The Journey of Life

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This is a two-part book that deals with the believer’s growth in life as portrayed in “songs” found in two different portions of the Bible: The Songs of Ascents and the Song of Songs.

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Comments on “The Journey of Life”

David Canfield

In one sense it was this book, “The Journey of Life,” which was the catalyst for putting this website together. To let the visitors to this site know, I began the work on the site because I was greatly helped by reading “The Journey of Life,” and wanted other believers to be able to receive that benefit as well.

If you have had some time in the Lord I would encourage you to consider going through this book, as the Lord leads, as I believe it could be a real profit to you. (In general I would not suggest this book for newer Christians, since it will take some experience with the Lord to grasp a number of the points in it.)

Part One covers the Songs of Ascents. I had not really looked at these psalms before in any detail, and was surprised to see how much they show us regarding the stages of the growth in life. Brother Titus divides them into five groups of three psalms each, with each group dealing with a progressive stage of the growth in life.

Part Two covers the Song of Songs. I have been going through the Song of Songs for the past year or so, using a number of different books – Watchman Nee’s “The Song of Songs,” Hudson Taylor’s “Union & Communion,” and Witness Lee’s “Life & Building in the Song of Songs,” “Life Study of the Song of Songs,” and “Crystallization Study of the Song of Songs,” and this book by brother Titus. (In the coming months I hope to also use the books by Madam Guyon and C.A. Coats on the Song of Songs.)

All of these authors view the book as a picture of the believer’s personal love relationship with Christ, which of course is how it should be viewed, yet even so each comes at the book from a slightly different perspective. Brother Nee really provides a verse-by-verse exposition which, more than any other that I’ve read, is an actual study of the Song of Songs; all of the other writers take the approach of using this book to illuminate the Christian experience. Hudson Taylor, as the title of his book suggests, stresses the importance of communion with God in the Christian life, and brings out some very practical matters in doings so, though he does not emphasize too much the matter of growth in life. Brother Lee takes a slightly different approach in each of his three books. Life and Building is not an exposition, but focuses on different points in the book that show us the stages of the believer’s growth in life for the building up of the Body of Christ. The Life-Study is more expositional in nature, though as with all of brother Lee’s writings the focus is still very much on the growth in life. His Crystallization Study, like Life and Building, also focuses on key points, but stresses more how this book shows us the matter of the believers’ becoming divine in their life and nature as God’s divine life works in us through the process of regeneration, growth, and transformation to make us organically one with God (1 Cor. 6:17, etc.).

Yet, even having read, and been helped by, all of these books, I can say that I was still helped in a particular way by my reading of brother Titus’ book, and in doing so received a new understanding of a number of points in the Song of Songs. The hallmark of brother Titus’ ministry, it has always seemed to me, is that he stresses the practical aspects of the Christian’s growth in life, and the experiences we need to go through in order to grow, and that is very much brought out in this book.

As an example, one point that touched me very much was on 3:6, which states that as the seeking one comes up from the wilderness she is “perfumed with all the fragrant powders of the merchant.” Brother Titus points out that the Lord is likened to a “merchant” in this verse to show that our being perfumed with the fragrance of Christ (cf. 2 Cor. 2:14-16) is not a free gift; rather, it is something we must “purchase” from Him for a price. To put it another way, we do not bear the fragrance of Christ solely as a matter of grace (although it is nonetheless based on the Lord’s grace and mercy), but through our seeking of Him in our experience. He writes:

“The seeking one realizes that a price must be paid if she wants to follow the Lord. Her love for Him will not leave her untouched any longer, for from this point onward He will touch every aspect of her living.

“We begin to realize that the Lord is a Merchant. We can no longer expect that things will come cheaply. How much blessing He gives you depends on the price you are willing to pay.Although you will suffer the exacting of a price, your payment of the price will result in your being perfumed with myrrh.

“When we experience a variety of environments before the Lord while paying the price to experience Him in those environments, He as the Merchant will supply us with the precious spices of His death and resurrection, making us fragrant pillars of smoke in the church life.

“From this point onward, if we want God to bless us, we need to pay the price. If we want God to bless our marriage, we need to pay the price. If we want God to bless our family, we need to pay the price. If we want God to bless our job or our spiritual work, we need to pay the price. We must pay a price to buy the fragrant spices from the Merchant. In this way we will manifest the aroma of Christ’s death and resurrection; we will bear a fragrance. Only when we pay the price to be perfumed by the Lord can we really supply others.” (pp. 211 —œ 213)

Watchman Nee also points out the significance of the Lord being likened to a merchant, but brother Titus develops this point much more fully and practically, and it touched me very much and encouraged me to be willing to pay a price to follow the Lord according to His desire.

Again, I would encourage all of the Lord’s seeking ones who have had some time in the Lord to consider reading this book as a means for helping them as they continue on the path of life.

 

Mathews M.

May I also have such a spirit to pursue and grow in divine life & understanding.
God bless you brother for such spiritual encouragement.

 

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