Christ is the One speaking to the church in Laodicea, and the solution to all their problems is Christ Himself as the gold – the precious divine nature, the white garments – living out Christ, and the eyesalve – Christ as the anointing Spirit who heals our blindness and give us insight and foresight.
No matter how much we know the Bible, how much spiritual experience we have, what our spiritual heritage and history is, and how many truths we know, we need to constantly come to the Lord and be under His shining so that we may gain Him in a fresh way.
The church in Laodicea – the degraded recovered church – had many riches, but she relied on her spiritual history and was proud about it; she considered herself as not needing anything but rather rich, but in the Lord’s eyes she was wretched, poor, blind, and naked.
If we do not freshly contact the Lord and are humbled to be filled with Him constantly, we will be poor in the experience of the riches of Christ, blind and full of shame and darkness, poor in the spiritual reality of God’s economy, lacking true spiritual insight in the genuine spiritual things, and lacking in living out Christ in our daily walk.
Because the Lord sees the true condition of the church in Laodicea, He counsels her to buy gold refined by fire so that she may be rich, white garments that she may be clothed and that the shame of her nakedness may not be manifested, and eyesalve to anoint her eyes that she may see (Rev. 3:18).
What is needed today is paying the price to buy gold, white garments, and eyesalve; we need to pay the price by redeeming the time to gain Christ.
It used to be that we would enjoy Christ day by day, and we have a certain history with Him, but today in a fresh way we need to pay the price – even a higher price – to gain Christ, be filled with Him, experience Him, and live Him out.
Paying the price to buy gold refined by fire refers to the living faith, the paying of the price not just to know about Christ or of Him but living Him out in our experience as we partake of His divine nature.
By partaking of the golden divine nature we become the pure golden lampstand for the building up of the New Jerusalem.
Living out Christ as our White Garments, our Conduct Approved by Him
The Lord counsels the church in Laodicea to buy white garments so that she would be clothed and that the shame of her nakedness would not be manifested (Rev. 3:18).
These white garments refer to the conduct that is approved by the Lord; this conduct is nothing else but Christ lived out in the church, and the degraded recovered church needs such white garments to cover her nakedness.
Without having Christ lived out of us we are naked and live in a shameful way, but when Christ is lived out of us, we are covered with white garments.
When we believed into the Lord and were regenerated, Christ as our objective righteousness covered us as a white garment for our justification; after regeneration, we need to live out Christ so that He would become our second garment, our white garment, for us to be approved by the Lord.
On the one hand we are approved by God by being in Christ who is our righteousness, but on the other hand we need to have Christ lived out in us so that He may become our second garment, which makes us approved before the Lord.
Many are called but few are chosen; many are saved and covered by Christ as their objective righteousness, but only few have Christ lived out of them as their subjective righteousnesses to be chosen, approved by the Lord.
After we have been justified and approved by God, we need to continue to love the Lord, pursue Him, be on fire for Him, and be absolutely for Him; then, we shall have the living faith to participate in God’s divine nature.
The more we pursue the Lord and pay the price to have Him lived out of us, the more we partake of the divine nature, and this divine nature is being manifested in us.
The more we partake of the divine nature, the more this nature will be manifested in us and through us in our living out Christ; this living out of Christ will become our second garment, the white garment approved by the Lord.
May we no longer remain naked but be covered by Christ, the One whom we live out in our daily living.
White garments signify a conduct that can be approved by the Lord; such a conduct is not our best behavior or moral living – it is the Lord Himself being lived out of the church, and it is required by the degraded recovered church for the covering of her nakedness.
We need to pay the price not only to get into the truth and be constituted with the truth but also to live out Christ, the One who lives in us and fills our inner being.
Lord Jesus, thank You for covering us as our objective righteousness to make us approved before God. We want to go on with You by loving You, being on fire for You, and being absolutely for You in our daily living so that we may partake of the divine nature and live out Christ. Lord, we want to not only know You and know about You but live You out. May we have the living faith to participate in the rich, divine nature so that Christ may be lived out of us as our second garment to cover our nakedness!
Paying the Price to have the Present Anointing of the Spirit, the Eyesalve for our Eyes
The Lord also counsels the church in Laodicea to buy from Him eyesalve to anoint her eyes so that she may see (Rev. 3:18). This eyesalve refers to the anointing Spirit (1 John 2:27), who is the Lord Himself as the life-giving Spirit (1 Cor. 15:45).
