Luke 3 Metaphysical Bible Interpretation

Metaphysical Bible Interpretation of Luke Chapter 3

Metaphysically Interpreting Luke 3:1-20

3:1Now in the fifteenth year of the reign of Tiberius Caesar, Pontius Pilate being governor of Judaea, and Herod being tetrarch of Galilee, and his brother Philip tetrarch of the region of Ituraea and Trachonitis, and Lysanias tetrarch of Abilene, 3:2in the highpriesthood of Annas and Caiaphas, the word of God came unto John the son of Zacharias in the wilderness. 3:3And he came into all the region round about the Jordan, preaching the baptism of repentance unto remission of sins; 3:4as it is written in the book of the words of Isaiah the prophet,

The voice of one crying in the wilderness,
Make ye ready the way of the Lord,
   Make his paths straight.
3:5Every valley shall be filled,
   And every mountain and hill shall be brought low;
And the crooked shall become straight,
   And the rough ways smooth;
3:6And all flesh shall see the salvation of God.

3:7He said therefore to the multitudes that went out to be baptized of him, Ye offspring of vipers, who warned you to flee from the wrath to come? 3:8Bring forth therefore fruits worthy of repentance, and begin not to say within yourselves, We have Abraham to our father: for I say unto you, that God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham. 3:9And even now the axe also lieth at the root of the trees: every tree therefore that bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.

3:10And the multitudes asked him, saying, What then must we do? 3:11And he answered and said unto them, He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath food, let him do likewise. 3:12And there came also publicans to be baptized, and they said unto him, Teacher, what must we do? 3:13And he said unto them, Extort no more than that which is appointed you. 3:14And soldiers also asked him, saying, And we, what must we do? And he said unto them, Extort from no man by violence, neither accuse any one wrongfully; and be content with your wages.

3:15And as the people were in expectation, and all men reasoned in their hearts concerning John, whether haply he were the Christ; 3:16John answered, saying unto them all, I indeed baptize you with water; but there cometh he that is mightier than I, the latchet of whose shoes I am not worthy to unloose: he shall baptize you in the Holy Spirit and in fire: 3:17whose fan is in his hand, thoroughly to cleanse his threshing-floor, and to gather the wheat into his garner; but the chaff he will burn up with unquenchable fire.

3:18With many other exhortations therefore preached he good tidings unto the people; 3:19but Herod the tetrarch, being reproved by him for Herodias his brother's wife, and for all the evil things which Herod had done, 3:20added this also to them all, that he shut up John in prison.

Sunday, July 9 1916: Luke 3:1-17

THE FIRST BAPTISM

SILENT PRAYER: The thoughts of my mind and the meditation of my heart are of thy Law.

John means in Hebrew “Jehovah is gracious.” It is that attitude of mind in which we are zealous for the rule of the Spirit. It is not the Spirit but a perception of spiritual possibilities, and an activity in making conditions in which the Spirit may rule.

The “baptism of repentance for the remission of sins,” which has been made by the church an outward form representing an inner mystery, is in fact a simple matter of thought training. The Greek word metanoia is translated “repentance,” which has been interpreted to mean an admission to God of sorrow for past sin and a resolve to be good in future. The field of action for that which has been assumed to be goodness in the sight of God has nearly always been in conduct. The whole Christian world has in a measure failed to discern the teaching of the New Testament about mental [acts?]. A proper translation of the mission of John the Baptist is, “He came into all the region round about Jordan preaching immersion in mentation for the doing away with shortcoming.” Lyman Abbott says that it is plain that the mission of John was to bring about a change of mind. “The fundamental idea is not so much sorrow as a change; a change, however, be it observed, not merely of conduct, but of the thinking and immortal part.”

There is to be a descent into the consciousness of a higher principle, called in Scripture, the Lord. There must be preparation for this more heavenly order of being. “Prepare ye the way of the Lord, make his paths straight” The mental department of man is a tangible reality. Thoughts occupy space and have form and shape. They make the “valley,” and “every mountain and hill” mentioned in this lesson, which are to be evened up before “all flesh shall see the salvation of God.” All your flesh shall see the salvation of God when you have made your “crooked” thoughts straight. If your flesh is not saved from the ills that mortal flesh is heir to, it is because you have not opened the way for the saving Christ principle by purifying and harmonizing your thoughts.

