Allegory: noun. “a story used for teaching, in which people, things, and happenings have a hidden or symbolic meaning.”
In a faraway land laden with abundant peace and joy, and cloaked in wondrous mystery, a fair and lovely city nestles serenely and securely among the foothills of a nearby high and lofty mountain. This city is not unlike other cities that dot our azure planet.
But there are some noticeable differences. For example, if you were to stand high on the lofty mountain overlooking the city, you would see there are many one-way roads leading into the city, and only one, one-way road leading out of the city to the high mountain; A curious sight…
Also from the mountaintop overlooking the city, observant travelers might find their curiousity further piqued by the unusual shape of the city.
The main portion of the city lies within a long, thin rectangle laid out at a right angle to the base of the mountain. The remaining portions of the city lie within two shorter rectangles equal in length, butting the main portion of the city at right angles directly opposite one another at a point about three-fourths along its length, with the other one-fourth of its length nearest the mountain.
Thousands of roads leading into the city originate at every farm, hamlet, village, town, city, metropolis, and megalopolis on the planet, and enter the foothills city from its sides opposite the mountain. The single, one-way road leading out of the city leads directly to the mountain. Many one-way roads leading into the city. Only one, one-way road leading out of the city to the high mountain. It is a mystery…
The roads leading into the city are not all roads; there are also lanes, and paths, and highways, and tracks, and turnpikes, and thoroughfares…in addition to the roads.
Some of those roads leading to the city are roads of pain, suffering, heartbreak, sorrow, loss, broken relationships, sickness, disease infirmities, loneliness, and suicide. But all such roads lead inexorably to that city—a city where there is surcease, healing, restoration, and the final ends of all such troubles that inflict many of those journeying to that city.
Some roads are well-traveled. Some are scarcely traveled at all. But they are all one-way accesses into the city. Yes, that is unusual. But so is the city. So is the mountain. It is a mystery…
Long ago, and once upon the fullness of time, God the Son told his followers, “I am the way… People reach my Father only through Me.” The Son of God is the Foothills City…a majestic city, yet the Son of God, one and the same.
There are many roads leading to the city—to the Son of God. As many roads as there are people—millions of roads, even billions. And the Son of God draws all people to the city as a lodestone attracts iron filings unto itself. He once proclaimed: “I will [inexorably] draw all people unto myself!”
As time marches on and generation after generation of people are drawn gently toward the foothills city, they each perceive the city individually and uniquely, based upon their current location on their journey, their present state of awareness, and their prevailing level of understanding.
Travelers also see the city through the eyes of their own backgrounds and lifespans, their own society, their own culture, and their own times. Yet, all are mysteriously and inexorably drawn toward the city—not against their wills, but sometimes they are not even aware they are being drawn toward it.
City Of Refuge
It is a soft, gentle, imperceptible summoning; it is a light, feathery, indistinguishable breeze upon their backs, guiding them toward the city. It is a mystery…
All see the city as bright, and fair, and welcoming. Somehow it is home—the home they left behind, yet a new home. As they stream toward this unusual city, they see it as a safe haven in which their life questions will be answered, their burdens lifted, their enslaving chains broken, and all their needs met.
It seems that all people left this Home before the Creation, yet they are about to return to the Home they left…and know the place for the first time.
They know there is healing and health for all travelers who arrive at this wondrous city. They know it is a city of refuge, a city of safety, a city of rest for the weary traveler. They know it is a good city to which they journey. Somehow—perhaps instinctively—they know the Architect and Builder of the city is absolutely good and everything He does is good; therefore, it is a city of Good.
Some run toward the city. Others plod slowly. Still others are reluctant, but an insistent, inner urging compels them to continue their journey.
Believing they may have found a better or faster way to the high mountain above the foothills city, some even take detours or veer off at junctions—only to find the detours and the new routes ultimately lead them back toward the city.
This happens with each assumed, new, and better route. Travelers cannot bypass the city to get to the high mountain. Some travelers pause from time to time, questioning the journey. Some stop to rest. Some find distractions along the way. Still, they all continue to journey inexorably toward the city. It is a mystery…
The Son Is The City
Yes, the Son of God is the Foothills City—and all people from all nations, all tribes, all ethnic groups, all language groups, all times, and all places are being inexorably drawn toward the city. There is not only one way alone by which people journey toward this city.
