The Principle Of Incarnation

But he who is joined to the Lord is one spirit.

1 Cor. 6:17
The New Testament Writers Never Said, “Thus Saith The Lord.”

In their so-called prophesying, many of those in the Pentecostal denominations or in the charismatic movement are fond of imitating the Old Testament prophets who frequently said, “Thus saith the Lord.”

Although this expression is used by the Old Testament prophets, it is not used by the New Testament writers. Paul wrote many Epistles, but he did not say at the end, “Thus saith the Lord.” Rather, he said, “Grace be with you,” “The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit,” or simply, “The Lord Jesus Christ be with thy spirit.”

The Incarnation Of Christ Had Not Yet Taken Place

The reason for this difference is very significant. In Old Testament times the incarnation of Christ had not yet taken place. The incarnation is a matter of God coming into man and being one with man.

In the birth of Jesus, God accomplished the incarnation of Himself in man. Through Christ’s death and resurrection, we who believe in Christ may share in the principle of incarnation. This means that through regeneration, Christ is born into our being and becomes one with us.

One Spirit With The Lord

As Paul says in 1 Corinthians 6:17, “He that is joined unto the Lord is one spirit.” This means that as long as we have been born again, we are one spirit with the Lord. Now we all have the ground to declare that we are one spirit with Christ.

Our Speaking Is Spontaneously His Speaking

On the day we believed we were not only saved, but we were also married to Christ in spirit, and a union between us and Him took place. As we continue to contact Him, the superior elements of the divine life swallow up the inferior elements of our human life. Then what we say and do is spontaneously also the saying and doing of Christ.

Therefore, there is no need for us to use the expression, “Thus saith the Lord.” Because we have been grafted into Christ and are living in oneness with Him, our speaking is spontaneously His speaking.

Christ Had Been Incarnated Into Paul

First Corinthians 7 illustrates this. Verse 25 says, “Now concerning virgins I have no commandment of the Lord: yet I give my opinion, as one that hath obtained mercy of the Lord to be faithful” (Gk.). Paul had no commandment of the Lord regarding this matter, but he spoke as one who loved the Lord and lived out the Lord in a practical way.

Then he proceeded to give his opinion. After doing so, he said, “I think also that I have the Spirit of God” (v. 40). As we read 1 Corinthians 7 today, we receive the whole chapter as the oracle of God, as part of God’s holy Word.

Thus, Paul’s speaking became God’s oracle because Paul was one with the Lord. According to the principle of incarnation, Christ had been incarnated into Paul, and Paul lived not an exchanged life, but a grafted life. This enabled him to speak in oneness with the Lord.

All quotations in this post, unless otherwise noted, are from Life-Study Of Romans by Witness Lee, message 63. Living Stream Ministry, Anaheim, CA, U.S.A. 1989. Source:

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