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 I said: “I know your good zeal for Me, and I praise you as a real friend of My heart, but about that first time I really do not like to tell more than what I have already done – a time in which I was guided by the Spirit of the Father in Me to a desert at the Jordan, where I fasted for 40 days and nourished Myself by necessity with roots and wild honey, and where I, when My body became very hungry after 40 days of fasting in this way, I was tempted 3 timesvby an evil spirit, a devil of the first degree. And it would not make a hair’s breadth of difference for the salvation of their soul if men would know more about it.”
 Philopold said: “But Lord and Master, how could You let Yourself be tempted by an arch-devil, and how was he able to approach You even a little bit? Because between You and a devil
there is such a great gap that is set by Your wisdom and might over which an evil spirit can eternally never come across. Who was that extremely daring spirit actually? O Lord and Master, now that You have told me already so much, tell me something more and more precisely about it.”
 I said: “Although there are no originally created arch-devils as you imagine, but still, everything in the material world is in its original element as if an originally created arch-devil, and therefore it is the same if one says that he is tempted by the world or the material lusts of the flesh, or by this or that arch-devil. And therefore, he who let himself be captured too much by the world and its flesh, his soul is also a personal devil and continues to live after the dead of his body in a constant connection with the evil, still unfermented material spirits, and his striving remains then evil like his love, and he tries to continually satisfy his evil love.
 Those kind of devils can of course not come across the immeasurable gap between Me and them, but since I Myself have come now into this world which is full of judgment and thus full of devils, I have, from the deepest depth of My mercy, built a bridge over the mentioned gap by accepting for a certain time a fleshly body, without which bridge no human being of this Earth could ever attain to the true and full blissfulness. So it is obvious
that a devil, just like a man, no matter how evil he is, can approach Me over this bridge and can also tempt Me in his complete blindness and can persecute Me in the most terrible way, although they can accomplish nothing against My might, but can only ruin himself more and more. This you surely will realize.
 And look, friend, so it was also possible for a devil to tempt Me during that time you mentioned.
 But so that you will know something more about this event, which sounds of course somewhat strange to you, I will tell you briefly the way and manner of the temptation. So listen.
 When I had fasted for about 3 weeks in the desert in order to entirely turn away from everything and everyone, and to bring My body in everything more in accordance with Myself than was possible during the time that I, as a carpenter, was often together with My foster father Josef and his sons from his 1st marriage, and when I, living only by roots and wild honey from the desert, became very hungry, and I felt a strong desire in My body to eat bread, the tempter came in the appearance of a serious and worldly wise magician, standing before Me and said: ‘Lord and Master, I know You, and know that You, what concerns Your body, are God’s Son. Why do You torment Yourself with hunger in this miserable desert while all treasures of all the worlds and Heavens are at Your service? But if You do not want to use them, because for the sake of the poor people You also wanted to become a human being to be a shining example of extreme abstinence and soberness – thus in order to make them more equal to You – then You still can make bread out of these many stones here, which You surely can do, while no one can see You here, and just eat until You are completely satisfied.’
 But I said very seriously: ‘Listen, you who dare to tempt Me, your Lord from eternity, My body is now also a human being, troubled with the need of every human being in this world, but know and understand that man does not live so much from the bread of this Earth but much more from every word that comes out of the mouth of God. Also for you all, the bridge to pass over to eternal life would be possible. But you rather should humiliate yourselves now and ask Me to forgive your sins, then you would be helped.’
 After My words, the tempter left Me for a few days, as if he wanted to take my admonition at heart and finally conform himself to it. But this was not so. Soon he came again to Me and said: ‘Lord and Master, You know that I am full of pride and lust for power, but I want – now that You are humiliating Yourself in this desert – to learn the right humility from You. So let Yourself be placed now on the highest peak of the temple, which is very easy for us, then I will continue to talk with You.’
 I said: ‘I will not allow to be placed there by your powerlessness, but I Myself want it so. And we are already on the spot. And now you can continue to talk.’
 When I had said that to the tempter, he said to Me: ‘Lord and Master, if, what concerns Your body, You are really God’s Son, then let Yourself fall down from this height, then God will
certainly command His angels to carry You on their mighty hands, so that not one part of the body will be hit by a stone.’
