This talk was given by Ed Rabel on August 17, 1993.
My big worry was, now, we’ve got four 50 minute classes. Will I be able to find enough mysteries in the gospel to take up that time? The problem changed halfway through. The problem was: Which ones do I have to skip? But that’s a better change than the other one, isn’t it? We know that the spirit of truth will always provide us with material to share when we’re dealing with truth, when we’re dealing with knowledge. Jesus told us this. He said, “The spirit of truth will guide you into all the truth.” I am open and receptive to God’s living spirit of truth. Together, I am open and receptive to God’s living spirit of truth. Father, we are grateful. Amen. All right, friends.
Matthew 9—What does it mean to "Shake the dust off your feet"?
Jesus is preparing to enter the final climax of his messiah ministry, and he knows everything that is going to occur in these last periods of his ministry. He is concerned about preparing his followers, especially his disciples, for certain things that were bound to happen after he left physically. One of the things he tells them is found in Matt. 9 beginning with the 11th verse. He’s telling them how to handle certain situations which are bound to come up. Among these, he says:
“And, into whatsoever city or village ye shall enter, search out who in it is worthy, and there abide till you go forth. And, as you enter into the house, salute it. And, if the house be worthy, let your peace come upon it. But, if it be not worthy, let your peace return to you, and, whosoever shall not receive you nor hear your words as ye go forth out of that house or that city, shake off the dust of your feet.”
Now, obviously, what he is dealing with here is the sad fact of being rejected. Now, my question to you is: How many of us have to meet that sad fact at times in our lives? All of us, every person. At times, under certain circumstances, we all have to go through an experience of being rejected even when my intentions are good. See, it’s no big problem to be rejected when you’re intentions are bad. I mean we can expect that. But, when our intentions are good, to be rejected can be very painful, can’t they? We often handle this in the wrong way, and Jesus is trying to help his disciples to not handle in the wrong way, the way everybody else does.
Now, most of the time, if you and I enter into a certain relationship and if that relationship seems important to us, many times we have the idea, whether it’s turning out right or not, that, since we entered into it, we should be stuck with it. Come on. Or you’re stuck with me or you shouldn’t have let me follow a relationship. Many times, a relationship is not worth continuing, but something in human nature tries to convince us to continue it even though it’s not worth continuing. We get stubborn.
Notice how Jesus says this. I’m going to change his words a bit into more modern idiom. He says, “Now, as you enter into a relationship,” he doesn’t use the word “relationship.” He uses the word a “village” or a “house,” but that would symbolize a relationship. “As you enter the house, salute it.” Now, that could mean, when you enter into a relationship, expect the best. Right? Welcome it. Salute it. “If it be worthy,” if it turns out to be worthwhile, “then let your peace come upon it. But, if it be not worthy,” if it’s working out so that it’s not worth it, not worth the trouble, not worth the aggravation, not worth the hassle, then he says, “Let your peace return to you.”
There’s where we fail often, don’t we? Instead of letting peace return to us, what do we do? We get angry, resentful. We start accusing and blaming. What does that get us? Well, it might get us into a nice, comfortable little divorce court or a lawsuit, but it doesn’t bring us peace or happiness ever, not ever.
Now, here’s the most important part: “And, whosoever will not receive you or hear your word,” that is, when you’re in a relationship where this person doesn’t want you anymore or won’t accept you, what should we do? Now, notice how subtle he is. He says, “And, whosoever shall not receive you nor hear as ye go forth out of that house or city ...” When someone doesn’t want you, leave. Go forth out of that relationship. Don’t try to stick around where you’re not wanted, where you’re not welcome. Then, he says, “And, when you do this, shake the dust off your feet.”
Now, here’s the question: What is the symbolic meaning of Jesus’s instruction to shake the dust off your feet if you’re being rejected and you leave where you’re not wanted? In the Bible, all body parts mentioned are symbols. The feet symbolize understanding. Your feet stand under the rest of your body, don’t they? Feet in the Bible symbolizes understanding. Now, dust or debris in the Bible has different meanings according to how it’s used. When dust or debris is used negatively, then it symbolizes negative emotions like hurt feelings, resentment, anger, dust on your feet, where your understanding is being dirtied by negative emotions.
