Description of the Darkness on the Earth Before Jesus Was Born, and the Internal Sense of the Scriptures that Refer to this Darkness: How Evangelical Religion Misinterprets the Scriptures With Doom and Gloom in Present Times

November 25th, 2020

The impact of the imbalance of evil over good in the time before Jesus is demonstrated on Earth in the lives of people in many ways. We will examine several of these. When Paul, Isaiah, John, and Jesus all speak of the light and the dark, we tend to think they are speaking in metaphors. This is part of the truth, but I also believe they are speaking of a palpable presence and a constant threat much more than we might think. They are urging and guiding the people to see the way out from under the spell of the dark imbalance. No person could fight the force of the evil imbalance by his or herself. However, by acknowledging the divinity of Jesus, they could come into His presence and protection. First let us look at some examples in scripture that refer to the cosmic imbalance:

 

Arise, shine, for your light has come. Behold, darkness is covering the earth, and thick darkness over the peoples, but Jehovah will arise upon you. (Isaiah 60:1)

Behold the savage day of Jehovah will come, a day of the rage of his anger. For the stars of the heavens and their constellations will not give their light; the sun will be darkened in its rising, and the moon will not shed its light. (Isaiah 13:9,10)

The day of Jehovah is coming, a day of darkness and blackness. The sun and the moon will be blackened, and the stars will withdraw their splendor. (Joel 2:1,2)

 

Each of these passages refers to the end of the universal church (Jewish church) and to the destruction that would come upon the people if imbalance were not corrected. It all sounds very mythical, and some people take it that way. These scriptures, however, are examples of prophecies from the Old Testament describing the dire situation before Jesus was born. The following scriptures are examples of the language in the Bible that describe the end of the church, and they give a more palpable feel of the force of darkness clashing with the light in the New Testament:

 

But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness! (Mat. 6:23)

The people which sat in darkness saw great light; and to them which sat in the region and shadow of death light is sprung up. (Mat. 4:16)

And when the sixth hour was come, there was darkness over the whole land until the ninth hour. (Mark 15:33)

When I was daily with you in the temple, ye stretched forth no hands against me: but this is your hour, and the power of darkness. (Luke 22:53)

But he that hateth his brother is in darkness, and walketh in darkness, and knoweth not whither he goeth, because that darkness hath blinded his eyes. (1 John 2:11)

 

The palpable sense of this darkness is most clearly seen in the way the people believed in sin and death. The ancient people did not think about sin and death as moderns do. They spoke in a way that shows sin and death to be cosmic forces. Ehrman explains the historical situation of the darkness at this time very concisely:

“It (sin) is instead a kind of cosmic power, an evil force that compels people to live in alienation from God. The human problem under this model is that people are enslaved to this demonic power and are unable to break free from their bondage…The power of sin is related to another power, the power of death. In the participation model, death is not simply something that happens when a person stops breathing. It is a cosmic force that is intent on enslaving people; when it succeeds, it totally removes a person from the realm of god. Here again the situation is desperate; all people are subject to the overpowering force of death, and there is nothing they can do to set themselves free”. (Ehrman, 355)

 

This description is a representation of the effects of the cosmic over-abundance of evil as the people experienced it. Imagine a Mediterranean person’s situation at this time. Evil had undue influence in their lives. The oppressive force, the dread of death and the cosmic force of sin, was something to which they were subject, and from which they could not escape. Death for them was not a ‘passing-on to a better place,’ but was a fearful place to be avoided at all cost; it was the most dreaded of all cosmic forces (Ehrman, 355). This is why, as I pointed out above, people of honor developed a sort of ‘popular natural science of the gods,’ which they used to seek knowledge of cosmic patrons for protection from evil forces (Malina, 112).

In Thessalonians, Paul paints a picture of this situation from the people’s perspective:

“For when they are saying, “Peace and safety,” then sudden destruction cometh upon them as travail upon a woman with child, and they shall not escape. But ye, brethren, are not in darkness, that that Day should overtake you as a thief. Ye are all the children of light and the children of the day; we are not of the night, nor of darkness. Therefore let us not sleep, as do others, but let us watch and be sober. For those who sleep, sleep in the night; and those who are drunken are drunken in the night”. (1 Thessalonians 5: 2-7)

When Paul describes the people being drunk and asleep, he sees that, without the protection of the Lord, the people are swallowed up. They are shadows of themselves because of the excessive infuence of evil. It might be comparable to people that take drugs for too long. Eventually, they become something else, exhibiting a dangerous vacancy in the eyes and behavior that cares for no-one. There is a tragic loss of identity in these cases. But, in the time of which we are speaking, it is a communal loss of identity threatening humanity. This is the influence of evil run amok in the imbalance.

