Monday, April 30, 2012

Abiding is NOT Impossible

"How do we abide? ‘Of God are ye in Christ.’ It was the work of God to put you
there and He has done it. Now stay there! Do not be moved back on to your
own ground. Never look at yourself as though you were not in Christ. Look at
Christ , see yourself in Him. Abide in Him. Rest in the fact that God has put you
in His Son, and live in the expectation that He will complete His work in you. It 
is for Him to make good the glorious promise that ‘sin shall not have dominion
over you. (Rom 6:14).”
Watchman Nee from The NORMAL Christian Life.
Personal: Nee speaks of what every Christian should be living from and in, not
just the spiritual heavy weights. God continues to challenge me. What about you?

Friday, April 27, 2012

Faith Speaks

“The point of the past couple of week is that there is practical
 value in the stand of faith that says:

‘God has put me in Christ and therefore all that is true of Him
is true of me. I will abide in Him.’ 
Satan is always trying to get us out, to keep us out, to convince us 
that we are out of sync with God, and by temptations, failures, suffering, 
trial, to make us feel acutely that we are outside of Christ. Our first 
thought is that, if we were in Christ, we should not be in this state,
 and therefore, judging by the feelings we have now, we must be out of Him. 
God’s injunction is to ‘abide’ in Christ, and that is the way of deliverance. 
Why? Because it opens the way for God to take a hand in our lives and 
to work the thing out in us. It makes room for the operation of His superior 
power--the power of the resurrection (Rom 6:4,9,10)--so that the facts 
of our daily experience, and where before ‘sin reigned’ (Rom 5:21)
 we now make the joyful discovery that we are truly ‘no longer...
in bondage to sin.’ (Rom 6:6).
If we stand steadfastly in Christ, we find that He becomes experientially true
in our lives. If instead we come on the basis of what we are in ourselves we 
find all that is true of our old nature remaining true in us. So often we go to the
wrong place to find the death of self. It is in Christ. We have only to look within
to find we are very much alive to sin; but when we look to Him who dwells 
within us, Christ, then God sees to it that even though death is working, 
newness of life is ours also. We are ‘alive unto God.’ (Rom 6:4,11)”
Watchman Nee from the Normal Christian Life

Well, dear reader, there is only one post left for this series on what 
it means for us to be in Christ and how to walk out of who we 
truly are. So few preach on it today and the concepts may sound
strange to you.  But more on this next week.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Abiding In Him

“The scriptures tell us that we are ‘dead indeed’, but nowhere do they say that
we are dead to ourselves. We shall look in vain to find death within; it can’t be
found. However, scripture does say that we are dead in Christ for we were
crucified with Him.
‘Abide in Me and I in you’ (John 15:4). It was an act of God that put us into
Christ and we have to abide there. This verse lays down for us a divine
principle, which is that God has done the work in Christ and not in us as
individuals. It is the history of Christ which is to become the experience
of the Christian, and we have no spiritual experience apart from Him. We
were ‘crucified with Him, quickened, raised, and set by God into the 
heavenlies in Him and we are complete in Him’ (Rom 6:6, Eph 2:5,6
Col 2:10). 
It is wrong to think that we can experience anything of the Christian life 
in ourselves, and apart from Him. All the spiritual experience of the Christian 
is all ready true in Christ. It has all ready been experienced by Christ. What 
we call ‘our’ experience is only our entering into His history, His experience. 
The character of the branches is determined by the Vine.The history of Christ
 becomes our experience and our spiritual history; we do not have a separate 
history from His. The entire work with respect to us is not done in us here 
but in Christ. He does no separate work in individuals apart from what He has 
done there. Even eternal life is not given to us as individuals; the life is in the Son, 
and ‘he that hath the Son hath life.’ God has done all in His Son, and He has 
included us in Him; we are incorporated into Christ.”
Watchman Nee from The Normal Christian life.
Tomorrow you and I will look at how this truth is lived out in our daily lives.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Sin Versus Sins

Sins vrs Sin
God dealt with our sins directly by means of the Blood so that they no
longer come to remembrance. But when it comes to the matter of sin
and deliverance from its power, we find that God deals indirectly. He 
does not remove the sin but the sinner. The vehicle of sin, the body,
is unemployed. 

