Genuine oneness is not mere unity – oneness is a matter of sinking deeply into the Triune God until we are fully overlaid with Him as gold; our problem is that we are short of God, and our need is to gain more God as gold so that we may be perfected into one for His expression.
The oneness that we have and must keep in the Body of Christ is not something outward or something mental; our oneness in the Body is the oneness in the Triune God which has been enlarged to include us.
The Triune God is one; though there’s the Father, the Son, and the Spirit – three seemingly separate yet not distinct persons, They are all one by means of coinherence (the Three of the Godhead are in one another).
The Lord Jesus prayed for such a oneness in John 17, and in His prayer He uttered His aspiration “that they all may be one, that the world may know that You have sent me” (John 17:21-23).
The whole world lies in the evil one, being under his sphere of influence, full of divisions and problems; when Christ came, He was one with the Father and the Spirit, and now we as His believers can be a living testimony of such a oneness.
The oneness for which the Lord prayed in John 17 is the oneness typified by the tabernacle in Exodus 26; the tabernacle had forty-eight boards of acacia wood overlaid with gold, each having three rings through which there were poles that joined them.
The three rings – the receptacles for the uniting bars – signify the regenerating and sealing Spirit, the all-inclusive Spirit of the Triune God in resurrection for the uniting of the believers (see Eph. 1:13; 4:3, 30).
At the time of our regeneration we have received the Spirit, and this Spirit is our oneness; as members of the Body of Christ we have the Spirit with our spirit, and whenever we exercise our spirit and are one with the Lord in spirit, we are spontaneously one.
Furthermore, the oneness in the Triune God can be seen in the overlaying of the boards with gold; we as believers in Christ need to be overlaid with a thick layer of God as gold so that we may keep the oneness for God’s building.
Being Perfected into One by Gaining More God as Gold; our Oneness is in the Triune God
The standing boards forming the wall of the outer court in the tabernacle were made of acacia wood overlaid with gold; each board was fifteen feet long and twenty-seven inches wide. These were tall and wide boards, and they were all joined together in oneness by means of the gold.
However, it was not enough to have a thin layer of gold on the boards; there was the need for a thick layer of gold so that the boards would be one. Humanly speaking, it may seem impossible for us as saints and members of the Body to be one, but what is impossible with man is possible with God.
The fact that the tabernacle was built in the wilderness with all these boards overlaid with gold shows that God will obtain His building: He will gain the genuine oneness by perfecting us into one.
Oneness is not a superficial matter. It is a matter of sinking deeply into the Triune God until we are fully overlaid with gold. We all need a great deal more of God. It is not sufficient simply to be coated with a thin layer of Him. If we truly have light on our need to be overlaid with gold, we will repent and say, “Lord, I repent that I am only gilded with gold. I have not yet been overlaid. What I have experienced of You is merely gilding. It is good for causing others to praise me, but it is not good for the real oneness, for holding me together with others. When even a small problem arises, my layer of gold is not sufficient, and the oneness is damaged. Lord, for the oneness, overlay me with an adequate amount of gold.” Witness Lee, Truth Messages, ch. 9
Our real need today is to gain more God as gold, for our oneness is in the Triune God (and not in ourselves). It’s not sufficient to just enjoy the Lord here and there, from time to time, or even only in the meetings; we need to be perfected into one by gaining more God as gold day by day.
Only when we as members of the Body are adequately overlaid with God as gold can we be perfected into one; this indicates that, in order for us to be perfected into one, we need to gain more God! Our problem is that we are short of God; we need to gain Him more!
God wants to dispense Himself into us to overlay us with Himself so that we may be God-men saturated, mingled, soaked, permeated, and overlaid with Him, to the point that we are so deeply into Him as the gold that we are built up together into His dwelling place to express Him in the universe as the Body of Christ in this age and the New Jerusalem in eternity.
If we look at ourselves and the other saints, we may say that it is impossible for us to be one; we may be so busy, so different, etc – but what is impossible with man is possible with God! We only need to gain more God as gold so that we may be perfected into one.
We are one in the gold, we are one in the God whom we enjoy and experience and gain. In the Lord’s recovery today He is overlaying us with Himself as gold so that He may recover and gain the oneness of the Body of Christ for His corporate expression.