What does Jesus say if you’re leaving a relationship in which you’ve been rejected? What should you do as you leave that relationship to your understanding? Shake what off of it? Negative emotions. See? Shake the dust, the dirt, the debris, negative emotions off of your feet, your understanding. You leave that relationship with clean understanding. Friends, let me tell you: In God’s world, no door ever closes in your life without a better one opening. That’s the law of divine compensation. But, if you leave one situation with dirty feet, who’s going to open their doors for you? Nobody will! Dirty feet.
You now understand I’m speaking symbolically. If you are leaving a relationship all loaded with negative emotions, you become a very unattractive person. You’ve got dirty feet. You may have opportunities to enter a new relationship, but they’re going to see your dirty feet. They’re going to see your negative attitude, and you’re going to have a hard time finding a better relationship.
Now, you may find that you’re still attracting the same kind of people into your life, and that’s no improvement. Are you hearing me? For instance, I know certain wonderful women who have a pattern of always marrying alcoholics. They don’t reform them; they divorce them. But guess what happens pretty soon? They meet another one. You hearing me? Because they haven’t shaken the dust off their feet from the last relationship. But, when we leave a relationship and are willing to enter into new opportunities and we’re not cluttered up with negative emotions, we become very attractive people. A non-negative person is an attractive person. No matter what their physical features look like, their souls are attractive, and better doors open, and newer and finer relationships occur.
Or, sometimes, even the old one that turned sour can sweeten up again. Well, that’s happened in my life. Come on, friends. I’ve lost a sweetheart in a love affair, but I handled it right, and it didn’t meet a new sweetheart because the old sweetheart saw how nice I was. It all works together for good, doesn’t it?
By the way, do you believe that all things work together for good to those that love God? Please say yes. Okay. You know what’s happening right now in this part of country ecologically? This hot weather that has descended on us in a bright, burning sunshine. Well, we’ve just had some floods recently, didn’t we? All that water caused a great influx of mosquito breeding, and we were in danger of an invasion of hordes of mosquitoes about this time after this flood. But this heat wave is boiling the water in those mosquitoes, and they’re dying. Isn’t that great? When you go out to dinner tonight, order broiled mosquitoes. All things do work together for good. All right.
John 6—Can flesh give life to the flesh?
Now, in John 6, Jesus is still talking to his disciples, and he’s saying things to them. Some of what he says to them, obviously, is to be taken literally, but a lot of it, obviously, is to be interpreted metaphysically. In the middle of one of the parables, he says this to his disciple: “It is the spirit that quickenth. The flesh profiteth nothing. It is the spirit that giveth life. The words that I have spoken to you are spirit and are life. The flesh profiteth nothing. It is the spirit that,” what? “... giveth life.”
Now, question: According to Jesus, can flesh give life to the flesh? According to Jesus, Jesus says no. Jesus says, “The flesh profiteth nothing. It is the spirit that giveth life.” Now, I see some of you said yes, which verifies what I was going to say next. In the world in general, the general belief is that flesh gives life to flesh. That is not true. Only spirit can give life to flesh. That which is born of flesh is flesh. That which is born of spirit is spirit, and the spirit giveth life. The flesh receives life, but the flesh can not give life.
Now, this error is being repeated every day, especially among parents who are trying to practice emotional blackmail on their grown-up children. This happens all the time. The child doesn’t want to do something that the manipulative parents want them to do, so the parents will resort to another attempt at emotional blackmail. I’ve had this pulled on me more than once. “I gave you ...” Finish. “... life!” No, Momma, you did not give me life. You gave me flesh. Spirit gives me life.
You see, it’s the same thing as people are telling other people, “You promised to make me happy. Why aren’t you doing it?” Because you can’t. You can’t make anybody happy. Only the divine idea of happiness can make you happy. A person can’t make you happy. Only happiness can make you happy, and happiness is a divine idea, a gift from God.
