Editor’s Note: This is the fifth in a series of posts based on the longer essay, One Life Divine. Unlike the original essay, these individual installments are illustrated. They are as follows:
- Escape To Reality
- Reality is One
- Reality is Intelligent
- The Manifold Appearance of Reality
- A Body You Have Prepared For Me
- Hidden In Plain Sight
- Jesus Is Calling…
- Reconciled To God
A Body You Have Prepared Me
When Christ came into the world, he said, “Sacrifices and offerings you have not desired, but a body you have prepared for me” (Hebrews 10:5).
The incarnation of God into the manifold unity referred to as the body of Christ ultimately extends to the whole of creation:
I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God; for the creation was subjected to futility, not of its own will but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God (Romans 8:18-21).
Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he has purposed in himself: That in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in him: In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who works all things after the counsel of his own will: That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ (Ephesians 1:9-12 KJ 2000).
And while the texts, above, may appear to relegate the true life and unity of creation to the future (and, per chance, to wishful thinking), their future aspect makes perfect sense when speaking to those who do not feel reconciled to God and who do not realize the union that exists between themselves and the whole of creation. Indeed, Paul himself indicates that the truth and being of creation, which appears in time to be manifold and subject to decay– but which we know by faith, to be One in Christ and eternal –is revealed to us, here and now, through the Spirit of God which he describes as the earnest of our inheritance (Ephesians 1:14). This is the same Spirit which, in the fourth gospel, we are told will guide us into all truth (John 16:13). Paul elsewhere writes:
“as it is written, ‘What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the human heart conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him’— these things God has revealed to us through the Spirit; for the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. For what human being knows what is truly human except the human spirit that is within? So also no one comprehends what is truly God’s except the Spirit of God. Now we have received not the spirit of the world, but the Spirit that is from God, so that we may understand the gifts bestowed on us by God. . . . we have the mind of Christ” (I Corinthians 2:9-12, 16).
And thus having the Spirit of God and the mind of Christ,
“we do not lose heart. Even though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day. For this slight momentary affliction is preparing us for an eternal weight of glory beyond all measure, because we look not at what can be seen but at what cannot be seen; for what can be seen is temporary, but what cannot be seen is eternal (II Corinthians 4:16-18).
By faith, then, we dwell in the kingdom, here and now, trusting in and relying on this timeless, living REALITY which is always at hand; within us; among us–whatever the future may hold (Matthew 3:2; Luke 17:20-21).
Thank you, Wayne. These postings are especially appreciated during our Holy Week. CC.
I’m just a little kernel of wheat … waitin’ and a-hopin’ and dreamin’ … but I also am a young seedling surging upward toward the light … and finally I am also a tall oak tree, shading other travelers and blowing in the silent whispering wind, that sounds like a Still Small Voice.
Of course, without the wind, the rain, and the sun-light and ground into which I am planted … I am nothing … nothing at all.
“As you, Father, are in me and I am in you, may they also be in us . . . The glory that you have given me I have given them, so that they may be one, as we are one, I in them and you in me, that they may become completely one” (John 17:21,22,23).
“So then . . . you are citizens with the saints and also members of the household of God, built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the cornerstone. In him the whole structure is joined together and grows into a holy temple in the Lord; in whom you also are built together spiritually into a dwelling place for God” (Ephesians 2:19-21).