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Old 11-26-2017, 12:41 PM   #1
Bradley
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Angry God in Life and Nature... Oh Really?

I don't know if you guys have the same experience as me but even though I'm so much happier out of the LC and have no intention of ever returning, I sometimes get these irrational fears that somehow I'm spiritually completely screwed now, having gotten off the 'ark' that they were building. Like I've shot myself in the foot and now I'm destined for outer darkness - or is it just cult indoctrination, trying to shake off scare tactics that worked so well to keep me in the group for so long?

So I stop to consider. If they really were what they said they were, if they were today's ark etc, then there should be some testimony. A lampstand is supposed to have light on it. If they really are becoming God in life and nature, then they should, on average, be better people than others who are not God in life and nature.

But I don't see that. I see a lot of people refraining from doing fun things (that they consider 'worldly') but anyone can do that, thats just self-discipline. I see people who are really zealous and passionate about their faith and thats nice, but I know passionate Muslims, doesn't mean anything.

God is love. If they were becoming God they would be becoming love, like hardcore agape love. They'd be super-loving people. All I can see though is some spiritually arrogant religious people

When I left my ex wife because she was abusive, I have never been so badly treated by so many people at once for such unreasonable reasons and with such unreasonable demands. I was told by many different people that it doesn't matter if she is abusive, or that there was no sex in our marriage, or that she made me absolutely miserable. I can't get divorced, period. I should either return to my ex or stay separated and single. I should never have a relationship with another woman, i.e. I should be lonely and celibate for the rest of my life.

Fortunately I was surrounded by loving and supportive people during this time, friends and family (who were not 'God in life and nature') without whom I could never have healed so well. I never received anything but kindness and support from anyone who wasn't in the LC. That's what caused me to realise that the LC loved me no more than my ex did, and treated me about the same - so I left them too, like another abusive spouse. Whenever I wonder whether I made the right decision or not I just remember this.

A few months ago I had what Pink Floyd calls a 'momentary lapse of reason' and freaked out, thinking I made a mistake in leaving the local church - so I contacted a well-known coworker and asked him for help. He couldn't care less about my situation. He just brushed me off and told me to repent and return to my ex. He goes from country to country holding conferences and trainings, but when a person he's known for almost a decade comes to him asking him desperately for help with his Christian life, he shrugs him off like the priest and the levite did to the dying man in Luke 10, he didn't have five minutes to think of some advice.

If the 'saints' in the 'recovery' were becoming God in life and nature, by definition they would be more loving than 'worldly' people. Or at the very least, equal to? But not less than. Oh but thats just the laymen, what about the high authority big brothers who run the show? Nope just as bad. One leading brother told me that if a brother beat his wife, she shouldn't leave him but she should just pray for him to repent.

Of course, God is not just love, he's righteousness. Maybe it'd be okay for everybody to come down on me like a tonne of bricks if I was the bad guy and I was doing a terrible thing, like they're expressing God in His righteousness. But its not like I cheated on my ex because she was flat-chested, that wasn't what happened. She threatened to kill me and I left her because I feared for my safety. Not the same ballpark. But nobody seems to be giving her a hard time for that, they're all on her side like she's some kind of victim.

It seems to me that if they're becoming God in life and nature, they're becoming the Old Testament God who flooded the world, burned Sodom to the ground, sent plagues to slaughter the Egyptians and fiery serpents to bite His people.
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Old 11-26-2017, 01:02 PM   #2
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Default Re: God in life and nature... oh really?

Thanks Bradley for popping on by and making a great post!

I think there are quite a number of forum members who have experienced something very close to what you have described. Maybe some others can chime in here and confirm my suspicions.

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Old 11-26-2017, 01:30 PM   #3
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Originally Posted by Bradley View Post
I don't know if you guys have the same experience as me but even though I'm so much happier out of the LC and have no intention of ever returning
Hey Bradley,

Thanks for sharing, it is not surprising to me that you are much happier outside of the LSm churches. The richness of Christ and His Spirit are real and true - the same can not be said for Witness Lee and his ministry. There are "good", passionate people in the LSm churches, but as you said, there are "good" passionate people that believe in Islam, Scientology, Mormanism, etc. They are not today's ark - that is painfully obvious. And it Witness Lee isn't who he claimed he was - where does that leave him? If his "ministry" isn't what he claimed it was - where does that leave it? It is all in vanity, striving after the wind.

Now if Christ is proclaimed as raised from the dead, how can some of you say that there is no resurrection of the dead? But if there is no resurrection of the dead, then not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified about God that he raised Christ, whom he did not raise if it is true that the dead are not raised. For if the dead are not raised, not even Christ has been raised. And if Christ has not been raised, your faith is futile and you are still in your sins. Then those also who have fallen asleep in Christ have perished. If in Christ we have hope in this life only, we are of all people most to be pitied.
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Old 11-26-2017, 02:07 PM   #4
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So what you're saying with these verses from 1 Cor 15 is:

Quote:

Now if [the local churches really are the Ark], how can some of you say that [bro Lee was not the Minister of the Age]? But if [bro Lee was not the Minister of the Age], then [the local churches are not really the Ark]. And if [the local churches are not really the Ark], then our preaching is in vain and your faith is in vain. We are even found to be misrepresenting God, because we testified about [the local churches, who are not the ark] if it is true that [bro Lee was not the minister of the age]. For if [bro Lee was not the Minister of the Age], [the local churches are not really the Ark]. And if [the local churches are not really the Ark], your faith is futile and you are still in [a silly cult]. Then those also who have [lived their whole life for the LSM] [essentially wasted their lives]. If in Christ we have hope in this [cult] only, we are of all people most to be pitied.
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Old 11-27-2017, 01:49 AM   #5
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Bradley,

I'm sure they never spent much time telling you about the history of the Daystar Motorhome Company.
Quote:
In 1972 [W.E. Miller] gave up editing the Gazette and took a full-time position as chief engineer/designer with Daystar Motor Homes, Inc., 1414 West Artesia Blvd., Compton, California. The firm's $70,000 26' luxury motor home was built on a Dodge 440 commercial truck chassis by a third party in Taiwan named Phosphorous, a Chinese-American firm connected with Witness Lee's Southern Californian 'Local Church'.
Miller even travelled to Phosphorous' Kaohsiung, Taiwan (Republic of China) factory to make arrangements for the construction of the Cor-Ten steel body and teak interior. Only 16 Daystars are known to have been constructed before the firm closed down in 1975, the victim of an alleged money-laundering scheme initiated by Phosphorous' directors Timothy Lee, Samuel Chang and K.H. Weigh.
http://www.coachbuilt.com/des/m/miller/miller.htm

Or, what about the installation and maintenance of admittedly 'unspiritual' son Philip as office manager at LSM?

Witness Lee wasn't even qualified to be an elder in a local assembly, per Titus 1:5-7. The all-too-human association basing its existence on his supposed apostleship has no power over your life. None. And his teachings which percolated through your brain have only as much credence as you willingly give them. No more or less.

My salvation was not to reject Lee et al. My salvation was to "see Jesus", per Hebrews 2:9. Once I saw Jesus, and realised that Lee & Co weren't seeing Jesus but "God's economy" and "the church life" etc then I didn't have to hang out with them anymore. I was free to go on my own path.

Just see Jesus, and follow that vision. That becomes your pathway home to the Father. He's right there, in the Word. He's been there all along. The Holy Spirit will reveal Him to you.
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Old 11-28-2017, 05:26 PM   #6
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Yep I heard of Daystar and Lee's dodgy son. Yesterday I was reading a thread on this forum discussing a book about Watchman Nee being a sex offender and a rapist. Shocking stuff. Its a lot to take in after twelve years of being in that group, more than 1/3 of my life (I'm 33 right now).

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My salvation was not to reject Lee et al. My salvation was to "see Jesus" ... The Holy Spirit will reveal Him to you.
Absolutely. He does. I don't want to give up on God just because I left 'the church'.

A week ago I bumped into an older sister in town while I was walking down the street and made polite small talk. She made a comment when I asked her how her life was, that 'there is a higher life'. Absolutely, amen, yup yup totally. What bothered me about what she said was not that she tried to remind me of the Lord, but that she assumed that because I had left, I was now completely godless and walking in sin. The implication was that if I repented then I would see the light and return to 'the church'.

I have no intention of ever returning but I also have no intention of leaving the Lord. I just have to figure out how to be a Christian all over again, and what I should and should not believe. Its going to take a few years.
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Old 11-28-2017, 06:07 PM   #7
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I have no intention of ever returning but I also have no intention of leaving the Lord. I just have to figure out how to be a Christian all over again, and what I should and should not believe. Its going to take a few years.
And your story will help others on the same path.

