Scripture reading: Romans 8:29
The human being at the very height of his development, as shown in the lesson from the Tabernacle of Moses, will give up his life in order to be absorbed into a higher life form, the MYSTICAL BODY OF CHRIST. Instead of being a whole, he becomes a part. Even at the height of his wholeness or perfection, he pours out all his goodness which he received of God for one great ACHIEVEMENT, “the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus,” Philippians 3:14.
We need to note at this point that the Church as a division of the Tabernacle is represented by the outer court which compasses and envelops the other two divisions. The second division, THE BODY OF CHRIST, is represented by the holy place, which is also a part of the church. The third and final representation of the HUMAN DWELLING PLACE AND MEETING PLACE OF GOD AND MAN, the human body, is represented by the holy of holies. This is the reason why a human life is such a precious thing to God, and should be to us.
The seven divisions are distributed under the three headings as follows:
1. The Church (The Outer Court):
a. The Brazen Altar (brass altar)
b. The Brazen Laver (brass basin)
2. The Body of Christ (The Holy Place):
a. The Candlestick (lampstand)
b. The Table of Shewbread (the dining table for the priests)
c. The Golden Altar of Incense
3. The Human Body (The Holy of Holies):
a. The Mercy Seat (the cover of the ark, made of pure beaten gold)
b. The Ark of the Covenant
From this chart, one can readily draw the inference that the duty of the church is to lead the man to the fiery Altar of sacrifice and to the watery grave, the Laver, for washing and cleansing. Beyond this, the work is on the inside of the believer’s own heart, where the work of the Candlestick or Lampstand (Holy Ghost), the Table of Shewbread (Christ-life), and the Golden Altar of Incense (total separation unto God of one’s whole human and spiritual life) takes place.
The third stage of development in the human soul, as depicted by the Mercy Seat and the Ark of the Covenant in the Tabernacle, brings man out of himself and into the nature of the Father. It is the third experience and the end of all flesh (carnality).
From this third experience, man comes to be like Jesus in His natural body. He walks and lives in flesh and blood, yet without sin. Then afterwards in a resurrected body – human, eating if he wants to, but Godlike enough to come through the wall or disappear at will. This is the experience Paul describes in 1st Corinthians 15:51-53.
Romans 8:29 bears that fact out that we shall be like Jesus, not only spiritually, but physically also. It must be, that one day soon, the Lord will truly answer our prayer, “Thy Kingdom come, Thy will be done in earth (our being), as it is in heaven.”
“For whom He did foreknow, He also did predestinate to be conformed to the image of His Son, that He might be the firstborn among many brethren,” Romans 8:29.
(Excerpt from The Pattern, pg. 27-28)
Thought for today: Let us press forward to the third stage of development which brings man out of himself and into the nature of the Father.