(The verb katargeo translated “destroyed in Romans 6:6
does not mean ‘annihilated’ but ‘put out of operation, made 
ineffective’, and is from the Greek root argos, which means 
‘inactive, not working, unprofitable.’  
This word is translated as ‘idle’ in Matt 20:3,6 of the unemployed
laborers in the market place.) 

Sin, the old master is still about, but the slave who served him 
has been put to death and so his members are unemployed. 
Thus we can say that ‘deliverance from sin’ is a more scriptural idea 
than ‘victory over sin.’ The expressions ‘freed from sin’ and ‘dead unto
sin’ in Romans 6:7 and 11 imply deliverance from a power that is still very
present and very real--not from something that no longer exists.
In 1John 1:3-9 John boldly writes: ‘whosoever is begotten of God doeth no
sin...he cannot sin,’ which is a statement that is often wrongly understood 
and thus misleading. John is saying that to sin is not the nature of that which
is born of God. The life of Christ has been planted in us by new birth and its
nature is not to commit sin.
So it is a question of choice of which facts we will count upon and live by:
the tangible facts of daily experience or the mightier fact that we are now
‘in Christ.’ The power of His resurrection is on our side, and the whole
might of God is at work in our salvation (Romans 1:16), but the matter still
rests upon our making real in history what is true in divine fact.
Watchman Nee. The Normal Christian Life

I don’t know if these blogs are for you or for me. I first read this book of Nee’s
just after college and it is underlined from end to end. BUT, as I go back into
the book, I find a depth of truth I did not comprehended then. My prayer for
me as well as for you, dear reader, is that God will give us revelation of His 
truth so that we can walk in it.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

What is the Secret of Reckoning?

What is the secret of reckoning?
“It is revelation.” 
“We need to have our eyes opened to the fact of our union with Christ, 
and that is something more than knowing it as doctrine. Such revelation 
is no vague indefinite thing. Most of us can remember the day when we 
saw clearly that Christ died for us, and we ought to be equally clear as to 
the time when we saw that we died with Christ. It should be nothing hazy, 
but very definite, for it is with this as basis that we shall go on. It is not that 
I reckon myself to be dead, and therefore I will be dead. It is that, because 
I am dead--because I see now what God has done for me in Christ--therefore 
I reckon myself to be dead. That is the right kind of reckoning. It is not 
reckoning toward death but from death. God tells us to reckon ourselves dead, 
not that by the process of reckoning we may become dead, but because 
we are dead. He never told us to reckon what was not fact.” 
Watchman Nee, from The Normal Christian Life
Scripture says, “Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, 
but alive unto God.” Romans 6:11
This is huge for me. It is the difference between seeing myself as a sinner 
still needing salvation or a saint who sometimes sins. Romans 6:11 seems to 
contradict everything I see about myself and other Christians. However,
if what God is saying in these verses is truth, then I want to understand
it and walk it out.  You see, I will live out of what I truly believe about myself.

Monday, April 23, 2012


“I remember one morning--that morning was a real morning and one
I can never forget--I was upstairs sitting at my desk reading the Word
and praying, and I said, ‘Lord, open my eyes!’ And then in a flash I 
saw it. I saw my oneness with Christ. I saw that I was in Him and that
when He died I died. I saw that the question of my death was a matter
of the past and not of the future, and that I was just as truly dead as He
was because I was in Him when He died. The whole thing had dawned
upon me. I was carried away with such joy at this great discovery that I 
jumped from my chair and cried,‘Praise the Lord, I am dead!’ I ran
downstairs and met one of the brothers helping in the kitchen and laid
hold of him. ‘Brother,’ I said, ‘do you know that I have died?’ I must
admit he looked puzzled. ‘What do you mean?’ he said, so I went on:
‘Do you not know that Christ has died? Do you not know that I died with
Him? Do your not know that my death is no less truly a fact than His?’
Oh, it was so real to me! I longed to go through the streets of Shanghai
shouting the news of my discovery. From that day to this I have never
for one moment doubted the finality of that word: ‘I have been crucified 
with Christ.’ I do not mean that we do not need to work it out. Yes, there
is an outworking of the death which we are going to see presently,
but this, first of all, is basic. I have been crucified : in Christ it
has been done.”  Watchman Nee

