Metaphysical Bible Interpretation of Mark Chapter 2
Metaphysically Interpreting Mark 2:1-12
2:1And when he entered again into Capernaum after some days, it was noised that he was in the house. 2:2And many were gathered together, so that there was no longer room for them, no, not even about the door: and he spake the word unto them. 2:3And they come, bringing unto him a man sick of the palsy, borne of four. 2:4And when they could not come nigh unto him for the crowd, they uncovered the roof where he was: and when they had broken it up, they let down the bed whereon the sick of the palsy lay. 2:5And Jesus seeing their faith saith unto the sick of the palsy, Son, thy sins are forgiven. 2:6But there were certain of the scribes sitting there, and reasoning in their hearts, 2:7Why doth this man thus speak? he blasphemeth: who can forgive sins but one, even God? 2:8And straightway Jesus, perceiving in his spirit that they so reasoned within themselves, saith unto them, Why reason ye these things in your hearts? 2:9Which is easier, to say to the sick of the palsy, Thy sins are forgiven; or to say, Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk? 2:10But that ye may know that the Son of man hath authority on earth to forgive sins (he saith to the sick of the palsy), 2:11I say unto thee, Arise, take up thy bed, and go unto thy house. 2:12And he arose, and straightway took up the bed, and went forth before them all; insomuch that they were all amazed, and glorified God, saying, We never saw it on this fashion.
February 14 1904: Mark 2:1-12
JESUS FORGIVES SINS.
Capernaum is another name for the Divine Order of Nature. There is in Divine Mind a perfect Body Idea, which is the foundation of the physical organism. Man projects this Divine Idea into visibility just in proportion to his ability to recognize and affirm its potentialities. These potentialities are ideas that have to do with form, such as substance, shape, life, love, unity. The higher range of ideas does not necessarily enter into this realm in its natural state. We see this plane of consciousness manifesting in all bodies as a healing and perpetuating force — it brings together sundered parts and pours over them the healing balm of mother love. It is our Mother Nature at work, and the esoteric meaning of Capernaum, comfort, consolation, truly expresses its pervading characteristics. It is universal in its healing, and pours its comforting balm as freely on the wound of a tree or an animal as on that inflicted on the body of man. It stitches with deft hands of invisibility the gaping wounds made by ignorance and violence, and fills up the waste places with its pure white substance, so that a scar is often prominent because the Holy Mother, or Mother of wholeness, has used bran new material to patch up the body that mortal thought had polluted through false thinking.
The centre of consciousness from which this Divine Natural Body projects itself is the navel, and our bodies are connected with the Universal Mother on the psychical plane in manner similar to the connection of the child with the physical mother before birth. The navel is the inlet and outlet of a life-flow centering in the small of the back, which governs the capacity of the body to express strength, vigor, activity. Job refers to this in Job 40:16, "Lo now, his strength is in his loins, and his force is in the navel of his belly."
This lesson is to show the student how to quicken the inactive or paralyzed life force at this centre and restore it to Divine Order. Whenever the I AM, or Individual Identity of every man, which is called the Son of Man in the New Testament, locates its thought, there is at once an increase of action in those parts. You can warm your feet by throwing your thought into them and affirming that they are warm, that they fairly glow with vitality and life. In this way the strength and vital force of the organism can be restored to Divine Order through concentrating the attention in the navel and opening a current into the back. When this is done there is a great pressure of thoughts desiring the fructifying of the Spirit — " many were gathered together — there was no room to receive them." The consciousness has to be enlarged and spiritualized at this point, hence the necessity of "preaching the word," or declaring the truth of Being, which is, that your body is not material nor physical, but spiritual in shape, in substance and in life.
In treating the body at this centre there is borne in upon you from every side ("borne of four") the conviction that the natural life force is inactive— this is the " paralyzed one" whom you are to heal. But the pressure of mortal belief in materiality and inactivity is so great that you find no point of contact, and you have to make connection with the Universal Mind through the Wisdom Centre in the very crown of the head. When you have "uncovered" this "roof," and let down the sick one, there is a realization of forgiveness, or giving up some sin or falling short. The most prevalent sin that produces this inactivity in back and bowels is the mortal thought belief that life is variable—that it goes and comes — that strength is not omnipotent; that it is possible for man, the spiritual Son of Omnipotent Spirit, to become exhausted and weak and lose his natural vigor. These are the " sins " that are forgiven by man in Spiritual Understanding.
