The church has been on the earth for almost twenty centuries. During such an extended period of time, many saints have authored studies on various books of the New Testament, and numerous commentaries and expositions have been written. However, most of them touch only the objective and doctrinal side of the divine revelation and have failed to stress the side of life. Because of this, Brother Witness Lee became burdened by the Lord to prepare this Life-study of the New Testament. From 1974 to 1986 he gave twenty-five trainings plus additional conferences, in which he had a thorough life-study of the entire New Testament. The messages given during these trainings and conferences constitute the contents of this twenty-volume set.
In the Lord's recovery during the past five hundred years the church's knowledge of the Lord and His truth has been continually progressing. This monumental and classic work by our brother builds upon and is a further development of all that the Lord has revealed to His church in the past centuries. It is filled with the revelation concerning the processed Triune God, the living Christ, the life-giving Spirit, the experience of life, and the definition and practice of the church.
In this set Brother Lee has kept three basic principles that should rule and govern every believer in their interpretation, development, and expounding of the truths contained in the Scriptures. The first principle is that of the Triune God dispensing Himself into His chosen and redeemed people; the second principle is that we should interpret, develop, and expound the truths contained in the Bible with Christ for the church; and the third governing principle is Christ, the Spirit, life, and the church. No other study or exposition of the New Testament conveys the life nourishment or ushers the reader into the divine revelation of God's holy Word according to His New Testament economy as this one does.
The purpose of this Life-study as expressed by Brother Lee is to present the truths contained in the New Testament, to minister the life supply, to solve the common and hard problems found in the New Testament, and to open up every book of the New Testament by giving a thorough interpretation of it. We believe that these volumes, containing the very essence of the New Testament ministry which is for the carrying out of God's divine economy, will serve as an entrance into a deeper and extensive understanding of the divine truths and will also render much life supply and nourishment to the church of God today and in the coming generations. May the Lord use the ministry of His word in these volumes to sanctify the church until she is fully prepared to be His bride, His counterpart, for His satisfaction (Eph. 5:26-27).
(Benson Phillips — Irving, Texas, U.S.A. — April 1986)
Following the pattern of presenting the revelation of life in the holy Scriptures that was intiated in the Life-study of the New Testament, Witness Lee continued his landmark study of the Bible by focusing on the thirty-nine books of the Old Testament. From the very first book, when God placed Adam in front of the tree of life, Witness Lee demonstrates that God's desire for man is centered on the dispensing of His life through Jesus Christ. This theme is revealed in every book, especially in the first five books, the Pentateuch. These fifteen volumes strongly confirm the Lord's word that the Scriptures, beginning from Moses and ending with the prophets, testify of Him as our life and life supply.