Weekly Ministry (Jan 23, 2022 – Jan 29, 2022)


Prayer to Absorb God and to Express God by Praying to God as a Friend So That we Can Co-work with God

Psa. 27:4 One thing I have asked from Jehovah; / That do I seek: / To dwell in the house of Jehovah / All the days of my life, / To behold the beauty of Jehovah, / And to inquire in His temple.

The more we contact God, the more we will absorb Him, and the more we absorb Him, the more we will enjoy God and salvation. Let me say a word here to clear up our inaccurate concepts concerning God and His salvation. Psalm 27:1 says, “Jehovah is my light and my salvation.” This verse does not say that God shines on us but that He is our light, nor does it say that God saves us but that He is our salvation….By shining on us and saving us, God is accomplishing something for us. But by being our light and our salvation, God Himself is what we need. When we have God, we have light and salvation. Without God we have neither light nor salvation. (CWWL, 1956, vol. 3, “The Meaning and Purpose of Prayer,” p.223)

God is Spirit; hence, our contacting and absorbing Him do not depend on our words….We may not say anything when we come to God, but our whole being, including our heart, should face God. While we look to God, we may sigh and confess that we are incompetent, weak, unable to rise, unpresentable, and thirsty and that we lack words for the gospel and are not inclined to fellowship with the saints. We should lay our inner condition before God and even tell Him that we are short in every matter. No matter what our inner condition is, we should bring it to God. There is a hymn that says, “Just as I am” (Hymns, #1048). This means that we should come to God just as we are without trying to improve or change our condition.

Many believers have the natural concept that before they can pray and draw near to God, they must wait until their condition improves or until their inner feeling is strong. This concept is not according to the meaning of prayer. To pray is to come to God just as we are….We do not need to wait for anything, change anything, or prepare anything. Even if we are weak, confused, sad, and speechless, we can still come to God.

When we pray, we should behold His glorious face and linger in His presence to worship, praise, give thanks to Him, and muse upon Him. We should think of His works and His person and not look at our condition or our environment. By looking to God, waiting on Him, and musing upon Him, we can absorb Him into us. (CWWL, 1956, vol. 3, “The Meaning and Purpose of Prayer,” pp. 223-225, 227)

Life-study of Galatians (Message 5)

The Formation of Paul’s Apostleship

Gal. 1:15 But when it pleased God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace,

In 1:15 Paul also says that God called him through His grace. Paul was called to be an apostle through the grace of Christ, not through the law that came by Moses. This calling took place at the time of his conversion. We also can testify that we have been called by God. Actually, God’s calling of us began with His setting us apart from our mother’s womb. If we spend time to review our past, we shall see that God’s calling of us began with our conception in the womb. God arranged the time and place of our birth. Then He called us. How grateful I am to the Lord that He caused me to be conceived in the womb of one who was in Christianity, although she was not saved at that time. In this way God caused me to be born into Christianity, beginning His calling of me by setting me apart from my mother’s womb. Then one day, in 1925, God’s calling was accomplished in a full way when I believed in the Lord Jesus. None of us should have any doubt about being called by God. Rather, let us worship Him and thank Him for His calling. Everything related to us, such as our family and education, is according to God’s sovereignty and related to His calling of us.

In 1:15 and 16 Paul says that God was pleased to reveal His Son in him. The Son of God was unveiled to Paul and shown to him. This means that he received a vision of the living Person of the Son of God. Since Paul is a pattern of the believers and the Son of God was revealed in him, we also should have Christ revealed in us. When the Son of God is revealed in us, something divine is added to us. Selection and calling do not cause anything to be added into us. But the revelation of the Son of God in us causes divinity to be added to our humanity. God Himself is added into our being to become our life. He who has the Son has life (1 John 5:12). Hence, to have the Son of God revealed in us means to have God added to us to become our life.

After the Son of God was revealed in Paul, he “did not confer with flesh and blood.” This means that he did not confer with man, who is made up of flesh and blood. This confirms the fact that Paul did not receive the gospel from man (1:12).

After we believed in the Lord Jesus, many of us immediately conferred with others. If we recall our experience, we shall realize that much of this was of no avail. As soon as I was saved, I turned to various people for help. However, I was only frustrated by them and cooled down. Some of you may have spoken to certain preachers or ministers, only to find that you were discouraged by your contact with them.

When young believers contacted me thirty years ago, I had a great deal to say. But it is much different today. Now when others contact me, I simply tell them to pray and to seek the Lord, to bring everything to Him for His leading. I do not want to be the flesh and blood with which others confer. We should neither confer with flesh and blood, nor should we be the flesh and blood with whom others confer. Let us leave others and their situation to the Lord.

Some of the leading ones may be concerned that such a word will cause the saints not to seek the proper fellowship. Furthermore, they may think that this will ruin the leadership. But would it not be wonderful for all the saints to be trained not to confer with flesh and blood? How good it would be if we all brought ourselves with our needs and problems directly to the Lord! If we would be today’s apostles, we should follow Paul’s pattern in not going up to Jerusalem to confer with others.

Life-study of Galatians (message 6)

Paul’s Faithfulness and Peter’s Unfaithfulness to the Truth of the Gospel

Gal. 1:16 To reveal His Son in me that I might announce Him as the gospel among the Gentiles, immediately I did not confer with flesh and blood,

In Galatians we see that Paul was faithful, honest, frank, and bold. At the same time, he also displayed a spirit of meekness. He refers to such a spirit in 6:1, where he says that those who are spiritual should restore the one overtaken in an offense in a spirit of meekness. In writing this Epistle, Paul was endeavoring to restore the Galatian believers who had been overtaken by their weakness. No doubt, in their subtlety the Judaizers had taken advantage of the weakness of the Galatian believers. Therefore, Paul exercised a spirit of meekness in order to restore the ones who had been overtaken. On the one hand, he was bold; on the other hand, he was meek in spirit. Regarding this, we all need to learn of Paul.

Throughout the years, both in the Far East and in the West, I have learned that much that passes for meekness is actually the playing of politics. Paul certainly was not meek in this way. For example, in 2:4 he speaks of “false brothers, brought in secretly, who stole in to spy out our freedom.” In making such a statement, Paul surely was not political. In his choice of terms he was bold and frank.

Those who take the lead in the churches must learn to be honest, faithful, frank, and bold, yet all of this with meekness. We should never play politics. However, if we are short of grace and lack the wisdom to handle a particular situation, we may need to be silent. But we must never be political.

In dealing with the problem in Galatia, Paul faced a situation which was serious and very touchy. In 4:20 he said that he was perplexed about the Galatians. He was puzzled, not knowing how to deal with these distracted believers. But even though Paul was puzzled, he did not play politics. On the contrary, he was still frank, honest, and bold.

Playing politics is a form of lying. In the eyes of God, politics is more evil than an outright lie. This is the reason that the international political situation is so evil, so deplorable, in God’s sight. Many diplomats and ambassadors are experts at lying in a subtle way. Some have even been trained to behave in such a manner. The church is altogether another realm, another kingdom. In this realm, the realm of the kingdom of the heavens, there should not be any lying; neither should there be any playing of politics. In John 8:44 the Lord Jesus said that the Devil, Satan, is the father of lies. Since playing politics is even worse than lying, it must also issue from the devilish father of lies. Because the playing of politics is so evil and devilish, negotiations can never bring peace among the nations. How can there be peace among nations when the representatives of those nations lie and play politics? In the church, the earthly embassy of the heavenly kingdom, there should be no playing of politics.

