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For there are three that bear record in heaven: the Father, the Word, and the Holy Ghost; and these three are one.” – I John 5:7. (The Spirit, water and the blood “agree in one,” are “to the point.” – Greek – I John 5:8.) “The Lord God hath sent me, and His spirit. Thus saith the Lord, thy redeemer, the Holy one of Israel. – Isa. 48:16, 17. God’s Spirit is not separate from Himself. Some one has said: “God the Father is that manifestation of God who is on the throne of the universe. God the Holy Ghost is that manifestation of the same Spirit everywhere present. Jesus Christ is that manifestation of the same Spirit who takes on a visible appearance.” Man was made in the image of God, spirit, soul, and body.
The theme of the O. T. is one God. “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God is one Lord.” – Deut. 6:4.
Saul was addressing the Jehovah of his fathers, on the way to Damascus. “Who are Thou, Lord?” He did not know that God was “manifest in the flesh.” Hear the Lord’s own testimony and answer: “I am Jesus.” – Acts 9:4, 5. That knocked Saul out. “In that day shall the Lord be one, and His name one.” – Zech. 14-5, 9. To the Jews Jesus said: “Except ye believe that I am, ye shall die in your sins.” – John 8:24. The whole purpose of God in the O. T. was to inculcate the idea of one God. This the Jews, after the Babylonian Captivity, which they suffered for their idolatry, never got away from. The “mystery of godliness,” is the Incarnation. “God in Christ.”
Those who deny that Jesus Christ is God, the absolute Deity, Deity the alone revelation and manifestation of the Father, are in line for the great Apostasy. Antichrist is battering at the walls of the church for a breach in the absolute Deity of the Lord Jesus Christ. If God can be known apart from Jesus Christ, or as a separate Person or Being from Jesus Christ, then we are bound to throw down the walls and embrace these anti-christian forces in one universal Fatherhood of God. And there must be two Gods, or Jesus Christ is not God. But Jesus Christ is God. There is no other saving manifestation of God. – Acts 4:12.
Spiritualists, Theosophists, Christian Scientists, etc., claim a knowledge of God outside of Christ. “Ye know neither me nor my Father. If ye knew me ye would know my Father also.” – John 8:19. “Neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal Him.” – Matt. 11:27. Jesus is the full and only revelation of God to man.
The more we come to know Jesus in the Spirit the fuller revelation we receive of His Deity. “No man can say Jesus is Lord but by the Holy Ghost.” – I Cor. 12:3. At first we see Him as our Mediator, our Sacrifice and Intercessor. Later we come to realize His absolute Deity, Godhead, oneness with the Father in essential being. Not simply oneness in accord. That is but a human proposition. He is both the Son of God, and God. – Luke 1:35, “ Christ is the visible representation of the invisible God,” – Col. 1:15-19, Weymouth. “For it is in Christ that the fullness of God’s nature dwells embodied, and in Him ye are made complete.” – Col. 2:9, 10, Weymouth. He is the “primal source” of all creatures.” – Col 1:15, Worrell. Eph. 1:10, 17.
Draw a circle. Jesus is both our center and circumference. The simple minded cannot possibly go astray when they make Jesus everything. It is all in Jesus. Does He not satisfy us fully? If so, why seek another God beside Him? Outside of that circle we line up with Christian Scientists, Spiritualists, Theosophists, and every other anti-christian spirit.
Jesus is the first and last letter, the Alpha and Omega, from Genesis to Revelation. – Rev. 1:8, 17. Jesus is Emmanu-El, – Matt. 1:23. God incarnate is the mystery that confounds the false systems of religion. He is “all and in all.” – Eph. 1:23, Col 3:11, Zech. 14:5-9.
We cannot find God outside of the Word. Jesus is the Word. Matt. 19:17; Mark 2:7-10; 4:41, Luke 5:21; 7:49; 8:25, John 6:64; 10:33; 12:45; 18:6, I Cor. 10:4; 9, Jas. 5:4 , 7, II Thess. 1:7-10, Rev. 1:12-17; 22:12, 13, Job 19:25-27, Ps. 50:1-7, Isa. 40:9, 10; 35:4; 59:15-20; 66:15, Dan. 7:13, 14.
