THE THEOLOGY OF EVERYTHING

BY:  CHIP BROGDEN

LESSONS 1-20

 

LESSONS

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1

WHAT IS THE THEOLOGY OF EVERYTHING?

Quiz

1

2

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THE FIRST UNIVERSAL SPIRITUAL PRINCIPLE

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3

3

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THE SECOND UNIVERSAL SPIRITUAL PRINCIPLE

Quiz

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THE FIRST INDISPUTABLE FACT OF GOD’S PURPOSE

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5

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THE SECOND INDISPUTABLE FACT OF GOD’S PURPOSE

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THE THIRD INDISPUTABLE FACT OF GOD’S PURPOSE

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THE FIRST EXPRESSION OF GOD’S PURPOSE

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9

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THE SECOND EXPRESSION OF GOD’S PURPOSE

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THE THIRD EXPRESSION OF GOD’S PURPOSE

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“HE MUST INCREASE” – THE BEGINNING

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“HE MUST INCREASE” – THE PROCESS

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“HE MUST INCREASE” – THE GOAL

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“HE MUST INCREASE” – THE INSTRUMENT

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BIBLICAL EXAMPLES OF THE INCREASING

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“I MUST DECREASE” – THE BEGINNING

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“I MUST DECREASE” – THE PROCESS

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“I MUST DECREASE” – THE GOAL

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“I MUST DECREASE” – THE INSTRUMENT

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BIBLICAL EXAMPLES OF THE DECREASING

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27

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SUMMARY AND PRACTICAL APPLICATION

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FINAL EXAM

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THE NEXT STEP

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LESSON ONE

WHAT IS THE THEOLOGY OF EVERYTHING?

Scientists around the world are diligently searching for a single formula that would explain the mysteries of the universe. No one can be sure that there is such a thing, but if it exists, it would be the DNA of our creation: a simple little code that governs everything from galaxies to sub-atomic matter. Scientists call this The Theory of Everything and they hope to discover it within a few years. If they do discover it, it would be one of the greatest scientific breakthroughs in history.

A discovery of even greater significance can be seen in the Bible and, like The Theory of Everything, there is a verse of scripture that does provide us with a single formula – a simple code, or a DNA if you will – that governs all things: and not just the visible universe, but the invisible world of the spirit.

For purposes of our discussion and to differentiate it from The Theory of Everything we refer to this as The Theology of Everything.

John 3:30 is the key that unlocks the mystery and gathers together all the truths, revelations and teachings of scripture into one simple little statement. In the authorized King James version of the Bible it contains just seven little words. Yet within those seven little words we can see the Theology of Everything:

“He must increase, but I must decrease.”

The man who uttered these words was John the Baptist. Jesus said that John was the greatest prophet – greater than Moses, greater than Elijah – even though Johndid no miracles. So what made John the Baptist the greatest prophet? It was his insight into the person of Jesus Christ as the fulfillment of God’s eternal purpose: and this is why he said, “He must increase, but I must decrease”.

John spoke those words in response to his disciples who complained that Jesus was getting a larger following than he was. On the surface, of course, we could take these words literally and simply interpret them in the context of John’s deference to Jesus. But, if we take the statement and apply it to ourselves, and make it personal, it takes on a prophetic significance: Who must increase? Jesus must increase. Who must decrease? You and I must decrease.

If we take these seven simple words and make them our confession, and personalize them, and apply them to ourselves, then something dramatic happens. We learn that everything past, present, and future can be explained by this. This explains everything God has done, everything God is doing and everything God will do. This explains everything God has said, everything God is saying and everything God will say. And not only that, this explains everything you have gone through, everything you are going through and everything you will go through.

Now is it really possible that seven little words – one tiny fragment of scripture – can really answer all these questions? Yes… provided we discover the spiritual principles behind John 3:30 and consider them in the context of the entire record of scripture.

In our next lesson we’ll discuss The First Universal Spiritual Principle.

QUIZ

Lesson 1 – What Is The Theology of Everything

1. The Theory of Everything is best described as

a) a scientific explanation for everything in the universe

b) a religious explanation for everything in the Church

c) a medical explanation for everything wrong with you

2. The Theology of Everything is best described as

a) a religious explanation for everything in the Church

b) a simple way to explain God and His ways

c) a philosophy for merging all religions into one

3. Although The Theology of Everything is supported by many Scriptures, the single verse that best describes it can be found in

a) John 3:16

b) Genesis 1:1

c) John 3:30

4. The “Seven Simple Words” that best describe The Theology of Everything is

a) We must stop and smell the roses.

b) Early to bed and early to rise.

c) He must increase, but I must decrease.

5. If we apply it to ourselves in a personal way, The Theology of Everything can help us better understand

a) everything past, present, and future

b) what God has done, is doing, and will do

c) everything we have gone through and will go through

d) all the above

LESSON TWO

THE FIRST UNIVERSAL SPIRITUAL PRINCIPLE

Truth is the truth, and truth remains the truth whether anyone knows it, understands it, or agrees with it! So, when we talk about universal spiritual principles, the beautiful thing about these principles is they do not require our cooperation or our permission in order to operate. We can’t add to them, we can’t take away from them. Their strength and their power is intrinsic, for they are established by God Himself.

Even in the natural order of things God has established laws that don’t require us to know anything about them, to understand them, or to agree with them in order to function. For example, the Law of Gravity brings objects down to the ground. Now it doesn’t matter if you know about gravity, if you understand gravity, or if you agree with gravity! In fact you can disbelieve gravity and exert all your willpower against gravity. Nevertheless, we are held firmly in place by this invisible force.

Now something infinitely more powerful than gravity is at work! When the Bible says “He must increase, but I must decrease” this is not just an aspiration or a wish or an hope. It doesn’t say “He might increase and I might decrease”! The presence of the word must gives us certainty and finality. These are spiritual principles, spiritual laws, spiritual truths that cannot be altered. It must be so – therefore it is so!

So the first universal spiritual principle we find in John 3:30 is He must increase and if Jesus must increase then He will increase and He is increasing.

You don’t have to understand it right now – you might not even agree with it. But the process is at work in every man, every woman, every boy, and every girl. This process is at work in creation itself. It is a process in which Jesus is increasing. It must be so and therefore it is so! No one and nothing can change it, interrupt it, or stop it. It is irresistible.

So the first universal spiritual principle is “He must increase”. But there is another principle here as well, so in Lesson 3 we will discuss The Second Universal Spiritual Principle.

QUIZ

Lesson 2 – The First Universal Spiritual Principle

1. A good example of a natural law that God established and functions whether we agree with it, understand it, or even acknowledge it is

a) Murphy’s Law

b) the Law of Gravity

c) The Law of the Jungle

2. Just like the Law of Gravity, spiritual principles are established by God Himself, and so

a) they must be confessed in order to get them to work

b) we must understand them to get them to work

c) they work with or without our cooperation

3. The First Universal Spiritual Principle is found in the first half of John 3:30, and says that

a) I must increase

b) He (Jesus) must increase

c) He (Jesus) might increase

4. Since the Bible says Jesus MUST increase, we must conclude that

a) Jesus will increase, and He is increasing

b) the Bible is only expressing a hope, not a truth

c) this verse does not apply to us today

5. Since Jesus MUST increase, we can rest assured that

a) Jesus will continue to increase

b) no one and nothing can stop Jesus from increasing

c) this spiritual truth cannot be altered or changed

d) all of the above

LESSON THREE

THE SECOND UNIVERSAL SPIRITUAL PRINCIPLE

If you have spent some time studying John 3:30, by now you probably can guess what the second universal spiritual principle is: “I must decrease” and, that decreasing is just as important and just as sure as the increasing. Just as Jesus must increase, in the same way, we must decrease.

On the one half of the equation we have the Law of Increase, which states, “He must increase”. On the other hand we have the Law of Decrease, which says “I must decrease”.

The Law of Increase tells us that everything God has done, is doing, and will do is for the purpose of increasing Jesus. The Law of Decrease tells us that everything we have been through, everything we are going through and everything we will go through is for the purpose of decreasing self.

These two laws – the Law of Increase and the Law of Decrease – create kind of a holy tension and a balance. People of other religions and philosophies have tried to glimpse this balance and they have attempted to explain it in terms of male and female, or yin and yang, or light and darkness; and the have observed something that is true, but, they are powerless to explain exactly what it is or why it is. They can’t really explain it or understand it because it cannot be explained apart from the revelation of Jesus Christ. Behind this process of increasing and decreasing is not an impersonal force but a living personality!

The Law of Increase says, “He must increase”. We call this a positive law, because it adds something. The Law of Decrease says, “I must decrease”. We call this a negative law, because it takes something away from us. These two laws are working in harmony together: as Jesus is increased, I am decreased; and as I am decreased, Jesus is increased.

So using John 3:30 as a reference point, we now want to apply these spiritual principles to the idea that God has a purpose and a will, so in our next lesson we will begin discussing The Three Indisputable Facts of God’s Purpose.

QUIZ

Lesson 3 – The Second Universal Spiritual Principle

1. The Second Universal Spiritual Principle is found in the second half of John 3:30, and says that

a) He must decrease

b) I might decrease

c) I must decrease

2. The Law of Increase in John 3:30 tells us that

a) God wants us to be prosperous

b) the more you give the more your receive

c) Jesus must increase

3. The Law of Decrease in John 3:30 tells us that

a) Self must decrease

b) the poor get poorer

c) if you sow sparingly you’ll reap sparingly

4. Since both Universal Spiritual Principles work together to create a “holy balance”, we have to remember that

a) Jesus must increase but we don’t have to decrease

b) both the increasing and the decreasing is optional

c) both the increasing and the decreasing are necessary

5. The Second Universal Spiritual Principle is referred to as a “negative law” because

a) no one likes to decrease

b) something is taken away from us

c) dying to Self is hard work

LESSON FOUR

THE FIRST INDISPUTABLE FACT OF GOD’S PURPOSE

In Ephesians chapter one verses 9-11 we find three indisputable facts of God’s purpose and in this lesson we will look at the first one. Ephesians 1:9-11 says this: “Having made known unto us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He hath purposed in Himself: That in the dispensation of the fullness of times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in Him: In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of Him who works all things after the counsel of His own will.”

