THE BIBLICAL REVELATION OF THE EXCELLENT CHRIST
I would like to testify to you that I was saved before reaching the age of twenty, and now I am nearly eighty; in these nearly sixty years, I have been reading the Bible almost every day and have worn out several Chinese Bibles. I have been in America for twenty-two years, and I have also worn out several English Bibles. In my study I have more than forty different English versions of the Bible. Now I have been working together with some brothers on the Recovery Version of the New Testament in English, and for each book I have spent at least several months writing the footnotes. In order to write the footnotes, I needed to read the works of many people and check with the authoritative references. After studying the Bible in this fine and detailed way for many years, I confess that the Bible is truly the Book of books. This is why in English it is called “The Book,” meaning that the Bible is the unique book, the book over all other books. This Bible is truly very precious! We may illustrate the preciousness of the Bible in the following way. I have been with the American brothers for twenty-two years, and they have often said, “Brother Lee, no matter which book of the Bible you take up, after you have written some footnotes and explained the verses in a training, that book becomes a new book.” Once they said, “We used to think that there was nothing in 1 and 2 Peter and that these Epistles were very dry and boring to read, but since your recent speaking, 1 and 2 Peter have become rich and fresh, full of revelation and light.” They also said to me, “In the past almost no one liked to read Exodus, but ever since you released the messages in the Life-study of Exodus, everyone feels that this book is truly precious. We see that the entire book of Exodus is full of the riches and revelations of Christ that bring us into the reality of Christ. It is truly very precious.”
Let me give you another example. In 1975 when I covered the Gospel of John in Washington, DC, I gave thirty messages, and later I gave tens of other supplementary messages. Thus, now the printed Life-study of John has fifty-one messages. Recently, however, I have had a burden to come back to speak on the essence of the Gospel of John. The Gospel of John is simply inexhaustible.
The biblical revelation of the Lord Jesus is very mysterious and precious. No wonder Paul said, “What things were gains to me, these I have counted as loss…on account of the excellency of the knowledge of Christ Jesus my Lord” (Phil. 3:7-8).
THE SURPASSINGNESS OF CHRIST
In this message we will look at ten major points concerning the surpassingness of Christ based on the verses in the Scripture reading above.
A. Christ Being the Son of the Living God
Matthew 16:16 says, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” The Lord Jesus Christ is surpassing because He is the Son of the living God. The living God means that God not only has life, but He also moves. God moves in the universe, so He is the living God. Jesus Christ is the Son of the living God.
B. Christ Being the Lord of All
Acts 10:36 says, “The word which He sent…in announcing the gospel of peace through Jesus Christ (this One is Lord of all).” Christ is the Lord of all. The word all actually includes all people, matters, and things. The Lord Jesus is the Lord of all people, matters, and things. He is the Lord of all. Many times I preached the gospel based on this verse of the Bible. In mainland China I said that everything has its owner, master, and lord; there is nothing in the universe that is without a lord. Who then is your lord? You may say that your parents are your lord, but when you grow up, your parents can no longer be the lord over you; in the end your parents will become dependent on you. The wives may say, “Our husbands are our lords.” However, when your husbands get sick, they have to depend on you and can no longer be your lords. Then who is really our Lord? Only the Lord Jesus is our Lord. It is truly marvelous that those who believe in any religion do not say that they believe in a lord; only those who believe in the Lord Jesus say that they have believed in the Lord. This is because only the Lord Jesus is the Lord in the universe; no one else is the Lord.
May I ask you who the Lord in the universe is? Heaven and earth are so great and we humans are so meaningful, yet can you say that we do not have an owner? We do have an owner; Jesus is our Owner. We all belong to the Lord Jesus. He is our Lord. Only what He says counts. As parents, children, husbands, and wives, we all rely on Him. He is the Lord of all. He truly is surpassing. None of the great philosophers, anywhere and at any time, such as Confucius, Socrates, and Plato, ever dared to call himself Lord. On the contrary, Confucius only said, “He who offends heaven cannot pray.” His word indicated that he was not the Lord. But the Lord Jesus said, “I am the light of the world”; “I am the life”; I am the door”; and “I am the way.” No other person has said these words. Over the past two thousand years everyone believes these great words spoken by the Lord Jesus because these are true words. Jesus is Lord; He is the Lord of all.
(Christ in His Excellency, Chapter 1, by Witness Lee)