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

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Old 03-22-2013, 09:24 AM   #1
ZNPaaneah
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Default The ground on which the church should be built

Everyone familiar with the LRC should be familiar with WN's seminal teaching on the "Ground of the Church". As has been pointed out something as important as this teaching should have had a clear NT teaching. Based on WN's thesis it didn't (he basically combines one verse where Paul refers to appointing elders in every church with another that says to appoint elders in every city, from these two verses he infers that "the ground of the church" is the boundary line of the city. A huge leap with no NT teachings to support this.)

However, the premise is based on the OT where the ground on which the Temple is built is critical. The piece of land has a very rich history and one in which it is very difficult if not impossible to ignore the spiritual significance. Likewise there are very many plain commands from God that they are not to build the Temple on any other land. This therefore provides two valid reasons why a Bible expositor would look for "the ground of the church" in the NT.

1. The church is the Temple of God. It is very clear in the NT that the OT temple is a type and shadow of the church.

2. The concept that you have to own the land before you can use it, build on it, bury your dead, etc. is a very strong concept in the OT law. Beginning with Abraham to the present. It is a very clear matter of righteousness. And it is closely associated with the Lord's redemption.

Therefore, although I agree that WN's teaching is seriously flawed and that the lack of a clear NT teaching to support it is it's most glaring flaw, at the same time I think we should not dismiss the concept of a "ground of the church". In brief I believe there is a very clear NT teaching as to the ground of the church, only that it is not what WN said it was.

I believe that Ephesians 4:3-6 gives us 7 ones and these are the things that all NT believers should be able to stand on. These are the things that make us one. This is the ground on which the church should be built. From this verse Paul moves to 4:12 which makes it very clear that the context of this chapter is the building up of the body of Christ.

In the LRC it is laughable the way 10 saints will go into a rented room, hold a Lord's Table meeting and declare themselves to have "taken the ground". If you look at the OT type it is very clear that the ground for the Temple was purchased by King David who had prepared everything for King Solomon to build the temple. This is a type of Jesus in His earthly ministry (typified by king David and supported by the NT where Jesus said He was the greater David) and His heavenly ministry (typified by King Solomon and supported by the NT where Jesus said He was the greater Solomon). Therefore it is not possible for 10 saints to "take the ground". The ground was purchased by Jesus.
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Old 03-23-2013, 01:47 PM   #2
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

It occurred to me that the two verses that WN refers to could have a different and more plausible explanation. It could be that his coworkers had been given their own territory. So each worker was given a region with some cities to work in. Their work was not merely to preach the gospel but to raise up and establish churches. Hence, appoint elders in every city and appoint elders in every church could be referring to the territory assigned to the coworker, not to the ground of the church. (Within their territory they were to establish churches by appointing elders, and they had been instructed to raise up churches in every city).
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Old 03-25-2013, 06:46 AM   #3
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

So then, in brief

1. Yes, I think it is a valid and Biblically sound exercise to look for the "ground of the church"
2. Yes, I agree that such a critical concept must have a clear word in the NT.
3. I think the verses provided by WN are not a clear word.
4. I think the OT type does not support and even rejects the application of WN's teaching. You cannot go into a city and "take the ground". According to the type and shadow the ground was purchased by Jesus in His earthly ministry.
5. Instead I think Ephesians chapter 4 presents 7 things that are one and that all believers should stand on when they meet together. There are many things we may not agree on, but as long as we agree on these 7 we should accept one another and fellowship with one another.

Therefore as to WN and WL's ministries I find it very disturbing that they would embrace such a flimsy teaching that should have been rejected and make it the cornerstone of their work. To me this suggests one of two possible conclusions.

1. They were very poor Bible expositors. I can understand a young WN suggesting this theory, but it should have been rejected within a couple of years. But for WL to embrace it and carry this torch for so many years tells me he had to be a very poor Bible expositor or

2. There was a very poor motive. If they knew this to be a false teaching then the fact that they continued to push it suggests they were false prophets motivated by covetousness in creating another sect.

James
5:1 Go to now, ye rich men, weep and howl for your miseries that shall come upon you.
5:2 Your riches are corrupted, and your garments are motheaten.
5:3 Your gold and silver is cankered; and the rust of them shall be a witness against you, and shall eat your flesh as it were fire. Ye have heaped treasure together for the last days.
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Old 03-25-2013, 11:45 AM   #4
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

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Originally Posted by ZNPaaneah View Post
Therefore as to WN and WL's ministries I find it very disturbing that they would embrace such a flimsy teaching that should have been rejected and make it the cornerstone of their work.
I think it started with a genuine desire to discover how to "do church."

Sadly, that soon morphed into a belief that there must be a way to distinguish "true churches" from "false churches." (Of course the idea that the means of determination was quite simple made that belief even more attractive, aka deceptive.)

That in turn led to the belief that on-the-ground churches were true and not-on-the-ground churches were false.

That in turn led to a convenient way to keep members in the fold, by telling them "the only way to meet was 'on the ground,' and, oh by the way, we are the only ones doing that right."
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Old 03-25-2013, 12:56 PM   #5
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

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I think it started with a genuine desire to discover how to "do church."
I wonder how much of it was a reaction by young Chinese idealism against perceived British colonialism manifested through denominational mission boards. Didn't Margaret Barber, Nee's earliest mentor, have a falling out with her own missionary board in London? In his ecclesiastical books, Nee addressed denominations and their failures head on. Lee, however, went way past this, and literally condemned all things Christian, except, of course, his own member churches.

Nee took the so-called "pattern" found in Revelations 2-3, John's 7 epistles, and then shoe-horned the rest of the New Testament into it. There's nothing wrong, for example, to say that your group is a "church in New York City," using the model of the church in Ephesus, but to use Acts 14.23 and Titus 1.5 to definitively declare that the entire "true" church in that city must be under one set of elders appointed by the self-appointed apostle is akin to those Appalachian snake handling churches trying to "recover" their long-lost "true" church based on Luke 10.19 and Acts 28.5.
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Old 03-25-2013, 01:12 PM   #6
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

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I believe that Ephesians 4:3-6 gives us 7 ones and these are the things that all NT believers should be able to stand on. These are the things that make us one. This is the ground on which the church should be built. From this verse Paul moves to 4:12 which makes it very clear that the context of this chapter is the building up of the body of Christ.
Our Lord's own words in John 4.21 show us that this "ground" of the church, the place where the apostles have laid the foundation Christ, cannot be a place we can visit in our car. To those who think they can drive to the "proper" place to worship, the Lord would say to them, "You worship that which you do not know." (John 4.22) If there is such a proper ground of meeting and worship, then it must be as the Lord has instructed us "in Spirit and reality." (John 4.2-24)

It's also interesting to note that WL and the Blendeds loved to speak of the "oneness of the body," as if there was some scripture that spoke of this. Please note there is none! It may sound spiritual, but it is not scriptural. The Bible only speaks of "being diligent to keep the oneness of the Spirit." Someone needs to share this with the Blendeds.
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Old 03-25-2013, 02:00 PM   #7
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It's also interesting to note that WL and the Blendeds loved to speak of the "oneness of the body," as if there was some scripture that spoke of this. Please note there is none! It may sound spiritual, but it is not scriptural. The Bible only speaks of "being diligent to keep the oneness of the Spirit." Someone needs to share this with the Blendeds.
Many Christians have been telling this to Witness Lee and his followers for almost 50 years. Lee never listened and now his "continuation - brothers we" don't listen either. Big surprise, right?
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Old 03-25-2013, 02:54 PM   #8
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

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Originally Posted by ZNPaaneah View Post
So then, in brief

1. Yes, I think it is a valid and Biblically sound exercise to look for the "ground of the church"
2. Yes, I agree that such a critical concept must have a clear word in the NT.
I think that these two statements need more than "think" and "agree" to make them worthy of consideration to think about whether we should consider a "ground."

Why is there a valid "biblical" reason to do this?
How does the purchase of the land that the Temple was built on create a need for a ground now?
Where is "ground" mentioned in the NT?
Is it ever mentioned in conjunction with the church?
If it is essentially missing from the NT, how does it rise to a "critical concept" that needs a "clear word"?
Why do we need a clear word when scripture provides none?

I honestly believe that we have to get over this hurdle before we wander into the realm of trying to answer the question of "what is the ground of the church." If there is no evidence that there is a ground or that it is important, then how can it be a critical concept in need of a clear word?
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Old 03-25-2013, 03:12 PM   #9
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Ephesians 4:3-6 Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit, just as you were called to one hope when you were called; one Lord, one faith, one baptism; one God and Father of all, who is over all and through all and in all.

Some important "ones" starting in verse 4. But I note that the predecessor verse speaks of us making effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. It would appear that the "ones" are provided as evidence that the thing that brings us together is One. So we should make efforts to be unified in a bond of peace.

Funny thing that it doesn't say "through the unity of doctrine," or "through the unity of form." And we know that the Jewish churches were different than the Gentile churches. And the mixed churches were even more interestingly different.

But they were all churches. And there is a record of some giving to the aid of others who were of different race and nationality. So the unifying factor is the Spirit. And we exercise our unity through the bond of peace. And, lest we forget, we are reminded that there are not two Christs. There are not two faiths. We don't get different baptisms (even if we may handle the water differently). There is only one God and he is the Father.

(And that last one is quite interesting since it seems that despite the verses that make it abundantly clear that Jesus is God, and the Spirit is God, when scripture says "God," it seems to be mostly speaking of the Father. I'm not suggesting anything one way or the other about it. Just noting that no one really seems to have it all down so well that we can declare a doctrine of the Trinity with great certainty.)

And yet, as ZNP has aptly pointed out, somehow Nee and Lee were certain that there is a ground of the church despite no such words in scripture upon which to start the question as to whether they might or might not be correct.
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Old 03-25-2013, 04:22 PM   #10
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Many Christians have been telling this to Witness Lee and his followers for almost 50 years. Lee never listened and now his "continuation - brothers we" don't listen either. Big surprise, right?
I never heard this until after Lee died.

TC would never refute things WL said, but after he passed away, TC started refuting a number of topics,just because the Blendeds were saying them.
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Old 03-25-2013, 07:25 PM   #11
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I never heard this until after Lee died.

TC would never refute things WL said, but after he passed away, TC started refuting a number of topics,just because the Blendeds were saying them.
You never heard WHAT until after Lee died?

I think I kind of sort of understand the second part. But what particular topic are you referring to?
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Old 03-25-2013, 07:55 PM   #12
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Default The ground on which the church should be built

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It's also interesting to note that WL and the Blendeds loved to speak of the "oneness of the body," as if there was some scripture that spoke of this. Please note there is none! It may sound spiritual, but it is not scriptural. The Bible only speaks of "being diligent to keep the oneness of the Spirit." Someone needs to share this with the Blendeds.
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You never heard WHAT until after Lee died?

I think I kind of sort of understand the second part. But what particular topic are you referring to?
Like I said in that previous post quoted above, that the phrase "the oneness of the body," which the Blendeds constantly herald in their sermons as some all-encompassing guiding principle, is not in the Bible.
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Old 03-25-2013, 08:06 PM   #13
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Ok, that's what I thought.

I heard Witness Lee, over the course of about 20 years, most of the time IN PERSON WITH MY OWN EARS talk about "the oneness of the body". In fact it was one of his main topics. He talked about "the oneness of the Spirit" too...but it was always linked to the oneness of the body. (which we all knew meant following his person and work).

So how did Titus Chu deviate from this?
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Old 03-25-2013, 08:49 PM   #14
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Ok, that's what I thought.

I heard Witness Lee, over the course of about 20 years, most of the time IN PERSON WITH MY OWN EARS talk about "the oneness of the body". In fact it was one of his main topics. He talked about "the oneness of the Spirit" too...but it was always linked to the oneness of the body. (which we all knew meant following his person and work).

So how did Titus Chu deviate from this?
Apparently I am not susplainin' myself very well.

TC never addressed one of WL's errors or shortcomings, hence he would never have pointed out that this expression "the oneness of the body" is not scriptural. As soon as Lee passes away, and the Blendeds were in charge, they used the same expression, but they did not get a free pass, and TC begins to point out their faults. This expression "the oneness of the body" is just one of their errors. Actually both Lee and the Blendeds used this phrase to manipulate the body by adding all sorts of "extras" to the faith of the saints, such as one publication, attendance at the 7 feasts, and mostly identify what is the "feeling of the body." Many things were subtly included in the "the oneness of the body."

Here TC applied a so-called spiritual principle to all the errant teachings and practices of WL, basically saying that he was TC's "spiritual father," and all of Lee's failures were "none of his business." In order to adequately understand the history of the Recovery in the GLA, one must understand this principle, taken not from the Bible, but from the Chinese culture. TC used this principle for his own advantage. The effects were two-fold. On the one hand, this principle absolved TC from any and all responsibility in warning the entire GLA about unrighteousness surrounding LSM, from the Daystar corruptions to the Phillip Lee improprieties to the slandering of John Ingalls, the whistle-blower.

On the other hand, TC was training his own subordinates, especially those leaders in his camp. This principle enabled him to enjoy the same perks as his mentor, a fringe benefit which few other ministers enjoy. This explains why TC was able to abuse and publicly ridicule brothers for decades with little consequence. Never did a brother stand up to TC's abuse. The reason is simple -- they all were trained to believe that TC was their "spiritual father," and any failures he may have were "none of their business."
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Old 03-26-2013, 04:35 AM   #15
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I think it started with a genuine desire to discover how to "do church."
I also am inclined to believe that. The problem is this. WN's theory is based heavily on the church being the reality of the Temple. In the OT God spoke a clear word repeatedly that the temple could only be built on the ground He chose. They were forbidden from putting it just anywhere. Teaching this shadow (the temple is a shadow of the church) was done repeatedly by both WN and WL. For example the term "the recovery" is based on the OT recovery of the Temple when they returned from Babylon. The church grows into / becomes the NJ, etc. How many times did WN and WL give messages on "taking the ground" or participate in a "taking the ground" ceremony? Must have been very many times. Surely they looked for an inspiring OT analog to the "taking the ground" experience. To me this is where the teaching runs off the rails. To equate this one spot with the dimensions of the city is absurd. You cannot equate any of the spiritual significance of that spot with the arbitrary boundaries of a city, which frequently change with time. If WN and WL didn't realize that the spot God designated for His worship to take place was not equivalent to the boundaries of a city then they were either very poor Bible expositors or they were willfully blind.

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Sadly, that soon morphed into a belief that there must be a way to distinguish "true churches" from "false churches." (Of course the idea that the means of determination was quite simple made that belief even more attractive, aka deceptive.)

That in turn led to the belief that on-the-ground churches were true and not-on-the-ground churches were false.

That in turn led to a convenient way to keep members in the fold, by telling them "the only way to meet was 'on the ground,' and, oh by the way, we are the only ones doing that right."
These are all indications that the teaching is false, and that they were forcing a square peg into a round hole. Once again, these teachings should have alerted them to the fact that this teaching was erroneous, or it is evidence that they were willfully teaching falsehood.
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Old 03-26-2013, 04:44 AM   #16
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I wonder how much of it was a reaction by young Chinese idealism against perceived British colonialism manifested through denominational mission boards. Didn't Margaret Barber, Nee's earliest mentor, have a falling out with her own missionary board in London? In his ecclesiastical books, Nee addressed denominations and their failures head on. Lee, however, went way past this, and literally condemned all things Christian, except, of course, his own member churches.

Nee took the so-called "pattern" found in Revelations 2-3, John's 7 epistles, and then shoe-horned the rest of the New Testament into it. There's nothing wrong, for example, to say that your group is a "church in New York City," using the model of the church in Ephesus, but to use Acts 14.23 and Titus 1.5 to definitively declare that the entire "true" church in that city must be under one set of elders appointed by the self-appointed apostle is akin to those Appalachian snake handling churches trying to "recover" their long-lost "true" church based on Luke 10.19 and Acts 28.5.
Yes, I think those verses may indicate that at the time of Paul and John the apostles worked in this way. They each had their own territory to work in (Paul talked about not wanting to work in a territory someone else was working in) and within that territory they raised up churches in every city.

However, as it has been noted there is no word at all in the NT about how large a gathering should get before it is too unwieldy, how many elders you need, how many meeting halls, etc. I think everyone agrees that division is wrong and that there should be a degree of oneness among all believers, but that degree is very clearly spoken of in the NT. If WN and WL had stuck to what the NT clearly does say about this oneness there would have been no issue, but to infer that oneness necessitates one eldership is a very big leap. To then say that the way to determine this oneness is with a magic formula "The church in ...." is to clearly veer off course. To then judge all other Christians as being in "Babylon" because they participate in the Lord's Table in a meeting that is not named "The church in ..." is evil, it is sin.
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Old 03-26-2013, 05:03 AM   #17
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Our Lord's own words in John 4.21 show us that this "ground" of the church, the place where the apostles have laid the foundation Christ, cannot be a place we can visit in our car. To those who think they can drive to the "proper" place to worship, the Lord would say to them, "You worship that which you do not know." (John 4.22) If there is such a proper ground of meeting and worship, then it must be as the Lord has instructed us "in Spirit and reality." (John 4.2-24)

It's also interesting to note that WL and the Blendeds loved to speak of the "oneness of the body," as if there was some scripture that spoke of this. Please note there is none! It may sound spiritual, but it is not scriptural. The Bible only speaks of "being diligent to keep the oneness of the Spirit." Someone needs to share this with the Blendeds.
WL shared in John chapter 12, Section 2

"In typology, the worship of God should be (1) in the place chosen by God to set His habitation there (Deut. 12:5, 11, 13-14, 18), and (2) with the offerings (Lev. 1—6). The place chosen by God for His habitation typifies the human spirit, where God’s habitation is today—Ephesians 2:22, “an habitation of God through the spirit” (KJV), should read “a dwelling place of God in spirit.” The offerings typify Christ; Christ is the fulfillment and reality of all the offerings with which the people worshipped God. Hence, when the Lord instructed her to worship God the Spirit in spirit and reality, it meant she should contact God the Spirit in her spirit instead of in a specific place, and through Christ, instead of with the offerings, for now, since Christ the reality has come (vv. 25-26), all the shadows and types are over. The Lord Jesus told the Samaritan woman that God is Spirit, that worshipping God means to contact Him, and that contacting Him is not a matter of place, but a matter of the human spirit.


If you compare what WL shared on these verses with WN's teaching you will see that the verses in the OT regarding the "Place" which were used to surmise that there is a "ground of the Church" are not referring to a place. This to me is the hypocrisy. Yes, the Temple is a shadow of the church. Yes, in the OT shadow the place where the Temple was built was very important. However, the NT makes it clear that the place is the human spirit indwelt by the Spirit. You can't have it both ways. You can't teach that Jesus was exposing religion in this chapter and pointing out that the shadow was done away with now that we had the reality of our spirit. And then on the other hand use this shadow as a basis for the "ground of the church" teaching. WL condemns this teaching with his exposition of John 4.

On the one hand there is no clear teaching in the NT to support such a divisive and critical teaching of the "ground of the church". On the other hand there is a clear word from Jesus condemning this teaching and lumping it together with all religions.
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Old 03-26-2013, 05:15 AM   #18
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Ok, that's what I thought.

I heard Witness Lee, over the course of about 20 years, most of the time IN PERSON WITH MY OWN EARS talk about "the oneness of the body". In fact it was one of his main topics. He talked about "the oneness of the Spirit" too...but it was always linked to the oneness of the body. (which we all knew meant following his person and work).
I understood this term "the oneness of the Body" differently. I think I first heard it in the context of John 15. If you cut the branch off from the vine it is no longer one. Likewise, if you cut a body part off, if you amputate part of your Body, it is no longer one. Once you are no longer one then you whither up and die.

