Basic Lessons on Life, by Witness Lee

More excerpts from this title...


Also in Psalm 51, in David’s repentance and confession, he prayed that God would give him a willing spirit. David connected the willing spirit with the joy of salvation. He asked the Lord to restore unto him the joy of salvation and sustain him with a willing spirit. A willing spirit depends upon the joy of salvation. When we have the joy of salvation, we spontaneously will have a willing spirit to go along with the Lord. What the Lord wants, what the Lord desires, what the Lord asks of us, we will have a willing spirit to answer, to obey. This willing spirit always come from our rejoicing, our joyful spirit. We need the joy of salvation.

No doubt, in David’s fall he lost the joy of his salvation. Now he was repenting, so he asked that God would restore unto him the joy of salvation. That means God would bring him back to the enjoyment of salvation. Then from this enjoyment and this joy, he could have a willing spirit. A willing spirit is an issue of his being happy and joyful in the Lord. Romans 14:17 says, "The kingdom of God is..righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit." When we have joy in God’s Spirit, our spirit will be willing. We will have a willing spirit to fellowship with the Lord, to worship Him, and to pray. Whatever can please the Lord, we will be happy to do. This means we have a willing spirit.


In Psalm 51:17a David said that the sacrifices of God are a broken spirit. In other words, in God’s eyes a broken spirit is more precious than sacrifices. In the second part of verse 17 David said that God would not despise a broken and contrite heart. A broken spirit is a spirit that repents, that feels very sorrowful for any sinfulness. In other words, a broken spirit is a real repenting spirit.

To be broken means to not be whole. Here it does not mean to be broken into pieces. It means that you do not consider yourself so perfect or complete. If you consider that you are perfect and complete, you would not repent or confess your weaknesses and your failures. When your spirit is repenting, your spirit is broken, contrite, and feeling sorrowful. After sinning, many would not have a broken spirit. Instead, they would have a spirit that is stubbornly whole. Because they feel that they are perfect and complete, they would not repent. They would not confess. We should not be like this. We should have a spirit which is always broken.

Even if we do not feel that we have sinned, we still need a broken spirit. Even if we have not sinned in a great way, we still could be wrong in a small way. In our words, our attitude, our thoughts, our feelings, and our talk with others, many times we are wrong, even unconsciously. So we always need to keep a broken spirit. Do not consider yourself as being whole, complete, and perfect. No one is perfect, so we always need a broken spirit to repent and confess.

(Basic Lessons on Life, Chapter 19, by Witness Lee)