KINGDOM BIBLE STUDIES
"Teaching the things concerning the Kingdom of God..."
THE HEAVENS DECLARE
ARIES THE LAMB
In our series of messages on the Signs of the heavens, we come now to the Sign of ARIES THE RAM OR LAMB. Let us look at some of the names by which the constellation of Aries has been known from ancient times. Aries usually carries the symbol of the ram, but many of the oldest Zodiacs portray a lamb (with no horns), and in some ancient Zodiacs the lamb has a circular crown on its head. The presentation of a lamb in-stead of a full grown ram is confirmed by the meanings of the names associated with Aries. The Hebrew name is TALEH, meaning The Lamb Sent Forth. The Greek name is KRIOS, also meaning The Lamb. In Latin it is called ARIES (the name by which we know it) which means The Lamb, The Chief, The Head. The Arabic name, HAMAL, means Sheep, Gentle, Merciful. Furthermore, the Sign of Aries emphasizes that the lamb is also a sacrifice. The brightest star, ELNATH, means The Wounded or Slain. The nearby star, called SHERETAN, has a name meaning Bruised, and the other notable star is MESARTIM, whose name means The Bound. The ancient Akkadians called Aries BARA-ZIGGAR; BAR meaning Altar, or Sacrifice, while ZIGGAR means Making Right. The full meaning would be The Altar, or The Sacrifice of Making Right. Another truth conveyed by the names in Aries is that of kingship. The name Aries itself bears the meaning of Chief or Head. There are other names also indicating the idea of a Reign. In putting all these ideas together, Aries presents to us A LAMB SACRIFICED BUT REIGNING!
A Lamb is obviously a very familiar figure in the Word of God. The first blood earth's startled soil ever drank was shed in that primeval Paradise in Eden. Thousands of years later John the Baptist began the ministry of Christ by proclaiming, "Behold the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world" (Jn. 1:29). In the last book of the New Testament we read, "Worthy is the Lamb that was slain to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing..." (Rev. 5:12). In the opening chapters of Genesis we read: "And the eyes of them both were opened, and they knew that they were naked; and they sewed fig leaves together, and made themselves aprons. And the Lord God called unto Adam, and said unto him, Where art thou? And he said, I heard Thy voice in the garden, and I was afraid, because I was naked; and I hid myself. Unto Adam also and to his wife did the Lord God make COATS OF SKINS, and clothed them" (Gen. 3:7,9-10,21). We would be totally void of understanding as to what kind of victim it was that provided this blessed covering for the sinning man and his wife, were it not that the Holy Spirit has shed precious light upon this wonder, revealing that Christ is "the LAMB slain from the foundation of the world" (Rev. 13:8) who verily was "a LAMB without blemish or spot...foreordained before the foundation of the world" (1 Pet. 1:19-20). I now invite you to meditate deeply upon my words. In the process of changing our garments, covering our nakedness, and clothing us in the righteousness of Himself God brings us to the LAMB, which has its base in the foundation of God before the world (kosmos - world system) began, for Christ the Lamb was foreordained before the foundation of the world, and He is the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world, and however you interpret "the foundation of the world" that certainly carries us back to Eden.
Redemption is not an afterthought of God by which He hopes to salvage a few of the broken and shattered pieces of His creation. Redemption is PART OF THE PLAN OF CREATION. If the fall of man is part of the plan of God, then the redemption of the fallen creation must also be a part of the same plan that issued forth from the fathomless depths of His omniscient mind. If Peter was speaking the truth when he wrote of God's Lamb, "Who verily was FOREORDAINED BEFORE THE FOUNDATION OF THE WORLD, but was manifest in these last times for you" (I Pet. 1:20), then the fall of man must certainly be a part of the plan of the Creator. For what possible purpose was the blessed redemptive Lamb foreordained before the world began if redemption itself were not already in the mind and plan of God? All Christians love to quote the Golden Text of the Bible, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son..." (Jn. 3:16). Yet what is the real message of this beautiful passage? Is it not that God SO LOVED that He GAVE His Son? Does not I Pet. 1:20 make it very plain that the actual giving of that Son was before the world began and before man was driven from the Garden planted eastward in Eden? Ah, the agonies of the cross were endured only two thousand years ago on Golgotha's hill, but the actual giving of the redemptive Lamb took place before the present world-system began and the actual slaying of the Lamb took place from the beginning of the world-system, in the mysterious mists of the sacred Garden of long ago.
It is clear that the plan of redemption was prepared in its fullness before ever the voice of God commanded,'"Let there be!" It was not completed just in case man should fall, but because the fall of man and his redemption from sin and death was part of the process by which he would come into God's image and live in the eternal realm as a creature of experience and knowledge, completely redeemed, completely purified, completely perfected, completely matured, completely instructed, and completely incapable of sin or death forevermore. Is it any wonder that John on Patmos heard every creature which is in heaven, and on the earth, and under the earth, and all that are in them exulting in such a plan as this and crying out in ecstasy, "Blessing, and honour, and glory, and power, be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto THE LAMB for ever and ever!" (Rev. 5:13). Creation and redemption walk hand in hand through all the pilgrim journey from Eden to the new heaven and the new earth.
The glorious theme of the holy scripture is the Person and Work of Him whose lovely title is "The Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world." This gracious title for our Lord Jesus Christ is indeed one of the most charming symbols used in the Bible to describe Him who loved us and has washed us from our sins in His own blood. Whenever the serious seeker after truth explores the meaning of the various Semitic symbols used to depict the Person and Work of the Saviour he becomes aware that each stands for a specific aspect of truth. In the case of the "Lamb" it is with the truth of redemption that we deal, for redemption is by the blood of the Lamb. "Ye were not redeemed by such corruptible things as silver and gold...but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot" (I Pet. 1:18-19). "Worthy is the Lamb that was slain" not the child that was born, though He was indeed worthy. Not the miracle-worker of the sea, or by the grave of Lazarus. Not the teacher whose words enthralled the multitudes on the mountain, or across the waters of blue Galilee. Not the healer restoring sight to the blind, or causing the lame to walk again. But "Worthy is the LAMB THAT WAS S-L-A-I-N to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing!"
