The Economy and Dispensing of God, by Witness Lee

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We have seen from 1 Corinthians 1—15 that the Christ into whom we have been called is an all-inclusive One. He is the portion given to us by God. He is God’s power and God’s wisdom, becoming our righteousness, sanctification, and redemption. He is our Passover lamb and the unleavened bread of the Feast of Unleavened Bread. He is the spiritual food, the spiritual drink, and the spiritual rock. He is the Head of all the members of the Body and is also the whole Body. As such a One, He is the life-giving Spirit that we may receive Him into us as our all. God has dispensed such a One to us to be our enjoyment. We should pay our attention only to Him and should not pay attention to any person, event, or thing apart from Him.

When all the members of the Body of Christ eat, drink, and enjoy Christ in this way, and when they love Him and set their eyes solely on Him, out of the members different kinds of gifts will be produced. These gifts are the different manifestations of the Spirit. Some will have words of wisdom. Some will have words of knowledge. Others will be prophets who prophesy or teachers who teach. Still others will render help and administration. Though the gifts are varied, they all issue from the operation of the Spirit and are distributed to each one individually as He purposes (12:11).

When we love the Lord, fellowship with Him, and walk according to Him, the indwelling Spirit will spontaneously distribute gifts to us through the inner life. These gifts are spiritual capacities, and they are developed out of life. At the time a baby is born, he may be complete in all his organs, but his feet cannot walk, his hands cannot work, and his mouth cannot talk. He needs the continual feeding of his mother before he will gradually learn to walk, jump, and talk. We who are saved have the life of God. Hence, we also have the life capacity of God. If we eat, drink, enjoy the Lord, and grow in life, this life capacity will be developed into gifts. From the time that we are saved and regenerated, this life capacity is in us. But if we do not receive the nourishment and the supply, we will not grow, the life capacity will not develop, and the gifts will not be manifested. Many Christians have been listening to sermons for decades, but they cannot speak with clarity concerning a truth as basic as justification. This is why we must practice the new way according to the revelation of the Bible. This will allow the brothers and sisters to have some practical training through the dispensing of God, and will enable everyone to manifest his organic function in the matter of meetings and service.

(The Economy and Dispensing of God, Chapter 6, by Witness Lee)