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created that are in heaven and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones or dominions, principalities or powers; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and by him they all consist' (Col. i. 15, 16).
And what says John ? _He was the beginning of the creation of God' (Rev. iii. 14).
The agnostic evolutionist, on looking back to the origin of things, sees no visible God above and behind them, and therefore speaks of the great First Cause as "unknown.” ' It is true that God in Himself is the Great Unknown, for ‘no man knoweth the Father, save the Son,' But the Great Unknown is not "Unknowable," for • He that knoweth the Son knoweth the Father also.' 'He that hath seen me,' said Jesus, ‘hath seen the Father.' Now, the Son could have made these glorious declarations to Adam in Eden just as well as to the disciples in the days of His flesh, for even then He was the revelation of the unseen Father. No man hath seen God at any time; the only begotten Son who is in the bosom of the Father he hath declared him.' He declared and manifested the Father from the beginning to both angels and
men. Nature could never have been an adequate and satisfying manifestation of God, and a BookRevelation like the Bible could never have made Him known as He required to be known. The revelation needed was Personal, ay ! and the personal revelation and manifestation of God was a necessity apart altogether from “the accident of sin.” Dr. Fairbairn is right—more so than he is aware of-when he says, “If God is to become the real Father of man and man the real son of God, then all the energies, loves, and ideals of the unseen Paternity must be incarnated and organized in a visible Sonship, that they may become creative of a mankind which shall realize the filial ideal." He who was originally 'in the form of God,' was 'the image of the Invisible,' or in other words the Invisible brought into view. The Son of God became Man before Creation, that He might reveal the invisible Father to all His children, for only thus could He become the visible "Image" and "Form" of God. When this glorious fact comes to be clearly apprehended and taught by the Christian Church, the agnostic sons of science and many others may be led to the feet of the God-Man
the Revealer of the Great Unknown and the Creator of the universe, and find in Him the crown and consummation of creation, the unity of all the sciences, and 'the Alpha and Omega' of all things, for 'it hath pleased the Father that in him should all fulness dwell.'
The fall of man necessitated the Incarnation of the Son of God, if the guilty race was to be redeemed. But when the Creator became the Redeemer, He did not become “Man, as is generally believed. There is no statement to that effect in the New Testament. What it says is this, that He who was originally in the form of God' was made in the likeness of sinful flesh' (which is quite another matter)—and "for the suffering of death.' By that suffering He was 'made perfect,' both as Man and Saviour, and ascended out of the flesh and blood condition into that which is spiritual. And now-as the Perfect Man and the Head of a new race-He is the Re-Creator of humanity and the Author of eternal salvation to all who believingly accept Him as their Saviour and Lord.
If the reader should desire to enter more fully into these great and important matters, let him carefully study the first and eighth chapters of our book, entitled The Visible God, and our Relation to Him in Creation and Redemption (Hodder and Stoughton).
See Note A.
THE NEW THE OLD AND THE RENEWED
In the beginning, when the Earth had been Divinely prepared for the advent of man, all things were new.
The Lord God looked upon the finished creation, and pronounced it 'very good. As the product of infinite wisdom and almighty power, it was a magnificent manifestation of the nature and character of the great Creator. Whatever the method was by which He brought all things into existence, it is certain that creation was created, and that in all its parts it was and is a glorious revelation of God. Over the beautiful and fertile world in which everything was fitted to fulfil its intended purpose, His complacent smile rested with constant benediction. He regarded with satisfied delight the orb He had made, and every object and creature placed upon its bosom.
And not only were all things new when originated, but they were also meant to continue new for ever. There was
no inherent element of disorder or discord in material things, out of which universal disorganization and decay were certain to issue. Matter was pure, and although it did not contain within itself the promise and potency of perpetual fertility and loveliness, it
a suitable medium for the constant and everlasting manifestation of Divine natural objects sown or planted in the earth were capable not only of growth and development into perfection, but also of endless reproduction and increase. Of all living creatures we are told that God blessed them, and said, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth.' There is no reason to suppose that they were immortal, and therefore they would have died even though sin had never existed, but death had no sting to them. Being unable to anticipate its coming, they had no dread of its approach, and but for the corruption which man brought into all earthly things, it is more than likely that death when it came to the lower creatures would have brought little or no pain.