“The Lord is my shepherd.” – Ps. 23:1. “I am the good shepherd.” – John 10:11. “He maketh me to lie down in green pastures.” – Ps. 23:2. “Come unto me . . . I will give you rest.” – Matt. 11:28. “He leadeth me in the paths of righteous.” – Ps. 23:3 ( Jer. 23:6). “But of Him are ye in Christ Jesus, who was made unto us righteousness.” – I Cor. 1:30.
The power is in Jesus’ name. Study Book of Acts and Epistles on this point. Matt. 10:22, Mark 16:17, Luke 24:47, Acts 4:12; 15:14, etc., Eph. 1:21, Phil, 2:9, 10, Col. 3:17, I Peter 4:14, III John 7, Rev. 3:8, Heb. 13:15, Jas. 2:7 ( Lev. 24:11), I Chron. 13:6, Deut. 28:58, Ex. 23:20, 21.
The subject of the Trinity is kaleidoscopic. The “persons” of the Godhead are like a dissolving view. One fades into another in true vision so perfectly and naturally that we cannot separate them. Yet God is not a mere Monad. The idea of God embraces Father, Son and Holy Spirit, a compound Personality. God showed me this figure in spiritual vision, all unsought for. It was repeated several times, at intervals of days, Father, Son and Holy Ghost continually resolved themselves into one, as in a dissolving view. I could not separate them. There was one God, one Substance. Nor could I tell one from the other.
All antichrist religions teach that Jesus was not absolute Deity. We could wish that the formers of the Nicean and Athanasian Creed had preserved the clear and powerful Apostolic vision of “God in Christ” that the early church possessed, instead of substituting “Greek Mysteries.” The church had already fallen, the Roman Emperor Constantine himself calling the Nicean Council, presiding over its deliberations and punishing those daring to reject its decisions. This is a fact of history. He was a shrewd diplomat and politician. It is far better to “let the lid stay on the Ark” (Jesus is the Ark), than to delve into Greek mysteries. – ( I Sam’l 6:19, Col. 2:9, 10.) God has gathered Himself up, concentrated Himself, visualized Himself in the person of Christ, that we might be able to approach and to know Him. – I John 5:20.
As men we understand man. We have no understanding of the animal kingdom. They have not our nature. Much less could we understand God except He had taken on Him our nature. God is God. Like Himself only. No other like Him. In the God-man, Jesus Christ, we understand Him. We do not even understand angels. Jesus is the “form” of God. – Phil. 2:6. The “form” is His nature, attributes and character. “God is Spirit.” Jesus is the alone revelation of God. The Father refers us to Jesus. The Holy Ghost shines the light upon Jesus. He takes of the things of Christ and shows them to us. – John 16:12-14. The triune God is incarnate in Jesus. “For Christ is the very incarnation of the invisible God.” – Col. 1:15, 20th Century Trans., Col. 2:9, 10. Jesus reveals the Father. John 14:6-11, 20; 10:30, Matt. 11:27. The Holy Ghost is the Spirit of the Father and the Son. – John 16:14. The Fatherhood, the Sonship, and the Eternal Spirit, are all manifest in Jesus Christ. He is the “eternal life.” He is “the Spirit.” – II Cor. 3:17, 18 (R. V.) There are three eternal distinctions in the Substance of God, but one Substance. The triune God, through the Incarnation, is united in humanity, for the salvation of man. – John 16:14Heb. 2:16. “God manifest in the’ flesh.” The only revelation of God in the O. T. or the N. T. is Jesus Christ. He is the Theme of the Bible. Jesus is the “Word of God.”
I once thought that Jesus loved the world, but that God hated us. Now I know that “God so loved the world.” – John 3:16. It was God’s love that saved us. As a child I feared my father. He did not seem to love me. But mother was tender, and loved me. She became my mediator with my father when he was angry at me. Just so I thought of the heavenly Father until I got a revelation of the real meaning of John 3:16. I found that God loved me. Jesus is the revelation of that love. They are one in love and sacrifice, offering for our salvation.
