NOTE. In a number of issues of this paper we have been occupied with
two aspects of the Divine Horizon, viz: -
1. All things horizoned by Christ.
2. All things horizoned by Purpose.
There are other aspects of Horizon yet to be considered, but when we
come to "The Stewardship of the Mystery", we find the above two
major aspects converging or coming together. And so, we move on from
those aspects as two, and take them up in their oneness in the
1. An Additional Word About the Vessel
We have, in our last chapter, given some particular consideration to
Paul as the specially chosen 'vessel' for this stewardship, and
while we do not want to allow him to eclipse other chosen vessels,
we feel how necessary it is to recognize that we cannot really
understand the peculiar nature of the dispensation in which we live
unless we recognize the peculiar and special, nature of this vessel
and its deposit.
We dare therefore to add this brief word in that connection in order
to link up with what has already been said, and to lead on to the
Perhaps the most impressive and forceful way in which we can do this
is to quote some words in a book just published by Dr. F. F. Bruce
(whose spiritual scholarship will not find much dispute).
Under the heading "Paul's World Significance" Dr. Bruce writes: -
'Paul is one of the most significant figures in the
history of civilization. To him, far more than to any other man,
Christianity owes the direction which it took in the first
generation after the death and resurrection of Jesus. It is
interesting at times to speculate on the might-have-beens of
history. What might have been the course of Christianity had Paul
never become a Christian? Would it have remained one among 5
several movements within the frontiers of Judaism? Would it have
remained a predominantly Asian religion, like other movements
which originated in the same continent? So we might go on, asking
questions whose only value is to emphasize the significance of the
life and work of Paul... if it is asked how a faith which arose in
Asia should have come to be so universally associated with
European civilization (for this purpose 'European' includes
'American'), the answer to the question must be sought in the life
and activity of Paul... Since Christianity began as a movement
within the commonwealth of Israel, how is it that, less than a
century after its inception, it presented the appearance of a
mainly Gentile faith? The answer to this question too lies in the
effectiveness of the ministry of Paul...' and so on.
If all this, and much more, as to Paul's significance is right, then
an inclusive question arises; to what does this particular
significance relate? The answer that Paul would give, and his
writings provide, is found in the phrase in which he embodied the
purpose of his calling - "the stewardship of the mystery". We must
therefore proceed at once to the consideration of what is meant by
It is not sufficient to say that 'mystery' means 'secret', something
hidden, and later disclosed. We must explain what that mystery was,
There are two main aspects of this Divine mystery.
One, and the first, relates to the Eternal Purpose; i.e.,
that which lay at the heart of the counsels of the Godhead before
time and before creation.
The other relates to the fore-knowledge which took in all the
contingencies of time and human history, and stored up in secret how
that history and those contingencies would be met, and their
We have dealt with the former of these two aspects in 'Horizoned by
Christ' and in Vol. 1 of the original Stewardship of the Mystery.
It is with the latter that we are mainly concerned now, although it
will embrace the former.
Within the compass of the contingencies of history we are confronted
with the great disruptive movement revealed in the Bible and so
apparent in experience. This is shown to have had two phases; one
before creation (of this present world), the other after.
The First Disruption
There is enough in the Bible to inform us that things were not
always as they are now. Scripture indicates that there was an
undefined period in which a state of perfect accord and harmony
existed in the universe. Heaven and earth were in holy happy and
joyous symphony. Job speaks of a time "when the morning stars sang
together, and all the sons of God shouted for joy" (Job 38:7).
This is said to have followed the "fastening of the foundations
and the laying of the cornerstone of the earth".
In the Book of Proverbs - the book so largely the fruit of a
special Divine gift of wisdom and knowledge - Wisdom is
personified, as of a He eternally existent, and that He is
spoken of as "rejoicing in his habitable earth", and saying, "my
delights were with the sons of men" (Prov. 8:31).
There is a little - but immensely significant - prefix to the
great activities of God in the reverting to the blessed and holy
state;- it is the prefix Re. Its meaning is 'again'. It
has numerous compounds, as any dictionary will show, but the
greatest words in God's reactions have this prefix:- Re-demption;
re-conciliation; re-storation; re-cover; re-generation;
re-new; re-plenish; re-turn, etc. All this
means a re-turn to a state which has been lost.
We ask then: How did this disruption take place and what were -
and are - the factors accounting for it?