 Then I said to the tempter: ‘You should indeed humiliate yourself before Me, your God and Lord, but not I for you by jumping into this deepness. With this you will eternally not
accomplish any humility and improvement. This attempt of yours was truly useless, so go away.’
 Then the tempter left Me and, carried by My power, I was again instantly in My desert where it was however not so pleasant to live.
 But after a few days the tempter appeared once more before Me. And I asked him: ‘What do you want from Me now for the 3rd time, you incorrigible devil?’
 The tempter said: ‘Lord and Master, go with me now to a high mountain. There I want to learn humility from You and improve myself.’
 And I went with him on a high mountain and said: ‘What do you want here from Me now?’
 The tempter said: ‘Lord and Master, humiliate Yourself first before Me, after that, I will humiliate myself before You. Look, all these beautiful and rich countries I will give You, if You first will bow down Your knees before me and worship me.’
 Then I said: ‘Now I have enough of you! Go away from Me now, Satan! For it is written: ‘You shall worship God, Your Lord, only, and serve Him and not tempt Him!’
 Then the tempter left Me forever, and instead of that, legions of angels came from the Heavens to Me, and they served Me.
 And so I left the desert, took already a few disciples to Me and let Myself be baptized by John in the river Jordan. From then on I took the other disciples, who were mostly fishermen, and traveled with them from one place to another.
 And now, friend Philopold, you have what was still lacking to you. If My elder disciples want also to write this down, they can do that also.”
 My Mathew wrote this also down in Kis, because he was more skillful in writing than the other disciples who could write. (GGJ Book 22, chap. 2)
- Sermon 13 -
First Sunday In Lent. The Temptation of the Lord
t. Matthew IV, 1-11: "Then was Jesus led up of the Spirit into the wilderness to be 35 tempted of the devil. And when he had fasted forty days and forty night, he was afterward an hungred. And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made bread. But he answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. Then the devil taketh him up into the holy city and setteth him on a pinnacle of the temple, and saith unto him, If thou be the Son of God, cast thyself down: for it is written, He shall give his angels charge concerning thee: and in their hands they shall bear thee up, lest at any time thou dash thy foot against a stone. Jesus said unto him, It is written again, Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God. Again, the devil taketh him up into an exeeding high mountain, and sheweth him all the kingdoms of the world, and the glory of them; and saith unto him, All these things will I give thee, if thou wilt fall down and worship me. Then saith Jesus unto him, Get thee hence, Satan: for it is written, Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve. Then the devil leaveth him, and, behold, angels came and ministered unto him." (January 21, 1872)
This chapter deals with My temptation through Satan when I walked on earth. The account of this temptation, as My disciples put it down in the Gospels, should not be taken literally for, naturally, Satan knew Me well and saw his Lord in Jesus. Therefore, it would not have been a temptation on his part to suggest that I turn stones into bread since he was well aware that I was capable of much more than that -, or to suggest that I cast Myself from the pinnacle of the temple saying that nothing would happen to Me if I were the Son of God. It was he who carried Me through the air from the desert to these pinnacles knowing that I did not fully belong to this earth and that the power of attraction of this planet could not affect Me if I did not wish it.
Also, when he led Me onto a high mountain offering Me all the kingdoms My human eyes could
detect from there, he still knew only too well that he could not offer his Lord and Creator the insignificant kingdoms of your dark earth, not even the entire earth; for he was able - as no other
spirit was -to survey My boundless creation with his spiritual eyes. You can see that the literal interpretation of the passages, as they are given in the Gospel, cannot be the real explanation of these words. The meaning and significance of the temptation is quite different. These temptations - as described in the Gospel - may be temptations for men but never for the God and Creator of all finite things, even if He is in a human body.
In your world, if a student is preparing for an examination, he usually retires to a secluded place
where he keeps on studying day and night. He renounces some worldly pleasures, be it food, drink or entertainment, so that - in the first case - his stomach may not gain too much influence over his mind or - in the other case - entertainment may not distract his mind which needs concentration during the studies.
That which every human being does who is preparing for an important step in his life, I did too.
When the time had come that I had to start My teaching ministry, namely, as a man in whose form My Deity was clad - I, too, had to concentrate, had to reduce the food for My body to an absolute minimum because My Spirit wanted to create spiritual and eternal things and did not wish to be impeded by matter.
