Basic Lessons on Life, by Witness Lee

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We also need to see that life is not power. The Spirit has two aspects: the aspect of life within us and the aspect of power upon us. When the New Testament talks about the Spirit’s power, it uses the preposition upon. Upon means outside. When the New Testament speaks concerning the Spirit as life, it uses the preposition in. The Spirit is in us.

The New Testament says that the Spirit of reality will be with you and even in you, and the rivers of living water will flow out from within you. There is the aspect of drinking the Spirit and the aspect of being baptized in the Spirit. To baptize a person is to put him into the water, but to drink is to take in the water. First Corinthians 12:13 covers these two aspects. We all have been baptized in one Spirit into one Body. Then we all have been given to drink of one Spirit. These are the two aspects concerning the Spirit. But in today’s Christianity the life side is nearly neglected and the power side is overemphasized wrongly. Therefore, we have to point out that life is not power.

Acts 1:8 shows that the Spirit of power coming upon the disciples enabled them to carry out the work of spreading the gospel from Jerusalem to the uttermost part of the earth. This verse shows us that power is for work, and John 6:57b shows that life is for living. In this verse the Lord said, "He who eats Me, he also shall live because of Me."


Life is not gift. Gift is the ability for function (Rom. 12:6), but life is the divine Being in our being. John 1:13b says that we believers are begotten of God. To be begotten of God is to have God’s being in our being. Life is God Himself, the divine Being, in our being.


The growth in knowledge is not life. The growth in knowledge is the increase of knowledge. You may accumulate a lot of biblical knowledge by reading books or by studying in a seminary and yet not know life at all. Life is the increase of God within us. Colossians 2:19b reveals that the church grows with the growth of God, with the increase of God as life.

(Basic Lessons on Life, Chapter 7, by Witness Lee)