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Old 07-02-2019, 07:28 AM   #149
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Natal Transvaal
Posts: 5,185
Default Conformity and Control

Originally Posted by Jo Casteel FB Page
Brother Lee characterized brothers with beards as looking like demons in the following direct quote from “Living Christ.” He acknowledges that everyone had outward conformity, but doesn’t seem to realize WHY they would do such a thing. Someone who is exalted to be the oracle of God, the Commander in Chief, the acting God, the Minister of the Age, etc. needs to think about the effect their words will have on others. The same could be said of the “Blending Brothers” we have today.

“In America I saw many young men with long hair and beards. When they walked into the meeting hall, I, a Chinese, had to examine them closely to determine whether they were humans or demons. They were actually humans, but from the back they looked like demons, and from the front they looked like cats full of whiskers. After they had been in the church life for a period of time, they cut their hair short and shaved off their beards. I was very happy to see their new look. At first, I thought that this was the transformation of the life within them. I also boasted to others, saying, “You see, the local church is very powerful; it can cause a long-haired man to cut his hair short and a bearded man to shave his face clean. This is the transformation of life.” However, after a while, I realized that this wasn't transformation of life but conformity to what they saw in the local church. Why do I say this? Because even though a person’s hair has been shortened and his beard shaved away, his nature remains untouched. Do you believe that this one has truly been transformed? No, he's not been transformed but has merely changed his attire. If he were truly transformed, not only would his hair be shortened and his beard shaved off, but his nature would also be dealt with.”
This is a "frank word" from Witness Lee in "Living Christ" (p. 15)

I see 2 problems with this quote: first, such a word tends towards high-control systems. Uniformity = Control. It's formulaic. Everyone must look the same, dress the same, think the same, speak the same. This is contrary to the scripture where "star differs from star in glory". God made things with diversity. But in the Lord's Recovery everyone must be a "small potato" and not stick out, not be different. And if you think this was an anomaly, and actually everyone in the LR is so free, the footnotes in the RecV in Revelation 2 and 3 show otherwise. In speaking on the epistles to the seven churches, Witness Lee held that the source of their problems was that they were different from one another. All local churches must be "exactly identical" and "with no differences whatever". (This thought was based on the seven golden lampstands. But did you ever see a hand-beaten gold calyx or almond blossom [Exod 25:33] look "exactly identical" to each other? But I digress).

Second, WL says peoples' nature must be dealt with. Okay, but this is from someone who bilked church members out of thousands of dollars for son Timothy's motor home business. How many thousands? I think that the local church in Boston gave $100,000.00, but how much from others? We don't know. The inheritance from So Cal that started it all, how much was that, and how much came back (if any) - we don't know (and this was early '70s money, when $100K could buy something). We've read that some lost their life savings. How many investors, and how much that was, we don't know, because WL didn't want to talk about it. "None of your business" was his answer - and this to ones that put up the money! Is this a transformed human? It looks to me that Witness Lee was able to dig into his "subjective" bag of tricks, and declare who was "truly transformed" and who wasn't, even when his own living (and of his sons) gave strong indication of not being so.

And installing his other son Philip as Office Manager at LSM - does this appointment show a pattern of being dealt with, or rather of not being dealt with, of avoiding having one's nature touched? Can't have the Minister of the Age, the Humble Bondslave of Christ, the Deputy God lose face! The system might collapse... revenues might fall off! So Witness Lee remained, in a word, untouchable. The LR system was built on the so-called oracle of God speaking such "frank words" and through them touching others, yet none could touch him or his fallen human nature.
"Freedom is free. It's slavery that's so horribly expensive" - Colonel Templeton, ret., of the 12th Scottish Highlanders, the 'Black Fusiliers'
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