"Mysteries of John"
by Charles Fillmore
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METAPHYSICAL BIBLE students recognize in the Gospel of John a certain spiritual quality that is not found in the other Gospels. Although this is not true of all Bible readers, it may be said that those who look for the mystical find it in the language of this book. The book is distinctive in this respect and is so successful in setting forth metaphysical truths that little interpretation is necessary. Only in a few instances does the original writing conceal the deep truths that the student seeks to discern. Written language is at best a reflection of inner ideas, and even though a teacher couples ideas and words as adroitly as Jesus does, elucidation is sometimes difficult.
Nevertheless ideas are catching, and this may be the best reason for publishing another book about this spirit-arousing Fourth Gospel. We are all heavily charged with ideas, and when these ideas are released they spring forth and pass from mind to mind, being "recorded" as they fly, and when they are expressed the whole race is lifted up--if the idea is charged with the uplifting Spirit. Jesus was God's idea of man made manifest in the flesh; so He was warranted in making that dynamic assertion, "I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto myself." Nowhere in all literature has this truth of the unity of God, man, and creation been so fearlessly expressed and affirmed by man as in the Book of John.
Here the question arises as to God's responsibility for all that appears in the flesh, both good and evil, which seems to confound our logic and understanding. We are in human consciousness the fruit of a tree that stemmed from the soil of Being. The laws instituted in the aeons and ages of the past still prevail in the present. Interpreting Being from a personal standpoint, we have ignored the principles and laws at the very foundation of all creation and substituted a personal God, and many contradictions have followed. Now through the unfoldment of the spiritual man implanted in us in the beginning we are discerning the unchangeable laws of the good and the absolute necessity of conforming to them.
So we see that Jesus taught plainly that God functions in and through man and nature instead of being a person somewhere in the skies; also that we demonstrate God by making His Spirit manifest in our life. "He that hath seen me hath seen the Father." Socrates was asked, "What is a good man?" He replied, "A man who does good." Again he was asked, "What is good?" " What the good man does," he replied.
No extended definition of good is necessary to those who follow Jesus; even converted savages understand good and do it. The universal desire among awakened Christians to love God and man is part of the law constantly operating through man when he finds his right relation to God.
The status of evil is that of a parasite. It has no permanent life of itself; its whole existence depends on the life it borrows from its parent, and when its connection with the parent is severed nothing remains.
Apparent evil is the result of ignorance, and when the truth is presented the error disappears. Jesus called it a liar and the father of lies.
Men personalize good and evil in
multiplicity of gods and devils, but Truth students follow Jesus in
recognizing the supreme Spirit in man as the "one God and Father of
John: Chapter 1
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 The same was in the beginning with God. 3 All things were made through him; and without him was not anything made that hath been made. 4 In him was life; and the life was the light of men. 5 And the light shineth in the darkness, and the darkness apprehended it not.
IN PURE METAPHYSICS there is but one word, the Word of God. This is the original creative Word or thought of Being. It is the "God said" of Genesis. The Greek original refers to it in the 1st chapter of John as the logos. The Greek word cannot be adequately translated into English. In the original it denotes wisdom, judgment, power, and in fact all the inherent potentialities of Being. This divine Logos was and always is in God; in fact it is God as creative power. Divine Mind creates under law; that is, spiritual law. Man may get a comprehension of the creative process of Being by analyzing the action of his own mind. First is mind, then the idea in mind of what the act is to be, then the act itself. Thus the Word and the divine process of creating are identical.
Apart from mind nothing can be made. Even man, in his forming and bringing anything into manifestation, uses the same creative process that God used; to the degree that the qualities of the one Mind enter into man's thought in the process his work will be enduring.
The divine idea--the Christ or Word of God--is always everywhere present.
Among the four Gospels that of John is readily discerned by metaphysicians as a symbolical life of Jesus and should appear first in the New Testament, corresponding to the first chapters of Genesis. Quite a few Bible critics so consider it, among them Ferrar Fenton, who gives it first place in his "Complete Bible in Modern English."
