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Old 03-24-2012, 12:00 PM   #1
Indiana
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Default God's economy vs Deputy authority

In my fellowship here in Southern California the last three months, a sister gave me a copy of this revolutionary word on Deputy Authority. Can she be challenged based on the Bible, or not? In other words, is the prevailing deputy authority concept manifestly and demonstrably wrong in the Local Churches?

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GOD’S NEW TESTAMENT ECONOMY
VS.
DEPUTY AUTHORITY




The Definition of
God’s New Testament Economy


What, specifically, is God’s New Testament economy in this age? This term has been used much--but what truly, according to the pure word of God, does this terminology mean?

Economy is, of course, the way a person or thing operates in order to obtain its goal or go about its business. Is there, specifically, a difference in the way God “goes about His business” in the New Testament than He did in the Old Testament? We are told in precise words that there is (Jer. 31:31 –34; Ezek. 36:26 –29; Heb. 8:8–12).

God foretold to His people that He would establish a new covenant with His people in the latter days. He even told His people what the details of that covenant would be (Jer. 31:31-34) and reiterated the items of that very covenant after it was effected (Heb. 8:8-12). Not only so, but that covenant was,and had to be, effected at the price of the precious blood of Christ. Therefore, that covenant is to us no more just a covenant--but it is a testament, a will, effected by the death of Christ.


How very significant the elements of that New Testament must be to us since they necessitated the highest price in the universe to secure for us! Surely, as Christians, there is nothing more paramount than this for us to guard and pay our allegiance to in this age. That will or covenant is what God Himself declares to be the precise statement of His New Testament economy.


Furthermore that will is directed at specifically one thing: that is, to restore the direct headship of God over His people by supplanting all rules, laws, principles, and speakings of man, whether they be by prophets or any other men. Therefore, to the extent that any man attempts to establish himself or his ministry as God's unique spokesman in this age, he is coming directly against the heart of God's New Testament economy and setting aside one of the most distinct elements for which Christ died.



A Contrast Between
the Old and New Testament

The book of Hebrews, the most distinct book in the Bible comparing and contrasting the believer's New Testament inheritance with the inferior
substitutes in the Old Testament begins by announcing:

"In many portions and in many ways, God, having spoken of old to the fathers in the prophets,has at the last of these days spoken to us in the Son" (Heb.1: 1-2a)


This means that in the New Testament age, God's mode of speaking has changed. We no longer need to go to one man to learn the mind and heart of God. Not only do we not need to go to one man, but the very

concept of going to one man as the oracle of God is directly opposed to what Christ shed His blood to produce for us as New Testament children of God.


The Element of
God's New Testament Economy

The primary elements of what Christ died to purchase for us as our New Testament inheritance are listed in Hebrews 8:10-12. They are:

(1) That God would impart His laws directly into the mind and heart of every believer (rather than necessitating them to either read them off a tablet of stone somewhere or hear them from an external spokesman).
(2) That the believers would no longer teach their fellow servants to know the Lord because all shall know Him (no longer necessitating a spiritual mentor because He now indwells us all).
(3) That God would be our God and we would be His people.
(4) The forgiveness of sins.

Coming against point one or two is just as definite a violation of the New Testament as coming against point four; that is, coming against Christ having shed His blood for the forgiveness of sins. What a serious sin it is to set up any man as the unique spokesman for God in the New Testament age!



Elevating Leaders is
An Affront to
God's New Testament Economy

The Apostle Paul unquestionably realized this fact, therefore, when the
Corinthian believers divided themselves against one for another by boasting, "I am of Cephas," "I am of Paul," "I am of Apollos," he neither explained to them the sequence of "first order apostle, second order apostle, third order apostle," etc., nor did he initiate a doctrine of "deputy authority" and claimed that there was only one "unique oracle" in every age, and that, of course, he himself happened to be that one. Instead, he declared, "I planted, Apollos watered, but God made to grow; so that neither is the one who plants (I, Paul) anything, nor the one who waters (Apollos), but the One Who makes to grow, God" (1 Cor. 3:6-7).

Paul realized that the lifting up of any man (including himself), among the believers, was in direct violation of God's New Testament economy, a damage to the Body of Christ, and an affront to God Himself. No doubt, that is why Paul thanked God that he did not baptize any more than two believers among them. He surely did not want to compound their problem of boasting in men any more than it was already compounded, and possibly even suffer the judgment of God's jealousy upon himself, as well. Although it is absurd to compare anyone of our age to the stature of the Apostle Paul, through whom the
majority of the New Testament was written, brothers with far less stature and even some of questionable character have been much quicker to take upon themselves a glory which Paul so wisely refused.

Nowhere in the New Testament is the concept of "deputy authority" even hinted at. To the contrary, Jesus stated,"The rulers of the Gentiles
lord it over them, and their great ones exercise authority over them. It shall not be so among you; but whoever wants to become great among you shall be your servant" (Matt. 20:25b-26)



God Desired Direct Headship
Over His People
Even in the Old Testament Age

It appears that not just in the New Testament, but in the Old Testament, also, it has been God's desire to be the direct ruler over His people,rather than allow them to submit to a visible "king".
That is why, when Israel asked for a visible king (God being their invisible king) to judge them like all the nations, God told Samuel, "They have not rejected you, but they have rejected Me" (1 Sam. 8:7).

Let us learn from the parable spoken by Jotham in Judges 9:7-15. No proper person of life (olive, fig or vine) will take any position of authority. Only one without life (thorn) will rule over others and eventually destroy them.

Even the leaders established in the Old Testament, such as
Moses, Joshua and David, were types of Christ as God's uniquely Anointed One, leading all of God's people. We fall into much error today when we misapply the authority given to these figures to any so-called leaders in our present day. Not only so, but as previously stated, the elements of the New Testament for which Christ died are directed at just this point--to abolish all mediators, whether human or otherwise, between God and man, and re-establish the direct headship of God over every one of His chosen and redeemed people.



The Erroneous Teaching
of "Deputy Authority"

Let us lay to rest, once for all, the erroneous teaching of "deputy authority" as a governing principle in the New Testament--overriding man's individual conscience, sense of righteousness and holiness, and
direct lordship by Christ Himself.

The Bible tells us nothing more clearly than the fact that human government must always bow to man's conscience and the direct rule of God over the individual.


Obedience directly to God is the only unqualified obedience a man can give. All men are fallen. Because of that, our obedience to any man can and must be limited and qualified to the extent each man's individual conscience can support it.


The Bible also makes clear to us that God is no respecter either of any man's person (Gal. 2:6; Acts 10:34; James 2:1) or any man's position.


We are, in the New Testament,told to submit to "elders" and also to submit "one to another" in love. This should indeed be our hearts' attitude toward every member of the Body of Christ--but only so far as our conscience and the direct rule of God support that submission.


We are told in plain words,"The head of every man is Christ" (1 Cor. 11;3), and "There is one God, and one Mediator of God and men, the Man, Christ Jesus" (1 Tim.2:5)


It is true that at the time of Noah, after man's conscience
had failed as the unique governing agent, God established human government. However, whenever human government--whether that government is familial,secular, or spiritual—comes into conflict with the direct rule of man by God, the Bible shows us clearly that man pays heavily, even grievously, for not submitting to God and overthrowing that government.

Man is always held accountable. He is held directly accountable to God whether his allegiance to the "deputy authority" was through
his own ignorance, his own preference or personal loyalty, his own improper motive or ambition, or through the deceit of the one proclaiming that authority. The ramifications are generally disastrous. Not only so, but the judgment falling upon the mistakenly obedient one is far greater than that on the misleading "deputy authority." No man can shirk his individual responsibility and accountability to God.



The Example of Moses and Aaron

Take for instance, the Old Testament example of Moses, so often cited by W. Lee and his followers as the epitome of deputy authority. No doubt Moses’ responsibility for God's people and his commission to
lead them are substantiated in the scriptures more clearly than that of any other man. In that sense, Moses is far more a type of Christ, the uniquely Anointed One, than he is a type of any other man. The New Testament repeatedly substantiates this (John 5:46; Heb. 3:3; Luke 24:27; 2 Cor. 3:7-11). Due to that, I believe it is dangerous for any man in our age to liken himself or any other man to Moses.

Still, Moses, unlike Christ, did fail to perfectly fulfill God's representation among God's people. At that point, therefore, we are given a clear picture of what happens to a man or men who fail to act when even an unmistakably appointed minister of God fails in his
representation of God's authority. (Interestingly enough, this is never cited by those who would like to use Moses as justification for lording it over God's people.)

Apparently, Moses was faithful to God's commission throughout the entire forty years in the wilderness, with the exception of misinterpreting God's feeling toward the people at the waters of Meribah (Num. 20:10-13). At that time Moses became angry and smote the rock before God's people, in spite of the fact that God had said simply to speak to the rock. For that single offense, Moses was not
permitted to enter into the good land of Canaan, but was allowed to view the land.

However, for our purposes, we need to see what was done to Aaron for the sin which Moses committed but Aaron did not publicly separate himself from. Aaron lost both his life and his ministry when Moses
committed the sin of misrepresenting God before the people. There is no record that Aaron committed any sin of his own other than failing to stand against Moses' sin of representing God before the people (Num. 20:24, 10-13).

God had said to Moses, "You shall be as God to him (Aaron)" (Exo. 4:16). Surely, if there is anything that resembles "deputy authority" in the Bible, it could not be stronger than Moses' God-appointed relationship to Aaron. Yet Aaron still faced a judgment greater than that upon Moses, when he failed to stand with God directly at the waters of Meribah.


Another incident which illustrates the same point of God's drastic judgment upon one of His people who failed to listen to Him directly, but obeyed a "delegated authority," instead, is the incident of the
man of God and the old prophet (1 Kings 13). The man of God was told directly by God not to eat, drink or remain in that city (1 Kings 13:9-16). However the old prophet declared that he, too, was a prophet and had been told by an angel of the Lord to bring him back, feed him and give him drink. The man of God, therefore, hearkened to the elder "delegated authority," instead of the direct speaking of God--which,as with Aaron, cost him his life.

Consider, also, the New Testament example of Ananias and Sapphira (Acts 5:1-11). Surely, the husband has been appointed on earth as head over his wife (1 Cor. 11:3; Eph. 5:23). still, Sapphira lost her
life for not separating herself from the sin of her husband in this matter, but "covering" him by lying to the Holy Spirit. On the other hand, the Scriptures give us numerous positive examples of men, either for God's sake of under His direct leading, overthrowing the rule of those originally appointed over them governmentally. As part of Gideon's original commission by God, God ordered Gideon to throw down the altar of Baal that belonged to his father (Judges 6:25).

When Nabal, Abigail's husband, despised David and his men and determined to do evil against them, Abigail rose and took loaves, wine, raisins, cakes and figs to him. She said to David concerning her
husband, "Let not my lord regard this worthless fellow, even Nabal" (which means 'fool'); for as his name is, so is he" (1 Sam. 25:25). For that "rebellious" deed of protecting David's interests (who is a type of Christ), Abigail was given the privilege of marrying David, and is presented to us in the Scriptures as a type of the church militant.

In the New Testament we are told concerning secular governments, "Let every person be subject to the authorities over them. For there is no
authority except from God, and those which exist are appointed by God. Therefore he who resists the authority opposes what God has appointed, and those who oppose will receive to themselves judgment" (Rom. 13:1-2).

Yet when the rulers charged Peter and John not to speak at all or teach in the name of Jesus, Peter and John answered and said unto them, "Whether it is right in the sight of God to hear you rather than God, you judge; for we cannot but speak the things which we saw and
heard" (Acts 4:19-20).

Even secular governments which recognize the supreme authority of God over the individual. For instance, in America a man can be court-martialed and even executed for deserting or failing to bear
his military responsibility in time of war. However, if he can prove that his unwillingness to bear arms is truly a matter of his conscience in answering directly to the all-sovereign God, the government will bow and not override that man's conscience.

Then, too, the international tribunal at Nuremburg established to judge the Nazi war crimes committed under Hitler declared that man is responsible for his own actions--in spite of any orders he may have received from a higher authority. They further declared that soldiers and citizens have a moral
obligation to disobey orders and laws which violate their consciences in dealing with other men.

If an international, non- Christian tribunal recognizes and bows to the direct supremacy of God over man versus that of any "deputy authority," how much more we Christians must come to the
same definite recognition.

- A.F.
********


* In the New Testament economy there is no thought of hierarchy. On the contrary,God's economy in the New Testament makes all the believers of the same rank.This is the reason that the Lord Jesus said that we all are brothers and that only Christ is our Leader, Guide, Instructor, and Director. Although God's economy puts all believers in Christ on the same level, the natural concept is that in the church, as in any social group or organization,there should be a special class of leaders.
- L.S.of Ephesians p.348

* I am sorry that some Christians utilize Brother Nee's book, Spiritual Authority, to make themselves an authority over others. This kind of authority is self assumed.

- L.S. of Revelation p.742

* Others have asked me if the elders have authority. This question springs from the natural concept concerning rank. If we were not under the influence of the natural concept, we would not raise this question. I repeat, in the church there is no such thing as rank. Rather, we all are stewards of the grace of God,and we submit ourselves one to another.

- L.S. of Ephesians p.364

* None of us in the church life should hold to any personal standing. Of course, we must stand firm for the Lord's testimony. However, we should not claim any standing, title
or position for ourselves.
- L.S. of Philippians p.93

* To control others means to make decisions for them and to
tell them what to do or not to do. It is to put people under your direction. In the Lord's recovery, we must hate this kind of control. No one should exercise control, because we all are under the one Lord and have the one Spirit living in us and leading us.
- L.S. of Matthew p.655

* Exalting spiritual giants not only destroys the church; it also causes us to be self-deceived. ...In the Lord's recovery there must not be the exalting of any person.

- L.S. of 1 Corinthians p.291

* One should never be so mistaken as to consider oneself the authority. God alone has authority; no one else possesses it.

- Spiritual Authority p.120

(No. SA-01, free of charge)
The Word & The Testimony
P.O. Box 2185

Anaheim, CA. 92814
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Old 03-24-2012, 07:36 PM   #2
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority - A. F.

What is the "working" definition for "Deputy authority"?

Obviously the NT talks about "authority". Ephesians talks about all authority was given unto Christ for the Church. The concept of head covering is related to authority and its practical application in the church life. Paul and Peter were both involved in counsels to hear their personal revelations before the church received the word. In Timothy it says that the Law is made for the lawless and disobedient, clearly the law has authority over the lawless and that would be administered by man. The entire concept of deputy authority was always taught with the analogy of a policeman and the uniform. 1Peter 5:5 exhorts the younger to submit to the elders. 1Pet 2:13 tells us to submit ourselves to every ordinance of man, not just laws but even things like "no shirt, no shoes, no service". Probably the most relevant verse would be 1Cor 16:16 where Paul tells us to submit ourselves to all those who are similar to Stephanas (who was addicted to the ministry of the saints) and all others who help Paul and labor with him.

So without knowing what the definition of "deputy authority" is that this person is referring to I would have no way to respond other than the premise that the concept of "deputy authority is not in the NT" is clearly not true based on a standard dictionary definition of the terms.
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Old 03-25-2012, 09:32 AM   #3
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority - A. F.

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What is the "working" definition for "Deputy authority"?

Obviously the NT talks about "authority". Ephesians talks about all authority was given unto Christ for the Church. The concept of head covering is related to authority and its practical application in the church life. Paul and Peter were both involved in counsels to hear their personal revelations before the church received the word. In Timothy it says that the Law is made for the lawless and disobedient, clearly the law has authority over the lawless and that would be administered by man. The entire concept of deputy authority was always taught with the analogy of a policeman and the uniform. 1Peter 5:5 exhorts the younger to submit to the elders. 1Pet 2:13 tells us to submit ourselves to every ordinance of man, not just laws but even things like "no shirt, no shoes, no service". Probably the most relevant verse would be 1Cor 16:16 where Paul tells us to submit ourselves to all those who are similar to Stephanas (who was addicted to the ministry of the saints) and all others who help Paul and labor with him.

So without knowing what the definition of "deputy authority" is that this person is referring to I would have no way to respond other than the premise that the concept of "deputy authority is not in the NT" is clearly not true based on a standard dictionary definition of the terms.
It was Roman Catholicism which first combined the elements of distorted oneness and Old Testament leadership. The result was a lineage of Popes bereft of godliness using twisted concepts of oneness to wield great power.

If the Apostle Paul had all of the "deputy authority" he was supposedly endued with, he would have been able to enact changes in Jerusalem. But he didn't and he couldn't.

The teachings of "deputy authority" have more roots in Chinese culture than in the Bible. How else could their dynasties exist for thousands of years? Like the Recovery, they have developed numerous teachings, as a system of error, which provide unlawful powers to its leaders.
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Old 03-25-2012, 09:59 AM   #4
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It was Roman Catholicism which first combined the elements of distorted oneness and Old Testament leadership. The result was a lineage of Popes bereft of godliness using twisted concepts of oneness to wield great power.

If the Apostle Paul had all of the "deputy authority" he was supposedly endued with, he would have been able to enact changes in Jerusalem. But he didn't and he couldn't.

The teachings of "deputy authority" have more roots in Chinese culture than in the Bible. How else could their dynasties exist for thousands of years? Like the Recovery, they have developed numerous teachings, as a system of error, which provide unlawful powers to its leaders.
How do you work out issues between saints? If there is no authority to go to it seems that it would be very difficult to deal with offenses. Paul rebuked the Corinthians for going to court asking isn’t there someone among you who could have judged? He then told them that the destiny of the saints is to judge the world. The only way a judge can be effective is as a representative of the higher authority, or as a “deputy authority”. Matt. 18 recommends a progression in trying to deal with an offense that ultimately ends up with you “telling the church”. In that context Jesus said “whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven”. That to me is the definition of the NT “deputy authority”.

This doesn’t mean that this authority rests with elders nor does it in any way suggest that there is a hierarchy in the church. Neither Paul or Jesus suggest that there is a hierarchy, only that there are reputable brothers that both of the parties could respect to judge according to righteousness. Also Jesus makes it very clear that He places a lot of faith in any two or three saints coming to together in His name and agreeing on anything. To me this demonstrates strongly that there is no hierarchy in this matter yet at the same time the church age is an age in which we are trained to exercise the Lord’s authority here on earth.

How about if there are problems with those who are taking the lead in the church? To me the authority is all about ownership. The "church of Christ" indicates that Christ has the ownership and therefore the authority to deal with the church. The "church of God" indicates that God also has the ownership and authority to deal with the church. Likewise the "church of the saints" indicates that the saints have the ownership, position and right to exercise authority over the church. There is no verse, however, that says the "church of the elders" or the "church of the apostles" etc. Having an equal standing to deal with issues also means we have an equal responsibility and equal accountability before the Lord. Basically, once you see sin or are aware of sin you are responsible to deal with it.

With that in mind, looking at how Paul recommends you choose an elder is very similar to how you would choose someone to judge between two saints. Obviously you want someone of good repute. If the problem is within a marriage I would much rather have a brother or sister that was married and had experience. If the problem was with the kids I would want someone who had done a good job raising kids to talk to. Although an elder may have been chosen as someone most saints would respect in most cases to judge between them, there is no rule that you would have to choose an elder to judge.

How about the example of the sons of Sceva. "Jesus I know, and Paul I know, but who are you" demonstrates that this authority is all about our relationship with the Lord. Compare this account with the Lord's word in Matthew "depart from me workers of iniquity for I never knew you". My understanding is that whatever we do in the Christian walk is based on our relationship with the Lord. We are not exercising our authority, we are one with Him, and we are exercising His authority, that is the meaning of "head covering". If we are speaking according to our own opinion our head is not covered, if our speaking comes out of our fellowship with the Lord or with the teaching of the Apostles then our head is covered.
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Old 03-25-2012, 10:52 AM   #5
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority - A. F.

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How do you work out issues between saints? If there is no authority to go to it seems that it would be very difficult to deal with offenses. Paul rebuked the Corinthians for going to court asking isn’t there someone among you who could have judged? He then told them that the destiny of the saints is to judge the world. The only way a judge can be effective is as a representative of the higher authority, or as a “deputy authority”. Matt. 18 recommends a progression in trying to deal with an offense that ultimately ends up with you “telling the church”. In that context Jesus said “whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven”. That to me is the definition of the NT “deputy authority”.
There definitely is authority in the church, and the saints are commanded to obey and submit to them. (H.13.17) If we look at the New Testament as a whole, the weight of scripture speaks to the abuses of leaders and not to the submission of the saints. The scripture is balanced knowing man's lust for power.

Never does the N.T. point to some solitary and distinct individual, other than Jesus Christ, the Son of Man, the Lord Himself, as some designated deputy authority, neither as a chief spokesman, a designated oracle, a Minister of the Age, nor one unique individual invested with power, as some "acting God."

