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GOD AT WORK:
THE INTENT, THE EPOCHS AND THE POINT
THE TEN POINT PROGRAM IN BASIC OUTLINE
In its elemental outline, the work of God is great and gracious.
There is the
There follows the
by the wilfulness of mankind leading to
|his CURSED ENVIRONMENT and CONDITION as a result.|
Next the foretelling of the
|FIRST AND FINAL REDEMPTION.|
|GREAT WORK OF ITS REALISATION:|
|EPITAPH OF RANSOM
IS THE BLAST- OFF FROM DEATH,
IN HIS BODILY RESURRECTION,
this, a communicable-non-disease to His people in their joint time.
Closely following is the
REINFORCED CHRISTIAN WITNESS, pending His return,
the date of which is as carefully hidden as His redeeming death date was clearly revealed (The Christian Prescription Ch. 2).
Terminating this phase, is the
|RULE OF THE SAVIOUR IN EXEMPLARY BRILLIANCE on a hallowed earth.|
Finally, the earth is given discard, just as had been the clutch of death, together with the heavens, in
|SIN'S DEMISE AND HEAVEN'S UNREVISED GLORY.|
in all its creative magnificence (II Peter 3, Revelation 20-22).
It started, not from a group of possibilities based in and on nothing. One must try to seek to avoid stark irrationality, like drunkenness during exams (or indeed at other times!).
HE made it. Nothing less had it there to do it, but the eternal non-nothing who never needed irrationality with which to come from nowhere, since nowhere never was, and if it had been, we would not be; and He always was.
Elevated to power in his intriguing kind of creation, man was enabled to consider God and whether or not to attach to Him. In so doing, his ear was open, and he was overcome with the marshmallow view of a soft and pushable reality, and sought to tilt at his Maker, as if He were just another being, rather than the genesis of all limited being and beings, as His art-gallery. Hence man became unreasonable and unruly. In this, he had plausible help from a devious spiritual power; but he had neither need to listen, nor permission, since this came in animal form, and those creations were for him to rule over, not to hire as tutors. Such was the lab set up in Genesis 3.
Man fell for it. Exposed for his inane presumption and unholy devices, this wonder child, a virtual prodigy of divine creation is next exposed to the results of his own misrule and misapplication, of what ? it was of his own powers! In having SOME of the perfect measures of protection and wonder therefore reduced, in his environment, some counterbalanced, he inherited woes not a few, having torn up the life of trust originally in view.
Enough however was left to retain the testimony of a glorious reality, together with the abrasive reminders of the unrealism of his rebellion, these jointly. The cause of the collision, and often the collision itself, is something man is ever ready to avoid, as if were the knife to his throat. It is rather like those persons who fearing cancer, do not have their condition checked, lest it burden their minds: and so die when it breeds unchecked. In this case, the shadow of conscience, even repressed or over-compensated, can make the eternal distancing of God a sort of dance, now leisurely, now frantic, now with antics as the occasion allows (Romans 1:17ff., 8:17ff.). The dancing floor however is usually left unfocussed, as if it just happened to be there, and the entrance never was an issue; while it is the whole issue.
Into this sad realm, and in particular in man's scattering across the earth, because of an effort at Babel to countermand the curse with new elevations of his pseudo-majestic career (Genesis 11), and the divine repudiation of such aggravations, there came ever increasing expressions of the divine method. What was this ?
The only rubric was not ruin; for if it had been, man could have been dismissed at once, as if God did not know beyond and over all time, His creation, what He was doing. Such is not only not the case, but infinitely far from it (Colossians 1:11).
From Genesis 3:15, to Malachi 3 and 4, what was to be, the mode of non-destruction, of avoiding ultimate judgment, was shown in predictions all but innumerable, precise and clear, thematic and with oversight and deep perspective, detailed to the last degree, as testimony of truth with mercy, indeed as showing the dynamic of deity to meet human delinquency.
Right from the first comes the message of what, and by whom and why God is going to reverse the curse. He is very personal, made man a person, and deals with persons, not just parts (just as man deals with pictures, not just specks of paint, and so with horses, not just hoofs, but envisaging and understanding the whole nature of the horse). God showed the restorative plan at the outset, then: it was an action to overcome the power of evil, which had infected man, devastated his spiritual function, but not eliminated it, a subduing power, and to meet such an adversary the only one of over-arching eliminative power being God, the whole is poured out from the first. It is He Himself personally who would take the brunt of the action to deliver man.
It would involve personal suffering on His own part, symbolised in the bruised heel (Genesis 3:15), resulting from stamping out the source of the evil, displayed experimentally through the guise of a serpent. It however, would be broken in head. It is He would prevail, so covering celestial cost borne far beyond the capacity of man. This, it would be the divine method of rehabilitation, restoration, deliverance from the whole opacity to light, which man had inherited from his play-boy attitude to reality.
As the revelation progressed, it became even clearer that a schema of the outpouring of divine purity astounding to the world by contrast with its own simmering sin, would occur to overcome the deviousness of sin. It would be called : redemption. God was willing to pay to void the spiritual sickness and the physical consequences in the end. He was NOT willing to make it compulsory to receive it (He as the truth does not lie). As the One offended and the Creator, however, He was undeflectable from His plan: what He had said, He would do, and not another thing, not for anyone, not for anything. He thought; He spoke; he declared (Galatians 1:6-9, Isaiah 40:9-14,27ff.).
So through the prophets He spoke, and assigned the time for His action in Daniel 9.
Then comes the PURCHASER of redemption, the Messiah, anointed, appointed, delighted (Psalm 40*1), meant, sent, triumphant not despite His suffering, but because He carried it through to its point: redemption and reconciliation's basis for man (II Corinthians 5:17ff.),from his convoluted blight, and ramifying ruin.
That concluded as appointed, removing the place of priests, animal sacrifices in symbolic indications and the specifically Old Testament civic superstructure of the State of Israel as the locale for press release through the prophets, and covering in prediction, salvation's accomplishment, through the signing off of Christ, in His crucifixion (Psalm 22*1A). It did not, however, since God is not at all simplistic, though very direct, remove either the opportunity for individuals in Israel to find the Saviour, or the righteousness of the prophetic works they had been used to convey, before the Saviour encapsulated the deliverance in Himself and His own works as sent (John 1:29, Philippians 2,Matthew 20:28).
Indeed, Israel, though in Christ's death sentence exposed as a State in ruin (to be actualised some 40 years later by Roman Emperor Titus), was as a people the source for the first aggregating thousands of individuals who became the Christian Church, rapidly expanding to all nations, as foretold by the Saviour Himself (Matthew 24, as well as by Isaiah - 42:6, 49:6 for example). For that matter, it did not remove God's dealings with Israel, according to promise (cf. Genesis 17:7-8), any more than man's fall put him beyond salvation in the first place. God is very thorough, a delightful characteristic. There is nothing sleazy about Him; you can rely on every jot and tittle of it, when He speaks (Matthew 5:17ff.). You could stake your house on it; yes your life. But it is not necessary: you trust, believe and follow what God has provided, said and done (Luke 14)
THE SERIAL DYNAMICS DURING THE EPOCHS
So God created. So man fell. So God acted to assign results; and acted to assign redemption.