John explains that all existence is spiritual, that it comes to man as a gift, and that Christ is its fulfillment. "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God."
"The Word" is the English translation of the Greek logos, which means a thought or concept and also the word that is an expression or utterance of the same. It also involves the logical relation between idea and expression; hence our word logic, which also derives from logos.
Our attention is called to the 1st chapter of Genesis: "And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. And God said, Let there be light: and there was light."
Here in detail, day by day, or period by period, creation is ideated.
The parallel between Genesis and John is shown by the manifestation of the ideal man. In Genesis Adam appears first. In John it is John the Baptist, who is said to "bear witness" to the coming man, Jesus. In Genesis man was given dominion over all things; in John "all things were made through him."
John the Baptist represents the natural man, the physical man, who is the nucleus around which the spiritual man builds. Man may be compared to a house, the foundation being rock, the superstructure lighter material. The rock upon which Jesus built was not material: it was mental; its symbol, Peter, was a mind receptive to spiritual Truth and spiritual substance.
The first Adam was formed of the "dust of the ground," representing radiant substance instead of gross earth.
So John the Baptist was more than the perfect physical man. He was the illumined natural man. He preached and baptized his disciples and with spiritual vision saw the unfoldment of the natural man into the Christ man.
Spiritual man is the true light "which lighteth every man, coming into the world." The world was made by him and yet "knew him not."
There is a creative force constantly at work in man and all creation, but it is not recognized. It is Spirit-mind shining consciously in the minds and hearts of those who recognize it. Those who ignore this light do not "apprehend" it, and to them it is nonexistent.
"But as many as received him, to them gave he the right to become children of God, even to them that believe on his name."
6 There came a man, sent from God, whose name was John. 7 The same came for witness, that he might bear witness of the light, that all might believe through him. 8 He was not the light, but came that he might bear witness of the light.
Man in his darkened, ignorant state dwells in a realm of material thoughts and perceives nothing higher until he arrives at the point in his unfoldment where he is ready to receive understanding of the Christ Truth. Then he enters into the John the Baptist or intellectual perception of Truth. The intellectual perception of Truth by the natural man (John the Baptist) is not the true light (the Christ) but bears witness to the light and prepares the way for its dawning in consciousness.
9 There was the true light, even the light which lighteth every man, coming into the world. 10 He was in the world, and the world was made through him, and the world knew him not. 11 He came unto his own, and they that were his own received him not.
The true light (the Christ or Word) that lights every man coming into the world is and ever has been in man. Even the outer man was formed and came into existence through it. Up to a certain stage in his unfolding man does not recognize this truth; now however this mystery, which is "Christ in you, the hope of glory," is being revealed to the race with more and more clarity and with greatly increased power.
12 But as many as received him, to them gave he the right to become children of God, even to them that believe on his name: 13 who were born, not of blood, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God.
According to the 12th and 13th verses, the same truth that held good for Jesus will hold good for as many as receive Him (the Christ) and believe in His resurrecting power as Jesus believed in it.
14 And the Word became flesh, and dwelt among us (and we beheld his glory, glory as of the only begotten from the Father), full of grace and truth.
Jesus recognized this truth that the Christ, the divine-idea man or Word of God, was His true self and that He was consequently the Son of God. Because Jesus held to this perfect image of the divine man, the Christ or Word entered consciously into every atom of His being, even to the very cells of His outer organism, and transformed all His body into pure, immortal, spiritual substance and life. Thus "the Word became flesh." The resurrecting of His whole being included His body. Jesus entered alive and entire into the spiritual realm.
15 John beareth witness of him, and crieth, saying, This was he of whom I said, He that cometh after me is become before me: for he was before me. 16 For of his fulness we all received, and grace for grace. 17 For the law was given through Moses; grace and truth came through Jesus Christ. 18 No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, he hath declared him.
"The law was given through Moses." Moses represents a phase of the evolutionary process in man. "The law"--the outer commandments--cannot redeem. "Grace and truth came through Jesus Christ"; that is, the real saving, redeeming, transforming power came to man through the work that Jesus did in establishing for the race a new and higher consciousness in the earth. We can enter into that consciousness by faith in Him and by means of the inner spirit of the law that He taught and practiced.
