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ASPECTS OF THE GLORY
OF THE GOD OF ALL GRACE
found in the Unsearchable Riches of Christ Jesus
Rev. Dr. Robert E. Donaldson
Published September, 2009
ISBN 978-0-9806 750-7-8
For a somewhat fuller treatment of this Chapter,
see this link.
In feeling, to me at least, this is not so much a book as a collection of spiritually gripping things, meat for the mind, enticement to the soul, challenge to the spirit. However, as it comes to be, there are two major inter-connected sections amid the rest, and together these compose most of the volume.
First comes Daniel, with his series of marvels, such as the Lord sees fit to designate for history, from time to time, as in the case of Joshua, King David, Elijah and then Elisha; crowned of course, as for the King, by the spectacular and the humble, the authoritative and the holy, the meek and the majestic, the illimitably powerful and the assiduously obedient Messiah, whose works abounded and astounded the populace, and might have swayed them to an entirely different history, had not graft and corruption, the devilish dynamic of disruption, the envy of priests and the sanctions of a system which was using man for his purposes, not being used for those divine, turned the moment of opportunity into the cauldron of ruin.
It is not any matter of opinion. Christ Himself make such a statement when as in Luke 19:42ff., He indicated with the acutest of grief, that those in Jerusalem, personified into the city, those who ruled and spiritually fooled, has missed the day of opportunity. Indeed, He declared this expressly:
"If you had
known, even you," He declared, "especially in this
Consider this. It means that there were irenic opportunities, matters, issues, perspectives, principles and above all perceptions which had they been given scope, had they worked in the hearts of those concerned, would have resulted in peace. If there were no opportunity, then of course there would be no ground for the notation that an opportunity had existed, or for the grief at its most evident loss. Nor was this loss to be something of a spiritual character, like the removal of bloom from the glowing skin of the peach, in the sunlight, a trend towards mediocrity, when high beauty might have been. Far was the case from this.
On the contrary, the devastation would be physical and fatal, and it would reach the city with oppressive military forces, no day for the claustrophobic.
Further, the result would be irremediable in this, there would be nothing left to remedy. It would be levelled with the ground, the city which WOULD NOT SEE, because it preferred to be blind to the bind of sin and the shut-out of rebellion, to the presence of salvation in the Person of the Saviour, and the practice of truth in the beauty of holiness. There were no further options. When it comes to God, the tapping of His resources by the appointed channel, like the underground way through the rock from the springs by the channel of Siloam, wrought by King Hezekiah, either is a thing done, or left undone. No tapping, no water. Hewn rock for the channel, or no water. It is on or it is off. The work of Christ to deliver the waters of life, it is received and entry is allowed into the city of life, or it is not. A city, a person, young or old, receives this bounty, this beauty, this thing sacred beyond measure, this Christ, this the power of God and the wisdom of God: or the thing is left alone.
If it be left alone, then so is the presence of God. It is as simple as that.
Jerusalem in its day, a picture of sin in its coronary occlusion of the spiritual heart, given a generation for pause, a gracious action, became like one without blood: not anaemic but a corpse, and its death was total, not metaphorical. Why ? It was because, "in this your day" it did not know "the things which belong to your peace," to personalise it. What things ? The Son of God via the Son of Man in accord with the covenant with David, and the promise from Eden (Genesis 3:15), in the protevangelion, as foretold a millenium before, expanded in the prophets, dated in Daniel, expounded in Isaiah, impacted in Micah 5 and located: the One carrying in Himself the Gospel outlined by Isaiah, effected for two millenia since, precisely as He specified by the power of the Spirit of Christ which directed him (I Peter 1:10ff.).
There are things, then as now, which belong to the peace of a man, a woman, a child, a city and a nation. In Australia as in much of the 'West', now more and more disburdening itself of any deep and national relationship to Christ (as explicit in the foundation-destroying speech of Obama), these things are being progressively, successively distanced. This the day provided, is being elaborated by excrescences, pushed about by winds of false talk, inadequate perspectives, scientistic follies, children are no more thrashed in schools, an excess in one direction, but indulged, and truth is thrashed, and not received concerning the Lord, the moralities, the commandments, the expectations and the opportunities in institution after institution, till most seem in any contact with the State, simply to cower because of the examination requirements, meet the conditions imposed to get the money and foul things up in the best possible snafu manner.
