Second danger & answer
5d(i) Baptised into Christ (4)
Type i. Creation: God commanded the light to shine
introductory remarks without form and void the Spirit moves Let there be light as ye received summary
Such is the importance of this baptism into Christ that we will now take a detour from our main studies in Colossians and enlarge upon this theme. In the previous three studies we have considered our baptism into Christ and the consequences of it.
For the next several articles we shall consider some OT types regarding this baptism and see what else we can learn. It should also be noted that these studies are by no means exhaustive, and the reader is encouraged to mediate further on theses things.
But first some words of caution regarding typology.
Typology is a broad term that refers to anything, which can be used to illustrate spiritual truth; these can be events, God-given instructions, inanimate objects etc.
We would want make one thing absolutely clear from the onset. Since we hold to the inerrancy of scripture we accept, without reservation that the events under discussion as being real history, and happened exactly as described. So, for example, we hold to a literal 7-day creation, a world wide universal flood etc. What we seek from these real events are the spiritual truths they illustrate.
We must also note the following:
We have eight types regarding this baptism: the Creation, the Flood, the Exodus, Israel's entry into Canaan, the Laver of regeneration, the Mantle from on high, Naaman and Jonah.In this article we shall confine ourselves to the first five verses of Gen.1 and we will take up other aspects of the creation narrative in a later study.
In the account of the creation the first thing we see is that it is God who initiates everything. It is: in the beginning God created.. Unless God had spoken the word to bring the universe into existence then nothing would have happened. The universe did not come into being by any other means. It was no accident, it did not come into being by some random (so called) evolutionary processes. The whole of creation was initiated by and spoken into being by the living Word of God. Jn.1:1-5.
This is no less true for salvation, it was God who took the initiative, in fact Jesus is called the Lamb slain from before the foundation of the world Rev.13:8. Just think, before creation God knew what would happen and had redemption all planned out, so when Adam sinned God gave the promise of the Messiah and the plan of redemption in seed form Gen.3:15. In the matter of salvation we do not drift into it by some random accident, it has to be a definite act of God in a life. God has to speak.
In the Biblical account we have the statement: the earth was without form and void. Much has been written on this: did God create it like this, or was there a cataclysmic event in between the first two verses? If so what was it? Such questions are speculative for scripture doesn't plainly tell us and so we will not pursue that point here.
That the earth was waste and without form describes our condition in our fallen state. The word suggests emptiness. We have the wisest man of the OT coming to this conclusion: Vanity of vanities, says the preacher all is vanity Eccl.1:2. Now in the Hebrew a word that is repeated is an idiom meaning the ultimate of that particular quality. (eg. Holy of Holies). Here Solomon declaring in Ecclesiastes that life without God is the ultimate vanity and emptiness.
Paul says something similar in I Cor.15:19 if in this life only we have hope in Christ we are of all men most miserable. In another place the apostle describes us as being dead in trespasses and sins Eph.2:1. As a result of first birth we are fallen in sin and are the enemies of God. We are in a lost state, void of life and full of a wasted existence. And we would have remained like that unless God had done something about it.
the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters. We must note carefully the following points that are relevant to our subject: the waters covered the earth, and that the planet was immersed in water, or we could say the earth was baptised! It was from this state that the world was made. We are told that the Spirit moved upon the face of the waters. The Hebrew word for moved means to brood, flutter or shake. The metaphorical language used associating the Holy Spirit as a bird, such as a dove. The Spirit moved where He willed and the earth came forth.
Likewise when a person is brought into true salvation, the Spirit moves as He wills. No one sees Him nor tells from whence He came, but the effects in a person's life will be clearly visible, as the effects of the wind are seen when it blows. This new birth is accomplished solely by the will of God and not of men, or by any other agency.
When God moves in a life He speaks and His creative word brings forth life into a soul. Peter describes it as being born again of the word of God. This word is incorruptible seed, it is a life that lives and abide (= remains) for ever. Two stanzas from the famous Wesley hymn ' O for a thousand tongues' speaks of this perfectly.
5.d.i(d) Let there be light
In the original description of the waste and void earth it is said that darkness was upon the face of the deep. Then God spoke and there was light; God spoke and it was done says the Psalmist Ps.33:4-6. In our unregenerated state we were in darkness, and Paul goes further by saying we were darkness itself!
Our condition was pitiful indeed, but God spoke and we became light! Paul gives us the spiritual application of Gen.1:3 in his second epistle to the Corinthians.
Those who don't believe have had their eyes blinded by the god of this world ( the devil) so that the light of Christ could not shine in them. But when a person comes to Christ God speaks the word and Christ, the very image of God, shines into our hearts to give the knowledge of God in the face of Jesus Chrsit. Consequently we have the treasure of God placed into these earthen vessels, who is Christ in you the hope of Glory Col.1:27.
In the opening verses of John's gospel we have the declaration that the true light is Jesus Christ, the Word of God. Further into the prologue John says that we beheld His glory the glory of the only begotten of the Father Jn.1:14. It was the Son's purpose to show us the Father and it is only by Jesus we can know the Father Jn.14:6-9. we do indeed have the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
It is a remarkable fact that the opening of John's gospel parallels the opening account in Genesis and in the verses following the creation we have statements on light. In Genesis we have the physical light created, in John we have the true light.
Christ is the light, in fact it says that it is His life that is the light of men, and it is this life that He came to give us so that we would no longer be in darkness. In fact this is one of the main themes of this fourth gospel.
The Apostle continues that the darkness does not overcome it. The life of Christ can not be overcome by the powers of darkness! If Christ is in you then the enemy can not overcome.
Linking this thought in with our studies in Colossians. We have seen that we have been translated from the kingdom of darkness into the kingdom of His dear Son ( Col.1:13. And in the scripture quoted above, one which we have emphasised before, exhorts us to walk in Christ as we originally received Him.
Having begun in light we must continue to walk in that light, and Jesus teaches much about this aspect of Christian living.
Jesus says that if we follow Him we shall not walk in darkness Jn.8:12. Jesus also tells us that if our eye is single then our whole being is full of light, but if evil then full of darkness Lk.11:34-36.
In order to walk along the correct path we need light and that means having our eye single, fixed on Christ. In the context of Colossians this would mean having our eyes turned off from other things such as philosophy, legalism, mysticism etc. By turning our eyes off Jesus and onto other things means that the light we have is darkness.
John in his first epistle expounds being in the light further. In God there is no darkness and so fellowship with Him is dependent on us walking in the light . This means that we are to be loving one another, by loving the brethren there is no occasion of stumbling in us. On the other hand hating our brothers means that we are in darkness.
In I Jn.1:11-16 we have the apostle using the incident of Cain and Abel to illustrate this truth. Cain murdered his brother because his deeds were evil and Abel's righteous. If we consider this we will note that according to Heb.11:4 Abel offered his sacrifice by faith, the implication is that Cain did not, hence Cain not being accepted. This resulted in hatred and murder. Cain was in darkness his lack of faith darkened his eyes, he could not see the truth even when God pleaded with him.
Having been born anew we must continue in that life, walk as we begun. We need to continue walking in that light. By not walking in that light we do not have fellowship with Him. It is only as we walk in the light as He is that we have fellowship and know the constant cleansing of the blood in our lives.
Through faith we understand that the worlds were framed by the word of God, so that things which are seen were not made of things which do appear.....But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.
Giving thanks unto the Father, which has made us partakers of the inheritance of the saints in light, Who has delivered us from the power of darkness and hath translated us into the kingdom of His dear Son