Now, I can treat you and relate to you and associate with you in a way which helps you to bring forth the happiness that’s already within you, but I can’t make you happy, but I can do things that you can feel happy about. But where did that happiness come from? Right. It’s the same thing that I can’t give you good health, and no doctor can give you good health. A doctor can cure a disease. A doctor can put you on a prescription that will make you feel better. A doctor can operate and save your life. But can a doctor give you good health? No, because the good health that you will experience is already where? Within you as the divine idea of life and health, which comes from God and spirit and God only.
When Jesus says, “The words that I have spoken unto you are spirit and are life,” another place Jesus says, “My words are spirit and our life,” but the question is: How can the words of Jesus be spirit and life? Now, I would not be able to answer that if I were not a devotee of Charles Fillmore’s writings. Thank God, Mr. Fillmore, where so much of them have been put into print. I’ve read all of his books more than once. Now, Mr. Fillmore answers this question, which I couldn’t myself.
Mr. Fillmore answered this question very, very late in his life when he was in his 90s. He stopped writing before he was 90, but, after he passed his 90s, he did not write anymore, but he did more short lecturing. He would appear in certain classes and give very short lectures, and students would enthusiastically take down what he would say in class because what he said then weren’t in his books so that many of his most valuable teachings are found in his classroom presentations after he stopped writing books. Thank God we have most of that in manuscript form, in notebook form, and eventually there is every reason to hope that it’ll all be published.
Listen to what he said: “Jesus gave great emphasis to the value of his words,” the words that he spoke back then which nobody understood. Not even his own family, his disciples, did not understand most of his words. Now, why would he continue speaking, saying everything he had to say, at a time when nobody was comprehending him? Because he knew that these words had to be spoken and planted in the ether, in the etheric atmosphere of this planet. Like any seeds that are planted, if they are in the right soil, eventually they will what? Germinate and grow and, yes, bring forth fruit, blossom. He knew he could do that with words.
Instead of into the soil of this planet, he could plant his words or, as Mr. Fillmore calls it, broadcast his words into the mental and etheric atmosphere of the planet and that the gospels would be written. Jesus himself talks about the gospels which are going to be preached before there was any gospel around, but Jesus would talk about, “When these gospels are read, when these gospels are preached,” because he knew it was going to happen and that these gospels would contain at least part of the words he spoke. See?
And Mr. Fillmore said Jesus knew that, by broadcasting the electrons of the atoms of his blood, he would be living in his words. Now, did you notice he did not say Jesus shed his blood? It doesn’t start with blood. It starts with what? Electrons. Jesus broadcast the electrons in the atoms of his blood, blood being a symbol of life.
See, a lot of people who heard that or who hear about the blood of Jesus think of Jesus as splashing blood into the atmosphere. It’s all so bloody. That isn’t it at all. Electrons are not blood. Friends, electrons are energy particles, not blood. Atoms are not blood. You see? Atoms have to become molecules first. Then, the molecules make connections, which form fluids. These fluids form tissues. Tissues form organs. Organs covered with skin become body. You see?
But Jesus didn’t broadcast his blood. He broadcast the electrons in the atoms of his blood through his what? How do you broadcast anything? Words. Words. Words. Jesus lives in his words, so Jesus’s words are living. They are life. We are learning his words, but we have to learn them first before we can interpret them, and we interpret them according to the light of the spirit. Okay.
Mark 9—Why does healing come out only by prayer and fasting?
Now, in the Gospel of Mark chapter 9, Jesus has taken 3 of his disciples, Peter, James, and John. Up into the mountian to pray and were told that, while they are praying, that Moses and Elijah appear and begin conversing with Jesus, and the disciples see this, and then a cloud comes over the thing, and they fall asleep. When they awaken, the cloud lifts, and Jesus is alone. But, while that cloud is there, they hear a voice saying, “This is my beloved, my son. Hear ye him.”
