Sunday, April 21, 2019

Urantia: Paper 189 section 4, Discovery of the Empty Tomb

This entire beginning is uncomfortable because it is not in Christian scripture. Nothing is recognizable until further down to paper 189:4.1 Skip down if you like. No offense taken.

Paper 189 is The Resurrection first, told in terms of activities of Universe beings that are not part of Christian teaching as given to us down through the ages as seen through the eyes of the Apostles and later codified by Christian officials into dogma. The names of orders of beings are mentioned and the Universe capitals are mentioned, the activities of specific Local Universe councils and other groups and individuals are described and their activities, and none of that can make sense without all the preceding descriptions that read so much like modern science fiction such as Dune, except a lot more intense. The book shatters into a thousand little bitty pieces, outrageously, and each thread is picked up again and neatly woven back in throughout two thousand pages and with no internal contradiction for its fabric used to cover this section. This is the spot where it all comes together, the Passion described in insane extravagant indulgent detail.

189:0.1 The chief of the archangels of this Super Universe is present on Earth. He summoned his council of the resurrection of the sleeping will creatures. They discussed possible techniques for restoring Jesus. They did this on their own without having been ordered. Finally, they decided there was nothing for them to do. The fragment of God that is the same for all people, the Thought Adjustor that lived inside Jesus when he lived, spoke to the associated groups of facilitators, saying,:

189:0.2 "Not one of you can do anything to assist your Creator-Father in the return to life. As a mortal of the realm he has experienced mortal death; as the Sovereign of a universe he still lives. The thing you observe is the mortal transit of Jesus of Nazareth from life in the flesh to life in the morontia. The spirit transit of this Jesus was completed at the time I separated myself from his personality and became your temporary director. Your Creator-Father has elected to pass through the whole of the experience of his mortal creatures, from birth on the material worlds, on through natural death and the resurrection of the morontia into the status of true spirit existence. A certain phase of this experience you are about to observe, but you may not participate in it. Those things which you ordinarily do for the creature, you may not do for the Creator. A Creator Son has within himself the power to bestow himself in the likeness of any of his created sons; he has within himself the power to lay down his observable life and to take it up again; and he has the power because of the direct command of the Paradise Father, and I know whereof I speak."

189:0.3 They all became anxiously expectant, all of them, from Gabriel down to the most humble cherubim. They saw the body of Jesus; they detected evidence of universe activity of their Sovereign; and not understanding such things, they waited patiently for things to develop.

Section 1 is the Morontia Transit. [From our point of view this would be becoming a spirit. From the spiritual point of view, this is halfway between physical and spiritual realities.]

189:1.1 Early Sunday morning seven unidentified Paradise personalities arrived on the scene and took positions around the tomb. Five minutes later intense vibrations of both material and morontia activities came from Joseph's tomb. Twelve minutes later the resurrected morontia form and personality of Jesus of Nazareth came out of the tomb.

189:1.2 Jesus' body was still in the tomb undisturbed, still in its sheet. The stone in front of the tomb was not disturbed, nor was the seal. The guards were still there unaware that anything happened. 

189:1.3 Mankind largely fails in seeing that matter is the skeleton of morontia, and both matter and morontia are the reflected shadow of spirit reality. Time is the moving image of eternity and space is the fleeting shadow of Paradise reality.

189:1.4 No creature or any universe personality had anything to do with this morontia resurrection of Jesus. On Friday he laid down his life and on Sunday morning he took it up again as morontia being. Everything about this transition happened right there in the tomb. The body of Jesus still wrapped in its linen.

189:1.5 No creature of the local universe participated. The seven personalities of Paradise surrounded the tomb but no-one saw them do anything. The moment Jesus emerged from the tomb in his new form, the seven Paradise personalities departed.


1) Jesus' material body was not part of the resurrected personality. His body remained in the tomb undisturbed. He came out of the tomb without moving the stones or breaking the seals.

2) He did not emerge as creator of the Universe. He was not in his form that he had before his human life.

3) He came out as all personalities do when resurrected from human to morontia form. 

189:1.10 Jesus came out of the tomb and delivered greetings to Universe beings and gave instructions about Universe affairs. He asked for the certification for his mortal transit, then spoke to the morontia creatures, saying, "Having finished my life in the flesh, I would tarry here for a short time in transition form that I may more fully know the life of my ascendant creatures and further reveal the will of my Farther in Paradise."

