Episode:Last Ministry of the Master—Detour for Lazarus (Part 7)

From Symmetry of Soul

When a prayer is apparently unanswered, the delay often betokens a better answer, although one which is for some good reason greatly delayed. No sincere prayer is denied an answer except when the superior viewpoint of the spiritual world has devised a better answer, an answer which meets the petition of the spirit of man as contrasted with the prayer of the mere mind of man.

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Keywords: Urantia, Jesus, Prayer, Material Petitions, Spiritual Answers

Summary by Kermit

Commentary after Review

SoS entertained some follow-up topics pertaining to the Lazarus resurrection. For example, did the myriads of beings directly involved in the re-animation of Lazarus require rehearsal? From other disclosures in the revelation we know of e.g., universe reflectivity, the underlying coordination of beings and energies enabling such complex transactions appears to take place well-nigh automatically. Why do the midwayers characterize the uniqueness of this event describing it as the “first and last” instance of mortal creature resurrection in the likeness of the physical body of death rather than simply the first and only? SoS suspects it is for added emphasis, inasmuch as the claims of such re-animations both before and after the bestowal abound in history and tradition.

We speculated on what manner of motivations existed in the minds of the Sanhedrists who so resolvedly hardened their hearts to reject Jesus, and the appealing truths of the gospel in the face of the undeniable fact of Lazarus’s rising from the dead. The hardening of the heart requires an act of will. Such an act by an individual can only be rescinded by another act of will (by that individual), absent which is beyond even God’s intervention. Such unreflective spiritualizing of the individual’s frame of mind obscures the precipitating reason for such choice.

168:4 The Answer to Prayer

That Jesus declined to discuss details of the resurrection of the dead SoS ascribes to the apostles’ lack of scientific sophistication as well as his desire to avoid encouraging them from attempting to do likewise. We know from both the New Testament and Christian history this was not successful. The apostles all recalled Jesus’ statement about Lazarus’s sickness not really being to the death, yet he did die. They were mindful of the sisters’ prayer for their brother’s physical healing. Thus, did they have many questions about the answer to prayer which the midwayers summarized in a list of ten items.

Preparatory to discussing these items SoS referred to [91:4.3] and [91:8.11] as a foundation and focus for consideration of these ten points. First, that prayer which seeks nothing for the one who prays or his fellows is a spiritual technique which leads to the level of true worship. Second, God answers prayer with an increased revelation of truth, and enhanced appreciation of beauty, and an augmented concept of goodness. Prayer is not valid as a material technique for effecting changes in external life affairs, albeit it ever serves as a sound psychologic procedure in realizing the reserve powers of human nature which are stored and conserved in the unconscious realms of the human mind aside from its religious implications and its spiritual significance.

A caller inquired as to the oft referred to unbroken communion Jesus maintained with his Paradise Father. SoS suggests that such unbroken communion is actually a state of worship attained through the spiritual technique of genuine prayer.

Many factors condition the nature, time and circumstances of the answer to prayer:

  • Prayer as an effort of the finite mind to approach the Infinite involves such a cosmic differential that an observable continuity of material phenomena between the making of a prayer and reception of a spiritual answer is impossible of detection.
  • Unanswered prayer may actually be a delay designed to answer the petition of the spirit instead of the prayer of the mind.
  • Answers to spirit indited prayers in time may have to await an increased capacity for receptivity.
  • Some answers to prayer can only be received when the individual has attained spirit status.
  • Prayers of even God-knowing persons may be distorted and deformed by contamination in the spiritualized mind that an adequate answer may not be recognized.
  • True prayers are addressed to spiritual beings and receive only spiritual answers.
  • Only prayer born of the spirit and nurtured by faith can receive an answer.
  • The child is always empowered to petition the parent, and the parent is obligated to delay, modify, or otherwise postpone the answer to another stage of spiritual ascension when superior wisdom so dictates.
  • Answers to prayers of spirit longing will certainly be on deposit awaiting requisite cosmic attainment and ability to recognize and appropriate them.
  • It is true, ask and you shall receive, even so time-space factors must always figure in the personal reception of the full answers to the prayers of time-space creatures.

168:5 What Became of Lazarus

This final section of the final paper in our series concludes the detour for Lazarus. It is easy to see why Jesus may have been conflicted in his decision to raise Lazarus from death. Lazarus’s life immediately became more burdensome, being almost a sideshow attraction for the sincere and merely curious alike. Following the crucifixion of Jesus, and after bitter persecution at the hands of the Jewish rulers he was sentenced to die by the Sanhedrin. He fled in haste to Philadelphia to join Abner and crew, joined later by his sisters. He lived almost another two decades working with Abner and the Christian church dying at 67 years of age of the same ailment that carried him off the first time.

Elsewhere in the revelation we learned that David Zebedee, following his marriage to Jesus’ youngest sister Ruth, joined Abner and Lazarus in Philadelphia working for the Christian church. Having noted the rift between Abner and the Jerusalem church leaders, Peter, Paul, and James, Jesus’ brother, we further see why the entire Philadelphia Christian leadership including David Zebedee, Abner, and Lazarus find no mention in Christian church history.

Notes by Brad

  • Resurrection rehearsal? Maybe. But we really cannot conceive how skilled these supermaterial beings are. How long they've been around doing their jobs.
    • We, meanwhile, have to rehearse just showing up to a scheduled meeting on time. We have very little innate coordination.

  • This author wonders: What was REALLY in the mind of a Sanhedrist, sincerely?
    • Jesus' kingdom notion will bring the wrath of the Romans.
    • I'm scared and want to stop the thing that is scaring me.
    • Jesus threatens my power--I won't be needed if what he says about the kingdom is true
    • Jesus will reduce my lofty position interacting with Rome.
    • Jesus is bringing change--violating tradition--and that can at worst invite God's wrath and at best be very uncomfortable for us all.
    • Jesus is in league with devils.
    • I'm mad that Jesus isn't smiting the Romans and delivering us materially.
  • But this wasn't just their material mind. Their hearts (spiritized mind) was hardened--framed a certain way.
    • The details and rationalizations take care of themselves...
    • Too much rigidity of mind.
    • It's not a thought or feeling--it's your BEING. Made in the image of God? Sure, as God IS love, we can BE our choice.
    • The only person who can change my choice is myself.
    • A choice is an eternity framing.

  • What is prayer???
    • far better to deduce what prayer is not.
    • Only by letting go of misconceptions can you find, humbly, through being grown, what it is.
    • Can you consecrate your inner life to the universal harmony of God the Mother, instead of scientific dictation, social usage, and religious dogma?

  • Prayer is not (PERIOD) a material technique.
    • But it always a psychologic procedure
    • And genuine prayer CAN be a potential spiritual technique if you get the upper domain of hourglass analogy of mind (the heart) involved properly.
    • See [91:4.3] for advice on a prayer being a material or spiritual technique
      • A prayer that asks for nothing for the prayer or other fellows, it tends toward worship. It's nothing material, so it can be something spiritual.
    • The answer to any prayer is relative to concepts of truth, beauty, and goodness. Purely inner life. Purely of eternity.
    • Prayer is so misunderstood!

  • Prayer is either a spiritual technique (true) or it isn't (false)!
    • It might still be a very effective psychologic procedure. But not a true prayer--a spiritual technique
      • And our authors here are trying to not chide us too much on praying, so we can at least not have that psychologic procedure shattered leaving us lost.

  • Where is unbroken communion possible? Inner life only! In the outer life it's always a broken continuity in "material phenomena."