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The Yoke of Christ

Chapter 90 of the Gospel of Thomas for Awakening

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Jesus said, Come unto me, for my yoke is easy and my lordship is mild, and you will find repose for yourselves. (90)

Patterson and Maeyer: Come to me, for my yoke is comfortable and my lordship is gentle, and you will find rest for yourselves.

Nancy Johnson: Come to me for my yoke is light, my rule is mild and you shall find repose.

In commenting on verse eighty-seven I pointed out that Jesus’ teaching was on two levels: one for the totally committed and one for those whose very real limitations restricted what Jesus could teach or require of them. This verse is for the committed disciples, for anyone who has had any experience knows that what those dedicated love and consider a source of peace and happiness will be considered miserable and laborious by those not so dedicated. Those who are being called by Jesus are those whose development enables them to appreciate the path of purification that leads to expanding awareness and spiritual fulfillment.

In my life I have seen people miffed and complaining about very mild disciplines and requirements, but I have also see people happy and cheerfully expressing their gladness at learning of very stringent things necessary for continuing their progress in spiritual life. It was all a matter of experience and the resulting perspective.

Those who have entered the path to Christhood and experienced its value are not reluctant to take upon themselves the discipline and purification required, for they have already gained a depth of insight and experience of inner life that draws them onward to attain more.

When we move onward we leave a great deal behind. For some that is a loss because of their attachment to those things, and for others it is viewed as a freedom from hindrance. The path of yoga, for example, demands not just a great deal, it demands everything. Yoga is fundamentally an all-or-nothing matter. It all depends on what we really want out of life, what we think life really is.

“The kingdom of heaven is like unto treasure hid in a field; the which when a man hath found, he hideth, and for joy thereof goeth and selleth all that he hath, and buyeth that field. Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it” (Matthew 13:44-46).

This is a picture of one who has caught the heavenly vision and realized the true value of things. For joy the seeker gives all that he has because he knows he shall receive so much more in return. What he will receive he wants; and he no longer wants those things that he must abandon to attain the kingdom of heaven, the realm of limitless consciousness.

The yoke of Christ is easy to bear because of what it bestows, and the lordship of Christ is mild when the guaranteed gain is so vast. Beyond all the worlds and their contents that the questing soul must leave behind as it moves from level to level of ever-increasing consciousness, there is a rest, a peace of spirit that is worth all that had to be sacrificed to attain it. Giving up what is now seen to have been really nothing, the dauntless yogi has come to possess everything. Total fulfillment is the result.

“Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new” (II Corinthians 5:17). It is worth the price; indeed the price was nothing. That is the secret that the saints and masters have come to know. And which we should learn from them.

Read the next article in the Gospel of Thomas for Yogis: Knowing the Unknown

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Chapters in The Gospel of Thomas for Awakening

  1. The Open Secrets
  2. Seeking Is More Than Just Finding
  3. Seeking the Kingdom Realistically
  4. The One Goal
  5. From the Seen to the Unseen
  6. What Jesus Wants Us To Do
  7. Eat Or Be Eaten
  8. Fishing Wisely
  9. The Inner Field
  10. Guarding the Flame
  11. What Will You Do?
  12. Who Shall Lead?
  13. The Unspeakable
  14. When Virtue is Vice
  15. Father in Heaven; Father on Earth
  16. Divine Discord
  17. The Divine Gift
  18. The Origin is the End
  19. Original Being
  20. A Mustard Seed
  21. Disciples of Jesus
  22. How to Enter the Kingdom
  23. Unity of Vision
  24. Where is Christ?
  25. Love and Protect
  26. Seeing
  27. The Fasting and Sabbath of the Spirit
  28. How Jesus Saw the World
  29. Hidden Treasure
  30. One
  31. The Power of Unbelief
  32. Spiritual Strength
  33. Speak It Out
  34. The Blind
  35. The Secret of Spiritual Security
  36. Live Carefree
  37. Unashamed Before God
  38. At the Source
  39. The Religion of Ignorance
  40. Within God
  41. Spiritual Gain and Loss
  42. Move On
  43. Challenging the Master
  44. The Source of Good and Evil
  45. Great in the Kingdom
  46. Impossible Duality
  47. Peace That Moves Mountains
  48. Back to the Source
  49. Children of the Light
  50. Here and Now
  51. Seeing Yet Blind
  52. Outer Ritual or Inner Growth?
  53. Infinite Transcendence
  54. “Hate”
  55. True Understanding
  56. Wheat and Weeds
  57. Finding Life
  58. Live and Die Not
  59. “Lest Thou Also…”
  60. Who Will Die; Who Will Live
  61. The Path of Unknowing
  62. Awakened by Death
  63. Turning Ourselves Away
  64. Gullibility
  65. The Rejected is Truly Accepted
  66. All–and Nothing
  67. The Blessings of Persecution
  68. Life or Death Lie Within
  69. Admission
  70. Not a Divider
  71. Seeking the Harvest
  72. Thirsting in Vain
  73. Who Shall Enter?
  74. Unfailing Treasure
  75. The All Speaks
  76. Well-dressed Ignoramuses
  77. True Blessedness
  78. A Duplication
  79. Balancing the Inner and the Outer
  80. Near and Far
  81. Seeing the Unseeable
  82. Seeing Your Unknown Side
  83. Our Forefather Adam
  84. Blessed Homelessness
  85. Doubly Wretched
  86. Onward and Upward
  87. Twofold Life
  88. The Yoke of Christ
  89. Knowing the Unknown
  90. Asking and Hearing
  91. Give Not…
  92. Seeking and Knocking
  93. Right Generosity
  94. The Expanding Kingdom
  95. The Fulfilled Universe
  96. Taking Stock
  97. The Spiritual Family
  98. Three Debts
  99. Father and Mother
  100. Exoteric Religion
  101. Ready for Invasion
  102. Penitential Discipline, Anyone?
  103. Daring to Know
  104. Ending Duality
  105. “I Love You More…”
  106. At the Source
  107. Finding the Hidden Treasure
  108. Having Come to the End
  109. Immortal and Above the World
  110. Body and Soul
  111. Where is the Kingdom?
  112. Male and Female?
  113. In Conclusion
  114. Glossary
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