Abraham—Called by God, by Witness Lee

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We have seen that Isaac enjoyed all the wells. Wherever he went there was a well for his enjoyment. This reveals that whether we are right or wrong in our standing there is a well for our satisfaction. In addition to enjoying the wells, Isaac secured a choice bride (24:61-67). He gained her without doing anything. As he was meditating in the field, she came to him. Isaac was not a doing person; he was an enjoying person. His father and his servant did everything to secure a bride for him. Isaac did not even go to Rebekah; Rebekah came to him. In all of history I have never heard of another case in which the bride came to the groom. All Christian natural doings are just a type of supplanting, a type of heel holding. Never supplant or hold the heel of others. Rebekah is your portion and she will come. Before the foundation of the world, it was destined that Rebekah would be yours. Do you believe this? Do you dare to claim it? Isaac received his Rebekah simply by meditating in the field, not by doing anything. This is enjoyment.


After twenty years without having a child, Isaac gained twin sons (25:20-21, 26b). Did God not say in His promise that Isaac, the only seed of Abraham, would be the one in whom all the nations of the earth would be blessed? Suppose Isaac never had a son. How then could this promise be fulfilled? And if this promise were not fulfilled, how could God’s purpose be accomplished? Thus, it was not only Isaac who needed a son, but also God who needed a seed out of Isaac. Because Isaac did not realize this for twenty years, God did not do anything. God had a need and intended to do something about it, but He required the cooperation from the human side. For twenty years Isaac was only enjoying, not caring about his need for a son. But after twenty years, he realized that he had such a need and that his need corresponded to God’s need. Once he realized this, he prayed and God answered his prayer.

The same is true with us today. When we realize that our need corresponds to God’s need and then pray accordingly, God will answer our prayer. Actually, His answer to our prayer is the fulfillment of His purpose. Our need must be God’s need, and the prayer for our need should also be the prayer for God’s need. When our need corresponds with God’s and when we then pray for our need, God’s need will be met also. When Isaac prayed for a child, whose need was greater—Isaac’s or God’s? Surely God’s need was greater. Nevertheless, the greater need of God could only be fulfilled in the smaller need of Isaac. Only when man realizes his need and prays for it does God have the way to come in to fulfill His need. God has a purpose, and we have a need which corresponds to God’s purpose. But God cannot do anything until we realize our need and pray about it. Then God will answer our prayer to meet our need for the fulfillment of His purpose. Eventually, Isaac had a son, Jacob, who not only fulfilled Isaac’s need but also fulfilled God’s eternal purpose. Out of Jacob came Christ, who brings in the church, the kingdom, and the New Jerusalem. All these eternal things came about through the meeting of Isaac’s need, a need which corresponded with God’s need.

Enjoyment is our destiny, and wherever we go there will be a well. But in the enjoyment of God’s grace, we must render Him our human coordination that He may fulfill His eternal purpose through us. This means that our enjoyment of grace will never be in vain, for the enjoyment of grace on our side eventually becomes the fulfillment of God’s purpose on His side.


Isaac received a hundredfold harvest and became great (26:12-14). The word great in 26:13 means rich. Isaac “became great and continued to grow great until he became very great” (Heb.). He became rich by fulfilling the regular duty of sowing and through the Lord’s blessing. This also was a matter of enjoyment, but this enjoyment was not on the proper standing. Isaac might have said to himself, “My standing must be right. If it were not right, how could the Lord have blessed me with all these riches?” But God might have said, “Isaac, you are settled here and have gained great riches, but I do not agree with your standing. I shall raise up the circumstances to force you to leave this place.” May the Holy Spirit show us such a vivid picture here. On the one hand, there is the proper enjoyment; on the other hand, there is the improper standing. Even if we lack the proper standing, we may continue to have the enjoyment. But do not think that this enjoyment justifies your standing. As long as we have the enjoyment, our need is met. But for the fulfillment of God’s eternal purpose, we need to get on the proper standing. Nevertheless, even if we are not on the proper standing, God still grants us His rich provision. This is wonderful. What a wonderful God! What a wonderful provision! We have been destined for the enjoyment. Even when we are wrong in our standing, we may still have the rich enjoyment. But God will not let us go. He will use our circumstances to bring us back to the proper standing that the fulfillment of His purpose might be realized.


Before Isaac came back to Beer-sheba, he had enjoyment after enjoyment, grace upon grace. After receiving the hundredfold harvest, he found the “well of living water” and came into the “broad places,” the “broad ways” (Rehoboth, 26:15-22). Although he had enjoyment in such a rich way, his standing was not right and he was forced to leave the broad ways and to come back to Beer-sheba.


When Isaac returned to Beer-sheba (26:23-33), the Lord immediately appeared to him, speaking to him and confirming His promise, saying, “I am the God of Abraham thy father: fear not, for I am with thee, and will bless thee, and multiply thy seed for my servant Abraham’s sake” (26:24). Then, here in Beer-sheba Isaac began to have the proper testimony. He built an altar, called upon the name of the Lord, and pitched his tent (26:25). Here in Beer-sheba he had a life for the fulfillment of God’s eternal purpose. Eventually, here in Beer-sheba the opposers were subdued (26:26-31). Beer-sheba is the right place, the place where we can have the proper standing, and the proper standing means a great deal both to God and to us.

(Abraham—Called by God, Chapter 28, by Witness Lee)