Why Jesus?    
April 2003

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         More than once in my life, I've been asked why I follow the pathway and teachings of Christ Jesus. Considering all the prophets and seers that have been on the earth, why do I still believe Jesus is so unique? Recently I delved deeply into this issue, and here is my response:

         There's a joke I heard once, about a man who fell into a deep, dark pit--too deep and dark to get himself out. After awhile, a certain rabbi passing by heard him yelling and shouted down to him, "I will pray for you," and then went on his way. Later, a priest came by and yelled down the same, deep shaft, "Ponder on your sins, my son, and ask God's forgiveness for this punishment that has come upon you!" And then the priest went on his way. Next, a minister approached the edge of the pit and said, "I'll help you, Sir! I'll go back to my church and organize a prayer group." Then, like the others, the minister went away to do his own mission. Finally, a stranger heard the man calling for help and said, "I'm coming," and jumped down into the pit with the man.

         Now when the stranger landed at the bottom, the man in the pit was exasperated. "Why did you jump in like that? Now we're both trapped down here! Why did you think you could help me when you're not even a rabbi, priest or minister?" To which the stranger replied, "Yes, that's true; I'm none of those holy ones. But I've been down here before, so I know the way out."

         This anecdote highlights the reason I believe that Jesus is the most important man in all of human history. Why, with all the prophets who have brought to humanity their own special light, Christ Jesus incorporated all their lights into one, in a unique demonstration of the spiritual being which is native to us all. I believe that Jesus jumped down into the pit of materiality and mortality with us, because he had been here before and knew the way out.

         To me, there's a strong possibility that Jesus had lived an earlier time, humanly, in the persona of Enoch; and in that human identity, he had learned what was needed, spiritually and metaphysically, to transcend the flesh and ascend back to his spiritual Self. Thus, he became the way-shower, or savior, to struggling humanity, who needed to know the truth of spiritual being, in contrast to the counterfeit identity of physical being.

         And this can't be a new idea. Once one follows a certain line of thought, it's an easy conclusion to reach. For that reason, I'm sure others before me have seen this logical possibility concerning Jesus.

         So how did I come to this conclusion? What makes me believe this? It has developed over time, and the part about Enoch didn't come from any particular church doctrine. It started for me, years ago, when I studied a couple of statements which Jesus made concerning John the Baptist, his partner in ministry: (Please note here that Elias is said to be the new testament spelling for Elijah.):

         "For all the prophets and the law prophesied until John. And if ye will receive it, this is Elias, which was for to come. He that hath ears to hear, let him hear." (Matthew 11: 13-15).

         "And his disciples asked him, saying, 'Why then say the scribes that Elias must first come?' And Jesus answered and said unto them, 'Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things. But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them.' Then the disciples understood that he spoke unto them of John the Baptist." (Matthew 17: 10-13).

         Now, here is how I interpret the first statement above which Jesus made about John the Baptist: 'All the spiritual prophets, throughout time, have predicted things and shown spiritual truths, until John, who went before me (Jesus) to herald the coming of all truth. And if your own belief structure will permit it, the person you know as John the Baptist, was also the prophet Elias, (Elijah) in an earlier time. And it was predicted that Elias would return to this human condition (to restore all things), and so he has come back from the spiritual beyond, as the current identity of John the Baptist. And if you have the spiritual sense to hear and take in such a possibility, (that someone could return to this human place after leaving it) take this in and digest it, for this is important to know.'

         So, Jesus was actually suggesting that John the Baptist was the re- incarnated prophet, Elijah. And it was while pondering this that I begin to realize how Jesus and John the Baptist had worked as a team. There was a spiritual relationship going on there, that the world didn't comprehend. And if one enlightened soul could reincarnate, it follows that another could also. So, if John had been here before as Elijah, who might Jesus have been?

         Now, prior to the relationship between Jesus and John taking on this new dimension for me, I was already convinced that Christ Jesus's spiritual mission was to physically die (on the cross or elsewhere) to show us, his spiritual brothers and sisters, that our real life is deathless. He went through the physical death process to show the unreality of death itself. It was a demonstration that eternal life cannot die. And this didn't just apply to Jesus (as some super-human being) for he, and also a couple of his disciples, had raised other individuals from the evidence of physical death. No, his mission involved the proof that the spiritual man, our true identities as God's sons and daughters, can't disappear into unconscious being. It's an impossibility. We don't reach our heavenly home by dying--we find it by growing or awakening out of the belief in both physical life and death. In other words, we don't die out of mortality; we die out of our belief in mortality.

