Episode:Jesus Goes Public—Preparation and Preaching (Part 2)

From Symmetry of Soul

The outstanding feature of James Zebedee’s personality was his ability to see all sides of a proposition. Of all the twelve, he came the nearest to grasping the real import and significance of Jesus’ teaching. He, too, was slow at first to comprehend the Master’s meaning, but ere they had finished their training, he had acquired a superior concept of Jesus’ message, the gospel of the kingdom.

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Keywords: Urantia, Jesus, Simon Peter, James Zebedee, John Zebedee

Opening thought: The essence of management, according to Peter Drucker: "...To make people capable of joint performance through common goals, common values, the right structure, and the training and development they need to perform and to respond to change." This seems to apply to the enterprise with the 12 apostles as well.

Note: Justin Armstrong filled in for Andrea Barnes.

Summary by Kermit

Commentary after Review

Continuing the discussion on temperament and character, temperament is the aggregate of qualities of the material self, derived from the influences of nature and nurture. Character is the composite of qualities of an individual acquired through experience and personal choosing, capable of ongoing existence in the soul, to the degree it is in conformity with the cosmos and God’s will. The quality of personality management over one’s temperament can be either positive or negative, good or bad. The nature of personality management (personal choices) determines the nature of the character qualities of the soul.

Thus, a soul’s resurrection on the mansion worlds will embody a spectrum of aspects positive and negative, depending on the personal choices of the individual, inasmuch as the fabricator of the soul, the Thought Adjuster, is subservient to our will (personality management). A resurrected soul consisting solely of positive or good aspects is an erroneous yet widely held idea. We are disabused of this by a Brilliant Evening Star’s description of arriving survivors on mansion world number one as being possessed of “varied defects of creature character and deficiencies of mortal experience” [47:3.8]. Much of Jesus’ influence on the twelve was in leading them to spiritualize their more positive temperamental aspects into cosmic character.

Our pre-reading discussion covered other topics well worthy of revisiting in the archive.

139:2.6 Simon Peter (cont.)

Simon Peter’s interior contradictions, his vacillating nature, his extremes of cowardice in the face of ridicule and courage when faced with a frontal attack were vivid examples of a man in sore need of top-down personality management otherwise known as self-control. We are told Jesus knew Peter’s faults were of the head and not of the heart.

SoS took this opportunity to attempt correction of the old wineskin interpretation of “head” and “heart”. In the flawed parlance of our times the “head” represents the rational function of our adjutant mind and “heart” consists of the level of the feelings. In actuality and as utilized in the 5th ER the head can be thought of as the Adjutant mind, with the heart representing the spiritualized mind encircuited in the Holy Spirit, far transcendent of the feelings on the second of the levels of meaning.

Following Pentecost Peter continued to make the mistake of trying to convince the Jews that Jesus was the Jewish Messiah. He was ever confused between the concepts of Jesus as the Jewish Messiah, favored by him, Christ as the world’s redeemer held by the gentiles, and Jesus’ revelation of God, the loving Father of all mankind, the genuine gospel of the kingdom. It was the gentile concept which ultimately absorbed Jesus’ teaching of the kingdom, “the spiritual ideal of individual righteousness and the concept of man’s divine fellowship with God”, resulting in a formal institutional church, substituting for the individually spirit-led brotherhood of the kingdom [170:5.9].

Friendship loyalty was Peter’s great strength of character. He was also the best orator of the twelve and an inspirational leader of men. He did more than any one man aside from Paul to establish the kingdom and send its messengers to the four corners of the earth in one generation. He courageously met his own crucifixion in Rome, while his wife, his partner in the work of extending the kingdom was thrown to the wild beasts.

139:3 James Zebedee

James Zebedee was the same age as Peter. He was something of a cross between Peter and Andrew. He had two sides to his temperament, both characterized by strong feelings. Vehement with a fiery temper when his indignation was aroused, he often excused his anger under the pretense of righteous indignation. James’s outstanding feature of personality was his ability to see all sides of a proposition. His one great weakness was spells of unaccountable silence. However, he was a balanced thinker and planner and came nearest to grasping the real import and significance of Jesus’ teaching. He most admired Jesus’ sympathetic affection.

Even though he was the first of the apostles to yield up his life for the kingdom he is said to have lived his life to the full. It is high praise to his courage at his execution that his accuser and informer was so touched that he joined himself to the disciples of Jesus.

139:4 John Zebedee

Along with James, John had known Jesus longer than any of the other apostles. He was the youngest of the twelve. John’s function as personal agent of Jesus in regard to family matters and his assignment to be one of the three personal aids to Jesus along with Peter and James gave rise to the well-known attribution of being the “disciple whom Jesus loved”. Obviously, the Master would never have been guilty of such favoritism.

Jesus’ directed Andrew as chief of the apostles to assign two or three of his associates to be with him and to remain by his side, to comfort him and minister to his daily needs, thus were Peter, James, and John so assigned. This is truly the request of a genuine human undertaking—an arduous mission and not something an exalted fetish-man would require.