The 18th verse teaches that through the Christ in us we come into an understanding of the Father, since the Son (the Word) ever exists in God, and Father and Son are one and are omnipresent in man and in the universe. Spirit Truth is discerned through Spirit only; not in outer ways or through intellectual perception do we come to know God.
19 And this is the witness of John, when the Jews sent unto him from Jerusalem priests and Levites to ask him, Who art thou? 20 And he confessed, and denied not; and he confessed, I am not the Christ. 21 And they asked him, What then? Art thou Elijah? And he saith, I am not. Art thou the prophet? And he answered, No. 22 They said therefore unto him, Who art thou? that we may give an answer to them that sent us. What sayest thou of thyself? 23 He said, I am the voice of one crying in the wilderness, Make straight the way of the Lord, as said Isaiah the prophet. 24 And they had been sent from the Pharisees. 25 And they asked him, and said unto him, Why then baptizest thou, if thou art not the Christ, neither Elijah, neither the prophet? 26 John answered them, saying, I baptize in water: in the midst of you standeth one whom we know not, 27 even he that cometh after me, the latchet of whose shoe I am not worthy to unloose. 28 These things were done in Bethany beyond the Jordan, where John was baptizing.
In the regeneration two states of mind are constantly at work. First comes the cleansing or denial state, in which all the error thoughts are eliminated. This includes forgiveness for sins committed and a general clearing up of the whole consciousness. The idea is to get back into the pure, natural consciousness of Spirit. This state of mind is typified by John the Baptist, who came out of the wilderness a child of nature whose mission it was to make straight the way for One who was to follow.
This putting away of sin from the consciousness (baptism through denial, plus forgiveness) is very closely allied to the deeper work that is to follow; so much so that to the observer it seems the same. Hence the followers of John, when they saw the works he did, asked if he was the Messiah. His answer was that the One who followed him was to baptize with Holy Spirit.
From this we discern that mental cleansing and the reforms that put the conscious mind in order are designed to prepare the way for that larger and more permanent consciousness which is to follow. This is the denial of "self" or personality. Jesus said, "If any man would come after me, let him deny himself." We are all guilty in a way of undue devotion to personal aims, which are always narrow and selfish. So long as these exist and take the place of the rightful One there is no room for the higher self, the Christ of God.
The recorded "This is the Son of God" is a reference to a matter of first importance in the regeneration. The recognition of man as the Son of God and the establishment in the mind of the new relations between the divine Father and the Son are essential to the process. If we do not affirm our sonship, with all its privileges and powers, we are sure to belittle ourselves and make limitations that prevent us from entering into the fullness of the Godhead. "Be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect."
29 On the morrow he seeth Jesus coming unto him, and saith, Behold, the Lamb of God, that taketh away the sin of the world! 30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man who is become before me: for he was before me. 31 And I knew him not; but that he should be made manifest to Israel, for this cause came I baptizing in water. 32 And John bare witness, saying, I have beheld the Spirit descending as a dove out of heaven; and it abode upon him. 33 And I knew him not; but he that sent me to baptize in water, he said unto me, Upon whomsoever thou shalt see the Spirit descending, and abiding upon him, the same is he that baptizeth in the Holy Spirit. 34 And I have seen, and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.
Metaphysically interpreted, John the Baptist symbolizes in each individual the natural man, but with an illumined intellect. His face is turned toward the light in the measure that he recognizes and pays homage to the higher self within the individual. John baptized with water all those who believed that Jesus was soon to make His appearance. This is a cleansing, purifying process, preparing the individual to see spiritually and to discern spiritually.
The Father-Mind is the living principle, the absolute, the unlimited. The Son is the living Word. "Word" is used to designate man's I AM identity. The Holy Spirit is the action or outpouring or activity of the living Word. This activity produces what may be termed the light of Spirit, the breath of God, the "personality" of Being. The outpouring of the Holy Spirit is the sign by which the natural man recognizes the divine. Jesus, who became the "Lamb of God" or perfect expression of God, baptized in the Holy Spirit.
