1950 First Portland
Tape 4 Side 1
By Joel Goldsmith
Part 5 of 5
And so, we come then gradually and naturally from the line of realization that I and the Father are one to this point: that because of that oneness, we embody within our own being whatever it is that is necessary for our fulfillment. Let us call it the Christ or let us call it the Father within or let us call it the meat or wine or water. So long as you recognize it as a divine presence, a divine power, an infinite good, you are on the road to spiritual freedom, because then, if you are made free by the Son—the Son, the Christ, the Father within—if you are made free by that Spirit, then are you free indeed. Then you don’t have to worry whether that Bible is over your heart or in your back pocket. It will always be, the truth will always be, and the divine Presence will always be in the place where it is necessary for our unfoldment for our safety and our security.
There is no other safety or security in this age. There is no other safety or security than that which can be found in that wonderful Presence and that wonderful Spirit of God in us. And it becomes necessary, first of all, that we, let us say, intellectually, agree on this. Somewhere in your mind, in your consciousness, there must be an answering response that says, “Yes, I believe that,” or “Yes, I knew that long before you said it. I’ve always known it, in fact.” There must first of all, be that agreement. If there isn’t, then all of these words can do you no good. There must be an answering response; something that says to you I can believe that; I can accept that, even if at the moment I’m not proving it, I can accept that; I can understand that; I believe that that’s what scripture meant. If you can go only that far, and then begin to live with that truth, you will find that that truth will make you free, because as you abide in this truth, it grows on you. It becomes not merely a memorized set of quotations; it really becomes the thing itself. It becomes the Spirit, Itself in action.
And so, you will find, that as you read the writings of The Infinite Way, all you’re going to find there are these ancient spiritual truths; I suppose dressed up in modern language, using modern symbols and explanations and illustrations, but that’s all you’ll find there: these ancient truths which were true then and are true now since the Master’s teaching is true: Your Father and my Father…. That’s what makes this whole thing possible. If he had only omitted that, then we could have gone back to our old theologies beautifully and just sat around worshipping Jesus and his demonstration. But because he said, “My Father doeth these works,”and then said, “My Father and your Father,” or “Our Father …, that makes it a teaching universal and adaptable to our experience.
I know this that the Bible is literally true in those passages that present to us universal truth, such as, for instance: I will never leave you nor forsake you. All these passages that show that the Christ is right where we are; that it isn’t the Christ that has forsaken us, it isn’t God who has forsaken us, it’s that we have, in our human sense, become separated from God. We have not agreed that God can set a table before us in the wilderness. We have not agreed that there is nothing impossible to God. And where we have said, “Well, why doesn’t God do these things,” or “Why isn’t the human race better off?” We forget the very logical answer: The world isn’t turning to God; it’s turning to some finite concept of God. Paul called it the God whom ye ignorantly worship, him declare I unto you.
You will not get any where asking this God or Christ for food or clothing; you will not get any where praying for peace. Nowhere in the Master’s teaching does he make that type of prayer a part of the ministry. In the most wonderful passage on the subject of prayer, ever given to the world, he says,“Take no thought for your life; what you shall eat, what you shall drink, wherewithal ye shall be clothed.”And he tells you about the lilies and he tells you about the birds, and then he tells you why: Your heavenly Father knoweth that you have need of these things, and it is His good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Therefore, take no thought, but seek ye the kingdom of God and His righteousness and the rest of these things will be added unto you. Why, he said the Scribes and the Pharisees are praying for things, but not you; you are not praying for anything at all. You’re just seeking the kingdom of God.
Another place on prayer: He tells them, “Don’t pray for your friends or relatives, the Scribes and the Pharisees do that too. And it doesn’t profit them anything. Pray ye for your enemies; for those who hate you and revile you and despitefully use you.” You know that he tells you in one place, “If you go to the altar to pray, and there remember that any man has ought against thee, get up, get out, first, make peace with your brother, then return to the altar with your gift.” Don’t you know that there isn’t a pray that could be voiced by anybody inside a church or outside of a church that would be fruitful if the one who was praying was entertaining hate, enmity, jealousy, malice against anyone in the world. You might as well save your time and your breath. You’d be better off to just be an out and out go getter, and go out and get it on your human ingenuity than to sit around depending on a prayer that in the last analysis is not going to work.
Unless you have come to a place of being at peace with your brother, and being at peace with your brother means just this: it means recognizing that when Jesus said,“Your Father and my Father,” that he meant God is a universal being, equally the God of saint or sinner, white or black, Jew or Gentile. Might as well make up your mind to that. If you are entertaining color prejudice; if you are entertaining racial or religious or national prejudice, you’re a house divided against yourself and your prayers cannot succeed. They can’t do it. You’ve got to come into peace with both God and man. If you say that you love God, and you hate your fellow man, you are a liar. It didn’t say you prevaricate or you exaggerate. No, no, no. You are a liar, the good book says, becauseyou cannot love God whom you have not seen, and at the same time hate your fellow man whom you have seen. It’s an utter impossibility.
Let us get this clear. All of us want to be, not only more spiritual, but actually we want to be healthier and wealthier and wiser and freer. Let us find out then, that if we are going to take the name of Christians, it will not do us any good to have it said of us, “Christianity hasn’t failed, but we haven’t tried it.” Let us, we’re only a small group, and we can experiment. Let’s try Christianity; let’s turn to the scriptures; let’s turn to the New Testament and let us find in there what it means to be a Christian; what it means to try Christianity. And you’ll find out that one of the things is that you have got to learn forgiveness.
You’ve got to learn that no matter what anyone has done to you in the world, even though you don’t love them as a person, and you can’t do that, nor can you love the evil that they’re guilty of, but you certainly can say within yourself, “Father forgive them, they’re hurting themselves more than they will ever hurt me.” That much you can do. Anybody can do that. Anybody can say, “Father forgive them, they’re hurting themselves.” Supposing they take your life? Are they doing any more to you than they did to Jesus, and it didn’t hurt him. And he said that whatever things he did, you’ll do even greater. So don’t be too bitter even against the fellow who can take your life. He who steals my purse steals trash. Shakespeare knew that. He that taketh my good name, he doesn’t do anything either, but Shakespeare didn’t know that. Because you will find that they hated the Master and reviled him and called him a winebibber and a friend of sinners. He probably was. They make swell company once they’ve realized that their way isn’t quite as fancy as they think it is. So perhaps he thought he was doing a great good with them and perhaps after their reformation, he felt that all was well.
However, the point is this: In this work, your good is very often evilly spoken of. And even when you are not actively engaged in this work, the moment you become a truth student, some of your friends and relatives will be sure, if nothing less, you’re cracked. And if not that, that you are dishonest or you’re a hypocrite and they point out why. So you have got to learn that even though they take your life, your physical life, you’ll find your spiritual life. And if they take from you your good name, they can’t take your character. They might take your reputation, but not your character. That’s what you are. That’s what you’ll always be no matter what the world will think about you.
And so we don’t have to be concerned for the world, but we have to be concerned with those four books in the Gospel: those four books in scripture that give us the chart of life. And one thing we’re going to have to learn then, that prayer must not be for some thing; that we’re not to take thought for demonstrating a husband or getting rid of one, or getting a wife or getting rid of one. We are not supposed to demonstrate a new house or a new automobile; we are supposed to demonstrate a realization of the presence of God, that little Christ that we spoke about that runs all through scripture. Get a conscious feeling of the presence of that and you will find that it will appear as a pillar of clouds by day or fire by night. It will appear as food; it will appear as companionship; it will even bring that new grandchild, the Christ idea itself, if only we can get the feeling, the conscious awareness of that Christ. That’s our mission. Then we fulfill the teachings of Christianity; then we can expect our good.
Well, that’s where we are tonight.
Thank you and bless you.
End of Part 5