John 8.31-59 Some insights into spiritual growth 3

“I tell you for certain anyone who sins is a slave to sin.” (v.34)

Jesus’ mission was to preach the Good News which is: “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me, because he has anointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to proclaim release to the captives and recovering of sight to the blind, to set at liberty those who are oppressed, to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord.”

In this passage from Luke 4.18-19 Jesus is letting us know that we are slaves, poor, captives, blind and oppressed. The remedy is the “acceptable year of the Lord” which can be understood as the Kingdom of God. Can you imagine there being bondage of any kind in the Kingdom of God? He says: “The time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand (right here right now); repent (change your mind), and believe in the gospel (good news).” Mark 1:15

We find Jesus talking here to believers (v.31) who do not understand what he is saying. Sound familiar? (v.43), “why can’t you understand what I’m talking about?” I’m reminded of Jesus’ statement on the cross “Father forgive them for they know not what they do.” Luke 23.34

What is the sin we are slaves to? Sin from the Greek; hamartia means to miss the mark. The commentator from the online Blue Letter Bible says of this word; “It is the most comprehensive term for moral obliquity.” Maybe what this commentator is pointing out here is that the word hamartia itself is a morally oblique term. It is very possible this word is used on purpose to describe an amoral condition of blindness or ignorance. That we have not offended God for the simple reason we are unable to reason. We cannot see the target (God) and we have no clue as to how get there. Is this a moral failing or just the condition we find ourselves in?

Some of the synonyms for obliquity are: ambiguous, darkness, inscrutability, murkiness, mysteriousness, and opaqueness. Of course we keep missing the mark because we cannot see the mark. Is it not inscrutable that theologians would take such a morally ambiguous word and create an entire moral system based on the idea that God hates what spiritually blind people do? Of course God does not hate anyone and he is no more offended by our actions then we are of mentally compromised people. We just don’t know what we are doing. And this ignorance has us imprisoned, slaves to our insanity. There are no Venal sins, no mortal sins, no sins of omission and no sins of commission. These theological terms describe only one condition our inability to see.

There really is only one sin from which all our mistakes have their root. We mistakenly believe we are separate from ALL there is. God. We believe in the impossible. We believe in something that can never be. There are not thousands of choices for our happiness there is only one; choose God or we are stuck in our blindness.

Here is what Jesus’ contemporary theologians had to say:

39 Jesus said, “For judgment I have come into this world, so that the blind will see and those who see will become blind.”

40 Some Pharisees who were with him heard him say this and asked, “What? Are we blind too?”

41 Jesus said, “If you were blind, you would not be guilty of sin; but now that you claim you can see, your guilt remains. (John 9 NIV)

This was said after healing the man born blind.

What we have done is cloak our ignorance in the fig leaves of theological thinking and convinced ourselves we can see. “Abraham is our father.” “We have just one father, and he is God.” said the people. Because of what they were taught they believed they could see.

For many of us our minds are full of theological theories and because we accept them and have called them MINE we are very attached to them. Did you know that your most important possessions are your beliefs? Aren’t we willing to kill for them even die for them? Unfortunately history proves this all to true. With this insight we see that the people in Jesus’ day were just like us. I find it interesting that at the end of Luke 4 and the end of John 8 the people are trying to kill Jesus. Isn’t this something we need to watch for in our lives? How do we react when someone threatens our theology? Do we demonize them? Once we do it is a very short path to the killing fields.

For the past 20 years I ave been a professional caregiver mostly working with people with Alzheimers and dementia. During this time I have been hit, accused of stealing, thrown up on, yelled at, told to leave etc. I would have not lasted very long in this work if I had taken any of this personally. These people no longer know what they are doing. In comparing our intelligence and spiritual insight to the creator of the known universe does it not seem that the human race has a case of Alzheimers? Now into this scenario comes a caregiver, a comforter who tells us we aren’t in our right minds. And why? because we have made a mistake, we believe that we are separate from God. This belief has given us dementia and we now think we are OK. However deep down inside there is a small bit of remembrance of how things used to be. It is this memory that Jesus is speaking to. It is like during those times of clarity when the one with Alzheimers remembers the name of her husband and begins to talk of all the wonderful things they used to do together.

What keeps us a prisoner? My mistaken belief that I can get back to God without help—”I can see.” This is where all of our insane actions (sins/mistakes) come from. I will have more than I need if I steal it. And we have forgotten we are sons of the King. I will have more love in my life with just one more lover. And we have forgotten that God is Love.

This way of interpreting hamartia in the light that God is not offended in any way brings us to a place where we must take another look at the death of Jesus and its purpose. But that is for future posts. Why if God is not offended did all those animals have to be sacrificed and why did Jesus have to be “sacrificed”? Just something to think about. And what of guilt?