“The Son quickeneth whom he will.” John 5:21. “The Father hath give all judgment unto the Son.” – John 5:22. “That all may honor the Son even as they honor the Father.” – John 5:23 (Greek). “The Father gave to the Son also to have life in himself.” – John 5:26. “I (Jesus) will raise him up at the last day.” – John 6:40, 44, 54. “I have power to lay down my life – and to take it again.” – John 10:18. “I give unto them eternal life.” – John 10:28. I am the resurrection and the life.” – John 11:25, I Cor. 15:45. The Father raises Jesus from the dead. – Rom 6:4. The Spirit raises Jesus from the dead. – Rom 8:11. Jesus raises himself from the dead. – John 10:17, 18.
Father and Son are one in a much deeper sense than mere agreement in action. They are inherently one in essential being. This is a much deeper oneness than that of husband and wife, or of even Christ and the church, which is His “body.” “These three are one.” – I John 5:7, “the only born God.” V. L. “an only begotten God.´- Rotherham. – John 10:17, 18.
The “Word” returns to the “bosom of the Father.” – John 1:18; 16:28. It carries with it the glorified humanity of Jesus Christ, the incarnation “bodily.” He is the “temple of God.” He dwells in the glory, and the glory dwells in Him. – I Tim 6:16. “And the city hath no need of the sun, for the glory of God did lighten it, and the lamp thereof is the Lamb.” – Rev. 21:23. The Lamb is the lamp that the light of God shines through. The light is softened for our approach in Jesus Christ. He is both the sheep-fold and the Shepherd, the High Priest and the offering. As High Priest He offers Himself. He is both God and the Son of God. How this can all be reason may never explain, but the Word of God declares it. His reward is with Him. – Rev. 22:12. He shall feed His flock like a shepherd. – Isa. 40:9-11, John 10. This is Jesus Christ the Rewarder, and Good Shepherd. It is impossible to exalt Him too highly. The one God is so constituted and contained in the Lord Jesus Christ as to absolutely prohibit any other God. The world must accept Jesus Christ as their God. The world is being rapidly prepared to accept the Antichrist as God. The apostasy of the church is paving the way for this by denying the Deity of Jesus Christ. Which side shall we be found on? “If another shall come in his own name, him ye will receive.” – John 5:43.
Thank God we have an unqualified Christ. He is neither qualified as to His Being or His power. He has “all power.” – Matt 28:18. He is “the Alpha and Omega, the Beginning and the End: the First and the Last.” There is none before nor after Him. He is “the Mighty God.” – Isa. 9:6. He is “all and in all.” We may well fear any teaching or people who show a tendency to minimize or deny either the power or Personality of Jesus Christ.”
“Who is the image of the invisible God.” – Col. 1:15. “Now unto the king eternal, incorruptible, invisible.” – I Tim. 1:17; Isa. 9:66:16. “Thou hast magnified thy word above all thy name.” – Ps. 138:2. Jesus is the Word – “For in Him all the fulness of the Godhead was pleased to dwell.” – Col. 1:19, Scofield. Jesus is “all the fulness,” and “fills all.” – Eph. 1:23, John 1:16. We know Christ “after the flesh” no more.” – II Cor. 5:16. No man knows anything of the “form” or nature, character or attributes of God except in Jesus Christ. Who is it the world is rejecting, and always has rejected? Jesus.
