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IN FORM, INFORMATION, IN CHRIST
It would be good to reflect at this stage. Diamonds are so versatile. While, undoubtedly, they are hard, and can scratch, their use is that they do not yield, while at the very same time, they are full of light.
What then is of this character, objectively ?
First, as to writing, it is the word of God, the Bible, that divine library of wisdom, wit, truth, objectivity and resource, that depiction of the way of salvation, that address from the Almighty.
Second, as to available Person, it is Jesus Christ, the way TO God, the truth OF God and the LIFE eternal, which is God's, His definitive expression in the format of man. His words could curse a tree, so that it shrivelled, still a storm so that there was peace not trouble, raise the dead, to bring comfort to mourning mother, enliven the paralytic, so that life could surge, feed the hungry, so that truth could at leisure be found. He could rebuke the mighty, expose those guilty of spiritual defalcation, restore mind to the crazed, walk with the seeking to bring understanding to the heart, breach death and bear sin, even all committed to Him by faith in Him by His word, then break it like a bulldozer, quietly pushing over a massive tree. The tree of death was given death, so that life might ensue, for God is the God of life.
Thirdly, but far down the list in quality, there is the heart of the Christian. Inscribed on this, we read in Hebrews 8, is His will, so that "I will put My laws in their mind and write them on their hearts, and I will be their God, and they shall be My people." Christians alas are not perfect, and not per se immovable. Ours is a lesser scope and a smaller place; but the God whom we harbour ("Christ in you, the hope of glory" - Col. 1:27) is not lesser, and His wisdom as in Luke 21:15, and His strength as in Ephesians 1:19, measured in terms of that required for the resurrection of His body as in I Corinthians 15, and Luke 24, this is not circumscribed, except by His word, which sets forth our duties, responsibilities and tasks. For these, there is no lack, no neither in comfort, company nor in assurance, as Peter tells us in II Peter 1, where the "great and precious promises" of God are declared, sufficient for all godliness of life and any escape "from the corruption which is in the world, through lust."
OUR diamond is Christ, and "Christ in all and in all" - Colossians . HIS is the lustre, His the splendid disengagement from all deviation, His lines exact, His crystal clear, His shaping illustrious and His perfection without price. Yet by His grace, He would even say this: "You shall be a crown of glory, in the hand of the Lord, and a royal diadem" (Isaiah 62:3), and again, "So a book of remembrance was written before Him, for those who fear the LORD and who meditate on His name. 'They shall be Mine,' says the LORD of hosts, 'on the day that I make them My jewels, and I will spare them as a man spares his own son who serves him' " - from Malachi 3:16-17.
True these words were addressed primarily to those of Israel, but they refer to the New Covenant in terms, in Malachi of 3:1ff., and 4:1ff., and in Isaiah in that there IS no other, and His new name for the Gentile believers, is the ONLY one that is now allowed - as in Isaiah 65:13-15, though it does nothing to dispel His promises to His land or people.
Hence there is this gracious lighting of the divine eyes on His people, yes one by one on those who in Him, commune with Him and with one another in fidelity, separating from the evil, seeking the good, for as He says in Malachi 3, "Then you shall again discern between the righteous and the wicked, between one who serves God and one who does not serve Him."
There is NO help for the sacramentalist, uselessly trusting in sacraments (instead of greatly appreciating those set forth in the Bible, for their lavish symbolism, decisive teaching and evocative reminders cf. Appendix, The Kingdom of Heaven...). There is none likewise for the sacerdotalist, dependent on priests, when ONLY Christ is our high priest, and as for the rest, "you are all brothers" - Matthew 23:8-10 and Hebrews 4, 8-10. Nothing comes from mere numbers, for as King Asa cried to the Lord in his confrontation with a million Ethiopians, "LORD, it is nothing for You to help, whether with many or with those who have no power: help us, O LORD our God, for we rest on You and in Your name, we go against this multitude, O LORD. You are our God: do not let man prevail against You!" ( I I Chronicles ).
One notes, it is nothing whatever to do with the number which Asa had, for it was the LORD who was appealed to, and if there is one thing which is primary and quintessential at the outset in everything to do with God, it is this: to realise that He is infinite, Himself, not something else, not some distillate but the Creator of all things, on whom all depend, whether consciously or not, and whom none and nothing can restrain (Isaiah 14:26-27, 14:13). Let us read the latter: "Indeed, before the day was, I am He, and there is no one who can deliver out of My hand. I work, and who will reverse it ?" I AM HE!
THIS is the way God acts to those who wait for Him, who, whether by life or by death, serve Him. His armies we have seen in Israel in particular, in the days of the Old Testament, as in predicted prevailing so recently, in the 20th century, are able to prevail as also to be chastened for disobedience and falsity; and though now the global war is spiritual in kind and compass, pre-eminently, it always held spiritual meaning, was for spiritual purposes, and could involve judgment or deliverance. The Lord requires faith; and suffering is not an option to avoid; but victory in Him is the testimony of truth. It is how it goes. You may be put in prison like John Bunyan, for faithfulness, may be captured by the faithless conventions and mores of the day, as he was, but look now at Pilgrim's Progress. Given the aims and appetites of Pastor Bunyan, the victory is not merely his, in Christ, but so overwhelmingly so, that at one time Pilgrim's Progress was reportedly the second best seller in the world.
To Moses, God was "I am who I am" and so he was to tell his 'field', "I am, has sent me", in Exodus 3 and 6. HE IS; the rest is mere derivation. But let us pause... 'Mere' ? Yes in power and place, in nature and in composition, as made from the dust, thought supplied with a spirit. But in emplacement through salvation, there is nothing mere, for then one becomes a CHILD OF GOD and is ADOPTED into His household (Galatians , Ephesians 1:5,11,14).
Thus when we Christians meet such a parody of righteousness, such a flawed endeavour to help some at the expense of others, to a monumental degree, as has alas appeared in the Commonwealth legislation on the Web, a thing horrid because of its portent for the future in principle, since it shows its humanistic relativism all too clearly, and exacerbated by the 'teeth' supplied via the South Australian Bill, reviewed, all, in the last chapter, we do not quail, or fear. What does it say ? "Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God's" (II Chron. ).
This was indeed stated by the prophet Jahaziel, when the Spirit of the Lord came on him, to the people with King Jehoshaphat, when confronted by a combination of Ammon, Moah and others. But note this carefully: BEFORE that assurance from the prophet, there came THIS prayer from the King (in part): " ... here they are rewarding us by coming to throw us out of Your possession which You have given us to inherit. O our God, will You not judge them ? For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us: nor do we know what ot do, but our eyes are upon You" - II Chron. .
It seems exceedingly strange to have one's own country 'rewarding' the sons and daughters of those who fought for freedom so bitterly and for so long last century, with this exquisitely crafted removal of it, set like a fake diamond in a fancy case. It must however be faced; and what confusion may be the lot of those who have made these invasions, they must be repelled with fortitude, met with courage, and the word of God transmitted faithfully to ALL ages, notwithstanding, and with COMPLETE global coverage, to all who wish to take, not to 'filtered' persons.
You do not
fish by filters!