit in darkness. This gospel of the kingdom belongs to all [!!] who believe it; it shall not be committed to the custody of mere priests. ["Priesthood of all believers"] Soon will the Spirit of Truth come upon you, and he shall lead you into All Truth. [God the Father-Infinite I AM] Go you, therefore, into all the world preaching this gospel, and lo, I AM with you always, even to the end of the ages.”
PAPER 192 APPEARANCES IN GALILEE
4. THE LAKESIDE GATHERING
192:4.7 On Thursday night the apostles had a wonderful meeting in this upper chamber and all pledged themselves to go forth in the public preaching of the new gospel of the risen Lord except Thomas, Simon Zelotes, and the Alpheus twins. Already had begun the first steps of changing the gospel of the Kingdom — sonship with God and brotherhood with man — into the proclamation of the resurrection of Jesus. [The true gospel OF Jesus was changed to a gospel ABOUT Jesus !!] Nathaniel opposed this shift in the burden of their public message, but he could not withstand Peter’s eloquence, neither could he overcome the enthusiasm of the disciples, especially the women believers.
192:4.8 And so, under the vigorous leadership of Peter and ere the Master ascended to the Father, his well-meaning representatives began that subtle process of gradually and certainly changing the religion of Jesus into a new and modified form of religion about Jesus.
Topical Study 94 "NEW ! -- Gospel, Ideas, Ideals, Life,
Light, Message, Reality, Spirit, Teacher, Teaching, Truth, Values, Way"
Compiled 4/15/2016 by Dave@PureChristians.org
[Part 27 of many]
PAPER 193 FINAL APPEARANCES AND ASCENSION
193:0.1 The sixteenth morontia [soul-form] manifestation of Jesus occurred on Friday, May 5, [A.D. 30] in the courtyard of Nicodemus, about nine o’clock at night. On this evening the Jerusalem believers had made their first attempt to get together since the resurrection. Assembled here at this time were the eleven apostles, the women’s corps and their associates, and about fifty other leading disciples of the Master, including a number of the Greeks. This company of believers had been visiting informally for more than half an hour when, suddenly, the morontia Master appeared in full view and immediately began to instruct them. Said Jesus:
193:0.2 “Peace be upon you. This is the most representative group of believers — apostles and disciples, both men and women — to which I have appeared since the time of my deliverance from the flesh. I now call you to witness that I told you beforehand that my sojourn among you must come to an end; I told you that presently I must return to the Father. And then I plainly told you how the chief priests and the rulers of the Jews would deliver me up to be put to death, and that I would rise from the grave. Why, then, did you allow yourselves to become so disconcerted by all this when it came to pass? and why were you so surprised when I rose from the tomb on the third day? [That common expression back then meant "soon" or "presently", not a literal three days. It was actually just over one and one-half days] You failed to believe me because you heard my words without comprehending the meaning thereof.
193:0.3 “And now you should give ear to my words lest you again make the mistake of hearing my teaching with the mind while in your hearts you fail to comprehend the meaning. From the beginning of my sojourn as one of you, I taught you that my one purpose was to Reveal my Father in Heaven to his children on Earth. I have lived the God-Revealing Bestowal that you might experience the God-knowing career. [!!] I have Revealed God as your Father in heaven; I have Revealed you as the sons of God on Earth. It is a fact that God loves you, his sons. By faith in my Word this fact becomes an Eternal and Living Truth in your hearts. When, by living faith, you become divinely God-conscious, you are then born of the Spirit as children of Light and Life, even the Eternal Life wherewith you shall ascend the Universe of universes and attain the experience of finding God the Father on Paradise. [We thank Jesus for Revealing our glorious eternal Destiny !]
193:0.4 “I admonish you ever to remember that your Mission among men is to proclaim the gospel of the Kingdom — the Reality of the Fatherhood of God and the Truth of the sonship of man. [Each human !!] Proclaim the whole Truth of the good news, not just a part of the saving gospel. Your message is not changed by my resurrection experience. Sonship with God, by faith, is still the saving Truth of the gospel of the Kingdom. [The Family of God.] You are to go forth preaching the love of God and the service of man. [The vital, living Gospel of Jesus:] That which the world needs most to know is: Men are the sons of God, and through faith they can actually realize, and daily experience, this ennobling Truth. My Bestowal should help all men to know that they are the children of God, but such knowledge will not suffice if they fail personally to faith-grasp the saving Truth that they are the Living Spirit sons of the Eternal Father. The gospel of the Kingdom is concerned with the love of the Father and the service of his children on Earth.
193:0.5 “Among yourselves, here, you share the knowledge that I have risen from the dead, but that is not strange. I have the power to lay down my Life and to take it up again; the Father gives such power to his Paradise Sons. You should the rather be stirred in your hearts by the knowledge that the dead of an age entered upon the eternal ascent [!!] soon after I left Joseph’s new tomb. I lived my life in the flesh to show how you can, through loving service, become God-Revealing to your fellow men even as, by loving you and serving you, I have become God-Revealing to you. I have lived among you as the Son of Man that you, and all [ALL !] other men, might know that you are all [ALL !] indeed the sons of God. Therefore, go you now into all the world preaching this gospel of the Kingdom of Heaven to all [ALL humans !] men. Love all [ALL !] men as I have loved you; serve your fellow mortals as I have served you. Freely you have received, freely give. Only tarry here in Jerusalem while I go to the Father, and until I send you the Spirit of Truth. He shall lead you into the enlarged Truth, and I will go with you into all [ALL !] the world. I AM with you always, and my peace I leave with you.” [Powerful Living Truths !!]
193:0.6 When the Master had spoken to them, he vanished from their sight. It was near daybreak before these believers dispersed; all night they remained together, earnestly discussing the Master’s admonitions and contemplating all that had befallen them. James Zebedee and others of the apostles also told them of their experiences with the morontia Master in Galilee and recited how he had three times appeared to them.
5. THE MASTER’S ASCENSION
193:5.1 It was almost half past seven o’clock this Thursday morning, May 18, [A.D. 30] when Jesus arrived on the western slope of Mount Olivet with his eleven silent and somewhat bewildered apostles. From this location, about two thirds the way up the mountain, they could look out over Jerusalem and down upon Gethsemane. Jesus now prepared to say his last farewell to the apostles before he took leave of Earth. As he stood there before them, without being directed they knelt about him in a circle, and the Master said:
193:5.2 “I bade you tarry in Jerusalem until you were endowed with power from on high. I am now about to take leave of you; I am about to ascend to my Father, and soon, very soon, will we send into this world of my sojourn the Spirit of Truth; and when he has come, you shall begin the new proclamation of the gospel of the Kingdom, first in Jerusalem and then to the uttermost parts of the world. Love men with the love wherewith I have loved you and serve your fellow mortals even as I have served you. By the Spirit fruits of your lives impel souls to believe the Truth that [each human] man is a son of God, and that all men are brethren. Remember all I have taught you and the Life I have lived among you. My love overshadows you, my Spirit will dwell with you, and my peace shall abide upon you. Farewell.” [Fare well: Do well, not goodbye !]
193:5.3 When the morontia Master had thus spoken, he vanished from their sight. This so-called ascension of Jesus was in no way different from his other disappearances from mortal vision during the forty days of his morontia career on Earth.
PAPER 194 BESTOWAL OF THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH
194:0.1 About one o’clock, as the one hundred and twenty believers were engaged in prayer, they all became aware of a strange presence in the room. At the same time these disciples all became conscious of a new and profound sense of spiritual joy, security, and confidence. This new consciousness of spiritual strength was immediately followed by a strong urge to go out and publicly proclaim the gospel of the Kingdom and the good news that Jesus had risen from the dead.
194:0.2 Peter stood up and declared that this must be the coming of the Spirit of Truth which the Master had promised them and proposed that they go to the temple and begin the proclamation of the good news committed to their hands. And they did just what Peter suggested.