Some may think that Peter or Paul were such persons, but they definitely were not, and that's why the failures of each, more so than any other of the early apostles, were so well known and broadcasted to the church.

It is only a collection of people, removed from scripture by the twisted teachings of a ruling body, who would buy into the distorted concepts of a "deputy authority." Unfortunately, I have spent my entire life, first under Rome, and then under Cleveland and Anaheim, swallowing this "doctrine of demons."
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Old 03-25-2012, 11:16 AM   #6
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There definitely is authority in the church, and the saints are commanded to obey and submit to them. (H.13.17) If we look at the New Testament as a whole, the weight of scripture speaks to the abuses of leaders and not to the submission of the saints. The scripture is balanced knowing man's lust for power.

Never does the N.T. point to some solitary and distinct individual, other than Jesus Christ, the Son of Man, the Lord Himself, as some designated deputy authority, neither as a chief spokesman, a designated oracle, a Minister of the Age, nor one unique individual invested with power, as some "acting God."
And this, to me, is what this age is all about. Learning to hear the voice of the Lord Jesus and respond accordingly. How do you respond when they quarantine TC? How do you respond when they threaten to quarantine you? How do you respond when you learn JI has left the LC?

Do you say "the elders should deal with this?" or do you stand up and speak? If you stand up, do you speak in your flesh?

Suppose you do speak up, suppose you don't bend when they threaten to excommunicate you, suppose you are bold and don't walk in your flesh. Well then they will lay traps, how do you respond to the traps? Does this cause you to turn more to your spirit and prayer? If so the response will be to intensify the attacks and even see expressed hatred.

Even if you are not "officially" quarantined you will still be "isolated". How do you deal with that? Does that cause the fellowship with the Lord to get deeper? Because after all that is what this age is all about.
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Old 03-26-2012, 09:22 AM   #7
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority - A. F.

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Even if you are not "officially" quarantined you will still be "isolated". How do you deal with that? Does that cause the fellowship with the Lord to get deeper?
If a brother at the church I meet with is an example, you go to seminary and become trained in pastoral work. As the Recovery has been a parallel, even if the Exclusive Brethren did not quarantine this brother, he was isolated, but not isolated from the Body of Christ. As this church is an example, he was received.
So yes, I do believe for many who have been involuntarily isolated, their fellowship with the Lord does get deeper.
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:09 AM   #8
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority - A. F.

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And this, to me, is what this age is all about. Learning to hear the voice of the Lord Jesus and respond accordingly. How do you respond when they quarantine TC? How do you respond when they threaten to quarantine you? How do you respond when you learn JI has left the LC?

Do you say "the elders should deal with this?" or do you stand up and speak? If you stand up, do you speak in your flesh?

Suppose you do speak up, suppose you don't bend when they threaten to excommunicate you, suppose you are bold and don't walk in your flesh. Well then they will lay traps, how do you respond to the traps? Does this cause you to turn more to your spirit and prayer? If so the response will be to intensify the attacks and even see expressed hatred.

Even if you are not "officially" quarantined you will still be "isolated". How do you deal with that? Does that cause the fellowship with the Lord to get deeper? Because after all that is what this age is all about.
And if I have to cite the primary sickness in the Recovery, it would be not honoring the Lord and upholding Him as the Head, and instead following a man. How many times have we seen LC leaders acting as man-pleasers and not followers of Jesus Christ? How often did I hear that "every one says they follow Jesus," but the true test is whether we can follow the brothers, and be one with them?

The recent quarantine exposed this all too well. Both sides claimed they were "fighting for the truth," when actually they were just picking sides, and siding with man. Who really stood for the Lord?

During the chaos of events leading up to the quarantine, I posted how I pleaded with the leading brothers to care only for the church. I was serving under 3 elders who were all employees of Cleveland. I noted the tremendous conflict of interest that surfaced because of that. The new leader sent by TC took strong offense to my pleas and demanded that I apologize for saying this in front of others.

These brothers were absolutely convinced that the church must side with TC to reject LSM and the quarantine. They never considered the needs and wants of the many saints, and hence, half of them finally decided to get up and leave. No one spoke up because it would be just a waste of time. It was one sister from another place who said it all, "this is just a fight between ministries, and it should not involve the church." We needed more like her.
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:11 AM   #9
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In my fellowship here in Southern California the last three months, a sister gave me a copy of this revolutionary word on Deputy Authority. Can she be challenged based on the Bible, or not? In other words, is the prevailing deputy authority concept manifestly and demonstrably wrong in the Local Churches?
Indiana, who is A.F.?
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:27 AM   #10
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Indiana, who is A.F.?
Don't know, but "The Word and the Testimony" is the same entity that published "Speaking the Truth in Love" by John Ingalls back in 1990.

cf. http://localchurchdiscussions.com/vB...read.php?t=411
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Old 03-26-2012, 11:41 AM   #11
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Don't know, but "The Word and the Testimony" is the same entity that published "Speaking the Truth in Love" by John Ingalls back in 1990.
Yes.

And there were several other papers printed besides JI's, which should be made available.
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Old 03-26-2012, 12:38 PM   #12
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And if I have to cite the primary sickness in the Recovery, it would be not honoring the Lord and upholding Him as the Head, and instead following a man. How many times have we seen LC leaders acting as man-pleasers and not followers of Jesus Christ? How often did I hear that "every one says they follow Jesus," but the true test is whether we can follow the brothers, and be one with them?
It goes to the teaching of deputy authority and delegated authority which ties brothers to be man-honoring.
By contrast a brother or sister can have spiritual authority, but not considered to be a deputy authority or delegated authority.
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Old 03-26-2012, 02:59 PM   #13
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And if I have to cite the primary sickness in the Recovery, it would be not honoring the Lord and upholding Him as the Head, and instead following a man. How many times have we seen LC leaders acting as man-pleasers and not followers of Jesus Christ? How often did I hear that "every one says they follow Jesus," but the true test is whether we can follow the brothers, and be one with them?

The recent quarantine exposed this all too well. Both sides claimed they were "fighting for the truth," when actually they were just picking sides, and siding with man. Who really stood for the Lord?
The Lord said the way that leads to life is narrow and few there be that find it. When I read Heb 11 I don't get the impression that those listed represented the "majority" of God's people. If faith, hope and love were common then they wouldn't be precious. One of the criteria in deciding that a stone is a "precious" stone is that it is rare. If this was an easy path to take then where would the glory be? To be a follower of Jesus is a high calling that leads from glory to glory. Didn't Paul say that "all had forsaken him"? Wasn't that similar to the Lord's experience at the crucifixion? I don't really see how the genuine experience of Christ would be any different.
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Old 03-26-2012, 03:40 PM   #14
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It goes to the teaching of deputy authority and delegated authority which ties brothers to be man-honoring.
By contrast a brother or sister can have spiritual authority, but not considered to be a deputy authority or delegated authority.
The sister first showed me the article in a booklet, which John So had published after he had read the article from her. He added a paragraph to it, published it, and he and others then distributed it, I assume. The turmoil was sky high at that time.

The following lnk is critical in defining the line that was crossed that purportedly "caused division" in the Local Churches. Actually, the article on deputy authority sets up the substantial matter that caused division.

http://www.twoturmoils.com/ProofofDivision.pdf


Andrew Yu exemplifies the drastic measures taken by leaders in their application of the meaning of deputy authority

http://www.twoturmoils.com/BlindLoya...yAuthority.pdf
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Old 03-26-2012, 04:23 PM   #15
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The sister first showed me the article in a booklet, which John So had published after he had read the article from her. He added a paragraph to it, published it, and he and others then distributed it, I assume. The turmoil was sky high at that time.

The following lnk is critical in defining the line that was crossed that purportedly "caused division" in the Local Churches. Actually, the article on deputy authority sets up the substantial matter that caused division.

http://www.twoturmoils.com/ProofofDivision.pdf


Andrew Yu exemplifies the drastic measures taken by leaders in their application of the meaning of deputy authority

http://www.twoturmoils.com/BlindLoya...yAuthority.pdf
Perhaps I misunderstand all of the events clearly. However, as I currently understand it the problem was this: PL was a sexual predator who worked for LSM. The elders in Anaheim didn't have jurisdiction over who LSM hires or fires, so they needed to fellowship with WL over getting rid of PL. To make this a more serious issue the meeting hall of the church is connected to the LSM ministry office of PL so PL continuing in his office at the LSM reflected badly on the church and the elders. To also make things worse, the building that the LSM was in belonged to LSM, not to the church in Anaheim. As a result JI, AK, and Godfried did not have the authority to oust LSM or PL.

It seems very obvious to me, and perhaps I am missing something, that if the church in Anaheim did not meet in the Hall at Ball road, but instead had their own meeting hall, completely under the jurisdiction of the church, then they would have had the authority to deal with this properly. Likewise, if the church was not so intertwined with the ministry this would have been much less of a big deal to the church and much more of a big deal to the LSM.

For example, I suppose that the church in Anaheim paid many of the fees for maintaining and keeping up the hall on Ball Rd. If they had left as tenants that would have put a significant financial strain on the LSM. Likewise without the standing orders of the churches LSM would have been out of business.

So to me the hypocrisy was teaching that the administration of the church is local while allowing yourself to be in a situation as tenants of LSM. Teaching that the church is not for the ministry but the ministry is for the church when in reality your personal financial arrangement was just the opposite.

What would have been much more effective, once they realized that WL had them by the "b#**s" and that he had set it up this way would have been simply, with the help of JS and BM, to get a second meeting hall as a decision voted on by the church. Once you have a new meeting hall, look at your contract with LSM and when it expires walk away from it. There was no reason to make a huge issue over it with JS talking about occupations and following a man. This probably would have taken one or two years at the most, with the help of decent legal advice they probably could have been out of the lease in six months.

Once the tables were turned and it was clear WL's empire would collapse because of PL's sins then perhaps he would have taken them more seriously. But if not, at least the church is no longer in a hypocritical stance, they can deal with sin as they see fit and continue to fellowship with the other saints.

It is highly unlikely that WL could have "excommunicated" the church in Anaheim in the way TC was excommunicated because then all the saints nationwide would have heard why the church had taken this stand. Also, it would be impossible for the rest of the churches to not have learned of this, since this was Anaheim. Also, AK, JI, BM, JS, and JF represent a very large portion of the LRC, no way WL could have kept the sins of his son hidden.

So instead of being "rebellious" they are merely sticking to the teaching that the ministry and church are separate.
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:45 AM   #16
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority

My recollection concerning the Ball Rd property was that it was spoken of as a combined training center, LSM office and printing facility, and place for the church in Anaheim to meet. If that was not the intent, then a whole lot of people were constantly speaking out loud about an error in perception. That the building was to also house the Anaheim assembly of the Local Churches was not simply some afterthought or concession — at least not from what we understood in Dallas at the time.

Yes, it was the LSM and training aspects that lured so many to go work part-time or full-time to build it. But it was always understood that it was also a church. For anyone to suggest to the average member that the church there was at the mercy of some business and its degenerate office manager is to turn the tables on the understood reality. In fact, if the average member in most places had heard of what was actually going on there in Anaheim in the late 80s, they would have demanded that PL be removed from the premises as an unfit "front man" to even speak to them on the phone as a representative of the ministry that they so ardently followed. They would have demanded better and Lee would have been forced to oblige.

But certain ambitious men saw that keeping it unknown granted them favor with Lee, who somehow could not bring himself to give certain controls of his ministry to anyone outside his family, no matter how corrupt he family actually was. And in the process applied the corruption to himself.

In the context of the outpouring of free labor and hospitality, to suggest that it was all for the creation of a nicer office for a corrupt lecher rather than for the benefit of the local members and the churches in general is to mock their sacrifice. And Lee did just that when he essentially dismissed JI and others who insisted that PL have nothing to do with the churches and with the ministry they served. I clearly have doctrinal differences with the LRC in many ways, but little complaint about the average member other than their unwillingness to see beyond what they love about their culture and community. For anyone o suggest that it is simply a matter of the legalities of whose name is on the deed for the property on Ball Rd is to mock their service to both the LSM and the church in Anaheim and pit one against the other.
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Old 03-27-2012, 05:28 AM   #17
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For anyone to suggest that it is simply a matter of the legalities of whose name is on the deed for the property on Ball Rd is to mock their service to both the LSM and the church in Anaheim and pit one against the other.
Bad conclusion.

I just don't understand the regular pot shots at that other poster?
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Old 03-27-2012, 06:52 AM   #18
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My recollection concerning the Ball Rd property was that it was spoken of as a combined training center, LSM office and printing facility, and place for the church in Anaheim to meet...
I am not certain because I did not see the deed to the property. But, when in Irving I was very clear that my service was to the LSM ministry. I am relatively certain that the property was purchased by LSM and the donations were to LSM. Therefore the Irving property was in the name of LSM. It combined a meeting hall of the church in Irving with what is otherwise a LSM center, it housed the printing, publishing (music, etc) and residence of WL. But the meeting hall was referred to as "a training center". So although I am not 100% absolutely certain that the property in Irving belonged to LSM that was certainly my understanding and feel I am more than 95% certain that this is the case. Therefore, would the church in Irving have the right to tell PL to vacate the premises? No, it is not there premises. Do church elders have the right to tell LSM who to employ? No. These are not difficult concepts.

However, does the church in Irving have to meet on that property as a tenant to LSM and pay rent? No. Do saints in the church in Irving have to serve in the ministry of LSM? No. Do the saints have to provide hospitality if the LSM wants to give a training? No.

Assuming the situation in Anaheim was the same, the church could have held their meetings elsewhere, refused to serve in LSM and refused to provide hospitality for trainings. All three could have been done in a way that could not in any way be construed as being "rebellious" though it would require a high level of discretion. I think had they done those three things WL would have been forced to get rid of PL.
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Old 03-27-2012, 10:45 AM   #19
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However, does the church in Irving have to meet on that property as a tenant to LSM and pay rent? No. Do saints in the church in Irving have to serve in the ministry of LSM? No. Do the saints have to provide hospitality if the LSM wants to give a training? No.

Assuming the situation in Anaheim was the same, the church could have held their meetings elsewhere, refused to serve in LSM and refused to provide hospitality for trainings. All three could have been done in a way that could not in any way be construed as being "rebellious" though it would require a high level of discretion. I think had they done those three things WL would have been forced to get rid of PL.
What makes this so difficult was that Irving initially was composed of immigrants from other LC's who moved there to "serve the ministry." Irving existed solely for WL and his ministry. WN called these types of churches ministry centers or work centers. Since WL had appointed the elders in these two centers, he supposedly had the right to remove and replace these elders, which he eventually did.

I believe there is no way to extricate the church from the ministry in such a place as Irving or Anaheim. Even the repulsive stories of PL could not provide the tipping point. Even brothers ready to re-enact "wild west justice" and go after PL with a gun did not succeed. WL only needed to call other leaders from around the globe, and cash in on his established credit. He had done it before, and was almost Clinton-esque in his ability to escape scandal ... and accountability.

I watched a 60 Minutes special on Michael Morton the other day. What a horrific story of a man wrongly incarcerated for life for the brutal death of his wife. Without even time to mourn her death, he was immediately targeted by a young and ambitious DA, yet without any evidence at all, and all the evidence which would have exonerated him was suppressed. The story had me in tears.

After he was finally released, due to years of work by the Innocence Project to expose prosecutorial abuses, Michael was asked to comment about the legal system that nearly destroyed him, he said, "I try to be very forgiving ... revenge, I know, doesn't work, but accountability works, it's what balances out, it's the equilibrium, it's the social glue, because if you're not accountable, then you can do anything."

Chilling words, yet spoken by him so graciously. Immediately I thought about WL and LSM.

If you're interested, this clip is well worth the watch.
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Old 03-27-2012, 12:07 PM   #20
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because if you're not accountable, then you can do anything.
As we know accountability to your brethren is one thing some LSM co-workers have shirked from. Claiming to be accountable only to God and not to their brothers and sisters in the Lord. This goes back to what our sister wrote:

"Man is always held accountable. He is held directly accountable to God whether his allegiance to the "deputy authority" was through his own ignorance, his own preference or personal loyalty, his own improper motive or ambition, or through the deceit of the one proclaiming that authority. The ramifications are generally disastrous. Not only so, but the judgment falling upon the mistakenly obedient one is far greater than that on the misleading "deputy authority." No man can shirk his individual responsibility and accountability to God."
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Old 03-27-2012, 12:17 PM   #21
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What makes this so difficult was that Irving initially was composed of immigrants from other LC's who moved there to "serve the ministry." Irving existed solely for WL and his ministry. WN called these types of churches ministry centers or work centers. Since WL had appointed the elders in these two centers, he supposedly had the right to remove and replace these elders, which he eventually did.

I believe there is no way to extricate the church from the ministry in such a place as Irving or Anaheim. Even the repulsive stories of PL could not provide the tipping point. Even brothers ready to re-enact "wild west justice" and go after PL with a gun did not succeed. WL only needed to call other leaders from around the globe, and cash in on his established credit. He had done it before, and was almost Clinton-esque in his ability to escape scandal ... and accountability.

I watched a 60 Minutes special on Michael Morton the other day. What a horrific story of a man wrongly incarcerated for life for the brutal death of his wife. Without even time to mourn her death, he was immediately targeted by a young and ambitious DA, yet without any evidence at all, and all the evidence which would have exonerated him was suppressed. The story had me in tears.

After he was finally released, due to years of work by the Innocence Project to expose prosecutorial abuses, Michael was asked to comment about the legal system that nearly destroyed him, he said, "I try to be very forgiving ... revenge, I know, doesn't work, but accountability works, it's what balances out, it's the equilibrium, it's the social glue, because if you're not accountable, then you can do anything."

Chilling words, yet spoken by him so graciously. Immediately I thought about WL and LSM.

If you're interested, this clip is well worth the watch.
When I study this history my concern is "how do I learn from that so I don't fall into the same pitfall". If I was a regular member of the church of Irving and I learned of PL I would go through the proper channels up to and even including a public testimony as to why I was leaving and then just leave to another locality. The same goes for Anaheim. If I was serving in the ministry I would stop and tell the leading ones why.

However, what gets trickier is if you were asked to be an elder. That could be a very difficult to impossible request to refuse. However, you should clearly be able to see the compromised position it puts you in. If the meeting hall belongs to LSM then what real authority do the elders have? Are they just puppets? I think you would have to see that you were being asked to be a puppet and request that there would have to be conditions placed. For example, if a brother was being disciplined by the elders it would be a slap in the face that this brother can walk in and out of the hall with impunity because they are "serving the ministry". I think in a hypothetical situation WL or any other leader would agree, in writing, that as a condition for the church to be a tenant the authority of the church covers the entire grounds, and is not restricted merely to the meeting hall. In return the church encourages the saints to serve the ministry, the church pays the bills for lights, heating, etc and the church maintains the grounds. These conditions are really no different than if you were leasing the property from a worldly owner.

I believe that the WL/PL case should be for our example, and that this age is designed to train us to exercise the Lord's authority.
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Old 03-27-2012, 12:28 PM   #22
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority - A. F.

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It is highly unlikely that WL could have "excommunicated" the church in Anaheim in the way TC was excommunicated because then all the saints nationwide would have heard why the church had taken this stand. Also, it would be impossible for the rest of the churches to not have learned of this, since this was Anaheim. Also, AK, JI, BM, JS, and JF represent a very large portion of the LRC, no way WL could have kept the sins of his son hidden.
This was spin doctoring to label those meeting with the Church in Anaheim who took that stand as "riotous". A way of damage control so the rest of the recovery would not be affected by reports of Phillip Lee's behavior.
I would ask this of those reading this forum, is it "riotous" to object to immoral behavior and the condoning of it?
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Old 03-27-2012, 12:35 PM   #23
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I believe that the WL/PL case should be for our example, and that this age is designed to train us to exercise the Lord's authority.
There are just so many violations by WL that have been condoned by the Recovery leaders, it should be a case study in hypocrisy, abuse of power and authority, coverup of corruption, nepotism, lording over the flock, exaltation of man, etc.
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Old 03-27-2012, 02:35 PM   #24
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This was spin doctoring to label those meeting with the Church in Anaheim who took that stand as "riotous". A way of damage control so the rest of the recovery would not be affected by reports of Phillip Lee's behavior.
I would ask this of those reading this forum, is it "riotous" to object to immoral behavior and the condoning of it?
Riotous would refer to the way in which you objected, not to the reason why. As a Christian how you do something is also important, not just why you did something.

So objecting to immoral behavior is a Biblical requirement, whereas condoning immoral behavior is an action to which you will be held accountable.

My spiritual childhood was in an environment filled with "spin doctoring". I learned very early that all behavior was subject to spin and the enemy would never give you the benefit of the doubt or take into account the context. I learned to assume that comments and actions would be taken out of context. That is why the standard in the NT is to be "beyond reproach" or to "avoid the appearance of evil".

