You may be surprised to hear that the temptation of Jesus in the wilderness is actually an allegory of the temptations we face each and every day…
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You may be surprised to hear that the temptation of Jesus in the wilderness is actually an allegory of the temptations we face each and every day… That is NOT to say that there was not a literal man named Jesus, who was literally tempted in the wilderness. The point to this essay people is this… IT DOESN’T MATTER WHETHER OR NOT THE STORY IS LITERAL. What matters is what the story means spiritually for us.
A reader shared a great line with me the other day, they said, we need to be mindful of the MYSTERY not get hung up in the HISTORY. YES! So much truth in those words. The Mystery of the Kingdom of God is what we are after, NOT THE HISTORY of what happened.
For example, it doesn’t matter if there was a literal boy who cried wolf or not. What matters is the SPIRIT of the story. I know I use that example a lot but it really does help to make this point. We don’t profit from proving that there was a boy and wolf in the past. We profit when we understand that we shouldn’t lie or embellish because there might be terrible consequences. This, this my friends is what my essays are all about. Sharing the SPIRIT of the story, not simply repeating the history of it.
It is only when we understand the spirit of the story that we find our way. The LETTER (literal understanding) kills, it is only the SPIRIT that gives life.
2 Corinthians 3:6
Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life.
We need to learn the difference between things we can take literally and things we must discern spiritually. And that can be tricky sometimes. However, if we allow the spirit of truth and love to lead us it is easier than you may think. It is true that the scriptures can have both literal and spiritual interpretations.
Example: “Thou shalt not kill” – Of course this is meant to be understood literally, but it also has a spiritual meaning. For you can Kill the Spirit of someone or something just as you can take the life of another.
When David fought Goliath, if you see the story spiritually, you see a Picture of Christ destroying the Carnal man. The symbolism of this story is beautiful, a smooth stone hitting and killing Goliath with one blow to the head (which is symbolic of the mind and how we think), then David taking the Giant’s sword and cutting off Goliath’s head (which is the authority of the carnal man). Whenever we are presented with stories in scripture where someone is cutting off another’s head, whether it is Goliath, John the Baptist, or crushing the head of the serpent, it is always symbolic of destroying the authority and rule of what that “person or thing” represents spiritually.
Every one of these stories is indeed an allegory for our waking life. We learn from these stories literally as well as spiritually. The trick is finding when we should take something at its word and when to look deeper, or both.
Now you may have been told that Jesus, the man, was perfect and did not sin. That Jesus, the man, never doubted and never struggled the way we struggle. Well, if we take the scriptures at their word, we find, LITERALLY, that it couldn’t be farther from the truth.
God does not play favorites, what one must endure all endure.
For there is no respect of persons with God.
Mental note: If God is no respecter of persons, we should be as well.
Now, if you really want to take the scriptures at their literal word, JESUS SINNED, just as we sinned… In fact, Jesus BECAME sin for us. Now let us think about how this “Jesus” became sin for us.
AN IMPORTANT THING TO CONSIDER: The idea of a literal Jesus that is separate and unique from us is indeed SIN (a foolish thought) for us… Something to chew on for later.
Let me explain the ways “Jesus” has become sin for us.
We have been taught that Jesus had a different birth than us, that he had a different relationship with God than us, that Jesus did what we could not do, that Jesus TOOK upon himself the SINS of the world to save us, if only we put our faith in him. But this is simply what religion has sold us, and IT ISN’T TRUE.
The scriptures command that we should not make any image as to what God looks like, talks like, seems like. The scriptures are clear, we are NOT to compare God to a “corruptible physical man”, that we should not Compare God (The creator) with the created, because God is beyond the created thing. We are commanded not to make any image of God, whether birds of the air, fish of the sea, anything in the sky, the earth, or the deep… YET, every religion has its idols… Jesus, the six-foot tall, handsome, bearded, blue-eyed, hollywood man is perhaps the best marketed name on planet earth. But the scriptures if we take them at their literal word tell us this is A HUGE MISTAKE.
22 Professing to be wise, they became fools, 23 and changed the glory of the incorruptible God into an image made like corruptible man—and birds and four-footed animals and creeping things.
2 “I am the Lord your God, who brought you out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
3 “You shall HAVE NO OTHER GODS BEFORE ME.