194:0.3 These men had been trained and instructed that the gospel which they should preach was the [loving] Fatherhood of God and the sonship of man, [all humans,] but at just this moment of spiritual ecstasy and personal triumph, the best tidings, the greatest news, these men could think of was the fact of the risen Master. And so they went forth, endowed with power from on high, preaching glad tidings to the people — even salvation through Jesus — but they unintentionally stumbled into the error of substituting some of the facts associated with the gospel for the gospel message itself. Peter unwittingly led off in this mistake, and others followed after him on down to Paul, who created a new religion out of the new version of the good news.
194:0.4 The gospel of the Kingdom is: the fact of the Fatherhood of God, coupled with the resultant truth of the sonship-brotherhood of men. Christianity, as it developed from that day, is: the fact of God as the Father of the Lord Jesus Christ, in association with the experience of believer-fellowship with the risen and glorified Christ.
194:0.5 It is not strange that these Spirit-infused men should have seized upon this opportunity to express their feelings of triumph over the forces which had sought to destroy their Master and end the influence of his teachings. At such a time as this it was easier to remember their personal association with Jesus and to be thrilled with the assurance that the Master still lived, that their friendship had not ended, and that the Spirit had indeed come upon them even as he had promised.
194:0.6 These believers felt themselves suddenly translated into another world, a new existence of joy, power, and glory. The Master had told them the Kingdom would come with [Spirit] Power, and some of them thought they were beginning to discern what he meant.
194:0.7 And when all of this is taken into consideration, it is not difficult to understand how these men came to preach a new gospel about Jesus in the place of their former message of the Fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of men.
1. THE PENTECOST SERMON
194:1.1 The apostles had been in hiding for forty days. This day happened to be the Jewish festival of Pentecost, and thousands of visitors from all parts of the world were in Jerusalem. Many arrived for this feast, but a majority had tarried in the city since the Passover. Now these frightened apostles emerged from their weeks of seclusion to appear boldly in the temple, where they began to preach the new message of a risen Messiah. And all the disciples were likewise conscious of having received some new spiritual endowment of insight and power.
194:1.4 By half past four o’clock more than two thousand new believers followed the apostles down to the pool of Siloam, where Peter, Andrew, James, and John baptized them in the Master’s name. [They did that; Jesus did not tell them to water baptize.] And it was dark when they had finished with baptizing this multitude.
2. THE SIGNIFICANCE OF PENTECOST
194:2.1 Jesus lived on Earth and taught a gospel which redeemed man from the superstition that he was a child of the devil and elevated him to the dignity of a faith son of God. Jesus’ message, as he preached it and lived it in his day, was an effective solvent for man’s spiritual difficulties in that day of its statement. And now that he has personally left the world, he sends in his place his Spirit of Truth, who is designed to live in man and, for each new generation, to restate the Jesus message so that every new group of mortals to appear upon the face of the Earth shall have a new and up-to-date version of the gospel, just such personal enlightenment and group guidance as will prove to be an effective solvent for man’s ever-new and varied spiritual difficulties.
194:2.8 Jesus lived a Life which is a Revelation of man submitted to the Father’s will, not an example for any man literally to attempt to follow. This Life in the flesh, together with his death on the cross and subsequent resurrection, presently became a new [false] gospel of the ransom [with blood atonement] which had thus been paid in order to purchase man back from the clutch of the evil one — from the condemnation of an offended God. Nevertheless, even though the gospel did become greatly distorted, it remains a fact that this new message about Jesus carried along with it many of the fundamental truths and teachings of his earlier gospel of the Kingdom. And, sooner or later, these concealed truths of the fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of men will emerge to effectually transform the civilization of all mankind. [!! Amen ! This mighty Fifth Epochal Revelation of Truth will greatly accelerate that true Revelation of Jesus !]
194:2.9 But these mistakes of the intellect in no way interfered with the believer’s great progress in growth in Spirit. In less than a month after the bestowal of the Spirit of Truth, the apostles made more individual spiritual progress than during their almost four years of personal and loving association with the Master. [About fifty times greater spiritual progress !!] Neither did this substitution of the fact of the resurrection of Jesus for the saving gospel Truth of sonship with God in any way interfere with the rapid spread of their teachings; on the contrary, this overshadowing of Jesus’ message by the new teachings about his person and resurrection seemed greatly to facilitate the preaching of the good news.
194:2.10 The term “baptism of the Spirit,” which came into such general use about this time, merely signified the conscious reception of this Gift of the Spirit of Truth and the personal acknowledgment of this new spiritual Power as an augmentation of all spiritual influences previously experienced by God-knowing souls.
194:2.19 7. The Spirit of the Father, Sons, and Spirits — the new-name Spirit of the ascending mortals of the realms after the fusion of the mortal Spirit-born soul with the Paradise Thought Adjuster and after the subsequent attainment of the divinity and glorification of the status of the Paradise Corps of the Finality. [We shall have a very glorious and eternal Destiny in our Universal Father God !! Amen !]
3. WHAT HAPPENED AT PENTECOST
194:3.1 Many queer and strange teachings became associated with the early narratives of the day of Pentecost. In subsequent times the events of this day, on which the Spirit of Truth, the new Teacher, came to dwell with mankind, have become confused with the foolish outbreaks of rampant emotionalism. The chief mission of this outpoured Spirit of the Father and the Son is to teach men about the truths of the Father’s love and the Son’s mercy. These are the truths of divinity which men can comprehend more fully than all the other divine traits of character. The Spirit of Truth is concerned primarily with the Revelation of the Father’s Spirit nature and the Son’s moral character. The Creator Son, in the flesh, revealed God to men; the Spirit of Truth, in the heart, reveals the Creator Son to men. When man yields the “fruits of the Spirit” in his life, he is simply showing forth the traits which the Master manifested in his own earthly life. When Jesus was on Earth, he lived his life as one personality — Jesus of Nazareth. As the indwelling Spirit of the “new Teacher,” the Master has, since Pentecost, been able to live his life anew in the experience of every truth-taught believer.
194:3.2 Many things which happen in the course of a human life are hard to understand, difficult to reconcile with the idea that this is a universe in which truth prevails and in which righteousness triumphs. It so often appears that slander, lies, dishonesty, and unrighteousness — sin — prevail. Does faith, after all, triumph over evil, sin, and iniquity? It does. And the life and death of Jesus are the eternal proof that the truth of goodness and the faith of the Spirit-led creature will always be vindicated. They taunted Jesus on the cross, saying, “Let us see if God will come and deliver him.” It looked dark on that day of the crucifixion, but it was gloriously bright on the resurrection morning; it was still brighter and more joyous on the day of Pentecost. The religions of pessimistic despair seek to obtain release from the burdens of life; they crave extinction in endless slumber and rest. These are the religions of primitive fear and dread. The religion of Jesus is a new gospel of faith to be proclaimed to struggling humanity. This new religion is founded on faith, hope, and love.
194:3.3 To Jesus, mortal life had dealt its hardest, cruelest, and bitterest blows; and this man met these ministrations of despair with faith, courage, and the unswerving determination to do his Father’s will. Jesus met life in all its terrible reality and mastered it — even in death. He did not use religion as a release from life. The religion of Jesus does not seek to escape this life in order to enjoy the waiting bliss of another existence. The religion of Jesus provides the joy and peace of another and spiritual existence to enhance and ennoble the life which men now live in the flesh.
194:3.4 If religion is an opiate to the people, it is not the religion of Jesus. On the cross he refused to drink the deadening drug, and his spirit, poured out upon all flesh, is a mighty world influence which leads man upward and urges him onward. The spiritual forward urge is the most powerful driving force present in this world; the truth-learning believer is the one progressive and aggressive soul on Earth.
194:3.5 On the day of Pentecost the religion of Jesus broke all national restrictions and racial fetters. It is forever true, “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” On this day the Spirit of Truth became the personal Gift from the Master to every mortal. This Spirit was bestowed for the purpose of qualifying believers more effectively to preach the gospel of the Kingdom, but they mistook the experience of receiving the outpoured Spirit for a part of the new gospel which they were unconsciously formulating.
