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 Copyright © December 2006

Understanding the Basics...Part 3

Things no longer taught in our Churches and Synagogues....

~written from the common sense perspective of The Winds of the Soul~

by Dr. Gregory C.D. Young, Ph.D.(Oxon.)

 
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Likewise, an understanding as to why and how the Second Commandment is like unto the First Commandment is avoided as well.  But I hope we won't be so careless here. 

As we discovered in the last two months, why and how the First Commandment is actually the Greatest Commandment is rarely discussed.  It's difficult to say that we follow His Commandments when the fact is that we don't understand them fully, nor care to investigate them further because such a query challenges us and makes us feel uncomfortable.  It's really a case of controlled denial (if not delusional) when we believe that we won't be held responsible from which we willingly keep ourselves ignorant.

Likewise, an understanding as to why and how the Second Commandment is like unto the First Commandment is avoided as well.  But I hope we won't be so careless here.

If there is one thing that becomes apparent here is that the Lord has created an ordered Universe, a design that, though the genius of it is not completely understood, is intelligent and purposeful.  That means its just chocked filled with order.... and that means ordered relationships...., nested laws where there are boundaries and exceptions to those laws, hierarchical relationships which evoked levels of influence and dependencies, etc... all of which means that there are reasons for the way things are.  Order means there is no chaos, no true randomness..., but purpose. 

And the order is seen not only in the physical cosmos above us, but in all of nature around us.  His Order, His Pattern if you will, permeates everything.  Hence, it should not be surprising that His Order may too be found, in like kind, in the Scriptures themselves, nested priorities of reason and thought being dependent upon ideas that exist above them and have been established before them..., ideas and notions that circumscribe them and parent those that come after.

Copyright © 2006 Dr. Gregory C.D. Young, Ph.D.(Oxon.).  All Rights Reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part, in any form or by any means, including but not limited to all forms of media print, audio, electronic and video reproduction, without the prior express and specific written content of the author, except in cases of brief quotations embodied in critical articles and reviews. 

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How these two are related should be of interest to us if we are of the mind to keep His Commandments.  Again, we can't possibly believe that we can follow His Commandments without an understanding of same.  Nor can we cannot think or entertain the belief that these Commandments are somehow separate from each other, sharing only a tenuous relationship. 

Thus, as I have mentioned before on numerous occasions, it is with such confidence that we may believe that His Commandments mirror the same ideological structure.  The basis of His Design, even the Foundation of the Creation itself, is replete in everything that He has created.  Just as DNA is found in all living tissue, so is His Pattern deeply insinuated in everything created by His Hand, though it may not be readily apparent to our eyes.

Accordingly, it follows that only upon understanding the heart of the First Commandment (which is by reason of its order, more dominant than the second) can we then begin to see how and why the "Second Commandment" is like unto it, namely that we shall love our neighbor like ourselves. 

How these two are related should be of interest to us if we are of the mind to keep His Commandments.  Again, we can't possibly believe that we can follow His Commandments without an understanding of same.  Nor can we cannot think or entertain the belief that these Commandments are somehow separate from each other, sharing only a tenuous relationship. 

Obviously, the Second is only derived from, and by reason that there is, a First Commandment; it rests and draws its legitimacy, intention and meaning from the First alone.  That is, the Second only has significancy and meaning because of the basis established by the First.... it grows from the reasons and wherewithal established in the First.  Mistakenly parsing the Second from the First creates error and much misunderstanding and misdirection because it ignores the consistent intelligent and ongoing intentions of its Parent. 

So, with that, let's see what the Scriptures tells us before we discuss this any further.  It is written:

Mark 12:28-34     28 And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all? 29 And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: 30 And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. 31 And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

32 And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he: 33 And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.

34 And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of God. And no man after that durst ask him any question.

Apart from when we love our neighbor as ourselves we are in point of fact in the service of our God, there is little more discussed about the connection, little more defined about why there even is such a connection.

But such an explanation still doesn't answer all our questions.  Specifically, beyond what I already acknowledged above, how else is the second commandment "like unto" the First...?  How is that we are in the service of our God by so loving another?  And most importantly, why and how in knowing about this relationship in particular, bring us closer to His Kingdom? 

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Indeed, it's well known by Biblical scholars that a "type" or "pattern" was consistently used in the Old Testament in order to direct our minds and hearts forward to the meaning behind the Law and the Law Giver, even Christ Himself.  

