The Divine Economy, by Witness Lee

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When I was a young man, I did everything quickly. I spoke quickly, and I walked quickly. When you are a quick person it is much easier for you to lose your temper. When I wanted to do something quickly and another person was going slowly, I became irritated. Then I got saved when I was nineteen. My sister returned home from a seminary where she was studying. She loved the Lord and wanted to go on with the Lord. She told me that she saw many "spiritual" Christians in her seminary. She related to me that these Christians did everything slowly. They walked slowly, they opened up the Bible slowly, and they talked slowly. After hearing that testimony, I desired to be a slow person, and I began to hate my quickness. Then I began to imitate the persons who were so slow. I tried to pick up my Bible slowly, walk slowly, and even read the Bible slowly. But eventually my quickness came out again. I found out that I was not a slow person. For me to try to be a slow person was like a monkey trying to imitate a man. Eventually, the monkey will return back to being a monkey.

Then I was taught by many Christian teachers that I should be patient, humble, and kind. I was taught that I should be very virtuous. Eventually I discovered that I could not love, I could not be humble, nor could I be patient, kind, holy, or righteous. I became very disappointed and struggled for a long time. One day I saw that man can never be holy. Only God can be holy. There is no possibility for a piece of black iron to be gold. I saw that what God wanted was to enter into me to be my contents, to be my holiness, to be my "gold." When I saw and realized this I became greatly excited. I wanted to tell everyone that I had God in me, that God was my contents. God is my life, my holiness, my love, my slowness, and my everything. I am a vessel, a container, to contain God and to be filled with God.

I used to tell people that I wanted to be a good man, but I could not make it. But today I can testify that I am not a good man. Do not be a good man, but be a God-man. If you want to be a good man, be sure that you will be a bad man. Do not try in yourself to love others. The more you try to love others, the more you will eventually hate others. If you try to be humble, you will be proud. You may even have the inward attitude—"Don’t you know that I am so humble?" This is pride. You are proud of your humility. You have to forget about being a good man.

In the garden of Eden there were two trees—the tree of life and the tree of the knowledge of good and evil (Gen. 2:9). Evil always goes with good. Hatred goes with love. Pride goes with humility. This is not what God wants. God wants life. God does not want you to be a good man, but God wants you to be a God-man. You may be a "good man," but you can never be an expression of God if you are merely a good man. God made man in His own image for the purpose of expressing God. When we become a God-man who is filled with God, we express God. A God-man is an expression of God.

Such a God-man, expressing God, is God’s representative. He represents God and he has God’s authority over all things. God created man in His own image to express Him, and God gave His dominion to man that man may reign for Him (Gen. 1:26). It is not a good man but a God-man who expresses God and represents God. God’s image is for us to express God, and God’s dominion is for us to represent God. We have God Himself in our spirit, and we can be filled with God and full of God to express Him and represent Him as a God-man. This is the dispensing of God Himself into us according to the divine economy.

(The Divine Economy, Chapter 2, by Witness Lee)