THE DISPENSING OF THE TRIUNE GOD THROUGH REGENERATION
Unfortunately, many believers are not clear concerning regeneration. They consider regeneration “the turning over of a new leaf,” the changing of the past to make it something new. Actually, it is not so. Regeneration is God’s dispensing of Himself into us, His being born into us. After we have been saved, we have another One, another Person, within us. We not only have another life but we have another One, another Person. This One is God yet man, and He is the Spirit, life, and everything. From the time of our regeneration God has been adding Himself gradually into us. When we were first saved and regenerated, God came in a little bit. Since then, whenever He has an opportunity, He adds Himself a bit more, and then another bit more, into us.
We can confirm this by our experience in our daily life. Before we were saved we had our disposition and personality. Everything we did was according to our preference, disposition, and personality. However, after we are saved, we have another One within us. When we conduct ourselves according to our former manner, this One within disagrees. He says, “You had better give up! Don’t be a husband anymore; don’t be a wife anymore; don’t be a father or mother anymore; and don’t be a son or daughter anymore. Let Me do it in you and with you. Not only do you not know how to do it, but even if you knew, you could not do it well. And even if you could do it well, I would not be pleased with it. Whatever you do, I do not want. I just want to be in you to do everything with you.”
I believe we all have this kind of experience. When we were newly saved, we were not so willing to allow God to do everything with us. However, over a long period of time, we become used to it. Today, when we live, it is “no longer I who live, but it is Christ who lives in me” (Gal. 2:20). Thus, more of God is added into us, and we become one who is God yet man, not only a new man but a God-man. This is regeneration.
THE DISPENSING OF THE TRIUNE GOD THROUGH RENEWING
After our regeneration, He as the life-giving Spirit goes on to renew us within. Renewing does not mean that we have lived to be too old and therefore need to be renewed. Rather, renewing means this: Originally, we were the created old man. Although the old man had the image of God outwardly and had a spirit to contact God and receive God as life inwardly, he did not have any element of God within. Therefore, God became man to accomplish redemption and become a life-giving Spirit. This life-giving Spirit is now waiting for us to receive Him. When we believe in Him, He comes into us and is born in us. Thus, we become another person, a God-man.
Not only so, we still need to be renewed. With us, the most difficult thing to renew is our habits. Our habits are based mainly on our thinking. This is why the Bible tells us that when God comes to renew us, He first renews our thinking (Rom. 12:2a). Because we are occupied by our thoughts, God does not have much ground in us. As we regularly draw near to God and fellowship with the Lord, we have the sense that the Lord Jesus is somewhat unreasonable in us in that He always wants to occupy more room. But usually we are willing to receive Him only as a guest and do not want Him to interfere too much in us. I was also like this. I was saved when I was young. At that time I felt that I really loved the Lord, but I did not want Him to interfere with some of my affairs. I felt that the Lord was too meddlesome, that He should allow me to take care of some things myself. But the Lord said no. The Lord desires to continuously dispense the element of God’s life into our spirit through the Holy Spirit that all our inward parts, beginning from our spirit, may be renewed metabolically.
Romans 12 says clearly that we need to be renewed in our mind and then our whole being will be transformed. This renewing is not merely a renewing, but it adds more of the Lord Jesus, more of the Triune God, into us. What is the significance of being a Christian? To be a Christian simply means that our old man is regenerated by God to become a God-man of the new creation. From that day on, God continues to increase in us. Whatever we do, we need to remember that whereas formerly we lived by ourselves, now we no longer live alone, but God lives together with us. When we get married, we can no longer be alone. Likewise, now we have a Companion, who is the Lord—our Husband. The Lord should be our Husband; we should not be the husband. We should let Him increase in us day by day. When He increases, we are renewed; when He increases, we are transformed; when He increases, the result will be that we are completely transformed to become Him. He and we become one entity—God yet man and man yet God. Thus our old man is completely exterminated, and the world is also put aside by God. God changes our old man into a new man, and He also changes us into Himself.
(The Dispensing, Transformation and Building of the Processed Divine Trinity in the Believers, Chapter 1, by Witness Lee)