The Urantia Book Fellowship

How the Living Spirit of Truth Transforms Us

By Stuart R. Kerr, III


"This is the kingdom of heaven—God is your Father and you are his sons, and this good news, if you wholeheartedly believe it, is your eternal salvation. " [1593:1]

"When the Father's will becomes truly your will, then you are in very truth in the kingdom because the kingdom has thereby become an established experience in you." [1589:1]

Mankind begins the mortal life as sons of the flesh; this is the primary material reality wherein man strives on this his earthly estate. Our Creator Son, Michael of Nebadon, bestowed himself on this world 2,000 years ago to initiate a new dispensation to mankind he came as Jesus of Nazareth, the Son of Man and "the truth made manifest in the flesh"; he came offering mankind a new way of living, a promise of transformation whereby his Spirit of Truth would strengthen the inner soul of man by the constant spiritual renewal of mind. This Spirit of Truth works by endowing the individual with the "power of the certain and joyous performance of the gracious, acceptable, and perfect will of God." [1609:6]

Jesus' spirit works with the human mind which acts as an effective conduit linking the estate of the flesh with the higher estate of the spirit. It is through mind that Jesus, through his Spirit of Truth, compels the human personality, through faith, to attempt a breach of the mortal estate and to transcend to the higher spiritual reality of the kingdom of heaven.

"He announced that he had come to function as a teacher, a teacher sent from heaven to present spiritual truth to the material mind. . . . Jesus spoke directly to men's souls. He was a teacher of man's spirit, but through the mind." [1594:4]

Jesus' incarnation on our world of Urantia gave mankind the opportunity for living a new life within the spiritual estate of the kingdom of heaven. Once he had gathered his twelve chosen apostles together under his loving care and personal influence, Jesus initiated the process of transforming these rugged men of the flesh into newborn creatures of the spirit. He worked to realitize their newborn identities to such a level of advancement within the kingdom that they would prove worthy as ambassadors of this heavenly estate to their brothers and sisters of the flesh.

Jesus was to accomplish this spiritual transformation by virtue of his being the living Spirit of Truth in the flesh. By the power of his very presence and by the sublime strength of his very personality, Jesus would draw these men to functionally align themselves to a new and higher reality of the spirit, to become sons of God within the heavenly estate of the Father's kingdom, to fully and faithfully dedicate their wills to the will of the Universal Father.

"They slowly assimilated his teaching because Jesus was all that he taught. What they could not gain from his verbal instruction, they gradually acquired by living with him." [1584:6]

Jesus' first attempts at raising the spiritual consciousness of these men of the world were often met with frustration and disappointment. The apostles would persistently relate the spiritual teachings of Jesus to their own concepts of the material, social, economic, and political realities of their own temporal circumstances and upbringing.

"Jesus would present to them the beautiful spirit of the soul's attitude, but they insisted on translating such teachings into rules of personal behavior." [1584:6]

"But you will stumble over my teaching because you are wont to interpret my message literally, you are slow to discern the spirit of my teaching." [1577:2]

"When I speak the language of the spirit, why do you insist on translating my meaning into the language of the flesh?....By this time it should be possible for me to instruct you as full-grown men of the spirit kingdom." [1605:2]

As the apostles slowly progressed in their attainment of a deeper understanding of Jesus' words, they began to demonstrate a real and spiritual grasp of his true meanings. These apostles were truly building a bridge that would allow them to cross over to a new estate of the spirit for the experiencing of new reality insights; they were truly re-identifying their lives as faith-sons of the Father within the kingdom of heaven.

"They saw more clearly that spiritual truth was not to be advanced by material wonders....These twelve men were slowly awaking to the realization of the real nature of their task as ambassadors of the kingdom." [1705:5]

Encouraged by this new development in the apostles spiritual maturation, Jesus then took his teaching to the next level of spiritual awareness and influence. He began to suggest that they were now different persons than who they were, and that, as his ambassadors of the kingdom to the world, they must now become sensitive to the reality that their brothers and sisters remained in the status of the flesh. Many of their listeners would find their instructions regarding the kingdom to be, for the most part, incomprehensible; at least this would be the case unless these people could first be enticed to enter into the kingdom of the spirit as well.

"You cannot teach the deep things of the spirit to those who have been born only of the flesh; first see that men are born of the spirit before you seek to instruct them in the advanced ways of the spirit....Introduce men to God and as the sons of God before you discourse on the doctrines of the fatherhood of God and the sonship of men." [1823:2]

"My words to you, the apostles, must be somewhat different from those spoken to the disciples and the multitude." [1823:2]

Jesus also taught the apostles that their achieved status as citizens of the kingdom did not completely remove them from their having had origin on a world of the flesh. These men were still obliged to finish their material lives, albeit they would do so as spiritual creatures of a nature rarely before seen by mortal man.