There are many ways leading to the city. High ways. Low ways. Difficult ways. Lonely ways. Circuitous ways. Bright ways. Dark ways. Puzzling ways. Mysterious ways. Confusing ways. Questioning ways. Doubtful ways. Faithless ways. Faith-filled ways. But they all lead to the city.
However, let it be known by all: once a traveler reaches the city, there is only one path out of the city to the high mountain. It is a mystery…
Only One Road Out of the City
The high mountain is God. All travelers must go through the foothills city to reach the one road leading to the high mountain. That road out of the city to the high mountain is a bright shining way, wending through fair vistas, lovely scenery, and unparalled and unprecedented wonders, joys, and delights.
But the only way onto that road is through the city. Not around the city, not past the city, not over the city, not under the city, but only through the city.
Once through the foothills city, travelers to the high mountain know with absolute certainty they are on the right road to the greater, celestial city shining brightly from the mountain’s peak. There are no detours, junctions, sidetracks, or pitfalls on that road. The road leads directly to the high mountain.
Upon their arrival, and to their wonderment, each traveler discovers the celestial city on the mountain peak is the same city they passed through to reach the road leading up the mountain—yet, it is a far greater city to which they journey. It is a mystery…
The celestial city descended from God out of heavenly realms, yet it is part of God, part of the city nestled in the foothills, part of the high mountain. The city has no need of the sun or moon to light it, for Father and Son of God are its light. The entrance to the city never closes at night, for there is no night there.
A pure, crystal-clear river of life flows out of the city, and on each side of the river grow unimaginable, ever-fruitful trees of life. The waters of the river and the fruit from the trees are powerful and wondrous medicine to heal all people from all hurts, all wounds, all traumas, all injuries, all diseases, all infirmities, all disabilities, all self-imposed limitations. And, wonder of wonders, they even heal from the darkest of all enemies—the last enemy: Death.
With increasing awe and growing wonderment, each traveler discovers that they—and all others who have arrived safely home—together comprise the city. They, along with The Father and the Son, are the City. How can that be? It is a mystery…
The Foothills City, the Lofty Mountain, and the Celestial City are all one. And the traveler who has arrived safely home is an essential part of the whole. It is a great mystery…
Moreover, the mountain and the shining city at its peak are not only the end of the journey, but also the beginning. Travelers discover at the end of their long journey they have arrived at where they started…and they know the place for the first time…and yet they have known it all through the journey and have merely arrived home where their journey originated.
The Eternal Realms
The end of the journey is merely the end of the beginning…and the beginning of the new beginning. How can that be? Because everything—everywhere and everywhen—is absolutely simultaneous to God!
God doesn’t inhabit an eternity that “was” and that will “begin” again at the end of the ages of time; time is merely a created phenomenon created by God, just as everything else that is not God was created by God.
God created time to accommodate us who are travelers through time into eternity. No, eternity is not something that “was” and that “will be” again when time ends and ceases to be.
Eternity simply is: a state of being resident in Almighty God, in which state of being everything is absolutely simultaneous to Him. He does not perceive past, present, and future as we do; those are merely realities having to do with time—in which we humans presently live, and move, and have our being.
We are the time travelers to the Great City of Mystery; God does not travel nor need to “go” anywhere for He is God. He is “outside” of time and sees everything occurring in time simultaneously. Everything is always “now” to God. Everything in all his creation is always “present” to God.
He does not have to “travel” back and forth in time in order to keep track of everything past, present, and future. He exists beyond time and space in an Eternal State in the Celestial City.
Eternity is not a “place” to which we are journeying through time and space. It is a state of being—a Great City—in which God resides eternally, beyond the limitations of time and space. And that is where we, too, shall abide eternally. In this mortal life we all share, we are always limited by time and space—but God is not so limited in any manner.
I encourage you to read another teaching on this web site titled Beyond The Far Shores of Time for more insight into this important concept: I guarantee that teaching about time and eternity on this web site will s-t-r-e-t-c-h your mind and spirit in some different ways!
So…let us all now continue our journey on the King’s Highway—on his Royal Road—to that Great City beyond time and space in the Eternal Realm . . . that Great City of Mystery to which all humankind is bound! Yes, it is the King’s Highway, the Royal Road, BUT it is also the Calvary Road leading all humanity to Jesus, God the Son—and through Him to that City on a Hill, the Celestial City in the Eternal Realm, in which there is no night, for God Himself is the Eternal Light!
For some additional thoughts about each of our journeys toward “The City of Mystery,” I invite you to read another companion teaching on this website titled “Our Long Journey Home.”
Revised and updated January 2023