Battleground of the Two Humanities (continued)
The Way the Old Humanity Does It: A Realm That Is NOT Allowed (continued)
Do not make too much of human intellectualism. I think one of the most deadening things today is theology as such; I think that is where Christendom has gone astray, intellectualism in the realm of Divine things. The power of the brain has made an awful mess in Christendom. Yes, they were intellectual with the philosophy of the Greeks. They were clever, they were efficient; but this letter is saying, that is out - that kind of wisdom is NOT allowed in here. There is Another Kind of Knowledge here, and how utter the apostle is in this matter when he says: "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God, neither can he know them, they are spiritually discerned" by the spiritual; that is the spiritual man - the man of the Spirit. And he says: "As it is written, eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither hath it entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love Him."
I suppose you at once would think that that must be after this life - what He has prepared for us afterwards. Oh, I do not believe that; I believe that begins now. It is for us now. The things that the eye, the natural eye, the hold human eye, have never seen and never can see, the things of the Spirit that have never entered into the natural heart, the old humanity heart, "God hath revealed them unto us by His Spirit": "hath revealed" - "hath." This is not hereafter: "hath revealed them unto us by His Spirit." You are standing in the good of that - the open heaven, the Anointing Spirit, and God revealing His Son in us; and in so doing He is devastating us, but He is also opening a new vista entirely of possibilities, of wonder. It is like that all the time in our going on. Can you say that is going on in you? Yes, I am seeing in my heart more and more of His Son, not the truth as a theory but His Son; and seeing His Son is undoing a lot of my own conceptions and my ideas and my valuations. It is just making them shrivel up; I see Him to be an entirely New Conception, and in Him I have a new conception of the Church.
The Church Is a Person Expressed in Mankind
I must reiterate that the Church is not a thing; it is not an institution; it is not a denomination, nor is it all denominations put together. It is not anything like that. The Church is a Person expressed in mankind, expressed in human life. The apostles never went anywhere with the preconceived idea: "We will have a church here; we will set up a church here; we will form a church here." No, they went and preached Jesus Christ; and when people saw God they began to see Jesus Christ, He became the Cohesive Power drawing together, and if they were really on that ground, what did they meet? They met Jesus Christ. They met Jesus Christ - that is the Church, and there is no other Church in the New Testament.
Well, it comes back to this - the natural man cannot see and is debarred from the things of the Spirit, "but he that is spiritual judgeth all things." He that is spiritual has this New spiritual capacity; and it is, as this letter teaches, the increase of that spiritual capacity, of spiritual measure, which is the thing that is the ground of appeal to these people in Corinth. Paul says: "While you talk 'as men,' while you behave 'as men,' are you not babes?" And as in Corinth, so today, we are to recognize that though that natural man should be the greatest brain that has ever been produced - compassing all the bodies celestial and terrestrial, this "nuclear age" man developed to the dimensions of humanity today - though he be a man like that, he cannot know, he cannot see, the things of the Spirit of God. There is a limit on the natural man. That is how it is, but there is a world, a realm, open to the spiritual man of the New Humanity which is beyond anything else of which the old humanity is capable.
(continued with # 22 - (Corinthian Questions: The Enunciation of a Principle )