As to that, done once (Hebrews 9-10), it is to be proclaimed often, to millions if not billions. This was to occur (cf. John 16, Matthew 24, Luke 21) - and has in fact occurred, in the ebb and flow of natural exploits, horrors and crimes amid mankind. These appalling abuses are bound together (like wheat and weeds when young plants), with works of wonderful dedication and devotion to love's duty in response to God's SO loving the world and NOT desiring to condemn it (John 3:15-19), on the part of milling crowds of the converted. Thus Christians in their turn, as ambassadors of the Messiah, the Christ, the anointed, appointed one, the Eternal Word of God (Micah 5:1-3, John 8:58) were sent as God meant, and still are. This is called the Great Commission as in the end of Matthew's Gospel.
As the Lord left this earth, to give scope to the universalising of the proclamation by many, He gave the Holy Spirit in direct access to all Christians (John 16), acting in His place, not to replace but to apply His presence and power, to be with them, till the job was done, hallowing the word of God, evangelising many, proclaiming to all, the gift of God's grace. The POWER of the Holy Spirit is not given to avoid suffering, far less to void effort, but to enable its success, so that the world may be saturated with the Gospel, even with many, spiritually burping and morally aborting as they hasten to avoid hearing it, or at least, to void any occasion of embracing it. Better for them, often in their own feeling, a death adder, as they try to make an impossible finale of rebellion, in some desperate manner, achieve the objective, or in sullen spiritual silence refuse to consider or to come where God has placed His name.
Others arise as knights of old, clad in cultural armour. Their presentation ? It is given by many. Methods ? First it is by sheer repetition and laziness, constantly acting and speaking and teaching as if God is not necessary, thus making it all just a matter of the cultural, optional.
Teaching this at least by implication to decades if not centuries of children, and those seized upon by culture, the thrust works with many, carried along on the current like flotsam. Then the organisation comes, and things are not even so free as that. The time comes repeatedly in this sphere or nation, when with totalitarian cultural clamping, they are not permitted to hear to the contrary, in all realism. Even if their ears WERE open, the words to meet them are successively silenced. It may be with armed guards, national glory, or bureaucratic syllable as necessary for professional success; but the defiant and irrational discrimination proceeds like the tsunami that hit Japan recently, both poisonous and rampaging. It can even proceed by having control of the Press (to ensure cultural conformity for some irrational reason, sinking safety in self-glorification), and then extending this to the internet, as currently in view in the paganisation program being worked out in Australia.
Here liberty is near to being sacrificed to cultural concepts to be applied at will, so that there is no appeal from the dictates of those appointed, a sort of collective anti-messiah, committed to culture, whatever it may desire to be, as the perspiration of human action, a mere concomitant of what they do!
The spiritually seditious method then in due time proceeds to detach the minds of the people, and those of past children, and present ones, from God, and attach them to man in a new myth of humanism, where God has no place. Mao tried it and looked ridiculous, millions dying in his inane seeming superficialities and self-glorification, finding small comfort in his little red book. If you want glory, it is best not to try it as man, since he is not glorious. He is a product, albeit, a personal one of great gifts. Stalin tried it with similar forcefulness, making himself the LEADER, a horrid trend now in this country, where instead of the PM leading a cabinet and seeking consensus, this person becomes THE LEADER, sheering off safety in self-elevation, and making for both stresses and instability.
The thing proceeds to aggregate (as Communism long tried to do in its international aspirations) until at last, in the depths of man's WILD majority molestation of reality, rationality itself becomes subdued, and mysterious currents lead many to ultimate follies (cf. II Thessalonians 2, which says it all quite clearly).
On the way to this, various easier options are tried in Satan's remorseless and relentless tyranny, the more horrible because it has only to be resisted with spirit and with reason and it has no point of application whatsoever. One effort has been to make the nation the proud possessor of the Church: so that if and when it goes astray to the heart, then the Church is a mere misgoverned misfit, without access to the sovereignty of its Foundation, and so a mythical meander, ending as a billabong of no point.
Another is to kill it off, efforts made in spurts in China, Albania, the USSR and so forth. In Germany around the turn of the 19th century into the 20th., there was another mode. In this you hear the rotund irrationality of creative spirits, who shower you with words people want to hear, and get themselves paid by Churches as professors! In this way, people tend to turn off at the power and reality part, and become interested in the Church, like a coffee machine, as a culture bar, where you can get new ideas, ground beef, where there is resemblance to the truth, but only in a wholly changed form, unrecognisable except for underlying reminders.
Again, you can give it a role as international peace-maker, or pace-maker (your option), and tell the Church to perform to produce designated aims, where the Gospel is merely divisive, and is to be set to one side while the REAL purpose and use for the Church, a manipulable cultural arm, is imagined and then forced on the people. Indeed, you can culturally manufacture something, call it a Church, and using the term, give oblique references to anything Christian, if any, and then set about using it as a bypass operation, inviting Christians to start with a revised version of a heart.
This it the ROLE for the Church idea, as in Russia and China, and really, in cryptic formulae much of the West. Thus Great Britain, we read, has now withdrawn all financial support in discriminatory and invidious vigour, from Schools which teach intelligent design as relevant to science. It is indeed far too little, what this phrase represents, though in the right direction; but to reject this is like forbidding prison inmates to have their daily gruel, and substituting dust, mixed with impure water.
While these diseased irrationalities fulfil their part in the divine plan, man capitulating to the curse, indeed catapulting into it and enhancing it if possible, makes his nature outside his God all too plain. God has suffered the exercise, so that in time, the facts of eternity may declare themselves on many sides, not least the experimental actions of its savagely source other options!
Unleashing freedom till all is revealed, and the time line has shown the truth in reality, so that for eternity, what happened with freedom will be incontestable and empirically exceedingly obvious (Ephesians 3:101-11, Jude 14:22, Amos 4, Jeremiah 13:36-37, 14 :19-22, Matthew 23:34-37), God has let man speak for himself! Much has been said and it gets nowhere, just as it is based on nothing, a likely duet!*1B . HOW LONG before they realise what they do and ignore; how MANY are the reminders and the words empirically fulfilled before their faces that they may learn; how MUCH the Church shows by its works on this earth in Christ's pure name, the nature by contrast of its mortal enemies, whose catchword is 'the lie', and whose catch is men to murder, imprison, slander or make mute as far as may be, lest they speak for Christ Jesus as Lord, truth and answer to man's vagrant acts and vicious lurchings.
