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Old 12-04-2017, 05:12 PM   #1
Indiana
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Default The Watchman Nee They Knew

www.lordsrecovery.us/TheWatchmanNeeTheyKnew.pdf

Ron Kangas shared in a radio message on Acts: “Sometimes we idealize the persons we call Bible heroes. Really this is not a biblical notion. We just may not understand that the Lord may intend to include a record of the shortcomings and even the failings of some of His best servants in order that we may learn from them.”

Ron made this statement as a prelude to his transparent fellowship concerning Apostles James and Peter, repeating Witness Lee’s words on their shortcomings and failings as Apostles. There was no compunction about doing so, and neither should there be in being transparent about the two men of God who have impacted the local churches, directly and dramatically. But much of their history is hidden from view as has been the history of local church government under their leadership.

Upon the resumption of Watchman Nee's ministry in 1948 he presented the test of the age to the church on authority and submission. But the teaching itself needs to undergo a test and so do those who take it seriously.


The Test

"But one day Noah became drunk in his vineyard and he uncovered himself in his tent. His youngest son, Ham, saw his father’s nakedness and told his two brothers outside. So far as Noah’s conduct was concerned, he certainly was wrong;...Yet, Ham failed to see the dignity of authority. ...It is seen then that the failure of Noah became a TEST to Shem, Ham, Japheth, and Ham’s son, Canaan. It revealed who was obedient and who was rebellious. Noah’s fall unveiled Ham’s rebellion.” (Spiritual Authority, Nee,1948)
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Old 12-04-2017, 10:04 PM   #2
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Default Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

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Originally Posted by Indiana View Post
www.lordsrecovery.us/TheWatchmanNeeTheyKnew.pdf


"Ron Kangas shared in a radio message on Acts: “Sometimes we idealize the persons we call Bible heroes. Really this is not a biblical notion. We just may not understand that the Lord may intend to include a record of the shortcomings and even the failings of some of His best servants in order that we may learn from them.”

Ron made this statement as a prelude to his transparent fellowship concerning Apostles James and Peter, repeating Witness Lee’s words on their shortcomings and failings as Apostles. There was no compunction about doing so, and neither should there be in being transparent about the two men of God who have impacted the local churches directly and dramatically. But much of their history is hidden from view as is the history of local church government under their leadership."
Statements such as this one spoken by Ron are intended to get people to let their guard down. The implication is that if there were a mistake made by a servant of the Lord that is worth discussing, he would have no problem discussing it. By not discussing or even acknowledging the mistakes of Nee and Lee, he intends to make a strong suggestion that he believes there were no notable mistakes made by either man.

No one in the LCM could honestly say that Nee and Lee made no mistakes. The problem is that they can’t bring themselves to even consider what mistakes were made or the consequences of such mistakes. By not doing so, they downplay things that many people feel to be quite serious.
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Old 12-05-2017, 03:38 AM   #3
aron
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Default Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

Funny - when ME Barber left the missionary board it wasn't about submission to the dignity of authority. No, it was about the freedom to respond to the small, still voice within. Ditto for Nee and Lee. But once they tasted temporal, earthly power, then the narrative changed. Funny how that works. Those who once wanted freedom now call for stability.
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Old 12-05-2017, 06:33 AM   #4
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Default Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

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Funny - when ME Barber left the missionary board it wasn't about submission to the dignity of authority. No, it was about the freedom to respond to the small, still voice within. Ditto for Nee and Lee. But once they tasted temporal, earthly power, then the narrative changed. Funny how that works. Those who once wanted freedom now call for stability.
Funny how that works.

Perhaps Piper had that in view when he extolled humility as proof of maturity.
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Old 12-05-2017, 08:01 AM   #5
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Default Re: An encouraging letter for following Christ

Dear brother Steve,

I have read your mail and the pdf. I have not read the book about Nee at this point in time. I agree 100% that the “Ham rule” is a spiritual and Scriptural error. The whole thought of “deputy authority” and God’s expectation of us supposedly to follow leaders, ignoring their mistakes, is an error that keeps cropping up in church history. Paul wanted the believers to follow him, but only as he “followed Christ.”

Another example of this is the total implosion of the Bill Gothard ministry. He taught an “umbrella” authority principle. As long as you are under the “umbrella” of authority you are OK. It is OK to follow the person “over you” as the umbrella, and disregard his mistakes. Now, years later, the fall out has happened. Bill Gothard was a sexual predator who liked to at least to get physically close to young women, embracing them, spending many hours with them, etc. He did wrongly touch one, maybe more. He did nothing to stop his flesh brother, who served in the Gothard ministry. His brother went further, having sexual relations with girls who came to the North Woods compound in order to learn spirituality. But Gothard ignored the complaints. All of the cautious ones and wounded ones were subdued because they bought into the “umbrella” rule. Gothard himself was also caught in a major flat lie, but would never confess it when confronted by other Christina leaders. Dr. Earl Radmacher tried to get him to repent but failed. Radmacher said Gothard always had a seemingly good “reply” but could not be trusted to tell the truth.