         Jesus was showing us that death in the material body seems frighteningly real to us, because we believe our life is in the material body. But life is a spiritual phenomenon--there's no such thing as "material life." Our life is and always shall be in our spiritual substance and consciousness, independent of materiality. Therefore, never having our life really dependent upon material form, we don't actually need the physical form to live, throughout eternity. Our consciousness can create another form.

         This also explains why healing physical diseases and injuries were part of Jesus's ministry. He even taught some of his more spiritually-minded disciples to heal in the same way. Since our true identity is spiritual rather than physical, we are already, eternally, healed. Our true identity is always whole. Since God creates, maintains and preserves his spiritual children forever, this true Self (the substance of which is spiritual) can't be touched by anything in the physical realm. Therefore, it can't be altered from its God-ordained wholeness and health. This is a fact that can be demonstrated by us all, with an awakening or change in consciousness.

         The physical form of body is the result of thought or belief about identity. It's the stuff that dreams are made of. Thus, it wasn't real bodies Jesus healed; he healed the collective consciousness which believes in a material selfhood, vulnerable and mortal. And since each of us contributes to this collective "pool" of thought about reality as material, the truth which Jesus knew over-rode the falsehood of material being held by those around him. That's because the truth of anything has substance behind it, while a falsity has nothingness. That's why it's called false. A falsehood doesn't actually exist to fill time and space. It's untrue, unreal, and non-existent. The true self, with its spiritual substance and form, is always invisibly present wherever we are. Knowing this "heals" the external world of form, because truth will always over-ride untruth in the human condition. All this I had already accepted.

         But the new thing I saw was that, in order for Jesus (or anyone) to make this demonstration of spiritual life in the face of physical death, he had to know how! He had to have been through this demonstration at least once before, or (to my reasoning) the divine Intelligence would never have trusted him, or any one, to be able to carry it through again.

         Now, Enoch and Elijah were the only two individuals, in old testament history, who had not died in the body, but ascended, or translated from physical form to their true, spiritual being. They found the way out, back to their spiritual self and home, without dying to reach it. If John the Baptist had been the prophet Elijah, Jesus must have been the earlier Enoch. That's what they had in common; that's what made them a spiritual team: they had both found the way out of the illusion of the flesh and translated back to their awakened, spiritual self.

         Then, many centuries later, as Jesus and John, they came back as a team (re-entered the fleshly, human condition) because they knew the way out and could demonstrate it for others. They didn't come to stay here; they only came to educate us spiritually, so we could find our own way back. Each soul must find its own way home, and awakening to spiritual reality is that way. They came to awaken us mentally, knowing it is possible for us to hear and comprehend.

         So looking a bit closer at John the Baptist's part, there's a fair amount to read in the four gospels of the New Testament. Basically, we learn he was born weeks earlier than Jesus and began his spiritual mission earlier than Jesus, paving the way for Jesus's ministry by baptizing people in the repentance of their wrongdoings, and by also declaring to them that a messiah was coming.

         While about these activities, John had this to say about Jesus: "I indeed baptize you with water unto repentance: but he that cometh after me is mightier than I, whose shoes I am not worthy to bear: he shall baptize you with the Holy Ghost, and with fire." (Matthew 3: 11). Can you see the teamwork? Notice, also, the spiritual status John gives to Jesus, as the real master of their mission. Even though they had both ascended before, Jesus (not John) was the chosen one to make the demonstration of spiritual being to the rest of us.

         If, then, John the Baptist had been the earlier prophet, Elijah, whose spiritual ability was great, here is the record of his translation, or ascension out of the flesh, as Elijah: "And it came to pass, as they still went on, and talked, that, behold, there appeared a chariot of fire, and horses of fire, and parted them both asunder; and Elijah went up by a whirlwind into heaven." (II Kings 2:11).

         Now, during my biblical search, I found that little was published about Enoch in the Bible. The first mention was in Genesis, and in Jude 14, 15, it alludes to Enoch being the 7th from Adam, probably meaning seventh generation. (There is, of course, the Book of Enoch which was left out of the current bibles of the world; but it's similar in some ways to the book of Revelation, in that it requires study and interpretation.) But biblically speaking, here's what many Bible scholars take as confirmation of Enoch's spiritual translation or ascension: "And all the days of Enoch were three hundred sixty and five years: And Enoch walked with God and he was not; for God took him." (Genesis 5: 23, 24).

