Three Aspects of the Kingdom of God
This mediated message deals with three aspects of the Kingdom of God — earthly Kingdom, spirit world Kingdom and Celestial Kingdom. It contrasts the three kingdoms and describes how each can be attained and participated in. For related information, go to this page.
Jesus Describes the Way to the Kingdom of God on Earth and to the Kingdom of the Perfect Natural Man, or Spiritual Heavens.
He Explains That Inhabitants of This Latter Kingdom Have Only Their Purified Natural Love,
But Do Not Possess the Divine Love That Is Necessary to Enter the Celestial Kingdom.
(May 5th, 1917 | Received by James Padgett)
I AM HERE. Jesus.
I come tonight to write on the only way by which men can reach the Kingdom of God, or, the way to the perfect man.
This is a subject that many men and teachers have endeavored to explain to mankind, and the ways described have been as varied and sometimes as contradictory as the thoughts and education of these men have differed; and all have sought to base their teachings and conclusions on the Bible. I mean, of course, those who profess to be Christians. As to other teachers and reformers (as they have been called), their teachings are based on the doctrines of the various sects to which they have belonged, or professed allegiance.
But the Kingdom of God is more peculiarly a phrase that is found in, and belongs to, the Christian Bible, and, to some extent, in the Hebrew Scriptures.
In considering the subject of this message, it is first important to understand what is meant by “Kingdom of God.” Some understand or conceive it to be a Kingdom on earth in which the Will and Laws of God will be followed and obeyed by men in the mortal life, and others understand it to be that Kingdom of God which exists and will continue to exist in perfection in the spirit world; and some few, that Kingdom which will find its home, or place of existence, in the Celestial Spheres.
Now, the way to each of these Kingdoms is not the same, although in pursuing the Way to one, and that the Celestial Kingdom, the way to the Kingdom of the Perfect Natural Man must necessarily be followed; or, in other words, he who follows the Way to the Celestial Kingdom pursues that course which, in its pursuit, will cause him to do those things, and obey those Laws of God, that are necessary to establish the Kingdom on earth and in the spirit world. But he who pursues only the way that leads to the establishment of the Kingdom on earth, and in the Sixth Sphere of the spirit world, cannot possibly become an inhabitant of the Celestial Kingdom.
The Kingdom of God on earth, or in the spirit world, may be obtained by man, or spirit, by obeying the Will of God in those essentials that will work a purification of his natural love and cause that restoration of harmony with His Laws which affect and control man as mere man—that is, that will restore man to the condition of perfection that existed before the fall of the first parents. Many of my teachings when on earth, of which there are preserved a number in the Bible, were intended to instruct men into that way of life that would develop their moral qualities and free them from the taint and destructiveness of sin in which they were then, and are now, living. By the observance of my teachings and sincere obedience to these moral precepts man will lose those things that belong to his appetites and passions and evil thoughts and desires, and he will realize that in their places will come a purer love and more spiritual desires and thoughts which lead to a cleansing of his heart and soul. This means living and thinking in harmony with the Will and Laws of God. For God is All-Good, and all His Laws require that man shall become good in order that this Kingdom shall be established in the spirit world.
Naturally, and I mean according to his creation, man is good, and not the depraved creature that, for so many centuries, the teachings and doctrines of the church have declared him to be. And when he shall arrive at that state of goodness that was his in the beginning, he will merely have rid himself of those contaminating appetites, thoughts, and desires that made him the sinful and inharmonious being that he now is.
So, you will see from this that the work of man, in order to enable the Kingdom to become established on earth, is largely a work of renunciation. This truth was taught by prophets and teachers prior to the time of my coming to earth and teaching the Way to the Celestial Kingdom, and the same truth applies to the spirits that shall make up and establish the Kingdom in the spirit world.
In these Kingdoms of the purification and regaining of the perfected natural love, there will be nothing of the Divine Nature of the Father except, as may be generally said, all the objects of His Creation, by reason of being such objects, may partake of the image of the Divine. But this is not the Divine. IN ITS TRUE SENSE, THE DIVINE IS THAT WHICH PARTAKES OF THE VERY ESSENCE AND NATURE OF GOD, AND NOT THAT WHICH IS MERELY THE OBJECT OF HIS CREATION.
Man, in body, soul, and spirit body, is only a creation of God, and, as to the soul, an image of its Creator. But this creation was not made of any or the least part of the Essence or Substance of God; and, if it so pleases the Father, this creation, in its composite and coordinated existence, can be utterly destroyed and reduced to the elements of which it was created, without in the smallest degree affecting the true Substance or Nature of God. So, you will see that, in truth, there is in or of man nothing of the Divine; hence, when the Kingdom of God shall be established on earth, or in the spirit world, there will be nothing therein of the Divine—only the existence of the perfect creatures, living and thinking in harmony with the Laws of God which control their creation and existence.
