God and Man in One Person.

L. M.Grant.

In Ephesians 1:15 to 23 there is a beautiful prayer addressed to "the God of our Lord Jesus Christ," a prayer which emphasizes the reality of the manhood of the Lord Jesus. In Ephesians 3:14-21 is another prayer of Paul addressed to "the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ," for in this the Lord Jesus is regarded from the viewpoint of His deity, as the blessed Son of the father. But in Colossians 1:3 Paul's prayer is addressed to "the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ" (New Trans.): for in this book we view a precious unfolding of the glory of the Lord Jesus as uniting Manhood and Godhead in one blessed Person. "For in Him dwells all the fulness of the Godhead bodily" (Col. 2:9 New Trans.). What marvellous, matchless fulness is here! It is far beyond the ability of the creature to understand the fulness of its significance, far beyond our understanding how this great manifestation can be true.

Declared in the Word of God.

But the truth of it nevertheless is so plainly declared in the pure word of God that only gross unbelief would deny it. Faith, on the other hand, gladly accepts it, and rejoices with joy unspeakable at the thought of a revelation so amazingly wonderful that only the God of eternal glory could be its Author. Consider Ch. 1:15: "Who is the image of the invisible God. firstborn of all creation" New Trans.). His great deity is first affirmed: He is the image of the invisible God, that is, the perfect representation of God. Adam was made in the image of God" Gen. 1:27); but Christ is the image of God. Secondly, as man he is "the firstborn of all Creation." Adam's rights as firstborn are totally set aside when the Son of God, as man. enters His own creation — He takes all the rights of the firstborn. And it is further added, "because by Him were created all things," again referring to His creatorial power as Gods for His Manhood and deity are perfectly united in this one blessed Person.

Again, in Eph. 1:17 we are told, He is before all, and all things subsist together by Him" His testimony to His deity in maintaining creation in existence is followed by the lovely declaration, "And He is the Head of the body, the assembly, who is the beginning, the firstborn from among the dead, that He might have the first place in all things" (vs. 18). As Head of the body He is very clearly Man, and Man in resurrection from among the dead. The beauty of this blending of deity and manhood is again immediately emphasized in verse 19: "For in him all the fulness (of the Godhead) was pleased to dwell."

Proven in His Personal History.

Many other scriptures besides Colossians bear theirgrand witness too this blessed One as God manifest in flesh: but as well as Scripture declaring it, it is also beautifully proven in His personal history when He moved among men on earth.

Consider Matthew 8:23-27. On board a sailing vessel the Lord Jesus calmly slept. He is certainly therefore Man, for God does not sleep (Ps. 121:4). But when awakened by the disciples becauseof their fear of the raging storm capsizing the boat, He calmly rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. He demonstrated that He is God, the master of the elements. His sleep can be attributed only to the fact that He is Man; but His authority over wind and sea is attributable to His being God. This is seen too in Matthew 14:25, when He walked on the sea. At His word, Peter began to walk on the water, but turned his eyes from the Lord to the raging waves, and began to sink. But the sea is totally under the domination of the Lord Jesus, for He is God, and while standing on the sea, He lifted Peter up.

In Matthew 9:4 the Lord Jesus knew and answered the thoughts of men, as in fact He did in various other cases. Even Satan does not know men's thoughts: only God does. This proves Him to be God: yet immediately after He refers to Himself as "the Son of Man" (v. 6).

In John 9:11, when the blind man, in obeying the instructions of the Lord, had his sight given to him, he refers to the Lord as "a man that is called Jesus." But when the Lord later came to him, He asked, "Dost thou believe on the Son of God?" The man questioned as to who this was, and the Lord answered, "Thou hast both seen Him, and it is He that talketh with thee." He answered immediately, "Lord, I believe." "and he worshipped Him" (v. 38), The Lord fully received the worship of this man. Peter would not receive worship (Acts 10:25, 26); nor would an angel allow John to worship him (Revelation 22:8, 9): for only God is to be worshipped (Matthew 4:10). The Lord unquestioningly received worship on many occasions, for He is God. He is also truly Man, as the blind man said.

Again, in resurrection, the Lord Jesus appeared to the disciples a week after Thomas had refused to believe He was raised. He proved He knew the previous words and thoughts of Thomas, though He had not been present when Thomas made his rash statement that he would not believe apart from seeing the print of the nails and putting his fingers into these, and putting his hand into the side of the Lord. the Lord told him to do this, but Thomas could not go so far. He said, "my Lord and my God." There before him in bodily form was the Lord Jesus, the wounds too bearing witness to the fact of His true manhood; but Thomas unhesitatingly calls Him, not only "my Lord," but "my God." And the Lord received this supreme adoration without question. Blessed, holy, eternal Son of God! Blessed, spotless Son of Man!

These are but a few of the great number of scriptures that bear witness to the wonder of supreme Godhead glory and attractive Manhood grace combined in one adorable Person for eternity. How well may this fill us with awe and wonder and eternal adoration.

L.M.Grant.