BIBLE LESSON XIII
John 12:20
GLORY OF CHRIST

 

by Emma Curtis Hopkins

 

Last Sunday you ought to have read "There is good for me and I ought to have it" in that line which said, "This is good," etc. The sewing girl at her task and the cash boy running at orders of another human being must not say, "This is good," for that is the old teaching of resignation to What we do not like. The white stone of revealing is, "There is good for me and I ought to have it." Keep this omnipresent, omnipotent truth going in your mind and you will be a magnet for success and joy.

*Also you must read "grief is a fertile soil" instead of "futile evil," for if you put a strong truth into your feeling of grief the union of the word and the feeling will make a fertile soil for a great good to grow up in. For Grief is the call for a bold statement of faith in the good.

This lesson tells you what to do when, having espoused a great principle or determined to cast yourself upon your righteous motive to take you safely through, you find yourself persecuted and lightly esteemed by the people among whom you have east your lot, and are invited by another class of people who recognize your greatness and your goodness to come and be identified with them.

The Jewish church was the chosen field of Jesus. It held Him as a bright, headstrong young fellow who, though a carpenter, might have done well and been considered of some account if He had not got into such strange notions.

The Greeks Who came to Him at this time came as representatives of the worship of externals carried to the highest ultimates.

Many thoughtful Greeks had felt that there was something radically Wrong about the worship of beings with the appetites and passions and frailties of mankind, even though such beings did inspire the genius of a Phidias; so they had turned to the Jewish worship of the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

The Jehovah of Abraham was the provider. There should be no lack when this God was trusted. The Jehovah of Isaac Was the defender. There should no ill befall when this God was trusted. The Jehovah of Jacob was the principle of righteousness. There should be no failure Where this God was trusted. Jehovah-jireh. Jehovah-nissi. Jehovah-tsid kenu. One Lord and His Name One.

To cast yourself on the Good as your Provider would be sure bounty. To cast yourself on the Good as your Defense would be sure protection. To cast yourself on the Good as your Rewarder would make every good action and word its own justification.

This principle seemed, indeed, a more reasonable lawgiver than Olympian Jose, with his ivory limbs, gold draperies and eyes of jewels, or Minerva with her immortal beauty. A principle with unvarying laws was greater than an unreliable god of the clouds. This was the way the Greeks felt.

To be a Daniel with the understanding of this Being of power was more worthy than to be a Phidias. For Phidias had no safety from lions' jaws and angry kings, while Daniel was safe as a babe in its cradle though such terrors folded him.

One step towards independent thinking always compels the next step and makes it easy. It is such a joy to find yourself thinking, as is reasonable to yourself instead of as somebody has told you. A Universalist who was snubbed by the Methodists, Baptists, Congregationists a few years ago, is sure to take every new thought and look it straight in the face.

So the proselyted or converted Greek Went to see Jesus, the young Jew who was faring so savagely at the hands of the high churchmen. They were interested in His extraordinary claims, making Himself equal with God, and telling even the common fishermen that they were as great as Himself. They were attracted by the reasonableness of the doctrine that one may be so one With truth that he calls himself Truth - may be so in love with Goodness that he is lost in the omnipresence, omnipotence, omniscience of Goodness.

They recognized the teaching as exactly adapted to fascinate the philosophical Greeks, as an ethical culture with spiritual potentialities. S0 they formally invited Him to be a recognized teacher of spiritual ethics.

Philip and Andrew presented their claims as a formal committee. Philip was the one who told Jesus that there were 5,000 people and that 200 penny-worth of bread would not feed them. Andrew was the one who counted up that five barley loaves and two fishes were all they had on hand.

So Philip, true to his character, told what a noble way of living his Master was worthy of; how highly His genius and talents would be appreciated; What wonderful libraries, handsome estates, and dignities would be His if I-Ie would go among the Gentiles. Why He might be even more highly regarded than Apollonious of Tyana-the companion of Princes.

Andrew reminded Him that there were so many teachers of high repute among the Jews that even though He (Jesus) might have a doctrine greater and truer than them all, yet He would stand no chance in His lifetime of being anything among them; said they had been treated dreadfully and had made only a very few converts. It would serve the Jews right to leave them. But Jesus knew He was the answer to the prayers of the pious prophets and noble mothers of Israel, whose hearts had been true to the true God in the midst of temptations.

They had been the only ones to hold on to the Being of love and goodness unchangeable. The promise had been that ten men out of all nations should lay hold of the skirts of the Jews, for they had always had God with them. He knew this promise and knew His doctrine as its fulfillment.

He called it His glory to stand there in His lot until the end of the days. He recognized the treatment of the Jews as the greatest proclamation possible to call attention to His teachings. Nothing tempted Him from the sight of this law whereby all nations should be beckoned on. He hastened the coming crucifixion by saying, "The hour is now come."