Paul, a good example of a heavenly ambassador, was not political in dealing with the Galatians. He spoke the truth in a frank way. You may feel that Paul was extreme in his frankness. Who else would use such a term as “false brothers”? Would you dare to call someone a false brother? Would you write a letter in which you speak of false brothers who have stolen in to spy out our freedom? Probably none of us would dare to be as frank as Paul was. Furthermore, in 3:1 he addressed the believers as “foolish Galatians.” How bold, honest, and genuine Paul was! The Galatian believers certainly were foolish to turn from Christ to the law. They surely were foolish in following the Judaizers. Therefore, Paul addressed them in a bold and frank manner. Let us learn from him to be faithful and bold and not to play politics. If we lack grace or the wisdom, we may be quiet. But if we speak regarding a particular situation, we should not be political.

Weekly Ministry (Jan 16, 2022 – Jan 22, 2022)


The Need to Develop Our Faith in the Lord and Our Love for Him

Gal 5:6 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision avails anything nor uncircumcision, but faith avails, operating through love.

Love issues out of such a wonderful faith and enables us to live out all the riches of the Triune God in Christ with those who have believed into Christ with us, that the Triune God—the Father, the Son, and the Spirit—may have a glorious expression….Love is for experiencing, enjoying, and living out the immeasurably rich Triune God. Faith is for the believers to be joined to the Triune God, who is everything to them; love is for the believers to minister and transmit the Triune God to their fellow believers so that, in such a wonderful and powerful faith, all the believers may love one another with divine, transcendent love and live a corporate life in Christ. In this way the Body of Christ is realized and the processed Triune God is expressed today on the earth in the all-inclusive Christ through the immeasurable life-giving Spirit.

[Faith and love] are the rich grace given to us in Christ by the Triune God (1 Tim. 1:14), not only to be the motivating power and expression of our spiritual life but also to become our breastplate (1 Thes. 5:8), which covers and protects the vital parts of our being. It is by such faith that we receive and enjoy the divine life that is revealed and ministered to us in the entire Gospel of John (John 3:16, 36), and it is by such love that we love the Lord and those who belong to Him (John 21:15-17; 13:34-35). Such faith and love are connected and go together: love comes from faith, and faith operates and works through love (Gal. 5:6). Love with faith enables us to love our Lord in incorruptibility so that we may have an overcoming church life (Eph. 6:23-24) for the fulfillment of God’s New Testament economy in Christ for the church. Therefore, it is in this faith that we are well pleasing to God (Heb. 11:6) and in this love that we are blessed of the Lord (1 Cor. 16:22). May this love with this faith be to the brothers from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ (Eph. 6:23). (Titus 3:15, footnote 1)

I appreciate that all of us love the Lord’s recovery. If we did not love the recovery, we would not be here. But we need to see that in the seven epistles to the churches in Revelation 2 and 3, the first dealing of the Lord is concerning the recovery of the first love (2:4). Do we love Him? Surely we do. But do we give Him the preeminence, the first place, in all things? To give the Lord the first place in all things is to love Him with the first love, the best love. In order to give Him the preeminence, we must be willing to be adjusted, to be broken, to be made nothing, so that the Lord can have a way in us, through us, and among us for the building up of His organic Body. (CWWL, 1991-1992, vol. 3, “Fellowship concerning the Urgent Need of the Vital Groups,” p. 462)

Life-study of Galatians (Message 3)

God’s Son Versus Man’s Religion

Gal. 1:14 And I advanced in Judaism beyond many contemporaries in my race, being more abundantly a zealot for the traditions of my fathers.

Gal. 1:15 But when it pleased God, who set me apart from my mother’s womb and called me through His grace,

We have pointed out that Paul’s Epistles were written according to God’s revelation. But we also need to see that a very high degree of intelligence was required to interpret this revelation and to express it in words. Others may receive such a revelation, but, unlike Paul, they may not have the ability to understand it and to convey it in language. We have seen that Paul, a highly educated person, was a leading religionist. According to his darkened mentality, nothing could compare to Judaism with its law, Scriptures, priestly service, and traditions. As one who always pursued what he thought was best, he was wholly given to these things. He despised the followers of Jesus; he considered that they were merely following an insignificant Nazarene, whereas he was zealous for the traditions of his fathers. But one day, when it pleased God the Father, the living Person of the Son of God was revealed in him. When this Person appeared to him, he fell to the ground and spontaneously called, “Who art thou, Lord?” (Acts 9:5). Immediately the Lord replied, “I am Jesus whom thou persecutest.” According to the darkened understanding of Saul of Tarsus, Jesus had been buried in a tomb, and His disciples had stolen His body and hidden it somewhere. But now Saul was shocked to realize that Jesus was living, was speaking from the heavens, and was being revealed to him. From the time this living Person was revealed in Saul, the veil was taken away and Saul’s keen mind was enlightened with respect to the Son of God. Henceforth, he cared for this Person and no longer cared for religion or tradition.

Though we have a good deal of knowledge of Bible doctrine, our burden is not to minister doctrine; it is to minister the living Son of God as the embodiment of the processed Triune God realized as the life-giving Spirit. We should not treasure anything, including our Bible knowledge or spiritual experience and attainments, in place of this living Person. Daily and hourly, we need to experience this living Person. The church is the Body of this Person, His practical and living expression.

Because this living Person is everything to us, there is no need for us to seek mere holiness, spirituality, victory, love, or submission. As the embodiment of the Triune God realized as the all-inclusive life-giving Spirit, He is within us to be whatever we need. In a forthcoming message we shall see that this One is now living in us. What we lack is not holiness or victory—it is this living Person. He is versus everything. Without Him, everything is a tradition made either by others or by ourselves. May we all see that today this living Person is versus all things.

Apart from Christ, the living Person of the Son of God, whatever we have is religion. For example, a brother may love his wife. But if he loves her apart from Christ, even this is religious. The same is true of sisters who submit to their husbands apart from Christ. This kind of submission is religious and traditional. I have known some Chinese wives who were submissive simply because they were submissive by nature. Before they were saved, they were submissive. After they became Christians, they became good, submissive, Christian wives. But this kind of submission has nothing to do with Christ. It is the expression of Chinese tradition, not of the living Person of the Son of God.

Before I received a vision of the living Person, I was one who kept many traditions. But one day it pleased God to reveal His Son in me. Now I know that this living Person is the embodiment of the processed, all-inclusive Triune God realized in my spirit as the life-giving Spirit. In my spirit I enjoy Him, experience Him, partake of His riches, and live Him. To be a Christian is to be one who is occupied with the living Person, not with religion. Judaism is a religion formed by man in dead letters with vain traditions. But the Son of God is life, the uncreated, eternal life of God. For our experience and enjoyment, this One is the all-inclusive Spirit with the divine reality (John 1:14; 14:6). I do not want anything to do with religion—I want this living Person. Which do you choose—man’s religion or the living Person of God’s Son?

Life-study of Galatians (message 4)

The Revelation of God’s Son in Us

Gal. 1:16 To reveal His Son in me that I might announce Him as the gospel among the Gentiles, immediately I did not confer with flesh and blood,

If we would receive the revelation of the Son of God, we need to drop our concepts. Every concept, whether spiritual or carnal, is a veil. I have spent many years groping in my search to learn how to have revelation. Eventually I discovered that to have revelation we need to drop our concepts.

God today is shining everywhere. This age of grace is an age of light. God is shining, and the Bible is shining also. The Bible is full of light, and it has been printed in hundreds of languages. Moreover, the all-inclusive Spirit moving on earth is full of grace. But although the Bible is shining and the Spirit is moving, many still do not receive revelation. The reason is that they hold to certain concepts and are veiled by these concepts. As you contact people from various nationalities, you will find that all of them are strong in their concepts. This is also true among us in the Lord’s recovery. On the one hand, I worship the Lord for all the growth and improvement among us. On the other hand, I realize that many veils still remain. These veils are the concepts that blind us.

With respect to receiving revelation, there is no problem on God’s side. On His side everything is ready. The problem is altogether on our side. We need to drop the veils, that is, to drop our concepts. It is important for us to pray, “Lord, help me to drop everything that is a veil.” If you hold on to your concepts while reading the Bible, you will be like the ancient Jews who had a veil on their mind whenever the Scriptures were read. But if you drop your concepts as you read the Word, you will read it with an unveiled face. Then the light will shine into you subjectively.

