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Finding the Christ
THROUGHOUT ALL His teaching
Jesus tried to show those who listened to Him, how He was
related to the Father, and to
teach them that they were related to the same Father in exactly the same
way. Over and over again He tried in different ways to explain to them
that God lived within them, that He was "not the God of the dead,
but of the living." And never once did He assume to do anything as
of Himself, always saying: "I can of myself do nothing." "The
Father abiding in me doeth his works." But it was very hard then for
people to understand, just as it is very hard for us to understand today.
There were, in the person of
Jesus, two distinct regions. There was the fleshly, mortal part that was
Jesus, the son of man; then there was the central, living, real part that
was Spirit, the Son of God--that was the Christ, the Anointed. So each
one of us has two regions of being--one the fleshly, mortal part, which
is always feeling its weakness and insufficiency in all things, always
saying, "I can't." Then at the very center of our being there
is a something that, in our highest moments, knows itself more than conqueror
over all things; it always says, "I can, and I will." It is the
Christ child, the Son of God, the Anointed in us. "Call no man your
father on the earth," said Jesus, "for one is your Father, even he who is in heaven."
He who created us did not make
us and set us apart from Himself, as a workman makes a table or a chair
and puts it away as something completed and only to be returned to the
maker when it needs repairing. Not at all. God not only created us in the
beginning, but He is the very fountain of life ever abiding with us. From
this fountain constantly springs new life to recreate these mortal bodies.
He is the ever abiding intelligence that fills and renews our mind. His
creatures would not exist a moment were He to be, or could He be, separated
from them. "We are a temple of the living God; even as God said, I
will dwell in them, and walk in them."
Let us suppose that a beautiful
fountain is supplied from some hidden but inexhaustible source. At its
center it is full of strong, vigorous life, bubbling up continually with
great activity, but at the outer edge the water is so nearly motionless
as to have become impure and covered with scum. This exactly represents
man. He is composed of a substance infinitely more subtle, more real than
water. "We are also His offspring." Man is the offspring or the
springing forth into visibility-- of God the Father. At the center he is
pure Spirit, made in the image and likeness of the Father, substance of
the Father, one with the Father, fed and renewed continually from the inexhaustible
good, which is the Father. "In Him we live, and move, and have our
being." At the outer edge, where stagnation has taken place (which
is man's body), there is not much that looks Godlike in any way. We get
our eyes fixed on the circumference, or external of our being. We lose
consciousness of the indwelling, ever active, unchanging God at the center,
and we see ourselves sick, weak, and in every way miserable; It is not
until we learn to live at the center and to know that we have power to
radiate from that center this unceasing, abundant life, that we are well
Jesus kept His eyes away
from the external altogether, and kept His thoughts at the central part
of His being, which was the Christ. "Judge not according to appearance,"
He said, that is, according to the external, "but judge righteous
judgment," according to the real truth, or judge from Spirit. In Jesus,
the Christ, or the central spark that was God, the same that lives in each
of us today, was drawn forth to show itself perfectly, over and above the
body, or fleshly man. He did all His mighty works, not because He was given
some greater or different power from that which God has given us--but just
because He was in some different way a Son of God and we only children
of God--but just because this same Divine Spark, which the Father has implanted
in every child born, had been fanned into a bright flame by His prenatal
influences, early surroundings, and by His own later efforts in holding
Himself in constant, conscious communion with the Father, the Source of
all love, life, and power.
To be tempted does not mean
to have things come to you which, however much they may affect others,
do not at all affect you, because of some superiority in you. It means
to be tried, to suffer and to have to make effort to resist. Hebrews speaks
of Jesus as "one that hath been in all points like as we are."
And Jesus Himself confessed to having been tempted when He said to His
disciples: "Ye are they that have continued with me in my temptations."
The humanity of the Nazarene "suffered being tempted," or tried,
just as much as you and I suffer today because of temptations and trials,
and in exactly the same way.
