21 March | Sacred Readings v1

<Jesus said,> “If you do not fast as regards the world, you will not find the Kingdom. If you do not observe the Sabbath as a Sabbath, you will not see the Father.”

Jesus said, “I took my place in the midst of the world, and I appeared to them in the flesh. I found all of them intoxicated; I found none of them thirsty. And My soul became afflicted for the sons of men, because they are blind in their hearts and do not have sight; for empty they came into the world, and empty too they seek to leave the world. But for the moment they are intoxicated. When they shake off their wine, then they will repent.”

The Gospel of Thomas


21

The grandest forms of active force
From Tao come, their only source.
Who can of Tao the nature tell?
Our sight it flies, our touch as well.
Eluding sight, eluding touch,
The forms of things all in it crouch;
Eluding touch, eluding sight,
There are their semblances, all right.
Profound it is, dark and obscure;
Things’ essences all there endure.
Those essences the truth enfold
Of what, when seen, shall then be told.
Now it is so; ’twas so of old.
Its name–what passes not away;
So, in their beautiful array,
Things form and never know decay.

Tao Te Ching


The general teaching in the Early Church on the doctrine of the Atonement was that Christ, as the Representative of Humanity, faced and conquered Satan, the representative of the Dark Powers, who held humanity in bondage, wrested his captive from him, and set him free. Slowly, as Christian teachers lost touch with spiritual truths, and they reflected their own increasing intolerance and harshness on the pure and loving Father of the teachings of the Christ, they represented Him as angry with man, and the Christ was made to save man from the wrath of God instead of from the bondage of evil. Then legal phrases intruded, still further materialising the once spiritual idea, and the “scheme of redemption” was forensically outlined.

Annie Besant