IV. THE INDWELLING OF THE TRIUNE GOD
Following Ephesians 2, chapter 3 has a prayer by the Apostle Paul. Ephesians 3:14-17 says, "I bow my knees unto the Father...that He would grant you...to be strengthened with power through His Spirit into the inner man, that Christ may make His home in your hearts through faith." Here we see again the Triune God—the Father, His Spirit, and Christ. This is a wonderful prayer for our experience of the divine dispensing of the divine Trinity. First, Paul bowed His knees to the Father. This means that he appealed to the source. He asked that the Father strengthen the believers through His Spirit into the inner man. Our inner man is our spirit that has been regenerated by the Holy Spirit. Our spirit is mingled with the Spirit. How can we be one spirit with the Lord? It is only by the Lord as the Spirit mingling Himself with our spirit. The divine Spirit has mingled with our human spirit to become one spirit. This is wonderful. The Father strengthens us through the Spirit into our inner man.
What does it mean to be strengthened with power through the Spirit into our inner man? Let us consider our experience. Many times we Christians become bothered, puzzled, or even disappointed. Nothing seems to go right in school or at home. The more we look at our situation, the more we feel that we are stuck and do not know what to do. The more we think this way, the more we are weakened and deceived. At that time we need to say, "Satan, get away from me! I will enter into my inner man. I will enjoy the strengthening of the Spirit in my spirit." If you go on to pray a few more minutes, you will be strengthened even more. By praying, you exercise your spirit that is mingled with His Spirit. This strengthens you into your inner man. You need to practice this to enjoy the Triune God.
Paul goes on to say that when we are strengthened this way, Christ the Son may make His home in our hearts. This means that Christ settles down in our whole being. Our heart is made up of our soul (mind, emotion, and will) plus our conscience. (Our conscience is part of our spirit.) We are Christians already, and Christ is in us; yet He wants to make His home in our entire heart. He does not want to be in just one part, but He wants to live in every part of us. Too many times we do not feel that we are strong in our spirit. The reason for this is that we have Christ in only a small part of us. If He occupied every "room" of our heart we could never be weak.
When you first received the Lord, He came into your spirit. This is like letting Him into your "living room." But you may not have given Him the freedom to move into another part. Your mind, for example, is another "room" that Christ would like to move into. Sometimes you think about things that you should not. You may sense that the Lord wants you to stop such thinking and to begin calling on His name. But when you do not, you miss an opportunity to let Him make His home in more of your heart. What about your emotions? You may like a certain thing or person more than the Lord. The Lord wants you to love Him with all of your heart, but you do not turn back to Him. Then how about your will? The Lord wants you to read the Word but you refuse. Throughout your daily life there are many opportunities for the Lord to move into more rooms of your heart. At such times, you need to be softened in your heart and you need to repent to the Lord. Then you will enjoy the Spirit’s strengthening and the Lord’s salvation of your whole being, till your mind, emotion, will, and conscience are filled with Christ. This is how Christ can make His home in your heart.
Although in Lessons Nine and Ten we covered only a few portions from some of the Epistles, we can appreciate how rich they are in showing us how to experience the Triune God. By pointing out some of the verses concerning the Triune God, we believe you will be helped to see some of the same kinds of things on your own. With such help we hope you will want to read more of the Epistles to enjoy and experience the dispensing of our wonderful God.
- What is the "two-way traffic" referred to in this lesson?
- Are you allowing the Spirit to occupy more and more of your being? Give some examples.
- Memorize Ephesians 3:14-17.
Quoted Portions from (Lee/LSM) Publications
- The Divine Dispensing of the Divine Trinity in Ephesians, pp. 11-18, 24-29.
- Life-study of Ephesians, p. 297.
(Lesson Book, Level 2: The Triune God—The Triune God and the Person and Work of Christ, Chapter 10, by Witness Lee)