We know that during His public
ministry Jesus spent hours of every day alone with God, and none of us
knows what He went through in all the years of His early manhood--just
as you and I are doing today--in overcoming the mortal, His fleshly desires,
His doubts and fears, until He came into the perfect recognition of this
indwelling Presence, this "Father in me," to whom He ascribed
the credit for all His wonderful works. He had to learn as we are having
to learn; He had to hold fast as we are having today to hold fast; He had
to try over and over again to overcome, as we are doing, or else He was
not "in all points tempted like as we are."
We all must recognize, I think,
that it was the Christ within that made Jesus what He was; and our power
now to help ourselves and to help others, lies in our comprehending the
truth--for it is a truth, whether we realize it or not--that this same
Christ that lived in Jesus lives within us. It is the part of Himself that
God has put within us, which ever lives there with an inexpressible love
and desire to spring to the circumference of our being, or to our consciousness,
as our sufficiency in all things. "Jehovah thy God is in the midst
of thee, a mighty one who will save [or He wills to save]; he will rejoice
over thee with joy; he will rest in his love; he will joy over thee with
singing." Christ within us is the "beloved Son," the same
as it was in Jesus. It is the "I in them, and thou in
me, that they may be perfected" of which Jesus spoke.
In all this explanation we would
detract nothing from Jesus. He is still our Saviour, in that He went through
suffering unutterable, through the perfect crucifixion of self, that He
might lead us to God; that He might show us the way out of our sin, sickness,
and trouble; that He might manifest the Father to us and teach us how this
same Father loves us and lives in us. We love Jesus and must ever love
Him with a love that is greater than all others, and to prove our love,
we would follow His teachings and His life closely. In no way can we do
this perfectly, except by trying to get at the real meaning of all that
He said, and letting the Father work through us as He did through Him,
our perfect Elder Brother and Saviour.
Jesus sometimes spoke from the
mortal part of Himself, but He lived so almost wholly in the Christ part
of Himself, so consciously in the center of His being, where the very essence
of the Father was bubbling up in ceaseless activity, that He usually spoke
from that part.
When He said, "Come unto
me . . . and I will give you rest," He could not have meant to invite
mankind to come unto His personal, mortal self, for He knew of the millions
of men and women who could never reach Him. He was then speaking from the
Christ-self of Him, meaning not "Come unto me, Jesus," but "come
unto the Christ"; nor did He mean, "Come unto the Christ living
in me," for comparatively few could ever do that. But He said, "The
words that I say unto you I speak not from myself: but the Father abiding
in me doeth his works." Then it was the Father saying not "Come
unto Jesus," but "Come unto me"; that is, "Come up
out of the mortal part of you where all is sickness and sorrow and trouble,
into the Christ Part where I dwell, and I will give you rest. Come up into
the realization that you are one with the Father, that you are surrounded
and filled with divine love, that there is nothing in the universe that
is real but the good, and that all good is yours, and it will give you
"No one cometh unto the
Father, but by me" does not mean that God is a stern Father whom we
must coax and conciliate by going to Him through Jesus, His kinder, more
easily entreated Son. Did not Jesus say, "He that hath seen me hath
seen the Father," or in other words, "As I am in love and gentleness
and accessibility, so is the Father"? These words mean that no man
can come to the Father except through the Christ part of himself. You cannot
come around through some other person or by any outside way. Another may
teach you how to come, and assure you of all that is yours if you do come,
but you must retire within your own soul, find the Christ there, and look
to the father through the Son, for whatever good thing you may need.
Jesus was always trying to
get the minds of the people away from His personality, and to fix them
on the Father in Him as the source of all His power. And when toward the
last, they were clinging to His mortal self, because their eyes had not
yet been opened to understand about the Christ within their own souls,
He said, "It is expedient for you that I go away; for if I go not
away, the Comforter will not come"; that is, if He remained where
they could keep looking to His personality all the time, they would never
know that the same Spirit of truth and power lived within themselves.