I was born into Christianity, and from childhood I heard about Christ. However, I was not saved until I was nineteen years old. I knew about Jesus, and I was in favor of Christianity. But I was not saved until the Son of God was revealed in me. One day, when I was nineteen, God shined into me, and I received a revelation of the Lord Jesus. At that time I began to have direct personal contact with Him and to know Him as a living Person. I touched Him, and I was touched by Him. Between Him and me there was a living transaction, a living contact. We all need a direct, personal, living contact with the living Person of the Son of God.

Today many of us earnestly desire to live Christ. But to live Christ we need revelation. As we have pointed out again and again, the only way revelation can come to us is if we drop our concepts. We also need to pray, “Lord, I trust in You to defeat the god of this age. Apart from You, I do not worship anything. Lord, I turn my heart to You, and I drop all my concepts. I don’t want to worship anyone other than You.” If you pray in this way, the light will shine, and you will receive revelation. If you drop your concepts and turn your heart to the Lord, the veils will be taken away, and the god of this age will have no ground in your being.

The light is here, and it is shining. Our problem is that our heart is turned away to many other things, and therefore we are covered with layer upon layer of veils. This enables the god of this age to have ground in us. As a result, our thoughts are darkened, blinded, and hardened, and we cannot receive revelation, even though we may read the Bible and listen to messages. Oh, how we need revelation!

Weekly Ministry (Jan 2, 2022 – Jan 8, 2022)


God’s Need in the Present Age

Rev. 5:10 And have made them a kingdom and priests to our God; and they will reign on the earth.

Some may ask: Why doesn’t God Himself cast Satan into the bottomless pit or the lake of fire? Our answer is: God can do it, but He does not want to do it Himself….God wants to use man to deal with His enemy, and He created man for this purpose. God wants the creature to deal with the creature. He wants His creature man to deal with His fallen creature Satan in order to bring the earth back to God.

Many times the work of saving souls is not necessarily the work of God. Saving souls solves the problem of man, but the work of God requires that man exercise authority to have dominion over all things created by Him. God needs an authority in His creation, and He has chosen man to be that authority. If we were here just for ourselves as mere men, then all our seeking and longing would be to love the Lord more and to be more holy, more zealous, and save more souls….These things are [good but are] concerned simply with the benefit of man; God’s work and God’s need are entirely neglected. We must see that God has His need….Thank God that He has committed the ministry of reconciliation to us, but even if we have saved all the souls in the whole world, we have not yet accomplished God’s work or satisfied God’s requirement. Here is something called God’s work, God’s need. When God created man, He spoke of what He needed. He revealed His need to have man rule and reign over all His creation and proclaim His triumph. Ruling for God is not a small thing; it is a great matter. God needs men whom He can trust and who will not fail Him. This is God’s work, and this is what God desires to obtain.

Brothers and sisters, this requires us to pay a price. We know how the demons can speak. A demon once said, “Jesus I know, and with Paul I am acquainted; but who are you?” (Acts 19:15). When a demon meets us, will he flee or not? Preaching the gospel demands that we pay a price, but a much greater price must be paid to deal with Satan.

This is not a matter of a message or a teaching. This requires our practice, and the price is extremely great. If we are to be men whom God will use to overthrow all of Satan’s work and authority, we must obey the Lord completely and absolutely! In doing other work it matters less if we preserve ourselves a little, but when dealing with Satan, we cannot leave one bit of ground for ourselves. We may hold on to something of ourselves in our study of the Scriptures, in preaching the gospel, in helping the church or the brothers, but when we are dealing with Satan, self must be utterly abandoned. Satan will never be moved by us if self is preserved. May God open our eyes to see that His purpose demands that we be wholly and absolutely for Him. A double-minded person can never deal with Satan. (CWWN, vol. 34, “The Glorious Church,” pp. 10-12)

Weekly Ministry (Dec 27, 2021 – Jan 1, 2022)


Knowing and Spreading the Up-to-date Truth of the Highest Gospel of God’s Eternal Economy according to the Ministry of the Age

Rom. 1:3 Concerning His Son, who came out of the seed of David according to the flesh,

Rom. 1:4 Who was designated the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness out of the resurrection of the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord;

Jesus in His humanity, in that part, was not the Son of God. He was of the old creation, the old man, having the flesh, which is involved with Satan, sin, and the world. So this part had to be made divine, to be sonized, designated, that it might become a part of the Son of God.

It is very hard to say what the word designated means in Romans 1:4….Christ is a wonderful person. He has two parts: the man-part, the part of man, and the God-part, the part of God. The part of man is human. The part of God is divine….His resurrection uplifted the humanity of Jesus into the level of divinity. Here is the essence of the person of Christ.

This is very, very deep. Jesus’ divinity is the Spirit of holiness, having the divine power and the divine element to transform Jesus’ humanity, making it divine. This is what it means to designate, and this is to sonize. This is the fulfillment of the prophecy in typology in 2 Samuel 7:12-14. (CWWL, 1994-1997, vol. 1, “Crystallization-study of the Epistle to the Romans,” pp. 216-217)

Those responsible for the crucifixion of Christ did not realize that crucifixion was the best way for Him to be designated, to be glorified….If [a carnation] seed is put to an end by being buried in the soil, it will eventually sprout, grow, and blossom. In the same principle, through death and resurrection Christ “blossomed” as the Son of God. Satan expected the crucifixion of Christ to mark His termination, but the Lord Jesus knew that this was actually the beginning, that it would lead to His designation according to the Spirit of holiness out of the resurrection from the dead….Hallelujah, in resurrection Christ was designated the Son of God in power! (Life-study of Romans, p. 551)

In His resurrection, all His believers were born, regenerated, with Him as His millions of “twins” to make all these twins the same as He is (1 Pet. 1:3)….The prototype is the firstborn Son of God, and the reproduction is the many sons of God. The Firstborn indicates that more sons are coming.

He is such a prototype to produce millions of God-men. These millions of God-men are the mass reproduction who are exactly the same as the wonderful person Jesus Christ. This mass reproduction of the prototype becomes the members of the prototype to be His Body, the Body of Christ, and this Body of Christ consummates in the New Jerusalem, which is the corporate expression of the Triune God, processed and consummated in Christ and becoming the life-giving Spirit. (CWWL, 1994-1997, vol. 1, “Crystallization-study of the Epistle to the Romans,” pp. 236-237)

Weekly Ministry (Dec 20 – Dec 26, 2021)


Upholding the Truth and Testifying to the Truth That the Church Is the Pillar and Base of the Truth and the Corporate Manifestation of God in the Flesh

2 Tim. 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, an unashamed workman, cutting straight the word of the truth.