But you will find within your consciousness the Scribes and Pharisees, those old materialists and ritualists, who look upon the assumption of Spiritual power by man as " sacriligious," and they will retard your work unless you clearly see that sin and sickness are really identical. Metaphysicians usually hold that sin is the cause of sickness. This as a rule is true, but not always. Men in pain sometimes swear, and when the pain is removed they stop. So in dealing with this physical inactivity in your body, you speak the healing Word to both the sinner and the substance.
February 25, 1906: Mark 2:1-12
JESUS' POWER TO FORGIVE.
What is the meaning of Capernaum? Capernaum means " the field of repentance." It indicates a cleansing of the mentality both conscious and subconscious.
What is the symbol of the gathering together of the many to hear Jesus? The concentration of thoughts that follow the proclamation of Truth in the mentality.
Who is the man sick of the palsy? The vital principle that pervades the organism.
What is the bed? The nervous system.
Who are the four that bear him? The desire for life, strength, power, substance — that is, restoration of body activity.
What is the meaning of letting the man down through the roof? The body thoughts must be raised to a higher state of realization than the mere physical before they can get the attention of the super-consciousness, or Christ I AM.
How do we do this? By affirming that our life, strength, power and substance is not physical but spiritual.
What is sin? A departure from the Law of our being.
How many kind of sins are there? Their name is legion. Each department of man's consciousness may fall short of the law, through commission or omission.
When the I AM takes up the cleansing of the body consciousness, does it meet with any opposition? Yes, the "scribes," or external religious thoughts, resent the authority of I AM, and feel that it is somehow " sacriligious" to interfere with the so-called laws of nature.
What is it that puts away this ignorance and reveals man's power? Spiritual understanding.
When man discerns the law of thought, and its effect upon the vital energies of the organism, what should he do? Begin at once to exercise the dominion of the Supreme I AM. Say to the ignorant thought, " Thy sins be forgiven thee," and to the thought of lack of power, "Take up thy bed and walk."
What is the "earth" here mentioned? The consciousness of a material body.
What should we do with this "earth" when we come to spiritual understanding? Forgive all its ignorance, and lift it up and send it into its " house," with the realization that all power to regulate that body-house is given unto the Son of man.
January 15 1928: Mark 2:3-12
What is the metaphysical meaning of "And they come, bringing unto him a man sick of the palsy, borne of four"? Palsy arises from a shaky condition of the nerves, the primal cause of which is subconscious fear.
What is represented by the raising of "the man sick of the palsy" unto the roof of the house and then lowering him down into the room where Jesus was? All physical healing is based upon the conception of the body as spiritually perfect. This ideal of bodily perfection is conceived in the top brain (the roof of the house). From that point it is let down to the body brain, the solar plexus where Jesus Christ, (the I AM) is functioning.
Jesus said to the man sick of the palsy, "Son thy sins are forgiven." What is sin and does man have power to forgive it? Sin is man's failure to harmonize his mind with the mind of God. this man's sin was evidently lack of confidence in the protecting power of God. Jesus proclaimed spiritual faith, and His confidence in the safety and care of God dissolved fear in the man, and restored him to harmony and health.
What is represented by Jesus' command to the man sick of the palsy, "Arise take up thy bed, and go unto thy house"? After fear and its shaky effect on the body are erased from consciousness, man must affirm and rest in the peace and harmony of his bodily temple.
Do the scribes, or external thoughts have any concept of the power of man to change his subconscious mind? No, The man who lives in the outer, material world has no understanding of the formative power of thought. These scribes believe that all power is given to an external deity who rules man like a czar and does not expect man's cooperation in carrying on his creative processes.
January 22, 1933: Mark 2:1-12
What is signified by Jesus' entering into Capernaum? In individual consciousness Jesus represents the I AM principle. Capernaum means "village of consolation." Jesus' entering Capernaum signifies that the entire man is awakening to the fact that the power to regain normal well-being resides within each soul.
What results when it is "noised that he [the I AM]" is "in the house"? All man's natural forces immediately collect around the central I AM in expectation of help and uplift.
What naturally follows? Man then realizes that he needs to have the I AM declare health throughout his whole self—mental, physical, and spiritual; and to this end all his thoughts crowd round this realization of Truth within himself, so that Truth has no chance to do its work. Thus the spiritual door is blocked.
What is symbolized by the man sick with palsy? The vital principle that pervades the organism is symbolized by the man sick with palsy. This vital principle is helpless without the sustaining and impelling power of the I AM.
Under these circumstances what course does the redemptive process take? The need of sustaining the vital principle is brought to the attention of the superconscious mind, or Christ. Then the thoughts of the natural self are raised to a higher state of realization, and make contact with the Christ consciousness.
When one ts helpless in the grip of sin or sickness, what is the sure way' back to health? The sure way back to health and wholeness is through affirmation. By affirming that life, strength, power, and substance are spiritual, not physical, man places his vitality in the hands of spiritual power. This power can "loose the bonds of wickedness," and "let the oppressed go free."
What God attribute is equal to every human need? Divine love is equal to every human need. Through thinking of the boundless, all-reaching' love of God, man throws off the bonds of self condemnation and the condemnation of society also, and stands forth free.
February 13, 1949: Mark 2:3-8
What is forgiveness? Forgiveness is to refuse to condem a person for falling short of the mark and to restore to him the good will and regard that were his before he forfeited them by his conduct. When we practice forgiveness we overlook the wrongdoing of another and continue to give him our love and good will instead of hate or retaliation.
What is proved by the fact that we are capable of forgiving those who wrong us? That we are children of God; that our true nature is divine.
Does consciousness of sin retard a person's spiritual progress? Yes. A sens of sin or guilt burdens a person so heavily that until he is able to throw it off and sand forth free he makes no spiritual progress.
Is repentance necessary to spiritual progress? It is. True repentance is a change of mind and a resolute advancing toward habits of constructive thinking. Continued self-abasement because of past wrongdoing is not repentance.
Can those who are in sense consciousness forgive sin? Yes, they can and do when love is in their heart. But to forgive all sins unreservedly, as a matter of principle and without regard to personality, proves that the Christ is in possession [unreadable]
January 21, 1951: Mark 2:1-12
Is our power to forgive limited in any way? No. Not only can we forgive offenses committed against ourselves, that is express forgiveness on the personal level, but we can forgive all other offenses, all falling short of the mark of perfection, that is express forgiveness on the impersonal level. We can overcome the habit of fixing blame of condemnation. "There is therefore, now no condemnation to them than are in Christ Jesus."
What would be the outcome if men expressed forgiveness on a world-wide scale? Unbroken peace among all men. "Many were gathered together." Instead of being characterized by strife and contention, the race mind would be characterized by harmony and concord.
What is the effect on the individual, when he forgives completely? Both his mind and heart are freed from the intolerable burden of remorse and condemnation, hatred, resentment, the smoldering desire.for revenge or retaliation. Forgiveness sets the body free from the negative emotions and states of mind that have hound it. Freed from the weight of condemnation, the body is able to respond to the healing life forces and to express health.
What gives the creative word power to call forth health in the face of disease? The faculty of faith. "Seeing their faith," Jesus "saith unto the sick of the palsy. Son, thy sins are forgiven."
Why should the freeing of the mind precede physical healing? Because that is the divine order. First, "Thy sins are forgiven," then, "Arise, and take up thy bed, and walk." The person who practices healing through spiritual means first sets the mind free from its burdens of guilt and lack of understanding, and then calls forth into manifestation the innate perfection of Spirit.
Why was the reasoning of the Pharisees, "Who can forgive sins but one, even God" at fault? They overlooked the truth that men in their highest and best selves are sons of God, and as such they are endowed with divine attributes. Among these attributes is the power to forgive as God forgives, without reservation and without respect of persons. At heart all are one, even one with God.
If healing is to take place, what must accompany forgiveness? Faith. Forgiveness alone is not enough to call forth healing; it needs, the constructive activity of faith to perfect its work.
Where lies the merit of healing by the word? With God, whose power is expressed through the creative word. They . . . glorified God." We acknowledge the power of the Most High in every perfect manifestation of life.
Metaphysically Interpreting Mark 2:13-17
2:13And he went forth again by the sea side; and all the multitude resorted unto him, and he taught them. 2:14And as he passed by, he saw Levi the son of Alphaeus sitting at the place of toll, and he saith unto him, Follow me. And he arose and followed him. 2:15And it came to pass, that he was sitting at meat in his house, and many publicans and sinners sat down with Jesus and his disciples: for there were many, and they followed him. 2:16And the scribes of the Pharisees, when they saw that he was eating with the sinners and publicans, said unto his disciples, How is it that he eateth and drinketh with publicans and sinners? 2:17And when Jesus heard it, he saith unto them, They that are whole have no need of a physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners.
January 15, 1928: Mark 2:15-17
What is represented by Jesus' eating with sinners and publicans? When the I AM is awakened to its spiritual power It has to make contact with all types of thoughts in consciousness. Jesus proclaimed, "Agree with thine adversary quickly," that is, get acquainted "with your shortcomings and through the application of your understanding of Truth they will be reformed. Healing of mind and of body is essential and those who are spiritually quickened should be about their Father's business. "They that are whole have no need of a physician, but they that are sick: I came not to call the righteous, but sinners."
