You know in Romans 8, perhaps the most familiar chapter in the Bible to you, it is always the contrast there between the Spirit and the flesh. You know that in that chapter you have got past the grave, you are now on resurrection ground, and it is all now the spiritual. First, the law of life has made you free, then it is all the Spirit, the spiritual mind, the spiritual man, everything spiritual, and God has not departed from that. Man, thinking in more material and objective terms, has not taken God away from His basis. His basis is still that, right from the cross; it is spiritual nature, spiritual measure. It is all what is really spiritual in the divine sense. It is the Lord.
And that explains so largely the Lord’s dealings with us. Do believe it! The Lord is after having mother tincture in spiritual life – that is, the ‘flavour’, trace or tinge of the Lord Himself. That is essentially spiritual intrinsic value.
Here, speaking among ourselves, I do not see, as I have thought and thought, and spent very much time in weighing up everything, I do not see any other explanation for the way in which we are dealt with by the Lord. I see no other explanation for our existence. I have never accepted that, if the Lord wanted to do what He is doing generally in this world, why He should have made something more here, something separate here? We were at one time doing that and getting on splendidly in the general realm of earnest Christian evangelical activity. That could have gone on. But the Lord did something and brought us apart as a people, not — let me say it strongly — not to make us in ourselves any more important. We have not got one inch of ground to stand upon to speak of superior importance or our superior value. But I do believe that He did something because He wanted His people, perhaps in all the world, or many of His people all over this world, to come into something more of Himself by putting this corporate vessel into the furnace. You know immediately you come into touch with this, you get into trouble. The only thing that will keep you going on, that will maintain your relationship, is that you find more of the Lord. If you do not — go, friend, go! Do not be attached to a thing. It is the Lord. And if it is not, my prayer is ever: Wind it up, put it out, if it does not stand justified in its extra measure of the Lord.
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