189:1.11 Jesus signaled his Personal Adjuster and all universe intelligences and sent them to their respective universe assignments. 

189:1.12 Jesus took an hour in contact with the morontia level creatures discussing the requirement for hanging out for awhile in morontia form. This hour-long discussion was interrupted twice by his desire to communicate with his former associates in the flesh as they came out of Jerusalem and poked around in the tomb. 

189:1.13 This is the transition of Jesus from human to morontia form. This is the beginning of the transition process. He did all this on his own without the usual assistance. His body is still there on the shelf undisturbed. The soldiers are still on guard, the seal is still intact around the stones. 

The second part is the Material Body of Jesus.

189:2.1 As resurrected Jesus spoke with the morontia personalities, the chief of the archangels of the resurrection asked Gabriel for the mortal body of Jesus. They wanted Jesus' mortal remains to apply accelerated time so they wouldn't have to bear watching it rot. They asked for a mandate giving them custody and empowering them to proceed with its immediate dissolution.

189:2.2 The archangel spokesman for the celestial hosts was given permission to dispose Jesus' body by whatever method they choose.

189:2.3 After getting permission the chief of archangels called his assistants together with other representative of all orders of celestial personalities and took possession of Jesus' physical body. It could not be removed from the tomb as the morontia form had been able to escape. With assistance of auxiliary morontia personalities, the morontia form can be made as the spirit so that it can become indifferent to ordinary matter, while at other times it can be discernible and contactable to material beings. 

189:2.4 As they got ready to remove the body of Jesus from the tomb for dignified disposal of nearly instantaneous dissolution, the secondary Earth midwayers were instructed to roll away the stones from the tomb entrance. The stone was like a huge millstone that rolled in a track cut into the rock so that it could be moved back and forth to open and close the tomb. In the dim light of morning when the Roman and Jewish guards saw the stone rolling apparently on it own accord with no-one seen pushing it, they were seized with fear and they panicked. They all fled from the tomb. The Jews ran to their homes and then reported back to the temple. The Romans ran to the fortress of Antonia and reported what they saw to the centurion. 

189:2.5 The Jewish leaders bribed both sets of guards to say they were overpowered by Jesus' followers who stole the body.

189:2.6 Christian belief in the resurrection of Jesus is based on the fact of an empty tomb. It was empty. But that is not the truth of the resurrection. The tomb really was empty when the first believers arrived, and that fact along with the undoubted resurrection of Jesus led to the formulation of a belief that is not true. The teaching that the material mortal body of Jesus raised from the grave. This shows that truth about spiritual realities and eternal values cannot alway be built by a combination of apparent facts even though individual facts are materially true. It does not follow that the association of a group of facts must necessarily lead to truthful spiritual conclusions. 

189:2.7 The tomb of Joseph was empty but not because the body of Jesus had been rehabilitated or resurrected, rather, because the celestial hosts were granted their request to give it unique dissolution: a return of the dust to dust without the delay of time and without the operation of ordinary visible process of decay.

189:2.8 The mortal remains of Jesus went through the same natural process of elemental disintegration as all human bodies except that this natural mode was accelerated to be nearly instantaneous. 

189:2.9 True evidences of the resurrection of Jesus are spiritual in nature, although corroborated by testimony of many people who met and recognized and communicated with Jesus in resurrected morontia form. Jesus became part of the personal experience of nearly one thousand human beings before he finally left Earth.

Section 3 is the Dispensational Resurrection.

189:3.1 The vast host of seraphim and cherubim concerned with the dispensation age prior to the dispensation age of Jesus all assembled, Gabriel announced the roll call of the planetary resurrection begins. 

[This is huge. This is the end of a dispensational age. Every person who had died during this age had slept as if time had not elapsed and all these beings will assist in their resurrection into morontia form all at once on another sphere in this morontia universe. Millions all at once. That would include Joseph, Jesus' father but not Mary, his mother.]

189:3.2 For the first time on Earth, the angels moved to the point of spiritual polarity. When Gabriel gave the signal, the voice of Gabriel flashed to first of the system worlds saying "Let the dead of Earth rise!" All of the people who had died since Adam and Eve appeared on first morontia sphere and the next instant the seraphic hosts departed. 

