Let me join the chorus in welcoming John back. I hope you can stay with us. You have insights from a unique point of view.
Again, I do not have time to comment on all the group's answers. If I do not mention your comment that does in no way mean that they were not valuable to me or others. I often read your comments and think to myself that I must comment on them but either forget or just do not have time. Rest assured I read and reflect on the entire group's writings. Many times a group member will write from a different vantage point than myself and offer something that will touch a soul that I cannot reach. Thus the group comments as a whole are more powerful than any individual.
"And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you. For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many." Matt 24:4-5
Has this prophecy been fulfilled?
There have been a number of people in history who have claimed to be the Christ but the prophecy extends further than that. Later in the chapter it talks about false prophets who will say such things as He is in the desert or secret chambers. We are warned here to not go to strange places expecting to meet Him.
So far everyone who has made any prediction around the coming of Christ or of some location where He will be found has been wrong.
Glenys mentioned Benjamin Creme. I remember the first time I read the "words of Christ" as they were revealed through him. They left me completely flat. No new knowledge, principles or wisdom. Then somewhere around 1988 he came up to Boise to give a lecture. I thought I'd try and be open minded and listen to him. I was surprised to hear him declare boldly that Christ was going to appear in about two months from the date of the lecture. He was going to be on television and his presence would be so powerful that the whole world would just know who he was and accept him.
Well two months passed and this glorious event did not happen. Later I heard he moved the event forward, but still it has now been over ten years and no mass TV appearance of the Christ with every eye recognizing Him.
Benjamin Creme was a student and personal acquaintance of Alice A. Bailey and he has a small amount of true data of the reappearance, but is caught up in a number of illusions and will continue to make false predictions.
It's possible that someone may surface who claims to be Creme's version of the Christ, but I assure you that such a one will not be able to speak words as beautiful as the Sermon on the Mount or give even one parable comparable to those of Jesus.
After we pass the year 2000 we are going to see more false Christs and prophets appear.
"For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be." Matt 24:27
What is the fulfillment of this prophecy?
Several of you gave some good correspondences here. Let me give you one that has not yet been mentioned. Most of the light and higher knowledge that has stimulated the West since 1945 has been from the teachings in the East. The idea of the Christ Consciousness could not have permeated our society had it not been on the wings of the light of the East.
The entire first stage of the Coming is due to the light of the east shining to the West. In addition to this Christ himself often dwells in a physical body in a hidden retreat in the East and it is possible He may travel to the West by orthodox means and begin teaching to certain prepared groups and then the world.
In Acts, chapter one, that was quoted yesterday we saw that only a few disciples saw Him ascend. Then two angels appeared and told them that the Second Coming will be similar to the event that they had just witnessed. If this is true it would mean that when he comes again that only a handful will recognize him at the initial event. Eventually every eye will see him, but this will happen over a period of time. We must remember that He plans on working directly with humanity in one form or another for a thousand years. After this mission is over He will leave this little planet for a time and another will assume the office of the Christ for an age.
There have been a number of interpretations of the words of Jesus on the cross about the Father forsaking him. Even Secret Places of the Lion has a different twist. But, as it is written in the Greek, the translation is accurate and we even have this rendering in the Gospel of the Nazarenes, thought to be translated from the oldest texts available.
The Christ was not being cruel in leaving Jesus on the cross for Jesus was an adept and not subject to pain. This is evidenced in a fragment of the gospel of Peter which tells us that Jesus was laughing on the cross. He found several circumstances around the event somewhat amusing. However to finish his mission and what some teachers call the fourth initiation he had to finish the job alone.
The Christ did not completely withdraw, but only partially for a great purpose that has never been revealed before. A hint is revealed in these scriptures:
"Verily, verily, I say unto you, If a man keep my saying, he shall never see death. Then said the Jews unto him, Now we know that thou hast a devil. Abraham is dead, and the prophets; and thou sayest, If a man keep my saying, he shall never taste of death. Art thou greater than our father Abraham, which is dead? and the prophets are dead: whom makest thou thyself?" John 8:51-53
"And whosoever liveth and believeth in me shall never die. Believest thou this?" John 11:26. We are told that if we follow the words of Jesus we will never die.
Question: Would Jesus teach something that He would not demonstrate? The whole world believes that Jesus died on the cross, but did he really? Is it possible that he practiced and demonstrated his teachings of overcoming death?
Is it also possible that the words of Christ can enable us to never die also?
Copyright 1999 by J.J. Dewey, All Rights Reserved