He knew the law of the hastening power of those words which state that a thing is already come to pass when it is not yet seen. An epileptic man cured himself in a few minutes, forever, by ecstasy: "Praise God I am healed!" when he had not any intimation of being healed, but had this law of saying that it is finished before you see it so.

Jesus did exactly the same way on the cross. Before it was apparently finished He said, "It is finished." He never saw the transactions going on with their eyes for a moment. It was all success and glory to Him. The Christian scientist who is true to his affirmation that the good is working with him and through him and by him and for him, does not see or hear anything but good, while the rest see evil. He will not let his idea of good get any mixture of evil.

Why the international committee chose as the title of this lesson "Death" when it is all about Glory is a wonder. Jesus Himself was prophesying glorification, but they say He was prophesying death. God cannot be anything but glorified. Remember this. He here tells them by this mention of the grain of corn that unless We put our living truth right down boldly into the hard, ugly experiences of everyday life and let that truth defy and deny and push away the material seernings to show its omnipotence, we shall be forced to go out of this world Without demonstrating What great power over environments we have. He explained that the world around us must show back to us our highest ideals, but unless We boldly proclaim the truth it will not. We must announce a principle of action and live it out. Hating the temporary notions offered by emoluments and dignities we are most prosperous by loving our principle.

If you were asked to rent your corner block to a rum seller for three times the rent a Methodist or Baptist bookseller Would offer you, you would not look at the first offer though you had not enough to pay the taxes and needed the money apparently. Shall you sell the land to the man when you know it will ruin him because it has depreciated and he does not know it? Can you trust the principle of righteousness to bring you out right? Shall you overcharge the man who does not know prices? One way is keeping your life; the other is hiding it. Earthly life or Ways count for nothing. Principle is everything.

"Shall I yield to these offers?" Jesus asked. "Never! I came to show men how to live the principle of righteousness - not by donating large gifts to orphan's homes, nor by building charity institutions, though these are Well enough, but by honorably and justly dealing with the fathers of those children."

"It is not by sheltering My physical body nor by protecting My name that I can show a man how to stand steadfast to his highest ideals, but by demonstrating the power of the spirit of man over every sort and kind of circumstance. I could have saved myself from every indignity to which I have been subject. I know the law of my ownership of all the earth. Forty days in the wilderness I studied this question for the nations; for the beggar, the prince, the priest, I know but one law."

Here he felt the principle of righteousness so strong within Him that it was the voice of God. A11 good men and women from Moses down through Gautarna and the saints have heard a living Voice speak when they have been stirred to the foundations of their being. This Voice proclaimed that It had always and would forever honor Itself when proclaimed. You do not need to fight for a great Truth. You have only to proclaim it. You need not fight evil. Speak Truth and evil falters and fails. Evil is a lie. Truth kills lies by its own quality. Evil fought is like the rock that resists the iron wedges driven by sledges, but yields to the wet Wooden wedge as it swells Within its bosom.

Sharper than steel is the sword of the Spirit,
Swifter than arrows the word of the Truth is,
Stronger than anger is love and subdueth.

Some thought this Voice was an angel. Others said it thundered. When you live up to your highest conception of right some will say you are a good person, but deluded. Others will say you do everything to show off your personality and get to yourself praise of mankind. He told them that the judgment of the world was now going to be that He was crucified; that His body was stolen and His doctrine was a failure because it would not demonstrate His own safety.

But He knew that whenever this deed was mentioned men would ask Wherefore He was lifted up, and then when it was explained that it was because He had preached the power of God the Good Spirit and the powerlessness of evil in every form that these men Would say He was right and they again would lift up the cross in their Way as He in His. The down beam of the cross is the saying, "There is no power in evil." The cross beam is," "The Good is all power." This shall be preached until every knee shall bow and every tongue confess the glory of Truth.

He told them to believe in Truth while it was among them. Whoever preaches the right of way of Truth and Goodness, he is right. Listen to him. Whoever says man and God are ONE, hear him, for mind is as great as it has courage to declare itself, and demonstrates its greatness to the extent it can lose itself in its declarations.

Do not believe in persecutions or death or failure. They are not your portion. You have a light within that enables you to know when a preacher is in the right. Walk according to the highest you know and your light will increase. The temperance Women, who, in their zeal for the rights of the home, got those pictures of diseased stomachs into the schools to show the effects of alcohol, have seen the strongest light of judgment shine which says that as a musician would have only perfect tones before his pupils so the teacher of life should describe only noble lives else our children will get like what they have heard described.

"Vice seen too oft, familiar with her face, We first endure, then pity, then embrace." The good is life described as unchanging, unending goodness. The eyesight and hearing will not fail when life is described.

Health teachings stimulate health. When this law of Truth is the light of the mind, the cities shall not need the sun, for God is the light. The material sun but symbolizes the light which the principle of righteousness makes within us. Our idea of good is our LIGHT.

*These two errors will be found corrected.

October 11th, 1891

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