194:3.6 Do not overlook the fact that the Spirit of Truth was bestowed upon all sincere believers; this gift of the Spirit did not come only to the apostles. The one hundred and twenty men and women assembled in the upper chamber all received the new Teacher, as did all the honest of heart throughout the whole world. This new Teacher was bestowed upon mankind, and every soul received him in accordance with the love for truth and the capacity to grasp and comprehend spiritual realities. At last, true religion is delivered from the custody of priests and all sacred classes and finds its real manifestation in the individual souls of men. [Amen !!]
194:3.7 The religion of Jesus fosters the highest type of human civilization in that it creates the highest type of spiritual personality and proclaims the sacredness of that person. [Secular human rights on Earth are a failure; only teaching and living sacred divine-human rights and true religious/spiritual liberty of all humans being divinely beloved sons of God in Jesus in Spirit will bring Light and Life realization to this confused planet !]
Topical Study 94 "NEW ! -- Gospel, Ideas, Ideals, Life,
Light, Message, Reality, Spirit, Teacher, Teaching, Truth, Values, Way"
Compiled 4/18/2016 by Dave@PureChristians.org
[Part 28 of 30]
PAPER 194 BESTOWAL OF THE SPIRIT OF TRUTH, Cont.
3. WHAT HAPPENED AT PENTECOST, Cont.
194:3.8 The coming of the Spirit of Truth on Pentecost made possible a religion which is neither radical nor conservative; it is neither the old nor the new; it is to be dominated neither by the old nor the young. The fact of Jesus’ earthly Life provides a fixed point for the anchor of time, while the bestowal of the Spirit of Truth provides for the everlasting expansion and endless growth of the religion which he lived and the gospel which he proclaimed. The Spirit guides into all Truth; he is the teacher of an expanding and always-growing religion of endless progress and divine unfolding. This new Teacher will be forever unfolding to the Truth-seeking believer that which was so divinely folded up in the person and nature of the Son of Man. [The fullness of God !! forever unfolding to us !!]
194:3.9 The manifestations associated with the bestowal of the “new Teacher,” and the reception of the apostles’ preaching by the men of various races and nations gathered together at Jerusalem, indicate the universality of the religion of Jesus. The gospel of the Kingdom was to be identified with no particular race, culture, or language. This day of Pentecost [May 18, A.D. 30 - on] witnessed the great effort of the Spirit to liberate the religion of Jesus from its inherited Jewish fetters. Even after this demonstration of pouring out the Spirit upon all flesh, the apostles at first endeavored to impose the requirements of Judaism upon their converts. Even Paul had trouble with his Jerusalem brethren because he refused to subject the Gentiles to these Jewish practices. No revealed religion can spread to all the world when it makes the serious mistake of becoming permeated with some national culture or associated with established racial, social, or economic practices.
194:3.10 The bestowal of the Spirit of Truth was independent of all forms, ceremonies, sacred places, and special behavior by those who received the fullness of its manifestation. When the Spirit came upon those assembled in the upper chamber, they were simply sitting there, having just been engaged in silent prayer. The Spirit was bestowed in the country as well as in the city. It was not necessary for the apostles to go apart to a lonely place for years of solitary meditation in order to receive the Spirit. For all time, Pentecost disassociates the idea of spiritual experience from the notion of especially favorable environments.
194:3.11 Pentecost, with its spiritual endowment, was designed forever to loose the religion of the Master from all dependence upon physical force; the teachers of this new religion are now equipped with spiritual weapons. They are to go out to conquer the world with unfailing forgiveness, matchless good will, and abounding love. They are equipped to overcome evil with good, to vanquish hate by love, to destroy fear with a courageous and living faith in Truth. Jesus had already taught his followers that his religion was never passive; always were his disciples to be active and positive in their ministry of mercy and in their manifestations of love. No longer did these believers look upon Yahweh as “the Lord of Hosts.” They now regarded the eternal Deity as the “God and Father of the Lord Jesus Christ.” They made that progress, at least, even if they did in some measure fail fully to grasp the Truth that God is also the spiritual Father of every individual. [The real gospel of Jesus !!]
194:3.12 Pentecost endowed mortal man with the power to forgive personal injuries, to keep sweet in the midst of the gravest injustice, to remain unmoved in the face of appalling danger, and to challenge the evils of hate and anger by the fearless acts of love and forbearance. Earth has passed through the ravages of great and destructive wars in its history. All participants in these terrible struggles met with defeat. There was but one victor; there was only one who came out of these embittered struggles with an enhanced reputation — that was Jesus of Nazareth and his gospel of overcoming evil with good. The secret of a better civilization is bound up in the Master’s teachings of the brotherhood of man, the good will of love and mutual trust.
194:3.13 Up to Pentecost, religion had revealed only man seeking for God; since Pentecost, man is still searching for God, but there shines out over the world the spectacle of God also seeking for man and sending his Spirit to dwell within him when he has found him.
194:3.14 Before the teachings of Jesus which culminated in Pentecost, women had little or no spiritual standing in the tenets of the older religions. After Pentecost, in the brotherhood of the Kingdom woman stood before God on an equality with man. Among the one hundred and twenty who received this special visitation of the Spirit were many of the women disciples, and they shared these blessings equally with the men believers. No longer can man presume to monopolize the ministry of religious service. The Pharisee might go on thanking God that he was “not born a woman, a leper, or a gentile,” but among the followers of Jesus woman has been forever set free from all religious discriminations based on sex. Pentecost obliterated all religious discrimination founded on racial distinction, cultural differences, social caste, or sex prejudice. No wonder these believers in the new religion would cry out, “Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” [Today, there is a worldwide battle for greater true spiritual/religious liberty which is now being won at a faster rate; as that is God's will for all humans.]
194:3.15 Both the mother and brother of Jesus were present among the one hundred and twenty believers, and as members of this common group of disciples, they also received the outpoured Spirit. They received no more of the good gift than did their fellows. No special gift was bestowed upon the members of Jesus’ earthly family. Pentecost marked the end of special priesthoods and all belief in sacred families.
194:3.16 Before Pentecost the apostles had given up much for Jesus. They had sacrificed their homes, families, friends, worldly goods, and positions. At Pentecost they gave themselves to God, and the Father and the Son responded by giving themselves to man — sending their Spirits to live within men. This experience of losing self and finding the [unified Father-Son] Spirit was not one of emotion; it was an act of intelligent self-surrender and unreserved consecration.
194:3.17 Pentecost was the call to spiritual unity among gospel believers. When the Spirit descended on the disciples at Jerusalem, the same thing happened in Philadelphia, Alexandria, and at all other places where true believers dwelt. It was literally true that “there was but one heart and soul among the multitude of the believers.” The religion of Jesus is the most powerful unifying influence the world has ever known. [Amen !]
194:3.18 Pentecost was designed to lessen the self-assertiveness of individuals, groups, nations, and races. It is this spirit of self-assertiveness which so increases in tension that it periodically breaks loose in destructive wars. Mankind can be unified only by the spiritual approach, and the Spirit of Truth is a world influence which is universal.
194:3.19 The coming of the Spirit of Truth purifies the human heart and leads the recipient to formulate a life purpose single to the will of God and the welfare of men. The material spirit of selfishness has been swallowed up in this new spiritual bestowal of selflessness. Pentecost, then and now, signifies that the Jesus of history has become the Divine Son of living experience. The joy of this outpoured Spirit, when it is consciously experienced in human life, is a tonic for health, a stimulus for mind, and an unfailing energy for the soul.
194:3.20 Prayer did not bring the Spirit on the day of Pentecost, but it did have much to do with determining the capacity of receptivity which characterized the individual believers. Prayer does not move the divine heart to liberality of bestowal, but it does so often dig out larger and deeper channels wherein the divine Bestowals may flow to the hearts and souls of those who thus remember to maintain unbroken communion with their Maker through sincere prayer and true worship.
