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Volume 9 - Page 74 of 138 Index | Zoom | |
The argument is transferred from the old creation to the new, and there the Church
which is His body is renewed in knowledge
"after the image of Him that created him, where there is neither Greek nor Jew,
circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond, nor free, but Christ is ALL
and IN ALL" (Col. 3: 10, 11).
It would seem that the unity that is shadowed forth in the body is an essential feature
of the Church. In that Church where there is neither Greek nor Jew, Christ can be ALL
and IN ALL, and that Church which is His body, which "He created of the both", i.e.,
Gentile and Jew (Eph. 2: 15), that Church is the fulness of Him that filleth ALL in ALL.
When the glorious consummation of God's purpose is reached and the words of
I Cor. 15: 28 are fulfilled, then "God will be ALL IN ALL"; till that moment comes that
wondrous fulness is vested in Christ. He is the One now who fills all in all. That these
words are limited to the believer, and must not be interpreted universally, Col. 3: 11
would seem to indicate; perfect unity is necessary to manifest the fulness of Him that
filleth all in all.
A church which is His bride, or His kingdom, or His people, cannot so fully reflect
this glory as the church which is His body, and thus it is that the most glorious calling is
reserved for the church of the dispensation of the mystery.
The word plerõma occurs four times in Ephesians, and each occurrence if studied will
help us in our understanding of the subject.
First, the special dispensation which is connected with the Church of the One Body is
spoken of as, "the dispensation of the fulness of the seasons" (1: 10), the characteristics of
that dispensation are the headship of Christ, and the uniting together under that headship
of things in heaven and earth; this is found to be equally the case in Eph. 1: 23. Instead
of speaking of the fulness of the seasons, the context speaks of "this age and the age to
come"; instead of speaking of things in heaven and earth, the heavenly things are named
principalities and powers, etc., and the earthly is represented by the Church which is
His body. Colossians, in its first reference to the fulness, takes us back first of all to the
creation of things visible and invisible in heaven and earth, and links the pre-eminence of
Christ as Creator with His headship as Saviour, which in turn leads on to the words, "for
it was well pleasing that in Him should all fulness dwell" (Col. 1: 16-19).
The third reference in Ephesians is found in chapter 3:, where, as a conclusion to the
prayer commenced in verse 14 the apostle says, "that ye might be filled unto all the
fulness of God"; this is intimately related to the words, "that Christ may dwell in your
hearts by faith". All the fulness dwells in Him, and can only be approximated by us as
He, by faith, dwells in our hearts. The A.V. reads, "filled with all the fulness of God".
One, and One only, is mighty enough to be filled with all the fulness; members of His
body may be filled unto all the fulness of God, the utmost limit of their capacity is the
measure of their comprehension of Christ Himself. As in other phases of divine
manifestation it is written, "NO man hath seen God at any time, the only begotten Son,