18th Sermon of Jesus… Christ’s Entry into Jerusalem
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(February 18, 1872)
“And when they drew nigh unto Jerusalem, and were come to Bethphage, unto the mount of Olives, then sent Jesus two disciples, saying unto them, Go into the village over against you, and straightway ye shall find an ass tied, and a colt with her: Loose them, and bring them unto me. And if any man say ought unto you, ye shall say, The Lord hath need of them and straightway he will send them. All this was done, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the prophet, saying, Tell ye the daughter of Sion, Behold, thy King cometh unto thee, meek, and sitting upon an ass, and a colt the foal of an ass. And the disciples went, and did as Jesus commanded them, and brought the ass, and the colt, and put on them their clothes, and they set him thereon. And a very great multitude spread their garments in the way; others cut down branches from the trees, and strawed them in the way. And the multitudes that went before, and that followed, cried, saying, Hosanna to the Son of David: Blessed is he that cometh in the name of the Lord; Hosanna in the highest.”
This chapter begins with My entry into Jerusalem. Riding on a she-ass, the symbol of meekness, I received as the meekest man the homage of the many faithful and then proceeded to the most arrogant people of that time – the chief priests and Pharisees in the temple.
There I outwardly cleansed that house of worship from material rubbish by casting out the money- changers and those who sold doves. As for cleansing from spiritual garbage the minds of the powerful within those walls, I had to leave it to time, which of them would enter My Kingdom purified.
Everything that happened there during My earth-life had its spiritual significance for the entire realm of spirits and souls. I, as the Son of Man on your earth, represented the great principle of My teaching of love through which all stages of life had to pass so that it could not only serve all created beings as an example and attainable goal to strive for, but, because I Myself gave this example, it could also serve as a signpost on the long road towards spiritual perfection in the brilliance of My divine omnipotence, love and wisdom to encourage you to follow it.
What I did in the temple – its cleansing as well as My parables addressed to the scribes and Pharisees – spiritually takes place in the heart of everyone as soon as he shows himself in the least receptive for My teaching, since there, too, I enter in the image of meekness and gentleness. There the rejoicing soul, stimulated by the spirit within it, also meets Me with hymns of praise and joy. There, too, I first direct My attention to the elimination of the worldly passions, mainly selfishness, for which trade is the most striking illustration. The next step is to supply the soul with spiritual nourishment according to its individual need which corresponds to the parables I told the scribes and Pharisees. They did not comprehend everything in its spiritual sense as I meant it, but could not deny the truth of the comparisons.
What did the scribes and Pharisees do after they had listened to My words? They rejected My teaching and tried to lay hands on Me. Many people whose hearts I have initially entered triumphantly do the same. As soon as they are faced with self-denial and sacrifice they turn their backs on Me and would rather efface the impression of My first coming than subordinate their material striving for riches and a temporal life of pleasure to a higher spiritual life.
My entry into Jerusalem and the temple also illustrates the process of conversion of the individual as well as mankind as a whole. The preliminary work for spiritual rebirth first paved the way externally, then it kept drawing closer and closer to the life-centre, the heart, so that with a final effort victory over all external adversities could be gained.
During My sojourn on earth I stayed mainly in townships and villages off the beaten track seeking believers among the still less corrupt people there and the Gentiles. Only as the end of My earthly life was drawing close, did I voluntarily visit those places – one of which was Jerusalem and its temple – of which I knew in advance that there My teaching would meet the greatest opposition. However, I also knew that as materially the situation got worse for Me, spiritually the triumph of My precept of truth and love would reach its culmination. I was quite aware that the moment I no longer avoided My enemies and opponents, but went near them, I would no longer escape their revenge. However, this is how I had planned it and the way it had to happen. Only in this way could My teaching gain permanency for eternity.
Thus the seed I had sown in Judea and Palestine and elsewhere would not fall on barren soil; for with My resurrection I crowned My work, and all the persecution that followed, all distress and suffering My believers had to endure, only increased their number and strengthened them. Every such event added a building stone to the great edifice of My spiritual creation which one day, as the spiritual Jerusalem, was to be the centre of all spiritual-heavenly life.
