DOCTRINES BEING USELESS
Doctrines are useless. If doctrines are to give us a way at all, then there is only one way that is useful, which is the way to God. The only way that is useful is the way that brings us to God. The Christians here are spoiled by revival meetings already. This can be compared to putting rice in a cooker and cooking it for a while. Before the rice is cooked, the fire is turned off, and the rice is left half-cooked; nothing more can be done to the rice. If a man has not been dealt with in a practical way in his daily life, what good will doctrines do for him? I wish that there would be no more revival meetings in this place. Every child of God who loves Him faithfully must be broken by Him. How many are captured by God in this way here? We have to realize that the person is God’s way.
GOD’S WAY BEING TO TOUCH THE PERSON
During the five or six years between 1938 and 1944, I spent all my time in Chefoo. In 1937 I travelled to other places often. The Pentecostals always tell people that they need the power. I told the brothers and sisters once, "Let them seek for the power. See where they will be after a few years." In Chefoo there were twelve or thirteen denominational churches. At least three or four of them could seat over a thousand people, but their combined attendance did not match our attendance. We did not have pastors, preachers, or seminary students. Although I cannot say that every one among us was touched by the Lord in an absolute way, I can surely testify that some were indeed touched by the Lord. The Communists opposed us very much. But during the New Year, we still preached the gospel in a daring way. One time we baptized one hundred two persons at the same time. The next time after that, we baptized a few dozen. For a city with only a few hundred thousand people, this was quite an outstanding achievement. One village chief warned a Communist cadet not to touch us, because he said that the Communists would not be able to deal with us.
If your heart is attracted by the Lord’s love, you will be willing to give yourselves to the Lord. This is a very simple and direct word. The degree you can render others help is determined by the degree you have advanced yourself; it is also determined by the amount of learning you have picked up. If only one-fourth of those among us are used by God in this way, in a few years, the church will increase from one or two hundred people to one or two thousand, and the quality of the people gained will surpass the one or two hundred people that we have today. It is not our ground or our doctrines that will bring in God’s blessing. The basic question is the person himself.
A GOOD TREE PRODUCING GOOD FRUIT,
A CORRUPT TREE PRODUCING EVIL FRUIT
I do not believe that there is anything that is more real than the things in the spiritual realm. A person cannot cheat God. He cannot cheat himself, and he cannot cheat the saints. In two years’ time, you will see the effect of my words today. The kind of person you are determines the kind of children you produce. Those who love the world will produce Christians who love the world. Those brothers and sisters who seek after modern fashions, if they can bring others to salvation at all, will bring in ones who are flippant and shallow. Those who have a hot temper will surely bring in Christians with a bad temper. A good tree produces good fruit, and a corrupt tree produces evil fruit (Matt. 7:17-18). The kind of person we are determines the kind of fruit we produce.
GOD’S LIFE COMING INTO MAN
THROUGH THE PROCESS OF BREAKING
In order for God’s life to enter into man at all, there must first be the breaking. This is like giving people an injection: the skin must first be punctured before the needle can go in.
PAYING THE PRICE TO GIVE GOD THE WAY
What this place needs is not doctrine, or zeal, or the so-called power of the Holy Spirit. What this place needs is neither excitement nor stirring up. What this place needs is people who are willing to pay the price. If there are some who would do this, God will have a way here. Brothers and sisters, we must be willing to suffer loss, so that God could have a way.
THE CONSECRATION OF OUR WILL
With regard to the work of the Holy Spirit, the main thing on our part is not whether or not we are able, but whether or not we are willing. Are you willing to allow God to do great things in you? This requires the consecration of the will. Sometimes we have to say to God with tears, "Lord, I am willing." When we do this, though our heart may at times be in pain, our spirit can rise up to praise Him.
(Messages Given During the Resumption of Watchman Nee's Ministry (2 volume set), Chapter 10, by Watchman Nee/Witness Lee)