Gospel of God and Gospel of Christ

There is only one gospel which is the Word. When He became flesh we beheld it as the gospel of God as John makes it clear (1:18). In manifesting as Son of man he was presenting himself as the image of the Invisible God (Co.1:14). In fulfilling the will of God we have Gospel of Christ.

Theophany of the Word when referred to the Son of man is Gospel of Christ. It is how he delineated the gospel of his Father. We shall now examine the Bible as organized by the Holy Spirit. It is in a mode, and its multi-layered narrative structure is like a portmanteau consisting yet another narrative owes to the Spirit. Consider this verse “He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall shew it unto you (Jn16: 14). As the expositor he creates focus remain on God the Son. For example we are told of God causing a deep sleep come over Adam while he took a rib and fashioned woman out of it. Spirit reorganized death of the Son (as foreordained before the foundation of the world) in the creation account. Historical Jesus needed to die and the Spirit underpins the founding of the Church to the risen Christ. When Adam exclaims “This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh (Ge.2:23) it holds in a figurative sense the close knit relationship God desires between Christ the Head and Church the body. The Adam and Eve episode figures in the time frame of ‘In the beginning (Ge.1:1)’But it throws its echo to reach even ‘the end times.’ In the ‘fullness of time’ marks the advent of Jesus of Nazareth. In his resurrection and his promise to return we find the Spirit tagging him as the last Adam (1 Co.15:45). Such consistency with which the Spirit weaves two narrative structures from the Father and Son serves its purpose. In Jesus Christ “dwelleth all the fullness of the Godhead bodily”. In short the Scripture throws up light to the benefit of the reader and in its orderly structure it is more from laser than from flashlight.

The Spirit adopts the principle of Association to use an abstract quality of the Father reveal in concrete terms through the actions of the Son of man. Thus when we read God is love (‘for his great love wherewith he loved us (Ep.2:4))’we know its greatness lay its universality. Jesus of Nazareth chose to die for all, the sinless for the sinful and it was to fulfil the mandate of his Father as stated in Jn.3:16. The Spirit also records actions from the Father counterbalancing that of the Son. God breathed on Adam (Gen.2:7). It created him a living soul. As a token of the outpouring of the Holy Spirit we are told that the risen Christ breathed on them and said unto the disciples, “Receive ye the Holy Ghost (Jn.20:22) ”. The Lord God warns Moses that he “is a jealous God (Ex.20:5)”. This was in context of verses (vs.3-4) preceding “Thou shalt not make unto thee any graven image,…bow down..nor serve them.” How shall anyone grasp an emotion like jealousy of God? The nearest we shall catch of it is in an incident of Mt.21:12-13. He drove away the moneychangers from the temple because he was jealous for the glory of his Father. “Ye cannot serve God and mammon (Mt.6:24).”

Similarly what shall we know of joy in heaven but in the way the Son of man exulted in spirit? (Lk.10:21, Mt.11:25) Significant is this verse: “…No man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him(Mt.11:27).” The Spirit has incorporated these verses and many more in order to illustrate the association existing between the Father and the Son. It is eternal.

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In order to understand the Bible we need accept the scriptural narrative is not straightforward but is multi-layered at several passages. The Spirit sets symbols and signs, which we can cite from innumerable examples. For example the Greater Light and the Lesser Light are placed in the Creation account as symbols of divine Will and of obedience respectively. In the Book of Revelation we have the testimony of Jess Christ the City of God had no sun and the moon to shine it (Re.21:23). Reason is clear. ‘The first heaven and the first earth are passed away (Re.21:1) The symbols of greater Light and Lesser Light are swallowed up in the glory of the holy city. These symbols therefore can be treated as an example of transitional symbolism.

God does not change; neither his Word that is forever settled in heaven. So we need look elsewhere for understanding the significance.

For example look at the sun and the moon serving for the Greater light and the Lesser light.

These are symbols for God the Father and the Son. When these heavenly objects form part of the vision of the Woman clothed with the sun (Re.12:1 ) it is understood that their usage is far removed from the conventional meaning. Neither is it intended there for giving light nor in their traditional symbolic values. Their significance arises from the substance of the vision. These two are signs to inform the reader of a specific apocalyptical event.

Coming back to the transitional symbol associated with the light we read “When all things shall be subdued unto Him, then shall the Son Himself also be subject…that God may be all in all (1Co.15:28).” The Greater and Lesser lights become as one. In short the transitional symbols are subsumed in the divine will, the symbol of the Greater Light. Of this we read in the book of Revelation. “And there shall be no night there,…neither light of the sun;for the Lord giveth them light (Re.22:5)” Glory of the Light is the Word revealed which we understand from this verse: “And the city had no need of the sun, neither of the moon to shine in it; for the glory of God gave it light, and the Lamb is the light thereof (Re.21:23-24).”

Sign of the Greater and Lesser light is supplanted by the glory of the Word in its Intent and revelation. “And I saw no temple therein, for the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are the temple of it (Re.21:22)”. This signifies the Law and the ordinances associated with temple worship are replaced by the Church and the Head, which is Christ Jesus.

This symbol underpins the Word as unchangeable and settled in Heaven. While studying the  word, we ought to be cautious for the symbolism could be carried to excess. God asking Hosea to marry a whore or the Spirit filling Elizabeth with Holy Spirit before the outpouring of the Holy Ghost are exception to the rule. So we shall simply learn the symbols for the spiritual significance they have for our growth. Many signs and wonders are not revealed for example our priesthood in eternity where there shall be no temple worship that as we know of. The Spirit shall reveal on need-to-know basis.

benny

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About bennythomas

I am a Dutch citizen. An architect by profession I am married and have six grandchildren. I am still keen on expressing myself and each day is new and an occasion where I might bring out from within something worthwhile.
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