25 May Neville Goddard Lectures: “Redemption”
by Neville Goddard 10/21/69 –
We are told in Paul’s letter to the Romans that this world is a world of sorrow. Then he gives us the reason and the glorious end it produces, saying: “I consider the sufferings of this present time not worth comparing to the glory that is to be revealed in us. The creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God; for the creation was made subject unto futility – not of its own will, but by the will of him who subjected it in hope; for the creation will be set free from its bondage to decay and obtain the glorious liberty of the children of God.”
Here we see that the redemption of the universe depends upon the revealing of ourselves, for, buried in this world, we are the sons of God but we do not know it. The world did not subject us; we subjected ourselves. No one took our lives; we laid them down ourselves. We have the power to lay our life down and the power to take it up again. Coming into this world for a purpose, we deliberately became what we are in the hope that one day we would rise and redeem the world by setting it free from its bondage to decay.
Your connection with the plan of redemption called Jesus Christ can be told in this manner. It is like a visible history which is compressed within a few years, and the eternal history of salvation, which continually unfolds throughout the ages. At a certain moment in time these two histories come together to unite into one person, who is the Son of God and the unveiling of your true identity. You and I departed the world of eternity and came here for a divine purpose. And it is here where our real humanity and the true divinity of Jesus Christ unite and become one person.
Think for a moment of Jesus Christ as divine history which will be experienced by you while you are in the world of human history. John tells of this event in the story of the raising of Lazarus. (Remember, Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John are not historical characters, but books bearing their names. The authors of these books took events which are separated in time and wove them into one dramatic experience.) The 11th chapter of the Book of John begins by identifying Lazarus as the one who is loved by the Lord Jesus, but is dead. Jesus, having heard this news, delays his journey and when he arrives, Martha (Lazarus’ sister) said: “If you had not left us, my brother would not have died.” And when they took Jesus to the cave where Lazarus was buried and he gave the command to remove the stone, Martha said: “Lord, by this time he stinketh as he has been dead for four days.”
Prior to this event Jesus knew himself to be the resurrection, and when he asked Martha if she believed, she answered in this manner: “Yes Lord, I believe that you are the Christ, the son of the Lord God who is coming into the world.” Notice the tense given here: he who is coming into the world; therefore, where is he being addressed? If you and I were speaking face to face would you not be here with me? So is the conversation not taking place within, as self speaking to self? Are you not telling yourself that you are the Lord who is coming into the world?
Now, when the command was given to remove the stone, the statement is made that there will be an offensive odor. This is a very important sign, for when the stone was removed, he said, “Lazarus, come out.” Then the one who was dead, bound hands and feet, with a napkin covering his head, came out. They unbound him and let him go.
You may think this is secular history, but I tell you it is not. John took events in divine history which were separated in time and wove them into this one grand experience. This I know to be true. John took the first event (which is resurrection) and the last event (which is the descent of the Holy Spirit in bodily form as a dove) and wove them into one grand complex picture; yet the events are separated in time by three and one-half years.
The resurrection of Christ in you and your birth from above are inseparable for “We are born again through the resurrection of Jesus Christ within us.” John takes the first event as someone he is going to raise, yet refers to it as the last event; and unless you have had the experience or know someone who has, you cannot understand it. I have books on the Bible at home, yet no scholar has touched this truth, for truth is not logically proved. It proves itself through revelation.
In my own case, the last event was when the Holy Spirit descended upon me in bodily form as a dove and smothered me with love. A woman at my side observed the descent, and said: “They avoid man because man gives off such an offensive odor. But he loves you and to demonstrate his love for you he has penetrated the ring of offense.”
Here we find the sign as an offensive odor. It was not just an odor, for an odor may be pleasant. The author was revealing the intensity of disgust felt regarding the world into which the sons of God had descended. Everything decays here – but everything! No matter how long a thing seems to live, whether it be animate or inanimate, in time it decays and vanishes. And the generative organs in the state of decay have a peculiar, offensive odor. On many occasions I have awakened knowing a friend or relative has died because I have smelled his odor, only to received confirmation during the day. The odor is associated with the decay of God’s creative power upon which the world is built.
When the Holy Spirit in the form of a dove descended upon me, it was a woman – not a man – who told me of his love, saying: “They avoid man because man gives off such an offensive odor.” The creation, waiting with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God, avoids this odor. But at a moment in time, contact is made between the two histories: the human history of 6,000 years and the eternal history of salvation. They touch, and one new person is created, without loss of identity. You are aware of being touched and the being doing the touching. That being is Jesus Christ, the eternal, heavenly man.