The acts are irremediable in many, unreserved in folly, maddened in malice, depraved in type, unremitting in hostility, cumulative in result, as for Jerusalem (Matthew 23), ignoring many warnings, sedating awareness.--
The NATURE of the results is shown in considerable detail, over time between steps 8 and 9 above (and exposed in part in SMR Ch. 8 and Answers to Questions Ch. 5), and this simply increases the empirical and testable warning made in the specialised prognosis of how to behave in conformity with the curse, as if disconformity, that is duty and truth, were themselves the curse and righteousness the thing to disrelish. Indeed, the time may come when objection to, or even the naming of perversion in sexuality may, if called such from biblical grounds, become not only a thing condemned, but a prelude to prison. It is useless to pretend this is civilised; for it has the same results, the same feverishly rank nature, and the same obliterative approach to truth, as to freedom.
In this sodden scenario, sinking into the depths, BOTH truth and freedom must go. So they pay to make barbarous their way, the captured and the captivated sliding from truth, defective or deafened in hearing, insistent on being praised and settled, as do many in other matters of parallel type. As Romans 1 ends, it speaks of this phase: people will NOT ONLY DO such things, but praise those who do. They will glory in rebellion against God, so that it becomes not cheek, but chic, not the ultimate perversion of personality, but the ultimate success story of autonomy, man instead of God to be praised (though it is becoming intensively difficult to find grounds for such an unheroic alternative!) and his glory set in what would be a comic opera if it were not tragic, exalted to the heaven only to be flung to the earth.
It is John 16:2 where we find Christ predicting that those who kill you (His disciples) will think they do God service! Thus the trio comes: remove freedom, remove truth, remove life. This is like a recipe for hell, and it is often made.
You see something of the ardour of arrogance and distortion in Beauty for Ashes Ch. 3 and Wake Up World! ... Chs. 4-6, as well as in SMR Ch. 2; and some of the confusions at a somewhat higher level, in SMR Ch. 3 and Ch. 4 and 4 Extension. Indeed, there is a whole little library on this site dealing with this type of godless mannerism found at Prospect, Retrospect and Reality Ch. 5*2 .
THE EXPOSURE OF UNDERLYING FORCES THROUGHOUT
Like the attestation of the creation,
in all its ramifying and scheduled, intimate detail
(cf. Repent or Perish Chs. 2 and 7, and earlier Chapters in the present volume - Chs. 3, 4 and 10, as well as in Secular Myths and Sacred Truth and The gods of naturalism have no go!),
so the empirical delineation of the faults,
ferments, decline and death awaiting its unredeemed components,
is a masterpiece of lucid exposition in the Bible.
It is put in principle, in practice, in preludes in the Old Testament, in prediction. It comes not in the drone of mere analytical exposÚs, but in a mixture of the graphic and the defined, the sonorous and the stringent, the medleys of concurrent events to come (in prospect) and those which have come (in retrospect), in the context of what God has said, as all but endlessly attested in the prophets. All this is as if a school child could not miss it. This multiplicity of means and singularity of exposure thrusts out like a fountain from the Book of the Lord (Isaiah 34:16; 48).
The words, the works of God, have proceeded from creation to fall, to curse and worse (Isaiah 14:9-10), as such disjunction from God is assiduously sought by further scoffing and scorn, folly and ferment (and what can match the cruelty to which fallen man can delve). Meanwhile, though man relentlessly aggravates the situation, yet sometimes there is a reviving in the case of many, even in the midst of great nations, with masterly results for considerable periods. Alas, waves of new flamboyancies flit in, much that is good beginning again to mix with revolting grotesqueries of almost unimaginable devilries on earth. It seems at times as if man in cultural madnesses, obsessions and enigmatic enterprises, suddenly becoming volcanic, were trying to teach hell something, or to justify for many, its own relentless exposures in everlasting shame, to come (Daniel 12:1-3).
From the first, as attested in such detail now, the creation was the greatest visible work of design*3 ever seen. To the last, the redemption is the lonely exhibit of sinless substitution for sinners made by the Deity, without parallel, or near likeness. In the end, the attainments of Christ the despised (Isaiah 53, 49:7), will not be revised, but as Lord of all He constitutes the sole sinless and therefore satisfactory substitute for any in sin city, one by one its citizens rescued (Hebrews 6:19), each of these given a new commonwealth and a new citizenry (Philippians 3:20ff.).
Nothing ever stands in the way of His love, to the point even of dying personally for sinners (Romans 5:1-11), in the embodiment of His eternal word, Christ the living word (Philippians 2, John 1:1). While love stops where force arises, as the criterion of action, the removal of His redeemed does not stop, their work duly done, till the Epoch of Unenlightenment finishes (Revelation 6:9-11) its tally for truth, and for 'a lie', indeed for 'the lie' on this earth (Romans 1:25, II Thess. 2:11, I John 2:22). and the entire residue, like one family is drawn from conflict to vacation, more to felicity in heaven from which the Lord proceeds to sever the follies of earth in the very confrontation they now directly seek.
Liberty has had its long licence; love its costly abode; majesty now bursts from significance in the atonement, to splendour, that of the heart the chief part (cf. Psalm 72).
Here is the final earthly expression of all He has already attained. Even this, however, when complete (Revelation 20-21), is but the prelude, as with an orchid slowly revealings its intense and hidden wonders as each day passes.
It is a fortune to be distributed to those who have received Him as He is, as sent, as having worked redemption once and for all, alone source of merit, God the ONLY Redeemer, when man comes of Age.
When is that ? Its masterpiece comes when this Age of grace being finished, the resurrection He has shown in power in His own body, becomes by grace, the precipitate and exemplar for those of His body, the family of Christ. Now the internal becomes external the eternal transparent in this, that it is revealed in a glory of exposition, the pardon in peace linked to the wonder of revelation. .
For my part, I can hardly wait and hope if it please the Lord, to stay here to attest what He has till He comes!
Praise the Lord. Who else! As for the finale on earth and in heaven, to see the binding of evil burdens broken, and the blinding of those seeking ended, the mutilations of mind and body terminated and made as the strange things of the past, it is like being flung from a dire contest to a lakeside flower-bed. It is no arbitrary action, or elevation to a hierarchy, but the result of love and power, purity and purpose in its wisdom achieving for freedom its finale, through the faith that would not crumble, being the preserve of the Lord to give it security (John 10:27-28). Indeed, He engenders faith where it belongs (John 6:65). The separation is like that through an intensely pored filter paper. What is newly made fits; what before the eternal mind of God, has preferred darkness (Ephesian1:4), has it. It is filtered out.
But do you see the logical development. In general, there is something called a series, in which scattered events succeed one another, for various causes. There is again, a sequence, in which there is at least a sense of grouping and commonality between each one of the events, as it leads on to the other: such as Spring and Summer, bud and bloom.
Again, there is an explicative sequence, in which the meaning of the whole is so transparently obvious that, like a friendship, there is a certain continuity and background, basis and dynamic which is grooming events from within. These therefore have a basis adequate and intimate, secure and innate, into which other things fit. Other forces may ally, but not remove the meaning.