         So here we have at least the possibility that both Christ Jesus and John the Baptist had proven spiritual ascension (complete spiritual awakening) out of the illusory physical plane of existence, at an earlier time. They had gone the whole distance, from leaving the illusion of the flesh and mortality, back to their true, eternal life in Spirit. And if it were possible, as Jesus suggested, that Elijah could re-enter the dark hole (state) of seeming materiality and mortality, it stands to reason that Enoch could also jump back into the pit. (And perhaps these are the individuals who can make a return appearance on this material plane--maybe those who ascend are the only ones who can return or "reincarnate.")

         So, to repeat, here's my conclusion: I think it's a strong possibility that Jesus and John had gone home (awakened spiritually) on their own, in an earlier time. I think they then came back to help us find this same way home, or the awakening to our same, spiritual reality. They came back, reentered the physical consciousness realm together, to carry out a singular mission: the great truth of spiritual being, which encompasses all the other great truths, brought to the world by its spiritual prophets throughout human history. They competed with no other prophets; their own truths merely incorporated the great truths of all the other prophets.

         So there is one reason for my being a Christian, or choosing Christ Jesus as the greatest prophet of them all. And add to this reason another: Christ Jesus did much more than talk about the spiritual truths he knew. He demonstrated the power of such knowledge. He showed the divine, spiritual status of the people he healed, by raising them from their beliefs that they could be sick or die. He broke the law of gravity by walking on water, and showed that Peter (and therefore all others) could do the same. He actually produced material evidence of spiritual law where physical beliefs about law appeared to be. He proved material existence to be an illusion, and therefore it was at the mercy of spiritual truth.

         These reasons may not match the reason given in some other Christian faiths. Many faiths still believe in the 'miserable sinner' concept and God's so-called wrath with us, making Jesus a sacrifice to appease an angry God. But, to me, this is ancient-belief stuff. It would make God in the image of man, instead of making man in the image of God.

         My own sense of God is of an infinite, loving Intelligence--not a creator who is capable of human, reactive emotion. By showing us the Christ-self, the spiritual Self in each of us, Jesus took away, not only the sense of mortality, but also the image of miserable sinner. Our true, awakened identity knows and remembers all spiritual truth, making it impossible to sin, or do evil in any form. There would be no reason, for Spirit eternally provides us with all we need. It's just the false, physical sense of ourselves as mortal sinners that sins, or does any evil, usually due to a material sense of self-preservation, or survival--believing evil to be necessary in a hostile, material creation--because we're unable to perceive our true, spiritual reality, here and now.

         So Jesus showed the world as much of our spiritual reality, and as much power of this reality, as humanity could comprehend. And John paved the way before him, heralding to the world that this great truth of spiritual being was coming to be demonstrated by a master--not to miserable sinners, but to who we really are: God's very own, beloved children, who are emanations of God, Itself, in infinite individualities.

         Therefore, we don't have to grow out of being a sinner, any more than we have to grow out of being mortal. The apostle Paul said, "For this corruptible must put on incorruption, and this mortal must put on immortality." (I Cor. 15:53). He is telling us to "put on" our true identity, and not accept corruptibility or physical mortality as part of us any more. Become who we already are. Don't accept the old Adam or Eve image or identity, which is a false selfhood, seemingly of the flesh. Claim the Christ identity--the one of the Spirit--the one Jesus was showing us. He was our brother, showing us ourselves (our spiritual selves) right where we believe we are another. We are not mortals in a material creation; we are the immortal, spiritual children of God, existing in the kingdom of God, here and now. When we recognize these two facts, all things become new to our perception. Death itself can't erase us, for Spirit can't die.

         I must conclude my views on Jesus by pointing out that it doesn't really matter whether or not Jesus was the reincarnated Enoch. What's important for us to realize was his mission to humankind. Whether it was his first time or second time here, he was a brother, loving us enough to endure the painful ordeal which brought him our way. I guess, that alone, is enough for me to love him back. That's also why my gratitude and trust is firmly staying with his teachings, and why I strive to follow his light, wherever it leads.

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