As believers in Christ, we need to follow the pattern of the Lord Jesus who as the Son of Man cherishes us and as the Son of God nourishes us; we need to experience and present Christ as the attracting factor to minister life to people and gain them in a normal way.
After we contact the Lord, deal with Him, let Him expose us, consecrate ourselves to Him, and focus on ministering life, we need to present to others the wonderful Lord Jesus, the One who cherishes us in His humanity and nourishes us in His divinity.
The pattern of the Lord Jesus can be seen both in the four Gospels and in the entire New Testament. In order for us to cherish and nourish someone we need to be God-men with an uplifted humanity to cherish people and with the divine life and nature to nourish people.
The entire content of God’s New Testament economy is Christ as the Son of Man cherishing us and as the Son of God nourishing us.
First, Christ came to cherish us; in His incarnation Christ came to cherish us, and His death on the cross with His redemption and forgiveness of sins were a great cherishing. Then in resurrection Christ became a life-giving Spirit to nourish us, that is, to minister the divine life supply into us for us to grow in life and become His increase.
First, He regenerates us, and then He continues to transform us, renew us, sanctify us, and organically save us in His life by ministering life into us until we become His increase, His duplication and reproduction.
Finally, in the stage of His intensification, Christ nourishes and cherishes us in an intensified way to produce us as His increase as the unique Overcomer. The whole New Testament talks about these two matters: Christ as the Son of Man in His humanity cherishing us and as the Son of God in His divinity nourishing us.
When Christ became a man to cherish us, He became the most approachable person; He wasn’t born as a king, neither did He come to us in His divinity, but rather He came to contact us in a very lowly humanity, not as a great or handsome man but as a man that any kind of person could approach.
Jehovah came to us in Christ to draw us to Himself with bands of love and with cords of a man (Hosea 11:4). God loves us with His divine love, but He came to cherish us not on the level of His divine love but through Christ’s humanity; He came to draw us with cords of man, that is, through Christ’s incarnation, human living, crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension.
He drew us to Himself by cherishing us, and now He is constantly ministering the divine life into us for us to grow in life and become His increase.
The Pattern of Christ: as the Son of Man He Cherishes us and as the Son of God He Nourishes Us
There are at least eight illustrations in the New Testament of how Christ as the Son of Man is cherishing us in His humanity and as the Son of God is nourishing us in His divinity.
1. Christ as the Son of Man became the Lamb of God to take away our sin (John 1:29) – this is His cherishing. Christ as the Son of God became the life-giving Spirit to give us life and transform us (John 1:32-34, 42; 1 Cor. 15:45b; 2 Cor. 3:6) – this is His nourishing. John the Baptist recommended Christ as the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, and his two disciples were drawn to Him and followed Him.
When we present Christ as the Lamb of God and the life-giving Spirit, others will be drawn to Him. As the Lamb of God He is cherishing us, and as the life-giving Spirit He is nourishing us. Our God is like a mother: He first cherishes us by making us feel happy, pleasant, and comfortable, and then He nourishes us with His element to make us Christ’s increase.
2. Christ as the Son of Man – in the form of the serpent – destroyed the old serpent through His redeeming death (John 3:14; Heb. 2:14; cf. Rom. 16:20) — this is His cherishing. Christ as the Son of God speaks the words of God and gives Himself as the Spirit to us not by measure so that we may have the eternal life (John 3:34-36, 15-16) – this is His nourishing.
We were bitten by the old serpent in the garden of Eden (Gen. 3), so we have the poison and essence of the serpent in our being; Christ became man to be in the form of the serpent yet without the poison of the serpent, and as One who is in the likeness of the flesh of sin, He destroyed Satan – the source of sin – through His redeeming death on the cross.
This makes us happy and comfortable to open to Him so that He may speak the words of God to us and give Himself to us not by measure, and we are made His increase, His bride.
3. Christ as the Son of Man detoured into the city of Sychar to wait for the immoral Samaritan (John 4:3-9) – this is cherishing; Christ as the Son of God gave her to drink of the water of life (John 4:10-14) – this is nourishing.
Jesus Christ took a detour in His trip to go to the city of Sychar, near Jacob’s well, to purposely wait for the thirsty and water-seeking immoral Samaritan woman; this was a cherishing to her, and she opened to Him about many things. Then, as the Son of God, Christ is the gift of God given to man, and He gave her to drink the water of life which springs up into eternal life – to nourish her.
Such a One now lives in us and can be presented by us to others: He goes on a long detour, out of His way, to find us, cause us to feel comfortable and open, and then He gives us to drink of the water of life.
4. Christ as the Son of Man has been designated by God to judge all the people of the world, the living and the dead (John 5:27-29; Acts 17:31; 10:42; 2 Tim. 4:1; Matt. 25:31); the judgment of Christ has been preached to the sinners as a cherishing to them that they might repent unto God and receive Christ as the Son of God to have His eternal life; the judgment in Revelation 14:6-7, as a part of the judgment of Christ, will be declared to all the people on the earth as the eternal gospel — this is His cherishing.