It is fairly generally agreed by Bible students, and it is borne
out by the geological strata of the earth's crust, that this world
existed long before the recreation account in Genesis. It is also
believed that the darkness, chaos, barrenness, and death to which
that book introduces itself was the result of some terrible and
devastating event. There are not lacking indications that this was
a judgment of God upon a regime which had - by its iniquity and
rebellion - passed beyond recovery. Not only are there pointers to
this as to that dateless past; there are two other things which
bear upon it. One is God's attitude toward and commandment
concerning such people as the Canaanites. Utter extermination
without a remnant or residue was God's edict because of the
extremity of their 'abominations'. The other thing is that a time
is declared to be coming (probably when the redeemed have been
lifted away) when, to quote the actual words, "the day of the Lord
will come... in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall be dissolved with fervent
heat, and the earth and the works that are therein shall be burned
up. Seeing that these things are thus all to be dissolved... But,
according to his promise, we look for new heavens and a new earth,
wherein dwelleth righteousness" (2 Peter 3:10-13). (We in this
atomic age can understand this language better than our fathers,
and what a testimony to inspiration it is that the manner of "the
end of all things" is so described many hundreds of years before
the atomic age.)
In the three connections there is a reflection upon the inclusive
cause of the cosmic judgment; it is in Peter's words - "wherein
dwelleth righteousness". Unrighteousness carried to its limit
means devastation and ruin. Unrighteousness in its essence is, not
ceding and giving to God His rights; this is frequently called
"iniquity", and the root of that work is rebellion. That last word
- rebellion - brings us immediately to the answer to our question
Whence This Universal Discord?
For answer we turn to Ezekiel's prophecy (28:1-10). First the
prophet speaks of the Lord's judgment upon the King of Tyre. Then
he is carried back into a realm and a position which call for
language and description which could never be limited to that
king. Through the King of Tyre, and through certain
characteristics of his there looms into view the greater one who
rules and inspires him.
This greater one is spoken of as "the anointed cherub that
covereth"; "full of wisdom and perfect in beauty"; dwelling in the
garden of God, bedecked and adorned with beautiful and costly
gems. As the "anointed cherub which covereth", he seems to have
had some position of special privilege, honour, and responsibility
in relation to the throne. He "walked up and down amidst the
stones of fire". No man ever held such a position. He was
Lucifer, the light-bearer.
But he was created and entrusted. He was neither the Creator nor
the source, but he held everything by trust and by dependence.
Then the scene changes and a dark shadow enters the realm of
glory. "Thine heart was lifted up because of thy beauty, thou hast
corrupted thy wisdom by reason of thy brightness". Conceit is
always followed by self-assertion. Sooner or later, it will come
out and show itself in conduct. It will rebel against authority;
it will resent equality; it will move - perhaps sullenly at first,
gathering strength - toward an open revolt and rebellion. It will
seek followers and supporters, until the "I will" becomes a set
course. "I will ascend"; "I will exalt my throne"; "I will sit
upon the mount"; "I will be". This then is the source and spring
of iniquity, and its essence is pride of heart. "Thy heart
was lifted up". Out of this came independent action.
In the meantime many have been defiled and have formed an
alliance with this erstwhile beautiful and trusted one. "The
angels which kept not their first estate" (Jude 6; 2 Peter 2:4).
Thus we see this rift as having taken place - according to Luke
10:17,18 - in Heaven, and the first great schism having taken
place there. There is no place too sacred and holy for the
spirit of pride and self-will to invade, corrupt, and hurt. If
this could happen there, can we expect that anything here
will escape the attack? No, nothing ever has escaped it!
But there is the reaction of God. His answer to "I will ascend"
is "thou shalt be brought down to hell". Hell is banishment
from the presence of God and loss of all Divine privilege.
The next phase and stage of this course is well known. It may be
that in some way Lucifer had a special relationship to this earth,
and with his rebellion he infected the previous creation, and was
"cast out". This may largely be deducted from certain Scriptures.
A judgment follows a rebellion, and out of the death, the God of
Resurrection moved to "make all things new". There we have the
account in Genesis.
But the Adversary has not given up. The renewed earth has been
placed under the 'dominion' of the 'First Adam'. Into this domain
Satan intrudes and - was it to regain his own lost
dominion - he makes a bid for it and succeeds. He has found his
accomplice and has captured the power of human reproduction with
the constituent of rebellion introduced into it. Even Jesus, the
rightful Lord will - before His Cross - call Satan, "the
prince of this world" and will not - at the time - dispute
the Devil's statement that "the kingdoms of the world... and the
glory of them... hath been delivered unto me". The Cross will
settle that, but that comes later.
