God wants us to be persons in the spirit. The soul’s use is as an organ; it is not to be our person. Many, many times in the course of the day, however, we travel back and forth from spirit to soul and from soul to spirit. Our soul needs to be exhorted, “Soul, formerly you were my person, but now you are simply an organ. I do not regard you as my person. My real person is the inner man, my spirit indwelt by the Holy Spirit with the Lord Jesus.”
Ask the Lord to help you practice. “Lord, thank You that I have a new person. I am not that old man. My regenerated spirit, indwelt by You, is my new person. Help me to walk, live, act, and speak in the spirit, no longer in the soul. I want to live by the inner man.”
This kind of prayer may be new to us. It is far more common to pray for the Lord to help us submit to our husband or to love our wife, that we might obey His Word. But praying in an ethical way like this results in even less submission and love than before.
Rejoice in this new Person within you. He submits to the headship. In Him is the love for your wife. This Person is the very Lord Himself mingling with your spirit.
What we have said thus far is a preparation for us to understand Ephesians 3:16: “That He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, to be strengthened with power through His Spirit into the inner man.” For many years I have been considering this verse. It is not easy to understand.
When the apostle prayed that God the Father would grant us to be strengthened, he was praying for our precise need. We are weak. Our need is to be made strong.
“ACCORDING TO THE RICHES OF HIS GLORY”
This phrase, though we can easily read the words, is hard to understand. We are to be strengthened according to a standard. That standard is the extent of the riches of God’s glory. The strengthening is not only according to the degree of God’s glory, but even to the riches of His glory. What do these profound words mean?
Glory is God manifested. If we pray that we may be strengthened into our inner man, the result will be that we are full of God’s expression. When God is expressed, there is glory. The riches of His glory are the divine virtues; namely, love, life, light, holiness, and righteousness. These riches of God’s expression will be seen in us. Others will sense the glory of God upon us. This is the meaning of God’s strengthening us according to the riches of His glory.
The Greek word for power here is related to the English words dynamo and dynamic. The power referred to is like a generator; it means a tremendous force. This is the very power that sufficed to raise Christ from the dead, uplift Him to the third heaven, and seat Him there far above all (Eph. 1:19-21). It is with this same power that God the Father would strengthen us. What a mighty power there is within our spirit!
“THROUGH HIS SPIRIT”
It is through the Spirit of God that we are strengthened with power.
(Life Messages, Vol. 1 (#1-41), Chapter 37, by Witness Lee)