Practical Devastation of Our Old Humanity (continued)
The Dividing: "He That Is Spiritual" and "The Natural Man" (continued)
Perhaps there is a lot of this in a conference like this - this man's name and that man's name and this teacher and that teacher. We have our preferences and attachments, but we must drop the whole thing. Paul is saying nothing but "Jesus Christ, and Him crucified." We must drop all that personality complex business which in the development only means division in the Body of Christ, and division is weakness and defeat. We must restrain from this sort of thing, for this is moving along the wrong line. This is moving from the outside - trying to gather around personalities and calling that "unity" instead of dealing with it from the inside; and after all, if only, if only we saw Jesus Christ, we would see what the Church is.
Dear friends, the Church of Jesus Christ is not an "it." It is not a system of teaching. It is not something ecclesiastical. It is not an institution. (Oh, I thank God for the day when He showed me this.) THE CHURCH IS A PERSON AND THAT PERSON IS JESUS CHRIST IN CORPORATE EXPRESSION.
We must revise our mentality when we talk about the Church, the Body of Christ. What are you talking about? - not an "it", a something, as though it were a something in itself, and a teaching in itself. No, it is this Man with a family, with children, brothers and sisters, begotten of God, that is the Church.
Oh, how much ecclesiasticism we can have without the family life, but the Church after all, when you come to the final Word, is just the measure of Christ that there is in those who make it up - "till we all attain unto ... the measure ... of Christ" - every one of us. That is the Body of Christ, that is the Church.
Now I am going to close this morning. We have seen the very first thing that you meet at Corinth is this carry-over of an old humanity in personality complexities, and the Lord says "No" and the apostle says: "No ... only Jesus Christ, and Him crucified." The Lord search our hearts concerning these two humanities. Let us pray ...
"Now, Lord, this can very quickly and very easily be all covered over in the next moments when we go away and have to think back as to what it was about in that hour. Spare that; save us from that. Lord, we are not wanting to impose upon Thy people and kind of suppression, but we do pray that the Holy Spirit will solemnize our hearts in the presence of such great issues in the greatest issue of all time and eternity. Give us quiet meditation, prayerful meditation in our hearts to see where we are, where we are in this whole Bible. So help us, God, for Thy Son's sake, Amen
(continued with # 16 - (Battleground of the Two Humanities)