Life-Study of Colossiansby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
In 2:6 Paul says, “As therefore you have received Christ Jesus the Lord, walk in Him.” Walking in Christ is based on receiving Christ. Walking in Him comes out of receiving Him.
Many Christians think that to receive Christ is simply to believe in Him. Receiving Christ, however, is not as simple as this. In order to understand what is the proper, genuine, and adequate receiving of Christ, we need to know the Christ whom we are to receive. According to our concept and according to traditional doctrine, Christ is rather simple. Many believers only realize that Christ, the Son of God, is the Savior who loved us and died for us. If we believe in Christ, we are saved. However, the receiving of Christ in a book such as Colossians involves a great deal more than this. We have pointed out that Colossians affords us an extensive revelation of the all-inclusive Christ. This Christ is more vast than the whole universe. According to Ephesians 3, Christ is the breadth, length, height, and depth. The Christ whom we have received is immeasurable. He is universally vast.
Although we have received Christ, our receiving of Him goes beyond an initial receiving of Him once for all. On the contrary, we shall continue to receive Him eternally. Receiving Christ can be compared to breathing. Just as breathing is a continual process, so our receiving of Christ should take place continually. Regrettably, however, a great many Christians have had only the initial receiving of Christ. They do not receive Him continuously. Many believers can tell you that at a certain time in the past they received Christ. But they have not continued to receive Him. If we do not receive Christ continually, we shall not enjoy the full benefit of the Christ we have received initially. Many Christians have not continued to receive Christ. Hence, we must realize that our receiving of Him must be consistent and continual.
The Christ we have received according to 2:1-6 is the mystery of God spoken of in 2:2. The fact that Christ is the mystery of God indicates that He is not simple. Rather, He is immeasurable and mysterious. To be sure, God is not simple. He is unlimited, infinite, eternal. How, then, could Christ, the mystery of God, be simple? As the mystery of God, Christ is the immeasurable, infinite, and eternal God.
Although God is eternal, He also has a history. Of course, to say that God has a history is to speak in human terms for our understanding. In the beginning, in eternity past, God had a good pleasure, the desire of His heart. The more living a person is, the greater is his desire for pleasure. Thus, as the most living One, God has the greatest desire. God is living, aggressive, and energetic. As such a living One, He has a good pleasure. Based upon this good pleasure, which is the desire of His heart, God made a plan. The biblical term for this plan is purpose. God is purposeful; He has an eternal purpose based on His good pleasure. This purpose is to have a group of living beings to be His corporate expression.
In order for such a group of beings to come into existence, God created the heavens, the earth, and billions of items. The center of God’s creation is man, who was created with a receiver, the human spirit. Just as a radio receiver has the capacity to receive radio waves, so our spirit has the capacity to receive God. Suppose a person from a primitive part of the world is shown a transistor radio for the first time and is told that it can give forth sounds transmitted through the air. If the radio is properly tuned, that person would be amazed at the sounds. But if the receiver does not function, he may argue that there are in fact no radio waves in the air. A transistor radio may have a beautiful casing, but if the receiver does not work, the radio is useless. Millions of people today are like broken transistor radios. Outwardly they appear very good, but their spirit has been damaged. The receiver within them does not function properly. This is the reason that atheists proclaim there is no God. Because their receiver does not function to substantiate God, they say God does not exist. If a broken radio receiver is repaired, the radio will work once again. In like manner, when our damaged receiver, our human spirit, is regenerated, it can function to substantiate God.
According to Zechariah 12:1, God stretched forth the heavens, laid the foundation of the earth, and formed the spirit of man within him. In this verse the spirit of man is ranked with the heavens and the earth. This shows the crucial significance of the human spirit. The spirit of man was created purposely and specifically to be a receiver to take God in. In order for man to exist with a spirit to receive God, there was the need of the earth and of the heavens. The heavens are for the earth, the earth is for man, and man, with his spirit, his receiver, is for God. Through His work of creation, God produced the environment necessary for the fulfillment of His purpose.
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