"We are not ignorant of Satan's devices" and that includes spin, taking comments and actions out of context, etc.
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Old 03-27-2012, 02:38 PM   #25
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There are just so many violations by WL that have been condoned by the Recovery leaders, it should be a case study in hypocrisy, abuse of power and authority, coverup of corruption, nepotism, lording over the flock, exaltation of man, etc.
These are all the actions of the flesh, and the LRC does not have a monopoly on the flesh. We are supposed to let our light shine in the midst of an evil and perverted generation. As you know, Satan disguises himself as an angel of light, so think it not a strange thing that his ministers do the same.
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Old 03-27-2012, 02:40 PM   #26
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Bad conclusion.

I just don't understand the regular pot shots at that other poster?
I don't follow your "bad conclusion" comment.

As for the "pot shots" comment, I read through all of the posts in one sitting. At the end, this one comment I recalled reading stuck in my mind. I was not considering who wrote it. I had to look back to figure out what you were talking about.

It was something that a person like me who is steeped in reading law (tax law) and parsing through verbiage tends toward. That is, to take note of the legalities and let the simply rule. Sort of like when someone sues because someone calls them a bad name.

Sometimes the problem is that the "bad name" is only relevant within a context that the law does not properly delve into. (And in the Harvest Hills lawsuit, a judge finally ruled that it was not their business unless there was proof that it has malicious and capricious — something never assert, and possibly acknowledged as not true.)

I cannot remember the context. On one occasion, I think before one of the trainings, I attended a meeting of the church in Anaheim wherever it was that they were meeting at the time that the Ball road property had been purchased, but no work done. At that time, despite the multitude of obvious references to the LSM, and the fact that the CiA clearly could never use such a large building, it was already clearly also the coming residence of the CiA.

Yes, we create a corporation and register it under sec 503(c) or other related provision as a nonprofit. And in this case, the corporation was a ministry. And legally that corporation can hire anyone it wants to do anything it wants (as long as the actions wanted are legal). But that is in the legal realm. In the spiritual realm — in the realm of the people of God — that distinction is only so meaningful when there is something wrong with the spiritual realm. Ministry, whether the simple acts of a preacher, evangelist, missionary, etc., or more concerted efforts of organizations like Focus on the Family or Living Stream Ministry, are part of the workings of the church as a whole, and of assemblies in particular. If they are not, then they are somehow outside of the fellowship of believers coming along to simply dump stuff on us for a "profit" (or to make a living at "no profit").

That is legal. But within the household of God, it is not right. It is not righteous. And you can probably point to numerous organizations that do not entirely maintain the kind of transparency that you might think is required. But we point derisively at the "ministers" that thumbed their noses at their governing bodies when they were found in sin (Jimmy Swaggert is a good example) and note that others did the righteous thing and stepped aside. There are are all kinds of shades in between.

That is what I am saying. LSM is church even though not a church. Focus on the Family is church. These are seen by insiders and outsiders as part of the whole of the Christian mission which is about the church which is the people, not the organizations or the buildings.

There was much to consider in ZNP's post. I did not need to jump on teh bandwagon for that. I noted, in my typically wordy way, that we do ourselves a disservice to think that we can divorce church and LSM just because there are documents. It may be legally so, but it is not spiritually so. The LSM is an integral part of the existence of "Local Churches" — at least it was at that time.
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Old 03-27-2012, 02:47 PM   #27
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I am not certain because I did not see the deed to the property. But, when in Irving I was very clear that my service was to the LSM ministry. I am relatively certain that the property was purchased by LSM and the donations were to LSM. Therefore the Irving property was in the name of LSM. It combined a meeting hall of the church in Irving with what is otherwise a LSM center, it housed the printing, publishing (music, etc) and residence of WL. But the meeting hall was referred to as "a training center". So although I am not 100% absolutely certain that the property in Irving belonged to LSM that was certainly my understanding and feel I am more than 95% certain that this is the case. Therefore, would the church in Irving have the right to tell PL to vacate the premises? No, it is not there premises. Do church elders have the right to tell LSM who to employ? No. These are not difficult concepts.

However, does the church in Irving have to meet on that property as a tenant to LSM and pay rent? No. Do saints in the church in Irving have to serve in the ministry of LSM? No. Do the saints have to provide hospitality if the LSM wants to give a training? No.

Assuming the situation in Anaheim was the same, the church could have held their meetings elsewhere, refused to serve in LSM and refused to provide hospitality for trainings. All three could have been done in a way that could not in any way be construed as being "rebellious" though it would require a high level of discretion. I think had they done those three things WL would have been forced to get rid of PL.
Interesting question (which I do not know the answer to): Does the church in Irving pay rent? Does Anaheim? If so, on what basis? (I don't mean legal basis, but the criteria that determines the rent.)

But from the very beginning, it was contemplated that the building in both places would also house the local assembly. It was not some afterthought. It seems hard to spiritually extricate the two in both cases even though there probably is a legal answer.
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Old 03-27-2012, 03:35 PM   #28
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Email 2007

"......Regarding the title of the meeting hall on Ball Rd. in Anaheim. When I left in 1989, I believe the title was divided between the LSM and the Church in Anaheim. If I remember rightly, 3/4 of it was in the name of the LSM, and 1/4 in the name of the church. That division was based mostly on the amount of space we occupied in the hall. What happened to it after I left, I don't know. This is all I can say."

Your brother in Christ, John
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Old 03-27-2012, 04:40 PM   #29
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Email 2007

"......Regarding the title of the meeting hall on Ball Rd. in Anaheim. When I left in 1989, I believe the title was divided between the LSM and the Church in Anaheim. If I remember rightly, 3/4 of it was in the name of the LSM, and 1/4 in the name of the church. That division was based mostly on the amount of space we occupied in the hall. What happened to it after I left, I don't know. This is all I can say."

Your brother in Christ, John
The worst possible situation, a minority owner in a property that is unsellable and unrentable. The option to "walk away" was not tenable and would be unfavorably viewed on by almost all in the LC. Yet at the same time the church does own their share of the hall and can therefore exercise authority over their space.

Therefore, if you, as a Christian, were faced with a similar dilemma: you are aware of immoral behavior on behalf of the Administrative officer of the ministry that you share a meeting hall with and which you serve in and which the church is intimately connected. You fellowship with the Minister and father of the perpetrator but appear to be speaking to a brick wall. How do you respond?

1. You thoroughly fellowship and confirm the accounts. You are morally obliged to object and to protect the flock that you shepherd. You do not have the authority to remove the person in question and the Minister who does have the authority is not taking action. Clearly he has refused to listen to you.

2. You return with several other brothers, say AK and Godfried. He still refuses to hear you.

3. You have a meeting with the church and you openly tell them the case while trying to protect the reputations of the innocent. You clearly explain the reasons the person in question is being excommunicated from the church. You also explain that you have talked with the minister to no avail. You have AK and Godfried also confirm that you have met with WL to no avail. You then resign from the LSM, as well as AK and any other brothers serving with LSM who were aware of the situation prior to this meeting. You go into complete detail as to how and why you came to your conclusion. You don't encourage or fellowship with anyone else as to what they should do, but you do walk through everything that you considered in coming to this decision. This meeting must be recorded both as an audio and also as a video. In addition you prepare a written record prior to the meeting that details all the relevant data about the efforts to deal with the offending person, the offense and the reasons the elders have decided to excommunicate him. A copy of this is given to everyone in attendance and anyone can have a tape of the meeting. In this meeting you open it to the saints to discuss the decision to excommunicate this person. No open discussion about your decision to resign from the LSM. This way if anyone in the meeting has a problem with the decision they should voice it. Then you conclude with a vote in which the church decides whether or not to excommunicate. Everything is done in good order, nothing is riotous, the church has the right to take this action, anyone who interferes is interfering in the administration of the church.

4. The above meeting should be held on a thursday night from 8:30 to 10:00 and videos should be fed Exed to key people (BM, JS, JF, etc) who you know from fellowship support your decision and will show the video, in its entirety, to their locality on Friday night. Likewise, you send emails of your written presentation at the conclusion of that meeting to at least 10 key brothers. You take this action because you anticipate a "spin" will be put on the proceeding and you want a clear message sent out before there is a chance for a distorted message to be sent. Also, you have those who wish to challenge the decision to speak into a mike in front of the camera during your meeting.

5. The meeting should be announced as a meeting of the corporation of the church during the Wed prayer meeting (if that is when it is) and all saints on the phone list should be called during the 24 hours prior to the meeting. I would recommend using a robo phone service since a copy of the message and a record of the calls made and completed would be available to anyone wishing to complain. The meeting is only open to members of the church.

6. You open the meeting with a very short word explaining that this meeting is to be sent to other churches because it affects them and they will have to make a decision whether or not to support this decision.

7. Friday evening you send out a broadcast email to many more localities of the official decision to excommunicate this person, as well as your written word explaining what you have done and why. In this letter you let them know that a video of the meeting is available to any locality requesting a copy.

In this way you have gotten your message out within a 24 hour period. You have reduced the effect that phone calls will have since 10 PST is 1am EST. You have done as much as in your power to prevent the truth being twisted. That said, the battle will begin and you should expect the weekend to be full of phone calls, emails and gathering storm clouds. You, AK, Godfried, etc. should make yourself fully available for the period from Friday night to Sunday night to speak to any and all that contact you. According to Matt 18 you should treat this person as a heathen man and a publican. That means you should anticipate spin doctors, actions and words taken out of context, etc. Therefore your message to the church Friday night and all weekend is to warn them that they are now under a microscope and people are looking for anything and everything that can be used to shed a poor light on the church.
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Old 03-27-2012, 05:55 PM   #30
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority - A. F.

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Riotous would refer to the way in which you objected, not to the reason why. As a Christian how you do something is also important, not just why you did something.

So objecting to immoral behavior is a Biblical requirement, whereas condoning immoral behavior is an action to which you will be held accountable.
During the chaos in Anaheim, we heard about the saints being out of control, and "what a shame that John could not control his saints." As a result, some brothers were encouraged to write "shame on you" letters to John Ingalls and the other elders.

Nobody was asking why they were out of control.

If I am out in the street screaming "fire, fire," and you don't hear what I am saying, then I also appear "out of control."
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Old 03-27-2012, 06:53 PM   #31
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Riotous would refer to the way in which you objected, not to the reason why. As a Christian how you do something is also important, not just why you did something.

So objecting to immoral behavior is a Biblical requirement, whereas condoning immoral behavior is an action to which you will be held accountable.
So if you say these brothers and sisters were riotous in the Church of Anaheim meeting hall, would you say how they objected was due to outrage?
I say to describe the brothers and sisters as riotous is to also say they were outraged how immoral behavior is given a passover.
These were normal Christians with a sensitive conscience.
How can the churchlife be turned upside down when light becomes dark and dark becomes light as the norm?
Even when Phillip Lee subsequently is excommunicated, another group of elders (Ed Marks and co) reverse the decision and basically say Phillip Lee was wrongly excommunicated for immoral behavior.
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Old 03-27-2012, 07:04 PM   #32
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority

From the first link in post #14:

"There is much evidence today proving that the unique factor of oneness and the ground of so many churches is a person and his ministry and work. He is recognized by many as the unique apostle of this age. He claims to be the oracle of God and therefore also claims to be His deputy authority… He eventually becomes everything to the churches."-John So

As much as many are taken aback by John's words, he's speaking reality. Local churches not aligned under LSM aren't a true local church unless the ground of their church is through this ministry. A church such as the Church in Moses Lake are "friends", but not a local church because of this unique factor of oneness John So has brought out. This is also why many Great lake area localities were deemed needing to be replastered because they ceased having this unique factor of oneness. All these localities needed to do was affirm Titus' unscriptural quarantine.
Just as John asserted "claims to be His deputy authority", certain blended brothers at various times have made similar claims of to be.
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Old 03-28-2012, 01:32 AM   #33
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Originally Posted by ZNPaaneah View Post
The worst possible situation, a minority owner in a property that is unsellable and unrentable. The option to "walk away" was not tenable and would be unfavorably viewed on by almost all in the LC. Yet at the same time the church does own their share of the hall and can therefore exercise authority over their space.

Therefore, if you, as a Christian, were faced with a similar dilemma: you are aware of immoral behavior on behalf of the Administrative officer of the ministry that you share a meeting hall with and which you serve in and which the church is intimately connected. You fellowship with the Minister and father of the perpetrator but appear to be speaking to a brick wall. How do you respond?

1. You thoroughly fellowship and confirm the accounts. You are morally obliged to object and to protect the flock that you shepherd. You do not have the authority to remove the person in question and the Minister who does have the authority is not taking action. Clearly he has refused to listen to you.

2. You return with several other brothers, say AK and Godfried. He still refuses to hear you.

3. You have a meeting with the church and you openly tell them the case........

4. The above meeting should be held on a thursday night from 8:30 to........

5. The meeting should be announced as a meeting of the corporation of........

6. You open the meeting with a very short word explaining that this........

7. Friday evening you send out a broadcast email to many more localities........

In this way you have gotten your message out within a 24 hour period. You have reduced the effect that phone calls will have since 10 PST is 1am EST.........
Wow, video and audio, Fedexes, tight schedules, "robo phone services"....and all this to fulfill our obligations as "average Christians" with no particular position or authority?

No wonder I stopped being a Christian!
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Old 03-28-2012, 01:42 AM   #34
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority

In any event, hopefully all this stuff serves as a reminder that Witness Lee's influence was a little more than "5%" of our Recovery experience.
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Old 03-28-2012, 02:38 AM   #35
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So if you say these brothers and sisters were riotous in the Church of Anaheim meeting hall, would you say how they objected was due to outrage?
I say to describe the brothers and sisters as riotous is to also say they were outraged how immoral behavior is given a passover.
These were normal Christians with a sensitive conscience.
How can the churchlife be turned upside down when light becomes dark and dark becomes light as the norm?
Even when Phillip Lee subsequently is excommunicated, another group of elders (Ed Marks and co) reverse the decision and basically say Phillip Lee was wrongly excommunicated for immoral behavior.
I did not say they were "riotous". My post was a response to your post. You used the word riotous. My point is that once you know that WL and PL will not receive your word, then you are obligated to "tell it to the church" and to treat them as "heathen and publicans". You therefore should anticipate a smear campaign to damage your credibility, that is standard procedure. "We are not ignorant of Satan's devices".

It is wonderful that they are "normal Christians with a sensitive conscience" now it is time for them "having done all, to stand".
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Old 03-28-2012, 02:41 AM   #36
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From the first link in post #14:

"There is much evidence today proving that the unique factor of oneness and the ground of so many churches is a person and his ministry and work. He is recognized by many as the unique apostle of this age. He claims to be the oracle of God and therefore also claims to be His deputy authority… He eventually becomes everything to the churches."-John So

As much as many are taken aback by John's words, he's speaking reality. Local churches not aligned under LSM aren't a true local church unless the ground of their church is through this ministry. A church such as the Church in Moses Lake are "friends", but not a local church because of this unique factor of oneness John So has brought out. This is also why many Great lake area localities were deemed needing to be replastered because they ceased having this unique factor of oneness. All these localities needed to do was affirm Titus' unscriptural quarantine.
Just as John asserted "claims to be His deputy authority", certain blended brothers at various times have made similar claims of to be.
It may be true, but it would have been much more persuasive if WL had said it instead of JS. If the excommunication of PL had been done in a way that caused many saints to follow the lead of others who resign from serving LSM, and even "boycotting" LSM products you would have forced WL into a showdown.
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Old 03-28-2012, 02:42 AM   #37
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Wow, video and audio, Fedexes, tight schedules, "robo phone services"....and all this to fulfill our obligations as "average Christians" with no particular position or authority?

No wonder I stopped being a Christian!
Our obligations as average Christians is written in the NT, I am particularly thinking about Ephesians 6 at the moment.
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Old 03-28-2012, 02:44 AM   #38
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In any event, hopefully all this stuff serves as a reminder that Witness Lee's influence was a little more than "5%" of our Recovery experience.
I think this number is based on a post of mine that was censored. However, that post did not say he was 5% of "our" experience, that would be false. It said he was less than 5% of my experience.
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Old 03-28-2012, 03:06 AM   #39
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I think this number is based on a post of mine that was censored. However, that post did not say he was 5% of "our" experience, that would be false. It said he was less than 5% of my experience.
And yet you've shared your experience of long hours building the Irving meeting hall, and years as a trainer at the full-time training in Taipei, etc. I understand that you were far more independent than most, but at the end of the day, the reality is that you've spent half your life absorbed by Witness Lee's system, and helping promote this system. Heck, even your moving to Taiwan in the 80's in the first place....

You might not think you were promoting Witness Lee's system, but isn't that what the full-time training is? It's a religious school for a religious organization, just like any denomination's seminary program. Well, except, of course, theirs is a living training, not a dead cemetery, you know. Aside from that.

Stepping back to see the forest, your life might seem just a little bit like my own -- way, way too influenced by a certain little man from China.
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Old 03-28-2012, 03:19 AM   #40
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Our obligations as average Christians is written in the NT, I am particularly thinking about Ephesians 6 at the moment.
I just think the legal focus is a little odd. Obviously the complicated relationship between "the church" and "the ministry" in Anaheim is really not a legal problem. As you said yourself, six months to a year and any kind of lease would have been up. Though I'm pretty sure they were both owners anyway.

But more to the point, what's the situation on Ball Rd today? Well golly gee willickers, Batman, the church in Anaheim still meets at the same place. Yes, LSM moved the publishing business to La Palma, but the FTTA is still right there on Ball Rd. And I think they also use it for young people's study times during the biannual trainings.

And don't forget the joint CIB/LSM property they just bought for a new FTT center in Boston. Decades later, same m.o. Somehow, I think a legal brief on the relationship between tenants and landlords....kinda misses the point.
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Old 03-28-2012, 04:32 AM   #41
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And yet you've shared your experience of long hours building the Irving meeting hall, and years as a trainer at the full-time training in Taipei, etc. I understand that you were far more independent than most, but at the end of the day, the reality is that you've spent half your life absorbed by Witness Lee's system, and helping promote this system. Heck, even your moving to Taiwan in the 80's in the first place....

You might not think you were promoting Witness Lee's system, but isn't that what the full-time training is? It's a religious school for a religious organization, just like any denomination's seminary program. Well, except, of course, theirs is a living training, not a dead cemetery, you know. Aside from that.

Stepping back to see the forest, your life might seem just a little bit like my own -- way, way too influenced by a certain little man from China.
Both are valid viewpoints (the one inside the forest and the one from outer space looking at the forest), in fact I gave two viewpoints in my analysis. But to say that WL was an invisible force affecting my entire experience is, in my opinion, disrespectful to the triune God.

The idea that WL should be given credit for the building of the Irving hall to the exclusion of those that gave money, time, labor, hospitality, etc. is, again to my opinion, disrespectful of the saints. I had no contact with WL, I did have contact with RG and the other brothers that did build it. I think it has a lot to do with your heart. If you were in Irving because of WL then yes, he had an influence on that decision which had an influence on your experience. I know that in my case WL did not factor into my decision to go to Irving. He did factor into my decision to go to Taiwan, but not on my decision to stay.
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Old 03-28-2012, 04:40 AM   #42
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I just think the legal focus is a little odd. Obviously the complicated relationship between "the church" and "the ministry" in Anaheim is really not a legal problem. As you said yourself, six months to a year and any kind of lease would have been up. Though I'm pretty sure they were both owners anyway.

But more to the point, what's the situation on Ball Rd today? Well golly gee willickers, Batman, the church in Anaheim still meets at the same place. Yes, LSM moved the publishing business to La Palma, but the FTTA is still right there on Ball Rd. And I think they also use it for young people's study times during the biannual trainings.

And don't forget the joint CIB/LSM property they just bought for a new FTT center in Boston. Decades later, same M.O. Somehow, I think a legal brief on the relationship between tenants and landlords....kinda misses the point.
Misses what point? My point is that the WL/PL incident exposes the danger in being a "puppet" church of LSM and that if your in a joint ownership of a meeting hall with LSM in which the church is a minority owner that is a compromised position. Once you put yourself into that position it is much more difficult to deal with PL and instead led to a rubber stamp eldership of EM, etal.

My point is that the response of JI, AK, Godfried and all the "riotous" saints indicates that they were not aware of the precarious position prior to this event.

My point is that their experience is an example for us to learn from.

My point is that if you think it would have been difficult to deal with LSM then, imagine what it would be like now. 30 years ago you could give a message like JS honestly expressing dismay that the church's stand is based on the ministry of a man. Today that would be laughable.
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Old 03-28-2012, 05:00 AM   #43
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Both are valid viewpoints (the one inside the forest and the one from outer space looking at the forest), in fact I gave two viewpoints in my analysis. But to say that WL was an invisible force affecting my entire experience is, in my opinion, disrespectful to the triune God.

