The Four Major Steps of Christ, by Witness Lee


The second reason for Christ’s death is deeper than the first. Christ had to die in order to bring the old creation, including mankind, to an end. Only then could He produce a new creation. In the universe, there is such a principle: the old must go that the new may come. The old humanity and the old creation must pass away so that the new may be ushered in. How could this be accomplished? By the death of Christ. And who is this Christ? He is the Head of all creation (Eph. 1:22). All creation subsists in Christ (Col. 1:17); He is the Head, He is the center, He is the representative of the whole creation. Christ’s death on the cross, therefore, means that the whole creation as represented in Christ was brought to an end. Through, by, and in the death of Christ we and the whole creation were terminated.

The economy of God is that Christ must bring to death all creation. In God’s economy, we were crucified (Rom. 6:6; Gal. 2:20; 5:24) even before we were born! Perhaps you were born just fifty years ago, but you were crucified two thousand years ago. In man’s reckoning such a thing could not be, but in God’s economy it is so. The whole creation was brought to an end by the crucifixion of Christ. That is why Christ had to die.


A third reason for Christ’s death is that He might impart Himself to us as our life-supply. Have we ever realized that every meal we have eaten is composed of things that have passed through death? Take, for example, a fish. Would we eat it alive? No, the fish must die. Everything we eat must die, even an apple or an orange. Day by day, while we are eating, we are killing, for we must chew the food. We kill the fruit, we kill the fish, we kill the cattle! Nothing can be our food unless it is dead. A little grain of wheat if put into the earth will grow, for there is life in it. But if we would take the grain as our food, we must kill it by eating it. We must realize that Christ had to pass through death in order to impart Himself to us as our life-supply. Even if we were not sinful, Christ still must die for us. He had to die that He might be our life-supply.

In some parts of the world it is the women who kill the chickens to prepare them for food. Do they kill them because they are sinful? Do they say, "O chicken, I am a poor sinner; so you must die for me"? Of course not. The chicken’s dying has nothing to do with their sin. The reason for its dying is that they may be supplied with life.

Christ is the food of life from heaven. We can only take Him into us by the way of death. What He said in John 6:53-56 regarding Himself as the bread of life to us indicates death. He had to die—and He did die, praise the Lord! Every time we come to the Lord’s table, we see the symbols, a piece of bread and a cup of wine. The bread signifies the body of Christ, and the wine signifies His blood. The blood is separated from the body, signifying death. At the Lord’s table we show forth His death (1 Cor. 11:26). Christ died in order to give Himself to us as our life-supply. This is the deeper reason why Christ had to die.

(The Four Major Steps of Christ, Chapter 2, by Witness Lee)