THE MYSTERIES OF THE FOUR GOSPELS
Lesson Twelve. John 7.
Unity Interpretation of
I am the Bread of Life
CHARLES and CORA FILLMORE
March 26, 1942
CHARLES FILLMORE: OPENING SONGS
Today we conclude the course of twelve lessons on the MYSTERIES OF THE FOUR GOSPELS. You will notice in these lessons, we have selected the most difficult of the teachings of Jesus Christ, that which seems mysterious, hard to understand, and gave the spiritual interpretation.
Now these lessons, of course, are to be applied. If you have been listening, you take for granted I have taken the easy way of applying them — that is, through the power of Spirit. When things look the darkest, you take right the opposite, and see the sunshine. So today in our song, we are going to sing an antidote for the weather condition: "There Is Sunshine In My Soul Today." We find the music No. 12 in the Unity Song Selectlons, and the revised words No. 13.
"THERE IS SUNSHINE IN MY SOUL TODAY."
There is sunshine in my soul today
It is glorious and bright,
Ever glowing in its brightning ray
For Jesus is my light.
O There's sunshine, blessed sunshine,
May the peaceful happy memories roll;
For I behold His smiling face, and there's sunshine in my soul.
There is springtime in my soul today,
I know the Lord is near;
The words of peace sing in my heart,
The joys of grace appear.
There is gladness in my soul today,
And hope and love and praise,
For blessings which he gives me now,
Have brightened all my days.
We will all keep our bodies up in that sunshine of the spirit by joining in the Lord's Prayer: (repeat in unison).
CORA FILLMORE: MEDITATION:
Today is the 12th in this course of lessons THE MYSTERIES OF THE FOUR GOSPELS. Our lesson this afternoon is based on the 7th chapter of John — 7th chapter of John. However, in order to connect up with this lesson, we will have to read a few verses from the preceding chapter. We read from Farrar Fenton's translation: (CHRIST THE BREAD OF LIFE):
"Jesus answered them, "I am the bread of life: the one who comes to Me shall never hunger; and the one who believes in Me will never thirst. ... The Judeans then muttered concerning Him, because He said, "I am the Bread which descended from heaven; and they said:
"Is not this fellow Jesus, the son of Joseph, whose father and mother we know? How then can He say, ‘I come down from heaven?'" ... Jesus answered, "I am the Bread of Life. Your forefathers ate the manna in the desert, and died. (This is the Bread coming down from out of heaven: if anyone should eat of this Bread, he will live forever; and the Bread also is my body, which I will give for the life of the world!") This is the Bread coming down from heaven so that any one may eat of it, and not die. ...
Many of His disciples hereupon turned back, and accompanied Him no longer. Jesus therefore, said to the twelve:
"Do you also not desire to go away?"
Simon Peter answered Him, "To whom, Master, can we go? You have the ideals of eternal life, and we are confident and satisfied that You are the "Holy One of God."
Jesus answered them, "Have I not chosen you, the twelve, and one of you is a traitor!" He here referred to Judas Simon Iscariot; for that man, who was one of the twelve, was about to betray Him.
After this Jesus travailed in Galilee; for He would not travel in Judea, because the Judeans were seeking to murder Him. (John 6:35 — 7:1.)
And now we come to our lesson, the 7th chapter of John, with a word of explanation: We remember that Moses led the children of Israel through the wilderness to the Promised Land. During this long journey whenever they abode in one place for any length of time, they build for themselves tents or tabernacles out of the boughs of trees, usually a leafy bower of tress. They dwelt in these tabernacles made from really the leafy limbs of the trees.
Now it seems for many years the Judeans always gave a feast usually in the course of their vintage years, celebrating the old custom of the Israelites, that caused the Judean's Feast of the Tabernacle.
So now we read from the 7th chapter of John [Fenton Bible]: (THIRD VISIT TO JERUSALEM) John 7:2-13.
When the Judean feast of Tabernacles was near, His brothers said to Him:
"Remove from here and go into Judea, so that those disciples of Yours may also see the works which You do; for no one does anything privately who desires to become famous himself. If you do them, exhibit Yourself to the world."
For even His brothers did not believe in Him.
Jesus, therefore, answered them:
"My opportunity has not yet arrived; but your opportunity is always at hand. The world cannot hate you; but it hates Me, because I give evidence against it, that its doings are wicked. You yourselves can go up to the festival; I am not going up yet to this festival, because My time is not yet fulfilled."
