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Jesus Heals a Lame Man on the Sabbath (Rabel)

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This is a series of lectures given by Mr. Edward Rabel, member of the faculty of S.M.R.S.
Winter semester 1976 - 2nd. Yr. Class. Part of Lecture 9 given on January 30, 1976

John 5:1-47

Jesus heals an infirm man at the pool of Bethesda; this is is so very well known (read verses 1-6). In verse 7 read Wilt thou be made whole, instead of, wouldst thou be made whole. Other translations use Wilt and I prefer this last form; this is one of the exceptions I take to the King James version. This very seldom happens as I almost always prefer the King James version as far as its symbolism is concerned but once in a while another translation seems to be the better choice. (Read verses 7-9). This is another of those multidimensional phrases, which means it has a whole bunch of levels of meaning, any of which would be valid, but none of which validity cancels out the other's validity and simply because I choose to concentrate on one particular level of meaning, in no way discounts the other possibilities of meaning here. I want you to understand this because I don't want you to say, "but why he did not mention this, or why didn't he give an opening here." If the openings are there for you, then there is where your level of validity probably lies. I have only to share what I see is the most important.

I see this incident as an illustration first of the validity but the limitations of types of healing other than spiritual realization of spiritual consciousness healings; that is the curative processes that are possible on the level of nature and can be administered to the physical body of man through his five senses. This is the curative activity, the symptom-relieving approach, the temporary relief, the curing of actual physical conditions on its own level. This is valid but very very limited; this is Bethesda type of healing and it is bordered by five porches which means, it is limited by what the five senses are capable of in that organism at the time but it is better than nothing because while many were not healed, many were and it was a potluck sort of thing; probably a strongly karmically-labored thing if you will, but still better than nothing, still better than hopelessness.

I mean, if I have to choose between a temporary or no cure, I wouldn't hesitate, I'd take the temporary cure and then when I feel better, start some studying and praying and consciousness-conditioning. So, in no way, is the healing activity of Bethesda denigrated in this incident. In fact, if it were wrong Jesus would not have entered into it but would have avoided this, which means that rather than separating the current curative nature activities from our spiritual awareness which a lot of people try to do, they shy away from any kind of a materia medica relief for the moment because the consciousness hasn't been purified yet. Well, the consciousness will be purified through Spiritual Awareness, but what will Spiritual Awareness do in this case? It comes into the thing, not separate them and keep them straight but bring them together. Bring your Spiritual Awareness into your involvement with materia medica activity, this is what the hospital visitation is all about, you are bringing Spiritual Awareness into a limited and risky setting and it can only do good. So, don't be afraid of bestowing your Spiritual Awareness into the less-developed or more limited levels of effort going on.

Jesus comes into this, he sees this patient, this patient would represent any man who has not yet attained the true healing. 38 years is a symbolic number, of course, and the man's plight is symbolic of the plight of all persons who are still limited to their expectancy for health solely to the avenues of the five senses. One who is waiting for perfect health on that level has 38 years to wait, symbolic of an undetermined number, who knows is the answer. But Spiritual Awareness approaches him, his own Spiritual Awareness and it says things to him, we only read, "Wilt thou be made whole," but that literal sentence contains a wealth of meaning "Are you at least willing?" "Are you at last to acknowledge that the healing can come to you from another source, that you do not have to depend solely on the troubled waters of Bethesda", "and the right guy to be there at the right time to give you the right kind of lifting and supporting and do it for you in a sense?" "You can do it yourself, you can take up your bed and do your own walking." "Spiritual Awareness now says this to to you." "38 years of probably self indulgence is over now, you can do it." And when the voice of Spiritual Awareness is really listened to you won't fail. Now, please keep in mind one thing. Don't get hung up on the time element. The man at Bethesda did it right away but maybe your time is six weeks. Where does time exist? In your own consciousness, in your own concept of it, so, don't get all hung up on the time element.

Text of the original transcript from paragraph 2 of page 58 through the first paragraph of page 59.
Transcribed by Margaret Garvin on 03-30-2014