Where is there a nation to be found that had such an ethical guidance? Nowhere, therefore, do we find merit or praise for baseness or lowness. When, for instance, it was said of Moses: "He was an humble man," it was a compliment which was never bestowed upon a heathen hero. Franz Josef Molitor The Hebrew prophets and the heathen seers present an essential difference. They are as follows: 1. The Magician, the Indian Brahmin, the mystical Priest, etc. The Magician elevates himself by his own innate strength to a higher state and condition than the world by whom he is surrounded; he isolates himself intentionally and his isolation becomes imperative, and through it follow the various castes and grades in life, as, for example, the Indian and Egyptian castes, which produces a special influence upon the diversified conditions of earthly life and intellect; Moses and the prophets are more casual, and in the passive dread of deep solitude, they suddenly hear the call and follow in humility, with veiled countenances.
To the Brahmin, for example, the earth is a hell, a place of torment; to the prophet it is a school, through which, in the performance of duty, the peace of true happiness may be found. The magician is a lawgiver, the prophets are obedient disciples, who preach and explain the revelations of God. There we have the means of falling into a state of ecstasy, self-denial and unnatural mortification of the body. Here the world is adapted to the most judicious enjoyment of life.
The prophet does not require extraordinary means to fall into a state of ecstasy ; he utters the immediate word of God without preparation and without mortifying the body, presents it, and lives among his kind. Therefore, the numerous antagonistic figures of truth and deception, of sensational emotions and phantasmagoria in broken and jarring forms, of convulsions and contortions of the body and the soul, which we find among our mesmeric subjects. The index of their visions relates to the general concerns of life in respect to religion and citizenship; the prophet speaks and his words are true doctrines, uttered clearly for the benefit of all men and ages, and comprehended by all.
He seeks happiness yet finds it not in penance, but in his calling, in spreading abroad the word of God, not in secret contemplations, but by imparting it to his fellow-beings through active cooperation.
What Is the “Horn of Salvation” in the Bible?
Finally, 7. Since the motives and proceedings differ essentially among inspired races, so their aims and results also differ. The Indian magician mourns on account of the gradual lowering of the spiritual from its original luster, following the rapidly succeeding eras of the world into perishing nature and into the kingdom of death, and deprecates the misery connected therewith, namely, discontent, the confusion and laceration of the spirit, all of which we may find among the different heathen nations.
On the other hand, how greatly has universal brotherhood and companionship increased, step by step, through the agency of the true prophet, and how has the spiritual been glorified! The spirit that waved over the Jewish religion in the west spread its peaceful influences farther and wider, and while in the former instance everything is lost in weakness and darkness, in the latter mountains are removed by active faith, and trees are planted by mutual help and counsel, whose fruit will only ripen for enjoyment in another world, toward which we should turn our faces and our exertions.
Historians and philosophers of modern times have declared that the ecstatic visions of the prophets of Israel and those of the apostles were identical with magnetic appearances. They are called seers, men of God, servants and messengers of the Lord, angels and watchmen.
The marks of the true prophets of the Old Testament were: 1st. That their prophecies agreed with the doctrines of Moses and the patriarchs Deut. That they agreed with other prophets Isa. That they led a blameless life Jer. That they exhibited a holy zeal in the work of God Jer. Their office consisted in this, 1st, That they instructed the people, when the priests, whose duty it was, became indifferent. That they restored the slack and decayed worship of God 2 Kings ; Ezek.
That they foretold future events, and to this end asked counsel of God 1 Kings , 3; Ezek. The same may be said of the apostles and the preachers of the living word. They were called ministers because Christ had himself chosen them and sent them to the ends of the earth to proclaim the atonement and gather His elect.
They did not force themselves in to his service, but Christ called them in a direct manner, and taught them personally to proclaim the advent of the Messiah, and with these credentials, to perform wonders through the divine word.
Their lives proved that they were true followers in the footsteps of their Lord and Master, in word and deed, in works and in suffering. For if their superficial appearance at first sight seems the same, their difference will soon become apparent when we examine them in a threefold point of view, namely, of cause, content or form and intention. An abnormal condition of health always precedes it, and the somnolent state of the outward senses is the first condition of it. Prophetic inspiration is not a procreation of nature or of man but it is an emanation of the Holy Spirit and a divine decree.
