Wednesday 17 April 2019

The Law Of Moses As the Devil

The Law Of Moses As An Adversary

The law was the tree. It has power to give the knowledge of good and evil. It neither removed him from evil, nor did it set him in the good, but it created death for those who ate of it. For when he said, "Eat this, do not eat that", it became the beginning of death. (The Gospel of Philip)

For this reason Jesus appeared. He put on that book. He was nailed to a cross. He affixed the edict of the father to the cross. (The Gospel of Truth)

He was nailed to a tree. He became a fruit of the knowledge of the father. He did not, however, destroy them because they ate of it. He rather caused those who ate of it to be joyful because of this discovery.
(The Gospel of Truth)

15  Having abolished in his flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances; for to make in himself of twain one new man, so making peace;

16  And that he might reconcile both unto God in one body by the cross, having slain the enmity thereby:

When Peter was explaining how Christ had opened a way for Gentiles to obtain salvation without the Law, he reminded them how Jesus had healed “all that were oppressed of the Devil” (Acts 10:38). ‘Oppressed’ meaning literally ‘held down’, is he hinting that the people Jesus helped had been hopelessly in bondage to the Jewish system? “Him that had the power of death, that is the Devil” (Heb. 2:14) may refer to the fact that “the sting (power) of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the (Jewish) Law” (1 Cor.15: 56; see also Rom. 4:15; 5:13;7:8, where ‘the Law’ that gives power to sin is clearly the Jewish law). Bearing in mind that the ‘Devil’ often refers to sin and the flesh, it seems significant that ‘the flesh’ and ‘sin’ are often associated with the Mosaic Law. The whole passage in Heb. 2:14 can be read with reference to the Jewish Law being ‘taken out of the way’ by the death of Jesus [A.V. “destroy him that hath the power of death”]. The Devil kept men in bondage, just as the Law did (Gal. 4:9; 5:1; Acts 15:10; Rom. 7:6-11). The Law was an ‘accuser’ (Rom. 2:19,20; 7:7) just as the Devil is.

One of the major themes of Galatians is the need to leave the Law. “You have been called unto liberty... for all the Law is fulfilled... this I say then (therefore), Walk in the Spirit, and you shall not fulfil the lust of the flesh. For the flesh lusts against the Spirit... so that you cannot do the things that you would”. It was because of the Law being impossible for sinful man to keep that is was impossible to obey it as one would like. “But if you be led of the Spirit, you are not under the Law”. This seems to clinch the association between the Law and the flesh (Gal. 5:13-18). The same contrast between the Spirit and the Law/flesh is seen in Rom. 8:2-3: “The Law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus has made me free from the law of sin and death. For what the Law (of Moses / sin) could not do...”. The Law indirectly encouraged the “works of the flesh” listed in Gal. 5:19-21, shown in practice by the Jews becoming more morally degenerate than even the Canaanite nations, and calling forth Paul’s expose of how renegade Israel were in Romans 1.

Gal. 5:24-25 implies that in the same way as Jesus crucified the Law (Col. 2:14) by His death on the cross, so the early church should crucify the Law and the passions it generated by its specific denial of so many fleshly desires: “They that are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with the affections (AVmg. “passions”) and lusts”. This seems to connect with Rom. 7:5: “When we were in the flesh the motions (same Greek word, ‘affections’ as in Gal. 5:24) of sins, which were by the Law, did work in our members”. “When we were in the flesh” seems to refer to ‘While we were under the Law’. For Paul implies he is no longer ‘in the flesh’, which he was if ‘the flesh’ only refers to human nature.

Hebrews 2:14 states that the Devil was destroyed by Christ’s death. The Greek for ‘destroy’ is translated ‘abolish’ in Ephesians 2:15: “Having abolished [Darby: 'annulled'] in His flesh the enmity, even the law of commandments contained in ordinances”. This would equate the Devil with the enmity, or fleshly mind (Rom. 8:7) generated by the Mosaic Law; remember that Hebrews was written mainly to Jewish believers. The Law itself was perfect, in itself it was not the minister of sin, but the effect it had on man was to stimulate the ‘Devil’ within man because of our disobedience. “The strength of sin is the Law” (1 Cor.15:56). “Sin taking occasion by the commandment, deceived me, and by it slew me (Rom. 7: 8,11). Hence “the wages of sin (stimulated by the Law) is death” (Rom. 6:23). It is quite possible that the “sin” in Romans 6, which we should not keep serving, may have some reference to the Mosaic Law. It is probable that the Judaizers were by far the biggest source of false teaching in the early church. The assumption that Paul is battling Gnosticism is an anachronism, because the Gnostic heresies developed some time later. It would be true to say that incipient Gnostic ideas were presented by the Judaizers in the form of saying that sin was not to be taken too seriously because the Law provided set formulae for getting round it. The Law produced an outward showing in the “flesh”, not least in the sign of circumcision (Rom. 2:28).