189:3.3 Although quite a lot of people that had personal seraphic guardians and others who achieved the requisite spiritual attainment had already gone onto the next morontia world during the ages since the times of Adam and Eve, and even though there had already been special and millennial resurrections on Earth, this was the third of the planetary roll calls, complete dispensational resurrections. The first was at the time of the arrival of the Planetary Prince [who failed by joining rebellion], the second during the time of Adam and Eve [who failed their mission of planetary uplifting]. This was the third, marking the mortal transit of Jesus.

189:3.4 The Personalized Adjuster of Jesus relinquished his authority over the celestial hosts and returned to the Universe capital to register the completion of the mortal transit of Jesus. All of the celestial host followed who were not required for duty on Earth.

189:3.5 This is the recital of events as viewed by the beings who saw them as they occurred apart from the limitations of partial human vision. 


Section 4 is the Discover of the Empty Tomb

Now the story shifts to comport with what we gather from scriptures. The whole rest of it is much more comfortable. It's recognizable. Although much more detailed. 

189:4.1 The ten apostles were at the home of Mark's parents resting on the same couches they used during the Last Supper. Except Thomas who left because he couldn't stand the sight of the others so despondent. They suffered from grief and shame more so than from doubt and despair.

189:4.2 David Zebedee and Joseph of Arimathea and about fourteen of the more prominent Jerusalem disciples were gathered at the home of Nicodemus. The women believers were gathered at the home of Joseph of Arimathea. The women did not know about the military guard on watch at the tomb. They did not know a second stone had been rolled in front of the first and that both stones were placed under the seal of Pilate.

189:4.3 At the first faint light of day, five women stepped out to the tomb with loads of embalming lotions and piles of linen bandages. They were intent on properly preparing the body of Jesus.

189: 4.4 These women were Mary Magdalene, Mary mother of the Alpheus twins, Salome mother of the Zebedee brothers, Joanna wife of Chuza, and Susanna daughter of Ezra of Alexandria.

189:4.5 As the women passed out of the Damascus gate, they encountered a number of soldiers fleeing in panic into the city and that caused them to pause for a few minutes but nothing happened so they went on.

189:4. They were surprised to see the stone rolled away because they were talking about who they would get to help them with that. They set down their loads and fearfully looked around. Mary Magdalene dared to step around the smaller stone and go into the tomb. The tomb was in Joseph's garden on the hillside on the eastern side of the road and it also faced toward the east. The barely risen sun allowed enough light for Mary to see that the body was gone but the bandages were still there. She cried in alarm and anguish. All the women were nervous and when Mary screamed they all took off running back to the house and they did not stop until they got to the Damascus gate. They got worried about leaving Mary behind. They went back to the tomb.

189:4.8 When they got to the tomb, Mary was even more shook up because she was left alone and Mary rushed up to them exclaiming, "He is not there. They've taken him away!" They all went inside the tomb to see for themselves. 

189:4.9 All five women sat outside the tomb and discussed the situation. It had not yet occurred to them that Jesus had been resurrected. They thought the body had been moved to another place. But they could not account for the orderly arrangement of bandages. 

189:4.10 As the women sat there they looked to one side and saw a silent motionless stranger. They were frightened again but Mary Magdalene rushed toward him and addressed him as if he were the garden caretaker. She said, "Where have you taken the Master? Where have they laid him? Tell us that we may go and get him." The stranger did not answer. Mary began to cry. Then Jesus spoke to them, saying, "Whom do you seek?" Mary said, "We seek for Jesus who was laid to rest in Joseph's tomb, but he is gone. Do you know where they have taken him?" Jesus said, "Did not this Jesus tell you even in Galilee, that he would die, but that he would rise again?" That startled the women. Jesus was changed so that they did not yet recognize him. As they were thinking about what he said, Jesus addressed the Magdalene in his familiar voice, "Mary." And when she heard her name spoken with well-known sympathy and affectionate greeting, she knew it was the voice of Jesus and she rushed and dropped to her knees at his feet exclaiming, "My Lord, and my Master!" And all of the other women recognized that it was Jesus who stood before them in glorified form and they all knelt before him. 

189:4.12 The people were able to see the morontia form of Jesus because of the special ministry of the transformers and the midway creatures along with a few morontia personalities that accompanied Jesus.

189:4.12 Mary tried to grab Jesus' feet. Jesus said, "Do not touch me, Mary, for I am not as you knew me before. In this form I will tarry with you for a season before I ascend to the Father. But go and tell my apostles that I have risen and that you have talked to me and be sure to include Peter.

