Both the Protestant and the Roman Catholic Church refuse to ampt any revelation proclaiming a new or additional message of salvation. Indeed, the Protestant Church will not accept any new revelation whatsoever. Following Luther's dictum of Sol scriptura (nothing but Holy Writ), it teaches that the message of salvation reached its conclusion with the New Testament. The Catholic Church admits, referring to Lk 17, 21; John 6, 45; 14,16-21; 16,12-15; I Cor 14,1, 5, 19 ff, that there will be relevations after Christ. These are referred to as 'private revelations', intended more for individuals and not for Christendom as a whole.
The Christian revelation essential for salvation, the Catholic Church feels, had been complete in the days of the apostles. They refer to the Bible, where it says that "in these last days He (God) has spoken to us by a Son" (Heb. 1, 2), and to Paul (1 Cor I 0, I 1) and Peter (2 Pet 3, 3); see also I Pet 4, 7 and I Jn 2, 18 speaking of the "end of days", and indeed the "last hour". These statements made by the apostles are not a reliable base for the churches' refusal to accept, because during the first century A.D. Christians adhered to the dogma that the end of the world was to come in their time. This is shown for instance in the above quote from I Heb 1, 2: "in these last days" and I Cor 10, 11, "for our instruction, upon whom the end of the ages has come!" "The appointed time has grown very short." (1 Cor 7, 29). In time, it had to be admitted that the apostles had been mistaken.
Jakob Lorber was told by our Lord that during His time on earth He had said to the disciples, "that I from now on until the end of the world will send messengers from the heavens, so that My Word may not be obliterated by the wicked children of the world nor be too much defamed. But these (messengers) too will be persecuted more or less for My name's sake." (Gr X 115, 9)
"After Me, the gates of heaven will henceforth be open and after more than a thousand years it will be possible (for Lorber, author) to perceive and write down what we are discussing here (with the disciples, author) as though it were all happening before the eyes of the people who will step upon the earth two thousand years (!) after us." (Gr 111 15, 6)
"Lest all men be lost, I have determined that from now on, My word and My teachings shall reach individual persons the way they once did my disciples, and reach them undistorted, not veiled as in the Prophets, but in a clear and comprehensible form, as My disciples once taught the peoples." "I shall now open the eyes of the unbelievers and explain their real meaning to those who literally interpret My Bible." (Pr 163)
This makes it quite clear that the churches are mistaken when they maintain that Revelation was complete with the message of Jesus and the apostles. The horizons of man's capacity for knowledge need to expand before "greater revelations and more accurate details will be given. . ." "Anyone who then accepts the revelations as true and acts accordingly, will soon gain increasingly clearer insight and attain to a truly independent, free life." (Gr VI 204, 9-10)
Mankind has made intellectual progress over the last nineteen hundred years and the time has now come for the mind to be given stronger meat. The Gospels contain only fragments of what Jesus said, and their interpretation leaves very much to be desired - as may be seen from the published results of biblical criticism. The confusion and the distortion of Jesus's teachings could hardly be worse. On the other hand, the churches have got themselves into really serious discredit in the scientific age by adhering to the dogma that the whole of the Old and New Testament text had to be taken literally. In the Galileo case, in the 17th century, the Catholic Church seriously shook the confidence of its believers, particularly the educated, in its exegetes. Luther was no different, of course. When Copernicus proposed the theory that the earth rotated around the sun and not vice versa, he said heatedly: "But this fool wants to turn the whole of astronomy upside down." And his friend Melanchthon wanted to have "this nonsense, a public menace, forbidden by the state." 1
In the days of early Christianity, the office of prophet was accepted as commonplace, - as may be seen from the Literature of the period. St. Paul wrote: "All scripture is inspired by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God be complete, equipped for every good work." (2 Tim 3, 16-17)
In lst century Literature, the prophets are referred to before the bishops. The function of the latter was not one of leadership in those days, but of subordinate nature. They acted as assistants to the presbyters and elders. The Latin word for bishop, episcopus, was used in public administration in antiquity. The episcopus was the city treasurer, and the function was very much the same in the early Christian communities. The second century didache on the teachings of the twelve apostles, explicitly states: "The prophets are your high priests" (!). (Didache 13,3).