4. BEGINNINGS OF THE CHRISTIAN CHURCH
194:4.1 When Jesus was so suddenly seized by his enemies and so quickly crucified between two thieves, his apostles and disciples were completely demoralized. The thought of the Master, arrested, bound, scourged, and crucified, was too much for even the apostles. They forgot his teachings and his warnings. He might, indeed, have been “a prophet mighty in deed and word before God and all the people,” but he could hardly be the Messiah they had [foolishly] hoped would restore the kingdom of Israel.
194:4.2 Then comes the Resurrection, [of Jesus by Jesus] with its deliverance from despair and the return of their faith in the Master’s divinity. Again and again they see him and talk with him, and he takes them out on Olivet, where he bids them farewell and tells them he is going back to the Father. He has told them to tarry in Jerusalem until they are endowed with power — until the Spirit of Truth shall come. And on the day of Pentecost this new Teacher comes, and they go out at once to preach their gospel with new power. They are the bold and courageous followers of a living Lord, not a dead and defeated leader. The Master lives in the hearts of these evangelists; God is not a doctrine in their minds; he has become a living Presence in their souls. [Now, all humans worldwide can practice the Presence of God always around all humans and within each truth-seeking human !!]
194:4.4 What has happened to these men whom Jesus had ordained to go forth preaching the gospel of the Kingdom, the Fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man? They have a new gospel; they are on fire with a new experience; they are filled with a new spiritual energy. Their message has suddenly shifted to the proclamation of the risen Christ: “Jesus of Nazareth, a man God approved by mighty works and wonders; him, being delivered up by the determinate counsel and foreknowledge of God, you did crucify and slay. The things which God foreshadowed by the mouth of all the prophets, he thus fulfilled. This Jesus did God raise up. God has made him both Lord and Christ. Being, by the right hand of God, exalted and having received from the Father the promise of the Spirit, he has poured forth this which you see and hear. Repent, that your sins may be blotted out; that the Father may send the Christ, who has been appointed for you, even Jesus, whom the heaven must receive until the times of the restoration of all things.” [a much weaker, new version of the real gospel of Jesus !]
194:4.5 The gospel of the kingdom, the message of Jesus, had been suddenly changed into the gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ. They now proclaimed the facts of his life, death, and resurrection and preached the hope of his speedy return to this world to finish the work he began. Thus the message of the early believers had to do with preaching about the facts of his first coming and with teaching the hope of his second coming, an event which they deemed to be very near at hand.
194:4.6 Christ was about to become the creed of the rapidly forming church. Jesus lives; [Yes] he died for men; [no] he gave [gives] the Spirit; he is coming again. Jesus filled all their thoughts and determined all their new concept of God and everything else. They were too much enthused over the new doctrine that “God is the Father of the Lord Jesus” to be concerned with the old message that “God is the loving Father of all men,” even of every single individual. True, a marvelous manifestation of brotherly love and unexampled good will did spring up in these early communities of believers. But it was a fellowship of believers in Jesus, not a fellowship of brothers in the family Kingdom of the Father in Heaven. Their good will arose from the love born of the concept of Jesus’ bestowal and not from the recognition of the brotherhood of mortal man. Nevertheless, they were filled with joy, and they lived such new and unique lives that all men were attracted to their teachings about Jesus. They made the great mistake of using the living and illustrative commentary on the gospel of the Kingdom for that gospel, but even that represented the greatest religion mankind had ever known. [!! Now, Christianity is still evolving and is constantly being purified by new Revelation ! Much needed !]
194:4.7 Unmistakably, a new fellowship was arising in the world. “The multitude who believed continued steadfastly in the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread, and in prayers.” They called each other brother and sister; they greeted one another with a holy kiss; they ministered to the poor. It was a fellowship of living as well as of worship. They were not communal by decree but by the desire to share their goods with their fellow believers. They confidently expected that Jesus would return to complete the establishment of the Father’s Kingdom during their generation. This spontaneous sharing of earthly possessions was not a direct feature of Jesus’ teaching; it came about because these men and women so sincerely and so confidently believed that he was to return any day to finish his work and to consummate the Kingdom. But the final results of this well-meant experiment in thoughtless brotherly love were disastrous and sorrow-breeding. Thousands of earnest believers sold their property and disposed of all their capital goods and other productive assets. With the passing of time, the dwindling resources of Christian “equal-sharing” came to an end — but the world did not. Very soon the believers at Antioch were taking up a collection to keep their fellow believers at Jerusalem from starving.
194:4.10 This Jesus sect was growing rapidly, and once more the Sadducees took notice of them. The Pharisees were little bothered about the situation, seeing that none of the teachings in any way interfered with the observance of the Jewish laws. But the Sadducees began to put the leaders of the Jesus sect in jail until they were prevailed upon to accept the counsel of one of the leading rabbis, Gamaliel, who advised them: “Refrain from these men and let them alone, for if this counsel or this work is of men, it will be overthrown; but if it is of God, you will not be able to overthrow them, lest haply you be found even to be fighting against God.” They decided to follow Gamaliel’s counsel, and there ensued a time of peace and quiet in Jerusalem, during which the new gospel about Jesus spread rapidly.
194:4.11 And so all went well in Jerusalem until the time of the coming of the Greeks in large numbers from Alexandria. Two of the pupils of Rodan [a famous Greek philosopher who believed in Jesus and his gospel of sonship of man] arrived in Jerusalem and made many converts from among the Hellenists. Among their early converts were Stephen and Barnabas. These able Greeks did not so much have the Jewish viewpoint, and they did not so well conform to the Jewish mode of worship and other ceremonial practices. And it was the doings of these Greek believers that terminated the peaceful relations between the Jesus brotherhood and the Pharisees and Sadducees. Stephen and his Greek associate began to preach more as Jesus taught, and this brought them into immediate conflict with the Jewish rulers. In one of Stephen’s public sermons, when he reached the objectionable part of the discourse, they dispensed with all formalities of trial and proceeded to stone him to death on the spot. [Stephen said: "Behold ! The Heavens are opened; and I see Jesus standing at the right hand of God the Father !" Then the murdering Jewish rulers stoned Stephen ! Stephen's last words of love and mercy were: "Lay not this sin to their charge." That is from 188:5.6 in this Revelation]
194:4.12 Stephen, the leader of the Greek colony of Jesus’ believers in Jerusalem, thus became the first martyr to the new faith and the specific cause for the formal organization of the early Christian church. This new crisis was met by the recognition that believers could not longer go on as a sect within the Jewish faith. They all agreed that they must separate themselves from unbelievers; and within one month from the death of Stephen the church at Jerusalem had been organized under the leadership of Peter, and James the brother of Jesus had been installed as its titular head.
194:4.13 And then broke out the new and relentless persecutions by the Jews, so that the active teachers of the new religion about Jesus, which subsequently at Antioch was called Christianity, went forth to the ends of the empire proclaiming Jesus. In carrying this message, before the time of Paul the leadership was in Greek hands; and these first missionaries, as also the later ones, followed the path of Alexander’s march of former days, going by way of Gaza and Tyre to Antioch and then over Asia Minor to Macedonia, then on to Rome and to the uttermost parts of the empire.
PAPER 195 AFTER PENTECOST
195:0.1 The results of Peter’s preaching on the day of Pentecost were such as to decide the future policies, and to determine the plans, of the majority of the apostles in their efforts to proclaim the gospel of the Kingdom. Peter was the real founder of the Christian church; Paul carried the Christian message to the Gentiles, and the Greek believers carried it to the whole Roman Empire.
195:0.2 Although the tradition-bound and priest-ridden Hebrews, as a people, refused to accept either Jesus’ gospel of the Fatherhood of God and the brotherhood of man or Peter’s and Paul’s proclamation of the resurrection and ascension of Christ (subsequent Christianity), the rest of the Roman Empire was found to be receptive to the evolving Christian teachings. Western civilization was at this time intellectual, war weary, and thoroughly skeptical of all existing religions and universe philosophies. The peoples of the Western world, the beneficiaries of Greek culture, had a revered tradition of a great past. They could contemplate the inheritance of great accomplishments in philosophy, art, literature, and political progress. But with all these achievements they had no soul-satisfying religion. Their spiritual longings remained unsatisfied.
