Greetings and good morning, brothers and sisters. This is Dr. James Perry continuing with our series
where we seek to explore the deeper meanings of our relationship with Jesus Christ. Over the years,
the heavenly Father has revealed many revelations of spiritual truth to me, and I want to share them
with you. This morning we ponder the problem of recognizing the Father's spirit.
And now, sit back and listen to today's message.
The Problem of Recognizing the Father's Spirit
Jesus said, "Verily, verily, I say unto thee, except a man be born again, he cannot see the
Kingdom of God" John Chapter 3, Verse 3.
Brothers and sisters, each day we experience the presence of the divine self, but lack of recognition
and cooperation rob of us of the joy of consciously knowing what a great gift the heavenly Father
has given us. He has given us a part of himself to be in us, to be with us, to guide us, to love us, to
be one with us. And though we acknowledge that we are beset by countless recurring material
problems that clamor for our attention and distract us, being able to recognize the divine spirit will
help us by illuminating the true meaning of all this difficult uphill struggle.
First we shall examine material reality. It is subject to our five senses of smell, touch, sight, hearing,
and taste. These senses verify the material things that we are dealing with and allow us to manipulate
that reality. These things appear outside of us and are distinct from the self though we experience
their meaning on the inside. Without the five senses, we would be handicapped as some of our
brothers and sisters are who lack some of these specialized senses. They have learned to compensate
and adapt and adjust for the one or the ones that are absent.
Next we shall move to the inside and examine emotional realities, which are unique. They can come
into existence in response to an external or internal reality. Emotional realities are different from
material reality, in that whereas material realities are discrete and concrete, emotional realities are
feelings. Emotional realities range from fear through human love, that selfish regard for another
person. Emotional realities cover all events ranging from the purely material to the spiritual,
including our thoughts. Thus a thought that is interpreted as a loss, emotion can cause the feeling of
sadness and depression. Likewise with an experience that is interpreted as a success, emotion can
cause the feeling of joy and jubilation. Sometimes the emotions remain long after the experience has
passed, but most of the time they are fleeting. Even though emotional reality colors experiences, they
are not the experience itself. Hence, there may be an emotional reaction to a spiritual reaction, but
they reaction is not the spiritual experience. Emotional realities stimulate us to act or sometimes
inhibit our actions such as in depression or fear.
Now we consider intellectual realities, which are factual meanings of what we experience, the realm
of ideas, be they material, emotional, moral, or spiritual. These are the accumulations of knowledge
that allow us to intelligently interact with our environment, external or internal. The beauty of
intellectual knowledge is its symmetry, its logic, its manipulative qualities from which more
knowledge is derived. Intellectual knowledge occurs on the mind level, a reality different from
material and emotional reality. And it is this state of mind that we try to obtain when we want an
objective opinion on something. There are many ways that we try to arrive at a purely objective
opinion, but mainly we try to create a condition where the emotional response to this knowledge is
minimal, such as serving on a jury. We minimize the emotional reaction to this kind of knowledge
by insuring the person serving in this capacity has no familiar association with the person whose
innocence or guilt is being determined.
Leaving the realm of ideas, we move on to the level of moral reality, the reality of obligation. It is
the realm where reason defines our relationship to one another and the responsibilities that stem
therefrom. This realm is entirely different from the previous levels of reality and is not generally
recognized as being very important. Some have gone so far as to deny its existence. But its violations
carry with them certain penalties. Nevertheless, this reality of obligation has laws governing it just
as all the others. The ability to be reliable and dependable, the ability and willingness to assume
responsibility is the essential pre-qualification that make possible the spiritual experience. The moral
nature of man makes possible the divine spirit indwelling. We are all familiar with this sense of
obligation, even though we don't always live up to the spirit of it. The nature of moral reality is such
that when it is ignored, the human being slowly sinks back to the animal level, where right and
wrong don't exist. And while we acknowledge that this concept is a property of the moral nature of
man, its interpretation varies from individual to individual. That being said, man must still choose
between the emerging values of right and wrong. He must obey his moral sense.
We have thus considered things, meanings, and the area that intervenes between meanings and
values, and now we consider the last--spiritual reality. We must move away from the human self and
to the divine self. But what shall we use to bridge this chasm? We know that the five senses have
served us admirable when dealing with strictly material reality; and the emotional sense has colored
our reality so that it is rich and alive, and the logic of the intellectual sense has served us well in the
intellectual world, and reason has served us equally well when trying to determine our moral
responsibilities. But these guides are useless as deciphers of spiritual reality. We must have
something else, something from God that will allow us to make this transport from the self to the
Jesus said, "I say unto you, if you have the faith of a mustard seed, you shall say to this mountain,
remove hence to yonder place, and it shall remove; and nothing shall be impossible unto you." Faith
will remove any material difficulty that stands in the way of doing the Father's will. Jesus said, "I am
in the Father and the Father is in me. We are one. Whosoever has seen the Son has seen the Father."
It is by faith that we recognize the Father's Spirit. The urge of the Father's spirit is recognized by our
unselfish love for each other. The exercise of faith is important and powerful because there is no
other method that can carry us away from the self to the divine self.
When it comes to recognizing spiritual realities, the way of faith is the only way. When speaking of
living faith, it is meant that we should use faith to grasp and make real the spiritual reality we desire
to obtain. And always is the operation of faith such that you must believe in order to receive. By faith
we embrace the value first; then it becomes real in the soul. The intellectual aspect of the experience
is made available to the mind as meaning, idea; but the actual experience takes place in the soul,
divine ideal. And this experience is just as real as the other realities already described. When we fail
to exercise faith, we fail to recognize the divine spirit.
Faith is required to see the qualities of the Father in Jesus and to recognize that these qualities
indicate the presence of the Father. Faith is required to recognize the attitude of divine love and to
recognize that these attitudes of divine love signal the presence the Father's spirit.
This concludes today's message on the problem of recognizing the Father's spirit. We hope you find
something in this message to ponder and pray about as you go about your day.
Until next time, this is Dr. James Perry.