So the first indisputable fact of God’s purpose is: God has a will. God has a purpose!

Most of the world’s philosophy, most of the world’s religion, is based on man’s attempt to answer these questions:

1) Who am I?

2) Where did I come from?

3) Why am I here? and…

4) Where am I going?

But these questions can only be answered when we consider them in the light of God’s ultimate will and His purpose. He created nothing by accident! In Isaiah 45:18 it says that the Lord created the heavens and He formed the earth, He established it and He did not create it in vain.

In other words the earth did not just suddenly appear by accident! God had a specific purpose in mind when He created the earth. A design implies a Designer.  A creation implies a Creator. A plan implies a Planner. And a purpose implies a Person who decided upon that purpose. There is a purpose, a reason for being. There is a reason for creating, a reason for living: a purpose which is larger than us, yet it includes us.

You are a living miracle, you are not an accident! You were not created in vain! Just like the earth, you too were formed to be inhabited by God Himself. There is a will, a purpose, a reason, a goal towards which God is moving. He has an intention. He is seeking a result! God is not floating along aimlessly towards everything in general and nothing in particular. He is moving towards something. God wants us to know His will so that we can enter into His will and work in harmony with Him, cooperating together. Why not just do what He wants? Why bother to reveal it to us at all? Because you and I are part of that will and part of that purpose.

So the first indisputable fact of God’s purpose is: God has a will. In our next lesson we will discuss The Second Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose.

QUIZ

Lesson 4 – The First Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose

1. Ephesians 1:9 says that God has made known to us the mystery of His Will. If we believe this to be true, then we have no choice but to conclude that

a) no one can be sure what His Will really is

b) God DOES have a Will and He wants us to know what it is

c) only deeply spiritual Christians can understand His Will

2. The First Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose is

a) everything is determined by cause and effect

b) God has a Will and a Purpose

c) man is in control of his own destiny

3. The “Big Questions” most philosophies and religions attempt to answer are

a) who am I and where did I come from

b) how did I get here and where am I going

c) all of the above

4. If there really is a Purpose for everything, then there must be

a) an amazing series of coincidences that explain it

b) a Person who decided what that purpose should be

c) a scientific way to figure it out eventually

5. If God can do anything He wants at any time, why would He bother to reveal His Will and

His Ways to us?

a) because we are part of His Purpose

b) because He can’t do anything without our permission

c) because He needs our help to make it happen

LESSON FIVE

THE SECOND INDISPUTABLE FACT OF GOD’S PURPOSE

If you turn back in your Bible to the book of Ephesians chapter one, and look at verses nine, ten, and eleven, we’re discussing the three indisputable facts of God’s purpose, and the first thing we learn is that God has a will.

Verse nine says that “He has made known unto us the mystery of His will according to His good pleasure which He has purposed in Himself.” So first of all, God has a will, God has a purpose.

Now the second indisputable fact of God’s purpose tells us what that will is. What is the will of God? In verse ten it tells us: “That in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven, and which are on earth; even in Him.”

So what is God’s will? What is God’s purpose? God’s purpose is to gather together in one, all things in Christ.

God only has one need. One desire. One thing that He wants to accomplish, and once we see this we’ll find everything else is peripheral to this one thing.

What does God want to accomplish? God’s ultimate will and desire, His purpose, is to sum up everything into Christ so that Christ will be All in all. Now you might call this the “cosmic will”, or the “universal will”, or the “mind of the Spirit”, or the “prime directive”, or simply, the “one thing”. However you choose to describe it, this is what God is after: – it is His will, His desire, His purpose, His heart – “that in all things Jesus Christ would have the pre-eminence. (Colossians 1:18b) A place of ascendancy, a place of lordship over all things.

So, the second indisputable fact of God’s purpose is: That God will gather together in one all things in Christ.

Now it’s easier to see how John 3:30 fits into God’s will and God’s purpose. How will God gather together in one all things in Christ? He will do it by increasing Jesus and decreasing everything else.

In our next lesson we’ll discuss The Third Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose.

QUIZ

Lesson 5 – The Second Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose

1. By reading Ephesians 1:10 we learn that God’s Ultimate Will and Purpose is

a) to gather together in one all translations of the Bible

b) to gather together in one all religions and denominations

c) to gather together in one all things in Christ

2. The Second Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose can be best summed up as

a) “All Things In Creation”

b) “All Things in Christ”

c) “All Sinners In Church”

3. Although Paul does not really say what he means by “the dispensation of the fullness of times”, he is probably referring to

a) the Old Testament

b) the New Testament

c) some point in eternity future

4. It’s easier to understand how God will gather together all things in Christ is we understand what John 3:30 is really saying: that

a) God will increase the Church and decrease the world

b) God will increase missionaries and decrease sinners

c) God will increase Jesus and decrease everything else.

5. At the center of God’s Purpose is Christ, so everything God has done, is doing, and will do

a) is somehow related to His Purpose

b) is increasing Jesus

c) is gathering us together into Christ

d) all the above

LESSON SIX

THE THIRD INDISPUTABLE FACT OF GOD’S PURPOSE

If you will, turn in your Bible once more to Ephesians chapter one and look again at verses nine, ten, and eleven. We are talking about the three indisputable facts of God’s purpose. Let’s review them quickly. First, God has a will. Second, God’s will is “All Things in Christ”.

Now the third indisputable fact of God’s purpose is found in verse eleven: “In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will.”

What a powerful statement that is! Look at the last half of that last phrase: “…Who works all things according to the counsel of His will.” In other words everything which is spoken by God, revealed by God, or done by God is connected in some way to this one thing, this one purpose. He is working all things after the counsel of His own will, and we know that His will is “All things in Christ”.

If we read and apply ourselves to the scriptures – the books of Moses, the Law, the Prophets, the Gospels, the book of Acts, the Epistles, and the book of Revelation – we will eventually see one thing taking shape and coming into being. It is this one continuous unbroken thread of God’s will which weaves it’s way throughout all of God’s dealings with man for the past six thousand years; having it’s beginning in eternity past and reaching it’s conclusion in eternity future towards one thing.

But more importantly we see that everything is moving in relationship towards God’s end. It’s the reason why God created the world, the heaven, hell, the devil, and man himself. It’s the motive for sending the Word to become flesh and to live as a man, to die on a cross, to be raised to life, to be exalted to God’s right hand.

It is the impetus and the motivation which causes God to pour out His Spirit on all flesh and establish the church that Jesus is building. It is His purpose in judging the world and creating a new heavens and earth. Everything is being worked together according to the counsel of His will, according to His purpose. It says in Romans 8:28 He is working all things together for good: not according to your purpose or my purpose, but according to His purpose.

And what is His purpose? What is His will? That all things would be gathered together in Christ! And how is His will accomplished? By increasing Jesus and decreasing everything else.

There are three expressions of God’s purpose that, I think, will help us to better understand how everything God is doing, everything God has done, and everything God will do is pointing us and leading us to Jesus Christ.

And so in our next lesson we’ll talk about The First Expression of God’s Purpose.

QUIZ

Lesson 6 – The Third Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose

1. According to Ephesians 1:11, God is working all things according to the counsel of

a) your will

b) His Will

c) whatever seems best at the moment

2. The Third Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose is

a) all things are moving randomly according to fate

b) all things are moving according to their individual will

c) all things are working according to His Will

3. One reason the Bible is so important is

a) it’s good for judging the hearts of others

b) it helps us decide what church to join

c) it shows us how God works all things according to His Will

4. If God is truly working everything according to His Will, and His Will is “all things in Christ”, then we can rest assured that

a) Jesus must increase

b) Jesus will increase

c) Jesus is increasing

d) all the above

5. Everything God has done, is doing, and will do is for the purpose of

a) increasing Jesus

b) decreasing everything else

c) both

LESSON SEVEN

THE FIRST EXPRESSION OF GOD’S PURPOSE

So we just learned that God has a purpose that God’s purpose is “All Things in Christ”, and that God is working all things together according to this purpose. There are three expressions of God’s purpose, three ways in which we can see God working to bring His purpose about, and you can find this in yet another little snippet of scripture: in Romans chapter eleven and verse thirty six. And if you turn in your bible there, Romans 11:36 says this: “For of Him and through Him and to Him are all things; to Whom be glory forever! Amen.”

Now in this little fragment “…of Him, through Him, and to Him…” we have the three expressions of God’s purpose; and the first expression of God’s purpose is “Of Him”.

Of Him… are all things”, and this is speaking of the past. When I say that everything God has done, everything God is doing, and everything God will do is connected to this purpose, I mean it is connected to increasing Jesus and decreasing everything else. That’s partially based on this portion of Scripture: of Him, through Him and to Him are all things. “Of Him” is the past, “Through Him” is the present, “To Him” is the future.

So let’s look at the first expression: “Of Him”. That means everything that God has done, everything God is doing, everything God will do flows from Christ! Of Him are all things.

Several scriptures bear this out:

John 1:3 says “...all things were made by Him and without Him was not anything made that was made.”

Ephesians 3:9 says “…to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world has been hidden in God, Who created all things by Jesus Christ.”

Colossians 1:16 says “… by Him were all things created that are in heaven, and that are in earth, visible and invisible, whether they be thrones, or dominions, or principalities, or powers: all things were created by Him and for Him.”