Imagine how the disciples felt, leaving the all-encompassing religion of Judaism. After Jesus ascended, all they had was His Spirit within, a handful of believers around them, and perhaps an Old Testament scroll was available. Today, just on my cell phone or my ipad, I have dozens of translations, commentaries, LCD forums for feedback, and search engines. I can't believe the early disciples did as well as they did.
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Old 11-29-2017, 08:52 AM   #8
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And your story will help others on the same path.

Imagine how the disciples felt, leaving the all-encompassing religion of Judaism. After Jesus ascended, all they had was His Spirit within, a handful of believers around them, and perhaps an Old Testament scroll was available. Today, just on my cell phone or my ipad, I have dozens of translations, commentaries, LCD forums for feedback, and search engines. I can't believe the early disciples did as well as they did.
And this forum has been a great resource. Once the spin-meisters of LSM/lc had the only functioning printing press, but those days are over.
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Old 12-01-2017, 09:02 PM   #9
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[QUOTE=Bradley;66863

So I stop to consider. If they really were what they said they were, if they were today's ark etc, then there should be some testimony. [/QUOTE]

Bradley, scrub your brain of such stuff.

The real Noah is Jesus Christ (not Witness Lee); the real Ark is built in His resurrection by Him and His family (the assembly of believers fathered by Him and following His leading. This is not exclusive to LSM Churches. When the doubting, Godless, corrupt and persecuting world that rejects His gospel is judged and baptized in fire rather than a flood, Jesus Christ and His faithful followers will float up above it all as the corporate Christ-Ark to a salvation that is waiting to be revealed in The last days.

They’ve gotten the lamp stand and many other analogies backwards too.

They have a god complex that is very dangerous!

So, does Satan.
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Old 12-01-2017, 11:06 PM   #10
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OK, more backward things:

We become God in life. Nope. Christ is our life.

We become God in nature? Nope. We have become partakers of the divine nature.

Not in the God-head? Yup.

Scrub, scrub, scrub! Read the Bible again, throw out Witness Lee’s mangling of it!
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Old 12-02-2017, 10:09 AM   #11
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God in life and nature was just wishful thinking ... that Lee used to keep his followers on a string.
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Old 12-02-2017, 03:09 PM   #12
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Its called high peak revelation. Not everyone attains to the heights. Most of the respected early church fathers knew it even those who knew the disciples of the apostles believed it and would not take issue with Lees teaching which is really a paraphrase of theirs, and theirs is much more explicit.
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Old 12-02-2017, 03:16 PM   #13
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Its called high peak revelation. Not everyone attains to the heights.
Where did this term come from?
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Old 12-02-2017, 03:24 PM   #14
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Where did this term come from?
The bible. It is mount Zion.
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Old 12-02-2017, 06:22 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by JJ View Post
OK, more backward things:

We become God in life. Nope. Christ is our life.

We become God in nature? Nope. We have become partakers of the divine nature.

Not in the God-head? Yup.

Scrub, scrub, scrub! Read the Bible again, throw out Witness Lee’s mangling of it!
"We become God". . ."we enjoy Christ" in the hyper-subjective world of the LsM it's not about Christ but about us. "Christ" is just a prop to be either waved or ignored. It's all about me, me, me. . .

Peter found out the hard way what happens when you take your eyes off of Jesus. Things degenerate instantly (Matt 14:28-30). "The Bride eyes not her garment" we used to sing. But Lee taught us to look at nothing but our "experiences", our sensations and subjective responses, which are O so slippery and so easily shaded with slithery and subtle things. Again, ask Peter - how easy it is go from Channeling the Father (Matt 16:17) to becoming a Vector for Satan (v.23)!

In Lee-land it's all about me and my abstract overlays, and the ooey-gooey sensation I get upon congratulating myself for scaling the "high peak", and for shouting the right phrases in front of awe-struck, wide-eyed infants.

What's the difference between the Spotless Bride and the Great Harlot? One was looking at her Husband, and one was looking at herself. I was reading the RecV a while back and saw that the King of Israel was a type of lc elder "enjoying grace", per the footnotes in Deuteronomy 17. And where was Jesus? Jesus who? "Rabbi, You are the Son of God, You are the King of Israel!" Nope, not in Deuteronomy 17. The lc elder is king of Israel.
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Old 12-02-2017, 08:53 PM   #16
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The bible. It is mount Zion.
The "high peak revelation" is Mount Zion?
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Old 12-02-2017, 09:24 PM   #17
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The "high peak revelation" is Mount Zion?
Ba baba Ba hahahahahahahaha hahah ....
Koinonia you're too funny lol .... hohoho .... christmas ...
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Old 12-02-2017, 09:52 PM   #18
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The "high peak revelation" is Mount Zion?
Figuratively speaking yes. The high peak revelation of man becoming God is actually the recovery of the truth taught from the beginning.
There is evidence that it was taught in the early church and disciples of the disciples of the apostles taught it. We are made in God's image, being gods, or prototypes of God. Jesus Christ is therefore the minister of our divinity, so that we may become sons of the Highest. "Men are gods and gods are men".

"becoming a god is the highest goal of all" - Basil of Caesarea

The command Be ye perfect is not idealistic gas. Nor is it a command to do the impossible. He is going to make us into creatures that can obey that command. He said (in the Bible) that we were "gods" and He is going to make good His words. If we let Him—for we can prevent Him, if we choose—He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess, dazzling, radiant, immortal creature, pulsating all through with such energy and joy and wisdom and love as we cannot now imagine, a bright stainless mirror which reflects back to God perfectly (though, of course, on a smaller scale) His own boundless power and delight and goodness. The process will be long and in parts very painful; but that is what we are in for. Nothing less. He meant what He said ~ CS Lewis.
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Old 12-03-2017, 05:46 AM   #19
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Its called high peak revelation. Not everyone attains to the heights. Most of the respected early church fathers knew it even those who knew the disciples of the apostles believed it and would not take issue with Lees teaching which is really a paraphrase of theirs, and theirs is much more explicit.
That's for sure. Not even Paul, Peter, or John.
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Old 12-03-2017, 10:26 AM   #20
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Its called high peak revelation. Not everyone attains to the heights. Most of the respected early church fathers knew it even those who knew the disciples of the apostles believed it and would not take issue with Lees teaching which is really a paraphrase of theirs, and theirs is much more explicit.
Sometimes bro EvanG, you make me wonder if you are just playing with us. But you have made me wonder.

I'm no scholar of early Christianity, but I dabble in it enough to be dangerous. Perhaps in my dabbling I missed it in my reading of early Christianity. Please help me expanded my knowledge of it.

Can you please source or cite where you find "respected early church fathers" speaking, writing, or being quoted, concerning : "high peek revelation?"

Until Witness Lee I never heard the term "high peek revelation." Isn't that just a euphemism for : "I'm getting the good stuff straight from God. I'm God's minister of the age?" And then, "if you don't listen to me, and do what I say, I'll take this high peek revelation of God away from you.

I know some out here don't like the word cult thrown around willy-nilly, but this walks and quacks like a duck.
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Old 12-03-2017, 11:50 AM   #21
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Figuratively speaking yes. The high peak revelation of man becoming God is actually the recovery of the truth taught from the beginning.
There is evidence that it was taught in the early church and disciples of the disciples of the apostles taught it. We are made in God's image, being gods, or prototypes of God. Jesus Christ is therefore the minister of our divinity, so that we may become sons of the Highest. "Men are gods and gods are men".

"becoming a god is the highest goal of all" - Basil of Caesarea

The command Be ye perfect is not idealistic gas. Nor is it a command to do the impossible. He is going to make us into creatures that can obey that command. He said (in the Bible) that we were "gods" and He is going to make good His words. If we let Him—for we can prevent Him, if we choose—He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess, dazzling, radiant, immortal creature, pulsating all through with such energy and joy and wisdom and love as we cannot now imagine, a bright stainless mirror which reflects back to God perfectly (though, of course, on a smaller scale) His own boundless power and delight and goodness. The process will be long and in parts very painful; but that is what we are in for. Nothing less. He meant what He said ~ CS Lewis.
It's always quite a big leap for you, brother, isn't it?
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Old 12-03-2017, 01:56 PM   #22
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Sometimes bro EvanG, you make me wonder if you are just playing with us. But you have made me wonder.

I'm no scholar of early Christianity, but I dabble in it enough to be dangerous. Perhaps in my dabbling I missed it in my reading of early Christianity. Please help me expanded my knowledge of it.

Can you please source or cite where you find "respected early church fathers" speaking, writing, or being quoted, concerning : "high peek revelation?"

