Urantia Book 46. The life of Jesus of Nazareth, Joshua ben Joseph, Christ Michael, the Sovereign God of Nebadon. One evening John asked why so many apparently innocent people suffered diseases and many afflictions. In answering John’s question, the Master said: “My son, you do not comprehend the meaning of adversity or the mission of suffering. Have you not read the book of Job? Do you not recall how this wonderful parable begins with the recital of the material prosperity of the Lord’s servant, Job? According to tradition, prosperity was evidence of divine favor. But such a tradition is wrong; prosperity is not really evidence of divine favor. The Father loves the poor as much as the rich. Job was stripped of everything; his animals died, his family died, and he sat in ashes scratching his boils. He had three friends who came to encourage him. The first was Eliphaz, who said: “Remember that it is the wicked, not the righteous, who suffer. You must deserve this punishment, else you would not be afflicted. You well know that no man can be righteous in God’s sight. The Lord is only chastising you for your own good.” This interpretation of Job’s suffering was certainly not encouraging and brought him no comfort. And the counsel of his second friend, Bildad, was even more depressing, although it was theologically sound. Bildad said: “God cannot be unjust. Your children must have been sinners, since they perished; you must be in error, else you would not be so afflicted. And if you are really righteous, God will certainly deliver you from your afflictions. You should know from the history of God’s dealings with men that the Almighty destroys only the wicked.” Job answered: “I well know that God does not hear my cry for help. How can God be just and so utterly disregard my innocence? I am learning that I can get no satisfaction from appealing to the Almighty. Cannot you discern that God tolerates the persecution of the good by the evil? And why did God create me just to suffer in this miserable fashion?” Jesus continued: “Who can challenge the attitude of Job in view of the counsel of his friends and the erroneous ideas of God which occupied his own mind? Do you not see that Job longed for a human God, that he longed to commune with a divine being who knows man’s mortal estate and understands that the just must often suffer in innocence as a part of this life in the long Paradise ascent? Wherefore has the Son of Man come forth from the Father to live such a life in the flesh that he will be able to comfort and succor all those who henceforth be called upon to endure the afflictions of Job.” Zophar, Job’s third friend, depressed him further when he said: “You are foolish to claim to be righteous, seeing that you are thus afflicted. But I admit that it is impossible to comprehend God’s ways. Perhaps there is some hidden purpose in all your miseries.” After Job had heard all his friends, he appealed directly to God for help. There was a second conversation with each friend, but Eliphaz became even more accusing, Bildad became indignant at Job’s contempt for them, and Zophar merely repeated his melancholy advice. His friends’ lack of empathy drove Job to God. After a brief conflict between faith and doubt, Job ascends “to new heights of love and courage, and his enlightened soul cries ‘My Vindicator Lives!’.” Jesus told John that our mission on earth is to know the love of God and the mercy of the Father in heaven; to know him as a personal God. Jesus repeated that God does not willingly afflict the children of humans. Humans suffer from the accidents of time and the evils of an immature physical existence. Humans suffer from the inexorable consequences of sin–transgression of the laws of life and light. Study the book of Job just to discover how many wrong ideas of God even good men may honestly entertain; and then note how even the painfully afflicted Job found the God of comfort and salvation in spite of such erroneous teaching. At last his faith pierced the clouds of suffering to discern the light of life pouring forth from the Father as healing mercy and everlasting righteousness. John’s life was changed by this discourse, and after Jesus’ ascension, he taught it to the other apostles (148.6.1-12).************************************** On the second Sabbath before the second preaching tour of Galilee, Jesus spoke at the Capernaum synagogue on the ‘Joys of Righteous Living.’ After he finished, a motley crew of disabled, sick, maimed and halt accosted him. The spies, as usual, were in the crowd, ready to spring. The leader of the spies induced a man with a withered hand to come forth and ask if it would be lawful to be healed on the Sabbath. Jesus realized that the man had been sent forward by a spy, so he asked the man if it would be lawful to pull a sheep out of a pit on the Sabbath. The man agreed that it would be lawful to rescue a sheep on the Sabbath. Then said Jesus to the crowd: “I know why you have sent this man into my presence. You would find cause for offence in me if you could tempt me to show mercy on the Sabbath day. You have agreed that it is lawful to exhibit loving-kindness on the Sabbath day not only to animals, but also to men. How much more valuable is a man than a sheep! I proclaim that it is lawful to do good to people on the Sabbath day.” And then he said to the man: “Stand up here by my side so all can see you, and if you have the faith to be healed, I bid you stretch out your hand.” The man’s hand was healed. The people were about to turn on the spies, but Jesus prevented them from doing harm. The spies went angrily to Herod and complained about Jesus, but Herod blew them off. This is the first case of a miracle performed by Jesus in response to a challenge by his enemies (148.7.1-4).***** The last week at the Zebedee home was quite eventful. The Jerusalem spies were found to be divided in their attitudes toward Jesus. Half of them actually were devoted to him! Meanwhile, at Jerusalem, Abraham, an influential member of the Sanhedrin, publicly espoused the teachings of Jesus and was baptized in the pool of Siloam by Abner. All Jerusalem was agog over this event, and messengers were sent immediately to recall the six spies. And then the Greek philosopher who had converted came back with certain wealthy Jews to invite Jesus to establish a school of philosophy and religion in Alexandria, as well as an infirmary for the sick. Jesus courteously declined the invitation. Next, a trance prophet arrived from Baghdad named Kirmeth. He created such a disturbance that David Zebedee and a few stalwarts took him out in the lake and dunked him until he promised to leave. He soon left with nobody the wiser. Next, a Phoenician woman named Beth-Marion went insane and almost drowned trying to walk on water. She was sent home. The Jerusalem convert, Abraham, gave all his possessions to the apostolic treasury, and this enabled them to send out the 100 newly trained evangelists. Andrew had already announced the closing of the camp, and most of them were either going home or following the evangelists into Galilee (148.8.1-5)

One thought on “Urantia Book 46. The life of Jesus of Nazareth, Joshua ben Joseph, Christ Michael, the Sovereign God of Nebadon. One evening John asked why so many apparently innocent people suffered diseases and many afflictions. In answering John’s question, the Master said: “My son, you do not comprehend the meaning of adversity or the mission of suffering. Have you not read the book of Job? Do you not recall how this wonderful parable begins with the recital of the material prosperity of the Lord’s servant, Job? According to tradition, prosperity was evidence of divine favor. But such a tradition is wrong; prosperity is not really evidence of divine favor. The Father loves the poor as much as the rich. Job was stripped of everything; his animals died, his family died, and he sat in ashes scratching his boils. He had three friends who came to encourage him. The first was Eliphaz, who said: “Remember that it is the wicked, not the righteous, who suffer. You must deserve this punishment, else you would not be afflicted. You well know that no man can be righteous in God’s sight. The Lord is only chastising you for your own good.” This interpretation of Job’s suffering was certainly not encouraging and brought him no comfort. And the counsel of his second friend, Bildad, was even more depressing, although it was theologically sound. Bildad said: “God cannot be unjust. Your children must have been sinners, since they perished; you must be in error, else you would not be so afflicted. And if you are really righteous, God will certainly deliver you from your afflictions. You should know from the history of God’s dealings with men that the Almighty destroys only the wicked.” Job answered: “I well know that God does not hear my cry for help. How can God be just and so utterly disregard my innocence? I am learning that I can get no satisfaction from appealing to the Almighty. Cannot you discern that God tolerates the persecution of the good by the evil? And why did God create me just to suffer in this miserable fashion?” Jesus continued: “Who can challenge the attitude of Job in view of the counsel of his friends and the erroneous ideas of God which occupied his own mind? Do you not see that Job longed for a human God, that he longed to commune with a divine being who knows man’s mortal estate and understands that the just must often suffer in innocence as a part of this life in the long Paradise