Episode:Jesus Faces Death—The Crucifixion (Part 10)

From Symmetry of Soul

On millions of inhabited worlds in our local universe, tens of trillions of evolving creatures who may have been tempted to give up the moral struggle and abandon the good fight of faith, have taken one more look at Jesus on the cross and then have forged on ahead, inspired by the sight of God’s laying down his incarnate life in devotion to the unselfish service of man.

Listen to the broadcast

Keywords: Urantia, Jesus, Supreme Devotion, Divine Love, Eternal Survival

Summary by Kermit

This episode concludes our arc “Jesus Faces Death.” Consisting of three series totaling thirty-one episodes our arc occupied us for over seven months, altogether spanning less than 72 of the Master’s final hours of his life, death, and burial.

Commentary after Review

We attempted to more fully understand how a mortal’s faith grasp of the fact of the Fatherhood of God and its correlated truth, the brotherhood of man, enables man to recognize and internalize the reality of human salvation. We emphasized that such recognition is tied to eternity and not to a temporal survival. It is by such a grace gift faith grasp that the creature is able to eternalize self. But grace gifts must be validated in experience through creature choice.

We also touched once again on the issues of Jesus’ spirit which he commended into the Father’s hands. Listen to the episode for the details.

188:5. Lessons from the Cross

In this section and the previous one, the midwayers address the reader in terms (sin, forgiveness, salvation, devotion, redemption) which traditional Christians might identify as apparently consistent with the old time religion (ghost-cult). However, careful reading and reflection of the second paragraph is required to discern the midwayer rehabilitation of these traditional terms into the new wine of the 5th ER. The midwayers are able to do this because this traditional vocabulary contains threads of truth, which they can highlight and re-present for our recognition.

We utilized the hierarchy of the levels of meaning (LoM) to examine the midwayer discussion of mercy and love. Mercy (applied love) is found on the 5th LoM. Love (realization of divine fellowship) is on the 6th LoM, transcending the 5th by transcending self, i.e. moving from selflessness to God-likeness.

A caller inquired as to how love destroys evil in distinction to mercy which sets it aside. Evil has no objective independent existence. It appears and is maintained by means of the willful subjective faculties of the creature. In taking hold of love a creature must release hold on evil, which disappears due to its cosmic unreality.

Jesus’ love and mercy as manifested in his life of service and the stunning manner in which he met death on the cross continues to inspire men and women not only of our world, but also on tens of millions of worlds throughout our universe to turn from sin and evil to goodness and righteousness. If laying down his life for his friends were not enough, he lays down his life for his enemies as well, even as he dares to forgive his executioners. Further, imagine the Master’s love that comes from a place where there is neither friend nor enemy. Imagine this place where no offence is taken which would even require forgiveness.

Note that his manner of suffering and death arouses the devotion of not only human beings but also angels. Reflective men and women witnessing the Master’s life and depth of suffering on the cross can no longer be justified in allowing themselves to complain about the inconveniences and petty problems of existence.

Reflecting on the full environmental context into which the Master bestowed himself, in order for him to be accessible to all of humanity, of necessity his death would be such that would touch the lowest experiential levels of mankind.

This entire arc has been a contrast between the primitive evolutionary religious interpretation of the Master’s mission and the enhanced revelation of truth we study on SoS. We must guard against our becoming self-righteous and calling out for criticism the practitioners of the primitive versions of the Master’s visitation.

In conclusion, we know that the death on the cross was not to effect man’s reconciliation to God but to stimulate man’s realization of the Father’s eternal love and his Son’s unending mercy, and to broadcast these universal truths to a whole universe.

Notes by Brad

  • This author reports, these days, gone forever are battles in his mind about "is God real?"
    • But replaced now by "how do I live properly in this world? Serving two masters?"
      • A move from childhood to adolescence.
      • The difference between apparent conflicts and real conflicts.
      • This takes courageous and independent cosmic thinking!
    • Education is such a crucial foundation in this life. Most of us had a woefully deficient education.
      • But good news: your soul isn't branded with unfortunate dogmas burned into it.
      • At worst, when you reawaken on the mansion world, your morontia mind is seated on a soal that is a bit... torqued, let's say.
    • As we have neuroses borne of genetics here, our coming morontia could have "neuroses" borned of a problematic soul foundation.
      • But like neuroses in this life, neuroses in the next life can be dealt with.

