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New Book-[The Economy of God]-Chapter21-Part2


All these things are the contents of the tabernacle, the dwelling place of God. The experiences of all these eight items in the outer court, the holy place, and the Holiest of all are the real contents of the true building of God, the Church. If we desire to be the building of God’s dwelling place, we must experience what Christ has accomplished by His cross and the cleansing of the Holy Spirit. We must also adequately experience Christ as our life, our light, and our resurrection savor. Furthermore, we must have real experiences of Christ Himself as the hidden manna, the hidden law, and the hidden authority. The experience of Christ in all these aspects forms the real content of the building of God and provides the very materials for the building.

In these last few years people have been talking so much about the New Testament Church. But the New Testament Church is not a Church of a certain pattern, but one of life and of experiences of Christ. Suppose we should say, “Let us pattern a man after that person.” So we make an arm out of wax, a head out of marble, a torso with wood, and the legs and feet with some clay. Once these are put together in the exact size and shape and painted in the exact color, we may have the true pattern of that man, but we do not have the reality of that man. The real man is not manufactured according to pattern, but born and matured by the growth of life. This man was first born of a living mother and then grew by receiving daily nourishment. Ultimately he became such a man with a certain pattern. If otherwise, there may be the pattern, but not the man.

One time when we were in Pittsburgh, I said to a friend, “Let us forget about the pattern and pay full attention to the life. For example, you have a nice little boy. You don’t pay much attention to his pattern. You don’t try to shape him day by day in a particular way. First, he is born of his mother, and then you nourish him with milk and baby food. The baby then grows and grows, assuming a certain shape and pattern. That pattern comes out of his birth and growth of life. Just as we could not form your child, so neither can we form a New Testament Church. If we try to form it, all we have is a pattern without the life. It is possible for us to form a church of pattern, but we cannot form a church of life.”

During the last few years I have been continually urging people and pleading with people: “Don’t form anything!” Whatever we form is not the real Church. Not one living person on this earth through the past six thousand years has been formed; every one had a birth and the growth of life. The Church is the Body of Christ, and no human hand can form it. We can form many things, but we cannot form a living Body composed of living members. We are never commanded or instructed in the New Testament to form the Church; but we are exhorted to experience Christ, to minister Christ to others, and to bring forth many children by spiritual birth. The real Church, the Body of Christ, only comes out of birth and the growth of life. This is why we stress the principle that the tabernacle comes out of the experiences of the contents.

[Continued Tomorrow]