So, we have the repercussion of the heavenly discord in this
All division, confusion, disruption, conflicting elements, derive
from this twofold primal disruption and disorder. There is now
only one legitimate antagonism; it is between light and darkness,
truth and falsehood, life and death, righteousness and
unrighteousness. It is impressive that at the beginning of the
Bible we have this unlawful bid for pre-eminence resulting in
division and discord, and so near the end - in John's third letter
- the man who has more to say about love than anyone else, turns
with vehement wrath and fiery threatening against "Diotrephes, who
loveth to have the pre-eminence", and thereby is causing
Here is the point at which, for the moment, we must break off,
for it is here that God's 'secret', His 'mystery', is kept in
reserve, firstly, to be revealed; secondly, to call for alliance;
and finally, to settle the whole issue.
The Particular Mystery
The word 'mystery' is found twenty-seven times in the received
text of the New Testament and is related to several matters. The
Lord Jesus said to the twelve disciples that it was given to them
to know the mysteries of the Kingdom. Paul, as we have seen,
claimed to have a special revelation of the mystery; not the
mysteries, but the particular mystery. This revelation
constituted his particular stewardship, and we have tried to show
how very vital and important that stewardship is for this
dispensation. So it becomes us to define that particular
"mystery". The farthest that most teachers have gone is to make it
to mean the uniting of Jew and Gentile in the Church. "That the
Gentiles should be fellow-heirs" (Eph. 3:6). This view or
conclusion seems to have a great deal of support especially when
chapters 9 to 15 of Romans are read. The imperfection of this
conclusion or deduction is not in the simple statement that Jews and
Gentiles are united in Christ, but in retention of the names in
Christ. The fact is that in Christ there are no Jews and
there are no Gentiles. As such they disappear in
the grave of Christ, i.e., baptism as a testimony to union with
Christ in death and burial. There is no such thing as a baptized
Jew or a baptized Gentile. The 'mystery' is that "of the twain (he
makes) one new man" (Eph. 2:15), and the point is "in himself".
So, the 'mystery' is that Christ in resurrection is the firstborn
of a new humanity in which there is neither Jew nor Greek,
circumcision nor uncircumcision, etc. Every dividing distinction
of nationality, culture, language, colour, country, etc., etc., is
removed in the Cross of Christ because these things are the entail
of a curse and the evil brood of the disruption to which we have
In the realm of Christ; in the realm of the Holy Spirit; in the
realm of the One Body and the One Life they have no standing. They
are great realities in the natural realm and may constitute
difficulties, but the Spirit of Christ forbids that they govern
attitudes and prejudices.
In Christ there is a common basis which makes fellowship a real
and blessed thing even where in the natural all these things exist
- even in one place. This is one of the most powerful testimonies
to the reality of Christ and the work of His Cross. It is indeed
"the mystery of Christ". Paul refers to this when he says that "Christ in you (is) the hope
of glory". It is literally "Christ in the midst of you".
It is in this connection that he says, "Henceforth know we no man
after the flesh". The "henceforth" refers back to "Christ-died for
(in the place of) all, therefore all died (in Him)" "Wherefore, if
any man be in Christ there is a new creation" (2 Cor. 5:16,17).
It is just here that the great need is to recognize
The Significance of Christ.
In the natural world all the effects of the great schism in the
universe to which we have referred will govern relationships and
attitudes. Indeed, they are the very nature and constitution of
things, postulating a control, a strangle-hold by forces inimical,
hostile, and viciously antagonistic to harmony, concord, and
peace. Racial discriminations and prejudices; 'colour bars'; class
distinctions; race superiorities; and everything else of its kind
and spirit emanate from a curse upon creation due to Satanic
interference. It is all the disruption that is in the very nature
of man and things. To change this, man has to be changed in
constitution. Christ is different; He is of another order of
humanity. In Christ there is "neither... nor", but only one new
man. In Christ there is a new creation, where there cannot
be this and that of inimical differences and conflicting natures.