35 Again on the morrow John was standing, and two of his disciples; 36 and he looked upon Jesus as he walked, and saith, Behold, the Lamb of God!
By cultivation the spiritual mind becomes an active factor in consciousness. It has to be desired and sought before it becomes a part of one's conscious life. John the Baptist (the natural conscious mind) is expecting, looking for, and earnestly desiring a greater realization of Spirit. He knows that he is not fulfilling the Christ ideal of manhood; hence his prophecy of One who is to come, "the latchet of whose shoe" he is not worthy to loose.
This willingness to give up the natural man to the divine is a most propitious sign in one who is in the regenerative process. Many persons are ambitious to put on Christ, but are not willing to give up the present man in order to do so. John the Baptist had a following, yet he was willing that his disciples should go to Jesus. He openly acknowledged Him as the "Lamb of God." This was his acknowledgment of the Christ Mind. That mind has no personal ambition; it is innocent, loving, and obedient to the call of God.
37 And the two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus. 38 And Jesus turned, and beheld them following, and saith unto them, What seek ye? And they said unto him, Rabbi (which is to say, being interpreted, Teacher), where abidest thou? 39 He saith unto them, Come, and ye shall see. They came therefore and saw where he abode; and they abode with him that day: it was about the tenth hour. 40 One of the two that heard John speak, and followed him, was Andrew, Simon Peter's brother. 41 He findeth first his own brother Simon, and saith unto him, We have found the Messiah (which is, being interpreted, Christ). 42 He brought him unto Jesus. Jesus looked upon him, and said, Thou art Simon the son of John: thou shalt be called Cephas (which is by interpretation, Peter).
When the conscious mind recognizes the Christ Mind, the various faculties gradually awaken and attach themselves to it. Andrew is the first apostle mentioned, and with him was one whose name is not given here but who is supposed to have been John (love). Love is modest and retiring, "seeketh not its own." Andrew represents the strength of the mind, which, greatly rejoiced when it finds the inexhaustible source of all strength, exclaims, "We have found the Messiah."
Strength is clearly related to substance (Simon), which in spirit we call faith. "Faith is the substance of things hoped for" (A.V.). What we hope for and mentally see as a possibility in our life comes into visibility, and we call it substantial.
43 On the morrow he was minded to go forth into Galilee, and he findeth Philip: and Jesus saith unto him, Follow me. 44 Now Philip was from Bethsaida, of the city of Andrew and Peter. 45 Philip findeth Nathanael, and saith unto him, We have found him, of whom Moses in the law, and the prophets, wrote, Jesus of Nazareth, the son of Joseph. 46 And Nathanael said unto him, Can any good thing come out of Nazareth? Philip saith unto him, Come and see. 47 Jesus saw Nathanael coming to him, and saith of him, Behold, an Israelite indeed, in whom is no guile! 48 Nathanael saith unto him, Whence knowest thou me? Jesus answered and said unto him, Before Philip called thee, when thou wast under the fig tree, I saw thee. 49 Nathanael answered him, Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art King of Israel. 50 Jesus answered and said unto him, Because I said unto thee, I saw thee underneath the fig tree, believest thou? thou shalt see greater things than these. 51 And he saith unto him, Verily, verly, I say unto you, Ye shall see the heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man.
The name Philip means "lover of horses," and Philip is symbolic of the vigor, power, vitality, and energy of the mind. Philip, Andrew, and Peter are of the same "city," Bethsaida. The name Bethsaida means "house of fishing," and Bethsaida signifies a group of thoughts in consciousness that have as their central idea a belief in the increase of ideas and their expression and manifestation in outer form.