ascent? Wherefore has the Son of Man come forth from the Father to live such a life in the flesh that he will be able to comfort and succor all those who henceforth be called upon to endure the afflictions of Job.” Zophar, Job’s third friend, depressed him further when he said: “You are foolish to claim to be righteous, seeing that you are thus afflicted. But I admit that it is impossible to comprehend God’s ways. Perhaps there is some hidden purpose in all your miseries.” After Job had heard all his friends, he appealed directly to God for help. There was a second conversation with each friend, but Eliphaz became even more accusing, Bildad became indignant at Job’s contempt for them, and Zophar merely repeated his melancholy advice. His friends’ lack of empathy drove Job to God. After a brief conflict between faith and doubt, Job ascends “to new heights of love and courage, and his enlightened soul cries ‘My Vindicator Lives!’.” Jesus told John that our mission on earth is to know the love of God and the mercy of the Father in heaven; to know him as a personal God. Jesus repeated that God does not willingly afflict the children of humans. Humans suffer from the accidents of time and the evils of an immature physical existence. Humans suffer from the inexorable consequences of sin–transgression of the laws of life and light. Study the book of Job just to discover how many wrong ideas of God even good men may honestly entertain; and then note how even the painfully afflicted Job found the God of comfort and salvation in spite of such erroneous teaching. At last his faith pierced the clouds of suffering to discern the light of life pouring forth from the Father as healing mercy and everlasting righteousness. John’s life was changed by this discourse, and after Jesus’ ascension, he taught it to the other apostles (148.6.1-12).************************************** On the second Sabbath before the second preaching tour of Galilee, Jesus spoke at the Capernaum synagogue on the ‘Joys of Righteous Living.’ After he finished, a motley crew of disabled, sick, maimed and halt accosted him. The spies, as usual, were in the crowd, ready to spring. The leader of the spies induced a man with a withered hand to come forth and ask if it would be lawful to be healed on the Sabbath. Jesus realized that the man had been sent forward by a spy, so he asked the man if it would be lawful to pull a sheep out of a pit on the Sabbath. The man agreed that it would be lawful to rescue a sheep on the Sabbath. Then said Jesus to the crowd: “I know why you have sent this man into my presence. You would find cause for offence in me if you could tempt me to show mercy on the Sabbath day. You have agreed that it is lawful to exhibit loving-kindness on the Sabbath day not only to animals, but also to men. How much more valuable is a man than a sheep! I proclaim that it is lawful to do good to people on the Sabbath day.” And then he said to the man: “Stand up here by my side so all can see you, and if you have the faith to be healed, I bid you stretch out your hand.” The man’s hand was healed. The people were about to turn on the spies, but Jesus prevented them from doing harm. The spies went angrily to Herod and complained about Jesus, but Herod blew them off. This is the first case of a miracle performed by Jesus in response to a challenge by his enemies (148.7.1-4).***** The last week at the Zebedee home was quite eventful. The Jerusalem spies were found to be divided in their attitudes toward Jesus. Half of them actually were devoted to him! Meanwhile, at Jerusalem, Abraham, an influential member of the Sanhedrin, publicly espoused the teachings of Jesus and was baptized in the pool of Siloam by Abner. All Jerusalem was agog over this event, and messengers were sent immediately to recall the six spies. And then the Greek philosopher who had converted came back with certain wealthy Jews to invite Jesus to establish a school of philosophy and religion in Alexandria, as well as an infirmary for the sick. Jesus courteously declined the invitation. Next, a trance prophet arrived from Baghdad named Kirmeth. He created such a disturbance that David Zebedee and a few stalwarts took him out in the lake and dunked him until he promised to leave. He soon left with nobody the wiser. Next, a Phoenician woman named Beth-Marion went insane and almost drowned trying to walk on water. She was sent home. The Jerusalem convert, Abraham, gave all his possessions to the apostolic treasury, and this enabled them to send out the 100 newly trained evangelists. Andrew had already announced the closing of the camp, and most of them were either going home or following the evangelists into Galilee (148.8.1-5)

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