Don't fall back on “our father Abraham,” which is heredity in the Adam line of descent, but bring forth in yourself the fruits of our Father God. Under the evolutionary law of nature, which Abraham represents, “God is able to raise up children from these stones.” John here infers that those who count themselves subject to the law under which Abraham lived and died are mortal, instead of spiritual. Lay the ax at the very “root of the tree;” deny all mortal ancestry. Affirm God to be your father and your mother and that you are subject to his law only; then deny the thought of selfishness, desiring more than you have daily use for. Be just in thought. Do not extort, but silently affirm, “I am willing to abide by the exact law of justice: that which is mine shall come to me, and no more.” Let no violent thoughts go from you. Breathe peace and love and harmony through your mind, and baptize the whole world daily in its refreshing sweetness. Then when you have made the proper conditions in your mind, there will descend into it a fuller life, a purer love and a greater power, than you have ever had; you will be baptized with the Holy Ghost.

Sunday, October 15, 1922: Luke 3:7-17

What attitude of mind does John the Baptist represent? In Hebrew, John means "Jehovah is gracious. When man, in the darkness of sin and ignorance, discerns the Truth, the light that is shed by the grace of the illuminating favor of the Lord, forms a new state of consciousness. John the Baptist represents this new Attitude of mind.

When man enters the John state of consciousness, what should be the general trend of his thought, or rather, what should he deny and what affirm? He should deny the thought of heredity, evolution, and materiality in all their phases; he should affirm his spiritual reality and unity with God through Christ. In this way, he will cut off all unfruitful states of mind.

What is the spiritual meaning of "He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath food, let him do likewise"? The two coats represent thoughts of the within and without, and food represents substance. Those who ave an understanding of the spiritual side of life should give it out to those who are without the understanding. And those who have a realization of Divine Substance should give it to those who are in thoughts of lack.

Who are the publicans who came to be baptized? The publicans represent the selfish thoughts.

Who are the soldiers? The soldiers represent the thoughts by which we demand our rights and try to enforce them by violence.

What does the baptism of John represent? The baptism of John represents the immersion of the conscious mind in the light of Truth. A correct translation of verse 3, preceding this lesson, is: “He came into the region round about Jordan, preaching immersion in mentation for the doing away of shortcoming.”

What follows the effective denial of error and the effective affirmation of Truth? The baptism of the Holy Spirit, and the foundation in consciousness of the new man in Christ.

July 1, 1923: Luke 3:3-8

INTERPRETATION

What does John the Baptist represent? John the Baptist represents that state in which the mind is changing from the natural to the spiritual consciousness.

What is symbolized by “preaching the baptism of repentance unto remission of sins”? The word translated “baptism” could have been better expressed as “immersion”: the submerging of the whole mind into an enveloping spiritual atmosphere, which, when it is recognized, cleanses and purifies all the thoughts.

In verse 8, what is meant by: “Begin not to say within yourselves, we have Abraham to our Father”? Verse 8 warns us against claiming fleshly inheritance. The body of flesh is the result of material evolution. “God is able of these stones to raise up children unto Abraham,” but the spiritual man is from the heavens, or from the realm of ideas.

What change first takes place in those who are coming into a consciousness of the spiritual man, Christ? A change of mind is the first step in the regeneration or new birth. According to the best authorities a correct statement of John the Baptist's mission is: “He came into all the region round about Jordan, preaching immersion in mentation for the doing away with shortcoming.”

What is the object of the change of mind which the baptism of John brings to man? The object of the change of mind symbolized by John the Baptist is to prepare the way for the formation of a perfect body which will represent in its health and wholeness the perfect man which God idealized for man in the beginning.

What effect does this immersion of the mind in the new spiritual consciousness have upon one's thoughts? Our thoughts are stabilized in the reality of our highest ideals. Our spiritual attitude is bold and rugged. We see the truth fearlessly and proclaim it to be of practical application in all the affairs of life.

Does baptism, or immersion of mind, as symbolized by John, fulfill the law of the new birth? No. There is more to follow. The transformation of the mind is the beginning of a change that ends in a complete transformation of the body. “Be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind.”

What attitude of mind does John the Baptist represent? In Hebrew, John means “Jehovah is gracious.” When man, in the darkness of sin and ignorance, discerns the Truth, the light that is shed by the grace of the illuminating favor of the Lord, forms a new state of consciousness. John the Baptist represents this new attitude of mind.

