THE DOCTRINE OF DEATH
Another very important doctrine in the Bible concerns death. The Bible depicts man as being totally corrupted, without any possibility of being reformed. The only solution is death. A man is like a piece of worm-infested wood with no chance of being carved or shaped. The only destiny for him is the fire. Death is the solution. Only dead people will not be proud if you praise them a thousand times. Only dead people will not be angry if you rebuke them repeatedly. Only dead people will not be tempted by sin and will not sin. Death solves all problems concerning sin.
But how can we die? How can such a death occur? A religion will exhort you to die. Be dead! If you are dead, sin will no longer have an object to work on! But how can one die? By committing suicide? By throwing oneself into the sea? Or as the old Chinese scholars have said, by considering everything that is past as dead yesterday? No! All these are methods of common religions. They are not the Christian teaching.
WE CAN DIE BECAUSE OF CHRIST
The doctrine of death is absolutely related to Christ. His person determines His doctrines. Jesus died. What does the Bible say about this? It says that the world died with Him (2 Cor. 5:14). His death was to sin; hence, the whole world is dead to sin. Originally, the whole world was in sin, being dead in it. Only Jesus was not affected by death. He did not die of sin; He died to sin (Rom. 6:10). If we are one with Him, we are also dead to sin by His death (v. 11). Sin will not have an object to work on. All the problems of sin in us will be solved.
This is the doctrine of Christianity. It is a fact that is absolutely tied to the person Christ. It is not an exhortation for people to conduct a moral life and repent from their wrongs. These are not Christian doctrines at all. Since Christ has died, whoever is in Him is also dead, thoroughly dead, to sin. Sin has no more grip on us. If Christ had not died, there would not have been any doctrine. All experiences and doctrines are based upon this person Jesus Christ.
THE DOCTRINE OF RESURRECTION
Another fact we have is the resurrection of Jesus Christ. He died and was resurrected. Hence, on our side, we are not only dead to sin, disassociated from it; we are regenerated and a new creation in the resurrection of Christ. All these are bound to the person Jesus Christ. No accomplishment is by us. Everything depends on Him.
TEACHINGS ARE BOUND TO CHRIST
The Bible is not completely void of teachings. However, all the teachings rest on the person Christ Jesus. Only when He has a certain experience can there be a certain doctrine or teaching. Every single doctrine or teaching is bound to His personal experience. His incarnation is the basis of the union of God with man. His death is the basis of our dying to sin and self and the foundation of a life of holiness. His resurrection is the basis for receiving our new life. Everything we have obtained is based on what He has attained. The doctrines are absolutely based upon the person and bound to the person. This is genuine Christianity. This makes our faith different from all other religions.
(The Normal Christian Faith, Chapter 6, by Watchman Nee)