III. SHARING THE SAME POSITION WITH CHRIST
When a person arrives at the full stature of Christ, he is in the same position as Christ, not only in objective fact, but also in experience. Christ is seated in the heavens, so also is he; Christ is on the throne, and so is he. At this time he is not easily shaken; neither can he fall easily.
Before a man’s spiritual life attains to maturity, he is not stable. A month ago he may have been greatly uplifted and zealous for the Lord; the next month he may be exceedingly depressed and weak to the point of even being unwilling to come to the meetings. Some brothers and sisters, when they are well received and lifted up, become overjoyed and beside themselves; but when they are opposed and troubled, they become depressed and downcast. These ups and downs prove that the life is still immature. However, when man’s life has attained maturity and is seated with Christ on the throne in the heavens, he does not rise and fall nor waver easily. When you welcome him, he is a certain kind of person; when you oppose him, he remains the same. If you lift him up, he is on the throne; if you trouble him, he is still on the throne. When the prophet Elijah heard that Jezebel desired to kill him, he became exceedingly fearful; he fled and sat under a juniper tree, requesting that he might die (1 Kings 19). This is because he had descended from Mt. Carmel. Likewise, when one descends from the heavenly position, he is easily confused and frightened. Nevertheless, one who has attained to maturity of life lives in the spirit, in the life of Christ; he shares His position and is not easily disturbed or excited. Just as Christ is stable and sure in the heavens, so also is he. One whose life has attained unto maturity is one who is stable and steady.
As Christ Himself is unshakable in the heavens, so are those who are full of the stature of Christ and who share the same position as Christ. He changes not because of place or time; no matter what kind of environment he encounters, he remains seated in heaven, unchanged. He shares the same position as Christ. This is the condition of one who is full of the stature of Christ.
IV. REIGNING WITH CHRIST
Another condition of one who is full of the stature of Christ is that he reigns with Christ. One must attain to the position of reigning with Christ that his life might become mature. If we desire to learn whether or not we are mature in life, we should ascertain whether or not we can reign in the spiritual life. We cannot ask a six-year-old child to rule; even if we crown him king and give him reign, with everything subject to his control, he will run off to play ball. If the life is insufficient, there is no possibility of reigning. When one’s life attains to maturity, he reigns automatically. Consider the maiden in the Song of Songs. It was not until her inner life became bright as the morning, fair as the moon, and clear as the sun, that she manifested her majesty and was terrible as an army with banners (S. S. 6:10). If one has not attained to this transcendent and heavenly state and yet claims himself to be experienced and standing in a high position, he is only displaying his own glory and power; it is an ugly display and certainly not reigning. Therefore, reigning is not only a matter of position, but also of life. In order to reign, one needs the position and much more, the life.
This is true not only of the spiritual life, but also of the physical life. A statement made by a child is of very little significance. The same statement, in the same situation, at the same time, when spoken by an adult, has some measure of weight, and when spoken by an elderly person of seventy or eighty years of age, is more weighty. The weight of the word is measured according to age. When a certain age is attained, the word has depth. In like manner, authority is based on life. When life matures, it can reign. Therefore, the experience of reigning depends on the maturity in life.
In Numbers 17, in order to prove that Aaron was invested with His authority, God caused his rod to bud, blossom, and bear almonds. This budding, blossoming, and fruit-bearing is the story of life. The rod represents authority. Among the twelve rods, only one budded and bore fruit. This proves that only those whose life matures can reign.
When our life attains unto maturity and fullness, we will be raptured and transfigured. At that time, we will be seated with Christ on the throne and reign with Him. All that we are will be full of the stature of the fullness of Christ, and all that we do will be to reign with Christ. The same principle applies today to the maturity of life. When our life attains to the full stature of Christ, then we are able to reign with Christ.
(The Experience of Life, Chapter 19, by Witness Lee)