God’s church finds her origin in the eternal mind of God and its perpetuity is further guaranteed the person of Christ. As Jonathan Edwards said, “God’s love to his saints has had being from all eternity. God often in his Word is setting [forth] how great his love is to his saints, how dear they are to him. But this love of his to them, he had before ever they had any being.” This work of God made “in eternity past” will be enjoyed by the church “in eternity future.” Edwards said, “Thus God has exercised love to his saints in the things that he has done from the beginning of the world.”
The union of the Christian to Christ results in participation with Christ. This union and participation is described by Canlis as “our greatest weapon against weightlessness” to “which the academy is prone” and “the weightlessness that our virtual society promises.” The origin and perpetuity of the church yet rest upon the eternal purpose of God and the eternal person of Christ. The Christians can be confident in God’s love for the church, his purposes for the church, and his promise to bring the church to himself because the church is “in Christ.” As Jesus said, “abide in me, and I in you” (Jn. 15:4).