4 “You shall not make for yourself a carved image—any likeness of anything that is in heaven above, or that is in the earth beneath, or that is in the water under the earth
Yet, you don’t have to go far to see images of God as a man. Just google the word God on an image search and you will see a man named Jesus everywhere, or an old muscle-bound guy who looks like an angry Santa Claus. YET, the ONLY GOD there is, IS WITHIN US… not outside of.
20 Now when He was asked by the Pharisees when the kingdom of God would come, He answered them and said, “The kingdom of God does not come with observation; 21 nor will they say, ‘See here!’ or ‘See there!’[a] For indeed, the kingdom of God is within you.”
We have been sold a lie. We have been told that in a single man from two thousand years ago our salvation is found. As opposed to understanding that “that man” is a symbol of all of us. For we and he (jesus) are the same. This is when our love is perfected, when we realize this.
1 John 4:17
Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because AS HE IS, SO ARE WE in this world.
It has never been about believing THAT HE IS OUR SAVIOR, or that what he did somehow wipes away all of our sin (foolish thoughts) as many say. There are countless Christians that have believed this who continue on in misery and continue to do horrible things. We don’t find salvation by simply believing that what is recounted in scripture is all literally true, we find salvation by FOLLOWING THE PATH, THE WAY, and FINDING THE LIGHT AND TRUTH that is within us all.
It is about understanding that His way is the only way, his path is our path, a path we must take. We must die to our ego and rise again. We too must Go to our Father, for God is greater than who we think we are. We too must say, Not my Will, But thine be done. We too must lay down our egotistical lives to have the true life within us all to rise again!
Many say Jesus the Man is God. Yet scriptures teach us… God is NOT A MAN, nor the SON OF MAN!
“God is not a man, that He should lie, Nor a son of man, that He should repent.
Man is an image that God created. And Jesus is an image that man has created in man’s image and called God. That is a big mistake. Because it puts salvation in the hands of someone or something else, as opposed to putting salvation where it needs to be… and that is within us all. The power of life and death is within us all, it is in our thoughts and tongues. Salvation is in the hands of the spirit of Life, truth and love, salvation is God’s and God’s alone.
Now God created Man in His Image, which means, he made mankind the way he thinks he is. In other words, God had an idea of what God could be or is and decided to make man that way…. Now ironically we have done a similar thing. Consider our ego.
Our EGO is an idea or image of who we think we are. However our EGO it is not WHO we are. Our EGO is merely the image we created for ourselves. That alone is a great revelation that I will try to share a bit later, but sadly, I don’t believe many are ready to receive the full extent of it.
So let’s start by unwrapping how Jesus is actually us. What happened to him happened to us, how he came into this world, we came into this world, what he did we do or will do…
Jesus is said to have taken upon himself the “sins of the world”.
This is exactly what WE all have done as well. Didn’t we ALSO take upon ourselves the sins (cares) of the world when we were born. Didn’t we also trade in joy and peace and unity for the nonsense we began to believe was life on planet earth. Isn’t this why we now cry and seek salvation and redemption? Of course it is the same story. Jesus’ story is our story, and our story is His.
I put to you, as I have done many times before, that JESUS THE MAN, whether historically literally true or not, is A SYMBOL for all of us… about all of us. Just as Buddha, Krishna, and any other avatar that has been written about is.
We ALL have SINNED (Thought foolishly) and come short of the Glory of God. Which is the revelation of the mystery that IS God… We all sinned by believing our salvation laid in the hands of another and not the spirit of truth and love, which is God, that is the center of us all.
Did not God say that he is our Savior! That no one else is our salvation, but God alone?
Read this next passage in Isaiah very carefully. Because it is the Truth of who is within us all and who is the ONLY Savior there is.
They will make supplication to you, saying, ‘Surely GOD IS IN YOU,
And there is NO OTHER; There is NO OTHER GOD. (BUT THE GOD THAT IS IN YOU)”
15 Truly You ARE GOD, who hide Yourself, O God of Israel, the Savior!
The Only God and Savior there is, IS IN YOU. This God is a God who HIDES IN YOU!
That’s right, there is no one that has walked this earth who had it all figured out. So many have painted this picture of Jesus as someone who knew everything, as God knows everything… AND YET…
But of that day and that hour knoweth NO MAN, no, not the angels which are in heaven, NEITHER THE SON, but the Father.