Hebrews 2:10 says “… for Whom are all things and by Whom are all things.”

1 Corinthians 8:6 says “But to us there is but one God, the Father, of whom are all things, and we in Him; and one Lord Jesus Christ, by Whom are all things, and we by Him.”

Finally, Revelation 4:11 says “You are worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honor and power, for You have created all things, and for Your pleasure they are and were created.”

So the first expression of God’s purpose is: Of Him – of Christ – are all things”. In our next lesson we will discuss The Second Expression of God’s Purpose.

QUIZ

Lesson 7 – The First Expression of God’s Purpose

1. Romans 11:36 contains three ways in which we see God working to bring His Purpose about.

They are best described as

a) of me, through you, and to God

b) of Him, through Him, and to Him

c) from Him, through me, and to others

2. The First Expression of God’s Purpose is

a) “of Him”

b) “through Him”

c) “to Him”

3. “Of Him… are all things” means that everything

a) begins with Christ

b) moves through Christ

c) ends with Christ

4. If all things are “of Christ”, this means that

a) everything was created by Him for a specific purpose

b) He is the Alpha and the Beginning

c) nothing was created apart from Him

d) all the above

5. Since all things are “of Him”, this proves that

a) we cannot be certain about Creation

b) man is now in control of everything

c) nothing exists by chance, accident, or fate

LESSON EIGHT

THE SECOND EXPRESSION OF GOD’S PURPOSE

We have already learned that God has a will. God’s will is “All Things in Christ” – and God is working all things together according to that purpose. In Romans 11:36, if you will turn there again, we see three expressions of God’s purpose. How does God go about working all things together according to His will? Romans 11:36 says that of Him, and through Him, and to Him are all things.

The first expression of God’s purpose is “of Christ”. In other words, everything past flows out of Christ – everything created out of Christ!

In the present tense all things are “through Him” and we can take other scriptures and demonstrate that and categorize them: 1) All things are in His Hands, 2) All things are under His feet, and 3)All things are working because of Him. Let’s go through some of these.

First, all things are in His hands:

In Matthew 11:27, Jesus said “All things are delivered unto me of my Father.”

John 3:35 says “the Father loves the Son and has given all things into His hand.”

John 13:3 says “Jesus, knowing that the Father had given all things into His hands, and that He was come from God and went to God.”

John 16:15 says All things that the Father hath are mine.”

Hebrews 1:2 says God has, in these last days, spoken unto us by His Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things.”

Then, all things are under His feet:

Ephesians 1:22 says “He has put all things beneath His feet and gave Him to be the head over all things to the church.”

Colossians 1:18 says “Jesus is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the first born from the dead, that in all things He might have the preeminence.”

Hebrews 2:8 says “You have put all things in subjection under His feet, for in that He put all in subjection under Him, he left nothing that is not put under Him.”

And then, all things are working because of Him:

Colossians 1:17 says “He is before all things and by Him all things find their being.”

Hebrews 1:3 says “Jesus is the brightness of God’s Glory, the express image of His Person and He upholds all things by the word of His power.”

Romans 8:28 (which we have already referenced) says “God works all things together for good, to them that love God, to them that are called, according to His purpose.”

Hebrews 4:13 says “No creature is hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open unto the eyes of Him with whom we have to do.”

So, “All things are of Him” and “All things are through Him”. And in our next lesson we will discuss The Third Expression of God’s Purpose.

QUIZ

Lesson 8 – The Second Expression of God’s Purpose

1. The Second Expression of God’s Purpose is

a) “of Him”

b) “through Him”

c) “to Him”

2. Whereas the First Expression of God’s Purpose (“of Him”) represents things PAST, the Second Expression of God’s Purpose (“through Him”) represents

a) things past

b) things present

c) things future

3. “Through Him… are all things” means that everything

a) begins with Christ

b) moves through Christ

c) ends with Christ

4. If all things are “through Christ”, this means that

a) nothing happens without His permission

b) in Him we live and move and have our being

c) all our steps are ordered by the Lord

d) all the above

LESSON NINE

THE THIRD EXPRESSION OF GOD’S PURPOSE

If you will turn in your bible again to Romans 11:36, we are discussing the three expressions of God’s purpose. We have already learned that God’s will and His purpose is to gather together in one “all things in Christ”, so that Jesus will have the preeminence in all things. And we have also learned that He is working all things together according to the counsel of His will.

So, in Romans 11:36 we see three expressions, or three ways, in which God works all things together towards increasing Christ and decreasing everything else: “For of him, and through Him, and to Him are all things”. “Of Him” refers to things past, “Through Him” refers to things present, and “To Him” refers to things future.

So the third expression of God’s purpose is “Unto Him are all things”.

Philippians 3:21 says “He will change our vile body, that it may be fashioned like unto His glorious body, according to the working whereby He is able even to subdue all things unto Himself.”

1 Corinthians 15:28 says “When all things shall be subdued unto Him then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.”

Ephesians 1:10, we’ve already read “That in the dispensation of the fullness of times he might gather together in one all things in Christ.”

Colossians 1:20 says “Having made peace through the blood of His cross by Him to reconcile all things unto Himself; by him, I say, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.”

Ephesians 4:10 says “He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.”

Revelation 21:5 says “He that sat upon the throne said, Behold, I make all things new.”

So “All things are of Him”, “All things are through Him” and “All things are unto Him.” Those are the three expressions of God’s purpose. You see the entire object of Christianity: it is not a religion about Jesus! It is Jesus Himself at the center of everything.

A quote from T. Austin-Sparks would be good at this point. He says this: “What we are after is to see the centrality and universality of the Lord Jesus, and He is, by divine appointment, at the center of everything in this universe, every phase and every aspect, and He is it’s explanation.” Isn’t that a great quote?

Now, in our next lesson we are going to go back to our First Universal Spiritual Principle – He must increase – and discuss exactly what that increase is: how it begins, the process of the increasing, the goal of the increasing, and the means, the instrument, through which Jesus is increased.

Then we’ll look at the second universal spiritual principle – I must decrease – and we’ll discuss the beginning, the process, the goal, and the instrument through which that decreasing is accomplished. Then we’ll be better able to understand and appreciate and acknowledge that God is working all things together according to His purpose; that of Christ, through Christ, and unto Christ are all things – so that Jesus Christ would have the preeminence in all things, beginning with you as a disciple; with the church corporately, as the body of Christ; and ultimately in all creation.

He must increase, therefore He will increase, and He is increasing.

QUIZ

Lesson 9 – The Third Expression of God’s Purpose

1. The Third Expression of God’s Purpose is

a) “of Him”

b) “through Him”

c) “to Him”

2. Whereas the Second Expression of God’s Purpose (“through Him”) represents things PRESENT, the Third Expression of God’s Purpose (“to Him”) represents

a) things past

b) things present

c) things future

3. “To Him… are all things” means that everything

a) begins with Christ

b) moves through Christ

c) ends with Christ

4. If all things are “to Christ”, this means that

a) every tongue will confess that Jesus is Lord

b) God will gather together in one all things in Christ

c) He is the Omega, the End

d) all the above

LESSON TEN

“HE MUST INCREASE” – THE BEGINNING

Congratulations! You’ve come a long way from Lesson One. Let’s quickly review what you’ve learnt so far. There are two Universal Spiritual Principles – The Law of Increase and The Law of decrease. These two laws govern The Three Indisputable Facts of God’s Purpose. One, that God has a will. Two, God’s will is “All Things in Christ”. And three, God is working all things according to this will.

God’s purpose is expressed in three ways – Of Christ, Through Christ, and Unto Christ. In other words, everything that God has done, is doing, and will do – past, present, and future – is connected in some way to increasing Christ and decreasing self.

(By the way, you can find the three expressions in other scriptures, Revelation 1:9 is a good way to remember it. “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the beginning and the end, says the Lord who is, and who was, and who is to come, the Almighty.”)

Now, we want to go back to The First Universal Spiritual Principle, the Law of Increase, which states: “He (Jesus) must increase.” Let’s look at this a little more closely and illustrate how this increase of Christ begins, the process of increasing, the goal of increasing, and the instrument, or the method, in which God causes the increase of Christ.

First, the beginning of increase. The increase of Christ does not begin with all creation. It doesn’t even begin with the Church. The increase of Christ begins when Jesus is revealed to a person and they first see Him for Who He really is.

In Matthew 16:15 Jesus asked His disciples “But who do you say that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. Jesus answered and said to him, blessed are you, Simon, Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in Heaven.”

Now this passage establishes that there are only two kinds of knowledge in this universe: flesh and blood or Spirit and Truth. The knowledge that you have of the Lord, Jesus Christ: where did it come from? Do you really know Jesus or do you only know some things about Him? We cannot know Jesus by studying Him or hearing others talking about Him. That’s flesh and blood knowledge, merely human. We can only know Him by revelation – and this revelation comes from the Father. In fact God has intentionally hidden the revelation of Christ from the world, and so, apart from revelation there is no way to truly know Him!

Luke 10:21 says “In that hour Jesus rejoiced in the Spirit and said, I thank You, Father, Lord of Heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and prudent, and revealed them to babes. Even so, Father, for so it seemed good in Your sight. All things have been delivered to Me by My Father; and no one knows who the Son is except the Father, and who the Father is except the Son, and the one to whom the Son wills to reveal Him. Then He turned to His disciples and said privately, Blessed are the eyes which see the things that you see.”

John 14:22 says “Judas (not Iscariot) said to Him, Lord, how is it that You will reveal Yourself to us and not to the world? Jesus answered and said to him, If anyone loves Me, he will keep My word. And My Father will love him, and We will come to him and make Our home with him.”

