FULFILLING OUR RESPONSIBILITY
In your going out to preach the gospel, it may be that you will baptize some nearly every time you go out. It is possible to become addicted to this. Every kind of addiction is harmful. If you are addicted to baptizing people, even that can be harmful. We all must learn not to baptize too many. If as a team you have already baptized eight, that is good enough; do not endeavor to baptize more. You should stop baptizing and go to “change diapers.” You must be balanced. Do not bring forth babies and then hand them over to others. That is wrong. After your team has baptized a small number, stop and form a family to do the work of raising up these new ones as God’s children. You must do everything for them continuously, day after day, week after week, and month after month. Then you will see the proper result. This is the way to build up the church life through raising up the new believers.
We all must bear our responsibility in taking care of the home meetings. However, we should not try to do this on a big scale. Each team member should have only about three new ones to take care of. It is their duty to meet continuously with these new believers in home meetings. If a nursing mother does not have a sense of duty, but only does things according to her desires and likes, her babe will not grow properly and may even die. In the Lord’s work, there are no vacations. You have to go out continuously, not to many homes, but to those three or four homes of the ones you are caring for. You must attend to your duty like a nursing mother raising up her children. Today you are raising up not only your children but also God’s children.
RAISING UP THE NEW ONES WITH THE WORD OF GOD
The second point regarding the raising up of God’s children is that you have to raise them up with the word of God, not with your own word. You must always keep this principle. Do not speak your own word too much. You must learn to seize, or grasp, the opportunity to inject these new ones with the word of God. Feed them with the milk of the Word of God. This is why I published Truth Lessons and Life Lessons. In these volumes I have collected the most suitable verses for helping the new ones. I encourage all of you who are working in the Lord’s new way to become very well acquainted with all forty-eight lessons in Life Lessons. All the subjects of these lessons were carefully selected according to my knowledge and experience to meet the needs of the new ones. Study these lessons, and learn how to use all these golden verses. It is best if you can recite all these verses, but at least you must know where they are in the Bible. Then if you cannot recite a verse, you can find it quickly. Sometimes, even if you can recite the verse, it is better to open to that verse and let the new one read it. Whatever you do, you must do it in a living way, and you should try to cover at least one definite point using the best verses.
The first thing we should inject into the new ones is that our Savior is the Spirit and that we as saved ones have a regenerated spirit. We need to spend at least three or four home meetings to impart this matter into them.
The second category of things we should impart to them must be the basic practices of the Christian life. As Christians we should read the Bible, the Word of God. We should pray to God, which is to breathe in God. Also, we should have morning watch. Every morning we should rise up early to have a time of morning watch with the Lord. We must also teach them how to practice morning watch by reading some verses and then pray-reading these verses. You have to charge them to attend the Christian meetings. Then you also have to help them to do the same thing that you did for them, that is, to preach the gospel to others. These are the basic practices of the Christian life.
The next matters we should cover with them are all the different items of God’s salvation. God’s salvation is all-inclusive, and within God’s salvation there are many different items. There are the washing away of our sins, the forgiving of our sins, redemption, reconciliation, justification, regeneration, and so forth. All of these matters are covered in the forty-eight lessons in Life Lessons. You have to take care of all these matters, and to do so will require many weeks.
If you cover these three categories properly, the ones who are under your care will be raised up very well. Spontaneously, they will grow and become steadfast. The home meeting is like kindergarten, and the group meeting is like elementary school. In later messages we will have much fellowship on the group meeting.
(The Exercise and Practice of the God-Ordained Way, Chapter 21, by Witness Lee)