In the case of the ten points on which this Chapter dwells, from the first, there is something even more intimate and cohesive in the steps of the sequence. There is a logical thrust which incorporates in each step, not only reason for, but an over-riding strategy about, the sequence. It is a story, a plan, a schema, an output breached by nothing, yet intimate in its oversight and significance, cumulatively proportioned and apportioned in revelatory force, as it goes.
First, then, in this structure, there is the DESIRE of God to create. There is the THRUST that gets it done. There is the WORD which sponsors it to order (Genesis 1). There is the WORK which issues in something new: beings in a vulnerable physical format equipped with the capacity to know and talk to their Maker. It is like creating a child already grown up, but at a derivative level, for nothing can equal the eternal God who made time, which is brought into being for service of this new type of events, IN time.
Then there is the way the new creation acts, mankind; and how its staggering liberty is used, how this creation deploys it. It schemes for participation in management as equal (Genesis 1:4). To be sure, there is help for the evil; but there is an indulgent listening ear from man! This spiritual flippancy ruins its potential, mocks its stature and makes two possibilities plain. Extinction (as when a poor draft plan is consigned to the waste paper basket): or else some means of restoration.
God who made time, is not about to withdraw from His plan, all parts of which are foreseen as when an aeroplane soars over a river and sees its source and stages (Ephesians 1:11, Isaiah 46:8-10). What He says about this, He then shows in successive action, like a Lecturer first speaking, then demonstrating at the bench.
How does God respond to this crime of man, indeed against his own created constitution! First He exhibits the inward crime of man in the outward circumstances of his environment, making a creation as dimmed and dulled, spoiled and unruly as man; though not to the point of inoperability or entire quenching, and this is called the curse. Then He leads man to begin to see that his unfortunate condition is not without remedy (Genesis 3:15), and covers the outline of what is to come; for the evil which spoiled is to be spoiled itself, and the One to do it will not only take the form of a man himself, but have a power though in that limited format, which counters evil at every and any stage, both suffering to do it, triumphant in getting it done.
Obviously what is so commanding in the internecine efforts of the Intriguing Adversary, who can subvert a whole creation, can be God only, and this fact is made clear over centuries of the work of the prophets of God. The nature, reason and results, indeed the date of the suffering of death given, for this was the nature of the suffering that God took upon Himself in extremis, and the details provided by the prophets appear in their books of witness, of warning, of proclamation, extensive data being given, concerning this epochal deliverance to come. It also served as an identikit for the Deliverer, the Messiah (cf. Luke 7:21ff.).
The time arrives. The God of creation comes. He suffers. He triumphs, He goes, He leaves the entire race of mankind still subject to its cursed condition WITH the escape hatch held open, the way of return, restoration, leading through repentance and faith, to joy. Indeed, man subjects himself by his energetic deviousness, bringing into himself the fruits of his own doings (cf. Proverbs 1). The Christ gone till the ripe time of fulfilment of dissemination of the Gospel arrives, the massifs of magnificence and madness with their diverse appeal, continue to operate on earth, till the latter with no restraint, seeks as did man at the first, and ancient Israel with the Deliverer when He came, to make a decisive pitch.
Man decides to make fresh the challenge to God, to overcome with lie, deceits, pretences, pretensions, false accusations, slaughter, mis-education of youth and every other means to hand, the entire testimony of God. He will de-throne God; but of course he merely de-naturises himself, product of the Lord. De-naturised man is like sour milk: it REMINDS of milk, but with an acidic rottenness which is both mockery and grave to goodness.
As always, in the end it reaches its consummation: the Lord, the Deliverer, Redeemer who gave His life to rescue man's life, dying that He might attest the fact that death is merely part of the curse and is revokable in resurrection of that body which dies in everlasting format, or by grace lives forever, when filled with light, dynamises immortality. Saints of past and present are clad with bodies, resurrected, spirit not forgotten, many already with Him, now covered (II Corinthians 5).
Thus, He takes His people, so many as are left, and with them resurrects those who have come to Him over time since man's first fall, and joining them to Himself in heaven, returns with this entourage to earth, to rule it as man has failed to do. Its latent glory now attested unspoiled, while evil turned down on the verge of muting, till it makes its last stand and the earth is removed: test concluded.
THE MAGNIFICENCE OF THE HEAVENLY VISION
AND THE PURITY OF DIVINE LOVE
In rest, the redeemed now are with that same God of creation, who so acted in the first place, and the love with which He first acted being now verified, the liberty being redeemed from foolish and autonomous take-overs in delusion, He has His family, not gods, but saints, a people freely His, volunteers, foreknown and identified before time. Sin could not contain these, for being foreknown they were sought out and found. Indeed, those who imagine that there is NO way in which God can reach the sinner, since spiritual things seeming foolish to him, he CANNOT desire them, forget only one thing.
It is GOD. With God, not only is nothing impossible, but anything can be transformed, or partly vivified, as you see in Hebrews 6:4-5, where some unredeemed people actually taste something of the glories and things to come, and still spit them out, not swallowing. However, this is not all, for God having foreknown them past all psychic and spiritual blemish, operates on them, known as His before sin ever alighted amid them (Ephesians 1:4, I Cor. 2:14), or liberty ever suffered arrest, so that the finale is made sure, and their lives are not lost.
Thus creation has its thrust; man has his being; liberty has its creation; sin has its flush; salvation has its prelude and performance - we are all saved by works entirely, but they are those exclusively of Christ, the Redeemer: that is those who ARE saved (Ephesians 2, Romans 3:23-27).
Love has its way. Quite impossible is it for the God who IS LOVE (I John 4:7ff.), to lose anyone in whom liberty was born, and who in these terms before sin and beyond mere whims of will, is foreknown, to find hell. The criterion for finding that is cited categorically (John 3:19), and woe to the folly which acts to limit the love of God, as it is in its own purity. Never tell the Judge His business! God is intensively passionate to have ALL reconciled to Himself (Colossians 1:19), even in terms of the blood of the cross, and no technical problem will ever halt or default Him who makes everything that in nothing is anything permitted, in the end, to be extradited from His will.
If there is a way which is true to love - without deceit, or circumscription of truth, such would not be shown by force or mere transformation of what is desired, so that it is not this which is found but something made different. Within the bounds of love and hence liberty, if there IS a way, then it WILL be found. In an image, to reach hell you have to step over the body of Christ, which though raised, is still vigorously emblematic! None knows whom God has chosen, so whether there be truncation, contrary to the Bible, of the love of God for the lost, or not, there is the same need to go by faith to seek, to proclaim, to ascertain, to challenge. God is well able to look after His name; it is we who go who need to look in His love, and seek not for form merely, but because where the light is not, darkness is, and where there is darkness, so every evil thing, like rats in a warehouse, is apt to come.