So you see the revelation of Christ begins on a personal level, not on a universal level, and then it expands outwardly, from the individual disciple, to the church, and then, eventually, in all creation.

Now, when I talk about the revelation of Christ, many people want to know “Well, what do I have to do to get this revelation?” And the good news is there is nothing you have to do to get it except ask for it! Ask, and you will receive!

The revelation of Christ is God’s gift, it’s not a reward for praying, or reading the bible, or listening to someone preach. It is a gift of grace and we cannot earn it. All we have to do is ask the Father to reveal Jesus to us.

In Ephesians 1:17 Paul is praying for the Ephesians: “That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give to you the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him.” So you see, Paul didn’t tell the Ephesians they had to earn this revelation of Christ, instead He simply prayed that God would grant it to them. And by the way, the Ephesians were already Christians. Still Paul prays that God would continue to reveal the depths of Jesus Christ to them.

For many people Jesus is only their Savior. But we should ask God to give us a fuller revelation of Christ so that we can better see and appreciate Jesus for Who He really is. So you can personalize those prayers in Ephesians. When you pray say “I pray that God would give me the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Him the eyes of my understanding being enlightened that I may know!” See, God will deny no one who asks Him for something that He is already willing to give.

Just as He must increase, so the revelation of Him must increase, and we’ll discuss the process of that increasing in our next lesson.

QUIZ

Lesson 10 – “He Must Increase” – The Beginning

1. The Increase of Christ starts with

a) the individual disciple

b) the Church

c) the universe

2. The Increase of Christ begins on a personal level with

a) listening to a pastor

b) joining the church

c) the revelation of Christ

3. There are only two kinds of knowledge in the universe. The first is “flesh and blood”. The second is

a) education and training

b) Spirit and Truth

c) rumor and gossip

4. The revelation of Christ is obtained by

a) hard work at being spiritual enough

b) asking for it and receiving it as a gift

c) having a prophet speak a word over you

5. The Ephesians were already Christians. Yet, Paul prayed for them to receive the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ. This proves that

a) Paul didn’t really know the Ephesians well enough

b) the Ephesians weren’t really saved

c) the revelation of Christ is a continual process

LESSON ELEVEN

“HE MUST INCREASE” – THE PROCESS

In our last lesson we said that the increase of Christ begins with the personal revelation of Christ. This is what Jesus was talking about when He said the Kingdom of God is like a seed planted in good soil that increases and brings forth fruit. So don’t worry! If you’re a disciple of Jesus, if you’re a Christian, if you know that Jesus is Lord, then you have the revelation of Christ. Maybe you only have the revelation of Christ as your Savior, it may be a very small revelation of Him, but it is a beginning.

Remember, the increasing of Christ is not a once-and -for-all event in the life of a Christian. It is a process in which Jesus is continually increased. Jesus described this process in Matthew 7:14: “..narrow is the gate and difficult is the way which leads to life, and there are few who find it.”

In this passage of scripture Jesus presents us with a narrow gate, and a narrow way. Now, think about the difference between a gate and a path. It only takes a moment to enter into the gate, but walking the path takes place over a period of time. It only takes one or two steps to pass through the gate but it takes many steps to walk the path.

In John 10:9, Jesus says that He is “the Door” (or “the Gate”). And in John 14:6, Jesus says that He is “the Way” (or “the Path”). Stop thinking about Christianity in terms of things, and begin thinking in terms of a Person, because everything is pointing to Jesus!

So, in Matthew 7:14, Who is the Narrow Gate? Christ. And Who is the Narrow Path? Christ. The narrow gate represents the revelation of Christ – the beginning of the journey. Now many people are content to just stay right there, but Jesus says the way to life is a gate and a path. The gate – trusting in Jesus for salvation – is not the end of the journey. It’s the beginning of the journey! Because beyond that gate there is a narrow path.

As soon as a new disciple enters the gate, the revelation of Christ is planted in their heart. As the disciple walks the path, that seed, the revelation of Christ, begins to grow. This process is called discipleship, or, spiritual growth.

Here’s a quote from one of my writings: “Spiritual growth is not more knowledge or increase of years. It is simply more of Jesus and less of me. He increases as I decrease! This is what it means to be a disciple.”

T. Austin Sparks describes it like this: “The hallmark of true spiritual development and maturity is this: that we have grown so much less, and the Lord Jesus has grown so much more. Real spiritual growth is just this – I decrease, He increases. It is the Lord Jesus becoming more. You can test spiritual growth by that.”

Now the question arises: what lies at the end of this narrow path? What is the goal of discipleship? When we enter the gate and walk the path, what are we moving towards? In our next lesson we’ll discuss “The Goal of Increase.”

QUIZ

Lesson 11 – “He Must Increase” – The Process

1. In Matthew 7:14, Jesus describes discipleship as

a) a church and a preacher

b) a Gate and a Path

c) a doctrine and a belief

2. If the Gate represents the Revelation of Christ (the beginning of the journey), then the Path represents

a) church attendance

b) spiritual growth

c) turning over a new leaf

3. According to Jesus, in order to find Life, one must first enter the Gate. The next step is to

a) rest and relax

b) walk the Path

c) shut Gate behind you

4. Spiritual growth is not more knowledge of increase of years. It is simply

a) more of religion and less of me

b) more of the new me and less of the old me

c) more of Jesus and less of me

5. Jesus said the Gate and the Path are narrow and difficult, and few people find it. Why do you suppose this is?

a) churches focus more on salvation than discipleship

b) we’ve made Jesus too complicated

c) people confuse religion with relationship

d) all the above

LESSON TWELVE

“HE MUST INCREASE” – THE GOAL

So far we have learned that the increase of Christ begins when a disciple receives the revelation of Christ and enters the gate. This sets in motion a process in which Christ is continually increased in that disciple, provided they continue to walk the narrow path. But what is the purpose of all this? What is the goal of the increase?

To answer that, let’s look at Ephesians chapter 4, beginning with verse 10: “He who descended is also the one who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.” Well, how will He fill all things? Here’s part of the process, in verse 11: “And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints, for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.”

Now the word “knowledge” here is the Greek word epignosis. “Epi” means full or complete. “Gnosis” means knowledge. So if you put them together you have “epignosis”, which is “full-knowledge”. God’s goal for the disciple is the epignosis of Christ: the full, complete, mature knowledge of all that Jesus means and all that Jesus is.

This is what Paul meant when he said he wanted to know Him and the power of His resurrection. Even as Paul neared the end of his life, he was still crying out to know more of Jesus! God’s goal for the church is exactly the same. The church consists of all those disciples of Jesus who are walking the narrow path of discipleship toward epignosis, the full-knowledge of Christ. That’s why Paul says “God sets some in the church to be apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers.” He gave some till we all. He gave some till we all. Till we all what? Till we all come to the unity of the faith and to the epignosis – full-knowledge – of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ.

Here’s another quote from T. Austin Sparks that will help us better understand God’s goal for the church: “What is the church? God’s thought is not Christianity. It is not churches as organized centers of Christianity. It is not the propagation of Christian teaching and enterprise. God’s thought is to have a people in the earth whom, and in the midst of whom, Christ is all and in all. That is the church.” I just love that quote!

Now, we said that the increasing of Christ begins with the individual disciple, it expands outwardly to include the church, and it continues until it encompasses allthings. If God’s goal for the disciple is the full-knowledge of Christ, and God’s goal for the church is the full-knowledge of Christ, what do you think God’s goal for the world is? God’s goal for the world is just the same: The full-knowledge of Christ.

We see this in 1 Timothy chapter 2 beginning in verse 1: “Therefore I exhort first of all, that supplications, prayers, intercessions, and giving of thanks be made for all men, for kings and all who are in authority, that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence. For this is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Savior, who desires all men to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth.”

Now that word ‘knowledge’ there is the same Greek word that we learned about in Ephesians 4: epignosis. What a fabulous passage of scripture this is!

We already know that God’s purpose is not some things in Christ but all things in Christ. To accomplish this purpose God begins with disciples. He then gathers the disciples into the Church that Jesus is building. Then the Church is called to do what? In Matthew 28:19, Jesus says “Go into all the world and make disciples of all nations.” Then the increasing of Christ repeats itself over and over and over again as new disciples enter the gate and begin walking the path toward the full- knowledge of Christ.

What a Mighty God we serve! What an awesome privilege it is to work together with Him towards the increase of Christ! But it gets even better! In our next lesson we will discuss The Instrument of Increase.

QUIZ

Lesson 12 – “He Must Increase” – The Goal

1. The purpose and goal of the increase of Christ is

a) the full-knowledge of Christ

b) the epignosis of Christ

c) knowing Jesus as He really is

d) all the above

2. The Greek word “epignosis” simply means

a) full-knowledge

b) incomplete knowledge

c) no knowledge

3. In Ephesians 4, the Lord sets some apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers in His Church. This is so they can

a) build international ministries

b) receive tithes from the rest of the saints

c) help the saints enter into the full-knowledge of Christ

4. God’s goal for the disciple is the increase of Christ. God’s goal for the Church is the increase of Christ. God’s goal for the world is

a) the increase of churches

b) the increase of Christ

c) the increase of Bibles

LESSON THIRTEEN

“HE MUST INCREASE” – THE INSTRUMENT

We are talking about that first universal spiritual principle – ‘the law of increase’ – which states that Jesus must increase. We said that revelation is the beginning of this increase, discipleship is the process of this increase, and the full knowledge of Christ is the goal of this increase – individually in every disciple, corporately in the body of Christ, and ultimately in all creation. Now we want to discuss the instrument God uses to accomplish the increase of Christ. Maybe you’ve already figured it out by now, but let’s take a look at it.