“That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus.” – Eph. 2:7. Throughout the countless ages of eternity we shall not be able to fathom fully the lengths and breadths and depths and heights of God in Christ. – Eph. 3:18. Do we need a revelation of God outside of Christ? Then we must seek for another plan of salvation. But we are “complete in Him.” “God is Spirit.” He is Omnipresent, everywhere. We cannot see Spirit. We are creatures, created beings, not as God – Deut. 4:12-16. Jesus is the visible of the invisible. We shall surely not be disappointed in seeing God in Him. Jesus Christ is ‘the plan of salvation.” He is the revelation of the Father, the channel of the Holy Ghost, “God manifest in the flesh,” the fulness of the Godhead bodily.” Those who are expecting to know and see God apart from Jesus Christ stand in grave danger of being disappointed in Him. They do not know Christ fully. “These three are one.” Jesus is the one to fill our vision. He will do it completely. The Holy Ghost reveals not Himself, but Christ. He is the Spirit of the glorified Christ. He is a great light, reflected on Christ. – John 16:14. “I am in the Father and the Father in me.” – John 14:11. “For ye are dead, and your life is hid with Christ in God” – Col. 3:3.Who is it the world must meet some day in judgment? Jesus. John 5:22, Rom. 14:10.
Adam heard God in the “wind of the day” (margin). – Gen 3:8. “The wind bloweth where it listeth and thou hearest the voice thereof .” – John 3:8. Jesus was the Word. Job cries, “I know that my redeemer liveth, and that he shall stand up at the last upon the earth. In my flesh shall I see God.” – Job 19:25, 26. Jesus Christ is “God our Savior.” – Titus 1:3. Only God can reveal God. – I Cor. 2:11.
God “tabernacled” in Jesus Christ. The Word that “was God,” “tabernacled among us.” – John 1:14. “God created man in His own image.” – Gen 1:27. One image. Peter would have also built three tabernacles. There is one tabernacle, Jesus Christ. See “Jesus only.” John 2:19-21. Jesus was the “express image” of the “invisible God.” – Heb. 1:3, Col. 1:15.
Adam was the father of the race naturally. Jesus became the Father of the race spiritually, the “second Adam.” He is the revelation of the Father. God becomes our Father in Christ. The Sonship reveals the Fatherhood. And we become sons thereby. Deity has no father. Jesus is absolute Deity for Deity is His real Personality. Only His human nature was “begotten” in the womb of Mary. – Luke 1:35, Rotherham. God is spoken of in Heb. 12:9, as “the father of spirits.” Adam got his spirit direct from God. But Jesus’ real Personality was God.
The “life which was with the Father” Was manifested in Jesus Christ. – I John 1:2. He is the “eternal life.” – I John 5:20. He has “life in Himself.” – John 5:26. Through revelation of Jesus Christ.” – Gal. 1:12. “Of Him are ye in Christ Jesus.” – I Cor. 1:30. The treasures of wisdom and knowledge are hidden in Christ.” – Col. 2:3. The mystery of His will is purposed in Christ.” – Eph. 1:19. The “finished work of Calvary” and the “Godhead” question simply resolve themselves into salvation and the manifestation of God in Jesus Christ alone.
The disciples understood God aright. All there is for us of God is found in Jesus. This does not deny the Father. The Book of Acts gives us the position in which they held Jesus, and the power they realized in His name. That was the secret of their ministry and success. They knew Jesus as “the Mighty God,” the fact the Antichrist and the Apostasy deny. All there is for us of God is in that Name – Jesus. The disciples rejoiced to be counted worthy to “suffer dishonor for the Name.” – Acts 5:41, I Peter 4:14, 16.
When we really know Jesus as “the Mighty God” we may also “do exploits.” – Dan. 11:32. We must know God in Christ, through the Eternal Spirit. We must know Jesus as “both Lord and Christ,” and the power in His Name. – Acts 2:36. “He is Lord of all.” – Acts 10:36. “The Lord is the Spirit.” – II Cor. 3:17. In Acts 16:6, 7, R. V., the Holy Ghost and Spirit of Christ are used interchangeably. See Acts 5:3, 4, 9. “the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ.” – Phil. 1:19. The Word and Person who utters it are not separated. My thought and speech are essentially myself. Jesus was Himself “the beginning and the ending.” – Rev. 1:8, 17. The beginning of all God’s self-revelation is found in Christ. He is both the Alpha and the Omega. “Jehovah” (Jesus) signifies the God that was, is, and will be. “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and today, and forever.” – Heb. 13:8.