Friday, April 20, 2012

Nee's Struggle

“For years after my conversion I tried to reckon as I had been taught. 
I reckoned from 1920 to 1927. The more I reckoned that I was dead
to sin, the more alive it clearly was. I simply could not believe myself
dead, and I could not produce death. Whenever I sought help I was
told to look at Romans 6:11, and the more I read Romans 6:11 and 
tried to reckon, the further death was: I could not get it. I fully 
appreciated the teaching that I must reckon, but I could not make 
out why nothing resulted from it. I have to confess that for months I
was troubled. I said to the Lord, ‘If this is not clear, if I cannot be
brought to see this which is so very fundamental, I will cease to do
anything. I will not preach any more; I will not go out to serve Thee
any more; I want first of all to get thoroughly clear here.’ For months
I was seeking and sometimes fasted, but nothing came through.”
Watchman Nee

Thursday, April 19, 2012

The Path of Progress: Reckoning

“Likewise reckon ye also to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God 
through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Romans 6:11
As I look at this verse I see that it is written in the present tense. I looked
at other versions and most use the word “consider” instead of reckon, but
reckon is a strong word.
Reckon: To reason from the facts and draw conclusions
“Romans 6:6 says that our old man was crucified with Him.
It is final and can’t be undone. Our old man has been crucified once
and for ever, and he can never be uncrucified. (This is fact.) This is
what we need to know. The sequence is most important. Our reckoning 
must be based on knowledge of a divinely revealed fact, for otherwise
faith has no foundation on which to rest. When we know we reckon 
spontaneously...So it comes to this, that unless we know for a fact 
that we are dead with Christ, the more we reckon, the more intense 
will the struggle become,and the issue will be sure defeat.” 
 Watchman Nee
More tomorrow. It unfolds slowly. 
Having difficulty? Ask God to give you revelation.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Root Out the Drinking

If a government decided to get rid of a drinking problem and destroyed all the
bottles of alcohol, would that solve the problem? No. Behind the bottles are the
factories that produce the liquor, and if the factories were not dealt with, production
would continue and more bottles would be produced. All of the things that 
produced the alcohol would have to be completely destroyed if the drink question
was to be permanently solved. 
We are the factories; our actions are the products. The Lord Jesus dealt with
the question of the products, namely our sins. But, what about the question of
what we are? Our sins were produced by us. They have been dealt with, but
how are we going to be dealt with? Do you believe that the Lord Jesus would
cleanse away all our sins and then leave us to get rid of the sin-producing
To ask this question is to answer it. Of course He has not done half the
work and left the other half undone. No, He has done away with the goods
and also made a clean sweep of the factory that produces the goods.
The finished work of Christ really has gone to the root of our problem and
dealt with it. There are no half measures with God. He has made full 
provision for sin’s rule is utterly broken.  ‘Knowing this, says Paul, ‘that
our old man was crucified with him, that the body of sin might be done
away, so that we should no longer be in bondage to sin (Romans 6:6)
Knowing this! Yes, but do you know it? Or are ye ignorant (Rom. 6:3)?
May the Lord graciously open your eyes.” Watchman Nee