You may be relieved to know that God’s purpose does not depend upon the weakness and frailty of men and women like you and me! Remember these spiritual principles are laws that operate whether we understand them, agree with them, or even know that they exist. These spiritual laws were operating before you learnt about them and they’ll continue to operate. He must increase, therefore He will increase and He is increasing.

But what is the instrument of this increase? What method does God use to work this increase of Christ so powerfully? What is the driving force behind this increasing of Jesus? The instrument of the increase of Christ is the Holy Spirit!

In John chapter 14, beginning in verse 16, it says: “I will pray the Father and He will give you another helper that He may abide with you forever, the Spirit of Truth, whom the world cannot receive because it neither sees Him nor knows Him. But you know Him, for He dwells with you and will be in you.”

Verse 26 of John 14: “But the helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my Name, He will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.”

John 15:26: “But when the helper comes, whom I shall send to you from the Father, the Spirit of Truth who proceeds from the Father, He will testify of me.”

John 16:13: “However, when He, the Spirit of Truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth. For He will not speak of His own authority, but whatever He hears, He will speak. And He will tell you things to come. He will glorify Me, for He will take of what is Mine and declare it to you. All things that the Father has are Mine. Therefore I said that He will take of Mine and declare it to you.”

Now remember in Ephesians 1:17 Paul prayed for the Ephesians to receive the spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of Christ. Now these are not all the passages that speak of the ministry of the Holy Spirit, but just from these passages alone, we can conclude these things about the Holy Spirit: He is a helper: He is a counselor: He is a comforter: He is a teacher: He will testify of Jesus: He will glorify Jesus: He will give us understanding and reveal the depth of Christ to us: He is the Spirit of Truth and He will lead us into all truth. And, since Jesus is the Truth, the Holy Spirit will increase Jesus.

The scriptures that tell us about Jesus are inspired by the Holy Spirit. The ability to understand those scriptures is given by the Holy Spirit. The fruit that comes from abiding in Jesus is the result of the Holy Spirit. And so the Holy Spirit is the instrument and the method and the means through which God accomplishes His purpose of increasing Jesus.

And according to Jesus, this helper, this counselor, this comforter, this teacher will abide with us for ever and will help us as we walk the narrow path towards the full knowledge of Christ.

How wonderful are God’s ways! His plan is perfect and His purpose will be accomplished.

In our next lesson, to illustrate The “Law of Increase even further, we’ll take a look at some biblical examples of the increase of Christ.

QUIZ

Lesson 13 – “He Must Increase” – The Instrument

1. The driving force behind the increase of Christ, the instrument God uses to bring about this increase of Jesus, is

a) Christian television

b) the Internet

c) the Holy Spirit

2. Jesus said the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of Truth and will lead us into all Truth. Jesus said He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. So the Holy Spirit will

a) lead us deeper into Jesus

b) glorify Jesus and seek His increase

c) continually reveal more of Jesus to us

d) all the above

3. The Holy Spirit reveals Christ in a number of ways. They include

a) understanding into the Scriptures

b) teaching us through our circumstances

c) counseling us when we seek direction

d) all the above

4. All the various workings of the Holy Spirit have one goal, one purpose, one mission: that is

a) the increase of spiritual experiences

b) the increase of charismatic churches

c) the increase of Christ

LESSON FOURTEEN

BIBLICAL EXAMPLES OF THE INCREASING

There are so many scriptures that illustrate this increasing of Christ. We certainly could not reference all of them in this brief lesson. But I can give you some good examples, and I can point you in the right direction, and the more time you spend meditating and studying these principles of the increase of Christ, the more easily you’ll be able to see them as you look through the Scriptures.

A good place to begin is Isaiah chapter 9 verse 6: “For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given and the government will be on His shoulder; and His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, mighty God, everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.” Now who is this passage referring to? Of course it is referring to Jesus. So verse 7 says “of the increase of His government and peace, there will be no end.”

Another good example is Daniel chapter 2. In Daniel chapter 2, Nebuchadnezzar had a dream of a statue that was destroyed by a rock and then that rock grew and increased until it became a mountain that filled the entire earth. What in the world can that mean?

Daniel 2:44 gives the interpretation: “In the days of these kings, the God of Heaven will set up a kingdom which shall never be destroyed and the kingdom shall not be left to other people, it shall break in pieces and consume all these kingdoms and it shall stand for ever.” And in the next verse he says, “The dream is certain and it’s interpretation is sure.”

So Jesus will increase and He will destroy all these other kingdoms until He Himself has filled the whole earth! And that is consistent with what we find all throughout the Old Testament.

In 2 Corinthians 4 verse 6, Paul tells us what the glory of God is. This is very important to unlock the mystery of the Old Testament. In 2 Corinthians 4:6 Paul says that “God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.” In other words, the glory of God is revealed by and through Jesus Christ. It is also established, in Hebrews 1, that He is the brightness of God’s glory and the express image of His Person.

So once you see that, you go back to the Old Testament and you can see the increase of Christ everywhere.

Numbers 14:21: “But as truly as I live, all the earth shall be filled with the glory of the LORD.”

1 Chronicles 29:11: “Thine, O LORD, is the greatness, and the power, and the glory, and the victory, and the majesty: for all that is in the heaven and in the earth is yours; yours is the kingdom, O LORD, and you are exalted as head above all.” Sounds just like the Lord’s prayer, doesn’t it?

Psalm 57:5: “Be exalted, O God, above the heavens; let your glory be over all the earth.”

Isaiah 6:3: “And one cried to another, and said, Holy, holy, holy, is the LORD of hosts: the whole earth is full of his glory.”

Habakkuk 2:14 says: “For the earth shall be filled with the knowledge of the glory of the LORD, as the waters cover the sea.”

Matthew 24:30 says: ”…they shall see the Son of Man coming in the clouds of the heaven with power and great glory.”

Praise God! And there are many, many other scriptures that we could use to further illustrate this increase of Christ.

All the parables of Jesus speak of this increase of His kingdom, which is nothing more and nothing less than the increase of Christ: “A sower went out to sow” “The kingdom of God is like a man sowed good seed in His field” – “The kingdom of God is like a man who cast seed into the ground” – “The kingdom of God is like a mustard seed.” And so on! And so on!

All these scriptures, and many more, are simply telling us the same thing: He must increase, therefore He will increase, and He is increasing.

You know, as I teach The Law of Increase, no one objects to Jesus being lifted up, increased and magnified. Practically every Christian I know of is in agreement with the increase of Jesus.

But John 3:30 is split right down the middle with one three letter word: “but”. He must increase. Amen to that, but… The presence of the word but suggests a potential barrier to this increasing of Jesus. On one side of “but” we are presented with the increasing of Christ, but on the other side we are presented with the decreasing of Self. These two laws are equally balanced like the scales on either side of that tiny word “but”.

So in our next series of lessons we’ll take a closer look at The Second Universal Spiritual Principle – “I must decrease”.

QUIZ

Lesson 14 – Biblical Examples of the Increasing

1. Correctly interpreted, Isaiah 9 tells us that Jesus and His government

a) will slowly diminish

b) will remain small and hidden away

c) will continue to increase forever

2. Daniel 2 tells of a Rock that destroys a statue and then

a) breaks into pieces

b) grows into a great mountain that fills the whole earth

c) eventually turns to dust

3. According to the New Testament, Jesus is the Brightness of God’s Glory and the Exact Image of God Himself. According to the Old Testament,

a) the glory of God is slowly fading away

b) the glory of God has disappeared altogether

c) the glory of God is increasing and will cover the earth

4. In His parables, Jesus is constantly comparing the Kingdom of God to a seed that is planted and eventually produces a harvest. This is a simple way of describing

a) how Jesus must increase

b) how the Kingdom of God is expanding

c) how spiritual laws do not change

d) all the above

LESSON FIFTEEN

“I MUST DECREASE” – THE BEGINNING

Now we want to turn our attention to The Second Universal Spiritual Principle, the Law of Decrease, found in the second half of John 3:30: “I must decrease.” Just like the Law of Increase, the Law of Decrease also has a beginning, a process, a goal, and an instrument through which the decreasing is accomplished. We’ll look at each of these as we proceed. Right now, let’s look at the beginning of the decreasing.

When I teach the Theology of Everything I find that almost everyone is enthusiastic about the increasing of Christ and they have no problem accepting it as a reality. It is the decreasing of Self that people find difficult to accept. And a lot of them want to know, why is decreasing necessary?

It is necessary because there is something in this Universe that resists God’s Purpose of filling all things in Christ. It does not want to see the increase of Christ. It actively resists God’s Will and struggles to maintain its own preeminence. It is terrified of Jesus having absolute Lordship because it wants to be a king in a kingdom of its own making.

Now, most Christians would say that this thing that resists God’s Purpose is the devil – but that’s only partially correct. The Scriptures do declare that there is a spirit of Antichrist fighting against God and God’s people. At the same time, the Scriptures present Satan as a defeated enemy who only has as much power as we permit him to have. The real enemy is not “out there” at all. The real enemy is much closer to home, and while the devil is already defeated, this enemy has yet to be conquered.

What really prevents the increase of Christ is Self. The Law of Decrease specifically says “I” am in the way – not the devil. It does not say anything about the devil because the devil is not the issue. In order for Christ to be increased, the “I”, the Self, must be decreased. Just as the increase of Christ must take place, so the decrease of me must happen. The measure of the increase of Jesus is directly related to the measure of the decrease of me.

Different Christian authors have, over the last two thousand years, described this process of decreasing. Some call it dying to Self. Some call it the Dark Night of the Soul. Some call it the crucified life. Some call it brokenness. I like to call it being reduced to Christ. All these different words and phrases are essentially describing the same thing. It is the practical application of John 3:30: “He must increase, but I must decrease.”