The will of God is to give mandate to man in his sin, and to rescue by irrevocable power through an immovable channel. Here, according to the mind of God, man is freed from sin's clutches and evil's parade, enabled to find the Lord who foreknew Him, and so is delivered and regenerated in terms of what is real and seen and before God as truth. Not his deluded will but his actual desire visible in eternity, prescribed THEREFORE for time (whom He foreknow, these He predestined - Romans 8:30), is fulfilled. The impossibilities of flesh become the fulfilments of divine function to liberate, and the onrush is felt and perceived by man in many ways within the travails of conversion: whether as a drawing or a rebuke, or a challenge, or an insistence. In whatever way the REALITIES of the love of God and the liberty man,
lost but not eradicated,
still operable before and by God,
are to be exhibited, these the Lord enables man to experience. Many are the aspects which fallen man finds as the Spirit of God grants love its new home, and liberty its new access, the cover adequate for all, designed for any, repudiated by many.
It is God who acts. How often must men invent ways of rebellion or theological systems which ignore this fact. He does not HAVE to do anything. When HE acts, what is impossible is re-routed. He makes essentials, changes essence, penetrates the realms of darkness, liberates the unreachable and gives liberty to lost freedoms by His power, supervising Himself the failing flesh, and ensuring in Himself that regeneration is just, and not a cover-up, an exposure by divine grant and gift, and not a mere imposition; for there are many who WILL NOT, who prefer darkness, and so far from these being the ultimate and God known total, these selectively find their desire, darkness their aim and preference, and their attainment. In all, there is an expression of the reality which, even if hidden in part from them, HE KNOWS.
He does not shanghai. He does not force a change by regeneration, and act as if this transmutation were in fact other than alteration of the loved to make it lovable, thus transcending love's own parameters to secure desire. God does not lust. In instituting liberty, He does not remove it as a procedure, so that the 'saved' is other than the sought. To be sure, there is a vast transmutation: that is the point in one aspect. To become a child of God requires that. But the GROUND of the change has two aspects. One is the payment to exclude the exclusion, pay the entry fee, detach the guilt, but the other is the SELECTION of those for whom this is to be done. I WOULD, YOU WOULD NOT is the constant index when these matters are in point as in Matthew 23:37, Luke 19:42ff., Jeremiah 13:27, 48, Proverbs 1 and the results are as there shown, almost like a crucifixion in spirit, as God abhors what He finds, laments at what comes, and yet proceeds with judgment past the provision.
Thus there is no scintilla of darkness in the divine light. It explains all. Man is lost, loved and sought, and vast is the divine provision in will and power, in incarnation and in manifestation; and nowhere is man crunched into submission without the reality of repentance, nor is this gift one that could not be refused (Acts 7:51, 18,Ezekiel 20). It is infused where it relates, it relates where it was foreknown, and the predestination followed, as a bike follows the contours of the stadium floor, in some of the elevated races. Liberty with love leads to licence to escape to God (Hebrews 6:19), or from Him (Proverbs 1, Mark 10:17ff., Jeremiah 48:29-44, Luke 19:42ff.), and this may be in the face of multiplied entreaties, or even impending doom; yet God is neither limited to the mood or mode of man, pathological or other through sin, nor intrusive into the image-of-God creation which He has made, by mere force, nor by counterfeit, like a constructive bomb, simply overpowering.
The ultimate direction HE has chosen, with discretion and knowledge, the cover paid up to the hilt, but never applied till it finds its due place. Then what ? the result is implemented with resolve, though its base for deliverance is secure in His passionate mercy: as if ANY kind of force could cohere with love in its reality! It is the result that has the force of reality, alas, as man has found in multitudes of ways for multitudes of reasons for many long years.
God does not go into the highways and byways (Matthew 22) to seek for souls, and then roughly taking them up, or forcibly, or by handling, change them so that they are now willing because of the change. That turns seeking into a dog squad, soliciting into shanghaing, love into inward strangulation, mystery into mechanisation, appeal into invasion, and makes entirely la new god and a new love, which many have used in their own way on this earth, but never with success! Love is not like that. God is never like that. His entire discourses and actions are matters of patience and longsuffering, call and challenge, entreaty and appeal to receive rest. When rejected, at length, whatever may have been the vast provisions to teach, awaken, elicit, virtual spiritual encapsulisations, that have come, results come. Yet it is never is it a matter of piracy take-overs. RIGHT with God is not the same as MIGHT.
Consequences come. though love has long restrained them and grief attends them. If it were not that man is a wonder made by God, with provisions exquisite beyond understanding, why would there have been such pangs and pains, grace and elaborate care, such a mandate and such a Gospel, such empathy and such suffering to achieve the work of grace freely ?
How adorable is the God who does all things well. He provides, He impels, but He does not impose. When man volunteers, in effect as in Psalm 110, then what discipline, what care, what coaching, teaching, reaching, direction; but that is for the Father. With this, it is never merely self-serving, since God has no deficiency to correct by additives. There is the proper and only site for worship for man, the fall from which leads to every kind of unsublime substitute, till mankind at times looks as if madness would be flattery, if ascribed! Yet it is more than that: it becomes a species of devilry which will not rest except in its flagellation of the faith, murder of its exponents, destruction of its exemplars, whether in the nations or elsewhere, like a perpetual Autumn, impatient at every Spring, trying to snatch the new leaves before they form.
But God does not vary, nor does malignity deter Him, and remains true. His reliability, His faithfulness arises like the dawn, and each episode reminds of the sunset in its glory. His light does not flicker.
What He has by creation, He does not merely force for salvation. That is an entirely different issue, where WHAT He has created becomes crucial. What He has created for love, is not gained without it. Where IN LOVE, and because He IS love, He has sought, so as He foreknew many are the cases where the object of it has gone; but not without the uttermost of endeavour for all to see, and learn, so that to eternity nothing but His love may be seen, as what had to be overthrown, overcome, for any to reach the indifferent shores of hell.
God finds the way, being astute and knowledgeable, past all force and merit, works and deceit, to a person, knowing before sin struck or complications came like rasping breath in pneumonia: there and only there He comes. He does not bulldoze.
IF ONLY YOU HAD HEEDED ... IF ONLY IN THIS YOUR DAY .... then your peace would have been like a river; then there was ripe and rich opportunity ... but no! You did not and would not! So it is and so do now the results fall, foreknown before time, implemented in it in the most impellingly poignancy, as ALL is poured out and many rule out the outpouring!
Here is a further wonder: that ALL deserve eternal exclusion from God, none merely sups from that dismal and mouldy banquet, for you have to achieve the ticket (John 15:21ff.) in the very face of another banquet, this time of food substantial. Love transcends, the atonement amends, and destiny bends, not by the force of human will, but by the eternal love of God moving with the exquisite wisdom befitting to His creation. Some might want to condemn the world: not He. Some might want to evacuate people wholesale, not He. He could. In mere justice, He would: John 3 speaks differently, for He neither imposes salvation (Ezekiel 33:11), nor condign judgment. That it ALL might be saved was His stated will; that it might not be condemned likewise. WHY this did not happen is articulated in John 3:19. One only stands in the way. ONE other holds open the door.