Some people, when they read the points I make about the times before Jesus, say, “Those times are no different from now.” But there is a big difference. Times of imbalance in equilibrium are very rare. At that time, the presence of evil was out of control on earth, whereas now, good and evil must play within the laws of freedom. The darkness on the planet before Jesus came was the greatest it had ever been and will ever be, so the power and effect of evil was much greater. In Matthew, it is said: “The abomination of desolation will come, and an affliction such as has never existed before and never will again. The sun will be darkened and the moon will not give its light; the stars will fall from heaven” (Matthew 24:15, 21, 29). And, in the Book of Revelation: “Satan will be released from his prison. He will go out to lead astray the nations that are in the four corners of the earth, whose number is like the sand of the sea” (Revelation 20:7, 8). This later verse refers to the Second Coming, yet gives an idea that both are apocalyptic times of cosmic imbalance.

Evangelicals commonly use the scripture from Thessalonians above and some of the others I quoted as proof for the rapture; that is, at the end times of the Second Coming there will be a time of trial and darkness in which half the population will die, and the Lord will come back to earth in person. They claim that those who express faith in the Lord will be taken up to be with the Lord in a rapture, similar to the way Elijah was taken up. They say that the Lord will show up riding on a white horse leading an enormous parade. This is a literal interpretaton of the Bible. I believe this literal interpretation is greatly mistaken. All these scriptures have an internal sense and are not referring to earthly events, but heavenly events in which the captives are released from the evil forces that have intercepted them in the world of spirits and put in false heavens during the imbalance. Evangelicals mistake the great joy of those released from the false heavens for what they call the ‘rapture’ which they falsely interpret as an earthly event. For evangelicals the rapture means that the ‘elect’ on earth will be taken up to heaven after Jesus gathers them from around the earth in the great parade.

Also, the extreme language of the light and darkness used in the Gospel of John, and especially in Paul’s letters, addresses the immediate, dire situation of evil oppressing humanity around the times of Christ. Evangelicals mistakenly interpret this language, formulating a doctrine of terrible times coming in the future, known as the millenium. This intense language about dire times is also a big source of ‘fire and brimstone’ preaching. This preaching has truth to it in the sense that it warns of the consequences of hell, but it is often applied in a very external way that has turned many people off. It is a misinterpretation to a degree, because, as we shall see in the chapters on the Second Coming, the Second Coming has already happened, and we now live in the Church of the New Jarusalem in which everyone can have a direct relationship with Christ, and we are not subject to an imbalance of evil as then. As everyone in modern times has seen, the end times and the Second Coming have been predicted to occur on certain dates several times, and much to the predictors embarrassment it never happens. All of this is to show that interpreting the Bible in a purely literal sense causes mistakes, which is understandable since most people are not aware of the internal sense.

But with the internal sense we can understand these verses very deeply. When Paul writes to the people, “Ye are all the children of light and the children of the day; we are not of the night, nor of darkness.” We can see how he is urging the people to come out from under the spell of sin. They felt sin as a communal, cosmic force oppressing them, which is the direct effect of the cosmic imbalance. Paul was showing them that Jesus defeated these forces, and he was giving them the great promise that they can be free from that by receiving the teaching and presence of Jesus. Theologically, Evangelicals see this language as meaning that Jesus removed sin ‘en mass’ from all humanity, that He did it unilaterally. They say that He sacrificed himself as payment, or ransom, for our collective and individual sins and that He removed these sins from the body and soul of each person. But this is not the case. This is not even possible because, as said above, the relationship between God and man is reciprocal, and man must work out his salvation in cooperation with God in freedom. In reality, Jesus’ acts of redemption were to battle and defeat the oppressive cosmic forces of evil, to judge and destroy the false heavens, to put all hell back into its place, and to restore order in heaven, thus restoring freedom and making Himself immediately present to us without representation. He indeed did these things by the might of His divine soul alone in the spiritual world, while at the same time teaching people on earth how to be internal men and women and to live with charity in the new church. By restoring equilibrium, humanity could live in freedom and have the opportunity to live in direct relationship to God (Himself). These are His works of redemption – redemption is not the cleansing of sin from the bodies of all people and taking it into Himself. Everyone must cooperate with and respond to God by exercising their own will for a change of heart to be real. It is understandable that these misunderstandings have stood so long when we consider the fact that humanity mainly knew only the literal sense of the Bible. Without an understanding of the internal sense of the Word, the literal sense seems to indicate that Jesus will show up on earth and lead the people on a white horse, bear their sins, and lead them into the new millenium. So, the constant preaching about Jesus bearing our sins and the constant waiting for Jesus to show up in a white cloud goes on and on. It has become tradition to believe this, but it is not the message of the Bible. In the chapter on the captives and the Second Coming, I will show from the Bible the time and the process of the Second Coming.