In his First Letter to the Corinthians, St. Paul declared: "God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets." (1 Cor 12, 28)
Later, when the hierarchy of priests evolved, the bishops moved into first place. It was at this time that the announcement was made that there would be no further divine revelations. According to Professor Walter Nigg, the strange view that after the apostles God made no further revelations to mankind, was "promulgated merely by theologians who understandably were afraid of the confusion active prophesy might cause among their paragraphs." 2
The objection that much is different in New Revelation to what the churches are teaching is no argument in favor of denying these disclosures. Present-day experts in exegesis and biblical research are unanimously of the opinion that in a number of places, the New Testament text is not identical with the original manuscripts which have been lost. Even Catholic experts are convinced of this today, though it is not spelled out clearly in the parish magazines. As Paul said in his Letter to the Galatians, "there are some who trouble you and pervert the Gospel of Christ." (Gal 1, 7)
After the Council, Catholic Bible scholars are now also admitting quite openly that the Gospel has suffered additions, omissions and alterations. The Catholic professor of theology, J. R. Geiselmann, for example, has written: "The present-day version of the Gospels has undoubtedly undergone a number of revisions." 3
Father Norbert Lohfink SJ states that even in the Middle Ages, learned monks were aware that the New Testament contained material that was not genuine. 4 This was the reason why Catholics were not allowed to read the New Testament for centuries. The experts had known about it all for a long time, but prior to the Council they would not have dared to speak of this openly. As Father Lohfink says, "occult teaching developed" among theological scholars. 5
Until 1962, the Catholic Church insisted that its faithful took the Bible to be wholly free of error. When New Revelation therefore differs here and there from the teachings of the church, this is no reason to refuse to accept it as divine revelation. God does not truckle to churchmen. His spirit blows where it wills and when it wills. The Roman Ex St. Office has explicitly confirmed in its Mysterium Ecclesiae declaration (1973) in response to Hans Kueng's book on infalliability, that the dogmas are "dependent on circumstance, imperfect, open to correction, and may be added to and replaced." 6 This weighty statement from an ecclesiastical authority should be kept firmly in mind by Catholics reading this book.
The central issue here is whether Jakob Lorber ranks as a true prophet deemed worthy to take down in writing a revelation made by God for men living in these last days. Apart from Lorber's scientific predictions, a critical assessment has to be made also of his inner attitude. According to John 7, 18, the following is demanded of a true prophet: "He who speaks on his own authority seeks his own glory; but he who seeks the glory of Him who sent him is true, and in him there is no falsehood." (Jn 7, 17)
This is utterly true of Lorber. lt is hardly possible to imagine a person more humble, unassuming and retiring. Although he has written the most significant religious work of all times, he remained completely unknown. He did not seek public recognition or material advantage. His attitude to his mission and his work is expressed in a letter he wrote to his friend Anselm Huettenbrenner on 21 April 1848: "The world is not prepared to gave me anything, and of this I am glad."
Another characteristic for a prophet given in New Revelation is that 'true prophets will always walk in poverty" (Gr VI 179, 3).
Furthermore: "A true prophet will never be self-seeking, and far from all conceit." (Gr III 204, 12) As already stated earlier, no other person living in a civilized country could really have been more poverty-stricken than Lorber. Self-seeking and conceit were as far removed from the heart of this harmless man as from an innocent child.
Any seeker for truth reading New Revelation will come to realize that Lorber had charisma and that the disclosures dictated to him day after day over a period of twenty-four years was a gift of heaven, a true well spring of divine inspiration and - as New Revelation says - "the key to understanding the Gospels."
lt is easy to distinguish Lorber from many an important-sounding, greedy charlatan who may call himself a "medium for the father". Unfortunately there are many harmless people lacking discernment who fall under the spell of these false prophets, are led astray and, as is only too often obvious, financially exploited.
It is perfectly evident, from what has been said above, that Jakob Lorber's disclosures are a divine message. Yet it is easy to imagine that this unadulterated wisdom, that opens up new horizons and sweeps away much theological debris, is an offence to many, and in particular that the severe judgement, and the fate proclaimed for a Catholic church that has lost its way will have serious consequences as it comes upon the rigid and selfrighteous conceits of the hierarchy. New Revelation makes it only too clear that the Catholic Church and the teaching of Jesus are not in every case one and the same.
