The life of Jesus has always been very real and vivid to me.
Yes, I now remember, for I was there.
Throughout the territory, there were rumors of a new birth.
They say a star announced the event, but only a few received the message.
I heard them say, “He is an extraordinary child, destined to be a king.”
The news was whispered among the caravan travelers and sealed in the hearts of the shepherds, who silently accepted the new gift.
Wise men in their quest for truth followed after its rays.
A new dispensation had begun, and man yielded to the changing course of events.
Freedom from tradition and bondage from the past was no longer a dream.
A new light had come into the world, and the darkness was being dissipated.
* * *
A surge of freedom possessed me, no longer was I held by the Mosaic Law but now love was the supreme ruler.
Yes, a new law was being written on the heart of mankind, a new code of ethics for human behavior.
I can hear it yet—“A child is born. His name is love, and this is the new law.”
The Christine era is my first clear remembrance as a soul expressing in a body. I remember so well how His light began to shorten the shadows in man’s life.
* * *
I admit the mind can be colored by stories which cause mental vagueness.
Yet, I do remember.
Deep in my subconscious is a scene I have long remembered and only recently understood.
I have been challenged on hearing others report it from what they have read.
No, it was not a pleasant scene.
It shocked my emotional nature and imbedded fear.
I have learned fear strangles the life of man, and fear must die so man can live!
Death is a prison that must be cleansed to become the Temple of the living God.
Only then is man resurrected into life eternal.
Man can become a prisoner of karma until he breaks the shackles of bondage and declares his freedom.
Have ye not heard?
“Ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall set you free.”
Yes, free from even karma as you cross out error and enter into conscious oneness with your creator.
* * *
Lifetime after lifetime, the scene stands as a monument to life not death.
I am reminded constantly that life is continuous, and there is continuity in its progressive movement.
Many of us remain where we are for we stand at an empty cross, bewildered and lost.
Tears cloud our eyes; we are unable to see either the empty cross or the hollow tomb.
Christ lives! I tell you!
Christ lives as the very substance of self, waiting to be recognized, eager to be acknowledged.
The search continues.
Christ must live in man as man.
He is more than an intellectual knowing.
He is a Divine Presence and the central figure of every person.
I am sure I knew Jesus.
I was in His Presence.
I am sure I heard Him speak, not once, but many times.
He was the wayshower, for He turned man from self to the Father within.
He never made any personal claims for the man Jesus but gave credit where it belonged.
He admitted He could function only as the Divine Principle flowed through Him.
He was unable to perform any thing of Himself but able only by the Infinite Power that is God.
Days before the experience that shocked me deeply and still draws tears, I was fascinated
by the exhilaration of activity.
There was a commercial excitement that filled the air like burning incense.
Taxes must be paid, and people needed housing.
The odor of spices and food cooking filled the narrow streets—teasing the sense of smell.
Even the uninteresting streets were now peopled with the royal garments of pageantry in color.
Soldiers manned their prancing mounts and rode arrogantly about shouting orders.
A constant stream of rags and riches mingled and mixed.
Garments, intricately woven of fine imported fabric splashed with vibrant color, added life to the dull drab cloak of the beggar and leper.
I was more interested in the faces and studied them deeply.
There were those who walked as in a trance, lifeless and dusty from travel, wearing a weariness that belonged to a complicated system of what is called survival.
Life had whipped many until their flesh was wrinkled from its beatings.
There were eyes dull from bitterness, others bright and dancing, and those that registered no meaningful expression at all.
This picture seems to depict the whole human race and retells itself in every city of our land.
All persons were concerned with the man Jesus for he was on trial for His life.
His frankness and honesty were exemplary.
The Sanhedrin greatly feared Jesus for this meant exposure of their own deceit.
Pilate, unable to make a decision that would jeopardize his own throne, was a coward.
However, the people eagerly awaited Pilate’s decision, anticipating the worst.
To me, it was a sordid and flimsy drama cast in the life of an innocent man.
Even I had to question: was this a form of shock therapy to a weary worn world, torn between tradition and devotion?
With all my feelings, I remained as much apart from the scene as possible.
Soon the time for the formal announcement came, and the final decree was to be spoken.
I was interested to find Pilate could not speak against Jesus but released the decision into the hands of the masses.
I knew he was freeing his own consciousness of a debt to love.
