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)

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

The Spirit of Jesus, part 1 of 13

   "THE phrase 'the Spirit of Jesus' only occurs once
in the New Testament, and it is not in the gospels.
Luke uses it, in the sequel to the third gospel, to
describe a mysterious arrest laid upon Paul and
his companions, as they endeavoured to begin a
Christian mission in Bithynia: They were attempting 
to make their way into Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus 
did not allow them. 1 The difficulty of the expression
was felt at an early period, and led to the omission
of the words of Jesus from some texts of Acts. Pro-
bably it denoted a vision of Jesus which appeared
to Paul or Silas in prophetic ecstasy, although the
more common phrase, as the context indicates, was
simply the Holy Spirit, or the Spirit. But, whatever
Luke meant, it is not in this sense that we can speak
of the Spirit of Jesus in connection with the theology
of the gospels. Neither is it in the trinitarian sense;
still less, in the opposite and untechnical sense of the
disposition or genius which characterises the teach-
ing of Jesus. It is true that this last connotation of
spirit is not entirely absent even from the vocabulary
of Paul; although he normally employs spirit in
the sense of a divine power acting on the Christian
and the church through the person of the risen
Christ, there are instances in which he seems to
use the term spirit in connection with human faculties
and temperament as a modern would. But by the 
Spirit of Jesus, as a rubric for some of the contents
of the gospels, we mean (a) the divine power pos-
sessed by Jesus on earth, and (b) the divine power
which came upon His followers after His resurrec-
tion, rendering their life stable and effective.
   Jesus has a spirit of His own, like any one else
(cf. Mark ii. 8, viii. 12), but the second Marcan
passage is omitted, and the former altered, by
Matthew and Luke, possibly from considerations of
reverence, although Matthew describes how Jesus
gave up his spirit on the cross (xxvii. 50 ; cf. Eccles.
xii. 7, Luke xxiii. 46). Luke, on the other hand, adds
that Jesus as a child developed in spirit (see link for Greek phrase),
and lays stress upon the power and
presence of the Holy Spirit in Jesus during His
ministry (cf. e.g. iv. 1, 14, iv. 18 f., x. 21). In the
Fourth gospel 'the spirit' of Jesus is twice men-
tioned (xi. 33, xiii. 21) in connection with perturba-
tion of soul, quite in the popular usage of the term;
the characteristic doctrine of the Spirit has to be
sought elsewhere."

- James Moffat (The theology of the gospels, pgs. 177-178)

*See link for footnotes.

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