There is a great difference
between a Christian life and a Christ life. To live a Christian life is
to follow the teachings of Jesus, with the thought that God and Christ
are wholly outside of man, to be called on but not always to answer. To
live a Christ life is to follow Jesus' teachings in the knowledge that
God's indwelling presence, which is always life, love, and power within
us, is now ready and waiting to flow forth abundantly, aye, lavishly into
our consciousness and through us to others, the moment we open ourselves
to it and trustfully expect it. One is a following after Christ, which
is beautiful and good so far is it goes, but is always very imperfect;
the other is a letting Christ, the Perfect Son of God, be manifested through
us. One is an expecting to be saved sometime from sin, sickness, and trouble;
the other is a knowing that we are, in reality, saved now from all these
errors by the indwelling Christ, and by faith affirming it until the evidence
is manifested in our body.
Simply believing that Jesus
died on the Cross to appease God's wrath never saved and never can save
anyone from present sin, sickness, or want, and was not what Jesus taught.
"The demons also believe and shudder," we are told, but they
are not saved thereby. There must be something more than this, a living
touch of some kind, a sort of intersphering of our own soul with the divine
Source of all good and giving. We are to have faith in the Christ, believe
that the Christ lives in us, and is God's Son in us; that this indwelling
One has power to save and make us whole; aye, more, that He has made us
whole already. For did not the Master say, "All things whatsoever
ye pray and ask for, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them."
If, then, you are manifesting
sickness, you are to ignore the seeming--which is the external, or circumference
of the pool where the water is stagnant and the scum has risen--and, speaking
from the center of your being, say: "This body is the temple of the
living God; the Lord is now in His holy temple; Christ in me is my life;
Christ is my health; Christ is my strength; Christ is perfect. Therefore,
I am now perfect, because He dwelleth in me as perfect life, health, strength."
Say these words with all earnestness, trying to realize what you are saying,
and almost immediately the perennial fountain of life at the center of
your being will begin to bubble up and continue with rapidly increasing
activity, until new life will radiate through pain, sickness, sores, all
diseases, to the surface, and your body will show forth the perfect life
Suppose it is money that you
need. Take the thought, "Christ is my abundant supply. He is here
within me now, and greatly desires to manifest Himself as my supply. His
desires are fulfilled now." Do not let your thoughts run off into
how He is going to do it, but just hold steadily to the thought of the
supply here and now, taking your eyes off all other sources, and He will
surely honor your faith by manifesting Himself as your supply a hundredfold
more abundantly than you have asked or thought. So also with "Whatsoever
things ye pray and ask for." But remember the earnest words of James
the apostle: "He that doubteth is like the surge of the sea driven
by the wind and tossed. For let not that man think that he shall receive
anything of the Lord."
Nowhere in the New Testament
is the thought conveyed that Jesus came that there might be, after death,
a remission of the penalty for sin. That belief is a pure fiction of man's
ignorant, carnal mind of later date. In many places in the Bible reference
is made to "remission of sins''; and Jesus Himself, according to Luke,
said that "repentance and remission of sins should be preached in
his name unto all the nations." "Sins, In the original text,
does not mean crime deserving punishment. It means any mistake or failure
that brings suffering. Jesus came that there might be remission or cessation
of sins, of wrongs, of mistakes, which were inevitably followed by suffering.
He came to bring "good tidings of great joy which shall be to all
the people." Tidings of what? Tidings of salvation. When? Where? Not
salvation from punishment after death, but salvation from mistakes and
failures here and now. He came to show us that God, our Creator and Father,
longs with yearnings unutterable to be to us, through the Christ, the abundance
of all things that we need or desire. But our part is to choose to have
Him and then follow His admonition to "hold fast till I come"--not
till He comes after death, but just to hold steadily to our faith until
He manifests Himself. For instance, in thus looking to Him for health,
when by an act of your will you stop looking to any material source (and
this is not always easy to do) and declare the Christ in you to be the
only life of the body and always perfect life, it needs but that you hold
steadfastly, without wavering, to the thought, in order to become well.
