March 2, 1918
Received by James Padgett
I am here, John.
I will not write now, except to say, that your spiritual condition is much improved and you are advancing in your soul perceptions of the truth and of the reality of the Father and His Love.
Yes, I know, but you must remember two things with reference to the writings in the Bible ascribed to me, namely:
First, that many of the sayings therein contained, I did not write or authorize to be written; and, secondly, that at the time I lived on earth and wrote, my knowledge of the truth and of God was not so great or so correct as it is now.
I realize that some things I then believed and taught were not in accord with the truth, as I now know it to be, even my conception of Jesus and his mission on earth, and his return to earth, was not true. Then, although I was a close companion of the Master and had many lessons of instructions from him, I was a quite ignorant man and did not grasp the spiritual meanings of his teachings, and up to the time of my decease, my beliefs were more colored by things of the material than by those of the spiritual.
For instance, I, as did the other disciples, supposed that he was coming to earth again in a short time - at any unexpected time - and set up his kingdom on earth. Now, this is a fact, notwithstanding that he had said that his kingdom would be a spiritual kingdom, though existing on earth. I could not dissociate from my conception of the establishment and existence of this kingdom, the idea that in some way it would be an actual, visible kingdom in which the Master would be the king, and rule as other kings ruled, except it would be a rule of righteousness.
All this may seem a little strange to you. but if you will consider for a moment that my teachings as a Jew were to the effect that when the Messiah came, he would actually rule on earth as a king, you will understand how difficult it was for me to get the idea, or make the distinction between that kind of kingdom and one which would be purely spiritual.
At some time, I will write you more fully on this matter, for I realize its importance, as many, yes a majority of the professed Christians, now believe that Jesus, at sometime, will come to earth and establish a material kingdom and rule all the nations of the earth; and some of these enthusiastic Christians believe that they will be of the elect and become princes and sub-rulers in that kingdom as material men called by the resurrection to again become the human, although glorified, as some of them express their faith. Well, they will be disappointed, for when they shall have passed from the mortal to the spirit, they will forever remain spirits, and the only kingdom that they will live in thereafter will be a spirit kingdom; and that, whether the kingdom of the restored man or of the Divine Angel will not be on the earth.
I must stop now. So pray to the Father and strive for a deeper and more abiding faith, and you will realize the truth and this experience. Good night.
Your brother in Christ,