| || |The Berean Expositor
Volume 11 - Page 33 of 161 Index | Zoom | |
There is more detail in the Prison Epistles however than we may at first credit. It is
locked up in the words "One hope of your calling" and "the hope of His calling". As the
special and peculiar features of our calling are realized so will the conception of our hope
be increased. For example, our blessings are "in the superheavenlies" (Eph. 1: 3). In
spirit we are already seated with Christ there "far above all". What is this but a
revelation also of our hope? If our hope be the hope of our calling, then when our hope is
realized we shall in fact as well as by faith be found seated with Christ far above all.
Each reader must pursue this for himself and as he does so he will be answering the
question, what is the hope of the one body?
It is possible that the testimony to the mystery will end as it began. One by one the
living members of the one body will fall asleep and the truth will be buried in the tomb of
the last believer. How such will be raised and be made manifest in glory we are not told.
We do not understand how Christ was raised, but we believe it and rejoice in it. This too
must be true in connection with our hope. Just as our salvation is a phase of the one
salvation, and the church a special company of all the redeemed, so our hope is a peculiar
phase of one great event and centred in the heavenly glory of our great God and Saviour.
While proving the things that differ we must ever remember the things which underlie
and remain unchanged. May we "Live.......looking......." (Titus 2: 12, 13).
pp. 158 - 160
We occasionally come into touch with companies of believers, who by the prominence
which they give to baptism by water refer to themselves as "baptized believers".
Moreover, it is very usual to find those who are members of the one body, and blessed
with all spiritual blessings under the dispensation of the mystery, conceding this point,
and allowing others to say of them, they do not believe in baptism.
Nothing could be further from the truth. Every member of the one body is a "baptized
believer", and in no sense should we allow any to say of us that we do not believe in
"baptism". See the strange argument which is used; while it is conceded by those who
practice water baptism that it is a typical rite, nevertheless, we allow those who
emphasize the shadow to monopolize the claim to baptism, while we who rejoice in the
substance (the "one baptism") often appear to undervalue it. It must be one of the objects
of our endeavour, for without it the unity of the Spirit is incomplete. "Divers baptisms"
are classified as "carnal ordinances" in Heb. 9: 10, which together with the tabernacle
and its offerings, was a representative figure (parabolé) for the season then present.