We would have thought that in calling our Lord "the Lamb" this name would have been used only in respect to His humiliation in His earthly life. However in scripture it is most used in reference to His eternal glory in the heavenlies. Peter saw Him as the Lamb foreordained before the foundation of the world. John saw Him as a Lamb that had been slain from the foundation of the world, highly exalted, standing in the midst of the Throne. This slain Lamb is IN THE MIDST of everything: in the midst of the Throne, and of the four Living Creatures, and of the Elders. This Lamb is peculiarly the One who is IN THE MIDST, just as the tree of life was IN THE MIDST of the Garden of God. His eternal centrality is set forth in these significant words: "Who is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of every creature: for by Him were all things created, that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by Him and for Him: and He is before all things, and by Him all things consist...and having made peace through THE BLOOD OF HIS CROSS, by Him to RECONCILE ALL THINGS unto Himself; by Him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven" (Col. 1:15-20)
The term "Lamb" is used of Christ no less than twenty-eight times in Revelation, and has two vital characteristics. Christ is the sacrificial Lamb and the conquering lamb. He is never presented this way except in the majestic scenes around the Throne. We see the Lamb marching to the ultimate throne of universal empire in complete triumph and as absolute victor. Confronting the power of the beast and the kings of the earth, and the hordes of hell, and the lewdness and deception of the harlot system, and the wars and battles and bloodshed that fill the soul with dread, is THE POWER OF THE LAMB, whose victory has been assured and whose glory is guaranteed. God has given the Lamb for a leader and a counselor; so He is both our leader for we are they who follow the Lamb whithersoever He goeth and He is our counselor and commander; a counselor to counsel us concerning the things of God and His Kingdom, the Kingdom that hath no end. So glory to God and to the Lamb! Glory be unto God and the Lamb forevermore! And the Lamb shall have the victory! Of this we are assured, though all the wild beasts and the wolves, and the dogs, and the goats and bulls of Bashan, the spotted leopards, and all the wild heifers of Ephraim, the horses of Pharaoh, and the wild Ishmaels, profane Esaus, envious Cains, which may gather in a brotherhood, and Gog and Magog, professor and profane, if all these rise against the Lamb and His followers, without or within, yet I say the Lamb shall have the victory over the beast, the whore, and the dragon, over the flesh, the world, and the devil, for Christ is Lord over them all, for He was slain before they were, and will be reigning when they are gone, blessed be His wonderful name! He has conquered and shall conquer all who rise up against Him. For seventy years the ruthless, atheistic communist regime in Russia blasphemed the Lamb and jailed, tormented and killed all who proclaimed His name. They planned and purposed to eradicate His Kingdom from the earth. Today the communist government no longer exists in Russia and it is ironic that the Russian government, through its ministry of education, has invited a consortium of sixty American evangelical groups and Christian colleges to train educators in 120,000 Russian public schools on how to teach Christian and spiritual principles. In commenting on the invitation, Evgeniy Kurkin, the Russian deputy education minister told U.S.A. Today on November 10, 1092: "Seventy years ago, we closed God out of our country and it has caused so many problems in our society we cannot count them. We must put God back into our country and we must begin with our children. "AND THE LAMB SHALL OVERCOME THEM!" This is the great and beautiful message of the book of Revelation, and this is why the Spirit witnesseth "Blessed (happy) is he that readeth, and they that hear the words of this prophecy, and keep those things which are written therein: for the time is at hand" (Rev. 1:3).
But the Lamb in the book of Revelation has another note. The word used for LAMB here is peculiar to this book. It is the diminutive form of the Greek word for lamb, and is not found elsewhere in the New Testament. It means a young lamb, or a lambkin, weak and small. Our Lord Jesus Christ Himself is THE LAMB of God, and joined to Him are the members of His body, His brethren, the younger sons of God, the lambkin company. To see this company as the body of the Lamb is not to magnify man, but to exalt Christ, for it is HIS LAMB LIFE formed in them and lived out through them, giving expression to the Lamb nature. We know that HE is the preeminent One, and that it is HIS LIFE which is given, and by that life we are conformed to HIS image, made partakers of HIS divine nature, becoming the revelation of HIMSELF in the earth. All the qualifications of The Lamb must now be found in this people who make up the body of The Lamb. As one has written: "THE LAMB beautifully took care of all the work on God's side towards man, and the lambkin will have a beautiful ministry from man's side, to bring things back to God. His kingdom shall come, His will shall be done, on earth, as it is in heaven. There are many paths through the sunshine and the shadows, but we learn to see His hand in it all, for He is preparing and fashioning those who shall become part of the lambkin, who are ONE IN THE LAMB, to be given for the salvation of the ends of the earth."
It is in keeping with this that in Revelation chapter fourteen, we find the Lamb standing an Mount Zion. Having been rewarded with "the glory that follows," He is now highly exalted. We are told that in eastern countries where, of course, this symbolic scene is set, when sheep and goats are left to roam where they will, the goats invariably climb to the tops of the hills, while the sheep ordinarily seek the low places, the valleys. So to John it must have seemed most unusual that a Lamb should be on Mount Zion. By this is brought to light a most important truth concerning Jesus, The Lamb of God. He did not attain to His high position on Mount Zion by means of self-exaltation, but because, sheep like, He had sought the low places." He humbled Himself, and because of this His heavenly Father exalted Him. It was because Jesus permitted Himself to be led as "a lamb to the slaughter" and did not open His mouth in self- defense or seek otherwise to justify Himself before His enemies that the Father, by resurrection and ascension, highly exalted Him. He had sought the "low places," and now we find the Lamb exalted to the Throne of the city of God! Our Lard does not sit enthroned in the heavens, as Ruler of the universe, because He was divine in His birth, and messianic in His office, but because He was a LAMB IN CHARACTER. It was because He "made Himself of no reputation." It was because, coming as a man, He "took the form of a servant." It was because, as a bond-slave, He "learned obedience." It was because, in obedience, He went all the way, even "unto the death of the cross." "WHEREFORE, God also hath highly exalted Him, and given Him a name which is above every name" (Phil. 2:5-10).
Even now, as Christ sits enthroned at the right hand of the Father, He reigns in virtue of the fact that He is a Lamb. He reigns as a Lamb-King, because God is raising up lamb-kings in the earth, and it is the work of the Holy Spirit in the earth to establish in each member of the body of the Lamb in the earth the nature, and the character, as well as the authority of Him who sits on the Throne. "He shall glorify Me: for He shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you" (Jn. 16:14). It is the work of the Holy Spirit not only to impart unto His people the POWER of God, but ALL that pertains to the exalted Lamb, His very nature, and character, and life, that He might be here in the earth, dwelling in His body, to be to you and me, yea, to be through you and me EVERYTHING THAT JESUS IS UPON THE THRONE. The "lambkin" as a figure of Christ is indeed complete and perfect; yet it is a type of Christ in a limited measure and at the same time in the greatest measure. How strange this sounds to our ears, how curious to our minds! As far as the Lord Himself is concerned, He is not limited at all, but as far as our experience of Him is concerned, there is such a limitation. When we come to the Lord and receive Him as our redemption, the Christ we receive is whole, complete, and perfect; but as far as our experience of Him is concerned, we experience Him in only a small measure, just as the little lamb of salvation. From the
time we experienced Christ as the Lamb, we have always been progressing and advancing; we have continually made progress in our experience of Christ and received of Him more and more. This does not mean that Christ has become greater and greater. No, Christ is the same, He changes not! But as we grow in our appropriation of Him He becomes greater and greater TO US AND IN US. Day by day in our experience Christ is becoming greater and greater. At the stage of our experience in which the total triumph of the Lamb is achieved within, Christ is unlimited to us, He becomes ALL IN ALL. It is His almighty strength in the heavens revealed through the weakness of our humanity on earth the TRIUMPHANT LAMBKIN! Hallelujah!