It’s time we let go of this idea that a man named Jesus was so much greater than we are. That what he did we can not do, when in fact the majority of scripture teaches quite the opposite. We are in fact told very clearly in scripture that if we do not do as Jesus did, believe as he believed, live as he lived, and see as he saw, that we are none of his.
And when he had called the people unto him with his disciples also, he said unto them, Whosoever will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
So let’s put this idea that Jesus was some sort of superman to rest. Let’s start with the fact that he was TEMPTED!!!!
AND LADIES AD GENTLEMEN, to be tempted means YOU ARE DRAWN AWAY BY YOUR OWN LUSTS!
But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust, and enticed.
That’s right even Jesus was “drawn away by his own lust”. Just as we are drawn away by our lusts.
And what are these lusts? You ask.
1 John 2:16
For all that is in the world, the lust of the flesh, and the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life, is not of the Father, but is of the world.
So the long and short of it is, Jesus being tempted by the devil is just another story to help us understand our story.
Our temptations are his and his temptations are ours. Because, IF TRUTH BE TOLD, Jesus is just the name we have chosen to identify the SPIRIT OF GOD’S SON (child) that is WITHIN US ALL.
We have been duped to believe that Jesus alone is God’s son… yet Adam was declared to be God’s son, David was declared to be God’s Son, All of Israel was declared to be God’s son, and we should know by now we are all Israel. We are all God’s son (heir/child/offspring).
Just as ADAM is A SYMBOL of all of mankind in his first nature (ignorance), JESUS (the 2nd Adam/Man) is a SYMBOL of all of mankind rising to his perfected state.
So when we are persecuted, Jesus is persecuted, just as when Jesus was crucified we were crucified.
I am crucified with Christ: nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ liveth in me: and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by the faith of the Son of God, who loved me, and gave himself for me.
Let’s discuss this above scripture (Gal 2:20). Please re-read GAL 2:20 again if you skimmed over it and then let me explain how I understand it.
“Christ” is our TRUE NATURE, Christ is our “LIFE force” if you will.
When Christ, who IS OUR LIFE, shall appear, then shall ye also appear with him in glory.
We (who we think we are=how we identify ourselves from others)are crucified with our TRUE NATURE (Christ).
Now that doesn’t mean our sense of being (or ego) no longer exists, we still live our life as the person we believe ourselves to be… HOWEVER we understand that although we seem to exist, in fact it is CHRIST (the power and wisdom of God) which is really living within that idea of who we think we are.
So once we come to the understanding that who we REALLY are is so much more than who we THOUGHT WE WERE we begin living with the faith that we are indeed GOD’S SON (child).
And if God’s child, then we TOO are GOD’S SON… AND IF THAT BE TRUE….
We are the SON who loved “the idea of who we thought we were” so much, that who “we really are and were (God’s son)” gave himself for us.
Okay, I don’t know if I can even really put in words what I am trying to state here.
Let me try it this way. When you were born who you were isn’t who you began to believe yourself to be. You were given a name which you began to identify as you, you had experiences growing up which molded you into becoming the person you began to think you were. But what really happened within, is who you REALLY were and ARE, began to love the idea of who you began to think yourself to be so much that YOU allowed your true nature to be put to death for the one you began to think yourself to be… BUT ARE NOT… Deep right?
In other words, “Christ (your true nature) DIED so that YOU (who you think you are) could LIVE” – get it?
Let’s put it another way.
Elohim (plural/many-as we are many) said, “let US make man in OUR image”, and “THEY” made mankind in the IMAGE of who THEY thought they were. Remember an IMAGE is only a representation of its creator. It may look like the creator, sound like the creator, feel like the creator, but the image is not the creator, IT CAN NEVER BE.
In other words, Your EGO (who you think you are) may look like, feel like and sound like YOU… but it can’t be, because your ego isn’t you. It is merely a representation of who you REALLY ARE in this world. YOUR EGO is nothing compared to who you are. You are so much greater than the image of who you are.
Okay, I know what I am sharing may seem far-fetched. But think about this… Isn’t our ego an image of who we believe ourselves to be? And can’t we, LIKE GOD, repent of the person we then became by destroying that image/person and starting again?