195:0.3 Upon such a stage of human society the [some of the] teachings of Jesus, embraced in the Christian message, were suddenly thrust. A new order of living was thus presented to the hungry hearts of these Western peoples. This situation meant immediate conflict between the older religious practices and the new Christianized version of Jesus’ message to the world. Such a conflict must result in either decided victory for the new or for the old or in some degree of compromise. History shows that the struggle ended in compromise. Christianity presumed to embrace too much for any one people to assimilate in one or two generations. It was not a simple spiritual appeal, such as Jesus had presented to the souls of men; it early struck a decided attitude on religious rituals, education, magic, medicine, art, literature, law, government, morals, sex regulation, polygamy, and, in limited degree, even slavery. Christianity came not merely as a new religion — something all the Roman Empire and all the Orient were waiting for — but as a new order of human society. And as such a pretension it quickly precipitated the social-moral clash of the ages. The ideals of Jesus, as they were reinterpreted by Greek philosophy and socialized in Christianity, now boldly challenged the traditions of the human race embodied in the ethics, morality, and religions of Western civilization.
195:0.4 At first, Christianity won as converts only the lower social and economic strata. But by the beginning of the second century the very best of Greco-Roman culture was increasingly turning to this new order of Christian belief, this new concept of the purpose of living and the goal of existence. [To continue to perfect in the love and care of God, and to love and serve all humans in the Family of God and in the universal brotherhood of all mankind.]
195:0.8 3. [Why the triumph of Christianity over other religions and philosophies:] But best of all, it contained a new and great ideal, the echo of the Life bestowal of Jesus and the reflection of his Message of salvation for all mankind. [Now being proclaimed in this Fifth Epochal Revelation with great strength !]
195:0.10 5. Likewise did the next and later generations of Christian leaders make such further compromises with paganism that even the Roman emperor Constantine was won to the new religion. [Some pagan beliefs and rituals still remain today in compromised Christianity.]
195:0.13 By this paganization of Christianity the old order won many minor victories of a ritualistic nature, but the Christians gained the ascendancy in that:
195:0.14 1. A new and enormously higher note in human morals was struck.
195:0.15 2. A new and greatly enlarged concept of God was given to the world.
195:0.16 3. The hope of immortality became a part of the assurance of a recognized religion.
195:0.17 4. Jesus of Nazareth was given to man’s hungry soul.
195:0.18 Many of the great Truths taught by Jesus were almost lost in these early compromises, but they yet slumber in this religion of paganized Christianity, which was in turn the Pauline version of the Life and Teachings of the Son of Man. And Christianity, even before it was paganized, was first thoroughly Hellenized. Christianity owes much, very much, to the Greeks. It was a Greek, from Egypt, who so bravely stood up at Nicaea [in A. D. 325] and so fearlessly challenged this assembly that it dared not so obscure the concept of the nature of Jesus that the Real Truth of his Bestowal might have been in danger of being lost to the world. This Greek’s name was Athanasius, and but for the eloquence and the logic of this believer, the persuasions of Arius would have triumphed. [Athanasius stated the Truth that Christ the Son of God is Eternal and Coordinate Deity with God the Father on Paradise ! They are the same "substance". (same Essence of Being) Arius falsely said that the son of God was "a Creature, made from nothing, and subordinate." Arius has no conception of Eternity and the Infinity and Universality of God the Father-Infinite I AM. Jesus Christ is I AM to all of us in his large created universe named Nebadon !]
Topical Study 94 "NEW ! -- Gospel, Ideas, Ideals, Life,
Light, Message, Reality, Spirit, Teacher, Teaching, Truth, Values, Way"
Compiled 4/20/2016 by Dave@PureChristians.org
[Part 29 of 30]
PAPER 195 AFTER PENTECOST, Cont.
1. INFLUENCE OF THE GREEKS
195:1.1 The Hellenization of Christianity started in earnest on that eventful day when the Apostle Paul stood before the council of the Areopagus in Athens and told the Athenians about “the Unknown God.” There, under the shadow of the Acropolis, this Roman citizen proclaimed to these Greeks his version of the new religion which had taken origin in the Jewish land of Galilee. And there was something strangely alike in Greek philosophy and many of the teachings of Jesus. They had a common goal — both aimed at the emergence of the individual. The Greek, at social and political emergence; Jesus, at moral and spiritual emergence. The Greek taught intellectual liberalism leading to political freedom; Jesus taught spiritual liberalism leading to religious liberty. These two ideas put together constituted a new and mighty charter for human freedom; they presaged man’s social, political, and spiritual liberty.
195:1.5 At the time Paul stood up in Athens preaching “Christ and Him Crucified,” the Greeks were spiritually hungry; they were inquiring, interested, and actually looking for spiritual truth. Never forget that at first the Romans fought Christianity, while the Greeks embraced it, and that it was the Greeks who literally forced the Romans subsequently to accept this new religion, as then modified, as a part of Greek culture.
195:1.6 The Greek revered beauty, the Jew holiness, but both peoples loved truth. For centuries the Greek had seriously thought and earnestly debated about all human problems — social, economic, political, and philosophic — except religion. Few Greeks had paid much attention to religion; they did not take even their own religion very seriously. For centuries the Jews had neglected these other fields of thought while they devoted their minds to religion. They took their religion very seriously, too seriously. As illuminated by the content of Jesus’ message, the united product of the centuries of the thought of these two peoples now became the driving power of a new order of human society and, to a certain extent, of a new order of human religious belief and practice.
2. THE ROMAN INFLUENCE
195:2.1 The Romans bodily took over Greek culture, putting representative government in the place of government by lot. And presently this change favored Christianity in that Rome brought into the whole Western world a new tolerance for strange languages, peoples, and even religions.
195:2.5 It was easy for these Greco-Romans to become just as spiritually devoted to an institutional church as they were politically devoted to the state. The Romans fought the church only when they feared it as a competitor of the state. Rome, having little national philosophy or native culture, took over Greek culture for its own and boldly adopted Christ as its moral philosophy. Christianity became the moral culture of Rome but hardly its religion in the sense of being the individual experience in spiritual growth of those who embraced the new religion in such a wholesale manner. True, indeed, many individuals did penetrate beneath the surface of all this state religion and found for the nourishment of their souls the real values of the hidden meanings held within the latent truths of Hellenized and paganized Christianity.
195:2.7 And so did these Romanized Greeks force both Jews and Christians to philosophize their religion, to co-ordinate its ideas and systematize its ideals, to adapt religious practices to the existing current of life. And all this was enormously helped by translation of the Hebrew scriptures into Greek and by the later recording of the New Testament in the Greek tongue.
3. UNDER THE ROMAN EMPIRE
195:3.7 The second century after Christ was the best time in all the world’s history for a good religion to make progress in the Western world. During the first century Christianity had prepared itself, by struggle and compromise, to take root and rapidly spread. Christianity adopted the emperor; later, he adopted Christianity. This was a great age for the spread of a new religion. There was religious liberty; travel was universal and thought was untrammeled. [not confined, not limited]
195:3.8 The spiritual impetus of nominally accepting Hellenized Christianity came to Rome too late to prevent the well-started moral decline or to compensate for the already well-established and increasing racial deterioration. This new religion was a cultural necessity for imperial Rome, and it is exceedingly unfortunate that it did not become a means of spiritual salvation in a larger sense.
195:3.9 Even a good religion could not save a great empire from the sure results of lack of individual participation in the affairs of government, from overmuch paternalism, over-taxation and gross collection abuses, unbalanced trade with the Levant which drained away the gold, amusement madness, Roman standardization, the degradation of woman, slavery and race decadence, physical plagues, and a state church which became institutionalized nearly to the point of spiritual barrenness. [Some of these problems now exist in the USA and in most of the world !]