The idea that WL should be given credit for the building of the Irving hall to the exclusion of those that gave money, time, labor, hospitality, etc. is, again to my opinion, disrespectful of the saints. I had no contact with WL, I did have contact with RG and the other brothers that did build it. I think it has a lot to do with your heart. If you were in Irving because of WL then yes, he had an influence on that decision which had an influence on your experience. I know that in my case WL did not factor into my decision to go to Irving. He did factor into my decision to go to Taiwan, but not on my decision to stay.
Two sides to everything, I'll give you that. But I still think it's a little like saying that I spent 20 years working full-time for Obama's political campaign, but, actually, Obama really hasn't had that much influence on my life. Bad example, my math's a little off.

I'm not giving Witness Lee "credit" for anything people did on his behalf. I'm just acknowledging that, really, they were doing all these things -- all the time, money, labor, hospitality, etc -- mostly on his behalf. You say that he did not factor into your decision to go to Irving. And yet what you were doing in Irving was building a publishing house for Witness Lee's pet ministry, which just happens to publish only two authors, one of whom is Witness Lee!

And I agree that Witness Lee was not an "invisible force". He was quite visible. He was a visible man with a visible ministry, moving his visible ministry halfway around the world to Taiwan, with a bunch of single American men riding his coattails, er, being "one with the ministry", many of whom married Taiwanese women while they were there...

No, nothing invisible about it. Just good old-fashioned religion...with a healthy dose of manipulation.
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Old 03-28-2012, 05:13 AM   #44
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Misses what point? My point is that the WL/PL incident exposes the danger in being a "puppet" church of LSM and that if your in a joint ownership of a meeting hall with LSM in which the church is a minority owner that is a compromised position. Once you put yourself into that position it is much more difficult to deal with PL and instead led to a rubber stamp eldership of EM, etal.

My point is that the response of JI, AK, Godfried and all the "riotous" saints indicates that they were not aware of the precarious position prior to this event.

My point is that their experience is an example for us to learn from.

My point is that if you think it would have been difficult to deal with LSM then, imagine what it would be like now. 30 years ago you could give a message like JS honestly expressing dismay that the church's stand is based on the ministry of a man. Today that would be laughable.
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I believe there is no way to extricate the church from the ministry in such a place as Irving or Anaheim.
Seems like more of a symptom than the problem itself. Didn't Witness Lee handpick elders in localities all over the place, not just Anaheim and Irving? Hasn't "one hand washing the other" been the norm in the Recovery going back to the 70's, if not earlier? Isn't this the culture that allowed the tangled web of "ministry" and "local church" to develop in the first place?

They were aware of the position they'd put themselves in. They knew. We all knew.

Witness Lee fishes with a straight hook, after all.
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Old 03-28-2012, 06:08 AM   #45
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I'm not giving Witness Lee "credit" for anything people did on his behalf. I'm just acknowledging that, really, they were doing all these things -- all the time, money, labor, hospitality, etc -- mostly on his behalf. You say that he did not factor into your decision to go to Irving. And yet what you were doing in Irving was building a publishing house for Witness Lee's pet ministry, which just happens to publish only two authors, one of whom is Witness Lee!
rayliotta, originally, I and most of the brothers I knew felt that our serving and labors were for Christ and the church, which is His body. I was convinced, at the time, and for a long time, that WL and his ministry were for these same goals.

Today I see things a little differently, but that does not discredit any of my past service to the Lord.

For example, Judaism was a degraded and corrupt system 2,000 years ago, and the temple had become a cesspool of commerce and politics, but God still honored Anna, who served in the temple night and day with fastings and petitions, looking for the redemption of Israel. (Luke 2.36-38)
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Old 03-28-2012, 06:10 AM   #46
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Seems like more of a symptom than the problem itself. Didn't Witness Lee handpick elders in localities all over the place, not just Anaheim and Irving? Hasn't "one hand washing the other" been the norm in the Recovery going back to the 70's, if not earlier? Isn't this the culture that allowed the tangled web of "ministry" and "local church" to develop in the first place?

They were aware of the position they'd put themselves in. They knew. We all knew.
We'll just have to agree to disagree.
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Old 03-28-2012, 06:46 AM   #47
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Seems like more of a symptom than the problem itself. Didn't Witness Lee handpick elders in localities all over the place, not just Anaheim and Irving? Hasn't "one hand washing the other" been the norm in the Recovery going back to the 70's, if not earlier? Isn't this the culture that allowed the tangled web of "ministry" and "local church" to develop in the first place?

They were aware of the position they'd put themselves in. They knew. We all knew.

Witness Lee fishes with a straight hook, after all.
When you respond with "righteous indignation" it indicates that you did not know. It may well be that some knew, but clearly it is not right to say "they all knew". The ones who knew beforehand would be the ones with some mealy mouthed justification for immoral actions. They try to justify the acts because they are afraid that any objection will ultimately lead to the discovery that they were complicit in the crime.
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Old 03-28-2012, 06:49 AM   #48
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Default LRC Catholocism

The bottom line is that the LRC operates in principle much like the Catholic church. It's a hierarchical authority structure where authority flows from one man, down through lieutenants, to churches, to individuals.

Either you believe this type of authority structure is valid, or you believe that churches should be autonomous and that extra-local workers are servants with no direct authority over churches and individuals. But you cannot believe both.

The LRC acts as if imbuing their authoritative structure with lofty spiritual rhetoric (Body, organic, flow, Recovery, move of God, deputy authority, MOTA, etc.) turns it into something different than what it is, but it doesn't.

It is my belief that this structure is non-Biblical and invalid. I ask LRCers to stop kidding themselves with their high-blown spiritual rationalizations about what is at heart a hierarchical system. If it walks, swims and quacks like a duck, it's a duck.
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Old 03-28-2012, 07:00 AM   #49
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The bottom line is that the LRC operates in principle much like the Catholic church. It's a hierarchical authority structure where authority flows from one man, down through lieutenants, to churches, to individuals.

Either you believe this type of authority structure is valid, or you believe that churches are autonomous and that extra-local workers are servants with no direct authority over churches and individuals. But you cannot believe both.

The LRC acts as if imbuing their authoritative structure with lofty spiritual rhetoric (Body, organic, flow, Recovery, move of God, deputy authority, MOTA, etc.) turns it into something different than what it is, but it doesn't.

It is my belief that this structure is non-Biblical and invalid. I ask LRCers to stop kidding themselves with their high-blown spiritual rationalizations about what is at heart a hierarchical system. If it walks, swims and quacks like a duck, it's a duck.
Yes, that is the bottom line. However, if you look solely at the ministry of WL and WN prior to 1980 it is conceivable to have operated under the assumption that the LRC was aspiring to live by the Biblical version of authority. There were very few events that could expose the lie. The events with JI, WL and PL in the 1980s put that to the test and since then I think it has become less and less conceivable to live under this illusion. Because JI was well known to all, and was closely associated with both WL and LSM I think it should have forced many saints to examine the events.
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Old 03-28-2012, 08:45 AM   #50
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When you respond with "righteous indignation" it indicates that you did not know. It may well be that some knew, but clearly it is not right to say "they all knew". The ones who knew beforehand would be the ones with some mealy mouthed justification for immoral actions. They try to justify the acts because they are afraid that any objection will ultimately lead to the discovery that they were complicit in the crime.
Well said. Concise, informative, and to the point. My kind of post.
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Old 03-28-2012, 09:42 AM   #51
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Yes, that is the bottom line. However, if you look solely at the ministry of WL and WN prior to 1980 it is conceivable to have operated under the assumption that the LRC was aspiring to live by the Biblical version of authority. There were very few events that could expose the lie. The events with JI, WL and PL in the 1980s put that to the test and since then I think it has become less and less conceivable to live under this illusion. Because JI was well known to all, and was closely associated with both WL and LSM I think it should have forced many saints to examine the events.
The LRC has always been equivocating on this. On the one hand, they might not say that WL (or his successors) had authority over the churches. On the other hand, they definitely believe if you don't follow what he says, you are making a grave mistake which is something like rebellion.

How they can hold these two opposing ideas in their minds goes to root of the problem!

I recall doing this myself and believing this was another example of the "two-foldedness of truth, " where holding two opposing ideas which together amounted to an absurdity was somehow God's way.

If you can get an group of people to believe that is God's way, you can get them to do anything.
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Old 03-28-2012, 09:42 AM   #52
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The bottom line is that the LRC operates in principle much like the Catholic church. It's a hierarchical authority structure where authority flows from one man, down through lieutenants, to churches, to individuals.

Either you believe this type of authority structure is valid, or you believe that churches are autonomous and that extra-local workers are servants with no direct authority over churches and individuals. But you cannot believe both.

The LRC acts as if imbuing their authoritative structure with lofty spiritual rhetoric (Body, organic, flow, Recovery, move of God, deputy authority, MOTA, etc.) turns it into something different than what it is, but it doesn't.
Actually the Bible record in the N.T. does not present either extreme for us to choose. Things are just not that simple. Sometimes I wish they were.

There is the record of apostles and workers traveling thru churches ministering and appointing elders. The record of love in their fellowship showed some saints willing to risk their lives and even "pluck out their eyes." At times certain churches were used as centers for their work and ministry. There are definite Biblical supports for how Catholicism, Brethrenism, and the Recovery got started. Many well-meaning brothers went along with the movement because of the support of many scripture.

However, the Bible also strongly asserts the need for mature elders, men of good repute, to watch over the flock diligently against even those who might rise up from within. This was Paul's last admonition to the Ephesian elders. We must face the fact that warnings abound in the entire of the N.T. from the beginnings of the Gospels thru the Acts to the last of the Epistles. Paul constantly battled Judaizing operatives from Jerusalem, whether sponsored by James or not, who worked to bring all the churches under a central command.

My conclusion is that churches should be willing to receive from many ministries in the body of Christ. One role of the elder-shepherds is to direct the flock to those ministries which are approved, time-tested, well known by their fruit, and helpful to meet certain needs of their many saints. Being connected to one and only one ministry can never be healthy, and once problems at that ministry surface, the elders must expose it so all may learn. The elders must lead the flock based on the whole of scripture. No line of teaching can be used to the exclusion of other healthy doctrines.

WL was extremely adept at using scripture for self-serving gains. Balancing and conflicting verses were minimized or excluded from discussion. Reading only LSM materials diminished the ability of the members to discern the many biased teachings.
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:08 AM   #53
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Actually the Bible record in the N.T. does not present either extreme for us to choose. Things are just not that simple. Sometimes I wish they were.
I disagree. All one has to do is conclude such apostolic authority does not exist today. All that is required to do that is to conclude those who had it were either direct witnesses of Jesus or close associates of those who were.

History has proven me right. No claims of apostolic authority since the early church have led to any good.

This is what I believe, so I also believe the two choices I mentioned do hold.
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:13 AM   #54
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The LRC has always been equivocating on this. On the one hand, they might not say that WL (or his successors) had authority over the churches. On the other hand, they definitely believe if you don't follow what he says, you are making a grave mistake which is something like rebellion.
Equivocating, hypocrisy, double-speak, mealy-mouthed (thanks ZNP), two-faced, and duplicitous are all words that come to mind.

We believers have no way to know what is is men's hearts. Some speak "two-foldly" with the purest of intentions, others with sinister self-serving motives. Oftentimes, the former describes their earlier state of mind, and the latter decribes later times. What we can know is how people behave, how they treat one another, how they conduct themselves uprightly. That is why we cannot judge others' hearts, only their actions.

WL and LSM got a free pass from many of us, that is, until we learned how unrighteous they were in their dealings. Unfortunately, many of us, like myself and you, learned this many years after the fact.
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:18 AM   #55
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I disagree. All one has to do is conclude such apostolic authority does not exist today. All that is required to do that is to conclude those who had it were either direct witnesses of Jesus or close associates of those who were.

History has proven me right. No claims of apostolic authority since the early church have led to any good.
I understand. We have discussed this before. Wouldn't it be nice if the Bible just said this?

Perhaps we could agree to say that once they claim apostolic authority, we know there is a problem.
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:31 AM   #56
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I understand. We have discussed this before. Wouldn't it be nice if the Bible just said this?

Perhaps we could agree to say that once they claim apostolic authority, we know there is a problem.
I'll go along with that gladly.
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Old 03-28-2012, 01:26 PM   #57
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I understand. We have discussed this before. Wouldn't it be nice if the Bible just said this?
I think the Bible does say enough to give us guidance. In Revelation it says

22:18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
22:19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

Now although this word is spoken directly about the Book of Revelation I think the principle applies to the other books of the NT. Peter and Paul both have other relevant verses as well (for the sake of brevity I will assume everyone agrees). As a result I think you can make a strong case for the "apostolic authority" of the NT and that no one can claim a higher authority than the word of God, which is equated to the incarnated God.

As to "apostles" the only NT figure that was clearly a "Minister of the Age" at the time he was speaking would have been Peter since the Lord promised him the "keys to the kingdom" yet the NT records the Apostle Peter being rebuked and corrected by Paul, and having to have his revelation confirmed by elders in Jerusalem. So I see no NT basis to say that there is ever a "Minister of the Age" in the sense that they are above rebuke and correction. Likewise the Apostle Paul said that he had not arrived, indicating that he also was not full grown or perfect.

As to appointing elders it would be completely pointless for the Book of Timothy to go into such detail about what was necessary to appoint elders if we don't still have brothers like Timothy who might appoint elders. So, if Hudson Taylor preaches the gospel in China, establishes a church, he has the authority to appoint elders according to Paul's instruction in Timothy. Likewise, if the Catholic church has left the apostle's teaching in the NT and Martin Luther has shown them their fault and they refuse to listen to him he is not called to bondage, he can leave and continue to meet with other like minded Christians and again, appoint elders in every church. He will have to stand before the Lord's judgement, but if the Lord agrees with his leaving the Catholic church I doubt he'll be condemned for appointing elders in a church.
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Old 03-29-2012, 02:28 AM   #58
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When you respond with "righteous indignation" it indicates that you did not know. It may well be that some knew, but clearly it is not right to say "they all knew". The ones who knew beforehand would be the ones with some mealy mouthed justification for immoral actions. They try to justify the acts because they are afraid that any objection will ultimately lead to the discovery that they were complicit in the crime.
So I exaggerate a little. Incidentally, your comments here go to my point --

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Yes, that is the bottom line. However, if you look solely at the ministry of WL and WN prior to 1980 it is conceivable to have operated under the assumption that the LRC was aspiring to live by the Biblical version of authority. There were very few events that could expose the lie. The events with JI, WL and PL in the 1980s put that to the test and since then I think it has become less and less conceivable to live under this illusion. Because JI was well known to all, and was closely associated with both WL and LSM I think it should have forced many saints to examine the events.
My whole experience is post-1980's events. And I know you see this as a kind of demarcating line. But the further you peel back the onion...before the 80's, there was MR, before MR, there was Daystar, before Daystar there was the Seattle World's Fair. And throughout all of this, there were migrations, consolidations...again, didn't Witness Lee handpick elders in the 70's in localities other than Anaheim and Irving? Not to mention that the Recovery idea of "deputy authority" was already being preached. By the time you get to 1986, it's all baked into the cake.

In 1984, Madonna sang Like A Virgin. Ten years earlier, Witness Lee said, "The saints lost their virginity." I have a lot of difficulty seeing leaders like John Ingalls as naive virgins in the post-Madonna Recovery. Just like I have a lot of difficulty seeing LSM's current spokespeople as ignorant of the things of which we speak publicly here on the Internet.

http://localchurchdiscussions.com/vBulletin/showthread.php?p=6298

------------------

But I was really more interested in hearing your response to my other post...
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Old 03-29-2012, 03:21 AM   #59
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But I was really more interested in hearing your response to my other post...
I did respond to that post, but my response is not here, I don't know what happened to it. Basically I said a better analogy would be for a soldier in Afghanistan. One person could see that GW Bush had a big influence in his life, but others could say that it really wasn't GW but Osama that started the war, and still others are arguing that the engineering evidence cannot possibly be explained by airplanes crashing into the towers so they are blaming a "Gulf of Tonkin" like event.

But if you ask the soldier he may say that Bush had very little to do with his life, he didn't enlist because of him, nor did he ever fellowship with him, etc. He may be much more focused on the experiences he had and the people he knew.

I also went into detail that to give credit to WL for the building of the Irving hall is to completely trivialize the contribution of those that donated the money, time, labor, hospitality, etc. that resulted in that hall being built. Also, that 18 months was an amazing experience in every way. PL's sins do not in any way tarnish the experience.

As to JI being knowledgeable I would have no idea, I didn't know him, I was only in one conference he shared. When I speak about the recovery in generic terms like "it was possible to be in the LC and think that you aspired to the Biblical principles" JI and other "leaders" are never in my consideration. I am always considering my personal experience and the saints I knew first hand.
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Old 03-29-2012, 06:25 AM   #60
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I have a lot of difficulty seeing leaders like John Ingalls as naive virgins in the post-Madonna Recovery. Just like I have a lot of difficulty seeing LSM's current spokespeople as ignorant of the things of which we speak publicly here on the Internet.
The whole church in Anaheim was in an uproar over what happened with the LSM "Office" manager. Even though you have a "lot of difficulty" understanding this, obviously lots of good folks within earshot of Ball Road were not privy to all of LSM's happenings.
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Old 03-29-2012, 06:43 AM   #61
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I also went into detail that to give credit to WL for the building of the Irving hall is to completely trivialize the contribution of those that donated the money, time, labor, hospitality, etc. that resulted in that hall being built. Also, that 18 months was an amazing experience in every way. PL's sins do not in any way tarnish the experience.
Let's imagine for the moment that the pyramids were not in fact built by aliens. That they actually were built by slaves, chiseled like Rambo, hauling those stones up there.

To say that the king built the pyramids would be to trivialize the tremendous sacrifice of the men who actually built the things.

But to say that those men did not build the pyramids for the king, on behalf of the king, to deny that, would simply be denial.

Er, da Nile.
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Old 03-29-2012, 06:51 AM   #62
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The whole church in Anaheim was in an uproar over what happened with the LSM "Office" manager. Even though you have a "lot of difficulty" understanding this, obviously lots of good folks within earshot of Ball Road were not privy to all of LSM's happenings.
I don't see it as an all or nothing, black and white thing. Surely there are things that happened, that you and I aren't privy to even now. And it's probably better that way. But you've shared things that went on, extra-local manipulations and the like, that raised red flags -- or should have -- years before you left.

It makes me feel numb that I didn't free myself from this religious system 5-7 years earlier than I did.

As a famous man from ZNP's city once sang, a man sees what he wants to see, and disregards the rest.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:09 AM   #63
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Let's imagine for the moment that the pyramids were not in fact built by aliens. That they actually were built by slaves, chiseled like Rambo, hauling those stones up there.

To say that the king built the pyramids would be to trivialize the tremendous sacrifice of the men who actually built the things.

But to say that those men did not build the pyramids for the king, on behalf of the king, to deny that, would simply be denial.

Er, da Nile.
I have already conceded that is a valid viewpoint, just like Fox News has a valid viewpoint. It doesn't mean that their viewpoint is the same as for a soldier on the ground. By the way, if alien's didn't build the pyramids why isn't there soot on the walls? Assuming they couldn't see in the pitch dark, what did they use for light if it wasn't a torch that leaves soot on the walls?
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:12 AM   #64
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I don't see it as an all or nothing, black and white thing. Surely there are things that happened, that you and I aren't privy to even now. And it's probably better that way. But you've shared things that went on, extra-local manipulations and the like, that raised red flags -- or should have -- years before you left.
Not concerning WL.

What I have learned started with that Bereans forum, about 30 years after I first heard about WL.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:13 AM   #65
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It makes me feel numb that I didn't free myself from this religious system 5-7 years earlier than I did.
Don't beat yourself up about it. You were probably still getting something out of it. I'm sure some good came out of it.

Regrets are a waste of time. Look ahead with a positive attitude.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:16 AM   #66
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I have already conceded that is a valid viewpoint, just like Fox News has a valid viewpoint. It doesn't mean that their viewpoint is the same as for a soldier on the ground. By the way, if alien's didn't build the pyramids why isn't there soot on the walls? Assuming they couldn't see in the pitch dark, what did they use for light if it wasn't a torch that leaves soot on the walls?
I thought Israel built them while in captivity.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:29 AM   #67
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By the way, if alien's didn't build the pyramids why isn't there soot on the walls? Assuming they couldn't see in the pitch dark, what did they use for light if it wasn't a torch that leaves soot on the walls?
The aliens didn't build the pyramids, but the Egyptians used a non-soot producing light source which was left behind by the aliens.
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Old 03-29-2012, 08:31 AM   #68
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Sorry guys, call me a stick in the mud...
But I'm going to have to ask that we not get into all the aliens, pyramids and soot on the wall stuff. There are all sorts of Internet forums to discuss these kind of things. Please...let's just stick with the subject at hand.

