13 Aug Neville Goddard: The Serpent: Jesus Christ (1968)
THE SERPENT: JESUS CHRIST (3/25/68)
“God is all Imagination and God is man and exists in us and we in him; the eternal body of man is the Imagination, that is God himself” (Blake, Berkeley/Laocoon). Now we are told that the Bible is God’s word, therefore, it must be man’s word if we are one. A scriptural episode is not a record of an historical event but a parabolic revelation of truth. Accept it, though you may not understand it. When you experience it, it will be literally true. In Paul’s 2nd letter to Timothy he said, “Follow the pattern of the sound words that you have heard from me. Guard the truth which has been entrusted to you by the Holy Spirit who dwells within us” (verses 13-14). Here he’s called upon to guard this truth, this pattern. Only as we follow this pattern are we really saved, for if we do not follow the pattern we go astray.
If I am all Imagination, and all things are possible to Imagination, I should able to accomplish anything in this world that I desire. I should…but to what degree do I believe that statement? Entirely up to me, do I believe? We are all living in states, infinite states. That basic state from which we operate is simply the body of belief—I believe in this, that and the other—all the things I really believe in. If I believe in this, believe in that, and they form a body, it is from that that I operate. It is to that that I return constantly. If I can produce any modification in that body of belief, I should, if this principle is true, produce a corresponding change in my outer world. For the outer world is reflecting the inner world. If I listen to this truth and I toy with it and produce within me some modification of this body of belief, I should find changes in my outer world. If you don’t, either the principle is false or you did not succeed in changing this body of belief.
Now tonight, let us take just a few of this fabulous book. There are sixty-six books in what we call the Bible. Really, it’s a library. We are told that the symbol of the fall is a serpent. We are told in the 3rd chapter of Genesis, he was the most subtle of all of God’s creatures. But the word translated “subtle,” you’ll find it a dozen times translated in different ways, most often as “wise.” He is the sound wisdom of God’s creation. But now in the 8th chapter of the Book of Proverbs we are told: “God created me at the beginning of his ways, the first of his acts of old.” All scholars agree that this is the personification of wisdom. In the New Testament we are told that “Jesus Christ is the power and the wisdom of God.” (1Cor.1:24) Who then is the serpent? You have been taught to believe that some strange monster, called the great dragon, betrayed man and led him into this world of sin and death. If you understand scripture, you will see that the one that brought man into this is Christ Jesus, the power and the wisdom of God. But he will take us from this world into the world of regeneration. He brings us into the world of generation and redeems us by raising us to the world of regeneration.
Now, he’s called “the serpent.” Do you believe that literally? May I tell you from my own personal experience yes. We are told in the Book of John, the 3rd chapter, that: “No one ascends into heaven but he who first descended, the Son of man. And as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up” (verse 13, 14). Here, who would think that infinity took the form of a serpent? Infinite power, infinite wisdom took the form of a serpent and entered the state called Satan. Satan means “the limit of opacity.” He took the form of man and man means in scripture “the limit of contraction.” You can’t get any lower. So here we find Satan now is nothing more than a blind man confined only to his five senses—nothing beyond what the eyes, what the ears, what the nostrils, what the tongue and what the sense of touch will reveal as true can be accepted as true. He is limited to the limit of opacity and contraction.
Now, we are called upon to exercise this power that actually sacrificed itself and became us, actually became me, became you. Well, how do I exercise it? Blake stated quite clearly: “I know of no other Christianity, no other gospel than the freedom both of body and mind to exercise the divine arts of Imagination.” Well, can I actually exercise the divine art of Imagination and prove I can go beyond my senses, what my eyes dictate, what reason dictates, what all my senses dictate? I know from experience I can. So here, I start exercising the divine arts of Imagination and I dare to assume that I am at the moment what at the moment reason denies and my senses deny. And to the degree that I am self-persuaded that what I am assuming to be true is true, to that degree the outer world changes to conform to this change of belief within me. I am working on this body of belief based upon all that reason has dictated, all that my senses have dictated. And so, to the degree I can bring about modifications and sometimes radical changes within this body of belief, when I do it changes in my outer world.
