In The Name of the Lord
Jesus said, "But even the very hairs of your head are numbered. Fear not, therefore; ye are of more value than many sparrows" (Luke 12:7).
If the Father is so minute in his watchful care of his children as to be familiar with even the number of hairs on every head, how can we for an instant imagine that we have been lost sight of in the bustle and whirl of the millions of earth's population? Do not deceive yourself into believing that because you are not conscious of the Father's presence, you are therefore out of his sight. What is it that gives you life? What heals your cuts, burns, and bruises so quickly? The intellect has taught you to say, Nature! But what is Nature? Is it not that same intellect's name for God? If Nature exhibits extraordinary ability in gathering healthy particles of flesh to the burned finger, why not recognize the real source thereof, and name it as it rightfully is — the Omnipresent Spirit, God!
As Jesus said, it is so omnipresent that it has numbered the very hairs of your head. It lives in you; in fact, it literally lives you, and you are as a puff of wind without the Omnipotent God.
You are, therefore, numbered. To be numbered is to be especially designated as having place, relation, importance, and necessity. If you are numbered, you are one of the factors that enter into the great problem of life. To number and to name mean one and the same thing. If you are numbered, you are therefore recorded in the annals of heaven, and the Omnipresent Father knows you by a name peculiar to Spirit.
Jesus said, "Rejoice because your names are written in heaven" (Luke 10:20). All of which means that the Father knows us by name, and has an intimacy and acquaintance with our lives, characteristics, and experiences, far exceeding that of any earthly parent.
Those who have returned to the Father's house, and thereby come into conscious acquaintance with him, know by experience that he is aware of every thought that flits through their minds. The most trivial circumstances of an apparentvly uneventful life are watched with the same careful solicitude as one upon whose acts the destiny of nations hangs.
The Scriptures give much importance to the naming and numbering of the prophets and peoples. The Lord always gave the wise men end leaders new names when they had achieved some signal victory. The record abounds with such examples. When the great Jehovah sent Moses to bring the children of Israel out of Egypt he gave the name by which he was to be known — "I Am That I Am" (Exod. 3:14).
This non-committal way of designating the Unnamable One stamps this Scripture with a peculiar metaphysical authority. It reveals, in this particular instance, that it came forth from one who knew the truth; that God could not be named as man names, by describing. To describe God is to give him limitation, hence he could not be given a fairer designation than "I Am That I Am."
This is without confines or bounds, and it allows unlimited expansion in every direction.
Metaphysicians have found that this name held persistently gives the mind freedom from narrow ideas. It lets the imagination soar away from its dimensional concepts of God, and there flows into the mind, in consequence, a whole flood of expanded ideas; The imaginating faculty of the mind is that upon which is based all form; it is the namer, hence a most important factor in the creation of man's world.
Moses was told to make all things after the pattern shown in the mount, or state of high spiritual realization. While he was up in that mount the children of Israel dropped back into their old habits of mind, and made an image of a calf out of gold, and he found them bowing down to it on his return (Exod. 32:4).
This represents that tendency in each one of us to formulate our images after the pattern which we see with the eye, rather than from the ideals that rise in the silent meditations of the mind. It Is perfectly legitimate to name or formulate your ideas, but you are wise if you first go up into the mount of spiritual understanding before doing so.
Jesus' advice to judge not according to appearances (John 7:24) was strictly correct in the science of mind. To make up your mind is to settle all your ideas about a common center. This means formulation, and formulation is crystallization. If you want to see how resistless a perfect crystallization is, try to "unformulate" the settled conviction of a diamond. This stone represents that adamantine mental condition that refuses to change its ideas. It has formed a center, and all its energies are bent to keep intact its dense persistency in that direction.
Ideas become crystallized in men's minds in the same way. A settled conviction upon any point, whether right or wrong, forms a mental center that draws to it all ideas of like nature; and this continuous accumulation from the outside presses upon the center until it has literally lost its power to expand into newer and higher forms. This is why it is a dangerous thing to name even your good from any external model.
Man is inherently religious, and he can be moved to greater depths and greater heights by appealing to this faculty in him, than to any other. Peter the Hermit stirred Europe from center to circumference with his semi-insane cry, "God wills it." The religious frenzy of the savage is paralleled by the dogmatism and bigotry of the civilized. Both are examples of an ignorant naming of the idea of God -- one from external nature and the other from some ancestral creed. Neither has looked within for its pattern; neither has heard the still small voice say "I Am That I Am."
Hence, "Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord" (Psalms 118:26). The Lord is the name of the Most High Good. The Lord has neither body, passion, nor parts, according to the Christian's creed, and he must therefore be Spirit. If Spirit, than he is the all-possibility.
Let all your ideas come in the name of the Lord. Do not let one of them take form in your mind based upon any external pattern. If you do there will come a time when you will have to unformulate it; because the law is that you shall grow in understanding and in Godlikeness. Jesus said that in the last days there should be much running to and fro in search of the Christ, and that many should say, "Lo, here is the Christ, or lo, there; but go not forth" (Mark 13:21). The Christ is within you (Col. 1:27). Go not forth to find him, because you will surely be disappointed.
