What is Resurrection? (1)

the rod of Aaron … it had budded

Num. 17:8
God’s doing

What is resurrection? Resurrection is everything that is not out of our natural life, not out of ourselves, and not based on our ability. Resurrection speaks of the things that are beyond us, which we cannot do in ourselves.

Any rod can be engraved with flowers or painted with colors, but no one can make it bud. We have never heard of a rod which can still bud and blossom after being used for decades. This is God’s work.

No woman in the world has ever given birth after her womb has been closed, but Sarah bore Isaac (Rom. 4:19). This was God’s doing. Hence, Sarah typifies resurrection.

What is resurrection? Resurrection means that one cannot do anything by himself, that he can only do it through God. It means that it is not by oneself, but by God.

Resurrection means that one ignores what he is and trusts only in what God is. It matters little whether or not you are smarter than others or more eloquent than others. If you have any spirituality, this spirituality is not based on yourself, but on God’s work in you.

Suppose Aaron had been foolish enough to say to others, “My rod is different from your rod. My rod is smoother, brighter, and straighter. This is why it budded.” How foolish and silly that would have been!

If we think for a moment that we are different from others, that is the most foolish thought. Even if there is something different in us, it is the result of God’s work. Resurrection means that everything is out of God.


The name Isaac means “laughter.’’ Why did Abraham call his son “laughter”? He called him Isaac for two reasons. First, God promised Abraham that Sarah would give birth to a son. When Sarah heard, she laughed. It was natural for her to laugh.

When she looked at herself, she could not help but laugh. Her time of childbearing was past, and her womb was closed. How could she ever bear a child? She thought that this was impossible. Therefore, when God told Abraham that she would have a child, she laughed.

Second, when Sarah brought forth a son a year later, she was indeed laughing for joy. Hence, God called the child’s name Isaac (Gen. 18:10-15; 21:1-3, 6-7), which means “laughter.” The first time she laughed because of the impossibility of the promise. The second time she laughed because she discovered to her surprise that it was possible.

If a man has never experienced the first laughing, he can never experience the second laughing. If a man has never realized his own inability, he can never experience God’s ability. Sarah knew herself; she had full knowledge of herself. She knew that she could not make it. But as soon as she looked to God’s work, she was able to laugh.

What is resurrection? Resurrection means that God has given us something that we did not have in ourselves. The Bible testifies again and again that man cannot make it by himself. But many people think that they can make it. In the matter of service, if some would truly laugh at themselves, saying, “I cannot make it,” they would find themselves laughing again, saying, “I did not make it. I have seen through myself. The Lord has made it for me.”

If there is any manifestation of authority in us, we should say to the Lord, “You are the One who has done it. It is none of my business.” Resurrection means that you cannot make it and that God is the One who has done everything.

All quotations in this post, unless otherwise noted, are from Authority and Submission, c. 15, by Watchman Nee. Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA, U.S.A. 1993. Source: ministrybooks.org

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