How the Solomon Jesus and Nathan Jesus Became One
It is clear that before the birth of their Jesus child, the Nathan parents lived in Nazareth and the Solomon parents lived in Bethlehem. When the Solomon family returned from Egypt, they went as the angel had instructed Joseph into Galilee and settled in Nazareth. As one might expect in a small community, they were friendly and the children grew up as neighbors until the Luke child was twelve years of age.1
Steiner tells us that the Solomon child was born long enough before the Nathan child to permit John the Baptist to escape the Herod massacre of male children under two years of age. Since John was six months older than the Nathan Jesus, we may assume that the Solomon child was born more than six months before the Nathan child. Those who have studied the matter carefully know that most scholars place the birth of Jesus earlier than our calendar date but that there is a discrepancy of a few years between the proposed dates. Herod the Great’s death in 4 B.C. pretty well establishes the birth of the Solomon Jesus at least four years BC, while from the standpoint of Luke’s Gospel a date as late as 1 BC is suggested. These discussions are beyond the scope of this brief work, but fit the scenario presented.
When the Nathan Jesus child was twelve, an event occurred that had been prepared in the spiritual world over many centuries. It was likely foreseen in the account that reflected the proverbial wisdom of the ancestral Solomon. I speak of the occasion where each of two prostitutes gave birth to a son, one of whom died, whereupon both women claimed the surviving child. Solomon proposed to cut the child in two with a sword and give half to each one, whereupon the real mother immediately gave up her claim so that the child could live. The wise Solomon then pronounced judgment in her favor.
As is so often the case in scripture, the “sword” can mean the mighty Word of God. And we find the wise Simeon telling Nathan Mary that in regard to her infant “a sword will pierce through your own soul also.” As events were to unfold, this can be seen to have truly happened in a most profound way.
Believing it important to know what happened between the birth of Jesus and his ministry, scholars of the last century and a half have bemoaned the inadequacy of the Gospels in giving us only the account in Luke’s Gospel of the twelve year old Jesus in the temple. But the Gospels have given us all that is really important. And except for the divine spiritual intuition of Rudolf Steiner we would even yet not be able to see its immense significance. What then are we told by him that makes it so significant?
The Ego of the Solomon Jesus left him and entered into Nathan Jesus who until then had only the provisional Ego rising from the unspoiled etheric body held back from Adam. Deprived of its human element, the Solomon child withered and died soon after. Nathan Jesus now consisted of the physical body descended from David through Joseph, the unspoiled etheric body held back from Adam, the purified astral body of the Buddha, and the most advanced Ego humanity had produced, that of the ancient Zarathustra and all it had accumulated through many succeeding incarnations—including the one as Zarathos who taught the middle period prophets in Babylon. One of these prophets, called “second Isaiah,” had been able to foresee the birth of this great soul as the suffering servant that the Christ Spirit would use.
Composed as it was of these four elements, this advanced Ego and these three bodies, Nathan Jesus was able to utterly confound the teachers in the temple. But what is even more telling is that this so astonished his own parents. They were astonished because the simple child they had known up until that time was no longer merely pure, simple and deeply in touch with all creatures, but he was now wiser than the wisest in the temple as a mere twelve year old. Had this wisdom previously existed in the child, they would have come to expect this type of thing. As it is they too are incredulous.
When this remarkable fact is revealed to us, we then begin to see the deep wisdom that led the Evangelists to include only it in the thirty years between birth and ministry. But we have yet to exhaust the marvel.
We are told by Luke in a single verse that Jesus then increased in wisdom, age, and beauty—Luke’s way of saying that the wise Ego worked on in these three bodies preparing them further for the next majestic event in the process of Incarnation, the entry of the Christ Spirit. The bodies would have to be magnificently prepared by this wise soul to withstand the entry of the intense, searing power of the Sun Spirit, the Son of God, the Christ.
But there were other developments in the families of the two boys. The Solomon Mary had other children, four sons and two daughters according to Mark’s Gospel. The Solomon Joseph died, probably after fathering all of these children. Soon after the temple incident, the Nathan Mary also died. The two families merged by the marriage of the Solomon Mary to the Nathan Joseph, and all the children then lived together. In terms of Jesus’ Ego, all his brothers and sisters were his own, as was his mother, while in terms of his body, he was the son of Joseph and lived in his native town of Nazareth.
This is the reason Luke says at the beginning of his genealogy that Jesus was the son, as was “supposed,” of Joseph, for the Ego had originally incarnated in the Solomon Jesus and was not therefore connected fundamentally with the Nathan Joseph. We may also ponder the profound depth of Jesus’ question, “Who is my mother, and who are my brothers?” It was especially profound since it was spoken after the further immense change brought about by his baptism when, in respect of his all important Ego, as we shall see, he was no more related to any one person than to all others.
We are not done with family matters, for too much remains to be said about the Marys. Let us defer that momentarily, however, in order to look at the significance that numbers play in these two Nativity accounts.