First Timothy 3:15 says that the church is the pillar and base of the truth. In ancient architecture a building was supported by a pillar, which rested on a base. The church is the pillar and base that bears the truth. The pillar and base of the truth are not the elders but the church, which includes every brother and sister. Every member of the church is part of the pillar that bears the truth. Whenever a new one or a young one asks a question related to the truth, we should all be able to answer. Someone may ask what holiness is. We not only should know that holiness is Christ, but we also should be able to find the verse that proves this (1 Cor. 1:30) and expound it. However, many saints know a certain amount of truth, but their knowledge is not thorough or adequate. In order for the churches to be strong, every brother and sister must bear the truth by learning the truth, experiencing the truth, and being able to speak the truth. (CWWL, 1978, vol. 3, “The Healthy Word,” p. 221)

Everyone…who has passed through all kinds of tests and who was not only never shaken but also never affected is a real benefit to the Lord’s recovery. Whatever the storm was, they remained steadfast, and they went on with the Lord and are still here. They have not been a damage or a problem. Everyone like this is one who loves the Word and has a sound foundation in the truth. There is not an exception to this either on the positive side or on the negative side. All those who became a problem never had a solid foundation in the Word. We must do our best to get ourselves into these truths and to get these truths constituted into our being. This cannot be done within a short time, but this must be our practice. I also am burdened that all the leading ones, either the elders or the serving ones taking some kind of lead, should have a real burden to pray for the saints in your locality that the Lord may stir up their interest, their seeking heart, and their spirit to seek after the Lord in His truth. The truth is nowhere but in the Bible, yet the Bible needs an opener. We need to lead the saints into the real, right, and proper realization of the need of the Bible and also of the help of the Life-study messages and the Recovery Version. We should help the saints to build up a practice or a habit that every day they would spend at least thirty minutes in the Word. This can be done by taking ten minutes in the morning, ten minutes in the evening, and another ten minutes before going to bed. We all need to build up such a practice to spend at least thirty minutes a day to get into God’s Word. (CWWL, 1984, vol. 2, “Elders’ Training, Book 3: The Way to Carry Out the Vision,” pp. 323-325)

Weekly Ministry (Dec 13 – Dec 19, 2021)


The Recovery of the Subjective Truths in the Gospel of John

John 4:14 But whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall by no means thirst forever; but the water that I will give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into eternal life.

The Triune God flows in the Divine Trinity in three stages. John 4:14b says, “The water that I will give him will become in him a fountain of water springing up into eternal life.” When the fountain springs up, that is the fountain emerging. Then a river flows. The Father is the fountain, the Son is the spring, and the Spirit is the river.

This flowing Triune God is “into eternal life.” The Greek preposition translated as “into” is rich in meaning. Here it speaks of the destination. The eternal life is the destination of the flowing Triune God. A fountain is in us springing up as a river into a destination. This destination is the eternal life. The New Jerusalem is the totality of the divine, eternal life. The eternal life eventually will be the New Jerusalem. Thus, into eternal life means into the New Jerusalem….The entire Bible is needed to interpret John 4:14. The Father is the fountain as the source, the Son is the spring, the Spirit is the flowing river, and this flowing issues in the eternal life, which is the New Jerusalem. The Gospel of John opens by saying, “In the beginning was the Word” (1:1). The Word is for speaking, and speaking is the start of God’s flowing. Speaking is flowing, spreading is flowing, and dispensing is also flowing. God flows through speaking, through spreading, through dispensing.

When we drink of this water, it becomes a fountain in us….This fountain emerges as a spring, and the spring flows out as a river for the New Jerusalem. This is the key to open up the entire Gospel of John. This is the divine speaking, divine spreading, divine dispensing, of the Divine Trinity. The Father as the fountain, the Son as the spring, and the Spirit as the river flow into us. When He flows into us, He flows with us. He will flow us into the New Jerusalem to be the New Jerusalem. The preposition into also means “to become.” Into the New Jerusalem means “to become the New Jerusalem.” If we are not becoming the New Jerusalem, we can never be in the New Jerusalem. We have to be the New Jerusalem; then we can be in the New Jerusalem. This is the intrinsic significance of the Gospel of John and Revelation. (CWWL, 1994-1997, vol. 4, “Crystallization-study of the Gospel of John,” pp. 455, 457)

Life-study of Colossians (Message 65)

Persevering in Prayer

Col. 4:2 Persevere in prayer, watching in it with thanksgiving,

Persevering in prayer has many benefits. By prayer we set our mind on the things above. In fact, prayer is the only way to have our mind set on the things in heaven. When we set our mind on things above by praying, we shall not pray for trivial matters. Instead, our prayer will be occupied with Christ’s heavenly intercession, ministry, and administration. Because Christ is interceding for the churches around the world, we also pray for the churches. Let the Lord take care of all the small matters in our living. Our responsibility is to seek first the kingdom of God and God’s righteousness. Since the Father knows our need, He will take care of us and meet our need.

When we set our mind on the things above during our times of prayer, we become a reflection of Christ’s ministry in the heavens. Through our prayer, Christ, the Head, is given a way to carry out His administration through His Body. When we pray, we are a heavenly ambassador on earth with the extension of God’s kingdom. However, when we are gossiping, we are not a heavenly ambassador at all. Only when we pray do we become an ambassador of the heavenly kingdom on earth in a practical way.

When we pray, we enter into the Holy of Holies and approach the throne of grace. Hebrews 4:16 says, “Let us therefore come forward with boldness to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and may find grace for timely help.” Prayer is the way to come forward to the throne of grace. Coming forward to the throne of grace, we receive mercy and grace to meet our timely need. When we pray, approaching the throne of grace, mercy and grace will become a river flowing in us and supplying us. How rewarding this is! Receiving the flow of grace in prayer is actually more important than having our prayers answered. Whether or not our prayer is answered is secondary. The primary thing is that grace flows like a river from the throne and into our being.

To receive this river of grace is to have our spiritual battery charged with heavenly current. The heavenly current, the divine electricity, is the Triune God as grace flowing out of the throne and into us. The supply and enjoyment this brings is unspeakable.

Christians today are weak because their spiritual batteries are not charged. Because they are short of prayer, they are short of the heavenly transmission. Again and again during the day, we need to be charged with the divine electrical current. This surely is a reward for persevering in prayer.

Another benefit of praying is related to fellowship with the Lord. We all love the Lord’s presence and anointing, and we all love to have fellowship with Him. But how can we enjoy the Lord’s presence and have fellowship with Him? The only way is to pray. When we pray, we enter into fellowship with the Lord and become conscious of the fact that we are truly one spirit with Him and that He is actually one spirit with us. The more we pray, the more we experience being one with the Lord, and the more we enjoy His presence and have fellowship with Him. What a marvelous reward!

It is always difficult at first to have a proper prayer life. But if you practice this for a long period of time, it will get easier and easier, for you will realize the rewards of praying.

We have seen that for a normal Christian walk we need to set our mind on things above, have the renewing of the new man, have the peace of Christ arbitrating in us, and allow the word of Christ to inhabit us. These four matters, however, all require prayer. To practice them and to experience them we need to pray. Prayer ushers us into the reality of these four things and keeps us in this reality.

Weekly Ministry (Dec 6 – Dec 12, 2021)


Being Constituted with the Truth and Being Absolute for the Way of the Truth and the Propagation of the Truth for the Consummation of the Divine Economy

1 Tim. 4:6 If you lay these things before the brothers, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, being nourished with the words of the faith and of the good teaching which you have closely followed.

You must dive into the Recovery Version with the footnotes and the Life-study messages. It is not an easy task to be built up in the truth. You must study the text and every footnote. If possible, it is helpful to take care of the cross references. Then you need to study the Life-study messages. You need to get into these messages not like you are reading a newspaper or a reference book. You must consider the text of the Recovery Version with the footnotes and the Life-study messages as a textbook. Because this is my work, I know the nature of it. I am fellowshipping this with you to let you know the way our publications were written. If you merely read them in a light way, you cannot get into them. You must study them as a textbook.

If you merely read the Life-studies, you will receive only a temporary nourishment. That will become only a kind of inspiration to you. An inspiration is like a vapor in the air. When what we read becomes a truth in our being, this nourishment remains forever. What I have received is not all the time inspiration, like a vapor. What I have received from the Lord is always the solid truth, so it remains in me, nourishing me all the time. You must have the truth. The only way for the truth to get into you is through your mentality. Then it remains in your memory. If you do not understand, the truth cannot get into you….If the truth gets into your memory, it becomes a constant and long-term nourishment. Then you have an accumulation of the truth, and you are a person continually under the constant nourishment. You will then know how to present the truth to others, not merely to inspire them or to stir them up but to make them solid and constituted with the truth.