  • Recall the value of the death on the cross: "the superb manner and matchess spirit he met death."
    • The outer life fact (the death) was juxtaxposed with an inner life value (the manner in which he met death).
      • From the thing and value juxtaposed, meaning superadditively arises.
    • The meaning and value were part of Jesus' soul. As they are for us.

  • Who is the savior?
    • Jesus is a definitive saver (savior). But (CRUCIAL!) he doesn't do your saving for you, he showed you how he did it for himself.
      • He won't reach into you and pry your fingers from something unfortunate you've willingly grasped.
      • He shows us the way, and we can choose to do likewise.
    • You can be a saver too. Choose to have something worth saving, as nothing of survival value is lost.
    • Can you be someone else's savior? No, never!
    • At best, you can be your own saver, then people can observe this and "choose to do likewise."
    • So, paragraph 9 is trying again to rehabilitate "the salvation of one's fellows."
    • Can you think of survival not as trivial temporal survival? But of eternal survival?
    • So many humans look for temporal salvation. "Will I wake up when I die?"
      • But temporal salvation really isn't that interesting given an infinite cosmos.
      • Eternal salvation is more interesting! "Where is eternity heading for me?"
    • Survival means "living above." Can you "live above" time itself, above the entire ascension scheme?

  • This week is section 5. How does it differ from section 4?
    • A bit more condescension to conventional thoughts about Jesus and the cross.
    • Beware: section 5's words,because of that condescension, can lull you into old wineskins.
      • Words like devotion
      • A massive paragraph like paragraph 2 is almost too much to take at once, so you might be tempted to "leave well enough alone" and fall back to old notions of sin, sacrifice, and atonement.
    • Indeed, our authors seem to all but invite us to embrace old concepts like sin forgiveness, redemption, etc, and remain placidly satisfied.
      • But that isn't what they want!
      • They're offering a path forward for someone stuck in the old wineskins. But oh leaving old wineskins is arduous work!

  • The word devotion throughout section 5
    • The shepherd is devoted FOR them, not TO them.
      • So it's an inner-life phenomenon.
    • Jesus has devotion FOR them, whether they accept it, know it, or not.
    • Each time it occurs you could substitute the full phrase devotion to supreme values.
      • Also known as genuine sincerity.

  • Language comes from the cosmos.
    • Human language is full of truth, in spite of ourselves.
      • We hold on to problematic words for millennia. Why? Because by grace there is some core thread of truth in it.
    • Let's rehabilitate some re- prefixed words!
      • Consider the re- prefix differently.
      • Take it not so much as "temporally before," but as "bound back to eternity."
      • So the word is no longer about buyback or paybacks--temporal issues.

  • Levels of meaning explain how forgiveness of love (6th level) transcends forgiveness of mercy (5th level).
    • We often think of forgiveness as setting something aside.
    • Forgiveness of mercy isn't chopped liver, it's pretty high up there. But there is something even greater: forgiveness of love
    • Can you set yourself aside (be selfless) to aim higher for the highest level of meaning? God-like-ness?
    • The first 5 levels of meaning are all self-oriented,albeit they become more and more objective as you ascend.

  • Plant your feet in eternity, not time
    • If you definitively grasp--take hold of--truths of eternity, they will shine through
    • Inexorably, the fruits of the spirit will manifest in your life.
    • People who subsequently observe you generally will fall into two camps:
      • A) Wow! How can I do likewise?
      • B) Wow! That person is beside themself.
    • In eternity, one can transcend the apparent friend-enemy dichotomy.
      • True friendship is transcendent of time.
      • Hence how Jesus could approach Pilate as a "friend". Not a temporal friend, but a child of God and therefore an eternal friend.

  • Who is the barbarian in paragraph 11?
    • Look in the mirror. You're no savage, perhaps, but on your best day you're likely only semi-civilized.
    • Do you talk atonement? Debt modality? You resemble a barbarian.
    • But even if in fact you resemble a barbarian, in truth there is a child of God there.
    • Can you let go of the unfortunate barbaric casings you've placed around this thread of truth?

  • Without a God nucleus, your petty self (a molehill) will become everything (a mountain)
    • Consider so many fictitious grievances today.
      • "This coffee is served at the improper temperature."
      • "That's a microaggression."
    • Try to reflectively think about Jesus on the cross, to contextualize you day's supposed grievances.
    • Is the cross a magical talisman for you? Or is it a reflective device to contextualize your day?
      • What about this big blue book of ours? Same question.