METAPHYSICAL BIBLE INTERPRETATION OF THE OLD TESTAMENT
This is a series of lectures given by Mr. Edward Rabel, member of the faculty of S.M.R.S.
Fall semester 1975 - 2nd. Yr. Class. Lecture given on November 11, 1975
Zeph. 2:3, pp. 272-274 of transcript.
Here's another negative from in some areas, this is from a very little known prophet, Zephaniah, chapter 2, verse 3, he makes this negative observation:
"Seek ye the Lord, all ye meek of the earth that have kept His ordinances, seek righteousness, meekness and it might be that it will be his in the day of his anger."
Now, that is better than nothing, but, I feel that a statement like this is a good example of a stage where the prophets in general were. They stand for a certain stage in our own spiritual unfoldment. Now, the prophets do not stand for the truth of spiritual understanding, nor do they represent all the crudities of literal or negative religious thinking. They represent a transitional phase for the most part, this is what the books of the prophets illustrate, symbolize - a transitional phase, an emerging out of the old, literal and predominant negativeness and growing more into an awareness of the greater life of truth. That's why the Messianic prophecies are in those books, because they are symbolic of the transitional thinking, for the most part.
Now, this quotation I've just said, from Zephaniah illustrates this. He is saying that is possible to avoid negative outworkings of the law of cause and effect, but just barely possible. Which is better than what - saying there's no way - at least he's taking a step in the right direction. Not a step that satisfies us, because we've received higher teachings, but I'm just giving this as an example of this tentative teaching - that there is a way, a possibility.
I want to bring up something that Dr. Cady did in taking a statement out of context from Jesus' teachings in Lessons in Truth. She quotes, "All things are possible to him that believeth." Careful, careful, folks. You take a statement like that totally out of context of the situation in which it was used and you can mislead people.
Now think for a moment, suppose, cold turkey, point blank, you come to a class and say, "Jesus Christ said, all things are possible to him that believeth." What might you then infer? Anything I believe is going to happen. "I believe that Shirley Byrns ought to drop dead. I really believe this." And so it's possible, or I believe that I can walk on the ceiling, it can go into lunacy if you just do that, teach it point blank as a truth.
Remember why Jesus said it, to whom He said it, and what He was referring to. The father of a young boy who had not been healed by a disciple, when Jesus comes, the father asks for Jesus' help, he said, "If thou canst, help us." Then Jesus says, "If thou canst, all things are possible to him who believeth',' but, believeth what? Believeth in that particular request, in other words, spiritual healing.
There it becomes connected with a valid, metaphysical truth situation, rather than take it out and just say, anything that you can believe is possible to you because you believe it. That is misleading. Maybe in the ultimate, absolute, that might be true, but you can see how it could be misleading at point blank, life situations.
So, when you take Bible quotes, be sure you are not betraying the writer by taking something away and making it sound like something different from what you obviously meant. In the case of the Jesus thing, He was talking to the father of a boy who had only one thing on his mind. See, Jesus knew that this man to whom He said this had only one thing on his mind - can my boy get healed spiritually? Because the other way didn't seem to work. So, referring to that, Jesus made the magnificent statement, "All things are possible to him that believeth," then, the father responds by keeping everything in context, remember he had one thing on his mind, "I believe, but help thou my unbelief." That's all that was needed. The healing consciousness was established. Include the cooperation of the father and Jesus.
Anyway, there is a possibility for a person to avoid the outworkings of negative cause and effect, the anger of the Lord. This is what the anger of the Lord, the wrath of the Lord, means metaphysically, it just means the outworking or the manifestation, or fulfilling of the negative action of cause and effect. Although this statement from Zephaniah does not reach the level of realizing the forgiving love of God, or the grace of God, it does at least point in that direction as a possibility. It might be, and we learn later that not only is it a "might be", but it most definitely is. O.K.
Transcribed by Margaret Garvin on February 6, 2015.