The temptations of Jesus..
The temptation of Jesus documented in Matthew 4 can be seen as the laws of the universe personified. These personifications are the warring factions that we have labelled God and Satan. The analogy is meant to bring wisdom to our lives instead they have become objects of fascination which we have used to take the responsibility for our actions out of our hands.
God or the positive effects of universal law epitomises love or ‘fruit in keeping with repentance’. Satan or the negative effects of universal law epitomises the direct opposite. Neither has a definitive form, but it is evident that our spectrum of vocal, mental and physical actions give rise to a corresponding array of negative or positive forces acting upon us. There are pre-determined outcomes for every one of our physical and spiritual actions. In respect of this aforementioned discussion the bible stands out as being a book of more than just unexplained imagery. The bible expresses very simple truths about how the law of the universe acts in any given situation. By meditating we are giving ourselves a heightened awareness of this phenomenon making God and Satan a reality in our consciousness.
What follows is a look at each of the temptations and the truths they profess.
Man does not live on bread alone.
The tempter came to him and said, ‘ if you are the Son of God , tell these stones to become bread’ Jesus answered , ‘It is written ‘Man does not live on bread alone, but on every word that comes from the mouth of God.’
All things are permissible, but not all things are beneficial – Meditation or Fasting should be used for the right purpose. We can resort to using it for other purposes, for there is only a fine line that separates right purpose from wrong purpose. It is like a gardening tool, which you apply to a task for which it was not intended and yet it carries out the task successfully. After a while you convince yourself that there is no harm in using it for this purpose if it works. However if you were to use it for the purpose for which it was designed it serves its purpose with much more satisfying results. Give to God what belongs to God and to this world what belongs to this world. Use your spiritual energy for the purpose for which it was created and let it be a light to your feet and the feet of others.
All too often we see people using spiritual energy as a route to acquiring wealth, prosperity and relating to others for self gain. We should not corrupt our direction and purpose when we journey within for it says ‘Seek ye first the kingdom of heaven and all these things will be added unto you.
Do not put the Lord your God to the test.
Then the devil took him to the holy city and had him stand on the highest point of the temple. ‘If you are the son of God,’ he said, ‘Throw yourself down. For it is written: he will command his angels concerning you, and they will lift you up in their hands, so that you will not strike your foot against a stone’
Jesus answered him, ‘it is also written do not put the Lord your God to the test,’
We can claim our right to our inheritance of the truth through false liberation. There is a right and wrong route to claiming the fruits of the spirit. We can choose to live the truth in arrogance, which makes us ignorant of the power of the spirit within us or we can live the truth in humility and experiential wisdom. If we commit to living in the joy of the present, we will not attract the misery of pre-empting the fruits of the spirit.
Bow down and worship me.
Again the Devil took him to a very high mountain and showed him all the kingdoms of the world and their splendour. ‘All this I will give to you,’ he said, ‘if you will bow down and worship me.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Away from me, Satan! For it is written: ‘Worship the Lord your God and serve him only.’
We can choose to live our life in the light or in the darkness. Living your life in darkness is like one who lives in denial of the spirit within attempting to find satisfaction and fulfilment in the pursuit of status, material wealth and power. This type of living is without wisdom, it is living in ignorance of how to be completely fulfilled for it bypasses attaining inner knowledge of the root causes of misery. It serves only to develop egotism and cycles of escalating pain and misery.
Living your life in the light is like one who first seeks wisdom, working and purifying them selves from within, building a strong spiritual base of love and compassion and by feeding the universe with positive energy they automatically attract the highest, most satisfying and fulfilling vision of themselves into their reality.
The bible teaches us that there is much more to be gained from allowing the search for a higher truth to take precedence over being satisfied to live in a false reality – seeking satisfaction and fulfilment in the pursuit of the achievement of status, material wealth and power.
Living in the light or living in the darkness is compared to serving two opposing masters – God or Satan. It is the difference between having your heart on heavenly things or worldly things. Living a life of darkness is the act of living a life of love for the world. The bible’s message is implying that reality as we know it is incomplete and has no lasting benefits. We are to realise that there is an alternative reality requiring a whole hearted acceptance of exploring and experiencing the essence of the power within. We are told that through this we can achieve wealth that far exceeds the value of wealth attained through unconscious means. We are looking at the attainment of wealth that is indestructible and not subject to the law of impermanence. We are left with the dilemma of assessing the two methods of living and deciding what we wish the fruits of our labour to be for we are ineffective in either respect if we try to serve both.
Diary entry: 10.05.07
I joined the company with the purpose of using my abilities to build the confidence, esteem and employable skills of an economically challenged community sector. Targets, securing funding, the pursuit of profit margins and status within the field of delivering training over-shadowed attending to the needs of the individual. Job satisfaction was slowly squeezed out of my role and I began marching to the beat of a different drum. All around me there was lack of unity, trust, appreciation or compassion and a great deal of back stabbing, arguments and aggression. I was being pulled apart by whether I wished my life to be mastered by the pursuit of internal or external wealth. The degree of dissatisfaction, pain and misery that I had to contend with in order to propel myself forwards was more than I could bear. I chose the pursuit of internal wealth.
To be totally honest I haven’t succeeded in life. I have no high profile career to be proud of or a husband and children to justify not having a career. I know that it is because in the pursuit of many avenues to fulfilment I have always felt in my sub conscience that there is an alternative truth that I was not living. I have learnt that the simple truth of the matter is to succeed in this world you must embrace the pursuit of external happiness wholeheartedly and bear in mind that it is a success with fluctuating levels of fulfilment so it must be born hand in hand with misery and pain. During this embrace the worship of God becomes like varying strengths of drink brought out and consumed on different occasions to suit the severity of the situation. It becomes something that only sees the light of day at Weddings, funerals and if you are lucky Sundays. The worship of God becomes like life’s decoration.
Just as the pursuit of material wealth cannot not be achieved half heartedly so also the achievement of spiritual wealth takes complete commitment. It does not work if you are like a boat without anchor.