But here, can I prove that infinite power and infinite wisdom actually took the form of a serpent and descended? Well, where would he descend? He descended into me, he descended into you. Your capacity to generate in this world is the descent of the serpent into generation. The day will come, you will turn around, and then the Son of man will ascend into heaven. But no one can ascend into heaven who has not first descended and the only one who descended was the power and the wisdom of God, and he came in the form of a serpent. Don’t be afraid. I am telling you what I know from experience. And the day will come, that this body of yours will be split in two from top to bottom. As Blake said, “The furnaces of affliction became fountains of living water.” These are the furnaces of affliction. Every one here is in a furnace, and suddenly when he is split, suddenly he becomes fountains, all of us, fountains of living water springing from humanity. You rise like a fiery serpent up that spinal column of yours. Now listen to these words from the 21st chapter of Numbers: “And the Lord God said to Moses make a fiery serpent, and set it on a pole; and anyone who is bitten, if he sees it, shall live” (verse 8). He shall live, therefore, he was already dead. If he sees it, he shall live—you enter into life within yourself. “Make a fiery serpent…” Now these are all adumbrations, these are all foreshadowings. Every little episode in scripture is simply a rough sketch, that’s all that it is. It’s not worked out in complete exposition; it’s simply a rough sketch, leaving it for time to fill in, when you and I actually have the experience.
Now let me share with you the experience of a friend who is here tonight. Throughout the entire experience the presence of a father, and he knows it’s “my father,” he’s present. He is building this fabulous building and he knows that his father is a greater builder than he is, he knows it. But he’s building…doesn’t see the father. Then comes the noon hour and there’s a break. When he goes in to wash up, as he goes in he finds that his father had preceded him, for here, the remains of the father’s wash in the basin. And he knew the father loved him and he loved the father, but he hadn’t seen the father, only he knew of his presence. He knew he was a greater builder. He also knew that eventually he would be as great a builder as his father: “And I will be one day equal to my father in the building.”
Now, he said, “Suddenly I saw a black and white king snake. I picked it up in my right arm and I loved the snake. I found some hamburger, I gave it a piece, and it ate it ravenously. I found another snake and I picked it up in my left hand. But I noticed it was poisonous and I quickly put it back, because I couldn’t control two in my arms. And this snake began to tell me of her husband. It becomes now vocal, and here it ceases to be a snake, it now has a voice. It’s telling me of her husband who has gone away, and she loves him dearly, but he has departed.” And a very intimate conversation takes place between a snake and this friend of mine, who is here tonight, who picked up the snake. “Then we separated. I’m now standing at a new building site and here there’s a pole and on it the snake, the same snake. And it’s moving up the pole, and then it turns around and jumps half way down, and starts the descent.”
Here is the perfect adumbration. You see it? Only that which descends can ever ascend. So he tells you, “You see the ascent? It was the same one that descended.” There is no other way up. And when you go up, you actually go up as a serpent. It doesn’t make sense. Let the whole vast world rise in opposition and scream, it makes no difference to me whatsoever. I have experienced it. I have fulfilled scripture from beginning to end. And just as Moses lifted up the serpent in the wilderness, so must the Son of man be lifted up (John3:14). How is he lifted up? In the form of a serpent…the same serpent which is the creative power of God that descended into man, which is your own wonderful creative sex power in this world, with the head turned down. So, turned down, it is sex in this world. It must be reversed. And you do not do it by anything that is a conscious act in this world. You can sit in meditation from now ’til the ends of time and you can’t reverse it. The reversal takes place when the whole body is split in two from top to bottom. Then you see the fountain of living water, and you become it. You fuse with it, and then, like a serpent, up you go. This fiery serpent moves up into heaven.
So as Blake said, “Here, these furnaces of affliction suddenly became fountains of living water, all springing from humanity.” So everyone is destined to add to that fountain of living water as we all rise from this world into which we descended. And the one that descended…as Blake tells us again, we followed the serpent: “I do not consider the just man, the weak man, the wicked man, any man to be in an ideal, supreme state, but to be every one of them states of the sleep in which the soul may fall in its deadly dreams of good and evil when it left paradise following the serpent” (Vision of Last Judgment, Pp.91). We followed the serpent. We believed that we really could awaken as God. For that’s what the serpent, which is wisdom, told us. That, “Did God say to you that you would die? You will not surely die” (Gen.3:4).
