Enjoying the Riches of Christ for the Building Up of the Church as the Body of Christ, by Witness Lee

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Now we can see that there is no other way to overcome. The unique way is eating. We need to eat Jesus. Eating is the unique matter in the whole Bible. The Bible starts with the eating of the tree of life, and it ends with the same thing. In the New Jerusalem in the last chapter of the Bible, out of the throne of God flows a river, and on either side of the river grows the tree of life, producing fruits every month to supply the need of all the people of the New Jerusalem.

Revelation 22:14 says, “Blessed are those who wash their robes that they may have right to the tree of life and may enter by the gates into the city.” Our eternal right is to eat the tree of life. Many Christians are happy that their robes have been washed, but they do not realize that the washing of the robes is for eating the tree of life. This is our eternal portion and enjoyment.


Jesus is sweet, precious, enjoyable, and available. The day that I came to know that I can eat Jesus, everything changed. The first time I came to this country, in 1958, I was invited to speak to a group in Los Angeles. That was the first time I gave a message in English. My message was on eating Jesus. That was the first time I told people in this country that they need to enjoy Jesus by eating Him. After that message, some persons came to me and said, “Brother Lee, this is a good thought, but we wish to help you to use the proper words to express it.” Since this was the first time I had given a message in English, I admitted that I needed some improvement, and I asked them to help me. They said it is better not to use the phrase eat Jesus. However, they could not find a better phrase. To eat is simply to eat. What word can we use? Any other word will still mean “to eat.” Eventually I told them, “Brothers, do not try to find a better word. The Lord Jesus Himself used this word. In John 6:57 He said, ‘He who eats Me, he also shall live because of Me.’ This is good enough.” They argued that this is not good English, but no one could find a better English word. This troubling is absolutely due to the old concept. We should not regulate the revelation of the Bible. Rather, our concept needs to be regulated.

Eating Jesus is not my teaching; this is the teaching of the holy Word. The Lord Jesus is our eternal portion not merely for us to learn about but mainly to eat. I have been eating food over sixty-five years. Today, I do not know what vitamin C and vitamin D are; I only know their names. I do not know much about vitamins, but daily I take in many vitamins. We must simply eat Jesus and not care for knowledge.


We may be assured that by eating the Lord Jesus we will be overcomers. According to my age, I may be a grandfather, but I am younger than many young people. They are not as living as I am. I am younger than they, not by myself but by Jesus. Jesus is so living! In my speaking some may think that I am “crazy,” but in my private room I am more “crazy” with Jesus, because my Jesus is enjoyable. I cannot help myself; I have to be crazy. My Jesus is the living Jesus, not a doctrinal Jesus. My power, my message, and my impact is my enjoyment of Jesus.

We can never return to the old Christianity because our Jesus is too enjoyable. Simply by eating Jesus we will be the overcomers. We will overcome the world, the degraded situation of Christianity, and all the teachings. We will declare, “We do not care for teachings; we only care for our Jesus!”

Yes, I read the Bible, but I do not read it for knowledge; I read it for enjoyment. I may pray-read the beginning of Matthew 1: “Abraham begot Isaac. Amen! Isaac begot Jacob. Amen!” I may not know all about Abraham and Isaac, but oh, the enjoyment I have! The Bible is no more a book of knowledge to me. It is no more a tree of knowledge; it is the tree of life, a book of life, a book of the living Jesus.

By enjoying Jesus in this way, we become the overcomers. Then to be sure, we will try our best to find where there are other Christians like us. We will be anxious to have fellowship with them. This produces the church life, and eventually out of this comes the man-child. By the Lord’s mercy, the overcomers are the man-child. We know that the man-child in Revelation 12 is the overcomers because verse 5 says that the man-child will shepherd all the nations with an iron rod. This is similar to 2:26 and 27, which says, “He who overcomes and he who keeps My works until the end, to him I will give authority over the nations; and he will shepherd them with an iron rod.” The overcomers are the man-child, and the man-child is the overcomers.

(Enjoying the Riches of Christ for the Building Up of the Church as the Body of Christ, Chapter 17, by Witness Lee)