It is a major source of confusion in my life.
- oOo -
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"Having been restored to your original state, you naturally become part of the atonement yourself. You know share my inability to tolerate the lack of love in yourself and in everyone else, and must join the Great Crusade to correct it. — ACIM urtext
"The world, in its original connotation, included both the proper creation of man by God, AND the proper creation by man in his Right Mind. The latter required the endowment of man by God with free will, because all loving creation is freely given. Nothing in either of these statements implies any sort of level involvement, or, in fact, anything except one continuous line of creation, in which all aspects are of the same order. When the “lies of the serpent” were introduced, they were specifically called lies because they are not true. When man listened, all he heard was untruth. He does not have to continue to believe what is not true, unless he chooses to do so. All of his miscreations can disappear in the well known “twinkling of an eye”, because it is a visual misperception." — ACIM urtextWhat, exactly, does it mean to be "wise as a serpent"?
And, from the Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary:
- As sheep in the midst of wolves. Defenseless by human means, among the fierce and cruel; among bitter enemies.
- Wise as serpents. Prudent, discreet. Serpents are very cautious in avoiding danger.
- Harmless as doves. Guileless and innocent as doves. The dove, peaceful, never preying on other birds, has always been a symbol of innocence.
Alone, the wisdom of the serpent is mere cunning, and the harmlessness of the dove little better than weakness: but in combination, the wisdom of the serpent would save them from unnecessary exposure to danger; the harmlessness of the dove, from sinful expedients to escape it. In the apostolic age of Christianity, how harmoniously were these qualities displayed! Instead of the fanatical thirst for martyrdom, to which a later age gave birth, there was a manly combination of unflinching zeal and calm discretion, before which nothing was able to stand.The symbolism of the serpent is dependent upon culture. In the Abrahamic religions, serpents are connected with deceit, and are used to symbolize deceitfulness. An example is the serpent in the Garden of Eden, who tricks Adam and Eve into partaking of the Fruit of the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. The symbolic connection between serpents and deceit may depend in part on the observation that snakes have forked tongues. A forked tongue is a tongue which has not one end, but two, pointing in different directions. In humans, the tongue is an essential tool in speech, and the presence of only one tip signifies the unity of truthful speech, and corresponds to the unity of the truth itself. There is only one truth, but there are many lies. The forked tongue represents the disunity of deceitful speech. Wikipedia