Until Witness Lee I never heard the term "high peek revelation." Isn't that just a euphemism for : "I'm getting the good stuff straight from God. I'm God's minister of the age?" And then, "if you don't listen to me, and do what I say, I'll take this high peek revelation of God away from you.

I know some out here don't like the word cult thrown around willy-nilly, but this walks and quacks like a duck.
Ireneneus is one and the earliest to believe it. He learned from a disciple of John and probably learned it from him. Athanasius is another respected father in Christianity. Many believers quote his creed as a declaration of orthodoxy but ignore what he says about becoming god. Can one man both be orthodox and heretic?

I'm not talking about terminology.
The topic i thought was becoming god. It is high peak revelation which is Lees terminology.
I'm not saying the fathers used the term high peak revelation. But they certainly believed in man becoming gods. To them it probably was not high peak, they probably taught it in Sunday school.

The term high peak is biblical and the use of mountains as symbols for revelation knowledge. But the terminology was never the topic here.

I think its sad that Christians know the pagan symbols like Christmas trees but don't know the biblical ones like high peaks.
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Old 12-03-2017, 03:13 PM   #23
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Originally Posted by Evangelical View Post
Figuratively speaking yes. The high peak revelation of man becoming God is actually the recovery of the truth taught from the beginning.
There is evidence that it was taught in the early church and disciples of the disciples of the apostles taught it. We are made in God's image, being gods, or prototypes of God. Jesus Christ is therefore the minister of our divinity, so that we may become sons of the Highest. "Men are gods and gods are men".

"becoming a god is the highest goal of all" - Basil of Caesarea
Fall back on that ol' theosis. A process that's proved by getting the right to wear lots of funny hats.

Quote:
The command Be ye perfect is not idealistic gas. Nor is it a command to do the impossible. He is going to make us into creatures that can obey that command. He said (in the Bible) that we were "gods" and He is going to make good His words. If we let Him—for we can prevent Him, if we choose—He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess, dazzling, radiant, immortal creature, pulsating all through with such energy and joy and wisdom and love as we cannot now imagine, a bright stainless mirror which reflects back to God perfectly (though, of course, on a smaller scale) His own boundless power and delight and goodness. The process will be long and in parts very painful; but that is what we are in for. Nothing less. He meant what He said ~ CS Lewis.
I'll take a pound of whatever ol' Clive was smokin'.

The problem I have with this theosis, Witness Lee style, is that it didn't prove to be true for Lee, or anyone else in his cult. It may happen in their imaginations, but not in reality..
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Old 12-03-2017, 03:20 PM   #24
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Fall back on that ol' theosis. A process that's proved by getting the right to wear lots of funny hats.


I'll take a pound of whatever ol' Clive was smokin'.

The problem I have with this theosis, Witness Lee style, is that it didn't prove to be true for Lee, or anyone else in his cult. It may happen in their imaginations, but not in reality..
What about being a "son of God". Is that also in people's imaginations but not in reality?
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Old 12-03-2017, 03:25 PM   #25
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John Piper agrees with "deification":

From:
Contending for Our All: Defending Truth and Treasuring Christ in the Lives ...
By John Piper


Finally, we must not assume that old books, which say some startling things, are necessarily wrong, but may in fact have something glorious to teach us that we never dreamed


What becomes clear when all is taken into account is that Athanasius is pressing on a reality in the Scriptures that we today usually call “glorification” but is using the terminology of 2 Peter 1:4 and Romans 8:29, “Those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.” He is pressing the destiny and the glory of being a brother of the second person of the Trinity, and “sharing in his nature.”
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Old 12-03-2017, 03:43 PM   #26
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Thank you for recommending John Piper. I would recommend him to all the fourth semester FTTA students and any LSM/LC saint that wants to enjoy something more than that offered by LSM.
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Old 12-03-2017, 03:51 PM   #27
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Thank you for recommending John Piper. I would recommend him to all the fourth semester FTTA students and any LSM/LC saint that wants to enjoy something more than that offered by LSM.
Yeah, let's all be transformed into a Christian hedonist. Yea!!!!
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Old 12-03-2017, 03:51 PM   #28
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Thank you for recommending John Piper. I would recommend him to all the fourth semester FTTA students and any LSM/LC saint that wants to enjoy something more than that offered by LSM.
What exactly is the more that Piper offers? You won't hear this teaching outside of the Recovery in evangelical churches, especially not at FTTA level. The Recovery has been teaching glorification/deification for years and realized this is the end goal, while Piper is still struggling to define the word glorification.
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Old 12-03-2017, 04:04 PM   #29
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Yeah, let's all be transformed into a Christian hedonist. Yea!!!!
You know your stuff Awareness! That's what he calls himself, a christian hedonist (I think). He was one of the first persons I read after being set free from the LSM LC movement.
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Old 12-03-2017, 04:16 PM   #30
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What exactly is the more that Piper offers? You won't hear this teaching outside of the Recovery in evangelical churches, especially not at FTTA level. The Recovery has been teaching glorification/deification for years and realized this is the end goal, while Piper is still struggling to define the word glorification.
OK: You can call Piper and others "struggling", but last I checked Piper never started an RV business using the savings of the saints. Open your heart, confess your sin, and ask God to show you if the WL recovery is God's move on the earth. You were deceived in thinking WL had no self, but God will not allow you to continue to deceive the saints. When you open your eyes after death it will not be WL that you see, but the Lord Jesus. What will you tell Him?
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Old 12-03-2017, 06:11 PM   #31
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What exactly is the more that Piper offers? You won't hear this teaching outside of the Recovery in evangelical churches, especially not at FTTA level. The Recovery has been teaching glorification/deification for years and realized this is the end goal, while Piper is still struggling to define the word glorification.
Evangelical, your Laodicea is showing (again).
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Old 12-03-2017, 09:37 PM   #32
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OK: You can call Piper and others "struggling", but last I checked Piper never started an RV business using the savings of the saints. Open your heart, confess your sin, and ask God to show you if the WL recovery is God's move on the earth. You were deceived in thinking WL had no self, but God will not allow you to continue to deceive the saints. When you open your eyes after death it will not be WL that you see, but the Lord Jesus. What will you tell Him?
You have not explained what Piper offers that Lee doesnt in relation to the topic. Just revert to the old Daystar topic. Can't you at least try to be original?
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Old 12-03-2017, 10:13 PM   #33
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What Piper doesn't offer is pompous and shameless self-promotion. He also doesn't offer outrageous and absurd declarations about being the only person on earth speaking as God's oracle. He also doesn't offer off-the-wall, make-it-up-as-he-goes-along crazy teachings...like only those who subscribe wholesale to his personal "ministry" and kowtow to his "apostleship" and his "authority" will be blessed or be in good stead with God.

What Piper does offer is plenty of sound theology and very practical help for Christians of all maturity levels, understand of the Bible and capacity. This is born out by the millions of books and tapes distributed over 30+years. When is the last time a LSM lackey has been invited to speak at a major evangelical Christian conference? You can hold your breath until the mooing cows come home for this to happen Mr. E.

Nobody has to bring up Daystar or any of the other shenanigans pulled by Witness Lee to make a fair comparison between someone like John Piper and Lee, but it's such easy pickens....like shootin fish in a barrel.

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Old 12-04-2017, 02:45 AM   #34
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Piper is good, I like him actually. But there's one fish in Piper's barrel, a big fish actually, that I think I can shoot - how well Piper knows the purpose or goal of salvation.

What does he say the goal of salvation is?

Here https://www.desiringgod.org/messages...-only-wise-god

He says the greatest goal is the humility of man and the glory of God.

"This is the greatest goal of salvation. This is what infinite wisdom was aiming at. “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.”"

According to Piper then the whole reason or main goal of salvation is that Jesus died on the cross so we could boast in the Lord and be humbled. I don't disagree that this is important and part of salvation. But I don't think it is the greatest goal, and I think the apostle Paul agrees.

Romans 8:29 describes the purpose of God's calling - For those God foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, that he might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.

Romans 8:30 says And those he predestined, he also called; those he called, he also justified; those he justified, he also glorified.

It seems to me that based on Romans 8:29-30 the greatest goal of salvation is to be conformed to the image of Christ. Being conformed to Christs's image is far more important and valuable than us being humbled.

Why? Because being conformed to Christ's image is us becoming who God wants us to be, but us being humbled is our experience or reaction to what God has done.

Piper equates "deification" with glorification. For the sake of argument I won't disagree. He at least recognizes that God wants something more than justification, glorification, theosis, deification, call it what we will.