My human being fasted whereas My spiritual being enjoyed an abundance of bliss, of which only a spiritual being is capable who is prepared to renounce all that is great and mighty within him and sacrifice himself out of love for the sake of the beings and spirits he has created.
In those moments all the human passions attacked Me. But only by becoming all man and by the Deity withdrawing into My innermost, was I able to set an example to My spirits of how to conquer and withstand all temptations. With this test I wanted to set an eternal example to all and make it clear to them that they could become My children only by conquering the mighty evil influences.
First it was hunger that assailed Me as a human being. That this was conquered is expressed in the words I spoke to Satan in response to his first offer: "Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God." In other words: If fleshly desires attack a man's soul, let him think of these words, namely, that above all man's inner spiritual self has to be nourished, cared for and educated, even if it is at the cost of the body. What I said to Satan has this meaning for you: "Remember always that you have not been created to care for your body but to perfect your soul."
Satan's second metaphorically depicted attempt was to tempt the divine power within Me. In other words: A desire to boast with My divine atrributes came over Me. This temptation may be likened to that when a person, gifted with great abilities and knowledge, even with divine powers and capable of accomplishing things that are denied to others and must appear to them like miracles, boasts with such abilities instead of using them for the benefit of his fellowmen or the greater glory of the Giver. Here applies My second reply to Satan: "Thou shalt not tempt the Lord thy God!" This means: "Do not succumb to the delusion that the Lord, even if He did give you power, might not take it away from you again if you do not use it for His ends but only for your own!" It would be raising oneself above one's own human abilities, misusing a divine gift the success of which would promote pride instead of humility. Satan tried to awaken My human conceit and thought I might raise Myself above this lowly station on which, in My opinion, depended the sucess of My great plan.
The third attempt was to arouse My lust for power. For these three mightest of passions are latent in the human heart as a basis for all the others: the propensity for a life full of pleasures for the body; the desire to excel others, that is, to hold a socially splendid position which provides the means for the satisfaction of the first passion; and, finally, the mania to be able to command instead of obey, to be the first, the one who lays down laws for others whilst he has raised himself above all laws and feels exempt from adhering to any of them.The answer to this third attempt by Satan was: "Get thee hence, Satan; for it is written: Thou shalt worship the Lord thy God, and him only shalt thou serve." This means in other words: Away with this low passion of wanting to dominate others which includes all the other passions like arrogance, hate, vengefulness, anger and retaliation. The spiritual element within man, which was placed in his heart by God, requires you to step down, to become the most insignificant, to want to serve all the others, - if one day you would like to be set over great things. You must completely relinquish your desire to subject others. You shall learn to obey, so that one day you may be able to command, but not command with word of judgment, but with love and patience. Only in this way will your command never appear harsh and will be strictly followed, because the one who obeys you realizes that all this is only for his best. Thus man serves his God and Lord and, following My example, he will achieve the best results in the smallest and most insignificant things.
Just as I, as a man, once had to fight My way through all the human passions which I, as the Creator, intentionally put into the human nature, you have to do the same if you want to follow Me. You have to fight the migthy urge for good living, subordinate all these pleasures to a higher goal freeing yourselves from the shackles that impede the flight of your soul. You must ban conceit, - the foremost liar, since it depicts a nicer picture of yourselves than is true and excuses bents of the worst kind with sophisticated shrewdness. As a result, you often imagine yourselves more important and better than you actually are which, naturally, must hinder your progress.
Do not give yourselves credit for powers you do not possess. Look upon yourselves as weak andunworthy, so that you may be strengthened in your faith and trust in Me; then the third bad passion, the lust for power, will not take hold of you and render you slaves of yourselves. There is nothing worse in the world than to have this conceited notion that you are better than others, and to be inclined to dodge any pressure of obedience, always climbing over the shoulders of others to where only the one is the master and all the others slaves. For, to command others quite different qualities are needed than are possessed by those who at the present time on your earth seek to govern their fellowmen. Look at Me! How do I govern? Is it through force, or through prompt punishment or relentless judgment of the fallen and erring? Do I govern through anger, revenge and punishment? Certainly not! As you know Me, you san see that I govern only with the help of My all-embracing love, that forgiveness is My first principle and that I do not persecute the one who may err without his fault, but indulgently put all the means in his path for his betterment.