While the issue of nourishment is forever, the nourishment itself remains only temporarily. Once the truth has been constituted into someone, however, it will remain there forever, and its remaining is its supply. Our need for the long run is this kind of education with the truth, which is really something solid, living, and existing. We need this. Do not expect to have an overnight success, which is like a factory making artificial flowers. Overnight you can produce many flowers, but in a genuine nursery or garden it takes time to grow flowers….You may have the thought that within two years a great number of people will be added to the church. Most of these people, however, may be empty. This is mushrooming. We must take care of the church in a way of growing gradually by life and by truth. (CWWL, 1984, vol. 2, “Elders’ Training, Book 3: The Way to Carry Out the Vision,” pp. 312-313, 336)

Life-study of Colossians (Message 63)

The Peace of Christ Arbitrating in Our Heart

Col. 3:15 And let the peace of Christ arbitrate in your hearts, to which also you were called in one Body; and be thankful.

For the peace of Christ to arbitrate in our hearts, it must rule in us. It must be enthroned as the ruler and decider. I believe you all have experienced that Someone has been enthroned in you to rule you and make the final decisions. Let us take as an example a brother who is offended by one of the elders. In my early ministry, I would have encouraged the offended brother to love the elder and not to be offended by him. However, from experience I learned that the more I did this, the more the offended one accused me of taking sides with the elder. Eventually I learned that the best thing is simply to pray that the Lord will have mercy on the brother who has been offended. In His mercy, the Lord will come to him and cause him to set his mind on the things above so that once again he can experience the divine transmission which gives rise to the arbitrating peace of Christ. Then, ruled by the peace of Christ, the brother will admit that even though the elder might have been wrong, he himself was wrong to a greater degree. Immediately he will confess to the Lord, receive grace, and have love for that elder. Through the arbitration of the peace of Christ, our problems are solved, and the friction between the saints disappears. Then the church life is preserved, and the new man is maintained in a practical way.

The church life as the life of the new man is preserved not by mere teachings, but by setting our mind on the things above and allowing the heavenly transmission to impart the divine element into us. Then we shall have the renewing of the new man and experience the peace of Christ ruling within us. The peace of Christ is actually Christ Himself in a particular aspect. Hence, the arbitrating of the peace of Christ is Christ working within us to exercise His rule over us, to speak the last word, and to make the final decision. In the case of the brother offended by the elder, Christ’s word is to love that elder, to seek him out for fellowship, and to enjoy the Lord with him. This is Christ enthroned as peace ruling, deciding, and uttering the last word.

In order to have a proper Christian walk and preserve the church life, we need the arbitrating peace of Christ. Otherwise, there will be no way for friction to be dissolved. Only the heavenly Christ, the One who is interceding, ministering, and administrating, can solve our problems and resolve the friction. If a brother and his wife set their mind on Christ in the heavens, they will experience the divine transmission. Then the peace of Christ will arbitrate in them.

In meeting after meeting and in message after message, we desire to minister Christ to the saints. As the saints see the revelation of Christ and experience the arbitrating peace of Christ, the church life will be preserved in freshness.

When the peace of Christ is enthroned in our hearts to be the unique umpire within us, we shall have peace with God vertically and with the saints horizontally. We praise the Lord that we are enjoying peace, and in this peace the church life as the new man is preserved! As the peace of Christ presides in our hearts, the renewing of the new man takes place continually. If we stay under the ruling of the enthroned peace of Christ, we shall not offend others or damage them. Rather, by the Lord’s grace and with His peace, we shall minister life to others. The oneness in a local church and among the churches is not maintained by human endeavoring. It is maintained only by the arbitrating peace of Christ. The management and maintenance of the Lord’s recovery are not our responsibility. All the churches and the recovery as a whole are under the arbitrating peace of Christ. In us Christ is the supplying grace and the arbitrating peace.

Life-study of Colossians (Message 64)

The Word of Christ Inhabiting Us

Col. 3:16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another with psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to God.

In 3:16 Paul charges us to let the word of Christ dwell in us richly. The Greek word rendered dwell means to be in a house, to inhabit. This indicates that the word of Christ should be able to make its home in us.

If a certain place is to become our home, we must have the freedom to make all necessary arrangements. If we want to keep a certain item, we may do so. But if we want to throw something else away, we are free to do that as well. If we do not have this kind of freedom, it is not possible for us to make that place our home. In like manner, if the word of Christ is to make its home in us, we must give it the full liberty, freedom, and right. We need to pray, “Lord, I offer my whole being to You and Your word. I give You access to every part of my inner being. Lord, make my inner being a home for Yourself and Your word.”

We all must confess that many times the Lord’s word has come to us, but we did not give it adequate room within us. Instead, we limited the word of God and restricted it. Sometimes we do receive God’s word, but we do not give it the freedom to make its home in us. Let me ask you, in your experience is the word of Christ first, or are you first? I do not believe that anyone can say that first place is always given to God’s word. Sometimes we may give preeminence to the word of Christ and allow it to be first. However, much more often we ourselves are first. In a secret way we keep the first place for the self. Outwardly we may act as if the first place is reserved for the word of God. But secretly the first place is for us.

Suppose you are reading Matthew 19:16-22, where the Lord Jesus tells the young man to sell all that he has, give to the poor, and follow Him. As you read this portion of Scripture, the Lord may tell you to give away certain things. That would be a test of what is first—the self or the word of God. Many of us have learned from experience how difficult it is for us to give first place to the word of God. For this, we need the Lord’s grace. We need to turn to the Lord and say, “Lord, I cannot do this, but, Lord, You can. Lord, I trust in You for this.”

We need the arbitrating peace of Christ to preserve us in oneness that the Lord may speak to us. Then we need to give first place to the word of God. If we do this, we shall experience the functions of the word of God: enlightening, nourishing, quenching our thirst, strengthening, washing, building, perfecting, and edifying. What benefit we receive from the word of God!

In 3:16 Paul speaks of “teaching and admonishing one another in psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to God.” This indicates that when we are filled with the word of God, we should be filled with joy. If we receive God’s word and yet have no joy, something must be wrong. When we receive the word of God, we actually receive the Spirit. Receiving the Spirit should stir us up and cause us to be joyful and to sing.

Weekly Ministry (Nov 29 – Dec 5, 2021)


Being Sanctified by the Truth to Move out of Ourselves and into the Triune God for the Genuine Oneness

John 6:63 It is the Spirit who gives life; the flesh profits nothing; the words which I have spoken to you are spirit and are life.

We cannot sanctify ourselves. The more we try to be sanctified, the more involved we become with things that are common. But when the word mingled with the essence of the Triune God is imparted into us as the truth, this truth sanctifies us.

Suppose the young people touch the Word with the Spirit in morning watch and then go to school. Throughout the day at school this word of truth will work within them to separate them and make them different from their classmates in their behavior, actions, work, thoughts, and feelings.

By taking the Word in this way, we have the clear conviction that something of the Lord has been wrought into us. This is not the mere knowledge of the Bible or of things concerning the Lord. It is the reality of the Triune God living, moving, working, and separating us. This makes us different from the worldly people….What a blessing! Every morning we can touch the living Word and have the divine reality infused into our being. In this way the Triune God is transfused into us.

This transfusion of the element of God frees us from such negative things as temper, jealousy, hatred, and pride. It sets us free from every kind of falsehood. This is real liberation, real freedom. As we are being set free, we are also sanctified, separated, made holy to God, not only positionally but also dispositionally. We become one with God because His very essence is being wrought into us. This is what it means to be sanctified by the word of truth.

