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Sunday, February 23, 2014

Christ - All, And In All

"And He is the Head of the body, the church: Who is the beginning, the First-born from the dead; that in all things He might have the preeminence" (Colossians 1:18)

"Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all" (Colossians 3:11)

There has been a great deal done in recent days to bring the greater magnitudes of the universe within the intelligence of the ordinary man and woman. This means that many people are interested in the explanation of the universe, and, no doubt in particular, of the course of this earth and of the creation and history of man; but we believe that we have the positive and final answer to the inquiry. For us there is but one definite and conclusive explanation of the universe, and that explanation is the Person - the Lord Jesus Christ, with all that is eternally related to Him. However much we read and study we shall never get the explanation of the universe, in whole or in part, until we come to see the place of the Lord Jesus in the eternal appointment of God. The simple but all-embracing words, "Christ is all, and in all," sum up the whole matter from eternity, through all stages of time, unto eternity.

Firstly, then, that "Christ is all, and in all" is -

1. The Explanation of the Creation Itself

This letter to the Colossians makes that very statement in other words. It tells us that "In Him were all things created, in the heavens and upon the earth, things visible and things invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers; all things have been created through Him, and unto Him; and He is before all things, and in Him all things consist (hold together)" (1:16-17). That is a comprehensive statement, and it clearly shows that Christ being all, and in all, is the explanation of the whole creation. Why were all things created? Why did God through Him bring the universe into being? Why does this great universal system exist and continue? What is the explanation of the world? The answer is that Christ may be all, and in all.

The intention in the heart of God in bringing this universe into existence was that, ultimately, the whole creation should display the glory and supremacy of His Son, Jesus Christ; and this one little fragment, "and in Him all things hold together," says quite clearly that but for the Lord Jesus Christ the whole universe would disintegrate, fall apart; it would be without its uniting factor; it would cease to have a reason for being maintained as a complete and concrete whole. Its holding together, its failure to disintegrate and break up, is because of this: God has determined that the Lord Jesus shall be the center, the governing center, of this whole universe, and He - God's Son - is the explanation of creation. But for Him, there never would have been a creation. Take Him out, and creation loses its purpose and its object, and need not go on any longer. "Christ is all, and in all," was the thought, the ruling thought, in the mind of God in the creation of the universe.

That may leave you cold in some measure and not get you very far, but I venture to think that what I am now going to say will get you a little further and warm your hearts; for the prospect is this, that when God has things as in eternity past He determined to have them - and He is going to have them so - every atom of this whole universe will display the glory of Jesus Christ. You will not be able to look at anything or anyone without seeing Christ glorified. A blessed prospect!

~T. Austin-Sparks~

(continued with # 2)

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