195:3.10 Conditions, however, were not so bad at Alexandria. The early schools continued to hold much of Jesus’ teachings free from compromise. Pantaenus taught Clement and then went on to follow Nathaniel in proclaiming Christ in India. While some of the ideals of Jesus were sacrificed in the building of Christianity, it should in all fairness be recorded that, by the end of the second century, practically all the great minds of the Greco-Roman world had become Christian. The triumph was approaching completion.
195:3.11 And this Roman Empire lasted sufficiently long to insure the survival of Christianity even after the empire collapsed. But we have often conjectured what would have happened in Rome and in the world if it had been the [Jesus' New] gospel of the Kingdom which had been accepted in the place of Greek Christianity.
4. THE EUROPEAN DARK AGES
195:4.1 The church, being an adjunct to society and the ally of politics, was doomed to share in the intellectual and spiritual decline of the so-called European “dark ages.” During this time, religion became more and more monasticized, asceticized, and legalized. In a spiritual sense, Christianity was hibernating. Throughout this period there existed, alongside this slumbering and secularized religion, a continuous stream of mysticism, a fantastic spiritual experience bordering on unreality and philosophically akin to pantheism.
195:4.2 During these dark and despairing centuries, religion became virtually secondhanded again. The individual was almost lost before the overshadowing authority, tradition, and dictation of the church. A new spiritual menace arose in the creation of a galaxy of “saints” who were assumed to have special influence at the divine courts, and who, therefore, if effectively appealed to, would be able to intercede in man’s behalf before the Gods.
195:4.3 But Christianity was sufficiently socialized and paganized that, while it was impotent to stay the oncoming dark ages, it was the better prepared to survive this long period of moral darkness and spiritual stagnation. And it did persist on through the long night of Western civilization and was still functioning as a moral influence in the world when the renaissance dawned. The rehabilitation of Christianity, following the passing of the dark ages, resulted in bringing into existence numerous sects of the Christian teachings, beliefs suited to special intellectual, emotional, and spiritual types of human personality. And many of these special Christian groups, or religious families, still persist at the time of the making of this presentation. [in A.D. 1935. Today there are many more Christian denominations and sects than back then, over 40,000 of them and still increasing ! Spiritual unity is found in following Jesus Christ and his Spirit Teachings, not in human-made church creeds and traditions that divide Christians !]
195:4.4 Christianity exhibits a history of having originated out of the unintended transformation of the religion of Jesus into a religion about Jesus. It further presents the history of having experienced Hellenization, paganization, secularization, institutionalization, intellectual deterioration, spiritual decadence, moral hibernation, threatened extinction, later rejuvenation, fragmentation, and more recent relative rehabilitation. Such a pedigree is indicative of inherent vitality and the possession of vast recuperative resources. And this same Christianity is now present in the civilized world of Occidental peoples and stands face to face with a struggle for existence [Godless secularism, atheism, hedonism, and immorality !] which is even more ominous than those eventful crises which have characterized its past battles for dominance.
195:4.5 Religion is now confronted by the challenge of a new age of scientific minds and materialistic tendencies. In this gigantic struggle between the secular and the spiritual, the religion of Jesus will eventually triumph. [Yes !! Probably after world comditions deteriorate further for about five to ten more years from A.D. 2016]
5. THE MODERN PROBLEM
[All included here in this important section]
195:5.1 The twentieth century [and now the more serious problems in the 21st century !] has brought new problems for Christianity and all other religions to solve. The higher a civilization climbs, the more necessitous becomes the duty to “seek first the realities of Heaven” in all of man’s efforts to stabilize society and facilitate the solution of its material problems.
195:5.2 Truth often becomes confusing and even misleading when it is dismembered, segregated, isolated, and too much analyzed. Living Truth teaches the truth seeker aright only when it is embraced in wholeness and as a living spiritual Reality, not as a fact of material science or an inspiration of intervening art.
195:5.3 Religion is the Revelation to man of his divine and eternal Destiny. [as an eternalized, Spirit-perfected, and ever-ascending Spirit Son of God !!] Religion is a purely personal and spiritual experience and must forever be distinguished from man’s other high forms of thought, such as:
195:5.4 1. Man’s logical attitude toward the things of material reality.
195:5.5 2. Man’s aesthetic appreciation of beauty contrasted with ugliness.
195:5.6 3. Man’s ethical recognition of social obligations and political duty.
195:5.7 4. Even man’s sense of human morality is not, in and of itself, religious.
195:5.8 Religion is designed to find those values in the universe which call forth faith, trust, and assurance; religion culminates in worship. Religion discovers for the soul those Supreme values which are in contrast with the relative values discovered by the mind. Such superhuman insight can be had only through genuine [personal] religious experience.
195:5.9 [A serious warning to us:] A lasting social system without a morality predicated on spiritual realities can no more be maintained than could the solar system without gravity.
195:5.10 Do not try to satisfy the curiosity or gratify all the latent adventure surging within the soul in one short life in the flesh. Be patient! be not tempted to indulge in a lawless plunge into cheap and sordid adventure. Harness your energies and bridle your passions; [self-control and more-self-control !] be calm while you await the majestic unfolding of an endless career of progressive adventure and thrilling discovery.
195:5.11 In confusion over man’s origin, do not lose sight of his eternal Destiny. Forget not that Jesus loved even little children, and that he forever made clear the great worth of human personality. [Your absolutely unique, potentially eternal I am of I AM personality is a tremendous Gift from God even before you were conceived by your human parents !]
195:5.12 As you view the world, remember that the [few] black patches of evil which you see are shown against a white [unending] background of ultimate good. You do not view merely white patches of good which show up miserably against a black background of evil.
195:5.13 When there is so much good truth to publish and proclaim, why should men dwell so much upon the evil in the world just because it appears to be a fact? The beauties of the spiritual values of truth are more pleasurable and uplifting than is the phenomenon of evil.
195:5.14 In religion, Jesus advocated and followed the method of experience, even as modern science pursues [and personally experiences] the technique of experiment. We find God through the leadings of spiritual insight, but we approach this insight of the soul through the love of the beautiful, the pursuit of truth, loyalty to duty, and the worship of divine goodness. But of all these [spiritual] values, love is the true guide to real insight.
195:6.10 But religious leaders are making a great mistake when they try to call modern man to spiritual battle with the trumpet blasts of the Middle Ages. Religion must provide itself with new and up-to-date slogans. Neither democracy nor any other political panacea will take the place of spiritual progress. False religions may represent an evasion of reality, but Jesus in his gospel introduced mortal man to the very entrance upon an eternal reality of spiritual progression. [!!]
8. SECULAR TOTALITARIANISM
195:8.4 It required a great power, a mighty influence, to free the thinking and living of the Western peoples from the withering grasp of a totalitarian ecclesiastical domination. Secularism did break the bonds of church control, and now in turn it threatens to establish a new and godless type of mastery over the hearts and minds of modern man. The tyrannical and dictatorial political state is the direct offspring of scientific materialism and philosophic secularism. Secularism no sooner frees man from the domination of the institutionalized church than it sells him into slavish bondage to the totalitarian state. [Oppressive nanny-state regulations and far too big, debt-ridden, over-taxing government !] Secularism frees man from ecclesiastical slavery only to betray him into the tyranny of political and economic slavery.
Topical Study 94 "NEW ! -- Gospel, Ideas, Ideals, Life,
Light, Message, Reality, Spirit, Teacher, Teaching, Truth, Values, Way"
Compiled 4/22/2016 by Dave@PureChristians.org
[Part 30 of 30]
PAPER 195 AFTER PENTECOST, Cont.
