The Creation in Christ

All things were made by him, and without him was not anything made that was made. In him was life, and the life was the light of men.
— John 1:3-4

Jesus made himself what he is by dying into the will of the eternal Father, through which will he was the eternal Son—thus plunging in to the fountain of his own life, the everlasting Fatherhood, and taking the Godhead of the Son. This is the life that was made in Jesus. This life, self-willed in Jesus, is the one thing that makes such life, the eternal life, the true life, possible—nay imperative, essential, to every man, woman, and child, whom the Father has sent into the outer, that he may go back into the inner world, his heart. As the self-existent life of the Father has given us being, so the willed devotion of Jesus is his power to give us eternal life like his own—to enable us to do the same. There is no life for any man, other than the same kind that Jesus has; his disciple must live by the same absolute devotion of his will to the Father’s. Because we come out of the divine nature, which chooses to be divine, we must choose to be divine, to be one with God, or we perish. While God is the father of his children, Jesus is the father of their sonship. We are not and cannot become true sons without our will willing his will. It was the will of Jesus to be the thing God willed and meant him, that made him the true son of God. So with us: we must be the sons we are. We are not made to be what we cannot help being; sons and daughters are not after such fashion! We must be sons and daughters in our will. And we can be such only by choosing God for the father he is, and doing his will. Therein lies human bliss. The working out of this our salvation must be pain, but the eternal form of the will of God in and for us, is intensity of bliss.

Commentary
 

by James House

For today's commentary, a collection of related George MacDonald quotes:

"He is come to free us from everything that makes life less than bliss essential. No other could be a gospel worthy of the God of men." (from Hope of the Gospel)

"Only, at the root of all human bliss lies repentance." (from Thomas Wingfold, Curate)

"Having now for many years cared only for the will of God, he was full of joy. For the will of the Father is the root of all his children's gladness, of all their laughter and merriment. The child that loves the will of the Father, is at the heart of things; his will is with the motion of the eternal wheels; the eyes of all those wheels are opened upon him, and he knows whence he came. Happy and fearless and hopeful, he knows himself the child of him from whom he came, and his peace and joy break out in light. He rises and shines. Bliss creative and energetic there is none other, on earth or in heaven, than the will of the Father." (from There & Back)

"Endlessly dreary would the story be, were there no Life living by its own will, no perfect Will, one with an almighty heart, no Love in whom we live and move and have our being. Offer me an eternity in all things else after my own imagination, but without a perfect Father, and I say, no; let me die, even as the unbelieving would have it. Not believing in the Father of Jesus, they are right in not desiring to live. Heartily do I justify them therein. For all this talk and disputation about immortality, wherein is regarded only the continuance of consciousness beyond what we call death, it is to me, with whatever splendor of intellectual coruscation it be accompanied, but little better than a foolish babble, the crackling of thorns under a pot. Apart from Himself, God forbid there should be any immortality. If it could be proved apart from Him, then apart from Him it could be, and would be infinite damnation. It is an impossibility, and were but an unmitigated evil. And if it be impossible without Him, it can not be believed without Him: if it could be proved without Him, the belief so gained would be an evil. Only with the knowledge of the Father of Christ, did the endlessness of being become a doctrine of bliss to men. If He be the first life, the Author of his own, to speak after the language of men, and the origin and source of all other life, it can be only by knowing Him that we can know whether we shall live or die. Nay more, far more!—the knowledge of Him by such innermost contact as is possible only between creator and created, and possible only when the created has aspired to be one with the will of the creator, such knowledge and such alone is life to the created; it is the very life, that alone for the sake of which God created us. If we are one with God in heart, in righteousness, in desire, no death can touch us, for we are life, and the garment of immortality, the endless length of days which is but the mere shadow of the eternal, follows as a simple necessity: He is not the God of the dead, or of the dying, but of the essentially alive. Without this inmost knowledge of Him, this oneness with Him, we have no life in us, for it is life, and that for the sake of which all this outward show of things, and our troubled condition in the midst of them, exists. All that is mighty, grand, harmonious, therefore in its own nature true, is. If not, then dearly I thank the grim Death, that I shall die and not live. Thus undeceived, my only terror would be that the unbelievers might be but half right, and there might be a life, so-called, beyond the grave without a God."  (Paul Faber, Surgeon)

"Then I did see that if I had had nothing to do with my own courage, it was quite time I had something to do with it. If a man had no hand in his own nature, character, being, what could he be better than a divine puppet -- a happy creature, possibly -- a heavenly animal, like the grand horses and lions of the book of the Revelation -- but not one of the gods that the sons of God, the partakers of the divine nature, are? For this end came the breach in my natural courage -- that I might repair it from the will and power God had given me, that I might have a hand in the making of my own courage, in the creating of myself. Therefore I must see to it." (from The Marquis of Lossie)

""For my part," said the curate, "I think I COULD believe in a God who did but his imperfect best: in one all power, and not all goodness, I could not believe. But suppose that the design of God involved the perfecting of men as the CHILDREN OF GOD—'I said ye are gods,'—that he would have them partakers of his own blessedness in kind—be as himself;—suppose his grand idea could not be contented with creatures perfect ONLY by his gift, so far as that should reach, and having no willing causal share in the perfection, that is, partaking not at all of God's individuality and free-will and choice of good; then suppose that suffering were the only way through which the individual could be set, in separate and self-individuality, so far apart from God, that it might WILL, and so become a partaker of his singleness and freedom;—and suppose that this suffering must be and had been initiated by God's taking his share, and that the infinitely greater share;—suppose next, that God saw the germ of a pure affection, say in your friend and his wife, but saw also that it was a germ so imperfect and weak that it could not encounter the coming frosts and winds of the world without loss and decay, while, if they were parted now for a few years, it would grow and strengthen and expand, to the certainty of an infinitely higher and deeper and keener love through the endless ages to follow—so that by suffering should come, in place of contented decline, abortion, and death, a troubled birth of joyous result in health and immortality..." (from Thomas Wingfold, Curate)

"He is come to free us from everything that makes life less than bliss essential. No other could be a gospel worthy of the God of men." (from The Hope of the Gospel)