But is such a great thing as recognized by the early church fathers, seen by Piper as the "greatest goal of salvation" ? No, it is something else. The idea that the "greatest goal of salvation" is humility and boasting in the Lord, is therefore his own concept and opinion. There is no verse in the bible that says "the greatest goal is humility of man and glory of God". If there is, it is surely overshadowed in importance by Romans 8:29-30.

So Piper has seemingly skipped over the truth that he tentatively admits in the writings of the early church fathers - deification and glorification, God becoming man so that man might become god. He has seen what is most important to him - humility and giving God the glory, and has missed the greater vision - man sharing in God's glory. "God wants to glorify us in Christ" is possibly something we will never read from John Piper. It unsettles him, because it makes "us the focus".

To be fair to Piper, I have done my research. He does almost tentatively say that the final goal of salvation is deification in a footnote:

“Glorification (in Western terminology), or deification (according to the East), is brought to fruition at the eschaton and lasts for eternity, and so is the final goal of salvation. . . . According to the Eastern church, the goal of salvation is to be made like God. This the Holy Spirit effects in us. It involves no blurring of the Creator-creature distinction, but rather focuses on the union and communion that we are given by God, in which we are made partakers of the divine nature (2 Peter 1:3).” Letham, The Holy Trinity, 474, 498.

https://www.desiringgod.org/messages...ng-for-our-all

Piper goes on to describe how discovering this truth has unsettled him:

And thus Athanasius raises for me one of the most crucial questions of all: What is the ultimate end of creation—the ultimate goal of God in creation and redemption? Is it being or seeing? Is it our being like Christ or our seeing the glory of Christ? How does Romans 8:29 (“predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son”) relate to John 17:24 (“Father, I desire that they also, whom you have given me, may be with me where I am, to see my glory”)? Is the beatific vision of the glory of the Son of God the aim of human creation? Or is likeness to that glory the aim of creation?

Athanasius has helped me go deeper here by unsettling me. I am inclined to stress seeing as the goal rather than being. The reason is that it seems to me that putting the stress on seeing the glory of Christ makes him the focus, but putting the stress on being like Christ makes me the focus. But Athanasius will not let me run away from the biblical texts. His language of deification forces me to think more deeply and worship more profoundly.


I'm not saying Piper's wrong, or anything like that. He just seems to have declared, at times, the goal of salvation to be other things. He is worried about "me being the focus" and not Christ, but this is never really a concern. As Piper said, deification forces him to worship more profoundly.
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Old 12-04-2017, 08:08 AM   #35
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Ireneneus is one and the earliest to believe it. He learned from a disciple of John and probably learned it from him. Athanasius is another respected father in Christianity. Many believers quote his creed as a declaration of orthodoxy but ignore what he says about becoming god.
Can one man both be orthodox and heretic?
Thanks for asking.

Can one man be both orthodox and heretical?

Yes.

Martin Luther, for example, your first MOTA, was both. He believed that the communion bread was literally the body of Christ, a centuries old RCC superstition. That teaching is heterodoxical and heretical.

Witness Lee, for example, your last MOTA, was both.
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Old 12-04-2017, 08:13 AM   #36
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John Piper agrees with "deification":

From:
Contending for Our All: Defending Truth and Treasuring Christ in the Lives ...
By John Piper


Finally, we must not assume that old books, which say some startling things, are necessarily wrong, but may in fact have something glorious to teach us that we never dreamed


What becomes clear when all is taken into account is that Athanasius is pressing on a reality in the Scriptures that we today usually call “glorification” but is using the terminology of 2 Peter 1:4 and Romans 8:29, “Those whom he foreknew he also predestined to be conformed to the image of his Son, in order that he might be the firstborn among many brothers.” He is pressing the destiny and the glory of being a brother of the second person of the Trinity, and “sharing in his nature.”
Still looking for where Piper says you are God.
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Old 12-04-2017, 08:32 AM   #37
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Piper is good, I like him actually.

What does he say the goal of salvation is?

He says the greatest goal is the humility of man and the glory of God.

"This is the greatest goal of salvation. This is what infinite wisdom was aiming at. “Let the one who boasts, boast in the Lord.”"

According to Piper then the whole reason or main goal of salvation is that Jesus died on the cross so we could boast in the Lord and be humbled.
How I wish W. Lee could have learned this from Piper!
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Old 12-04-2017, 08:58 AM   #38
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You have not explained what Piper offers that Lee doesnt in relation to the topic. Just revert to the old Daystar topic. Can't you at least try to be original?
Plus, even when Witness was wrong he was right. Don't you know anything bro HERn?
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Old 12-04-2017, 10:05 AM   #39
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I appreciate Bradley's candor in the OP. Whether we're in the LC or out of the LC our situation with respect to Big Picture is one of uncertainty. We attempt to cover our own uncertainty with arguments against those who are on different paths. It's as if by winning the argument we hope to gain the certainty that we lack.
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Old 12-04-2017, 10:23 AM   #40
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How I wish W. Lee could have learned this from Piper!
Those who humble themselves in this age will be glorified in the next. Those who glorify themselves in this age will be humbled.

Witness Lee was sleeping in the back of the room when they gave that lesson in Sunday School. He never heard it. The whole system he built was one of self-exaltation. He could pan whole swaths of scripture as "natural", in contravention to NT reception, yet nobody could question any one of his teachings. He was untouchable.

You don't think God's going to touch that, in the next age? Lee was untouchable in this age, and also in the next?
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Old 12-04-2017, 12:59 PM   #41
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Still looking for where Piper says you are God.
He's shy of saying what Athanasius or the other fathers actually said -
"man becomes god". Catholics and Orthodox are not shy of quoting them directly, nor CS Lewis. My guess is that he knows he'll be thrown out of evangelical circles if he says that. Nevertheless he sees something there that he is not comfortable with, as it goes against his theology.

Still, it does not explain why he makes the "greatest goal of salvation" something other than glorification.
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Old 12-04-2017, 02:12 PM   #42
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He's shy of saying what Athanasius or the other fathers actually said - "man becomes god". Catholics and Orthodox are not shy of quoting them directly, nor CS Lewis. My guess is that he knows he'll be thrown out of evangelical circles if he says that. Nevertheless he sees something there that he is not comfortable with, as it goes against his theology.
Perhaps the real reason for Piper not saying "man becomes god" is that the Spirit of God is not anointing him to say that because it is not in the Bible.

Obviously you make Witness Lee's writings the standard by which we judge all other writers including the writers of the Bible.
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Old 12-04-2017, 07:03 PM   #43
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Perhaps the real reason for Piper not saying "man becomes god" is that the Spirit of God is not anointing him to say that because it is not in the Bible.

Obviously you make Witness Lee's writings the standard by which we judge all other writers including the writers of the Bible.
Not just Lee, the early church fathers, even CS Lewis expound the scripture about glorification better than Piper if we do a chapter by chapter comparison. Not to blame him, but if I was looking for a good resource on the matter I would prefer Lee over Piper.

He seems inhibited by an irrational fear of being the focus rather than Christ when he writes:

"I am inclined to stress seeing as the goal rather than being. The reason is that it seems to me that putting the stress on seeing the glory of Christ makes him the focus, but putting the stress on being like Christ makes me the focus.".

The bible teaches that we are the focus of His salvation - Christ did not die for Himself but for us.

Piper dips his toe into the doctrine of "deification" by referencing the early church fathers, dilutes it back to mere "glorification" to mold it into his evangelical Calvinist viewpoint.

In contrast, CS Lewis has the vision of deification and is not shy to state it plainly.

In his book Mere Christianity, which can be seen as a manifesto on the subject, Lewis argues that the whole purpose of Christianity is to turn people into what he variously calls “new men,” “little Christs,” “Sons of God”—and “gods and goddesses.”

Lewis knew such language might give many of us a shock, but he insisted that this is “precisely what Christianity is about.

Although largely forgotten by Christians today, deification is at the heart of Lewis’ vision of reality. From his sermons to his apologetic essays, from his space fiction to his children’s stories, one can hardly find a corner of his literary universe that is not illumined by the idea.

It is not surprising that some modern Christians might find this idea baffling or even heretical; but neither is it surprising that Lewis did not since his mind was “shaped by the whole scope of intellectual history and Christian thought…liberated from the narrow confines of the religious views of the day.

http://www.cslewis.org/journal/shine...f-deification/

I suggest that Piper is inhibited as he "represents the narrow confines of the religious views of the day", whereas CS Lewis, Lee and others, are not.
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Old 12-04-2017, 08:56 PM   #44
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But didn't Lee tell you plainly that no Christian author since 1945 is worth reading?

How do you now dare quote him as support for Lee's questionable teachings?

