Fulness

Fulness a term variously used in Scripture.

1. "The fullness of time" is the time when the Messiah appeared, which was appointed by God, promised to the fathers, foretold by the prophets, expected by the Jews themselves, and earnestly longed for by all the faithful: "When the fullness of the time was come, God sent his Son," Ga 4:4.

2. The fullness of Christ is the superabundance of grace with which he was filled: "Of his fullness have all we received," Joh 1:16. And whereas men are said to be filled with the Holy Ghost, as John the Baptist, Lu 1:15; and Stephen, Ac 6:5; this differs from the fullness of Christ in these three respects:

Definition of fullness

(a.) Grace in others is by participation, as the moon hath her light from the sun, rivers their waters from the fountain; but in Christ all that perfection and influence which we include in that term is originally, naturally, and of himself.

(b.) The Spirit is in Christ infinitely and above measure, Joh 3:34; but in the saints by measure according to the gift of, God, Eph 4:16.

See also the International Standard Bible Encyclopedia.

(c.) The saints cannot communicate their graces to others, whereas the gifts of the Spirit are in Christ as a head and fountain, to impart them to his members. "We have received of his fullness," Joh 1:16.

3. It is said that "the fullness of the Godhead dwells in Christ bodily," Col 2:9; that is, the whole nature and attributes of God are in Christ, and that really, essentially, or substantially; and also personally, by nearest union; as the soul dwells in the body, so that the same person who is man is God also.

4. The Church is called the fullness of Christ, Eph 1:23. It is the Church which makes him a complete and perfect head; for, though he has a natural and personal fullness as God, yet as Mediator he is not full and complete without his mystical body (as a king is not complete without- his subjects), but receives an outward, relative, and mystical fullness from his members (Watson, Dictiomary, s.v.).

5. It is probable that the expression fulness of the Godhead, as applied to Christ (Col 1:19; Col 2:9), contains aen allusion to the theories of some speculators, who taught that there were "certain distinct beings" (sons as they called them), "who were successive emanations from the Supreme Being himself," to whom they gave the title of "the Fulness." They pretended that one of these had assumed human nature in Jesus Christ. It was probably in designed contradiction to this that the apostle asserts the indwelling in Jesus "of all the fullness of the Godhead" (Eden).

 
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