The divine call comes unexpectedly, and the physical condition has no connection with it whatever. The physical powers can never become the determinate powers, but they remain dependent upon the spirit, which makes it a means to spiritual aims. A mesmeric life with changed functions of the senses and a physical crisis does not take place here. Secondly, according to form, magnetic second-sight depends directly upon the health and on the life of the seer, or rather, it predominates in the relative modes of earthly life.
The true prophet, according to form, has no diversity of visions, but an unchanging index of scriptural work — the annunciation of Him, who is the Beginning and the End, and by whom all things were created. A prophet is not only a seer, but he is the organ of the divine will. That which is worldly or changeable — bigotry or sensuality, health, riches and honor in the world, and dominion over his fellow-men, is not his affair.
Through prayer, and in word and deed, the prophet continues in a living relation with God and his fellow-beings. True prophets do not isolate themselves, neither do they sink into the absorbing depths of their own visions, feelings and relations. Their prophecies do not refer to personalities, but to the fate of nations and the world, therefore, are they able in their works to exhibit supernatural powers, strengthened by the omnipotent power of their faith and will, and this power they exercise over their own bodies as well as over the bodies of others and over all nature in its wide and temporal boundaries.
The sudden conversions and changes of opinion, the instantaneous healing of severe and lingering diseases, the warnings against threatening dangers, and help for the needy from a distance, giving consolation and strength in trouble and suffering, etc.
Angels of Doom
Self-aggrandizement and the personal advantage of these organs of the Deity were not thought of. To these obvious variations the children of Israel bear special witness. That there is a still more exalted spiritual region which takes a positive hold upon the reason and offers revelations which are not of a natural order, and which cannot exist in these lower regions, and which are not merely phantasies, illusions or hallucinations of an abnormal condition of the brain.
The ignoring, or rather, the denial of sophistical rationalism, especially by the Israelites is also represented superficially, just as the pantheistical philosophy of nature is, which distils everything into a common mass, and which represents the prophets and the saints only as somnambulistic sects, upon a somewhat higher plane than is ascribed to them in the partial Tellurian dark ages.
Suggestions for Teaching
We often find among the prophets also, that they secluded themselves in solitary places, and that they fasted and gave themselves up to quiet contemplation. They, like the clairvoyants, speak of an inward higher light, of a light that enlightens them, and they admit this higher illumination to be the spirit of the Eternal, whose hand came upon them and transfigured them, and they walked, as the Psalmist says, in the light of His countenance, "For in Thy light, we shall see light; the Lord my God will enlighten my darkness.
Thou art the living fountain and in thy light we see the light. Then I lifted up mine eyes, and looked, and behold a certain man clothed in linen, whose loins were girded with fine gold of Uphaz: His body also was like the beryl, and his face as the appearance of lightning, and his eyes as lamps of fire, and his arms and his feet like in color to polished brass, and the voice of his words like the voice of a multitude. And I Daniel alone saw the vision: for the men that were with me saw not the vision; but a great quaking fell upon them, so that they fled to hide themselves. Therefore I was left alone, and saw this great vision, and there remained no strength in me: Yet I heard the voice of his words: and when I heard the voice of his words, then was I in a deep sleep on my face, and my face toward the ground.
And behold, a hand touched me, which set me upon my knees and upon the palms of my hands. And he said unto me, O Daniel, a man greatly beloved, understand the words that I speak unto thee, and stand upright: for unto thee am I now sent. And when he had spoken this word unto me, I stood trembling. Then said he unto me, Fear not, Daniel: for from the first day that thou didst set thine heart to understand, and to chasten thyself before thy God, thy words were heard, and I am come for thy words.
And when he had spoken such words unto me, I set my face toward the ground, and I became dumb. And behold, one like the similitude of the sons of men touched my lips: then I opened my mouth, and spake, and said unto him that stood before me, O my lord, by the vision my sorrows are turned upon me, and I have retained no strength, for how can the servant of this my lord, talk with this my lord? And when he had spoken unto me, I was strengthened, and said, Let my lord speak; for thou hast strengthened me.
Then said he, Knowest thou wherefore I came unto thee? The created spirit does not generally exist for itself, nor by itself, but only in reference to absolute being. The more perfect the creature, the more inward and free is the communion between the creature and the Creator — the more is man a free agent and a co-worker with God. If taken in this connection, the power of the divine seer is not to be regarded separately from other spiritual powers by which he can overcome anything foreign to his nature, but rather as a fixed form, a normal and regenerated soul-power.