And having told them this, He stayed in Galilee.
When His brothers had gone up to the festival, however, He also went up Himself – not publicly, but quietly. The Judeans were, however, searching for Him at the festival, and kept asking, "Where is He?"
And there was much muttering among the crowds respecting Him. Some even said, "He is a benefactor"; while others exclaimed, "Not He! On the contrary, He deceives the multitude." None, however, spoke openly about Him, for fear of the Judeans.
Now we all know the very first part of the Scripture about eating of the body and appropriating it and the life and blood of Jesus Christ. Here at Unity it is an old old story, a story we love very much because all down the years we have been taught how to go into the silence, how to enter into the very Presence of Jesus Christ, walk and talk with him. You enter into this Garden of God where we breathe the very atmosphere of the Savior. And here in this Holy of Holies you take a word, — life and blood of Jesus Christ — and realize it till we are conscious of His consciousness, His life going through our veins. And we take an idea of substance until we appropriate the very idea of Divine Substance.
But now, here in the very seventh chapter of John, at the very beginning, there is a scene of Jesus, his followers had deserted him because he taught Eternal Life here and now; Jesus' own disciples, the twelve, were urging him to go up to Jerusalem where the Feast of the Tabernacles was being held, where the Judeans sought to kill him, just to prove himself. Jesus replied, "My opportunity has not yet arrived. I am not going up just yet because my time is not fulfilled." In other words, Jesus' disciples were urging him to allow himself to be crucified when he was not yet ready, just as proof to his deserters that he was the Christ.
Note how Jesus is working scientifically to round out His twelve faculties, to lay hold of new power; no doubt, in order to demonstrate to the Father of Life that he could really overcome death. He wasn't so particular about demonstrating his ability to mortal man.
Now you know there are many in this audience who are waiting to put on Christ, to put on the Perfect Mind, the Perfect Man, the Perfect Woman. But in your ongoing have you not discovered that there is back of it all a spiritual evolution which you must acknowledge and must recognize? No doubt, this is what Jesus meant when He said: "My time is not yet come. We must wait for the assurance; get a realization and wait for the assurance, before we attempt the demonstration. And constantly we do bear in mind that there is this law back of the great universal evolution we must follow.
Now again we are conscious of this law, the mighty law of spiritual evolution, a mighty law of evolution with which we must work scientifically in order to make our demonstrations. When we live close to Spirit, sometimes we are conscious of angelic harmonies. We cannot hear them with the outer ear. We are conscious we hear them with the inner ear. We are conscious of these angelic harmonies playing themselves through soul and body consciousness. Yea, even through the whole universe! We are sure that each and every one has his hearing ear upon this great symphony of Life expressing according to law. We are sure of it. But to be able to really know it, we must tune in, work in harmony with it, and work until we get our realization that it is finished.
No doubt Jesus was approaching at that time what we would term the end of the symphony, or rather the end of the cycle of time when his time was to be fulfilled, when he was to have his great test before the Almighty Himself. So right now is the time for us to go within and realize that we, under the Light of Spirit, penetrate into this stillness and realize and know that we are in tune with the great universal symphony of Life, working in perfect accord with Jesus Christ. And we know and realize in order to demonstrate, we must really know much about this inner life, and work in harmony with it.
"My time is not yet come." Not until we finish playing the great symphony of Life, until we finish the cycle, are we ready for the great test to demonstrate "life here and now."
We take this thought: GOD QUICKENS AND SPEEDS HIS LIFE IN ME."
Now we are realizing that we are drinking of the blood of Jesus Christ when we are appropriating, eating of His body, working in perfect accord with the great symphony of life; expressing according to law. Amen.
LESSON: CHARLES FILLMORE:
You were told at the beginning of the lesson today that the Jews murmured at Jesus because he said, "I am the Bread which came down out of heaven." Many of us have murmured at this proposition. He also told them if they didn't eat of his body and drink of his blood, they wouldn't have any life in them, and as we, in our physical consciousness have said, "How can we eat this man's body and drink his blood?" How can this be in any way accomplished?
Well, here is the hard saying: WE HAVE TO USE OUR MINDS. We have to come into a different mood. THINK! We haven't really THOUGHT in our physical activity. We have just used our muscles and bones and flesh. Now we are compelled, if we would understand the mystery of the teachings of Jesus Christ, we are compelled TO THINK.
