What I’m going to tell you in this message is not new, but I believe it will be presented in a way that will enhance what you already know. I’m going to begin with one of the letters of the Lord to the seven churches in chapters 2 and 3 of the Book of Revelation. Keep in mind that these letters are not only for the seven individual churches mentioned, but are letters from the Lord for the Church in all ages and, most particularly, are they for the Church coming into the Kingdom of the Lord. It is interesting to note that at the end of each letter the Lord says, “To him that overcomes,” and then gives a promise for the overcomer. The singular pronoun “him” confirms the truth that it is a remnant within the Church that becomes the overcomer. The “him” or overcomer will not merely be one person from each church but will be a remnant that becomes one with the Lord and also becomes the many-membered Body of Christ. The Body of Christ will be a manifestation of the Lord Jesus Christ. He is the Overcomer; He is the “Him.”
Revelation 3:14 And unto the angel of the church of the Laodiceans write; These things saith the Amen, the faithful and true witness, the beginning of the creation of God.
The Lord Jesus Christ is the “Amen,” the “faithful and true Witness,” and the “beginning of the Creation of God.” What creation is He the beginning of? He is not the beginning of the creation of the heavens and earth, for He created them. In what way can He be the beginning of a creation and of what creation? He is the beginning of the creation of the many-membered Body of Christ. We are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2:10. It is important for us to understand that the many-membered Body of Christ is a new creation, a new man. Put on the new man, which after God is created in righteousness and true holiness. Ephesians 4:24. It is a new creation because it is born of God. Jesus Christ is the Beginning and the Fulfillment, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last, the Alpha and Omega. The Lord Jesus is “the firstborn among many brethren” (Romans 8:29). For it became Him, for whom are all things, and by whom are all things, in bringing many sons unto glory, to make the Captain of their salvation perfect through suffering. Hebrews 2:10. Jesus Christ is the Head, the firstborn of the many-membered Body. When the many-membered Christ is completed it is a manifestation of Christ. Therefore, He is the Beginning and the End.
II Corinthians 5:15-17 He died for all, that they which live should not henceforth live unto themselves, but unto Him which died for them, and rose again.
As a new creation the Body of Christ no longer lives unto themselves; that is, according to the ways of man. They have a new life. He that died for them rose again in them and He becomes their life. They are a new creation.
Verse 16 Wherefore henceforth know we no man after the flesh; yea, though we have known Christ after the flesh, yet now henceforth know we Him no more.
Now, this verse is a stumbling block for many people. Those who are the new creation of Christ no longer know one another after flesh. They relate to one another as members of Christ, according to their new creation. They also no longer know Christ after the flesh. They do not know Him as Jesus the Nazarene but as the Lord of Glory, for their life is hid in God (Colossians 3:3).
Verse 17 Therefore if any man (be) in Christ, (he is) a new creation: old things are passed away; behold, all things are new.
The words in parenthesis are not in the original Greek text. They were added by the translators to make it look more sensible, but it is not supposed to look sensible to man. It is speaking of a new creation that is of God, not of man. Take out the added words and it reads this way: Therefore if any man in Christ He is a new creation; old things are passed away and all things are new. Christ and all those in Him are the new creation. He is the Beginning and the Fulfillment of the creation of God. He is the “Him,” the Overcomer. Man cannot overcome in himself. Man only becomes an overcomer when the Overcomer comes forth in him and they become one, the new creation of God.
I Corinthians 12:12-13 For as the Body is one, and has many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body; so also is Christ.
Christ is no longer just an individual. He is many-membered. He and His members are God’s new creation.
Verse 13 For by one Spirit are we all baptized into one Body, whether we be Jews or Gentiles, whether we be bond or free; and have been all made to drink into one Spirit.
All the members of Christ have been baptized into His Body. That is not speaking of water baptism; it is speaking of being immersed in Him, becoming one with Him. Neither is it saying that all Christians have been baptized into His Body, but all that have been baptized into His Body have all been made to drink into one Spirit. If a Jew is baptized into His Body, he is a member of the new creation and is no longer a Jew. The same is true for a Gentile, a bond or a free person. There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither bond nor free, there is neither male nor female; for ye are all one in Christ Jesus. Galatians 3:28. All human titles are done away with in Christ. The Body of Christ is a new creation; it is not of man.
In a real sense the creation of the Body of Christ is the coming of the King and His Kingdom.
Matthew 2:1-2 Now when Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod
the king, behold, there came wise men from the east to Jerusalem,
2 Saying, Where is He that is born King of the Jews? For we have seen His star in the east, and are come to worship Him.
Herod the king is a type of “the prince of the power of the air (the realm of man), the spirit that now works in the children of disobedience” (Ephesians 2:2). But now a new King has arrived, and when the King comes, so will His Kingdom. The kingdom of Herod is a type of the realm of man. When the Lord Jesus comes forth within us (birthed in our Bethlehem), He begins delivering us from the reign of Herod. He finds in us (His temple) those that sell oxen and sheep and doves, and the changers of money sitting (religious activity); and when He had made a scourge of small cords, He drives them all out of the temple…and says make not My Father’s house, a house of merchandise (John 2:13-16).
The King cannot be separated from His Kingdom. His forerunner John the Baptist preached saying, “Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 3:2) When Jesus began His ministry, His message was the same, “Repent, for the Kingdom of heaven is at hand” (Matthew 4:17). When He sent His disciples out on their first missionary journey, He told them to preach repentance, for His Kingdom was at hand (Matthew 10:7). When the King comes, He comes with the purpose of establishing His Kingdom.
Luke 17:20-21 When He was demanded of the Pharisees, when the Kingdom of God
should come, He answered them and said, The Kingdom of God comes not with
21 Neither shall they say, Lo here! Or, lo there! For, behold, the Kingdom of God is within you.
The Kingdom of God does not come in the realm of observation. It does not come in the realm of man. The realm of Herod (man’s world) and the Kingdom of God are both here, but those in the realm of Herod are not aware of the Kingdom of God. Even many Christians are not aware of the Kingdom of God. They still have it in the future because they are more in the realm of Herod than they are the realm of God. The Kingdom of God is a spiritual Kingdom; it is where the Body of Christ functions. Jesus told Pontius Pilate, “My Kingdom is not of this world” (John 19:36).
Are you waiting for Christ to return? He is returning; He is the many-membered Christ that is in the process of being created even now. The creating of the Body of Christ and the establishment of His Kingdom began with His crucifixion and resurrection. Are you waiting for the Kingdom of God? You will find it when you are baptized (immersed) into the Body of Christ. There you will find the King and His Kingdom.
Copyright © 2008 by Henry DuBose