So, the way in which these two Kingdoms of the non-Divine can be established is by man pursuing that course of thinking and living that will enable him to renounce and get rid of those things, foreign to his true nature, which prevent him from coming again into the exact harmony with the Will of God, as expressed and made obligatory by the law of man’s creation.
The observance of the moral laws will enable men to accomplish this end. The love with which man was endowed as the perfect man enables him, as it becomes purified and more harmonious, to love God and to love his fellowman as himself; for this natural love is one that is universal in its perfection and nature and, in its exercise, every man is his neighbor’s brother. The progressive qualities of this love, which every man may obtain, are truly and wonderfully set forth by Peter in one of his epistles as contained in the Bible (II Peter, 1:5-7– “And beside this, giving all diligence, add to your faith virtue; and to virtue knowledge; and to knowledge temperance; and to temperance patience; and to patience godliness; and to godliness brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness charity.”). And if men will seek these successive steps in acquiring the purifying development of this love, they will obtain the great object sought for.
As I have written, the Bible contains many of my teachings which, if followed, will lead to this end, and men will realize the Kingdom of God on earth.
And let me correct, here, one mistaken belief or idea that has so long prevailed among mankind, and which, in its results, has delayed the coming of the Kingdom on earth. The correction is: that God, by His mere Decree, or irrespective of the desires and workings of men’s souls, will not establish this Kingdom. Its establishment depends upon men themselves. And until their loves become, and they become, in harmony with God’s Will, this Kingdom will never be established.
I know that it is believed and taught and emphasized (and men place all their hopes and expectations of a heaven of bliss on the statement) that I will come at some time from the clouds of heaven to earth with a great shout, and, by the power which they believe exists in me, I will establish the Kingdom of God—a kind of kingdom in which I will be the king and rule supreme, receiving as my subjects those who believe in and worship me, and sending those who do not into eternal damnation and outer darkness.
Well, this is pitiable, untrue, and all erroneous. This Kingdom will never be established in this way. For only man himself can call the Kingdom into existence, and only by becoming the pure, perfect man that originally existed when God’s earthly Kingdom was first established. Man alone brought sin into the world, and man himself must destroy sin; and then harmony with the Father’s Will will be restored, and also this Kingdom.
But, from what I have written, it must not for a moment, or even in the slightest degree, be inferred that God is not taking and will not take any part in the reestablishment of this Kingdom; for it is a fact that He is working through His angels upon the souls and thoughts of men to bring this Kingdom on earth. But He will not force its establishment. It must come voluntarily on the part of men.
When God created man, He gave him a free will—the most wonderful of the natural gifts to man—and He will not arbitrarily control the direction of that will by the exercise of His Power. Where the human will is concerned God leaves man supreme. Of course, while this is so, yet, if man contravenes the Laws of God in such exercise, man must suffer the consequences; for God never changes or sets aside His Laws. Man may exercise his free will as he desires and as his thoughts and appetites may influence him to do, but this freedom of exercise does not prevent the imposition of the penalties that the laws prescribe when the laws are violated. Thus, you see that there is freedom without limitation. But every inharmonious exercise of that freedom necessarily invites the infliction of that which necessarily follows the violation of harmony.
God wants and is patiently waiting for the love of man, and He is always the Loving Father Who delights not in the suffering of His creatures. He wants their love to come voluntarily, and without constraint or fear of punishment or hope of reward, except that reward which must necessarily follow the blending of God’s Love and the love of man.
Then, I say, the Kingdom of Heaven on earth is not the Divine Kingdom, and it does not have that which is necessarily Divine in it (except the Love of God for His creatures to bless and make them happy). His Essence and Substance are not conferred upon them, however; for, if they were, men would not remain in the Kingdom of earth but would be, to a degree, in the Celestial Heaven, even while on earth (as I know that some men are in this Divine Heaven who are still mortals).
Now, what I have said with reference to the Kingdom of Heaven on earth applies with equal truth to the Kingdom of God in the spirit world. There, the inhabitants are merely the spirits of men who have surrendered their physical bodies and have become purified in their natural love and in harmony with the Will and Laws of God controlling their existence as perfect men.
