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Tuesday, June 9, 2015

The Stewardship of the Mystery # 102

The Man Whom He Hath Ordained (continued)

b. The Problem of Race

Here we have it: "... neither Jew nor Greek ..." This is the national problem. If you are familiar with the background of Galatians, you know that it was a national problem that gave rise to that letter. Jewish believers were assuming a status above other believers. They were saying, Well, we are the Jews, and they are the Greeks; we stand in one realm and they in another! We, as the Jews, have certain privileges and advantages, which they do not: we stand in a more favored position than they do; we are altogether superior! Greeks or Gentiles are spoken of by Jews as "the dogs," the outsiders. How are you going to deal with the national problem? You will never finally solve that problem by a round-table conference. It is that problem which is so pressing in the world today, between the superior and the inferior races, between those who have the advantage and those who have not the advantage.

God's solution to the problem is a Man. In Christ there can be neither Jew nor Greek. Has not the Man solved the problem? You and I who come on to the ground of the Heavenly Man, who forsake the earthly ground, forsake the national ground, and come on to the ground of Christ, find blessed fellowship. Oh, what perfect fellowship! What profitable fellowship! What prospects loom up in view; how fruitful it all is! So far from being a way of loss, it is blessedly full of value. What a tragedy that even so many of the Lord's own people have not forsaken national ground. What prejudices and implied limitations there are through pride! How they limit, how they blight, how they keep out the fullness of Christ, and make God's intention impossible! Get off that ground on to the ground of God's Heavenly Man, where there can be neither Jew nor Greek, and the national  problem, as a part of the human problem, is solved.

c. The Social Problem

Then further it is said, "...there can be neither bond nor free ..." The social problem is dealt with, the problem of the master and the slave. How are you going to solve the problem of the employer and the employee? You will only solve it in the Man, but in Him you will solve it in truth. Then, if the Jew thinks that nationally he has an advantage over the Greek, and if the master thinks he has an advantage over the servant, and, as is often the case, particularly in the East, the man thinks he has the advantage over the woman, how are you to get over these problems? God's salvation is a Man. You do not, of course, get rid of the facts; the distinctions are not abolished here on the earth - and God forbid that we should attempt such a thing - but on the ground of the "new man" we are made as one. There we meet on a different ground altogether. In Christ there can be neither Jew nor Greek neither male nor female, neither bond nor free, neither superior nor inferior; advantages and disadvantages disappear.

~T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 103 - (c. The Religious Problem)

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