All the evil, evident as such in the world, was not created by Me, but it is a product of men's misuse of their free will. As free beings they can do what they wish, but they alone are responsible for the consequences. As I have said before: There ist but one truth, and he who sins against it has to experience the consequences of falsehood.
Thus this Gospel shows how I, as a man, notwithstanding My position of might, fought forcefully against the passions in order to demonstrate to you and all the spirits that the evil, which I suffer to be in the world, serves after all a good purpose - the soul's progress.
You shall serve God alone, and this you do only when you follow the great commandments of love which prompt you to control your flesh and fight against the evil mental traits of vanity and lust for power. Only through self-denial and resistance to these strong urges in your human nature will you one day, in My Kingdom, comprehend what it means to be set over great things or, what the phrase signifies: "He who humbles himself shall be exalted!"
You will come upon the same traits also in the beyond. The first - although not in a material but in a spiritual sense, that is, as a desire to know and comprehend everything. The other two will in the beyond be more prominent in you than here on earth. This you can see where Lucifer and his followers are concerned who, conscious of their power, lost their equilibrium, proceeded from meekness to presumption and then, as did Satan, wanted to dominate even Me. In order to know the right measure of how and when one is allowed to use his power, in order to understand how much knowledge will be needed for a particular task and to realize that, even if one is set over great things in the beyond, one is still meant to be a servant also to the lowest being, these passions must be fought and conquered already in this trial life here, so that one will be able to control them in the other world when entrusted with greater powers.
For this reason, do heed My words! You do not even know half your mission, you know less than a third about your nature and have no idea whatsoever why it has been made as it is and not different. Your eyes still suffer from cataract and the light of My wisdom is still unable to penetrate to your inner being. At most, a spark of love sometimes moves your heart and makes you suspect that there is still something higher and greater. But the moment this ray of light has illuminated the innermost ventricles of your heart, these three passions-selfishness, vanity and lust for power darken them once more. They whisper a thousand excuses into your ear: "Yes, but one cannot completely withdraw from the world!", "One cannot live like that!", "Well, that is how the world has been made!", and so on. All just excuses of indolence because all of you, although you are hearers of My Word, do not want to become doers.
Now in particular, when from one Sunday to the next My Gospel is explained to you as you have never before heard it explained, now I want to make you ponder on My coming to your earth, so that you may recognize - at least to a degree -its great significance and understand what it means: God, the Creator of all infinity, descended to your earth in the lowliest circumstances and suffered you, erring and blind created beings, to persecute, even crucify Him. He went through all the phases of your life and fought against the human passions in order to give a shining example to you and all the spirits for all times. He showed that if a person wants to be spiritually like Him he must respect the spiritual as the most important thing and subordinate everything else to it. Then, fighting against the most powerful passions, one can become worthy of serving also other spirits as a leader and helper, proving through one's actions that man does not live only by material, but above all by spiritual food. He showed that God should not be tempted in His grace and that, following His two commandments of love, one could lead himself and others to where He, the Father, has long wanted to have you, that is, to His Kingdom as His worthy children. Amen. (Sermons of the Lord, chap. 13)
Chapter 299 - And He Increased In Grace And Wisdom
1. NOW IT IS WRITTEN in the Scripture: And He increased in grace and wisdom before God and men and remained subservient and obedient to His parents, until He began His ministry
2. Question: How could Jesus, as the only eternal Supreme Being, increase in grace and wisdom before God and men, when He actually was God from eternity;
3. and how especailly before men, since He was the infinitely most perfect Being from eternity?
4. To understand this correctly, Jesus must not be looked upon exclusively as the only God;
5. but He must be seen as a man in whom the sole eternal Deity imprisoned Itself as seemingly inactive, just as the spirit is imprisoned in the nature of every man.
6. And what every man must do according to the divine order to free the spirit within himself,
7. that the man Jesus also had to do in all earnestness in order to free the Supreme Being within himself, so that he might become one with Him.
8. Now every man must carry certain weaknesses within himself, which are the common bonds of the spirit by which it is confined as though within a tight shell.
