16. Multiple Motivators

Some passages contain multiple incentives. The following is an example. It commands, admonishes, informs, reasons, and finally warns. Added together, the multiple incentives in the following passage gain a power perhaps beyond any other found in sacred Scriptures:

Tear asunder, in My Name, the veils that have grievously blinded your vision, and, through the power born of your belief in the unity of God, scatter the idols of vain imitation. Enter, then, the holy paradise of the good-pleasure of the All-Merciful. Sanctify your souls from whatsoever is not of God, and taste ye the sweetness of rest within the pale of His vast and mighty Revelation, and beneath the shadow of His supreme and infallible authority. Suffer not yourselves to be wrapt in the dense veils of your selfish desires, inasmuch as I have perfected in every one of you My creation, so that the excellence of My handiwork may be fully revealed unto men. It follows, therefore, that every man hath been, and will continue to be, able of himself to appreciate the Beauty of God, the Glorified. Had he not been endowed with such a capacity, how could he be called to account for his failure? If, in the Day when all the peoples of the earth will be gathered together, any man should, whilst standing in the presence of God, be asked: “Wherefore hast thou disbelieved in My Beauty and turned away from My Self,” and if such a man should reply and say: “Inasmuch as all men have erred, and none hath been found willing to turn his face to the Truth, I, too, following their example, have grievously failed to recognize the Beauty of the Eternal,” such a plea will, assuredly, be rejected. For the faith of no man can be conditioned by any one except himself.377 _Bahá’u’lláh

Let us now divide up the previous paragraph to identify each of its incentives or appeals:

Command:

Tear asunder, in My Name, the veils that have grievously blinded your vision, and, through the power born of your belief in the unity of God, scatter the idols of vain imitation. Enter, then, the holy paradise of the good-pleasure of the All-Merciful.378

Admonish:

Sanctify your souls from whatsoever is not of God, and taste ye the sweetness of rest within the pale of His vast and mighty Revelation, and beneath the shadow of

His supreme and infallible authority. Suffer not yourselves to be wrapt in the dense veils of your selfish desires.379

Inform:

…inasmuch as I have perfected in every one of you My creation, so that the excellence of My handiwork may be fully revealed unto men. It follows, therefore, that every man hath been, and will continue to be, able of himself to appreciate the Beauty of God, the Glorified.380

Question and Reason:

Had he not been endowed with such a capacity, how could he be called to account for his failure?381

Warn:

If, in the Day when all the peoples of the earth will be gathered together, any man should, whilst standing in the presence of God, be asked: “Wherefore hast thou disbelieved in My Beauty and turned away from My Self,” and if such a man should reply and say: “Inasmuch as all men have erred, and none hath been found willing to turn his face to the Truth, I, too, following their example, have grievously failed to recognize the Beauty of the Eternal,” such a plea will, assuredly, be rejected. For the faith of no man can be conditioned by any one except himself.382

Why does God use so many motivators? Why does He appeal in so many ways to our hearts and souls? Simply because of His supreme love for His creatures.

God desireth that all men should be guided aright…383 _The Báb

The Lord…is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance. _II Peter 3:9

For the mountains shall depart and the hills be removed, but My kindness shall not depart from you…Says the Lord… _Isaiah 54:10

God’s investment in human beings is beyond anyone’s estimation. Within the soul of every person He has placed His greatest gifts and most precious possessions.

Ye are My treasury, for in you I have treasured the pearls of My mysteries and the gems of My knowledge.384 _Bahá’u’lláh

My claim on thee is great, it cannot be forgotten. My grace to thee is plenteous, it cannot be veiled. My love has made in thee its home, it cannot be concealed. My light is manifest to thee, it cannot be obscured.385 _Bahá’u’lláh

God is our supreme Lover who wants to be also our supreme Beloved.

I have breathed within thee a breath of My own Spirit, that thou mayest be My lover. Why hast thou forsaken Me and sought a beloved other than Me?386 _Bahá’u’lláh

He wants us to reach out for His choicest fruits.

Upon the tree of effulgent glory I have hung for thee the choicest fruits, wherefore hast thou turned away and contented thyself with that which is less good? Return then unto that which is better for thee in the realm on high.387 _Bahá’u’lláh

He wants us to experience abundant and enduring joy.

Rejoice in the gladness of thine heart, that thou mayest be worthy to meet Me and to mirror forth My beauty.388 _Bahá’u’lláh

There is yet another reason why God uses so many incentives and appeals in so many ways. As God is loving, so is He just. His justice demands that people must be told in every possible way the consequences of their deeds, especially the ultimate destiny of those who accept or deny His Redeemers. God completes His testimony. He leaves no excuses for anyone who hears His message:

Say: By the righteousness of the Almighty! The measure of the favors of God hath been filled up, His Word hath been perfected, the light of His countenance hath been revealed, His sovereignty hath encompassed the whole of creation, the glory of His Revelation hath been made manifest, and His bounties have rained upon all mankind.389 _Bahá’u’lláh

I bear witness, O friends! that the favor is complete, the argument fulfilled, the proof manifest and the evidence established. Let it now be seen what your endeavors in the path of detachment will reveal.390 _Bahá’u’lláh

We have the choice to say no to God; He has the right to say no to us. We have the choice to close our hearts to Him; He has the right to close His Kingdom to us. Would it be fair if this rule were not upheld? Would God be just if He allowed every denier into His Kingdom?

Please reread all the motivators quoted in this chapter and ponder their meaning until their powers touch your soul. God communicates with us through words. He gave us the gift of understanding, thinking, and speaking for that reason. His words are our very life and spirit. Without them, we remain spiritually dead:

The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life. _Christ (John 6:63)

God’s Word testifies to His greatness and glory, to His supremacy and authority. It shines as brightly as the sun against lighted lamps. It is so powerful, it eclipses every other light:

Verily, the Day is come, and My Lord hath made Me to shine forth with a light whose splendor hath eclipsed the suns of utterance.391 _ Bahá’u’lláh

If we fail to read and heed His words, if we fail to connect our soul with His, if we fail to seek Him and pray to Him with earnest desire, we remain deprived of spiritual life.

Can we expect answers to prayers not offered?

He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will deliver him and honor him…and show him My salvation. _Psalms 91:15-16

If we pray, will He not guide us to His Kingdom?

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will guide you with My eye. _Psalms 32:8

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct your paths. _Proverbs 3:5-6

Can we expect results without means, without efforts?

For results depend upon means, and the grace of God shall be all-sufficient unto you.392 _Bahá’u’lláh

What are “the means” that set the cycle of blessings in motion, that result in the outpouring of the grace of God?

• Searching patiently and persistently for truth with a watchful and pure heart. • Reflecting and meditating with an open and critical mind.
• Praying and pleading with God to become worthy of His grace and glory.

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