CHRIST AS THE LIFE AND PERSON OF THE NEW MAN
The new man is not a movement, such as the ecumenical movement, and is not an organization but a man. As a man, the new man must have life and he must have a person. The life of this new man must be Christ, and the person of this new man must also be Christ. In this new man there is no place for anyone else. The Jew, the Greek, the circumcised, the uncircumcised, the barbarian, the Scythian, the slave, and the freeman all have no place, but Christ is all and in all (Col. 3:11). For one to say that Christ is his life and Christ is his person is not good enough. We must say in the plural that Christ is our life and Christ is our person. The Lord’s recovery is here to bring forth the new man. In the Lord’s recovery the Lord does not care for a movement or an organization. What He has been doing, and what He is now doing, is bringing forth the new man with Himself as the life and person.
Many among us will pick up the burden to move to other localities to start the church life. This is marvelous. But at the same time, none of us should take this as an opportunity to be a leader. No doubt many leaders will be raised up because in every small church there should be some leading ones. But we should all be willing, once a church is established, to follow the Lord’s leading to go to still another place. We should not desire to be a leader, and we should not desire to have a “nation.” This is a great snare in Christianity. Every Christian denomination is a “nation.” Even every free group is a nation, an empire. In this situation there could never be the oneness. In the Lord’s recovery, among all the local churches, there should be no “nations.” On the whole earth all the local churches are not “nations,” but one new man. If we have many “nations,” spontaneously there will be organization. But if we do not have such nations, we will be simply, singly, and uniquely the one new man. We do not care for the leadership, but we care to bear the burden. We do not care to have an empire, a little nation, in which we can be a little king. Rather, we are all in the one new man.
TAKING THE SUBJECTIVE CHRIST AS OUR LIFE AND OUR PERSON
Practically, we all have to learn how to take Christ as our life and our person. This very Christ who is our life and our person is the life-giving Spirit. This is a crucial point. According to traditional teaching, Christ is merely objective and in the heavens to be worshipped, adored, and praised. However, according to the New Testament, our Christ is the life-giving Spirit, who indwells our spirit (1 Cor. 15:45b; Rom. 8:16). He is not merely objective but altogether subjective to us. He is the Spirit dwelling in our spirit, making our spirit one with Him. First Corinthians 6:17 says, “He who is joined to the Lord is one spirit.” Today we are not simply worshipping an objective Christ in the third heavens. We are experiencing, enjoying, and partaking of a very subjective Christ who is the life-giving Spirit in our spirit. We all must learn to say, “Lord Jesus, since You are such a Spirit, I surrender myself and my all to You. I surrender all my knowledge, ordinances, practices, rituals, works, doings, and everything to You. I do not care for these things. Lord Jesus, I would simply take You as my life and my person. Lord Jesus, it is not I, but You who live in me. I do not like to do anything, be anything, or say anything that You would not do, be, or say. Lord Jesus, You are my life and You are my person.”
(The One New Man, Chapter 4, by Witness Lee)