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In all His glory
by Rev. Howard Ray Carey

'When Christ comes He won't need the media, for He is coming in all His glory.'' This bristling statement was practically hurled at Benjamin Creme by a television interviewer in Los Angeles. Let us ponder on that phrase: ''In all His glory.''

What a fascinating illustration that a great truth can be uttered with correct words but with complete misunderstanding. Certainly we know that the World Teacher has indeed come in all His glory. But that glory is something far different from what that dogma-bound interviewer imagines.

How ironic that 'His glory' is seen as the power of violent destruction, instead of the healing, transforming power of love. But humanity has for such long ages indulged in so much destructive violence, is it any wonder that that great power is equated with violent destruction? My fundamentalist brother (who has long since made his transition to the inner planes of life) used to say that Christ came the first time in weakness; but that He would come the next time in power. That idea was, of course, not original with my kind and deeply devotional sibling.

Like so many others he merely absorbed it from the dogmatic leaders of his fundamentalist church. Yes, indeed, in the thought of millions the idea of allowing oneself to be nailed to a Roman cross is unmistakably a sign of weakness, while from that point of view the expectation that Christ is to come again ''to slay the wicked with the breath of His mouth'' would constitute His coming with great power. This demonstrates, does it not, how completely distorted truth can become, and in this case has become, in the minds of so many.

Not long before the crucifixion in Jerusalem, the World Teacher assured His disciples (and us):

  • ''Be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.'' (John 16:33)

Of course He was speaking of a power far greater than the potency of any destructive thrust. He was pointing out to us a great truth, that the power which overcomes violence is that of love and wisdom. Yet in spite of His teaching and example it is evident that much of the world has yet to discover that the power to heal, to lift, to unite, to bring justice and peace is a power far greater than any destructive violence.

Perhaps one reason this is not more fully comprehended is that this constructive, healing power of redemptive love usually works quietly and progressively from within, while destruction typically comes with a sudden bang. A large and beautiful building, which may have taken many years to construct, can now be destroyed in seconds. Is it any wonder that those who look only at outer appearances equate destruction and violence with power? But let us look at the results. Violent destruction leaves devastation and ruin; the power of loving wisdom results in justice, sharing, harmony and peace.

Religion is intended to be an instrument of love and wisdom, helping to bring with it all that works toward peace and brotherhood. Hence it seems ironic that in so many of its expressions (not all, thank God, but too many) it yields to the old and outgrown thought-forms of destruction as the great power. A Washington-based newsletter calls our attention to the fact that a minister in California has asked the members of his congregation to pray for the death of one of the members of the U.S. Supreme Court. Why such a request? Because the Justice opposed something the church believes important. And a newsletter which has just arrived in my mail from a minister in the state of Arizona states: ''There is an eternity, and we will spend it either with Jesus or with Satan.'' As a fellow Protestant minister I have the impulse to cringe at such dungeon thinking. Religion purports to save humanity. But in some of its expressions it needs to be saved from itself and its blindness.

In the June 1984 issue of Share International Benjamin Creme's Master says:

  • ''So mystical has been the view of the Christ presented down the centuries by the churches that many fear His judgment and omnipotent power; they await Him as God come to punish the wicked and reward the faithful. It is sadly to be regretted that such a distorted vision of the Christ should so have permeated human consciousness. No such being exists...
  • "Let us understand the nature of the task which He has set Himself. To establish in our midst the fact of God, has He come. To recreate the Divine Mysteries, is He here. To teach men how to love, and love again, is He among us. To establish man's brotherhood does He walk the earth once more. To keep faith with the Father and with man does He accept this burden. To usher in the new age has He returned. To consolidate the treasure of the past, to inspire the marvels of the future, to glorify God and man has He descended from His high mountain.''

This helps to put His nature, His power and Plan into perspective. When this World Teacher said long ago in Palestine, ''I have overcome the world,'' He was speaking of something already accomplished on the high spiritual planes within. The expression of that affirmation here in the physical world, much nearer now than ever before, awaits the great Day of Declaration, plus some subsequent years for the implementation of the Plan of justice and sharing, love and brotherhood.

Yes, the World Teacher has indeed come in all His glory. And that glory of love and brotherhood will proceed to melt away the old thought-form of destructive violence as the real power in our world. And let us not forget that we have a vital part to play in all this. For to the extent that we become His disciples we thereby become embodiments of His great power of love. What joy it brings to know this, and thus to live and work under His direction and that of the Spiritual Hierarchy.

This article is a chapter from The Joy of Christ's Coming This book by the late Rev. Howard Ray Carey was published by Share International Foundation in 1988. It is not currently available in hard copy form. Copyright © Share International Foundation.  Biblical quotations are taken from the Revised Standard version unless otherwise indicated. 

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First published April 1999, Last modified: 15-Oct-2005