There is a frequent association of sin (the Devil) and the Mosaic Law throughout Romans (this is not to say that the law is itself sinful- it led to sin only due to human weakness). A clear example of this is found in Romans 6 talking about us dying to sin and living to righteousness, whilst Romans 7 speaks in the same language about the Law; thus “he that is dead is free from sin... you (are) dead indeed unto sin” (Rom. 6:7,11) cp. “You also are become dead to the Law” (Rom. 7:4). Other relevant examples are tabulated below:

Romans 6 (about sin)
Romans 7 (about the Law)
“Sin shall not have (anymore) dominion over you: for you are not under the Law” (:14)
“The Law has dominion over a man... as long as he lives” (:1 )
“Dead indeed unto sin” (:11)
“She is loosed from the Law” (:2).
“Being then made free from sin” (:18)
“She is free from that Law” (:3)
“As those that are alive from the dead... you have your fruit unto holiness” (:13,22), having left sin.
“You should be married to another, even to him who is raised from the dead, that we should bring forth fruit unto God” (:4), having left the Law.
“Neither yield your members as instruments of unrighteousness unto sin (as a result of sin having dominion over you)" (:13,14).
“When we were in the flesh, the motions of sins, which were by the law, did work in our members... but now we are delivered from the law” (:5,6).
“Therefore... we also should walk in newness of life” (:4).
“We should serve in newness of spirit, and not in the oldness of the letter” of the Law (:6).

“For what the Law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending His own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin” (Rom. 8:3) - cp. Gal. 4:4-5, “Made of a woman, made under the Law (cp. “sinful flesh”) to redeem them that were under the Law”. The drive of Paul’s argument in its primary context was that having been baptized, they should leave the Law, as that was connected with the sin from which baptism saved them- it introduced them to salvation by pure grace in Jesus. The Hebrew writer had the connection in mind when he wrote of “carnal ordinances” (Heb. 9:10; 7:16). To be justified by the Law was to be “made perfect by the flesh”, so close is the connection between Law and flesh (Gal. 3:2,3). “We (who have left the Law)... have no confidence in the flesh (i.e. the Law). Though I might also have confidence in the flesh...” (Phil. 3:3-4), and then Paul goes on to list all the things which gave him high standing in the eyes of the Law and the Jewish system. These things he associates with “the flesh”.

Paul summarizes this argument in Colossians 2, where, in the context of baptism and warning believers not to return to the Law, he argues “If ye be dead with Christ (in baptism) from the rudiments of the (Jewish) world, why, as though living in the (Jewish) world, (i.e. under the Law) are ye subject to (Mosaic) ordinances...?” (:20). The Law was “against us... contrary to us” (Col. 2:14) - hence it being called an adversary/Satan. The natural Jews under the Mosaic Law, as opposed to the Abrahamic covenant regarding Christ, are called “the children of the flesh” (Rom. 9:8). Similarly those under the Law are paralleled with the son of the bondwoman “born after the flesh” (Gal. 4:23). Paul reasons: “Are you now made perfect by the flesh?... received you the Spirit by the works of the Law?” (Gal. 3: 2,3) - as if “by the flesh” is equivalent to “by the law”. Now we can understand why Heb. 7:16-18 speaks of “The Law of a carnal commandment... the weakness and unprofitableness thereof”. Not only is the word “carnal” used with distinctly fleshly overtones elsewhere, but the law being described as “weak” invites connection with phrases like “the flesh is weak” (Mt. 26:41). Rom. 8:3 therefore describes the Law as “weak through the flesh”.

"The god of this world"
If Scripture interprets Scripture, “the god of this world (aeon)” in 2 Corinthians 4: 4 must be similar to “the prince of this world (kosmos)” (Jn. 12:31; 14:30; 16:11). Both the Jewish age [aeon] and kosmos ended in A.D. 70. In the context, Paul has been talking in 2 Cor. 3 about how the glory shining from Moses’ face blinded the Israelites so that they could not see the real spirit of the law which pointed forward to Christ. Similarly, he argues in chapter 4, the Jews in the first century could not see “the light of the glorious (cp. the glory on Moses’ face) gospel of Christ” because they were still blinded by “the god of this world” - the ruler of the Jewish age. The “prince” or “God” of the “world” (age) was the Jewish system, manifested this time in Moses and his law. Notice how the Jews are described as having made their boast of the law…made their boast of God (Rom. 2:17,23). To them, the Law of Moses had become the god of their world. Although the link is not made explicit, there seems no reason to doubt that “the prince of this world” and “Satan” are connected. It is evident from Acts (9:23-25,29-30; 13:50,51; 14:5,19; 17:5,13; 18:12; 20:3) that the Jews were the major 'Satan' or adversary to the early Christians, especially to Paul. Of course it has to be remembered that there is a difference between Moses’ personal character and the Law he administered; this contrast is constantly made in Hebrews. Similarly the Law was “Holy, just and good”, but resulted in sin due to man’s weakness - it was “weak through the flesh”, explaining why the idea of Satan/sin is connected with the Law. Because of this it was in practice a “ministry of condemnation”, and therefore a significant ‘adversary’ (Satan) to man; for in reality, “the motions of sins... were by the Law” (Rom. 7:5)

The tree of knowledge thus comes to represent the Law - because “by the law is the knowledge of sin” (Rom. 3:20). The fig leaves which Adam and Eve covered themselves with also represented the Law, seeing they were replaced by the slain lamb. Their initially glossy appearance typifies well the apparent covering of sin by the Law, which faded in time. The fig tree is a symbol of Israel. It seems reasonable to speculate that having eaten the fruit of the tree of knowledge, they made their aprons out of its leaves, thus making the tree of knowledge a fig tree. Both the tree and the leaves thus represent the Law and Jewish system; it is therefore fitting if the leaves were from the same tree. It is also noteworthy that when Christ described the Pharisees as appearing "beautiful" outwardly, he used a word which in the Septuagint was used concerning the tree of knowledge, as if they were somehow connected with it (Mt. 23:27).