In His humanity, union with man, Jesus was distinct from and inferior to the Father, and must of necessity speak of Himself as such. Mary would have touched His humanity. He spoke to her as a man. – John 20:17. He was to be revealed to them in His Deity. The disciples had only known Him heretofore as a man. In Mexico the Roman Catholics worship three Gods, in separate, corporeal forms. They have a picture of this idea, which they worship. But if Christ is “all and in all” why do we look for more than all?
In Rev 5, a lamb takes the book. But Jesus is not a literal lamb. This is figurative speech. Dan. 7:1, 13, – This is a vision, not a literal scene. “The worlds were framed by the word of God.” – Heb. 11:3. This Word was Jesus. The Word did all the speaking in the revelation of God. The Word in heaven testifies to the Son on earth. The Word is omnipresent, and eternal. – I John 5:7. The Bible speaks of three in one, but never of one in three. Jesus is “at the right hand of God,” spiritually, the place of power. – Matt. 26:64. He is “in God.” – Col. 3:3. “God is Spirit.” And the Father God is in Christ, “all the fulness of the Godhead,” and we are “complete in Him.” – Col. 2:9, 10. He is all there is of God for us. Do we really know Jesus? He is “all and in all.”
The Jesus returned to His disciples as “another Comforter.” – John 14:16, 18. He was the same Christ, but no longer “in the flesh.” They were to know Him now in a higher sense. Jesus has been with them, but He is to be in them. “In that day ye shall know that I am in my Father and ye in me, and I in you” – John 14:20, 26, 16:12-14. This was on the day of Pentecost when the “other Comforter” came. “Christ in you the hope of glory” – Col. 1:27. He is the Eternal Spirit, the eternal life.” “The Spirit was not yet given because Jesus was not yet glorified.” – John John 7:39. Jesus had been with the disciples and was about to leave them. Their hearts were sad. What would they do without Him? They did not want another. Hence His words, “I will not leave you orphans (Greek), I will come unto you,” be a Father to you. – John 14:18. He was going away that He might come closer, be in them, through the Holy Ghost, forever. “And lo I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world. – Matt. 28:20. They are to know Jesus “after the flesh” no more. – II Cor. 5:16.
Jesus does not simply represent God. He is God. We do not say that He is the Father. But He is the manifestation and the revelation of the Father to us. The Father is in Him, for us. It is impossible to make too much of the Lord Jesus Christ. He is everything to us, and all we need. The Son of God is the Father’s “fellow,” human form. – Zech. 13:7. The dispensation of the Father is in the Son. He dispenses Himself to us in the Son. Jesus taught us to pray, “Our Father.” “He that confesseth the Son hath the Father also.“ – I John 2:23. “He that abideth in the teaching, the same hath both the Father and the Son.” – II John 9. “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one cometh unto the Father, but by me.” – John 14:6. “I am the resurrection and the life.” – John 11:25. “God was in Christ reconciling the world unto Himself.” – II Cor. 5:19. “Even as God also in Christ forgave you.” – Eph 4:32. “That ye may know the mystery of God, Christ.” – Col. 2:2. “God was manifest in the flesh.” – I Tim. 3:16. No one can have the Son without the Father. And no one can have the Father without the Son.
I have never felt, when preaching that Jesus is God, that the Father was in any sense neglected, denied, or displeased. In fact, I have always felt that He was mightily pleased. I have never been conscious of denying Him. I have often asked Him to help me to exalt Jesus more. I am so weak and unable, either in understanding or example, to do so. But I have never been so blessed in my soul as when doing so. And the Holy Ghost always wonderfully helps me. In fact I had never heard until the last few years, since the Apostasy has set in, that it was possible to exalt Jesus Christ too highly. We did not use to think that way about it.
