Devoted to the Propagation and Defense of New Testament Christianity
August 11, 1966
NUMBER 14, PAGE 5c-7a

"Christ Is All, And In All"

Maurice W. Jackson, Jr.

Necessary to order and tranquility in any organization is a recognized and accepted authority that governs. This is abundantly true as respects the church. It must have a head and it does! Its head is Christ. All things are in subjection under his feet, and he is "head over all things to the church." (Eph. 1:22, 23) Let it be recognized that Christ is to have the preeminence in all things (Col.1:18) This robs God of no glory, for such is the way God chose it. It does not place Christ above God, but rather places Christ where God wants him placed. Everyone who does not give Christ and his will first place, eminent above all others and things, fails to stand in obedience to Colossians 1:18. This passage designates our source of authority for all matters religious --- the name we wear, the church we claim to be a member of, the work of the church, etc. In his relationship to the church, let us consider:

1. CHRIST IS THE HEAD OF THE CHURCH. Shortly before his death Jesus declared to his disciples, and to all men, "be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your teacher, and all ye are brethren. And call no man your father on the earth: for one is your Father, even he who is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters: for one is your master, even the Christ." (Matt.23:8-10) Men are not to be called Rabbi, father (in a religious sense) and/or master for these titles belong only to God the Father and Christ the Master. Likewise, the title "Reverend" belongs only to God (Ps. 111:9), and no man has a right to appropriate it to himself. Men who do act without authority, and out of an inflated love for self!

After his resurrection Jesus' claim to authority was expressed by himself in Matthew 28:18. "All authority (power) hath been given unto me in heaven and on earth." After the church was established the Holy Spirit, through the apostle Paul, claimed for Christ, that God raised him from the dead and "made him to sit at his right hand in the heavenly places, far above all rule, and authority, and power, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come: and he put all things in subjection under his feet, and gave him to be head over all things to the church, which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all."

As in our solar system it is from one sun that we receive light, heat, the spectrum of colors that beautify the earth, sky and ocean, and the life giving agencies that surge through every plant from seed to maturity; it is from Jesus, the Son of God, that all blessings flow, and from whom men are filled with soberness, righteousness, and godliness in this present world, and are enabled to walk worthily before God. Let men know what it means then for the church to be subject to Christ. (See Eph. 5:22-27) He is its head, thus he alone is to direct the functioning of every aspect of church work and activity. Only as Christ directs can the church act. This is how the church is subject to Christ, its head.

2. CHRIST IS THE HIGH PRIEST AND MEDIATOR. The inspired record says, "It behooved him in all things to be made like unto his brethren, that he might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people." (Heb. 2:17) Of course, this did Jesus do, and we read in Hebrews 3:1, "Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of a heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession, even Jesus. Having then a great high priest, who hath passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession." (Heb. 4:14) During the Mosaic dispensation there were a plurality of high priests as each one lived and served, then kept his appointment with death (Heb. 7:23). But in Jesus Christ, "because he abideth forever, hath his priesthood unchangeable." (Heb. 7:24) Or as the Lord sware concerning him, "Thou art a priest forever." (Heb. 7:21) "Now in the things which we are saying the chief point is this: We have such a high priest, who sat down on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in the heavens" --- Jesus, the Son of God. (Heb. 8:1)

The mediator now, between God and man is Christ. In fact, "Now hath he obtained a ministry the more excellent, by so much as he is also the mediator of a better covenant, which hath been enacted upon better promises." This covenant is the one that God promised, through the prophet Jeremiah, that he would make in days to come (Jer. 31: 31ff). This covenant has now been made and enacted, and Christ is the mediator of it.

Again we read in 1 Timothy 2:5, "There is one God, and one mediator also between God and men, himself man, Christ Jesus." The fact that Jesus Christ, God's Son, became flesh and dwelt among us, and was "in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin" (Heb. 4:15), emphasizes his fitness to mediate for man. His exaltation at the right hand of God emphasizes his fitness to mediate with God. (Acts 2:33, etc. ) We could have no better mediator, and should expect no other, for "he is able to save to the uttermost them that draw near unto God through him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them." (Heb. 7:25) "Let us therefore draw near with boldness unto the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy, and may find grace to help us in time of need." (Heb. 4:16)

Let us hasten to add that Christ as the one mediator between God and man, excludes all men, angels, departed saints, and the Virgin Mary as even remotely serving as mediators on behalf of mankind.

3. CHRIST IS THE KING AND JUDGE. The church of Christ is the kingdom of Christ (Cf. Matt. 16:18, 19) Contrary to the thinking and teaching of some, the kingdom foretold by the prophet Daniel (Dan. 2:44) was set up when the church was established -- See Acts 2:1-47. Many, including the apostle Paul, were in the kingdom in the first century. The apostle said, God "delivered us out of the power of darkness and translated us into the kingdom of the Son of his love." (Col. 1:13) It is over the kingdom that Christ reigns as king. John wrote for Christ saying, "He that overcometh, I will give to him to sit down with me in my throne, as I also overcame, and sat down with my Father in his throne." (Rev. 3:21) Hence, Christ is on his throne reigning and ruling over his kingdom as King. In 1 Corinthians 15:24-26 we read that he will continue to reign even until the end. "Then cometh the end, when he shall deliver up the kingdom to God, even the Father; when he shall have abolished all rule and all authority and power. For he must reign till he hath put all his enemies under his feet. The last enemy that shall be abolished is death." What wonderful consolation it is to know that his ultimate victory over the forces of sin and evil is sure. We have a good Captain! "These shall war against the Lamb, and the Lamb shall overcome them, for he is Lord of lords, and King of kings; and they also shall overcome that are with him, called and chosen and faithful" (Rev.17:14) If you are not a citizen in the Lord's kingdom, then heed his call, he will place you among the chosen, and then be faithful even until death, and receive the crown of life.

Christ is the judge of all. In John 5:22 we read that the Father "hath committed all judgment unto the Son." In Romans 2:16 we again read that "God shall judge the secrets of men, according to my gospel, by Jesus Christ." Paul assured his audience in Athens (and all men) that God had "appointed a day in which he will judge the world in righteousness by the man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead. (Acts 17:30, 31) The one raised was Jesus Christ, and by him all will be judged. In the light of this truth all men everywhere are commanded to repent. ... "for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God". (Rom. 3:23) "The wages of sin is death" - Eternal Condemnation! (Rom. 6:23) Men must obey the gospel of Christ, and continue steadfastly therein, or "suffer punishment, even eternal destruction from the face of the Lord and from the glory of his might." (See 2 Thess. 1:7-9) Thus the whole question of truth and error, right and wrong, acquittal as over against condemnation is determined by Jesus Christ the Great Judge, and our attitude toward him.

Therefore, in his relationship to the church, it is a Paul stated in Colossians 3:11 - "Christ is all". He is the Head, High Priest, Mediator, King and Judge of the church. He is the fount of every blessing, the heart and core, our standard of appeal, the sum of all we hope for and desire. Christ is all! Everything else, comparatively speaking, is insignificant. Christ is not only "all", but "in all". To his people, faithful Christians, Christ is their life and soul, and will is theirs to do. Consequently the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, guards their hearts and their thoughts in Christ Jesus. It is this love of Christ which passeth knowledge, that fills them unto all the fulness of God.

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