The Life and Way for the Practice of the Church Lifeby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
I am concerned that many of you may be very good, yet you are wrong with the Spirit. You may work for God today, preach the gospel, do a lot of things to build up the churches, and even give what you have to help others. But I would ask you, “Are you right with the Spirit in you?” One day when the Lord comes back, He will not ask you about so many things. He is concerned about only one thing, that is, whether or not you are right with Him according to the inner law of life.
Today it is not a matter of work or doing. It is a matter of how you deal with the living One who dwells in you. Are you right with Him? I say again, you may be very good, very religious, and seemingly very spiritual, but I am afraid that you are not in the Spirit. According to your actions, your expressions, your doings, and your speaking, you are altogether outside of the Spirit. You are not right with the Spirit. You are not right with the inner law. You do not take care of the inner regulating but neglect it all the time.
In Revelation 2 the Lord told the church in Ephesus, “I know your works and your labor and your endurance and that you cannot bear evil men; and you have tried those who call themselves apostles and are not, and have found them to be false; and you have endurance and have borne all things because of My name and have not grown weary. But I have one thing against you, that you have left your first love” (vv. 2-4). As a wife, you may do many good things for your husband, but are you right with your husband? Do you have a genuine love for him? This is the problem.
We are talking about the Christian life and the church life. What is the Christian life? What is the church life? The Christian life is not a religious life; it is a life that is Christ Himself lived out through us. We must take Christ as life and live by Him day by day. We need to love Him and be willing to be regulated, governed, and ruled by Him. Then we will be walking in this living One, and we will be in the reality of the Christian life. The church life is not something organized or something regulated by teaching. The church life is Christ lived out through us in a corporate way. You live Christ and I live Christ, and this very Christ unites us together in oneness. Then together we have the corporate life of Christ expressed.
The church life is not produced by much discussion. This is the way of the United Nations in New York or of the United States Congress. This is not the church life. Strictly speaking, in the church there is no need of discussion. If we need much discussion, it means that we are fallen; we are wrong. If you take Christ as everything, all the problems will be solved, settled, through the cross.
Brothers and sisters, I am very much concerned about this matter. We may know how to be religious, but we do not know adequately how to take Christ as our life so that Christ Himself may be lived out through us. We may know the forms and the teachings, but do we know the real church life, which is Christ Himself lived out through us in a corporate way? We need to be definite and subjective. This wonderful Christ is living, acting, and moving within us. He is shining on us and regulating us all the time. The only need is for us to take care of this inner regulating.
Sometimes brothers or sisters would come to me and ask me about certain things, but I had something within holding me back from speaking. According to the inner regulating, I could not say anything. If we learn to forget about all the outward things and simply take care of the inner regulating, we will have a wonderful church life. The church life is Christ Himself.
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