Thank you.
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Old 03-29-2012, 11:10 AM   #69
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I think the Bible does say enough to give us guidance. In Revelation it says

22:18 For I testify unto every man that heareth the words of the prophecy of this book, If any man shall add unto these things, God shall add unto him the plagues that are written in this book:
22:19 And if any man shall take away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God shall take away his part out of the book of life, and out of the holy city, and from the things which are written in this book.

Now although this word is spoken directly about the Book of Revelation I think the principle applies to the other books of the NT. Peter and Paul both have other relevant verses as well (for the sake of brevity I will assume everyone agrees).
Humor me. I don't necessarily disagree. I just don't have a basis to opine one way or the other.

This is one of those things that comes up everywhere all the time. And somehow I always have some nagging sense that it's not quite so simple. But I don't have a basis to agree or disagree.

So, again, humor me. What are the other relevant verses. Not trying to cause trouble. I just got skittish about simply taking people's word about things without seeing the basis for their conclusions. And I know that a lot of smarter people than me say this all the time, so I presume I will be persuaded.

No rush. Just want to see enough to conclude.

Thanks,
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Old 03-29-2012, 02:11 PM   #70
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Humor me. I don't necessarily disagree. I just don't have a basis to opine one way or the other.

This is one of those things that comes up everywhere all the time. And somehow I always have some nagging sense that it's not quite so simple. But I don't have a basis to agree or disagree.

So, again, humor me. What are the other relevant verses. Not trying to cause trouble. I just got skittish about simply taking people's word about things without seeing the basis for their conclusions. And I know that a lot of smarter people than me say this all the time, so I presume I will be persuaded.

No rush. Just want to see enough to conclude.

Thanks,
Sure, here is a samplling:

Rev 22:18 says that no man can add to the prophecy, so for example if the Catholic church wants to add the worship of Mary to the NT then they are clearly forbidden. The authority of the Bible trumps any man in this situation.

Rev 22:19 says that if any man takes away from the words of the prophecy then God will take away his name from the book of life. So if the JW's want to take a few verses away that are inconvenient for their teaching then clearly the Bible again forbids this and trumps any man in this situation.

Heb 4:12 says that the word of God is living and powerful and sharper than any two edged sword piercing even to the dividing of soul and spirit. So if some would be apostle and his followers try to promote his ministry over the word of God, his words are clearly less sharp and less able to divide the soul from the spirit. To me this means there is no basis to promote a man's ministry over the word of God.

Peter said that no verse of the Bible is of its own interpretation, but that you should use verses of the Bible to interpret other verses. Therefore you can use the Bible to disprove a teaching, even if it is by the MOTA, and you can use the Bible to confirm a teaching, even if the MOTA doesn't like it, and you are required to use the Bible to establish a teaching. Once again, this puts the Bible above any MOTA.

In both Galatians and 2 Cor Paul condemned false apostles who preach another Jesus, or another gospel, or another spirit. So to me this shows that anyone purporting to be an apostle from God must have a teaching that is aligned with the NT. Therefore the NT trumps any MOTA.


According to 1Thes 1:5 a minister of the word should be someone who through their manner of life gives assurance to those they are ministering to that they are men of God. Therefore, the word clearly rejects anyone who is fleshly or sinful from being a “MOTA”.

1Tim 6:3 says that if a man does not consent to wholesome words, even the words of our Lord Jesus Christ that he knows nothing. Clearly a “MOTA”, “Apostle”, “Prophet” etc should submit to the words of our Lord Jesus Christ. Once again the authority of the word of God trumps any would be MOTA.
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Old 03-29-2012, 06:20 PM   #71
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Not concerning WL.

What I have learned started with that Bereans forum, about 30 years after I first heard about WL.
Even this?

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That's what they did with those cheap "gold" chairs.

WL told TC that "you just bought a thousand."

TC told us in Columbus, "you just bought a hundred."
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Old 03-29-2012, 06:42 PM   #72
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Don't beat yourself up about it. You were probably still getting something out of it. I'm sure some good came out of it.
Regrets are a waste of time. Look ahead with a positive attitude.
Oh I was getting something out of it, that's for sure. You really have no idea.

And beating yourself up's not so bad, so long as you feel numb afterwards...
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Old 03-29-2012, 06:57 PM   #73
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Old guy who doesn’t have time to worry about sarcasim:
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Don't beat yourself up about it. You were probably still getting something out of it. I'm sure some good came out of it.
Regrets are a waste of time. Look ahead with a positive attitude.
Younger guy who knows this but has enough time to worry about sarcasim:
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Oh I was getting something out of it, that's for sure. You really have no idea.
And beating yourself up's not so bad, so long as you feel numb afterwards...
Yikes…maybe aliens, pyaramids and soot are on topic afterall.
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Old 03-30-2012, 06:28 AM   #74
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Even this?
I never learned that on the forum.
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Old 03-30-2012, 06:30 AM   #75
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Yikes…maybe aliens, pyramids and soot are on topic after all.
Takes a while ... perhaps a long while ... but you're finally coming around.
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Old 03-30-2012, 10:06 AM   #76
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Book of Evil-Speaking #5
Elders Training Book 10

To assert that this is now the fifth book of evil-speaking from the press at LSM is not an exaggeration. They produce the books; I report them. Young people especially need to learn how not to speak and thus stay away from lies and mere party-line agenda.

The content of Elders’ Training, Book 10, like the four books of evil-speaking before it, deals falsely with the late 80s turmoil in messages given in 1989-1991.

THE PRESENT TURMOIL IN THE LORD’S RECOVERY

Brother Lee says, “The present turmoil among us can be considered a rebellion, a rebellion with a conspiracy. I have been quiet for more than two years. You have probably never heard me speak concerning this matter. On occasion I have expressed something related to this matter in the elders’ meetings, but not in a very clear way. Since the ones who initiated this rebellion have made it so obvious, even through the printed page, I feel that after a long period of silence I should let you know some of the facts. But in this message, I will only say a little bit in principle. For the details in full, see the book entitled The Fermentation of the Present Rebellion. It is published by Living Stream Ministry and is free of charge.”

INSTIGATED BY THE EVIL ONE

“Having thoroughly considered during the past two years the things that have happened in the rebellion, I came to the conclusion that this rebellion is the work of the devil, the evil one. (Matt. 13:19), because nearly everything brought out by the rebellious ones was not logical or reasonable, and some of the ways in which they did things were inhuman.”

CARRIED OUT BY THE PERVERTED ONES

“A rebellion such as the one we are encountering now in the Lord’s recovery is not only instigated by the evil spiritual source but also carried out through human instruments. In Paul’s charge to the elders from Ephesus in Acts 20:30, he warned them that from among themselves that men would rise up to speak perverted things to draw away the disciples to be their followers. In the past nineteen centuries Paul’s word has been fulfilled repeatedly. I would say that the present rebellion among us is another fulfillment of Paul’s warning. Many words that have come out of those who are participating in this rebellion should be considered as 'perverted things'".

In Anaheim the false reporting for many years by LC leadership is not only from “the evil spiritual source but also is carried out through human instruments”. For a complete rebuttal of such evil speaking by so-called deputy authorities see
http://www.MakingStraighttheWayofthe...dsRecovery.pdf
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Old 03-30-2012, 10:34 AM   #77
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Brother Lee says, “The present turmoil among us can be considered a rebellion, a rebellion with a conspiracy.”
WL is referring to the fallout that resulted from PL being force fed upon the churches by RG and BP. To put an unrepentant sexual predator who could accurately be described as a wolf in a position of authority over the elders of other churches is clearly contrary to the truth. There is no basis for elders in autonomous churches to submit to someone in the LSM office, much less a wolf. You could say that doing so was a rebellion against the NT. Since this was carried out by a group of people, most notably RG and BP but also EM and FB, KR, and RK, etc. Then by definition it can also be called a conspiracy.

So I agree with WL, the turmoil was a rebellion with a conspiracy. The goal was to increase the reach and authority of LSM.
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Old 03-30-2012, 10:36 AM   #78
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INSTIGATED BY THE EVIL ONE

“Having thoroughly considered during the past two years the things that have happened in the rebellion, I came to the conclusion that this rebellion is the work of the devil, the evil one. (Matt. 13:19), because nearly everything brought out by the rebellious ones was not logical or reasonable, and some of the ways in which they did things were inhuman.”
Once again I absolutely agree with WL. Clearly putting PL, a wolf, in charge of elders and churches is the work of the devil. It isn't logical or reasonable. No doubt some of the things PL did could be considered inhuman. I had no idea WL felt this way.
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Old 03-30-2012, 10:42 AM   #79
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CARRIED OUT BY THE PERVERTED ONES

“A rebellion such as the one we are encountering now in the Lord’s recovery is not only instigated by the evil spiritual source but also carried out through human instruments. In Paul’s charge to the elders from Ephesus in Acts 20:30, he warned them that from among themselves that men would rise up to speak perverted things to draw away the disciples to be their followers. In the past nineteen centuries Paul’s word has been fulfilled repeatedly. I would say that the present rebellion among us is another fulfillment of Paul’s warning. Many words that have come out of those who are participating in this rebellion should be considered as 'perverted things'".
Yes. Yes. Yes. Preach it WL! This could never have taken place without the help of human instruments like RG, BP, etc. If these brothers had stood with the decision of the elders in Anaheim to excommunicate a sexual predator none of this would have happened. Also KR and RK were instrumental in the whitewash coverup job. And EM and FB were crucial in implementing the new "Ministry Church" model of rubber stamp elders without a backbone.

Yes, men would rise up to speak perverted things to draw away disciples to be their "Ministry churches". Wow! This word is hot. Bazinga, he just nailed PL. Many words that have come out of those who are participating in this rebellion should be considered as 'perverted things'. Absolutely! The teaching of MOTA for one! Making the idea that our oneness includes the attempt to be one with the Ministry of WL is another! WL is on fire!
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Old 03-30-2012, 11:59 AM   #80
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There is no basis for elders in autonomous churches to submit to someone in the LSM office, much less a wolf. You could say that doing so was a rebellion against the NT. Since this was carried out by a group of people, most notably RG and BP but also EM and FB, KR, and RK, etc. Then by definition it can also be called a conspiracy.

So I agree with WL, the turmoil was a rebellion with a conspiracy. The goal was to increase the reach and authority of LSM.
As I understand ZNPaaneah's post,
1. Those elders and co-workers who executed directives of LSM's office manager were the ones in rebellion and in conspiracy to bring localities under LSM headship.
2. Those elders and co-workers who reacted against directives of LSM's office manager were officially or unofficially quarantined, or simply withdrew from the local churches affiliated with LSM.
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Old 03-30-2012, 12:32 PM   #81
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WL is referring to the fallout that resulted from PL being force fed upon the churches by RG and BP. To put an unrepentant sexual predator who could accurately be described as a wolf in a position of authority over the elders of other churches is clearly contrary to the truth. There is no basis for elders in autonomous churches to submit to someone in the LSM office, much less a wolf. You could say that doing so was a rebellion against the NT. Since this was carried out by a group of people, most notably RG and BP but also EM and FB, KR, and RK, etc. Then by definition it can also be called a conspiracy.

So I agree with WL, the turmoil was a rebellion with a conspiracy. The goal was to increase the reach and authority of LSM.
I specifically remember WL speaking publically that, "you cannot say that you are one with my ministry, and not be one with my office."

None of us realized that this "office" had a name.

After hearing WL teach on so many subjects, pointing out the errors of everyone else besides himself, I can still remember how dumbfounded I was upon learning that his own son Phillip (choking out the word nepotism) was LSM's manager. a.k.a. "my office."
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Old 03-30-2012, 12:56 PM   #82
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As I understand ZNPaaneah's post,
1. Those elders and co-workers who executed directives of LSM's office manager were the ones in rebellion and in conspiracy to bring localities under LSM headship.
2. Those elders and co-workers who reacted against directives of LSM's office manager were officially or unofficially quarantined, or simply withdrew from the local churches affiliated with LSM.
My point was that "with what judgement you judge you shall be judged". It seemed very clear to me that the words spoken by WL were much more appropriate as a judgement on himself and his son.
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Old 03-30-2012, 01:05 PM   #83
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I specifically remember WL speaking publically that, "you cannot say that you are one with my ministry, and not be one with my office."

None of us realized that this "office" had a name.

After hearing WL teach on so many subjects, pointing out the errors of everyone else besides himself, I can still remember how dumbfounded I was upon learning that his own son Phillip (choking out the word nepotism) was LSM's manager. a.k.a. "my office."
And that is where the teaching becomes very ugly. You begin with verses in the NT about the oneness of the Body, and "one lord, one spirit, one God, etc." You then go to Phil where it talks about murmuring and complaining and how to restore saints to harmonious situation. All good and scriptural teachings.

From there we mention cases of those who labored with Paul and then draw the analogy that for us today that means laboring with WL. Still not a "bad" teaching, perhaps a little self serving, but OK.

From there we get RG going off the deep end with his "wink wink" teaching about who the minister of the age is. You get some seriously bad teachings about how "it doesn't matter if he is wrong, as long as you follow him it is right" type of garbage. As bad as all these are, at least they aren't codified, only rumored.

From there you get the teachings of WL being the "MOTA", perhaps the most serious error in all of the LSM publications.

And then you have the extortion that you must be "one with his office" (i.e. PL in order to claim to be "one with the ministry"). The implied threat being that to not be able to "claim" to be "one with the ministry" (I assume this is referring to the document RG and BP made all the elders sign) is to be ostracized from the club. There you have it, the LSM sect full of extortion.
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Old 03-30-2012, 01:31 PM   #84
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And then you have the extortion that you must be "one with his office" (i.e. PL in order to claim to be "one with the ministry"). The implied threat being that to not be able to "claim" to be "one with the ministry" (I assume this is referring to the document RG and BP made all the elders sign) is to be ostracized from the club. There you have it, the LSM sect full of extortion.
And when complaints start to surface from around the globe, as the backlash to Philip Lee's abusive bully tactics from inside the office of LSM, WL comes to the podium and quiets the faithful with these challenging words, "don't I have the right to hire an unbeliever as my personal cook?"

Ask John So and the brothers in Germany if they were just protesting the spoiled dinner they had last night.

Since when does a "personal cook" run a multi-million dollar publishing company intent on controlling all the LC's in the Recovery?
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Old 03-30-2012, 03:53 PM   #85
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And when complaints start to surface from around the globe, as the backlash to Philip Lee's abusive bully tactics from inside the office of LSM, WL comes to the podium and quiets the faithful with these challenging words, "don't I have the right to hire an unbeliever as my personal cook?"

Ask John So and the brothers in Germany if they were just protesting the spoiled dinner they had last night.

Since when does a "personal cook" run a multi-million dollar publishing company intent on controlling all the LC's in the Recovery?
Forcing churches to have "standing orders" for books no one wanted was a result of extortion. Elders chose the books as the lesser of two evils. RG and BP pushing PL when his sins were well documented could in the most optimistically spun euphemism be characterized as "illogical". I think WL was more precise when he said it had an evil spiritual source, involved a conspiracy and constituted rebellion.
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Old 03-31-2012, 07:36 AM   #86
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Forcing churches to have "standing orders" for books no one wanted was a result of extortion. Elders chose the books as the lesser of two evils. RG and BP pushing PL when his sins were well documented could in the most optimistically spun euphemism be characterized as "illogical". I think WL was more precise when he said it had an evil spiritual source, involved a conspiracy and constituted rebellion.
What kind of spiritual leaders, facing evidences of immorality and corruption exposed to the light of day, sacrifice numerous long-standing personal relationships, and subsequently attempt to destroy the integrity and character of these very brothers with bogus accusations in order to maintain their own pristine image to the rank and file?!? They then hold public meetings, kangaroo courts, heaping condemnations upon these brothers, in absentia, by parading their own lackeys to the podium as "credible witnesses."

Against every available fact of truth at their disposal, WL and his most loyal cadre of lieutenants really believed that they were under some kind of coup d'etat, a global conspiracy to destroy God's Recovery of the one true ministry to build the one true church, by other co-workers who had suddenly decided to overthrow his leadership, and become the new leaders. Or did they? Did they really believe this?!?

By completely rejecting all the obvious facts of numerous and credible eye-witnesses to the contrary, they were able to maintain their own delusional inner belief system that they, and they alone, were the unique testimony of the church, the one unique move of God on earth, the sole guardians of all the recovered truths of this age. As brother Francis Ball gleefully proclaimed, "I'd rather be an ostrich with its head in the sand."

So it's no wonder that they have maintained constant and continual efforts to "inoculate" their members from this truth. No wonder they considered this the most dangerous of "poisons." As soon as some member discovers what really happened during the quarantines of John Ingalls and so many others godly co-workers, that member changes overnight, one day an ardent zealot for the ministry, the next day gone completely "negative."
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Old 03-31-2012, 09:13 AM   #87
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Don't think that they "maintain constant and continual efforts to inoculate their members from this truth" to protect the reputation of WL. He is dead. They are protecting their own reputation. That is proof positive they know what they have done.

I went to school with KR, there is no way he didn't know that what he was writing was a whitewash. I know him well enough to know the issue is not sloppy scholarship, on the contrary, his issue is the willingness to do a hatchet job that he knew was a hatchet job.

I served under RG for years. He was meticulous about maintaining the testimony concerning brothers and sisters. Everything that was run in both Houston and Irving he was very careful to make sure there was no appearance of evil and he preached on this. He knew what PL's sins were, he knew the danger to the ministry, and had it been anyone else he would have been at the forefront of any discipline being handed out. What RG and BP did was clearly to use this as an opportunity to seize control of the LSM. The hypocrisy of this action is so bizarre as to only be described as a knife in the back of JI, etal.

Why would brothers (RG and BP) who had always been so careful for the testimony all of a sudden push a lecher like PL as someone for the elders to submit to? This goes beyond RG's obsession with all things WL. The simplest answer is that with them in charge of the LSM this would broaden their power base. They used extortion to sell books, and they let PL be the "bad man".

To my impression the whole "using footnotes for testimonies" started with EM. In the very small fishbowl that I grew up in (Houston and Irving) he was the one that excelled the most at it. I believe this is how he got RG's attention, this is why he was made an elder of Anaheim, and this was a critical part of RG's strategy to make LSM vital. I think you can sum up RG's entire strategy in his pet phrase for the RcV of the NT, he called them "gold bars". Create an LRC in which every member has to have this version, the only way to do that is to emphasize the footnotes until they are an essential part of the meetings, then sell tens of thousands of these gold bars at $45 to $90 each. Make them with and without footnotes, NT and whole Bible.
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Old 04-01-2012, 08:19 AM   #88
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What kind of spiritual leaders, facing evidences of immorality and corruption exposed to the light of day, sacrifice numerous long-standing personal relationships, and subsequently attempt to destroy the integrity and character of these very brothers with bogus accusations in order to maintain their own pristine image to the rank and file?!?
This kind:

23:29 Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! because ye build the tombs of the prophets, and garnish the sepulchres of the righteous,
23:30 And say, If we had been in the days of our fathers, we would not have been partakers with them in the blood of the prophets.
23:31 Wherefore ye be witnesses unto yourselves, that ye are the children of them which killed the prophets.
23:32 Fill ye up then the measure of your fathers.
23:33 Ye serpents, ye generation of vipers, how can ye escape the damnation of hell?
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Old 04-01-2012, 04:16 PM   #89
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I served under RG for years. He was meticulous about maintaining the testimony concerning brothers and sisters. Everything that was run in both Houston and Irving he was very careful to make sure there was no appearance of evil and he preached on this. He knew what PL's sins were, he knew the danger to the ministry, and had it been anyone else he would have been at the forefront of any discipline being handed out. What RG and BP did was clearly to use this as an opportunity to seize control of the LSM. The hypocrisy of this action is so bizarre as to only be described as a knife in the back of JI, etal.
This post is quite telling.

Thanks.
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Old 04-02-2012, 04:58 AM   #90
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Sure, here is a sampling . . . .
I can see the various verses make it clear that any kind of teaching that is inconsistent with existing scripture does not stand. They clearly speak against so much of the kinds of things that Lee taught, making it clear that even if there were such a thing as a MOTA, it wasn't Lee.

But none of them defined the boundaries of scripture so neatly as to extend those two verses in Revelation to define what is scripture. And since there were many things already written that were not inconsistent with what we have as the Bible now, yet are not included as scripture, then it does not seem that simple — unless we are prepared to join the ranks of those two guys who visited here a year or so ago claiming that if they wrote, it was scripture.

The verses in Revelation obviously speak concerning that one writing of John. Whether they are speaking concerning anything else still appears to be speculation.

