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Apologetic discussions Apologetic Discussions Regarding the Teachings of Watchman Nee and Witness Lee

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Old 08-04-2019, 03:54 PM   #1
Sons to Glory!
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Default The LC Practice of Open Meetings (circa 1960s & 70s)

I thought to start a discussion about the open meeting style that was practiced historically by the LC in the 1960s and 70s (but not so much now I think). The gatherings back then were full of life and most glorious in the experience and exultation of Christ! Anyone felt free to stand up and testify of a fresh experience of Christ or call a song, or even to ask for prayer. The gatherings were full of life, which was not - and couldn't be - strictly organized. (and no one wanted that) We sang the songs loud and with our spirits! There was much freedom in eating and drinking and sharing of Jesus in a festive atmosphere that was real and genuine!

Lot's more I could add . . . anybody experiencing that sort of gathering now?
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Old 08-04-2019, 04:48 PM   #2
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Default Re: The LC Practice of Open Meetings (circa 1960s & 70s)

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I thought to start a discussion about the open meeting style that was practiced historically by the LC in the 1960s and 70s (but not so much now I think). The gatherings back then were full of life and most glorious in the experience and exultation of Christ! Anyone felt free to stand up and testify of a fresh experience of Christ or call a song, or even to ask for prayer. The gatherings were full of life, which was not - and couldn't be - strictly organized. (and no one wanted that) We sang the songs loud and with our spirits! There was much freedom in eating and drinking and sharing of Jesus in a festive atmosphere that was real and genuine!
This definitely described the Church in Cleveland meetings and the other LC's I was with in the early days. The beginning and end of the meetings were completely open to the saints. At some point we would read verses and a brother would share. Later on the practice of "prophesying" and regurgitating the message took over in the meetings.

The freshness and anointing of the early days had much to do with the outpouring of the Spirit. The blessing the Recovery enjoyed was common to many congregations. Probably the biggest deception thrust upon the LC's was that Lee was the source for all the blessing, and thus LSM promoted this never-ending quest to return to the time of blessing (i.e. Elden Hall) by being "absolutely one with the ministry."

It was the ultimate "carrot and stick" motivational deception for all the LC "mules." It has been going on headstrong since that first Max-storm in 1977.
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Old 08-04-2019, 06:12 PM   #3
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Default Re: The LC Practice of Open Meetings (circa 1960s & 70s)

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Lot's more I could add . . . anybody experiencing that sort of gathering now?
Personally StG, for myself wherever the Lord needs me that's where His glory will be. It could be alone with Him in worship, it could be amongst other believers, or it could be amongst unbelievers. It all depends on where the Lord is doing His work. It's not so much a consistent thing and I've learned to accept that knowing that I'm not always in the places He needs me to be.

As far as the LC glory days of the 60's and 70's; I can't speak from experience, but I can speak from a historical context.

Much like today, the 60's and 70's were a time of cultural revolution. Stands against established authority and systems of thought were widespread. It's wasn't something only confined to mainstream culture, it also spread throughout religion as well. This movement not only effected Christendom, but all other systems of spirituality. It's where you got cults like Jonestown or the Hare Krishna's and many others. All segments of society profited off of the spirit born out of 60's and 70's counter-culturalism.

Was this the result of the Holy Spirit of God? No, I doubt that strongly given that it was indiscriminate of belief. Can God have used this momentum for his purposes? Sure, but how do you discern what was of God and what wasn't from amongst it all? It's a hard thing to say as there were many non-Christians feeling ecstatic, open, and free during those times.

Those that were involved in the Local Churches of Watchman Nee, and today LSM/GLA, know that there's a false spirit of oneness (which isn't a unity in the truth but uniformity in lies). The same is with the spirit of liberty. There's the liberty which sets us free from the bondage of sin, and then there's a false liberty that sets us free from cultural norms and gives us the fleeting sense of peace and security. But this sense of freedom usually precedes sudden destruction (in one's personal life or society in general).

Scripture speaks about being free in Christ but Paul also speaks about being in chains for the sake of the gospel. Paul wasn't bound to an oppressive clergy yet he was still bound by duty to Christ. The belief that following Christ will consist of nothing but spiritual ecstasies upon ecstasies is not consistent with scripture. We're told to take up our cross and follow him. Yet the peace, hope, and joy that only God can provide us is a seed planted deep in our heart that is irreplaceable. It's what carried Paul through prison terms, attempted assassinations, and shipwrecks. If Christ couldn't escape his cross, neither can those that chose to follow him. We may get glimpses of the outward manifestation of God's glory in this age but this won't be made complete until Christ comes back and establishes his reign upon the earth.

But we can have joy in knowing that the sufferings we endure in this life don't compare to what God has planned in eternity for those that love Him and we can take comfort in knowing God hasn't left us alone in our struggles (John 14:16).
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Old 08-05-2019, 09:24 AM   #4
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Default Re: The LC Practice of Open Meetings (circa 1960s & 70s)

I was gloriously saved and healed at the tail end of the Jesus People movement. Many who were witness to this confirm that it was a real move of the Spirit among young people. Many had been caught-up in drugs and the counter-revolution, like I was. We were seeking something, and my testimony - along with so many - was that when I hit the bottom of a drug induced despair, that is when I cried out and He rescued me out of a horrible pit and miry clay. At that time I very clearly remember praying, "Lord, take me to be with others who love you the way I do." He is faithful.

Yes, at that time there was a huge rebellion against authority, so I can see where some might say that this was just something brought into the style of Christian meeting. All I know is that I find the open participatory style much more nourishing to my spirit and helpful in drawing me into a closer walk with the Lord. It's simple and no need to over-analyze it.

In my travels around the country, I've joined various other Christians for Sunday worship. I always enjoy it, and there is always a portion of Christ regardless of their "style" - just being with others in the body is a good thing! Some have good singing. Some have good teaching. And some have good coffee! LOL But there is oneness in the one Spirit.
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Old 08-27-2019, 09:22 AM   #5
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Default Re: The LC Practice of Open Meetings (circa 1960s & 70s)

In looking at recent threads, it's interesting that this topic got very little traction. Do others not value the open meeting concept as much as I do? I just find it so helpful to hear what others were inspired or nourished by, from the message and/or from their daily walk with Christ. It's a wonder to me that more groups don't practice this much in main gatherings (I know it's probably done in smaller groups more)! Is it a control thing?
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