First, let's note in the above referenced scripture the understanding conveyed by the scribe that obeying these directives "is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices."

Now this becomes very interesting...  The scribe's comment caused Jesus to state (i.e., teach), "Thou art not far from the kingdom of God."  Why?  Why was this understanding that obedience to these two great Commandments was "more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices" worthy of such a response?  What was it in what the scribe said that so effectively penetrated the mind and heart of the Lord and elicited such a revealing compliment? 

To begin with, let's first address the most obvious...  Our answer can of course be found in understanding first and foremost that all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices were always meant to be "ceremonial" sacrifices, and were just that, "ceremonial."  They had no power in and of themselves but to indicate a willingness to obey the Lord's direction.  But even more importantly, they were an express allegorical teaching to help us understand something far deeper, a teaching aid that was only part of the much grander syllabus. 

Specifically, "whole burnt offerings and sacrifices" were meant to move our understanding forward to the deeper and more significant matters before us.  Namely, these sacrifices were only a typification of the Lord's Atoning Sacrifice, and what such an act would then enable for all mankind, namely, the resurrection and our salvation.  These ceremonies were meant to demonstrate that only by such an Eternal Atoning Sacrifice could our sins be remitted, and His Cause consequently advanced within us.  All of what the Lord commanded then was to make more plain the unseen world and its laws all around us.

Indeed, it's well known by Biblical scholars that a "type" or "pattern" was consistently used in the Old Testament in order to direct our minds and hearts forward to the meaning behind the Law and the Law Giver, even Christ Himself.   

The entirety of the Mosaic Law, and all it's accompanying ceremonies, was to teach us that here and beyond this earthly life, Christ is our personal savior, indeed, and in that station, He is and will always remain as the perfect revelation of the Father. Whatever we see in Him is in fact simply a perfect reflection of His Father before Him.  He acts not only as a bridge to our understanding and the propitiation of our sins, but a reconciler extraordinaire, One who points out to us the extraordinary connection that literally and spiritually exists between Himself and us...., namely that His Seed-Pattern exists within us, as the Father is in Him. 

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Namely, if the First Commandment's purpose is to lead us to finding that obedience to His Voice emanating from the Seed of God within us, and thereafter allowing the goodly influences arising from His Name to bring about our restoration of the dominance of His Will within us, then so should the Second Commandment lead us in the same direction.

Now see this...  Once the point of the lesson is learned and understood, the lesson is no longer needed because the fruit is now ready for harvest.  Similarly, once the ceremonial sacrifices have served their purpose in teaching us about our absolute dependence upon the Christ Messiah, then the ceremonial lesson is no longer as needful and no longer needs to be emphasized or practiced.  It's work had been done.  It's purpose completed.  So it was that upon the scribe's understanding that such sacrifices paled in comparison to keeping the two great Commandments. 

 

Well, even though the foregoing argument makes some sense, it still doesn't give us what we're looking for.  It still doesn't give us the clear reasons for which we seek, and the dots still remain unconnected.

I believe the answer can be found in knowing what the two commandments have in common, again getting our direction from the First Commandment and following through to see if such an understanding finds some harmony of purpose in the Second.

Namely, if the First Commandment's purpose is to lead us to finding that obedience to His Voice emanating from the Seed of God within us, and thereafter allowing the goodly influences arising from His Name to bring about our restoration of the dominance of His Will within us, then so should the Second Commandment lead us in the same direction. 

In other words, the primary purpose of the First Commandment should not be paled or compromised by the Second, but rather amplified.  Similarly, repentance and good works should not stifle His Will within us, but only encourage the appreciation of His Will more, as well as the recognition and acknowledgement that it is His Grace which saves us, not our works.... though good works should naturally flow from our continuingly obeying His Influences.

Having said that, we should look within the Second Commandment for the same underlying direction and purpose, namely, to follow His Name and Voice within us.  The same Pattern must be present.... 

It becomes painfully clear that whenever we are around our "neighbors" long enough, we begin to see them through our own eyes.... a mixture of humanity filled with sorrows and troubles, sins and bad habits, along with the "Good of Him" within themselves attempting to break through to the surface.  Indeed, we are often mirrors to each other, at times unflattering and shameful as well as hopeful and courageous.  As Milton penned in "Paradise Lost", we are placed within this "isthmus of a middle state, created half to rise, half to fall...." 