It makes all the difference imaginable how you name your Lord. He is the All-Possibility, but his expression in you and your affairs is only what you have named it. If you have circumscribed your Lord with personality, and given him powers corresponding thereto, he will be so expressed. If you have given him unlimited powers, and made yourself his free agent for making them manifest, there is nothing within the scope of your imagination but what you can accomplish.
It is your peculiar privilege to see that which you name appear. This is a law that has no exception. It is a most important bit of knowledge — this knowing that what you name always comes to pass.
"Thou shalt decree a thing, and it shall be established unto you," said Job 22:28, so long ago that history has no record of its date. To decree a thing is to name it, and by the mere naming it comes to pass. Do not take time into consideration in looking for the fruit of your lips. The harvest may be at a time when you least anticipate, and in manner different from what you expected.
It is written, "And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field" (Gen. 2:20). Metaphysically this means that the I of man decides the character of every thought. Cattle represent thoughts of active power, while beasts of the field are animal passions. Birds of the air are thoughts that soar into the ideal world — daydreams, etc. Thus, whatever you name these desires and emotions that arise in you, that they appear to be to you. You call them by the name you have given them, and they answer, because they are subject to you and know no other master.
If you have said that the Omnipresent Life welling up at your heart's center may some time pass from you, and allow your body to disintegrate, you have paved the way for that appearance called "death."
If you have said that there was an appearance of weakness in any organ of your body, that obedient servant responds to the name you have given it exactly as would a pet dog or eat. The members of your body do not express intelligence until you infuse into them the quality of your thought. They are quick to catch the faintest thought image that may flit through your mind, and they respond at a time when you least look for it. That weak back may be the echo of your word sent forth years ago. So the vigor of your health is the result of the all-potent name you have dropped into your mind, expressing that harmony which we observe and call "health."
All the potentialities of Being are made manifest through man in orderly method. Man has distinct faculties for expressing these potentialities. The heart is the center from which the divine substance is poured forth, the highest aspect of which is Love. The head is the center from which the mind differentiates that combination of ideas termed "intelligence." The mind does not take cognizance of names; instead, it has mental images or pictures. These are called the products of the imagination. The mind forms a picture and the intellect names it. You see in mind a transparent liquid flowing through the land, and at once the intellect says "water." Everything that has a name in the world of effects is known in the world of causes by its image. So mind expresses every emotion, every sensation, every desire, every motive, and every thought of every kind, by forming them into mental pictures. It is only when they are described in the language of the intellect that they receive that arbitrary appellation which we call "name."
The intellect makes language, and language is an arbitrary arrangement of sounds to express ideas. Thus the same idea in the minds of two men may be beyond their power to communicate to each other, because they are not familiar with the intellect's provincial dialect. If those men were conscious of this mental plane where images are the basis of language, they would have no trouble in communicating though they were born of races the most diverse. The image of a horse in one mind would be seen with the other mind instantly, and communication would be easy.
So we see that the common language of mankind is based in thought images, and that we shall never realize the universal language, which is the dream of the philologist, until we have dropped the arbitrary word-plane and ascended into the realm of thought images. There language becomes alive. Every picture that the mind makes is an exact copy of the thing imagined. If you think of a horse you have formed in mind a living animal having all the characteristics of that quadruped.
If you are familiar with driving your mental images, you can put a bit into the mouth of your mental horse and bid him carry your desire where you wish. Do not presume that this is a mere play upon words; it is a description of reality -- the only reality, in truth. These mental images are the vital substance of which the spoken word is a very faint echo. When one who lives on the froth and foam of life says, "Oh, that is the result of your imagination — there is no power in that," he is a fool drunken with his folly.
Just recently the press chronicled the remarkable recovery of sight, in a Methodist revival meeting, of a blind woman. The church people looked upon it as the work of God, but the worldly wise physician said it was nothing of the kind. He said the woman had become excited, and through her imagination the optic nerves, which had been paralyzed, were revived.
This case is rich with suggestions for the trained metaphysician. The doctor explains how the cure was effected, yet denies God any part in it, and at the same time by his flippancy ridicules the process while admitting its efficacy. The church people look upon it as a miracle performed by the direct hand of the Almighty, and scorn the theory of the doctor, who explains just how God in reality wrought the so-called miracle. Thus ignorance sits in darkness both in the house of those who have built a curative system without this wisdom as a concomitant.
But he who claims miraculous operations at the hand of God — meaning, by that, results produced outside of exact and universal law — and he who claims that God is not immanent in every movement and manifestation, do err, and are far from "coming in the name of the Lord."
He who comes in the name of the Lord knows the Lord. He does not stand outside of him and look at effects and judge according to appearances, but he stands at the center of his own being, where the Lord is, and is witness to the work that is perpetually carried on. Then he can say of himself, "Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord".