"Life ... Promised Before Times Eternal"
2 Corinthians 3:3
We have seen that the Holy Spirit is writing a spiritual life of the Lord Jesus in the hearts of believers, and we proceed now with this spiritual biography.
The Beginning of the Biography
When a biography is being written of some important person, we always want to know their beginning - something about their birth, their home and their journey. That is very important to us where the Lord Jesus is concerned, for what we are trying to see is that what was true of Him the Holy Spirit is seeking to make true in us. His beginning has to be our beginning; His home has to be our home; His country must be our country. All that was true of Him at the beginning has to be made true of us, that is, in a spiritual way.
Now, we open our New Testament, we have the biography of the earthly life of the Lord Jesus in three of the Gospels, and two of those Gospels tell us of His earthly beginning and birth. They give us His genealogy, tracing Him right back to the beginning of His ministry, but has nothing to say about Bethlehem, nor His earthly mother, nor His home. It just begins with the ministry of the Lord Jesus, when He was thirty years of age. But the fourth Gospel ignores all that. It has nothing to say about Bethlehem, nor about Nazareth. It says nothing about David, nor Adam, but just leaps right back over all earthly history and takes us into eternity before time was. You know that I am speaking about the Gospel of John, which begins with that dateless time before the world was, and shows us that the Sonship of the Lord Jesus was not a thing of time only, but that it was eternal and supernatural, and not natural. John describes it in this way (and he includes us with the Lord Jesus in this matter): "...which were born, not of bloods (that is, the blood of Joseph and Mary), nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God" (John 1:13). Born of God! When was the Lord Jesus born of God? Not at Bethlehem only, but away back there before time was. And the wonderful thing is this: that the deepest truth in the life of a child of God is that he or she is not a child of time, but a child of eternity, born from above - not in Bethlehem, nor in Switzerland, nor England, nor Germany, nor in any other place here on this earth - but born from above. That is a supernatural act of the Spirit of God.
What does it mean to be born? It is to receive life. If, then, we are born from above; if ours is a supernatural birth, then the link with the Lord Jesus is the link of eternal life.
We must get hold of this! You may think that when you were born again it was in some place that you can mention, but that is only something to do with this earth. You were not really born again on this earth. You were born where the Lord Jesus was born. You were not really born on any date which you can mention in the earthly calendar. You were born in eternity. Your home is not here at all. Your home is outside of this world and outside of time. In this matter we, like the Lord Jesus, are born with eternal life.
This is a very wonderful thing. If the Bible is true, it is a very wonderful book. If Christianity is true, it is a very wonderful thing. We are so familiar with these things about Christianity that we have lost something of the wonder of it all. I think we need to sit down with our Christianity again and really think about it in this way: the Holy Spirit is reproducing what was true of the Lord Jesus in us, and the beginning of His history and the beginning of our history is in eternity.
(continued with # 6)