Of course, the question here is: How did the disciples recognize Moses and Elijah? I mean Moses and Elijah had lived who knows how many centuries before this occurred, and I’m sure that they didn’t introduce themselves to the disciples. They were busy with Jesus. We have no explanation in the gospels about how did they or even the writer of the gospels know it was Moses and Elijah? There is a mystery that we will just take the writer’s word for it.
Now, there’s another thing is that, while they are up in that mountain, the other 9 disciples who have been left behind have been approached by a man whose son is afflicted with what seems to be epilepsy from the description we get, the symptoms of epilepsy. The father asks the disciples to heal the boy because the healing news had gotten around about the power of Jesus. But the 9 disciples are not unsuccessful in healing the boy, at least not there on the spot, and it is then Jesus and the other three return, and they see this crowd and the father, and so they go up to see what’s going on.
The father explains to Jesus that he had asked his disciples to heal the boy, but they could do nothing. Then, the father, “If thou canst, have mercy and help us.” Jesus says, “If thou canst ...” Did you get that? The father requests Jesus, “If thou canst, have mercy and help us,” and Jesus’s reply is, “If ...” Who’s he appointing now as the healer? The father. Jesus does this a lot. He sets up people and helps them to become the healer. Do you understand? He doesn’t do the healing, but he sets up somebody else who’s interested, who’s involved, and does things that he enables them to become the healer. He does this a half-dozen times. He certainly does it here because he says to the father, “If thou canst ...”
All things are possible to him that believeth, and the father gives the perfect response. He didn’t lie, he didn’t fake it, and said, “Okay, I believe. Let’s have a healed son.” That would have been faking it. The father was honest, and that’s what healed the son. He said, “Lord, I believe. Help thou mine unbelief.” How honest can you get? How many times have you and I been in that situation? “Oh, I believe. I’m a Unity student. I wrote all my papers. I got all my credits, so I believe, but yet I don’t believe.” Come on, haven’t we all been houses divided? Of course. But, if we’re honest about it, we’ll do the right thing and not try to deny our unbelief but ask for what? Help. See? “Help thou mine unbelief,” and the child was healed. Beautiful story.
But what I’m referring to now is the ending of it as it appears in Mark 9. It says: “Jesus took him by the hand and raised him up, and he arose. That boy is now healed.” Beautiful. Now, “And, when he was come into the house, his disciples asked him privately saying, ‘What could we not cast it out?’ And Jesus said unto them, ‘This kind can come out by nothing but prayer and fasting.’”
Now, the question is: Why did Jesus not answer the question his disciples asked, which was, “Why could we not cast it out?” What they are asking for is: Explain failure to us. Isn’t that what they’re asking? Point out failure to us. Explain why we failed. Now, if Jesus had explained why he failed, nothing would have been accomplished. Instead of explaining failure, he tells what success consists of. He says, “This kind can come out by ...” What? “... prayer and fasting. Now, Jesus doesn’t mean fasting not eating food. He means the power of denial. Of course, the prayer would be what? If fasting is denial, then prayer would be affirmation.
Now, we know that the disciples had been praying, don’t we? I mean we could take that for granted. He didn’t say to them, “You didn’t pray,” and, “You didn’t fast.” What he’s saying is, “Keep it up.” Are you with me? They did not fail. They didn’t fail. They just were interrupted before they were successful. Jesus only came along and speeded up the process, but they had gotten it started.
Now, what’s important is, today, many people don’t get results of their prayer efforts as fast as often Unity teaches them they ought to, which can be a mistake. You can make exaggerated promises about instantaneous this, and that may not be the case. Often, we have people who are a bit discouraged and sad because they are not getting the results as quick as Unity magazines say they ought to get it. The tendency is to start feeling guilty about it. Isn’t that right? And then be calling themselves a failure. But how can you be a failure if you are continuing with your good efforts? You see?
It’s just that you haven’t gotten the results yet, and there may be very good reasons why you don’t get such quick results. We don’t know all of the factors involved. Sometimes, maybe it would not be a good thing to get too quick results. What Jesus is telling the disciples here is don’t worry about what fails or what’s making the delay. Keep doing what will bring the eventual good results. Keep praying. Keep using your power of denial and affirmation.