I confess I am becoming more and more afraid at the possibility of throwing my sympathy on the wrong side, my influence in the wrong direction, against Christ. I cannot afford in any sense or degree to sympathize, take sides with, or aid the Antichrist. I am afraid of the spirit of apostasy. The Pentecostal people stand at the parting of the ways on this question. Will they also help prepare the way for the Antichrist? It is a solemn issue. It is Christ or Antichrist. Are we going to gradually surrender our Lord to the enemy to be crucified, also? We declare in all seriousness many are already doing so.
The spirit of Antichrist (against Christ), the apostasy, is gradually, subtly, but surely, creeping over the Pentecostal people. Of this we have abundant evidence. It is going to become harder and harder to preach the absolute Deity of Christ. This is a terrible thing. Many of our people are already fast becoming Higher Critics, along many lines, denying the Deity of Christ, and the inspiration of the whole Bible. The apostasy has struck the Pentecostal Movement. Have we any reason to believe that we shall be spared this more than others? History repeats itself. We are the same as others, only more privileged. We have more to answer for.
This is not a mere matter of “old issue” or “new issue,” so-called. If we fail to confess and preach the absolute Deity of Christ we are yielding to the Antichrist. No matter how many may have overshot the mark, God has a controversy with His people. Dare we through fear of being “numbered among transgressors” deny our Eternal Lord? The devil is shutting many a mouth through fear today. As the Sun frequently appears oblong at its rising, through refraction of its rays, because of abnormal, unfavorable, atmospheric conditions, so with the present issue. The truth is hindered and distorted by our human misconceptions, wounded in the house of its friends.
Jesus Christ being robbed of His Deity today. That is the real issue. No matter what others may have done, how they may have abused the truth, through ignorance, etc., will we deny our Lord? It is better to even overexalt Him, if such a thing were possible, through honest ignorance, than to deny Him. God will accept the one, where the heart motive is pure, through misunderstanding, but reject the other. It is not a human issue. Our wrestling is not “with flesh and blood.” “Lord, what shall this man do? What is that to thee; follow thou me.” We shall answer each for himself in the matter.
God will not reveal Himself to “party spirit.” We must be cleansed from this evil also. He cannot reveal Himself to men in carnal conflict. Jesus is again “crucified between two thieves,” between two selfish “party” extremes. Both are robbing Him. We need a fuller, clearer revelation of the Deity of Christ. We must have God’s issue, the balanced truth, without fear or favor, ignorance or prejudice. Extremes can only hope to meet in Christ, in the middle.
Philip Schaff, D. D.; LL. D., has said: “The divisions of Christendom will be overruled at last for a deeper and richer harmony, of which Christ is the key-note. In Him and by Him all problems of theology and history will be solved.
In the best case a human creed is only an approximate and relatively correct exposition of revealed truth, and may be improved by the progressive knowledge of the Church, while the Bible remains perfect and infallible. Any higher view of the authority of Creeds is unprotestant and essentially Romanizing.”
Let us pray God that this may soon be realized. Some one has said, “Believers hate each other more for the things they disagree upon, than they love one another for the things in which they do agree.” This is a sad situation. The reformers in Luther’s and Zwingle’s day, when the Protestants of Germany and Switzerland came together to see if they could come to any possible agreement, and thus be enabled to stand together against their common foe, the terrible Roman hierarchy, were surprised to find how many things they really did agree upon. If we would seek today to see how many things we are agreed upon, rather than to see how many we can disagree upon, and thus separate, scatter and divide our strength and the “body,” we might really be surprised and joyed at our findings.
We confess to a very limited capacity for handling such a profound subject, and crave the charity and leniency of all in their judgment of this contribution. Jesus said of Mary, “She hath done what she could.” – ( Mark 14:6-8.) We have given, for the most part, the testimony of others in the matter. We wish to claim authority over no man’s conscience. May the Lord be merciful to us all, further illuminating our minds and understanding in the knowledge of Him. We “know in part” only, at the best. – I Cor. 13:9. In humility let us together seek His face for further grace and favor. And wherein we may have erred may we be forgiven.
“All hail the power of Jesus’ Name, let angels prostrate fall;
Bring forth the royal diadem, and crown Him Lord of all.”
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