Hidden meanings in Jesus’ parables
August 25th, 2001
Received by H.
Good afternoon, H___. I am very happy to see that we can meet now, although not everything is in perfect silence around us. This is a very good sign. And you see me, yes, you feel me in fact so close to you that you could touch me. We have a great rapport.
Yes, we will proceed to talk a while about Jesus’ teachings. And I see that you have been very impressed by an article John Dominic Crossan wrote, and which you read some years ago. And we will take a short passage from this article as the basis for our contemplation. You see, your studies have not been in vain.
[For example], Jesus tells a parable about somebody who takes a mustard seed, plants it in the ground, and it grows up to be a great tree, or a bush at least, a weed, though, in plain language. Now, imagine an audience reacting to that. Presumably the Kingdom is like this, and you have to figure out, “What’s it like? You mean, the Kingdom is big? But you just said it’s a big weed. So why don’t you say a big cedar of Lebanon? Why a big weed? And besides, this mustard, we’re not sure we like this mustard. It’s very dangerous in our fields. We try to control it. We try to contain it. Why do you mean the Kingdom is something that the people try to control and contain?” Every reaction in the audience ... the audience fighting with themselves, as it were, answering back to Jesus is doing exactly what he wants. It’s making them think, not about mustard, of course, but about the Kingdom. But the trap is that this is a very provocative, even a weird, image for the Kingdom. To say the Kingdom is like a cedar of Lebanon, everyone would yawn, say, “Of course.” It’s like a mustard seed ... “What’s going on here?”
It was the first time it occurred to you that there may be something more, something much deeper in many of Jesus’ parables, apart from those, which he himself had explained through Mr. Padgett and primarily through Dr. Samuels.
Yes, there is much more to them, and we find them often in shortened, mutilated form in the text of the New Testament, torn away from their context. The above example of the mustard seed is a good one, and you could give an even better interpretation than Crossan has done.
Jesus was a great orator, who knew how to draw the audience’s attention to his words, speaking in a provocative way, inciting questions, a discussion. Jesus preferred this form of discussion, introduced with surprising statements, like that one about the mustard seed, and then to proceed explaining the deeper meaning of his words, an explanation with active participation of his audience, a very effective way of putting forth teachings, which otherwise would have been very difficult to explain. Can you understand now that Jesus was not the serious, inaccessible professor, speaking in hand-picked words, difficult to follow, but he was of the people, in the people and for the people.
Now, in the context of many messages that have been received in the course of the last months, I wish to talk a little bit about these famous sayings of Jesus:
“Ye are the salt of the earth: but if the salt have lost its savor, wherewith shall it be salted? It is thenceforth good for nothing, but to be cast out and trodden under foot of men.
Ye are the light of the world. A city set on a hill cannot be hid. Neither do men light a lamp, and put it under the bushel, but on the stand; and it shineth unto all that are in the house. Even so let your light shine before men; that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father who is in heaven.”
Both sayings are shortened, their explanatory value has been lost to some extent, and they are quoted out of context.
Both sayings, of course, refer to the Father’s Love, and Jesus used them many times, when he was talking about prayer, the New Birth and the Kingdom of God.
He explained how man, through prayer, could receive God’s Love, and how God’s Love would work inside their souls, so that their created substance eventually would be transformed into the Divine Substance, like unto God’s Own Soul. You are now familiar with this teaching, but for many people it is new, and it was new, of course, when Jesus preached in Palestine.
But then, after having explained the availability of the Father’s Love and the New Birth, he went one step further and showed that the acquisition of God’s Love forcibly must lead to more: The mortal must react. He cannot simply accrue Divine Love in his soul, but he must make use of It. In order to carry out its transforming activity, Divine Love needs the mortal’s cooperation, like the leaven needs warmth to ferment the batch of dough. If there is no warmth, Divine Love becomes inactive, like those yeast cells in the state of latent life.
Use your salt, don’t keep it to yourselves, or it will not serve for anything. Use it to spice your lives and those of others. Use your light to shine over your path and to illuminate the path of others. In other words, be an example. And this has been the essence of so many past messages, and this has been the essence of so many of Jesus’ preachings. They are not any more contained in the Bible as he uttered them.
You were surprised by John’s message that so many people in the world really possess Divine Love, some of It, but how many make use of It? In despair, in anxiety, people find the way to God, they are capable of opening up their souls to the Father and His Love, but when It arrives, and when together with It, the Father’s blessings soothe men’s anxiety, they are not prepared or willing to add their fuel, their warmth, to make the Love glow.
Think of it. Taking the risk of repeating my words over and over again, but life is activity, true life is true activity. So be active, give spice to your lives and to other’s lives, let your Love shine forth, be examples. When you do this, you will be like angels on earth.
Yes, you are right. This is a beautiful message. So try that it be not only a beautiful message, but a striking attribute to your life.
God bless you, my dear brother.
© Copyright is asserted in this message by Geoff Cutler 2013