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Hudson Taylor's Story

Hudson Taylor’s Story
“Hudson Taylor knew that in order to be fruitful he had to be able to 
draw the sap out of the Vine into himself. ‘I knew,’ he said, writing to
his sister from Chinkiang in 1869, ‘that if only I could abide in Christ,
all would be well, but I could not.’ The more he tried the worse it got.
One day revelation came and he saw. 
‘I have not got to make myself a branch. The Lord Jesus tells me I 
am a branch. I am part of Him and I have to just believe it and act
upon it. I have seen it long enough in the Bible, but I believe it now
as a living reality.’
A brother in Shanghai wanted to know the crucified life, the resurrected
life, but he could see no way of getting there. There was a thermos on
the table and his friend said, ‘what is this?’  ‘A thermos’ he answered.
‘Well what if the thermos started to pray, “Lord make me a thermos. I very 
much want to be a thermos!” ‘What would you say?‘ The brother said,
‘It would be nonsense to pray like that. It is a thermos.‘ The friend then said 
to him, ‘You are doing the same thing. God in times past has included you
in Christ. When He died you died. When He lived you lived. Now today
you cannot say, “I want to die. I want to be crucified. I want to have 
resurrection life.” The Lord simply looks at you and says, “You are dead!
You have new life!” ‘All your praying is just as absurd as that of the thermos
flask. You do not need to ask the Lord for anything; you merely need your
eyes opened to see that He has done it all.’  The man was shocked and
the light dawned. With tears in his eyes he said, ‘Lord, I praise Thee that
Thou hast included me in Christ. All that is His is mine!’ And, that brother
began to live a changed life.”  Watchman Nee

Monday, April 16, 2012

The First Step: Knowing This...

“Knowing is not an intellectual knowledge at all, but an opening
of the eyes of the heart to see what we have in Christ. 
See Ephesians 1:17. The written Word has to become a living 
word to your heart that something is true. Forgiveness
 of sins is in the Bible, but it does not benefit you until a light 
shines into your inner being and you are wholly persuaded 
of the fact as truth. What is true of the forgiveness of your sins 
is no less true of your deliverance from sin. Once the light of God 
dawns upon the heart, you can see yourself in Christ.
It is not because someone quoted Romans 6:6 to you, but 
you know it because God has revealed it to you by His Spirit.” 
Watchman Nee

Friday, April 13, 2012


As I sat pondering what I had written yesterday morning I began 
to think about how our Lord is an Eternal Being with no beginning 
and no end. He is outside of time. He is at the beginning of time
and the end of time, at the same time. He entered time and dwelt
among us for 33 years and then He died but all during that time
He was still God the Son. When we come to Christ and receive Him
into our lives, He takes up His abode within us. We become one
with our Lord who dwells outside of time. Dear reader, if you can
grasp this then it is easier to grasp the concept, the truth that you
were crucified with Christ on the cross. You are in Him and when He
died, you died. “Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him,
that the body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should
not serve sin.  Romans 6:6
Next week we will take up knowing who we are in Christ.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Crucified With Christ--Part 2

“Our crucifixion can never be made effective by will or by effort, 
but only by accepting what the Lord Jesus did on the cross.
Our eyes must be opened to see the finished work of calvary.
This is how we entered into salvation in the first place. 
Sanctification is made possible for you on exactly the same
basis as that initial salvation.
When we are preoccupied with the power of sin in our lives,
we naturally conclude that if we are to have victory we need 
more power. ‘If only I were stronger,’ we say, ‘I could overcome
my violent outbursts of temper,’ so we plead with God to strengthen 
us so we can exercise more self control. However, God’s means 
of delivering us is by making us weaker and weaker. God sets
us free from the dominion of sin, not by strengthening our old
man but by crucifying him, not by helping him to do anything but
by removing him from the scene of action. Once you see the
truth that you are powerless to do anything, that God has done
it all, it brings to an end human striving and self effort.”  
Watchman Nee
Well, I don’t know about you, dear reader, but this goes against
my grain and against what I have been taught in church 
through the years. Just before Jesus died He said, 
it is finished.” 
I know that He took care of it all. I want to grasp this truth 
and so I say, “Help.”