Like breathing, we cannot do this once for all; rather, it must be a continual exercise. We need to be sanctified unceasingly every minute of the day. This is the reason we need to come to the Word every morning and, if possible, at other times as well. When the word is mingled with the living Spirit in our spirit, we are sanctified with the essence of God….Our crucial need is to have the Triune God infused into us through the Word. This…works to sanctify us and transform us….By contacting the Word in this way, God is added into us day by day. As a result, we are permeated with God and made one with Him. (CWWL, 1978, vol. 3, “Truth Messages,” pp. 327-328)

Life-study of Colossians (Message 61)

One with Christ in the Things Above

Col. 3:1If therefore you were raised together with Christ, seek the things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.

The things above mentioned in Colossians 3 are the things related to the heavenly ministry of Christ, to Christ’s ministry as our High Priest and God’s Minister. We should not be occupied with earthly things and with the elements of the world, but should realize that we are hidden with Christ in God. We should then seek the things above and set our mind on them. We should set our mind on Christ’s intercession and on His ministry for the building up of His Body.

As we seek the things above, the new man will be renewed in a full way. In a very practical sense, the new man comes into existence through our seeking the things which are above. Therefore, if the new man is to be expressed on earth, we need to see Christ as our High Priest and heavenly Minister and also experience the two-way traffic between the heavenly Christ and us.

We need to be those who respond to Christ’s heavenly ministry. For centuries, Christ has tried without adequate success to get a people to respond to His ministry in the heavens. By His mercy and grace, there is on earth today a group of people in the Lord’s recovery responding to Christ’s heavenly ministry. Let us be those who tell the Lord that we are one with Him in this ministry. Day and night, we need to respond to the Christ who is above all. When I respond to the Lord, saying, “Amen, Lord,” I have the conviction deep within that Christ is interceding and ministering, that He is transmitting His riches into me and infusing me with the element of God. Because of this transmission and infusion, I am filled and stirred for the Lord’s interests. Sometimes I am so beside myself with joy that I hardly know what to do. This is what it means to seek the things above.

If we seek the things above and are one with Christ in the things above, we shall not care for religion, philosophy, or ethical teachings, all of which are elements of the world. Rather, we shall care only for Christ’s intercession for His Body and for the transmission of His riches into His members. I have the full assurance that many of the saints in the local churches are experiencing the transfusion of the riches of Christ. Because we have such a transfusion, we do not need ethics, culture, or religion. We simply need more and more oneness with Christ in His heavenly ministry. Praise Him for His intercession, for His ministry, and for the traffic between heaven and earth!

We need to be impressed with the fact that the Christ who is in heaven is very busy. Consider how many local churches He takes care of throughout the world. Christ’s ministry in heaven is all for the goal of building up the Body and forming His Bride. However, Christ’s ministry in heaven requires our response. We need to become on earth the very reflection of that heavenly ministry. When we seek the things above, we respond to the Lord’s heavenly ministry and reflect it. Our experience testifies of this. If in our prayer we are willing to forget insignificant matters and care for the things above, we shall become conscious of the traffic between us and Christ in heaven. We shall sense a current flowing back and forth between Him and us. By means of this kind of prayer, the divine riches are transfused into us. This enables us to be one with others and to be right with everyone. This also issues in the renewing of the new man. Through the heavenly transmission and transfusion, the new man comes into existence in a practical way. Hence, the new man is not produced by teaching; the new man is produced by the heavenly traffic, transaction, and transfusion.

Life-study of Colossians (Message 62)

The Renewing of the New Man

Col. 3:11 Where there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free man, but Christ is all and in all.

In 3:11 Paul goes on to say, “Where there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave, freeman, but Christ is all and in all.” According to this verse, in the renewing of the new man there is no room for any natural man—no room for Greek or Jew, for religious or unreligious, for cultured or uncultured. In the renewing of the new man, Christ is all and in all.

In Greek the first “all” is neuter gender and denotes things. But the second “all” is masculine gender and denotes persons. Therefore, in the renewing of the new man, Christ is all things, and He is in all the members. This indicates that in the renewing of the new man, Christ truly is all-inclusive. On the one hand, He is in all the persons, the members of the new man; on the other hand, He is all things in the renewing of the new man.

Perhaps you are wondering what are all the things in the renewing of the new man. At least, all things must include all virtues and attributes. Love, patience, and humility are all excellent virtues. All these virtues are Christ Himself. In the renewing of the new man, Christ is all the wonderful virtues, all the good things, and all the positive attributes.

How can we, the New Testament believers, realize the life of the universal new man in a practical way? Among those Christians who set their mind on the things on earth, there is no renewing of the new man and no possibility of having the life of the new man in a practical way. But when we set our mind on the things above, spontaneously the new man grows and is renewed within us. This causes our whole being to be renewed and transformed. Then wherever we may be, we can have the practice of the new man. Recently I heard of a young brother in the Navy who visited a number of churches in the Far East. He enjoyed good fellowship with the saints. To be sure, this brother experienced the life of the new man. Although he was from the United States, he could be merged in the spirit of fellowship with so many saints from the Orient.

If we are not willing to set our minds on the things above and thus do not open the way for the new man to increase within us, it will be very difficult for us to experience the life of the new man in a practical way. But if we set our mind on the things above, the new man will spread from our spirit into our soul. Then no matter where we may be with the saints, we shall realize the life of the new man.

Colossians is definitely a book on the all-inclusive Christ. However, in this book Paul also speaks of the new man. The practical life of the new man comes out of the revelation of Christ and the experience of Christ. When we have the revelation of Christ with the adequate experience of Christ, the new man will appear among us in a practical way, and we shall realize the life of the new man.

God’s goal is to have this one new man, which ultimately will consummate in the New Jerusalem. Therefore, the New Jerusalem will be the final consummation of the one new man. When we are in the New Jerusalem, we shall enjoy the life of the universal one new man. Today we may have a foretaste of this enjoyment by setting our mind on the things above and giving a free way for the new man in our spirit to spread into our whole being.

Weekly Ministry (Nov 22 – Nov 28, 2021)


Knowing the Truth, Being Absolute for the Truth and for Upholding the Absoluteness of the Truth, and Testifying to the Truth in the Present Age of the World

2 Tim. 2:15 Be diligent to present yourself approved to God, an unashamed workman, cutting straight the word of the truth.

Today the whole earth needs the truth of the Lord that is in His Word. Regrettably, however, the Bible, the divine Word, has not been fully opened to the world….At the most, Christians are able to boast that the holy Word of God has been published into many languages and propagated over the whole earth. Yet they are not able to say that after reading the Bible, regardless of which language, they have been able to truly understand the deep mysteries within it….The mysteries of the truths in the Bible are very deep and profound. We need the enlightening of the Spirit of God to understand them, and we also need to spend time to dig them out (cf. 1 Cor. 2:10-14). The Lord’s recovery is the recovery of all the truths in the Bible that were lost….The Lord’s recovery depends upon the recovery of the knowledge of the truth.

The New Testament says repeatedly that we should know the truth. Moreover, when referring to this matter, Paul repeatedly says that we should come to the full knowledge of the truth (1 Tim. 2:4; 2 Tim. 2:25; 3:7; Titus 1:1). This means that we must know not just a small part or one aspect of the truth but rather the truth in its entirety and in all its aspects. Paul also said that the church is the pillar and base of the truth (1 Tim. 3:15). This implies that the truth in the Bible is like a large building that is not one-sided but complete on all sides with a foundation and a roof. If we are going to spread the Lord’s recovery today, we must know the truth and be able to expound the truth. For this reason we must know every side of the truth without any biases or particular leanings.

The truth not only has many sides but also includes many crucial items. For example, the Bible speaks about God, Christ, the Holy Spirit, the believers, the church, the kingdom, and the New Jerusalem. The Bible begins with God, then continues with God’s creation, man’s fall, God’s redemption, and God’s entering into man to be man’s life for man to be regenerated, sanctified, renewed, transformed, conformed to His own image, and ultimately brought fully into glory. In the midst of all these matters, the Bible also shows us the believers and the corporate church. This corporate church brings in the kingdom, consummating in the ultimate expression, which is the New Jerusalem in the new heaven and new earth. All these aspects are included in the truths of the Bible.

