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By Geoffrey T.Bull
(From “God Holds The Key” Chapter Four)

He must needs go through...” John
There must also of necessity be the death.” Hebrews

‘The legs of the lame are not equal...’ This is the reason of the circular motion of all our human activity. We are creatures of curvature and gravitation. In deviating from the straight line of His causeway across the marshes of our lives we find ourselves time and again back at the old point.
Until Saul, blinded by God's light and smitten in conscience, was found praying in the street called ‘Straight’ he failed to break the lifelong circles of his pride found in his race, his religion and his scholarship. In their concentric strength he verily thought with himself that he ought to do many things contrary to the name of Jesus of Nazareth.
There is a way that seems right to a man but the legs of his thinking are unequal and in the circling eddy of his life he is swept to delusion and on death.
In refreshing contrast it is written of the Christ* ‘His legs are as pillars of marble set upon sockets of fine gold.’ He stands in the perfect balance of grace and truth; erect in all the fairness of unsullied manhood; rooted in all the essential nature of His deity. As man in all His walk, He pointed heavenward, pillard in light, marbled in beauty, adorning all doctrine of the Father. His flawless righteousness upheld entire superstructure of God's purpose of grace.
With Him there was no variableness or shadow caused by turning. His heart was large with the largeness of God, running in the way of His commandments He is the constant Christ.

As God His legs are set upon sockets of fine gold. All His steps are established in the absolute virtue of Hid Godhead. He does not bring to us merely a further glimpse of God, but rather is He God Himself in view. When we see Him, we see the Father in all the excellence of His character and in all the greatness of His way.
Luke, the beloved physician, intimate in skill with the sons of men, take the thread of Christ’s manhood and weaves it with the Spirit’s touch into the fabric of the sacred record. John the beloved disciple, intimate in counsel with the Son of God, handles with tender majesty the pure gilt strand of deity, Thus as we turn the pages of these complementary Gospels and trace the walk of Jesus Christ our Lord on earth, we find the poetic words of Solomon exquisitely fulfilled. In Luke ‘His legs are as pillars of marble. In John ‘they are set in sockets of fine gold’.

Let Luke’s vision of our Lord come first before our minds. The co-ordinating factor of all our movement is the necessity imposed of will. This was supremely so with Christ. He had power to do all things yet chose to do one thing. The will and love of God were His all-excluding passion.
‘Even Christ pleased not Himself.’ He was utterly consumed in the zeal of His Father’s house.
As man He ever moved for God.
As God He ever moved for man.
The will of His Father was His only portion and, wherever He might stand or walk, His Father’s whole delight found fullest expression in His life and work. He had accepted the stern necessity at the core of true redemption and made it His only joy for the sake of God and man.
Thus when He treads His way across the scroll of Luke, He is a man bound with the cords of sacrifice to the moment of His receiving.
Galilee, Samaria, Jericho cannot hold Him. His face is steadfast. He is set in the way that leads to Jerusalem.
Beneath the altar the fires are already kindling.
The dominance of the great necessity is complete. In His own arresting epitome He enshrines it all.
‘I must walk today and tomorrow and the day following.’
‘The third day’,
He affirms, ‘I shall be perfected.’
So He walks to a finish.
‘His legs are as pillars marble’, immovable in their direction,
incomparable in beauty, set on the earth, yet lifting men to God.

Here is the obedience of the one man by whom many would be made righteous. ‘All we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned every one to his own way’; but Christ Jesus is the man in whom God can rest again upon the earth, a man, He says, who shall fulfil all My will.
Who can fathom the immeasurable cost to Christ of meeting all the necessity of the planned atonement?
He, who would purge our sins, must himself be made sin, ere we could stand accepted in His righteousness. He who would be our peace, must first become accursed, ere we could be at one with God in Him. He, who would be our joy, must first be Man of Sorrows, ere He could bring us singing to the courts above. As the Mediator, He must needs dies to bring us into His inheritance. As Minister of the sanctuary, He must needs be touched with the feelings of our infirmities and maintain us in the house of God with His own blood.
All his life on earth from the first day to the last, in all its moments, and all its places, was utterly controlled by the need to die in the perfect appointment of God.
All his steps were mastered by the concept of ‘the tree’.
The fulfilment of the will of God in a man entails a life lived vertically. Such a man has links with God above, whilst living on the earth beneath, and thus becomes a pillar of testimony. To put it in a word, he is ‘upright’. His life is a straight line Godward, and as such he becomes the constant butt of all the lateral earthbound assertions of mankind. It is this that forms the Cross. Through the needle’s eye of that drastic intersection is the way into the Kingdom. It is the place where Jesus died. The finishing point, where the total will of God and all His grace and truth was cut across by the total will of man in all his rebellion and defiance. As Jesus walked, His every step was encountered by the crosswire of man’s selfwill. Every moment for Him was in this sense a foretaste of Calvary; God’s will in Him, cut across by human sin, human judgements and human disdain. There was a sense in which man’s will in its ultimate anti-God expression would inevitably seek to annul the will of God, expressed so perfectly in Christ. This culminating point of intersection where sin would abound its very limit, God chose of His own volition, to make His necessity. Where sin abounded, His grace would much more abound. Where man sealed his doom, there God would open His fountain of forgiveness. Where man fully expressed his enmity, there God would fully express His love. Where human alienation from the most high appeared to be irrevocable, there God would be in Christ reconciling the whole world unto Himself. Thee God of holiness is the God who cares. What righteousness demanded, His love would not fail to give. Thus does He contemplate the Cross, and count it needful for the Son to die that men might live. The crisis of His walk becomes now more apparent. No step must lag or swerve. He must walk to the third day. He must live out each moment in the principle of what He would achieve in death. Luke sums up His life later when he says, **’He went straight through doing good.’
Hesitation was totally foreign to the resolution of our Lord.
As the second man He not only walked with God,
but He accomplished all things for God.
He emerged triumphant through death and resurrection to head a new creation of human beings subject to the Father’s will.

* Song of Soloman 5:15
** Literal translation of Acts 10:38

By Geoffrey T.Bull

From “God Holds The Key” Chapter Four
Hodder and Stoughton Limited
London 1959

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