No Second Coming

A whisper came into my soul and said, “Write!” And I asked, “What shall I write?” And the whisper said, “Write the words that are given to you, write the law that I wrote in your heart.” The whisper said, “Write of the world you live in, not of the next.” The whisper said, “Write of love and justice.”

For a thousand wrongs, and for ten thousand, the One will not withhold the punishment; because for the wealth of one we have beggared a thousand, and for the feast of ten we have let a million starve. The wealth of the great was a gift given that it might be given again, a blessing to be handed on for the blessing of all, but out of greed and pride and luxury it has been held back. Therefore all luxury shall pass away, and its passage will not be peaceful.

For a thousand wrongs, and for ten thousand, the One will not withhold the punishment; for what the One gave open-handed has been taken and consumed, and the fingers and the hand as well, and now we gnaw the wrist! The streams and the trees of the mountains are stripped and fouled, and the mountains themselves are thrown down, and not by faith but greed. The sea has been poisoned, and the air itself, and all the bounty that was once called limitless draws near to its end.

For a thousand wrongs, and for ten thousand, the One will not withhold the punishment; for when three thousand are killed we make war over all the earth, but when thirty million are raped, we laugh and scorn and call the victims guilty. Brother and friend take advantage, and yet the women and children are blamed; rape is called a crime of enticement, but the true crimes are betrayal and abuse of power. Yet women were not given to men as slaves or playthings. Women were not given to men at all. All are given to each other.

For a thousand wrongs, and for ten thousand, the One will not withhold the punishment; for the One said, “Peace,” and we made war; the One cried, “Peace,” and we slaughtered; the One roared, “Peace!” and we laid waste. We have been told and told to live in love, and yet every prophet and every scripture has been used to justify war. Now genocide stalks the earth, and the atomic fire is loose, yet every leader says, “I have no choice!” Therefore those who live by the sword, or who profit by the sword, or who are sheltered by the sword — all these shall fall by the sword. For every war is fratricidal and all violence self-destructive. Do you doubt it? You already bear the scars.

For a thousand wrongs, and for ten thousand, the One will not withhold the punishment; for the One said, “Do unto others,” and we raped those others, the One said, “Love your neighbors,” and we robbed those neighbors, the One said “Love your enemies,” and we slaughtered instead. The heart of the law is broken, and the rest of the law is a hollow shell.

We have fouled the waters given to us; we have abused the children given to us; we have perverted wisdom given to us; we have squandered riches given to us; and the neighbors given to us, we have put to the sword, all for power and all for profit. But all the wronged of earth cry out, and the earth itself cries out as well, and the One Who Is has heard.

Therefore the One has prepared the punishment: we shall be left alone.

There shall be no rapture, no last trump, no seventh seal; there shall be no Judgment Day. Christ will never come. The world shall go on and on, misery upon misery, woe upon woe, and still there shall be no savior. A thousand crimes shall become a million, and a million deaths a billion; cities shall rise, and fall, and rise to fall again, and all powers shall be broken. All scripture will be proven lies and every faith shall be proved an idle dream. There shall be no chosen people and no nation shall be elect. We have crucified ten million Christs and stoned a billion prophets — in My Lai and in Detroit, in Birkenau and Sabra, in every famine made by wealth and in every prison filled by fear, in every rape or war. There shall be no rescue. On and on and on we shall run, misery without cease, hurt without healing, war without end. It shall all be empty, and have no meaning, and it would be better that we had never been.

Repent, for the day of the Lord is not at hand.

Because this is the truth: we shall have no help from heaven, nor hope of reaching it, until we help each other. We shall never be rescued by the kingdom of God until we learn to help our neighbors.

Because we are the kingdom of God.

We are the Kingdom of Peace, its bricks and mortar, its stones and its spires. We are the lions and the lambs, who might lie down together. We are the city on the hill, and the soft rains, and the budding fruit. Yet we do not build ourselves into the kingdom, and we do not lie down, and the best of us are still only blossoms, not the harvest. You would see heaven on earth? Then pick up your bricks and build!

So away with your offerings and ministries, and away with your “saved” and your “damned.” The One cares nothing for your doctrines and your dogmas, but for the love that you show to enemy and friend. Rite or ritual are nothing next to justice and to love, for those are the heart of the kingdom.

But for those who walk in righteousness, those who deny a neighbor nothing and who give aid without demand, those who see the dignity in every soul and have compassion when there is nothing for them to gain for themselves, those who have no coercion in them, they are heaven’s paths: they shall be our teachers and our guides. They shall be the ones who bring us out of endless pain. The One shall labor beside them, fear shall fly from them, healing shall be in their hands. Though their days are long, and their tasks beyond count, there shall be a strength in their bones that never breaks, and a wisdom in their hearts that never fails; such are the fruits of everlasting and selfless love. Those who love without limit shall ride on the Almighty’s shoulder, they shall rest in the arms of Immanence, and they shall speak in a voice that can never be silenced. They shall remake the world, not law, nor tech, nor dogma, nor war; for their ally is the One, and there is no greater power.

Those who love shall be afraid, but they shall also be brave.

They shall struggle all their days, but what they build will stand.

They shall see no way, because they make the way — they are the way.

All those who love without restraint or reservation, those who “trust beyond all reason and thus achieve beyond all hope,” these belong to the One, for the One is love. The power that is love is the power that made light and darkness, made sea and made sky. And when the city is built, when the community lives, when the feast of the harvest is spread out for all, then the One will be come again.

If you would see the Kingdom of Heaven, look to the ones with limitless love, learn from them, and build the kingdom on earth.

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