|- Ray & Doris Prinzing -
"There is one body, and one Spirit, even as ye are called in one hope of your calling: one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God and Father of all." [Ephesians 4:4-6].
"God is one..." [Galatians 3:20].
Duality, division, fragmentation-pulled in all directions trying to satisfy multiplied desires, this is a mark of this world's system. But there are those who have been apprehended of Him, to become first fruits of a new creation, and they shall know the joy of oneness, unity, harmony.
To become "like ones to Him", as He is, in His identity, and this means: the condition of being the same with Him, sameness of essential character and being. OUR STATE OF BEING to be identified in Him, and "God is Spirit." John 4:24]. How we yearn to be fully identified in His substance, in the fulness of His Spirit. There is nothing outside of God, not even nothingness. But nothingness, vanity, emptiness, all this speaks of the lowest form of substance. The "creation was made subject to vanity, not willingly, but by reason of Him who hath subjected the same in hope." [Romans 8:20], HOPE THAT ULTIMATELY WE SHALL BE RAISED UP INTO HIGHER REALMS, in to the glory of His life, into the liberty and freedom of the Spirit.
Even our present state of being, with all its nothingness and vanity, its emptiness and frustration, is contained with in the sphere of God, for there can be no space in the universe where He is not. But we desire that this low estate of present existence be changed, and our state of being be elevated into higher realms in Him. The outward manifestation will be in accordance to the need of the surroundings, it is the INNER SUBSTANCE that is being changed into His nature, and image, and substance. The fragmentary "spirit realm" of the spirit of man is so limited, but being brought into His fulness, we shall be satisfied indeed.
The outward manifestations will always be adaptable to the needs of creation. When Jesus came forth from the tomb He had a different body than that which was placed in the tomb, it had been changed. When He came to a door He simply walked through it even while it was locked. The atomical structure of His body was changed― but at the same time, the appearance thereof was adaptable to the need, taking on any form necessary for the moment. And though as yet it has not been made visible what we shall be, we know that when it is revealed, like ones to Him we shall be, as He changes our body and fashions it anew, like unto His glorious body. He does have a body in which He can manifest Himself to the world, and when we see Him, our body shall be changed in its substance and atomical structure.
The future changes, however, are the results of the present transition process, and thus "we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord." [2 Corinthians 3:18].
In reference to His substance, God is SPIRIT. Now, in reference to His state of being, GOD IS ONE. That which is ONE is that which is UNDIVIDED. And oneness speaks of singleness, unity, especially in its identity. He is ONE! The fact that there is ONE GOD must not be confused with the truth that God is ONE. Perhaps this is only another aspect of viewing the same truth, for God is truly one, undivided in Himself, or in His will and purpose. And surely HE alone is God! There are not many Gods, not even three. "Unto thee it was shewed, that thou mightest know that the Lord He is God; there is none else beside Him." [Deuteronomy 4:35].
"There is but one God, the Father, out of Whom are all things, and we in Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by Whom are all things, and we by Him. Howbeit there is not in every man that knowledge." [1 Corinthians 8:6-7].
"One God and Father of all, Who is above all, and through all, and in you all." [Ephesians 4:6]. Yes, and Paul declared, "He be not far from everyone of us: for in Him we live, and move, and have our being." [Acts 17:27-28]. There are many aspects of His manifestations, and this is readily seen in a threefold revelation of the Father, the Son, and the holy Spirit. Every expression of God brings forth another revelation of His glory and majesty, but in relation to His state of being, there is ONE GOD, for GOD IS ONE. May He truly and fully be GOD in us.
"For in Him (Christ Jesus) dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in Him." [Colossians 2:9-10]. Jesus Christ is the visible expression of the invisible God-this does not take away from His onesness, for every expression of the Son was to glorify the Father, indeed, Jesus said, "he that hath seen Me hath seen the Father; ..." [John 14:9]. What often confuses people is that they forget that what is made visible on this earthly plane is one realm, and the glory of the SPIRIT realm is another. The Fatherhood realm is of spirit, to beget after Himself, for "He is the father of spirits." [Hebrews 12:9]. Yet to become manifested in a visible realm of flesh and blood, He took upon Himself the creaturely form of His own creation, and became also the SON OF MAN. "And without controversy great is the mystery of godliness: God was manifest in the flesh..." [1 Timothy 3:16].