The Meaning of ‘I Will Create Rivers in the Desert’: Description of the Internal Mechanism By Which Jesus Restored All Mankind.

August 6th, 2019

“For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway in the wilderness. I will create rivers in the desert.” Isaiah 43:19
Before Jesus was born, (and the reason He was born on earth), was that there was a devastating darkness that had overtaken earth and humanity. There was a disequilibrium between heaven and hell where the forces of hell were beginning to over run the world of spirits and the lower parts of heaven. For many years evil spirits had been posing as good leaders in the world of spirits similar to the way the Jewish religious leaders had been using religion to control the people on earth. The leaders in the spiritual world were intercepting those who died who were good or bad and bringing them into their societies that they said were heaven, but it was a false heaven. The great number of people captured in these societies are known as ‘the captives’ in the Bible. These false heavens were causing a dark cloud between earth and heaven and an overabundance of evil. This dark cloud was choking-off the influx from heaven and corrupting the correspondential connections that are necessary for man to be sustained. The Jewish church had long since become completely external, yet the Lord used it as the means of correspondence between earth and heaven as long as he could by making it the ‘holy external’. But this was not sustainable, it was a mere shadow of light and charity – so Jesus had to be born. The words ‘wilderness’ and ‘desert’ refer to the state of desolation of the church and charity on earth. The words ‘pathway’ and ‘river’ refer to the influx and correspondences being rebuilt between. The connection between heaven and earth had atrophied, like a river going dry or an electrical circuit that had lost its nodes. All this and much more mean that whole parts in the body of the Grand Man, if we were able to view it, were dying, were going grey so to speak. This means that in man the spiritual internals were shutting off, the wiring so to speak in the psyche that connect to heaven were dying. By being born on earth and the growth he went through day by day, jesus was restoring the pathways in the psyche of man that make it possible to connect with heaven. He rewired and activated the channels in the mind of man by his acts of love on earth. There has to be a node on earth and a node in heaven to complete the circuit. He rebuilt this internal connection, in all of its complex particulars, day by day by overcoming the powers of evil and the temptations with which they continually assaulted Him. He overcame them by exercising acts of love and wisdom that created and re-established union. Wilderness and desert in general mean the desolation of charity in the church and the resulting loss of correspondence and influx between the mind of man and heaven. This caused the functions in the body of the Grand Man, which is heaven, to atrophy. But by being born on earth God received a new human – Jesus. As jesus went through the gradual process of making his Human divine, known as the glorification process, he was also making all the functions and structures of the Grand Man whole and sound and brilliant. In doing this He became the source and innermost of everything; He became the fountain from which all meaning, regeneration and love spring, so that all things immediately or remotely correspond to him. We are truly, in every sense of the Word, in the body of Jesus.

        Swedenborg Writes:
“In relation to man the Grand Man is the whole of the Lord’s heaven, but in the highest sense the Grand Man is the Lord Himself; for it is from Him that heaven has its being, and to Him everything there corresponds. Since the human race had become utterly corrupted on account of a life of evil and consequent false persuasions, and since at that time the lower things with man were beginning to take control over the higher, that is, natural things were taking control over spiritual, and as a result Jehovah or the Lord was no longer able to flow in by way of the Grand Man, that is, by way of heaven, and bring those things back into proper order, it was consequently necessary for the Lord to come into the world. It was necessary because in so doing He assumed a human and made this Divine. Then by means of that human made Divine He restored order so that the whole of heaven might have reference to Himself as the one and only Man and might correspond to Him alone, once those who were under the influence of evil and so of falsity had been trodden down and so cast outside the Grand Man. This explains why people in heaven are said to be ‘in the Lord’, indeed in His body; for the Lord is the All of heaven, and being in Him every single angel there is assigned to a particular province and function” (AC 3637).