When once you have put any matter
into the hands of the indwelling, ever-present Christ, in whom there is
at all times an irrepressible desire to spring to our rescue and to do
all things for us, do not dare to take it back into your mortal hands again
to work out for yourself, for by so doing you simply put off the time of
His bringing it to pass. All you have to do in the matter is to hold to
the thought: "It is done. It is manifest now." This divine Presence
is our sufficiency in all things, and will materialize itself as such in
whatever we need or desire, if we but trustfully expect it.
This matter of trusting the
Christ within to do all things for us--realizing that we are one with Him
and that to Him is given all power--is not something that comes to any
of us spontaneously. It comes by persistent effort on our part. We begin
by determining that we will trust Him as our present deliverance, as our
health, our riches, our wisdom, our all, and we keep on by a labored effort,
until we form a kind of spiritual habit. No habit bursts full-grown into
our life, but every one comes from a succession of little acts. When you
see anyone doing the works of Christ, healing the sick, loosing the bound,
and so forth, by the word of Truth spoken in faith, you may be sure that
this faith did not jump to him from some outside source all at once. If
you knew the facts, you would probably know of days and nights when with
clenched fists and set teeth he held fast to the Christ within, "trusting
where they could not trace," until he found himself possessing the
very "faith of Jesus."
If we want the Father within,
which is the Christ, to manifest Himself as all things through us, we must
learn to keep the mortal of us still, to still all its doubts and fears
and false beliefs, and to hold rigidly to the "Christ only."
In His name we may speak the words of healing, of peace, and of deliverance
to others, but as Jesus said of Himself, so we must also say of ourselves:
"I can of myself do nothing." "The Father abiding in me
doeth his works." He is the ever-present power to overcome all errors,
sickness, weakness, ignorance, or whatever they may be. We claim this power,
or bring it into our consciousness where it is of practical use, by declaring
over and over again that it is ours already. Saying and trying to realize,
"Christ is my wisdom, hence I know Truth," will in a short time
make us understand spiritual things better than months of study will do.
Our saying, "Christ is my strength, I cannot be weak or frail," will make us strong enough to meet any emergency, with calm assurance.
Remember, we do not begin by
feeling these things at first, but by earnestly and faithfully saying them,
and acting as though they were true--and this is the faith that brings
the power into manifestation.
The Christ lives in us always.
God, the creative energy, sent His Son first, even before the body was
formed, and He ever abides within, "the first born of all creation."
But it is with us as it was with the ship on the tempestuous sea after
the storm arose: Jesus' being in the vessel did not keep it from rocking,
or the angry waves from beating against it; for He was asleep. It was only
after He was awakened and brought out to manifest His power that the sea
became still and the danger was over.
The Christ in us has been there
all the time, but we have not known it, and so our little ships have been
tossed about by sickness and poverty and distrust until we have seemed
almost lost. I, the true spiritual self of me, am one with the Christ.
You, the true spiritual self of you, are one with the Christ. The true
self of every person is the child of God, made in His image. "Beloved,
now are we children of God, and it is not yet made manifest what we shall
be. We know that, if he shall be manifested, we shall be like him."
Now, already, we are sons. When He shall appear--not when, sometime after
the transition called death, He, some great, glorious Being, shall burst
on our view, but when we have learned to still the mortal of us, and let
the Father manifest Himself at our surface, through the indwelling Christ--then
we shall be like Him, for He only will be visible through us.
"Behold, what manner of
love the Father hath bestowed upon us, that we should be called children
of God." We are not simply reflections or images of God, but expressions
(from ex, out of, and premere, to press or force), hence
a forcing out of God, the All-Good, the all-perfect. We are projections
of the invisible presence into visibility. God made man one with the Father,
even as Jesus was, and just in proportion as we recognize this fact and
claim our birthright, the Father in us will be manifested to the world.
Most of us have an innate shrinking
from saying, "Thy will be done." Because of false teaching, and
from associations, we have believed that this prayer, if answered, would
take away from us all that gives us joy or happiness. Surely nothing could
be farther from the truth. Oh, how we have tried to crowd the broad love
of God into the narrow limits of man's mind! The grandest, most generous,
loving father that ever lived is but the least bit of God's fatherhood
manifested through the flesh. God's will for us means more love, more purity,
more power, more joy in life, every day.