The other verses make it clear that scripture is of the inspiration of God. By extension, unless we have a fickle, arbitrary, and capricious God, the whole of his words should not lead us in contradictory ways. But they don't define the boundaries of the sum of scripture, just the boundaries of the content of scripture.

Whether there could be more scripture is not defined. Neither whether all of the 66 books that we now call scripture are required to be called scripture is defined.

My recollection is that when they got together to try and agree on a single definition of the whole of scripture, it was not exactly a unanimous decision. In part, they left some out as redundant (although this was mostly from the epistles rather than the gospels). They provided nothing insightful that was not already found in other writings. They argued over the inclusion of some, including James. And in the end, the appearance of unanimity was somewhat an illusion brought on by the fact that there was an external, secular power that would make those who did not agree into heretics who could be banned and even punished.

I do not allow that last part to dissuade me from what we got. It is coherent, and consistent. Yes, Paul did write some more (or it is said to be so). But it was restating what he or others already said fairly clearly. But just because he or others said it does not make it scripture-worthy. They must speak from and for God. While Paul's writings were often very different from all that had gone before, they still synthesized what was already there in a way that was consistent in message.

And Lee's teachings too often were not consistent in message.

For me, even without the expansion of the Revelation edict, I take the NT a little like the Jews did (and still do) the old. The Torah is the law. Everything else is interpretation. (I probably got that somewhat wrong, but it is still how they say it.) In other words, it starts with the basics — the foundation. Then come the details and understanding. But no matter how new the details and understanding may seem, they are not inconsistent.

Same with the NT. The gospels provide the base of truth. Acts records host that was begun to be lived out. The rest fills in details and explains, but does not change the base.

So, at some level, good writers who deal with the nuances of today's issues are like the writers of the epistles. They take our uncertainty of living righteously in this particular version of a perverse and crooked generation and fill in details. And some do it better than others. And some do it quite poorly. But if they can't measure up to, and remain faithful to the core — the scripture — then they get discarded. Or we surely hope so.

The earliest of those writings became scripture. They were found to be clearly the speaking of God to the people and situations at hand. This does not lessen the importance of similar writings of current times except to say that we do not elevate any of it to the level of scripture. And we inspect it to determine whether, and to what extent it reflects a reasonable application of God's constant word to the changing situation of man.

I've said a lot. I am convinced that "scripture" is the 66 books we have. No more or less. But I don't see any of these passages defining that as true. Just defining the rational bounds of what would be included.

And clearly speaking against the nonsense that Lee taught.

Thanks for trying. I'll just keep it to myself next time it comes up.
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Old 04-02-2012, 01:40 PM   #91
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I can see the various verses make it clear that any kind of teaching that is inconsistent with existing scripture does not stand. They clearly speak against so much of the kinds of things that Lee taught, making it clear that even if there were such a thing as a MOTA, it wasn't Lee.

But none of them defined the boundaries of scripture so neatly as to extend those two verses in Revelation to define what is scripture. And since there were many things already written that were not inconsistent with what we have as the Bible now, yet are not included as scripture, then it does not seem that simple — unless we are prepared to join the ranks of those two guys who visited here a year or so ago claiming that if they wrote, it was scripture.
I have no idea what you are talking about. Here is the discussion as I understand it: We had a long discussion previously about whether there are still apostles today. Igzy said there weren't Ohio and I said there was nothing in the NT to say that. Igzy then clarified his position saying that no one today can write scripture the way a few apostles did when the NT was written. That position I agree with, but Ohio said "I wish the NT gave us a clear word on that". I responded that I felt the NT says enough to give us clear guidance.

The verses in Revelation can clearly be used to refer to the entire book of Revelation. However, the book of Revelation can be considered as a "conclusion" to the NT. If the book is a conclusion then it is reasonable to say that word refers to the entire NT. Likewise, John said that the book of Revelation was "the revelation of Jesus Christ". If this is the vision he is referring to "the revelation of Jesus Christ" it is again reasonable to say that this would encompass the entire NT. You are free to choose the narrowest interpretation if you wish, but even if you do that doesn't mean the principle doesn't apply to the rest of the NT.

Paul said in the book of Galatians that you cannot add to or annul a covenant after it has been confirmed. This is a standard legal principle and would clearly refer to both the NT and the OT.

In addition there are many condemnations throughout the NT towards those who try to deceive by twisting the scriptures or distorting the scriptures. Likewise there are admonitions throughout to "cut straight the word of the truth". So even if you choose the narrowest possible interpretation of the two verses in Revelation, there is no ground to say that anyone could add to or subtract from the Revelation of Christ.

That is not to say that we cannot have those who speak the word of God today, or that have the gift of prophecy or the gift of apostleship. What it does mean is that everyone who speaks, whoever they are, must be governed, controlled and restricted by the word of God. Therefore, the NT does give guidance on this issue of whether we still have apostles that can write scripture.
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Old 04-03-2012, 04:35 AM   #92
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I was not talking about whether the scriptures speak against twisting its words. Or whether the scriptures gave sound advice for identifying or otherwise thwarting false apostles. I simply asked for some scriptural evidence that, besides the unclear reference in Revelation (unclear in whether it applies beyond its own writing to other scripture), indicated a boundary to what should be called scripture.

And for virtually every issue that you brought up in your post, the verses mentioned give some sound direction. Toward identifying false apostles and teachers. Toward revealing the nature of God and the life and work of Christ.

But none of them identified the writings that are or are not scripture in such a way as to be able to warn-off the possible inclusion of some other writing. Instead, they provide a basis for analysis of what you want to consider as scripture. It does not add to or alter what has already been spoken. It does not diminish the very clear words of God/Christ. I recall that toward the end of Matthew 5, Jesus gave a word that enhanced the meaning of adultery and murder. Then he said that anyone who taught less was guilty and would be least in the kingdom. Seems we know of someone who "took away" from scripture by saying that being right was not really so important as being "in the spirit." A kind of taking away.

But none of them identify that what we call the Bible is precisely the 66 books we have agreed to. Instead, they identify the nature of the content of what we have included. And the writings that have been omitted (from among the earliest writings) are either redundant, or have inconsistencies. Much like modern writings which may have a lot of help, mixed with thoughts that leave you wondering where they got that.

I am not suggesting that I question the 66 books as the standard. Just saying that the way you get to those is not entirely found in those verses. Those would surely be guides as you seek to determine what to include or exclude. But they don't say "this is it; don't add to or take away from it." They don't define the absolute limit of scripture, but the way to determine what is within and without. If the guys who gave us the 66 books had decided to also include other of Paul's writings, which they considered redundant, would there have been grounds based on any of these verses for us to exclude them? That is where I see the limit in the application of these various verses to establishing an intent in the writing of John to mean there is a defined quantity of scripture that you can't mess with.

Enough said. I'm not fighting. Just wanting to figure out where the claim that some make of a clear line of "in" and "out" comes from. And I don't see it. I don't disagree with what we have. Just some of the claims made around it.
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Old 04-03-2012, 04:55 AM   #93
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Well now i understand your question, and you are right, I was operating on the assumption that the 66 books are "scripture".

I suppose the verse where the Lord says "not one jot or tittle" of the law would be done away with could operate as a guideline for deciding whether or not one of the NT books should or should not be included. But I imagine those that have put more thought into this have found many more verses, like "signs and wonders will accompany them", and "the signs of an apostle were wrought among you" etc.
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Old 04-03-2012, 11:55 AM   #94
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This post is quite telling.

Thanks.
Yes it was Ohio.
Seemingly brothers of character were compromised and their integrity sacrificed. Very sad and disappointing. Since brother Lee's passing in 1997, I have longed there would be a turn in BP, RK ,etc. As their speaking is a driving influence throughout the recovery.
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Old 04-03-2012, 03:09 PM   #95
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Default Undermining the "deputy authority" of RG and BP

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Yes it was Ohio.
Seemingly brothers of character were compromised and their integrity sacrificed. Very sad and disappointing. Since brother Lee's passing in 1997, I have longed there would be a turn in BP, RK ,etc. As their speaking is a driving influence throughout the recovery.

Here is a summary of what I know to be true:

1. One sister that was molested by PL was sent to live in Houston. As a result it is sure that both RG and BP were well aware of PL being a sexual predator.

2. Houston began printing for the LSM at least a full year before the Irving construction began, if not more. I served the entire time that LSM was printing in Houston under RG. During that time RG was very strict that there not be even the appearance of evil. As a result no sister could be alone with a brother in any room. This was made abundantly clear and was repeated over and over again.

3. While in Irving I was working on the construction of the Irving hall and I was one of 12 brothers chosen to go with RG to "have fellowship" with PL when he visited the construction site. The "fellowship" involved all of us sitting around a large table at a very fancy Chinese restaurant watching PL eat Lobster by himself. At the time I felt it had been the biggest waste of my time and I also was repulsed by PL, even though this was the only time I had ever met him and had never heard anything negative about him prior to this. I was amazed that RG would speak glowingly of what to me was obviously a lascivious man (if anything RG had always appeared to be an ascetic to me). As a result I think it is safe to say that from first hand experience I know that RG and BP were in close fellowship with both WL and PL. (Later I realized that for PL to expense this lunch which probably cost him around $100 he needed the rest of us so that he could call it “fellowship”, also if the bill were divided 14 ways it would not stand out. Suffice it to say that our lunch fellowships while working in Irving never included lobster at fancy Chinese restaurants.)

4. Based on JI account of his meeting with RG and BP it has always struck me as very strange that they would react putting their hands to their ears, running out of the room and saying "that is a local matter". How do you know it is a local matter until you have heard the fellowship? How do they both act in unison? It just seemed to me from the account that JI gave that they both knew exactly what was going to be fellowshipped beforehand and had agreed together how they would react. Unless you think the sister contacted them it could only mean that WL and PL had talked to them prior to the meeting.

5. At the time of construction it was always presented that LSM was now going to have two centers in the US. But in hindsight I wonder how much financial sense such an investment made? However, if you factor in the idea that WL and PL had invested in Irving as a “worst case” plan then it does make more sense. Surely they couldn’t have anticipated how it ultimately turned out.

6. KR is a Phd and has a very good education, I spent several years with him at Rice. I don’t believe it is realistic to assume that his scholarship is really as sloppy as it would have to be for the whitewash he worked on to have been innocent. Either he is a fool or was involved in a coverup. Based on my experience I would be much more inclined to believe that KR felt the saints were foolish enough that he could pull off the whitewash than to believe that this book accurately depicts his scholarship. Why would he do that, well, his major was perfectly aligned with working on a translation of the Bible. There are not many jobs in that area and if this is what it would take to get this job, as someone who spent several years with him in Houston, I am sorry to say that I would not put it past him.

7. I see absolutely no basis for EM to be sent to Anaheim at a time of serious upheaval other than that he was a classic yes man, and would rubber stamp anything he was told to. The only reason for EM to be chosen for this role is that BP and RG chose him, there is no other explanation I can see. His apology to PL is absolutely repugnant.

8. RG and BP engineered a written consecration to the ministry by the elders.

The only way I can put these 8 facts together is to conclude that RG and BP stabbed JI in the back in order to take charge of the LSM. As much as we talk about WL and PL on this site I can not find any other explanation than these two were complicit.
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Old 04-03-2012, 05:46 PM   #96
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Default Re: Undermining the "deputy authority" of RG and BP

ZNP, thank you for posting this.

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5. At the time of construction it was always presented that LSM was now going to have two centers in the US. But in hindsight I wonder how much financial sense such an investment made? However, if you factor in the idea that WL and PL had invested in Irving as a “worst case” plan then it does make more sense. Surely they couldn’t have anticipated how it ultimately turned out.
I definitely heard that Irving was chosen because the leadership there was much more favorable to WL, especially during the turbulent times of the late 70's. (TC and Cleveland would have loved to have received the same opportunity.) The property was sold to the church for tax advantages, knowing that DFW was planning a runway directly over the property.

Taipei went sour. Elden hall went sour. Anaheim went sour. Needed a "new start" for the ministry.


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6. KR is a Phd and has a very good education, I spent several years with him at Rice. I don’t believe it is realistic to assume that his scholarship is really as sloppy as it would have to be for the whitewash he worked on to have been innocent. Either he is a fool or was involved in a coverup. Based on my experience I would be much more inclined to believe that KR felt the saints were foolish enough that he could pull off the whitewash than to believe that this book accurately depicts his scholarship. Why would he do that, well, his major was perfectly aligned with working on a translation of the Bible. There are not many jobs in that area and if this is what it would take to get this job, as someone who spent several years with him in Houston, I am sorry to say that I would not put it past him.
I heard that KR was living in Greece to learn the language, and then was recalled by Texas leaders to help with the translation of the recovery version. KR later explained to us that during the Life Study era, JI's translation work lacked continuity from book to book of the New Test. I always felt that KR's work added nothing to the translation, and in fact was much less readable. It's just sickening to think that his motivation for smearing JI's name was simply to take his job and move up the ladder, but these kinds of things happen every day, just not in the kingdom of God.


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7. I see absolutely no basis for EM to be sent to Anaheim at a time of serious upheaval other than that he was a classic yes man, and would rubber stamp anything he was told to. The only reason for EM to be chosen for this role is that BP and RG chose him, there is no other explanation I can see. His apology to PL is absolutely repugnant.
If ever there was a pom-pom cheerleader of the ministry, it was he. Someone once counted 33x in one training meeting in which EM shamelessly invoked the glorious name of WL after he passed away.


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8. RG and BP engineered a written consecration to the ministry by the elders.
To say this was done only to brown nose WL would be short-sighted. Based on others' accounts, signatures were coerced in order to bring all leaders under submission to LSM. It was a strategic power move.
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Old 04-03-2012, 06:07 PM   #97
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ZNP, thank you for posting this.



I definitely heard that Irving was chosen because the leadership there was much more favorable to WL, especially during the turbulent times of the late 70's. (TC and Cleveland would have loved to have received the same opportunity.) The property was sold to the church for tax advantages, knowing that DFW was planning a runway directly over the property.

Taipei went sour. Elden hall went sour. Anaheim went sour. Needed a "new start" for the ministry.



I heard that KR was living in Greece to learn the language, and then was recalled by Texas leaders to help with the translation of the recovery version. KR later explained to us that during the Life Study era, JI's translation work lacked continuity from book to book of the New Test. I always felt that KR's work added nothing to the translation, and in fact was much less readable. It's just sickening to think that his motivation for smearing JI's name was simply to take his job and move up the ladder, but these kinds of things happen every day, just not in the kingdom of God.



If ever there was a pom-pom cheerleader of the ministry, it was he. Someone once counted 33x in one training meeting in which EM shamelessly invoked the glorious name of WL after he passed away.



To say this was done only to brown nose WL would be short-sighted. Based on others' accounts, signatures were coerced in order to bring all leaders under submission to LSM. It was a strategic power move.
It seems very Machiavellian. There isn't a "simple misunderstanding" between JI and RG / BP / KR / EM. On the contrary this is the proverbial "selling your soul". Imagine what it must be like to be one of them: you wear a robe of being a "deputy authority" of the Lord yet in your conscience you know it a lie, the Lord knows it is a lie, the Spirit knows it is a lie, Saints whisper it is a lie, and even on the internet it is clearly proclaimed to be a lie. You can only pretend to be a Bible scholar within the small confines of the LRC, if you step outside of that bubble you get no respect at all. So if your lies have put you into a prison why would you want to be alone. You have to prepare a message or a conference, but when you pray to the Lord all you get is convicted to confess and repent. So what choice do you have but to open up an old WL message and parrot it to keep your sins hidden. Of course your wife knows, how could a wife or kids respect someone like this? Of course anyone with the slightest amount of self respect would realize this is not the person or life they want, they'd confess, repent, and go get a real job. The problem is that after 10 or 20 years in the LRC what job can you do? You aren't qualified to do anything. Anyone who thinks there isn't a hell try building your world around a lie to the church of the Living God.
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Old 04-03-2012, 06:58 PM   #98
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority

Ohio,

At the time of the sale and the building in Irving, flights were going directly overhead already without the new runway. Southeast take-offs were quickly turned to the right to a due South direction to avoid going over more expensive houses to the Southeast. And they put extra insulation in the exterior walls, roof and upper ceilings because of it.

They eventually stopped the takeoffs from that runway, but when they built the new East-most runway years later, the planes were essentially landing to the North (obviously not the main air-traffic direction in Dallas) less than a block to the West of the building. But they seldom use it for take-offs.

At some level, I believe that the airport is being used as an excuse to try to get the airport or the city to pay for the building. A building that was put where it was to take advantage of the proximity of the airport.

And the plans for that new runway existed long before the idea of a church/print shop/training facility was hatched.
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Old 04-03-2012, 07:03 PM   #99
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Default Re: Undermining the "deputy authority" of RG and BP

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. . . .

7. I see absolutely no basis for EM to be sent to Anaheim at a time of serious upheaval other than that he was a classic yes man, and would rubber stamp anything he was told to. The only reason for EM to be chosen for this role is that BP and RG chose him, there is no other explanation I can see. His apology to PL is absolutely repugnant.
I must admit that I did not dislike EM. But he never impressed me as much more than a relatively young wanna-be. When I heard years later that he became some sort of name as a leader/speaker, I could only shake my head. I guess they needed a good parrot to keep from having to have the instigators be the only voices heard.
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Old 04-03-2012, 07:17 PM   #100
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority

Ok, let’s try to get back a little closer to a discussion of the proposition set forth by the writer of this little paper, “God’s New Testament economy vs. Deputy Authority”. Of course this thing was not written in a vacuum – we all know the circumstances and atmosphere from which it came. I was given a copy of this booklet back in the early 90s during all the turmoil in So. Calif. There were a lot of these anonymous writings floating around at the time, and most of them had the general theme of “things have changed” and “wait a cotton pickin minute, I thought ‘In the New Testament economy there is no thought of hierarchy. On the contrary,God's economy in the New Testament makes all the believers of the same rank’(Lee)”

I do find it interesting that the writer’s description and definition of “God’s New Testament Economy” is rather different (almost diametrically opposed) to that which was taught by Witness Lee. I can only assume that she knew this and wanted to score some points with her readers right off the bat. Once she established what “God’s Economy” really was, it wasn’t hard to expose the bejeebers out of the whole “Deputy Authority” false teaching.

Actually, it’s a fact that this kind of teaching came from Watchman Nee, and it was no doubt one of his most crucial and damaging errors. The writer, to throw a little irony into the mix, made sure the readers knew about Lee’s quote:
* I am sorry that some Christians utilize Brother Nee's book, Spiritual Authority, to make themselves an authority over others. This kind of authority is self assumed. - L.S. of Revelation p.742 Yikes! Only Witness Lee could have the gall to say something like this, with the kind of man he was, and how he wielded his self assumed power and authority over others.

I found this portion of the paper most poignant:

Man is always held accountable. He is held directly accountable to God whether his allegiance to the "deputy authority" was through his own ignorance, his own preference or personal loyalty, his own improper motive or ambition, or through the deceit of the one proclaiming that authority. The ramifications are generally disastrous. Not only so, but the judgment falling upon the mistakenly obedient one is far greater than that on the misleading "deputy authority." No man can shirk his individual responsibility and accountability to God.

Man oh man - “or through the deceit of the one proclaiming that authority”. That really hits home, doesn’t it? I think most of us would opt for this choice over “ignorance, his own preference or personal loyalty or his own improper motive or ambition”. In any case, she was right about the ramifications being generally disastrous.
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Old 04-04-2012, 08:32 AM   #101
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I found this portion of the paper most poignant:
Man is always held accountable. He is held directly accountable to God whether his allegiance to the "deputy authority" was through his own ignorance, his own preference or personal loyalty, his own improper motive or ambition, or through the deceit of the one proclaiming that authority. The ramifications are generally disastrous. Not only so, but the judgment falling upon the mistakenly obedient one is far greater than that on the misleading "deputy authority." No man can shirk his individual responsibility and accountability to God.
I took issue with this statement, the following verses should make it clear that the statement seems at odds with the Lord.

Luke 12:47 And that servant, which knew his lord's will, and prepared not himself, neither did according to his will, shall be beaten with many stripes.
12:48 But he that knew not, and did commit things worthy of stripes, shall be beaten with few stripes. For unto whomsoever much is given, of him shall be much required: and to whom men have committed much, of him they will ask the more.

The mistakenly obedient could refer to those that knew not their Lord’s will in this passage whereas the "misleading deputy authority" could refer to those that knew His will and did it not.

Luke 17:1b It is impossible but that offences will come: but woe unto him, through whom they come!
17:2 It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones.

Someone who offends one of these little ones in this passage could apply to a “misleading deputy authority”. Whereas "little ones" could refer to those that are "mistakenly obedient".

