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, May 21, 2016

The chief blessing bestowed by our Lord Jesus Christ as High-priest of His people is the gift of the Spirit, part 6

   "If it was thus with our Lord when He was upon earth, it is not otherwise with Him now that He is in heaven. The human nature which He there possesses is still penetrated and pervaded by the Spirit—the Spirit who was eternally in the Son; and the difference in that respect between His state on earth and His state in heaven consists simply in this, that the dominion of the Spirit in Him is now absolute, and free from every restraint to which He had subjected Himself during the days of His humiliation. In this sense St. Paul speaks of Him as “Spirit” when he says of Christians that, “reflecting as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, they are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as from the Lord who is Spirit.”1 Not, indeed, that He is wholly Spirit, like a formless ether diffused throughout the immensity of space. The “Spirit” which He is, is expressed in form. He has a body—the “spiritual body” of which the same Apostle tells us in another passage;2 but that body is in complete subservience to the Spirit, adapted to its requirements and obedient to its behests. As the humanity of Christ is not less perfect now than it was before He died, so its union with His Divinity is now not less close than it was then. If parallelism in the one state is no explanation of the union, neither is it in the other. Nay, if it be possible, we must even think of the Divine element as interpenetrating the human, and the human the Divine, in the glorified Redeemer more thoroughly and more completely than before. “Let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made Him both Lord and Christ—this Jesus whom ye crucified.”3
    Our Lord then possessed on earth, and possesses now in heaven, the fulness of the Spirit. Let it only further be observed that this possession is not to be thought of as a mere dwelling of the Spirit in Him, in a way similar to that in which a man may dwell in the house he occupies. It is not a dwelling so much as an indwelling, organic, permeative—an efficient source of being and action, as true and real an indwelling as is that of the soul in the body. Hence that remarkable later reading of the New Testament, where we are told that when St. Paul, on his second great missionary journey, would have carried his apostolic labours into Bithynia, “the Spirit of Jesus” (not simply, as in the Authorised Version, “the Spirit”) “suffered him not.”1 The Holy Spirit had so penetrated and pervaded the human nature of the exalted Lord that He could be spoken of as “The Spirit of Jesus.”"

- William Milligan (The Ascension and Heavenly Priesthood of Our Lord, pgs. 177-179)

*See link for footnotes

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