The exclusion ? This does not come, except FIRST, fruit of His passion, work of His love, the light having come, it is SELECTIVELY NOT preferred, the work of some (John 3:19, 15:21ff.). This being His statement, let others make statutes like Canute to hold back the waves, if this occurred! Rather let us have God move us as He pleases, and alter the oceans at His pleasure.
So the dynamics of creation, liberty at the highest level for disposition of life before God, the alternatives of disablement and deliverance,,, love in foresight and in operation, all this on a grand scale suitable for the battle of the Ages, it has come and in a little, will be past. It is God who is eternal, and this not least is the wonder of eternal life when received by faith through grace in gift: you then SHARE it with God Himself!
Before us now also, is the consummation of the culmination which the Lord Himself purchased, epochs passing as the dynamic drive moves to its conclusion in systematic sequence. This, in retrospect, adorns the skies of man's understanding more than do the stars the heavens. When the culmination comes, it will be as a book read, while life surges!
Love has not been superseded, nor surpassed; liberty has not been squashed or deemed irrelevant; wisdom has achieved, meaning has maximised, responsibility is inescapable, wonder is infinite, achievement is modest in its method, indeed sunken in its procedure, but glorious in its quality, never subordinated to grasping, nor grabbing, nor evading the very issue of liberty, so often expounded by God in grief as He ensures it. His restraint is magnificent; His power, wisdom and self-control beyond all, as He gains spiritual children, expression of love, testimony of reality, none mere necessities of naked power, not simply shanghaied onto ship: all is achieved in its place, through the totality of the grand love and mercy of God, by nothing less! For the new house shows power; but the wooing shows love, and the latter precedes the former.
Sometimes the results of folly on earth radiate like forked lightning; and it is sudden. Sometimes there is devastation, once inundation, as man asks for it, and over time, at last finds the target so tellingly sought in spiritual oblivion, as if drunk. When mercy has finished its appeal (cf. Isaiah 57:15ff., Matthew 23:34-38), then the overthrowing flood of intensive radiation may strike. Some may listen. Many may not. If force comes, it is not to over-turn liberty, but to cease distancing justice. It comes where love is not merely lost, shunned, despised or disregarded, but parody obtrudes and darkness delighting in itself, fawns on the dismal, till there is no remedy (II Chronicles 36:16). God is FULL of remedy, as His testimony is FULL of reason; but He does not force. He DOES forge, and vast is His testimony, and has it been through the ages through many, and in much; and some see His works and His word and heed. There is an amplitude in His mercy which is unique in depth, breadth and height. Yet it cannot be suborned, subordinated or manipulated.
There is answer from God because of WHO He is and thus WHAT HE has done and the WORDS He has spoken, to every query, a response to every interrogation, a personal movement wherever cry is heard, or call in faith is made. To this, it is more sensitive than any human micro-instrumentation could detect, more robust than the most armoured equipment, more sure than the most trustworthy. For some millenia, He has declined to destroy mankind or even his habitat. Mercy however is not manipulability, and love is not a charred frustration, but a robust reality. HE decided what was to be done, is to be done and how. In so doing, He has shown our stricken state, utter improvidence, total debasement, enormous need matched to His own vast and limitless merciful love.
He has acted. He has provided. He has come. He has sent. He comes again in His time for the conclusion. Meanwhile cries the wisdom of God (Proverbs 1)...
""How long, you simple ones, will you love simplicity ?
For scorners delight in their scorning
And fools hate knowledge.
Turn at My rebuke.
Surely I will pour out My Spirit on you;
I will make My words know to you .
Because I have called and you refused,
I have stretched out My hand and no one regarded,
Because you disdained all My counsel,
and would have none of My rebuke,
I also will aught at your calamity ... "
The CAUSE is as always, ultimately vested in the preference (John 3:19,36), here found in the response, translated into history as formed in reality.
There in Proverbs 1, God in His wisdom (cf. I Corinthians 1:30) addresses man, as did Christ, recorded in Matthew 23:37. The realities obtrude. The cry is obstructive but not invasive. The sincerity is passionate. The appeal is inordinate, not least BECAUSE so is the cost of that ultimate preference which is willing bewitchment. In heaven it does not belong; nor would heaven be what is fit for man, if it did.
It all coheres like the body of a babe, which is more than parts, and their assemblage (some long in preparation before birth), beyond mere synthesis, being a design for a UNITY of some specifiable kinship to the Creator, and this for designated purposes, which the passing of time reveals with assured certainty. It is so with any design; the more so with the good ones. The fulfilment suggests, then speaks of and finally shouts of the germ of the idea and the wonder of the wisdom. With this, there comes the totality in many dimensions, in perfection. God is like that. He does not make in order to ignore the proportions of what is now there; as it IS, so He deals with it; in His IMAGE, so does He not invade, inveigle or manipulate. Light shows reality and God is light, who in mere mercy has provided for EVERY aspect for all time for man, and active in His Spirit, on His Gospel, with His grace, He fulfils all to the uttermost.
Therefore let each take heed. Life is too important for playing games with it as stake. God is too wonderful for mere evasion. Look to Him therefore and be saved (Isaiah 45:22-24).
Not only is He magnificent, but there is a magnitude in that magnificence which neither diminishes nor fades away, neither is limited nor staggers at anything good. It is not for nothing that the term good is derivable from the name of the Almighty, by simply adding one letter. Nor is it surprising that that for the devil, is similarly obtained from evil, by adding just one letter.
They belong, except that goodness emanates from God, and the devil is snared in evil, and too proud to admit it, while continuing in maundering malevolence, till his day comes (Revelation 12).
So does the Lord continue in ever fresh beauty of holiness. While liberty has let the lines be drawn; it is not for that reason, though precious and necessary for love, to be worshipped. The American dream, too heavily charged with it, omits the nature of the GOD who has the name printed on the coins.
Man without God is no more free than a river without banks. Though tyranny and compulsion concerning the liberty vested in man is horrendous, liberty without love becomes another sad lament, like the bugle blown for the slain. If the USA is to become great again, it must face who is the Lord, and not start at this late stage, a Spiritual Shopping Mall, inhabited by Presidents. If Australia is to achieve greatness, it is not in the loss of liberty to a granny guidance group, called a government, that it will find it, but in restoration of the pre-eminence, for the nation, which was founded in dependence on Almighty God (and this without any doubt about the name of that God)! It needs not slithering slopes imported from the clouds, but a secure foundation. Without it, its insecurity is solicited, as a drunkard solicits drinks, borrowing as now Australia seems to do so freely, from anyone with plenty to spare.
Bondage may come from buying the ropes and securing them to oneself, or by having them placed on you. Vast sprees of thrusting money without oversight into all kinds of places, and entering debt like a Hall of Splendour, not an Introduction to Serfdom, is merely a symptom. Founding great things judicially on a short-run plan of intelligence is one thing; spending your way into trouble to get out of trouble becomes a way of life, unfettered, broken, a vision inhabiting the dust. How Europe writhes, and how it must work to escape indolence!
