The Divine-Human Family
by E.H. “Jack” Sequeira
I do not ask that you should comprehend this study, but I do ask that whatever the Word says may be received and believed; because it is only in that way that we can do anything with this study. The Jews lost one of the very best lessons — in fact, the lesson of all lessons that Christ endeavored to teach them — because [John 6:52]:
[they] began to argue sharply among themselves, “How can this man give us his flesh to eat?”
And the same spirit would shut up our minds and hearts to the lesson of this study.
...And in Christ you have been brought to fullness.
And the special thought of our study at this time will be the further development of that idea expressed in Hebrews 7:9-10:
One might even say that Levi, who collects the tenth, paid the tenth through Abraham, because when Melchizedek met Abraham, Levi was still in the body of his ancestor.
Our previous study was to learn concerning the Head of this divine-human family. Levi paid tithes in Abraham, for he was yet in the body of his father when Melchisedec met him. What did we do in him, the father of this spiritual family, this divine-human family? John 1:14a:
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us.
I wish to read three or four texts to show that according to the general tenor of the subject and at the same time following more strictly the original text just expressed.
To express the general idea that God was manifested in the flesh among men, we have the text in Matthew’s gospel, first chapter, 23rd verse:
“The virgin will conceive and give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel” (which means “God with us”).
But here are other texts where the rendering follows the same original and translates it “in us.” 1 John 4:13:
This is how we know that we live in him and he in us: He has given us of his Spirit.
Not among us, but “in us.” 1 John 3:24:
The one who keeps God’s commands lives in him, and he in them. And this is how we know that he lives in us: We know it by the Spirit he gave us.
...That all of them may be one, Father, just as you are in me and I am in you. May they also be in us so that the world may believe that you have sent me.
In all these texts you will observe that it would destroy the whole meaning to say “among us,” and while it does not destroy the meaning in John 1:14a to say:
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us...
yet it seems to me to lose sight of the very best of the meaning. “He was made flesh and dwelt in us.” That is to say that Jesus Christ was the representative of humanity, and all humanity centered in him, and when he took flesh, he took humanity. He took humanity and when he became the father of this divine-human family, and he became the father by joining himself in this way to humanity, and the flesh which he took and in which he dwelt was our flesh, and we were there in him, and he in us, just as Levi was there in Abraham; and just as what Abraham did, Levi did in Abraham, so what Jesus Christ in the flesh did, we did in him. And this is the most glorious truth in Christianity. It is Christianity itself, it is the very core and life and heart of Christianity. He took our flesh, and our humanity was found in him, and what he did, humanity did in him.
Now, let us follow the development of that idea further. Ephesians 1:3:
Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ.
That is, when he put all those spiritual blessings upon Christ when he was here in the flesh, he put those blessings upon us, because he was made flesh and dwelt in us. We were there in him, and the time when we were blessed with all spiritual blessings in Christ was when those blessings were put upon Jesus Christ who dwelt in us. The only question for us is, Have we enjoyed, have we received, the blessings that he gave us in him? Fourth verse:
For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight.
When he chose Jesus Christ, he chose us in him, and we were chosen before the foundation of the world in him; not you and I as individuals chosen above other individuals, and our salvation personally assured as distinct from others, but everyone in him was chosen. Everyone in him was chosen. Every member of this divine-human family was chosen when he was chosen, because we were there in him, and because he was made flesh and dwelt in us.
...He predestined us for adoption to sonship through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will — to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves.
When the Father said to his Son, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased,” he said the same words to every son in this divine-human family. Mark 1:11:
And a voice came from heaven: “You are my Son, whom I love; with you I am well pleased.”
Was he accepted? So are we in him. Are we accepted because of anything that we are, or have been, or can be? No, but we were accepted in him, in the beloved. It is so, in him, accepted.
And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession — to the praise of his glory.
Did he redeem the inheritance? Did he buy back the inheritance? Did he pay the price? Did the thorns rest upon his brow in token of the fact that he bore the curse of the earth, and that he bore the suffering for the earth, and that he was removing the curse from the earth, and that he was bringing back the inheritance? We obtained the inheritance in him, and so he obtained the inheritance and redeemed the inheritance, and bought back the inheritance. We obtained it, because we were there in him, and because he was made flesh and dwelt in us. Ephesians 2:10:
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus...
When the new man, the divine-human man, the man Christ Jesus, was created, we were created in him. All members of this divine-human family were created in him.
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
Where did he prepare the good works which we are to do? Why, in him. What are we to do? To do the good works that God has prepared, that we should do them, so the scripture says in 1 John 2:6:
Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did...
not so much as an obligation, but as a consequence. Why? Inasmuch as God prepared beforetime the good works for us to do, why, “whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did,” not as an obligation, but as a consequence, he “must live as Jesus did,” because he is in him.
