The Experience of Christ, by Witness Lee

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If we would know how to die, we must also see that we have a powerful life within us and that this life is Christ. Second Corinthians 13:3 says, "Since ye seek a proof of Christ speaking in me, which to you-ward is not weak, but is mighty in you." Christ is not weak in us; He is powerful. He is the powerful One. This powerful One is actually the power of resurrection spoken of in Philippians 3:10. Christ Himself is the power of His resurrection. If you take away Christ, resurrection has no power. Hallelujah, today this power of life is in us!

According to Philippians 3:10 and 11, we firstly have the power of resurrection, secondly the conformity to Christ’s death, and thirdly the attaining unto the out-resurrection. Thus, the sequence is resurrection, death, resurrection. In our experience, which comes first, death or resurrection? We have already pointed out that death is the threshold of resurrection. Therefore, death must be first. But in these verses resurrection comes before death. Romans 6 says that we are baptized into Christ’s death and indicates that the power of resurrection follows death. In Philippians 3 death is implied by the fact that Paul counted all things loss. Paul’s counting all things loss was actually his experience of remaining in the death of Christ. Because he remained in death, the power of Christ’s resurrection could rise up in him. This is the way to know the power of resurrection.

The way to know the life power in a grain of wheat is to put that grain into the soil and keep it there. Likewise, in order to know Christ as the power of resurrection life within us, we need to remain in Christ’s death. As we remain in His death, the power of life will rise up. When the power of life rises up, it will bring us into deeper death. This deeper death is the conformity to Christ’s death.

The day we were baptized we were merely put into Christ’s death; we were not yet conformed to it. For example, when sisters bake a cake, they put the dough into a mold. But after the dough is put into the mold, it is pressed and processed until it conforms to the mold. Thus, to put the dough into the mold is one thing, and to conform it to the mold is another. When we were baptized, we were put into the death of Christ, but we were not molded to the form of His death. When we are willing to remain in His death, the power of resurrection will rise up within us and bring us deeper and deeper into death. This is not being baptized into His death, but being conformed to His death. We need to say, "Lord, how I thank You for Your wonderful death. To stay here is not a suffering. How sweet and pleasant it is to remain in Your death! When someone gives me a difficult time, I would like to remain in this death and sing hymns of praise unto You." If we remain in Christ’s death in such a way, we shall have resurrection. The more resurrection we have, the more death we shall experience. Eventually, the out-resurrection, the outstanding resurrection, will be ours.

(The Experience of Christ, Chapter 21, by Witness Lee)