There is no way through this situation, the only way is above
it, ascendency over it. The Church is viewed as "seated with
Christ in the heavenlies", and the sooner we realise that this is
no abstract, idealistic, unreal, and theoretical position - to say
nothing of it being a geographical position - the sooner will our
Christianity regain its power and impact. That position is a
spiritual one. That is, it is a position of the spirit in the
power and energy of the Holy Spirit. Where Heaven is we do not
know, but the "heavenlies" are right here around us, pressing upon
us and seeking to elevate us in our inward life as "in Christ".
The heart of the whole matter is in Ephesians 1:9,10 - "having
made known... the mystery of his will... which he purposed in him,
unto a dispensation (stewardship, or outworking) of the fulness of
the times, to sum up all things in Christ..." To 'sum up' means
literally 'to reunite'; to reunite all things in Christ.
Three phases are indicated: The eternal, purpose that "all
things" were the Son's heritage, to be in Him: the universal rift
by reason of a bid for the Son's place and heritage: the secret
hid in God as to how to realise the purpose and destroy the rift,
through the Cross to 'reunite all things in Christ'. This
represents the essential sphere of unity - "In Christ"; and a
power working through the Cross to a resurrection position - "the
exceeding greatness of his power" (Ephes. 1:19).
In the first edition of The Stewardship of the Mystery Vol. 2
(now out of print), we said some things which were taken up in two
ways and given a meaning different from and beyond what was
intended. The construction put upon them was - in both cases -
that of our seeking to be divisive among the Lord's people.
The extremists of 'come-out'ism used what we said to support
their position and they gave occasion to others for opposing us on
the ground of being divisive in our teaching and influence. The
fact is that both were wrong. Ours was a wholly constructive
object, positive and not negative.
The following is what we wrote then and we can only ask that it
will now be viewed as an attempt to show how great and how
different Christ is as the all-uniting person and nature.
Seeing that "the mystery" which was revealed to the Apostle Paul
in a particular and fuller way is shown to be Christ personal and
Christ corporate, it is necessary for us to look more earnestly
The Peculiar Significance of the Definition
We have to get nearer to the special definition of the Church as
the Body of Christ. It has been said by some that the term is only
a metaphor. But when we look at all that is said about it in
Paul's letters we have to say that if any man's body is
only a metaphor, then this is. Can we regard our own bodies as of
merely metaphorical significance, or are they of literal and
practical meaning or reality? There surely cannot be any doubt as
to the practical reality of the Church as Christ's Body! However, we
shall see. To understand the significance of this definition it is
first of all necessary to recognize the significance of Christ
Himself. There is first the personal and then the related
In Himself Christ took up all the eternal interests of God as
bound up with the Elect. God had an inheritance or "heritage" in
that corporate company. God's heritage was "alienated" from Him.
God's heritage was marred. God's heritage was turned to serve
purposes which were contrary to Him and His intention. God's
heritage was taken possession of by powers inimical to His
interests. In relation to this, God's Son undertook a full
recovery and restoration to God of His rights, His
purposes, and His instrument.
The point is that this Son of God as Son of Man did not undertake
this work in an independent and detached way, but Himself became
the representative and embodiment of all this. Because moral
factors were involved requiring judgment and death a position
had to be accepted. This could be nothing merely official, it had
to be moral and spiritual. So, in order to effect a full recovery
to a position in keeping with God's holiness for holy
purposes, the Son of God was "made sin" (in the hour of His
atoning work), entered into the alienation because of that
accepted position ("My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?");
became marred ("marred more than any man"); fought out the battle
of God's rights, and destroyed the inimical powers and works;
redeemed the heritage "unto God"; secured the Elect in "the
blood of the everlasting covenant"; and ratified the eternal
(We must ever keep the broad line between that which Christ
was inherently as sinless, and that which He took upon Himself
representatively. A guiltless One took the place and judgment of
We repeat, this was all done in no merely official capacity, but
He and the heritage and the Elect became one in experience.
Finality rested with Christ. God had no other in reserve if He
failed. He was not the Second Adam, but the Last
Adam. God has "at the end... spoken in his Son". Well,
then; Christ as risen and exalted is the personal embodiment of
everything which relates in God's eternal thought to the Church.
Then the next phase is that - while He remains a living person
and a distinct member of Godhead - He is given "to be head over
all things to the church which is his body, the fulness of him..." All this fulness
is now - in the first instance - not embodied in a separate person
as one by Himself, but in a Head as one with the Body. The Head
holds all in relation to the Body. The Body gets all in relation
to the Head. The full statement of this is in Ephesians 1, leading
up to verses 18-22. No individual or number of individuals as such
can obtain the inheritance; it requires the Body. Two things,
amongst others, postulate this fact.