February 13, 1949: Mark 2:16-17
If we are to help people, must we associate closely with them? Mutual understanding is necessary, and close association sometimes effects this. Jesus ate and drank with publicans and sinners, not because He was one of them but because He wished them to become one with Him.
To do effectual work in spiritual healing what is necessary? To speak the word of healing in full consciousness of the divine will, which is perfection in mind and body.
If the kingdom of heaven is to be realized on earth which is the more important, the keeping of the divine law or the observing of man-made customs? Keeping of the divine law is the most important. Jesus healed on the Sabbath, although the Pharisees counted healing as work and made it unlawful [unreadable] Jesus knew that helping others to realize health is more important than the observing of certain traditional customs.
What is the spiritual meaning of the Sabbath day? Spiritually, the Sabbath day is when we rest in the consciousness of the truth that God's creation is "very good," that is, "whole, perfect"
What has this resting in divine perfection to do with bodily healing? God created man in His image and after His likeness. This pertains not only to man's spiritual mind but also to his body, called in the Scripture "the Lord's body." Whoever abides in the consciousness of this perfect mind and its perfect manifestation radiates the consciousness of divine perfection. This is the foundation of all spiritual healing. "He that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh damnation to himself, not discerning the Lord's body.
Metaphysically Interpreting Mark 2:18-22
2:18And John's disciples and the Pharisees were fasting: and they come and say unto him, Why do John's disciples and the disciples of the Pharisees fast, but thy disciples fast not? 2:19And Jesus said unto them, Can the sons of the bridechamber fast, while the bridegroom is with them? as long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast. 2:20But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then will they fast in that day. 2:21No man seweth a piece of undressed cloth on an old garment: else that which should fill it up taketh from it, the new from the old, and a worse rent is made. 2:22And no man putteth new wine into old wineskins; else the wine will burst the skins, and the wine perisheth, and the skins: but they put new wine into fresh wine-skins.
January 22, 1923: Mark 2:18-22
To what did Jesus refer when He said, "As long as they have the bridegroom with them, they cannot fast"? Jesus was talking about fasting from spiritual life and substance, which are appropriated when one has conscious union with the Christ (bridegroom).
What is the meaning of verse 20: "But the days will come, when the bridegroom shall be taken away from them, and then will they fast in that day"? It is quite evident that this means that when the personal consciousness of the bridegroom (represented by Jesus) is taken away, His followers will fast, or deny personal attachment. "Nevertheless I tell you the truth: It is expedient for you that I go away; for if I go not away, the Comforter will not come unto you; but if I go, I will send him unto you."
What is the meaning of verses 21 and 22, in which Jesus says: "No man seweth a piece of undressed cloth on an old garment," and "No man putteth new wine into old wine-skins"? The reference in the foregoing verses is to the old material concept of the body. Jesus taught that we should eat (consciously affirm) and drink (imbibe) the new body "... when I drink it new with vou in mv Father's kingdom."
Spiritually, what does fasting represent? Fasting means "abstaining from." In fasting those who function in outer consciousness abstain from food, while those who function in Spirit abstain from certain lines of thought.
Certain persons asked Jesus why His disciples did not fast. Were those persons in spiritual understanding? No, They referred to fasting from food.
[Undated. Probably 1900]: Mark 2:19-22
Jesus at Matthew's House.
GOLDEN TEXT — He said unto him, Follow me. Luke 5:27.
Matthew was a publican. The word "publican" comes from the Latin publicani, those who gathered the publicum, or public state revenue. Roman knights were usually at the head of this work, but farmed out the collection of the taxes to under officers, who in the New Testament are termed publicans. Of these a Bible commentator says: "They were the lowest and worst class of the native population, since no others would assume a task so hateful. They were required to pay over to their superiors the exorbitant sum fixed by the law, and depend for their profit on what they could make by fraud and extortion. They often overcharged, brought false charges of smuggling to extort hush money, seized upon property in case of dispute and held it until their levy was paid, forbade the farmer to reap his standing crops until they had wrung from him all that his penury could produce. They were universally feared, bated, and despised throughout the empire, but nowhere more than in Palestine."
Jesus represents the I AM in each of us illuminated with Truth, and bringing into right relation every faculty and tendency of the mind. Then we must all have the Matthew tendency. In some it may be weak, in others strong. It is that in the mind which says, " I must have my rights." It clamors for.those "rights"'in the name of Justice, who in temporal things is represented by the Roman ruler, or metaphysically, the dominant desire of the sense consciousness.