9. These bonds can only be burst asunder when the soul, which is entwined with the flesh, has so strengthened itself through the proper amount of self-denial that it is stable enough to perceive and to hold the free spirit.
10. This is why man can only become aware of his weaknesses by suffering all manner of temptations and thus discover how and wherein his spirit is fettered
11. And when he thereupon denies himself in his soul in these very matters, he thereby frees his spirit of its bonds and binds his soul therewith.
12. And when, in the course of time, the soul is bound with all the former bonds of the spirit, the completely unfettered spirit quite naturally unites with the entire, now strong soul,
13. and the latter thereby enters into all perfect, heavenly power of the spirit and thus becomes wholly one with the spirit forever.
14. For the loosening of one bond after the other constitutes the soul's increase in spiritual strength, which is God's wisdom and God's grace.
15. God's wisdom consists in the clear beholding of God's eternal order within the self, and His grace in recognizing His eternal light of love, by means of which all of the endless and innumerable things, the conditions of their existence and their paths are illuminated.
16. And as is the case with man, so it also was with the God-man Jesus.
17. His soul was like that of every man and was fettered with all the more
weaknesses because the most powerful Spirit of God had to bind Himself with the mightiest of bonds so He could be contained within His soul.
18. Thus the soul of Jesus also had to withstand the greatest temptations and deny itself in order to take the bonds off its God-Spirit and to gird itself therewith for the infinite freedom of the Spirit of all spirits, so it could become wholly one with Him.
19. And in just this did the increase in the wisdom and the grace of the soul of Jesus before God and men consist, and that in such measure that the God-Spirit gradually and ever more and more united Himself with His in fact divine soul, which was called the Son of God. (Childhood of Jesus, chap. 299)
Chapter 300 - An Exemplary Life of The Soul JUST HOW did the Lord Jesus live from His twelfth to His thirtieth year?
2. He constantly felt the Presence of the almighty Deity within Himself as a living Power; He knew within His soul that everything in the whole creation was and eternally must be subservient to His slightest wish.
3. Moreover, He felt the greatest urge within His soul to rule over everything.
4. Pride, a desire for power, for complete freedom of will, for a life of pleasure, for women and for other such infirmities, as well as anger were the chief weaknesses of His soul.
5, But He fought against all of these powerful and deadly inclinations of His soul from the will of His soul.
6. He humbled His pride by means of want; but what an indeed harsh measure this was for Him to whom all things belonged, and He nevertheless might not call anything "My own".
7. He tamed His desire for power through the most willing obedience toward those who like all men were like chaff before Him
8. Although it was an infinitely difficult thing for Him to do, He assaulted His eternal, supreme freedom by submitting Himself to men as a slave-like servant to perform the lowliest tasks.
9. He fought against His most powerful urge to lead a life of pleasure by frequent fasts - from want as well as from the free will of His soul.
10. He combatted His desire for women through repeated hard work, through simple fare, through prayer and through keeping company with wise men.
11. Indeed, in this matter He had to carry an exceptionally great burden, for His appearance and the sound of His voice were most captivating,
12. for which reason the five truly beautiful daughters of Cyrenius were one and all violently in love with Him and vied amongst each other to please Him the most.
13. Such love did indeed please Him; but for all that He had to say to each at all times: 'Noli Me tangere!'
14. Furthermore, since He saw through the malice of men at a glance and saw their cunning and hypocrisy, their dishonesty and selfishness,
15. it is easy to understand that He was quickly aroused and could very easily be hurt and angered;
16. but here He tempered His divine character with His love and His thereupon following compassion.
17. And thus He practiced all manner of most arduous self-denial throughout His whole life, so He thereby might rebuild the eternal order which had been shaken to its very foundation.
18. Thus it can easily be seen how' it was that Jesus as a human being spent these eighteen years amid constant temptations and the combating thereof.
19. And since this has now been presented in a manner which should be of benefit to everyone, all that remains to be told is the three-day discourse with the wise men and scholars in the temple, but which, as well as a number of other matters, cannot be given at this time.
20. So be content with this for now, and the other will follow when you say to the servant,
21. Come to us, brother, in the name of the Lord, and stay and dwell with us!'
22. This work is herewith completed, and I bestow My blessing My grace upon you for ever and always! Amen. Amen. Amen.
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