Many young people were ruined in their walk with God due to Gothard’s legalism and his “umbrella” rule.

WE MUST LIVE UNTO THE HEAD . We can respect leaders and listen to them, BUT WE MUST FOLLOW ONLY CHRIST. We must deal righteously with sinful and wrong “leaders” without fear.

Finally, some of us in __ went through a time of trial here and the basic problem was leadership and leadership concepts . After that, one brother wrote a very thought-provoking booklet on Biblical leadership. I highly recommend this book and hope saints will read it.

Yours in grace and truth,
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Old 12-05-2017, 08:42 AM   #6
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Default Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

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Originally Posted by Indiana View Post
www.lordsrecovery.us/TheWatchmanNeeTheyKnew.pdf

Ron Kangas shared in a radio message on Acts: “Sometimes we idealize the persons we call Bible heroes. Really this is not a biblical notion. We just may not understand that the Lord may intend to include a record of the shortcomings and even the failings of some of His best servants in order that we may learn from them.”
I really enjoy Peter's closing word in his first epistle:

6Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:
7Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
8Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
9Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.


We all know that Satan wanted to sift Peter after his failure during the Lord's crucifixion. How encouraging this word is for those of us who have also had failures that the same afflictions are accomplished in the Apostle Peter.

As for the "test" -- "Noah's fall unveiled Ham's rebellion". I am confused by this term "rebellion" and how it would apply to Witness Lee. Is he saying that if someone takes issue with his human failings, like drunkenness and nakedness, that this is equivalent to rebelling against God? Noah cursed his son, but the Lord blessed us, dying for us when we were sinners. It seems to me that setting up Noah as the standard and ignoring the Lord's redemption is to deny the Lord who redeemed us. I thought the Lord became a curse for us so that we could be redeemed from the curse?

Paul rebuked Peter, exposing his failing, why didn't Peter's fall expose Paul's rebellion? Instead of Peter putting himself on par with Noah and cursing Paul he says to "be humbled under the mighty hand of God".

So I am confused that they would use Peter as an example to justify this teaching.
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Old 12-05-2017, 12:45 PM   #7
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Default Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

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Originally Posted by Indiana View Post
The Test

"But one day Noah became drunk in his vineyard and he uncovered himself in his tent. His youngest son, Ham, saw his father’s nakedness and told his two brothers outside. So far as Noah’s conduct was concerned, he certainly was wrong;...Yet, Ham failed to see the dignity of authority. ...It is seen then that the failure of Noah became a TEST to Shem, Ham, Japheth, and Ham’s son, Canaan. It revealed who was obedient and who was rebellious. Noah’s fall unveiled Ham’s rebellion.” (Spiritual Authority, Nee,1948)
And a personality cult was born. Thanks for posting this Indiana. This doctrine of authority is what resulted in Witness Lee. (And his son's too ... haha)

By the way, upon thinking about this authority doctrine, considering Dr. Lily Hus's revelation of Nee's promiscuity (and worse), Nee's failing was much worse than Noah's. Did that make Nee a super authority of God? Greater than that of Noah.

And where does the scripture, anywhere, speak of Noah as an authority? Why make it about authority?
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Old 12-06-2017, 08:39 PM   #8
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Default Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

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And a personality cult was born. Thanks for posting this Indiana. This doctrine of authority is what resulted in Witness Lee. (And his son's too ... haha)
Even at a very basic level, authoritarianism is the root of all the problems with the LCM. Since its inception in China, the LCM has always revolved around an authority figure, and there has been an unbalanced trust placed in leaders. Even if the rank and file members don’t necessarily care so much about roles of Nee/Lee, they quickly learn to fear stepping on the shoes of anyone who has seniority in the movement.
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Old 12-07-2017, 08:25 AM   #9
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Post Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

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Originally Posted by ZNPaaneah View Post
I really enjoy Peter's closing word in his first epistle:

6Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time:
7Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.
8Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:
9Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.


We all know that Satan wanted to sift Peter after his failure during the Lord's crucifixion. How encouraging this word is for those of us who have also had failures that the same afflictions are accomplished in the Apostle Peter.