5 And God saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. 6 And it repented the Lord that he had made man on the earth, and it grieved him at his heart. 7 And the Lord said, I will destroy man whom I have created from the face of the earth; both man, and beast, and the creeping thing, and the fowls of the air; for it repenteth me that I have made them.
Don’t we all at one point or another in our lives say, “I don’t like the person I have become”, “I don’t like the way I think”, “the way I live”, “I don’t want to be the person I am anymore”, “I want to recreate myself?”
And then don’t we then set out to change who we were to become a new and better person? Don’t we set out to destroy the person we made on the earth with every negative thought and bad habit that went along with it?
Of course we do.
So when I stated earlier that Jesus is simply a representation of who we REALLY are, I wasn’t expressing myself metaphorically, I was being literal about the metaphor of Jesus… who is really US.
Now I have written about this for years, so it shouldn’t come as a surprise that when I say the Temptation of Jesus by the devil in the wilderness is really our temptation to begin with.
We need to first understand that the WILDERNESS that we are tempted in is OUR WAKING LIFE. It is the life we are living right now WITHOUT the full understanding of who we are and what we are capable of.
The wilderness is our waking life which feels more like a journey that goes on and on until we find the promise land.
Think about that for a moment. Isn’t everyone here waiting to die to go to heaven? As if on some journey where the end result is the promiseland?
The irony is WE ARE THE PROMISE LAND. The light and life of God is WITHIN, IT IS ALREADY WHO WE TRULY ARE. And while we are searching high and low for peace outside of us, PEACE has always been within and never far. While we are trying to FIND OURSELVES we have ALWAYS BEEN OURSELVES but refused to believe that.
This world has become OUR WILDERNESS in which we are tempted, because of our EGO (who we think we are).
This world should feel like paradise because we are paradise. I believe it WILL feel this way once AGAIN. the instant we embrace who we really are and let go of WHO WE THINK WE ARE. Our EGO has turned this paradise into a wilderness where we are suffering, struggling to make ends meet, and worse. This is written right there in the book of Isaiah.
16 They that see thee shall narrowly look upon thee, and consider thee, saying, Is this the man who made the earth to tremble, that did shake kingdoms; 17 THAT MADE THE WORLD AS A WILDERNESS.
AND SO, NOW to correct all of this, we have become the VOICE CRYING OUT IN THE WILDERNESS…
The voice of him that crieth in the wilderness, Prepare ye the way of the LORD, make straight in the desert a highway for our God.
The reason we are shouting, “prepare the way of the Lord and to make straight a path for our God” is because we want to live right, we want to know the truth, WE WANT TO BE FREE! So we are actively preparing and taking steps for this great day. The day when the truth of who we are is finally revealed.
So when I state that Jesus’ temptation is our temptation, and our temptation is Jesus’ temptation, I am being quite literal. For Jesus is the name we have given to the salvation of self-realization. Jesus is just the name we used to eventually lead us to the savior that is within us all… SO THAT WHEN WE BELIEVE ON HIM (WHO WE REALLY ARE) WE WILL BE SAVED!
Our journey has never been about putting our faith in another, especially putting our faith in someone from thousands of years ago who supposedly did all the work for us. Our journey is to find that…
1 John 4:17
… as HE is, so are WE in this world.
Your salvation from your fear, worry, doubt, and suffering is not found in believing that some man from thousands of years ago died for you. It is realizing the truth of who you are died so who you think you are can live. And that is why you MUST follow the example laid out before you and LAY down the person you think you are to allow the truth of who you really are to live.
Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me.
To DENY something is to state “It doesn’t exist”. It doesn’t say “deprive” yourself, it states you need to “DENY YOURSELF, TAKE UP THE CROSS AND FOLLOW THE PATH”. To DENY who you think you are, take up your cross from death to life and follow the example laid out before you.
When Jesus was asked, what is the way to the father… He said very clearly. I AM THE WAY.
Now that does not mean you have to believe on him and that it’s all good because he did it already. It means HE IS THE WAY, what “HE” did “YOU” must do, what “HE” found out “YOU” must find out… And you have to BELIEVE this if you will ever have a chance of finding salvation in this world.
And what was one of the first things Jesus found out first before his true ministry began?
While he yet spake, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them: and behold a voice out of the cloud, which said, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.
