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The Reappearance of the Christ - Chapter III - World Expectancy
It is essential that today there should be a measure of fuller knowledge concerning the "center where the will of God is known." The public should possess some understanding of this highest spiritual center to which - if we believe the Gospel story - Christ Himself was always attentive. Frequently we read in The New Testament that "the Father spoke to Him" or that "He heard a Voice," unheard by others, or that the words were heard, "this is my beloved Son." Several times, we read, the seal of affirmation (as it is spiritually called) was given to Him. Only the Father, the planetary Logos, the "One in Whom we live and move and have our being" (Acts XVII, 28.), the Lord of the World, the Ancient of Days (Dan., VII, 9.) can speak this final affirmative word. There are, as well we know, five crises or initiations which concern the Master Jesus - the Birth at Bethlehem, the Baptism, the Transfiguration, the Crucifixion and the Resurrection - but lying behind this obvious and practical teaching, lies an undercurrent or thought of something much higher [40] and of greater importance - the affirmative Voice of the Father, recognizing that which the Christ has done.

When Christ completes the work during the next two thousand years which He inaugurated two thousand years ago, that affirmative Voice will surely again be heard and divine recognition of His coming will be accorded. Then the Christ will take that stupendous initiation of which we know nothing except that two divine aspects will blend and fuse in Him (love-wisdom in full manifestation, motivated by divine will or power). Then the Buddha and the Christ will together pass before the Father, the Lord of the World, will together see the glory of the Lord and eventually pass to higher service of a nature and a caliber unknown to us.

I write here in no fanatical or Adventist spirit; I speak not as a speculative theologian or an exponent of one phase of religious, wishful thinking. I speak because many know that the time is ripe and that the appeal of simple, faithful hearts has penetrated to the highest spiritual sphere and set in motion energies and forces which cannot now be stopped. The invocative cry of distressed humanity is today of such a volume and sound that - united to the wisdom and the knowledge of the Spiritual Hierarchy - it has given rise to certain activities in the Father's House. These will result in the glory of God, in the transformation of the divine will-to-good into human goodwill, and resultant peace on Earth.

A new chapter in the great book of spiritual living is about to be written; a new expansion of consciousness is an imminent happening; a fresh recognition of divine attentiveness is now possible to humanity and a revealing expectancy will prove the accuracy of the Biblical statement, "every eye shall see Him." (Rev., I, 7.) The religious livingness or spiritual history of mankind can be [41] summarized for us by a series of recognitions - recognition of Those Who, down the ages, have constituted the Apostolic Succession, culminating for us in the great religious leaders who have come out among us since 700 B.C. and founded the great modern world faiths, and - above all else - in the Christ Himself Who embodied the perfection of God Immanent, plus awareness of God Transcendent; recognition of those major spiritual concepts of love, life and relationship which have hovered ever in the background of man's thinking and which are now on the verge of right expression; recognition of the true brotherhood of man, based on the one divine life, working through the one soul and expressing itself through the one humanity; recognition, therefore, of relationship both to the divine life throughout the world and to mankind itself. It is this developing spiritual attitude which will lead to right human relations and eventual world peace.

Today, another recognition is becoming possible. It is the recognition everywhere of the imminent return of Christ (if such a phrase can be true of someone Who has never left us!) and of the new spiritual opportunities which this event will make possible.

The basis for this recognition lies in the deep seated conviction, innate in the human consciousness, that some great Teacher, some Savior, Revealer, Lawgiver or divine Representative must come forth from the world of spiritual realities, because of human need and human demand. Always down the centuries, at the hour of man's greatest need and in response to his voiced demand, a divine Son of God has come forth and under many different names. Then the Christ came and apparently left us, with His work unfinished and His vision for mankind not yet consummated. For two thousand years it has seemed as if all His work had been blocked, [42] frustrated, and of no avail, for the growth of the churches during the centuries is no guarantee of the spiritual success at which He aimed. It needed more than theological interpretations and the numerical growth of the world religions (including Christianity and Buddhism) to prove His world mission successfully carried forward. It all seemed impossible, necessitating three conditions; under these a test of His work could be attempted; today these three conditions are proven facts. First, as we have seen, a general planetary condition which has unfortunately (owing to man's selfishness) proved to be so catastrophic in nature that humanity has been forced to recognize the cause and source of the disaster; secondly, a spiritual awakening which would have its impulse in the deepest depths of man's consciousness and such is the case today as a result of the World War (1914-1945); thirdly, a steadily mounting invocative cry, prayer or demand, directed toward high spiritual sources, no matter by what name such sources may be called.

Today, these three conditions have been fulfiled and humanity faces renewed opportunity. The disaster which has overtaken mankind is universal and widespread; no one has escaped and all men are involved in some way or another - physically, economically or socially. The spiritual awakening of men everywhere (within or without the world faiths, and largely outside of them) is general and complete and a turning to God is to be seen on every hand. Finally, these two causes have aroused - as never before - the invocative cry of humanity; it is clearer, purer and more selfless than at any other time in human history because it is based on clearer thinking and a common distress. True religion is again emerging in the hearts of men in every land; this recognition of a divine hope and background may possibly take people back [43] into the church and into the world faiths, but it will most certainly take them back to God.

Religion is the name, surely, which we give to the invocative appeal of humanity which leads to the evocative response of the Spirit of God. This Spirit works in every human heart and in all groups. It works also through the Spiritual Hierarchy of the planet. It impels the Head of the Hierarchy, the Christ, to take action and the action which He is taking will lead to His return with His disciples.

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