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Wednesday, April 1, 2015

The Stewardship of the Mystery # 36

The Heavenly Man - The Inclusiveness... (continued)

Nothing But What Is of Christ Allowed By God In the Ultimate Issue (continued)

The same thing applies with regard to work, to great movements. The history of a movement is like that of the individual. Even that which has been blessed by God comes to the place where, as a movement, as a collective instrumentality, it knows that the old days have passed, and for that which now obtains, and that which is before, a new position is necessary. Unfortunately so many try to live upon the past, try to go on upon a reputation, a history, and will not confess to the fact that things have changed and that God requires something more. If only they would face up to that, how much more glorious in its effectiveness would be the future, than ever the past has been. But there you have the interpretation of the experience. However it is apprehended by those concerned, the fact remains that God applies this law, that in the end, when everything has been said and done, and when all these present ages have run their course, in God's ages of the ages there will be nothing but what is of Christ. He is seeking to bring the Church to that goal, to be the fullness of Him that filleth all in all. It cannot be the fullness of Christ while anything else is there.

How manifold is the application of this truth! How many a detail it touches, and how ashamed it should make us! If we really do see it, if it really strikes our hearts, we shall be greatly humbled. Inwardly we shall feel thoroughly disgusted with ourselves as in the light of this we think of "our" assertiveness, of "our" strength, of "our" activity in the things of God, of all that has been of "ourselves" in this realm. The putting forth of strength is only effective in the proportion in which it represents a measure of Christ. We puny folk on this earth stand up and think we are of some account! What insignificant people we are if viewed from the heavenlies! The Lord looks down upon us and sees us trying to make names for ourselves in His things; dominating other lives; trying to exercise our influence with other lives; manipulating, putting our hands upon them. It is all pride, all conceit, all "self" in some form. The aspects of it are countless. The Lord looks at it and says, No, it is not of Christ; therefore, in the final issue it has to go! That is why He breaks us, and empties us, and brings us down to the place where we cry from a deep, heart-broken consciousness: Lord, unless Thou dost it, it is impossible! Unless Thou dost speak the word, my words are useless! That is why He works in that way. The Lord in His Sovereignty sees to it that we meet with plenty of things to keep us humble.

~T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 37)

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