The Practical Building Up of the Local Churches
According to the God-ordained Way
3. Perfecting the Believers
The third step of the God-ordained way for the building of the local church is the perfecting of the believers. Commenting on this step, Witness Lee writes:
After establishing the churches, the apostles then returned to perfect the saints that they might grow in the life of Christ in order to participate in the work of the ministry to build up the Body of Christ. The apostles must minister more and more riches of Christ into the living members of the Body of Christ in order to perfect them.
(Witness Lee, Body of Christ, 36)
Throughout his ministry, Witness Lee frequently emphasized the need for the gifted members of the Body to perfect all the other members. He writes of this need:
We must also realize that the gifted persons have to perfect the saints. The best way and the best place to perfect the saints is in the group meetings. If you are a gifted person, you should go to a group meeting to perfect the saints in that group. When you are with them, you can observe them and get to know everyones condition. Then you can not only perfect them in the meetings but also perfect them outside the meetings by going to be with them. Paul said in Acts 20 that he taught the saints publicly and from house to house (v. 20) and that he admonished each one with tears (v. 31). He taught the saints not only in the big meetings but also in the homes and one by one. This is a detailed, fine work. It takes much labor and time. If I am a person who has the portion, the capacity, and the gift to perfect the saints, I should attend a group meeting all the time. As everyone speaks in the group meeting, I will get to know their real situation. Then I can go to their homes to spend personal time with them. Perhaps I could visit one person each week to have a direct talk with each one of them. This is for the purpose of promoting each ones gifts, to develop his capacity, and to enrich his speaking. We can render much tutoring by this one-on-one contact. In this way the saints will be perfected face to face by some of the gifted persons. This labor will not be in vain because some saints will be perfected. Eventually, the saints will be perfected to do what the gifted persons do. Furthermore, the gifted persons will produce gifted persons.
(Witness Lee, Summary, 49)
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