The Eternal One has always existed, without any beginning or ending cycles. When He perceived the concept of parenthood and offspring as “images of His likeness,” (a) [see end notes for all Scriptures] He created the natural time and space universe. (b) To facilitate His desire, God formed a planet with an atmosphere to support the process of growing life forms. (c) The earth is where He would birth, raise, and teach His offspring as children.
Next, God formed the first human body from the earth’s dirt and breathed His Spirit into the form. As the new creature animated, impressions began forming a conscious soul. Noting the limitations of the one as “not good,” He took from the first and formed a second. (d)
The first two (we know them as Adam and Eve) were designed to complement each other and assist God in birthing and raising the colossal multitude that would be His family. Additional offspring of God and man come from interactions of men and women who become good and not-so-good illustrations of our heavenly parent. So, how do we understand the three stages of life?
The First Stage
Each offspring begins their first stage of existence in their mother’s womb. At conception, when male sperm connects with a female egg, a burst of light happens. Scientists have snapped pictures of the event. (e) This is visible evidence that God, who is Love and Light, (f) is involved in every impregnation. (g) Every person begins their natural and spiritual life in the restrained limitations of a mother’s womb.
During our time in the womb, we develop at unbelievable rates. Science confirms several areas of growth during this first stage of life. During fertilization your sex is determined and your heart begins beating in just 18 days. Within four weeks you have grown 10,000 times larger. At seven weeks you are one inch long and have each of your eleven organs. Although no one can hear you because of your environment, you cry in the womb. Your cry is influenced by voices you hear from realities outside your world.
While our first stage of life appears to be largely physical, it is not void of spiritual awareness. During this first phase we are consciously influenced by input from the stage of life that is to come. When a conscious soul in a womb is cutoff by a natural or forced abortion, they miss the second stage of life and go straight into the third realm, where God welcomes all of His offspring.
While our first stage of life appears to be largely physical, it is not void of spiritual awareness.
The Second Stage
As we exit the womb and are birthed into this second stage of life, we enter a reality that is beyond comprehension in the womb. The brighter light and expanded space changes our perceptions of life. This new life is so overwhelming; we quickly forget the previous limitations and restrictions.
In this stage of life, we are able to consciously grow and develop into greater levels of conscious awareness. God gives us the gift of choice, so we can choose from a vast array of options. This stage is full of productive and destructive processes (good and evil) that ease and complicate life, so God offers to lead and guide our steps.
During this life, we become more consciously aware of our heavenly Father and His parental care. Scripture says God is always involved in our lives, “taking us from the womb and sustaining us.” (h) Even without consciously knowing God, we all experience His guiding presence, much like we experience gravity without knowing or understanding it.
Throughout this phase we receive input and are influenced by the life to come. God’s insightful voice and guiding presence is always available to everyone willing to listen. (i) “The Lord…is patient toward you, not wishing for any to perish.” (j)
Scripture identifies the qualities of God that are developing in us during this life as: “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control…If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit.” (k) The fruit of spiritual consciousness is beneficial to both the bearer and the receiver.
God’s insightful voice and guiding presence is always available to everyone willing to listen.
The Third Stage
Most everyone knows and Scripture confirms that our consciousness continues beyond this life into a third stage. And, there are hundreds of thousands of recorded near-death occurrences that also bear witness. During the near-death precursor to the third phase, people see a brighter light and experience a depth of forgiving love that exceeds this natural world’s perceptions. Our next stage of life is vastly greater than this life.
“Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard, and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him.” (l)
The first two stages of life include temporal aspects of natural life, which tends to pass. The third will not have the physical or conscious limitations of the natural realm. Upon exiting this world’s restrictions, we will again enter a reality that is beyond any comprehension currently understood.
While our Bible translations appear to describe what life is like in the next phase, the original writings of Scripture actually instruct us about how to live this life and invite us to partake of elevated qualities of spirit life during our time in earth. (m)
Our goal in this life is to be Christ-like expressions of God, as His developing children. Ideally, we should strive to learn to walk in union with our heavenly Father, like Jesus did. (n)
Everyone can be more sensitive to God and grow into better examples of His character, attitude and personality (CAP). May we all continue to learn to do the “good and righteous” thing (o) and become more mature expressions of our heavenly Father!
Our goal in this life is to be Christ-like expressions of God.
a) Genesis 1:26); b) John 1:1-3; c) Isaiah 42:5; 54:18; d) Genesis 2:7; e) (https://www.sciencealert.com/scientists-just-captured-the-actual-flash-of-light-that-sparks-when-sperm-meets-an-egg) f) 1 John 1:5; 4:7, 16; g) Jeremiah 1: 5; Isaiah 44:24; Psalms 139:13-16; h) Psalm 71:6; 22:9; i) Matthew 11:28; Acts 3:19; j) 2 Peter 3:9; k) Galatians 5:22-25; l) 1 Corinthians 2:9; m) https://relationalgospel.com/blog/what-actually-is-the-heaven-of-scripture/ and https://relationalgospel.com/blog/where-is-the-heaven-of-scripture-that-we-look-for/ ; n) John 14:3; 12:26; 17:24; o) Matthew 5:45; Ecclesiastes 7:20
Keith Carroll, “The Relationship Guy”
Relational Gospel Founder