I. TAKING CHRIST AS ITS CENTRALITY
If we are to be the overcomers, we need to be clear about God’s economy. Christ is the centrality and universality of the divine economy (Col. 3:10-11). Actually, God’s economy is just Christ. What God desires to have is Christ. Christ is God’s good pleasure and His unique goal.
The New Testament shows us this in Ephesians 1 and 3. These chapters speak of God’s good pleasure (1:5, 9) and God’s eternal purpose, God’s heart’s desire (3:11). God’s good pleasure is Christ. A church without Christ as the centrality and universality is not pleasant to God. God could never be pleased with a church without Christ. God does not want to see merely a group of people meeting and serving together. He wants to see Christ among them, and He is concerned about how much Christ is among them. How much God would be pleased with us depends upon how much Christ we have. Everything we do must be in Christ, with Christ, by Christ, through Christ, and to Christ.
Christianity’s gospel preaching is for soul winning, but our gospel preaching is the practice of the New Testament gospel priesthood for saving sinners to make them members of Christ, parts of Christ. Then we offer these parts of Christ as an offering to God (Rom. 15:16). In the Old Testament, the sacrifices which the priests offered were all types of Christ. Today in the New Testament economy, we offer the members of Christ. In other words, we offer the Body of Christ. To preach the gospel merely to win souls is not adequate. We preach the gospel to make sinners the living members of Christ to constitute Christ’s Body, so that we can offer them to God for the constitution of Christ’s Body.
As priests of the gospel, we need to visit people in a regular way to bring the gospel to them. D. L. Moody once made a decision that he would preach the gospel to at least one person a day. One night he went to bed, and he realized that he had not preached the gospel to anyone that day. He went out into the street, and the only one he saw was a policeman. He went to that policeman and exhorted him to believe in the Lord Jesus. Then Moody hurried home. Later, the policeman wanted to know who this person was who spoke to him about believing in the Lord. The policeman found out that this person was D. L. Moody. Then he went to see D. L. Moody, and he was saved. This shows us that we should fulfill our duty as priests of the gospel to regularly visit people so that we can make them the members of Christ for the increase and building up of the Body of Christ.
II. MAKING CHRIST PREEMINENT IN ALL THINGS
God’s economy also makes Christ preeminent in all things (Col. 1:15-19). To have the preeminence is to have the first place.
A. In the Godhead
Christ, in the whole universe, is the first. He is even the first in the Godhead (v. 15a). The Godhead has three—the Father, the Son, and the Spirit. Of the three, the Son is the center. The embodiment of the Triune God is Christ, the Son, so He is the center. Colossians 1:18b says that Christ has the first place, the preeminence, in everything. He is the image of the Triune God. If you have the image, you have the person. This shows us that Christ is the very center of the Divine Trinity. He is both the image and the embodiment of the Triune God.
Christ, the preeminent One, is a living, organic person, and the Body of Christ is an organism, not an organization. A wooden stand is an organization of pieces of wood, but a living person is an organism. The church is not mechanical. It is not a robot. The church is an organism. If we want the church to be living, we should not come to the meetings and sit in our chair the entire time to merely listen to others. That makes us mechanical, not organic. We need to exercise our spirit to sing to the Lord, praise the Lord, and speak for the Lord. When we say "amen," we should say it in a living way with the exercise of our spirit. Not only prophesying needs our practice; even saying "amen" needs our practice.
Sometimes the best part of the Lord’s table is when everyone makes a "noise" to the Lord. If we are always so orderly and organized in what we do, our meeting might be like a cemetery. In a cemetery there is no noise, and everything is very orderly. But the church is living, so the church has to make a joyful noise to the Lord (Psa. 98:4, 6; 100:1). If we do not exercise our spirit in the church meetings, we will die. Exercise is the secret of being healthy. In the church meetings, we should be living and active in the Spirit. In this way Christ will have the preeminence in our meetings.
(The Satanic Chaos in the Old Creation and the Divine Economy for the New Creation, Chapter 4, by Witness Lee)