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Old 12-04-2017, 10:06 PM   #45
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But didn't Lee tell you plainly that no Christian author since 1945 is worth reading?
Good point! You see, you can't have it both ways Mr. E. Either Witness Lee was the ONLY PERSON ON EARTH speaking as God's oracle...or HE WAS NOT. Which is it my friend? You can quote Piper all day every day for eternity and your posts are as so much blowing in the wind.

In any event, I can tell by your sound-bite quotes taken out of context that you know next to nothing about John Piper. You have ZERO understanding and comprehension of his teachings, and certainly you don't know his mind and heart. Like most Local Churchers you are decidedly clueless about the depth and breadth of many of the modern Christian teachers, scholars and apologists.
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Old 12-04-2017, 11:23 PM   #46
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I think I have compared and contrasted Piper and CS Lewis quite well.

Both contrasting in their views about the goal of salvation.

CS Lewis seems to embrace a broader swath of Christian thought. CS Lewis and Witness Lee agree somewhat about what the purpose of Christianity is.

Piper on the other hand is unsettled by Athanasius. He has not ventured far from evangelical thought.

Which one has the anointing of the Holy Spirit?

Ohio suggests it is Piper:

"Perhaps the real reason for Piper not saying "man becomes god" is that the Spirit of God is not anointing him to say that because it is not in the Bible."

So Ohio is also implying that CS Lewis is not anointed by the Spirit, because Lewis says things which are not in the Bible - "new men,” “little Christs,” “Sons of God”—and “gods and goddesses"
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Old 12-05-2017, 03:32 AM   #47
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—and “gods and goddesses"
In this, Lewis' inner muse is not the HS but his own fevered imagination. "Hear, oh Israel, there is but one God. . ."
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Old 12-05-2017, 07:07 AM   #48
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I think I have compared and contrasted Piper and CS Lewis quite well.

Both contrasting in their views about the goal of salvation.

CS Lewis seems to embrace a broader swath of Christian thought. CS Lewis and Witness Lee agree somewhat about what the purpose of Christianity is.

Piper on the other hand is unsettled by Athanasius. He has not ventured far from evangelical thought.

Which one has the anointing of the Holy Spirit?

Ohio suggests it is Piper:

"Perhaps the real reason for Piper not saying "man becomes god" is that the Spirit of God is not anointing him to say that because it is not in the Bible."

So Ohio is also implying that CS Lewis is not anointed by the Spirit, because Lewis says things which are not in the Bible - "new men,” “little Christs,” “Sons of God”—and “gods and goddesses"
CS Lewis and Witness Lee are not alone. In addition to being taught in the Eastern Orthodox Church, recent scholarship has found deification taught by prominent western theologians including Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, early Anglicanism, early Methodism and Jonathan Edwards. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journ...8E6671B9AEBB78 http://www.ctsfw.net/media/pdfs/marq...andtheosis.pdf

The question then becomes, what's so special about Witness Lee? Why must deification be "recovered" when it was never lost?
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Old 12-05-2017, 07:49 AM   #49
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I reject how EV equates the word “glorification” to “deification” in this thread, changing God’s Word to something not said, following Witness Lee, and not Piper, who stopped short of saying it, being troubled by it.

Aron has rightly said elsewhere on these boards, quoting the Apostle Paul. “We do not yet know what we shall be”. So, we too must limit ourselves to what the Word of God does say, in anticipation of a glorious unveiling later.

Instead, we should follow Paul’s exhortation in Philippians 2:5-11
http://biblehub.com/philippians/2-5.htm

Thus, humility, and submission to God is part of God’s high peak revelation after all.
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Old 12-05-2017, 08:44 AM   #50
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Aron has rightly said elsewhere on these boards, quoting the Apostle Paul. “We do not yet know what we shall be”. So, we too must limit ourselves to what the Word of God does say, in anticipation of a glorious unveiling later.
The aging and wise Apostle John also said (3.2) as much.

I spent a considerable amount of prayerful study back in the mid-90's attempting to absorb this supposed "high peak" truth with those around me in my LC. It did little for our faith or our daily walk, and as with so many winds and waves of teaching emanating from the MOTA, this teaching fell into the LC trash bin of failed experiments from WL's own "laboratory."

Without realizing it, we merely fulfilled Paul's own directive to the Thessalonians, "Test all things, hold on to what is good." (5.21) Eventually one of the wise sages in Cleveland would help us put it to rest with an observation like, "BruLee sees things that we don't." Whatever. Time to move on. At least the Lee-trained conscience of our leaders was now free to move on to greener pastures ... without "guilt." So much for "administration local, each answ'ring to the Lord," as we used to sing. (#824)

Today what troubles me most is the timing and the fruit of this "high peak recovery" of becoming god in life and nature.

Firstly, this teaching, supposedly inspired by the Spirit, originated by WL following the excommunications of godly men who attempted to protect the saints from Lee's own predatorial son Philip, LSM's Office Manager and 2nd in command. This timing is highly suspicious and diversionary. Remember how Paul and the brothers were "ministering to the Lord and fasting" before the Spirit moved to send them with the supposed "low gospel" to the Gentiles? Should not something similar have occurred before the release of "high peaks?"

Secondly, this teaching only heightened the arrogant attitude of Lee's accolades. "I am a baby god, no one sees what I see!" was shouted in the streets. Where was humility? Rather, the ministry of condemnation moved into overdrive. Sleeper cells around the country regularly informed headquarters of those not completely on board. High Peak or bust! After almost 30 years, I still have not seen anything remotely resembling good fruit.
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Old 12-05-2017, 10:38 AM   #51
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The aging and wise Apostle John also said (3.2) as much.

I spent a considerable amount of prayerful study back in the mid-90's attempting to absorb this supposed "high peak" truth with those around me in my LC. It did little for our faith or our daily walk, and as with so many winds and waves of teaching emanating from the MOTA, this teaching fell into the LC trash bin of failed experiments from WL's own "laboratory."
You must be talking about those highfalutin peak teachings?

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Today what troubles me most is the timing and the fruit of this "high peak recovery" of becoming god in life and nature.
What's the word I'm looking for? Oh I got it : sublimation.

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Originally Posted by Ohio
Secondly, this teaching only heightened the arrogant attitude of Lee's accolades. "I am a baby god, no one sees what I see!" was shouted in the streets.
Ahhhh! He's a cute little baby god. He looks like a little angel. Do baby gods require diapers?

Did you mean that shouting baby gods in the streets were accolades to Lee?
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Old 12-05-2017, 11:29 AM   #52
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In this, Lewis' inner muse is not the HS but his own fevered imagination. "Hear, oh Israel, there is but one God. . ."
If you read Lewis' "The Abolition of Man" maybe Lewis' muse was The Tao.
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Old 12-05-2017, 02:01 PM   #53
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I reject how EV equates the word “glorification” to “deification” in this thread, changing God’s Word to something not said, following Witness Lee, and not Piper, who stopped short of saying it, being troubled by it.

Aron has rightly said elsewhere on these boards, quoting the Apostle Paul. “We do not yet know what we shall be”. So, we too must limit ourselves to what the Word of God does say, in anticipation of a glorious unveiling later.

Instead, we should follow Paul’s exhortation in Philippians 2:5-11
http://biblehub.com/philippians/2-5.htm

Thus, humility, and submission to God is part of God’s high peak revelation after all.
Actually I think it was Piper who equated deification with glorification:

"“Glorification (in Western terminology), or deification (according to the East), is brought to fruition at the eschaton and lasts for eternity, and so is the final goal of salvation"

This is actually not too different from Witness Lee, as deification is the end result of glorification and the preceding stages (justification, sanctification etc). "Deification is an organic union with Christ".

CS Lewis's terminology - "gods and goddesses" to me this is bordering on paganism.
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Old 12-05-2017, 02:09 PM   #54
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CS Lewis and Witness Lee are not alone. In addition to being taught in the Eastern Orthodox Church, recent scholarship has found deification taught by prominent western theologians including Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, early Anglicanism, early Methodism and Jonathan Edwards. https://www.cambridge.org/core/journ...8E6671B9AEBB78 http://www.ctsfw.net/media/pdfs/marq...andtheosis.pdf

The question then becomes, what's so special about Witness Lee? Why must deification be "recovered" when it was never lost?
In a way it has been "lost" in particular types of Christianity -evangelicalism for example. I think what is recovered in not the idea itself per se, as it was never really hidden as you showed, but its rightful place as the "high peak of divine revelation".

Between different churches the gospel is not too different, however their belief in the goal or purpose of salvation might be different. One might see earthly prosperity as the goal, others may see humility and obedience as the goal, others might see getting to heaven as the goal. The early church seemed to have "deification" or "glorification" as the goal - to be fully conformed to the image of the Son. That must be God's highest purpose for mankind.
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Old 12-05-2017, 03:07 PM   #55
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In a way it has been "lost" in particular types of Christianity -evangelicalism for example. I think what is recovered in not the idea itself per se, as it was never really hidden as you showed, but its rightful place as the "high peak of divine revelation".