Day 33 of The 40-Day Prosperity Plan

SRF_Garden_8-3419

Day 33 of The 40-Day Prosperity Plan.

“I am Conscious of the Inner Presence as my lavish Abundance. I am conscious of the constant activity of this mind of infinite prosperity. Therefore my consciousnesses is filled with the Light of Truth.”

To be mindful—have my mind full of the Inner Presence to be constantly aware of God in my life, of the Holy Spirit: the Teacher, the Comforter, the Healer, the Provider that is already in me and who wants to work through me. This Spirit wants to and is guiding my desires for the fulfillment of my life. My life is a blessing to me and a blessing to others. A blessing to me so I can give what I have been given.

This “constant activity” is propelling me on and providing encouragement, for it is courage I need to step out and move forward into my dreams, knowing I am not alone in my endeavors because God is not only working in my life but also in the lives of others who can benefit from my life and the services I have to offer.

This Infinite Mind—Infinite Creativity—will have no problems helping me to create my life the way I want it. There is a passage in the New Testament: Philippians 2.13for God is at work in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure.Those things I want to do, are a blessing to others, placed in me by God according to the talents he has given me. This is the will/desire part then the “to Do” part, the manifesting, bringing into the world that which has been willed by God and me. God’s will is always Good and a blessing for everyone.

Thank you, God.

Day 31 of The 40 Day Prosperity Plan

Borrego, Slot Canyon

Borrego, Slot Canyon

Day 31 of The 40 Day Prosperity Plan

“God is lavish, unfailing Abundance, the rich, omnipresent substance of the universe. This All-Providing Source of infinite prosperity is individualized as me-The Reality of me.”

What else is there but God? It has been said that the difference between Jesus and us is that for Jesus there was only God. He saw no difference and no separation between him and his Father. He said; “I only do what I see the Father doing.” and “I don’t do anything on my own, the Father does all things through me.” also, “I and the Father are one.” For Jesus there was no other Life, no other relationship and saw only God in everything.

Some people in recent times have tried to ‘prove’ Jesus never existed or they say they are searching for the ‘historical Jesus’ a Jesus less than is recounted in the stories of the New Testament, a more human non miraculous being. They claim the Apostles made up, embellished and surrounded with superstition the actual person of Jesus.

But I think it would take a person or several, in this case, who were themselves at or above the consciousness level of the one they created to have had such a long standing effect upon the history of the world. How could a first grader just learning math write a fiction about such a person as Einstein. And if they made Him up or embellished the events why would they die for a fiction?

Of course there are many theologies written about Him; who he was and his actual relationship to God but these are mans attempts to understand someone incomprehensible. What did he mean when he said; “I and the father are one.”? The beauty of Jesus is that we can decide for ourselves. We don’t have to subscribe to any particular ideology. He does say we can do the same and greater things by following his example of relationship with the Source of all Life.

The only thing that mattered to him was God and then he said you go and do the same. When nothing else matters but God we to can write the ‘story’ of Jesus as expressed through me, “the Reality of me”

This is the Word/Substance becoming flesh in us.

Day 23 of 40 day Prosperity Plan

Cherokee Purple Tomatoes from the Abundance of my garden

Cherokee Purple Tomatoes from the Abundance of my garden

Day 23 of 40 day Prosperity Plan

“I am conscious of the Inner Presence as my Lavish Abundance. I am conscious of the constant activity of this Mind of infinite Prosperity. Therefore, my consciousness is filled with the Light of Truth.”

To be God Conscious? “Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus.” Paul

And from Jesus:

“I and the father are one.”

“I don’t do anything on my own but the Father does everything through me.”

“I want you to be One just as the Father and I are One.”

These statements give a hint of the Mind of Christ Jesus and look at what his Lavish Abundance demonstrated using His Mind of Infinite Prosperity. His life shows our potential when we have the mind of Christ Jesus.

I have said before that God does only one thing—Give. Isn’t that all that he did while here on earth? It is important to remember we cannot give unless we have received. We have been told that it is good to be a joyous giver which is true and we also must be a joyous receiver. Joy and gratitude should accompany all our work, compensation and distributing of the wealth God gives us.

God is offering to give us lavishly so we can give lavishly. We are not required to give it all away we are required to have an open and generous heart. The rest will take care of itself.

Day 22 of 40 day Prosperity Plan

SRF Garden 6 2294 Orange flower getting the last rays of the sun

SRF Garden 6 2294 Orange flower getting the last rays of the sun

Day 22 of 40 day Prosperity Plan

“I lift up my mind and heart to be aware, to understand and to know that the Divine Presence I AM is the Source and Substance of ALL my Good.”

