Life-Study of Exodusby Witness Lee
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
Printed Copy: Available Online from Living Stream Ministry
In the foregoing message we saw that in 34:18-35 there are three important matters: feasting and resting with the Lord, five conditions for enjoying the Lord as our feast, and God’s infusion into Moses by His speaking with him. In the previous message we considered the matter of feasting with the Lord and resting with Him. In this message we shall go on to consider the five conditions that must be fulfilled in order for us to feast with the Lord.
The first of the five conditions is described in verse 20: “And the firstling of a donkey you shall redeem with a lamb, and if you do not redeem it, then you shall break its neck. Every firstborn of your sons you shall redeem, and none shall appear before Me empty.” This signifies that our natural man must be replaced with Christ so that we may live a sanctified life for God. Even though we have been redeemed, we still are natural. We are a “donkey,” an unclean animal; we are not a lamb. Yes, we have been redeemed, but we are not clean. Therefore, as “donkeys” we need our natural being to be replaced with Christ as the Lamb.
As far as sanctification is concerned, we are not sheep or oxen; we are donkeys. Even though we have been redeemed, our natural man is still unclean in the sight of God. Hence, in order to be sanctified to the Lord, we need Christ to be our Substitute. The Passover lamb typifies Christ as our Redeemer. Through Him as our Substitute, we have been redeemed. However, because we are still unclean and natural, we cannot be a living sacrifice for God’s satisfaction. We need Christ to be our Substitute in sanctification. For more regarding the firstling of a donkey being redeemed with a lamb, see Life-study of Exodus, Message 27, pages 305-307.
No matter how nice we may be, or how good, we still are natural. On the one hand, I like to meet nice people. On the other hand, I realize that the nicer a person is, the more natural he is. I am not implying, of course, that in order to be spiritual we should be crude instead of nice. The point here is that even our natural niceness needs to be replaced with Christ. We need to remember that in our natural life we are a “donkey.” We have been redeemed, but we are still donkeys. So many “donkeys” have been gathered together in the church life. Now there is the need for all of us to be replaced with Christ. If our natural “donkey life” is not replaced with Christ, we shall be hindered in the enjoyment of the feasts and also in the keeping of the Sabbath. Having our natural life replaced with Christ is a condition both of feasting with the Lord and resting with Him.
The second condition is found in 34:25a: “You shall not offer the blood of My sacrifice with leavened bread.” This indicates that we should not mix Christ’s redemption with our sinful life. We should never mix Christ’s redemption with a sinful life. We should not declare that we are redeemed and then continue living in sin. To do this is to offer the blood of the Lord’s sacrifice with leavened bread. A person who is still living in sin should not boast that he has been redeemed.
We have pointed out that we need to keep the feast of unleavened bread. This is to purge away everything sinful as evidence that we have been redeemed by the blood of Christ. When a believer clears up his sinful life, this is a testimony that he has been redeemed by Christ.
It is not hard for us to realize that if we still live in sin, yet claim that we have been redeemed, we shall not be able to enjoy Christ. We all have been redeemed by the blood of Christ in order to enjoy Christ. Nevertheless, we still must fulfill the condition of clearing away all leaven, the requirement of not mixing Christ’s redemption with a sinful life.
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