III. THE GENUINE CHRISTIAN PERFECTION REVEALED IN THE ENTIRE DIVINE REVELATION
OF THE NEW TESTAMENT
We have seen the virtues of Christian perfection stressed by James. In this message we want to see the genuine Christian perfection revealed in the entire divine revelation of the New Testament. There is a vast difference between these two kinds of perfection. The same subject of mathematics may be taught to both elementary students and college graduate students. Although the subject is the same, the lessons are vastly different. We have seen the elementary school of Christian perfection in James. Now we come to the graduate school of Christian perfection in the entire New Testament.
The New Testament is of twenty-seven books. James is only one of the twenty-seven and is only five chapters long. As a short single book, James cannot compare with the entire New Testament. The perfection stressed by James is according to James’s view. But the genuine Christian perfection is according to the entire New Testament.
A. The Factors of Which the Genuine Christian Perfection (Christian Living) Is Brought Forth
1. The Processed and Consummated Triune God
Now we want to see the factors which bring forth, or produce, the genuine Christian perfection. The first factor is the processed and consummated Triune God (Matt. 28:19; John 14:8-11, 16-20; 2 Cor. 13:14). The Triune God passed through the processes of incarnation, human living, the all-terminating death, the germinating resurrection, and the transcending ascension. Many in Christianity teach that God never changes. I believe that God never changes in His attributes. He never changes in His love, in His holiness, etc., but He did have a big change in His person. He was God becoming a man. What a big change! He was God conceived in the womb of a virgin for nine months and born out of her to be a man, and that man was called Emmanuel, God with us (Matt. 1:23). Isaiah 9:6 reveals that the little babe Jesus in the manger was the mighty God, the eternal Father. If you say that God never changes, you either do not know or do not believe the Bible. The Bible says that God changed, but in His Godhead He never changed. The Triune God was processed and consummated in the all-inclusive life-giving Spirit. The processed and consummated Triune God is the first factor for our Christian perfection.
2. The All-inclusive Christ
The second factor is the all-inclusive Christ (Eph. 1:23; 4:10). The all-inclusive Christ is a term invented by us. I started my ministry in December 1962 in the United States, and the first set of messages I gave was on the all-inclusive Christ. That book on the all-inclusive Christ is based upon only three verses in Deuteronomy (8:7-9). Since that time, I have spoken concerning the all-inclusive Christ in thousands of messages.
(Crystallization-Study of the Epistle of James, Chapter 2, by Witness Lee)