As we had in our last lesson, Jesus gave the parable of the villainous steward, who robbed his master, and then figured out how he was going, to get out of it. He commended him because he was of a reflective state of mind. He began to think about the proposition. So in this great appropriation of the invisible forces that make up the visible, we have to use our minds, and we know that is sometimes a pretty hard proposition.
You know, people really don't like to think. We have to think sometimes! (laughter) But it is hard work to think, to really think, and think constructively. And we don't realize how powerful our words are when they are backed up by thought.
Now in the first chapter of Genesis, we are told how God created the heavens and the earth. Well the idea was that God SPOKE the heavens, and the earth, and man into existence without any law, any procedure that we could understand. But you read — well in Ferrar Fenton's translation, you find instead of God creating the heavens and the earth, that original is, "God created that which produced the universe," and it was done through periods.
Now Spirit — that is God's creation is spiritual ideation; God's creation is spiritual ideas, and those ideas bring forth. And you can see when we follow Jesus Christ, we must begin to THINK; think how ideas work; what relation ideas have to our spoken words. EVERY WORD THAT YOU SPEAK IS BACKED UP BY AN IDEA. And that WORD IS POWERFUL according to the POWER THAT YOU PUT INTO IT, the POWER THAT IS BACK OF THE IDEA.
Will Carleton, the poet of the people, said once:
"Thoughts unexpressed may sometimes fall back dead,
but God Himself can't kill them when they're said." [The First Settler's Story. St. 21]
Think of that. That's pretty good then of the idea there again: "Thoughts unexpressed — unexpressed — may sometimes — that's the thought we think and don't want it to get into action — fall back dead, but God Himself can't kill them when they're said." If you have expressed a selfish thought, then it goes from you. It is finished, and it requires a great deal of effort to adjust the condition that you set up by your spoken word.
"Thou shalt decree a thing and it shall be established unto you." We haven't given nearly as much value to our spoken words as we should. We have talked a great deal about the thoughts, and that's where you build up, that's where the constructive part of your work comes from. But until that thought is in some way expressed, it doesn't really make the manifestation, and we are all really wanting the manifestation.
So you can't blame those old Jews who had been trained in the outer expression of their religion, through forms and ceremonies and scriptures — you can't blame them for quibbling a little bit when Jesus Christ said they had to "eat his flesh and drink his blood"!!!
Now Jesus Christ spoke in the consciousness of this spiritual man and it is that spiritual man we all are seeking. We all want to be our perfect self, and we can only do it through cultivating the spiritual Man in ourselves, until we can appropriate the flesh, that is the Divine Substance, that radiant substance we hear about, and the life and energy and power being shaped into us through our thoughts, into this body — through our thoughts and words, that's the way we appropriate, that's the way we eat of this invisible Spiritual Man that was created in the beginning, perfect in every way, just waiting for us to appropriate him.
Now Jesus Christ in the lesson today, they wanted him to go up to Jerusalem and manifest himself. Or, as they said, "Manifest thyself unto the world." He didn't feel he was ready. "My time is not yet fulfilled." There is a time for everything, but do we sometimes retard the fulfillment? Don't we say, "My time is not yet fulfilled." In other words, "I haven't yet arrived at the place I feel I can demonstrate." So many of us are in that state of transition. We are evoluting, and so we don't always feel we have arrived at the place where we can brag about what we have done or what we are doing.
Now there are two propositions. One is that you shall wait. As Emerson says, "Blessed is the man whose time is arrived," We don't know then, if harboring two states of consciousness, how to handle them. Naturally there is one in which you have to meet your brother. The brothers of Jesus Christ didn't believe what he had done. They didn't walk with him anymore as some of his disciples. So undoubtedly, some would desert and betray him. And some of them stuck to him, and that you will find in yourself.
Here's this dual man. The man of Spirit which you can see and in mind you can demonstrate — you have your dreams — yet when it comes to fulfillment, then you think you have run up against conditions that prove to you, you really haven't yet gained the Truth, that you are not altogether in manifestation, then this is the point where you say "What are you going to do?"
Shakespeare says, "There is a tide in the affairs of men which taken at its fullness ALTOGETHER THE CURRENT OF THAT LIFE IS FULL. In the shallows are mysteries. (??)
This isn't strictly true, that there is only one great opportunity in the life of all of us and if we don't catch onto it, that's why we fail.
