TRANSFORMATION BY RENEWING
Christ as the embodiment of God is very real; He is the reality (John 14:6). The Spirit also is real and is called the Spirit of reality (v. 17; 16:13). He is invisible, but He is real. When we touch Him, we touch something real. Anything real has substance, and any substance has an element. Within the element is the essence. When we eat food, we take in some substance. In that substance there is an element, and within that element there is an essence. Upon entering our body, the essence renews and transforms our body into another form. This renewing is transformation.
In the early part of my ministry in this country, I borrowed terms such as metabolic and organic from biology and chemistry in order to describe the work of transformation in our Christian life. I told the saints that transformation is not only organic but also organically metabolic. I have never studied chemistry, but I understand that chemistry is a study of elements and compounds. In order to have a chemical compound, there must be more than one element. When different elements are put together, a kind of transformation takes place.
A mortician may beautify a dead person’s face by adding color outwardly. However, that is not transformation. Transformation is metabolic. In contrast, my face may be changed from a pale complexion to a pink one through eating rich and nourishing food for a period of time. This kind of change is transformation. That transformation of my face is by renewing. Such renewing is a metabolic change; hence, it is something of life.
Transformation does not take place by teaching. If we merely hear a word of teaching, nothing will take place within us. However, when we open to the word that we have heard and pray, something takes place. We may pray, "Lord, I take what You have spoken to me. I love it and I take it. I want to taste it and enjoy it. Lord, I even want to dwell upon it." As such a prayer is offered, the divine element with the divine essence is dispensed into our being. This divine element and essence are invisible yet very real. This dispensing renews us and changes us. Renewing is not a matter merely of teaching. We may understand the teaching concerning the Body of Christ and yet not have the element or essence of the Body. In order to have the element and essence, again and again, time after time, we must open ourselves to what we have heard and pray. If we open to the Lord and pray in this way every morning, it may seem that our prayer is the same day after day. However, this can be compared to our eating the same nourishing breakfast morning after morning. We do not need to change our "diet" from day to day. Just as the children of Israel ate manna every day for forty years in the wilderness, with no change in their diet, we should daily eat Christ in this way, with no change in our spiritual diet. Such a practice will produce a change in our constitution, and that change is the renewing.
The real significance of being renewed is not in merely reading messages. You may read concerning the secret of renewing in this message, but the actual renewing does not take place until you apply what you have read to your experience by going to the Lord, touching Him, and lingering in His presence for a period of time. In this way you will receive His element, which will renew and transform you metabolically. This will not only make you organic, but it will also bring about a metabolic change within you, a change from one form to another form. Your Christian life will grow, and you will be under the sealing, which will result in the glorification of your body. On God’s side, this is His dispensing, and on our side, it is our receiving. As we receive God’s dispensing, the transformation by renewing takes place.
(The Central Line of the Divine Revelation, Chapter 23, by Witness Lee)