It is predicted in New Revelation that "when the need for the truth of life in the end becomes more and more general, and men are no longer satisfied with mere faith in authority, a faith that forever is the basis of benighted, dilatory superstition, then the time will have come to gave them a great and concrete life of light, full of clarity and truth." (Gr VIII 162, 18)
Judging by the experience of all the prophets, there will be opposition to the revelation the Lord has made through Lorber. New Revelation predicts that opposition will grow as it becomes more widely known. It also says, however, that the "wind of the spirit" is already blowing. "It comes from the heavens, to cleanse your spiritual air that is full of all kinds of evil vapors." And the spiritual breath of wind of New Revelation has indeed entered into the hearts of increasing numbers of readers. They realize in awe how this revelation opens up God's plan for salvation in its whole depth, and that this plan is much more comprehensive than the priests have ever been able to envisage. Here the word "God is love" makes itself felt in its full significance. New Revelation is divine in origin, and it therefore calls for the purest love of God and our fellow men, as ineluctable as active Christianity. The urgency of the warnings given to mankind in these last days does indeed touch the heart.
Perceptive theologians have not failed to notice that a prophetic element is astir in the world and that this has its Godgiven purpose in the plan of salvation. They realize that the soil has been broken for a new seed.
In a series of lectures entitled 'Prophets of Yesterday and Today,' Dr. Norbert Lohfink of the Papal Bible Institute in Rome made the following significant comments (without reference to Jakob Lorber): "If we count ourselves among those who feel concern for our world, then there is nothing more oppressive in this world than God's silence. And here we come across a person who has been reached by the voice of God." "Let us not make the limits too narrow where prophesy is concerned, and we shall meet it even in our day. And we also do not know if it will not appear in completely new forms, perhaps within two decades, surprising us all.... The more the church is prepared to gave consideration to the prophets whom God is sending, the more critical it will find the issue of division of minds, and this indeed is not easy. But at the same time we, at least in Europe, should say to ourselves over and over again that in reality we do feel in our bones a wholly unchristian distrust of prophets." "Yet we must always reckon with the fact that such prophets may well have messages that should have been given within our churches but could not be given there, because we are sinfully shutting ourselves off. What, then, can we do? We should not feel ashamed also to go to these prophets and learn from them." "The temptation is always not to adapt ourselves to the prophets, but adapt the prophets to ourselves' " We are often under the painful impression that God is silent in our world. The prophets will not let us go, because they claim that they hear God speak. lt all depends on there being prophets again today. 7
Professor Karl Rahner SJ, a well known Council theologian, has said that the church is far from infallible in its assessment of private revelations. (See the declaration made by the Roman Authority 1877 ASS XI. p. 509 ff) In principle, Rahner holds that "If God has spoken, and this fact has been established, i.e., if adequate proof has been forthcoming, then I feel it is my absolute duty to listen, to obey and to believe, in so far as the content in any way concerns me." "In principle, the spirit of God can have any member of the church influence the church, telling it what the spirit demands of it, what the hour demands." 8 Protestant theologians have made similar statements. 9
These are very impressive statements. They may well cause many a premature opinion concerning Jakob Lorber to be changed. Yet they are unlikely to have any effect on reading churchmen. The repressive measures taken by the Vatican leave no doubt as to the attitudes prevalent in the Papal Court.
"The more My teaching (of New Revelation, author) gains ground, the more will obstacles rise high against it, for it attacks many in their material and even more of their spiritual prosperity, in the way of thinking they have got used to." (Pr 108)
"Many will cast stones upon My teaching, stones that are harsh words intended to crush the gentle teaching of love with their weight. But do not be afraid that they will win." (Pr 107)
A prophet is always a man for radical change. This applies to the churches as much as to temporal things. Amos was the prophet of doom in Samaria, and Jakob Lorber will be ours. Amos had bitter truths to tell to the priests in the name of God (5, 21-23). They did not like to hear this and told him: "0 seer, go, flee away to the land of Judah, and eat bread there, and prophesy there; but never again prophesy at Bethel, for it is the king's sanctuary, and it is a temple of the kingdom."
It is no different today. "They do not love My light," Lorber was told by the Lord, referring to the priests of today. (Gr III 225, 9)
So that as many people as possible may be acquainted with New Revelation, the following is said in the work to all who seem fitted to spread New Revelation: "Contribute all you can, to show your fellow men the way to the same goal, then My words to you will not have been in vain." (Pr 132)
In earlier centuries the Catholic Church always altered the meaning of revelations or suppressed them. In the case of New Revelation it will be able to prevent it spreading among men, for-as Jakob Lorber said very specifically: "This is not within My scheme for now and henceforth." "At the right time, My word will reach all who call for it in their hearts." (Hi Il p. 276)
"My work will enter the light of day without hindrance as a great magnet that will draw everything to itself." (Hi I p. 99)