Lust claims marital rights and levies a tax upon the whole system, which is enforced at the expense of bodily depletion. Appetite and avarice are prominent in their claims and cause much misery in the consciousness in carrying out their demands. These are rights of social and official positions that some people contend for. Their dignity must not be offended—they insist upon their rights at all hazard. This subtle idea of selfishness in its various phases sets up a whole lot of minor petty mental traits until what was a good and noble faculty becomes a despised one.
But the saving power of the Son of man, the I AM when illumined by Truth is equal to the cleansing of all these foolish and ignorant states of consciousness. The good in them must be brought to light. The Pharisee condemns, but the Truth stoops to conquer. The illuminated I AM goes into all parts of the consciousness and becomes acquainted with the sources of every thought and act. The greater the sinner, the greater the need of salvation. "I came not to call the righteous, but sinners."
MARCH 24, 1912: Mark 2:13-22
BY CHARLES FILLMORE
FEASTING AND FASTING.
GOLDEN TEXT—" I came not to call the righteous, but sinners." — Mark 2:17
In the regeneration, man controls, directs, teaches, and disciplines the faculties of his mind. To do this, he must withdraw in a measure at least from money getting, and those other material occupations that have absorbed his time and attention. The disciples of Jesus "left all and followed him." Peter was afraid they had made a mistake, and he received this assurance from Jesus, "Verily I say unto you, There is no man that hath left house, or brethren, or sisters, or fathers, or mothers, or children, or lands, for my sake, and for the gospel's sake, but he shall receive an hundredfold now in this time, houses, and brethren, and sisters, and mothers, and children, and lands." This is one of the promises that is always fulfilled where there is a wholehearted surrender of the old life and a full absorption into the new, in mind and purpose. No one ever hears expressions of disappointment or regret on the part of a devoted Christian worker, over anything that he has forsaken in the old life. On the contrary, there is rejoicing as each mortal link is severed, because the new relation in Christ is deeper and stronger than the human relation, and love is increased and real possessions multiplied.
When this school of man and his mind begins there is a medley of thoughts to deal with. Jesus sits eating with his disciples, publicans, and sinners. This represents the state of mind which man finds within himself when he takes the reform necessary to the Christian life. It is not by landing aloof from our errors that we overcome them, but by uncovering the secret sins and correcting them. Your good points of character will take care of themselves—all you need to do is to reform the bad.
Taken in its literal or symbolical character all the teachings of Jesus point to increase. His promises of good to those who follow him in the regeneration are so magnificent that men have construed them amiss. They have said, that these promises will be fulfilled in heaven—that they are figures pertaining to the soul, etc. But Jesus emphasized that these things were to be fulfilled "now in this time."
Feasting is symbolical of abundance, and represents in the individual a condition in which the man is appropriating. Jesus is the bridegroom, who is providing generously for his friends. This represents that period in our spiritual growth when we realize the inexhaustible abundance of the Christ Mind. Make your highest statements of Truth when you see in spiritual perception your birthright. The old man of the flesh is not overcome in a day, and he will now and then assert his presence so forcibly that the bridegroom will seem to have been taken away. These are the "days" that will come, referred to in verse 20. But the overcoming power of Jesus Christ never leaves those who have faith in him. "Lo, I am with you alway."
October 27, 1929: Mark 2:18-28
(Additional interp. on verse 22)
Our body temples, represented in this lesson by the wine skins, must be renewed by our speaking to them words of Truth, and that they may be made able to receive and hold the abundant, resurrecting Christ life (the new wine). In mind and body we enter into an abiding life consciousness.
January 30, 1938: Mark 2:1-19
Why is palsy treated int this lesson as a result of sin? All disease is a falling short of the law of life. The sin consists in man's failure to measure up to the standard of perfection set by the Son of man. The impairment of function called palsy results from failure to observe the law.
What kind of discourse is meant in verse 2 where it is said that Jesus "spake the word" on His return to Capemaum? The word of Truth or the law of life is what Jesus taught, some times in parables, often in open discussion. He came to bear witness to Truth.
What caused Jesus to say to the sick of the palsy, "Son thy sins are forgiven"? The faith shown by those who let the the palsied man down through the roof moved Jesus to speak the freeing word of forgiveness that brought healing.
Who is qualified to forgive sins? Man in the natural consciousness feels powerless to remit the penalty that follows nonobservance of the law of life. His authority to forgive, in his opinion, covers only sins against himself personally. The spiritually developed Son of man knows that he can remit both sin and penalty.