Folks, I’ve tried that out in my life, and it does work. I’ve reached the point where I say, “It’s taking too long. There’s something wrong in my consciousness.” Then, I remember this. Then, I say, “Well, no. I don’t know if there’s anything wrong in my consciousness, but I know there’s something right somewhere in my consciousness, so I’m going to continue doing the right thing and stop worrying about whether it’s the wrong thing or not.” Eventually, you do. You get some kind of a good result. It may not be the specific thing you’re outlining, but it’ll be a good result.
Let me give you an example. Some years ago, on the fourth of July, I was out riding my bike on the Chipman Road. Being the fourth of July, a holiday, there had been some drinking going on somewhere. I mean isn’t that kind of normal? I’m sure, because a obviously drunken driver started to play games with me on my bicycle, edging over and all that. I made the bike rider’s big mistake. I took my eyes off the road in front of me and began looking at this drunken driver. Sure enough, I paid for that mistake. My bike hit a pothole on the edge of the highway, and I had just finished going over a railroad bridge. There’s a railroad bridge up there. That’s where I hit the pothole. My bike stopped, and I went head over heels onto the embankment.
Had that happened 30 seconds earlier, friends, I would have gone over the railing right down on the railroad tracks, about a 25 foot drop. You’d have a corpse talking to you right now in that case. But, see, that happened after I got over the bridge. Instead of falling down into the tracks, I rolled down head over heels an embankment. See? I was lying at the bottom of the embankment, and somebody saw what happened. Within 5 minutes, the ambulance from Lee’s Summit Hospital was there and put me on the stretcher, took me. 53 stitches in my face. Take a good look. Almost lost my beauty. Almost. 53 stitches; I never felt any pain whatsoever. I laid there in that hospital for about, oh, 3 days. Then, I had to get up and start teaching a class that Monday. I looked funny, but I was able to teach.
But, in the hospital, they gave me a thorough examination, including what they call a CT scan. You know what that is? You’re shoved into a machine, and it x-rays you everywhere. What they were looking for was brain damage with all of those cuts. There was no brain damage. They say there wasn’t. But I was able to teach.
But what happened was I had my scars, not on the skin, but my optic nerve. It’s a frayed strand of an optic nerve. An optic nerve is very sensitive, and this can not be treated. They have no way of treating it. It’s not like eye surgery. He said, “You’ll either have to live with this blurred vision, one half of the vision blurred, or it will regenerate itself,” which has happened in the past. That’s what I’m hoping for. But, meanwhile, I have this handicap of blurred vision, and I pray constantly, and this is the prayer I use: “My eyes are the windows of spirit. Blessed are my eyes for they see clearly.” It’s a good prayer. It’s a good affirmation. I remember it, say it many times every day; my vision doesn’t clear up.
Now, if I didn’t remember this teaching, what might I do? Bigshot Unity minister? You understand? I am very spiritual. Understand? I worked 12 years in Silent Unity helping to heal other people. If I wasn’t remembering these teachings, what would my very strong temptation be, friends? To feel guilty. To say, “My prayers aren’t answered. I am affirming clear vision. I am affirming, and it’s not happening, so my prayers are a failure.” That’s a temptation, but I won’t fall for that.
Here’s what I have realized: All right. I’m faithful in prayer. Even though I might not get the specific thing I want, that prayer will be answered in other ways, maybe even better ways than 20/20 vision, because, when I had 20/20 vision, friends, I was blind to many things. But, now that I’ve got faulty vision, my eyes are now opening to many things I overlooked before, and I am now enjoying and appreciating and understanding things because I have faulty physical vision. You see?
If I went back to 20/20 vision and had to give up my new insights, I wouldn’t do it. I want these new insights more than I want the 20/20 perfect vision. I say to Captain Karma, who probably caused this, “I drew this to me.” ... Maybe I did. I don’t know. But I say, “No hard feelings. My eyes still are the windows of spirit, and my eyes are blessed, and I see clearly. If not with the eyeball, then with the ...” What? Inner eye. The inner eye. I didn’t mean to tell you that, but it sort of fitted into this context here. Let’s go on. We mustn’t miss anything. Oh.