So we read in Colossians 2:6:
So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live your lives in him,....
In him. Now we were created in Christ Jesus for good works, and God has prepared those good works beforetime for us to do, and how shall we do those good works which he has prepared for us to do? Why, live our lives in him. Let us read Ephesians 2:6:
And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus....
And the fifth verse shows that it is together with Christ, because it says,
[God, who is rich in mercy] made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions — it is by grace you have been saved.
“God made us alive with Christ.” “God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus.” He had seated us in heaven in Jesus the Messiah.
He was made flesh and dwelt in us, and with that same flesh of humanity he went to heaven, and, when he had purged our sins, sat down on the right hand of the throne of the Majesty on high. When he went to the throne of the Majesty on high, we were seated there in him. Humanity is in heaven. We, our humanity, our flesh, is there, and we are seated there in him, because he is the Father of this family, and because every son is in him just as Levi was in Abraham, and when Abraham paid tithes, Levi paid tithes in him, although he was not born yet. And when Jesus Christ went to heaven, every child of his went there in him. When he took his seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty on high, every child was seated there in him; thank the Lord!
Every one of these truths is worthy of an hour’s study. The whole thought is overwhelming: what God has done for us, the human family! What he has done to bring us back to him, to restore his image in us, to redeem us, the condescension of Jesus Christ to come here and dwell in us! To take our flesh, our sinful flesh, to unite himself to the human family, to become the Father of the family, to join himself with us by birth, in those closest ties, never to be broken! That is the love of God in Jesus Christ! And he did not simply come here as an outsider, and do something, but he came here and became what we are; he dwelt in us! He gathered together in himself all humanity, and he invited the Father to treat him as the representative of humanity, and so what he did, we did in him, and are receiving the benefits of it. What we have done he did not do; but he was treated as if he had done it, and he received the benefits of that — completely changing places with us! That was the love of God in Jesus Christ.
We read again in Romans 6:6-8:
For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body ruled by sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be slaves to sin — because anyone who has died has been set free from sin. Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.
The death he died [and we died with him], he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus.
He died, and we died with him.
2 Corinthians 5:14 expresses the same idea:
For Christ’s love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, and therefore all died.
Read it in Hebrews 2:9:
But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.
How could he taste death for everyone? Because everyone was in him; because he clothed his divinity with humanity; because humanity was all centered in him.
Notice how many ways this is touched upon in the Scriptures. Hebrews 4:15:
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are — yet he did not sin.“He was tempted in all points like as we are”; the temptation of humanity met in him. Isaiah 53:6:
We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
Everything met in him. 2 Corinthians 5:21:
God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.
“Made him to be sin,” not a sinner, but “made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin.” He took it all, he bore all our sins. See it in this same 53rd chapter of Isaiah 53:4-5:
Surely he took up our pain and bore our suffering, yet we considered him punished by God, stricken by him, and afflicted. But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.
Why? Because our humanity bore those wounds, and we received those wounds in him.
See how this thought is further brought out in Romans 7:4:
So, my brothers and sisters, you also died to the law through the body of Christ, that you might belong to another, to him who was raised from the dead, in order that we might bear fruit for God.
Notice the form of the expression, — “you died.” It refers to a definite point of past time when this thing all took place. Now notice further on that idea. Hebrews 10:5:
Therefore, when Christ came into the world, he said: “Sacrifice and offering you did not desire, but a body you prepared for me....”
He was made flesh, and dwelt in us; so we were the body, and he put us on, in order that we might put him on. Romans 13:14 says:
Rather, clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the flesh.
But we never could have put him on, had he not first put us on. But, Hebrews 10:10:
And by that will, we have been made holy through the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all.
Now how was it possible that we should be made or were made, dead to the law through the body of Christ? Because he was clothed with a body, he was made flesh and dwelt in us, and we were there in him, and that body of flesh was a body of sinful flesh, so we may be sure it was like ours [Romans 8:3]:
For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh....
So when he was offered, he paid the penalty of the law. But that body was our flesh, and we were in him. And by the offering of the body of Christ, we became dead to the law through that body, because humanity (humanity in which divinity was enshrined) was paying the price. Divinity and Humanity were joined in the body of Christ, and the penalty was paid. Isaiah 53:6:
We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to our own way; and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
“The Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all” and we were all there in him receiving the punishment. So we became dead to the law. We were made dead to the law at a definite point in past time. We were made dead to the law through the body of Christ.