"Let me assure you, once and for all, that, if you dedicate your lives to the work of the kingdom, all your real needs shall be supplied. Seek the greater thing, and the lesser will be found therein; ask for the heavenly, and the earthly shall be included. The shadow is certain to follow the substance." [1823:3]

There finally came that critical moment that completely changed the life efforts of Jesus on this planet - Peter openly confessed that he acknowledged Jesus as the Son of God, the living Christ. This confession of Peter ‘s "marked the beginning of the new period of the more complete realization of the truth of his supreme ministry as a bestowal Son on Urantia and for an entire universe." [1749:2] This acknowledgment of Jesus' divinity gave confirmation to Jesus that his Father in heaven recognized this as the completion of an important stage in his Son's human life in the flesh. Now the stage was finally set to initiate the final juncture of his earthly bestowal career - to deliver to his apostles and their successors the very keys of the outward kingdom, the authority over all things temporal on this planet in preparation for his eventual death and resurrection.

"You are my chosen could not entertain this belief as a result of mere human knowledge. This is a revelation of the spirit of my Father to your inmost souls... Upon this rock of spiritual reality will I build the living temple of spiritual fellowship in the eternal realities of my Father's kingdom....To you and your successors I now deliver the keys of the outward kingdom - - the authority over things temporal." [1747:31]

Jesus offers to mankind a technique of "trans-estatism" whereby mankind is functionally endowed with the freewill prerogative to align his identity, starting from his original material and earthly estate, to a higher spiritual reality occupying another estate of heavenly existence. Mankind is challenged with the opportunity for becoming sons of God within the transcendent reality of the spiritual estate of the kingdom of heaven.

"When you enter the kingdom, you are reborn. " [1592:7]

"As the new creatures of the rebirth of the spirit, you are taught to believe and rejoice. In the Father's kingdom you are to become new creatures; old things are to pass away; behold I show you how all things are to become new. And by your love for one another you are to convince the world that you have from bondage to liberty, from death into life everlasting." [1609:5]

During his brief sojourn on this world, Jesus was the living Spirit of Truth; all that Jesus promised to mankind regarding the later outpouring of his Spirit of Truth at Pentecost, Jesus was himself the literal and living manifestation of this promise.

"Jesus was the truth made manifest in the flesh, and he promised to send his Spirit of Truth into the hearts of all his children after his return to the Father in heaven." [1593:8]

"In just a few hours the world will see me no more; but you will continue to know me in your hearts even until I send you this new teacher, the Spirit of Truth. As I have lived with you in person, then shall I live within you; I shall be one with your personal experience in the spirit kingdom." [1948:4]

"In a very short time I am going to send you my spirit, just like me except for this material body. This new teacher is the Spirit of Truth who will live with each one of you, in your hearts, and so will all the children of light be made one and be drawn toward no another." [1949:1]

Thus could Jesus, during his early years prior to his public ministry, convince his young travel companion Ganid to speak of this Spirit of Truth as a present reality (years before the Pentecost,); thus does Jesus tell his apostles that they are being transformed by this same Spirit of Truth (also before the actual event of Pentecost,) as a very real part of their training as ambassadors of the kingdom. Jesus can avow these claims because he was this living Spirit of Truth in the flesh.

"Always will I [Ganid] try to worship God with the help of the Spirit of Truth, which is my helper when I have become really God-knowing." [1452:2]

"By the old way you [the apostles] seek to suppress, obey, and conform to the rules of living; by the new way you are first transformed by the Spirit of Truth and thereby strengthened in your inner soul by the constant spiritual renewing of your mind." [1609:6]

By virtue of his Spirit of Truth, Jesus fellowships with man and reinforces man's emergent faith through enhanced sensitivity and receptivity to spiritual truth.

"The spirit never creates a consciousness of himself, only a consciousness of Michael, the Son....your fellowship with the Spirit of Truth is not to be found in your consciousness of this spirit but rather in your experience of enhanced fellowship with Michael." [2061:3]

"The Spirit of Truth comes really to lead all believers into all truth, into the expanding knowledge of the experience of the living and growing spiritual consciousness of the reality of eternal and ascending sonship with God." [2061:6]

And when man successfully undertakes this faithful attempt at spiritual transformation, he trans-realitizes his being into a proper "temple of God"; and the Father responds by sending his spirit, a fragment of himself, to actually dwell within the mind of man. At his consecration of the apostles to the Father in heaven, Jesus entrusts them into the Father's loving care.

"I have manifested you to the men whom you chose from the world and gave to me. They are yours—as all life is in your hands— you gave them to me, and I have lived among them, teaching them the way of life, and they have believed.... Be near them, Father, until we can send the new teacher to comfort and strengthen them." [1964:1]

Jesus has fulfilled his mission to spiritually unify his apostles according to their faith and dedication to the Father, and by their dedication as ambassadors of the Father's kingdom. Jesus has admirably performed his role as "unifier" to this group of faithful believers, just as he will continue to perform this role to all faithful believers throughout the habitation of his created local universe.

"Father, keep these men faithful as I prepare to yield up my life in the flesh. Help these, my friends, to be one in spirit, even as we are one." [1964:1]

"I have sheep not of this flock. . . I must provide for them the pattern of doing the will of God while living the life of the mortal nature." [1577]

Jesus enters into the estate of mortal man, via the Spirit of Truth, by a supreme and dynamic act of immanence, and man reciprocates by his faithful attempts to transcend his mortal estate into the spiritual realm of the kingdom of heaven.

A service of
The Urantia Book Fellowship