189:4.13 The women ran back to the city after they recovered from the shock and amazement, to the home of Mark's parents where they told the ten apostles what happened. But the apostles did not believe them. They thought the women had a vision but Mary repeated what Jesus said. And when Peter heard his name he ran out of the upper chamber to get to the tomb as fast as he could to see things for himself. John went with him.

189:4.14 The women repeated what happened and what Jesus said but the apostles still did not belive them. 

Section 5 is Peter and John at the Tomb

189:5.1 As they ran to the tomb, Peter's thoughts went between fear and hope. He feared to meet Jesus but his hope was lifted by Mary saying Jesus mentioned him specifically. He was partially persuaded that Jesus was really alive. Peter recalled Jesus' promise to rise on the third day. As John ran out of the city he was filled with ecstatic joy and hope. He was nearly convinced the women really did see Jesus.

189:5.2 John outran Peter and waited at the tomb door and peered in to see it just as Mary described it. They sat down and pondered what all this means, but they could not clearly perceive what had happened. 

189:5.3 Peter thought the grave had been rifled and enemies had stolen the body. John thought the grave would not have been left so orderly. They went back in to examine the bandages more closely. They came out of the tomb again and found Mary Magdalene there crying again at the entrance. She did what Jesus told her to do but the apostles still did not believe her. She returned to the tomb with the hope of seeing Jesus again.

189:5.4 Mary lingered after Peter and John had gone. Jesus appeared again to her saying, "Don't doubt; have the courage to believe what you have seen and heard. Go back to my apostles and tell them again that I have risen, and that I will appear to them, and that presently I will go before them into Galilee as I promised." 

189:5.5 Mary raced back to Mark's parent's home and told the apostles she had talked with Jesus again but they would still not believe her. Peter and John returned and they stopped ridiculing and became filled with fear and apprehension.

This concludes paper 189

Paper 190 describes the Morontia Appearances of Jesus. 

I must say, this is the coolest, most spectacular most tender section of the book. Jesus appears a few times before he appears to his apostles. The women were ready to see him, but his apostles were not. Jesus wanted the apostles to be in the right frame of mind before he would appear to them. And that took some time. 

I love when he appears he says at each one, "Be not afraid for I have ... " then he always says something spectacular. Later, when people stop being afraid, he begins, "Peace be upon you." Just reading what he says to his believers makes your heart leap to your throat. It is the most sympathetic thing that I've encountered about these post-resurrection appearances. A fine movie could be made of just this segment. The whole time I'm going, yes, that does sound exactly like what he would say, as he is described. And it's no wonder why or how this message resonates so powerfully through the ages across cultures. People see in the scriptures what it takes this book to show me. Now I see how this message changes people permanently.

I love when Jesus appears to the Apostles he asks Thomas if he wants to put his finger in the hole in his hand and Thomas is too abashed to say "sure, bring it." He shamefully hangs his head for having doubted Jesus would be resurrected and now here's the proof and Thomas just can't even deal with it.

I love when it's pointed out in 190:3.2 that of the first five appearances of Jesus, Mary Magdalene had seen four. She is an awesome woman.

The appearance before the two brothers on the road is wonderful. Such a fantastic story. One brother sort of believed in the teaching of Jesus and the other one didn't. The book puts the reader in this scene. 

These brothers were not disciples. But they were not random either. 

They lived seven miles west of Jerusalem and they spent Passover week in Jerusalem going to sacrifices, ceremonials and feasts. The elder brother was a partial believer and had been cast out of the synagogue. His younger brother was not a believer, although he was intrigued. 

They were walking along early afternoon three miles out of Jerusalem trudging along the road of Emmaus speaking earnestly about Jesus and his teaching and his work, and especially about the tomb being empty and about women having actually spoken to him. The older brother half believed the reports and the younger bother thought it was all nonsense. While they walked along the seventh morontia manifestation of Jesus came up beside them. 

After a moment of walking together Jesus said, "What were you guys talking about when I came upon you?" They stopped and looked at Jesus a bit sadly, and the older one said, "Can it be that you travel in Jerusalem and don't know the things that happened just now?" Jesus asked, "What things?" The senior brother answered, "If you don't know about these things then you are the only one in Jerusalem who has not heard the rumors about Jesus of Nazareth, who was a prophet mighty in word and in deed before God and all the people. The chief priests and our rulers delivered him up to the Romans and demanded that they crucify him. Now many of us had hope that it was he who would deliver Israel from the yoke of the gentiles. But that is not all. It is now the third day since he was crucified, and certain women have today amazed us by declaring that very early this morning they went to his tomb and found it empty. And these women insist that they talked with this man. They maintain that he has risen from the dead. And when the women reported this to the men, two of his apostles ran to the tomb and likewise found it empty" Here the younger brother interrupted, "but they did not see Jesus." 

