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Mysteries of John, by Charles Fillmore, [1946], at

John: Chapter 11

Now a certain man was sick, Lazarus of Bethany, of the
village of Mary and her sister Martha. 2 And it was that
Mary who anointed the Lord with ointment, and wiped his
feet with her hair, whose brother Lazarus was sick. 3 The
sisters therefore sent unto him, saying, Lord, behold, he
whom thou lovest is sick. 4 But when Jesus heard it, he
said, This sickness is not unto death, but for the glory of
God, that the Son of God may be glorified thereby. 5 Now
Jesus loved Martha, and her sister, and Lazarus. 6 When
therefore he heard that he was sick, he abode at that time
two days in the place where he was. 7 Then after this he
saith to the disciples, Let us go into Judaea again. 8 The
disciples say unto him, Rabbi, the Jews were but now
seeking to stone thee; and goest thou thither again? 9
Jesus answered, Are there not twelve hours in the day? If a
man walk in the day, he stumbleth not, because he seeth the
light of this world. 10 But if a man walk in the night, he
stumbleth, because the light is not in him. 11 These things
spake he: and after this he saith unto them, Our friend
Lazarus is fallen asleep; but I go, that I may awake him
out of sleep. 12 The disciples therefore said unto him,
Lord, if he is fallen asleep, he will recover. 13 Now Jesus
had spoken of his death: but they thought that he spake of
taking rest in sleep. 14 Then Jesus therefore said unto
them plainly, Lazarus is dead. 15 And I am glad for your
sakes that I was not there, to the intent ye may believe;
nevertheless let us go unto him. 16 Thomas therefore, who
is called Didymus, said unto his fellow-disciples, Let us
also go, that we may die with him.

THE NAME Lazarus means "whom God helps." Metaphysically interpreted, Lazarus represents the spiritual strength that comes to man

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through his recognition of God as his supporting, sustaining power. When man fails to recognize God as the origin and support of his life, spiritual understanding becomes weak in him and he sinks into materiality. To all intents he is dead to the Truth of his own being. The devotional soul, Mary, and the practical soul, Martha, are sisters in this intellect, and although like all women they have faith in the Spirit, they allow themselves to fall under the thought of mortal law and believe in the reality of death. The whole world is under the hypnotism of this material belief, and it is making tombs for thousands every day.

Out of a torpid condition of soul like that of Lazarus the I AM (Jesus) calls forth the living Spirit of the Christ, and reawakens by one word the consciousness of true understanding in man and the quickened perception of his faculties.

The name Thomas means "twin." Spiritually considered, Thomas is understanding, whose twin is Matthew, the will. Matthew, metaphysical twin of Thomas, is not so described in the Scriptures; spiritually he is identified as the co-ordinating faculty. In a well-balanced mind understanding is followed by action.

Intellectual understanding assures us of the truth of our sense impressions. It says, "Seeing is believing." According to this dictum, if we should see written on a blackboard, "Two plus two equals six," we should be called on to accept as true a contradiction of the principles of mathematics.

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17 So when Jesus came, he found that he [Lazarus] had been
in the tomb four days already. 18 Now Bethany was nigh unto
Jerusalem, about fifteen furlongs off; 19 and many of the
Jews had come to Martha and Mary, to console them
concerning their brother. 20 Martha therefore, when she
heard that Jesus was coming, went and met him: but Mary
still sat in the house. 21 Martha therefore said unto
Jesus, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother had not
died. 22 And even now I know that, whatsoever thou shalt
ask of God, God will give thee. 23 Jesus saith unto her,
Thy brother shall rise again. 24 Martha saith unto him, I
know that he shall rise again in the resurrection at the
last day. 25 Jesus said unto her, I am the resurrection,
and the life: he that believeth on me, though he die, yet
shall he live; 26 and whosoever liveth and believeth on me
shall never die. Believest thou this? 27 She saith unto
him, Yea, Lord; I have believed that thou art the Christ,
the Son of God, even he that cometh into the world. 28 And
when she had said this, she went away, and called Mary her
sister secretly, saying, The Teacher is here, and calleth
thee. 29 And she, when she heard it, arose quickly, and
went unto him. 30 (Now Jesus was not yet come into the
village, but was still in the place where Martha met him.)
31 The Jews then who were with her in the house, and were
consoling her, when they saw Mary, that she rose up quickly
and went out, followed her, supposing that she was going
unto the tomb to weep there. 32 Mary therefore, when she
came where Jesus was, and saw him, fell down at his feet,
saying unto him, Lord, if thou hadst been here, my brother
had not died. 33 When Jesus therefore saw her weeping, and
the Jews also weeping who came with her, he groaned in the
spirit, and was troubled, 34 and said, Where have ye laid
him? They say unto him, Lord,