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Our Death with Christ is Historic

“As a Christian, do you believe in the death of Christ? Of course 
you do. But the same Holy scripture that says He died for us
says also that we died with Him.
'Christ died for us'--Romans 5:8  That statement is clear
'Our old man was crucified with Him'--Romans 6:6
'We died with Christ'--Romans 6:8
We can say reverently but accurately, “I was crucified when
Christ was crucified.” No, you have never felt it. You believe
it because the Word of God tells you so. It does not depend
on your feelings.
You have died! You are done with! You are ruled out! The self
you loath is on the cross with Christ. And ‘He that is dead is 
freed from sin.’ Romans 6:7 AV. This is the Gospel for the
Christians.”  Watchman Nee
Dear Reader, munch on this. I will do likewise. It was only
the last few years that this scripture was unpacked for me
and I am still trying to get my head and my heart around it.
It is changing me. I am not a sinner but a Saint who sometimes
sins.  Stick with me on this journey.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Romans 6:1-11

Romans 6:1-11
These scriptures are key for what I will share this week. When our 
kids were younger we memorized them but neither the parents
nor the children had a clue what they meant!
1 What shall we say then? Shall we continue in sin that grace
may abound? 
2 God forbid. How shall we, that are dead to sin, live any longer
3 Know ye not, that so many of us as were baptized into Jesus 
Christ were baptized into His death?
4 Therefore we are buried with him by baptism in death:
that as Christ was raised up from the dead by the glory of
the Father, even so we also should walk in newness of life.
5 For if we have been planted together in the likeness of
his death, we shall be also in the likeness of his resurrection.
6 Knowing this, that our old man is crucified with him, that the
body of sin might be destroyed, that henceforth we should
not serve sin.
7 For he that is dead is freed from sin.
8 Now if we be dead with Christ, we believe that we shall also
live with him:
9 Knowing that Christ being raised from the dead dieth no more;
death hath no more dominion over him.
10 For in Him all died, he died unto sin once: but in that he liveth
he liveth unto God.
11 Likewise reckon ye also yourselves dead indeed unto sin, but
alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.

Monday, April 9, 2012

The Path of Progress

As I read the words of The Normal Christian Life, they become, again,
water to my thirsty soul. I receive the words as a Well of Water springing
up and my desire is to share this Well with you, my dear reader. I will
go slow. There is no hurry. If they minister to you, share them with others.
“Our old history ends with the cross, our new history begins with the
resurrection. ‘If any man is in Christ, he is a new creature: the old
things are passed away; behold they become new.’ (2 Corinthians 5:17).
The cross terminates the first creation, and out of death is brought a 
new creation in Christ, the second Man.”
 Romans 6,7 and 8 lay out the conditions for living a normal Christian 
life. They are fourfold and Nee states that all four are necessary:
“a Knowing
 b Reckoning
 c Presenting ourselves to God
 d Walking in the Spirit.”
Tomorrow we begin this journey together!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Crucified, Buried and Risen Again!
Here is the problem. We were born sinners. How then 
can we cut off our sinful heredity? When Jesus was crucified 
on the cross, He was crucified as the last Adam. All that 
was in the first Adam was gathered up and done away with
 in Him. Our union with Him as the second Adam begins
 in resurrection and ends in Eternity. He arose as the Head 
of a new race of men. It is in His resurrection that He stands 
forth as the second Man, and there we were included.
“For if we have been planted together
in the likeness of his death,
we shall be also
in the likeness of His resurrection.” 
Romans 6:5
The cross is thus the mighty act of God which translates 
us from Adam to Christ; from the kingdom of darkness 
into the kingdom of His dear Son.

Now when I get up in the morning, by whose life do I live the Christian life?

The Cross--Good Friday

Ah, why is it called "GOOD Friday?" Read on.