We too, must understand that WE ARE GOD’S ONLY BEGOTTEN SON IN WHOM GOD IS WELL PLEASED! And immediately after we do this, just as the story of Jesus details, we too will be tempted in the wilderness of our lives.
But it is essential that you understand the symbolism of this temptation and not feel compelled to simply accept the Hollywood version as historical fact. There was no literal snake whispering in Jesus’ ear. This is allegory people and my essays have always been about trying to uncover what that means.
There is so much more for us all to learn from these stories when we don’t rely on private interpretation, or should I say “literal interpretation”. We need to rely on spiritual inspiration.
I tell you the truth when I say the spiritual meaning of these stories is life-giving and wonderful. While trying to make these allegories literally true becomes a stumbling block for all.
In addition once you understand this, you will also see that like scripture, our lives are an allegory as well. Whatever we face has a much deeper spiritual meaning for us to learn. This is why the scriptures teach us that God is known by the physical things around us.
But let me get back to the original point of this essay. The Temptation of Jesus in the wilderness.
Because I have an interesting thing to put before you. In the story of the Temptation Jesus is whisked away by the Devil and basically promised that Jesus could have it all, if he would simply bow down and worship him.
Isn’t it ironic that the Christian Church also teaches that if you worship Jesus, your problems will go away and you can be blessed beyond measure?
8 Again, the devil took Him up on an exceedingly high mountain, and showed Him all the kingdoms of the world and their glory. 9 And he said to Him, “All these things I will give You if You will fall down and worship me.”
Now I am not saying Jesus is the devil here, I want to be clear. I am saying Man’s EGO is the Devil, and Man’s EGO is tricking you into worshipping someone else to have it all. Now I know there are many that even read this blog that “worship” Jesus… But when tempted in the wilderness, pay attention to the words Jesus used.
10 Then Jesus said to him, “Away with you,[d] Satan! For it is written, ‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and Him only you shall serve.’
Jesus did not say, it is written YOU SHALL WORSHIP ME (JESUS) AND JESUS ALONE SHALL YOU SERVE… NO! Jesus said very clearly that YOU SHALL WORSHIP THE LORD, YOUR GOD (the devils/egos God), and GOD ALONE SHALL YOU SERVE.
This means people, and PAY ATTENTION… YOUR EGO MUST SERVE GOD! Your TRUE NATURE is in control of YOUR EGO!
WHO YOU ARE TRUMPS WHO YOU THINK YOU ARE!
You are not a helpless victim. You do not need anyone or anything to help you find the peace and freedom you crave. All you need to do is BELIEVE ALL THINGS ARE POSSIBLE!
But Jesus looked at them and said to them, “With men this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
The temptation is to turn stones (religious laws) into Bread (life-giving food). The Temptation is to bow down and serve your ego and you can have it all, but your EGO/Devil is your prison in which you have the power to not only escape but put under your true control. The temptation is to believe you are helpless and that only if you bow down and serve another that you will find freedom and peace. The temptation is you can live the way you want without consequences. The temptation is to accept yourself as you are and call yourself perfect when you know deep down living out of your ego is far from perfection. The temptation is to believe everything the media feeds you, to believe if you only have this or that you will finally be happy. The temptation is designed to keep you focused on everything that is outside of you, when everything there is has always been within.
YOU ARE MORE THAN YOUR EGO. You are more than you could ever believe. When Jesus said, “I am in the Father and the Father is in me” – He was stating a fact that is true for us all.
For God is everything, and Everything is God. You and every single person share something unique and wonderful in common. YOU ARE ALL THE CENTER OF EVERYTHING, AS AM I. The day begins and ends with each of us. We ARE the center of everything, we are IN THE FATHER AND THE FATHER IS IN US…
A good way to describe that is to look at the world outside of you. You are in this world, but also the world is IN YOU… Because the only way the world and everything in it is known, is by how it is processed within. Everything you see, is actually formed within, everything you hear, EVERYTHING OUTSIDE OF YOU is scientifically proven to be INSIDE OF YOU. And with out YOU nothing would ever exist.
I don’t know how many people are truly ready to see past the temptation of putting your faith outside of yourself. But I do know once you put your faith within and accept that you are so much more than who you think you, then you will know salvation and God in all God’s glory.
And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.
FIND THE TRUTH PEOPLE!
Thank you again for spending some time on my ladder! 🙂
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