A Study on the Meaning of the Magnificent Prayer that Jesus Prayed For Himself (John 17: 1-5): And How it Is That Jesus Broke the Unbreakable Law of Nature.

May 26th, 2019

After Jesus said this, he looked toward heaven and prayed:

“Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Now this is eternal life: that they know you, the only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you have sent. I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began.

Father, the hour has come. Glorify your Son, that your Son may glorify you. The hour has come refers to the last temptation and the coming resurrection. Jesus and God are one but from being born on earth there is a change. To glorify means to make divine; and the whole arch of Jesus life is to make His natural human body divine. In the process of doing this He would ‘renew all things’. His soul is divine, and his body is natural. The rigorous process of the glorification is to make His natural body divine, and take it up into heaven. The resurrection is the transformation of his body from being natural to spiritual so it enters the spiritual world in the highest and the innermost. He prays to accomplish these things.

Before God come down to earth He is Jehovah, the one God. God has always been in the human form from the beginning; as He says we are ‘made in His image’. He was born on earth because a great separation had grown between Him and humanity to such a degree man would have been lost in abysmal darkness and perished. No man can approach God in his essence and live; it would be like approaching the sun. But to be born as a man on earth made Him the bridge; it made him accessible to humans without harming them, and He could also be in the presence of evil spirits without destroying their existence yet be able to defeat them. (I wont describe the whole Glorification process here but there are several articles on this blog where it is described in full detail.) 

For you granted him authority over all people that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Jesus possesses within himself the love and wisdom to govern the whole universe. In the resurrection He became the innermost and that which is the innermost is present to and renews all things in the universe. Here is a good way to understand this: It defies the universal laws of physics to take the physical body into the spiritual world. We all know this is an impossibility from experience. But Jesus broke this universal law and actually raised His human body into heaven by making it divine in the glorification process. He who breaks such a universal law becomes the universal law. He does so not for himself but from a love for the whole of humanity and the universe that had never existed before. This is how He is granted ‘authority over all people’. He who is the highest is also the innermost of all things and thus governs from love. He paved the way for all people to have the chance to be restored. He did so by re-building the union between body and soul, and between earth and heaven, that had been almost completely destroyed by evil forces. He did this in the universal, and what is done in the universal is done in every particular for all things. What had become dark and disconnected in the psyche of man became connected and vivid again by Jesus blazing the path by overcoming all temptation from evil in His own human body. He prayed for the ability to do this.  He didn’t do this unilaterally for people; he restored the opportunity for all people to achieve salvation, but everyone has to walk the path with Him from our own desire. This is what it means that he might give eternal life to all those you have given him. Also, at the same time, Jesus, by himself, restored the equilibrium between heaven and hell that had been lost and which constitutes the essence of man’s freedom, and this freedom that He alone provides – is the only means of salvation.

I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. This is an enormous statement that has so much to do with why we love and worship Him, the only one who is worthy. He speaks honestly the truth about himself. It’s so wonderful because what He did was profoundly difficult to a degree far beyond human comprehension to understand. He is the hero of heroes.

‘On earth’ has two important meanings. One is that it refers to the natural world of earth. That sounds simple enough but there is a great distinction to make that is very enlightening about the phrase ‘Glory on earth’. As Jehovah from the beginning God was always the highest and in the celestial and spiritual realms, but being born on earth and resurrecting He entered the natural realm also for the first time. Now by being in ‘the whole’, that is the union of the celestial, spiritual and the natural, He made the light available to man exponentially brighter! Only when He was born on earth did He add the natural to Himself, and in so doing increased His power, presence, love. From this union He achieved flows the source of life, love and wisdom. This is what is meant by I am the Alpha and Omega, and the statement ‘I draw all things unto me’. It is also why the Holy Spirit comes into being after the resurrection. The Holy Spirit is Jesus; it is His presence in increased and direct relationship to all things.

