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)

Saturday, April 23, 2016

H.R. Mackintosh on the Christology of St. Paul, part 5 of 6

   "At the same time, the relation of Christ and the Spirit is not that of identity, but of vital unity. The opposite view has been taken strongly. "He could not distinguish the Son from the Holy Ghost," Weinel says;2 a statement the force of which is naturally lessened by its retractation on the next page. The wording of 2 Co. 3. 17 may seem to decide the question; "the Lord," the apostle avers plainly, "is the Spirit." Yet the following clause faintly reaffirms the distinction in the words, "Where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty." No one can imagine that " Christ" and " the Spirit of Christ" mean the same thing precisely. Not to speak of the fact that St. Paul does not regard Jesus as the incarnate Spirit of God, but affiliates his ideas on this subject to other lines of ancient thought, various minor data are significant. The person who died upon the cross, and rose again, and will come at last to judgment, is nowhere named "Spirit." Christ, moreover, gives the Spirit in its fulness. And in the triple blessing of 2 Co. 13. 14, the Spirit is co-ordinated with Christ and God as a separately discernible element in the one redeeming agency. It is important to recollect that the theological ideas of Christianity came first, and that only afterwards were they fitted with more or less exact verbal distinctions, so that usage might for a considerable time show a certain fluidity or free play of expression. By the form of identification St. Paul indicates just the familiar experiential fact that Christ, by whom God saves men, and the Holy Spirit, in whom He conveys to them Divine life, are so indissociably one in significance and operation and media that from the point of view of practical faith they are seen as true equivalents of each other. Yet within the unity there is distinction. As it has been put, "Christ in you, or the Spirit of Christ in you; these are not different realities; but the one is the method of the other."1"

- H. R. Mackintosh (The doctrine of the person of Jesus Christ, pgs. 59-60)

*See link for footnotes.

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