LIVING IN THE PERSON OF CHRIST
Second Corinthians 2:10 says, "To whom ye forgive anything, I forgive also: for if I forgave anything, to whom I forgave it, for your sakes forgave I it in the person of Christ." What does it mean to say that Paul forgave in the person of Christ? I spent a long time studying this verse before I came to realize Paul’s meaning. My understanding of this is best expressed through an illustration. Once I was invited to a brother’s home for dinner. At a certain point I asked the brother a question, and then I turned the question to his wife. Before she answered me, she first looked at her husband, and he looked at her. Learning from the look in her husband’s eyes what to say, she proceeded to answer me in the person of her husband. Many husbands and wives relate to one another in this way. If a wife does not know how to behave in the person of her husband, she is independent. A wife should always speak in the person of her husband. Any wife who speaks according to the person of her husband is a very good wife, for she lives not by herself, but by her husband. Although she has her own personality, she does not live by her personality, but by the person of her husband. How wonderful this is!
All the young people need to learn how to live in the person of Christ. The way to experience Christ is to live in the person of Christ. We need to do everything in the person of Christ. For example, if you can watch television in the person of Christ, go ahead and do it. But if you honestly cannot watch it in the person of Christ, you should not do it. If you look at the Lord as you are watching television, He may tell you to shut if off. Furthermore, a married brother must learn to speak to his wife in the person of Christ. If he lives in the person of Christ with his wife, he will not argue with her. If he checks with the Lord as he is about to exchange words with her, the Lord will tell him to stop. What a wonderful life we would have if we lived in the person of Christ!
Paul was one who lived in the person of Christ. According to 2 Corinthians 2:10, he forgave in the person of Christ. Paul did not do anything according to his choice, taste, or preference. Instead, he did everything according to the taste of Christ. The best wife is one who lives by taking her husband as her person. The husbands also need to live in the person of their wives, but with discernment. This is according to God’s economy. According to God’s household arrangement, the headship is not with the wife, but with the husband. Nevertheless, both the wife and the husband need to live in the person of the other party. Then their married life will be sweet and pleasant. What a wonderful experience it is to live in the person of Christ!
According to the Greek text, the Greek word rendered "person" in 2 Corinthians 2:10 is the same word as the word translated "face" in 2 Corinthians 4:6, the verse which says that the glory of God is in the face of Jesus Christ. This indicates that when Paul lived in the person of Christ, he lived in the face of Christ. He was a man in Christ, who was found in Christ in a condition based upon faith and conditioned by faith. In order to know Christ in his daily experience, Paul did everything in the person of Christ. Christ and he were not two, but one. Therefore, in Philippians 1:21 he could say, "For to me to live is Christ." He lived in the person of Christ and was one with Christ. Two persons, Paul and Christ, lived as one. We need such a life as this.
(The Experience of Christ, Chapter 14, by Witness Lee)