Well, read the 22nd verse of that same chapter, the 3rd chapter, where God said, “Behold, the man has become like one of us, knowing good and evil.” That’s what the serpent told him that would happen to him if he would descend and partake of this knowledge of good and evil. He would then become awake to good and evil just like the gods. For if we become awake, knowing good and evil, and God said “he has become like one of us, knowing good and evil”, well then, the gods know good and evil, which is what we did not know before. We only knew…we were simply automatons, innocents, knowing nothing, really, simply awake in a strange dreamlike state. And here comes infinite wisdom—for he’s the wisest of all God’s creation—and said, “Follow me. I’ll take you into an experience.” So we leave the world of innocence, we enter the world of experience, and return to the world of Imagination. And that’s the story. When we go up, it’s all Imagination, and there is nothing impossible to man when he rises, because he is God. There’s nothing impossible.
But before he rises, we can test this right on this level. Do you know someone who’s in need? Maybe you yourself are in need? Well then, bring before your mind’s eye a scene that would imply the fulfillment of your desire, either for a friend or for yourself, and lose yourself in the feeling of this wish fulfilled. And do nothing to make it so, just let it be so. May I tell you, no power on earth can stop it from being so. Don’t say, “Well, suppose he opposes me?”…right away you’re in the world of Satan or opacity. You see “others”…there are no others; God is one. God is not a second, he’s one. So don’t say, “Well now, suppose he opposes me…suppose there isn’t a job open for me?” I don’t care what the world looks like; you’re creating it from within yourself. Try it. All I ask of you is to try it. And simply keep and follow the pattern of these words that you’ve received from me.
Just as Paul said for his experience, although he wrote beautifully, I do not write in that same vein—it’s the same pattern, it’s not another pattern. When it pleased God to reveal himself in Paul, it’s the same God who revealed himself in me. So when Paul said, “It pleased God to reveal his Son in me,” well, if he reveals his Son in him, then he reveals the Father. For when the Son is revealed, the Father is revealed. For if there’s a Son, there’s a Father. So Paul is telling you he knows he’s God the Father. And if you read it carefully, in Timothy what he’s actually telling you: You heard this from Paul and may I tell you, it came from Paul, not from Paul who got it from another. For he said, “I never heard it from a man, I was never taught it, it was revealed to me.” So he’s telling you that it didn’t come to him from another. He didn’t get it from a book, didn’t get it from some lecture, he didn’t get it from any person in this world; it came from revelation from within himself. So he’s asking everyone to follow the pattern of the true words that you have heard from me, Paul, that’s what he’s saying.
Well, I’ll tell you, follow these words you have heard from me, because I have actually experienced the entire story of scripture. And I tell you, it is not secular history. These individual stories all of them put together have not a thing to do with anything in this world, like recalling some true historical event. It’s not so at all. These are simply parabolic revelations of truth. They’re all parables…naturally, find out what it means. Well, I’ll tell you, when it does happen you’ll know exactly. I can tell you to the best of my ability, but when it happens it seems, well, this is natural. When the body is split and the serpent moves up from this base of golden liquid light, then you know what this living water really is in scripture, this living fountain that comes up—from what?—from humanity. So every story in scripture is true literally when experienced, but it is parabolically true until experienced. You see it as a rough sketch; it’s something that is not quite understood by the rational mind.
Now here, another friend writes, this lady, “I found myself in the depths of the earth, in a cave, and the walls were all hewn out of rock. The only object present was an urn or a jar, a large urn or jar. I noticed that on the side of it was carved a face, a human face. But, suddenly, as I’m looking at it I became so excited because something is happening to me. I am moving in and out of this cave, without effort, going right through the walls…a thing I have not experienced before, I’m moving right through the walls. And then after going through and coming back many, many times, I suddenly now become absorbed in the jar. I notice now it is not a carved face on the jar, the jar itself is a head, the whole thing…that stone jar is a head. I’m looking at it and the forehead is furrowed, which I didn’t notice before. I noticed that the lips are moving. I can’t hear any words, but I noticed it’s speaking. But again this impulse to move through the walls, and I start through the walls again. When I go back and forth many times through the walls and return, I notice the top of jar is off, the head is off, the top of the head. I peered into it and it’s empty. Then I thought, well now, I’ll investigate and get into it, and see what it’s all about. And then I awoke.”
