The Christian Life, by Witness Lee

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The Spirit is the Spirit of life (Rom. 8:2). The Spirit of life is the reality of life, for this Spirit contains the element of the divine life. Actually, the Spirit Himself is life. If we have the Spirit, we have life.


The Spirit is also the Spirit of power (Acts 1:8; Luke 24:49). The Spirit is not only life within essentially but also power without economically. If we want to receive the Pentecostal power, we need to go through the cross of Christ so that we can be brought into resurrection. Then we will experience the Spirit as our life inwardly and our power outwardly.


The all-inclusive Spirit is the compound Spirit, typified by the compound holy ointment (Exo. 30:22-31). The compound ointment has olive oil as a base compounded with four spices, myrrh, cinnamon, calamus, and cassia. The numbers related to this compound ointment are very significant. The one unit of olive oil is compounded with four spices. One signifies the unique God, and four signifies the creatures. This shows that the unique God is compounded with man, the creature.

Furthermore, there are five substances in the ointment. Five in the Bible signifies responsibility. The Ten Commandments in Exodus 20 are divided into two groups of five, and the ten virgins in Matthew 25 are divided into two groups of five. Our hand has four fingers plus one thumb. The four fingers signify man and the one thumb signifies God. We, the four, plus God, the one, bear responsibility, five. Every day our hands bear responsibility. Without a thumb, how could we pick up our Bible? We need the four fingers plus the thumb to bear responsibility. In the same way, we need ourselves plus God to bear responsibility. Every day we need to have a "plus." Our "plus" is God.

Also the four spices of the compound ointment are divided into three units of five hundred shekels each. Five hundred means one unit of full responsibility, and three signifies the Triune God. The three units of five hundred shekels each, in four spices, signify the Triune God in resurrection mingled with humanity to bear the full responsibility. The New Jerusalem is a city of the number twelve, which is three times four. The city has twelve gates, three gates on four sides (Rev. 21:12-13). The numbers three and four are seen in the compound ointment. The entire New Jerusalem is one city composed of the unique Triune God, signified by the olive oil, mingled with man, signified by the four spices. The Triune God today has been consummated to be such an all-inclusive Spirit with all the marvelous elements of His person and work.

When I was a young Christian, I read some books which pointed out from the Word that we have died with Christ (Rom. 6:8a). I asked myself how I could experience this. Then I was taught that I should reckon myself to be dead (Rom. 6:11). There is a hymn by A. B. Simpson which speaks of reckoning ourselves to be dead to sin (Hymns, #692). I tried to reckon myself to have died with Christ, but this did not work. Brother Watchman Nee taught that we should reckon ourselves as having died with Christ in his book entitled The Normal Christian Life. Eventually, however, Brother Nee discovered that we cannot experience Christ’s death in Romans 6 unless we experience the Spirit in Romans 8. The death of Christ is in the Spirit. Let us use the illustration of the lemon tea again. Where is the lemon? It is in the water. Where is the tea? It is in the water. In like manner, where is Christ’s death? It is in the Spirit. Where is Christ’s resurrection? It is in the Spirit. Where is the Triune God? He is in the Spirit. In this message I am sharing how to experience the Christian life. Without this Spirit, we cannot experience the death of Christ and the resurrection of Christ. This Spirit is the compound of God, man, Christ’s death, and Christ’s resurrection.

(The Christian Life, Chapter 3, by Witness Lee)