The Perfectness of the Lord’s Power
2 Corinthians 12:9—“And He has said to me, My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is perfected in weakness. Most gladly therefore I will rather boast in my weaknesses that the power of Christ might tabernacle over me.”
Note 2 on power says: “For the sufficiency of the Lord’s grace to be magnified, our sufferings are required; for the perfectness of the Lord’s power to be shown forth, our weakness is needed. Hence, the apostle would most gladly boast in his weaknesses that the power of Christ might tabernacle over him. Grace is the supply, and power is the strength, the ability, of grace. Both are the resurrected Christ, who is now the life-giving Spirit dwelling in us (1 Cor. 15:45; Gal. 2:20) for our enjoyment.”
Cross-reference “b” on power directs us to these verses:
Why Read the Bible?
This is the first post in a special two-part series on reading the Bible. In these posts, we include helpful excerpts from books by Watchman Nee and Witness Lee that provide insight about reading the Bible. BfA gives away some of the referenced books for free. The others can be read for free online or purchased from the publisher’s website.
The Benefits of Reading the Bible
The Bible is the foundation of Western civilization—morally, politically, literarily. Even the secular world recognizes the Bible as the most influential book in the world. It is the highest in its record of the origin of mankind, human history, and prophecies and in its wisdom, profoundness, ethics, and morality.
While these qualities are compelling enough reasons to read the Bible, they cannot compare with the amazing fact that God Himself is embodied and expressed in His Word. But God does not want His words to remain confined in a book, and He tells us so in the Word:
The Unlimitedness of Christ
“There is a limit to human goodness, but the goodness of Christ is without limit. If your patience has a limit, that patience is not Christ. If you are patient with Christ’s patience, the more wrongly you are treated, the more patient you will be. This patience can never be exhausted. Christ is good in His unlimitedness; Christ is good in His spaciousness. With everything of Him, there is no limit and no change.”
What 2 Timothy 2:22 Says about Fleeing Lusts and How It Applies to Us Today
Lusts—we all have them and we’re all susceptible to them. We can never be safe from them while we’re in these earthly bodies. This is because in the fall of the entire human race, the pure physical body God created for us became the sinful flesh, full of lusts.
We believers are not exempt from this fact. Certainly, when we believed in Jesus Christ, we were forgiven of our sins and saved eternally. We became God’s children, born again with His divine life. But though our spirit was regenerated, our body was not. The sinful lusts in our flesh remain.
Life and Peace
Romans 8:6—“For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the spirit is life and peace.”
Note 2 on death and life says: “Life and peace result from setting our mind on the spirit. When our mind is set on the spirit, our outward actions are in agreement with our inner man and there is no discrepancy between us and God. He and we are at peace, not at enmity (v. 7). The result is that we feel peaceful within.
When our mind is set on the flesh and the things of the flesh, the result is death, which causes us to feel separated from the enjoyment of God. We feel uneasy and deadened instead of peaceful and living. When we are minding the flesh and setting our mind on the things of the flesh, the sense of death should serve as a warning to us, urging us to be delivered from the flesh and to live in the spirit.”
Cross-reference “a” on life directs us to these verses:
What Does It Mean to Be Pure in Heart?
“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.”
Many of us have heard these words of the Lord Jesus from Matthew 5:8. But what did He mean? Did He mean that a person who is pure in heart would physically see God, or have a mystical vision of God? What does having a pure heart have to do with seeing God? And isn’t God unapproachable and therefore unseeable?
Seeing the Treasure Hidden in Our Heart
“All the worry and fret of God’s children would end if their eyes were opened to see the greatness of the treasure hid in their hearts. Do you know, there are resources enough in your own heart to meet the demand of every circumstance in which you will ever find yourself? Do you know there is power enough there to move the city in which you live? Do you know there is power enough to shake the universe? Let me tell you once more—I say it with the utmost reverence: You who have been born again of the Spirit of God—you carry God in your heart!”
The Big Question
A professor at a world-renowned American university regularly inquired at the beginning of his course, “If you could ask God one question, what would it be?” Students routinely answered that they’d ask for money or material things. But on one occasion a student responded, “I’d ask God, What’s the purpose of my life?” This was right after the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks on the U.S.
In the wake of cataclysmic events such as 9/11, horrific campus violence, huge earthquakes, killer hurricanes, devastating tsunamis, and unprecedented economic collapse, questions about life that lie deep down in us make their way to the surface.
Eventually the trauma subsides, and life, as it must, goes on. We’re occupied with the usual college pursuits of studies, sports, a busy social life, and a plethora of campus activities. But in moments of quiet reflection, if we’re honest with ourselves, the big question haunts us—What is the meaning of my life?
The Love of the Divine Trinity
Luke 15:3-4—“And He told them this parable, saying, Which man of you, who has a hundred sheep and has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the one which is lost until he finds it?”
Note 1 on parable says: “In answering the self-righteous Pharisees and scribes, who condemned Him for eating with sinners, the Savior spoke three parables, unveiling and depicting how the Divine Trinity works to bring sinners back, through the Son by the Spirit, to the Father. The Son came in His humanity as the Shepherd to find the sinner as a lost sheep and bring him back home (vv. 4-7). The Spirit seeks the sinner as a woman carefully seeks a lost coin until she finds it (vv. 8-10). And the Father receives the repenting and returned sinner as the ‘certain man’ here receives his prodigal son (vv. 11-32). The entire Divine Trinity treasures the sinner and participates in bringing him back to God. All three parables stress the love of the Divine Trinity more than the fallen condition and repentance of the penitent sinner. The divine love is fully expressed in the Son’s...
What Does God Want?
When we believed in Jesus Christ, we were forgiven by God and delivered from eternal judgment. Not only so, we were also born again, regenerated with the life of God in our spirit. We thank the Lord for these wonderful realities! What tremendous mercy God had on us!
But let’s take a moment to ask, Why? Why did God save us? Why did He regenerate us? Going back even further, why did God create us to begin with?