The Universal Christ

"The resurrection gives us a Christ who is spiritually present; the Holy Spirit gives us a Christ who is universally present. By the coming of the Holy Spirit the risen Christ is made omnipresent, and the whole process of revelation here and now completed. Nothing higher can be looked for until the veil is dropped on the other side. Momentous consequences follow the acceptance of this truth. If the age of the Spirit under which we are now living marks the final outgoing of God to man; if the God who is manifested in Christ is every-where present in the Spirit; if through the medium-ship of the Spirit he dwells in the inner sanctuary of the soul; if he is not only with man, but in man; if through the Holy Spirit his presence within the soul is realized as the presence of Christ, then the time foretold by Jesus has come when temples and shrines are no longer indispensable, when every man has immediate access to God as the Father, and when every humble receptive soul may become "an habitation of God in the Spirit." "
- James Mann Campbell (The Presence, p. 89)

The New Covenant Gift of the Spirit

"Let us recall the three considerations that have been
mentioned. First, that our Lord Himself in His Divine-human nature was on earth, and is now in heaven, possessed of the fulness of the Spirit, and this in such a manner that the Spirit entered into all He was in the one sphere, and enters into all He is in the other. Secondly, that the Spirit given us by our Lord in His glorified condition is His own Spirit in the most definite and particular meaning of the words. Thirdly, that when the Spirit is bestowed upon us He must be made inwardly and experimentally ours, entering into all that we are in a manner similar to that in which He entered into all that Jesus was and is. Let us fix these three points distinctly in our minds, and it will follow that the Spirit promised as the chief gift of the New Covenant is pervaded by human as well as Divine elements. As the Spirit of the exalted and glorified Lord, He is not the Third Person of the Trinity in His absolute and metaphysical existence, but that Person as He is mediated through the Son, who is human as well as Divine. It is on this particular aspect of His being that He diffuses Himself through the members of Christ's body, and abides in them. Only as human, entering into and coalescing with what is human, can He be also our Spirit dwelling in a living and real way within us."
- William Milligan (The Ascension and Heavenly Priesthood of Our Lord, p. 189)

Friday, March 18, 2016

The Second Adam

  "As by deepening the conception of Sonship and by
emphasising the equivalence in the work of Salvation
between the Son and the Spirit St Paul threw new
light on the relation of Christ to God, so he illuminated
His relation to mankind by presenting Him as the new
Adam of a new Race.
  In the first place, he conceived of a new Humanity,
a corporate unity of redeemed men, as having been
brought into being through Christ. There had in fact
been 'a new creation' (2 Cor. v. 17; Gal. vi. 15). The
'new man' had been created as the first man had been
'after the image of God,' but in righteousness and
holiness which rest on truth (Eph. iv. 24). And when
St Paul calls on men to ensphere themselves in this
new Humanity (Col. iii. 10; Eph. iii. 23), it is as when
he calls on them to be ensphered in Christ. And he
foresees as the destiny of this corporate Society of
Christ's people that it is to develop extensively and
intensively, in magnitude and in likeness to Christ until
it actually represents Christ to the world (Eph. iv. 13).
  In the second place, as the earlier Humanity had in
Adam its origin, its head and its representative, so the
new Race had the same in Christ. Thus the first Adam
was 'a type' of Him that was to come (Ro. v. 14), and
Christ can be recognised as the last Adam, who,
summing up humanity in Himself, re-presents it to
God. If it were reasonable to believe that the first Adam
had entailed upon his descendants according to the flesh
condemnation and death, how much more reasonable
was it that the second Adam, the Son of God, should
be able to secure for those who belonged to Him by
faith the reversal of condemnation and the gift of life.
  The first man, Adam, had at his entrance into the
visible world, been made 'a living soul.' The last Adam
had at His entrance into the world unseen been made
'a life-giving spirit.' And as the first man belonged to
earth, being earthy, so the second Man belongs to
heaven, being heavenly*.
  That this is the meaning of this much disputed
passage appears from a careful study of the context in
which we find it. The question in hand is, With what
body do they come? The body of the first Adam had
been a body 'of humiliation,' and as composed of 'flesh
and blood' could not inherit the Kingdom of God.
The body to be borne by the new man after the resur-
rection was a 'spiritual' or heavenly body. Until the
Resurrection of Christ the highest thing that could be
said of man was that he was 'a living soul,' and even
that was qualified by the fact that he was 'of the earth,
earthy.' Now, the Head of the new Race, Himself
become 'a life-giving spirit,' had a body 'of glory,'
belonged to heaven and the spiritual world, and pro-
vided for those who through Him were joined to the
new Humanity, a guarantee that a like heavenly 'body'
would be theirs. As they had borne the image of the
earthly, so they would bear the image of the heavenly.

* See H. R. Mackintosh, The Person of Christ, p. 69: 'the passage
is concerned throughout not with the pre-existent but with the exalted
Christ. It was only in virtue of the Resurrection that He became
head and archetype of the new race'; Windisch, TLZ, xxxiv. 602:
'the heavenly man as known to us from Philo has no existence at all
for Pauline Christology.' "

- C.A.A Scott (Christianity According to St. Paul, pgs. 261-263)

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