RENEWED WITH A NEW ELEMENT
Verses 22-24 of chapter four tell us that such a church which is mingled with the Spirit, one with the Lord, and saturated with the Triune God is being renewed. To be renewed is to drop the old element and to replace the old element with the new. We have to drop the elements of culture, of religion, of ethics, and of traditions. In the church life there is a kind of life metabolism causing us to drop the old and to replace the old with the new. Everyday we can enjoy something new. This is not to enjoy some new thought or new teaching, but a new element from the divine source which is the Triune God. This will saturate us to replace the old and to discharge the old. The old element will be discharged and replaced by the new element of the Triune God.
WASHED AND RENEWED
Titus 3:5 and 6 read: "Not by works in righteousness which we have done but according to His mercy, He saved us, through the washing of regeneration and renewing of the Holy Spirit, Whom He poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior." In the church life our being is washed. That washing is the washing from the regeneration. While we are being washed, we are being renewed by the Spirit. The old nature has to go. The old man has to be washed away, but the new element has to be added in by the renewing Spirit.
THE EXCELLENCY OF CHRIST
In Philippians 1:19-21 Paul only cared for the bountiful supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ which would turn out to his salvation. He didn’t care for imprisonment or death. He only cared that Christ was being magnified in him. To him to live was Christ. This is the expression of God. In chapter three of the same book Paul indicated that formerly he had treasured certain things, especially the righteousness from keeping the law, but now he counted everything refuse, dog food. Now he had only one pursuit, to pursue after Christ. He wanted to live Christ, to live in Him, and to be found by others in Christ. He wanted to be in Christ, having Christ as his righteousness and his everything. His longing was to know Him. Just to know Him is excellent. Paul wanted to know Him and the power of His resurrection. Paul also said in Philippians 4:13 that in the One who empowers him he could do everything.
THE EMBODIMENT OF GOD
By reading Colossians 2:9 we can realize that the very Christ who is Christifying us is the very embodiment of God. The fullness of the Godhead dwells in Him bodily. He is Christifying us with the fullness of the Godhead to make us the full expression of God. In 3:4 we have this One as our life and in 3:10 we are being renewed to be a new man in which there is no race, no social rank, and no culture. Christ is all and in all. He is all and in all the members. In every race and in every color there is nothing but Christ.
GOD MANIFESTED IN THE FLESH
Finally we come to 1 Timothy 3:15-16 where we see that the church is the house of the living God. Great is this mystery. Everyone confesses that God is manifested in such a church which is the very expression of the Triune God. This is what the Lord wants to recover today.
(Concerning the Lord's Recovery, Chapter 5, by Witness Lee)