The building of the House of the Lord, therefore, is not only a gathering of people but it is a spiritual and a moral building up, and that side of things is only done through conflict.
The Divine economy has so ordered that although the Lord Jesus has in Himself secured a universal triumph over all His foes, the foes are still left for us to deal with.
The enemy has, although been defeated, still been left for the saints to have something to do with, and the Lord has not put out of the universe our foes, though in Himself He has triumphed. He has left them for us to deal with in His triumph, and it is in that that you and I get our spiritual and moral development.
It is by conflict, by battle, by grim and terrible warfare spiritually, that the moral excellencies of our triumphant Head are brought out in us.
We triumph in His victory, but we know that faith is so tested in a conflict, so deeply tried in a battle, that it is something more than just objectively holding on, or believing in something in Christ.
That very exercise of faith brings out from Him, into our own souls, the strength of His victory so that we are made morally one with Him in His triumph by a test of faith which is so grim and so terrible that nothing that is not of Him in us would be sufficient to carry us through.
It has to be wrought into the very substance of our being, and that is done through conflict in which faith is drawn out; and so we spiritually and morally build through conflict, through adversity, in the Divine and sovereign ordering of our lives.
The moral side of things is that which comes out in exercise, and exercise of faith in the value of Calvary's victory.
It is one thing to have a theoretical appropriation of Calvary's victory and say in an hour of emergency: "I take the victory of Calvary." But very often nothing happens, and although you take a position like that you find yourself called upon to hold on, and hold on, and hold on, and during that time of being called upon by the Lord to hold on, faith is being tested.
Calvary's victory is becoming something not objectively taken hold of but inwardly established, and at last that victory is in us as it is in the Lord. But it has become a moral quality in our being and in the next time it is not a trying to get hold of something, it is there with its roots in us, something has been done in us which is a part of us.
~T. Austin Sparks~