You know, even our illustration of the tide is a continuous tide, tide after tide. There is a tide and the silence. If you know how to take advantage of that tide, you attain, with your invisible tide, every day some opportunity opens itself.
Somebody said opportunity knocks but once. Somebody else said opportunity knocks at the door. When we open the door and find he is in overalls, we close the door again. We ignore it when the work is to be done,
Every opportunity is to be taken advantage of. It is there for you to use. It is good for you and it comes every day. In some avenue of your life there is a new opportunity every day. Are you taking advantage of these opportunities? Are you dealing with this proposition of making the Invisible Man manifest? Are you? Are you in the simplest avenue in which we express, for restoring good health, are you demonstrating good health? Every day? It is possible for you to do it. It is just a matter of recognizing the spirit of the Christ in you. That is, eat of it. You can eat of the new life every day. You don't have to wait until Sunday to go to communion, if you have a little communion every morning, and eat of the Lord's Body, the Substance.
You look at the body when you get up in the morning ... it don't look so very bright before you put on your war paint. (Laughter) (C. F.: Pardon, for the interruption).
And as I say, the image that appears as you look in the glass isn't the Real Man. The Real Man is what God created. And He created that which makes man, and gave over to us to make the man. So we should be busy every day appropriating, laying hold of this invisible man, bringing Him into manifestation. Every day is an opportunity. Don't think you have missed your opportunity to make man manifest. Every day is your day to make manifest the Real Man, and if you enter into it, you find you have sometimes instantaneous healings. Yes, all at once, you come from that into a new consciousness you didn't know was there.
Practice. You haven't had it before. You say, "Well, I have been applying the law and go through the lesson every day." Yet some of the old conditions continued and you weren't ready to meet that special avenue through which your mind was working on the negative side. So the search continued. All at once you come into this new consciousness.
Now this healing — people all over the country are being healed. It heals what they have been told were incurable things. We have well, lots of faith. So does every religion in the country. Each has its faith in God as the Source of man, and in his extremity for the healing of man. Some of these healing institutions depend on faith alone.
This great healing place in France called L-O-U-R-D-E-S Lourdes, is calibrated as a faith healing center. And in the February number of Liberty magazine was quite an article giving some of the illustrations of the healings that took place. I made some extracts to show you instantaneous healing is still going on. You find this in Liberty magazine for the month of February 21 and 28, telling about how this healing takes place.
It tells us in mid-afternoon the procession, that is a large procession of people come there, and every day they apply for healing in this way. In mid-afternoon, there is a procession of the persons selected for healing. All pilgrims, no matter how ill, march or are carried from the grotto to the place in front of the church, or chancery. They carried sacred vessels and chanted. Voices are raised in dour prayer. The procession often lasts till midnight. There is no special time for the miracle to occur. Sometimes, it is in the bath itself. They put these patients in a cold bath in the spring — not the 'spring of the year', but the spring of water! (laughter). Or sometimes it occurs back at the hospital. Sometimes after the patient has left for London or other places, the priests ask the pilgrims for prayer. There is a point I would like to call to your attention to — the priests ask the pilgrims not to make supplications for a physical miracle, but to keep praying for spiritual grace.
That's exactly what we teach here. People mustn't forget to take the mind off the physical, but pray for spiritual grace.
I copied a couple of cases. Oh there is quite a number of these notations here and some of them were deferred a month or a year after leaving the spring. Here's the case of Mrs. Elisabeth Elliott. She arrived at Lourdes in 1926, after several Paris doctors had pronounced she had a large cancer of the stomach. X-rays had been taken, and surgeons pronounced the case inoperable and incurable. I call to your attention the fact they have a staff of doctors at this shrine and they examine all cases before they are taken there for the miracle, and also after they come away. For this reason, it is accepted by most physicians. They have a group of three thousand professors belonging to this staff. On her first immersion in the waters, she felt a moment of almost unbearable pain and then suddenly felt herself aglow with health. She cried out that, she was cured. Immediately she was rushed to the medical bureau where all the doctors were, and X-rays and all scientific tests showed where the cancer had completely disappeared and had been replaced by healthy tissues. She was gay and happy and says she has an enormous appetite.
Another cure was John Treanor, an English war hero who had a severe head wound, paralysis of the legs, gangrene sores and injuries. The doctors of London pronounced him incurable. He was taken on a stretcher and immersed for several minutes in the icy cold water. He got to his feet afterwards and walked to the hotel. The head wound disappeared, his sores were gone and he returned to England where he now drives a coal truck.