THE BLOOD OF THE LAMB
What is this stream of life from the Lamb upon the Throne, and why is the Lamb so highly exalted until eternity re-echoes the song of His praise: "The Lamb that was slain is worthy to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honour, and glory and blessing!" The wonderful answer comes: "Thou art worthy...FOR Thou wast slain, and hast redeemed us to God by Thy Blood. It is the blood of the Lamb that bestows this glory upon Him. By His own blood He has entered the Holiest of all, and is seated upon the Throne of the Majesty in the heavens. His blood has accomplished this. The blood of Jesus is the greatest mystery of the ages, the deepest mystery of divine wisdom. Let us not imagine that we can easily grasp its meaning. God thought four thousand years necessary to prepare men for it, and we must take time, yea, sacrificial time in His presence, if we are to gain a knowledge of the awesome and marvelous power of the blood. I know of no word in the Bible or in human speech that contains such glories! This great and eternal truth shines with ever increasing brilliance from Eden's fragrant Garden of long ago to the jasper walls of the New Jerusalem descending from God out of heaven; from Adam's covering of skins and Abel's humble sacrifice of the firstfruits of his flock to the very Throne of God Himself where, glorious in power and might, the Lamb reigns and the seven Spirits of His divine Life are sent forth into all the earth.
The blood of Jesus Christ is of such vast importance to God the Father that He has decreed that there shall be (1) no remission, (2) no salvation, (3) no atonement, (4) no redemption, (5) no propitiation, (6) no cleansing, (7) no justification, (8) no peace, (9) no new covenant, (10) no sanctification, (11) no reconciliation, (12) no entrance into the Most Holy Place, (13) no sonship, without the blood of Jesus Christ whose blood is called by Paul the BLOOD OF GOD (Acts 20:28; Heb. 10:19-20).
Never forget, precious friend of mine, that Jesus came as THE PRICE WHICH COVERS, the substance in the scale that replenishes all deficiency. He shed His blood His divine life pouring it out for us. Life and blood are synonymous. Spirit and blood are synonymous. Spirit, blood, and life are all different names for the same element. Jesus performed His mighty works by the shores of Galilee, but then He died, resurrected and returned in mighty SPIRIT POWER to be the MIRACLE WORKER WITHIN. Nothing less must become ours, than HIS LIFE the divine life He lived in human flesh. "As I live by the Father, so he that eateth Me even he shall live by Me," Jesus said. The truth is so simple He has poured out His blood-life to us to quicken us again to the glory of God that belongs to man. Our spirit is quickened by His Spirit and in union with Him we are brought to union with God. Christ gave Himself FOR US and TO US. Our spirit must be quickened by His Spirit. This is the power of His redeeming blood. That He might liberally pour His dear-bought treasures into benighted human storehouses, was the inspiration of Jesus' intense human sacrifice. Some hold not to this truth, choosing rather to believe that they are a self-sufficient god within themselves, needing no Saviour beyond the development of their own inherent divinity.
There is a deep longing and intense hunger in the hearts of vast numbers of the Lord's people in this significant hour. They are earnestly searching for reality but the church systems and so-called revival movements have failed to meet their need. But the profound hunger, the intense need in their life cries loudly for satisfaction, their soul seeks ardently and resolutely after truth, life and eternal substance. Their great need is not being met by the churches nor by the television evangelists, nor by the crusades, nor by all the good meetings with their tongues, prophecies, healings, manifestations, and preaching of faith and prosperity. So these dear folk begin to look to other sources. Many of these "other sources" are dangerously deceptive, especially to those who desire "more knowledge," "deeper truth," or "the latest revelation." My beloved, there is an invasion right into the camp of those whose hearts have been moved by the call to sonship of "humanistic new age" philosophy that is deceiving many precious people today. It was prophesied by the apostle Peter that this enemy of the Lamb of God should appear right in the midst of the very elect. "But there were false prophets also among the people, even as there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even denying the Lord that bought them and bring upon themselves swift destruction (separation from the flow of divine life)" (II Pet. 2:1). The key word is "even denying the Lord that bought them." The denial is against the atonement, the ransom, the redeeming blood. They are offended at the Lord that bought them, though they may be devoted to the Lord that taught them. Ah, in very fact, they do not deny the Lord - they call Jesus Lord and esteem Him as the Son of God, the Christ, our Guiding Teacher, our Great Example, the Way-Shower, our Pattern. They speak effusively of His goodness, His love, meekness, unselfishness, understanding, compassion, mercy, power, and wisdom. They believe that His mission was to show us just how great is the potential of the true spiritual identity within every man, and the raising up of the Christ-consciousness within. They proclaim that Jesus became the Saviour by blazing the trail and showing the way of salvation to all who would follow in His steps. The only problem is that they are required to go in their own power, their own inward identity, their own godhood, their own inherent divinity, to follow Jesus into the fullness of the divine life. There is no reconciling, atoning, redeeming, cleansing, sanctifying, justifying, transforming power of His precious blood involved, no quickening of His life, no new birth, no washing of regeneration or renewing of the Holy Ghost. And yet, to the natural mind it all sounds so good so very right! But we must truly allow the Holy Spirit of Truth to give wisdom and understanding that we may discern the difference between the precious and the vile. These satanic agents are described by the inspired apostle as those who appear to be teachers of the deep mysteries of God, yet they bring in damnable heresies, in all cunning craftiness and subtlety, consummating in the repudiation of the redeeming blood of Jesus Christ. It is not strange that there is resentment against the mystery of the blood which does not exist against any other thing in the vast panorama of Truth. It is not strange that the ministers of satan, appearing as the apostles of Christ and messengers of Light, should fortify their lies and hypocrisies by contending for almost every phase of revealed truth, including the bright hope of sonship; yet subtly omitting, or violently denying, the one and only point upon which the interests of God and satan divide.