The law was the tree. It has power to give the knowledge of good and evil [for without it we would not know sin nor could we become "as gods" setting ourselves up as gods in the temple of god (our bodies)]. It neither removed him from evil, nor did it set him in the good, but it created death for those who ate of it [there is no salvation available from the works of the law according to the “letter” but the “spirit” of the law was life for those who discerned it as an allegory pointing to the Savior and the power of sonship]. For when he said, "Eat this, do not eat that", it became the beginning of death [This Command was the groundwork for the great task of creating sons.  Shortly after the precept Adam was given his first taste of free will and his conscience failed him and as a result construction could now begin on the greatest temple (not made with hands) ever created!]. (Philip 75)

Sunday 7 April 2019

The Election and the Calling The Tripartite Tractate

The election shares body and essence with the Savior, since it is like a bridal chamber because of its unity and its agreement with him. For, before every place, the Christ came for her sake. The calling, however, has the place of those who rejoice at the bridal chamber, and who are glad and happy at the union of the bridegroom and the bride. The place which the calling will have is the aeon of the images, where the Logos has not yet joined with the Pleroma. And since the man of the Church was happy and glad at this, as he was hoping for it, he separated spirit, soul, and body in the organization of the one who thinks that he is a unity, though within him is the man who is the Totality - and he is all of them. The Tripartite Tractate

The two classes of believers

There are two classes of believers the one the fellowservants, and the other the brethren, The brethren are fellowservants, but all the fellowservants were not brethren -- even as true believers are Christians, but all christians so-called are not true believers. Eureka 

The distinction is, of course, based upon Matt. 22:14.

thus being consubstantial with the Saviour
here means simply to be of the spiritual substance
like him, and specifically of the substance of his
spiritual body

The Pleroma in the Odes of Solomon

The Use of Pleroma in The Odes of Solomon

The Father of knowledge (gnosis) is the Word (logos) of knowledge (gnosis).
He who created wisdom is wiser than His works.
And He who created me when yet I was not knew what I would do when I came into being.
On account of this He was gracious to me in His abundant grace, and allowed me to ask from Him and to benefit from His sacrifice.
For He it is who is incorrupt, the perfection (Pleroma) of the worlds and their Father.

A few places where the the equivalent of Pleroma occurs (in Syriac) in a somewhat theological sense.

Ode 1 Your fruits are full and complete; they are full of Your salvation....
Ode 6:10 For it spread over the surface of all the earth, and it filled everything.
Ode 7:7 The Father of knowledge is the Word of knowledge.
For He it is who is incorrupt, the perfection of the worlds and their Father.
13 Because He it is that is incorrupt, the fullness of the ages and the Father of them. 
Ode 7:13 For towards knowledge He has set His way, he has widened it and lengthened it and brought it to complete perfection.
Ode 9:4 For in the will of the Lord is your life, and His purpose is eternal life, and your perfection is incorruptible.
Ode 11:23 Indeed, there is much room in Your Paradise. And there is nothing in it which is barren, but everything is filled with fruit.
Ode 17:7 And He who knew and exalted me, is the Most High in all His perfection.
18 You are my God, falsehood and death are not in Your mouth; only perfection is Your will.
Ode 19:3 Because His breasts were full, and it was undesirable that His milk should be ineffectually released.
19:5 Then She gave the mixture to the generation without their knowing, and those who have received it are in the perfection of the right hand.
Ode 23:4 Walk in the knowledge of the Lord, and you will know the grace of the Lord generously; both for His exultation and for the perfection of His knowledge.
Ode 23:21 And the letter became a large volume, which was entirely written by the finger of God.

Ode 26:7 Even from the crest of the summits and unto their extremity is His perfection.
Ode 36:2 And made me stand on my feet in the height of the Lord, before His perfection and His glory, while I was praising Him by the composition of His songs. 
Ode 36:6 And He anointed me with His perfection; and I became one of those who are near Him.

Ode 3 speaks of the “members of the Lord” as if referring to something like the gnostic Pleroma

The Pleroma has consecration and redemtion

Ode 9:4 For in the will of the Lord is your life, and His purpose is eternal life, and your perfection is incorruptible.

For in the good-pleasure of the Lord your life exists, and His thought is the life that is for ever; and incorruptible is-verily your fullness-of-perfection. 

imperishable is your Pleroma/fullness  here perfection is parallel to etenal life 

Your fullness-of-perfection: The Odes of Solomon sometimes uses the words 
Perfection, fullness, complete with the idea of consecration.Hence the Syr. here rendered "fullness-of-perfection" (which is a form of Heb. "full") means (Thes. 2128, and comp. 4210) (i) "complete," (2) "perfection," (3) "consecration."

