ITERO 2020 – The Christian Life – Week 3
Losing the Soul-life, Participating in the Rapture of the Overcomers, and
Receiving the End of Our Faith the Salvation of the Soul
Luke 14:26, 34-35
26 If anyone comes to Me and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, and moreover, even his own soul-life, he cannot be My disciple.
34 Therefore salt is good; but if even the salt becomes tasteless, with what will its saltiness be restored?
35 It is fit neither for the land nor for the manure pile; they will throw it out. He who has ears to hear, let him hear.
John 15:5, 16
5 I am the vine; you are the branches. He who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit; for apart from Me you can do nothing.
16 You did not choose Me, but I chose you, and I set you that you should go forth and bear fruit and that your fruit should remain, that whatever you ask the Father in My name, He may give you.
Ps. 73:25-26, 28
25 Whom do I have in heaven but You? And besides You there is nothing I desire on earth.
26 My flesh and my heart fail, But God is the rock of my heart and my portion forever.
28 But as for me, drawing near to God is good for me; I have made the Lord Jehovah my refuge, That I may declare all Your works.
24 And He said to them, Struggle to enter through the narrow door, because many, I tell you, will seek to enter, yet will not be able.
30 And you shall love the Lord your God from your whole heart and from your whole soul and from your whole mind and from your whole strength.”
We may think that the lord jesus teaches us only to love. But in verse 26 He teaches us to hate. This is not religion; this is a matter in God’s economy….Especially we need to hate ourselves, even our own soul life.
What we love in ourselves is not mainly our spirit or body but our soul….Actually, all forms of amusement, entertainment, and pleasures are for the enjoyment of the soul. In 14:26 the Lord clearly says that if we do not hate our own soul life, we cannot be His disciples. (Life-study of Luke, pp. 281-282)
In Luke 14:34 and 35 the Lord [speaks] of salt….Salt by nature is an element that kills and eliminates the germs of corruption. To the corrupted earth, the followers of the Lord Jesus should be such an element keeping the earth from being fully corrupted. The Lord indicates that it is possible for salt to become tasteless. For the followers of the Lord to become tasteless means that they have lost their salting function. They have become the same as earthly people, with no distinction from the unbelievers.
Believers in Christ are the salt of the earth used by God to kill and eliminate the earth’s corruption. Their taste depends upon their renouncing of earthly things. The more they renounce the things of the earth, the more powerful will be their taste. They will lose their taste by not being willing to renounce all the things of the present life. If this happens, they will be fit neither for the soil, signifying the church as God’s farm (1 Cor. 3:9) issuing in the coming kingdom (Rev. 11:15), nor for the manure pile, signifying hell, the dirty place in the universe (Rev. 21:8; 22:15). They will be thrown out from the kingdom of God, especially from the glory of the kingdom in the millennium. They have been saved from eternal perdition, but they did not renounce the earthly things and have lost their function in the kingdom of God. Thus, they are not fit for the coming kingdom, but need to be put aside for discipline.
Because our Father knows that His children may be “naughty” and not faithfully enjoy Christ, He has made part of His full salvation an incentive and a reward…to encourage us, warn us, and remind us to keep ourselves in the enjoyment of Christ today and to behave ourselves in this enjoyment. Otherwise, we shall be disciplined. This does not mean that we shall perish, that we shall be lost. Since we have been saved eternally, we shall never perish. Nevertheless, some of the Father’s children will need to suffer discipline during the coming age. Those children who suffer the Father’s discipline in the coming age will not cease to be His children….This matter of God’s dispensational discipline of His children is clearly taught in the New Testament.
We have seen that the soil signifies God’s farm, which is the church, and the church will issue in the coming kingdom. The manure pile, the dirtiest place in the universe, signifies hell, the lake of fire. To be sure, no saved person would be fit for such a place. But for what place will you be fit after the Lord Jesus comes back? You certainly will not be fit for hell, the manure pile, because the Lord’s blood has washed you and you have been saved. Will you, then, be fit for the kingdom? Your conscience may not allow you to say that you are fit for the kingdom. If this is your situation, you are fit neither for hell nor for the kingdom. This means that you are fit for a third place, a place of discipline. (Life-study of Luke, pp. 283-284, 286-287)
Further Reading: HWMR The Christian Life, the Church Life, the Consummation of the Age, and the Coming of the Lord – Week 3, Day 2
Corporate Reading of “The Mystery of Christ” Chapter 9 – Sections: The Principle Of The Body; The Apostles’ Laying On Of Hands
© Living Stream Ministry, 2016, used by permission