How did Jesus make this point clear? After the Resurrection He said to His disciples, "Receive ye the Holy Spirit: whose soever sins ye forgive, they are forgiven unto them"
If the law of life is the law of God and is therefore constant and changeless, how can any one remit the penalty for breaking it? The Law 0f God also takes account of love, which is the greatest power that man can employ. Prompted by love, man knows that "it is lawful to do good" always. In full consciousness of love the Son of man remits every sin but one.
What sin is not forgiven? The willful sin that is not repented of is not forgiven, for there must be a change of mind before the Spirit of love can enter the heart and do it's perfect work. So long as the Holy Spirit is resisted through lack of desire to change for the better or discern the Truth, there is no forgiveness and no freedom in mind or body.
Can one forgive oneself? To forgive oneself is one of the duties of the Truth seeker. Without forgiveness the mind and soul are not freed from the burden of guilt, fear, dread, or whatever adverse condition limits them.
What is the result of effectual forgiveness? Forgiveness means restoration to freedom for man, and full consciousness of his divine sonship.
February 6, 1938: Mark 2:13-22
Jesus taught the multitude that resorted to Him by the seaside. What does this teaching represent? The sea represents Universal Mind. To teach the multitudes is a symbol of setting in order thoughts, hitherto vague and unsatisfied, concerning the inner realm.
What does Levi the son of Alphaeus represent? He represents the will stationed at the gate of the conscious mind to weigh the thoughts as they enter and decide what shall be done with them. He is elsewhere referred to as Matthew.
Interpret verse 15 To sit at meat in the house of Alphaeus is to affirm the one substance made manifest in and through the will. When man affirms or appropriates the one substance, he quickens and strengthens his faculties (disciples) as well as those phases of his thought life which are not yet in harmony with divine law (publicans and sinners).
The publicans and sinners followed Jesus. What does this statement mean? Jesus represents the I AM or spiritual man. All man's thoughts are controlled by the I AM, and by this means he identifies himself with what he chooses to make his own.
In what way was the relation of Jesus to sinners original? As the light of the world Jesus revealed the truth of God's forgiving love to all men especially to sinners, those who through ignorance of the divine law had missed the mark and fallen far short of perfection.
What does the reference to undressed cloth on an old garment signify? This expression refers to new and untried truths injected into the mind of one who is wedded to old beliefs and practices.
Is verse 22 applicable to life at the present time? "New wine into fresh wine-skins" signifies the inspiration that springs afresh in the mind of the one who has given himself to the pursuit of the ideal. It is always applicable to such a person.
October 11, 1942: Mark 2:14-17
Why should the will be developed equally with the other faculties? Because it is the dynamo that gives us power to persevere until we have completed the work of transforming our threefold nature into the Christ ideal of perfection.
In this lesson what represents the will? The publican Levi or Matthew, as he is usually called.
How is the will easily "converted" or transformed? Only through love. Otherwise self will does not easily yield its place to the divine or good will. When the imagination stirs us to zeal and enthusiasm or when new understanding dawns, the will may rise to this higher level, but all these qualities arouse love also in the heart.
What is the nearest approach to the divine will of which anyone is capable? What is known as good will, which is another term for God's will.
Metaphysically Interpreting Mark 2:23-28
2:23And it came to pass, that he was going on the sabbath day through the grainfields; and his disciples began, as they went, to pluck the ears. 2:24And the Pharisees said unto him, Behold, why do they on the sabbath day that which is not lawful? 2:25And he said unto them, Did ye never read what David did, when he had need, and was hungry, he, and they that were with him? 2:26How he entered into the house of God when Abiathar was high priest, and ate the showbread, which it is not lawful to eat save for the priests, and gave also to them that were with him? 2:27And he said unto them, The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath: 2:28so that the Son of man is lord even of the sabbath.
APRIL 14, 1912: Mark 2:23-28 3:1-6
THE USE OF THE SABBATH.
GOLDEN TEXT — "The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath." — Mark 2:27.
The observance of every seventh day as a day of rest, or Sabbath, has its source deep in the constitution of things. Among nearly all peoples similar rest-days have been instituted, and history proves that Moses was not the originator of the system. The observance of a weekly rest-day is now very widely held to prove a natural basis in the needs of man. The persistency with which such an institution has been maintained for many ages among Jews, Christians, Mohammedans, and some of the so-called pagan nations, amply supports this view. It has been found by experience that one day in seven is the right proportion. During the French Revolution, when the decade was substituted for the week,, and each tenth day devoted to rest, it was found insufficient. Moses borrowed the usage from the BabyIonian civilization, as recently discovered cuneiform tablets record the observance of a seventh day of holy rest.