Between different churches the gospel is not too different, however their belief in the goal or purpose of salvation might be different. One might see earthly prosperity as the goal, others may see humility and obedience as the goal, others might see getting to heaven as the goal. The early church seemed to have "deification" or "glorification" as the goal - to be fully conformed to the image of the Son. That must be God's highest purpose for mankind.
Deification hasn't been lost or recovered. Deification doesn't happen, in other Christians sects, or the local church sect.

Ask yourself : from the beginning of time who has been deified?
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Old 12-05-2017, 04:23 PM   #56
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Deification hasn't been lost or recovered. Deification doesn't happen, in other Christians sects, or the local church sect.

Ask yourself : from the beginning of time who has been deified?

The early church father Irenaeus believed in deification. Irenaeus studied under bishop Polycarp, who in turn had been a disciple of John the Apostle. Such a man wrote against gnostic heresies - if the idea of deification was so heretical and against the bible then surely he would have rejected it.

The Westminster Dictionary of Christian Theology contains the following in an article titled "Deification":
Deification (Greek theosis) is for Orthodoxy the goal of every Christian. Man, according to the Bible, is 'made in the image and likeness of God.'. . . It is possible for man to become like God, to become deified, to become god by grace. This doctrine is based on many passages of both OT and NT (e.g. Ps. 82 (81).6; II Peter 1.4), and it is essentially the teaching both of St Paul, though he tends to use the language of filial adoption (cf. Rom. 8.9—17; Gal. 4.5—7), and the Fourth Gospel (cf. 17.21—23).

The language of II Peter is taken up by St Irenaeus, in his famous phrase, 'if the Word has been made man, it is so that men may be made gods' (Adv. Haer V, Pref.), and becomes the standard in Greek theology. In the fourth century, St. Athanasius repeats Irenaeus almost word for word, and in the fifth century St Cyril of Alexandria says that we shall become sons 'by participation' (Greek methexis). Deification is the central idea in the spirituality of St. Maximus the Confessor, for whom the doctrine is the corollary of the Incarnation: 'Deification, briefly, is the encompassing and fulfillment of all times and ages,' . . . and St. Symeon the New Theologian at the end of the tenth century writes, 'He who is God by nature converses with those whom he has made gods by grace, as a friend converses with his friends, face to face.' . . .
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Old 12-05-2017, 05:26 PM   #57
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Psalm 82 says, "You are gods but you will die like men"; not particularly my choice of final destination, thank you very much.

And Jesus said the angels see God's face- does that make them gods?

Gabriel said that he stands before God- does that make him a little god?

Methexis = participation. . . my cat also participates in my household.

There's simply too much straining at the bit in these readings, as if perspiration and hope would make it so. What about loving the person next to you? Isn't THAT the great commandment?? I saw too much doctrine on the LSM/lc, grasping doctrine, feverish even, and far too little love. I suspect the 2 phenomena are connected.

Love is giving when nothing comes back. The LSM trainers told us bluntly, "Don't waste your time" with those who cannot repay you in this age. I suspect that their church-building programme & their teachings are tightly linked. Thoughts & intentions go right along with acts.

I don't know about Irenaeus, but Cyril had little love that I can see. He loved to fight. I wouldn't cite him as an authority.
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Old 12-05-2017, 11:08 PM   #58
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Psalm 82 says, "You are gods but you will die like men"; not particularly my choice of final destination, thank you very much.

And Jesus said the angels see God's face- does that make them gods?

Gabriel said that he stands before God- does that make him a little god?

Methexis = participation. . . my cat also participates in my household.

There's simply too much straining at the bit in these readings, as if perspiration and hope would make it so. What about loving the person next to you? Isn't THAT the great commandment?? I saw too much doctrine on the LSM/lc, grasping doctrine, feverish even, and far too little love. I suspect the 2 phenomena are connected.

Love is giving when nothing comes back. The LSM trainers told us bluntly, "Don't waste your time" with those who cannot repay you in this age. I suspect that their church-building programme & their teachings are tightly linked. Thoughts & intentions go right along with acts.

I don't know about Irenaeus, but Cyril had little love that I can see. He loved to fight. I wouldn't cite him as an authority.
Note that they did not call themselves gods. God called them that. God appointed them with authority and in the verse you quoted he says he will take away that authority and they will "die like men".

This is the bible evidence:

1) In Psalm 82:6, God called them gods:

Psalm 82:6 I have said, Ye are gods; and all of you are children of the most High.


Cambridge bible says:

I is emphatic. It is by God’s appointment that they have been invested with divine authority to execute judgement in His name.


2) Christ defended himself as the son of God by pointing out that God called them gods in the Scripture.

a) Jesus confirmed that God called them gods:

John 10:34 Jesus replied, "It is written in your own Scriptures that God said to certain leaders of the people, 'I say, you are gods!'

If he called them 'gods,' to whom the word of God came--and Scripture cannot be set aside--

...
Why then do you accuse me of blasphemy because I said, 'I am God's Son'?


3) The early church understanding of deification matches this understanding of the Psalms.

Augustine of Hippo (354–430) said: "But he himself that justifies also deifies, for by justifying he makes sons of God. 'For he has given them power to become the sons of God' [referring to John 1:12]. If then we have been made sons of god, we have also been made gods.


Justin Martyr (c. 100-165)

"[Men] were made like God, free from suffering and death, provided that they kept His commandments, and were deemed deserving of the name of His sons, and yet they, becoming like Adam and Eve, work out death for themselves; let the interpretation of the Psalm be held just as you wish, yet thereby it is demonstrated that all men are deemed worthy of becoming "gods," and of having power to become sons of the Highest.
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Old 12-06-2017, 03:32 AM   #59
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-1

Evangelical,

what kind of gods die like men? I'm not anyone wants to be that. If God takes away their authority, they are god? The Hebrew faith says "one God", and you present me with gods who lose authority and die like men. I'll stick with the former. But thank you for the invitation.
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Old 12-06-2017, 06:31 AM   #60
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In a way it has been "lost" in particular types of Christianity -evangelicalism for example. I think what is recovered in not the idea itself per se, as it was never really hidden as you showed, but its rightful place as the "high peak of divine revelation".

Between different churches the gospel is not too different, however their belief in the goal or purpose of salvation might be different. One might see earthly prosperity as the goal, others may see humility and obedience as the goal, others might see getting to heaven as the goal. The early church seemed to have "deification" or "glorification" as the goal - to be fully conformed to the image of the Son. That must be God's highest purpose for mankind.
Glorification, according to Lee is "when the spirit, soul and body are reconstituted wholly." "...sanctification consummates in the believers' glorification." (The Spirit with Our Spirit, Chapter 11, Section 6)

The doctrine has never been totally lost. The question is whether or not deification actually ever occurs and if so to whom?

I assume you think it's occurring in Lee's local church movement. I was in that group for thirteen years. I saw people working hard for their own sanctification.

But it's a tricky proposition. Seeking to be sanctified and glorified is seeking your own ultimate salvation. What did Jesus say? "...whoever desires to save his life will lose it..."

I saw that the leaders including Lee himself, sought their own "glorification." I saw him who was supposed to be the furthest along in the deification process suing Christians who disagreed with him.

I saw an elder who was supposed to be the spiritual leader in the locality drum people out because they didn't hold the right opinion not about Christ but about Witness Lee. I saw leaders take the money that the saints gave to the Lord use it to live in an opulent life-style.

When I saw what was actually going on versus the "vision", the leaders lost the hold of their "spiritual authority" over me and I left.

So, the doctrine doesn't need to be recovered. It was never lost. The spiritual reality is the problem. If the proof is in the pudding, where's the pudding?
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Old 12-06-2017, 07:31 AM   #61
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Evangelical,

Quoting early church “fathers” (who led Christianity headlong into the dark ages), Eastern Orthodox sources, and Piper’s review of them, which he found “troubling”, to support “deification” versus the Biblical “glorification”? I also reject their equating of glorification to deification (becoming God).

We shall be like Christ (doesn’t say “be God” or “be gods”) when He appears indeed, http://biblehub.com/1_john/3-2.htm. As Ohio pointed out, this verse says we do not yet know what we shall be.

This is what Christ looks like on earth http://biblehub.com/nasb/acts/10-38.htm.

Bradley’s original point, and many others here, are pointing out the disparity between this description of Christ (who is God, but laid that aside to serve, die for, and give life to sinners) and what they (and I) observed taught and practiced in “the local churches”.

