It has taken me a week to decide if I can get past the quote below from the Master Key Part 17 Introduction and concentrate on the many positives in the numbered section.

I am not sure if the Intro’s to the numbered parts were written by Haanel himself or are commentary from another writer but I cannot let it pass and want to discuss it whoever the writer may be. First let’s read the passage in question.

“The kind of Deity which a man, consciously or unconsciously, worships, indicates the intellectual status of the worshipper.
Ask the Indian of God, and he will describe to you a powerful chieftain of a glorious tribe. Ask the Pagan of God, and he will tell you of a God of fire, a God of water, a god of this, that, and the other.
Ask the Israelite of God, and he will tell you of the God of Moses, who conceived it expedient to rule by coercive measures; hence, the Ten Commandments. Or of Joshua, who led the Israelites into battle, confiscated property, murdered the prisoners, and laid waste to cities.
The so-called heathen made “graven images” of their Gods, whom they were accustomed to worship, but among the most intelligent, at least, these images were but the visible fulcrums with which they were enabled to mentally concentrate on the qualities which they desired to externalise in their lives.”

I have not met many pagans though I have met plenty of Muslims and Jews and many more Christians and I have never found intellectual status to be a deciding factor in what they believe. I am a member of Mensa and I only mention it to say I suppose it means I have quite a high intellect but I have met men with far less mental ability than myself who have been able to teach me much about the simple faith in the God we both follow.

The writer above, suggests that men have created their deity in their own image and I agree with him that many have but the God I know and serve was not created at all but He created man in His own image.

In Haanel Part 17:1 we read “We are told that Man has “dominion over all things”; this dominion is established through Mind.”

In the very first chapter of the book of Genesis we read from verse 26,  Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” 27 So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it;…

and moving to Genesis 2:15 we read  Then the Lord God took the man and put him in the garden of Eden to tend and keep it.

Whether you take it literally or allegorically is up to you but the point is, God made man and gave him a superior mind for a purpose: that he might fill the earth, rule over it, tend it and keep it.
It seems that man’s tendency, at least since the fall of Adam has been more about subduing and dominating than it has about tending and keeping.
If you are struggling with the concept of ‘the fall’ let me put it another way…Haanel talks about being in harmony with the laws of nature…The apostle John wrote “if we ask anything according to God’s will we know He hears us.” and Jesus said “Ask believing, nothing doubting.”

Before the fall man was in perfect harmony, walking with God in the garden, nothing doubting…clearly all men are not in perfect harmony today and doubt is everywhere evident…so we are fallen from what God intended for us, which we now know to be “Whole, Perfect, Strong, Powerful, Loving, Harmonious and Happy.’
Now the God I read about in Moses writings is not the one described above by Haanel or his introducer. “the God of Moses, who conceived it expedient to rule by coercive measures; hence, the Ten Commandments.”

To a man who knows God and understands the Old Testament scriptures this God is not at all coercive but full of Grace and Truth. The Ten Commandments are the Law of God and as we have already agreed concerning the laws of nature they were given for the good of mankind.
The 7th as an example is written Thou shalt not commit adultery.
How about this as a paraphrase, Remain faithful to the partner you married because the intimacy you know with that person can never be bettered, The sex will be the best if you give yourselves fully to one another, the trust will be complete and perfect but if shattered will never again be totally whole. Every person connected with the adulterer and the one betrayed will be in some way diminished and nobody at all will be increased. Thats why I say remain faithful… because I love you both so much.

The writer clearly does not know this God of love and has a scant understanding of the scriptures.
God had been very patient with the inhabitants of Canaan and waited hundreds of years until their sins became intolerable before allowing the Israelites to invade.

This is the same God who changed His mind about bringing judgement on Ninevah in the days of Jonah after the king humbled himself and the people followed his example.

This is the same God who waits patiently today for the world to get better although the signs of that happening are not very encouraging.

Haanel talks about a new age of thinking men where peace reigns and there is prosperity and progress on every side. I believe he would be so disappointed if he were alive today because having placed his trust in men and the ‘universal mind’ to make everything right perhaps he would feel the world is actually worse now than it was in his day. Sure we have invented new and shiny things and much better ways to kill each other, but is the character of man with his wonderful mind and many opportunities any better?
I know we are not to judge…I am just observing.

The writers comments about the Israelite hero Joshua being a thief and a murderer are probably antisemitic, and considering the time it was written this is no surprise, but to suggest the pagan deities were just like our DMPs and the cards we are using to develop our desired characteristics is at best naive. They were sacrificing their own babies to these ‘gods’ they had carved from wood or stone. Has man changed since then? Not a bit considering the millions of babies that are sacrificed each year in abortion clinics.

So are you thinking this is so negative…I never knew Rob could be like this…let me just say I am very positive that we can turn it round, but not if we think we can do it without God. Mark spoke a few weeks ago about the Tower of Babel, that was the birth of the New Age movement…man can get to heaven without God, by the power of his own mind. Communism is a modern day tower…from each according to his ability, to each according to his needs…how does that work out in practice? Needs are deeper than food clothing and shelter, men need incentive and crutches only teach men they cannot walk.  Man needs God and to carry out His great plans for man on the earth God needs man…He has chosen in His goodness to use men and it is our privilege to be so used. Because He has chosen us we must choose to believe it was He who created us Whole, Perfect, Strong, Powerful, Loving, Harmonious and Happy.

It was man who chose to fall from that place but each man individually has now been given the chance to be restored by simply believing in the Saviour Jesus Christ and experiencing a New Birth in his human spirit (Ephesians 2) meaning the Spirit of God, the Universal Spirit if you like, comes to live there: (Thanks to Haanel I now understand the seat of this dwelling to be the Solar Plexus.) and so he regains access to the Mind of Christ (1 Corinthians 2:16).

We become new creations and the old person we once were dies away. There is a process as we are renewed in the spirit of our minds and there is a new blueprint to replace the old. The architect, the builder and maker of this new man is God as we cooperate with Him in it.

It may be that you will choose to carry on believing that man without God can solve his own problems and you have the right to do that…God is not at all coercive and will not take that right from you.
But remember the people in Canaan, as patient as God is, judgement will have to come one day because it is a law of nature. Perhaps Emmerson would describe it as the law of compensation but for better or worse we will all reap what we sow.

I want to leave the last word with the great Israelite Hero who said in the book of Joshua chapter 24:14,15
“So fear the LORD and serve him wholeheartedly. Put away forever the idols your ancestors worshiped when they lived beyond the Euphrates River and in Egypt. Serve the LORD alone.
But if you refuse to serve the LORD, then choose today whom you will serve.
Would you prefer the gods your ancestors served beyond the Euphrates? Or will it be the gods of the Amorites in whose land you now live?
But as for me and my family, we will serve the LORD.”