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Whenever you truly and humbly see into another's heart, you will see the propensity of His Will struggling to become free of sin.... just as it is within our own.  Look deep enough and deeply without prejudice enough, and likely we will see our own trials staring back at us.

Within each of us rests His Seed Pattern, His Will and Name, His Voice and Intention for us, waiting.... always waiting for the occasion that we will prove curious enough to listen to its admonitions and learn of His Ways.  This gift that He has bestowed on all of us from our beginning is meant to bring us to His Kind of Goodly Happiness, to His Way of Living, of Life Eternal, if we would only be interested enough to allow Him place at the Inn within us. 

Sometimes birth of any sort is difficult, if not painful, needing the help of others to allow the Child of Heaven, even the "Children we used to be" to come forth.  The birth of His Name within us demands similar sensitivities of awareness, and we should all be on the look out for those whom need our hands of help and nurturance to aid them in their poignant delivery. 

Loving our neighbor as ourselves demands just this specific ongoing vigilant mindset.  And in this revolving pathos which is continually a part of our interactions with others, we are then drawn to see past the sins of others and look more deeply into their souls to see how similar failing and conflicts rage within our own.... and learn mercy and compassion, love and forgiveness. 

Whenever you truly and humbly see into another's heart, you will see the propensity of His Will struggling to become free of sin.... just as it is within our own.  Look deep enough and deeply without prejudice enough, and likely we will see our own trials staring back at us.

We do this not to prove ourselves "worthy" or "special" or "exceptional" of anything.  We do this so that our subsequent help is singularly directed in aiding our neighbor correctly and humbly.... never finding the occasion of seeing ourselves better than another because of their sins we happen to witness, nor taking advantage by grooming our egos because of their faults. 

Instead, we see them "as ourselves".... having the same difficulties which plague all of us.... struggling to bring forth something better, something from Heaven, something that bears His Name, while we struggle to be forgiven for our own natural and willful impediments.

Our first birth, although consequential, was relatively benign compared to that of our second....  To be born "again" after the order of Jesus Christ is lengthy and arduous, confronting and humbling.  It does not happen so quickly as did our first.  It is a process of continuing repentance and sorrow of the sins of our past, seeking for our own Forgiveness and cleansing, paralleled with the continuing forgiveness of others who have similarly transgressed against us. 

The reality is that loving our neighbor as ourselves is a continual process of forgiveness, re-growth and understanding built upon the instructions from His Spirit that we glean in the process.  In the process of ongoing education, we become new men and woman who are then awakened to the fact that we no longer wish do the divers sins and awful deeds that we once did..., now running from sin instead of entertaining its engagement. 

Indeed, we become those no longer capable of committing the same blind and stupid actions, while  encouraging our neighbors to find the same newness within themselves. 

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As the First Commandment gives our Faith direction and footing, the Second Commandment makes our Faith alive and active, yielding works the prove themselves in the field.  Remember..., the process of salvation is not an armchair event.... It takes participation and investment, while enduring until the end.

And how is this come to be?  It is because of His Promises to us that these things are so.  To be sure, it is nothing other than His Name rising within us that has brought us this wondrous change in disposition, manner and temperament... learning that His Ways are indeed more sweet and pure than the ways of the World, than the ways we used to habitually practice. 

And as we follow the instructions of the First Commandment, awakening to His Will within us and the manner in which He is to bring about His Grand Purpose, so too must we be about His Business in awakening His Seed in others, and in so doing, glorifying the Lord. 

This is the very connection that reveals the finishing of the circle of the Intention of the Lord, and the more likely reason for the Lord to teach that the scribe was not far from the Kingdom of Heaven when recognizing the harmony of purpose between the two greatest Commandments.... 

It is the measure of His Reconciliation that is brought forth within us, through forgiveness made pure by His Atonement, that allows us to once again be conscious of His Presence within us, affording us all the wisdom and knowledge that is His, to guide and direct us forward to the prize of Eternal Life.

As the First Commandment gives our Faith direction and footing, the Second Commandment makes our Faith alive and active, yielding works the prove themselves in the field.  Remember..., the process of salvation is not an armchair event.... It takes participation and investment, while enduring until the end.

This is a process of refining... Heaven's way of bringing forth the Child of Heaven, becoming Children of the Kingdom of Heaven after the order of the Father and the Son.  It is not something that can be done all on our own without the continual polishing circumstances that Life brings us.  It must be done by our loving our neighbor as ourselves, bringing good works to fruition from amongst our Faith in Him. 