We must diligently learn all these things, obtain the knowledge of them, and be able to speak them clearly to others. (CWWL, 1984, vol. 5, “Truth, Life, the Church, and the Gospel—the Four Great Pillars in the Lord’s Recovery,” pp. 393-394)

Life-study of Colossians (Message 59)

One Position, One Life, One Living, One Destiny, and One Glory with Christ

Col. 3:1If therefore you were raised together with Christ, seek the things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.

It is very easy for us to understand the matter of the Christian life in a natural way. We see a sister who is gentle, quiet, and kind, and we think that because she has such characteristics she is full of life. Seeing a brother who is an eloquent and powerful speaker, we may take his power and eloquence as signs of life. However, in both cases what we see may be the natural life, not the life that Christ has, the life hidden with Christ in God.

A certain sister may be nice, gentle, and kind; however, all this may be in the natural life, a life that has not been crucified. This is proved by the fact that when she is insulted or mistreated, she breaks down and cries. Her tears indicate that she is living in the natural life. Her life is not a crucified life.

When the Lord Jesus was on earth, He always lived a crucified life. Although He was severely criticized and insulted, He did not weep for Himself. Instead, He could say, “Father, I thank You that this is according to Your will.” His life was a crucified life.

If a person is truly one in life with Christ, his life will be a crucified life. The life we have received of the Lord Jesus is not a raw, unprocessed life; it is a crucified life, a life that has been processed and thoroughly dealt with. If we truly know this life, we shall not weep when we are insulted. Instead, we shall thank the Lord and even praise Him in a genuine way.

Sometimes when we are in the flesh and others insult us, we may say “Amen” or “Hallelujah!” However, our “Amen” and “Hallelujah!” is fleshly. If we are truly living a crucified life when others insult us, we shall not say anything. Those who are on the cross say neither “Amen” nor “Hallelujah!” They do not say anything at all. The life we should live today should be such a crucified life.

The one life we share with Christ is also a resurrected life. Nothing, including death, can suppress it. Furthermore, in resurrection there are no tears. Suppose a sister begins to cry when she is criticized for the way she cleaned a room in the meeting hall. Is this the resurrected life? Certainly not! In the resurrected life there is no place for weeping. But if this sister lives a resurrected life while she is cleaning in the meeting hall, she will not be troubled if someone criticizes her work. This is another difference between the resurrected life and the natural life.

If our natural life has not been dealt with, our service in the church will not last long. If we serve in the natural life, we shall be easily offended, and eventually we shall stop serving. But if our life in serving is a life that is crucified and resurrected, nothing will be able to defeat it.

Furthermore, the life Christ has is a life hidden in God. As we have pointed out, only the divine life can be hidden in God. I appreciate this word hidden (3:3). The life Christ has is not a showy life; it is a hidden life. If you serve by this life, you will not want to be seen by others. On the contrary, you will prefer to serve in secret. Our natural life is the very opposite of this, for it is fond of making a show. Today’s religion appeals to this element in the natural life. For example, it is a common practice in raising funds to give public credit to those who donate large amounts, whereas little or no mention is made of those who donate a small amount. Religion nourishes the natural life, but in the church the natural life is put to death.

Life-study of Colossians (Message 60)

Christ as All the Members and in All the Members in the New Man

Col. 3:10 And have put on the new man, which is being renewed unto full knowledge according to the image of Him who created him,

Col. 3:11 Where there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave, free man, but Christ is all and in all.

In the new man Christ is every member. Concerning this, Paul says in 3:11, “Where there cannot be Greek and Jew, circumcision and uncircumcision, barbarian, Scythian, slave, freeman, but Christ is all and in all.” This means that in the new man there is no place, no room, for any natural person. There is no place for regional, cultural, or national distinctions. For example, in the new man there cannot be Chinese or Americans, Californians or Texans. Likewise, in the new man there is no room for Jew or Greek, for religious ones or nonreligious ones, for cultured ones or uncultured ones, for freemen or slaves. There is no room for any race, nationality, culture, or social status. In the one new man there is room only for Christ. Christ surely is all the members of the new man.

Perhaps you are wondering how Christ can be all in the new man. For this to be a reality, we must take Christ as our life and live Him, not ourselves. If Christ is the living of all the saints, then only He will be in the new man. Those from America will no longer live an American life, and those from Japan will no longer live a Japanese life. All the saints, whatever their nationality may be, will live Christ. Then in a way that is real and practical, Christ will be all the members of the new man. Christ will be you, and Christ will be me. Because we all live Christ, not ourselves, Christ will be all of us, every member of the new man.

In the local churches we are not concerned with helping others improve their natural life. We would rather help them to crucify their natural person and bury it so that they may live Christ. The death of our natural person will usher us into resurrection, where we can take Christ as life. I can testify that the more I experience crucifixion with Christ, the more I take Christ as my life in resurrection and live Him.

In 3:11 Paul says not only that Christ is all, but also that He is in all. In other words, on the one hand, Christ is all the members, and on the other hand, He is in all the members. Since Paul says that Christ is all, why is there the need for him to say that Christ is in all? If Paul did not say that Christ is in all, only that He is all, then we may think that in the new man Christ is needed and that we are not needed. We should not think that, because Christ is all the members in the new man, we are nothing and are not needed. On the one hand, the Bible does say that in the new man there is no place for the natural person because Christ is all the members. Yet, on the other hand, Paul says that Christ is in the members. The fact that Christ is in the members of the new man indicates that the members still exist.

When we take Christ as our life and live together with Him, seeking the things which are above, we have the sense deep within that we are one with Christ and that Christ is us. But simultaneously we have an even deeper sense that Christ is in us. Therefore, it is true to say that Christ is both in us and that He is us. We are part of the new man with Christ in us. We continue to exist, but we do not exist without Christ; we are those indwelt by Christ. Now we can rejoice and say to the Lord, “Lord Jesus, when I take You as my life and live together with You, You are me. I am altogether one with You. But, Lord, I am still here, for You are in me. I am here, but I am here with You.” According to our experience, we all can give such a testimony. When we live Christ and are one with Him, we say, “Lord Jesus, this is not me—it is You.” However, at the same time, we have the sense that we are with the Lord and that He is in us.

Weekly Ministry (Nov 15 – Nov 21, 2021)

HWMR – Crystallization-study of Joshua, Judges, and Ruth (Week 12)

Taking the Way of Life in the Lord’s Recovery

Rom. 8:6 For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the spirit is life and peace.

The proper understanding of death is that it denotes separation from the enjoyment of God. This means that if we do not have the enjoyment of God, we are in death. Likewise, if we are separated from the enjoyment of God, we shall die….In Romans 8:6 death is separation from the enjoyment of God. Life is the opposite, for it is the enjoyment of God. When we have the enjoyment of God, there is no separation between us and God, we are in life, and life operates in us.

In distracting the believers from the tree of life, Satan seeks to separate us from the enjoyment of God as our life. For centuries the subtle serpent has been using teachings to keep God’s chosen people from enjoying Him as their life. For the most part, these teachings are related to knowledge, good, and evil. But such teachings result in separation from God.

The best way to discern a matter is to discern according to life or death. We need to ask questions like this: Does this teaching help me to enjoy the Lord more and bring me into life, or does it cause the poison of death to be injected into me? You may find that if you accept a certain kind of teaching or preaching, taking it into you, immediately your inward enjoyment of the Lord is cut off. Some things function like insulation that stops the flowing of the divine electricity. Therefore, we must learn to discern, to differentiate, matters by life and death.

Thank the Lord for the secret of real discernment. This secret is to discern a preaching or teaching by whether or not it helps us to enjoy the Lord and gain more life supply. If anyone’s preaching cuts us off from the enjoyment of the Lord, that preaching must be of the serpent, of Satan….Many of those who have left the Lord’s recovery have neither the life supply nor the enjoyment. This is an indication that they have taken in something that is not of the Lord. The genuine ministry of the Lord always strengthens us in the enjoyment of Him as our life supply.

Anything that cuts you off from the enjoyment of the Lord is of the serpent. But anything that causes your enjoyment of the Lord to increase is of the Spirit and of the New Testament ministry. (Life-study of 2 Corinthians, pp. 468-470)

Life-study of Colossians (Message 57)

Having Died with Christ from the Elements of the World and Having Been Raised with Christ to Live with Him in God

Col. 2:20 If you died with Christ from the elements of the world, why, as living in the world, do you subject yourselves to ordinances:

The compound, life-giving Spirit is an all-inclusive drink containing many elements. By drinking the Spirit, we spontaneously take in all the elements included in the Spirit. The effectiveness of Christ’s death is one of the elements in this Spirit. This is what enables us to experience Christ’s crucifixion. As the Head, Christ today is the all-inclusive Spirit in our spirit. In order to hold Him as the Head, we must be in spirit.

In Colossians 2 Paul speaks of being rooted and of holding the Head, and in John 15 the Lord Jesus speaks of abiding in the vine. Abiding in the vine is equal to being rooted in the soil, and being rooted in the soil is equal to holding the Head. On the one hand, Christ is the vine in which we abide; on the other hand, He is the soil in which we are rooted. But He is also the Head. Christ is the vine, the soil, and the Head. We abide in Him as the vine, we are rooted in Him as the soil, and we hold Him as the Head. In every case the principle is the same: we absorb Christ’s riches into us. As branches, we absorb the life juice from the vine; as plants, we absorb the riches of the soil; as members of the Body of Christ, we absorb the nourishing element from the Head. By absorbing the riches of the Head, the Body grows with the growth of God (2:19). As we have indicated, the riches we absorb include crucifixion, being buried, and being raised up with Christ. When we hold Christ as the Head, we absorb all these elements into us.

In 2:20 Paul says, “If you died with Christ from the elements of the world, why as living in the world do you subject yourself to ordinances?” The Greek word rendered “if” may also be translated “since.” Since we have died with Christ, we should not live in subjection to ordinances. It is a fact that we have died with Christ. But although Christ died more than nineteen hundred years ago, our participation in this death takes place moment by moment in the present as we are enjoying Christ, holding Him as the Head. Our experience of Christ’s crucifixion is not once for all. On the contrary, it is a moment by moment matter. Perhaps last night you experienced Christ’s crucifixion. But today you are not happy with your husband or wife, so you purposely come down from the cross in order to argue and vindicate yourself. You have been provoked, and you can no longer bear to remain silent. Last night you were in the death of Christ, but now you are very much alive in yourself. In one of his hymns, A. B. Simpson says, “Oh! It is so sweet to die with Christ.” Last night this was sweet to you, but now you do not wish to remain in Christ’s death. This indicates that whenever we are not in the spirit, we are not in the experience of the death of Christ. But when we are in spirit, we are dead with Christ. Whenever we are not in the spirit, we are in ourselves, living according to our natural life. From our experience we know that when we hold Christ as the Head in spirit, we have the experience of being crucified with Him. At such a time, we can declare to all, even to the Devil, that we have died with Christ.

In 4:2 Paul says, “Persevere in prayer, watching in it with thanksgiving.” If we would stay in the spirit, we need to watch and pray, even to pray without ceasing (1 Thes. 5:17). Only by praying without ceasing can we stay in the spirit. Many years ago I did not appreciate the Lord’s word about watching and praying (Matt. 26:41). But in recent years I have come to see the importance of this word. We need to watch whether or not we are in the spirit and to pray that we may be preserved in the spirit. Are you tempted to exchange words with your husband or wife? Watch! Do you intend to go shopping for a certain item? Watch to see whether you are shopping in the spirit or in the flesh. We need to be on the alert that we may stay in the spirit.

We also need to pray, “Lord, grant me the preserving grace to remain in the spirit. Lord, keep me in spirit.” If we stay in the spirit, we shall experience the death of Christ in the all-inclusive, compound Spirit. There is no need for us to reckon or even to believe that we have been crucified with Christ. All we need to do is to abide in the spirit by watching and praying. In the spirit we experience the death of Christ and are released from all the elements of the world.

Life-study of Colossians (Message 58)

Seek the Things Above and Set Your Mind on Them

Col. 3:1 If therefore you were raised together with Christ, seek the things which are above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God.

Col. 3:2 Set your mind on the things which are above, not on the things which are on the earth.

At this point we may ask how we can enjoy Christ and have Him constituted into us when He is in heaven and we are on earth. The answer lies in the fact that there is a transmission taking place from Christ in heaven to us on earth by means of the all-inclusive Spirit. By means of this transmission, the electricity from the heavenly power plant flows into us, just as electricity flows from the power plant into our homes and into the meeting hall. Hallelujah for the transmission from the third heaven into us! “There’s a Man in the glory Whose Life is for me” (Hymns,#505). Christ is the Man in the glory, but His life is for us. We all need a vision of the heavenly transmission from the glorified Christ into us. Furthermore, we need to stay open to this transmission so that it will not be cut off. Even a small amount of insulation will cause this transmission to cease. Between Christ as the fullness of God and the one new man, there is our experience of the heavenly transmission. May there be no insulation to hinder this divine transmission.

John’s writing is like Paul’s in this matter. John 1:16 says, “For of His fullness we all received, and grace upon grace.” The fullness of Christ is the very fullness of God. Of this fullness we have all received grace upon grace. Ultimately, the issue of our receiving of Christ’s fullness will be the New Jerusalem. The New Jerusalem revealed through John’s ministry will be the ultimate consummation of the new man revealed through Paul’s ministry. On the one hand, Paul begins with the fullness and goes to the new man; on the other hand, John goes from the fullness to the New Jerusalem.

In Hebrews, Ephesians, and Revelation there are windows through which we can see the things above. The first aspect of the things above is found in Hebrews 2:9. According to this verse, we see Jesus crowned with glory and honor. On earth, He was crowned with thorns. But on the throne in heaven, He is crowned with glory and honor. As the One crowned with glory and honor, Christ is far more precious than Judaism or Greek philosophy. To set our mind on such things is to set it on “the things which are on the earth” (Col. 3:2). Judaism and Greek philosophy are things on the earth. Let us look away from these things and look to the resurrected and ascended Jesus who is enthroned and crowned with glory and honor. Since we have been raised with Christ, we should seek the things above, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God (3:1). Let us forget our natural virtues and look at the Lord Jesus. Instead of appreciating our natural attributes and character, we need to appreciate the One crowned with glory and honor. According to Paul, our attention must be concentrated on the Lord Jesus. We should not be attracted by anything else.

In Acts 2:36 we find another aspect of the things above. Here Peter declares, “Therefore let all the house of Israel know assuredly, that God hath made that same Jesus, whom ye have crucified, both Lord and Christ.” Jesus, the carpenter from Nazareth, has been exalted by God to be the Lord over all and the Christ. How marvelous! If the believers in Colosse truly had realized this, they would not have been distracted by Judaism or Greek philosophy. Today Jesus is God’s Christ, God’s anointed One, the Lord of all.

In Ephesians 1:20-23 Paul says that God raised Christ from among the dead; seated Him at His right hand in the heavenlies, far above all rule, authority, power, lordship, and every name; has subjected all things under His feet; and gave Him to be the Head over all things to the church, His Body. The power exercised by God in raising Christ from among the dead has made Him Head over all to the church. Christ has been crowned with glory and honor, He is the Lord of all and the Christ of God, and He is the Head over all things to His Body, the church. To be sure, the vision of such a Christ should cause us to forget our natural virtues and characteristics, all of which are things on the earth, not things which are above.