Nathanael (representing the imagination) is also called Bartholomew. In the realm of the real (Israel) the imaging power of the mind is guileless, innocent of error images. It is open and receptive to the beauty and perfection of Being. It is the faculty of imagination that makes the great artist and the great poet. It is the guileless innocence of the Nathanael state of mind that causes the religious enthusiast to believe all things about Spirit and the world invisible. Exercised without Christ understanding, the imagination becomes delusory. It is the image maker in the psychic; the clairvoyant may be deceived by its conjuring power. In itself it is not error, but it may, like all the other faculties, be used in erroneous ways. When the Mind of Spirit uses it, as in the case of Jesus' discerning Nathanael when he was under the fig tree, it is without guile; and in God's communication with man this faculty plays an important part.
Among the apostles, Bartholomew represents the imagination. He is called Nathanael in the 1st chapter of John, where it is recorded that Jesus saw him under the fig tree, the inference being that He discerned Nathanael's presence before the latter came into visibility. This would indicate that images of people and things are projected into the imaging chamber of the mind and that by giving them attention one can understand their relation to outer things. Mind readers, clairvoyants, and dreamers have developed this capacity to varying degree. Consciousness is what is concerned with soul unfoldment both primarily, and secondarily and all the way! Forms are always manifestations of ideas. Whoever understands this can interpret the symbols shown him in dreams and visions, but lack of understanding of this law makes one a psychic without discernment.
With this spiritual faculty it is possible for man to penetrate into the "fourth dimension" or what is usually called the "kingdom of the heavens" and to discern the trend of the spiritual forces. The angels of God are spiritual forces active in the Sons of God, the spiritually quickened.
The open and receptive and
mind can see the things that take place in the Christ Mind, thus
transcending the capacity of the unillumined natural man.
John: Chapter 2
And the third day there was a marriage in Cana of Galilee; and the mother of Jesus was there: 2 and Jesus also was bidden, and his disciples, to the marriage. 3 And when the wine failed, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine. 4 And Jesus saith unto her, Woman, what have I to do with thee? mine hour is not yet come. 5 His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it. 6 Now there were six waterpots of stone set there after the Jews' manner of purifying, containing two or three firkins apiece. 7 Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim. 8 And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the ruler of the feast. And they bare it. 9 And when the ruler of the feast tasted the water now become wine, and knew not whence it was (but the servants that had drawn the water knew), the ruler of the feast calleth the bridegroom, 10 and saith unto him, Every man setteth on first the good wine; and when men have drunk freely, then that which is worse: thou hast kept the good wine until now. 11 This beginning of his signs did Jesus in Cana of Galilee, and manifested his glory; and his disciples believed on him.
SPIRITUALLY A marriage represents the union of two dominant states of consciousness. Mary, the mother of Jesus, represents intuition, the spiritual soul, Eve, "the mother of all living." Jesus is the personal I AM and His apostles are the twelve faculties.
Cana is a "place of reeds"; so is the larynx found in the body. The name Galilee means "to whirl"; air is rapidly forced through the larynx in speaking or singing. The apostles represent the dominant nerve centers, the spiritual symbolism of each being concealed in the name. Philip means "one who is fond of horses." The horse symbolizes vigor, vitality, power. Vigor or its opposite, weakness, is betrayed by the voice, so we designate Philip as the power faculty, and his place in body expression is in the larynx (at Cana).
Water may be compared to natural or human life, and wine to spiritual life. In the regeneration spirit and body are united, but before this union can be accomplished the exhausted natural life must be quickened with spirit (symbolized by the turning of water into wine). This lack of vitalizing life is first realized by Mary, the source of all life, but Jesus, the directive I AM in all bodily activities, does not feel that He is yet ready to perform this seeming miracle and pleads delay: "Mine hour has not yet come."
But the urge of the inner forces is strong and the confident mother is sure that her son can do all things: "Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it."
The water pots filled to the brim with water by the servants represent the extent to which nature is prepared to fulfill the transformation from negative life to spiritual life through the power of the word of the Master, Jesus: "Draw out now, and bear to the ruler of the feast." The ruler of the feast, the supreme I AM, pronounced the transformed water to be superior to the best wine.
This transformation of the negative, watery fluid of the organism into vitalizing Spirit is accomplished by adding to every word a spiritual idea. The idea of omnipresent life will then quicken the natural life in man, and it will make conscious contact with the one life and draw it out for the benefit of the many.