This sentiment, no matter how trivial some have made it, is a reality that each must find. Having once been a child after the order of His Image, every one of us retains the rights and means to reintegrate these capacities, sensitivities, and authorities within us once again, and with them, the Seed-Pattern that carries His Name. We do not have to go outside ourselves to gain these afresh, or think that we have to hurriedly fabricate some facsimile in its place because He is asking for something that we cannot possibly supply. No matter how foreign or alien this may now seem to us..., rest assured..., everything we need still remains within us and simply calls out for us to exercise the privileges we have already been given. Although this is a labor that tries the heart and tests our fiber, we must remember that we are not called to run before we have learned to walk. Nothing needs to be rushed or done haphazardly. Everything will proceed in the needed and timely fashion that is best suited for our own personal development. Everything will be done and must be done according to His direction. He has made it to work just as simple and perfect as that....

As previous mentioned with the Winds of Forgiveness  (pages 458-459)...

"At times, the Light will feel as a blast of a trumpet and make us quake in fear of its portending. At other times the still, small Voice will ache silently and painfully within our hearts and bring us to our knees in the realities that He exposes, but exposes only for our benefit. His Voice must discover to us all that it can find. Yet in all the discovery, we will not be consumed by His burning and refining when centered within the children we used to be, being baptized by the sorrow and pain but not destroyed. And we must be humble and willing enough to accept the understanding given, knowing that it will be done in His time, not ours. Just as the Silver-smith astutely knows that the molten metal he burns within the fire is only purified of the dross when finally his image is clearly reflected back from its unblemished liquid-mirrored surface, so does God, in the center of our sorrows and trials, patiently look for His Image within us to become clear, dominant, and certain again..., signaling the end and completion of our needed refining....

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Knowing of this sweetness, we are moved to proclaim this goodness to all that we meet, to our neighbors and friends, to our family members and all that we may come into contact.  Rejoice, because unto us a child is born....  The Great Reconciler, The Lamb of God, the Propitiation of our sins! 

But, still, there are those that would refute the truth of these things, caterwauling that this is not the Gospel of Christ, rather claiming that such is of the devil and just a lot of "mumbo-jumbo" and modern-day "psycho-babble," for according to their interpretation of the Scriptures, Jesus couldn’t possibly have meant all that has been written and presented here. I would simply reply that we should not forget that the scribes and Pharisees of old made the same dissenting arguments and basic objections to His face, and then willfully crucified him in an attempt to prove their point and forever silence His challenging message. But contrary to their rudely dark portending and contumacious willfulness, He rose to Life again on the third day and ascended in glory to the right hand of the Father, proving them all wrong about their understanding of His Father’s Commandments and His Character. Despite all their rantings to the contrary, despite their stubborn insistence that His Teachings were false, that the tenets He proposed were impossible and too fantastic, and that He didn’t know what He was talking about..., in the end it was their criticisms of Him that proved off the mark and wayward, not His Message. His resurrection proved Him right about everything that He said and taught—right about needing to believe in Him, right about following Him into His Father’s Kingdom by first becoming as a little child, right about the need for us to repent from our sins, right about us needing to become born again to His Spirit and finally come unto the Father by His Name. He addressed every sorrow, every wrong, every possibility of mistake, and every needful thing about us..., drawing every aspect of us to Him, even the most hidden and embarrassing..., drawing attention to every possibility of our inner world and the needs to be delivered from our every confusion, our every misstep, our every sin. Most simply He was right and all His detractors were most assuredly wrong. So much for the trusted assurances and prognostications of the so-called experts, or any other that choose to diminish the importance of even the smallest of these things!"

 

Knowing of this sweetness, we are moved to proclaim this goodness to all that we meet, to our neighbors and friends, to our family members and all that we may come into contact.  Rejoice, because unto us a child is born....  The Great Reconciler, The Lamb of God, the Propitiation of our sins!  As it is written....

Isaiah 9:6-7 6 For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace. 7 Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.

Therefore, most simply, whenever we see our neighbor, we are witness, if we so choose to look lovingly, to the Seed-Pattern of Christ in another individual... mirroring the type given to us over two thousand years ago this Christmas Season.