No study of spiritual or material
things, no effort, though it be superhuman on our part, could ever be as
effectual in making grand, godlike creatures, showing forth the same limitless
soul that Jesus showed, as just praying continually the one prayer, "Thy
will be done"; for the Father's will is to manifest His perfect Being
through us. "Among the creatures, one is better than another, according
as the Eternal Good manifesteth itself and worketh more in one than in
another. Now that creature in which Eternal Good most manifesteth itself,
shineth forth, worketh, is most known and loved, is the best; and that
wherein the Eternal Good is least manifested, is least of all creatures"
("Theologia Germanica"). "For it was the good pleasure of
the Father that in him the Christ should all the fulness dwell"--fullness
of love, fullness of life, fullness of joy, of power, of All-Good. "And
in him ye are made full." Christ is in us, one with us, so we may
boldly and with confidence say, "in Christ all things are mine." declaring it will make it manifest.
Above all things else, learn
to keep to the Christ within yourself, not that within somebody else. Let
the Father manifest through you in His own way, though His manifestation
differ from that in His other children. Heretofore even the most spiritually
enlightened of us have been mere pygmies, because we have, by the action
of our conscious thought, limited the divine manifestation to make it conform
to the manifestation through someone else. God will make of us spiritual
giants if we will but take away all limits and give Him opportunity.
"Although it be good and
profitable that we should learn and know what great and good men have wrought
and suffered, and how God hath dealt with them, and wrought in them and
through them, yet it were a thousand times better that we should in ourselves
learn and perceive and understand who we are, how and what our own life
is, what God is doing in us, and what He will have us do" ("Theologia
All the blessings promised in
the 28th chapter of Deuteronomy are to those who "hearken diligently
unto the voice of Jehovah," those who seek the inner voice in their
own souls and learn to listen to and obey what it says to them individually,
regardless of what it says to any other person, no matter how far he or
she may be advanced in spiritual understanding. This voice will not lead
you exactly as it leads any other in all the wide world, but, in the infinite
variety, there will be perfect harmony, for there is but "one God
and Father of all, who ls over all, and through all, and in all."
Emerson says: "Every soul
is not only the inlet, but may become the outlet of all there is in God."
We can- only be this by keeping ourselves consciously in open communication
with God without the intervention of any other person between Him and us.
"The anointing which ye received of him abideth in you, and ye need
not that anyone teach you.'' "But the Comforter, which is the Holy
Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things."
"Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he shall guide you
into all the truth: for he shall not speak from himself; but what things
soever he shall hear, these shall he speak: and he shall declare unto you
the things that are to come."
It needs but the one other little
word now, firmly and persistently held in the mind, to bring into manifestation
through us the highest ideal that we are capable of forming; aye, far higher,
for does it not say, "As the heavens are higher than the earth, so
are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts"?
This manifestation through us will be the fulfillment of God's ideal, instead
of our limited, mortal ideal, when we learn to let Spirit lead and to hold
our conscious mind to the now.
You want to manifest the
perfect Christ. Affirm with all your heart and soul and strength that you
do so manifest now, that you manifest health and strength and love and
Truth and power. Let go of the notion of being or doing anything in the
future. God knows no time but the eternal now. You can never know any other
time, for there is no other. You cannot live an hour or ten minutes in
the future. You cannot live it until you reach it, and then it becomes
the now. Saying or believing salvation and deliverance are to be, will
forever, and through all the eternal ages, keep them, like a will-o'-the-wisp,
just a little ahead of you, always to be reached but never quite realized.
"Now is the acceptable
time; behold, now is the day of salvation," said Paul. He said nothing
about our being saved from our distresses after death, but always taught
a present salvation. God's work is finished in us now. All the fullness
abides in the indwelling Christ now. Whatever we persistently declare is
done now, is manifested now, we shall see fulfilled.
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