IDENTIFIED WITH CHRIST
The fourth point is that in presenting the burnt offering, we are one with Christ. On the one hand the burnt offering is just Christ Himself. Yet, on the other hand, if we would present Christ as the burnt offering, we must be one with Him. This is why in the presentation of the burnt offering there is the laying on of the hand of the presenter. This simply means that the presenter is one with the present; the offerer is one with the offering. To lay your hand upon the head of the burnt offering means to be identified with the offering.
If, throughout the whole day, we have never been one with Christ, it is rather difficult to come into the meeting to present Christ as the burnt offering. If our hand has been kept away from Christ, yet we come to the meeting and try to present Him as our burnt offering, it is indeed awkward. We all must be identified with Christ. We must be one with Christ all day long. All day our hand must be on the head of Christ. In other words, throughout the day we must be one with Christ in our spirit.
This Christ upon whom we lay our hand is not One who kills others. His is not a killing life, but a life that is willing to be killed. Let me illustrate in this way. Here is a brother and his wife. If this brother has really been one with Christ today, he will realize that Christ is not the killing One, but the One who is so willing to be killed. Suppose that when he gets home, his wife gives him a difficult time. This is the killing. Many, many times the wives are the best killers. But I must be fair and say that the husbands are killers, too. The wives are killing the husbands, and the husbands are killing the wives. The lives of both the husbands and of the wives are killing lives. Do not think that a certain brother is so gentle—his life is a cutting life. Many times he cuts his wife into pieces. And his wife has the same kind of life. Perhaps she tries even more to cut him into pieces.
But when your wife or your husband is cutting you into pieces, if you are one with Christ, you will be willing to be cut. The life of Christ within us is so willing to be cut. By His life you will never quarrel; you will never have any exchange of words with your wife. You will be so willing to be cut into pieces. Then when you come to the meeting, you will have something of Christ to offer and present to God. On the other hand, if you quarrel a little with your wife and reason with her in even a small way, you are through. You will come to the meeting with your hands empty. You will have nothing of Christ to offer.
This is the case not only in the marriage life, but also in the office, the classroom, and the apartment where we live. All the time we must experience Christ as the life which is willing to be cut into pieces. It is not by ourselves, but by the indwelling Christ. He is the burnt offering, and His life is so willing to be cut.
Paul says in 2 Corinthians 4:10-12, “Always bearing about in the body the putting to death of Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body. For we which live are always delivered unto death for Jesus’ sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our mortal flesh. So then death worketh in us, but life in you” (lit.). We must bear the putting to death of Jesus in our life. All day long we are given to death.
Do not think that it will be those who are so much against you who will kill you. Many times your wife kills you, and sometimes an elder in the local church kills you. All these are just the proper cuttings for you.
If we are all going to be built up together and have a rich recovery of the church, we all must experience these things. Do not say that when you come to the church the love is so marvelous. After two weeks, you will suffer much. You will suffer the cutting. Do not try to cut others, but be willing to be cut. However, no matter how careful you are, you will sometimes cut others. Many times I was extremely careful not to cut others, but eventually I cut a great deal. I did not do it intentionally, but I did it. We all have cut one another many times, but today we are here in real oneness because we are willing to be cut by one another. We do have a life within us which is willing to be cut.
Do not take this matter of the burnt offering as a teaching in an objective way. We all must realize that the burnt offering is our oneness with Christ. All day long we must identify ourselves with Christ in a practical way in our daily walk. It is not just a matter of coming to the meeting and trying to present Christ as the burnt offering. That will not work. We must be one with Christ in our practical daily lives, and to be one with Christ as the burnt offering means to take the life which is so willing to be killed, skinned, and cut into pieces.
(Christ as the Reality, Chapter 3, by Witness Lee)