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)

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Almighty, ever present, the Living King of Grace

"It might sound, perhaps,
too paradoxical to say that no apostle, no New
Testament writer, ever remembered Christ; yet it
would be true in the sense that they never thought
of Him as belonging to the past. The exalted Lord
was lifted above the conditions of time and space;
when they thought of Him, memory was transmuted
into faith; in all the virtue of the life they had
known on earth He was Almighty, ever present,
the Living King of Grace. On this conception the
very being of the Christian religion depends; but
for it, that religion could never have been born, and
without it, it could not survive for a generation.
When we preach from the gospels, and see what Jesus
was, and said, and did, and suffered, let us remem-
ber to make the application in the present tense.
Never preach about the historical Christ; preach
about the living, sovereign Christ—nay, rather
preach Him, present in the grace of His earthly
life and death, and in the omnipotence of His
power to save; it is not because He lived, but
because He lives, that we have life also; it is not
because the historical imagination is highly de-
veloped, so that we can make the evangelists' pages
vivid, and be affected as by a fine scene in a drama
—not for this reason, but because we confess with
our mouth and believe in our heart that God raised
Him from the dead, that we are saved. Faith
always has its object here and now, and without
faith there is no religion."

- James Denney (Studies in Theology, Lecture VII "Christ in His Exaltation", p. 154)

*Re-post from 06/27/15

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