As for the "test" -- "Noah's fall unveiled Ham's rebellion". I am confused by this term "rebellion" and how it would apply to Witness Lee. Is he saying that if someone takes issue with his human failings, like drunkenness and nakedness, that this is equivalent to rebelling against God? Noah cursed his son, but the Lord blessed us, dying for us when we were sinners. It seems to me that setting up Noah as the standard and ignoring the Lord's redemption is to deny the Lord who redeemed us. I thought the Lord became a curse for us so that we could be redeemed from the curse?

Paul rebuked Peter, exposing his failing, why didn't Peter's fall expose Paul's rebellion? Instead of Peter putting himself on par with Noah and cursing Paul he says to "be humbled under the mighty hand of God".

So I am confused that they would use Peter as an example to justify this teaching.
This is an example of adding an interpretation to an Old Testament story that goes against the teaching found elsewhere. In addition to the story of Paul confronting Peter, and John the Baptist speaking out against Herod, we should also remember 1 Timothy 5:20-21 (NIV)

[20]**But those elders who are sinning you are to reprove before everyone, so that the others may take warning. [21]*I charge you, in the sight of God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, to keep these instructions without partiality, and to do nothing out of favoritism.

Verse 20 is a unique case of Paul calling upon three such exalted witnesses to one of his statements, so we know that this was an important principle. The correction of Diotrephes shows that criticism was applied openly to leaders.

If we want to look in the OT, we can also look at David proclaiming Saul’s unjust persecution, shouting out in front of all Saul’s men, and the correction brought by Nathan to David. Neither David nor Nathan were in rebellion by bringing correction to a leader. And there are many cases of prophets doing similarly, many of them much stronger.

In conclusion, it appears that the story of Noah and Ham is being twisted to squash those who would keep Church Leaders’ accountable for sin as strongly required by scripture and the Holy Spirit.
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Old 12-07-2017, 10:34 PM   #10
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Default Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

Insightful posts in this thread. Well said y’all.
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Old 12-08-2017, 12:51 AM   #11
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Default Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

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Originally Posted by Andrew from HK View Post
This is an example of adding an interpretation to an Old Testament story that goes against the teaching found elsewhere. In addition to the story of Paul confronting Peter, and John the Baptist speaking out against Herod, we should also remember 1 Timothy 5:20-21 (NIV)

[20]**But those elders who are sinning you are to reprove before everyone, so that the others may take warning. [21]*I charge you, in the sight of God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, to keep these instructions without partiality, and to do nothing out of favoritism.

Verse 20 is a unique case of Paul calling upon three such exalted witnesses to one of his statements, so we know that this was an important principle. The correction of Diotrephes shows that criticism was applied openly to leaders.

If we want to look in the OT, we can also look at David proclaiming Saul’s unjust persecution, shouting out in front of all Saul’s men, and the correction brought by Nathan to David. Neither David nor Nathan were in rebellion by bringing correction to a leader. And there are many cases of prophets doing similarly, many of them much stronger.

In conclusion, it appears that the story of Noah and Ham is being twisted to squash those who would keep Church Leaders’ accountable for sin as strongly required by scripture and the Holy Spirit.
Thank you for explaining biblically. Quite helpful to me.
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Old 12-08-2017, 01:11 PM   #12
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Default Re: The Watchman Nee They Knew

Quote:
Originally Posted by Andrew from HK View Post
This is an example of adding an interpretation to an Old Testament story that goes against the teaching found elsewhere. In addition to the story of Paul confronting Peter, and John the Baptist speaking out against Herod, we should also remember 1 Timothy 5:20-21 (NIV)

[20]**But those elders who are sinning you are to reprove before everyone, so that the others may take warning. [21]*I charge you, in the sight of God and Christ Jesus and the elect angels, to keep these instructions without partiality, and to do nothing out of favoritism.

Verse 20 is a unique case of Paul calling upon three such exalted witnesses to one of his statements, so we know that this was an important principle. The correction of Diotrephes shows that criticism was applied openly to leaders.

If we want to look in the OT, we can also look at David proclaiming Saul’s unjust persecution, shouting out in front of all Saul’s men, and the correction brought by Nathan to David. Neither David nor Nathan were in rebellion by bringing correction to a leader. And there are many cases of prophets doing similarly, many of them much stronger.

In conclusion, it appears that the story of Noah and Ham is being twisted to squash those who would keep Church Leaders’ accountable for sin as strongly required by scripture and the Holy Spirit.
Even Peter's word to elders "not lording it over the flock but as examples" He makes it clear what the proper attitude is. Without saying it the entire doctrine of "deputy authority" is to justify WL and others "lording it over the flock"
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