Three Crucial Matters for the Increase and Building Up of the Churchby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Prayer: Lord, we worship You for Your leading. We praise You for blessing us. We also praise You for the grace You are exhibiting in the young brothers and sisters. Lord, Your church is looking to You. We are waiting on You and asking You to release Your heart’s desire to us so that we may know Your will and touch Your way. We confess that we are unprofitable slaves who lack wisdom and are short in every way. Lord, we really need You. We need You to be our wisdom, our power, our daily grace, and our moment-by-moment strength. The only things that have eternal value are the things that You do through us. We stand against what we are and what we can do. We do not trust in ourselves. We trust in You as the resurrected Lord. We do not want to live in our natural man, and we do not want to do anything by our own strength. Everything we do apart from You is vain and useless. We look to You to operate within us so that we may become one spirit with You and be Your living witnesses. Lord, we are not merely going out to do a work; rather, we are going out as Your witnesses to prove that You are the true and living Lord, who died and resurrected. You denied Yourself and did not live by Your natural life; rather, You lived absolutely in the resurrection life. Care for us that we may live in the same way before You. When we go out, we want to be testimonies of Your resurrection so that the churches we establish will be golden lampstands. Lord Jesus, bless us. We look to You for Your leading that we may touch Your heart’s desire. Amen.
First, we need to consider how many days the saints should spend in the towns or villages for the spread of the gospel. The saints have spent two months spreading the gospel. Every team spent fifteen days in their first town. Some saints remained in the first town, and the rest of the team went to a second town and spent twenty days there. At the end of the twenty days, some saints remained in the second town, and the rest of the team went to a third town and spent twenty-five days there. Hence, every team went out for a total of sixty days. However, we may not be spending enough time in these places. According to our research, it is not good for us to have too few new ones, and it is difficult to care for too many new ones. Consequently, we should gain between forty and fifty people in every town. We need to beget the right number of new ones in order to properly care for the people we baptize. We need to feed, teach, and perfect them. It is therefore best for the saints to spend twenty-five days in every place. This means that all the teams will go out for two and a half months.
Initially, we said that our intention was to establish a church in the two hundred twenty-seven towns and villages that do not have churches. However, based on the observations of the full-timers who went out for the spread of the gospel, we have had further consideration, because certain places have a low population, and the people live far apart. Most of the ones going out for the spread of the gospel are young sisters, and we need to consider their safety in these areas. Consequently, we will probably reduce the number of target localities and not go to all two hundred twenty-seven towns and villages. We will select the more important places and establish churches in them; we can then spread out from these localities in one or two years. Reducing the number of target localities means that the large cities like Taipei will not suffer. Otherwise, we would need to send some of the saints serving in Taipei to the towns and villages. These saints, however, would probably gain more people in Taipei than in the rural areas. Reducing the number of target localities will also enable us to increase the number of days we spend in every town to twenty-five days.
Second, it is not good to take time off during the two and a half months that your team is spreading the gospel. You should remain with your team the entire time. This is the only way we can accomplish the spread. God wants man to work for six days and to rest on the seventh, just as He worked for six days and rested on the seventh day. Hence, you should all consider this matter. Furthermore, when you rest, you should not do anything strenuous. According to the New Testament, the Jews had something called “a Sabbath day’s journey” (Acts 1:12); they did not walk a long distance on the Sabbath. You need to be restricted on your day of rest and not engage in many activities, such as playing ball and running. If you engage in too many activities, you will be exhausted the next day, and instead of having a day of rest, you will have had a day of labor. To rest simply means to rest. It is best not to travel farther than the distance allowed on the Sabbath, but this is not a legalistic matter. Every team can determine the details for their day of rest according to the situation in their environment. It is best to keep the biblical principle, because the matters permitted in the Bible are beneficial, and the things forbidden in the Bible are not beneficial.
Third, the location of the meeting hall in the new localities must be appropriate. The meeting halls should not be close to major streets, because the noise from passing traffic will make it difficult to have meetings. Furthermore, some towns and villages have two sections; one section is elevated, and the other is in a valley. Is it more convenient for the meeting hall to be located in the elevated section or in the valley? If the meeting hall is in the elevated section, everyone will need to walk uphill to the meetings, and if it is in the valley, those who live in the elevated section will need to walk downhill. The valley is a more convenient location. When choosing a location for a meeting hall, we should consider these things.
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