In the testimony of scripture the order is ever: "Unto HIM that loved US, and WASHED US from OUR SINS in HIS OWN BLOOD." And, "to as many as received HIM, to THEM gave HE power to BECOME the sons of God." Break these links and the chain is gone. Let us never forget this! Some trust so strongly in their own divinity, in the raising up of the Christ-consciousness within every man, that they need no Saviour beyond themselves, no sun or wind or rain from without to quicken the life within. The unwary are caught by it. All this time the blood of Christ is omitted or ignored. Not one word is said about it. The silence is ominous. Do let us understand truth clearly, for "there shall be false teachers among you, who privily shall bring in damnable heresies, even DENYING THE LORD THAT B-O-U-G-H-T THEM and bring upon themselves swift destruction. The destruction is the drying up of the spiritual life, the aborting of the spirit of sonship, and ultimate separation from the High Calling of God in Christ Jesus. Do away with the blood of atonement, the blood of remission, the blood of salvation, the blood of propitiation, the blood of reconciliation, the blood of justification, the blood of cleansing, the blood that gives eternal life, the blood of the new covenant, the blood that speaketh better thing's than Abel's, the blood by which entrance is made into the Most Holy destroy, I say, this wonderful stream of the precious blood of Christ as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot and every room within the towering temple of reality comes crashing down to earth! The love of God became a man, the love of God became human flesh, the love of God in Jesus Christ has flowed into our souls as the precious blood of Christ to wash away the veil of carnal consciousness and quicken us again to our true heritage in God. "Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed by such corruptible things, as silver and gold from your vain manner of life received by tradition from your fathers; but with the precious blood of Christ, as of a Lamb without blemish and without spot." Hallelujah for the blood!
Multiplied millions of Christians in all lands hold the blood of Christ to be precious. The word precious means of great price or value, costly, of great desirability, honored, esteemed or beloved. But there must be a reason why the blood is precious! Through many years of my Christian walk I never learned of any reason why it is esteemed except that God counts it to be the most valuable and precious of all blood to Him. I was never told whether it was intrinsically valuable or if it was valuable because of what it could and did accomplish. To be intrinsically valuable or precious means that it is of itself precious and does not necessarily need to accomplish any work to get its value. For example, the value of precious gems is determined not so much from their usefulness as from their intrinsic value and the desire that people have to own them. My sincere prayer is that the spirit of wisdom and revelation may enlighten the eyes of our understanding until we clearly see that the blood of Jesus Christ was and is precious both in respect to its INTRINSIC VALUE and because of WHAT IT COULD AND DID AND DOES NOW DO.
The mystery of the blood is far too intricate for my little mind to fully grasp, but there is a most interesting statement found in the very first command which God gave to man after the awful judgment of the flood in the days of Noah. After the wickedness of man had reached its peak in antediluvian days, God, in order to spare the human race from complete corruption sent a great flood upon the earth and destroyed all men except one single family which by the grace of God had still remained "perfect in his generations." With this new family on a cleansed and renewed earth, the Lord begins a new chapter in the history of humanity. No sooner had God, however, released Noah from the ark, than He gave him some instructions concerning his conduct, lest another judgment fall upon them. Chief among these instructions was the commandment, "Eat No blood." "Every moving thing that liveth shall be meat for you; even as the green herb have I given you all things. But flesh with the life thereof, which is the blood thereof, ye shall not eat" (Gen. 9:3-4).
Because life is in the blood, and not in the flesh of God's creatures, He permitted men to eat flesh but it must be without blood. God is very insistent, even in the New Testament, on this point. In giving the national dietary and ceremonial laws to Israel He repeats the prohibition of Gen. 9:4. "And whatsoever man there be of the house of Israel...that eateth any manner of blood; I will even set My face against that soul that eateth blood, and will cut him off from among his people. FOR THE LIFE OF THE FLESH IS IN THE BLOOD" (Lev. 17:10-11). God says, "It is sin to eat any manner of blood." So serious was this sin that the transgressor was to be put to death! Meat which had not been thoroughly drained of its blood was unfit for food as well as all things strangled. Today, the orthodox Jew at least, still remembers this prohibition, and will eat nothing but kosher meat, that is, meat that is without blood and slaughtered according to the law. Every kosher meat market and every bit of kosher food is evidence of the sacredness of blood!
God's commands are never arbitrary but always logical, reasonable, and with divine purpose. Many reasons can be found for abstaining from blood. We might mention the reasons of health and hygiene, but there are two reasons which stand out most prominent. First, the life is in the blood and life is sacred. It was God's special gift and the effect of His own breath. Moses tells us in Genesis this wonderful and little understood fact: "God formed man of the dust of the ground, and BREATHED into his nostrils the BREATH OF LIFE; and man became a living soul" (Gen. 2:7). Truly do I declare unto you that a profound mystery lies here! Since life is in the blood, all flesh is lifeless without blood. Here then is Adam formed of the dust. Just a lump of matter without life. God breathes into his nostrils and lo, he lives. Now mark well, God did not cause Adam to begin to breathe the air in the atmosphere around him. It was not breathing air that made Adam a living soul. GOD BREATHED into his nostrils. God is Spirit. It was the very breath of God that entered into Adam, the very spirit of life from God. Since the life is in the blood, it is my deep conviction that it was blood which God added to that body when He breathed into him the breath of life! Not the mortal, corruptible, dead blood that flows in mankind's veins today. Adam's body was of the earth but his blood was DIRECTLY FROM GOD. Since the life of all flesh is in the blood, and in view of the fact that God typified the regeneration of man's blood by the slain animals of Israel's altars, God demands that we respect the life of all flesh and to eat blood, therefore, is to insult the life of God! Ah, the power of the blood is in the worth of the life. In the blood of Jesus THE POWER OF THE DIVINE LIFE DWELT and worked hence its intrinsic value. He came with a blood not unlike the first Adam's blood before he sinned and the spirit of life fled from him. He was the Son of God by conception but the Son of man by birth. He was a specially prepared body to contain a SPECIALLY PREPARED BLOOD that was to be THE LIFE of all humanity. This blood was precious from the fact that it was a unique blood which would do something for all humanity that no other blood could ever do. It was the Word that became flesh, who was made man. It was the life of God that dwelt in Him. That life gave His blood, every drop of it, an intrinsic value. The blood of a man is of more worth than that of a sheep. The blood of a king or a great general is counted of more value than hundreds of common soldiers. The blood of the Son of God! it is in vain the mind seeks for some expression of its value; all we can say is, it is His own blood, the precious blood of the Son of God!