What Jerusalem was for the Jews, My creation shall become for My spirits and souls. And what the temple represented as the abode of Jehovah in the Holy of Holies, one day every living heart shall become, – the temple wherein I can dwell unashamedly. As I then fared, people shall fare generally and individually. The more a person will begin to turn to Me in his heart, the more opposition will he experience; for with spiritual progress also the number of opponents, who want to fight and hinder it, keeps growing.
After My last appearance in the temple 1 had to face the greatest suffering a human being can endure. Thus also man is faced with ever growing difficulties in his progress on the spiritual road. The world keeps becoming more and more alien to him, and it will take revenge for being neglected. Obstacles will be piling up high in the social world and influences from the spiritual world will make it difficult for the frightened soul to walk My ways. It will all present a faithful picture of My own suffering and struggles until, when the great turning-point has been reached, the world must be completely relinquished and the spiritual kingdom seized forcefully. Then the banner of spiritual triumph on the one side and that of worldly pleasures on the other will lead a man either towards Me or away from Me. If he follows My example he, too, will rise from the dead in his spiritual rebirth. But if he follows the world, his fate will be that of Jerusalem which, continuing to enjoy the pleasures of the world, soon turned into a heap of debris, and its inhabitants had to live dispersed all over the world as slaves to other nations.
The entry into Jerusalem has a far greater spiritual significance for all mankind than is realized. It signifies My drawing closer to mankind and is the actual consecration of living men and spirits. Through My entry into Jerusalem I hallowed those walls, acknowledged them publicly as My property and proved that I, the Lord of creation, did not consider it beneath My dignity, riding on an ass in simple clothes, to ask humbly and gently to be received by the people.
Spiritually this entry has the following meaning: I want to make the human heart My abode. There I want to be worshipped and loved through having My teaching observed. Just as the temple in Jerusalem was built as a House of God in My honour with all the splendour and magnificence available in those times, the human heart and soul shall also be adorned with all the spiritual virtues that a true human is meant to possess as My spiritual image for which I once created and destined him.
The temple in Jerusalem was an edifice of worldly splendour, and spiritual glory was to have dwelt therein. Thus man shall become a being placed on the boundary between two worlds, with his feet on the material ground, but his gaze and his heart directed towards the spiritual. This purification from the material and attracting of the spiritual is man’s mission in this world, is the mission of the spirits. It was My mission and is still yours.
The spiritual wind is now blowing everywhere to cleanse the human hearts of worldly vapours, for the Lord and Father is close. Leaning against His she-ass, the symbol of meekness, He is waiting for the right moment when He can triumphantly enter your hearts, so that you, too, may receive Him with ‘Hosanna’!
The great time of spiritual rebirth is at hand demanding entrance into those places that since the beginning of creation have been prepared solely for the Lord of all that is. Open the doors wide that the wind of love may cleanse your hearts from money-changers and vendors of pigeons, that is, from worldly, selfish activities. The time is coming when the Lord will be asking you to account for the values He had entrusted to you, for the spiritual gifts all of you have received on loan. As the temple in Jerusalem was meant to be a House of God, also your heart is destined to be My dwelling place.
Keep in mind that material time is speeding and your life running out from minute to minute. Soon the angel of death will be asking you to account for the gifts entrusted to you. Do not hide them away, but make use of them that you may be allowed to enter the great spiritual kingdom, the great spiritual Jerusalem and its temple – the abode of your Father -and that you will not be forced, like the stubborn Pharisees, to wander about lost in the vast expanses of My creation as slaves of your own passions. You would find there all that once gave you pleasure, but with this transient enjoyment you would be missing out on the greater, much more important enjoyment of My love, My grace and My presence. For you must know that if your heart is not My abode and you are not carrying Me in your heart wherever you go, you will not find Me anywhere, not even in the great spiritual Jerusalem which is nothing else but the spiritual principle of love that has created everything, sustains it and leads it gradually to ever greater bliss.
Take note of this! Observe the time in which you live with spiritual eyes, its events and tendencies, and you will soon understand that the time is near when I, the Lord, will be making My entry into the spiritual world, the human souls, riding on an ass! Happy he who is prepared, for he will not be surprised by My advent! It will not frighten him, but will be for him the festival of My entry into Jerusalem as it was once for My followers more than a thousand years ago.
Therefore, be prepared to receive Me and My teaching of love with all honours and shouts of ‘Hosanna’! Amen.
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