Simply said self glorification is of the devil, not God. We saw that, and are calling it out. Real glorification is “Christ in you, the hope of glory” being manifested upon His glorious return.

Grace and peace to you, in Christ.
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Old 12-06-2017, 09:43 AM   #62
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The early church father Irenaeus believed in deification. Irenaeus studied under bishop Polycarp, who in turn had been a disciple of John the Apostle.
Yeah, okay. I know. Irenaeus was a Blended Brother. Pass it on to Kangas.

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Such a man wrote against gnostic heresies - if the idea of deification was so heretical and against the bible then surely he would have rejected it.
Okay, slay the Gnostics and Marcionites, and become the Father of the Roman Catholic church.

Plus, speaking of scripture, Irenaeus considered the deuterocanonical books as scripture. I like that but prolly can't go that far, tho I appreciate the respect him gave them. In them the Logos and Wisdom are basically considered the same thing (It was "from the beginning" - in the book of the Wisdom of Solomon, considered Old Testament, what was said in the gospel of John about Logos, is said about Wisdom).

Finally. How did Irenaeus claim we become God? He thought it was by eating the Eucharist. So not only is he considered the father of the RCC, but also the pioneer of transubstantiation.

And last. Thanks bro Evan, for not answering my question. Good dodge bro.
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Old 12-06-2017, 10:01 AM   #63
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Quoting early church “fathers” (who led Christianity headlong into the dark ages), Eastern Orthodox sources, and Piper’s review of them, which he found “troubling”, to support “deification” versus the Biblical “glorification”? I also reject their equating of glorification to deification (becoming God).

Bradley’s original point, and many others here, are pointing out the disparity between this description of Christ (who is God, but laid that aside to serve, die for, and give life to sinners) and what they (and I) observed taught and practiced in “the local churches”.

Simply said self glorification is of the devil, not God. We saw that, and are calling it out. Real glorification is “Christ in you, the hope of glory” being manifested upon His glorious return.
JJ, great points, very helpful, thanks.

Jesus asked the Pharisees, "How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and do not seek the glory that is from the only God?" (John 5.44) Many of the exact same failures we see in the Jewish leaders, I saw in LC leaders. Human nature has not changed! And it only changes when we are obedient to Him and His word.

During the run up to the GLA quarantines, I saw operatives from LSM fighting for the spoils of war. They really didn't care one bit for the actual saints in the LC's, but really just proclaimed the GLA LC's as their fruit. They promulgated that every GLA LC was theirs, and belonged to them, and not Titus Chu in Cleveland. This forced LC elders to decide who "owned" us, whose fruit we were, and who did we belong to.

Self-glorification is not just self-exaltation, but also usurps what only God rightly owns. During the previous quarantines, did not TC drill John Ingalls in a letter, "Is it not a fact that you brothers and the church in Anaheim owe Brother Lee your existence?" (STTIL) Talk about dethroning the Lord Jesus, who purchased the church thru His own blood! It was often these trying times when the true character of LC leaders got shined on by God Himself.

I thought the Apostle Paul addressed this once for all -- "Was Paul crucified for you? Or were you baptized into the name of Paul?" (I Cor. 1.13)
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Old 12-06-2017, 10:47 AM   #64
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[I]John 10:34 Jesus replied, "It is written in your own Scriptures that God said to certain leaders of the people, 'I say, you are gods!
If we're already gods then what's the purpose of deification?
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Old 12-06-2017, 11:15 AM   #65
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The question is whether or not deification actually ever occurs and if so to whom?...
But it's a tricky proposition. Seeking to be sanctified and glorified is seeking your own ultimate salvation. What did Jesus say? "...whoever desires to save his life will lose it..."
I saw that the leaders including Lee himself, sought their own "glorification." I saw him who was supposed to be the furthest along in the deification process suing Christians who disagreed with him....
So, the doctrine doesn't need to be recovered. It was never lost. The spiritual reality is the problem. If the proof is in the pudding, where's the pudding?
At some point (my memorial fails me when) there was a term thrown around the Local Church - "Christified". I actually think it is a better term than deification. For our identity and destination as Christians is most specifically wrapped up in the Person and work of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. Yes, our "God and Father, is over all and through all and in all", (Eph 4:6) yet the practical outworking and tangible experience finds that we are "in Christ" and "Christ in us" is truly "our hope of Glory". (Col 1:27)

Yes, there is "a Man in the glory", and yes we are called to share and participate in this glory. The apostle Peter knew very well about sharing and participating in this glory. He put it this way - "Partakers of the Divine nature" (2 Peter 1:4) For Peter, who spent 3+ years with the Lord Jesus, God's glory was on vivid display during the life and ministry of Jesus. Now we, as his disciples, have been entrusted with a life and ministry of our own. This is where the rubber of "the spiritual reality" meets the road. Are we expressing "the Divine nature" in our lives and ministries? Do we treat others, regardless of their love or respect for ourselves, as Jesus did? How do we react when we come across the man laying in the road, beaten and left for dead? Do we visit and care for the hungry, the thirsty, the stranger, the naked, the sick or those in prison?

It's all too easy for us to shout, pump our fists and bloviate about being "baby gods"and "Godmen" in the friendly and self-righteous confines of a comfortable meeting hall. But what really counts before God and men is what happens after the meeting. Being "God in life and nature" in the meeting is virtually worthless to the man laying in the road if we just pass him by. "Eating Jesus" is an empty, worthless practice if we leave real stomachs empty, scorn the stranger, ignore the naked and sick and never visit those in prison.

Witness Lee and his followers were/are not the only Christians guilty of the hypocrisy I have outlined above, they are just the ones we are most familiar with. Also it doesn't help when you claim to be the sole recipients and guardians of all "the high peak truths" and proclaim your movement as "THE Lord's Recovery".

Ok, I'll get off my high horse....it won't be hard since he's only a Shetland pony anyway.

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Old 12-06-2017, 02:08 PM   #66
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I know a brother, of Elden Hall fame, that visited those in jail, and in nursing homes, while in the c. in Ft. Lauderdale.

Even tho we were close in Ft. Lauderdale, he didn't tell me about it until we were long out of the LC. He said he kept it secret because he knew the brothers wouldn't agree with it.

His name out here is "Hosepipe." But I doubt Untohim left any of his posts on the forum. He sat in love feasts at the table with Lee. He said the guy made the hair on the nape of the neck stand up. He never like Lee in the least, and he was pretty vile with it on these forums.
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Old 12-06-2017, 03:29 PM   #67
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If we're already gods then what's the purpose of deification?
It says, "You are gods, but you will die like men". Jesus knew the rest of the verse, as did his audience. Lee didn't, or ignored it, hoping his audience was ignorant. Evangelical tries to cover it & says that God takes away the authority of these 'gods' and they die like men. What kinds of gods are those?
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Old 12-07-2017, 03:56 PM   #68
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It says, "You are gods, but you will die like men". Jesus knew the rest of the verse, as did his audience. Lee didn't, or ignored it, hoping his audience was ignorant. Evangelical tries to cover it & says that God takes away the authority of these 'gods' and they die like men. What kinds of gods are those?
The early church fathers interpreted those verses in positive light regarding man becoming god and none of them, not even the ones who wrote strongly against heresy ever hesitated, like Evangelicals do, at the phrase "man becomes god".

To think about it, men who defended the faith against non-Trinitarian and gnostic heresies also believed that man becomes god.

This is something very hard for you or anyone to deny, and is the reason why Orthodox and Catholic still accept it today.

It is a historical and credible teaching based on the Bible.

Here's something to think about:

The teaching about man becoming god is more historical and Christian than Christmas and Easter is today. In contrast to these celebrations, it:
- dates back to the early church
- is free from pagan influence
- has not been turned into a commercial enterprise
- is free (costs nothing).
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Old 12-07-2017, 05:44 PM   #69
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It is a historical and credible teaching based on the Bible.
No one is claiming that Mistletoe and colored eggs are high peak teachings either.

And this "historical and credible teaching" is not based on the Bible, unless the writings of all of these Church Fathers is now scripture. That's what we have been trying to tell you.
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Old 12-08-2017, 07:53 AM   #70
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I second what Ohio said.
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Old 12-08-2017, 09:02 AM   #71
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The early church fathers interpreted those verses in positive light regarding man becoming god and none of them, not even the ones who wrote strongly against heresy ever hesitated, like Evangelicals do, at the phrase "man becomes god".

To think about it, men who defended the faith against non-Trinitarian and gnostic heresies also believed that man becomes god.

This is something very hard for you or anyone to deny, and is the reason why Orthodox and Catholic still accept it today.

It is a historical and credible teaching based on the Bible.

