Editor's Choice

"Because of the presence of the Paraclete in the life of the believer, the blessings of the end-times—the eschaton—are already present"


Robert Kysar, John
"While John uses the concept of the Spirit in a way very similar to other NT writers (e.g., 3:5ff.), he advances the Christian view of the Spirit with the concept of the 'Paraclete.' In five passages within the section called the farewell discourses (chaps. 14-16) John sketches a creative and original view of the Spirit. The Paraclete is the successor to Jesus who brings the revelation of the Father found in Christ to the believers, reminds them of all that Jesus said, glorifies Christ, and convicts the world of unbelief (14:15-17; 14:26; 15:26-27; 16:7-11, 12-14). It is in these passages that John relates the Spirit to the Father and to the Son (although not in such a sophisticated sense as the later doctrine of the Trinity) and enlivens the way in which the Spirit may be understood as related to the community of faith amid a world of unbelief.

Because of the presence of the Paraclete in the life of the believer, the blessings of the end-times—the eschaton—are already present. At times John speaks as if that final consummation of history is still a future event conceived in terms typical of apocalyptic though, both Jewish and Christian: The end-time will bring the coming of Christ, the resurrection of the dead, judgment, and eternal life for believers (e.g., 14:3, 18, 28; 6:39-40; 12:48, 25). Yet, at other times, all of these are spoken of as present realities in the lives of the believers (e.g., 3:18; 5:21, 24, 26). Moreover, there is also some evidence for the view that believers upon their death are taken directly to a heavenly home where they dwell immediately with God (14:2-3; 17:2-3). It is clear that John's eschatology is a complex one that bridges the distinctions of time and strongly affirms the present life of the believer. In this twofold (or threefold) eschatology we see a possible hint at how John has combined in his gospel older traditional views (future eschatology) with his own interpretation of those views (present or realized eschatology).

These six themes do little more than hint at the rich and none-too-simple views of the Fourth Gospel. Perhaps, however, they do whet the appetite of the reader for the whole banquet of thought found in this gospel."

Robert Kysar, John
Augsburg Publishing House, 1986, pages 19-20


Between Apocalypse and Eschaton
"De Lubac's understanding of revelation can be summarized by the following phrase: Dando revelat, et revelando dat (In giving God reveals, and in revealing God gives). Revelation is intimately bound to the gift of salvation. De Lubac explained that the Council's intent is not to explicate the 'doctrine on revelation,' but rather the 'proclamation of salvation itself,' that is 'revelation itself that is transmitted to us.' The intimate union between the proclamation, that is revelation, and the salvation that it proclaims is made particularly clear in the prologue of Dei Verbum, which quotes 1 John 1:2-3: "We proclaim to you the eternal life which was with the Father and was made manifest to us - that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you may have fellowship with us; and our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ.' In 1 John, the proclamation is of the 'eternal life' who was with the Father and made manifest. The proclamation effects ecclesial fellowship and the fellowship with the Father and the Son, which constitute 'eternal life.'"

The Eschatological Structure of Salvation and Revelation

"Despite his extensive research into the history of biblical interpretation, de Lubac's writings did not contain a general theory of revelation. His writings on revelation derive from his involvement in the Preparatory Theological Commission leading to the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965). A subcommission of the Preparatory Theological Commission, called 'De fontibus Revelationis,' had produced a preparatory schema entitled De fontibus Revelationis (On the sources of revelation). The working schema reflected classical positions taken as a development of the Council of Trent (1545-1563) and in anti-Protestant literature. For Trent, the "source" of revelation is the gospel. However, the subsequent scholastic tradition treated Scripture and tradition as independent supernatural sources of knowledge of God in order to combat the Protestant principle of sola scriptura. Tradition, it was claimed, constituted the unwritten revelation handed down from the apostles, which supplemented Scripture, the written revelation. The Vatican I document, Dei Filius (1870), spoke of revelation as the supernatural knowledge of God, but did not identify Scripture and tradition as distinct sources. In the preparatory document, De fontibus Revelationis, Scripture and tradition are described as distinct 'sources'. The document sought to 'resolve' open debates over the Catholic understanding of revelation, Scripture, and tradition in favor of a neoscholastic and anti-Modernist school. Evidently, de Lubac had very little sway as a theological expert on the Preparatory Commission.