The thought of a full and perfect redemption of mankind in the course of which humanity is developed "to a full-grown Man" (comp. Eph. 4:13) while still remaining a babe. This full-grown humanity, or "fullness of perfection," he cannot attain except by receiving it from the "fullness of perfection" of Him who (Eph 1:23) "filleth all in all." 

the totality the completion the perfection and fulfilment of the whole body the total number of persons in connection with the angels and the church of divine perfection the totality of aeons whole of the divine sphere or Pleroma   

In the second of these senses it represents (Deut. 33:8 (Syr.)) "Thummim," or " Perfection." 

Ode 6:10 For it spread over the surface of all the earth, and it filled everything.

In Hebrew thought, God filled all things by His Presence, His Spirit, His glory and His Wisdom*^ philo, who bridges the gap between Hebraic and Hellenistic thought, speaks frequently of the omnipresence of God, or His filling all things by means of His Spirit, or the Logos, or Wisdom, or His Providence, or His Powers 3. Philo, Legum Allegoria, III, ii, 4; De Gigantibus, vi. 27-28; De Specialibus Legibus, I, iii, 18; De Vita Mo'sTs, II, xliii, "S38; and many other places*

Ode 36:6 And He anointed me with His perfection; and I became one of those who are near Him.

Here the Messiah is given the fullness of the Most High 

Ode 19:3 Because His breasts were full, and it was undesirable that His milk should be ineffectually released.

Ode 19 Then She gave the mixture to the generation without their knowing, and those who have received it are in the perfection of the right hand.

The metaphor may seem crude to our occidental minds, but such language as "the Divine Word, the milk of the Father,"  

in their choice of the word to convey the thought of "the fullness of God," "the fullness in Christ," and the fullness imparted to believers.

again notice the link  perfection,  consecration.and redemption

Ode 1 Your fruits are full and complete; they are full of Your salvation....

Ode 11:23 Indeed, there is much room in Your Paradise. And there is nothing in it which is barren, but everything is filled with fruit.

your fruits full of your salvation

"the joint fruit of the Pleroma," and "Sophia, mother of all living creatures," and " the Jerusalem that is... Sophia whose spouse is the joint fruit of the Pleroma

The Pleroma and Gnosis

7:7 The Father of knowledge is the Word of knowledge.
For He it is who is incorrupt, the perfection of the worlds and their Father.

13 Because He it is that is incorrupt, the fullness of the ages and the of them.

7:13 For towards knowledge He has set His way, he has widened it and lengthened it and brought it to complete perfection.

Ode 23:4 Walk in the knowledge of the Lord, and you will know the grace of the Lord generously; both for His exultation and for the perfection of His knowledge.

Ode 23:21 And the letter became a large volume, which was entirely written by the finger of God.

The Pleroma as a place

the father of knowlage is called the pleroma of the aeons and their father 
towards gnosis he laid out his way and brought it over the whole pleroma

Ode 7:13 For towards knowledge He has set His way, he has widened it and lengthened it and brought it to complete perfection.

towards gnosis he laid out his way and brought it over the whole pleroma this brings out the spatial character of this fullness

Ode 23:4 Walk in the knowledge of the Lord, and you will know the grace of the Lord generously; both for His exultation and for the perfection of His knowledge.

The walk of life of a person's inner life. the terms way walk and complete perfection perfection of His knowledge or pleroma  are connetied 

The expression the perfection of His knowledge or the pleroma of his gnosis means Yahweh's own knowledge and also the pleroma of the Most High 

Ode 26:7 Even from the crest of the summits and unto their extremity is His perfection. 

Ode 26:7 And from the top of the hills to their utmost bound is His perfection. 

Compare Ps 112:5 LXX 5  (112:5) Who is as the Lord our God? who dwells in the high places,

the summits or hills literally the heights of the Most High define the space of his pleroma 

Ode 36:2 And made me stand on my feet in the height of the Lord, before His perfection and His glory, while I was praising Him by the composition of His songs. 

the pleroma in its divine fullness of being and fullness of essence with spatial dimension

we often find in Philo's writings some form of that familiar phrase, "containing all things but not contained

"There is a third signification (of place), in keeping with which God Himself is called a place, by reason of His containing all things and being contained by nothing whatever, and being a place for all to flee into, and because He is Himself the space which holds Him; for He is that which He Himself has occupied, and nought encloses Him but Himself. I, mark you, am not a place but in a place and each thing likewise that exists; for that which is contained is different from that which contains it, and the Deity, being contained by nothing, is of necessity Itself Its own place.  Philo, De Somniis, I, xi, 63-64. Likewise, see De Migrations AbraEami, xxxii, 181-182; xxxv, 192>; De ConTusione Lingu'arum, xxvii, 136; and Legum Allegoria, I, xiv, 44.

The Pleroma as the nature of God

Ode 16:17 And by their portion one from another they complete the beauty of God.

Ode 17:7 And He who knew and exalted me, is the Most High in all His perfection.

18 You are my God, falsehood and death are not in Your mouth; only perfection is Your will.

the basic idea behind Pleroma, as used of God, was doubtless the concept of a Deity who was all-perfect, who was limited by nothing, "who contained all things but was not contained,"'

Ode 11:2 For the Most High circumcised me by His Holy Spirit, then He uncovered my inward being towards Him, and filled me with His love.