This decreasing is part of God’s purpose because it paves the way for the increase of Christ. The Bible says that Jesus is Lord, that He is Head over all things and that all things are beneath His feet. But in Hebrews 2:8 the Bible says, “We do not yet see all things submitted to Him.” If Jesus is Lord, why don’t we see all things submitted to Him? Because all things have not yet been decreased. When a person is decreased then Christ is increased; when a person refuses to be decreased, Christ is unable (for the time being) to be increased in that person. In other words, we can temporarily limit God through disobedience, pride, unbelief, rebellion, or simply living our lives the way we want to live them instead of living in submission to the Lordship of Jesus Christ.

Now, I say a person can “temporarily” prevent Christ from increasing. This is the condition described in Hebrews 2: “We do not YET see all things submitted to Him.” Why not? Because, for the time being at least, there are many people, places, and things that refuse to submit to Jesus. But the presence of the word YET means this rebellion will not, and cannot, continue forever. Philippians 2:10, 11 says that every knee will bow – in heaven, in earth, and under the earth and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. Remember The Second Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose? God will gather together all things in Christ – things in heaven and on earth.

You see, John 3:30 says two things must happen. Jesus must increase and I must decrease. The Law of Increase begins with the revelation of Christ, while The Law of Decrease begins with the revelation of Self. When God wishes to increase Christ, He begins by revealing Christ to us. When God wishes to decrease Self, He begins by revealing Self to us. Knowing Christ leads to the increase of Christ. Knowing Self – truly knowing ourselves – leads to the decrease of Self.

The Bible says in Philippians 3:21 that Jesus is able to subdue all things unto Himself. Isn’t that a wonderful verse? But how is this accomplished? We’ll discuss how this works in our next lesson – the Process of Decreasing.

QUIZ

Lesson 15 – “I Must Decrease” – The Beginning

1. The Law of Decrease is based upon the second half of John 3:30, which states that

a) Jesus must decrease

b) I must increase

c) I must decrease

2. There is something in this universe that always resists the increase of Christ. Although this resistance takes on many different identities, the real barrier to the increase of Christ is

a) the devil

b) the world

c) the Self

3. Hebrews 2:8 says, “We do not YET see all things submitted to Him.” This means that

a) one day we WILL see all things submitted to Him

b) we will never see all things submitted to Him

c) we need to teach on submission more often

4. The Decrease of Self begins with

a) the revelation of Christ

b) the revelation of Self

c) the revelation of end-times prophecy

LESSON SIXTEEN

“I MUST DECREASE” – THE PROCESS

The Law of Decrease states that “I must decrease.” In our last lesson, we said this process of decreasing begins with the revelation of Self. Now, just as the revelation of Christ is a continual thing, so is the revelation of Self. A good example of this is found in Peter’s conversion. In Luke 5:8, God opened his eyes to see the Lord, and also, to see himself. So he says to Jesus, “Depart from me Lord, for I am a sinful man.” Peter’s ability to call Jesus “Lord” is the result of Christ revealing Himself to Peter. Peter’s ability to see himself as a “sinful man” is the result of Christ revealing Peter to Peter.

Another good example is the story Jesus told in Luke 18 of the two men who went to the temple to pray – the first was a religious man, the second was a sinner. The religious man boasted in his righteousness while the second man prayed, “God, be merciful to me, a sinner.” Jesus said the sinner went home with a clean heart, while the religious man did not. What made the difference? The sinner was able to “see” himself, while the religious man did not see himself at all.

So you see, The Law of Decrease is working in sinners and in saints. I don’t know you or how you came to the Lord, but most people do not come to Jesus without a certain amount of Decreasing going on in their life – some kind of trial or circumstance or need that causes them to cry out to God for salvation. And since our trials and circumstances and needs continue so long as we live on this earth, this process that begins long before you finally surrendered your life to Jesus will continue on long after you are saved.

This process of decreasing continued to operate in Peter long after he first came to the Lord. In the beginning, Peter confessed he was a sinful man. But later, Peter was arguing right along with the rest of the disciples over which one of them would be the greatest. He boldly said that even if everyone else left, he would never forsake Jesus. Jesus knew what would happen because Jesus knew Peter; but Peter did not know Peter. It was only afterwards, when he denied Jesus that Peter was able to see himself as he really was.

Now the process of decreasing is accomplished through repentance. According to the Bible, repentance is more than just saying, “I’m sorry.” Repentance is more than just feeling sorry. Repentance is a change of mind that causes a change of heart which leads to a change of behavior.

Genuine repentance is very powerful. When something moves me so profoundly that my mind, my heart, and my behavior changes then this is a revolutionary act. It means I used to think a certain way, and believe a certain way, and behave a certain way – but God has shown me a different way, and I am forsaking my way for His. That is repentance. The more I fail the more I realize that God’s way is superior to my way, and the more willing I am to forsake my will and embrace His Will. This is the process of decreasing.

How many times have you allowed God to change your mind about something? You used to think you were not so bad, but one day you realize that you really are a sinner. You used to think good works would get you to heaven, but one day you realized that you are saved by grace. You used to think that entering the Gate was sufficient, but now you realize that God also calls you to walk the Narrow Path. And so it goes. God is constantly challenging your version of truth and offering you His version. That’s why, when Jesus began His public ministry, the first thing He said was: “Repent – change your mind, your heart, and your behavior – because the Kingdom of God is at hand.” Those who repented were able to hear Him; those who did not repent did not understand.

Again, repentance is not for sinners only. Six times in the book of Revelation, Jesus calls upon His own people to repent. Repentance isn’t for really bad people, it’s for anyone who is growing spiritually. Why? Because as Christ is increased, Self is decreased, and as Christ is revealed, Self is revealed, and every time I see something more of Him, I have to decide which way I will go. Will I go the way of Christ, or will I go the way of Self? Repentance is the continual process of choosing the way of Christ and denying the way of Self.

Just like the increase of Christ, there is a purpose behind this decreasing of Self. A specific result is intended. We’ll discuss the goal of decreasing in our next lesson.

QUIZ

Lesson 16 – “I Must Decrease” – The Process

1. The Process of Decreasing is accomplished when we continually choose God’s Way over our own way. This choosing is called

a) Bible study

b) repentance

c) church attendance

2. Repentance is not just feeling sorry for our sins or praying the Sinner’s Prayer. True repentance is a revolutionary act that causes a change of

a) mind

b) heart

c) behavior

d) all the above

3. Six times in the Book of Revelation, Jesus told His own people to repent. Why is it necessary for someone to repent even after they are saved?

a) repentance is part of the process of decreasing

b) you might lose your salvation

c) confession makes people afraid to sin

4. Why would Jesus begin His ministry by first calling on people to repent?

a) it’s a good way to strike fear in the hearts of sinners

b) that’s the way John the Baptist preached

c) decreasing is needed before Jesus can increase

LESSON SEVENTEEN

“I MUST DECREASE” – THE GOAL

John the Baptist tells us that Jesus must increase and “I” (Self) must decrease. But what is the purpose? What is the goal? What is all this increasing and decreasing leading towards?

Paul reveals this mystery to us in Galatians 2:20: “I am crucified with Christ ,nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me.” Notice the four words: Not I, but Christ. “Not I, but Christ” is the secret of living the Christian life as well as the end result of all this increasing and decreasing. But what does it mean?

Simply put, Christ was steadily increasing in Paul, and Paul was steadily decreasing, until the day came when there was more of Christ to be seen in Paul than Paul. In other words, Paul was so diminished and Christ was so revealed through this man that Jesus in Paul became greater than Paul. On that day, and every day thereafter, Paul could truthfully say, “Not I, but Christ.” If Jesus must increase, and Paul must decrease, then it stands to reason that one day Paul would be overshadowed altogether. This is the glorious outcome God intends for every disciple.

Now, this does not suggest the end of Paul’s existence. In the Kingdom of God, death is not the end, it’s the beginning. Paul lives on, but it is a different kind of Life that causes him to live now. “I am crucified… nevertheless I live… yet not I.” What Paul is describing is death and resurrection. He lived, he died, and he lives again, but the life he lives now is not his own life, it is the Life of Another.

So Paul lives, but Paul is not what he used to be. After many seasons of walking with God and going through many temptations, tests, trials, and afflictions, Christ was increased while Paul was decreased. When we rightly interpret these experiences then we, too, will reach the same result. Everything we experience is an opportunity to see Christ increased and Self decreased. Eventually Christ in us will have more influence than Self, and when that happens, we will find ourselves on resurrection ground.

This is why we say that the fundamental need of a disciple of Jesus is not more power, but more brokenness. With less of me, there is more of Him. And with more of Him, there is less of me. When a person is sufficiently broken then Jesus will be increased in them. It is a Universal Spiritual Principle.

The good news is we do not have to do anything to “make” this happen. It must be so, therefore it IS so. Jesus must increase, therefore He will increase, and He is increasing. In like manner, I must decrease, therefore I will decrease, and I am decreasing. The instrument God uses to accomplish this decreasing is something you’re probably familiar with. We’ll find out more about it in our next lesson.

QUIZ

Lesson 17 – “I Must Decrease” – The Goal

1. Galatians 2:20 tells is the Goal of Decreasing and the secret of living the Christian life. It is best described as

a) name it and claim it

b) not I but Christ

c) expect a miracle

2. When Paul says, “I am crucified with Christ…nevertheless I live”, he is referring to

a) the power of positive thinking

b) an imaginary exercise

c) death and resurrection

3. Since spiritual power comes as we are decrease and Christ is increase, the fundamental need of a disciple of Jesus is not more power, but more

a) brokenness

b) prayer

c) teaching

4. The death of Self does not mean the elimination of Self. That’s because death in the Kingdom of God means

a) a new beginning

b) the end of everything

c) the ultimate defeat

LESSON EIGHTEEN

“I Must Decrease” – The Instrument

We’re talking about the Second Universal Spiritual Principle, The Law of Decrease, which states that “I must decrease.” We said that the revelation of Self is the beginning of the decrease, repentance is the process of the decrease, and “not I, but Christ” is the goal of the decrease.