Here you can see, by simple faith, healing comes into manifestation. These people were evidently ready for the expression of this spiritual man.
Now we are told in this article that during the history of this miraculous shrine, some ten thousand cases have been treated, but only a hundred and fifty healed. Why this disparity? If God is the One Great Source of all health, willing to heal, why weren't the ten thousand healed instead of the hundred and fifty? You can see at once it was the mental attitude of the patient — they didn't have it. They hadn't really raised their consciousness to the place where the combined faith of all these priests and their own, taking part in the ceremonies, could reach their minds. Only those who had that undying faith, manifest in the One Source of health and strength, got the results.
We're applying that in a scientific way. We say, well, it isn't necessary to go to a spring or to do any outer, external thing, but to get the mind in right relation, then you can go up into Jerusalem — go up and demonstrate what you have talked. So this has been reduced to a scientific operation that the mind works along scientific lines. We have to evolute. We have to unfold our mental ability; and through these — well — abilities, contact spirit. Our mental ability becomes the avenue there through which Omniscient, Omnipotent, All-Powerful Spirit will express Itself. Amen.
CORA FILLMORE: OFFERTORY:
This is our opportunity to give our love offering to the class. We can hold this love offering in our hands and repeat the usual word of blessing: DIVINE LOVE THROUGH ME BLESSES AND MULTIPLIES THIS OFFERING. (repeat). Blessing the Offering: Father, we do thank Thee for this generous outpouring of substance, and bless all in our word of blessing for it, that it shall return to the givers multiplies many fold. In His name. Amen.
Charles: All join now in our healing meeting. We are going to apply this Holy Communion, call it the Lord's Supper, or appropriating in our consciousness the Life and the Substance of the spiritual Man. Now this spiritual Man, I would say hovers over every one of you, within you, about you, above you, below you, within you — it can't be located geographically, but it is right here in your mind, awaiting your mind to recognize it, and that you will open the door and it will begin to pour in there according to your attitude of taking control. Think about Life. Think about the quickening Substance. Think about something — not too much. We have substance in our body. We need quickening life, wakening to this, the idea of quickening life. Take the thought:
"GOD QUICKENS AND SPEEDS LIFE IN ME".
Like electricity. Thy life is healing in me. Quicken the consciousness we have in LIFE. If we have a slow turgid life consciousness, we will slow down this life consciousness of the quickening spirit in life. Let's take it actively. Go down within yourself. "FATHER QUICKEN AND SPEED YOUR LIFE IN ME."
"Quicken and speed Your Life in me." We are drinking the blood of the Lord. We are partaking of the Holy Supper, drinking the wine of life.
Now what we do for ourselves, we can help others to do. In the Spirit, we quicken that spiritual man throughout all consciousness everywhere. So we can say to all those who are asking about this consciousness we have: "GOD QUICKENS AND SPEEDS HIS LIFE IN YOU." GOD QUICKENS AND SPEEDS HIS LIFE IN US. Let's all speak these names of these persons who have asked for healing substance of the quickening life. Say to them: GOD QUICKENS AND SPEEDS HIS LIFE IN YOU. Repeat altogether: (Repeat). Silently. See that great flow of quickening life. We are eating and drinking the very Substance of the Life of the Lord Jesus Christ. We have power to speak the word for anybody anywhere.
Hold in your mind the people who want your help. We will all speak with the quickening word from the Spirit. Altogether: GOD QUICKENS AND SPEEDS HIS LIFE IN YOU. We know the blessing of life and substance flows, runs through that one for whom you speak. Any other you would like to have join with us in this Holy Communion, he shall partake of the Lord's body and drink his blood.
CORA: The cells are all for health and prosperity, but also for illumination, guidance, forgiveness, freedom. Let us know the law is working for these dear ones from every angle.
CHARLES: Jesus Christ is saying, "Ask whatsoever ye will in my name and it shall be done unto you." Ask whatever you will. Ask right now. Realize it is all here for you. And your call is fulfilled.
We are thankful unto Thee, Our Father, for this understanding that we may drink the blood and appropriate the bread, the body of Thy holy Son, the ideal Man, at any time under all circumstances. We thank Thee, Father, for this. Also please.
BENEDICTION: I call your attention to the fact that this Christ Man, this Christ Body is always with you wherever you are. You can eat and drink, you can appropriate the life and realize the very substance of the Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.