Whatever, however, this world does, as individuals and nations contrive to wound and spoil themselves, the way lies open for one and for all. It is not hard. There is a cross. You take it up. There is pardon, you receive it. There is a payment, it was studiously made, and sufficient for any. I t was made at the transaction time appointed, by Jesus Christ, in the way appointed, down to detail. There is the Way of Escape, which came to earth to enable those who flee to God for refuge to find the certainty of salvation (Hebrews 6:19), not in a fiddle of so-called faith, but in the Rock which is as it always has been, God Himself, the worker of wisdom, the Founder of Sure Faith with good reason*4, that never changes, though the millenia mill, and times wear out.
See The Bountiful ... Ch. 8.
See The Bountiful, The Accountable ... Epilogue and Ch. 6.
See for instance, SMR Ch. 3, Ch.10, Ch. 4 Extension, these in contrast to Ch. 5). See also Barbs ... 29, Ch. 3 above, Ch. 8, Agitation, Cogitation...
is reproduced below from the Ch. 5 noted in the
For a broader
coverage of the follies of begin-spin, romance physics, unscientific scientism,
egregious inventions and inane contentions in the field of the ultimate,
Dig Deeper ... Ch. 1, Ch. 2,
Deity and Design, 2 and 8.
Possess Your Possessions Volume 7, Ch. 1, esp. *1A, (PP), PP Volume 12, Ch. 6,
The Wit and Wisdom of the Word of God Ch. 2, Ch. 7 (words, works, wit), Ch. 6,
Ch. 1 (review reductionisms, matter, mind and spirit),
Calibrating Myths ... Ch. 2 (machining mind, avoiding mindless machinations),
Stepping Out for Christ, Ch. 8 (dialogue),
Not Only is God Great, but Glorious Ch. 5, esp. *2,
SMR Ch. 4, Extension,
The gods of naturalism have no go! 20 (dialogue), cf. PP Volume 9, Ch. 2,
Op. cit. 36 (day-dreaming and nano-fragment), 37, 21
Sparkling Life in Jesus Christ Ch. 8 (includes Davies, Mark 2),
Delusive Drift or Divine Dynamic Ch. 7, dialogue, gospel application, Ch. 6 (moron),
Ch. 4 (versified with multiple exposures of naturalism),
Redemption or Revolt, Chs. 5 and 7,
1504 (The Bible ... Ch. 4),
One Only but Not Alone ... Ch. 9 (dialogue, includes slavation and trinity),
History, Review and Overview Chs. 4 (multiple exposures), 5,
The Defining Drama Ch. 3 (includes work about Genesis 1, and Reference to Let God be God Ch. 12, covering some recent mouthings contrary to the word of God infesting where it has no place),
Christ, the Cumulative and the Culmination Ch. 9 (words of no mean import about nothing),
Lively Lessons in Spiritual Service Ch. 5 (includes Hartnett), Ch. 3,
Cascade of Mercy, Torrent of Truth Ch. 6 (pointed),
Hallowed be Thy Name, Ch. 8 (father and son),
Scaling the Heights ... Ch. 2
Dizzy Dashes, Heady Clashes and the Brilliant Harmony of Inevitable Truth Ch. 6, Ch. 4,
Ch. 2 (variety of quotations),
The Desire of the Nations ... Ch. 2 Epilogue (angelic conversations), Ch. 2 (dialogue),
Sums, Summits and in Sum Ch. 12 (wide-ranging dialogue).
Agitation, Cogitation, Aspiration and Conclusion Ch. 1 (stupour and the stupendous, creation and creativity), and Ch. 8, a dialogue on dynamics, form and function.
See Deity and Design, Designation and Destiny.
See for example, It Bubbles ... Ch. 9, *1A, with
What is the Chaff to the Wheat! Chs. 3 and 4.
See also *2 of Prospect, Retrospect and Reality Ch. 4, *2. It is provided here for convenience.
In Possessing your Possessions, Vol. 9, Ch. 2, we have a review. An excerpt is presented below. When reason requires a result, here as in SMR esp. Ch.1, the eternal God and His word, in this world; and that result is found and is independently testable as to its unique criteria, then the verification of data becomes a validation of the method of reason, gift of God. What HAD to be, is! Not only is this revelation in the Bible unique, testable, verifiable, remedy-containing, but as having such qualities, and myriads more, it is THERE. Were it not there, this would be an anti-verification. What IS there is like Jesus Christ, incarnate as a Person, without parallel or competition in its field, alone in majestic solemnity, inciting test and performing as God alone can proceed to do.
It is like a particle or planet being indicated, and then the discovery: it is there! Here however, it is not the product merely of variable data, but of the very structure and nature of reason that it is both forecast and found, in one bundle of triumph.
Part of the Ch. 2 review noted appears below.
THE BEGINNING - when GOD ACTED
Nothing produces nothing*1. Nothing is not the product. Nothing cannot be the cause, when you consider it as the original and till creation, eternal state. Void at the first is the mother of nothing.
Matter is not the product of nothing, so it had a precursor. It was a matter producer. Matter cannot produce itself when it is not there to do it. It cannot be a non-product since it is not sufficient for itself: it has laws, limits, traceable procedures. It is not self-sufficient. To imagine it eternal is to abandon logic, which ever demands a cause, just as causality cannot be dispensed with, without dispensing with logic, by which argument is made (cf. Causes). The only logical possibility*1 is a self-sufficient source, eternal and not subjected to imposition or contrivance, free. Then causality, and then alone, is satisfied, by an eternal causeless, unconstrained and unrestricted Being. Then only is the demand of scientific method for cause adequate for result and interface for its occurrence, to be met. The thought process does not stop because the universe is big, as though grandeur made its origin irrelevant, or its magnificence eliminated institution, as if magic rules where operation of scale occur! The opposite is true.
It is merely an issue of total, self-explanatory basis for everything. It is the ever-vernal reality.
It cannot be material, since matter has the aforementioned liability to reason's demands. It must be free therefore to make what it wishes, and not be any type of constricted, constrained, contained and directed being, by program (who made that ?) or other grounding.
Reason requires this Being and when reason is followed, it finds the testimony, testable to an exceedingly great degree, of the Bible. Thus reason requires God as in SMR, and a unique validity is attested for the result of reason, in this, that when you get there (as with a scene of a crime with finger-prints), your work of investigation receives its confirmation. You not only find what meets reason, but what confirms it, the ultimate validity. What reason insists on, God has given. What of this testable book claiming His Almighty origin ? (cf. II Peter 2:19ff., I Corinthians 2:9ff., Matthew 5:17ff.). In detail, it is verified, making the investigation scientific in those aspects of scientific method applicable, and a number of these are. There are many other lines of testimony leading to God, but in this case we are looking at one only.