Ode 12:1 He has filled me with words of truth, that I may proclaim Him.

To fill of a person's inner life

Saturday 6 April 2019

What is the Serpent

What is the Serpent?

 the word “serpent” immediately suggests an animal, so it Is NATURALLY taken LITERALLY. Understood SPIRITUALLY it is a FIGURE OF SPEECH.

XV. (53) "And they were both naked, both Adam and his wife, and they were not ashamed; but the serpent was the most subtle of all the beasts that were upon the earth, which the Lord God had Made:"{11}{#ge 2:25; 3:1.}--the mind is naked, which is clothed neither with vice nor with virtue, but which is really stripped of both: just as the soul of an infant child, which has no share in either virtue or vice, is stripped of all coverings, and is completely naked: for these things are the coverings of the soul, by which it is enveloped and concealed, good being the garment of the virtuous soul, and evil the robe of the wicked soul. (54) And the soul is made naked in these ways. Once, when it is in an unchangeable state, and is entirely free from all vices, and has discarded and laid aside the covering of all the passions. Philo of Alexandria

XVIII. (71) "Now the serpent was the most subtle of all the beasts which are upon the earth, which the Lord God Made."{21}{#ge 3:1.} Two things having been previously created, that is, mind and outward sense, and these also having been stripped naked in the manner which has already been shown, it follows of necessity that pleasure, which brings these two together, must be the third, for the purpose of facilitating the comprehension of the objects of intellect and of outward sense: for neither could the mind, without the outward sense, be able to comprehend the nature of any animal or of any plant, or of a stone or of a piece of wood, or, in short, of any substance whatever; nor could the outward sense exercise its proper faculties without the mind. Philo of Alexandria

the aforesaid serpent is the symbol of pleasure, because in the first place he is destitute of feet, and crawls on his belly with his face downwards. In the second place, because he uses lumps of clay for food. Thirdly, because he bears poison in his teeth, by which it is his nature to kill those who are bitten by him.

The serpent In whose mouth Is the poison of death, signifies a sinful person according to God's definition (given in Psalm 140:1-3; Romans 3:12-13; Matthew 12:34).

 The name “serpent” was attributed to those MEN who Jesus and John the Baptist had encountered (Matthew 3:7; 12:34; Luke 3:7).  Hence when the word serpent is used to indicate an intelligent  reasoning creature having guile (deceit) in his mouth, It SIGNIFIES a man exhibiting such characteristics.

The serpent a symbol of the Sense consciousness or the desire of unspiritualized man for sensation. He seeks satisfaction through the appetite. By listening to the serpent of sense, man falls to his lowest estate.

The "serpent" of the garden of Eden is the outward senses of consciousness or the carnal mind. The serpent is the symbol of pleasure. It may also be called desire, and sensation, or the activity of life in an external expression, apart from the Source of life.

Friday 5 April 2019

The meaning of senses Proverbs 20:12

The meaning of senses

Proverbs 20:12 - The hearing ear, and the seeing eye, Yahweh hath made even both of them.

The sense consciousness--A mental state formed from believing in and acting through the outward senses. It is the consciousness of sin, linked with emotions (body) and feelings (mind).

1 John 2:16 For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride of life—is not from the Father but is from the world.

the meaning of this is clear the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world.

"Operating upon the brain [physical], it [indwelling sin] excites the 'propensities', and these set the 'intellect' [mental], and 'sentiments' [moral] to work. The propensities are blind, and so are the intellect and sentiments in a purely natural state; when therefore, the latter operate under the sole impulse of the propensities, 'the understanding is darkened through ignorance, because of the blindness of the heart'". (Elpis Israel, p . 127)

Decisions based on outward appearances--the senses--produce conflicting thoughts

Romans 8:7 The mind governed by the flesh is hostile to God; it does not submit to God's law, nor can it do so.

Romans 8:6 The mind governed by the flesh is death, but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.

And again, when the spiritual mind is awake the outward sense or carnal mind is extinguished; when we discard the exercise of our senses; and so, when the mind rises up again and awakens, the outward sense is put an end to.

Therefore, the awakening of the outward senses or the carnal mind is the sleep of the spiritual mind or the Christ consciousness; and the awakening of the spiritual mind is the discharge of the outward senses from all occupation. Just as when the sun arises the brightness of all the rest of the stars becomes invisible; but when the sun sets, they are seen. And so, like the sun, the spiritual mind or the Christ consciousness, when it is awakened, overshadows the outward senses, but when it goes to sleep it permits them to shine.

Reuben Chapter 1
2:1 And now hear me, my children, what things I saw concerning the seven spirits of error, when I repented.
2:2 For seven spirits are established against man, and they are the sources of the deeds of youth.
2:3 And seven other spirits are given to man at creation, so that by them every human deed is done.
2:4 The first is the spirit of life, The first spirit is of life, with which man's whole being is created.. The second is the spirit of sight, with which comes desire.
2:5 The third is the spirit of hearing, with which comes instruction. The fourth is the spirit of smell, with which is given tastes for drawing air and breath.
2:6 The fifth is the spirit of speech, with which comes knowledge.
2:7 The sixth is the spirit of taste, for consuming food and drink; by it comes strength, because in food is the substance of strength.
2:8 The seventh is the spirit of procreation and intercourse, with which comes sin through fondness for pleasure.
2:9 For this reason, it is the last in order of creation, and the first in that of youth, because it is filled with ignorance, and leads the youth as a blind man into a ditch, and like an animal over a cliff.