9. CHRISTIANITY'S PROBLEM
195:9.1 Do not overlook the value of your spiritual heritage, the river of truth running down through the centuries, even to the barren times of a materialistic and secular age. In all your worthy efforts to rid yourselves of the superstitious creeds of past ages, make sure that you hold fast the Eternal Truth. But be patient! when the present superstition revolt is over, the Truths of Jesus’ gospel will persist gloriously to illuminate a new and better way. [ I believe, in year 2016, that we are now in a new spiritual Renaissance that will become powerful in two decades or less.]
195:9.2 But paganized and socialized Christianity stands in need of new contact with the uncompromised teachings of Jesus; it languishes for lack of a new vision of the Master’s life on Earth. A new and fuller revelation [This Fifth Epochal Revelation of Truth] of the religion of Jesus is destined to conquer an empire of materialistic secularism and to overthrow a world sway of mechanistic naturalism. Earth is now quivering on the very brink of one of its most amazing and enthralling epochs of social readjustment, moral quickening, and spiritual enlightenment. [Thank You Jesus, here in Spirit guiding us !]
195:9.3 The teachings of Jesus, even though greatly modified, survived the mystery cults of their birthtime, the ignorance and superstition of the dark ages, and are even now slowly triumphing over the materialism, mechanism, and secularism of the twentieth century. And such times of great testing and threatened defeat are always times of great Revelation. [Much needed and much appreciated !!]
195:9.4 [Important !] Religion does need new leaders, spiritual men and women who will dare to depend solely on Jesus and his incomparable teachings. If Christianity persists in neglecting its spiritual mission while it continues to busy itself with social and material problems, the spiritual renaissance must await the coming of these new teachers of Jesus’ religion who will be exclusively devoted to the spiritual regeneration of men. And then will these Spirit-born souls quickly supply the leadership and inspiration requisite for the social, moral, economic, and political reorganization of the world.
195:9.5 The modern age will refuse to accept a religion which is inconsistent with facts and out of harmony with its highest conceptions of truth, beauty, and goodness. The hour is striking for a rediscovery of the true and original foundations of present-day distorted and compromised Christianity — the real Life and Teachings of Jesus.
195:9.8 [Powerful ! beyond all words !] \big>The world needs more firsthand religion. Even Christianity — the best of the religions of the twentieth century — is not only a religion about Jesus, but it is so largely one which men experience secondhand. They take their religion wholly as handed down by their accepted religious teachers. What an awakening the world would experience if it could only see Jesus as he really lived on earth and know, firsthand, his Life-giving Teachings! Descriptive words of things beautiful cannot thrill like the sight thereof, neither can creedal words inspire men’s souls like the experience of knowing the Presence of God. But expectant faith will ever keep the hope-door of man’s soul open for the entrance of the eternal spiritual realities of the divine values of the worlds beyond.
195:9.9 Christianity has dared to lower its ideals before the challenge of human greed, war-madness, and the lust for power; but the religion of Jesus stands as the unsullied and transcendent spiritual summons, calling to the best there is in man to rise above all these legacies of animal evolution and, by grace, attain the moral heights of true human destiny.
10. THE FUTURE
195:10.1 Christianity has indeed done a great service for this world, but what is now most needed is Jesus. The world needs to see Jesus living again on Earth in the experience of Spirit-born mortals who effectively reveal the Master to all men. [to all humans.] It is futile to talk about a revival of primitive Christianity; you must go forward from where you find yourselves. Modern culture must become spiritually baptized with a new Revelation of Jesus’ Life and illuminated with a new understanding of his gospel of Eternal Salvation. And when Jesus becomes thus lifted up, he will draw all men to himself. [See John 12:31-32] Jesus’ disciples should be more than conquerors, even overflowing sources of inspiration and enhanced living to all men. Religion is only an exalted humanism until it is made Divine by the discovery of the Reality of the Presence of God in personal experience. [True religion — True spirituality — is having personal God-consciousness ! Freely available at all times and in all places !]
195:10.2 The beauty and sublimity, the humanity and divinity, the simplicity and uniqueness, of Jesus’ Life on Earth present such a striking and appealing picture of man-saving and God-Revealing that the theologians and philosophers of all time should be effectively restrained from daring to form creeds or create theological systems of spiritual bondage out of such a transcendental Bestowal of God in the form of man. In Jesus the universe produced a mortal man in whom the spirit of love triumphed over the material handicaps of time and overcame the fact of physical origin.
195:10.3 Ever bear in mind — God and men need each other. They are mutually necessary to the full and final attainment of eternal personality experience in the divine destiny of universe finality. [Countless I am's of I AM Personality]
195:10.4 “The Kingdom [Reality] of God is within you” was probably the greatest pronouncement Jesus ever made, next to the declaration that his Father is a living and loving Spirit.
195:10.5 In winning souls for the Master, it is not the first mile of compulsion, duty, or convention that will transform man and his world, but rather the second mile of free service and liberty-loving devotion that betokens the Jesusonian reaching forth to grasp his brother in love and sweep him on under spiritual guidance toward the higher and divine goal of mortal existence. Christianity even now willingly goes the first mile, but mankind languishes and stumbles along in moral darkness because there are so few genuine second-milers — so few professed followers of Jesus who really live and love as he taught his disciples to live and love and serve. [!!]
195:10.6 The call to the adventure of building a new and transformed human society by means of the spiritual rebirth of Jesus’ brotherhood of the Kingdom should thrill all who believe in him as men have not been stirred since the days when they walked about on Earth as his companions in the flesh.
195:10.7 No social system or political regime which denies the Reality of God can contribute in any constructive and lasting manner to the advancement of human civilization. But Christianity, as it is subdivided and secularized today, presents the greatest single obstacle to its further advancement; especially is this true concerning the Orient.
195:10.8 Ecclesiasticism is at once and forever incompatible with that living faith, growing Spirit, and firsthand experience of the faith-comrades of Jesus in the brotherhood of man in the spiritual association of the Kingdom of Heaven. The praiseworthy desire to preserve traditions of past achievement often leads to the defense of outgrown systems of worship. The well-meant desire to foster ancient thought systems effectually prevents the sponsoring of new and adequate means and methods designed to satisfy the spiritual longings of the expanding and advancing minds of modern men. Likewise, the Christian churches of the twentieth century stand as great, but wholly unconscious, obstacles to the immediate advance of the real gospel — the teachings of Jesus of Nazareth.
195:10.9 Many earnest persons who would gladly yield loyalty to the Christ of the gospel find it very difficult enthusiastically to support a church which exhibits so little of the spirit of his Life and Teachings, and which they have been erroneously taught he founded. Jesus did not found the so-called Christian church, but he has, in every manner consistent with his nature, fostered it as the best existent exponent of his Lifework on Earth.
195:10.10 If the Christian church would only dare to espouse the Master’s program, thousands of apparently indifferent youths would rush forward to enlist in such a spiritual undertaking, and they would not hesitate to go all the way through with this great adventure.
195:10.11 Christianity is seriously confronted with the doom embodied in one of its own slogans: “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” The non-Christian world will hardly capitulate to a sect-divided Christendom. The Living Jesus is the only hope of a possible unification of Christianity. The true Church — the Jesus Brotherhood — is invisible, spiritual, and is characterized by unity, not necessarily by uniformity. Uniformity is the earmark of the physical world of mechanistic nature. Spiritual unity is the fruit of faith union with the Living Jesus. The visible church should refuse longer to handicap the progress of the invisible and spiritual Brotherhood of the Kingdom of God. And this brotherhood is destined to become a living organism in contrast to an institutionalized social organization. It may well utilize such social organizations, but it must not be supplanted by them.
195:10.12 But the Christianity of even the twentieth century must not be despised. It is the product of the combined moral genius of the God-knowing men of many races during many ages, and it has truly been one of the greatest powers for good on Earth, and therefore no man should lightly regard it, notwithstanding its inherent and acquired defects. Christianity still contrives to move the minds of reflective men with mighty moral emotions.
195:10.13 But there is no excuse for the involvement of the church in commerce and politics; such unholy alliances are a flagrant betrayal of the Master. And the genuine lovers of Truth will be slow to forget that this powerful institutionalized church has often dared to smother newborn faith and persecute truth bearers who chanced to appear in unorthodox raiment.
