Present Privileges

The only thing God ever owned in religion or ritualism was Jewish. It all had to do with the flesh. And it is all gone now by the Cross; all has been crucified. Our life, our position, our association and fellowship are all in the Lord Jesus Christ at the Father’s right hand.

We have heavenly things—we are in union with the Lord Jesus Christ in heaven; “because I live, ye shall live also.” I have all in Him; He is my life, my very righteousness from God. The Father rests with delight concerning me because I am in His Beloved Son.

Abraham received a promise, and he believed in it; and oath, and he believed it. I have more than that. I believe my Father has performed it all on my behalf. I have been made the righteousness of God in Christ. I have life, righteousness, and the Holy Spirit as His Seal. Moreover, the Forerunner (Heb 6:20) has gone inside, and the Holy Spirit gives me the realization of my union with Him; not merely the fact that my sin is put away. Now all in the world is dross and refuse.

The Holy Spirit, as in Ephesians, never enters upon our future privileges until our present position is settled. What is “the inheritance”? It is that which we shall be set over. But blessed as that will be, it is far better to be set right as to that which we have now.

The Lord will take care that we shall know where we are to be set; but the Father Himself is better than all the glory. To know our Father, to be consciously before Him, to be set at rest in His glorious presence, to be happy with Him, to know how much He loves and cares for us, is infinitely better than knowing all about Jews and Gentiles, or earth and heaven. We shall reign with our glorious Bridegroom, the King; but the kingdom itself, with all its blessedness and glory, is an inferior thing to the heart being really at ease and happy and at home with our Father now.

We have the Holy Spirit in virtue of the finished work of Christ, which gives perfect rest. In Christ we are set in the presence of our father. The Spirit unfolds, by the Word, all the consequences of our being thus brought into our Father’s presence. No man can learn the blessing of relationship, except in the exercise of it. As in nature, so with divine relationship. All depends on the presence of the Holy Spirit down here.

Two great truths are connected with this—first, the accepted Man, the Last Adam, the Lord Jesus from heaven. The One who came down is gone up, and is at the right hand of the Father in glory (John 3:13). Secondly, the Holy Spirit down here associates us with all that the Lord Jesus Christ is in heaven. “If ye, then, be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above, where Christ sitteth on the right hand of God. Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth. For ye have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God” (Col 3:1-3).

Being filed with the Spirit is having Christ the actual source of all that arises in us of thoughts and feelings. A man’s spirituality is measured by this. When there is nothing else but Christ manifested, we are filled with the Spirit. What liberty this is! “For the law of the Spirit of life in Christ hath set me free from the law of sin and death” (Rom 8:2).

-- H H Snell

Anthology by Miles J Stanford: