THE INNER SENSE BEING THE LIGHT OF LIFE
We need to know this inner sense in a full way. This inner sense comes out of five main items within us. The first is the light of life. Since we have the life from the Lord, we have the light of life. John 1:4 speaks of the light, but it does not mention “the light of life.” This phrase is in 8:12, which says, “Again therefore Jesus spoke to them, saying, I am the light of the world; he who follows Me shall by no means walk in darkness, but shall have the light of life.” Strictly speaking and according to our experience, the light of life is the sense of life. When we received the Lord Jesus, He came into our spirit as life to dwell and work there. By His dwelling, working, and living there is this sense, and this sense is the enlightening. When we have the life of the Lord Jesus within us, this life enlightens us. We know this because we sense it; we have the feeling and consciousness of it. If a believer, a reborn young man, goes dancing, as he is going, there is the inner sense within him. That is the light of life. To have this sense means that we are not in darkness but in the light. The faster the unbelievers go to dance, the happier they are, because they are in darkness. They do not have this inner sense to tell them that they are wrong. It is needless to speak of going dancing; sometimes when we have only a wrong or impure motive, right away there is the sense of condemnation in us. This sense of condemnation is the light of life. Now you can understand that the light of life is simply the inner sense in the spirit. When we have the inner sense in the spirit, we have the light of life.
How do we know we are wrong? We may say we feel or we sense we are wrong. This sense within us is the enlightening; at least it comes out of the enlightening of the inner life. The inner life, which is the Lord Jesus Himself, enlightens us within, and by this enlightening we have the inner sense. There is no need for anyone to tell us that we are wrong. Many times we argue that we are right. Some things seem right as long as we argue for them, but when we stop arguing, we see that we are not right. According to our argument we are right, but in fact we know that we are not right. If we were truly right, there would be no need for argument. Many times a wife may argue with her husband, insisting that she is right. She may be right in word, but she is not right in her spirit and in life. When her words stop, she realizes she is wrong. We know this because we sense it, and we sense it because we have the life of the Lord Jesus shining within us. Therefore, we are in the light and not in darkness.
Many times when a brother argues with me, I am happy, because I know that behind his speaking is a sense of condemnation as the light of life. The more he argues, the more I am clear that he is in the light. When such a person argues, I often do not say much. I may say, “Perhaps you are right,” although he is right only in argument. In actuality, he is in the light; he has light within. This light is not from knowledge or teaching. This is the light of life. “In Him was life, and the life was the light of men” (John 1:4).
If we have Christ within us as our life, this very life is the shining light within us. We simply have a sense within us which we cannot escape. We cannot escape from this shining. Young men especially always like to be right. When I was young, however, I went to people perhaps ten times a day to confess. I might say, “Brother, excuse me. I am wrong. This morning I argued with you, but now I am clear. To tell the truth, I am clear not only now, but even this morning I was already clear. While I was arguing with you, I was clear that I was wrong, but I would not lose my face. Now by the Lord’s mercy I know that I have to confess to you.” This means that I was in the light. These experiences prove that we have something living within us, because we have the life of Christ. This life within us is the light of men and the light of life. Please keep this in mind: The light of life gives us the inner sense while it enlightens. We can never separate the sense of life from the enlightening of the light of life.
(Practical Lessons on the Experience of Life, Chapter 5, by Witness Lee)