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Is the Urantia Book the "White Stone" foretold in The Book of Revelation 2:17?

KJV

Rev 2:17 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it.


"He that hath an ear..."

Is that us?

"let him hear what the Spirit saith..."

If the Spirit says it, can we get any more authoritative than that?

"To him that overcometh..."

We have to overcome, but overcome what? Do we, at least to some degree, have to "overcome" what we already believe, our previously settled beliefs derived from the Bible?

"will I give to eat of the hidden manna"

Could the hidden manna be the new truth revealed in The Urantia Book?

"and will give him a white stone"

Throughout history the "white stone" has signified "yes" or the truth. Could the Urantia Book be the "white stone," signifying The Truth?

"and in the stone a new name written"

Is it possible that the "new name written" is that name found in the Urantia Book? That name is "Michael of Nebadon," which the Urantia Book declares is Jesus' heavenly, spiritual name. Along with this "new name written" is a complete rendering of a previously unknown and unrevealed story of Jesus as Michael (about 1/4 of the Urantia Book).

According to the Urantia Book, Michael is not an archangel. The Book of Daniel describes Michael as "one of the chief princes," and "Michael your prince," and "Michael..., the great prince." A prince is not an archangel. Rather, a prince is the son of the king, and a member of the Royal Family. Jesus/Michael is mentioned as a divine Son of God, and it seems one can learn all about Him in The Urantia Book.

Is this Book not apparently then "white stone," the truth that was foretold?

"which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it."

The only ones who can know it are those who receive it. So, should the Urantia Book be accepted as fulfillment of Rev 2:17? If not, why not?

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Welcome to Biblical Hermeneutics Stack Exchange! Be sure to take our site tour to learn more about us. We're a little different from other sites. We study the Bible. While we have only loosely defined what texts fall into that category, I'm confident that texts written in the 20th century don't. If you have a question about a specific passage in Revelation, you are free to ask it without imposing ideas from later texts onto it. –  Daи Apr 15 at 13:20
    
@user2479 keep in mind that this is not a Christian (nor Jewish) site. Whether the book is used by what you deem to be a 'cult' or not has no bearing on whether or not it is on topic here (it is off topic, but not for that reason). –  Daи Apr 15 at 13:24
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@Daи: Is it "off topic"? It (1) asks about the interpretation of a specific text (Rev 2:17) and (2) can be answered from the text (see my answer). What more does it need to qualify? That it takes its own interpretation of the text is (I assume) not inherently invalid for the site. That it makes its interpretation from outside the text makes it questionable. In this case, however, that outside view is also what makes it answerable by the text. –  ScottS Apr 15 at 14:08
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"A prince is not an archangel. A prince is the son of the king, and a member of the Royal Family." That's using a modern meaning for an ancient word. The Hebrew sar means leader and is used for various nobles and priests. –  Frank Luke Apr 15 at 19:49
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@ScottS you may be the best qualified person to improve the question: if you have the time and are willing, please do so. I hope the tone could be changed without doing damage to the OPs perspective or to the basis for your excellent answer. –  Jack Douglas Apr 16 at 8:13
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1 Answer 1

The Bible Answers this as "No"

Quoting you (all quotations are from prior to editing the "tone" of the question):

Is the Urantia Book ("White Stone") foretold in The Book of Revelation 2:17 ?

There is no textual evidence to link the "white stone" symbol to the Urantia Book. Such a connection is an arbitrary assertion. Of course, because we are dealing with symbolism and prophecy here in Rev 2:17, something that was future is being referred to in a symbolic way. The question then becomes, does the Bible give evidence that it cannot be the Urantia Book, based off what is known from both Scripture and the teachings of that book itself? The answer to that is "Yes," the Bible has textual evidence that proves the Urantia Book cannot be the "white stone" of Revelation 2:17.

Quoting you:

Rev 2:17 He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches; To him that overcometh will I give to eat of the hidden manna, and will give him a white stone, and in the stone a new name written, which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it. (KJV)

"He that hath an ear..." Is that us ?

The reference "he that hath an ear" refers back to

Rev 1:3 (emphasis added):

Blessed is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand.

It is the Apostle John (the author of Revelation) that God earlier related in John's gospel who it is that can "hear":

John 8:42-44 (emphasis added):

42 Jesus said unto them, If God were your Father, ye would love me: for I proceeded forth and came from God; neither came I of myself, but he sent me. 43 Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word. 44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning, and abode not in the truth, because there is no truth in him. When he speaketh a lie, he speaketh of his own: for he is a liar, and the father of it.

Those that can hear Jesus' words (the same one speaking in Revelation; Rev 1:1-2) are those that "love Jesus," and John's words are by His Spirit (Rev 1:9-11) in the passage under discussion.

Quoting you:

"let him hear what the Spirit saith..." If the Spirit says it. Can we get any more authoritative than that ?

No, we cannot. But all that the Spirit is saying is what is written in the book of Revelation, and specifically in this reference to what was said in Rev 2:12-16 to "church in Pergamos."

Quoting you:

"To him that overcometh..." We have to overcome. But overcome what? Do we, at least to some degree, have to "overcome" what we already believe, our previously settled beliefs derived from the Bible?

Specifically, what was it that, not we, but the believers in the "church in Pergamos" had to overcome (since they are the direct reference and recipients of the message)? The temptation amidst Satan's stronghold to deny "my [Jesus Christ's] name," which meant to have "denied my faith" (Rev 2:13). It was false doctrine about Christ that had to be overcome, which doctrine had been allowed in their midst (Rev 2:14-15).

That principle can be translated to a "we" (i.e. believers in Christ today), that false doctrine should be resisted, not allowed in the church itself, and certainly not believed. So on the contrary, it is in fact "previously settled beliefs derived from the Bible" that should be maintained.