But now, it is in this QUALITY OF ONENESS that we find such challenge, and a hope which shall be fulfilled in us, as we are changed from glory to glory, to be like Him, even as He is.
In contrasting God's promise to Abraham, with the law which was later given to Israel, Paul declared that this law was "ordained by angels in the hand of a mediator." [Galatians 3:20]. And Israel "received the law by the disposition of angels." [Acts 7:53]. The angel, literally, the Greek gives, messengers-hence the messenger, who was the mediator here, was Moses, for "the law was given by Moses..." [John 1:17]. And in describing the time and conditions when the law was given, we read, "And all the people saw the thunderings, and the lightenings, and the noise of the trumpet, and the mountain shaking." [Exodus 20:18]. Four manifestations that came by God's messenger company to ordain the law, as pronounced through the mediator, Moses. It was such a startling and fearful moment, that the people desired of Moses that he do all the speaking unto the Lord, and they would keep their distance, and let Moses come to them with the messages which God would give.
"Now ago between (intermediary) has to do with and implies more than one party― there can be no mediator with just one person. YET GOD IS (ONLY) ONE PERSON― and He was the sole party in giving that promise to Abraham. But the Law was a contract between two, God and Israel; its validity was dependent upon both." [Galatians 3:21, Amplified].
We would point out this particular contrast between the giving of the promise unto Abraham, and the law unto Israel, because it so beautifully brings out also the oneness of God. When God gave this promise to Abraham, HE was the sole party extending the promise, and there was no dependency upon Abraham at all. There were no further conditions given to Abraham whereby he must do this or that to receive the fulfillment of the promise, for it was based totally upon the grace of God, and the merits of grace alone. To such an extent, that Paul writes in another place, "If we believe not, yet He abideth faithful: He cannot deny Himself." [2 Timothy 2:13]. God was the sole party extending the promise unto Abraham. But when it came to the law, there was a mediator, which was the go-between for two parties, God and Israel. Moses heard from God, related it to the people, heard the people promise to obey the commandments, and told that back to the Lord. And the law was only valid so long as both parties kept up their part. Obviously God did not fail in any part, but we know that Israel was unable to fulfill her part of the obligation. Thus the law was weak through the flesh.
But again, we see in this promise to Abraham where God was the sole party, HE IS ONE, operating sovereignly according to His own will. He is ONE in His operation, ONE in His purpose, ONE in His character, ONE in His unity, HE IS ONENESS IN HIS STATE OF BEING.
There might be cycles within cycles, and wheels within wheels, with various manifestations derived from degrees of condescension to lower realms, and yet HE is oneness throughout the whole. There is but ONE WILL being wrought through it all-the will of God. There is but one divine character revealed, the very wonderful and glorious character of our God. This is a state of being into which we earnestly desire to enter, for it speaks of freedom from duplicity.
"When thine eye is SINGLE, thy whole body also is full of light." [Luke 11:34].
"For I fear, lest by any means, as the serpent beguiled Eve through his subtlety, so your minds should be corrupted from the simplicity that is in Christ." [2 Corinthians 11:3]. Literally, "from the SINGLENESS into the Christ."
Everything in today's confused, complex system seeks to turn us away from that singleness which leads us back into Christ. We get so entangled and frustrated by every confused work, that we hardly know which way is up, or down. May the Lord indeed loose us from all such confusion and bring us into that NARROW WAY which leads into life. Surely the more we enter into Christ, the more we enter into singleness, for He IS oneness in every aspect. It is when we are outside of Christ, no longer controlled by the anointing, that we have duplicity, part natural, maybe a little of the spiritual, and we have a hard time trying to decide which is which. Ah, "A double minded man is unstable in all his ways." [James 1:8]. In man's present state of being, partaking of the duality of good and evil, we find this constant duplicity. A desire for good, and a desire for evil, with a limited knowledge of both, and them mixing them up in awful messes of confusion.
Only in the central supremacy of Christ can true oneness be found. HE is to be the Centre, Source, and the Goal of the universe. So long as the will of man is in contradistinction to the will of God, we do not have oneness. But the more we are brought to that place of submission, "not my will, but Thine, be done," then there is a unification taking place which brings us into this blessed oneness.