The second thing is that in the internal sense ‘earth’ means the church of man on earth. While on earth Jesus started the new church. The old church had become completely external, bereft of genuine charity. There must be a genuine church at all times on earth for humanity to exist, so Jesus was born to do this. While on earth He taught people how to love again, He gave us the One to truly worship, He taught us how to know God, and He established an internal church on earth. He prayed for the ability to accomplish this.

And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began. Jesus prays to the Father to become One again as the divine human in the highest. Another utterly unique Quality of Jesus is this: God is the one from his infinite wisdom that puts all humans through trials and temptations for the sake of their growth and ultimate salvation. Jesus was the only one, and the only one who ever will, that gave himself temptations and trials. For Him this was the essential part of his Glorification process by which he removed hereditary evil from his human body. He prayed for the last temptation to achieve the resurrection. This is part of why He so often says ‘for the sake of fulfilling all prophecy, let it be done’. Jesus is the only one who went through the process of the Glorification (and the only one who ever will) for only God can do this. Humans go through the process of regeneration which corresponds to Jesus’ process of glorification. He prayed for these trials in full awareness of what they brought. But by no means did this make it easy. It was rigorous far beyond our ability to know as evidenced by His prayer in the Garden, ‘Father why have you foresaken me, but nevertheless let your will be done’.

“I will give children to be their princes”. Analysis of Upside Down leaders, Then and Now.

March 6th, 2017

I will give children to be their princes,
And babes shall rule over them.
The people will be oppressed,
Every one by another and every one by his neighbor; The child will be insolent toward the elder,
And the base toward the honorable. (Isaiah 3: 4, 5 NKJ)

This scripture describes upside down leadership which the picture above is a parody of. Leaders are supposed to put the Lord’s love for the people first in their heart, and this gives them wisdom to serve. Leaders in the ancient world like Herod and the Jewish leaders had great external power, but were like kids throwing a fit inside fighting for their own way and power. They put their self first and delight in dominion over others, which is upside down; the self is full of proprium and evil, full of hate, and in a spiritual way eventually insane without submitting to God. Upside down leaders believe in their own prudence and don’t tether them self to the prudence of God. A child sees itself to be omnipotent which is cute because they have innocence, and it is an appropriate compensation for being helpless; so growing up spiritually is about gradually learning to transfer power back to God where it belongs, and this gives a genuine strength that loves others more than our self – because the person retains innocence and gains intelligence (and wisdom is the marriage of innocence and intelligence). But the self-centeredness of upside down leaders buries the innocence in the soul; like a plant that dies in dry, rocky soil; so they look intelligent and seasoned on the outside but have the emotional intelligence of children inside, insolent and oppressive to others.

         Isaiah’s words describe the destructive constraints that family roles had become in the ancient world and how each person was ‘doing it’ to the other. The verse quoted above gives a picture of insolent children leading the people with ill intent, which is very apt. The religious leaders obsessively kept the people obedient to the law of the Torah, which was stringent and behavioral. Their use of religion for power furthered the grip of evil on the land. But the leaders themselves were even greater victims of evil for in their spiritual pride most hated the light of Jesus, and intentionally sought to kill the real Messiah. Zealots wanted him for political power, but the leaders were profoundly threatened by Him and wanted Him dead at all costs. Some of the common people had enough innocence in them to respond to Jesus, but the leaders obsession to serve their own purposes extinguished charity in them. There were exceptions, of course. Nicodemus and Joseph of Arimethea spoke up for Him in the trials. Nicodemus secretly came to Jesus seeking answers and guidance in the cover of night. But even he, in his interaction with Jesus, barely understood the teaching Jesus gave him. When Jesus told him that he must be born again, he took it literally, asking, “How can a man be born from the womb a second time?”

To keep the trust of the people, the leaders had to keep up appearances and fulfill their roles according to custom. The leaders and the people were unconscious of how evil was using them, and most leaders fought to their dying breath to maintain power. Evil in the honor shame society of ancient times had manipulated the society to the point the people had no internal conscience, and, therefore, no ability to stop the downward spiral into darkness, and this is why Jesus had to be born. It was the work of Jesus to awaken the fighting spirit deep in the souls of the people so they could find their internal life again.