Quoting you:

"will I give to eat of the hidden manna" Could the hidden manna the new truth revealed in The Urantia Book ?

The book of Revelation answers this as well

Rev 22:18-19:

18For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book: 19And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

While it is debated among conservative Christians whether the warning in the passage is a reference to the Bible as a whole, or to just the subset portion of the Bible that is the Book of Revelation, for your question, that does not matter, as it is the Book of Revelation under discussion. What it does say is to not "add" or "take away," it is not approved by God.

Quoting you:

"and will give him a white stone"

Throughout history the "white stone" has signified "yes" or the truth. Could the Urantia Book be the "white stone," signifying The Truth.

As answers here on BH.SE note, the "white stone" likely deals with admission into a place (and thus into Christ's kingdom as argued in a couple of those answers there). However, even if it did symbolize Truth, Christ has already declared that He Himself is that Truth (Jn 14:6), and that His word is that Truth (Jn 17:17), and (as noted above) the book of Revelation was the final word on that Truth with respect to prophetic events.

(It is worth noting that these connections are all from the same human instrument of God's divine Revelation, the apostle John; not that any of God's revelation will contradict, but for those that hold more weight to examining how a particular human author uses terms and such, we are dealing with the same author).

"and in the stone a new name written"

That "new name written" written in the Urantia Book is "Michael of Nebadon", Jesus' heavenly, spiritual name. Along with this "new name written" is the complete, previously unknown and unrevealed story of Jesus as Michael. About 1/4 of the Book. Michael is not an archangel according to the Urantia Book. The Book of Daniel describes Michael as "one of the chief princes," and "Michael your prince," and "Michael..., the great prince." A prince is not an archangel. A prince is the son of the king, and a member of the Royal Family. Jesus/Michael is mentioned as a divine Son of God and we can learn all about Him in The Urantia Book, apparently the "white stone."

"which no man knoweth saving he that receiveth it."

The only ones who can know it are those who receive it, the acceptance of the Urantia Book.

To assert this is "Michael of Nebadon" is simply that, an assertion. Is it true? Not based off the language of Scripture. This new name is only known by two people, the one giving the stone and the one receiving it. The words are singular "no man" is οὐδεὶς (lit: "no one") with one exception given, "he that receiveth it," which is ὁ λαμβάνων (lit: "the one receiving." It is thus not a new name for Christ, but rather for the believer. If it were a new name for Christ, then every believer would be receiving the same name, and there would be many more than just the one receiving it knowing it.

Additionally, you state "Michael is not an archangel according to the Urantia Book," yet according to the Bible, and that quite clearly, he is, and not the same as the Lord.

Jude 9:

Yet Michael the archangel, when contending with the devil he disputed about the body of Moses, durst not bring against him a railing accusation, but said, The Lord rebuke thee.

If the current Wikipedia article is accurate in reflecting the teachings of the Urantia Book, then the following are some other points of conflict with the Bible:

Some differences with Christianity include:

  • Jesus' crucifixion is not considered an atonement for the sins of humanity. The crucifixion is taught to be an outcome of the fears of religious leaders of the day, who regarded his teachings as a threat to their positions of authority.
  • Jesus is considered the human incarnation of "Michael of Nebadon," one of more than 700,000 "Paradise Sons" of God, or "Creator Sons." Jesus is not considered the second person of the Trinity as he is in Christianity. The book refers to the Eternal Son as the second person of the Trinity.
  • Jesus was born on earth through natural means of conception instead of a virgin birth.
  • Jesus did not walk on water or perform some of the miracles that are attributed to him in the Bible.

I'll leave the Trinity point alone, as that will get too far into theology for what this site likes (since there is no direct assertion of the doctrine, though I believe the text of Scripture supports the doctrine in many ways). However, the other three points can be shown to directly contradict the textual assertions of the Bible, because:

  • Jesus is at least the "propitiation" and "reconciliation" for sins (1 Jn 2:2; Heb 2:14-17); both concepts fall under the idea of "atonement," and are certainly relating Christ's death to more than just being feared by religious leaders of the day.
  • Jesus was born of a virgin (Mt 1:23-25; the Greek is παρθένος which is primarly related to the concept of virginity as we know it, and is affirmed in the phrasing of Joseph's behavior toward her, that he "knew her not" (a euphemism for sexual contact, as some translations reflect, and numerous commentaries discuss).
  • Jesus is stated to have walked on water (Mt 14:25-26)

It becomes a bit hypocritical to use the Bible's statement of Rev 2:17 to try and support the Urantia Book, when the Urantia Book itself ignores the revelation of the Bible at these other points. Proper hermeneutics never ignores the testimony of the text itself.

Conclusion

So the Urantia Book's "revelation" proves to be exactly what Rev 2:12-16 warned against: lies leading one away from Christ, and thus cannot be the "white stone" of Rev 2:17.

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Awesome-I would have deleted my comment myself if I knew you were going to examine it this carefully-Thank you! –  user2479 Apr 16 at 7:10
    
The white stone is obviously something received once one gets to heaven. That consideration alone makes for an obvious "no." –  david brainerd Apr 17 at 4:47
    
@davidbrainerd: While I am not sure that I disagree with you about it being received "once one gets to heaven" (I'm still pondering if that is true), I'm fairly convinced that it is not "obvious" that is. From the textual evidence itself, I would lean toward it being something gained at Christ's 2nd coming to earth (based off Rev. 1:7). I would encourage you to possibly investigate your comment further and come up with a textual argument of exactly where/when (if possible) the "white stone" is given and add that as an answer here for further proof against it being the Urantia Book. –  ScottS Apr 17 at 13:23
    
Excellent, ScottS, simply excellent; direct, concise, and stated with loving care and concern. +1 –  DrFry Apr 22 at 21:56
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