It seems to me that the Lord has made it very clear that those who mislead others with this false "deputy authority" claim will receive much greater punishment than those that are fooled.
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Old 04-04-2012, 09:12 AM   #102
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Ok, let’s try to get back a little closer to a discussion of the proposition set forth by the writer of this little paper, “God’s New Testament economy vs. Deputy Authority”. Of course this thing was not written in a vacuum – we all know the circumstances and atmosphere from which it came. I was given a copy of this booklet back in the early 90s during all the turmoil in So. Calif. There were a lot of these anonymous writings floating around at the time, and most of them had the general theme of “things have changed” and “wait a cotton pickin minute, I thought ‘In the New Testament economy there is no thought of hierarchy. On the contrary,God's economy in the New Testament makes all the believers of the same rank’(Lee)”
I saw two saints in Houston get excommunicated, one I knew (he was living with us in corporate living) and the other I didn't know very well. But I never felt that since this was done by the elders that there were two different ranks in the church. So these quotes don't resonate with me since I never was taught or felt that there were different ranks in the church, nevertheless there was a need for a "deputy authority". There are thousands of decisions that have to be made, most seem trivial, yet they concern the church, and God's people and someone has to take responsibility to make the decision. Think of all the decisions made to run the meeting hall, as well as schedule and run the meetings. All of these decisions impact the church and they all require someone with authority to make them.
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Old 04-04-2012, 11:49 AM   #103
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It seems to me that the Lord has made it very clear that those who mislead others with this false "deputy authority" claim will receive much greater punishment than those that are fooled.
I happen to agree with you on this one, and for the very same reasons. I think this writer went a little over board with this statement. But, hey, she got most of it right.
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Old 04-04-2012, 12:01 PM   #104
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..So these quotes don't resonate with me since I never was taught or felt that there were different ranks in the church, nevertheless there was a need for a "deputy authority".
There is a huge, HUGE difference between a godly and experienced AND well-intentioned person exercising some measure of spiritual authority over a person or person(s) with whom he/she has a relationship, and what Witness Lee (and now blendeds) taught regarding "THE deputy authority". It's not even close. What Lee taught was unbiblical and even on bordered spiritual abuse. He took what Watchman Nee taught and magnified and multiplied the error big time, which was par for the course for Mr. Lee.
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Old 04-04-2012, 01:29 PM   #105
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There is a huge, HUGE difference between a godly and experienced AND well-intentioned person exercising some measure of spiritual authority over a person or person(s) with whom he/she has a relationship, and what Witness Lee (and now blendeds) taught regarding "THE deputy authority". It's not even close. What Lee taught was unbiblical and even bordered on spiritual abuse. He took what Watchman Nee taught and magnified and multiplied the error big time, which was par for the course for Mr. Lee.
Which is why I like the verses from the Lord. He understood that some would know His will and not do it, others would be ignorant of His will and act foolishly. He also knew that some would be so heinous as to stumble and deceive new believers. To me the basic teachings are not the issue. The problem was in the practice and it will ultimately be sorted out by the Lord at His judgement seat. The Lord has the hard job, our job is to follow the Lord and that is an easy yoke by comparison.
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Old 09-21-2014, 11:21 AM   #106
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority

John Ingalls once said during his resignation message with the Church in Anaheim,

"There has been an over-stressing and distortion of the teaching concerning deputy
authority, which has caused the saints to be fearful to follow their conscience, to be one with their spirit, and sometimes to speak their genuine concerns.
"

What John saw then in 1988/1989 took others much longer to see. Yes, there is an over-stressing and distortion of the deputy authority teaching. This tragically results in many loving brothers becoming prideful in heart. A symptom of pride is an unwillingness to apologize for any mistakes, shortcomings, or sin.
Instead there is the concept as the one over you, if you have been offended or hurt by a deputy authority, take the cross. As the deputy authority, only perceived accountability is to God and not to fellow joint-heirs.
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Old 05-10-2015, 09:36 PM   #107
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority

This link gets into the matter of authority:
http://www.lighthouseprophecy.com/pr...TheChurch.html
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Old 05-11-2015, 05:34 AM   #108
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From the linked article.
Quote:
This is the pattern in the body. Fathers in the faith instruct faithful men, bringing them to maturity, that they in their turn might do the same.
II Timothy 2:1-2
You therefore, my son, be strong in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. The things which you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses, entrust these to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.
Is this pattern followed in the traditional church? No, it is not. But this is the pattern set forth in scripture. Yahshua was not invisible among His disciples. The disciples, turned apostles, were not invisible either. They were very evident among the saints. Paul was very visible everywhere he went. He did not try to hide among the body and make himself obscure, nor should leaders today. They are granted authority to edify the body, to build it up. They are called as servants, not benefactors, and they are visible servants.

It has been asserted that it is wrong for any saint to stand out among the others. It has been stated that it is wrong for any of the saints to be looked at differently due to their calling. This sounds like humility and sound reason, but it is not scripturally supported. In regard to the issue of support, Frank Viola spoke the following:
Frank replies: Let me add something more practically. I have been a Christian a long time. I have never seen in all of my life a man who received a salary from God's people who was not set apart from them as someone better, someone higher, and someone of a different class...

Also the saints will look at you differently. You are separating yourself from them by this practice.
Did we not already read that an elder is worthy of double honor? If this is true, then do not elders stand out? Are they not set apart and presented as an example to the body of Christ? In this same talk Frank has stated that he believes that elders are worthy of double respect, that is, not the same respect as other brothers, but a special, double respect. It cannot be both ways. Elders cannot be given double honor and no honor at the same time. They cannot be treated with extra respect and with the same respect as everyone else at the same time. Many such difficulties are encountered by trying to make the scriptures fit a wrong model.
It was interesting to read through roughly half the article this morning. While I can see where they are rightly pointing to the blindness of interpretation in the ones they write to and about, they are equally blind to their own problems of interpretation.

In this short segment that is probably about 3/5 through the article, there is much said that I can agree with. Yet from the very beginning, he simply dismisses the "traditional church" as not following this pattern. He makes this assertion immediately after quoting the verses in 2 Timothy 2 where Paul tells Timothy to entrust what he has learned to faithful men that they can also teach it. How is this not he way of the traditional church? Given the way in which seminaries so often rely on recommendation from others of stature to decide who will be able to attend and learn, how is this different? How is any of it different other than the unstated desire to claim some higher ground than the traditional church through unsubstantiated claims that they are not following the same pattern.

Then he moves on to the matter of honor for those who lead. He rightly points out that they are worthy of double honor. It is interesting that here the argument is that paying a minister does not unjustly set him apart as different because people then look at ministers as different from themselves. And his references for his claim are valid. Yet periodically throughout the article he has made references to the to something like the "clergy-laity divide" as if it is a proven error that he never mentions other than as a disparaging remark.

So what would the divide be? That they are somewhat set apart? Like Paul and Barnabas for ministry? That they are the ones charged to teach the flock? Like elders and unlike leaderless groups who simply teach themselves whatever they think is right.

I note that at one point shortly before the one I quoted, there is a passage from Nee's Spiritual Authority in which he makes his case for the proper understanding of authority. It is a 593-word portion that begins with "Authority is a tremendous thing in the universe - nothing overshadows it. It is therefore imperative for us who desire to serve God to know the authority of God." But it does not contain a single reference to evidence that the importance that Nee gives to it is even found in scripture. In fact, there is no scripture mentioned at all. Just statements that the importance of it all is as he claims.

But what I find just as interesting, or even more so, is that it is now evident that those who less directly follow Nee (compared to those who more directly follow Lee) are in many ways just as dogmatic about their superiority to "traditional Christianity" They are totally blind to how they are just like everyone else as they claim superiority. All in the name of a group (like others) who gripe about various "divides" as they go to extraordinary lengths to separate themselves from the others.
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Old 05-11-2015, 08:50 AM   #109
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In this short segment that is probably about 3/5 through the article, there is much said that I can agree with. Yet from the very beginning, he simply dismisses the "traditional church" as not following this pattern.
It's a bit confusing because he starts out a) refuting notions of the traditional church. Then follows b) a long section, a letter actually addressed to him, upholding traditions of authority in the traditional church, which he then concludes by c) rejecting in some detail.

Problem is you don't see the transition from section a) to section b), so you think that he is doing an about face, when actually he is quoting the alternative to his own view in some detail.

I find it very hard to consider WN's own writings on authority, simply because he apparently discovered them only after he founded his indigenous church, and needed to prop himself up. They're entirely too self-serving to be taken on face value. If WN had truly come to the realization that rejecting authority was such an evil sin, then he should have promptly recanted his Little Flock position and gone back to join the already established Protestants (who, btw, had themselves quit the RCC, who'd in turn rejected the Eastern church authority).

But instead it's the usual subjectivism: when I do it, then it's God's deputy authority, and when you do it, then it's rebellion.
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Old 05-11-2015, 09:50 AM   #110
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If WN had truly come to the realization that rejecting authority was such an evil sin, then he should have promptly recanted his Little Flock position and gone back to join the already established Protestants (who, btw, had themselves quit the RCC, who'd in turn rejected the Eastern church authority).
On the EO/RCC split, I find it difficult to determine who split from whom. More like a separation of equals. And it appears that they had been divided for centuries, dating back all the way to around 180 but somewhat officially when they both excommunicated certain emissary individuals of the other group (roughly 1054?).

The funny thing is that while many denominations have hierarchies that ultimately rule in certain aspects of the members of their sects, they don't pretend to rule over all believers as the EO and RCC initially did. Except for the kinds of groups that dismiss virtually all others as divisive (based on their own private rules) and therefore their grand leader, whatever called, is the ruler of everyone (whether they like it or not). Especially if failure to recognize their authority is called rebellion against God.

That apparently would be Nee then Lee. And I guess that those who followed Nee but not Lee still recognize the authority of Nee, or of some other coworker even if not stated. Or at least a variant on "blended ones" — in this case people like Kaung and others who would not claim to be the minister of the age, but who otherwise have no one over them and everyone below.

Now it is commendable that some of them, like Kaung, seem to have accepted his Nee-ordained "position" in more of a servant-leader way. But this discussion raised by this apparent follower suggests that the understanding from below may not have been much different that of those who revered Lee and continue to do so. And who are held in the control of those who wield Nee's deputy positions.

And now with the withdrawal of Kaung from regular active ministry, those who were under his "authority" appear to be leaderless in many cases.

The subtleness of Nee to say things like "It is the rebellious nature of man that makes him want to obey God's direct authority without being subject to the delegated authorities God has established" is that it is written by the man who asserts himself into the picture as the one to whom all but God should submit. It is very true that we should submit to others. Also generally to one another. Yet for Nee, and then for Lee, there was no "one anothers" to whom they would submit. They were above it as the pinnacle of a hierarchy. And unlike those holding such positions in so many other Christian hierarchies, I don't think they recognize the responsibility of the position, but only the authority of it. They come across more like the teachers of the law demanding the best seats at banquets while putting rules on the followers that they cannot (and do not) keep.
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Old 05-11-2015, 11:34 AM   #111
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But instead it's the usual subjectivism: when I do it, then it's God's deputy authority, and when you do it, then it's rebellion.
The sentence that caught my attention from quoting Nee was:

We do not obey man, but God's authority in man...

When exercising subjective discernment, one could consider himself not being in rebellion because how could they submit to a brother's authority when it isn't God's authority. Simply quote, "we don't not obey man, but God's authority in man..."
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Old 05-22-2015, 12:06 PM   #112
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Default Games Grown Men Play

Giving some thought to it, practice of deputy authority can be renamed Games Grown Men Play. Meaning in the local churches I would argue the doctrine of deputy authority is the second most important teaching in the Local Churches after the Ground of Locality doctrine. Without deputy authority, you'll have disorder, mayhem, and chaos. You'll have riotous meetings when brothers and sisters object to an unrighteous situation being whitewashed to where deputy authority has no influence.
Why is it a brother disciple by Nee whether it's Kaung, Hsu, etc could not be received by LSM coworkers? I assert it is because they're not playing the deputy authority game. An analogy, it's as when I was growing up with my two younger brothers. One brother is two years younger and we had an unspoken understanding of how we play together. My youngest brother is seven years younger and he didn't play with the same understanding so he often brought disorder. How this relates to my post, LSM coworkers cannot receive certain brothers if it means disrupting the order deputy authority practice brings. Certain LSM coworkers might get red in the face claiming authority, when they feel a brother is not "respecting the deputy authority". Going along with deputy authority, it's really all about playing politics.
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Old 05-28-2015, 04:43 PM   #113
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Man is always held accountable. He is held directly accountable to God whether his allegiance to the "deputy authority" was through his own ignorance, his own preference or personal loyalty, his own improper motive or ambition, or through the deceit of the one proclaiming that authority. The ramifications are generally disastrous. Not only so, but the judgment falling upon the mistakenly obedient one is far greater than that on the misleading "deputy authority." No man can shirk his individual responsibility and accountability to God.
Coworkers, Elders, etc view themselves as being God's Deputy authority. In one moment an elder is a responsible brother for a locality and a deputy authority. Once he falls out of favor with LSM, he's no longer a deputy authority?
For those reading who really cling onto this teaching, what would you say the basis of the deputy authority is? Teaching has been to say it's Christ, but practice has been to indicate an allegiance to a ministry. It also seems the base is on personal preferences, improper AND impure motives or ambitions.
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Old 05-28-2015, 06:07 PM   #114
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Coworkers, Elders, etc view themselves as being God's Deputy authority. In one moment an elder is a responsible brother for a locality and a deputy authority. Once he falls out of favor with LSM, he's no longer a deputy authority?
For those reading who really cling onto this teaching, what would you say the basis of the deputy authority is? Teaching has been to say it's Christ, but practice has been to indicate an allegiance to a ministry. It also seems the base is on personal preferences, improper AND impure motives or ambitions.
With both Nee and Lee, I believe authority was the main means by which they promoted their image and ministry. They both had the capability to have some form of ministry, but I don't think either should have been involved in such a large scale ministry as they each ended up with. Both men had weaknesses and rather than accepting these weaknesses, they needed a way to insulate themselves from their inevitable failures. That was accomplished through establishing themselves as authorities who answered to no one. I would note it is my view that these weaknesses would not have been so much of a problem if they had surrounded themselves with peers who they could work with and hold them accountable.

When Nee was alive, Lee was his "apprentice", not someone who could really hold Nee accountable. When Lee's ministry was underway he had his own set of minions. Never was there anyone that he answered to. Lee best said it himself:
When I went to Taipei, he said, I did not fellowship with one person concerning what I was going to do. He continued: None of you is perfected. Who can say that he is perfected? So you are not qualified to criticize what I am doing. I didn’t include you in my fellowship – how can I? So let there be no more talk about anything I do. You criticize my young trainers in Taipei, telling me their mistakes, but I was doing everything; what they did was to carry out my burden.
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Old 05-28-2015, 06:27 PM   #115
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When Nee was alive, Lee was his "apprentice", not someone who could really hold Nee accountable. When Lee's ministry was underway he had his own set of minions. Never was there anyone that he answered to. Lee best said it himself:
"When I went to Taipei, he said, I did not fellowship with one person concerning what I was going to do. He continued: None of you is perfected. Who can say that he is perfected? So you are not qualified to criticize what I am doing. I didn’t include you in my fellowship – how can I? So let there be no more talk about anything I do. You criticize my young trainers in Taipei, telling me their mistakes, but I was doing everything; what they did was to carry out my burden."
For many decades Titus Chu did his best to cover for Witness Lee, claiming him as his "spiritual father," and portraying all those over the years who surrounded Lee as bumbling idiots.

This quote makes it clear that Lee was involved with and initiated everything that came from LSM. No excuses should be made for Lee due to all the nonsense that has emanated from LSM in its endless "flows," "moves," and "new ways."
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Old 05-28-2015, 07:56 PM   #116
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This quote makes it clear that Lee was involved with and initiated everything that came from LSM. No excuses should be made for Lee due to all the nonsense that has emanated from LSM in its endless "flows," "moves," and "new ways."
Agreed. It's interesting how Lee insulated himself. He accused others of not being "perfected". Obviously that is true, because no one except God is perfect. Lee forgot to mention that he wasn't perfect as well (he did say that at the end of his life, but very generically). Of course in the LC, no one would dare to question something like that. To anyone on the outside, Lee's talk would sound like utter nonsense, but for someone who has spent time in the LC, the notions put forth in that statement are all too familiar. In fact, if I had heard a BB or elder say something like that several years ago, I would have swallowed it without a second thought.
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Old 05-29-2015, 12:14 PM   #117
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Agreed. It's interesting how Lee insulated himself. He accused others of not being "perfected". Obviously that is true, because no one except God is perfect. Lee forgot to mention that he wasn't perfect as well (he did say that at the end of his life, but very generically). Of course in the LC, no one would dare to question something like that.
First let's talk about what it is to be "perfected". In the Local Churches, it's supposed to have "positive" implications. In plain English for everyone to understand, it is to verbally abuse with the expectation the recipient of your "perfecting" work will be submissive. In normal Christian fellowship brothers are spoken to as men and treated as men. In normal Christian fellowship the LC concept of "perfecting" will result in a Matthew 18:15 fellowship. Being raised in the local churches occasionally my dad would take me aside and say, "be constructive and not destructive". That being said, as an adult I tend to view myself as a nice brother with a very bad temper. I'm sure there are other brothers with my temperament who wouldn't take kindly to the LC concept of "perfecting" (verbal abuse).

When Witness Lee had his memorial service, it was video recorded and at least replayed in the locality I met with. I recall the brothers speaking regarding Witness Lee as "being perfected". Perhaps due the "shouting from the rooftops" we have been doing on this forum currently and previously on thebereans.net, the brothers have reversed their stance. At least Ron Kangas has in his visits to the NW. I have listened to Ron backtracking saying Witness Lee did make mistakes. It's much more changing their tune, than questioning what was previously uttered.
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Old 10-06-2015, 12:06 PM   #118
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How about if there are problems with those who are taking the lead in the church? To me the authority is all about ownership. The "church of Christ" indicates that Christ has the ownership and therefore the authority to deal with the church. The "church of God" indicates that God also has the ownership and authority to deal with the church. Likewise the "church of the saints" indicates that the saints have the ownership, position and right to exercise authority over the church. There is no verse, however, that says the "church of the elders" or the "church of the apostles" etc. Having an equal standing to deal with issues also means we have an equal responsibility and equal accountability before the Lord. Basically, once you see sin or are aware of sin you are responsible to deal with it.
Generally in practice the attitude of elders is there is no democracy in the locality. Decision making begin and stop with them.
If you're an offended brother who is figuratively used as boxing bag by an elder or elders, you're the one who must apologize, repent, and get right with the brothers for the manner they have responded to you. All accountability lies with the offended one, not with the brothers.
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Old 10-06-2015, 03:04 PM   #119
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I have listened to Ron backtracking saying Witness Lee did make mistakes...
I'd be interested in hearing RK or BP utter those 4 words in sequence: "Witness Lee made mistakes". How might they frame that idea, to allow the least damage? They'd surely be wary of opening the door to examining "the apostle" WL the way that the so-called apostle examined everything else. At best I'd expect a generic statement that admits the possibility of imperfection, without any expectation to look further.
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Old 10-06-2015, 07:21 PM   #120
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I'd be interested in hearing RK or BP utter those 4 words in sequence: "Witness Lee made mistakes". How might they frame that idea, to allow the least damage? They'd surely be wary of opening the door to examining "the apostle" WL the way that the so-called apostle examined everything else. At best I'd expect a generic statement that admits the possibility of imperfection, without any expectation to look further.
The blendeds might be willing to admit that Lee made mistakes, however, they would likely turn right back around and question our motives in asking them to admit that. All we are doing here is to offer criticism where it is due (as they do also attempt to do in their A&C journal). When they criticize, it's all fun and games. If it's directed at them or the LC, they immediately assume ulterior motives. But as was just discussed in a different thread, if the critique leads to the conclusion that their so-called "recovery" is actually degraded, then that is the worst publicity possible for them. In that respect, it's understandable why they are so afraid.
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Old 10-11-2015, 01:26 PM   #121
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The blendeds might be willing to admit that Lee made mistakes, however, they would likely turn right back around and question our motives in asking them to admit that.
Or they just might say, sure brother Lee has made mistakes. Nobody's perfect.
Yet that is quite the reversal what was being spoken by the blendeds when brother Lee passed away in 1997....that being, he was perfected.
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Old 10-11-2015, 01:58 PM   #122
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Or they just might say, sure brother Lee has made mistakes. Nobody's perfect.
Yet that is quite the reversal what was being spoken by the blendeds when brother Lee passed away in 1997....that being, he was perfected.
The LC strategy is that they pay lip service what everyone wants to hear, that is, that no one is perfect, but their action speak otherwise. Just try telling a LC leader that he's wrong and see what happens.