Jesus came as the Head of an entirely new creation. In fact He Himself WAS A NEW CREATURE, different from any that had ever been. I want to make it very plain that Jesus was in no way derived from the First Adam, either by flesh or by blood. If He had even one ounce of the first Adam's blood coursing through his veins, then He Himself NEEDED A SAVIOUR. Hear now what Paul says of the Christ: "The first man Adam was made a living soul; the last Adam was made a quickening spirit. Howbeit that was not first which is spiritual, but that which is natural; and afterward that which is spiritual. The first man is of the earth, earthy: the second man is THE LORD FROM HEAVEN" (I Cor. 15:45-47). Jesus was not fifty percent the first Adam and fifty percent the last Adam. He was one hundred percent the last Adam! He was not fifty percent the first man and fifty percent the last man. He was not fifty percent the man of earth and fifty percent the Lord from heaven. The second man I-S (100%) THE LORD FROM HEAVEN. To be the second man and the last Adam He could in no way contain any part of the first Adam. To be the man from heaven He must not be a descendant of the man of the earth. He must be an entirely NEW KIND OF MAN, separate from every other creation of God, as was the first man Adam in the day when he was created. The first Adam was truly without father, without mother, and without descent he was not derived from the life of any other man who had ever lived. So the last Adam! Though He was conceived IN the womb of Mary, He was not OF Mary. He was not formed from the union of the sperm of God with the ovum of Mary. His genes were not half from Mary and half from His heavenly Father. "That holy thing which shall be born of thee shall be called THE SON OF GOD," declared the angel to Mary. Mary was merely a surrogate mother. That fact should settle for all time the morality of surrogate motherhood! Jesus was as truly man, as truly flesh, as was the first man, but He was also as truly a UNIQUE CREATION OF GOD as was the first man in Eden.
Oh. the mystery of it! Oh, the wonder of it! Jesus Christ was THE WORD MADE FLESH; He was not old Adam's flesh imbued with God`s life. He was the second Man, the Man from Heaven, the God-man, Head of a new species of Men, a new creation of God in the earth, each member of which is a SON OR DAUGHTER OF THE MOST HIGH! The life is in the blood. As the value of this life, so the value of the blood. In Christ there was the life of God; infinite as God is the worth and the power of that blood! In Christ there was the life of man in its perfection; in His humility, and obedience to the Father, and self-sacrifice, that which made Him unspeakably well- pleasing to the Father. The blood of Jesus, God and man, poured out in death, that was a perfect fulfillment of God's will, and a perfect victory over sin and self, effected an everlasting atonement for sin, and put it forever out of the way, destroying both sin and death and him that had the power of it. Therefore it was, that in the blood of the everlasting covenant Jesus was raised from the dead: that in the power of that blood He entered the highest heaven; and THAT PRECIOUS BLOOD IS NOW AND FOREVER AVAILABLE TO US WITH ALL ITS INCORRUPTIBLE POWER. His blood is His divine spirit of life which has come into us Christ in us, our hope of glory.
Beloved sons and daughters of God! The blood of Jesus! The blood of the Lamb! Oh, think what it means! God gave it for your redemption from Adam's race and your transformation into the image of God. God accepted it when the firstborn of the new creation entered heaven and presented it on your behalf. God points you to it and asks you to believe in its omnipotent energy, in its everlasting sufficiency. Ah, this heavenly Man was injected into a whole world full of men descended from the earth- man to impart something we had lacked from the day Adam was driven from Eden's portals. That something was LIFE, LIVING BLOOD, for He said He came to give life to the world. He could impart a life to the world that would change it completely.
When Adam transgressed, the life of God, which had been breathed into His nostrils, departed from him and all that was left was a residue, that mortal something which flowed as blood in the veins of his body. This blood contains nothing of the life of God and in its composition and nature is similar to the blood of the animal kingdom, for when the glorious power of divine life departed from Adam, he entered into the kingdom of death. Adam was made a living soul. From the Greek the statement reads, "The first man Adam was made a zoe psuche (living soul)." ZOE is the word which throughout the whole of the New Testament is used of the life of God, divine life, eternal life. PSUCHE, on the other hand, is used of the natural life of animals and men. This life, ZOE, is the life Jesus promised to give to man when He said, "I give unto them eternal life (zoe), and they shall never perish," and this, beloved, is the LIFE THAT DEPARTED FROM ADAM when he transgressed, leaving him ashamed, fearful and dead. The life is in the blood, but our blood, being devoid of eternal life (zoe), is in reality dead blood capable of sustaining only physical, animal life (psuche), and that only poorly until man returns to the dust from whence he came. It is not without significance that, when the bodies of men are embalmed, the first act is to remove the corruptible blood that the dead body may be better preserved. To redeem this dead sinner, life must be again imparted. The only remedy for death is LIFE. This life is in the blood, and so blood must be furnished which is sinless and incorruptible. Now none of Adam's race could do this, for "in Adam all die." There was only one, yes, ONLY ONE, who could furnish that blood the virgin-born Son of God, the Man from heaven, with a human body, but sinless supernatural blood, inseminated by the Holy Ghost.
Jesus came to bring life to the world. Here is where His blood differed from the ordinary blood or life of men. His blood was precious in that it was able to do something for all mankind which mankind's own blood or life could not do. The natural blood or life of mankind was only for a few years at most, but the blood of the Christ was the LIFE OF THE AGES. So there must somehow be a discontinuance of the blood of a few years, that the blood or the LIFE OF THE AGES might be injected into mankind.
"For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and of goats should take away sins" (Heb. 10:4). It was impossible for the blood of Old Testament sacrifices to take away sin because that blood was dead blood. There was no power of life in it. Nevertheless, because of the faith of the worshippers in that BETTER BLOOD which was to come, those animal sacrifices were accepted by God for the time then present or for the time being, and by this faith the worshippers were sanctified, and being thus accepted by God they patiently awaited the day when the BETTER BLOOD OF THE LAMB OF GOD, in which was eternal life, would not only remove their sin, but erase the sentence of death, quickening them in spirit and transfusing their beings with the incorruptible blood of the Man from heaven. We say, and rightly so, for the scripture says, that Christ died for us. There is marvelous significance in those words, however, for when He died He GAVE HIS LIFE TO US. The precious blood that drained from His body on the cross is now manifest as THE SPIRIT, the LIGHT OF LIFE. That eternal life, which two thousand years ago was confined to the blood of His body, now, being loosed by death, is SHED ABROAD to become available as life eternal to all who believe. By the shedding of His blood life was given. By the receiving of His life DEATH IS CANCELED. In the light of life darkness and death flee away. Hallelujah for the blood!