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come and see. 35 Jesus wept. 36 The Jews therefore said,
Behold how he loved him! 37 But some of them said, Could
not this man, who opened the eyes of him that was blind,
have caused that this man also should not die? 38 Jesus
therefore again groaning in himself cometh to the tomb. Now
it was a cave, and a stone lay against it. 39 Jesus saith,
Take ye away the stone. Martha, the sister of him that was
dead, saith unto him, Lord, by this time the body decayeth;
for he hath been dead four days. 40 Jesus saith unto her,
Said I not unto thee, that, if thou believedst, thou
shouldest see the glory of God? 41 So they took away the
stone. And Jesus lifted up his eyes, and said, Father, I
thank thee that thou heardest me. 42 And I knew that thou
hearest me always: but because of the multitude that
standeth around I said it, that they may believe that thou
didst send me. 43 And when he had thus spoken, he cried
with a loud voice, Lazarus, come forth. 44 He that was dead
came forth, bound hand and foot with grave-clothes; and his
face was bound about with a napkin. Jesus saith unto them,
Loose him, and let him go.

Jesus represents man in the regeneration; that is, man in the process of restoring his body to its natural condition, where it will live right on perpetually without old age, disease, or death. A necessary step in this process of body restoration is the quickening of the sleeping Lazarus, who represents the vitalizing energies in the subconsciousness that feed the body and give it the life force that renews its youth.

Jesus was at Bethany near Jerusalem. Metaphysically Jerusalem represents a point in consciousness where the spiritual energy of life is strong enough to vitalize adjacent body substance (Bethany, "house

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of figs"). Jesus vitalized and baptized His soul and body with spirit life when He denied the power of death over Lazarus and affirmed the resurrecting life. We can do the same thing when we do it in His name. Jesus' groaning and weeping represent the seemingly insurmountable conditions that are just before us.

We should ever remember that the youth we love so well never dies; it is merely asleep in the subconscious--Jesus said that Lazarus was not dead. People grow old because they let the youth idea fall asleep. This idea is not dead but is sleeping, and the understanding I AM (Jesus) goes to awaken it. This awakening of youthful energies is necessary to one in the regeneration. The body cannot be refined and made, like its Creator, eternal before all the thoughts necessary to its perpetuation are revived in it. Eternal youth is one of these God-given ideas that man loves. Jesus loved Lazarus.

The outer senses say that this vitalizing force of youth is dead in man, that it has been dead for so long that it has gone into dissolution, decay; but the keener knowledge of the spiritual man proclaims, "Our friend Lazarus is fallen asleep; but I . . . awake him out of sleep."

Bringing this sleeping life to outer consciousness is no easy task. Jesus groaned in spirit and was troubled at the prospect. The higher must enter into sympathy and love with the lower to bring about the awakening--"Jesus wept." But there must be more than sympathy and love--"Take ye away the stone." The "stone" that holds the sleeping life in the

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tomb of matter in subconsciousness is the belief in the permanency of present material laws. This "stone" must be rolled away through faith. The man who wants the inner life to spring forth must believe in the reality of omnipresent spiritual life and must exercise his faith by invoking in prayer the presence of the invisible but omnipresent God. This reveals to consciousness the glory of Spirit, and the soul has witness in itself of a power that it knew not.

