A RECOVERY WORK
The Lord is doing a recovery work in which He needs a people who realize and take Him as their humanity. In the midst of the degradation of the churches and the corruption of society, we are here for the Lord’s recovery. But for this we need a strong and proper humanity. It is not sufficient simply to shout, “Hallelujah!” or “Jesus is Lord!” It is not enough to have divine healing or the so-called power from on high. We must show this generation, and even the entire universe with the Devil and all his demons, that we are taking the proper humanity to fulfill God’s purpose. We must declare and even proclaim to this universe that we are here as genuine men. We are here as a corporate man taking Jesus as our humanity. This will terrify the enemy. The tempter came to the Lord Jesus and said, “If You are the Son of God.…” But the Lord Jesus answered by referring to Himself as a man (Matt. 4:3-4). That terrified the enemy. We must be “Jesusly” human. Every member of the church in the Lord’s recovery must be a proper man, even an “acacia” man. This will be a strong testimony, and the mouth of the enemy will be shut.
I realize that many people today are waiting to criticize the local churches. Whenever they are wrong, they will justify it, but when we are wrong in anything, they will tell everyone. There is only one way to shut their mouths, and that is by expressing the humanity of Jesus. Their conscience will have to agree with the proper humanity. So many opposing ones are waiting for the churches to fail. They are looking for any failure on our part. It is really a kind of suffering to us. Many of us were never opposed or criticized so much as when we came into the local church. To be in the local church is to collect much criticism from Christianity. But this is not really criticism, it is something of the battlefield. But we cannot fight the battle without the proper humanity of the Lord Jesus. The proper humanity for the Lord’s recovery will surely shut all the critical, opposing mouths.
THE PROPER WAY
Then what is the way to enjoy such a humanity? In the above verses we are able to see five main items. By these we can see the Apostle Paul’s concept concerning the way to take the humanity of Jesus. The first was to call on the name of the Lord from a pure heart. “Flee youthful lusts, and pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart” (2 Tim. 2:22). When we call on the name of the Lord, we are really taking His humanity into us. Then Paul referred to the Scriptures: “All Scripture is God-breathed…” (2 Tim. 3:16). All Scripture is breathed out by God to make us genuine and proper men of God. We not only need to call on the Lord, but we must also breathe in every word of the Scriptures. This is simply to pray-read the Word. How important are these two items for taking the Lord’s humanity! We must call on the Lord, and we must breathe in His Word.
The third item is the Body life. Paul did not say simply to call on the Lord by yourself, but with “those” (2 Tim. 2:22). This is a corporate life. We enjoy the Lord’s humanity by being with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. Fourth, Paul tells us that we have a spirit to exercise. “For God has not given us a spirit of cowardice, but of power and of love and of a sober mind” (2 Tim. 1:7). And fifth, we have a wonderful Person in our spirit: “The Lord be with your spirit” (2 Tim. 4:22).
We have these five matters to practice: calling on the Lord, breathing in the Scriptures, having the Body life, exercising our spirit, and realizing the Lord Jesus within our spirit. This reveals the concept of the Apostle Paul. How can we enjoy the humanity of Jesus? Simply by these five things. We have to call on the Lord, we must breathe in the Word, and we must do these things in a Body way in the church life. For this we have such a strengthening factor in our spirit. The Lord Jesus, who is the real humanity, is in our spirit. By exercising our spirit to call on Him and to breathe in the Word in a corporate way, we simply enjoy His humanity.
Suppose that I am a young man, seventeen years of age. If I exercise my spirit to call on the Lord and to pray-read His Word with the brothers and sisters, do you believe that I could be disobedient to my parents? I do not believe so. There would be no need of anyone telling me to obey my parents. Spontaneously, I would be obedient to my parents because of the humanity of Jesus within me. And if I have been doing these things in the church life, do you believe that I could be boastful or arrogant? Never! Since I would have the proper humanity within me, I could never behave in that way. This issue does not come by teaching, but by feeding on the Lord Jesus. The proper enjoyment of the humanity of Jesus will swallow up all the negative things and replace them with all the positive things.
We must pray for the entire situation of the Lord’s recovery, that all the brothers and sisters in the local churches may have a full enjoyment of the humanity of Jesus. Then we will be the acacia boards, standing steadfastly against the current of this evil age. This will be our strong testimony, and this will bring the recovery of the local church life to all the leading cities.
(Christ as the Reality, Chapter 16, by Witness Lee)