J. N. Darby.
Remark, as illustrating other passages, how eternal life is presented as the result of a course pursued, and as a present life given, in the very same passage; Romans 6:22, 23.
Note that Isaiah 40, in comforting Israel, shows the nothingness of flesh (in Israel as elsewhere) of the nations of idols compared with God. But the power and unweariableness of God secures Israel in grace. He that waits on Him, Jehovah, renews His strength.
Though Paul brings into heaven, he brings us into heaven, though in Christ, but Christ as being exalted, brought there as Man, while John, though as we have seen not heavenly, is divine.
I am inclined to think that "the fulness of him that filleth all in all" is not simply Godhead but Christ in redemption. The passage, Ephesians 4:10, leads me to this. It is redemption - He who went into the lower parts of the earth, and now far above all heavens.
How remarkably, while the highest condition of mere spiritual power and enlightening, where grace and lowly life are not, is shown to be only irreparable danger and ruin, when it is alone, the smallest fruit of life is secured by the testimony of the strongest impossibility of God's for a moment failing in making good His promises, and sustaining in grace, enlightened, and tasting good, and working miracles. I fall away and there is no hope. I fly for refuge to the hope set before me, the word and oath of God secure me.
The more we compare John's gospel and epistle, the more we shall see the contrast of the instruction - life in Christ, light in the world, in the gospel; but Christ, life in the believer (in us) in the epistle. Hence darkness comprehended it not; darkness passing, the true light now shining. The life was manifested; we walk in the light as God is in it. The instruction is very great in this. In Him was life - light perfectly adapted to men - now, which thing is true in Him and in you, for the darkness is passed (passes or is passing) and the true light now shineth. We walk in it as God is in it.
Not only is it impossible that God could do anything that sin may abound, but, in Romans 5:21, if He had said where the offence abounded grace did also abound, it would have confined it to those under the law. But He was showing the contrary - that Christ's work reached out beyond, to Adam's in aspect and efficacy. Grace overrode the whole, though it might be rejected.
Remark how the Holy Ghost completely answers in us to the privileges and glories of Ephesians 1; how He makes them good down here. First, answering to verse 4, the power of holiness is His very character, and the love of God shed abroad in our hearts by Him given to us. He is the Spirit of Sonship, so that we cry: "Abba, Father." He is the earnest of the inheritance, and the transforming Revealer of the glory. Even as to the body of Christ, we are baptised by Him into One Body, united to Christ, One Spirit. It shows us greatly how the Holy Ghost, as the Paraclete (Comforter) fills up now in power the whole scope of God's counsels in which we have part.
END OF VOLUME 6