"And on the seventh day God finished his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from all his work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day and hallowed it." This quotation from Genesis presents in concise words a law that pervades the universe. The rock-ribbed earth beneath our feet bears record of six great creative periods, with a seventh in process. Seven movements of the creative law are found at the foundation of the world about us. The seven colors of the spectrum, the seven notes of music, the seven senses of man (two not yet universally used), all point to these degrees, or days, of action and rest.
When man in his wisdom unites his thought with Divine Mind, as did Jesus, he has power to use the same creative law that God uses in bringing forth the universe. The seven elements of the body are found everywhere, and through understanding that they are not fixed, material things, but forms of thoughts, man gains entrance to a realm where he can speak words that will arrest the attention of those elements, and they will obey him according to his power. When you have gained the power to still the stormy, undisciplined thoughts in your own mind, you can speak to the winds and they will obey you. When you have arrested the scorching currents of anger that burn up your body-cells, you can stop the fire in a burning building. When you have ceased to drop into the weak, watery mental states called discouragement, despondency and fear, you can command the waves and walk upon the waters, as did Jesus.
But before man can rise into his natural dominion he must understand and realize that God's whole plan of creation is to bring forth the perfect man. This means that man is the supreme thing in creation and that all laws are for his convenience. The universal tendency of great men to manifest this inherent excellency proves that it is natural. Most of them miss the mark by seeking to dominate other men and nations before they have mastered themselves.
When men set up a law and make its observance burdensome, they are slaves of their own creations. The Jews had become burdened with the observance of the letter of the Sabbath commandment, and had a multitude of ridiculous prohibitions and external formalities, from which Jesus sought to rescue them by his example of bold freedom and disregard of man-made laws.
The Sabbath was instituted for man, not man for the Sabbath. It is lawful to do good on the Sabbath, whether it be preaching in a pulpit, healing the sick, or in any way saving men from ignorance and its results. Luther said, "Keep it holy for its use's sake both to body and soul. But if anywhere the day is made holy for the mere day's sake, if anywhere any one sets up its observance upon a Jewish foundation, then I order you to work on it, to ride on it, to dance on it, to feast on it. to do anything that shall reprove this encroachment on the Christian spirit and liberty."
August 20, 1916: Mark 2:23-28
What important point was Jesus seeking to make clear in this lesson? That man has inherent powers of dominion and is "lord even of the Sabbath;" that is, man is greater than the law.
What in consciousness, is the Sabbath? It is the quiet confidence of I AM in the omnipresent peace, poise, mastery and dominion of Spirit.
How may man keep the Sabbath holy? Through resting in confidence and faith, that the Word of Truth established in consciousness will bring forth the perfect manifestation.
What does the "seventh day" referred to in the first chapter of Genesis represent? The "seventh day" is that state of mind in which we rest and realize with God that our work has been fulfilled in Spirit
What is the seventh day called under the law? It is called Sunday.
What relation does Sunday bear to the Sabbath? Sunday is the outer manifestation, while the Sabbath is the inner spiritual reality.
October 27, 1929: Mark 2:13-28
Spiritually what does fasting represent? Fasting represents denial. Jesus said "Can the sons of the bride chamber fast while the bridegroom is with them? The bridegroom is with us when we realize the presence of the Christ, which we should never deny. The time might come when we would not have the realization of the Christ. Therefore we had better put off our denials until that time.
What figure of speech is used to represent the healing of local ills? The healing of local ills is represented by the patching of an old garment with a new piece of cloth. A new idea that we put into the body consciousness should be tempered - that is, shrunk to correspond with the bodily conditions. Some healers make their statements so high that they bring about a reaction, an adverse chemicalization, in the whole body.
Metaphysically, what does wine represent? Wine represents Spirit. When we declare the word of Spirit w e should realize that our spiritual words are quickening the spiritual idea of the perfect body.
According to the man-made law, everybody should cease from his labors on the Sabbath day. Why did not Jesus and His disciples observe this law? Jesus and His disciples were not under the man-made law. They represent the law of Spirit, by which man transcends all laws of mortal man. There is no evidence that divine law has a day of rest. On the contrary , it goes steadily forward with the work of creation day after day. For the natural man the day of rest is essential, but the spiritual man suits the occasion of the Sabbath to his needs. Jesus had this in mind when He proclaimed, "The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath."
