Not less the life and light of the world

Culebra - Playa de Flamenco

Fairbarn, The Revelation of Law in Scripture, on the connection between God’s particular choice and his universal purpose:

“From the time that God began to select a particular line as the channel of His revealed will to man, He made it clear that the good of all was intended. A special honour was in this respect to be conferred on the progeny of Shem, as compared with the other branches of Noah’s posterity but it was not doubtfully intimated that those other branches should participate in the benefit. When, however, the Divine purpose took effect, as it so early did, in the selection of Abraham and his seed, the end aimed at was from the first announced to be of the most comprehensive kind–namely, that in Abraham and his seed ‘all the families of the earth should be blessed.’ It was but giving expression in another form to this announcement, and breathing the spirit couched in it, when Moses, pointing to the destiny of Israel, exclaimed, ‘Rejoice, O ye nations, with His people;’and when the Psalmist prayed, ‘God be merciful to us and bless us, that thy way may be known upon earth, thy saving health among all nations’—the true prosperity of Israel being thus expressly coupled with the general diffusion of God’s knowledge and blessing, and the one sought with a view to the other. Hence also the temple, which was at once the symbol and the centre of all that God was to Israel, was designated by the prophet ‘an house of prayer for all peoples.’ And hence, yet again, and as the proper issue of the whole, Jesus—the Israel by way of eminence, the impersonation of all that Israel should have been, but never more than most imperfectly was—the One in whom at once the calling of Israel and the grand purpose of God for the good of men found their true realization—He, while appearing only as a Jew among Jews, yet was not less the life and light of the world—revealing the Father for men of every age and country, and making reconciliation for iniquity on behalf of all who should believe on His name, to the farthest limits of the earth and to the very end of time.”

Source:, Comment #1


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