The following quote from The Course in Miracles is my lesson for today:

Lesson 267 – My heart is beating in the peace of God

Surrounding me is all the life that God created in His Love. It calls to me in every heartbeat and in every breath; in every action and in every thought. Peace fills my heart, and floods my body with the purpose of forgiveness. Now my mind is healed, and all I need to save the world is given me. Each heartbeat brings me peace; each breath infuses me with strength. I am a messenger of God, directed by His Voice, sustained by Him in love, and held forever quiet and at peace within His loving arms. Each heartbeat calls His Name, and everyone is answered by His Voice, assuring me I am at home in Him.

“Let me attend Your Answer, not my own. Father, my heart is beating in the peace the Heart of Love created. It is there and only there that I can be at home.”

There is a sense of security in the idea of ‘Home’. The ideal Home is a place of belonging, welcoming, always provided for, a place of Peace and comfort and the feeling of being unconditionally loved and accepted. At home as a child I feel connected to “…the source and substance of all my good”

How this is experienced for each of us depends on the level of consciousness of the parents at the time they were raising us.

I think deep within every being is implanted the notion of “Home”. The exceptions to this ideal only proves its presence by the longings we feel in life for its fulfillment. We try in marriage to build what was lacking in our growing up and hope to gain unconditional love, Peace, acceptance, joy and goodness only to find we fall short of this feeling here as well.

Many of us came to the spiritual path looking for the fulfillment of this promise. After trying many different sources of comfort and experiencing failure we turn to God the Father/Mother of a new family.

As a friend told me about her experience in Church: “They all seemed so happy there.”

Thank you Mother/Father God for taking me in.

Day 21 of 40 day Prosperity Plan

SRF Garden 6 2288, "IN TO"

SRF Garden 6 2288, “IN TO”

Day 21 of 40 day Prosperity Plan

For those of you who have recently joined me on my Prosperity journey, this is inspired by The Abundance Book by John Randolph Price. His forty day plan involves 10 meditations repeated 4 times. These posts are the journaling he recommends we do following each days meditations.

“God is lavish, unfailing Abundance, the rich omnipresent substance of the universe. This all-providing Source of infinite prosperity is individualized as me—The Reality of me.”

On day fourteen I was contemplating our physical being and how it was made out of other things that in themselves are not our physical being. That who I am and also what everything else is, is made from trillions of things that are not us. That everything is empty of an individual self, and yet somehow this other stuff has all congealed into what we experience in the physical.

We are also mental and Spiritual beings. The physical is the lowest energetic vibration in what we ‘see’ or ‘think’ of as ‘solid’. Molecular science points out we are not solid but are made from a whole universe of space in a microcosm of constant movement. It turns out we are not solid at all.

The next level up in the ladder of consciousness is the soul level. This is made of things we do not see; mind, will and emotions. This ‘soul’ is also made of trillions of things–thoughts are ‘things’ on the mental level. to demonstrate this to yourself pay attention to your thoughts and see if you can have two thoughts occupying the same mental space at the same time. If you have spent anytime in meditation you will have discovered that one thought follows another just as cars follow each other on the freeway. You will also discover that you can go between each thought to a place of ‘no thought’.

In the physical world there are accidents when two cars try to occupy the same space but in the mind there are no accidents it is only because thought moves so fast they seem to be simultaneous. Our mental life is also made up of millions of thoughts that are not us. I am not these thoughts I’m writing today. I am not all the thoughts that flow through my mind each second. I am not what I think I am. Zen Buddhism’s “no Mind is a place free from the tyranny of thought. The place of transcendence of the mind where we can understand immediately and directly without the interpretation of thought. This place is the “….Reality of Me.”

In Christianity this is called the “Mind of Christ”, as Paul says “have this mind in you which was also in Christ Jesus.” The Spiritual Mind—The Reality of Me—is on the Spiritual level which is not the ‘me’ of the body or the mind it is the ME as created by God who individualized itself as each one of us. This Real Me is all those qualities we use to describe God in positive terms: Loving, Good, Peace, Joy, Abundance, Unlimited, All knowing, All Powerful, All Present, Light.

Meister Eckhart calls this Real Me the Aristocrat. Here are a few things he says about this Aristocrat: “He is taken up with the Love of God.” “He has forgotten the things of this temporal life and has been caught up into the likeness of God, having become a child of God. there is no higher grade, nothing beyond this. It is eternal rest and blessing–the end of the inner new man, eternal life.” God’s Son or Idea is like a flowing spring in the core of the soul.”

He starts out his essay this way: “Our Lord says in the gospel [Luke 19.12] ‘A Certain noble man went into a far country to receive for himself a kingdom, and to return.’ In these words our Lord teaches how noble man is by nature created and how divine, by grace, he may aspire to be. This is the point of a major part of the Holy Scripture.”

“The Reality of Me.”