Reuben Chapter 2
3:1 In addition to all these there is an eighth spirit of sleep, with which is brought about the trance of nature and the image of death.
3:2 With these spirits are mingled the spirits of error.
3:3 First, the spirit of fornication resides in the nature and in the senses; the second, the spirit of insatiableness, in the stomach; the third, the spirit of fighting, in the liver.
3:4 The fourth is the spirit of flattery and trickery, in order that through excessive effort one might appear to be at the height of his power.
3:5 The fifth is the spirit of pride, that one may be boastful and arrogant. The sixth is the spirit of lying, which through destructiveness and rivalry, handles his affairs smoothly and secretively even with his relatives and his household.
3:6 The seventh is the spirit of injustice, with which are thefts and acts of rapacity, that a man may fulfil the desire of his heart; for injustice works together with the other spirits by the taking of gifts.
3:7 And with all these the spirit of sleep is joined which is that of error and fantasy.
3:8 And so every young man is destroyed, darkening his mind from the truth, and not understanding the Law of God, nor obeying the admonitions of his fathers as befell me also in my youth.
3:9 And now, my children, love the truth, and it will preserve you: hear you the words of Reuben your father.

Thursday 4 April 2019

Jesus as a Concept Romans 5:10

Jesus as a Concept
Jesus as a Principle

Christ is a principle or Christ as an abstraction rather than an historical figure a symbolic representation of the divine mind in mortal existence. Jesus represents God's idea of man in expression; Christ is that idea in its fullness.

Jesus Christ is himself a symbol of the thought processes of life's trials and tribulations that we go through. Therefore we see Jesus Christ going through all the trials, internal temptations and thoughts of each of us, "yet without sin," that is, the Lord Jesus overcame the power of sinful thoughts by quoting Scripture.

Jesus, the man of Nazareth, revealed that this high and lofty consciousness of the divine mind is possible to believers, and as a result He is a symbol or principle a representation of what we can become. We are exhorted to "have this mind in you, which was also in Christ Jesus," which implies that all true believers may display a change of consciousness as He did. To come to this realization requires careful training of the thoughts.

The mind that was in Christ Jesus was the mind of God, so we know that we must be perfect even as the Father in heaven is perfect. The carnal mind or the consciousness of sin, has to be put away and the Christ consciousness established in its place.

In the individual consciousness the meaning of Jesus' being born in Bethlehem of Judea is that the principles of the Gospel have taken hold of the mind (Bethlehem), and through praise (Judea) have brought the Christ into manifestation.

We may "put on the new man," that is, bring forth Jesus Christ in ourselves. First we must put away the "old man" of the flesh by reading the Scriptures. The second step is to live the Gospel in thought, word, and deed. The Christ is the man that God created, the perfect-ideal man, and is the real self of all true believers; Jesus Christ is this Christ self brought forth into perfect expression and manifestation.

It is wise to protect the newborn spiritual consciousness from contact with Herod, the personal ego. Herod seeks "the young child to destroy him," but under the guidance of Spirit no harm comes to the Child. He is taken down into Egypt (down into the protected places of the memory), to remain until the personal ego destroys itself; then the Christ child is free to come forth and to express.

Jesus in the Temple, at the age of twelve years, represents the growing consciousness within us that we are sons of God (Luke 2:40-52).

The temptation of Jesus (Matt. 4:111) took place within Himself. The place of overcoming is within the consciousness of man. When we follow Jesus we rise above the demands of the flesh-and-the outward senses the consciousness of sin.

The forty days' fasting in the wilderness is in all respects a renouncing of the demands of the consciousness of sin. In fasting, we in our thoughts live above the material needs. We are "led up," and our appetites and passions are for a season in such an eclipse that we think that they will trouble no more. But "he afterward hungered." There is a return to the consciousness of sin.

We are tempted by the “devil” of our own lusts or evil desires, and so was Jesus. We are not tempted by an evil being suddenly standing next to us and prompting us to sin - sin and temptation come “from within, out of the heart of man” (Mk. 7: 21). They “proceed” out of the heart, as if to stress that the heart really is their source. Jesus was tempted just as we are (Heb. 4:15,16), and in this sense He becomes for us a legitimate example.

The Devil is the ego, the consciousness of sin or the carnal mind which has been built up in ignorance and disregard of the divine law.

To worship the Devil is to submit to self-will, the ego, or the carnal mind. To serve God we must build up spirituality in mind, body, and affairs.

In Luke 4:16-30 Jesus represents the Spirit of truth declaring its mission and power in the place of its development, the common, everyday mind. The highest spiritual Truth may be flashed into your mind while you are performing the commonest duties of life. Nazareth is a type of inferiority; it was considered a community of commonplace, if not disreputable, people. "Can any good thing come out of Nazareth ?" Yet in that mediocre village Jesus was reared--and in any one's mediocre mind the Christ Truth is expressed.