The stimulus of anger-fired prejudice brought cries from the people.
I can hear them yet, “Not Jesus Barabbas, but Jesus who claims to be the Christ!”
So it was, mob law was the scene not a hall of justice.
In the twinkling of an eye, I realized a journey into eternity had begun.
I was consciously aware of the tremendous lessons being taught.
I stood in awe of this man who could stand silent before His accusers.
He was fearless for He knew His destiny was not the cross but total acceptance into Infinite Mind.
I watched Him as He stood, tall in stature, poised and confident—the Master Teacher, a craftsman schooled in shaping and molding human lives.
Yes, a MAN among men; a man who had actually put God into every experience of life.
He tried to deliver His message helping man to realize his divinity.
He spent hours healing the sick, comforting the grief-stricken, and teaching, teaching, teaching.
This I said is a man. Yes, He is truly the Son of God!
* * *
My soul assured me this was an expedition into a great discovery for real identity.
In this moment, I knew one body could never tell the story, but many bodies are required for life’s lessons.
We must live in the body of many personalities, wear different colors and change sex in order to make the final adjustment.
What man calls death is but transition from life to life.
Mother Earth endows man with a body as her gift to life; this is the laboratory in which man experiments and seeks to prove identity.
What we call death is release from personal to the universal, “The Law of Expansion.”
The journey Jesus traveled is not unlike the one you and I take.
His journey was not simply a type of experiment to prove a formula, but it was a formula that gave proof to the experiment.
Jesus shows us life equals life and that death is a catalyst which moves us from one expression to another.
The last enemy to be conquered is the fear of death, not death, for it is fear that starves the spirit in the body.
Try to picture the mental process that was now taking place in Jesus as the shadow of the cross stood before Him.
Death held no vain imaginings for life was His answer.
Once more, we return to the scene and the hum of activity, watching the curiosity seekers, people numb with fright, others filled with a frenzied fever of hate propelled by pride and lust for power.
There were those so engrossed in sorrow; the pain shook their bodies.
Yes, others were too troubled in thought to utter even casual greetings.
Tears streamed down pale faces, tense and filled with anguish.
Some were repelled by the moment, too shocked to look upon the scene, but followed, caught up in the crowd of temperament and mixed emotions.
My soul remembers, for it was a fearful moment.
* * *
I stood beyond the crowd unable to see the face of Jesus, the man being sent to His death, but my body relaxed as a strong vibration engulfed me.
I responded to His Presence and felt His power deep within my own body temple.
The end of His journey brought strange sounds as the wooden cross was pulled over stone and gravel streets.
I could feel the movement and pain in my own body.
Pain came as a sensation unique to suffering yet with a reward in its painfulness.
It was the kind of pain that awakens an inner stirring and annoints the body with cleansing.
The sounds with their studied tempo were mysteriously haunting.
Suddenly, I was unable to control the tears that flowed over my face.
I sensed a deep loss and felt inadequate to help in any way; I could only watch and send Him a special brand of love, that which He Himself had taught.
I remember the woman who barely touched the fringe of His garment and received her healing.
What a moment this must have been in her life—to touch the very heart of the Infinite.
How close I was, yet how far away.
What was it that stood between me and this man?
Only my eyes followed the marching procession to the hill; my ears were attuned to the mysterious sounds.
I heard it then.
I hear it now.
Could it be the same mob, confused, torn between self and God?
* * *
Like rehearsed actors, their shouts rang and echoed, “Kill Him! Kill Him!”
A mental sedative seemed to come over the people as the cross was raised.
A quietness brought an exchange of words as Jesus gave His final lesson on forgiveness.
Jesus released Himself to God and freed man to work out his own salvation.
I tell you the cry is still heard in our land as people weep, wonder, and are confused, hungry and afraid.
Yes, I live with it now, and my soul remembers when!
The hill became obscure in my tear-clouded eyes, and the three crosses blended into one.
I could look no longer but turned away; I do not recall leaving the hill.
In memory, I see only an empty cross.
“Is this the man destined to live in unity with God and man throughout eternity as the eternal message of peace and love?”
This is the man.
Now, I realized it.
How much growing was required of Jesus to reach this point and how long must man live to come into a realization of this truth?
Only life has the answers.
© 1972, by Richard Dale Billings
All rights reserved.
Reprinted with permission.