In Spirit all things are fulfilled now. The moment a concept enters the mind, the thing conceived is consummated through the law that governs the action of ideas. The inventor mentally sees his machine doing the work designed, though he may be years short of making it do that work. The spiritual-minded take advantage of this law and affirm the completeness of this ideal, regardless of outer appearances. This stimulates the energy in the thought process and gives it power beyond estimate. This is the step that Jesus took when He lifted up His eyes and said: "Father, I thank thee that thou heardest me. And I knew that thou hearest me always." The sleeping youth (Lazarus) does not at once respond, but the prayer of thanksgiving that is now in action gives the assurance that calls it at the next step to the surface--"Lazarus, come forth."

Jesus "cried with a loud voice." This emphasizes the necessity of working strenuously to project the inner life to the surface. Beginners find it easy, under proper instruction, to quicken the various life centers in the body and co-ordinate them as a body

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battery that, under the direction of the will, throws a current of energy to any desired place. A time comes when the outer flesh must be vitalized with this inner life; then arises the necessity of using the "loud voice" as the propelling force. This is removing from the face the "napkin," which represents conscious intelligence made manifest.

Freedom from all trammels is necessary before the imprisoned life can find its natural channel in the constitution. "Loose him, and let him go" means unfettered life expressing itself in joyous freedom of Spirit. The flesh would take this vital flood and use it in the old way, put new wine into old bottles, but Spirit guides those who trust it, and leads them in righteous ways when they listen patiently to the inner guide.

This raising of Lazarus is performed every day by those who are putting on the new Christ body through the resurrected Christ life.

45 Many therefore of the Jews, who came to Mary and beheld
that which he did, believed on him. 46 But some of them
went away to the Pharisees, and told them the things which
Jesus had done.

Interpreted within ourselves, there are always the thought forces that believe the Truth and accept the so-called miracles of the Christ, but there are also those that question and resort to the Pharisees (the strict intellectual phase of mind) for their stamp of approval.

47 The chief priests therefore and the Pharisees

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gathered a council, and said, What do we? for this man
doeth many signs. 48 If we let him thus alone, all men will
believe on him: and the Romans will come and take away both
our place and our nation. 49 But a certain one of them,
Caiaphas, being high priest that year, said unto them, Ye
know nothing at all, 50 nor do ye take account that it is
expedient for you that one man should die for the people,
and that the whole nation perish not. 51 Now this he said
not of himself: but being high priest that year, he
prophesied that Jesus should die for the nation; 52 and not
for the nation only, but that he might also gather together
into one the children of God that are scattered abroad. 53
So from that day forth they took counsel that they might
put him to death.

In this instance the Pharisees represent a congregation of intellectual thought people called together to counsel with one another. The Romans symbolize the rule of the natural man. The intellectual Pharisee is always jealous of his religious rights and fearful of being robbed of his own. He observes the forms of religion but neglects the spirit. He does not understand the activities of the Christ Mind and therefore fears it.

Another tendency of the intellect is to question and argue back and forth. The high priest symbolizes the highest spiritual thought force in authority that has an inkling of Truth, and he perceives that the Christ will eventually give His life for the redemption of all. The narrow intellect, however, does not have the spiritual viewpoint and seeks to destroy the saving spiritual power.

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54 Jesus therefore walked no more openly among the Jews,
but departed thence into the country near to the
wilderness, into a city called Ephraim; and there he
tarried with the disciples. 55 Now the passover of the Jews
was at hand: and many went up to Jerusalem out of the
country before the passover, to purify themselves. 56 They
sought therefore for Jesus, and spake one with another, as
they stood in the temple, What think ye? That he will not
come to the feast? 57 Now the chief priests and the
Pharisees had given commandment, that, if any man knew
where he was, he should show it, that they might take him.

When a state of consciousness is not open to Truth, the Christ (in this Scripture symbolized by Jesus) withdraws to an inner sanctum (here symbolized by Ephraim, a name that means "doubly fruitful"), where closer union with the great divine source is found. Jesus therefore walked no more openly among the Jews.

The Feast of the Passover represents a passing from a lower state of consciousness to a higher. For the spiritual passover the devout always seek the city of peace (Jerusalem). No matter in what state of consciousness one may be functioning there is always that within which craves something better. The intellect, continuing to believe it is to be the highest authority, would kill out the Christ.

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Next: Chapter 12