We know many of the trite statements of Truth so well that we find it hard to conceive that they are the mighty power that can relieve us from the bonds of sense. "Is not this Joseph's son?" But in no other place shall we find the Truth that sets free. The power that brings salvation from every ill is within us; it is in the gracious words of the indwelling Christ. "To-day hath this scripture been fulfilled in your ears." Every day our inner ears are filled full of this Truth. We know the right, we know the just, we know the pure. This is "this scripture" that is written on the heart.

Do you ask for a sign of power? Do you want miraculous healing without fulfilling the law of right thinking and right doing? Then you are not receiving the Christ Spirit rightly. You are seeking the temporal instead of the eternal, and if you let this superficial phase of mind rule, you will reject the Christ Spirit and cast it out of your midst.

Mark 9:2-13 tells us of the Transfiguration: Jesus went up into a mountain to pray, and was there transfigured. Prayer always brings about an exalted or rapid radiation of mental energy, and when it is accompanied by faith (Peter), love (John), and judgment (James) there is a lifting up of the soul that electrifies the body; the raiment (the aura surrounding the body) shines with glistening whiteness.

The presence of Moses and Elijah represents the two processes through which this picture of the purified man is to be objectified or demonstrated in real life. The first is the Mosaic or evolutionary process of nature through which there is a steady upward trend of all things. This evolutionary process is part of a spiritual plan for the redemption of the human race from its fallen state. The other is the ability of the prophet Elijah, or spiritual discerner of Truth, to make conditions change rapidly on the mental plane, to be in due season worked out in substance. Thus we are told in the lesson that Elijah must first come and restore all things. The mind must first be set right through spiritual understanding; then comes the demonstration.

Peter's proposing to erect three tabernacles carries out this idea of a substance manifestation for each; but Peter's ideas were vague as to the process, hence the accompanying voice out of the cloud, "This is my beloved Son: hear ye him."

To "tell no man what things they had seen, save when the Son of man should have risen again from the dead," means that we shall not consider these mental pictures as real, and so. discuss them. They represent ideas that can be understood only when they are demonstrated in the risen man. ("These mental pictures" refers to visions, dreams, and all that we see in our high moments of illumination.)

Jesus rode an ass into Jerusalem (Matt. 21:1-9). In Oriental countries, in Bible times, kings and rulers rode the ass, and this animal was the accepted bearer of royalty. In the man-consciousness, the animal part is typified by the ass, and its being ridden into Jerusalem by Jesus portrays the mastery by the I AM of the animal nature and its manifestation (colt). Jerusalem means habitation of peace and signifies spiritual consciousness.

"The Lord hath need of them." These forces of the so-called lower nature in man are necessary to his full expression. A man or woman with the animal nature asleep or suppressed is but partially alive. The vital fires are in this department of being, and it is in this purifying furnace that the material man is melted and the pure gold extracted.

Those who live on the plane of mere animal generation do not ride the ass into Jerusalem--they are not masters of their animal nature--but, like the beasts of the field, are mere slaves to animal desire.

In the regeneration these animal forces are turned inward; they become powers in a higher field of action. To fulfill this part of their mission they must be wholly weaned from animal habits. So long as the animal rules, the man is a slave. When the I AM man takes charge of the body, a new order of things is inaugurated. The vitality is no longer wasted in mere sense gratification. Through high and pure ideals the whole consciousness is raised to a higher standard. Through interior thought concentration the subtle essences of the organism are transmuted to vibratory energies and become important factors in building up that pure body which is to triumph over death.

Let not the one who is indulging the sense man in his animal ways think that he is on the royal road into Jerusalem. "Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord." The Lord is the higher ruling principle in man; it is to be in supremacy, not the lower. There is much sophistry among a certain school of metaphysicians who love to live the life of the animal, and call it God. The Master metaphysician said, "That which is born of the flesh is flesh; and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit." Another said, "Be not deceived; God is not mocked: for whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap. For he that soweth unto his own flesh shall of the flesh reap corruption; but he that soweth unto the Spirit shall of the Spirit reap eternal life."

The characteristics of the ass are meekness, stubbornness, persistency, and endurance. To ride these is to make them obedient to one's will. The outer thoughts, or people, recognize that some unusual movement of mind is going on, and they fall into line. Their cry, "Hosanna," means save now. A change of base from personal willfulness to meekness and obedience stirs the whole consciousness, or city, and there is questioning about the cause. Simply saying in the silence, "Not my will, but thine, be done," often stirs up a commotion, and then there is questioning as to the cause. The answer is, "This is the prophet [one who states the spiritual law], Jesus [the I AM], from Nazareth [place of development] of Galilee" (life activity). Rendered in modern metaphysical terms this would read, "This is the supreme I AM stating the law of Spirit in development of life action."

The betrayal of Jesus means, to individual consciousness, the appropriation and use in sense ways of the life and substance that the higher self imparts to us in our periods of exaltation. When we deny the bondage of sense and affirm our spiritual freedom, we set free in the organism an energy or vibratory force that goes through the nerves to every part. This is the eating of the Passover with our disciples. But these disciples, or faculties, are not all in understanding of the divine law and they do not use this spiritual force in right ways. This is shown by their desire to have first place (see Luke 9:46), implying carnal ambition. Jesus demonstrated humility and a willingness to serve--which is always a sign of the true disciple--by washing their feet.

