The New Testament: The Great Transition (continued)
A New Seeing of the Significance of Christ In God's Universe (continued)
And as you get on toward the end of that letter to the Hebrews, you have another of these transitory phrases: "You are not come unto a mount, a palpable mount, that burned with fire ... but ye are come ..." - how vast is this movement from that old economy to the bringing in of the New Economy. There is one thing only in your New Testament, introduced by Christ in the Gospels and followed out by the apostles; and in this letter to the Hebrews, the solid object of the whole of the letter is the transition from one economy to Another. Oh, read it again and glory in it. Read that letter again to the Hebrews. Glory in this: "My, what a thing we have been brought into." Tabernacle? Yes, says the writer, there was a tabernacle on this earth, and for the time being ... until the time. That is all gone, he says, and now we have come into the True Tabernacle not made with hands, which God has made, a Heavenly Tabernacle. See how wonderful the transition is! - the passing over from one economy to Another.
I must pause to ask, is this where Christendom has gone astray?
Is it still holding on to the old economy?
Is it still in the grave clothes?
Is it still that old Mosaic economy with its forms and ways?
Is it not emancipated into the Heavenlies?!
That is what the Lord wants to do with us here.
From one nation to Another: Abraham to Christ, Moses to Christ. From one sovereignty to Another: we know how full the New Testament is of David and His Greater Son - full of it. But it shows the transition from one earthly sovereignty to Another Heavenly Sovereignty in Jesus Christ.
And so we could go on marking these aspects of the transition. And if you want a key to the Gospel by John, remember John wrote the whole of that gospel on one thought only. The key to the whole of that gospel is this transition from one to Christ. He has taken over. That is why the many "I AM's." You notice those "I AM's" have a reflection upon the old. I am not the vine, "I Am the True Vine." Israel was a vine, but He has taken over as the True Vine. Israel was a false vine - did not bring forth the fruit.
Now, I am not going to start with John's gospel, but I give you the key. When you move from the introduction of this Other Humanity in the Person of Christ in Matthew, Mark, Luke, John, (and this is the key to them all) and come through the desolation of the Cross, you come into Acts, and what are you in? Oh, this marvelous emancipation - transition, transition - in the Book of the Acts. What desolation was made in that whole system because through the desolation of the Cross, there is the emergence into this Other side - this New Humanity. Watch how the Lord is working on this old humanity to wind it up, progressively now bringing it to where He has put it.
The Climax of the Full Knowledge of Christ
You know, friends, God always works backward towards something. Well, in the creation, He was working backward. Read it again. Why have we in the New Testament so many words which begin with the little prefix "re," regeneration, reconciliation; all have that little prefix "re", for He is working back.
Things have gone away, gone wrong, got out of God's way, and God is returning to where they went wrong. God usually does that with us. And so what is God's beginning? It is His Son before the foundation of the world. Right back in the Eternal counsels His Son was made the beginning, God's starting place. Men have all gone astray, because the history, "all of us like sheep have gone astray."
God gets back to His beginning, His Son. Christendom has gone astray, and the only way of saving Christendom is to get back to God's beginning, a true and right apprehension of His Son.
(continued with # 6)