By Charles H. Welch
Man. Man created in the image of God, and man fallen, sought and redeemed, comes under the heading rather of doctrinal truth than dispensational truth, for dispensational truth deals with differences, but all mankind are alike in their origin, in their failure and in their need of salvation. Two usages of the word man, however, demand a place in this analysis, namely "the new man" and "the perfect man".
The new man. This term is found only in Paul's epistles, and only in those epistles that are called "the Prison Epistles" (see article bearing that title). It therefore belongs peculiarly to the dispensation of the Mystery. In the earlier epistles we have a New Covenant and a new creature, and in the epistles of the circumcision a new commandment and a new heaven and a new earth, but a new man is peculiar to the Mystery. After having observed that, we must make a further observation. Two Greek words are used, kainos and neos, and they each have their own special connotation.
Kainos means something entirely new, not something recent, but something different from that which had been formerly, something so new as not to have been in use before. Neos means something young, something recently originated or lately established. Dr. Bullinger has the following note in his Lexicon:
The references are as follows:
While in ordinary usage kainos and neos often appear interchangeable, their distinctive meanings must be remembered. Ephesians four and Colossians three are not dealing with dispensational distinctions but with the new man as contrasted with the old. Where the word kainos is used, the word "created" follows, and where neos is used the word "renewed" follows, each passage keeping close to the primary meaning of the words translated "new", a silent testimony to the accuracy of Scriptural language. The only reference that is specialIy dispensational in intention is that of Eph. 2:15. This is a part of the subject introduced into Ephesians two under the figure ofthe "Middle WalI" and is treated in its place in the article of that name. See also article entitled NEW.
The perfect man. Where Ephesians 2:15 and 4:24 use the word anthropos, "man", Ephesians 4:13 uses the Greek word aner. These two words differ, anthropos means not only a man in the sense of a male, but any individual of either sex of the human species. It is a generic name. Aner means an adult male person, and never means a woman. Aner occurs 213 times in the N.T. and is translated "fellow" once, "husband" fifty times, "man" one hundred and fifty-six times, and "sir" six times.
Here are the occurrences of aner
in Ephesians. It occurs seven times as follows:
The Apostle has used anthropos nine times in Ephesians, yet when he wished to speak of the Church as the perfect man, he goes out of his way to use a word that he uses six times afterwards for "husband" . It is, therefore, evident, if Scriptural language is accurate, that such a Church cannot be "the Bride", for it would be incongruous to speak of a Church which is the perfect "Husband" as a "Bride". By observing the distinction, a fuller conception of the purpose of the ages is gained. Just as at the beginning man was placed in a garden and provided with a wife, so in the realization of that typical fact, the Church of the Bride, will be associated with (but not confused with) the Church of the Body, the Church which is the perfect Husband. Those who see no other Church than the Bride are 100king forward to a Paradise where "Eve" will have no companion. If it be objected "Christ is the Bridegroom", we must remember that He also is "The Head of the Body", and moreover, the Bride is never called the Bride of Christ, but the Bride of the Lamb. See for further features the article entitled THE BRIDE AND THE BODY.