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Friday, March 27, 2015

The Stewardship of the Mystery # 31

His Excellent Greatness (continued)

2. The Bounty of Solomon's Table (continued)

Again, consider not only the pathetic tragedy, but the wicked tragedy of starvation. What is it that is keeping the Lord's people out of fullness? Very largely it is prejudice, the devil's trick of putting up the barrier of prejudice between the need and the supply. Oh, the wickedness of the devil in coming in by these works of blinding to starve the Lord's people. There is bread in Christ. He is an inexhaustible fullness for the spiritual life. We know that we shall come to the same position as Paul, when he cried, "...that I may know Him..." - that is, to a consciousness of there being a knowledge beyond anything that we have yet attained unto, and where everything is counted as nothing compared with that. This is not mere words, it is true. There is bread in the Lord Jesus; there is bread in His house. his is where He is superior to Solomon. There is bread for a mighty host, a company capable of doing greater justice to His fare than ever Solomon's household could do. If they had sat down to his bounty, they could have gone so far and no further, but our appetite will go on. We have a spiritual capacity which is  growing, and growing all the time, unto the fullness of Christ. Solomon's bounty, then, is another feature by which he foreshadows the excellent greatness of the Lord Jesus. We touch but briefly on a third.

3. The Glory of Solomon

The glory of Solomon is proverbial. Even the Lord Jesus spoke of it as being so: "Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin: yet I say unto you, that even Solomon in all his glory (and they knew what his glory was) was not arrayed like one of these" (Matthew 6:28, 29). But what was Solomon in his glory compared with the Lord Jesus? What is the glory of the Lord Jesus? Inclusively it is the revelation of the fullness of God, the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.

That may not sound very practical, but let us mark that this glory of Solomon was closely associated with his wisdom; his wisdom indicated the nature of his glory. There was something beyond the glory. This glory was not mere tinsel, or mere show, but was the fruit of a great wisdom that God had given him. It was the wisdom of Solomon that issued in his glory and his fame. What may be said of his wisdom? He spoke three thousand proverbs, he wrote many songs; he spoke of trees, and of beasts, and of birds, of creeping things, and of fishes. They are all very practical things. How did he speak of them? He invested everything in the creation with a meaning. If he speaks of trees, he will give you a secret, give a meaning to the trees, from the cedar in Lebanon (trees in the Word of God all have a significance) to the hyssop that springeth out of the wall. We know of what hyssop speaks as we first meet with it away back in Exodus and Leviticus. We know what the cedars of Lebanon stand for, and all the trees in between the two equally bear a meaning. Solomon gave the secret significance, the Divine meaning. Then he spoke of beasts, and we know that the Bible speaks of many beasts, and they all have a significance. He spoke of fowls also, and of creeping things, and of fishes. He unfolded the secrets of the creation, and invested everything in the creation with a deeper meaning. To be able to do that is proof of no mean wisdom.

~T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 32)

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