When man enters the John state of consciousness, what should be the general trend of his thought, or rather, what should he deny and what affirm? He should deny the thought of heredity, evolution, and materiality in all their phases; he should affirm his spiritual reality and unity with God through Christ. In this way, he will cut off all unfruitful states of mind.

What is the spiritual meaning of “He that hath two coats, let him impart to him that hath none; and he that hath food, let him do likewise”? The two coats represent thoughts of the within and without, and food represents substance. Those who have an understanding of the spiritual side of life should give it out to those who are without the understanding. And those who have a realization of Divine Substance should give it to those who are in thoughts of lack.

Who are the publicans who came to be baptized? The publicans represent the selfish thoughts.

Who are the soldiers? The soldiers represent the thoughts by which we demand our rights and try to enforce them by violence.

What does the baptism of John represent? The baptism of John represents the immersion of the conscious mind in the light of Truth. A correct translation of verse 3, preceding this lesson, is: “He came into the region round about Jordan, preaching immersion in mentation for the doing away of shortcoming.”

What follows the effective denial of error and the effective affirmation of Truth? The baptism of the Holy Spirit, and the foundation in consciousness of the new man in Christ.

January 18, 1942: Luke 3:1-6

With important Roman officials and Jewish religious leaders in power in Judea, Galilee, and the adjacent territory, why did the word of God come to the obscure son of Zacharias in the wilderness? John (grace and mercy of the Lord) represents the attitude of mind in which we are zealous for the rule of Spirit. The worldly rulers and religious leaders of John's time represent the thoughts given over to the forms and ceremonies of religion, rather than to its principles and inner truths. John therefore, and not the worldly chiefs and rulers, received the call to the service of Truth.

In his preaching John “came into all the region round about the Jordan.” What does this signify? The name Jordan means “flowing of judgment” and represents the place in consciousness where we are willing to meet the result of our thoughts face to face. In this consciousness, zeal for the rule of Spirit or the principle that makes man desire to do right (John) accomplishes its best work.

“Every valley shall be filled, and every mountain and hill shall be brought low.” Of what is this figurative language a symbol? Of road building. In modern road building the valleys or depressions are filled in and the mountains and hills cut down to make the grades easier. Curves are straightened and the surface smoothed. Through Christ we likewise cut down by denial and build up by affirmative thought and word the way that we are following back to our Father’s house.

In what way is it true that “all flesh shall see the salvation of God”? By the salvation of God is meant the power of the Infinite to change or transform imperfect forms of expression so that they may develop into perfection. All flesh, all mankind and man's entire nature as an individual, is capable of advancing in spiritual consciousness and expressing greater degrees of perfection.

January 18, 1942: Luke 3:15-17

Can others do the work of the Christ as Jesus did it? They can when they identify themselves through the I AM with the same source of love, wisdom, and power, that is, when they are filled with the same Spirit as Jesus.

How can we tell whether we are awakened to the Christ consciousness or merely to an intellectual perception of Truth? The quickening of the Holy Spirit makes all the faculties keenly alive and causes them to function in the cause of Truth. Faith, love, strength, wisdom, and all other powers are concentrated on perceiving and expressing what is for the good of all, and we are able to see what that good is. Intuition plays a part in this awakening, which involves man's whole being, whereas mere intellectual perception of Truth does not.

What is the unquenchable fire that burns up the chaff? The white heat of divine wisdom destroys all ignorance and folly in the heart of man, when he is filled with the Spirit of the Christ.

August 20 1950: Luke 3:7-20

LESSON INTERPRETATION

What are “fruits worthy of repentance”? They are the thoughts and acts that express the Christ Spirit. Changing our habitual state of mind from negative to positive enables us to have and express them and thus we bring forth “fruits worthy of repentance.”

What does John the Baptist represent? He represents the intellect, and his baptism with water represents denial. Every one of us has thought habits that he must deny out of mind before he can prepare himself to enter into the Christ consciousness. This denial is the baptism of John.

Can we rely on the faith we inherit from our parents to bear us up through life? No. An active faith of our own is as vital to our life as our heart action or blood circulation. Without the reinforcement of our own faith and effort no one else’s faith can bear us up.

What are the “trees” that must have the ax laid at their roots? These are the erroneous habits that spread their tentacles (branches) throughout all sense life, and that must be “hewn down” before the way is clear for the Christ to enter into us.

