The Berean Expositor
Volume 4 & 5 - Page 31 of 161
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It will be observed that it does not say that the Lord is the originating cause of all
things universally, but of the all things. It does not say that He is the ministerial cause of
all things universally, but only of the all things, and it does not say that all things
universally are unto Him as the final cause, but the all things. This emphasis at once
suggests the question, What all things? and it is with a view to providing a scriptural
answer that we continue our investigations. Even in the wider and more universal
expression (that is with the article omitted) there are necessary limitations. The apostle
said, "all things are lawful," but this is not universally true. Murder, lying, thieving, &100:,
were no more lawful to Paul the apostle than to Saul the Pharisee. "All things" must be
considered in the light of the restrictions imposed by the law of Moses, the traditions of
the Elders and the contextual references to various foods, idolatrous connections, &100:
Eph. 6: 21, Phil. 3: 8, I Tim. 6: 17, and Titus 1: 15 will supply other examples of the
limitations of this wider expression.
Returning to the doxology of Rom. 11: 36, we compare it with the statement of the
apostle in I Cor. 8: 5, 6. In Rom. 11: the scripture does not differentiate between "Him"
of Whom are all things, and "Him" through Whom are all things. He is called "God" and
"Lord" in the context (see verses 33 and 34). It is evident that the God of verse 33 is the
Lord of verse 34, and the fourfold "Him" of verse 36. The apostle who wrote Rom. 11:
had written I Cor. 8: 5, 6, and felt under no obligation to attempt to explain that which
superficially is a difficulty to some. In contrast to the heathen conception of gods many
and lords many (i.e., Baalim, demons, mediums), the believer recognizes one God, the
Father, the originating cause of the all things (ta panta), and one Lord, Jesus Christ, the
ministerial and mediating cause in reference to the same "the all things" (ta panta), and
consequently to such "an idol is nothing in the world."
Again, the force of the expression (the all things) must be observed. This emphasis
upon origin and ministerial cause is met with in the next reference, I Cor. 11: 11, 12:--
"For as the woman is out of (ek, origin) the man, so also the man is through (dia,
ministerial cause) the woman, but the all things (ta panta) are out of (ek, origin) God."
The next passage (I Cor. 15: 27, 28) we must consider together with Heb. 2: 8-10:--
"For He hath put all things under His feet. But when He saith all things are put under
Him, it is manifest that He is expected which did put the all things (ta panta) under Him.
And when the all things (ta panta) shall be subdued under Him, then shall the Son also be
subject unto Him that put the all things (ta panta) under Him, that God may be all in all."
We must not take it as proved that God cannot be all in all in the destruction of some
as in the salvation of others, it is a sentimental conclusion which must not weigh with us
here. In this passage we find the wider expression used first, then in repetition the article
is used, and in this case it would seem that throughout one aspect is intended. This is
further emphasized by the one exception which emphasizes the universality of the all
things which are to be subjected beneath the feet of Christ. Heb. 2: 8-10 definitely states