The Person of the Holy Spirit Part 4 The Holy Spirit in Relation to the Person and Work of Christ -- By: John F. Walvoord

Journal: Bibliotheca Sacra
Volume: BSAC 098:389 (Jan 1941)
Article: The Person of the Holy Spirit Part 4 The Holy Spirit in Relation to the Person and Work of Christ
Author: John F. Walvoord


The Person of the Holy Spirit
Part 4
The Holy Spirit in Relation to the Person and Work of Christ

John F. Walvoord

(Continued from the October-December Number, 1940)

Introduction.

To the careful interpreter of the Scriptures, no portion of the Word of God requires more careful exegesis than the Gospel narratives. Combining in their scope the elements of three dispensations, Law, Grace, and Kingdom, the problems of interpretation are multiplied, yet the accounts are so simple in statement that a child may read with profit. Christ lived in the days of the setting sun of Mosaic law. Its provisions had ruled Israel for fifteen hundred years, more frequently disobeyed than obeyed, equally misinterpreted by the literal Pharisee and the liberal Sadducee. It had been intended as a schoolmaster to bring Israel to Christ (Gal 3:24), but its pupils had not learned their lessons. Christ came to fulfill the law, not only in His death on the cross, but in His own life to demonstrate perfect obedience. He was “made under the law” (Gal 4:4). Repeatedly in His messages, Christ referred to and interpreted the law, correcting the interpretations which had abused it, and adding new concepts of God and truth. Even as Christ had a backward look at times to the law, so also His prophetic message anticipated the coming glorious kingdom. He teaches the people the principles of the kingdom, warns of the danger of exclusion, raises a lofty standard which pierced through the outward forms of religion to matters of the heart. His Messianic message is presented with all the clarity and revelation which could be expected from His lips. As the growing unbelief of the people indicates their rejection and brings the shadow of the cross nearer, Christ turned to truth concerning the present age, the kingdom not in its outward display, but in its mystery form. The fulfillment of the promise of God to David is postponed, and into the foreground comes

the undeclared purpose of God to call out from every nation a new company, composed of both Jew and Gentile, independent of all His promises to Israel, having its own calling and destiny. Only by bearing in mind that Christ lived in His prophetic ministry in the three dispensations of Law, Grace, and Kingdom is it possible to exegete with accuracy and profit the Gospel narratives which contain extended reference to all three systems of truth.

Aside from the intricate nature of the prophetic truth revealed by Christ, a further amazing event is enacted by God becoming incarnate, assuming human form, and living for a time within the limitations of the human frame. Culmi...

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