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Tuesday, October 7, 2014

"That Which Is Born of the Spirit" # 4

"The Image of His Son" (continued)

As to Calvary; we do know from much that was subsequently written by the Holy Spirit, especially through one apostle, that Calvary is to have its counterpart in the life of every believer and in a very deep way, and while something to be accepted once and for all, it is to have an abiding meaning for every day. "Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus that the life also of Jesus may be manifested in our body" (2 Corinthians 4:10). That is Calvary on both sides. Then being received up. We have much to say in these coming days about the heavenly life of the believer, but there is the necessity for us to be received up now and come into everything of this from above. The next thing is this - there are a lot of people who stumble on this first thing; that the Holy Spirit has come with the pattern, as it were, in His eye; He has seen the Lord Jesus in glory, He has seen the Man in the glory according to God's heart, perfected. The Holy Spirit knows that pattern through and through, every detail, and He has come, and if we are truly born from above children of God, He is in us and now, what the Holy Spirit is here to do is to work that pattern inwardly that we might be conformed to the image of God's Son. The point where so many people tumble is that they are trying to imitate an objective conception of Jesus; they get some objective idea of this wonderful Man, this beautiful life with loving acts and kindly words, and they have Him objectively, and try to imitate that life outside of themselves. Very noble, very good, but altogether inadequate. The imitation of Christ is NOT that. It is NOT a matter of outward activities, in the first instance. The Apostle puts us perfectly right on that in Galatians 1:16, "To reveal His Son in me." Beloved, you are not to go out to proclaim to men that they have to imitate Jesus Christ. There is a standard which God has which no man - apart from the mighty energies of the Holy Spirit - can attain unto. The standard of Christ cannot be reached in any energy of ours. Imitation is a poor thing. What we need is a new conception, a new operation inside. The Holy Spirit is here to make this inward, and blessed be God for that gift - the Gift of the Holy Spirit. It is a great thing to know that a very member of the Godhead has come and taken up residence in every child of God, not to make them Gods in themselves, but to conform them to the image of His Son. Not to bring into them Deity, and to transfer to them Deity, but to make them like unto the Man in the glory, and the effect is that the Christ in the glory is also now the Christ within, the hope of glory. That is our hope, and we have no other hope of glory other than that He is already inward. This whole thing is gathered up in all the energies and possibilities and capacities of the Holy Spirit; gathered up and resident within, and if we let the Lord have His way He will do His work.

~ T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 5)

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