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Bahá’u’lláh and the New Era

  • Author:
  • J. E. Esslemont

  • Source:
  • US Bahá’í Publishing Trust, 1980 edition
  • Pages:
  • 286
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Pages 254-256

A Glorious Prospect

The Bahá’í glad tidings disclose a vision of the Bounty of God and of the future progress of humanity, which is surely 255 the greatest and most glorious Revelation ever given to mankind, the development and fulfillment of all previous Revelations. Its purpose is nothing less than the regeneration of mankind and the creation of “new heavens and a new earth.” It is the same task to which Christ and all the Prophets have devoted Their lives, and between these great teachers there is no rivalry. It is not by this Manifestation or by that, but by all together, that the task will be accomplished.
As ‘Abdu’l-Bahá says:—
It is not necessary to lower Abraham to raise Jesus. It is not necessary to lower Jesus to proclaim Bahá’u’lláh. We must welcome the Truth of God wherever we behold it. The essence of the question is that all these great Messengers came to raise the Divine Standard of Perfections. All of them shine as orbs in the same heaven of the Divine Will. All of them give Light to the world.
The task is God’s, and God calls not only the Prophets but all mankind to be His co-workers in this creative process. If we refuse His invitation, we shall not hinder the work from going on, for what God wills shall surely come to pass. If we fail to play our part He can raise up other instruments to perform His purpose; but we shall miss the real aim and object of our own lives. At-one-ment with God—becoming His lovers, His servants, the willing channels and mediums of His Creative Power, so that we are conscious of no life within us but His Divine and abundant life—that, according to the Bahá’í teaching, is the ineffable and glorious consummation of human existence.
Humanity, however, is sound at heart, for it is made “in the image and likeness of God,” and when at last it sees the truth, it will not persist in the paths of folly. Bahá’u’lláh assures us that erelong the call of God will be generally accepted, and mankind as a whole will turn to righteousness and obedience. “All sorrow will then be turned into joy, and all disease into health,” and the kingdoms of this world shall become “the kingdoms of our Lord, and of his Christ; and he shall reign for ever and ever” (Rev. xi, 15). Not only those on earth, but all 256 in the heavens and on the earth, shall become one in God and rejoice eternally in Him.