May we be those who come to the Lord to buy gold refined by fire; may we realize that without Him adding Himself to us again and again we are poor, miserable, wretched, blind, and naked, but when we gain more God, we are one with Him and with the saints for God’s corporate expression (Rev. 3:18).
Lord Jesus, overlay us with Yourself as gold today for Your building! We want to be perfected into one by gaining more God as gold, for our oneness is in the Triune God! We repent for only being gilded with God as gold; we need more overlaying, more of God as gold added to our being for the real oneness. Lord, for the oneness and for Your building, overlay us with an adequate amount of gold! May we gain more God today! Amen! May we be perfected into one by the addition of God to our humanity so that we may express Him corporately!
The Oneness is not in our Humanity but in the Triune God: We need to Gain More God!
When the Lord prayed in John 17 concerning the oneness, He never mentioned such things as being kind, humble, meek, etc or anything of humanity; what He prayed for is that just as the Father and the Son are one by being in one another, so the believers would be one by being in God Himself.
Genuine oneness is NOT to be found in our humanity; being more humble, kind, gentle, or meek doesn’t mean that we have the genuine oneness. The acacia wood (our humanity) needs to be overlaid with gold (God Himself) so that the boards may be one in the gold.
No matter whether we are meek or rough, slow or quick, humble or proud, educated or uneducated, we all have a problem with oneness, and oneness cannot be found or kept in our humanity.
The oneness the Lord prayed for and we experience today in the church life is in the Triune God. This is why we need to gain more of God. We need to come to Him every day, enjoy Him, pray, fellowship with Him, and open to Him as He works in us so that He may overlay us with more of God as gold.
When there’s an adequate amount of God in our being, we will spontaneously be one. The Lord wants to perfect us into one; He doesn’t want to improve our humanity – He wants to add more of Himself to us, to overlay us with gold.
I am so happy that in Exodus there’s a picture of the oneness the Lord prayed of in John 17! The Lord’s last words when He was on earth was that we all may be one, so that all may see that the Father has sent the Son, and they may believe into Him.
Today we are being perfected into one by God adding Himself to our being as gold with our cooperation so that God may gain the actual oneness among us for His corporate expression. We need to remember, however, that oneness in the church is not in our humanity but in the Triune God.
The church is not a group of meek, humble, kind, and gentle saints; our temper and disposition may differ quite a lot, however, we are not one in our humanity but in the Triune God who daily overlays us, adding Himself to us as gold to make us one!
How much we need to sink deeply into the Triune God until we are fully overlaid with God as gold, having a thick layer of gold added to our being for the oneness of the Body!
Lord Jesus, cause us to realize that oneness is not in our humanity but in the Triune God! We want to sink deeply into the Triune God until we are fully overlaid with gold! Amen! Oh Lord, we want to gain a great deal more of God so that we may be perfected into one for the building up of the church, the Body of Christ. May there be an adequate quantity of God in our being so that we may be one, even as the Father is in the Son and the Son is in the Father. Lord, amen, gain what You are after: the genuine oneness in the Triune God being enlarged and practiced in the Body of Christ!
References and Hymns on this Topic
- Inspiration: the Word of God, my enjoyment in the ministry, the message by brother Ed M. for this week, and Truth Messages, ch. 9 (by Witness Lee), as quoted in the Holy Word for Morning Revival on, Crystallization-Study of Exodus (part 4, 2016 Summer Training), week 42 / msg. 6, The Oneness in the Triune God Typified by the Tabernacle.
- Hymns on this topic:
# Life is full of opportunities / Ordered by our Father’s hand: we see / Everything’s the best that it could be, / So let’s gain Christ! / Christ our content and reality / To shine out from us unceasingly: / He must have a way in you and me, / He must have a way. (Hymns #1178)
# Take time to enjoy Him, our portion is He: / Our present, available reality; / Our practical, real, and enjoyable Lord / Is everything to us through His living Word. (Song on enjoying the Lord)
# Lord, gain me; Lord, gain me; / In the Body, Lord, gain me, / For the full expression of the Triune God; / In the Body, Lord, gain me. (Song on gaining God)
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