Soon after that moment you will take off your garment of flesh and leave this world of death for the last time, for you will have come into your heavenly inheritance, which is the body of the Lord Jesus Christ. Creating anything at will, your every wish will become objectively real. That is the power you are inheriting, along with a body to fully appreciate it. Now, the creation waits for such contacts, for the creation has been subjected to futility – not by its own will, but by the will of him who subjected it in the hope of revealing God’s sons, for such everyone is.
Now let me share a recent experience of a lady who received my eyes in vision about three years ago, at which time she was told that she was an incurrent eyewitness: one who gives passage to a current moving inward where reality is to be seen. In her recent vision she found herself with a group of people watching bolts of light move toward her. Then she began to feel a power so great she felt as though she could still the universe. Suddenly a man dressed in black stood before her and she recognised him as the embodiment of fear. But as she looked into his eyes her memory began to return, and she knew he came into being by usurping her power when she fell asleep. She also knew that now that she was waking and her memory was returning, he was on the verge of demise.
There is a rabbinical legend which states that man’s doubts, his unbelief, and frailties are always dressed in black. So she saw the personification of a being called Satan; and as she watched him try to cause her fear, she heard herself say to herself: “I am Paul and I am Jesus Christ.” And at that moment she felt as though she were a man, yet it did not seem strange to be so. This lady is a young mother of two expecting her third child, and is very much a woman: yet in her vision she was totally man. She knew she was Paul. Not a Paul, but the Paul; and she also knew that she was Jesus Christ, with all the power she formerly possessed, minus the portion memory had not yet revealed.
Now to continue her vision: Reaching out, she struck the man, and as he fell back on his elbows he looked at her with his piercing, fiery eyes and she knew he was trying to find some weakness where he could once again recapture the power he had taken from her when she fell asleep and forgot who she was; yet they both knew it was hopeless now. Then he spoke, saying: “You don’t remember when you met me, do you?” and as she started to reply she remembered an ancient dream of a tree and a man standing beneath it. It was he who told her to eat of the tree, and as she did she entered the dream of life and forgetfulness. Then he, the power of the world, became real. Appearing to be others, he was her very self; and the power she was going to redeem was returning to her, for she knew: “I am Paul and I am Jesus Christ.”
Now, who is Paul? His name was Saul, which means “to ask for.” Saul was ruled by his personified hate until he touched the eternal story, and the union of the two transformed Saul into Paul – the redeemed man who knows he is man, yet also knows he is the Lord Jesus Christ. Everyone is destined to experience this awareness.
The authors of the gospel took the events in the divine history of the Lord Jesus Christ and – taking liberties as poets do – they took events widely separated in time and fused them into a complex picture, as though they happened at one moment in time. Our evangelists knew that something as great as this could not be spelled out so that a child in kindergarten could understand it. As Blake said: “That which can be told to the idiot’s understanding isn’t worth my care. The ancients discovered that which is not too explicit was best fitted for instruction.” Our gospels recorded events which were revealed and can never be understood logically. There truth will only be known from experience.
I am telling you what I have experienced based upon divine history. You will experience it in the manner I have told you. The evangelists did not give you the chronological order. They wove the events they had experienced into a story, because truth embodied in a tale shall enter in at lowly doors. Man finds it difficult to accept bare truth. He finds a thought easier to accept if it is put in picture form, where he reads the story of a man being raised from the dead. Then he can say to himself: “Isn’t that a mighty act!” But scripture is not speaking of resuscitation as our life guards revive those who are drowning at sea. The words used here are “four days,” because at that time the body was kept for three days in the belief that the soul hovered over it in the chance that the body could be revived. So when Martha said: “He has been dead four days,” she was telling him that there was no hope of resuscitation, as decay had set in and produced a stench.
I tell you: no man was placed in any little tomb here on earth. This is an adumbration, a foreshadowing in a not altogether conclusive or immediately evident way, of what you will one day experience. It is divine history which unfolds forever. It is not like human history, for it begins and ends, but this history is eternal. The moment you touch salvation history these things begin to unfold from within. Then you will know you are one with the body of the Lord Jesus Christ.
This union will produce one new man, and you will no longer bat your head against the world as Saul, but be Paul, one who knows he is Jesus Christ, the creator of it all. And you will discover that the things which are frowned upon here because of our moral codes are so natural there. It didn’t seem strange to her that she was man in that world, yet she is so much a woman here.
Now, the Book of John has two endings. The true ending is found in the 20th chapter, while the 21st chapter is an epilogue. In the 20th chapter this statement is made: “Many other signs did Jesus do which are not written in this book. But these are written that you may believe that Jesus is Christ, the Son of God and that believing, you will have life in his name.” There are a number of experiences you are going to have related to this eternal history that are not recorded, but everyone will experience the events written there. I have shared with you the series of visions I have had which fit into the given period of time; and I still have experiences related to divine history, because I can find their parallel in the Old Testament. My memory has returned, and I now know that the drama was experienced before we descended and lost our memory. But as our memory returns we have these experiences and can tell them; but we cannot share them with another, because they take place in a land unknown to mortal man.