Again, go back to Blake: “And he has a sepulcher hewn out of rock to receive me, and a death of eight thousand years that you have forged for thyself.” (Jerusalem, Plt.37) Here, he has a sepulcher to receive and a death of eight thousand years that you—he didn’t do it—you forged for yourself. Now, 8,000 in Blake’s symbology does not necessarily mean 8,000 years. Eight is resurrection. Eight is a new beginning: On the eighth day he rose. He said the third day, it’s after the Sabbath, and so the Sabbath, and the next day he rose…that is the eighth. So here, on this day he will actually prepare a death, leading up to resurrection.
In this lady’s case I think she’s on it, so it’s not any eight thousand years in time. I think she’s on it…from this experience I would say she is. For here, she realizes that she can go through this cave. This is the sepulcher in which man is placed, and when man enters the grave he enters it with the one that descended with him. “God himself enters death’s door with all who enter it, and he lays down in the grave in visions of eternity until they awake” (Milton, P.522) And so they will awake on the eighth. So here, I think it’s the 37th page or plate of Blake’s, I think it is. But you check it. But here, her vision is perfect, because all of Blake’s works are vision. Everything that he recorded was vision, and he’s telling exactly what happened to him. Luckily for us he had the capacity to write poetry, and that lives, poetry lives. And so, he told us in this marvelous way what actually is taking place within him.
Now another lady, and she is present, and this thrills me. In her experiences, she finds herself in the experience checking herself and revising it. And that is a thrill to me, that when it becomes so much a part of your life here that in dream you check it. You don’t like what you’re seeing and you revise it right there and then. That’s marvelous! For the whole story begins the Book of Mark…he begins by saying, “Repent!” That means revision, change your mind, change your attitude towards what you dislike in this world. Change it! If you can bring about any change in your belief concerning that, that has to change to correspond to the change in you. So in her dream, in her vision, she is having this desire to change it, and telling others in her dream that you must revise it now. Don’t wait ’til tomorrow, next month, next year; do it now! May I tell you, you are right. If imagining creates reality, what am I doing waiting for tomorrow when the emotion, as she brought out so cleverly, is stronger then. If I let it go for another day, another week, and it simply confronts me all the more, well then, I find it more difficult to overcome that thing that now faces me. So change it at the moment that you don’t like to hear what you’re going to hear but you’re hearing it, alright, change it. So these are perfectly marvelous that you’ve given me this past week. Perfectly wonderful!
So here, let me share with you, you are destined to awaken as God. Don’t be afraid of the serpent. Who would have told me years ago that I would rise like a serpent when I don’t like the animal. When I go to the zoo, I don’t go to watch the reptiles…I am not overly fond of them…they don’t interest me. And here, it’s a symbol of man’s redemption. And here, I who am not overly fond of any reptile if I go to the zoo, well, I’ll go and see other animals; but I certainly don’t go to the reptile cage, because in some strange way it just doesn’t interest me. It’s a peculiar something that goes back, possibly, into the very depths of one’s soul. For one seems to have been betrayed into this experience, and you harbor it all through, it simply betrayed you. For that’s what you’re told in scripture—he beguiled Eve and led her into experience (Gen.3:4). And only as we could be led from innocence into experience could we really awaken and return as God, who is completely awake as one grand wonderful human Imagination. For God is man.
So when we are told, again in Blake: “Thy own humanity learn to adore, for that is my spirit of life,” when he uses the word “humanity,” he’s using it individually. Your humanity is your own wonderful human Imagination…learn to adore it. Turn to it. If you would worship God, worship your own wonderful human Imagination. You would love God? Love your own wonderful humanity…“Thy own humanity learn to adore.” Now he tells you, “For that is my spirit of life.” That is Christ in you, that is life in you. Remove that from you and you are not, you don’t even exist. So “learn to adore thy own humanity for that is my spirit of life.”
So tonight, instead of turning to an outside God, or turning to anything, dwell upon what you are imagining. What a creative power! That you can’t draw a straight line, and yet in your mind’s eye you can bring before your mind’s eye the human face and embody all lovely things into it. You can take someone that is old and injured, and in your mind’s eye bring them right into the loveliest thing in the world, and yet you can’t draw a straight line. Well, isn’t that creative power? That’s God. Learn to adore thy humanity, for the humanity in Blake’s symbology is your own Imagination. He doesn’t mean…he’s not speaking of collectively, he’s speaking of you individually, that’s “the humanity.” He first begins it by saying: “Thou art a man, God is no more, thy own humanity learn to adore.” You are the man and “thy humanity” is that man. Learn to adore it. “For that is my spirit of life.”
So tonight, don’t turn elsewhere. Your own wonderful human Imagination, that’s God. Well, you adore God? Then, adore your Imagination. But now, all things are possible to God, therefore all things are possible to your Imagination. Now what do you want to imagine? Now you say you believe in God? Well, I’ll test you to what degree you believe in God: Believe in your own imaginal acts. So in the 14th of John: “You believe in God? Believe in me also.” For he’s telling you who he is: “For that is his spirit of life.” Do you believe in God? Believe in me also. Now, can I this night give the same feeling towards my imaginal act that I would if I thought that something external to myself acted? Well now, can I imagine and believe it, and actually accept it as real, and live in it just as though it were? If this principle is true that imagining creates reality, I should see it taking place in my world in the not distant future, I should. And if it doesn’t, and this thing is false, well then, throw the whole thing through the window. But I tell you, from my own experience, it is true.
But to what degree do I believe it? He puts no limit on man’s ability to believe and he puts no limit on what belief can accomplish, none whatsoever. Whatever you desire, believe that you’ve received it and you will, no matter what it is. There’s no limit to this. Now, can I believe? Man will say, “I can believe that of God.” I’m not speaking of some God on the outside; can you believe it of the only true God? He is in you! Go back and let me quote once more that 2nd letter to Timothy: “Follow the pattern of the sound words that you have heard from me. Guard the faith, the truth that has been revealed to you by the Holy Spirit who dwells within us.” Alright, it came from within us. So don’t look for any Holy Spirit on the outside. There is no one on the outside, it’s all within. Can you so trust him that you can believe it? Well, try it. Test it…just test it.
Again, let me go back to one—he is here tonight, the same one with the pole and the serpent—he said, “I was…well, we were all torn between what we think is the ethical thing and what we really want to do.” He said, “I wanted a better job that paid more money. But I was torn—if I gave up my job I would feel that I was just not quite the man that I should be because they’d been kind and they’d been helpful. But I wanted more money. And so, when I decided I would injure no one, I would hurt no one, I would simply get a better job, more money…and I named it, 20,000 a year.” He didn’t state what he was, but he implied it was double what he was making. Then he said, “In two weeks I was called for an interview. And in the past I always had to sell myself…whenever I was interviewed, I had to sell myself, really sell myself. This time they were practically throwing the job on me. And strangely enough the man who made it possible for me to be interviewed was a man who formerly worked for me, and there was an intense dislike of me by this man. He hated me and we parted company. At the end of the interview, when the whole thing was mine, he met me on the outside and he said, ‘You know, the job was offered to me, but I didn’t feel that I was capable, qualified.’ Then said he, a little aside in his letter, “Why, he is just as capable as I am, but he was kind enough after this break in the past to actually suggest me as the one best qualified for the job.”
So I tell you, there’s only one being in the world. When I change my body of beliefs, everyone must play the part necessary to produce the change in me. And if formerly he was my enemy, he has to play the part of the friend if he can play the part to bring about what I am doing in my world. So I thank him for sharing with me this story. And keep on dreaming nobly. Fill that mind with lovely things that tomorrow you’ll want to recall. Because tomorrow…and I hope that everyone here will have it before I make my exit…all the experiences that I’ve had, because I can’t tell you the joy in hearing when someone has it. When someone has brought forth the birth, when someone has found David, and then the serpent rises from within, from the depths of generation into regeneration; and then when the great dove descends. For again, go back to Blake, “Everything is man.” He said, “The lion, the tiger, horse, elephant, eagle, dove, fly, worm, and the all-glorious serpent, clothed in gems and fine array, humanized in the forgiveness of sins, according to thy covenant, O Jehovah.” In the end, there is nothing but God, and God is man. So God becomes the worm to feed the weak. He’s everything. There’s nothing but God, and God is man.