When the I is "lifted up" there is a higher vital action imparted to the whole consciousness. Jesus said, "I, if I be lifted up from the earth, will draw all men unto myself." The lifting up of the I is the result of spiritual perception of Truth. When we discern the real truth of being and our relation to it, there is a new and higher consciousness established. This greater energy is first imparted to the soul or thought realm and through it to the body. This whole process is under law. There is a definite consecutive connection of thought and thing, through laws that may be discerned by man and used universally. At the close of chapter 1, Jesus had caught sight of the spiritual realm and said: "Ye shall see the heaven opened, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of man."
This high perception of man's union, through the I AM, with the divine harmony sets up a sympathetic vibration that is imparted to every part of consciousness. The marriage that took place in Cana of Galilee symbolizes this union in which the negative watery elements of the body were "lifted up" to wine or Spirit. A Bible authority says that His remark is more correctly stated in the words: "Woman, what is there between me and thee?" This interrogation depicts the questioning attitude of the personal I AM, Jesus. It is not clear in its understanding of what is to be done. It is looking forward to a time when it will act, but its "hour is not yet come." We find ourselves wanting to see all the steps of our actions before we begin, but in spiritual processes we have to proceed without foreknowing the various steps. If we go ahead and speak the word, the law will see us through. The elemental forces of Being (servants) are at hand to carry out our orders, and the intuitive perfection of Truth (woman) within us commands that those forces do our bidding.
The symbolism of this miracle has to do with the abundance of vital energy that may be generated from a union of man with the "water of life" or nerve substance in the various centers of his organism. With every thought we are putting the nerve substance into a state of action, and it rushes to any part of the body that is the center of attention. When we have been much excited or interested there is a concentration of vitality in the head, and if we do not know how to restore and equalize this vitality again in the body, we have a headache or the stuffy condition called a cold. To equalize: Center the attention in the larynx and declare, "All equalizing, harmonizing power is given unto me in mind and body."
In regeneration there is a permanent transmutation of physical vitality into higher consciousness, and a new element is introduced into the organism. "The ruler of the feast" (the Lord) praises the transmuted substance as the best offered at the wedding feast.
12 After this he went down to Capernaum, he, and his mother, and his brethren, and his disciples; and there they abode not many days.
Capernaum designates or represents an inner conviction of the abiding compassion and restoring power of Being. When one enters this state of consciousness a healing virtue pours out of the soul and transforms all discord into harmony.
Jesus and His mother and His brethren and His disciples went into this state of consciousness.
13 And the passover of the Jews was at hand, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem.
It is the nature of thought to repeat itself. At each repetition it will grow stronger or weaker as it is consciously recognized or ignored by man. Thus we can cultivate a good movement of the mind by giving it a special affirmation (feast). The Feast of the Passover that Jesus went up to Jerusalem to attend symbolizes an escape from bondage. When we begin to discipline our mind we always go up in consciousness, because it is from our spiritual height that we see things clearly and in their right relation.
14 And he found in the temple those that sold oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting.
When we throw the light of Spirit into the subconscious courts of the body temple, we find queer and often startling conditions there. One would hardly expect to see butcher stalls and money-changers in a temple built for the worship of God, yet similar conditions exist in all of us.
15 And he made a scourge of cords, and cast all out of the temple, both the sheep and the oxen; and he poured out the changers' money, and overthrew their tables; 16 and to them that sold doves he said, Take these things hence; make not my Father's house a house of merchandise.
So the body temple must be cleansed; it is the house of God ("for we are a temple of the living God"), and it should be put in order. The first step in this cleansing process is to recognize its need. The next step is the "scourge of small cords" (A.V.): to formulate the word or statement of denial. When we deny in general terms we cleanse the consciousness, but secret sins may yet lurk in the inner parts. The words that most easily reach these hidden errors are not great ones, such as "I am one with Almightiness; my environment is God" but small, definite statements that cut like whipcords into the sensuous, fleshly mentality.