Matt. 18—Does everything happen because it is the will of God?
One of the questions, one of the debates that come up in religious and metaphysical circles, it also has from the beginning, it still is, which is: Does everything that happen happen because it is the will of God? Can anything happen if it is not the will of God? You have 2 camps. “Everything that happens can only happen because it is God’s will, and that is the explanation for everything that happens.” It’s what? The will of God. The other camp says, “No, there are things that happen that are not God’s will.” Now, neither camp can be right because neither camp can prove they’re right. They are simply entitled to their what? Their point of view. Right? Their opinion.
But Jesus has a statement, which is generally overlooked, which answers the question for me. I don’t know if it would answer the question for somebody else, but it answers it for me, which is, “There are things that happen in the human world that are not God’s will,” and Jesus says it this way. He’s talking about the way we should treat these little ones. He uses this term “little ones” a lot in his teachings. He uses the symbol of children, a little child, very often in his teachings, and he’s doing it here.
But, at the end of this paragraph, listen to his word. He says: “Even so, it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven that even one of these little ones should perish.” (Matt. 18:14) Now, that answers the question for me that there are things that can happen in human life which are not the will of God. “How can you say that, Ed Rabel?” I didn’t say it. Jesus said it first. ... Some of you are still looking very skeptical. May I read it again? Jesus says: “Even so,” this is in Matthew 18:14, “Even so, it is not the will of your Father which is in heaven that even one of these little ones should perish.”
Now, back in those days, friends, little ones were perishing all over the place. I’m speaking literally, historically now. Back then, childhood mortal rate was horrendous. Children who lived to be 7 years old were superbly lucky. Do you understand that? The mortality rate back then, especially among children, was horrendous, so little ones were perishing all over the place, but was that God’s will? According to Jesus, what? No. “It is not the will of your Father that even one of these should perish.” My conclusion, based on Jesus, is that there are things happening that we are not to call God’s will but man’s stupidity, man’s willfulness. God’s will can only be what?
Listen. God is the principal of absolute good. God’s will can only be for good. But, man’s will, man is given freedom of will as part of his divine inheritance. You are free to think, you are free to believe, you are free to act anyway you want because your inheritance from God is all divine ideas. Now, is freedom a divine idea or not? Of course it is, friends. Freedom is a divine idea. Since God has given us all divine ideas, then we are free. We are free to think and act and choose as we will. Many things that are happening are strictly man’s willfulness.
John 7—Why did Jesus first stoop down and write with his finger in the sand?
In John chapter 7, we read an interesting incident in which a woman was caught in the act of adultery, which means she has having sexual intercourse with a man she was not married to. This is what adultery means in the Old Testament literally. Jewish law, you see. That was a crime in those days, and it was punishable by death. They’re trying to trap Jesus. They’re trying to frame him so that they can bring charges against him, especially charges of the contradicting Jewish religious law. That was punishable by death too. If you said anything that was against the law and under Jewish law, you could be executed.
It says: “Now, they bring her to Jesus.” They say, “This woman hath been taken in adultery,” and, later, “Now, in the law, Moses commanded us to stone such. What then sayest thou of her?” Now, if Jesus had said, “Stone her,” then he would be breaking his own law, the law of God, thou shalt not ... If he had said, “Don’t stone her,” he’d be breaking Moses’s law. Either way, they’d grab him, wouldn’t they? They’d get him, they thought.
“And this they said tempting him so that they would have whereof to accuse him. But, then, Jesus stooped down and with his finger wrote in the sand. When they continued asking him, he lifted himself up, and he said unto them, ‘He that is without sin among you, let him first cast the stone at her.’ Again, he stooped down and with his finger wrote on the ground. And, when they heard him, they went away one by one beginning from the eldest, and Jesus was left alone with the woman where she was. And Jesus lifted himself up and said to the woman, ‘Where are they? Did no man condemn thee?’ And she said, ‘No man, Lord.’ And Jesus said, ‘Neither do I condemn thee. Go thy way, and sin no more.’”