During conciliar debate over De fontibus Revelationis, Edward Schillebeeckx and Karl Rahner provided widely distributed and influential criticisms of the schema. De fontibus Revelationis became so controversial that it took an act of John XXIII to push the discussion over the document to the side. The final document, ratified in 1965, bears little resemblance to its predecessor and testifies to a radical shift in perspective of thinking about revelation. Dei Verbum, Vatican II's Dogmatic Constitution on Divine Revelation, prioritized the historicity of revelation and Christ as the center of revelation. It placed an emphasis on revelation as a personal encounter with God, not simply knowledge about God. Moreover, revelation is fully present in Christ, not in the biblical text.

It is unclear what role de Lubac himself played in resisting the draft schema. While he certainly influenced the formation of a new document, called the 1964 Schema, he never revealed the precise nature of his role in the formation of the document. De Lubac's 1966 commentary on Dei Verbum, 'La Revelation divine,' is not only a commentary from a participant at Vatican II. It is also an attempt at influencing the reception of the document in the church. His commentary produces a radically historical understanding of revelation as the sensible or visible sacrament through which salvation occurs. According to de Lubac, salvation is already taking place through the revelation of the incarnate Word, but it is nonetheless only complete in a future consummation.

De Lubac's understanding of revelation can be summarized by the following phrase: Dando revelat, et revelando dat (In giving God reveals, and in revealing God gives). Revelation is intimately bound to the gift of salvation. De Lubac explained that the Council's intent is not to explicate the 'doctrine on revelation,' but rather the 'proclamation of salvation itself,' that is 'revelation itself that is transmitted to us.' The intimate union between the proclamation, that is revelation, and the salvation that it proclaims is made particularly clear in the prologue of Dei Verbum, which quotes 1 John 1:2-3: "We proclaim to you the eternal life which was with the Father and was made manifest to us - that which we have seen and heard we proclaim also to you, so that you may have fellowship with us; and our fellowship is with the Father and with his Son Jesus Christ.' In 1 John, the proclamation is of the 'eternal life' who was with the Father and made manifest. The proclamation effects ecclesial fellowship and the fellowship with the Father and the Son, which constitute 'eternal life.'

Following John, the entire first chapter of Dei Verbum attests to the 'indissoluble union of revelation and salvation.' De Lubac speaks of this union between revelation and salvation in two ways: first, revelation 'contains' salvation; second, salvation is the object or end of revelation. First, revelation communicates the very reality of salvation: "The announcement of salvation contains the salvation announced. The object revealed does not consist in notions, by themselves without vital efficacy, which would just barely have as their goal to make explicit a Christianity existing already in an 'implicit' state, or to name finally a reality until then 'anonymous.'" De Lubac's mention of an 'anonymous salvation' sounds like a criticism of Karl Rahner's notion of 'anonymous Christianity.' However, it is more likely that de Lubac was criticizing an 'intellectualist' notion of revelation as the communication of a series of abstract truths. Catholic intellectualist theories of revelation tended to oppose 'supernatural revelation' - those truths beyond the capacity of the mind to attain by its own power - to 'natural knowledge' or 'natural revelation' - those truths about God that can be known by human reason alone. As a matter of course, intellectualist theories deemphasized the historical nature of revelation because history could not easily be categorized into 'natural' or 'supernatural.' If revelation consists primarily of 'concepts,' those concepts have no power to save. Their only function would be to bring us to explicit consciousness of the salvation already available implicitly or anonymously. De Lubac, therefore, implies that the intellectualist view of revelation espoused by some neoscholastics supports a view of salvation attributed to the Modernists and condemned by the neoscholastics themselves.