Scientific method*2 insists that if a thing be deemed to be so, there must be no contrary testimony in the areas of verification, and there should be convergent testimony in those areas. As shown in many volumes, this is the case. There is hence a ground for the reality of God found in logical, causal, scientific and validation areas. There is no other option. The way to test lies open; and it shows that God has not left this world to roam like children at a nuclear control tower, with no adequate ideas about the powers, privileges and duties of being here. He does not allow the ruin of young lives, active minds, peaceable people by the artisans of war and crime, cruelty and dishonesty as a systematic gift to innocent man (cf. Repent or Perish Ch. 2, Barbs ... 6 -7); but has told mankind so often, so much, in so many ways, summed in the Bible, personified in Jesus Christ, that the mere continuance of this race at all, is a miracle of mercy. But its term is set, known only to God (Matthew 24:22).
Signals of its end, as a period of grace, with the remedial Gospel of grace purchased in Christ (cf. Romans 3:23ff.) are numerous (Answers to Questions Ch. 5).
He gave the time for the arrival of the Remedy, in the Redeemer (Christ the Citadel ... Ch. 2), but it is a matter of having the signals only for the arrival of the Royal Sovereign, who having suffered is to reign. It is a testing time, and why not ? Indeed, in this second case, that of His return, there is point in not telling, for that is part of the test. In mercy however, he does give multiplied signs and signals, when the time is near, as now (cf. Answers to Questions Ch. 5).
Let us review. In this, a number of somewhat parallel formulations will be given, enabling nuances and aspects to be keenly visualised, felt and discerned with considerable care.
Shortly: reason requires, unique validity attests, scientific method attests (and it refuses organic evolution - cf. SMR pp. 140ff.), results singularise (multi-faceted correlation of cause and consequence with the appropriate scope), and verification consummates. It is not necessary to distrust reason; it is necessary to use it and find its testimony at the level of attestation, of things done and explicable, and then to verify. In that sense, verification is icing on the cake; and its breach, as for other ideas, is fatal. There is nothing outside the God of creation and revelation, in the testable Bible, which conforms to its Author, to meet these tests. There is no competition; what reason requires, only this gives. Not only does it confirm itself, but provides what attests, in perspective and approach, everything else demanding explication. It is not so hard when convention and rebellion die down, like an evening fire, at last. It is not so very hard to find the Lord ...
This is so, however, since we are not free minds roving in space, but sinful people, keeping to no totally perfect moral code, for the simple reason that divorced from God, man can find no such thing in the first place, but only subjective intimations, variable greatly. That of course is a predictable result of his rebellion, just as the degree of convergence, on the other hand, is a testimony to the underlying structure of man, in the image of God, but now sullied.
Thus the realm of the empirical merely confirms what reason requires. Without God, the absolute truth available, in any model of thought, no finding is possibly true. In any such case, theory then requires, but when the status of any such alleged finding be examined, the model insists that absolute truth be not available, so on this model, its affirmations are void. Instead, all things being mutually self-limiting, and in totality, self-inhibiting by the lack of an objective perspective: what is needed, is not there. It is a perpetual vacancy for such a model. If truth by your own model dies, then your own model cannot be defended. Omit it and you logically omit your talk.
With God, this impasse is avoided, and the positive features are confirmed. There is no problem. Since the Bible is essential as a ground for absolute truth (a non-communicative God does not improve man's position re truth, to have it, to speak it, to present it), and is utterly confirmed empirically and logically, and since it has no competitors at the validation and verification level, as has been presented numerous times, there is nothing more to be concerned about, but receiving the God of the Bible, His diagnosis of our affairs, world and universe and getting on with the remedy provided, which means Jesus Christ as Lord and Saviour.
This is the ultra-presuppositional method:
rational, heuristic, investigatory-confirmatory,
It is as with Elijah at Mt Carmel: put things to the test. See what your gods can do, and we will show you what God does. The reason why it is NOT presuppositional, in any aspect, or does not depend on negations, in method is the great action of God in providing direct an d directly testable testimony, found uniquely in the Bible.
This He has provided, step by step. First, then is the Bible; then in it, the predictions of Christ to come; then thirdly, Christ, within this world, testable then and indirectly as well as vitally, now; and fourthly His own Messianic word, like that of a relay runner, who is also the King, constraining history to do precisely what He has said, just as wind and word, life and death were in His power while here He lived (cf. Christ, the Wisdom and the Power of God Ch. 8).
Nothing else can validate past negation, with the affirmations of efficacy as reason applied. This is the point where the pursuit of what reason requires, proceeds to the point where empirical reality confirms it, and of course. The course of reason is confirmed in the findings when it is applied, in its ramifications. Thus this is not merely empirical, for it is systematic as well, leaving no confusion in its internal testimony, major gap in its coverage or alternative to the use of reason but incoherence, nor any blemish or irreconcilability, but the precise opposite in a honeyed harmony, not always so sweet, but not so sour either. It is the sin bin which as rubbish, tends to smell, and its odours are not purely olfactory... but significant!
Thus reason has no other testimony; revelation has no other testable path; logic has no other avenue; and the irrational is incapable of defence. THEN revelation provides the crown, the truth, the positivity in practice, the confirmation of intractability of reason, the conquest of the orientation need of man, and the knowledge of the very heart of God. Then all is explicable; not that there is nothing more, for when we see God, who know Him, then it is like noon after the dawn. However, even now, nothing systematic in principle, lies unresolved.
Here, at the gift of God, is the ultimate in self-consistency, since when it is found, not only is it attesting its rightness as a finding of reason, so that man is not a muddle of inconsistency (cf. Deity and Design ... 8), a self-obliterative void, but is given his place, diagnosis, prognosis, grounds for it, and testimony of its developments, often predicted, over the millenia. It has been a long, long day at the lab, but a good one, a nicely proportioned few thousand years, as shown in SMR Ch. 7.
In principle what then do we have ? it is yielding to reason, and an adornment with meta-reason, reason at work on the systematic self-consistency of what it has found, which also verification confirms. Reason to find, revelation as a finding, self-sufficiency of the word of God as testable, directive and testable again in that, as in the performance level of the crucial Word who came personally, and of His bequeathal of words about what would come, which has done so in large measure already, and is completing the tour as told, at a very fast clip at the present time. Instead of a query, it is a tour de force, like the Tour de France, each phase presenting the champion, always the same one, the whole sequence ending, this time not in Paris, but in objective, demonstrated, multi-tested truth.
As to the detail, the coverage, the fields of application, the verification crop: That is as found, for example, in the two-volume, over 2 million word work:
LIGHT DWELLS WITH THE LORD'S CHRIST
WHO ANSWERS RIDDLES AND WHERE HE IS, DARKNESS DEPARTS
Bible or Blight, Christ or Confusion:
The Comprehensive Resolution of Man's Intractable Problems
is Found Only in the Bible, the Word of God.
What then ? This method of Christian apologetics is not presuppositional but operational.