Reconciliation is the operation of a THOROUGH CHANGE AND UNIFICATION. One cannot be unified, reconciled, until that thing which caused the estrangement has been dealt with. But when there has been a thorough change wrought, so that no more is there anything causing a division, to make two sides, but all things become one, then we have perfect harmony. It is not only a reconciliation of a creation to its Creator, but of the CREATOR IN HIS CREATION, for the work is being done WITHIN THE HEART of each man, so that we shall indeed be reconciled
Oneness must eventually be established in ALL, everywhere,that God, WHO IS ONE, might be ALL IN ALL. This means true unification, with singleness of mind and purpose, because everything is IN Him, and OF Him. He is the Firstborn of many brethren, but it will be this sameness, this oneness of identity which shall permeate everyone of the brethren. "That they may all be one; as Thou, Father, in Me, and I in Thee, that they also may be one in us. ― I in them, and Thou in Me, that they may be made perfect in one." [John 17:21,23]. This will not be the producing of the monotony of a stereo-typed creature but the glory of the myriad facets of His character shall be expressed through all of His creation in glorious harmony. Each vessel shall display that particular glory for which it was prepared, and yet the whole shall produce a glorious oneness of majesty, to His honour and praise. The stars differ in glory, and there is also the glory of the sun and the moon, etc. not with each one operating in contra-distinction to each other, but all blending together in a beautiful effulgence.
To God be the glory! It is IN HIM that "mercy and truth are met together; and righteousness and peace have kissed each other." [Psalm 85:10].
Mercy-bespeaks of tenderness bending over in love.
Truth-which is uprightness, stable, and builds.
Righteousness-which is purity without deviation.
Peace-absolute safety beeause of perfection, and completeness.
All of these co-exist in harmony in Christ. Whatever conflict the introduction of sin caused, it was all disposed of by the blood of His cross, as He reconciled "all things INTO Himself." [Colossians 1:20].
And now HE, Who is ONE, harmoniously works this victory into us, line upon line, precept upon precept, changing us by degrees, gathering all into Himself, that we might be restored into the same identity, or state of being as Himself.
The principle of reconciliation is that of gathering into ourselves, absorbing all into ourselves, and then changing all that which is perverted into good, and releasing it again to be a a manifestation of that which is righteous. This can only be done when there is total purity within, but if there is ought within which defiles, then that which is released from us shall bear the mark of that defilement. Hence, if we are ever to become apart of that glorious ministry of reconciliation, it means that we shall have to be totally purified within, made like unto Him, to be as He is, that we might become saviours in The Saviour .
How wonderful is this operation of God, reconciling into Himself. He is ONE― He is Light, and when He receives darkness into Himself, He does not immediately become dual in His nature and character, part light and now part darkness, but rather, "The light shineth in darkness; and
the darkness comprehended it not (that is, could not overpower it)." [John 1:5]. Darkness is not able to abide in the light, it gains no mastery over the light, but rather the light is master over darkness, and absorbing all darkness into itself, it raises the low vibrations, changing the whole into light. Thus, its being remains unchanged, it is still ONE, for now all is light.
Praise God, He has stripped us, brought us into nothingness, but as we become swallowed up into HIS FULNESS, there shall be no more this contra-distinction between our nothingness and His fulness, but we shall become FULL IN HIM, and thus again the glorious oneness remains, and from then on it shall only be the manifestation of fulness. As soon as Christ becomes the total Centre of our life, and everything is swallowed up into Him, then He is all in all for us. We shall not stroll through the ages together just hand in hand, but He said, "I WILL DWELL IN THEM, AND WALK IN THEM; and I will be their God, and they shall be My people." [2 Corinthians 6:16].
Furthermore, He has "purposed in Himself; that in the dispensation of the fulness of times He might gather together IN ONE all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth, even in Him." [Ephesians 1:9-10]. But where does the fulfillment of this purpose begin but IN A FIRST FRUITS COMPANY. Those whom He apprehends and leads out from the midst of the world, and its corruptness, into a path of righteousness will become HIS people. And then, every man in His own order, rank after rank, until all have been brought into the fulness of His life.
THE CHRIST― His cross, His blood, His sufferings, His death, His life, as we partake of all these we become ONE IN HIM. Perhaps we would like to take hold of His life first, and let go of all the suffering, and the way of the cross, with its complete death to the self-life, but HE hath left us an example, that we should follow in His steps, and we must needs be made "conformable to His death," that we might then attain unto thee resurrection out from among the dead.