In contrast, de Lubac's theology of revelation is radically historical. His 'La Revelation divine' emphasizes that revelation consists in events that can be seen, heard, and touched, namely the deeds and words of God. Because they are God's actions in history, these deeds and words 'contain' the salvation that they announce. The second paragraph of Dei Verbum reads,

It pleased God, in his goodness and wisdom, to reveal himself and to make known the mystery of his will [Scipsum revelare et notum facere sacramentum voluntatis suac] (cf. Eph. 1.9). His will was that men should have access to the Father, through Christ, the Word made flesh, in the Holy Spirit, and thus become sharers in the divine nature (cf. Eph. 2:18; 2 Pet. 1:4). By this revelation, then, the invisible God (cf. Col. 1:15; 1 Tim. 1:17), from the fullness of his love, addresses men as his friends (cf. Ex. 33:11; Jn. 15:14-15), and moves among them (cf. Bar 3:38), in order to invite and receive them into his own company. This economy of Revelation is realized by deeds and words [gestis verbisque], which are intrinsically bound up with each other. As a result, the works performed by God in the history of salvation, show forth and bear out the doctrine and realities [doctrinam et res] signified by the words; the words, for their part, proclaim the works, and bring to light the mystery they contain."

Joseph S. Flipper, Between Apocalypse and Eschaton: History and Eternity in Henri de Lubac
Part III, The Eschatological Structure of De Lubac's Thought, Fortress Press (May 1, 2015) pp. 220-224




The Great Adi Shakti Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi
The Paraclete
"I am with you at every step, at every place. Everywhere! You may go anywhere. At every place I am with you, completely, in person, by mind and in every respect. Whenever you will remember Me I will be by your side with all my powers. It is my promise. But you have to be mine. This is necessary. If you are mine then it'll not take for me even a single second to come to you. May God bless you all and give you wisdom. Lead a life of wisdom."

The Divine Mother/Paraclete Shri Mataji
Public Program, Mumbai, India—29 May 1976




The Great Adi Shakti Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi
The Paraclete Shri Mataji
"Now this Kundalini is the power which is placed in the sacrum bone (coccyx), nowhere else... And imagine this bone is called sacrum; 'sacrum' means 'sacred.' So they knew there was something in it... This is the primule, is the germinating power within us. Now this fact has been accepted for thousands of years in India and elsewhere. For in the Bible also ... they talk of the Tree of Life. That is the same as this...

So this is the thing that is being described in our ancient books, in all the scriptures, even in the Qur'n they are described as Ruh, R,U,H, Ruh. 'Ruh' means the 'cold breeze', the 'cool breeze' (pneuma). The cool breeze (pneuma) of the Holy Ghost is described in the Bible also.

You cannot suddenly start a new idea about something. If it is an evolutionary process, if it is a living process it must have its background, its history, and it must culminate into something fruitful. Like every fruit has a tree behind it... If it is a living fruit it has to come out the tree that have existed for thousands and thousands of years, and out of that this tree has to come. It must have a base and this is traditionally called the kundalini awakening process...

Christ has said very clearly that you have to be born again. I mean the whole message of Christ's life is Realization ... when Christ came on this Earth to show that you have to become the spirit. By His resurrection He showed that, and this is the message of Christ."

The Divine Mother/Paraclete Shri Mataji
Hampstead, UK—October 23, 1980




The Great Adi Shakti Shri Mataji Nirmala Devi
The Paraclete
"Then above that lies the center here - is of Christ. This is the window of Christ, I should say. But this center is very important, because this center controls these two institutions of ego and superego. That's why it is said that Christ died for our sins. When you awaken Christ in that center, then He sucks in these two institutions or these two balloon-like structures. He sucks in, so that our karmas - which are talked of, that we have done bad karmas and we have done this and that - all that goes into it, and our sins and our conditioning all are sucked in. And we enter into the kingdom of God, which is the limbic area in the medical terminology.

But from here you have to pierce through; and this piercing through is the destination, is the destination through which you have to come out, and is placed at the fontanel bone area where you get your baptism. But baptism, as I told you yesterday, is just an artificial exercise. Actual baptism is when this Holy Ghost rises and you start really feeling the cool breeze on top of your head. This is a miracle. It is! Not to believe in miracle is not correct. You should keep yourself open. Even you may be an intellectual, you must be honest about it that if you have not known a miracle, that doesn't mean there are no miracles and that miracles do not happen. But keep the point of view of a scientist who sees, wants to see for himself if it is so. Now this miracle happens when the kundalini rises, pierces through all these centers and pierces through here."

The Divine Mother/Paraclete Shri Mataji
Public Program, Bath, U.K.—August 7, 1984




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