The Urantia Book -- Part IV. The Life And
Teachings Of Jesus
PAPER 136: Section 9.
The Fifth Decision
Having settled such questions of policy as pertained to his individual relations
to natural law and spiritual power, he turned his attention to the choice of
methods to be employed in the proclamation and establishment of the kingdom
of God. John had already begun this work; how might he continue the message?
How should he take over John's mission? How should he organize his followers
for effective effort and intelligent co-operation? Jesus was now reaching the
final decision which would forbid that he further regard himself as the Jewish
Messiah, at least as the Messiah was popularly conceived in that day.
The Jews envisaged a deliverer who would come in miraculous power to cast down
Israel's enemies and establish the Jews as world rulers, free from want and
oppression. Jesus knew that this hope would never be realized. He knew that
the kingdom of heaven had to do with the overthrow of evil in the hearts of
men, and that it was purely a matter of spiritual concern. He thought out the
advisability of inaugurating the spiritual kingdom with a brilliant and dazzling
display of power -- and such a course would have been permissible and wholly
within the jurisdiction of Michael -- but he fully decided against such a plan.
He would not compromise with the revolutionary techniques of Caligastia. He
had won the world in potential by submission to the Father's will, and he proposed
to finish his work as he had begun it, and as the Son of Man.
You can hardly imagine what would have happened on Urantia had this God-man,
now in potential possession of all power in heaven and on earth, once decided
to unfurl the banner of sovereignty, to marshal his wonder-working battalions
in militant array! But he would not compromise. He would not serve evil that
the worship of God might presumably be derived therefrom. He would abide by
the Father's will. He would proclaim to an onlooking universe, "You shall worship
the Lord your God and him only shall you serve."
As the days passed, with ever-increasing clearness Jesus perceived what kind
of a truth-revealer he was to become. He discerned that God's way was not going
to be the easy way. He began to realize that the cup of the remainder of his
human experience might possibly be bitter, but he decided to drink it.
Even his human mind is saying good-bye to the throne of David. Step by step
this human mind follows in the path of the divine. The human mind still asks
questions but unfailingly accepts the divine answers as final rulings in this
combined life of living as a man in the world while all the time submitting
unqualifiedly to the doing of the Father's eternal and divine will.
Rome was mistress of the Western world. The Son of Man, now in isolation and
achieving these momentous decisions, with the hosts of heaven at his command,
represented the last chance of the Jews to attain world dominion; but this earthborn
Jew, who possessed such tremendous wisdom and power, declined to use his universe
endowments either for the aggrandizement of himself or for the enthronement
of his people. He saw, as it were, "the kingdoms of this world," and he possessed
the power to take them. The Most Highs of Edentia had resigned all these powers
into his hands, but he did not want them. The kingdoms of earth were paltry
things to interest the Creator and Ruler of a universe. He had only one objective,
the further revelation of God to man, the establishment of the kingdom, the
rule of the heavenly Father in the hearts of mankind.
The idea of battle, contention, and slaughter was repugnant to Jesus; he would
have none of it. He would appear on earth as the Prince of Peace to reveal a
God of love. Before his baptism he had again refused the offer of the Zealots
to lead them in rebellion against the Roman oppressors. And now he made his
final decision regarding those Scriptures which his mother had taught him, such
as: "The Lord has said to me, `You are my Son; this day have I begotten you.
Ask of me, and I will give you the heathen for your inheritance and the uttermost
parts of the earth for your possession. You shall break them with a rod of iron;
you shall dash them in pieces like a potter's vessel.'"
Jesus of Nazareth reached the conclusion that such utterances did not refer
to him. At last, and finally, the human mind of the Son of Man made a clean
sweep of all these Messianic difficulties and contradictions -- Hebrew scriptures,
parental training, chazan teaching, Jewish expectations, and human ambitious
longings; once and for all he decided upon his course. He would return to Galilee
and quietly begin the proclamation of the kingdom and trust his Father (the
Personalized Adjuster) to work out the details of procedure day by day.
By these decisions Jesus set a worthy example for every person on every world
throughout a vast universe when he refused to apply material tests to prove
spiritual problems, when he refused presumptuously to defy natural laws. And
he set an inspiring example of universe loyalty and moral nobility when he
refused to grasp temporal power as the prelude to spiritual glory.
If the Son of Man had any doubts about his mission and its nature when he
went up in the hills after his baptism, he had none when he came back to his
fellows following the forty days of isolation and decisions.
Jesus has formulated a program for the establishment of the Father's kingdom.
He will not cater to the physical gratification of the people. He will not
deal out bread to the multitudes as he has so recently seen it being done
in Rome. He will not attract attention to himself by wonder-working, even
though the Jews are expecting just that sort of a deliverer. Neither will
he seek to win acceptance of a spiritual message by a show of political authority
or temporal power.
In rejecting these methods of enhancing the coming kingdom in the eyes of
the expectant Jews, Jesus made sure that these same Jews would certainly and
finally reject all of his claims to authority and divinity. Knowing all this,
Jesus long sought to prevent his early followers alluding to him as the Messiah.
Throughout his public ministry he was confronted with the necessity of dealing
with three constantly recurring situations: the clamor to be fed, the insistence
on miracles, and the final request that he allow his followers to make him
king. But Jesus never departed from the decisions which he made during these
days of his isolation in the Perean hills.