What is the “fire” into which the trees of erroneous habits are cast? It is spiritual zeal, and it consumes all the dross of the sense nature.

What is essential as a follow-up of the practice of denial? We must do what is constructive and helpful, instead of what is harmful. Everyone must do right, must be generous and unselfish, sharing his material substance as well as the substance of his thought with those who have less than he. They are to discharge their duties with strict honesty, contenting themselves with the reward of the worth of their services, instead of attempting to extort for them more than their just due. Whether in wages or in fees, extortion is the taking of unjust advantage, and no one who practices such methods is prepared to entertain the Christ mind.

What is meant by John’s saying “There cometh he that is mightier than I”? The intellect asserts authority in its domain, but when it is spiritually illumined, it recognizes its limitations and yields to the supreme authority of the Christ.

What is the baptism of fire that is to follow water baptism or denial? It is the baptism of the Holy Spirit or the filling of mind and heart with zeal for Truth, which infolds and does away with all lesser loyalties.

What is the significance of Herod's shutting John up in prison? Herod represents the sense consciousness ruling on the plane of mortality. John represents the intellect, which having perceived Truth seeks to do right from the intellectual point of view . When John tries to reform the sense consciousness by condemning it for its evil ways (here represented in its various phases by “multitudes,” “publicans,” “soldiers,” Herod, and Herodias), he eventually stirs up its violent opposition and is imprisoned (the intellect finds itself hemmed in by its overpowering conviction of the dominance of evil in the world).

Metaphysically Interpreting Luke 3:21-22

3:21Now it came to pass, when all the people were baptized, that, Jesus also having been baptized, and praying, the heaven was opened, 3:22and the Holy Spirit descended in a bodily form, as a dove, upon him, and a voice came out of heaven, Thou art my beloved Son; in thee I am well pleased.
January 19, 1935: Luke 3:21-22

Is purpose discernible in the trials that man must meet? The clearest purpose to be discerned in the trials or tests that come to man is the strengthening of his faith by exercising it in overcoming them and gaining self-dominion. When he loses faith under trial or temptation, he misses the purpose of the testing.

Does the metaphysician find it necessary to face tests? Like everyone else, the metaphysician must prove the faith that is in him before he can be sufficiently sure of it to use it in ways of greater service.

January 18, 1942: Luke 3:21-22

What opens “the heaven” or the universal mind to the consciousness of man, so that he may have the assurance of his oneness with the divine? Denial and affirmation made in the spirit of love and adoration do this. Denial and affirmation are represented by the baptism of Jesus followed by His prayer to the Father. The I AM thus identifies itself with its source.

Metaphysically Interpreting Luke 3:23-37

3:23And Jesus himself, when he began to teach, was about thirty years of age, being the son (as was supposed) of Joseph, the son of Heli, 3:24the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, the son of Melchi, the son of Jannai, the son of Joseph, 3:25the son of Mattathias, the son of Amos, the son of Nahum, the son of Esli, the son of Naggai, 3:26the son of Maath, the son of Mattathias, the son of Semein, the son of Josech, the son of Joda, 3:27the son of Joanan, the son of Rhesa, the son of Zerubbabel, the son of Shealtiel, the son of Neri, 3:28the son of Melchi, the son of Addi, the son of Cosam, the son of Elmadam, the son of Er, 3:29the son of Jesus, the son of Eliezer, the son of Jorim, the son of Matthat, the son of Levi, 3:30the son of Symeon, the son of Judas, the son of Joseph, the son of Jonam, the son of Eliakim, 3:31the son of Melea, the son of Menna, the son of Mattatha, the son of Nathan, the son of David, 3:32the son of Jesse, the son of Obed, the son of Boaz, the son of Salmon, the son of Nahshon, 3:33the son of Amminadab, the son of Arni, the son of Hezron, the son of Perez, the son of Judah, 3:34the son of Jacob, the son of Isaac, the son of Abraham, the son of Terah, the son of Nahor, 3:35the son of Serug, the son of Reu, the son of Peleg, the son of Eber, the son of Shelah 3:36the son of Cainan, the son of Arphaxad, the son of Shem, the son of Noah, the son of Lamech, 3:37the son of Methuselah, the son of Enoch, the son of Jared, the son of Mahalaleel, the son of Cainan, 3:38the son of Enos, the son of Seth, the son of Adam, the son of God.

Transcribed by Lloyd Kinder on 01-16-2014