Christ as the Son of God was given authority by God to give the eternal life to His believers (see John 5:19-26; 17:2-3) – this is His nourishing. Christ was assigned by God to judge all the people, and preaching this judgement is a cherishing to us; even at the end of this age, God is still announcing an eternal gospel to allow man to repent and receive God’s life.
5. Christ as the Son of Man would not condemn the sinful woman caught in the act of adultery (John 8:11) – this is His cherishing; Christ as the Son of God would free the sinful woman from her sin so that she would sin no more (John 8:11, 24, 36) – this is His nourishing.
Christ was the only One without sin, the One qualified to condemn the woman, but He didn’t; rather, He as the “I AM” would free her from her sin so that she would sin no more. Christ can condemn us, but He doesn’t; rather, He cherishes us and nourishes us to both redeem us and enable us not to sin but become His increase.
As those who follow His pattern, we should not condemn others but rather cherish them in Christ’s humanity and nourish them in Christ’s divinity so that they would be redeemed, regenerated, and become the increase of Christ.
6. God sent His Son as a propitiation for our sins in His humanity (1 John 4:10) – this is His cherishing. God sent His Son so that we may have life and live through Him in His divinity (1 John 4:9) – this is His nourishing.
John 3:16 confirms this: God gave us His only begotten Son so that we who believe into Him would not perish through His redemption in His humanity (cherishing) but may have eternal life in His divinity (nourishing). Hallelujah, Christ died for our sins to cherish us, and He imparts His life into us to nourish us.
7. The whole New Testament speaks of how Christ as the Son of Man came to redeem us from sins (1 Tim. 1:15) – this is His cherishing, and He came as the Son of God to impart the divine life into us abundantly (John 10:10) – this is His nourishing.
What the whole New Testament speaks of is how God in Christ came to redeem us from our sins in His humanity to cherish us, and how Christ came as the Son if God to impart His divine life into us abundantly in His divinity to nourish us. When we speak this to others and present such a Christ to them, they will love Him, be drawn to Him, and be shepherded by Him to become His increase.
8. In eternity Christ as the Son of Man is sustaining and maintaining the life union of all His believers with God (John 1:51) – this is His cherishing, and He as the Son of God is the life element of the New Jerusalem as the divine and human constitution of the consummated Triune God and His glorified elect (Rev. 21-22) – this is His nourishing.
For eternity, Christ will be the reality of the ladder joining the heavens to earth: He will sustain and maintain our life union with God – this is His cherishing. For eternity, Christ will be the life element of the holy city, New Jerusalem, to nourish us constantly. Hallelujah!
The Lord Jesus is our pattern how to minister life to others. By shepherding them in this way: by cherishing them in the humanity of Jesus and nourishing them in the divinity of Christ, we can help others become the increase of Christ.
Lord Jesus, we take You as our pattern as the Son of Man cherishing us and as the Son of God nourishing us to make us Your increase. Lord, thank You for coming in Your humanity to cherish us by dying for us, destroying the devil, redeeming us, not condemning us but saving us, and saving us from God’s eternal judgement. Thank You for coming to us in Your divinity to nourish us by giving life to us, speaking the words of God to us, giving us to drink, freeing us from sin so that we would sin no more, give us life abundantly, and supply us with life eternally! Lord, thank You for coming as the Son of Man to cherish us and as the Son of God to nourish us. We want to experience You as such a One and present You to others as the attracting factor to minister life to others and gain them in a normal way!
References and Hymns on this Topic
- Inspiration: the Word of God, my enjoyment in the ministry, the message by brother Mark R. for this week, and portions from The Vital Groups, msgs. 9, 4, 6 (by Witness Lee), as quoted in the Holy Word for Morning Revival on, The Increase of Christ for the Building up of the Church (2016 Memorial day Weekend Conference), week 3 / msg. 3, The Increase of Christ Being for the Increase of the Church by Ministering Life to Others according to the Law of Increase.
- All Bible verses are taken from, Holy Bible Recovery Version.
- Hymns on this topic:
# O Lord, do cherish us, as on Thyself we feed; / Warm us so tenderly and meet our every need. / Our hardness soften, Lord, till we are Yours indeed; / Oh, cherish us, dear Lord, we pray. (Hymns #1135)
# Duplicate Your heart in me to care for others. / As I’m nourished, I can nourish others too. / Jesus! You need us to bear the fruit for the vine! / How we need You! Lord, grant the growth in life that they might remain! (Song on nourishing others)
# You’re the One inside who cherishes me, / Feeding me with milk from Your holy Word, / Lord, You bring me just to feast upon You. / And You feed me richly… / And now I see… / You’re the One who’s always shepherding me. / And I see… / You’re the One who’s feeding, watering me. (Song on shepherding)
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