This is the basis for growth—to be so occupied with Christ, as to forget self! While told to reckon ourselves dead, we are looked upon as already dead in Christ. How is this? Christ is looked upon as coming down into the place of death, that there, where I was without stirring, Christ might be, and rise up out of it for my deliverance.
Because of the death He suffered upon the Cross, as manifested in the power of His resurrection, “old things have passed away, and all things have become new.” It, God will have none of the old Adamic thing now. It is defiled and corrupted, and good for nothing. “All things have become new”—not renewed!
“In Him dwelt all the fullness of the Godhead bodily” (Col 2:9). He is the eternal life that was with the Father, and is manifested unto us. This is not the man that fell out of paradise! How then can God and man be in union? “Except a grain of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone.” There was the inseparable barrier of man’s will on one side, and the power of death on the other. Therefore He says, “I have a baptism to be baptized with, and how I am straightened until it be accomplished?” But, “if it die (grain of wheat), it bringeth forth much fruit.”
“The exceeding greatness of His power” is in resurrection. “You hath He quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sin.” In connection with, and the basis of it all, is Christ, who is dead and risen, with whom we are quickened together. The Last Adam has not His place as Head of the family except by death first. Why? Because redemption could not have been wrought. Nor would it have been, as now, a question of God’s righteousness. These being accomplished, He is entirely and in everything fitted to be the Head of the new creation.
The Messiah speaks to Nicodemus about the things that he, as a Jew, ought to have understood (Ezek 36). He says, “If I have told you earthly things and ye believe not, how shall ye believe if I tell you of heavenly things?” God’s earthly things were not evil or fleshly things, but the promised earthly portion, which the Jews now were to look for (Jer 31). In the latter day they must be sprinkled with water and have a new heart (Eze 36:25-27) from the Spirit before they can inherit the Millennial Kingdom. This Nicodemus should have known.
Then there are the heavenly things which are infinitely better. “The wind bloweth where it listeth” (Jhn 3:8). There is the sovereign act of His grace. He will take any poor sinners of the Gentiles, as well as the Jews, and bring them into the heavenly blessing He has to give. “God so loved the world.” This goes beyond the Jews. It is not here, God so loved Israel (salvation is for everyone who chooses to receive—NC). For the best, the Son of Man must be lifted up, and for the worst, God would give His only-begotten Son.
What are we brought into by that which Christ has done? He says, “We speak that we do know, and testify that we have seen.” Here was the double revelation of God. Christ was speaking as a Divine Person, and as one who has seen the divine glory. “No man hath see God any time: the only-begotten Son, who is in the bosom of the Father, He hath declared Him.”
He was, Himself, in the unity of the divine essence. Though we were not only men outside it all, but fallen men, yet now, as born of God, what we are not brought into! We have new-creation life in Him; we are one spirit with the Lord. It is not the poor thing of the mere renewal of good qualities; but it is the Lord Jesus Christ, the Eternal Son, Himself making us partakers of His own Life and things.
—J N Darby
MJS daily devotional excerpt for October 12
“By trial our Father reveals whether we can suffer His will as well as do it. By trial He weans us from the world, draws us to His Son, drives us to the Word and to prayer, and shows us our hearts, and makes us humble. We are to learn to be patient in the days of darkness. Our trials are not meant to do us harm, but good. Our Father chastens us ‘for our profit, that we may become partakers of His holiness’ (Heb. 12:10).” -J.C.R.http://www.abideabove.com/hungry-heart/