THE WORD, THE SPIRIT, FAITH, AND CHRIST
Now we must go on to consider what this faith is. The faith that has been infused into us is the Spirit, and this Spirit is the word. When the word spoken to us enters into us, it becomes the Spirit, and this Spirit is the faith. According to Ephesians 2:8, we are saved by grace through faith. The faith through which we are saved is not of ourselves; it is the gift of God. Faith as a gift always comes through hearing the word. Furthermore, Hebrews 12:2 says that Christ is "the Author and Perfecter of faith." In fact, Christ Himself is our faith.
It is important that we not separate the word from the Spirit, the Spirit from faith, and faith from Christ. These four all are one. In this universe there is God. When God speaks, we have the word. As we hear the word, the Spirit is infused into us and becomes faith, a faith which is Christ Himself. When we hear the preaching of the word of God, faith is thus produced within us. In our experience, the word becomes the Spirit, the Spirit is the living faith, and this faith is Christ. The proper speaking in the meetings of the church will always produce faith in this way.
In the first two chapters of Galatians Paul speaks of Christ, but in chapter three he begins to speak of the Spirit. Through the hearing of faith we have received the Spirit. Also, the Spirit is supplied to us by the hearing of faith. This indicates the urgent need for the hearing of faith.
The hearing of faith as mentioned in 3:2 and 5 implies the word. If we do not hear the word of God, there is no way for us to have faith. Furthermore, only through the word can we apply Christ to our situation. Colossians 3:16 says, "Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly." The way to apply Christ is to contact the Word and hear the Word. As we contact the Word, the word of God comes into us and infuses us with the Spirit. Then the Spirit becomes the faith by which we live Christ and enjoy Him.
Galatians 4:6 tells us that God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts. God sends the Spirit into our inner being through the hearing of the word. Our experience testifies of this. Whenever we pray-read and assimilate a portion of the Bible, we receive the supply of the Spirit. Then we have a living faith within us. This faith is the proper realization of Christ. With this realization we experience Christ living in us and being formed in us, and we also have the experience of being clothed with Christ.
The reason for the failures in our daily living is that we depart from the Word. I do not believe that any Christian can live in a proper way without the Bible. If we neglect the Word and pay no attention to all the verses we have heard, it will not be possible for us to live Christ. We may try to live Him, but we shall not be able to do so.
In 5:5 Paul puts the Spirit and faith together: "For we by the Spirit by faith eagerly expect the hope of righteousness." Notice that Paul first speaks of the Spirit and then of faith. If we do not have the Spirit, we cannot have faith. Faith and the Spirit are important aspects of the secret of experiencing Christ.
(The Secret of Experiencing Christ, Chapter 8, by Witness Lee)