Life-Study of Joshua, Judges & Ruthby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
From the first century A.D. to the fifth century, there were many teachings and debates concerning Christology, the study of the person of Christ. The entire Old Testament from Genesis to Malachi is a book on Christology. In the Old Testament there are many types of Christ, and each of these types is related to the study of Christ. The full, complete, and consummate type of Christ is the good land. My burden in this message is to consider ten aspects of the all-inclusive Christ, who is typified by the good land.
In eternity Christ was only God, not man. He was the Son of God as the embodiment of God (John 1:18) and the Word of God as the definition of God (v. 1).
One day the eternal Christ came into time, becoming flesh in His incarnation. In His incarnation Christ as the Son of God came “in the likeness of the flesh of sin” (Rom. 8:3). He was not sinful, but by becoming flesh He became something that is related to sin.
Through incarnation the infinite, unlimited, and holy God came out of eternity, and with divinity He entered into time and into the womb of a virgin, remaining there for nine months. Matthew 1:20 indicates that the One who was born into Mary’s womb was the very God. First, Christ was born into a human virgin, and then, as a man, He was born out of her. Therefore, Christ is now the God-man; He has not only divinity but also humanity. This reveals that incarnation means that man has been added to God.
Whereas in eternity Christ was merely God, in His incarnation He became the God-man. In Christ as the God-man the human nature and the divine nature have been mingled, blended. However, in this mingling, this blending, the two natures remain distinct, and a third nature is not produced. The divine nature and the human nature remain distinct, yet they are mingled as one. This is Christ in His incarnation.
It is hard for us to imagine that the almighty, unlimited God became an infant lying in a manger. Even in His infancy Christ was a God-man. In a slow, gradual way Christ passed through boyhood into manhood. For thirty years Christ in His humanity lived in a despised country, in the despised town of Nazareth, and in the home of a poor carpenter. Then He came out to teach God, to minister God to people, and to express God’s attributes through man’s virtues.
This God-man expressed God in man, through man, and with man. Although He was not learned, His speaking was full of wisdom. Although He was humble, He spoke not only with power but also with authority. In every virtue of this One there was something divine, for He was the God-man, God with the divine attributes expressed in man with the human virtues. He was God living as a man, God living a human life.
In His crucifixion Christ died as the Lamb of God to take away man’s sin (John 1:29), as the bronze serpent (3:14) to destroy the old serpent, Satan (Heb. 2:14), and as a grain of wheat to release the divine life from within the shell of His humanity (John 12:24). The divine life, which was concealed in His humanity, needed to be released in order to increase and multiply. Therefore, Christ died not only to take away sin and to destroy Satan but also to release the divine life.
By His death on the cross, Christ also terminated the old man and the old creation. Through incarnation Christ became a man, and that man was the old creation. When Christ died, the old man in his totality and ultimate consummation also died. Therefore, when Christ was crucified as a man, the old man was terminated (Rom. 6:6). Furthermore, when Christ became a man, He also became a creature, the Firstborn of all creation (Col. 1:15). This creature was not of the new creation but of the old creation. When Christ was crucified as a creature, the entire old creation was brought to an end.
In addition, in His crucifixion Christ abolished “in His flesh the law of the commandments in ordinances” (Eph. 2:15). The word ordinances here refers to rituals, the forms or ways of living and worship, which create enmity and division. Because every nation and culture has its particular ordinances, today there are thousands of different ways of living. Nevertheless, in His crucifixion Christ abolished all these ordinances. Now among us in the church life there is only one way to live—to take Christ as our life, our living, and even our way of living and to live Him.
After the Lord Jesus died, “one of the soldiers pierced His side with a spear, and immediately there came out blood and water” (John 19:34). Blood is for redemption, to deal with sins (Heb. 9:22) for the purchasing of the church (Acts 20:28). Water is for imparting life, for the ministering of God into us as life. The blood of Christ has redeemed us, and the divine life of Christ has flowed into us as a river to minister God into us. Now, as believers in Christ, we have been redeemed back to God, and we have God flowing into us as living water.
Through the crucifixion of Christ, sin has been taken away, Satan has been destroyed, the divine life has been released, the old man has been terminated, the old creation has been brought to an end, the ordinances have been abolished, we have been redeemed back to God, and we have God flowing into us as living water. We all need to have such a view of the crucifixion of Christ.
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