Firstly, the use of the article in the Greek in this connection.
A classic instance is in 1 Cor. 12:12:
"...As the body is one, and hath many members, and all the
members of the body, being many, are one body: so also is
Christ" (Greek, "the Christ").
This is not an isolated case. It is a form used when Christ and
His members as one Body are in view. Its force is that the members
and the Head - for all purposes of God here - are "the
Christ". The whole subject or truth of identification with Christ
is bound up with this. Let us be most explicit and emphatic that
we are not touching the personal existence of the Son, as a member
of the Godhead. This term "the Christ" is His official, not His
Then there is that other fact to which reference has been - and
yet will be - made. That which springs out of or issues from
Christ's resurrection as in God's eye and Heaven's mind is a "one
new man". If you carefully read the various passages dealing with
this One New Man you will find that you cannot discriminate
between Christ and His members. Take, for instance, the following:
"...the building up of the body of Christ; till we all attain
unto... a fullgrown man, unto the measure of the stature of the
fulness of Christ... may grow up in all things into him, which
is the head even Christ [Gk., "the Christ"]; from whom all the
body fitly framed and knit together... maketh the increase of
the body..." (Ephesians 4:12,13,15,16).
"...holding fast the Head, from whom all the body, being
supplied and knit together through the joints and bands,
increaseth... and have put on the new man, which is being
renewed unto knowledge after the image of him that created him:
where there cannot be Greek and Jew, Scythian, bondman, freeman;
but Christ is all, and in all" (Colossians 2:19; 3:10).
This brings us to see that what our members are to our heads, the
Body of Christ is to Him. It is for the expression of what He is
and has done in Himself.
But there is another aspect of this which need only be
mentioned, for all know it. As Christ personally was the shrine of
God on earth, so the Body is the shrine of the Trinity.
"Ye are the temple of God", "A habitation of God through the
Spirit", "Christ in you the hope of glory", etc.
As to the practical values and outworkings of this corporate
nature of the Church we have much to say yet, but let it be seen
that, not in an institution, an organization, but as a personal
living presence in a spiritual organism Christ is present in the
whole spiritual cosmic realm.
We must take account of some of the implications of this
definition - the Body.
Some Implications of "The Body"
Firstly these implications are corrective.
There are many either false or imperfectly considered ideas about
the Church, and a real revelation to the heart by the Holy Spirit
of the truth will result in considerable adjustment.
If there is any real Divine mind behind the definition of the
Church as the Body of Christ, and the One New Man, then the Church
cannot be five things which obtain in 'Church History', or 'Ecclesiastical
Polity'. It cannot be national. It cannot be international. It
cannot be denominational. It cannot be interdenominational. It
cannot be undenominational.
What sort of a man is this One New Man? What kind of a
body is this Body of Christ? Is he a National man? Then there
cannot be "one Body"! Is he an international man? Then he
must be a composite man, embodying the features and
characteristics of all nations. We will not carry the question
further. All these designations which we have mentioned represent
something, as apart from something else, to the Church. They
distinguish Christians; they put some here and some there; some in
this and others not in this. Even the last-named -
undenominational - as a good-intentioned measure to get over
sectarian barriers or distinguishing marks, but sets up another
boundary, and misses the positive truth of the Body of Christ; it
is at least negative.
Before we proceed let us pause a moment. We are anxious to avoid
unnecessary misunderstanding. We are not saying that
because many believers are in the various denominations they are not in the Body of
Christ. Rather would we say that the Body of Christ comprises
those who are truly joined to Himself wherever they may be found.
So that no one must imagine that we suggest that in order to be in
some thing called "the Body of Christ" they must leave their
denomination. We should say that denominations are not an
expression - in themselves - of the Body, and can be either
a definite limitation or a real hindrance to the full thought of
God. We recognize that there may be a fine difference between
denominations and denominationalism; the one being more or
less passive, the other positive. The latter would certainly be a
menace to the truth of the Body of Christ. What we mean by
denominationalism is the definite pursuance of denominational
interests. There are many people of God in denominations who are
not denominational in any positive and aggressive way, but who are
rather where they are because that is where they have met the
Lord. They love the Lord and desire to go on with Him.
