Messages Given During the Resumption of Watchman Nee's Ministry (2 volume set)

Messages Given During the Resumption of Watchman Nee's Ministry (2 volume set)by Watchman Nee/Witness Lee

ISBN: 0-87083-627-7
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry

Currently in: Chapter 50 of 79 Section 3 of 5

THE RELATIONSHIP
BETWEEN THE BODY AND THE MEMBERS

Brother Tang asked: What is the relationship between the members and the Body? Where does the individual end and the Body begin?

The Starting Point Being the Body

Brother Nee answered: It is difficult to answer this question. Where does the individual end and the Body begin? Let me change your starting point a little.

We have to ask the Lord to give us the mercy to have a make-up lesson today. We have to see that God's children did not receive an individual life, but a corporate life. God sees us as one Body, but we pay our attention to individual members. Suppose here is a stalk of wheat. You may say that here are just grains of wheat. Actually, there is only one stalk of wheat. Bread is made out of many grains. We have a corporate life. What you should ask is when does the Body end and the individual begin. When does the individual life emerge out of the Body? You should not ask when does the individual end and the Body begin. One does not put all the members together and form the Body. Rather, it is in the Body that the many members are produced. In the Bible, there is no such thing as individuals receiving life; all the time it talks about the Body. We pay attention to the members, but God pays attention to the Body.

Do not think that by saying this, I am bringing you back to Catholicism. In the Catholic Church, there is only the catholicity; there is no church. The reason for this is that it does not have life. The Body life that we are speaking of does not start from the Catholic Church, but from the corporateness of the Body. Since our salvation was not a strong one in that it did not originate in the Body, we have to go back to the starting point to make it up for our lesson today.

First Corinthians 12:12 says that the Body is one and has many members. Here it speaks of first the Body and then the members. We proceed from the members to the Body. But here it speaks of the Body first and then the members. First there is the life of the whole Body. Then we go home and live our individual lives. These two things point out two different stances. A different stance produces a different result. When I stand here, I can see a few stars. But when I step to the other side, I cannot see them any longer. The place one stands is very crucial. The stance we need to take today is that of the Body.

What we have received is the life of the Body. It is only after I go home that I acquire personal inward knowledge. Brother Tang's question points out our problem in this age. We cannot say when the individual stops and the Body begins. When the next generation studies history, they will say that Brother Tang is surely a man of 1948. Today, with the individual there is no way to go on. Only with the Body is there the way.

Having Fellowship in the Body

We have to know that the life we have is corporate. Today, man thinks that the life he received is individual, the experience he has is individual, and the conscience within him is individual. But in the future, we will realize what is the conscience of the church. In twenty years, this matter will be as common as having a haircut.

If a person comes up to any major decision, he has to learn to follow the Body and to fellowship with the brothers ahead of him. Do not think that it is a difficult thing to ask others. You have to realize that it is more difficult to be asked of others. No one likes to mind others' business. No one can have so much interest as to take upon himself everything concerning others. This is troublesome, and it is too much responsibility. However, if we want to take the way of the Body, we have to fellowship. What you eat and wear by yourself are things in the realm of Adam; they are personal matters. But if you go beyond the normal limit, I will say, "This is wrong. You have taken all your monthly income to spend on eating. You have indulged yourself in eating. For this reason, I have to say something." I have to deal with the matter. This is a matter of the Body. The way a sister dresses herself may have gone beyond a certain limit. At such times, someone can say, "We are not interfering with the way you dress, but this is something that is damaging the Lord's testimony." This is not being a busybody.


Note: We hope that many will benefit from these spiritual riches. However, for the sake of avoiding confusion, we ask that none of these materials be downloaded or copied and republished elsewhere, electronically or otherwise. Living Stream Ministry retains full copyright on all these materials and hopes that our visitors will respect this.

Downloading this material, even for personal use, is prohibited.
Your IP address is 34.236.216.93 [8:10:47 PM (GMT -08:00), October 19, 2019].

Search Online Publications

Simply enter a word or phrase. Common words, such as "and", "is", and "the", also known as noise words, are bypassed in a search.

Advanced Search

Noise Words

Common words, such as "and", "is", "but", and "the", also known as noise words, are bypassed in a search. The search string, the Spirit & who, would result in an error since who, which stands by itself, is a noise word. The following is a list of noise words:

$, a, also, an, and, another, any, are, as, at, be, because, been, being, both, but, by, came, can, did, do, each, for, has, had, he, have, her, here, him, himself, his, how, if, in, into, is, it, like, make, me, might, much, my, of, on, or, our, out, over, said, should, since, some, still, such, take, than, that, the, their, them, then, there, these, they, this, those, to, too, very, was, way, we, well, were, what, where, which, while, who, with, would, you, your

×

Ranking

Rank is a value from 0 to 1000 indicating how closely a match scored or ranked against the original search string. Rank values are affected by the following factors:

  1. The total number of occurrences of the original search words/phrases in a portion of a book.
  2. Content that includes the search words in close proximity to each other are ranked above those that do not. Therefore, a portion of a book that has the search words in close proximity may have a higher ranking than another portion of a book that has a higher hit count but the words are not in close proximity to one another. Therefore, we also include a search word hit count for reference.
  3. The rank values are relative to each other. Therefore, it is not possible to interpret the RANK value as a percentage or group the rank values into high/medium/low ranges. Think of rank as a method to order the results for a specific search.
×

Search Scope

Include All Word Forms

This option breaks out the search string into its individual words and generates all conjugations and declensions for each word in the search phrase. A search on the word, dwell, would search for dwell, dwelling, dwelling's, dwells, dwelt, and dwelled.

There is no need to use ^ (inflectional search) or * (prefix search) when using the Include all word forms search scope.

Specified Word Forms

This option searches for exact matches of the specified words or phrases used in the search string. Use of ^ (inflectional search) with a particular word in the search string will broaden the search for that given word in that all conjugations and declensions for that word will be searched. Similarly, use of * (prefix search) with a particular word in the search string will broaden the search for that given word in that all words with that prefix will be searched as well.

Note

Common words, such as "and", "is", "but", and "the", also known as noise words, are bypassed in a search. A list of all noise words is as follows:

$, about, after, all, also, an,and, another, any, are, as, at, be, because, been, before, being, between, both, but, by, came, can, come, could, did, do, each, for, from, get, got, has, had, he, have, her, here, him, himself, his, how, if, in, into, is, it, like, make, many, me, might, more, most, much, must, my, never, now, of, on, only, or, other, our, out, over, said, same, see, should, since, some, still, such, take, than, that, the, their, them, then, there, these, they, this, those, through, to, too, under, up, very, was, way, we, well, were, what, where, which, while, who, with, would, you, your

×