In order to change Mr and Mrs Christian Scrooge — who are present in every congregation and in every heart — Paul appeals to the most sublime truths under heaven. When was he rich? Then there are the adoptionists who also deny the eternal sonship of Christ saying that Jesus was born of a normal union of Mary and Joseph but that God adopted him to become his son and this is what him rich. What is such teaching ignoring?
When was Christ rich? Paul is not thinking here of the fullness of the Spirit that descended on Christ at his baptism, nor of the invested glory that Christ was given when he ascended into heaven as a reward of his obedience even to the death of the cross. The Lord Jesus Christ was rich in the very form of God, that is, he possessed the fulness of Godhood. He was rich because he was himself God. He possessed all the divine attributes — omnipotence, omniscience, omnipresence — those strong Latin terms. He possessed all the divine prerogatives — creation, providence, power to save his people, to sanctify them, to raise them from the dead and glorify them — he is able to do all that.
He has all the divine entitlements of being honoured and worshipped and prayed to and served. All the totality of Godhood is found in him. He possesses all the fulness of Godhood. There is no attribute which the Father or the Spirit has which the Son lacks. God over all, blessed for ever — he was rich. The Lord Jesus Christ was rich in his divine relations. He was God existing in the riches of inter-trinitarian communion, a fellowship of perfect love and agreement.
There are no secrets between them at all. The Father knows the Son exhaustively, and the Son knows the Father totally. He has a unique, exclusive, all-comprehensive, all-penetrating knowledge of the Father. There is nothing in the decrees of the Father, and the purposes of the Father, and the will of the Father, and the mind of the Father, and the character of the Father which is unknown and unloved by the Son.
He himself is known and he knows with a perfect and infinite knowledge. Now our greatest delights come from knowing God. That is eternal life. The more we know God the greater is our rapture, and the more we are overwhelmed with our own ignorance. The more we grow in our understanding of God the more we are conscious that this is a deep beyond measure, a height we can never reach. We shall never reach its east or west. These are incomprehensible vistas of infinite glory for us.
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But they are not like that for the Son. In his knowledge of his Father there are no obscurities, and no mysteries.
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He penetrates the very being of God; it is not in vain that he sounds the depths of love divine. He comprehends the totality of the divine glory. All the deepest mysteries of the divine will are known to him. If we ourselves are exalted when God draws near to us and blesses us with a wee glimpse of his knowledge then what riches of delight there must have been for the Lord Jesus Christ in his contemplation of his Father, a knowledge that had no beginning or end, without any waxing or waning, any ebb or flow. How the heart of the Son of God must have been utterly ravished with love for his Father!
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His heart had no cares; his soul had no pangs of sorrow; there were no unresolved tensions between Father and Son. There was the perfect peace of measureless love given and received. The Father knows the Son and the Spirit fully, and loves them perfectly. The Son knows the Father and the Spirit fully, and loves them perfectly. The Spirit knows the Father and the Son fully, and loves them perfectly.
Each knows and loves the other in his person, relations, perfections, mind, will and purpose. There is nothing that makes them recoil from the other or disapprove the other. Their knowledge is infinite and exhaustive and so is their love. There was love enough in God for him, and if he had chosen to will it he could have made a thousand races of nobler creatures than ourselves who would have loved him with the deepest love. The Lord Jesus Christ was also rich in all he possessed. All creation was his, whether things in heaven or earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers.
All things were made by him and he is the heir of all things. The oil resources of the Middle East are all his. The diamonds and precious metals of Africa, the teeming fish of the seven seas, the width of space — all are his. Think of the vastness of the universe. Consider the minuteness hidden in the world of the atom and electron. Think of how you were when you were conceived and how you grew. Consider the design of your brain, the wonder of it, the intricacy and delicacy of you and all the world.
We are seeing the fringes of how this universe is made and sustained. But in the Lord Jesus Christ everything coheres. He holds together everything in the heavens and everything in the atom. There is nothing in this universe, nothing in its grand immensity, nothing in its infinitesimal minuteness that the Son of God has not made, and which he does not exhaustively comprehend. All things are by him and for him.
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He is Creator of the rolling spheres: he is possessor of heaven and earth. Ten thousand angels wait upon him. He has but to will it and they will hasten away upon his instructions. They adore him ceaselessly. They rejoice that they are in his presence. Even when he was on earth he could say that he could pray to his Father and he would send twelve legions of angels to do his bidding.
What riches these are of what the Lord Jesus Christ is, in and of himself, and what he is in relation to Father and to the Spirit. The whole world is in his hands. There is nothing more ultimate, and nothing more transcendent than this — Jesus Christ is God — and there is none other like unto him. Greater riches are inconceivable. The riches of the Lord Jesus are the riches of God himself. They are absolute, infinite and eternal. They cannot be added to, and there can be no subtraction from them.