What we are saying is not meant to be a judgment of such, nor in
the spirit of criticism, but out of real love for every
fellow-member of Christ. If a thing has to be judged as being less
or other than the Lord's full or true thought; and if it is seen -
in the light of fuller revelation and corresponding experience -
to be only good as far as it goes, but not good in
relation to a fuller thought of God, then those who are in it will
only come under that judgment if and when they fail to have light
which God has made available, or disobey light given. This, of
course, will touch upon the question of whether the Cross has
dealt with the natural life, and whether there is a walk in the
Spirit. Let no one think therefore that we are out against
Christians because they are in this or that department of the
whole company of believers, nor yet that it is our aim to destroy
We are concerned with positive spiritual reality, and we say with
Paul "admonishing every man, and teaching every man in all wisdom,
that we may present every man perfect in Christ; whereunto I
labour, striving according to his working which worketh in me
mightily" (Colossians 1:28, 29).
But we recognize and know that "perfect in Christ" is related to
the Body, as the context shows - "I... fill up on my part that which is lacking of the
afflictions of Christ... for his body's sake, which is the
church" etc. (verse 24).
We would never say anything which would raise an issue which is
fraught with so much suffering and misunderstanding were it merely
a technical question, and were we not convinced that the gain to
the Lord and His people far outweighs that cost, and justifies the
"afflictions". Our objective is constructive, not destructive;
positive, not negative; love, not judgment or criticism.
But to resume where we paused. Have you seen the Son of Man? Of
what nation or nationality is He? Into what section of
mankind do you fit Him as the Son of Man? What is His category in
that capacity? To what people does He belong, or to what
temperament, clime, or time? You answer, to all! Yes, and more! He
reaches over all time limits, over all earth distinctions, outside
of this present order of creation. He is a Man whose like has
never been in this earth. He answers to the full and final thought
of God as before man was created. He is eternal in conception,
heavenly, universal. Yet He is Man.
Now come back to Paul. In this New Man to which he calls
attention all the points which distinguish between people here are
ruled out. Jews and Gentiles, and all others, as such,
cease to be. They have disappeared when the Body of Christ comes
into view - 'there can be neither'; not 'there are both'.
That principle extended means that in the Church which is His Body
there are not British, French, German, Indian, Chinese, etc., all
making up the one Church. No! (Here is the fundamental weakness.)
If Christ really gets into a man or woman by new birth; that is,
if the Holy Spirit really and truly takes up residence as Lord
within, the one preeminent reality and fact there is Christ! Let
the persons concerned recognize and realise that; let all other
responsible workers recognize that and certain things will follow.
A new and altogether other Factor will be there to govern that
life. That Factor can be trusted to check up. The seeds of another
nature are there. We need not all the time be taking account of
national disposition, temperament, accountability. It is a shame
to see how many Christians despise other Christian 'nationals',
especially if those others have come from a 'heathen' nation. It
all amounts to whether the fundamental reality is there implanted,
and then as to whether we trust the Holy Spirit in one another; or
whether we are all the time trying to do the Holy Spirit's work.
It is wonderful how the Apostles cast their converts and their
churches upon the Lord.
Now it is this other, heavenly, Divine, Factor - "Christ in you" - one indivisible Person - who constitutes the Body. "Henceforth
know we no man after the flesh". Why? Because "one died for all,
therefore all died in him". We know quite well that the
universality of Christ is a reality in every true child of God,
for we instantly have something in common with such whatever their
nationality, even if we have never met before. It is only when we
get on to man's side of things and leave the Lord that dividedness
In all love, yet in all faithfulness we venture to say that no
one who has really had a revelation of the Body of Christ
could remain officially or spiritually on positive
national, international, racial, denominational, or other ground,
if that ground represents a division amongst the people of God.
The only possible position for such is that of openness,
fellowship, and ministry to "all saints". There are two things
here to mention. One is that every matter such as this one should
be a living issue in the hearts of those concerned. We realise
that what we have said could be taken up legally, and action could
be precipitate, and impulsive. Unless a thing is done by the Holy
Spirit in the heart it can never be a Holy Spirit matter
outwardly. It is therefore unwise and dangerous to tell people to
leave this or that, do this thing and do that thing, unless
already the Holy Spirit has done something. There are plenty of
independent and unrelated movements which are neither fruitful nor