They walked along. Jesus said to them, "How slow you are to comprehend the truth! When you tell me that it is about the teachings and work of this man that you have your discussions, then may I enlighten you since I am more than familiar with these teachings. Do you not remember that this Jesus always taught that his kingdom was not of this world, and that all men, being the sons of God, should find liberty and freedom in the spiritual joy of the fellowship of the brotherhood of loving service in this new kingdom of the truth of the heavenly Father's love? Do you not recall how this Son of Man proclaimed the salvation of God for all men, ministering to the sick and afflicted and setting free those who were bound by fear and enslaved by evil? Do you not know that this man of Nazareth told his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem, be delivered up to his enemies, who would put him to death, and that he would arise on the third day? Have not you been told all this? And have you never read in the Scriptures concerning this day of salvation for Jew and gentile, where it says that in him shall all the families of the earth be blessed; that he will hear the cry of the needy and save the souls of the poor who seek him; that all nations shall call him blessed? That such a Deliverer shall be as the shadow of a great rock in a weary land. That he will feed the flock like a true shepherd, gathering the lambs in his arms and tenderly carrying them in his bosom. That he will open the eyes of the spiritually blind and bring the prisoners of despair out into full liberty and light; that all who sit in darkness shall see the great light of eternal salvation. That he will bind up the brokenhearted, proclaim liberty to the captives of sin, and open up the prison to those who are enslaved by fear and bound by evil. That he will comfort those who mourn and bestow upon them the joy of salvation in the place of sorrow and heaviness. That he shall be the desire of all nations and the everlasting joy of those who seek righteousness. That this Son of truth and righteousness shall rise upon the world with healing light and saving power; even that he will save his people from their sins; that he will really seek and save those who are lost. That he will not destroy the weak but minister salvation to all who hunger and thirst for righteousness. That those who believe in him shall have eternal life. That he will pour out his spirit upon all flesh, and that this Spirit of Truth shall be in each believer a well of water, springing up into everlasting life. Did you not understand how great was the gospel of the kingdom which this man delivered to you? Do you not perceive how great a salvation has come upon you?”

They got to the village. The two men hadn't spoken a word since Jesus began to teach. They arrived at their front door and invited Jesus in. They sat down to eat. They gave Jesus the bread to bless and as he began to break the bread and hand it to them they suddenly realized this is Jesus Himself, and when the eldest brother said, "It is the Master ...," the morontia Jesus vanished from their sight. 

They were stunned. "No wonder our hearts burned within us as he spoke to us while we walked." 

They couldn't eat. They were too excited. They rushed from their house and ran back to Jerusalem to spread the good news of the resurrection.

Later that night just before Jesus appeared to the ten apostles, these two excited brothers broke into the apostles in the upper chamber saying they had seen Jesus and talked with him. They told the apostles all that Jesus had said to them, and how they didn't discern who he was until the time of breaking the bread. 

And much much more. This is only one portion. One appearance. Each appearance of Jesus after the resurrection gets this same treatment with fine touches of insight throughout. Jesus appears to his followers but never to his enemies. He sends word to groups telling them to anticipate his appearance, so he shows up to groups expecting him in Bethany and Sychar, in Alexandria and to a group of Greeks. He makes a Phoenician appearance to a group of believers. As the appearances go on and Jesus develops in his morontia form as all ascendent creatures do, these morontia appearances become increasingly difficult to pull off. Then the later sections discuss what all this means. 


edutcher said...

Scripture was a smorgasbord back then.

Consider the Gospel of Judas (I love it when the bad guy joins the good guys).

XRay said...

You ever hear of Elizabeth Claire Prophet?

Chip Ahoy said...

She had a t.v. show. I heard of her but didn't follow along.

XRay said...

Saved yourself a lot of time. My friend, bless his soul, insisted I listen. I never liked hurting his feelings, as he was a good man. Just misguided on occasion.

XRay said...

She was kinda Urantiaish, if you get my drift. My friend was also a Rosicrucian. Just make it sound mysterious, he'd be all in.