THE LAW BEING GOD HIMSELF LIVING AND WORKING WITHIN US
In principle, the law is the regulating of the being of God’s people by God Himself, or rather, by what God is. We as the people of God must be regulated by what God is. We must live, move, and have our being according to what He is and corresponding to what He is. If God were a God of hatred and murder, we would have to live in the way of hatred and murder people day by day. In this way our moving and acting would be corresponding to God. But, as we know, our God is a God not of hatred but of love. Therefore, we must live according to His love, being regulated by what He is.
There are two ways to have God as our law, our regulation. One way is to paint a picture of God, that is, to write down a description of what He is, and put it before us. Then we may read it and see what kind of God He is. This is the way of the Ten Commandments. The Ten Commandments are a description, a picture, of God. This outward way does not work well. To be regulated outwardly by a description of even a small person is not easy. We would have to walk as he walks, stand as he stands, and pronounce our words with his accent. This is not easy.
The other way is that God Himself—the living law, not the written law; the real person, not the picture—comes into us. If a living person comes into us to be the law within us, there is no need of an outward description. This is the difference between the old law, the law of letters, and the new law, the law of life. The old law was a picture, a photograph, a description of God presented to us outwardly, according to which we should live, walk, and do things. This does not work. The new law, the law of life, is God Himself coming into us to be the law. He comes into us to be a person, so there is no need only to have His picture. The person Himself is within us, living and working in us as the living law.
GOD INSCRIBING HIS LAW INTO OUR MIND, EMOTION, AND WILL
God within us is the unique law. Therefore Jeremiah 31:33 speaks of the law in the singular number: “I will put My law within them.” We may illustrate this from our experience. Before we were saved, we understood and considered things in a certain way. But from the first day we were saved, there was a change in our understanding, our thinking, and our way to consider things. There was also a change in our emotion and will. We may say that this is due to God’s salvation, but beyond that we must realize that this was the putting of the law into us, into our inward parts, the parts of our soul. The tripartite man has a human spirit as his center, a soul surrounding it, and a body as the environment for it. At the time we were saved, God came into our spirit as our life. By this, there was an influence in our mind, will, and emotion. We may call this an influence from God being life in our spirit, but God calls it the putting of His law within us. God put His law into our mind, our will, and our emotion.
However, the putting of His law within us is general; it is not very deep. After this putting, God works on us to engrave, to inscribe, to do something deeper within us. If, after we are saved, we cooperate with God by going along with the sense of life from the fellowship of life, day by day God’s inscribing hand works on us to inscribe Himself into our mind, will, and emotion. The more we fellowship with Him, and the more we live, move, and have our being according to the inner sense in the fellowship, the more God has the opportunity to engrave and inscribe. Then the law put into us will become a law not only written on us but inscribed in us. This is the real transforming work. When God’s law is inscribed on our mind, our mind is transformed. The more God’s law is increased in our mind, the more our mind is renewed and transformed. Ten years ago our mind may have been awful, wild, ugly, earthly, sinful, and even satanic, but today our mind has been improved and refined by the inward regulating, and if we cooperate with God in a fuller way over the years, our mind will even be wonderful. It is the same with our emotion and our will. We often speak of the growth in life, or we may say that a brother has had some improvement. In actuality, the growth and improvement in life are the inscribing of the law in our inner parts.
(Practical Lessons on the Experience of Life, Chapter 7, by Witness Lee)