THE CLEANSING OF THE BLOOD
In the service of God as ordained by the hand of Moses far Israel, there were two ceremonies to be observed by God's people in preparation for approach unto Him. There were the SACRIFICES and the CLEANSINGS. Both were to be observed but in different manners. Both were to typify the redemption by which the Lord Jesus Christ would restore men to right relationship with God. As a rule it is only the sacrifices which are regarded as typical of redemption through Christ. The writer of the book of Hebrews, however, points out that the DIVERS WASHINGS as well as the SACRIFICES were figures "for the time then present" of the "good things to come" through the High Priestly ministry of Jesus Christ and through His blood. We are told in I Jn. 1:7 that "the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanseth us from all sin." This word "cleanseth" does not refer to the forgiveness received when we first trust in Christ; but to the effect of God's grace IN God's children who WALK IN THE LIGHT. The word is: "If we walk in the light as He is in the light...the blood of Jesus Christ, God's Son, CLEANSETH US from all sin." That this cleansing refers to something more than pardon appears from what follows in verse nine: "He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to CLEANSE us from all unrighteousness."
There are two kinds of functions of the blood of the Lamb. One is to take away or kill, and the other is to add or supply. On the one hand it takes away the negative elements we should not have in us, and on the other hand it adds in the positive elements we should have in us. What is taken away is the element of Adam in us, and what is added is the element of Christ the new creation life. What is taken away is old. What is added is new. What is taken away is earthly and carnal, and what is added is heavenly and spiritual. What is taken away is dead, and what is added is living. When the blood of the Lamb works within us, it has these two kinds of functions manifest within us: one is to progressively take away all of our old creation man, and the other is to continually add all of God's new creation man. In this way HIS LIFE within us gradually increases from glory to glory.
It is like the blood in our physical body, which contains two kinds of elements: the white corpuscles and the red corpuscles. White corpuscles have one function, to kill germs that invade the body; the red corpuscles also have one function, to supply nourishment to the whole body. When the blood circulates and flows within us, the white corpuscles kill and clean up the germs which have invaded our body, while the red blood corpuscles supply every part of our body with needed nourishment. Likewise, when the blood of the Lamb works within us, or when the life of God in the Lamb works mightily within us, the two elements, life and death, contained in the life of God have the function of killing and supplying within us that is, killing the spiritual germs of the carnal mind and the fleshly nature, and supplying us with spiritual nourishment, which consists of the life and nature and power of God Himself.
Concerning the cleansing power of the blood of the Lamb, no greater statement of truth was ever made than that given by the beloved John on the rocky steeps of Patmos: "Unto Him that loved us, and washed us from our sins in His own blood" (Rev. 1:5). Some modern translations substitute the word "freed" for "washed", but a look at the Greek word shows that they are in error. The word is LOUO meaning "to BATHE THE WHOLE PERSON in the same way clothes are laundered in water." But praise be to God! this is not an outward washing but an INWARD CLEANSING. One aspect of the power of the blood of Jesus lies in its marvelous ability to ABSORB all that is in the blood or the life of the Adamic man. The apostle Peter by inspiration penned these words of deep and wonderful truth: "Who His own self BARE OUR SINS in His own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should LIVE UNTO RIGHTEOUSNESS" (I Pet. 2:24). This one who hung upon the cross possessed a life or a blood that would course its way through the veins of our inner nature and remove all our sins, infirmities and death. It is very wonderful and thrilling to many Christians to stand up and testify that they have been washed in the blood of Jesus. But if you would ask them to explain how they were washed in the blood, about the only answer many could give is that it was by faith. The Christian who has testified concerning being washed in the blood of Jesus has been unable to tell how because he has not understood the significance of one word that he was using. That word is WASHED. We have somehow in the past unconsciously given to that word "washed", as used in connection with the blood of Jesus, some special meaning. It must be that we have not been able to associate such a common and lowly procedure as washing clothes with the work done by the blood of the Lamb. And that is just where we have missed the whole point!
I would point you to this simple and self-evident fact: WHAT IS TO BE WASHED IS DIRTY. That is the reason for its being washed. It is filthy and contaminated and it needs to be washed. And the result of the washing is that the article becomes clean! Ah - what a good feeling it is after a day of sweaty, dirty work, to come home, take a refreshing bath, and get into some clean clothing. The dirt and grime and filth of the work has been washed away and we feel like a new person. All the members of Adam's race need washing! Not physically, but mentally, emotionally and spiritually. The mind, the heart and the nature of mankind are as full of the filth of the flesh as it is possible to be. The life of the blood is as full of filth and corruption as is the man, so it can do nothing to cleanse. Man's nature is literally saturated with sin, evil, fear, pride, self-righteousness, hatred, bigotry, weakness, anger, lust, sickness, sorrow, limitation and death. We know what it means to wash our clothes in water, how they are plunged into it and saturated with it, for several minutes agitated and moved about in it until the dirt is softened and loosened, it is then removed from the garment and SUSPENDED IN THE WATER and carried away. The water has TAKEN UNTO ITSELF all the defilement that was in the clothing. After some rinsings the clothes are taken out of the washer, sparkling clean, and with none of the filth that was in them in the beginning. How beautiful they look! How fresh they smell! Such is the process used today by millions in the washing of clothing. Yet this has not generally been associated with the wonderful washing process that mankind goes through in the blood of the Lamb.
Where does this washing take place, and what is it that is washed? It is the heart. It is in the deep, hidden, inner life of man that this effect of the blood, the life, the spirit of Christ is experienced. Sin has penetrated into the heart, and the whole nature has become saturated with it. The blood too must PENETRATE THE NATURE; as deeply as the power of sin has gone, so deeply must the inner nature be cleansed by the blood. This is wrought by the daily experiencing of HIS LIFE in the nitty-gritty of everyday experience. This is not some mushy, sentimental, religious experience at the altar of some church, but the APPROPRIATING OF HIS LIFE in the crucible of each problem, trial, temptation, weakness, testing, and difficulty we encounter, until self and sin are completely dealt with, washed away, and the mind and will of Christ reign supreme in our lives. Clothes are agitated when they are being washed; in the old days and still in many areas of the world they are beaten with rocks to loosen the dirt. Ah, we hope to kneel on a thick carpet before a plush altar and experience the wonderful cleansing of the blood of the Lamb, but it can never be so, my friend. It is in the midst of all the agitation of the pressures of life, in the turbulence of crisis, trouble, pain and despair that we encounter HIS LIFE WITHIN as the answer, and submitting, receive a mighty and eternal cleansing. Where sin ruled, His life must rule. Where self reigned, His precious mind must reign. Where the flesh manifests its lively activities, there the spirit of the Lamb must conquer, bringing righteousness, peace and joy. It is in the minds and hearts of men that the cleansing of the blood must take place. Out of the heart "are the issues of life" just in proportion as the heart is cleansed, so the entire life is cleansed, the whole man outwardly and inwardly is TRANSFORMED by the power of the blood!