Now we want to discuss the Instrument God uses to accomplish the decrease of Self. According to the Scriptures, the Holy Spirit is the instrument God uses to increase Christ, and the Cross is the instrument God uses to decrease Self.

When we talk about the Cross in this instance we are not referring to the cross that Jesus died on for our sins. We are talking about the principle of decreasing that is at work in every disciple. Only Jesus can die on the cross to pay the penalty for the sins of the whole world. But there is another cross that God uses to accomplish the work of decreasing Self.

Matthew 10:38 says: “He that taketh not his cross, and followeth after Me, is not worthy of Me. He that findeth his life shall lose it: and he that loseth his life for my sake shall find it.”

Matthew 16:24 says: “Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.”

Mark 8:34 says: “And when He had called the people unto Him with His disciples also, He said unto them, Whosoever will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me.”

Mark 10:21 says: “Then Jesus beholding him loved him, and said unto him, One thing thou lackest: go thy way, sell whatsoever thou hast, and give to the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, take up the cross, and follow Me.”

Luke 9:23 says: “And He said to them all, If any man will come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross daily, and follow Me.”

Luke 14:27 says: “And whosoever doth not bear his cross, and come after Me, cannot be My disciple.”

This is what Paul means when he says, “I am crucified with Christ.” Did he mean that he was personally with Jesus on the cross, suffering for the sins of the world? No. He meant that, as a disciple of Jesus, he had accepted the death of Self. Again, the death of Self does not mean the end of our existence. It just means the end of our rebellion, the end of our old life, and the beginning of a new life.

This dying to Self and coming alive to God is daily experience. As Jesus is increased, I am decreased. With each death, burial, and resurrection, I am getting closer to the Goal of Decreasing: “Not I, but Christ.”

Here’s a quote from Lilias Trotter: “Death is the gate of life. The Christian life is a process of deliverance out of one world and into another, and death is the only way out of any world in which we are.”

The cross looks like death and defeat. And it is… in one sense. In another sense, the cross is the path that leads us to resurrection life – to ruling and reigning with Christ. But God is far too wise to entrust His power to people who have not been crucified – who have not accepted the decreasing of Self, so that Christ – instead of Self – can receive the glory.

Here’s another quote from one of my writings:

“The Cross is the means by which God reduces us to Christ, that we may be raised to new Life. What cannot be accomplished in a lifetime of self-effort is easily accomplished in God through the Cross. We may take many shortcuts along the way and attempt to escape the inevitable, the day we cease striving and meekly accept the Cross we find everything is done for us.”

When we take up the cross daily, we are committing all that we have, and all that we are, over to God. Some things will be crucified and buried forever. Other things will be raised to life and given back to us after they have passed over to resurrection.

It’s one thing to talk about it, but it’s a lot easier to understand it if we see it at work in the lives of real people. So in our next lesson, we’ll take a look at a some Biblical examples of the decreasing.

QUIZ

Lesson 18 – “I Must Decrease” – The Instrument

1. The instrument, or the means, through which God accomplishes the increase of Christ is the Holy Spirit. The instrument through which God accomplishes the decrease of Self is

a) the Church

b) the world

c) the Cross

2. When Paul says, “I am crucified with Christ”, he means

a) the death of Christ affected Paul deeply

b) he has accepted the Decreasing of Self

c) he was with Jesus when He was crucified

3. Jesus says if anyone wants to be His disciple they must take up the Cross daily and follow Him. This means

a) we must die for any sins we commit as a Christian

b) we must be willing to die like Jesus did

c) the Decrease of Self is a continual process

4. God is far too wise to entrust His power to people who have not been

a) crucified

b) educated

c) perfected

LESSON NINETEEN

BIBLICAL EXAMPLES OF THE DECREASING

Just as The Law of Increase is illustrated throughout Scripture, The Law of Decrease is illustrated as well, and we can see this principle at work in the lives of saints in the Old Testament and in the New Testament. There are so many examples that we could not go through all of them in the brief time that we have, but we will look at a few to get you started in the right direction.

Job is a good example. Of course you know all the tribulation and the trials that Job experienced but at the end of that period of time, in Job 42 verse 5, he tells the Lord something very profound, and it illustrates The Law of Decrease. He says,

“I have heard of you by the hearing of the ear, but now my eye sees you. Therefore I abhor myself and repent in dust and ashes.”

That’s a fabulous example of someone who is reduced to Christ – someone who is decreased – and not only sees God for who He is, but sees himself for who he is also. And then there is the repentance! And so that is a good example of The Law of Decrease.

Jacob is a good example of the law of decrease. Jacob was a very powerful personality, he was full of pride, and he was full of bargaining and reasoning, and he was always conniving to get his own way. And the Lord allowed him to go through some very terrible circumstances and some very acute suffering in order to decrease him. In Genesis 32 he really gets to the end of his rope here, because he is just about to be attacked by Esau and he goes to God and he begins praying to the Lord. In Genesis 32:10 he makes a very profound statement. He says,

“I am not worthy of the least of all the mercies and of all the truth which You have shown Your servant.”

What a humble attitude Jacob is displaying here! When he is brought to the end of himself and when his circumstances are ganging up against him, God is able to show him that he is reaping what he has sowed. And so, Jacob, in a moment of repentance, finally sees the Lord and he finally sees himself as not worthy of the least of all the mercies and the truth that God has shown him.

So that is a good example of The Law of Decrease, and you see how it took a long period of time before Jacob could finally surrender and give everything over. But once he did – what a powerful testimony that is!

Joseph is another good example of The Law of Decrease. Joseph was very gifted and he had visions and dreams of the future, but Joseph was very immature and he also had some pride in his life (just like most of us do when we’re young and when we start out in our walk with God). And so God permitted Joseph to go through many things that humbled him and decreased him and reduced him, and He took that pride and turned it into something that was humble and acquiescent to the will of God. So much so that even when his brothers, who betrayed him, finally met with him again there in Egypt, he was able to speak words of blessing and say (in Genesis chapter 50 verse 20) that, “…even though you meant it for evil, God meant it for good!”

And that is the work of the cross: to be able to see that God is working all things together for good. Even the things that we would not choose! Even the things that we go through! Even the things that we experience! Even the evil things that other people do to us! All of these things God can use for our good if we will embrace them and accept them and understand the reason why God permits them to come to us.

Everything we experience: whether it is evil or whether it is good; whether it is something we have not chosen or something that we have chosen; whether it is something we like or something we do not like; all things are working together to increase Christ and decrease us. That is the principle that we see in the life of Joseph.

We also see the law of decrease in Moses. Moses had a call from God. He had a heart for God’s people, but Moses tried to deliver the people in his own power and in his own strength. And they rejected him! It took forty years in the desert before Moses was sufficiently decreased enough that God could then send him back to Egypt to do what He wanted him to do. And Moses was so humbled and so decreased and so reduced after forty years in the desert, whereas before he wanted to go in his own power to do it, now he says, “Lord, send someone else. I can’t do it!”

And you know, that is exactly the type of person that is exactly the kind of attitude, that God is looking for. It is not the ones who think they can do it and then set out to do it in their strength! It is those who embrace the weakness of the Cross and allow God’s strength to be perfected in them. That is what we see illustrated in the life of Moses.

Now I told you that The Law of Decrease is working in sinners as well as in saints, and we see this happening in Scripture also. In Daniel chapter 4, Nebuchadnezzar had a dream and Daniel interpreted that dream to mean that God was going to decrease Nebuchadnezzar in a big way. And we see that is exactly what happened.

Even though Nebuchadnezzar was a pagan king (he certainly was not a Christian, he certainly did not know the Lord); nevertheless, God was able to reduce him and decrease him. He revealed Himself to Nebuchadnezzar, and He also revealed Nebuchadnezzar to Nebuchadnezzar!

Nebuchadnezzar had everything stripped away from him and he lived like an animal. Finally in Daniel 4:34 he says: “…at the end of that time I Nebuchadnezzar lifted up my eyes to Heaven, and my understanding returned to me, and I blessed the Most High, and praised and honored Him who lives forever, for His Dominion is an everlasting Dominion and His Kingdom is from generation to generation.” You will notice he is no longer prideful, he is no longer arrogant, he is no longer self-centered. This is how he concludes his testimony in Daniel 4:37: Now I Nebuchadnezzar praise and extol and honor the King of heaven, all of whose works are truth and His ways justice. [and look at this!] And those who walk in pride He is able to put down.”

Isn’t that a fantastic testimony from someone who is not even a Christian? He is a pagan king that God humbled, and yet he is able to see and experience (and we can see illustrated) The Law of Decrease, because Jesus is able to subdue all things unto Himself.

Even Jesus was decreased when He was a man! Now listen to Philippians chapter 2 verse 5. It says: “.. let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus, Who, being in the form of God, did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bond-servant, and coming in the likeness of men. And being found in appearance as a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death, even the death of the cross.”

So, if Jesus found it necessary to humble Himself, and to become obedient to the point of death, even the death of a cross, how much more do you and I need to be humbled, and decreased, and accept the Cross as God’s instrument for our decreasing?

In Hebrews chapter 5 verse 8 it says that Jesus, “…though he was a Son, yet He learned obedience by the things that He suffered.” Again! If Jesus learned obedience by the things that He suffered, how much more do we need to learn obedience through the things that we suffer?

