The flow of the divine life in us makes us ministers of the new covenant (2 Cor. 3:6). A competent minister of the new covenant has six statuses in 1 Corinthians – a sower sowing the seeds of life, a planter planting Christ into others, a waterer with the water of life, a begetter of others in Christ, a feeder of the believers, and a builder of the building of God. The work we do as ministers is not something outward but it is something related to life – the flow of life makes us ministers of life, those who experience, enjoy, and minister Christ as the life-giving Spirit.
sowing the spiritual things, the seeds of life
1 Cor. 9:11 says, We have sown to you the spiritual things. What we sow into others are not doctrines or teachings but spiritual seeds, containers of life. Sowing the seeds of life – the containers of life – into others is a matter of life, a matter of imparting life into others. The Lord Jesus came as a Sower to sow Himself as the seed of life into the human race (Matt. 13:3, 37). In the same way today we in the Lord’s recovery of the church life we should not just pass on doctrines or teachings but we should sow spiritual seeds. The ministers of life impart seeds of life into others.
To be a sower with the seeds of life is more difficult than to be a teachers with the good teachings and doctrines. If you study hard enough and are trained to speak, you can teach the good teachings and become a good speaker. But for us to be a sower, we first need to gain and obtain the seeds of life by spending much time with the Lord, enjoying Him and experiencing Him. The seeds of life are not doctrines or letters, they are something of life in our mingled spirit. We need much enjoyment and experience of Christ to gain the seeds of life.
planting Christ in God’s cultivated land
A planter is also something related to life – a planter doesn’t teach or preach but carefully and gently plants herbs, plants, trees, into the ground. We the believers of Christ are God’s cultivated land, God’s farm (1 Cor. 3:9), and we can also be ministers of the new covenant planting Christ into others. As the church, we have God in Christ planted into us, and we need the genuine experience of Christ as life in our spirit in order for us to also plant Christ into others. If we “grow and produce Christ” by experiencing Him as life, we can plant Christ into others!
watering others with the water of life
On the one hand we can plant Christ into others and on the other hand we can water others (1 Cor. 3:6) with the water of life (Rev. 22:17) for the plant of life to grow. We all as plants in God’s farm need watering continually and we also need to learn to water others. You can say that there should be “a divine irrigation system” with a reservoir of living water stored within us to water the church as God’s farm. We all are sprinklers of water of life, ministering life to other believers to water them for their growth in the divine life.
In order for us to have the water of life so that we may water others, we need to have genuine experiences of Christ as the water of life and a living contact with Him. It is in our personal and intimate contact with the Lord that we gain the water of life and are dealt with by Him so that we may flow this water of life to others. If we don’t have the sufficient experience of Christ as the living water, it will be hard for us to water others. But if we have a fountain of life bubbling within us constantly (John 4:14), we can be a rich channel of living water to others to supply them with the water of life (John 7:38-39).
[sharing inspired from, The collected works of Witness Lee, vol. 1 (such a rich portion in pages. 577-583), as quoted in the Holy Word for Morning Revival on, The Four Great Pillars in the Lord's Recovery. You can purchase the morning revival book online, follow the articles on The Four Great Pillars on this blog and become a fan on Facebook for more updates. Picture source: planting]
Lord, save us from anything outward and anything that is not of life! Deepen the flow of life until it becomes something flowing out of us as many rivers to water others! Lord, make us the sowers with the seeds of life. We don’t want to be merely teaching others but imparting life seeds into them! Make us those who plant Christ into others – by having a rich experience of Christ as life! O, Lord, bring us fully in the way of life even in our working with You and for You!