THE LIGHT OF LIFE
There is a wonderful statement in the Song of Solomon wherein the Shulamite maiden, beautiful type of God's elect, says, "My Beloved is white and ruddy, the chiefest among ten thousand" (S. of S. 5:10). This was in answer to a question put forth by the "daughters of Jerusalem." The daughters of Jerusalem represent those who are truly people of God, saved by grace but who never grow up to maturity, they fail to go on to perfection, and do not press into the depths of Jesus Christ. These are the children of God, not the sons of God. They are not quickened to enter into intimacy of fellowship and vital union with HIM thus are no part of that blessed company standing on Mount Zion who "follow the Lamb whithersoever He goeth." These daughters of Jerusalem ask the Shulamite, "What is thy Beloved more than another beloved, O thou fairest among women?" (S. of S. 5:9).
The scene is set in the Shulamite's search for her Beloved. As she pursues her Beloved the flame of her love burns brighter; faster and faster she hastens through the streets of the city to find Him, all the while He appears more wonderful to her soul. In her marvelous description of her Beloved, she mentions, first of all, the combined, though contrasted colors of "white and red." To a superficial reader, this might signify only health and beauty. Let us bear in mind that the daughters of Jerusalem did not ask for a description of her Beloved. They inquired in what He differed from, or was more than another beloved. You see, the daughters of Jerusalem always have lovers other than Christ lovers of earthly things, jobs, homes, cars, hobbies, lovers of men, personalities, preachers, someone whom they can follow and commit the care of their souls to; lovers of religiosity, denominations, movements, church systems, multiplied religious works, rituals, ceremonies, programs, sacraments, etc. all of which supplant a living relationship with Christ alone. The Shulamite needs and desires nothing but HIM, while the daughters of Jerusalem find many other things just as important in their lives as Him. So they asked concerning the distinguishing features that belong to Him alone, what it is that the Shulamite sees in HIM that causes her to forsake all else and all others for the knowing and possessing of HIM. From the question asked and the motive in asking it, we see at once that "white and ruddy" do not have the significance of "health" when used by the Shulamite to describe her Beloved.
These two colors make her Beloved different from, and more than every other beloved. They, above all, make the Christ of God different from, and more than all others. They, more than all else, make Him the only fruitful Tree in all the forest of the sons of men. These two colors distinguish Him and mark Him out before all eyes; and because of which, every knee shall bow, and every tongue shall confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father. She knew, as some even who profess to be sons of God do not know, that all religions are not "a way" into union with God! The meaning of the word "white" is dazzling, bright, illuminated by the sun, sunny. Dazzling white, as the brightest sunlight. The meaning of the word "ruddy" is red, to show blood, to dye or make red. The one name above all other names, by which the Christ of God is known, is "the Lamb." This is the name by which He is known as the sacrifice of God. John the Baptist calls Him "the Lamb of God, which taketh away the sin of the world." It is the pure, spotless Lamb of God to which the sacrifices of the Israelite worship pointed, and whom they foreshadowed.
The characteristics of the meaning of "white," namely, "dazzling, illuminated, and shining as the sun," were literally manifested in the transfiguration of Christ on the Mount. We are told in Mat. 17:2 that "He was transfigured before them; and His face did shine as the sun, and His garments became white as the light." In the ninth chapter of Mark, we are told that "His garments became glistering," which, in the Greek, means: "To lighten forth, flash forth like lightening." Within that form that was marred more than the sons of men, dwelt glory ineffable. As He prayed upon the Mount of Transfiguration, He opened a little way the robe of humanity with which He had covered Himself when He came down to earth, and His majesty and glory burst forth! None can overlook the precious significance here, when the scripture is compared with the clause that we are now considering in the Song of Solomon. The Shulamite declares that her Beloved is "white", or that He is dazzling, white as the light, shining as though illuminated by a might sun.
Ah was this not a "breaking forth" of the glory of the incorruptible blood of God flowing through the veins of His perfect humanity? With this wonderful thought in our minds let us with humble reverence consider the words of the apostle John: "In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. In Him was LIFE; and the LIFE was the LIGHT OF MEN" (Jn. 1:1,4). Notice the words: IN HIM WAS L-I-F-E. Now: THE LIFE IS I-N T-H-E B-L-O-O-D. Finally: THE LIFE WAS THE L-I-G-H-T OF MEN. In these statements we discover three synonyms: life, light, and blood. In an article that has come across my desk are found these words of truth: "You have heard of the light of a candle. You have heard of the light of the stars. You have heard of the light of the moon. You have heard of the light of the sun. But this is the light of life. When men speak of the light of the sun, we understand. When they speak of the light of the moon, we understand. May we not now understand the truth of Christs words: the light of life? I doubt not that my next sentence will be a disturbing jolt to the understanding of many, but the truth as I see it is simply this: Life and light and blood are one and the same thing, manifest on three levels just as vapor and water and ice are one and the same thing on different levels. I am well aware that what I am saying is entirely new and may come as a shock to many who read.... a proper understanding of it will assist us to grasp the greatness of that prominent Bible theme, the precious blood of Christ. Not only will we better grasp its meaning, but we will know why that precious blood of Christ is THE LIFE OF THE WORLD. I see no way that we can avoid the conclusion that His LIFE is in fact RESURRECTION itself. It redeems from sin, because sin found man in life and brought him to death, but the blood of Christ, which is eternal life, finding man in death, brought life, and that is what redemption is."
The glory of the transfiguration was the momentary unveiling of the glorious heavenly light of Christs blood-life. It was in truth the manifestation of the light of life promised by our Lord Jesus in Jn. 8:12: "He that followeth Me shall not walk in darkness, but shall have the LIGHT OF LIFE." It shone from His face. It glistered from His garments. It surrounded Him like a halo. It radiated from Him like the rays of the sun. His eyes were like lamps of fire the light that swallows up all darkness and death of the carnal realm. There in the Mount of Transfiguration His disciples beheld Him in the glory of the light of life of His incorruptible blood. This was resurrection life, kingdom life, heavenly life, incorruptible life. And, my beloved, this beautiful picture tells us what OUR INCORRUPTIBLE BODIES WILL BE, the glistering light of life that Christ Himself actually is. What a powerful metamorphosis when this light of life has matured and bursts forth from within all the sons of God, vanquishing all that pertains to this mortal realm. There is a natural body and there is a spiritual body, the inspired apostle tells us. Those who imagine that the incorruptible body will be a body that sleeps, drives a car, goes to work at a factory or office, and eats hamburgers have never seen by the spirit the glory of the resurrection. When Jesus burst out of the tomb in resurrection He came forth in the full brilliance of this divine light of life. In this glory Paul saw Him in his Damascus vision, a light brighter than the noonday sun (Acts 16:13-14), and in this way John beheld Him in the wonder of his Patmos vision (Rev. 1:16). This, my dearly beloved, is the full and glorious and eternal reality of the PRECIOUS BLOOD OF CHRIST. it is the blood, yea, the life the saints will possess when the fullness of His resurrection has been experienced in spirit, and in soul, and in body. It is the glory of the manifested sons of God!