Let us read further in Romans 6:7:
...Because anyone who has died has been set free from sin.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
And when one has died, one has paid the penalty. So that the one who died is freed from sin, and the whole choice with us lies just here: Shall we prefer to die for ourselves? We were there in him and received the punishment and paid the penalty; shall we avail ourselves of that fact? Or do we prefer to pay the debt ourselves and die ourselves apart from him? We can do so, but “anyone who has died has been set free from sin.” The eighth verse of Romans 6:
Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him.
So if we accept that fact and make it our own, that we died with him, that we died in him, it is thus that we receive life in him, and through him.
Read this same idea in Galatians 2:20:
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.
I read that same idea in Colossians 2:11:
In him you were also circumcised with a circumcision not performed by human hands. Your whole self ruled by the flesh was put off when you were circumcised by Christ....
“In him you were also circumcised.” Do you not see this idea, that everything that he did, we did in him? And do you not see that the only question to be settled is: Are we in him? That is all. Are we in him? If so, just as soon as we come into the family, we avail ourselves of all the rights and privileges of the family. Just as soon as we come into the family, we come into possession of all that the Father of the family did.
It is feebly illustrated when children are born into the earthly family. They have certain rights in all that the father has done, represented by his property. The child has certain rights and claims, and the law recognizes them. It is a feeble illustration, and yet is in the line of thought, because when we are born into the divine-human family, and become really in him, by our own choice, it is not simply true that we have a right to certain things that he has, and has done, but all that he has done, and all that he has, belong to each member of the family. Is it any wonder that the apostle John broke out and said [1 John 3:1a]:
See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!
Then, as sons and daughters, as members of the family, all that he did is ours; all that he has is ours. Everything comes to us just as soon as we are born into the family, just as soon as we become the children of God.
The next question that arises is: But what about the Christian experience on any such basis as this? It is all in him. If we do it, it is in him; if we strive, it is in him. It is all in him, and Christian experience may be summed up in this, — what we did in him, then, without any choice on our part, he is to do now in us by our choice. Then we will have plenty of Christian experience of the right kind. All this that we did in him was without our choice of consent, without asking us if we would like it done, he came and by taking our flesh, and dwelling in us, he did it in us and we did it in him without even asking for it, without any choice, without any effort on our part whatever.
Now his desire is that, what was done then in him — without any choice or will on our part — he shall now do in us by our choice and by our will, and our choice is all the time to be exercised on this point: Shall I remain in him? Shall I continue to choose him, and be in him? That is Christian experience. That is the experience set forth by the apostle Paul in his letter to the Galatians [1:15-16a]:
But when God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me by his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son in me....
It is now a good time to say that this union by which we are in him is of that nature that it is impossible except as he also is in us and so reveal His Son “in me.”
See this thought in 1 Timothy 1:16:
But for that very reason I was shown mercy so that in me, the worst of sinners, Christ Jesus might display his immense patience as an example for those who would believe in him and receive eternal life.
Jesus Christ showed all his long-suffering, his immense patience. It was shown when Jesus Christ was here, and he desired that the same thing should be shown in the apostle Paul. See this thought in 1 John 4:2-4:
This is how you can recognize the Spirit of God: Every spirit that acknowledges that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is from God, but every spirit that does not acknowledge Jesus is not from God. This is the spirit of the antichrist, which you have heard is coming and even now is already in the world. You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.
Now it is not everyone who acknowledges that Jesus Christ did come in the flesh, but every one who acknowledges, who is acknowledging, that Jesus Christ is come in his own flesh. But you say, It cannot mean that. We will stop a moment. Every spirit that acknowledges Jesus is of God. When Jesus Christ was here in the flesh, every time the devils met him, they recognized him as Jesus Christ in the flesh. They said, “We know who you are: the holy one of God.” Were they of God? Does it meet this idea to say every one who acknowledges that Jesus Christ is come, that he did come? The devils acknowledged that very thing, and that is the very kind of faith that is being pushed upon the people now. The devils believe and tremble, but they do not believe unto righteousness, and believing unto righteousness is the gospel, is “Christ in you the hope of glory,” and everyone who is acknowledging that Christ is come in the flesh is one who is acknowledging that Jesus Christ is in him, the hope of glory. That spirit is of God. Every spirit that does not acknowledge that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is not of God, and it is that spirit of antichrist, and it does not make any difference where you meet it or when you meet it. Every spirit that does not acknowledge that Jesus Christ is come in the flesh is an opposer; he is antichrist and is of the spirit that opposes, and it is the very essence of antichrist to deny that fact which is the basis, in the first place, of Christianity, and the second place is the life and the all of every individual’s Christianity, and that is that Christ is in him, the hope of glory.