So he (Blake) said: “Double the vision my eyes do see and a double vision is always with me. With my inner eye it is an old man gray; with my outer, a thistle across my way.” Haven’t you had that experience? I used to practice that morning, noon and night with my old friend Abdullah. He would say, “Look and tell me what you see.” So I couldn’t tell him that I’m looking at a lampshade. He told me to look at the lampshade, but he didn’t mean to look at the lampshade, for anyone can see a lampshade: “Look and tell me what you see.” I had to look through it, focus my attention beyond it but look at it. So that is a thistle, a lampshade. Look beyond it, you see all the human faces in the world, and then I tell him what I’m seeing. They’re all living, all become alive. He would say, “Look, Neville and tell me. Look at the carpet. Look at the wall. But you don’t look at it, you look through it. You focus beyond it.” And so, with my outward eye it’s a wall, it’s a lampshade, it’s a thistle; but with my inward eye…and then I tell him what I’m seeing. And so, “Double the vision my eyes do see, and a double vision is always with me. With my inner eye it is an old man gray; with my outer, a thistle across my way.”
It’s exciting. Sometimes when I first start with it I have to break it because you can feel yourself moving right into this world that’s alive. You go right beyond it. I would sit in my living room and look at the couch. And suddenly I would look into the couch, not at it, and then I am not on the chair at all, I’m right in that world, entirely different world. That’s Imagination. But you’ll say, “Now what does that do?” What does it do? Well try it, go right into an entirely different world. And this world seems so solidly real and the only reality, and yet I know from experience that everyone who departs here has been improved. So I’m not concerned if someone goes; there’s an improvement for everyone who departs. I don’t care what happens, if he hits his head against a post and he goes, he’s been improved by that very departure. But he’s still in a world just like this, and he goes on and on, until finally the pattern unfolds within him.
So, “Follow the pattern of the sound words that you have heard from me and guard it, guard the truth that has been entrusted to you by the Holy Spirit who dwells within us.” So, he has revealed it to me, and so he has entrusted me with that truth. I must tell it, tell it and tell it over and over until I am through telling it. And then someone else picks it up. He’ll have the same experience. These are patterns. The Bible is simply a book of patterns, that’s really what it is, from beginning to end, a book of patterns. And so, it hasn’t a thing to do with secular history. And if you will take these patterns, for instance, take a simple little one: “In the beginning God…” that’s the first of Genesis, and the last of Genesis is “…in a tomb in Egypt.” Well, who is in the tomb? A man, his name was Joseph. Joseph was called “the dreamer.” The Bible only has one source of dreams and that source is God. So the one who “in the beginning God” is the one in the tomb in Egypt. He descended and took upon himself the limitation of man, which is this concrete, opaque state. So that is Joseph.
Look at this pattern in Joseph. He was born of one who was long barren. His mother was Rachel. He was a favorite son because he was a son of his old age. He didn’t come for years and years. Leah had them and concubines had them, but the one he loved most, which was Rachel, didn’t have a child. She prayed and here came Joseph. Now, his father Jacob was the son of his mother’s old age, and his father Isaac was the son of his mother’s old age. You find the pattern repeating it over and over and over. The book is a book of patterns. So you ask yourself, what is the pattern? Is this a secular thing? No, it’s in us. If it seems long, alright, we have the pattern for it. “How long, O Lord, how long?” He will come, but how long? He will come. He comes in your old age. He comes after you’ve had all the experiences that life here can give you, then, all of a sudden. Don’t be concerned! You seem to be barren? The child will come.
Now, into the Silence, and then we’ll have some questions.
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Q: If this is the only time or zone where we’re born from the womb of a woman, how can we explain to ourselves the Bible where throughout the Bible people are born through the womb of a woman?
