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THE SCHOOL OF CHRIST
By T. Austin Sparks
AN OPEN HEAVEN
THE NEED OF A NEW SET OF FACULTIES
Now, here is where we become so seemingly elementary. You see, the very nature of this school requires the most drastic change in ourselves. It is impossible to get into the School of Christ, where the Holy Spirit is the great tutor, until the greatest change has taken place in us. We have to be made all over again or that school will mean nothing.
We cannot come in here with any hope of learning Christ in the smallest way until a whole new set of faculties has been given to us. We have to have faculties given to us which we do not possess naturally. "Except one be born from above, he cannot see the kingdom of God" (John 3:3); and that is the Lord's way of stating a tremendous fact.
That kingdom is one in which certain things obtain with which I have no correspondence at all, with which naturally I have no power of communication. Take a walk round the garden. Walk down by the potatoes and vegetables and talk about, well, anything you like. What would the potatoes think about you? What would the cabbages say about you?
They neither hear nor understand what you are talking about, whatever it is. Their kind of life is not your kind of life. They are not constituted in your kingdom. There is no correspondence between them and you at all. They have not the capacity, the gift, the qualification, for the most elementary things that you may be talking about. You may be talking about such foolish things as dress, ordinary everyday things: they do not know. It is like that.
There is just as great a divide between us and the kingdom of God. "The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; and he cannot know them ..." (1 Corinthians 2:14). The divide is so utter that if you and I were brought in our natural state right into the place where the Spirit of God was speaking, unless that Spirit of God wrought a miracle in us, the whole thing would be of another world. And is it not so?
You believers, go out into this world and talk about the things of the Lord and see men gape at you! It is all foreign to them. It is like that. "Except one be born from above, he cannot see the kingdom of God." To get into this school, something has to happen to us, and that means that we have to be constituted anew, with altogether other qualifications and abilities for the things of God. That is the nature of this school. It is the School of the Spirit of God.
I know that is very elementary, but, after all, is not that the thing that is being pressed on us all the time? It is being brought home to us how that we may hear words, and yet that they may not mean anything to us. We need our capacity for spiritual understanding enlarged more and more. We are naturally handicapped in this whole matter.