Explain the true rest of the Sabbath. In the second chapter of Genesis it is written that God rested after the six days of creative work. By this same token the metaphysician finds that after declaring a spiritual affirmation he should rest from making Affirmations. During the rest period the mind should be in a quiet attitude of confidence, certain that good results will follow. This is the practical use that our present-day metaphysicians are making of the true Sabbath in soul unfoldment.
January 29, 1933: Mark 2:23-28
From what source does the observance of the Sabbath spring? The observance of every seventh day as a day of rest or sabbath has its source deep in the constitution of things. A weekly rest day is now very widely held to have a natural basis in tne needs of man.
"And on the seventh day God finished his work which he had made; and he rested on the seventh day from His work which he had made. And God blessed the seventh day, and hallowed it." Please explain. This quotation from Genesis presents in concise words a law that pervades the universe. Seven movements of the creative law are found at the foundation of the world about us. The seven colors of the spectrum, the seven notes of music, the seven senses of man (two not yet universally used), all point to these degrees, or days, of action and rest.
Has man power to use the creative law? When man in his wisdom unites his thought with Divine Mind as did Jesus, he has power to use the same creative law. The seven elements of the body are found everywhere, and through understanding that they are not fixed, material things, but forms of thought, man gains entrance to a realm where he can speak words that will arrest the attention of those elements, and cause them to obey him according to his power.
Explain Jesus' words "The sabbath was made for man, and not man for the sabbath." God's whole plan of creation is to bring forth the perfect man. This means that man is the supreme work of creation and that all laws are for his convenience.
Jesus boldly entered into the grain fields on the Sabbath and plucked the ears. Why? When men set up a law and make its observance burdensome, they become the slaves of their own creations.The Jews had become burdened by the observance of the letter of the Sabbath commandment. Jesus sought to rescue them from this burden by His bold example of freedom from man-made laws.
February 13, 1938; Mark 2:23-28
What is the main point in Sabbath observance? The main thing is to rest from habitual labor and commune wholeheartedly with God. The Jewish law forbade the doing of any "servile work" on the Sabbath. It was a season of rest and refreshment.
Does refreshment come only through inactivity? Refreshment of mind and soul comes best through new activity. A walk through the grain fields means exercise or work for the body but refreshment for mind and soul.
Is the Sabbath holy in and of itself? It is holy in so far as it serves man's deepest need, a consciousness of God. Since it was made for man it should be kept sacred to what serves him best.
How did Jesus justify the breaking by His disciples of the Pharisaical Sabbath? By recalling the historic fact that David disregarded a law of similar origin, Jesus showed that what is meant to serve man can lawfully be adapted by him to meet the changing needs of a new day. Laws serve him who has the law of life at heart.
October 17, 1943: Mark 2:23-28
What is within the scope of the law of Sabbath rest? Whatever is good for us is lawful for us to do on our day of rest, so long as we separate ourselves from the strain and stress, the dullness and monotony, the fear and worry, and the thousand errors that attend our ordinary [unreadable] of labor unless we remember [unreadable] our mind in God and trust Him to keep us and our affairs in divine order.
What does the story of Jesus "gong on the sabbath day through the grain fields indicate? That He utilized the restorative power of nature in gaining the rest and refreshing that He and His disiples needed. We find a valuable lesson in the way Jesus combined prayer and communion with God with communion with the outdoors. Much of His three years of ministry was in the open air.
August 4, 1946: Mark 2:23-28
What is the origin of the idea that one day in seven should be dedicated to rest? It derives from the account of the creation. The six "days'* or periods of intense creative activity of Divine Mind are followed by the seventh "day" or period of rest.
Is rest a phenomenon observable throughout nature? It is; from the ebb and flow of the tides to the action of the mind. Everything indicates that recurrent seasons of rest form part of the divine plan.
What is the Sabbath of the mind? A state in which we are free from care and harassing thoughts and can devote ourselves to contemplation and prayer.
Why was the Sabbath made for man? To give him the poise that comes from a counterbalancing of activity and contemplation. He needs to devote one seventh as much time to contemplation and rest as he does to activity
As sons of God what is our ultimate goal? Peace of mind and achievement. Without the former the latter cannot be realized.
As far as we can discern it, what is the purpose of creation? To bring forth the perfect man. In so far as the perfecting process requires special seasons such as the Sabbath, these seasons are provided. Man does not exist for the purpose of observing them. On the contrary they exist because he needs them.
May 11, 1952: Mark 2:27, 28
Should we do teaching and healing on the Sabbath? Yes. It is lawful to do good on the Sabbath days, and both healing and teaching minister to man's well-being. Therefore all seasons are appropriate for them.
Transcribed by Tom Schulte on 10-16-2013