BECOMING THE LIFE-GIVING SPIRIT
We have seen that at the end of His life, the Lord Jesus literally entered into death and was buried. But after His physical burial, in which He was absolutely and thoroughly terminated, He was bodily resurrected. By His resurrection the divine life within Him was fully released. Hence, He became the life-giving Spirit (1 Cor. 15:45). As the life-giving Spirit, He entered into the disciples and infused them with His life, the life that lived always under the death of the cross. This enabled the disciples to live in the form, in the model, in the mold, of the death of Christ. Thus, the Apostle Paul could declare, "I have been crucified with Christ; nevertheless I live; yet not I, but Christ lives in me" (Gal. 2:20, Gk.). Paul lived, not by his own life, but by Christ as his life.
THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN LIVING AND DOING
It is important to see the difference between doing something and dying that we may live Christ. Doing things is according to the old ordination, but dying to live Christ is according to the new ordination. As we have seen, God today does not want us to do anything; He only wants us to die that we may live Christ. This is what it means to be conformed to Christ’s death. This vision needs to control us. For example, as you are about to love someone, you need to consider whether you are loving by your self or by Christ. The same is true with the preaching of the gospel. Do you preach the gospel by your self or by Christ? God does not want you to preach the gospel in your self; He wants you to preach the gospel by Christ. You need to be able to say, "It is not I who preach the gospel; it is Christ." We need to live a life under the death of Christ until the redemption of our body, until we are literally and thoroughly terminated and enter into resurrection with the divine life. Until that happens, we must live in the principle of having our human life buried so that we may live by the divine life, which is Christ Himself. To do this is to be conformed to the death of Christ.
We are all in the process of being conformed to the death of Christ. Christ’s death is the model, the form, for our daily living. Our very being needs to be conformed to His death. This means that our human life is always under death so that we no longer have our being according to our human life, but according to Christ.
(The Experience of Christ, Chapter 17, by Witness Lee)