One Lord, One Faith, One Baptism, One Body
(Eph. 4:4,5,13-16, Isaiah 61, Heb. 1:1-3)
A few years ago, I saw a display in a Christian bookstore. In large letters it read, “There is no B.C.” I thought for a moment and understood. Before Christ appeared in the flesh, the Spirit was speaking. We recognize that Christ appeared to Moses in the manner of a burning bush and the voice Moses heard. He appeared to all Israel in the wilderness as the rock that gushed water and the daily manna. Well before that He appeared to Abraham as the three at the oaks of Mamre. And He appeared as Melchizedek. Those appearances were limited and part of the shadows expressed in the tabernacle.
Read and consider Isaiah and his words recorded for us. I focused on chapter 61 but have pondered the final chapters from 60 through 66. The pronouns switch and Jesus Himself turned to those words, “The Spirit of the Lord is upon me.” He had known that truth for a long time but that day He went public. As members of Christ, that same oil flows down on us. I am speaking of the Spirit of the Lord and that we are His body. Yet it flows as we are in the unity of the Spirit, the oneness that He has expressed in His Son, and the Son’s matured harmony with His Father. The Son learned that harmony, or obedience, by allowing, or suffering, all the troubles God ordained in His life. The same Spirit that spoke in and through Isaiah speaks today. Now it is clearer and brighter and sharper for it is expressed through His Son.
We must hear the clearer, deeper, higher, more matured word which is in His Son. In these days, God has spoken to the church through and in His Son. Are we listening to Him? I have often prayed for the Lord to tune my ear. Many voices are heard over the entire world but are we hearing Him? Are we in tune with Him? Are we allowing Him to synchronize us? Today I hear the word prophetic used so much, its significance has been diluted. Far too much as been spoken as if from the Lord, but it falls to the ground. And many are disillusioned. And those who have spoken out of turn, have acknowledged it and some have then defended their ministry. We are all learning but I hope we learn more quickly.
The truth expressed in Ephesians 4 is a message that is simple, eternal, and is basic to God’s purpose in His church. For years I heard the desire to be a new testament church, a first century church. But what is that? What does it really mean? Follow the pattern of those words. Grow to see yourself as a prisoner of the Lord to be given to people. Then allow our Father to send you to a few or many and pour you out, It includes speaking truth as it is in Christ, always maintaining a gentle and humble spirit. The goal of God is a unity expressed that the world will hate and deny, but will draw people to Christ. The church will shine with the brightness of His appearing. And the kingdom will fully come. That kingdom is heavenly and is untainted by the hands of man, and by this world, this present evil age.