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, June 17, 2016

The contrast of the first and second Adam, part 2 of 4

"The clearest general view of this matter, I believe, may be
obtained by considering it as the counterpart to that tremen-
dous activity of the spirit of darkness which has continued
incessantly since the fall of man. It has often been said that
Satan perpetually imitates the operations of God; the obser-
vation seems, in some remarkable instances, founded in truth;
but, as regards the main features of the Christian scheme, I
am inclined to think that the reverse approaches more near
the reality. The remedy must succeed the disease; and,
being directed to meet its prominent points, must, in many
instances, bear to it the analogy of immediate contrast. The
outlines must resemble, though the colouring and expression
be opposed; and though God had, doubtless, from the
beginning, projected the forms of beauty with which He
would in the end adorn the original ground of our nature,
yet, in the evolution of time and events, the glowing tints
from His celestial pencil came in to supplant the gloomy
shadows that already defiled the canvass. Alas! so in-
grained, too, is the substance defiling in the substance defiled,
that, in this life, it can never be wholly eradicated, or even
wholly overlaid!
    What account, then, not metaphysically or psychologically,
but spiritually, do the Scriptures give us of the state of our
nature, on that side of it which looks towards the redeeming
work of Christ? To this the answer is rapid and easy. We
find it everywhere represented (either by assertion or by
implication) as spiritually dead, as infected with a curse and
condemnation, such that every human soul is, as it were, still-
born in this world; nor need I now insist how emphatically
experience confirms this lamentable truth. We find it clearly
intimated, moreover, that God is pleased to view men as
aggregates under a single head, seeing them in their sources
as well as in themselves; a law made visible in the Jewish
economy, witnessed (for the substance of it) in all nature,
by the inheritance of bodily and mental characteristics from
parents and ancestors, and attested in grace, by the constant
contrast of the first and second Adam, as the respective foun-
tains of curse and of blessing. The efficacy of each illus-
trates, and is made in the inspired page to illustrate, that of
the other. As we find that to Adam are ascribed the natural
death of all men, the spiritual death of all in this life, and, if
carried out, its necessary consummation in eternal ruin; so to
Christ are attributed the contrasted gifts, resurrection to all
men, spiritual life to such as He visits in this world, and its
appropriate completion in eternal glory. In the fifth chapter
of the Epistle to the Romans, we are amply warranted in
expecting to understand each by each. May we not, then,
gain some light as to the formal nature of the spiritual
gift, by examining what is the formal nature of the curse
inherited from Adam by the human race? I do not now
consider either in the way of imputation, but in the way
of inherence."

- William Archer Butler (Sermons, Doctrinal and Practical, Sermon XX, pgs. 376 - 377)

*Re-post from 06/28/15

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