A NORMAL SERVICE
Consecrating Our Bodies and Our Time
In order to have the proper service, we must first consecrate our bodies and our time. Romans chapter twelve shows us that to practice the Body life, we must first offer up our bodies. We have to say to the Lord, “Lord, my body is purchased by You. It is Your possession. I am consecrating it to You.” To offer up the body, we have to offer up our time, because the body is in the time. If we cannot give our time, the body cannot be presented. Practically speaking, you should consecrate your body and your time according to the way of budgeting we described. Paul said in Romans 1:14 that he is a debtor to everyone. This is a debt to the Lord. If we do not preach the gospel and do not help others to go on, are we not indebted to the Lord? Hence, we have to consecrate our bodies and our time to preach the gospel and to help others. Only then will we not be indebted to the Lord.
Preaching the Gospel to Gain New Ones
The second item of a proper service is to preach the gospel to gain new ones. In order to preach the gospel, first we must be interested in sinners. We must not feel that they are evil or repulsive. If so, our gospel will not go out. Romans 5:8 says, “But God commends His own love to us in that while we were yet sinners Christ died for us.” In Matthew 5:44 the Lord also said to love our enemies. Hence, we have to be interested in sinners. When others lie, you have to pity them. If they are saved, they will no longer lie. Man is corrupted by birth. If the Lord had not saved you, you would not be that much better than they are. Moreover, we have to pray for the unbelievers.
Our preaching of the gospel should not be with a temporary zeal. Many Christians become hot suddenly and also turn cold suddenly. This is not normal. We should serve in a normal and regular way. Once a week we go out to knock on doors to preach the gospel. First Corinthians 9:16 and 17 says, “For if I preach the gospel, I have nothing to boast of, for necessity is laid upon me; for woe to me if I do not preach the gospel. For if I do this voluntarily, I have a reward.” It was Paul’s commission to preach the gospel. If he would not preach, it would be a woe to him. We should see the same thing today.
Taking Care of the Home Meetings and Perfecting the New Ones
After a person is baptized, he needs care, shepherding, feeding, and teaching. All these require our labor. During the last few years, we have baptized about thirty-eight thousand people through our door-knocking. All the brothers and sisters have to rise up and pick up the burden to care for them. This training is conducted with the hope that the working brothers and sisters would rise up to visit them week by week, caring for them in the home meetings, perfecting them there, and considering them as their joy (1 Thes. 2:20), teaching and shepherding them patiently (John 21:15-16), with the view mainly to develop their spirit (John 4:24). If everyone would practice this, the result will be very noticeable.
(Messages Given to the Working Saints, Chapter 8, by Witness Lee)