This lady’s experience is true. She is Paul and she is Jesus Christ; yet she is very much a woman here. This is not reincarnation. Paul is only the personification of everyone who has been transformed from Saul to Paul. Called “The Way,” Saul was persecuting divine history, and when he heard the words: “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?” he questions: “Who are you, Lord?” and the answer came: “Jesus, whom you are persecuting.”
Where did this conversation take place? In the mind! If, tonight you hear this story and refuse to accept it, you are persecuting the Lord by denial. But in the fullness of time the story of Jesus Christ will erupt within you and then you will know it was your very self you have been persecuting, for you will know from experience that you are the Lord Jesus Christ.
Who would have thought that simple little statement in the 11th chapter of John, “By this time he stinketh,” could be so profound. Yet we are told that the one upon whom the spirit descends is he who is the chosen one. Here is the elect, unveiling one more Son of God, and in the end all of the revealed sons will form the Father.
There is no book comparable to the Bible, which is revealed truth and not truth which has been discovered by any logical process. Everyone will hear the words of Martha. It was she who stood on my left and said in a very commanding voice: “They avoid man because man gives off the most offensive odor.” This is what the translators of the King James Version meant when they said: “he stinketh,” because every man stinks, causing the world to give off an offensive odor to those who watch in eternity. They are eagerly waiting for the stir telling them that they may come down and redeem the one that is but an externalisation of themselves. And the moment the eternal one is touched, virtue goes out and the one who touched is healed. Then that one begins to move from here to eternity.
I can tell you – as I have over the years – the chronological manner in which the visions came to me, but whether it is a chronologically true story or not is unimportant.
The poets who wrote the gospels told their experiences in poetic form. One day [Aldous] Huxley said to me: “There are three kinds of writings – journalism, literature, and scripture. Those who are considered to be literary giants can’t write scripture.” Huxley admitted he couldn’t, for it is revealed truth and therefore something entirely different. The journalist writes beautifully and excitingly, but no journalist would ever be considered a mental giant in the use of words as to real literature. On the other hand, those who write great literature couldn’t write scripture. And if you could understand scripture as it really is written, you would know it is inspired poetry, but our transcribers could not bring it into its poetic form. Everyone who reads scripture is moved by it, because it is speaking to the being in the depth of the soul; so don’t treat it as literature because it is not.
I saw in today’s paper that some ex-nun is teaching the Bible as literature at UCLA. You can do that if you want to, but that’s not religion. Scripture certainly is not history, as there is no place on this earth where a man was buried for four days – having been proved dead – who rose from the grave. But I tell you: you have been buried for thousands of years. You don’t know you are, but the watchers in eternity do, as they receive from you, multiplied by the billions of us here, a stench beyond the wildest dream of man. If you have ever visited the Chicago stockyards you know what a horrible odor is there. Well, multiply that smell by the population of the world and the stench will be beyond comprehension. But his love for you is so great he will, one day, penetrate this ring of offense. Then you will be Paul, a transformed being, joined to he who is Jesus Christ, and the two of you return together as one Lord.
When you read scripture don’t discount the simplest thought expressed there, for you are going to experience it. You will know that Lazarus is not someone on the outside. The word means “God has helped.” No man can redeem himself – only God can do it; therefore God has helped. There are numberless schools teaching self-realisation and self-development, promising you self-realisation by doing as they say. If you want to believe that you must pay others to teach you, you will lose your money for they cannot deliver the goods. Grace and truth come through Jesus Christ. Let no one fool you into believing that by doing certain things you will be saved. Rather, set your hope fully upon the grace that is coming to you at the revelation of Jesus Christ in you.
Don’t reject this story. Firmly believe it and set your hope that without doing anything on the outside its revelation will come to you. And when it does and you share it with others not everyone will believe you. They may discount your experiences as wonderful dreams or hallucinations. Don’t expect, just because a man is intelligent, that he will understand when you speak of these depths, because they with their PhD’s can’t understand your words and will proclaim proudly that they are agnostics. I recently read this statement: “The man who prunes himself on agnosticism is only confessing that he is an ignoramus. This is the Latin word for ‘we do not know,’ as is the Greek word ‘agnostic.’ So he who prunes himself on agnosticism is confessing, in Greek, that he is a Latin ignoramus.” Tell that to someone who claims to be agnostic and chances are he will slap your face, but I tell you: the truth of which I speak is not acquired in universities. It doesn’t make sense logically, yet it is the eternally true story. Redemption is the wedding between visible history and salvation history; and when they meet they create a new being in one person, who is Paul, who is Jesus Christ.
Now let us go into the silence.