1961 Maui Work

Tape 389 Side 1

Two Steps To Spiritual Freedom (Habakkuk 2:18-20)

By Joel Goldsmith

Part 1 of 4

Good evening.

We might as well start our Maui work by returning to the two principles which we understand to be of such great importance in bringing to us our freedom—freedom from material sense,from the limitations of the human mind, even of the human body; freedom from living in the five physical senses, so that we may receive the impartations of the Spirit and live by grace.

One of the major mistakes of the religions of the past 5,000 years is ascribing evil to God; that is, holding God responsible for the evils of this world—accepting the belief that God rewards and God punishes or that God sends diseases to the earth or is responsible for accidents, or as the insurance companies put it, that an “act of God” results in disaster—cyclones, hurricanes, tidal waves.

As long as an individual believes for a moment that God is capable of an evil act or deed, or visiting evil on his children, just so long it is impossible to love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, with all thy soul and with all thy mind.  No one can love God who at one moment may reward and bless and who for no reason says that we may be responsible for, and may visit horrible sins and diseases, accidents and death upon us.

As long as we believe that God can send a storm, we must believe that God can destroy innocent babies and children who often are victims of those very storms. And so, there is no way then to love the Lord thy God, except one way, and that is to understand fully, to become convinced within, that evil has no foundation in God; that evil does not have its rise in God; that neither sin, disease, accident, death, famine, storm, drought—that none of these come forth from God.

Only in the degree that you can remove the foundation of evil can you become free of it, and it has its foundation in the theological beliefthat God in some way is responsible for it.

We know, of course, where this misconception of God came from.  We know that back in the very earliest days of the Hebrew race when there was no spiritual wisdom, very little of spiritual light, that they turned to God for their blessings, and they feared God for His cursings.

You have this illustrated in the story of Noah and the ark, in which because Noah was a good man, God was going to save him and instructed him to build an ark and fill it with cattle and birds and keep him and his family alive and the same God that was going to do that for Noah was going to wipe out all the rest of the race on the earth.

Now, of course, it couldn’t ever be possible for there to be only one holy man, or one righteous man on earth, but if there were, try to think:  Where would man get his capacity to be evil if God gave him not that capacity?  Where would he get it but from God?  And why, then, would God punish him?  And if God did not give man the capacity to sin, where would he receive this capacity since God is his Father, his Creative Principle, and the source of all there is?

But they had no such wisdom in those days; they had only the darkness of superstition and ignorance and therefore they blessed God when he blessed them, they cursed God when they were cursed, believing that blessings and cursing came forth from God.

Now, with the spiritual light which was the consciousness of Jesus Christ, we are presented with a different God—a God in whom there is no darkness; a God too pure to behold iniquity; a God who demands of us, of men and women, that we be so pure that we even forgive our enemies and those who despitefully use us—that we pray for our enemies.

He presents to us a God who instructs him not to hold the woman taken in adultery in condemnation, but to say to her, “Neither do I condemn thee; thy sins are forgiven thee.”  And to a thief on the cross, he is bidden to say, “I will take thee with me into paradise this very night.”

This is the God that Jesus presents:  the God that demands of us that we hold no one in condemnation; that we visit no punishments, no sins, no diseases, no deaths, on the sinner.  What then do we know of God?  Is not God greater than we?  Is not the love of God greater than any love that we can express?   Is not the wisdom and the justice of God greater than the wisdom and the justice of man?

Therefore, to ascribe evil in any form to God is to make God lower then man, for of man, it is demanded, “Be ye therefore perfect.”  We would never consider any man perfect who visited sins and diseases and death on other men—not for any reason.  Even in this modern day, mankind is developing enough love, enough understanding of the spiritual nature, that he is even doing away with the death penalty for those who commit murder.  Well now, if man is that just and that considerate and that knowing, think of God.  How then could God demand death of you or of me for any reason when we are that righteous that we no longer believe in death, even for murderers?  Think of that.

In the same way that you witness in international relationships how that instead of holding countries in condemnation to their faults, we turn around after they have warred with us, we turn around and finance them back into prosperity.  We lift them back into cultural wisdom.  If we do that, how much more so is God?  How much more of love, and of intelligence, and of life, and of purity is there in God? And therefore to ascribe evil to God is sinful; it’s blasphemous.

Now most of the evils from which we suffer have their foundation in a universal belief that God visits those evils upon us—either to punish us for something, or to teach us a lesson, or for some other reason.  Even as it is given in funeral services, “God is calling this dear one home.”  And he usually calls them home by way of a cancer or consumption or being hit with an automobile, and it is blasphemous to believe that that is the way God has of calling anyone home.

And so you’ll find out that the foundation of the evils that beset you are in the universal belief that God is responsible for them, and you and I are ignorantly suffering from unconsciously accepting that belief.  We may never have consciously thought of it, but, nevertheless, because it is in consciousness, we suffer from it.

End Part 1