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About the Author:  Dr. Gregory C.D. Young, Ph.D.(Oxon.) is a Clinical Psychologist and Neuroscientist having been educated abroad where he completed his postgraduate studies at King’s College, the University of Aberdeen, Scotland, and then graduated and received his Doctorate from the University of Oxford, Oxford, England. He has been in private clinical practice and medical research for over 25 years, being active as an author, popular radio and TV personality, public speaker, and biomedical researcher. He is the author of The Winds of the Soul~Heaven’s First Voice To Us books  &  The Winds of Forgiveness~Heaven's Healing Promises, as well as numerous other scholarly papers and works.

 

 

 

 

Warning and Disclaimer: Although the author and publisher have made every effort in the preparation to ensure the completeness and accuracy of the information given in this eNewsletter and the books, The Winds of the Soul & The Winds of Forgiveness, the publisher and author assume no responsibility for errors or omissions of any kind. The information provided is offered entirely on an “as is“ basis and is simply the point of view of its author. Moreover, the information in this eNewsletter as well as the book is offered without warranty, claim of fitness, or therapeutic effectiveness and appropriateness, either express or implied, nor does it claim or seek to offer any form of diagnosis or treatment for any form of disease or dysfunction. Any individual requiring psychological intervention, diagnosis and/or treatment should always seek the professional services of a responsible and licensed Psychologist or Psychiatrist. Neither the author or Davidic Publishing will be liable or responsible for any damages whatsoever or however defined, caused or alleged to be caused directly, indirectly, incidentally, or consequentially by the information contained in the eNewsletter and the books, The Winds of the Soul & The Winds of Forgiveness.

Without such practiced and determined vision, we will never be able to see another as ourselves, leastwise learn to love them like ourselves as the Lord most specifically commanded, and learn of the process of Forgiveness from the very examples and trials they bring us.  Indeed Goodness and Mercy shall be a covering to us with such ongoing Forgiveness, as designed by Heaven: 

Psalm 23:4-6 4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me. 5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: thou anointest my head with oil; my cup runneth over. 6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

In keeping with the Second Commandment, then, when we see and interface with our neighbor, what is our response outside of the usual worldly criticism?  Is there room at the proverbial "Inn" for the struggles of their better Selves ongoing with them (i.e., His Name being born within them)?  Will we forgive them as to how they may first appear unto us... tired, weary, and beaten down by their travels through life?  Are we kind in our perceptions, seeing them as we do indeed see ourselves and offer our loving, compassionate and intelligent support? 

Do we, too, seek their betterment as did the three Magi of old, exclaiming of the wonder of witnessing the Child of Heaven coming down and being made flesh within their humble heart?  Do we reverence both the miracle of the moment and the moment of the miracle, recognizing the change within their hearts as they are forgiven of their sins?  Do we support the Intention of God being manifest in their heart, or do we look critically to see if they are abiding our worldly expectations, straining at gnats but swallowing camels?  

Do we see, as the Silver-Smith of Heaven most surely does, His Name and Countenance shinning back from their tried and purified reborn hearts and lives, His Image now clearly, so certainly and dominantly reflected without blemish from their eyes? 

Or do we pretentiously cast them aside as did so many others, doubting in their sincerity, believing that no such forgiveness could have or should have taken place within these unworthy individuals. 

Do we have eyes and hearts with which to see, made sensitive by His Grace within us?  Or do we hoard the merciful treasures of Heaven for ourselves alone, thinking that we are owners rather than serving stewards?

Indeed, do we like Herod rage at the possibility of our world being turned upside down because of the True King being born unto us?  Do we calculate how to stop such an event from occurring within us and others, sending the crippling aggression of gossip and arrogance against those that need our help, making the bar of our acceptance impossible to satisfy?

Do we see the pattern of the First Commandment then reflecting back at us from within the heart of the Second?  Do we not see the connection inviting us further into their mysteries, into the understanding of the Blessed Nativity of this Christmas Season?  Do we not understand that at the heart of the law rests Mercy and Forgiveness, and that these are so much more important than dry obedience and blind sacrifice?  Truly, if we do, then we, like the scribe quoted earlier, are not far from the Kingdom of Heaven! 

I pray this time of year and of our lives may be a blessing of remembrance for all of us.... Of His Great Sacrifice and Condescension... of the King of the Universe astonishingly coming into this world and made flesh, so that we may, if we so desire, learn to see and be as Good and Happy as He.  What gifts could so compare, Gifts prepared from the foundation of the World?  So wondrous that we are led to exclaim  "Merry Christmas.... Merry Christmas to one and all, indeed!"  

 

 

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