Consider the following two statements Philip Lin made in Sacrifice and Sail On:

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When I wrote this book, I was very cautious and faithful. The Holy Spirit strictly controlled me not to mold Witness Lee into a so-called “perfect person.”...
----------------------------------------------------------------------
The project was completed in June 1976, then he taught us what kind of furniture to buy and where to put it. Sometimes we tried to be smart in placing furniture, bookshelves, wall paintings, and hanging scrolls. When he came to check what we did, he would find something inappropriate, then he would correct us by way of educating us. I remember one day after we hung a wall painting, he came and looked at it, and he felt that the height was wrong. Then he corrected us and taught us, and he said that when hanging a wall painting the focus point of the object should be about ten to fifteen degrees above the slant line of sight . When we followed his instructions, we always found that his way was just right...
At the beginning of his book, Philip Lin states that he won't be portraying Lee as being "perfect". Maybe that is meant to get everyone to let their guard down. Then later on in the book there is his description regarding Lee's absolute authority in regards to even the small things like arranging furniture and hanging pictures. Does that present a view of "imperfect Lee" or "always-right deputy-authority Lee"? They can pay lip service to whatever they want, but I think it's pretty clear how they regard Lee.
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Old 10-12-2015, 11:43 AM   #123
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Then later on in the book there is his description regarding Lee's absolute authority in regards to even the small things like arranging furniture and hanging pictures. Does that present a view of "imperfect Lee" or "always-right deputy-authority Lee"?
Just as I would tend to take a carpenter as an authority in remodeling work, it could be Lee had a hidden skill as an interior designer. If that's the case, I would say Lee was an authority in furniture arrangement and hanging pictures.
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Old 10-12-2015, 11:55 AM   #124
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Just as I would tend to take a carpenter as an authority in remodeling work, it could be Lee had a hidden skill as an interior designer. If that's the case, I would say Lee was an authority in furniture arrangement and hanging pictures.
If Lee's apprentices weren't allowed even the freedom to hang a picture on their own, it is indicative of a extremely high level of control. As a side note, it seems that Lee was thought to be an expert on every matter including interior decorating and running businesses. It's no wonder mottos came about such as: "We don’t even need to think; we just do what we are told." In this kind of setting, how could Lee have been viewed as anything less than perfect? In Lin's own words "we always found that his way was just right." No matter what any LCers admit about Lee making mistakes, that is not how he is really viewed. He is viewed on the level of a deity, an infallible god-man.
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Old 10-12-2015, 12:01 PM   #125
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In Lin's own words "we always found that his way was just right." No matter what any LCers admit about Lee making mistakes, that is not how he is really viewed. He is viewed on the level of a deity, an infallible god-man.
That sums up until 2000, how Lee was generally viewed by co-workers, elders, and deacons.
I do not know if it has eve happened, but something I have considered what if you're a skilled carpenter, electrician, etc working on a LSM project and one of the so-called deputy authorities is telling you how to do perform your skill. The so-called deputy authorities' way is considered right even if it is folly.
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Old 10-12-2015, 02:02 PM   #126
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That sums up until 2000, how Lee was generally viewed by co-workers, elders, and deacons.
I do not know if it has eve happened, but something I have considered what if you're a skilled carpenter, electrician, etc working on a LSM project and one of the so-called deputy authorities is telling you how to do perform your skill. The so-called deputy authorities' way is considered right even if it is folly.
I participated in a number of LC "services" over the years, and I frequently noticed the tendency among leaders to micromanage. Simple tasks always seemed to become complicated. I remember this one time, I was either dusting or wiping off counters, and come to find out, I was doing it all wrong. Opps, my bad. Needless to say, the only thing that was accomplished is that I felt resentful towards the person who wanted to make it obvious that I was doing something simple completely wrong. The sad part is, anyone who tries to stand their ground might be accused of not being able to "take the cross". LC leaders think their nitpicking is all with the goal to "perfect".

As time when on, I became less inclined to participate in any services for that reason. No one wants to be micromanaged, and whether anyone realizes it or not, many LCers do react to being micromanaged. Usually that reaction comes by way of disappearing, or choosing not to participate in certain activities. LC leaders always wonder why every one has become so "passive" with participating in such services. The reasons are right in front of them. Leaders, however, follow the example of a man named Witness Lee, who thought his way was always the best. It doesn't matter what skill or capabilities anyone had, he knew better. So-called natural abilities meant nothing. Leaders follow in his footsteps. Maybe it's because they don't want to be eclipsed by someone who can actually do something better than they can.
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Old 10-12-2015, 06:18 PM   #127
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Maybe it's because they don't want to be eclipsed by someone who can actually do something better than they can.
I think you just touched on a plausible reason why current elders don't want to reconcile with former elders. Petty jealousy and envying.
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Old 10-13-2015, 10:44 AM   #128
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If Lee's apprentices weren't allowed even the freedom to hang a picture on their own, it is indicative of a extremely high level of control.
I guess he was the originator of Feng Lee . . . or is it Lee Shui. Either way, it's all about Lee.
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Old 10-13-2015, 10:56 AM   #129
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I guess he was the originator of Feng Lee . . . or is it Lee Shui. Either way, it's all about Lee.
Doesn't everybody want to have the incredible power to walk into an almost finished building and say, "move that elevator over here," and then watch all of his minions bow down in awe, thinking that God had just spoken to them, as they proceed to violate building codes to fulfill his whims.
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Old 10-13-2015, 10:57 AM   #130
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I guess he was the originator of Feng Lee . . . or is it Lee Shui. Either way, it's all about Lee.
If only it was evident to members how ridiculous it all is.

A few years ago, I heard brothers begin talking about need to revise the children's work. Apparently the brothers (led by Tom Goetz) had been reading some of Lee's unpublished ministry and "discovered" that they were doing the work all wrong. So starting a few years ago, there was a push to revise things - all because Lee, the master of raising kids (as is evidenced by his 2 sons), knew the best way.
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Old 10-13-2015, 11:23 AM   #131
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. . . - all because Lee, the master of raising kids (as is evidenced by his 2 sons), knew the best way.
Seems that Lee might not qualify under Paul's guidelines for elder. Do you think Paul would give it all a pass since he is not an elder, but merely MOTA?
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Old 10-13-2015, 11:40 AM   #132
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Seems that Lee might not qualify under Paul's guidelines for elder. Do you think Paul would give it all a pass since he is not an elder, but merely MOTA?
It wouldn't surprise at all if Lee felt "exempt" from certain qualifications because he wasn't an elder. But functionally, he was an "elder" of sorts, because he basically had the final say in any matter, in any church.
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Old 10-13-2015, 11:46 AM   #133
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Seems that Lee might not qualify under Paul's guidelines for elder. Do you think Paul would give it all a pass since he is not an elder, but merely MOTA?
Same can be said for many current LC elders not being scripturally qualified to be elders. Fortunate for them their qualifications is based on loyalty to a system and not on scripture.
Speaking of MOTA, there is a movie being released in the US last weekend of this month based on the life of Felix Manalo. (The Philippine MOTA)
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Old 10-13-2015, 11:47 AM   #134
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Doesn't everybody want to have the incredible power to walk into an almost finished building and say, "move that elevator over here," and then watch all of his minions bow down in awe, thinking that God had just spoken to them, as they proceed to violate building codes to fulfill his whims.
I've never liked the Ball Rd building much. There's so many rooms, so many secluded areas. But that's how Philip Lee wanted things, as we know. At any rate, that building is an eclectic mess with no real master plan. The "wise master builder" must have been out sick when the construction was taking place.
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Old 10-13-2015, 12:03 PM   #135
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I've never liked the Ball Rd building much. There's so many rooms, so many secluded areas. But that's how Philip Lee wanted things, as we know. At any rate, that building is an eclectic mess with no real master plan. The "wise master builder" must have been out sick when the construction was taking place.
In the late 70's when I was a child there, the lower area was used for Children's meetings and subsequent class time by gender and grade.
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Old 10-13-2015, 12:50 PM   #136
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At the beginning of his book, Philip Lin states that he won't be portraying Lee as being "perfect". Maybe that is meant to get everyone to let their guard down. Then later on in the book there is his description regarding Lee's absolute authority in regards to even the small things like arranging furniture and hanging pictures. Does that present a view of "imperfect Lee" or "always-right deputy-authority Lee"? They can pay lip service to whatever they want, but I think it's pretty clear how they regard Lee.
The Blendeds were in a conundrum at Lee's passing, with the "raptured or martyred" theory. Watchman Nee of course was martyred (in Blended lore) so he made the grade. Fully sanctified, Body Soul and Spirit. But what of Lee? Not raptured, or martyred? 1,000 years in a holding room? A big problem in this culture if your leader isn't up to God's standard. Lee being held as "perfected" was a way around that. Then he wouldn't need a "summer school" to finish the transformation process. Therefore according to his acolytes he'd run his course, and a crown of glory surely waited for him.

In this mindset, if the Deputy God (DG) is at imperfect, then the whole system, the whole conceptual edifice of God's current move and speaking may be threatened. The fabled 'God's New Move' might really be an old move of men, with a coat of white paint. Therefore Lee, by position as DG, simply had to be supreme everything. Recognition of imperfection anywhere could threaten the perception of functional perfection everywhere: teachings, interpretations, and leadings.

Viewing the Asian-centric cultural imperative, it seems that authority of the Maximum Leader must be unchallenged for social harmony to prevail. Whether it was the Emperor of the Han dynasty, or Chairman Mao of the Red Guards, or the apostle of the age, the humble bondslave of Christ Witness Lee, the DG must always be right - the good of the Collective (read: the church) demands it. For example, even 40 years after his death, if you criticize Chairman Mao publicly you'll lose your job in the PRC. Social order demands the exaltation and perfection of the DG; here, scripture must yield to culture, even in the supposedly normal, biblical church life.
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Old 10-13-2015, 02:53 PM   #137
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Speaking of MOTA, there is a movie being released in the US last weekend of this month based on the life of Felix Manalo. (The Philippine MOTA)
From Wikipedia:

"Because there were no precursors to the registered church, external sources and critics of the INC refer to him as its founder.[3] The official doctrine of the Iglesia ni Cristo is that Felix Y. Manalo is the last messenger of God, sent to reestablish the first church founded by Jesus Christ, which the INC claims to have fallen into apostasy following the death of the Apostles.[4]"

Sound familiar: "the last messenger of God"?
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Old 10-13-2015, 03:25 PM   #138
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From Wikipedia:

"Because there were no precursors to the registered church, external sources and critics of the INC refer to him as its founder.[3] The official doctrine of the Iglesia ni Cristo is that Felix Y. Manalo is the last messenger of God, sent to reestablish the first church founded by Jesus Christ, which the INC claims to have fallen into apostasy following the death of the Apostles.[4]"

Sound familiar: "the last messenger of God"?
It's all too familiar. Same narrative, different players and terminology. In the LC they would claim it was Lee who "recovered" the church that had fallen into apostasy. Then by the time of his passing, it was that the age of spiritual giants is over, leaving no room for anyone else to take his place. WL had already reached the "high peak". Seems like all the false teachers come and con people the same way. For some reason, everyone though Lee would be different. He wasn't.
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Old 10-13-2015, 08:24 PM   #139
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It's all too familiar...Seems like all the false teachers come and con people the same way. For some reason, everyone thought Lee would be different. He wasn't.
What's also noteworthy is that the promoters of these "Brother X is God's Final Prophet" systems also have a lot of ambition. Those who slavishly promoted Brother Lee's ministry, for example, now are the Blendeds.

The legacy of Felix Y Manalo's ministry as God's penultimate speaking was curated by his son and now his grandson, who to no surprise became the Big Dogs of the Iglesia Ni Cristo.

Who rose to the top of the PRC Shouter sect? I would bet dollars to donuts it was those who took the lead to promote Witness Lee as God. That was the way to the top of the heap: push your man as Deputy God or even God incarnate, and now you've got your meal ticket.

So there are a lot of incentives, down the pyramid, to create these man-exalting systems. Those who exalt DG the most, themselves get lifted up as the system grows.
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Old 10-14-2015, 10:01 AM   #140
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority

As a follow-up to yesterday's post (#139), for the "Brother X has the Ministry of the Age" systems to work, first Brother X must suffer from the delusion that He (or She, if Sister X) has the unique speaking of God to man on earth today. Watchman Nee put out the "recovery of local ground" idea in Mainland China in the 1920s, and in the 1930s tens of thousands streamed in. By WWII he was the head of the largest Chinese Christian church, by historical accounts that I've read. He was saved 2 or 3 years and was suddenly penning "Christian classics", some of which were essentially translations of European works. But who cared because he got there first. And so it went to his head.

So "Watchman Nee is the Great Man of the Current Hour" was then formulated as an organizing principle, the Lodestone of the Little Flock. The second thing that the system needs is an ambitious underling or two or three, who see Brother X as the meal ticket. Promote Brother X and you have a job for life, as his Right Hand Man, Flunkie, Maximum Cheerleader, or whatever. When the Seer of the Divine Revelation in the Present Age gets caught with his hand in the cookie jar, then the Maximum Cheerleader is there to chide the Shanghai elders, "How did you feel when you expelled Brother Nee?"

And lo and behold, when Brother X passes from the scene, The Maximum Cheeleaders now have the reins as the "closest disciple", and can carry the message however they want to. Witness Lee did this with Nee, and now the Blendeds are doing it with Lee. Likewise Pedro Dong will likely carry Dong Yu Lan, and so forth. If you look at the Eastern Lightning mug shots, there are usually two: first is the Yang Xiangbin the Incarnate God, a college drop-out from China who's now holed up in NYC, and second is her lover and chief promoter, a man named Zhao Weishan. So she's his meal ticket.

Asia Harvest: "Eastern Lightning, or Dongfang Shandian in Chinese, was founded by Zhao Weishan in Acheng City, Heilongjiang Province, in 1989. Zhao was an unhappy member of the Shouters sect. He rejected many of the Shouters’ teachings and broke away with several other church members to start a new group which they called ‘Church of the Everlasting Fountain.’ Zhao began to call himself “Powerful Lord.”

They grew rapidly, and somehow managed to receive substantial financial support that enabled them to set up an underground printing house, producing tens of thousands of booklets and tracts outlining their views. By 1991, when the group was declared illegal and the printing press was shut down, they already had thousands of followers.

Zhao and his leading coworkers fled from the authorities in Heilongjiang and restarted their activities in Henan Province. In 1993 Zhao changed the name of the cult to “Real God” and said he had received divine revelation on the verse “For as lightning that comes the east is visible even in the west, so will be the coming of the Son of Man.” (Matthew 24:27). This is how they came to be commonly known as the “Eastern Lightning,” or “Lightning from the East.”

Zhao sent his main leaders, Yi Haitao, Zhang Xindong and Zhang Hongzhen, throughout Henan Province, spreading their influence among thousands. Many of the deceived who joined their group were illiterate rural house church members, who had little Bible training and so were susceptible to the group’s influence. They also target educated university students who have an unstable grounding in the Bible.

Eastern Lightning quickly spread to neighboring Anhui, Shaanxi and Jiangsu, and then to most parts of China. Today the Eastern Lightning (EL) has grown with remarkable speed to at least 22 of China’s provinces, and they are believed to number in the millions of members. A November 2001 article in Time Magazine said the EL claim just 300,000 followers across China, (1) but that number is almost certainly a deliberate underestimation, especially considering the Chinese government concedes the EL have infiltrated more than 20 provinces throughout the nation.

The EL are highly organized and secretive. Their structure is hierarchal, ranking from “the person used by the Holy Spirit” (Zhao), to provincial leaders, district leaders, section leaders, and cell group leaders. Each member is given responsibility for tasks he or she must carry out.

The Eastern Lightning are known to have a special emphasis on publishing literature. According to a speech by Bi Rongsheng, deputy director of the Shijiazhuang Public Security Bureau, the cult printed a total of 870,000 books between 1989 and 1999. (2)

Instead of trying to convert unbelievers to their group, the Eastern Lightning appears to have decided it is better to deceive existing Christians. They do not mind targeting nominal believers, but it’s clear their chief goal is to attack church leaders and those with the most influence. Their methods have included financial inducement, beatings and torture, sexual seduction, and brainwashing.

In 1997, Tianfeng, the official magazine of the Three Self Patriotic Movement (China’s government-sanctioned church) were so alarmed at the inroads Eastern Lightning were making among their congregations that they wrote several articles exposing the cult, warning readers how to defend themselves against it. The magazine noted, “The [Eastern Lightning] missionaries scurry to every part of the country, making a beeline especially for the responsible persons and preachers in other religions, those who have been preaching for many years, and when someone of a definite status has been trapped he becomes their tool and their accomplice in crime.” (3)

Even the Catholic Church has seen many of their top leaders lured over to the Eastern Lightning. According to an official Chinese government report, “This cult is hastening its efforts to infiltrate underground Catholic churches so as to increase its strength by uniting with other underground powers. Tangshan Public Security authority [in Hebei Province] discovered that underground Catholics in areas such as Zunhua, Fengnan and Qianan have joined hands with this cult.” (4)

The founder of the Eastern Lightning, Zhao Weishan, was granted refugee status in the United States in 2000, [with lover/incarnate "God" Yang Xianbin] on the ground of being persecuted for his religious beliefs. He continues to command the cult’s activities inside China and around the world from his American base."


Third, you need an ignorant and compliant populace. Note that recruiters go for people who are already amenable to the sales pitch; i.e. they go to Christians. Note also that in China the EL recruiters can even get Christian ministers to come into the group, because they already are "good building material", to use LC jargon. They're already in agreement with a number of EL doctrines; all you have to do is convince them that the Leader of the EL is "the person used by the Holy Spirit". (See the bolded part in the quote above).

Likewise, if the LC recruiters can convince the "new one" that the LC is "just a Christian group", then once they establish relationships, they next convince them that the LC has the "high peak truths" which no one else in degraded Christianity has. The excitement that the new one got by shouting repeatedly in group meetings is actually evidence of the Holy Spirit, and God's favor. Then they new one realizes that Witness Lee was God's Deputy, with the ministry of the age, and the current Blendeds in Anaheim are the sole legitimate curators of this vision, and thus are the conduits for God's unique move on the earth today. What a privilege! You get to be in "God's Best"!

The key is to get Christians who are amenable to "pursuing Christ" in the LC, but who are ignorant enough to not see the warning signs, as aberrant teachings begin to surface. Then, once they are committed, when things get bad, they are told that it is even worse elsewhere. So the "messy kitchen" of the LC, in Witness Lee's parlance, is deemed tolerable, while anything in Babylon the Great, Christianity the Degraded Harlot is to be utterly rejected. The new member is now isolated, and a compliant disciple, and is put to work as a recruiter as well.
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Old 10-14-2015, 01:10 PM   #141
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Default Re: God's economy vs Deputy authority

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Then they new one realizes that Witness Lee was God's Deputy, with the ministry of the age, and the current Blendeds in Anaheim are the sole legitimate curators of this vision, and thus are the conduits for God's unique move on the earth today. What a privilege! You get to be in "God's Best"!
If there's an aura of elitism, it's elitist when others do it. In the LC, it's not elitist when you're the remnant.
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Old 10-14-2015, 01:15 PM   #142
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They also target educated university students who have an unstable grounding in the Bible.
Kind of sounds like the campus work you might find supported by the LC.
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Old 10-14-2015, 01:32 PM   #143
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If there's an aura of elitism, it's elitist when others do it. In the LC, it's not elitist when you're the remnant.
Quote:
Originally Posted by LSM Hymns

No more trying something else,
Or thinking that there’s something more;
No more hoping “someday,”
’Cause today I have the best.
Is that hymn referring to salvation through faith in Jesus Christ, or the local church life on the local ground, or the ministry of the age with the high peak vision, or all three? Are they essentially synonymous here, and blended into a yummy LC smoothie - Today I have the best? Not merely the "low gospel" of faith in Jesus Christ, but a revelation of Christ and the church, and even better, Christ and the Church as presented by God's oracle of the current age, and by the seer himself of the divine revelation? Why settle for anything else? Why settle for mere Christianity when you can get God's best?

We have books, magazines, posters, calenders, coffee mugs, CDs, DVDs, online streaming, video training - what do you want? Step right up, folks, the ministry of the age for merely a dollar!

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Kind of sounds like the campus work you might find supported by the LC.
Yes it does, doesn't it? And compare that to the 'normal campus work' shown in the pages of the NT. There we see a brother being led, not by close operational control of the minister of the age, but by an angel (Acts 8:26), and then the Holy Spirit (8:29) to preach the gospel to an open vessel. Upon confession and baptism, Philip didn't tell the convert to report to Headquarters for training, but let him go, and 2,000 years later, there's still a church in Ethiopia! For two millenia there has remained a bastion of Christian testimony in a sea of Islam and animism. Incredible.
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