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)

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

The Spirit of God as made effective in Christ

    "It would he an incorrect reading of Acts, however, and
a misunderstanding of the Christian experience of the apos-
tolic age to suppose that the Spirit has only an official
or ecclesiastical interest in individuals. The second im-
portant function of the Spirit is as mediator of the Christian
religious experience. It is the experience of the Spirit
which constitutes men as Christians. That is, it brings men
into that relationship with Jesus which creates in them
Christian experience and in turn the Christian experience is
evidence that the proper relationship toward Jesus has been
obtained.1  In this way men are qualified for the mission and
for the fellowship. The church is a spiritual society en-
gaged in communicating their experience of God in Christ to
others. This is the central conception of the story of
Pentecost. It is the central conception of the Book of Acts.
And there is every reason to believe that it was the creative
fact in primitive Christianity. It is really an absurd mis-
understanding of the primitive Christian fellowship to sup-
pose that only certain individuals and they only at certain
times were inspired by the Spirit, or that the Spirit was a
donum superadditum. It belongs to the Christian life as such.
For it is the Spirit of God as made effective in Christ.

1. "Who can think that Paul stood alone in identifying the
Pentecostal outpourings as a working of the 'Spirit of
Jesus'? Paul at least is not conscious of departure from
the conviction of 'those that were before him' in this
pregnant identification." Bacon, Jesus the Son of God, p. 93."

- Fred Daniel Gealy (The Significance of Jesus for the Holy Spirit Experiences of the pre-Pauline Church, p. 240)

*Re-post from 8/26/15

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