Here's something to think about:

The teaching about man becoming god is more historical and Christian than Christmas and Easter is today. In contrast to these celebrations, it:
- dates back to the early church
- is free from pagan influence
- has not been turned into a commercial enterprise
- is free (costs nothing).
I hate to break this to you Evan but there' s a very simple reason people can't accept the "teaching about man becoming god." Gods are immortal. Men aren't.

If you look at the long list of guys who taught that men were becoming gods including Athanasius, Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, Jonathan Edwards and Witness Lee, you might notice that none of them are around. That's because they all died.

That's pretty powerful evidence that deification is bunkum. No matter how much you like the idea that "men become gods" the evidence against the idea is incontrovertible.
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Old 12-08-2017, 06:51 PM   #72
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I hate to break this to you Evan but there' s a very simple reason people can't accept the "teaching about man becoming god." Gods are immortal. Men aren't.

If you look at the long list of guys who taught that men were becoming gods including Athanasius, Augustine, Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, Jonathan Edwards and Witness Lee, you might notice that none of them are around. That's because they all died.

That's pretty powerful evidence that deification is bunkum. No matter how much you like the idea that "men become gods" the evidence against the idea is incontrovertible.
But even if Lee's interpretation of "men becoming gods" is correct - that doesn't change the fact that the man isn't who he said he was, nor his ministry what he claimed it to be.

If Lee created a church that is merely a personality cult, as Awareness puts it... then there is no recovery and no local expression of the Lords move. Just a guy who was quick to promote himself and his works and quicker to disparage other believers. Where would the LSm be without generalizing, mischaracterizing, and bad mouthing fellow believers?

I'm personally thankful for Christ and sacrifice, the Holy Spirit and His move, and the Father, moving as one to carry out His divine plan. Christ as my solid rock, scripture as my truth, and the Spirit as my guide and comfort is better than 1000 days in the courts of Lee.
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Old 12-08-2017, 08:48 PM   #73
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https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=D1n5CQe1krI
Not aimed at anyone in particular.

I can’t hang with this discussion.
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Old 12-09-2017, 10:41 AM   #74
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I hate to butt in, but if gods can't die wouldn't that mean that Jesus wasn't God? Just wondering.
The Gospel of John addresses the issue explicitly. There Jesus explains that no one had the power to take his life; but, he had the power both to lay his life down and to take it up again.

Quote:
John 10:15 As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father; and I lay down My life for the sheep. 16 And other sheep I have which are not of this fold; them also I must bring, and they will hear My voice; and there will be one flock and one shepherd.

17 “Therefore My Father loves Me, because I lay down My life that I may take it again. 18 No one takes it from Me, but I lay it down of Myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This command I have received from My Father.”
So, whereas you characterized immortality negatively as the inability to die, the Gospel of John construes it positively in the case of Jesus Christ as power over both life and death.
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Old 12-09-2017, 12:03 PM   #75
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Your point is off topic Harold. I'm sure everyone is grateful to you for letting us know that the many of the Greek manuscripts did not have spaces or punctuations. How have we ever gone on with our lives without knowing this? And anyone who knows just a little about history knows that all sorts of people have claimed to be divine, a god or the son of god, etc, and that some of their followers claimed that they were resurrected. But the problem is is that they were NOT the incarnate Son of the living God and they were NOT resurrected. Jesus Christ WAS the incarnate Son of the living God and he WAS resurrected. These facts are not up for negotiation on the main forum board.

Back on topic please.

-
Okay, sorry for the diversion. Back to God in life and nature. Jesus is the only one that had it. So unless you are born of a virgin you don't have a chance to be it.

Throughout all history there's only been one. Not even Paul had God in life and nature ... much, much, much, less than Lee.
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Old 12-10-2017, 09:28 AM   #76
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But "Yes" according to, the Gospel of John which claims that Jesus has resurrection power [John 10:18] and that Jesus said “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live." [John 11:25] So, according to John, we have resurrection only in Jesus Christ by faith.
Since the inception of the church, the common, orthodox understanding of this matter is that we receive the life of God and partake of his divine nature. We do not "become", rather we receive. Witness Lee is just one of many false teachers who have made the unbiblical claim that we are becoming god in life and nature. He wasn't the first and he won't be the last.

"Tis mystery all the immortal dies
who can explore his strange design"
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Old Yesterday, 03:08 PM   #77
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Default Re: God in life and nature... oh really?

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Originally Posted by UntoHim View Post
Since the inception of the church, the common, orthodox understanding of this matter is that we receive the life of God and partake of his divine nature. We do not "become", rather we receive. Witness Lee is just one of many false teachers who have made the unbiblical claim that we are becoming god in life and nature. He wasn't the first and he won't be the last.

"Tis mystery all the immortal dies
who can explore his strange design"
-
The early church quotations use the word "become" so I don't know how you can claim that. The word become is the correct translation of Athanasius (also Irenaeus,Clement, Hippolytus et al. ) :

"For the Son of God became man so that we might become God." ~ Athanasius

"Αὐτὸς γὰρ ἐνηνθρώπισεν, ἵνα ἡμεῖς θεοποιηθῶμεν (Migne, Patrologia Graeca, 25, 192 B De incarnatione Verbi, 54: literally, "... that we might become ...". Grammatically, the verb θεοποιηθῶμεν could be translated as "be made God" Himself or "be made gods."

While it is correct that we receive God's life and nature, that comes with some transformation aspect, or to "become".
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Old Yesterday, 03:20 PM   #78
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The early church quotations use the word "become". The word become is the correct translation of Athanasius (also Irenaeus,Clement, Hippolytus et al. ) :

"For the Son of God became man so that we might become God." ~ Athanasius

"Αὐτὸς γὰρ ἐνηνθρώπισεν, ἵνα ἡμεῖς θεοποιηθῶμεν (Migne, Patrologia Graeca, 25, 192 B De incarnatione Verbi, 54: literally, "... that we might become ...". Grammatically, the verb θεοποιηθῶμεν could be translated as "be made God" Himself or "be made gods."

While it is correct that we receive God's life and nature, that comes with some transformation aspect, or to "become".
Some of those early church fathers you are falling back on got fired. Including your favorite boy Athanasius.

The early church fathers were just men, living in the iron age. Why should we listen to any of them, or consider them authoritative?

They invented the RCC.
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Old Yesterday, 04:51 PM   #79
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Some of those early church fathers you are falling back on got fired. Including your favorite boy Athanasius.

The early church fathers were just men, living in the iron age. Why should we listen to any of them, or consider them authoritative?

They invented the RCC.
You believe the writers of the scripture, Peter Paul etc were just iron age men as well?

Anyway, one reason we can consider them authoritative is because they used the Scripture authoritatively:

No one reading the apostolic and other early Fathers can’t help but be stuck by their extensive and authoritative use of Scripture. Just seven major Fathers from Justin Martyr to Eusebius cites 36, 289 verses from the New Testament–every verse but eleven (most of which are from 3 John). Irenaeus alone cites nearly 2000 verses (1819 to be exact) (see Leach, OBHGI, 35-36).


http://normangeisler.com/tag/early-church-fathers/

On the topic of modalism quotes of Athanasius was the favorite of people on here. People will quote Athanasius and perhaps other early church fathers on here when it suits them.

They are not as authoritative as Scripture obviously but there's a difference between rejecting a doctrine because the Bible denies it (which in this case, it doesn't) and rejecting a doctrine because the Bible doesn't say it (and ignoring what the early church fathers, even the Reformers like Luther say). So far the only argument I have seen against it is that "the bible doesn't say it". The Bible does not deny it, in which case the weight of the early church fathers, Luther, Wesley and others, must count for something.

Dennis Ngien (Professor of Systematic Theology at Tyndale University College and Seminary in Toronto and Research Scholar in Theology at Blackfriars Hall, Oxford University. ) in a book "A Faith Worth Believing, Living, and Commending" writes

"Evangelicals should not be offended at the thought that the death of the
crucified Christ involved not only the humanity of Jesus but also his deity".

"Here is no surrogate. God Himself died a real death".

"The greatest marvel of the gospel is that the divinity was present in the Cross".

"If we take the Trinity and Incarnation seriously and recognize that this human Jesus is the second divine person, there is no suffering closer to God than the suffering of the human Jesus. Thus the human suffering of Jesus is really God's own suffering: God suffered as we do".

What has been happening in recent years in Christianity, although for some time I guess, is a denial of Jesus's divinity and people's reactions to "God's death" is a symptom of that. A heresy which the early church battled was that Jesus was not human. Today it is the opposite - that Jesus was not divine. Only Witness Lee (and possibly others) have stressed the God-man aspect of Christ, which in my view is fair and balanced.
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