In the Divine scheme of things it is the Church which has the ultimate effect in the spiritual realm. I mean that individual Christians, though they may be born again, as individuals will not get very far in touching the outermost realm of spiritual forces. There a real registration has to be a corporate one. It will be the Church eventually which will be the instrument of Divine government in this universe.
Spirituality means what the Church is in God’s mind. When we come to contemplate the Church in its wholeness and entirety, of course, we come mainly to the letters to the Ephesians and to the Colossians. There we find God’s mind about the Church. We must realize the necessity for our seeing and apprehending what the Church is in God’s mind, not as we find it in the churches, not as it actually is here; and we must stand on that ground, or we shall be helpless in this matter of spiritual impact. I mean that if we are going to accept what we find in the New Testament as to the churches as being the expression of all there is, we are very soon going to give up the fight and shall not get very far. If we are going to accept that as the standard, we are going to be crippled, and the measure of our spirituality will be very small indeed, and therefore the measure of our impact likewise. The Apostle, who was mainly responsible for these churches coming into being, repudiated their condition, would not accept it, was fighting against it. Why? Because he had seen God’s mind; that was his position, his vantage ground, his strength. If he had never seen God’s mind and only saw this, what a disheartened, disappointed, despairing man he would be! He had seen God’s mind about it.
It is the Church that is in view in these epistles, and spirituality in Ephesians and Colossians means first of all an inward revelation of God’s mind about the Church. It is a tremendous thing for spiritual strength, for spiritual power, for spiritual ministry, for spiritual impact, for spiritual food ― yes, for every spiritual value to have really had a heart revelation of God’s mind about the Church; not simply to have studied Ephesians and Colossians, but for it to have broken in upon your heart, to have seen it in an inward way. I say that is spirituality with an impact; it is spirituality with a dynamic; and what a dynamic it is!
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