To get perfect results it is necessary to deal with our mind in both the absolute and the relative. In the early morning we may affirm, "All the affairs of my life are under the law of justice, and my own comes to me in ways divine," and before noon find ourselves searching the papers for advertisements of bargains in the stores. Such an experience shows that we have not gone into the temple and tipped over the tables and scattered the coins.
17 His disciples remembered that it was written, Zeal for thy house shall eat me up.
Excessive zeal in observing the forms of religious worship eats up the truly spiritual. "The zeal of thine house hath eaten me up." When we become very zealous in observing the rites of the church, we are prone to forget the church itself, which is Christ.
The light of Jesus Christ is, symbolically, the life of everyone who enters the same state of mind that He did. You always reap the consequences of your thought, and to enter the Christ Mind you have but to think along Jesus Christ lines.
Every man produces a thought atmosphere that has character and power in proportion to his ability as a thinker. Power increases with expansion; in thought, power is great or small as the ideals are high or low. When you follow narrow ideals your thought atmosphere is correspondingly contracted; but mental breadth enlarges and strengthens it in all directions.
"How can a man conceal himself?" said Confucius. In the light of the ever-present thought atmosphere with which we surround ourselves, he cannot. Nearly all people have the ability of sensing the thought atmosphere of those they meet; and a man may cultivate this ability to project himself until he becomes an open book and the air about him is filled with his silent yet potent words, ever telling what he has thought.
The thought atmosphere is a real, substantial thing, and has in it all that makes the body. We have a way of considering the things we cannot see as unsubstantial, and although we are told that we cannot conceal ourselves we go right on believing that we can. Hence it is good for us to know that of a truth we do carry about with us this open book of our life, out of which all persons read whether we realize it or not. Some people are good thought readers while others are dull, but all can read a little, and you cannot conceal yourself. Also your thought atmosphere is constantly printing its slowly cooling words on your body, where they are seen of men. But with a little practice we can feet the thought force of this atmosphere that surrounds us and gradually gain a realization of its existence that is as real as that of the outer world.
"Think on these things," said Paul. Think about Christ as a life force penetrating your whole being. Try to feel this force as an energy pulsating through every nerve and fiber of your body. Then imagine you can see this life force as a light lighting up every cell. Light represents intelligence, and when the light in you breaks forth into understanding you will know that there is a spiritual mind that is as much greater than the ordinary mind as the sun is greater than the moon. In Him is life, and this life is the light of men.
18 The Jews therefore answered and said unto him, What sign showest thou to us, seeing that thou doest these things? 19 Jesus answered and said unto them, Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up. 20 The Jews therefore said, Forty and six years was this temple in building, and wilt thou raise it up in three days? 21 But he spake of the temple of his body. 22 When therefore he was raised from the dead, his disciples remembered that he spake this; and they believed the scripture, and the word which Jesus had said.
That the temple referred to means the body is clearly stated in verse 21: "But he spake of the temple of his body." Man's ability to preserve his body from destruction is the proof that he has mastered his mind. So long as our body shows signs of decay it is evident that we have not cast out of the inner realms the "thought butchers" that for a sacrifice kill doves, sheep, oxen, and goats. The allusion here is to the destructive thoughts lying deep in the consciousness at the very issues of life.
The "three days" are spirit, soul, and body, the three "degrees" or parts of man's consciousness. When the I AM of man has purified and mastered these three, man is in the dominion proclaimed for him in the 1st chapter of Genesis; the Scripture or Word of God is fulfilled in him, and his faculties (disciples) recognize and respond to it every time that the uplifting word (the resurrecting word) is proclaimed.
23 Now when he was in Jerusalem at the passover, during the feast, many believed on his name, beholding his signs which he did. 24 But Jesus did not trust himself unto them, for that he knew all men, 25 and because he needed not that any one should bear witness concerning man; for he himself knew what was in man.
Truth is of the absolute order and does not have to be proved. Jesus recognized this fact and therefore did not feel it necessary to place any great value on the opinion of those who had not yet fully attained spiritual consciousness.