All right. That’s a beautiful story, isn’t it? With a happy ending. But we have a mystery here that many people ask about. Why did Jesus first stoop down and write with his finger in the sand before freeing the condemned woman? Why didn’t he just free her right off the bat? Why did he pause and stoop down- and did it twice, stoop down and write in the sand? Then, the other question is: What did he write? Well, the gospels don’t tell us either of those. They don’t tell us why he stooped down twice. They don’t tell us what he wrote. Why? Because nobody knows. See?
But Mr. Fillmore had a very strong intuitive thought, insight, as to why Jesus did this. Now, I’m going to try to remember it as Mr. Fillmore told it. He said: From what we read in the gospel, it is without question, obvious, that Jesus could read into people’s minds, that smack into their book of life, into their minds, their hearts. Nobody could disguise anything to him. Nobody could tell lies to him, because he didn’t read lips. He read minds and hearts. He could do this to individuals, which he does many times, but he also, we find, can do it to crowds. Understand? He can read into the minds of crowds of people as well as individual.
Here, he has a situation where a woman is about to become a victim of the rage of these officials, that they want nothing more than to, come on, let fly. He could see that this was inflaming them, that they just couldn’t wait to throw those rocks at that woman. He knew when their fury had reached the boiling point, and it was right near the boiling point right there. All they wanted was him to reply to their question, and that would have lit the fuse, and those rocks would have been flying. They would not only have hit that woman. They’d had hit him.
But Jesus could read this, and he saw that, now, the boiling point has ... There it is. Something’s got to be done to defuse that fury. The only way he could defuse that fury was to not say anything but to divert their attention by doing something strange and curious and goofy, and he did, and that was this. “What the heck is that man writing in the sand for? It’ll blow away in a minute anyway. What’s he doing down there? This is a crisis. That idiot is down there writing in the sand.” That’s what they paid attention to, his idiocy. Jesus knew that that defused the boiling point. Do you understand? They were still angry and determined, but they weren’t going to explode because he defused them by diverting their attention even for a short while. Then, when he realized that happened, then he could speak, not before that, because, no matter what he had said before that, the rocks would come flying. It only took an instant, but he knew it would work because he knew everything.
When he knew it was defused, then he speaks his marvelous words. “He that is without sin among you, let him first cast a stone at her.” Since they weren’t mad with rage anymore, they saw the logic of what he said. Each one realized that he was, in his own way, a sinner. Then, they didn’t need to throw their rocks, and they went away.
I love the very last words he speaks to her. Now, this is no longer a mystery. This is common sense. Jesus then ends his connection with this woman by giving her the best advice that any human being can ever receive, the very best advice any human being can ever receive. Naturally, it would come from Jesus, wouldn’t it? Which is this: “Go and ...” What? “... sin no more.” Isn’t that the best advice anybody can ever receive under any circumstances? “Go and ...” What? “... sin no more.”
One time, when I brought this out in a class, one of the students said, “Oh, but, Mr. Rabel, I don’t need that advice because I never do sin.” I said, “Well, good for you, honey, but go and don’t get started.” Wasn’t that good advice? If you never have sinned, then wonderful. I envy you. But go and don’t start. But, if you have, then what Jesus said is appropriate: “Go and sin no more.”
Okay, friends. There’s a lot more mysteries as I told you, but we have to close. But let’s take just a moment to give thanks for that light of spirit, the spirit of truth. There are mysteries. There are unanswered questions. But there is always light, and there is always truth, and the truth and light will solve our mysteries, answer our questions, and illumine our whole being. Jesus promised us this. For this promise and assurance, we say thank you, Father, in the name of Jesus Christ. Amen.
Well, thank you, dear friends. It’s been a pleasure to be with you. We didn’t solve many mysteries, but we had a bit of fun.