Episode:Jesus in Galilee—Crisis and Consequences (Part 2)

From Symmetry of Soul

Said Jesus to the assembled congregation: “Verily, verily, I say to many who sit before me this day, you are confronted with the necessity of choosing which way you will go. Today, many of you stand at the parting of the ways.” Jesus spoke out with less reserve because he knew the hour had come when he could do nothing more to prevent an open rupture of relations with the religious leaders.

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Keywords: Urantia, Jesus, Proclaim Spiritual Liberty, Teach Eternal Truth, Foster Living Faith

Summary by Kermit

Commentary on the Review

In preparation to finishing our reading of Jesus’ epochal sermon, we reiterated the point made previously that Jesus delivered this sermon as God incarnate addressing the orthodoxy of all Jewry. In so doing Jesus puts the cleaving sword of truth into play as he challenges this assembled leadership with the example of Jeremiah and his treatment at the hands of the priests and teachers for prophesying the political downfall of Israel, asking what they will do with him who warns them of the day of their spiritual doom. So it is that the revelation of truth has the effect of starkly separating the righteous from the unrighteous. The bulk of mankind currently drifts along with the material currents of human affairs and while this does not necessarily constitute a spiritual emergency, it does threaten the progress of civilization.

153:2.4 The Epochal Sermon (cont.)

Pressing the leaders, Jesus asks what they seek as evidence of his mission here. Jesus invokes the challenge of Joshua to their forefathers, “Choose you this day whom you will serve.” Here Jesus, as incarnate Deity, raises the stakes highlighting their being at the parting of the ways. Unlike in Joshua’s time their choice is not between Yahweh and lesser gods but between God and self, the true binary choice—bifurcation relative to eternity. Lest we become anxious about our spiritual security in handling the sword of spirit, we are encouraged to double down on humility and eschew all forms of pride.

Jesus continues, drawing sharp distinction between material considerations and spiritual issues. He attempts to clarify the difference between their notions of a material minded Messiah and Jesus' mission to proclaim spiritual liberty, teach eternal truth, and foster living faith. Inasmuch as nearly everyone present failed to comprehend the depth and significance of Jesus’ method of speaking, SoS addressed the question of the point of Jesus’ bestowal mission to a planet so unprepared for the spiritual uplift he came to provide.

At this point in the sermon, the midwayers begin using New Testament writings, particularly the Gospel according to John, wherein we note a profoundly significant modification. John 6:29 says “The work of God is this: to believe in the one he has sent.” In the 5th ER the midwayers omit the word “in”. On this inclusion of the word “in” rests the problem of the difference between believing Jesus, and believing IN Jesus. [196:0.13] “Jesus does not require his disciples to believe in him but rather to believe with him, ...”

To be sure, believing IN Jesus can be a beginning of a believer’s spiritual journey in the Kingdom of Heaven, but it is hardly a stopping place, lest the Heavenly Father’s infinite and eternal nature be out of reach in this life. A caller illustrated how present day religious orthodoxy responds in like manner to the leaders whom Jesus addressed by virtually branding the 5th ER as blasphemous!

Jesus becomes ever more abstruse in his preaching as he proceeds to declare “I am the bread of life!”, further confusing his material minded audience. It is only with the help of the 5th ER and a deeper penetration of that, are we able to begin to understand his meaning. Returning to John’s gospel by comparison we gain further insight into the origin the atonement doctrine and John’s contradictory misunderstanding of the meaning of the flesh and blood of Christ.

153:3. The After Meeting

Following the sermon the perplexed disciples and caviling unbelievers continued to ask questions for another three hours.

Jesus takes great pains to clarify the spiritual meaning hidden within the material symbolism of the bread and water of life. In the midwayer treatment of this explanation we can begin to grasp the truths of Jesus’ spirit of unification (in distinction to his Spirit of Truth), and the Father’s indwelling Thought Adjuster. It is here that we see the point of Michael's bestowal. It is the bestowal of his spirit of unification upon his departure that makes possible the universal bestowal of the Father's gift of Thought Adjusters to all normal-minded mortals on this planet.

Notes by Brad

  • Jesus is trying to get his audience to think about what evidence they're looking for to indict him on.
    • He's saying "look, there's really nothing indictible going on here."
    • But they've exalted the material into the spiritual, so they cannot understand what he is talking about.
    • And because he is incarnate personalized deity delivering this sermon. Because some people have called the question with a spirit energy, they are forced to make a choice between eternity and iniquity. Right there at the sermon.
      • Quite a unique moment in the history of our local universe.
    • "Whom will you serve?" The choice is between serving God, and serving yourself. Righteousness or self-righteousness.
    • The feeding of the 5,000 was deliberate, to call a question. Do you really just want full bellies? Is the fulfillment of the prophets material prosperity really all you want?

  • Historians say the past is alien and unknowable. Even more so is the pre-Pentecost era--no Spirit of Truth as a basic influence we've taken for granted for 2,000 years.

  • Jesus said "believe me", not "believe IN me" as the Bible recorded. Two letters. A world of difference.
    • Believe with Jesus, not in Jesus (which is Jesus-ism)
    • Two letters that have helped divide the world for 2,000 years.
    • And yes, we recognize this is The Urantia Book claiming to authoritatively eliminate this error from the Bible's record of what Jesus said.
      • We won't resolve a debate on that point theologically. Ask yourself if you can challenge assumptions: what is more true? Is it more truthful to believe with Jesus, or believe in Jesus?
      • This author remembers a turbulent adolescence of basically feeling the world was insisting he choose this book or that other book. But this isn't about books at all. It's seeking truth.
    • And yes, it's okay to start out by believing in Jesus. It's a beginning, not an ending. Someday you must graduate.

  • So Jesus brought forth manna from earth a few days earlier, and now says that's not the manna from heaven you seek.
    • He's setting up a fine point so subtle that it takes fine inner-life discrimination to see it. Basically no one in his audience could have his fine of a discriminator.
    • Few today would too. We like free bread. This author always takes the free bread sample at the sandwich shop.

  • Is it possible Jesus knows, in this speech, he is setting up Jesus-ism?
    • This author wonders if it was another fallback, another change of plans. "Well, at least they'll have Jesus-ism."
    • We see he was trying to explain that Pentecost was about to give Thought Adjusters to all. But how could anyone in this audience have gotten such an abstraction?
    • On the other hand, there are no other signs in the 5th ER he was trying to institute Jesus-ism, not really. He was just using an apt symbol (bread); misinterpreting it is just what happened.

  • In the book of John, all of the closing of Jesus speech is summed up as "this bread is my flesh."