OVERCOMING BY THE BLOOD
If your desire is to truly be an overcomer in all things, a part of the firstfruits of God's redemption in this important hour, a most wonderful key is found in I Jn. 1:7. "If we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship one with another, and the BLOOD OF JESUS CHRIST GOD'S SON CLEANSETH US FROM A-L-L S-I-N." There is a way for the Lord's people to be freed from ALL SIN! "If we walk in the light." How? "AS HE IS in the light." Do not forget for one moment, dear ones, that the life is the light and the blood is the life. To walk in the light as He is in the light means to walk in the LIFE as HE is in the LIFE. There is a great principle here!
Paul says in Rom. 8:1-2, "There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, who walk not after the flesh but after the Spirit. For the LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE in Christ Jesus hath made me free from the law of sin and death." What makes me free from the law (power) of sin and death? Why, the LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF LIFE makes me free! Do we not understand that life swallows up death and light dispels darkness? His precious life blood (spirit) flowing through our lives accomplishes this. But haven't we always had it turned around in our thinking? How many of us have been struggling to "die" so we can live! How often have we told ourselves, "If I can get rid of my old man, if I can conquer this habit, overcome this temper, this unruly tongue, this lust, this nature, this...this...this...then I will have the life of Christ manifested in me!" We have tried to get rid of sin so we could have righteousness. We have made valiant efforts at conquering the death in us so we would have life. We have worked at eradicating the darkness from our lives so we could walk in the light. Dearly beloved friends, we have had the cart before the horse! It is like saying, "I will stand here in this dark room and rebuke the darkness, and when all the darkness has been chased away I shall have light." The simple fact is you can rebuke the darkness until men carry your dead body out to the mortuary, but THE DARKNESS WILL NEVER LEAVE UNTIL YOU TURN ON THE LIGHT. There is no vacuum that can suck up darkness, no chemical that disintegrates it, no force that can move it. The problem is not to get rid of the darkness, but to produce the light!
The LAW OF LIGHT is that it always dispels darkness. It never fails! So if you have been trying to get rid of the darkness of the carnal mind and the fleshly nature in you, by rebuking it, resisting it, struggling with it, fighting it, ignoring it, praying to be delivered from it, having hands laid on you for it FORGET IT! These are one and all efforts at self-reformation. None of those methods has one iota of power to remove the darkness from a life. Only LIGHT is able to remove darkness! Brother, sister, TURN ON THE LIGHT in your life, expose yourself to the mighty presence of the Holy Spirit in your life, open yourself to the creative power of His Word within, thrust yourself into the living stream of His precious blood, and the LAW OF THE SPIRIT OF HIS LIFE working powerfully within will begin to make you free from the law of sin and death. You can't take death out of a corpse to make it live, but put life in it and it will live! And there is no way that you can remove the law of sin and death from heart and nature, but you take the law of the Spirit of Life in Christ into you and I tell you the truth the death will be swallowed up!
I have had the experience of becoming so involved with the pressures of everyday living until the vital presence of God was crowded out of my life. When we spend all our time working and visiting and fellow shipping in carnal things, reading the newspaper, watching television, tinkering with hobbies, and multiplied other natural activities the Spirit is crowded out of our lives, the flow of His life-blood is hindered. How filled our lives are with EARTHLY THINGS! Constantly going, going, going, and doing, doing, doing. Occasionally we spend a few minutes in prayer, or in the Word, or in blessed fellowship with another saint, or time and effort wasted in some dead meeting, and then wonder why there is no power in our lives and we are not overcomers! There is a LAW OF LIFE that must be at work in us. But you don't really need to be concerned about the law of life, you just need the LIFE! The law will work naturally. When the life is there the law will work. When the law is working the power of darkness and death is annulled, the negative realm is neutralized. Therefore, seek LIFE! If the glorious presence of God, the light of life, can keep me in the spiritual state of overcoming victory for ten minutes...or for two hours...or for three days...then the same substance of HIS LIFE WITHIN can keep me in that condition of victory and transformation for as long as the flow of His life is maintained this is the absolute unfailing key to overcoming! Death always sets in in any body member where the flow of blood is prevented. People have lost hands and arms and feet and legs when for some reason the blood circulation was cut off. Maintain the flow of the precious blood of Christ and you will have little trouble with the flesh.
"And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb" (Rev. 12:11). All who would be sons of God must overcome the dragon of the carnal mind and the beastly nature of old Adam. It comes not by "pleading the blood," thinking positive, or confessing the promises. In proportion as we live in close and abiding contact with the blood we shall experience increasingly its powerful, omnipotent effects. He who gives himself up to continual intercourse with THE LAMB, joined in one spirit with Him, will experience through His blood a TRIUMPHANT LIFE beyond his conception. He will see the law of life at work. The old carnality, the old weaknesses, the old desires, the old thoughts, the old emotions, the old frustrations will begin to fade away, diminishing and diminishing in the cleansing of His blood. Ah, precious saint of God, try no longer to "get rid of," or "quit doing," or "kill," or "die," or "change," anything! Only expose your whole being to the light and you will begin to live by the life of God's dear Son.
The blood of the Lamb is described as a "fountain opened in the house of David for sin and uncleanness (Zech. 13:1). By the power of the Holy Spirit it streams through the heavenly Temple. I must in faith turn away from all that is seen, to plunge into that spiritual fountain, with the assurance that it will manifest its blessed power in me. WE ARE BEING CHANGED even as by the Spirit of the Lord." God is seeking the fully developed life of His Son in us in order to manifest HIMSELF through us as the central revelation of Himself to the Whole Creation. God in the Lamb IN YOU is His purpose! So let us with childlike, persevering, expectant faith, open wide our souls to an ever increasing experience of the wonderful power of the blood of the Lamb.
To be continued... J. PRESTON EBY [HOME] [KINGDOM RESOURCES]