I. ILLUSTRATION ONE
A. Christ as the Son of Man Becoming the Lamb of God
Christ as the Son of Man became the Lamb of God to take away our sin (John 1:29)—cherishing. If God had never become a man, He could not have become the Lamb. The One who is the Lamb is the Son of Man with humanity. It was only in humanity that God could accomplish redemption for us by dying on the cross. Our sin is the most troublesome thing to all of us, but Christ became the Lamb of God to die for us, to accomplish redemption for us, to take all our sins away. This is the greatest cherishing to us to make us happy and restful.
B. Christ as the Son of God Becoming the Life-giving Spirit
Christ as the Son of God became the life-giving Spirit to give life to us and transform us (John 1:32-34, 42)—nourishing. As the Lamb, Christ cherished us, and as the life-giving Spirit, He nourishes us. When a child will not eat, the mother will do something to make him happy. By cherishing her child, she is able to nourish him. Our God is like a mother. First, He cherishes us, makes us happy. Then He gives us some nourishment to transform us from clay to precious stones for God’s building. Without Christ’s cherishing, no one would come to receive Him as the life-giving Spirit.
II. ILLUSTRATION TWO
A. Christ as the Son of Man in the Form of the Serpent
Christ as the Son of Man, in the form of the serpent, destroyed the old serpent, the source of sin, through His redeeming death (John 3:14; Heb. 2:14)—cherishing. We were bitten by the old serpent in the garden of Eden in Genesis3, so we have the poison, the essence, of the serpent in our being. It was not sufficient for Christ merely to become our redeeming Lamb. He also had to become in the form of the serpent. Paul in Romans 8:3 said that God sent His Son in the likeness of the flesh of sin. Christ became a serpent in form not in element. He was the reality of the brass serpent in Numbers 21 (vv. 4-9) to destroy Satan, the source of sin, through His redeeming death.
B. Christ as the Son of God Speaking the Words of God
Christ as the Son of God speaks the words of God and gives Himself as the Spirit to us not by measure that we may have the eternal life (John 3:34-36, 15-16)—nourishing. The unlimited Son of God speaks God’s words and gives the Spirit to the hearers of God’s word. Those who hear His word and receive the Spirit are regenerated to be His increase, His bride (vv. 29-30).
III. ILLUSTRATION THREE
A. Christ as the Son of Man Detouring into the City of Sychar
Christ as the Son of Man (Jesus), going from Judea to Galilee, detoured into the city of Sychar, near Jacob’s well, to purposely wait for the thirsty and water-seeking, immoral Samaritan woman (John 4:2-9)—cherishing. The very God who became a man traveled from Judea to Galilee, and He purposely detoured to a small city to cherish an immoral woman. As the Son of Man, Christ is the detouring Savior.
B. Christ as the Son of God Giving Her to Drink the Water of Life
Christ as the Son of God, sent by God as a gift, gave her to drink the water of life which springs up into eternal life (John 4:10-14)—nourishing. First, He was the Son of Man to cherish her; then He was the Son of God to give her the living water that flows into the New Jerusalem, the totality of the eternal life.
(The Vital Groups, Chapter 9, by Witness Lee)