He was rich! What a small and miserable English word that is. Yet he considered us! He stooped to us. How generous he was with those great riches for he gave his very self for us, and in doing that he impoverished himself. You notice the tenses the apostle uses here.
Paul does not say that Christ became rich. His riches were not because of a wonderful gift of the Father. There never was a time when he was not rich. He never discovered riches or had a fortune thrust upon him. But his poverty commenced. When he entered the womb of the virgin Mary and came into the sin-laden and sin-cursed world. How did he become poor? Not by ceasing to be what he was. He did not lay aside the riches of his omnipotence, and the riches of his omniscience, and the riches of his omnipresence.
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He did not terminate his rich knowledge of his Father and the Spirit. His rich prerogatives of creating, and raising the dead, and saving sinners were not given up at all. He did not cease to be in the form of God in any way at all. That overall went over all his riches. They were there all the time. He did not divest himself of one divine property.
There was no subtraction and no depotentiation. None at all. He gives tips and hints that I feel like I can actually work into my life and see meaningful growth. Great find. Encouraging and uplifting! Thank you and may God bless you in this work!! Positive, encouraging, doable They have truly inspired me to do better and be better. Thank you, Kris!
I LOVE these perfectly timed lessons!! Thank you Kris for your thought and preparation in putting this together!! Please keep making more! Great podcast! It is full of sound, practical, biblical,and applicable advice. Thanks for all you are doing Kris! Thank you for the edification. I am only on episode 5, but I feel like I have learned so much to help get me through each week.
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Keep this podcast going! Great Podcast — especially when driving to work. I wanted a short, simple, encouraging podcast to enjoy on my way to work, and Excel Still More is exactly what I needed. Thanks, Kris, for your great work. Simple goals to inspire spiritual growth. My husband downloaded the first 7 episodes for us to listen on a trip, and after listening to the first I kept telling him to play the next. We have always studied the bible separately usually in the evenings and had chaotic mornings, but now we get up earlier, start the day with the Lord and with eachother.
It has made a big difference! The simple points to remember and references to scripture give me something to focus on throughout my day, and are easy to share and talk about with people in my circle of influence. If you want to grow spiritually, but don't know where to start this is the pocast for you! Just listened to the I, too, misunderstood affirmations for a long time and there are many days when I'm still uncomfortable writing an affirmation in my journal. But I have come to understand that there's a difference between confidence in Christ, versus pride.
Self-doubt has been a giant stumbling block in my life and at the root of self-doubt has been pride and a lack of trust in Jesus Christ. So, keep right on cooking on topics like this, Kris! Tracy Winchell RebootsPodcast. Listen with my teens on the way to school. Words of wisdom from a godly man. These podcasts are a wonderful way to use small bits of my downtime to improve my life and my walk with the Lord.
I appreciate your insight and faith based advice! Refreshing and sincere. Excellent Purpose Driven Christian Podcast. I'm really grateful to God that there is finally a Christian faith and bible-based podcast that is really worth listening to. I listen to several podcasts regularly, but have struck out on every religious podcast I've ever listened to. Oftentimes, religious podcasts can drone on, terribly uninteresting, have poor delivery, wrong, or any number of things that I just can't get passed.
Fortunately, this is none of those things! Chris releases twice-weekly podcasts that never span more than 20 minutes a piece Probably my favorite thing about the podcast is that it is simply focused on how to excel your faith. Every episode speaks of small hints and tips to implement in your life or action everyone can take to improve your faith.
I personally have taken multiple of the actions to heart and implemented them in my own daily life. That's not to say they are ALL amazing, life-chainging events. As with anything, you can take it or leave it. The good part is that every episode is worth listening to, for every person.
In these places we Christians serve our neighbors, be they a listening audience, the fans in the stands, or the citizens of our community. This kind of ambition is not sinful, but God-pleasing, and even imperative to life as a Christian. A warning, though. Every vocation has its temptations, and every human ambition has them, too.
He would not have warned the young to humble themselves if arrogance were not a threat.
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We all want to excuse and justify ourselves, and to serve ourselves rather than our neighbors. We are all too ready to accept credit for what is not ours to claim. Humility can be tough for the gifted and talented, but even they must confess their sinful motives to their heavenly Father. The good news is that Christ is for all of us. But the key is to know that since you are washed, justified and anctified, in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God 1 Corinthians , your identity and worth come from Him.
Everything else proceeds from this. And so we live, our selfishness from the Old Adam put to death by our baptism and the forgiveness of sins and the New Man daring to excel and be the best, for the good of those around us. Be ambitious! Use your talents and remember who gave them to you. You have nothing to lose, for Christ has given you everything. His two sons, Eric and Josef, greatly assisted in editing this article.