The church in Laodicea has been distracted by the dead knowledge of letters, and therefore she needs to pay the price to buy and obtain the present anointing of the Spirit. We need to pay the price to gain more of the Spirit.
What we need is not more knowledge but more of the Spirit; we need more Spirit to anoint our eyes so that we may have spiritual insight. We don’t need more doctrines, teachings, or knowledge; we need more Spirit to anoint our eyes and the depths of our being so that we may have insight to see things from within.
When we have the present anointing of the Spirit, we will have both foresight and dep insight to see things thoroughly. Then we will realize how precious the Lord is, and we will be willing to give up everything to gain this precious One.
We cannot rely on the light we have received from the Lord many years ago: we need to freshly buy the oil, have the Lord’s present anointing, to have a present seeing with the fresh eyesalve.
What we want is the Lord’s present guiding, speaking, leading, anointing, and teaching. In the New Testament age, seeing God equals gaining God; to gain God is to receive God in His element, in His life, and in His nature that we may be constituted with God (see Matt. 5:8).
For this, we need to be pure in heart to see God, and we need to pay the price to gain God, receive God, and be constituted with God.
Seeing God will transform us, because when we see God we receive His element into us, and our old element is discharged; this metabolic process is transformation (see 2 Cor. 3:16-18; Rom. 12:2; 1 John 3:2).
For us to be transformed, we must pay the price. For us to see God, we must pay the price.
Our need today is Christ….It is worthwhile for me to pay the cost of my family, my future, my destiny, and my whole life for Christ. If I would pay all this, the price is still too cheap. Paul said that all the things he counted loss for Christ were just dung, dog food (Phil. 3:8). In the church life in the Lord’s recovery we are not for doctrine or merely for the so-called truths. We are here for the rich Christ. (Life-study of Revelation, p. 206, by Witness Lee)
To see God is to be transformed into Christ’s image, so that we may express God in His life and represent Him in His authority. When we pay the price to have our heart purified, we will behold the Lord, be transformed in His image, and we will express Him.
This is what we need: to pay the price to have the present anointing of the Spirit, which is the eyesalve for our eyes; when our eyes are anointed and we see the Lord, we will abhor ourselves, repent, and are transformed.
May the Lord save us from gaining dead, vain knowledge and doctrinal forms, which make us degraded and lukewarm.
May we repent of our lukewarmness and be zealous, boiling, burning, so that we may regain the enjoyment of the reality of Christ.
When we see the Lord’s preciousness, we will pay the price to gain Him, obtain Him, and be constituted with Him; when we pay the price for our eyes to be anointed with eyesalve, we will regain our enjoyment of the reality of Christ, and we will be saved from lukewarmness and spiritual pride.
Lord Jesus, we repent for our lukewarmness. We reject any dead, vain knowledge and doctrinal forms, and we want to be zealous, boiling, and burning for You so that we may regain the enjoyment of the reality of Christ. Oh Lord, we want to pay the price to gain the eyesalve to anoint our eyes; anoint us with the present anointing of the Spirit so that we may have the spiritual insight and foresight. Heal us, Lord, cover us, and enrich us. We want to see You so that we may gain You, receive You in Your element and life and nature!
References and Hymns on this Topic
- Inspiration: the Word of God, my enjoyment in the ministry, the message by brother Minoru C. for this week, and portions from, Life-study of Revelation, pp. 203-206 (by Witness Lee), as quoted in the Holy Word for Morning Revival on, Returning to the Orthodoxy of the Church (2016 fall ITERO), msg. 8 (week 8), The Church in Laodicea.
- Hymns on this topic:
# Lord, my desire is to be found in You / As lived out righteousness, give me this view. / Lord, clothe and stitch me, with embroidery / Day by day, inwrought Your gold in me. (Song on Christ living in us)
# With the vision we must not be proud or be content, / Lest as Laodicea soon we lukewarm become, / Empty knowledge would only make you poor, blind, naked, / “Buy gold, garments and eyesalve!” — this’ how we overcome! (Song on being overcomers)
# God in Christ as life in Spirit / Into my own spirit came! / He the Holy One anoints me / Till in spirit we’re the same. / God in Spirit; I can touch Him; / In my spirit He’s the flow. / Deeper, wider, richer, fuller— / Oh, the very God I know! (Hymns #1119)
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