While the Kingdom of God has not yet been established on earth, it has been in the spirit world. In the highest [the Sixth] sphere of that world,* the souls of men have become purified and harmony has been restored; and the souls of men enjoy the supreme happiness that was bestowed upon them at the time of their first creation, which God pronounced “Very Good.” Sometime, you will have the bliss and wonderful happiness of that Kingdom described to you. And I will not say that this is beyond all conception of men. It was established not by the mere Power and Will of God, but, after they became spirits, by the exercise of the wills of men in renouncing evil and sin, and having their thoughts and desires and souls purified and made harmonious in the natural love. And I must say here that all men who have ever lived, or who shall ever live, will, at some time, live in this Kingdom of God in the spirit world, or in the Kingdom of the Celestial Spheres; but the large majority will find their homes in the former Kingdom.
MAN, WITH THE HELP OF THE FATHER, MUST HEW HIS OWN DESTINY; AND, THE FATHER, WITHOUT THE EFFORT OF MAN, WILL NOT MAKE A DESTINY FOR HIM THAT HIS CONDITION OF SOUL AND LOVE DOES NOT ENTITLE HIM TO.
BUT THERE IS A KINGDOM GREATER AND DIFFERENT AND UNLIKE THESE KINGDOMS OF WHICH I HAVE BEEN WRITING, AND THAT IS THE CELESTIAL KINGDOM OF GOD. AND ONLY THOSE WHO RECEIVE THE DIVINE ESSENCE CAN BECOME INHABITANTS OF THIS KINGDOM. THE SOULS OF MEN MUST BECOME TRANSFORMED INTO THE VERY DIVINE NATURE OF GOD, AND THE NATURAL LOVE OF MAN MUST BE CHANGED IN ALL ITS QUALITIES AND ELEMENTS INTO THE DIVINE LOVE OF THE FATHER.
I have written that many of my moral teachings are recorded in the Bible, and that my acceptance by the Father as His beloved son, and the reception of His Divine Love into my soul, qualified me to teach the way to the several Kingdoms. And, as was said in that book, what was lost by the disobedience of the first man was restored by the coming of the second. This only means that, by reason of the knowledge that came to me of Truth and of the Laws of Harmony that govern God’s Universe, I was enabled to teach men the way to a return to the purity and development of their souls in natural love that existed before the great loss caused by the disobedience of the first man. I was not to bring about this restoration by any great power or godlike qualities of omniscience that I might be supposed to possess, but, rather, by merely teaching men to love God and their brothers, and to have them pursue that course of living and thinking that would necessarily enable them to renounce sin and evil, and come into a state of harmony with the laws of their creation. Now, while I taught these moral truths, I also taught the great spiritual Truths that show men the Way to the Celestial Kingdom; for, in my communions with the Father, there came to me not only the Divine Love, which transformed my soul into the Substance of the Father in Its Love Qualities, but also the knowledge by which this Divine Love might be acquired, and the certain Way to the Celestial Kingdom, even though only to a degree while still in the flesh.
But my spiritual teachings that show the Way to the Celestial Kingdom were not so well understood by my hearers—and not even by my intimate disciples, but more so by John; consequently, they were not preserved in the Bible as were my moral teachings. And, as to the Bible, the original manuscripts were not written until many years after my death. However, even in these manuscripts, not many of my teachings as to the Way that leads to this Celestial Kingdom were contained. And, afterwards, when these manuscripts were copied and the copies recopied, these important Truths were not preserved—scarcely any, although the fundamental ones, namely: GOD IS LOVE and EXCEPT A MAN BE BORN AGAIN, HE CANNOT ENTER INTO THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN were retained.
As time went by, and the recopying continued, fewer and fewer of my precepts were preserved, and men came to know less and less of these higher Truths. Consequently, the mere moral teachings became better understood, and these were used by the teachers and instructors of the masses to lead men to the Spiritual Kingdom of God. And, in addition to this, these leaders changed even these moral truths and the interpretations of the early writers in such a way as to enable these leaders to attain to wealth and power and control over the common people in their beliefs and observances of worship. The God of Love, then, to a large extent, became a God of “hatred” and “wrath,” inflicting “punishment” upon those who dared to disobey those injunctions that the hierarchy of the church placed upon them as the “demands” and “will” of God.
But these matters have been written upon more fully elsewhere, and I will not enlarge further upon them. But I will now disclose the true Way that leads to the Kingdom of God in the Celestial Heavens.
I am pleased that you are in so much better condition, and I feel that we can now proceed more rapidly with our messages. Remember this: that my promises will be fulfilled, and you must have faith. I am with you very often and love you, as you know, and I will continue to pray to the Father for you. So, trust me, and be assured that I am helping you in your desires. Good- night and God bless you.
Your brother and friend,
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