The spirit of man, the image of God, may become the mirror in which the divine type is reflected just in proportion to the purity of this image. Second edition, p. Johann Carl Passavant , German physician. I have not located an English edition, but his Untersuchungen: uber den Lebensmagnetismus und das Hellsehen originally appeared in , and was substantially rewritten in 2.
The way from Ur in Chaldea to Canaan, which was taken by the patriarch Abraham, how far it stretched through its lengths and breadths across to Egypt, and from thence through the wilderness to the promised land of which they were to take possession! If Israel then is, as it is represented, the favored people of God, then it can be nothing less than the pearl of perfection, and consequently the mirror of perverseness, which always strives after outward forms and ceremonies, and seeks happiness in nature and the dissipations of the present, a happiness which cannot be found on earth.
In order to teach the children of Israel humble obedience to the laws, they were exposed to the severest trials and subjected to the meanest slavery.
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To this people and to no other, the commandments were communicated in thunder tones by divinely appointed leaders, in order that it might heed with the inner depths of the mind and not merely superficially with the outward senses. Sacrifices and feasts were not to serve as temporal occasions of rejoicing, but they were to serve as a typical covering through which might be seen the true light of the coming Messiah, as the flower-bud turns toward the approaching light of the sun.
The Mercy-seat, the Cherubim, the Holy of Holies, the Pillar of Fire, and Solomon's Temple, are all symbolical manifestations originating in magical visions and point to the coming of Christ. That the entire Mosaic regulation was symbolical and hieroglyphical is admitted by every expert, and the following words express this fact clearly: "and look that thou make them after their pattern, which was showed thee in the mount. The forms and ceremonies of the law were only now strictly enforced in order to impress men with the importance of the revealed word. But how long a period, intervened between the wanderings and sufferings of the Israelites, the wonders by which they were surrounded, the death of the firstborn in Egypt, the lightning which flashed from the heights of Mount Sinai, and the time of King David, with whom commenced the third period.
His obedience toward God, and his unwavering faith not only caused it to be said of him, "that he was a man after God's own heart," but as the root of Judah, born in Bethlehem, he also became the type of Christ. He was both king and prophet, and had to bear many troubles and trials.
As a servant of God he sought to lead the children of Israel to God at Jerusalem, the mountain of peace, where finally, the mild, illuminating light of the divine Prince of Peace appeared to the world out of the dark, transitory night, on the cross. Even so we, when we were children, were in bondage under the elements of the World. The coming of Christ on earth was not an accidental occurrence as other natural events were. His coming was a revelation ordained by God from the foundation of the world.
I have already shown in my anthropological views, that Christ, if he actually was the Son of God, would necessarily have to appear at a fixed time and place, and that his appearance would constitute the beginning of the second period of human power, and that this event would take place on the western coast of Asia.
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Having brought forward many of the most extraordinary events of the old covenant which have reference to magic and magnetism, it seems important in more than one sense, also to speak of the new covenant, in order to extract from it that which concerns us so directly, because in the new covenant the magical healing of diseases was effected in so many instances without visible means, as well by Christ himself as by the apostles, from which it would appear that all these miracles and healings were the result of nothing else than magic or magnetism.
There are a few extremes here which have been maintained by both the advocates and opponents of these miracles, which we will notice more particularly in this place. In concluding this section we will glance at the existence and signification of Christianity in a general sense, as well as the relation which it bears to magic.
The men of God under the old covenant, who performed such great wonders, and accomplished such wonderful works, were always rather more on the side of humanity than that of the divine, that is, they always evinced only single powers and perfections. The universal expression of full perfection became an absolute reality only through Christ.
He it was who first unbarred the new door — severed the chains of slavery, and pointed out the true image of perfection and wisdom in all their fullness to man. Christ again restored to humanity the assurance of immortality. He elevated the spiritual being to a temple of holy fire, and made it a living altar and incense to an eternal peace.
Since God alone is superior to man, this agent or Savior could be nothing less than the essential idea of divine powers. In order to awaken a consciousness in the soul of man of what God really was, he had to bear the Divine character in himself.