THE INTRINSIC SIGNIFICANCE OF THE CHURCH
I have spoken on the church many times throughout the past sixty years. When I first began to speak on the church, the standard was too low, but thank God that my speaking on the church has been all the time going up. We need to see what the church is. These messages in this book are of the highest standard because they reveal that the church is the issue of the dispensing of the processed Trinity and the transmitting of the transcending Christ. The church is the issue of God. When God issues out, He becomes the church. The church is the surplus of God.
All of us need to be impressed with the revelation of the church in hymn #203. I wrote this hymn in 1963. During that time I realized there was a shortage of hymns on the deeper truths. This hymn says:
- In the bosom of the Father,
Ere the ages had begun,
Thou wast in the Father’s glory,
God’s unique begotten Son.
When to us the Father gave Thee,
Thou in person wast the same,
All the fullness of the Father
In the Spirit to proclaim.
- By Thy death and resurrection,
Thou wast made God’s firstborn Son;
By Thy life to us imparting,
Was Thy duplication done.
We, in Thee regenerated,
Many sons to God became;
Truly as Thy many brethren,
We are as Thyself the same.
- Once Thou wast the only grain, Lord,
Falling to the earth to die,
That thru death and resurrection
Thou in life may multiply.
We were brought forth in Thy nature
And the many grains became;
As one loaf we all are blended,
All Thy fulness to proclaim.
- We’re Thy total reproduction,
Thy dear Body and Thy Bride,
Thine expression and Thy fulness,
For Thee ever to abide.
We are Thy continuation,
Thy life-increase and Thy spread,
Thy full growth and Thy rich surplus,
One with Thee, our glorious Head.
We must pay our full attention to stanza 4 of this hymn. This stanza reveals that the church is God’s total reproduction, God’s dear Body, God’s bride, God’s expression, God’s fullness, God’s continuation, God’s life-increase, God’s spread, God’s full growth, and God’s rich surplus. We may have sung this hymn many times without any impression of its significance. Stanza 4 of hymn #203 tells us what the church is. Have we ever considered that as the church we are God’s total reproduction, God’s continuation, and God’s rich surplus? This is why we should pray, "Lord, give me a spirit of wisdom and revelation to sing such a song." We need to read and sing this song prayerfully until we really see what the church is in its highest sense. The church is the total reproduction of God!
(The Issue of the Dispensing of the Processed Trinity and the Transmitting of the Transcending Christ, Chapter 5, by Witness Lee)