Judas represents the personal self of the body, whose center of consciousness is in the sex function. This consciousness is directly connected with appetite and feeling. This is indicated by the phrase, "He that dipped his hand with me in the dish, the same shall betray me." In body consciousness that which we eat is finally appropriated by this function and deposited in the seminal glands as a reserve supply for the whole nervous system. In this respect its office is good, and when its work is well done, physical harmony ensues.

Judas develops selfishness and sense desire, however. He steals the substance that should go to the upbuilding of the organism, and wastes it in sexual and other sense sensations. In this way he is a "thief" and is possessed of "a devil." When the new life from the spiritual fountain is poured into the body, Judas absorbs so much of it that its identity and power are lost in the consciousness, which is typified by the betrayal of the Christ. In the end Judas destroys himself, because he is ignorant of the constructive law.

There is, however, a feeding of all the faculties through descent of the divine life and substance, which is typified by the eating and drinking of the body and the blood of the Master. When we know the ways of Judas we are on our guard and we declare the law for him, and thus pave the way for his final redemption.

At the crucifixion of Jesus it was the human consciousness of a perishable body that died. "Our old man was crucified with him, that the body of sin might be done away, that so we should no longer be in bondage to sin." When the thoughts of sin and death are crossed out, the spiritual truth about life and its manifestation in the body takes form in consciousness. "The Spirit of him that raised up Jesus . . . shall give life also to your mortal bodies." This is pictured in the resurrection of Jesus as an angel of the Lord descending from heaven (the ruling spiritual kingdom) and rolling away the stone from the door of the tomb.

This angel in man's consciousness is the spiritual I AM. "I am the resurrection, and the life." The tomb represents the most negative phase of material thought or human ignorance. The descent of the spiritual ego into consciousness brings divine intelligence and power within and without. "His appearance was as lightning, and his raiment white as snow."

The first affirmation of the I AM for its body is that it is not under any limitation of material thought; that it is free with the freedom of Spirit. "He is not here: for he is risen." The second affirmation of the I AM for its body is a swift and universal proclamation of omnipresence and activity in all realms of consciousness. "Go quickly, and tell his disciples, He is risen . . . and . . . goeth before you into Galilee; there shall ye see him: lo, I have told you."

Jesus resurrected the body that was crucified; this is forcibly brought out in the Scripture account of the crucifixion. He did this by putting into the body the true state of consciousness. "Put on the new man, that after God hath been created in righteousness and holiness of truth."

We can resurrect our body just as Jesus resurrected His. "Follow me." We can overcome, and make our body like the body of Jesus. We must do this. "The law of the Spirit of life in Christ Jesus made me free from the law of sin and of death." We resurrect our body by putting a new mind into it--the mind of Spirit. "Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind." Ignorance and sin kill the body; understanding and righteousness bring it to life.

The three days that Jesus was in the tomb represent the three movements of mind that are involved in overcoming error. First, nonresistance and humility, second, the taking on of the divine activity, or receiving the will of God; third, the assimilation and fulfillment of the divine will.

In individual consciousness the "Sabbath" is perfect rest in Spirit, after the cleansing of mind that follows the introduction and activity of Truth principles. Jesus arose "late on the Sabbath day."

In consciousness the two women, "Mary Magdalene and the other Mary," symbolize the feminine side of the soul forces of Jesus (manifest man). "Mary Magdalene" signifies love redeemed. "The other Mary" represents pure life thoughts welling up from the subconsciousness.

The "angel of the Lord" represents positive spiritual thought of the perfect law of life. The "watchers" at the tomb are the thoughts that tend to limit the activity of the body consciousness. The "disciples" represent ideas of Divine Mind that have centers of action in body consciousness.

The spiritual meaning of the two women's being sent to tell the disciples of the resurrection is that divine love and life must be felt in the centers of action in body consciousness as a result of spiritual thought (angel) before a demonstration or resurrection is complete (Matt. 28:1-10)

When Jesus left this planet, at His ascension; He came back by the power of the holy spirit in an invisible presence in the inner spiritual realms of a believer. John 14:23 Jesus answered and said to him, “If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word; and My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.

Jesus will become visible to those who "put on Christ" and manifest their new personality. Many are conscious of His presence in some degree, but they do not see Him as He is, because they have not brought their faculties of perception up to His standard. When we awake in His likeness (see Psa. 17:15) then we shall see Him as He is. This does not come about through the soul's leaving the body, but it is accomplished by refining, spiritualizing, and raising both soul and body to higher degrees of power.

Jesus exists in a realm of being where the limitations of form are dissolved. He lives in the heart and mind. When we have identified ourselves with the Christ consciousness as Jesus identified Himself with it, we shall see Him face to face in His spiritual reality.

Many have seen Him in this mind mirage; but we shall not see Him as He is until we awake in His likeness. If the mind has grasped the capacity and power of spiritual ideas, then the appearance of Jesus will be understood.