Thus, ultimately it is not just His mind controlling our mind, but it is our possessing HIS mind. This is His central supremacy within. It is more than just a "fill me" with more of God, but a being swallowed up into Him, henceforth to be AS HE IS, a vessel that shall be truly a revelation of His life. This is not becoming a "little christian robot," with the Lord on high pulling the strings. Flesh and Spirit do not operate in unison when the carnal mind seeks to control. But when man is joined in one spirit to the Lord, and the Spirit of Christ fills all of man, there is a NEW CREATION which is able to fulfill God's purpose for mankind.
Oh, to possess HIS mind, HIS will― becoming one in HIS purpose. This is what we are admonished in Ephesians 4:23, to be "renewed in the spirit of your mind." This renewal, which brings the mind into oneness with the spirit realm, breaking down all the barriers of the carnal, results in anew state of being, "to make in Himself of twain ONE NEW MAN, so making peace." [Ephesians 2:15].
The first man, Adam, was made a living soul. A division was wrought between soul and spirit, and Adam moved in a soulish realm. The new man, the last Adam, became a life-giving spirit. In Christ we see the swallowing up of the soulish man into the realm of the spiritual. Thus, when our mind is fully renewed, into the mind of Christ, we shall no more think thoughts which are, different than that of the Spirit, but we shall think the Spirit's thoughts. And since all actions are thoughts-expressed, it follows that all that we do will be right, for our actions shall spring out of a christed mind.
There is another truth to be included here, for the "spirit" is of the masculine realm, and the "soul" is of the feminine. When both are unified again into this true oneness, it means a restoration to that realm which Adam knew before Eve was taken from him. Furthermore the natural body is but a portrayal ground for the invisible. And if all the divisions are ended, and we become totally one, our spirit and soul re-united, then it simply follows that if there be any bodily manifestations, it will require a body again like unto Adam's original body. This is termed as "a monoecious state," from the Greek "mon," meaning ONE, and "oikos" meaning HOUSE. ONE HOUSE for both the masculine and the feminine.
Not until all our desires, drives, longings, needs, are met in the very central supremacy of Christ can we know full peace and completeness. IN HIM there is balance, and "BY HIM all things consist (are held together)." [Colossians 1:17].
This brings a whole new perspective to the verse in Psalm 27:4, "ONE THING have I desired of the Lord, that will I seek after; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life..." To dwell in the house of the Lord! What is the house of the Lord? "Your body is the temple of the holy Spirit which is in you." [1 Corinthians 6:19]. But not in this present mortal body, as the complete fulfillment, for God does not dwell in fulness in this body. But when He shall have changed this body and fashioned it anew like unto HIS GLORIOUS BODY, then it shall be able to contain all that His body contains.
A greater and more perfect tabernacle,
To far exceed the temple that now stands,
One prepared by God, reserved in the heavens,
'Tis the building that is made without hands.
Changed into the image of the Saviour,
What mortal tongue can find the words to tell
The glory of the new creation temple,
In whom God's fulness shall be pleased to dwell.
No more a divided house, one here on earth made of clay, and one "not made with hands, eternal in the heavens." [2 Corinthians 5:1]. Nor do we desire to just be stripped of this house ― "not that we would be unclothed, but clothed upon, that mortality might be swallowed up of life." [2 Corinthians 5:4]. This is the merging of our low estate into that new creation dwelling.
We have been so divided in ourselves! Torn between desires for the world, and desires for God. We speak of the "old man" and then of the "new man," and we often wonder which one we really are, or if we are still trying to blend them both together. But no man can serve two masters, and thus we have passed through the conflict, to which shall we give obedience? Praise God for the inworkings of the Spirit, and the purgings which are a part of the way of the cross, for gradually we find that the old is put to death, crucified, and the new shall arise, yes, our life shall totally be found in Christ. Then shall we become one in ourselves, even as we become ONE IN HIM.
O quality of oneness to which we would attain,
The whole of life encompassed within the Spirit's rein.
To know pure freedom's glory from all divided ways,
A singleness of purpose to mark transition days.
Till cycles within cycles all blend their golden hue,
With each degree portraying the same inherent view.
To magnify the Saviour, our Centre, Source and Goal,
Supreme in every measure, the life of every soul.
No more the dual nature which shackles every clod,
With flesh in mortal conflict against the will of God.
Nor yet the tangled feelings confused by babbled sounds,
But inward peace pursuing, till clarity abounds.
O glorious state of being where all blends into One,
The twain in Christ united, blest image of the Son.
To find the truest balance in His identity,
Where God is one forever in full reality.
Writings in This Series: