Beginning Steps 3/4

The life we live is God’s life. The soul we have is God. But until this moment of illumination, until this moment of realization, we have no benefit. But from the moment of illumination, from that moment the presence goes before us to make the crooked places straight.

Now again let me repeat to you, that the spirit of God does dwell in you from the moment you’re conceived in your mother’s womb, but it is as if this were not true until the time when you consciously become aware of the indwelling spirit. And I give you as an illustration, Saul of Tarsus. Saul of Tarsus is not only a holy man, a dedicated seeker of truth, a high man in the councils of the Hebrew synagogue at Jerusalem. The student of the then greatest known religious teacher, Gamaliel. But he wasn’t the son of God. And he wasn’t spiritual. And he wasn’t under the law of God. As a matter of fact, I suppose today we would call him a murderer, in fact, or at least as part of the conspiracy. For he was on missions to kill the followers of the Master. He was a persecutor of those Hebrews who followed the Master. He did take part in the stoning until death. You could hardly call that man spiritual or a child of God. Yet he was so religious that he was willing to kill for his concept of religion. But in a certain moment; blinding flash. The light dawns. The Christ is revealed; that in-dwelling spirit. And he’s no longer Saul of Tarsus, he is now Paul, later the Saint Paul. And as Paul, he says – and remember, not as Saul of Tarsus did he ever say this – but as Paul, he says; “I can do all things through Christ that dwelleth in me. I live, yet not I. Christ liveth my life.” The in-dwelling Christ. In other words, he is now consciously aware of that which always had been within him. Always, because it’s in each one of us. God has imparted Himself to us. God has incarnated Himself in us.

The life we live is God’s life. The soul we have is God. But until this moment of illumination, until this moment of realization, we have no benefit. But from the moment of illumination, from that moment the presence goes before us to make the crooked places straight. The presence goes before us to prepare mansions for us. The presence walks beside us. The presence is behind us. We are never alone. Not only that we are never alone; there is always this “Father that dwelleth in me” that the Master spoke of; “The Christ that dwelleth in me” that Paul spoke of. Regardless of the name you give it, there is this in-dwelling Spirit of God that now companions us, tabernacles with us, goes before us, feeds us, sustains us. In our experience, at different times, it speaks to us in different languages. It says, at one time; “You shall not eat by bread alone but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God.” It says to us at another time; “No no, don’t go to the city to get me meat, I have meat the world knows not of. I AM the meat. I AM the wine.” This still small voice, this presence within us, is speaking to us. Well it is now.

The question is, to what extent are we silent, receptive and responsive. Because the voice won’t speak this way to you beginning at a certain time. You will merely hear it beginning with a certain time. When you develop the listening ear, when you develop an inner stillness that always has with it the ability, even while conducting your business outwardly, the ability inwardly to be still and hear, receive these impartations. You will then begin to hear the voice, but it is just like a radio station that’s on the air 24 hours a day; it’s always speaking. If your set’s turned off, you’re not hearing. As human beings we are cut off.

Let me quote from the Master on this. Fifteenth chapter of John; “I am the true vine and my Father is the husbandman. Every branch in me that beareth not fruit, He taketh away. Every branch that beareth fruit, He purgeth it that it may bring forth fruit. Abide in me and I in you. As the branch can not bear fruit of itself except that it abide in the vine, no more can ye except ye abide in me. I am the vine, ye are the branches. He that abideth in me and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit. For without me, ye can do nothing. If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch and is withered, and men gather them and cast them into the fire and they are burned.” Now, can you imagine the human race, how much time it has spent from birth turning within and recognizing that the Christ in-dwelleth. Can you imagine how much time the human race has spent, from birth, turning within and realizing; “Thou art the vine and I am the branch, and I am fed by thee. I am not dependent on my parents. I am not dependent on my investments. I am not dependent on my children. I am dependent on my contact, on my oneness with the vine which is within me. Can you imagine the human race spending time thinking of this. And yet reading this, Sunday after Sunday after Sunday, or hearing it time after time after time, everyone in the world practically owning a book with it in, and how many living it? And yet, to be the child of God, to be fed from within, to be at one with our source, there is the teaching; “You must abide in me and let me abide in you.” It means you must not only recognize that “I abide in you”, you must continuously turn within. And instead of the first thought being; “Who is going to give me this?” or; “Through whom am I going to get that?” or: “How am I to achieve this?” The first thought should be; “My oneness with my source provides it.” Because I am the branch that is one with the vine, all must flow to me from within. Just think now of the fruit tree. The barren branch looking over at another tree and saying; “Can you lend me some fruit?” That’s what we’re doing; “Can you lend me?” Or; “Can you give me?” And in desperate times we even want to steal it. And yet, the fruitage of our lives must come forth from within our own being. Because it has been provided so. We are the branch. The son of God, or Christ within us, the in-dwelling son of God, or Christ, is the vine. And our fruitage must come forth from there. And so it is that you can understand how still; the degree of stillness we must ultimately demonstrate if we are to hear that still small voice say; “Be still. Be still. Fear not, I am with you. I will never leave thee. I will never forsake thee. I am thy fruit, not the banker, not your friend, not your relative. I am the fruit. Abide in me, and in due season the fruitage will come forth.

Now this, you see, is embarking on not the metaphysical path of life but the spiritual path of life in which our attention is not on our life, our health, our supply, but rather on the Master’s teaching; “Take no thought for your life, what ye shall eat or what ye shall drink or where with all ye shall be clothed.” It is at this point that you’ll realize that all these things are the added things when you abide in this word and let this word abide in you. When you abide in the realization that there is an in-dwelling presence, Christ, son of God, Father, whatever term you like. And then live, move, have your being in that realization until eventually it is as if you were grafting a branch onto a tree. At first it may not seem that anything is going to happen. It may take a whole season. But as soon as that branch is well grafted onto that tree, and the life starts flowing, now comes the flowering and the fruitage from within the tree. So with us. Our life’s demonstration begins to take form from within ourselves. A whole new era begins for us.

This, you can see, is a stumbling block to many people who have lived in the external so long that they can not get back into the inside. But very soon, a few other difficulties appear. But if we accomplish the first of these, the others will not be so difficult. For instance, there are very few thinking people or praying people who do not pray for their friends and for their relatives. But now they have to come face to face with Christ Jesus’ statement that, it profiteth you nothing to pray for your friends and relatives. You might as well give it up. In order to be the child of God, you have to pray for your enemies. That’s a terrible statement and I am not the author of it, thank you. Christ Jesus made that statement; “It profiteth you nothing to pray for your friends. You must pray for your enemies if you would be children of God.” If you would make contact with that in-dwelling spirit, you have to learn how to pray and pray daily for your enemies. Not pray that they be successful in enslaving you, but pray at least that they be forgiven their sins. Pray that their eyes be opened to spiritual truth. Pray that the spirit of God touch them. In some way pray for their freedom, for their enlightenment, for forgiveness for them. Remember the Master’s praying for Judas and his followers; “Put up thy sword. Father forgive them, they know not what they do.”

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