The blood takes care of my sins, but the cross must deal with the sinner.
A sinner is said to be a sinner because he is born a sinner, not because
he has committed sins. We sin because we are sinners.”Through one man’s
disobedience the many were made (or constituted) sinners. Rom. 5:19.
I am an American even if I live outside of America my whole life. I am an 
American because I am born an American. I am a sinner because I was
born in Adam. The blood procures our pardon for what we have done,
the cross procures our deliverance from what we are.
Look at it this way: We try to please the Lord but we find something within that
does not want to please Him. We try to be loving but something inside is un-
loving. The more we try to change the outside the more we realize how deep
seated is the trouble. Then it begins to dawn: “It is not only that I DO wrong,
I AM wrong.”

More on this tomorrow....
The Normal Christian Life by Watchman Nee

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Overcoming the Accuser

Today is Maundy Thursday as we continue to think on what Jesus did for us on the Cross.

(And, yes, dear readers, I just discovered that I posted the same 
thing twice putting me a  day behind schedule! Perhaps I will post two today...)

Satan’s most strategic activity in this day is the accuser of the brethren.
See Rev. 12:10. The Blood of Jesus operates against Satan by putting
God on the side of man against our enemy.
“God is in the light, and as we walk in the light with Him everything is
exposed and open to that light, so that God can see it all--and yet,
the Blood is able to cleanse from every sin.” What a cleansing!
(IJohn 1:7 Darby)
Satan accuses us before God. God points to the Blood of His dear
Son and says, “Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s
elect? It is God that justifies; who is he that shall condemn? It is
Christ Jesus that died, yea rather, that was raised from the dead,
who is at the right hand of God, who also makes intercession for us.”
(Romans 8:34)
Our faith in the precious Blood and our refusal to be moved from
that position can silence the charges and put our enemy to flight.
See The Normal Christian Life by Watchman Nee

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

The Believer's Access to God

The second value is that the blood cleanses our conscience. 
What does this mean? It means that my guilty conscience came between 
me and God whenever I sought to approach Him. It constantly reminded 
me of the barrier that stood between myself and Him. As soon as I find 
my conscience uneasy, my faith leaks away, and immediately I know 
I cannot face God. In order to keep trucking I must know that God keeps 
short accounts; that I am made right by the Blood every moment of everyday. 
It means that I come to God on the basis of the finished work of the 
Lord Jesus. A clear conscience is never based upon my own attainment; 
it can only be based on the work of the Lord Jesus in the shedding of His 
Blood on the cross.
All of us may feel weak, but looking at our weakness will never make 
us strong. But we can say to God, “Lord, I do not know the value of 
the Blood of Jesus, but I know the Blood has satisfied You and so the
Blood is enough for me and it is my only plea.”
See the Normal Christian Life by Watchman Nee

Monday, April 2, 2012

Easter Thoughts

The Power of the Blood
I have been reading Watchman Nee’s book, The Normal Christian Life,
and getting a new perspective on the meaning of the Blood and of the
Cross. This is a good week to revisit these things. Here are some tidbits:
We need to understand the work of the Blood for us, in three ways:
1 Our sins were dealt with by the Blood of Christ.
2 Our guilt was dealt with and our guilty conscience set at rest by 
showing us the value of that Blood.
3 The attack of the enemy was met and his accusations answered by
the power of the Blood.
We need forgiveness for the sins we have committed, lest we come
under judgement; and they are forgiven, not because God overlooks
what we have done but because He sees the Blood. The Blood is 
therefore not primarily for us but for God. This carries over in the old
testament in these two places: The first is in the story of the Israelites 
placing the Blood over the lintel of their homes so that they would not die 
at the passing of the Angel of Death; the second story tells how the High Priest 
would enter the Holy of Holies once a year on the Day of Atonement and 
sprinkle the Blood on the Mercy Seat before the Lord.
Sometimes the sense of sin and guilt is so great, so terrible as to cripple us
by causing us to lose sight of the effectiveness of the Blood. We cannot
approach the Blood of Christ subjectively and measure how we feel on a 
particular day. We have to believe that the Blood is precious to God 
because He says so. A holy and righteous God has the right to say that
the Blood is acceptable to His eyes and has fully satisfied Him--so it
must satisfy me also.