195:10.14 It is all too true that such a church would not have survived unless there had been men in the world who preferred such a style of worship. Many spiritually indolent souls crave an ancient and authoritative religion of ritual and sacred traditions. Human evolution and spiritual progress are hardly sufficient to enable all men to dispense with religious authority. And the invisible brotherhood of the Kingdom may well include these family groups of various social and temperamental classes if they are only willing to become truly Spirit-led sons of God. But in this Brotherhood of Jesus there is no place for sectarian rivalry, group bitterness, nor assertions of moral superiority and spiritual infallibility.
195:10.15 These various groupings of Christians may serve to accommodate numerous different types of would-be believers among the various peoples of Western civilization, but such division of Christendom presents a grave weakness when it attempts to carry the gospel of Jesus to Oriental peoples. These races do not yet understand that there is a religion of Jesus separate, and somewhat apart, from Christianity, which has more and more become a religion about Jesus.
195:10.16 The great hope of Earth lies in the possibility of a new Revelation of Jesus with a new and enlarged presentation of his Saving Message which would spiritually unite in loving service the numerous families of his present-day professed followers.
195:10.17 Even secular education could help in this great spiritual renaissance if it would pay more attention to the work of teaching youth how to engage in life planning and character progression. The purpose of all education should be to foster and further the supreme purpose of life, the development of a majestic and well-balanced personality. There is great need for the teaching of moral discipline in the place of so much self-gratification. Upon such a foundation religion may contribute its spiritual incentive to the enlargement and enrichment of mortal life, even to the security and enhancement of Life Eternal.
195:10.18 Christianity is an extemporized religion, and therefore must it operate in low gear. High-gear spiritual performances must await the new Revelation and the more general acceptance of the real religion of Jesus. But Christianity is a mighty religion, seeing that the commonplace disciples of a crucified carpenter set in motion those teachings which conquered the Roman world in three hundred years and then went on to triumph over the barbarians who overthrew Rome. This same Christianity conquered — absorbed and exalted — the whole stream of Hebrew theology and Greek philosophy. And then, when this Christian religion became comatose for more than a thousand years as a result of an overdose of mysteries and paganism, it resurrected itself and virtually reconquered the whole Western world. Christianity contains enough of Jesus’ teachings to immortalize it. [!!]
195:10.19 If Christianity could only grasp more of Jesus’ Teachings, it could do so much more in helping modern man to solve his new and increasingly complex problems.
195:10.20 Christianity suffers under a great handicap because it has become identified in the minds of all the world as a part of the social system, the industrial life, and the moral standards of Western civilization; and thus has Christianity unwittingly seemed to sponsor a society which staggers under the guilt of tolerating science without idealism, politics without principles, wealth without work, pleasure without restraint, knowledge without character, power without conscience, and industry without morality. [Much of that was said by Mahatma Gandhi in India; this Revelation improved it.]
195:10.21 The hope of modern Christianity is that it should cease to sponsor the social systems and industrial policies of Western civilization while it humbly bows itself before the cross it so valiantly extols, there to learn anew from Jesus of Nazareth the greatest Truths mortal man can ever hear — the Living Gospel of the [loving and merciful] Fatherhood of God and the [perfecting] Brotherhood of man. [All humans are now in the Family of God ! That is why Jesus commands us to rise in his Spirit of Truth here to even dare to love all humans, even any alleged "enemies" !!]
PAPER 196 THE FAITH OF JESUS
196:0.2 The human Jesus saw God as being holy, just, and great, as well as being true, beautiful, and good. All these attributes of divinity he focused in his mind as the “will of the Father in Heaven.” Jesus’ God was at one and the same time “The Holy One of Israel” and “The Living and loving Father in Heaven.” [Paradise and omnipresent] The concept of God as a Father was not original with Jesus, but he exalted and elevated the idea into a sublime experience by achieving a new Revelation of God and by proclaiming that every mortal creature is a child of this Father of love, a son of God. [!!!]
196:0.3 Jesus did not cling to faith in God as would a struggling soul at war with the universe and at death grips with a hostile and sinful world; he did not resort to faith merely as a consolation in the midst of difficulties or as a comfort in threatened despair; faith was not just an illusory compensation for the unpleasant realities and the sorrows of living. In the very face of all the natural difficulties and the temporal contradictions of mortal existence, he experienced the tranquillity of Supreme and unquestioned trust in God and felt the tremendous thrill of Living, by faith, in the very Presence of the Heavenly Father. And this triumphant faith was a Living Experience of actual Spirit attainment. Jesus’ great contribution to the values of human experience was not that he Revealed so many new ideas about the Father in heaven, but rather that he so magnificently and humanly demonstrated a new and higher type of living faith in God. Never on all the [3.8 million human-inhabited] worlds of this universe, in the life of any one mortal, did God ever become such a living reality as in the human experience of Jesus of Nazareth.
196:0.4 In the Master’s life on Earth, this and all other worlds of the local creation discover a new and higher type of religion, religion based on personal spiritual relations with the Universal Father and wholly validated by the Supreme Authority of genuine Personal Experience. This Living Faith of Jesus was more than an intellectual reflection, and it was not a mystic meditation.
2. THE RELIGION OF JESUS
196:2.1 Some day a reformation in the Christian church may strike deep enough to get back to the unadulterated religious teachings of Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith. You may preach a religion about Jesus, but, perforce, you must live the religion of Jesus. In the enthusiasm of Pentecost, Peter unintentionally inaugurated a new religion, the religion of the risen and glorified Christ. The Apostle Paul later on transformed this new gospel into Christianity, a religion embodying his own theologic views and portraying his own personal experience with the Jesus of the Damascus road. The gospel of the Kingdom is founded on the personal religious experience of the Jesus of Galilee; Christianity is founded almost exclusively on the personal religious experience of the Apostle Paul. Almost the whole of the New Testament is devoted, not to the portrayal of the significant and inspiring religious life of Jesus, but to a discussion of Paul’s religious experience and to a portrayal of his personal religious convictions. The only notable exceptions to this statement, aside from certain parts of Matthew, Mark, and Luke, are the Book of Hebrews and the Epistle of James. Even Peter, in his writing, only once reverted to the personal religious life of his Master. The New Testament is a superb Christian document, but it is only meagerly Jesusonian.
196:2.4 But the greatest mistake was made in that, while the human Jesus was recognized as having a religion, the divine Jesus (Christ) almost overnight became a religion. Paul’s Christianity made sure of the adoration of the divine Christ, [true !] but it almost wholly lost sight of the struggling and valiant human Jesus of Galilee, who, by the valor of his personal religious faith and the heroism of his indwelling Adjuster, ascended from the lowly levels of humanity to become One with Divinity, thus becoming the new and living way whereby all mortals may so ascend from humanity to divinity. Mortals in all stages of spirituality and on all worlds may find in the personal Life of Jesus that which will strengthen and inspire them as they progress from the lowest spirit levels up to the highest Divine Values, from the beginning to the end of all personal religious experience.
3. THE SUPREMACY OF RELIGION
196:3.20 Every time man makes a reflective moral choice, he immediately experiences a new divine invasion of his soul. Moral choosing constitutes religion as the motive of inner response to outer conditions. But such a real religion is not a purely subjective experience. It signifies the whole of the subjectivity of the individual engaged in a meaningful and intelligent response to total objectivity — the universe and its Maker.
196:3.29 Religious insight possesses the power of turning defeat into higher desires and new determinations. Love is the highest motivation which man may utilize in his universe ascent. But love, divested of truth, beauty, and goodness, is only a sentiment, a philosophic distortion, a psychic illusion, a spiritual deception. Love must always be redefined on successive levels of morontia [soul level] and Spirit progression.
196:3.33 [Very important !!] Be not discouraged; human evolution is still in progress, and the revelation of God to the world, in and through Jesus, shall not fail. [Amen !!!]