We’ve already seen how Matthew starts with Abraham and counts forty-two generations in the development of the three bodies, a sevenfold process in each step. It seems strange that, in comparison, Luke goes all the way back to Adam in his genealogy, and in doing so lists a total of seventy-seven generations. If we examine this, we find that we move from the sevens of Matthew’s Gospel to the twelves of Luke’s; from the realm of the sevenfold planetary nature of our solar system into the twelvefold nature of the zodiac, a pattern one clearly sees in John’s portrayal of the reascent of the human being in his Apocalypse. Time, or evolutionary development, is expressed in terms of seven, and timelessness in terms of twelve.
Above, forty-two generations were said to be necessary for the perfection of the three bodies of a descendent of Abraham that would be adequate to receive the Zarathustra Individuality. The requisite degree of perfection of the physical caused there to be a certain degree of perfection in the younger etheric and astral bodies, and thus could be considered the degree of perfection of the three. Steiner tells us that the Essenes recognized that a divine being, the folk-spirit of the Hebrew people, laid into the organic constitution of Abraham the seed for the bodies that were to descend from him, and that the seed was to work through the force of the blood, that is through heredity. Further, the Essenes perceived a spiritual law that the influence of heredity ceases only after forty-two stages: In other words, all traces of heredity have been eliminated from a human being’s soul, and no influence exists, after forty-two generations. This was perceived as six cycles of seven generations, with the seventh cycle of seven representing the stage of perfection.
The hereditary aspects of the human body thus prepared for Zarathustra’s return were mainly those of the physical body and the etheric body. The other two elements of the human being, the astral body and the Ego, would also have to be adequately prepared. For an event of such stupendous importance as the Incarnation this could not be accomplished by one personality, and two were necessary. This is entirely in line with the Essenic expectation of two Messiahs. The physical body and the etheric body were prepared in the personality with whom Matthew’s Gospel is primarily concerned; the astral body and Ego-principle were prepared in the personality of whom Luke’s Gospel tells. Unfortunately, Steiner leaves us at this seemingly mystifying point. How is it that the physical and etheric bodies are said to relate to the Matthew account and the astral body and Ego to the Luke account when we have seen that the Zarathustra Ego of the Matthew account leaves the three bodies of the Solomon Jesus to enter the three bodies of the Nathan Jesus child of the Luke account? This is an example of where one must apply what is elsewhere given in order to make sense of the statement. We have already seen that the Solomon child was probably at least fourteen when the Nathan child was twelve. At fourteen, the Zarathustra Ego had utilized everything it acquired by inheritance by way of the physical and etheric bodies (seven years for each), and it was ready to enter into the period of development of the astral body (which commences at puberty). For that, it needed what was in the Nathan Jesus child. All development by the Zarathustra being from that point to the Baptism was in the three bodies of the Nathan Jesus.
Inasmuch as the physical and etheric bodies are related to the sevenfold solar system and time, the secret of six times seven applies to them, while the astral body and Ego relate to timelessness and to the zodiacal forces, so that the secret of eleven times seven applies to them. In each case, the final seven represents perfection. So in Matthew, the body prepared for the Solomon Jesus child (Zarathustra) is six times seven, or forty-two generations, while in Luke, the body prepared for the Nathan Jesus child (the unspoiled “Second Adam”) is eleven times seven, or seventy-seven generations. As explained in my longer work, generations prior to Abraham included many of what we would call generations, each one extending as long as the blood-enabled memory of a named ancestor’s experiences continued.
We marvel that Luke dares to trace the genealogy of Jesus all the way back to God. But since Luke understood Adam to be the “first man,” he would have started counting with him and not with God. That being so, it was necessary to insert one additional name, even though perhaps not historical (Arni and Admin being one, as noted earlier), in order to get to his vital number seventy-seven. In this manner we see clearly that Luke was not in error in presenting what he intended to say—which was not earthly history but spiritual truth.
That such was his intent seems clearly to be confirmed by the stress upon years in the prophetess Anna passage. We see there that Anna had lived a total of seventy-seven years either as a virgin or a widow (both of which have deep esoteric meaning relating to purity and devotion) and a total of eighty-four years (“great age,” esoteric for wisdom) when she recognized the master. The name “Anna” comes from the Greek which in turn derives from the Hebrew chana, meaning “grace,” and is expressed there in the name “Hannah” (and seems also related to the Jewish festival “Hanuka,” which is literally chanuka). The number seventy-seven thus expresses humankind’s perfecting process up to the final seven years, the twelfth septenary, which comes about by virtue of “grace.” Here Luke merges the concepts seven and twelve in the number eighty-four, the product of the two.
Perhaps now we can begin to see the reason why Matthew left out three kings in his genealogy and why Luke made Ram into Arni and Admin in his. They were telling of spiritual development, to which earthly history was only subservient.
Before moving to the next event, it is noteworthy that not only did Essene prophecy, as discovered this century, predict two messiahs, but considerable early art work during the Christian era shows both Jesus children, as indicated in The Burning Bush.