Jerusalem is not alone; it is just that the issues were express, total, concentrated in one Person, and they executed Him. That was all. Since however, this was and is God, visiting in flesh, able to be questioned, watched, discerned, wondered at, the result was what at other times may be less sudden, total and disastrous. Yet the principle is the same.
The power of God in prophecy of course, in which the slightest detail is always honoured, verified, the Speaker vindicated, the events fulfilled as indicated, is not surprising for One who has constructed the building, both physical and biblical, both in DNA and in prophecy, with which man is concerned, in the body of his physiology and anatomy, and that of the Truth, the Bible, the least jot and tittle, said Jesus Christ, of which will be fulfilled. God is like that. You see something of His coding, linguistic work in DNA, in which attention to detail is justly termed prodigious, this time, despite the passage of time with its downward impact, a real immaculate conception, one of the mind, to produce mankind.
This phase of this volume, dealing with the practical work through Daniel in prophecy, is conjoined with the whole arena of foreknowledge and predestination, so that the basis and the outcome are seen, the practical thing first, and the basis later.
Thus the first three Chapters concern Daniel. This prophet and his work have been focussed before at length, in my work, Highway of Holiness, Chs. 2-10 (except 6), in News 111, as in SMR pp. 886ff., for example and Christ the Citadel ... Ch. 2; but here there is a particular focus. It is first of all on the Strategic Plan of God, which appears to move across the sky of revelation in this Book, a brilliant way of turning the tragedy of failure on the part of Israel into heightened triumph by God in His invitation, challenge and testimony in the Gentile world.
Chapter 2 moves into the dynamic of development, the successive impacts made through the Daniel and his three friends, and through the former into empires coming and going. Central, cordial, cardinal, this is an extravagantly brilliant use of minimally vulnerable manpower! Further and further goes the revelation, the disclosure, as Empire already falls and the future begins to open just like an opera, when you hold in your hand, the program for it - here the Bible.
Chapter 3 comes to the thrust to the end, centring on the Messiah, and the scope of the last chapters of Daniel, as history moves on to the restoration of the temple of stone, and the input of the Living Temple of Jesus Christ, into this world, Champion Crusader, salary nothing, reception glory, nothing, estimation nothing, reality all.
Chapter 5 deals with the sensationally glorious love of God, discrete, undictatorial, inviolate, pure, insistent, persistent, humble in endearing majesty, vast in enterprise, seeking to give mercy and not justice, but never varying from truth.
It is the sixth Chapter which deals with predestination and its underlying foreknowledge, the comprehensive and exhaustive knowledge of God, with which He is able to foretell what He foresees, and the power with which He is able to evoke into existence, what He foretold. It is not a matter of forcing evil on an upright race, but compressing here, expressing there, rebuking in another place and exposing the trend of the whole matter, as He sees fit, to warn, to exhort and to offer to many in this way and in that, the day of opportunity, "this your day", in which man is given scope to know "the things which make for your peace."
These topics are given fuller attention in the PREDESTINATION AND FREEWILL Hexad, not least in Predestination and Freewill, but here is an opportunity for a reduction in size, with some salient points covered, in one volume, 11 excerpts being added to the Chapter 6 itself.
More may be added to the collection from time to time, as the Lord enables and directs.
THE DIVINE DEPLOYING THE HUMAN FORM OF DANIEL
DANIEL, NEHEMIAH, MESSIAH
THE OVERALL STRATEGIC THRUST
IN THE DIVINE MISSION TO THE WORLD
THE LINE OF DEVELOPMENT FROM DANIEL
THE THRUST TO THE END
The Messiah, Desolations, Dates and Dynamic of Resurrection
THE TYPE, THE PICTURE AND THE REALITY
in Daniel, Lamentations and the Finale of History
Vignettes, Applications, Implications and the End
THE LOVE OF GOD IN THE EPISTLES OF PETER
ON EARTH AND AT THE BRINK OF HELL
I Peter 3, II Peter 3 in the Domain of John 15 and Colossians 1
ROMANS 9 PERSPECTIVE
The Fluency of Faith and the Finality of Rejection
in the Love, Pity and Mercy of God
THE GENTILES AND
TERMINAL DIVISION, ENSUING LIFE IN CHRIST
BE SURE YOU ARE OFF WITH THE OLD LOVE,
BEFORE YOU ARE ON WITH THE NEW:
THE NEW TEMPLE … Amos 9
EZEKIEL and HIS CULMINATIONS
OF BOTH THE LOVE AND THE JUDGMENT OF GOD