The Divine Dispensing for the Divine Economy, by Witness Lee


The Stewardship of the Grace of God
Given to the Apostle

The apostle’s stewardship was for dispensing the riches of Christ (Eph. 3:2-5, 7-11). The stewardship of the grace of God was given not only to the apostle Paul (Eph. 3:2) but to all of us as well. This stewardship was given by revelation concerning the church as the mystery of Christ, which was not made known to men in other generations (vv. 3-5). The revelation of the mystery makes the apostle a minister, with the grace of God dispensed into him, to minister to the nations the unsearchable riches of Christ through the dispensing of the rich Christ (vv. 7-8). When we go out to visit people with the gospel, we go out to minister Christ with His unsearchable riches to sinners. We do not go to minister doctrine, philosophy, logic, or religion. Rather, we go to minister the unsearchable riches of Christ directly into people. We do this in much the same way as a waiter or steward serves a meal to the patrons of a restaurant. A waiter would not just come to the patrons and describe how clean the restaurant is, how qualified the cook is, or how the food is being cooked. If he would do this, those waiting for their food would grow very impatient. Our preaching of the gospel in the past was very often just like this. We gave a lot of explanation, doctrine, and teaching to people, but very little Christ. Therefore, the response was usually not very positive. We must learn to minister the rich Christ to people directly.

The stewardship of the grace of God was given to the apostle to bring to light the economy of the mystery, which from the ages had been hidden in God, who created all things (v. 9). The mystery is no longer hidden; it is an open fact today.

The Stewardship of the Grace of God
Being for the Constituting of the Church

The stewardship of the grace of God is for the constituting of the church, through the dispensing of the unsearchable riches of Christ, to make the multifarious wisdom of God known to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenlies, according to God’s eternal purpose made in Christ (Eph. 3:10-11). When you go out for three hours a week to minister the riches of Christ into sinners, you must realize that the result will be that the church is constituted. It is a shame to us that many of the churches have existed in many cities for a number of years, yet the number of saints is still relatively small. How could a local church be built up with only a small number year after year? In order to build a house, there is the need of material. You cannot build a great house with a little material. In Haggai the Lord charged the children of Israel to go up to the mountain to bring wood in order to build His house (1:8). We must go out to disciple the nations in order to make them members of the Body of Christ. By the increase of the material, there will be something with which to build the church. This is the stewardship which was given not only to Paul but also to the entire Body when the Lord charged the disciples after His resurrection in Matthew 28:18-19.

(The Divine Dispensing for the Divine Economy, Chapter 2, by Witness Lee)