Jesus said that “…in this world you will have tribulation…” So as long as you will have tribulation in this world, you might as well make the best possible use of everything that you are going through. See everything as an opportunity for Jesus to be increased and for you to be decreased. Embrace that principle and allow that principle to produce fruit in your life.

In our final lesson we will summarize The Theology of Everything and discuss how we can practically apply these things to our lives.

QUIZ

Lesson 19 – Biblical Examples of the Decreasing

1. Job is a good example of how everything we experience in being decreased serves the purpose of

a) making us unhappy and bitter

b) teaching us that friends are fickle

c) increasing Christ and decreasing Self

2. Jacob is a good example of how we must eventually learn, through decreasing, that

a) we cannot wrestle with God and win

b) resisting the decrease of Self prolongs our suffering

c) God uses difficult circumstances to drive us to Him

d) all the above

3. Joseph is a good example of how God uses the decreasing of difficult circumstances, suffering, and evil to

a) give us material possessions and power

b) purify our heart and help us grow spiritually

c) teach us not to trust other people

4. Moses living in the desert for 40 year after failing to deliver the Hebrews by his own power is a good example of how the decreasing of Self

a) makes a person useless and good for nothing

b) makes us reluctant to help people ever again

c) prepares and qualifies us for serving others

5. Nebuchadnezzar is a good example of how The Law of Decrease

a) does not apply to pagan kings

b) only works if we agree to it

c) works in sinners as well as saints

LESSON TWENTY

SUMMARY AND PRACTICAL APPLICATION

Once again, I congratulate you, and I commend you, for completing The Theology of Everything. I don’t know about you, but when I come to the end of a teaching like this, I’m usually stirred up with a lot of good ideas and food for thought. But I don’t always have a real clear sense about what to do next – how to apply what has been taught and live it out in a practical way. Fortunately, the Theology of Everything and the Universal Spiritual Principles of Increase and Decrease are so powerful that you don’t have to understand them completely in order to apply them. In fact, if you’re honest, you’ll admit that God has been increasing Jesus and decreasing you long before you even realized what was happening.

Think back over your life – how you were raised, how you lived your life before coming to the Lord. How you first came to trust Jesus for salvation. How Jesus began to reveal Himself to you. Maybe you had the impression that coming to Jesus would eliminate all your problems. Instead, you discovered that you still had problems to be worked out and circumstances to go through. Maybe you even got a little discouraged and your spiritual growth became slow and difficult.

Now that you know something about The Law of Increase and The Law of Decrease, doesn’t your life make a little more sense? Without having met you, I can say this much about you: The Holy Spirit has been steadily doing His work of increasing Jesus, and the Cross has been steadily doing its work of decreasing Self. You may not have understood it, and you might not have always cooperated with it.

The good news is you don’t have to blame God, or blame your parents, or blame the Church, or blame the devil for where you are today. You can make a fresh start right now: by acknowledging that God is working everything in your life – the good, the bad, and the ugly – for His Purpose.

As a disciple, my duty is to submit to this Purpose. As a teacher, my calling is to explain this Purpose. But as a brother, my responsibility is to encourage you to surrender your life – all that you have, and all that you are – to that Purpose. If you’ve never given your life over to Jesus, now is a good time to do so. If you are a disciple of Jesus, now is a good time to rededicate your life to Him all over again.

Now I’d like to leave you with some practical things you can do to reinforce the Theology of Everything in your daily walk with God.

The first thing I would recommend is this: go back and take this course again! Now that you see the big picture, feel free to go back and quickly review the lessons. You can start at the beginning and work through each of them, or you can go back and only study the lessons you want to better understand. Pretty soon the truths will become second nature to you, and it will be a lot easier to connect the dots between the teaching and your daily experiences.

Second, seek those things that increase Christ in your life. We know that the Holy Spirit will use things like the Scriptures, prayer, and fellowship with other believers as tools to increase Christ and help us grow spiritually. So, take advantage of those opportunities when they are available to you. If prayer helps you to better know Jesus, then pray. If studying the Bible helps you to see Jesus more clearly, then study the Bible. If fellowship with others helps you to grow spiritually (especially if you’re a new believer), then seek the fellowship of strong, mature Christians who are focused on Christ and can help you stay focused on Him. At The School of Christ, we sometimes sponsor weekend workshops where people can come together and learn on a more personal, face-to-face basis. If you can attend one of these lives workshops I encourage you to do so.

Now, as you seek things that increase Jesus in your life, begin to eliminate things that do NOT increase Jesus – religious things that distract you from the simplicity of Christ, or teachings that sounds good but don’t really lead you into a greater revelation of understanding Who Jesus is. The Internet is a valuable resource for Bible teaching, but that doesn’t mean you should read and listen to everyone and everything. We have plenty of online and offline resources available here at TheSchoolOfChrist.Org, and if you want to learn more about the increase of Christ and the decrease of Self, that’s a great place to begin.

Lastly, if you got something out of this online workshop, and if you’re in agreement with what we’re teaching, why not tell others about it? Can you think of one, two, five, or ten people who would benefit from knowing what you’ve been learning? Invite them to visit TheSchoolOfChrist.Org, and encourage them to sign up for this free online workshop. Or, if you’d like to make this workshop available to people in your home meeting, Bible study, church, fellowship or small group, get in touch with us and we’ll show you how easy it is to get started. When we teach about the increase of Christ we are cooperating with that increase. And when you help others to experience this teaching, you are cooperating with the increase of Christ also.

If you’ve just completed the workshop for the first time, I hope you’ll send us a quick email to let us know. Our email address is info@TheSchoolOfChrist.Org.  And, if you’ve given your life to the Lord for the first time, or if you’ve just rededicated yourself to Him, we’d like to hear from you as well. Of course, if you have any questions or comments about the workshop please feel free to share them with us.

He must increase, but I must decrease! Thank you so much for the privilege and the opportunity to share the greatness of our Lord Jesus Christ with you through The Theology of Everything.

QUIZ

Lesson 20 – Summary and Practical Application

1. The Universal Spiritual Principles of Increase and Decrease were working in your life long before you understood them or knew anything about them. This means that

a) you must be incredibly wise

b) you need to memorize them to get them to work

c) you can apply them without fully understanding them

2. If you don’t like where you are in your life today, you should blame

a) God

b) the devil

c) yourself

d) your parents

e) none of the above

3. The most important thing to ask when you find a new teaching, ministry, or Christian website is

a) does this sound spiritual?

b) does this help to increase Christ?

c) does this say it is for Christians?

4. The best way to reinforce the truths you’ve learned in this course is to

a) take the course over again

b) study the lessons you want to really focus on

c) share the teachings with others

d) all the above

FINAL EXAM

Lessons 1 – 20

1. The Seven Simple Words that make up The Theology of Everything are

a) He must increase, but I must increase

b) He must decrease, but I must decrease

c) He must increase, but I must decrease

2. The First Universal Spiritual Principle is the Law of Increase, which states that

a) I must increase

b) I must decrease

c) Jesus must increase

3. The Second Universal Spiritual Principle is The Law of Decrease, which stats

a) I must increase

b) I must decrease

c) Jesus must decrease

4. The First Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose is

a) God has a Will

b) God has no Will

c) God’s Will is a mystery

5. The Second Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose is

a) God’s Will is “All Christians Victorious”

b) God’s Will is “All Things In Christ”

c) God’s Will is “All Sinners Saved”

6. The Third Indisputable Fact of God’s Purpose is

a) God’s Will mostly applies to the Church

b) God’s will is flexible and changes as needed

c) God works everything according to His Will

7. The First Expression of God’s Purpose says that

a) All things are “OF CHRIST” (Past)

b) All things are “THROUGH CHRIST” (Present)

c) All things are “TO CHRIST” (Future)

8. The Second Expression of God’s Purpose says that

a) All things are “OF CHRIST” (Past)

b) All things are “THROUGH CHRIST” (Present)

c) All things are “TO CHRIST” (Future)

9. The Third Expression of God’s Purpose says that

a) All things are “OF CHRIST” (Past)

b) All things are “THROUGH CHRIST” (Present)

c) All things are “TO CHRIST” (Future)

10. The Law of Increase begins with

a) the revelation of Self

b) the revelation of Christ

c) the revelation of All Things

11. Christ is increased through the process of

a) good works

b) discipleship

c) visions and dreams

12. The goal of the increasing of Christ is

a) the knowledge of Christ (gnosis)

b) the full-knowledge of Christ (epignosis)

c) the knowledge of Self (hypnosis)

13. The instrument, or the means, through which God accomplishes the increase of Christ is

a) the Holy Church

b) the Holy Scriptures

c) the Holy Spirit

14. Which illustration BEST describes the increase of Christ?

a) the parable of the rich man and Lazarus

b) the parable of the prodigal son

c) the parable of the sower

15. The Law of Decrease begins with

a) the revelation of All Things

b) the revelation of Christ

c) the revelation of Self

16. The decrease of Self is accomplished through a process called

a) regeneration

b) restitution

c) repentance

17. The goal of the decreasing of Self is

a) “Not I, but me”

b) “Not I, but Christ”

c) “Not me, but you”

18. The instrument, or the means, through which God accomplishes the decrease of Self is

a) the World

b) the Church

c) the Cross

19. Which person below BEST illustrates the Law of Decrease?

a) Jezebel

b) Nebuchadnezzar

c) Pilate

20. The bet way to reinforce the truths you’ve learned in this course is to

a) take the course over again

b) study the lessons you want to really focus on

c) share the teachings with others

d) all the above

THE NEXT STEP…

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THEOLOGY OF EVERYTHING, Lessons 1-20 [Chip Brogden] ~ BOOK          1

 

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