The Spiritual Teachings of The Urantia Book: Synopsis, Part 9
Work for God
When you are a faith child of God, all secular work is sacred. Nothing that a child of God does can be common. Do your work, as from this time on, as you would do it for God.
My one purpose is to reveal my Father. I have lived this God-revealing bestowal that you might experience the God-knowing career.
Salvation is the free gift of God, but those who are born of the spirit will immediately begin to show forth the fruits of the spirit in loving service to their fellow creatures. And the fruits of the divine spirit that are yielded in the lives of spirit-born and God-knowing mortals are: loving service, unselfish devotion, courageous loyalty, sincere fairness, enlightened honesty, undying hope, confiding trust, merciful ministry, unfailing goodness, forgiving tolerance, and enduring peace.
You may enter the kingdom as a child, but the Father requires that you grow up to the full stature of spiritual adulthood.
The Spirit of Truth
The first mission of the Spirit of Truth is to foster and personalize truth, for it is the comprehension of truth that constitutes the highest form of human liberty. Next, it is the purpose of this Spirit to destroy the believer's feeling of orphanhood.
The Spirit of Truth never creates a consciousness of himself, only a consciousness of Jesus, the Son.
The Spirit of Truth also came to help you to recall and understand the words of the Master as well as to illuminate and re-interpret his life on Earth.
Next the Spirit of Truth came to help the believer to witness to the realities of Jesus' teachings and his life as he lived it in the flesh and as he again lives it anew in the individual believer of each passing generation.
The Spirit of Truth equips the teachers of Jesus' new religion with spiritual weapons. They are to go out to conquer the world with unfailing forgiveness, matchless goodwill, and abounding love. They are equipped to overcome evil with good, to vanquish hate by love, to destroy fear with courageous and living faith in truth.
Pentecost endowed mortal man with the capacity to forgive personal injuries, to keep sweet in the face of the gravest injustice, to remain unmoved in the face of appalling danger, and to challenge the evils of hate and anger by the fearless acts of love and forbearance.
Up to Pentecost, religion had revealed only mankind seeking for God. Since Pentecost, there shines out over the world the spectacle of God also seeking for mankind-and sending his Spirit to dwell within those whom he has found.
Before Pentecost, women had little or no spiritual standing in the tenets of the older religions. After Pentecost, women stood before God in equality with men. No longer can men presume to monopolize the ministry of religious service.
Before Pentecost, the apostles had given up much for Jesus. After Pentecost, they gave themselves to God, and the Father and Son responded, giving themselves to man by sending their Spirits to live within them.
The material spirit of selfishness has been swallowed up in this new spiritual bestowal of selflessness.
Jesus and Revelation
Jesus lived a life which is a revelation of man submitted to the Father's will.
The religion of Jesus does not seek to escape this life-rather it provides the joy and peace of another and spiritual existence to ennoble the current life in the flesh.
Mankind has passed through the ravages of great and destructive wars from which there emerged but one victor-Jesus of Nazareth with his gospel of overcoming evil with good. The secret of a better civilization is bound up in the Master's teachings of the brotherhood of man, and the good will of love and mutual trust.
In Rome, Christianity came with refreshing comfort and liberating power to a spiritually hungry people whose language had no word for unselfishness.
Religion is the revelation to man of his divine and eternal destiny. It is designed to find those values that call forth faith, trust, and assurance-and culminate in worship. It discovers supreme values-superhuman insight that can be had through genuine religious experience.
A lasting social system without a morality predicated on spiritual realities can no more be maintained than could the solar system without gravity.
When there is so much good truth to publish and proclaim, why dwell upon evil?
In religion, Jesus advocated and followed the method of experience-even as science pursues the technique of experiment. We find God through spiritual insight, but we approach God through the love of the beautiful, pursuit of truth, loyalty to duty, and worship of divine goodness. But of all these values, love is the true guide to real insight.
No matter what the conflict between materialism and the teachings of Jesus may be, eventually Jesus' teachings will fully triumph.
In reality true religion cannot become involved in controversy with science or materialism as it is in no way concerned with material things-only with things of the spirit.
Freedom or initiative in any realm of existence is directly proportional to the degree of spiritual influence and cosmic mind control; that is, in human experience, the degree of actuality of doing the Father's will. And so, when once you start out to find God-and seek to do his will-that is the conclusive proof that God has already found you.
The religion of Jesus stands as the transcendent spiritual summons, calling to the best there is in man to rise above all these legacies of animal evolution and, by grace, attain the moral heights of true human destiny.
Modern culture must become spiritually baptized with a new revelation of Jesus' life.
Religion is only an exalted humanism until it is made divine by the discovery of the reality of the presence of God in personal experience.
Jesus' religion is based on personal spiritual relations with the Father and wholly validated by the supreme authority of genuine personal experience.
Jesus' faith was so real and all-encompassing that it absolutely swept away any spiritual doubts and effectively destroyed every conflicting desire.
Jesus' personal faith, spiritual hope, and moral devotion were always correlated with the keen realization of the reality and sacredness of all human loyalties-personal honor, family love, religious obligations, social duty, and economic necessity.
The personal faith of Jesus in the certainty and security of the guidance and protection of the heavenly Father imparted to his unique life a profound endowment of spiritual reality.
As a man of the realm, Jesus brought to God the greatest of all offerings; the consecration and dedication of his own will to the majestic service of doing the divine will. Jesus always and consistently interpreted religion in terms of the Father's will.
The secret of Jesus' unparalleled religious life was his consciousness of the presence of God and he attained it by intelligent prayer and sincere worship-unbroken communion with God-and not by leadings, visions, or extraordinary religious practices.
Jesus trusted God much as the child trusts a parent. He had a profound confidence in the universe-just such a trust as a child has in its parents.
Jesus does not require his disciples to believe in him but rather to believe with him in the reality of the love of God and, in full confidence, to accept the security of the assurance of membership in the family of the heavenly Father. He desires that all his followers should share fully his transcendent faith. He challenged his followers to believe as he believed. This is the full significance of his one supreme command, "Follow me."
To follow Jesus means to personally share his religious faith and to enter into the spirit of the Master's life of unselfish service for man.
What Has Value?
Of all human knowledge that which is of the greatest value is to know the religious life of Jesus and how he lived it.
Jesus was a wholly consecrated mortal, unreservedly dedicated to doing his Father's will. It was this very singleness of purpose and unselfish devotion that enabled him to effect such extraordinary progress in the conquest of the human mind in one short life.
In his devotion to the cause of the kingdom, Jesus burned all bridges behind him; he sacrificed all hindrances to the doing of the Father's will.
Jesus did not long to escape from his earthly life; he mastered a technique of acceptably doing the Father's will while in the flesh. He attained an idealistic religious life in the very midst of a realistic world.
Jesus taught men to place a high value on themselves in time and in eternity, and he was willing to spend himself in unremitting service to humankind. And it was this infinite worth of the finite that made the golden rule a vital factor in his religion. What mortal beings could fail to be uplifted by the extraordinary faith Jesus had in them?
Personal spiritual religious experience is an efficient solvent for most mortal difficulties; it is an effective sorter, evaluator, and adjuster of all human problems. Religion does not remove or destroy human troubles-but it does dissolve, absorb, illuminate, and transcend them.