A: Did you hear that question? I firmly believe that this is the only time that man is born through the womb of a woman, right in this world, this section of ours. Should one drop this night who has not been redeemed, who has not been reborn from above, he will find himself restored to life in a body that is new, just like the body that he dropped behind him. It’ll be new; it’ll be young but not an infant. He will not be born again. He will be a young man or a young woman, say, twenty, confronted with the similar problems, the problems that are here. He will love, he will marry, he will have all these things, but it is not the kind of marriage that is here. The expression is there. But this…you come through the womb once. You have two births, but only one death. The death is not when I drop this body…that is not death in the Bible. When I descended, when Christ in me descended, for we descended together—for I am told that “if I have been crucified with him in a death like his”—so that I’ve experienced that death, all of us have. So that is the only death when I come through the womb of woman.
Now, a second birth is the birth from above; it is not a second birth from the womb. So I cannot accept reincarnation as the Eastern world and many people in the Western world believe. It has just not been my experience. And yet, my memory goes back quite far in parts that I have played in my descent. This, here, is a world that is unique, coming through the womb of woman. And so, as far as I am concerned, to be born here is the most fantastically marvelous thing in the world…to be born. And you will be born the second time but from above. You do not lose your identity. I have never lost my identity in all of my travels. I have known what it is to be fabulously wealthy and yet still the same sense of I-ness. I know what it is not to be but yet the same sense of I-ness. I have never lost that sense of I-ness, so I was not other than the being that I am. I am individualized and I tend forever toward ever greater and greater individualization. What if that is not it, well then, the whole thing is a mess. And in spite of this, there is unity. There is a oneness out of the many. I will know you in eternity and you’ll know me, and yet we’ll be one. We are brothers, we are brothers of that ultimate truth, and all the brothers when completely awakened form the Lord, the Father. And you as a brother are the Lord, the Father. There’s only one. There’s only God.
Try it. Believe it. Toy with it. If I could only, night after night, get a little change in the body of beliefs. But to the benefit of those who allow the change, you’ll find changes corresponding in the outer world. It need not be in dollars and cents, but in a way of living, in out-flow, in visions, in dreams. If you begin to believe that you truly are God the Father before you have the experience of being God the Father, then the visions change. All things change.
In this morning’s paper I read where this bishop from South Africa—he’s been disbarred, and he’s over here now, and he’s a bishop of the Episcopal Church—why his concept of Christianity is the most asinine thing I have ever heard. I’ve never read such stupid things in my life…and he’s a bishop. Can’t condemn him…he’s just human. The little title called bishop doesn’t suddenly endow him with a great measure of wisdom. He was appointed politically as we appoint politicians. If someone suddenly becomes a senator, does it mean overnight he’s endowed with wisdom? Doesn’t mean that his hand is still not up to the elbow in the pork barrel. What changes took place in him because they gave him the title of a senator? He is still the ___(??). We were asked not to travel, well, within one week after they were asked not to travel, all the senators are gone. All went off to Europe with their wives and their girlfriends and whatnot, all went off. Who is kidding whom in this world? Now they’ve put some little code of ethics…what nonsense! And so people read it and now we have a little protection. Instead of stealing fortunes they will just steal a little bit below the fortunes. That may seem cruel to say from the platform, but let us be perfectly honest with each other. A man spends $1,000,000 on a campaign to get a job that pays $40,000. Now tonight, one in our midst is spending millions to get a job that’s going to pay him $100,000 for a guarantee of four years, when he’s paying $10,000,000 to get it. Well now, who is kidding whom when that is the picture?
But let us not get into that very low level. Let’s go back to the high level. You are God, and God became man that man may become God. That’s the story. And God planned it as it has come out and as it will be consummated. It will not fail. There is no power on earth that can stop it, can’t stop it! This is not some emergency thinking. This is a plan that was before the beginning. It was a plan. He chose us in him before the beginning. And “those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son. And those whom he predestined he also called; and those whom he called he also justified; and those whom he justified he also glorified” (Rom.8:29). Well, the glorification of man is simply giving himself to man. As told us in the 17th of John: “Glorify thou me, O Father, with thine own self with the glory that I had with thee before that the world was” (verse 5). I came out from you and did your job. I came out as a creative being to raise unnumbered, more numerous than the stars, to bring them back to you. And I came out as your creative power. Now, Father, return unto me the glory that was mine before that the world was.