However, I always knew that every part of the Body is directly connected to the head. I never considered WL the head, I always understood Jesus to be the head.

Whenever I hear this term I am reminded of Pele. I was not a big soccer fan, but while in England I did see a replay of a Pele shot. He was surrounded by defenders, jumped and caught a long pass in his stomache, turned in mid air and with one motion kicked the ball into the top corner of the goal. In super slow motion you could see his stomache muscles rippling as they directed the ball down to his leg, over the knee and then boom. The entire thing took place as he was in the air and spinning while being defended by several players.

To me that was an example of "the oneness of the Body". The brain had calculated the velocity of the ball and directed every member to do its job in such a way that the Body had a single purpose.

Since I wasn't getting orders from WL I never equated WL with the "head".

So if the "blendeds" are now equating their speaking to that of the head then that to me would be idolatry and the basis for a very grievous judgment by the Lord, akin to the "Woe unto you, ye pharisees".
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:07 AM   #19
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

The problem with the unbiblical term "oneness of the Body" is that it implies that there is a larger group that you need to make efforts to be one with. It focuses on being one with a group, rather that with God.

The Bible as far as I can tell does not send this message.

The Bible tells us to "keep the oneness of the Spirit." That is very different from keeping the so-called oneness of the Body.

Keeping the oneness of the Spirit means clinging to Jesus. It means majoring on the majors and minoring on the minors

Keeping the "oneness of the Body" means dropping your personal convictions and engaging in group-think. It means when the chips are down letting others do your thinking for you.
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:35 AM   #20
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Since I wasn't getting orders from WL I never equated WL with the "head".
Ok, but you were getting orders from others who were getting orders from Witness Lee. Some were getting orders from those who were getting orders from those who were getting orders from Witness Lee.

So long as a group leader surrounds himself with enough "yes men" (the kind that say "even if Witness Lee is wrong he is right!" and "we're Witness Lee's company!") then he doesn't have to proclaim that he is the head....he is by de facto the head. This is how Witness Lee was able to proclaim "What church do I have? What church is under my control? Why are all you nasty people calling me controlling?"All the while he was controlling people behind the scenes, sending out spies and having them report back to him, and even publically denouncing people as traitors because they dared to question the One Master Builder.

So even if one was hundreds or thousands of miles away, or even across the oceans on a far away continent.....Lee had full control of almost every aspect of your life. You read his messages, you pray-read the words to his messages and sang songs based upon his messages. You were lead by men trained by him. This is what we called "the church life". Today, the Blended Brothers are simply continuing on as if Lee was still alive. They speak what he spoke. They teach what he taught and practice how he practiced. They handle those who would question or have the slightest difference of opinion the way that Lee handled them - "Shut up or get out!" And the beat goes on....
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:46 AM   #21
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The problem with the unbiblical term "oneness of the Body" is that it implies that there is a larger group that you need to make efforts to be one with. It focuses on being one with a group, rather that with God.
This is exactly what happens.

Couple this with distorted teachings about the N.T. leadership and regular tirades designed to subjugate all the leaders, gripping them in fear, and you produce a system of man-pleasers who dare not place the Head above "the body."
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Old 03-26-2013, 07:52 AM   #22
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I heard Witness Lee, over the course of about 20 years, most of the time IN PERSON WITH MY OWN EARS talk about "the oneness of the body". In fact it was one of his main topics. He talked about "the oneness of the Spirit" too...but it was always linked to the oneness of the body. (which we all knew meant following his person and work). [/COLOR]
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Ok, but you were getting orders from others who were getting orders from Witness Lee. Some were getting orders from those who were getting orders from those who were getting orders from Witness Lee.
From your vantage, it must have appeared like everyone was getting orders from WL, actually it was only some, as you have said.
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Old 03-26-2013, 10:19 AM   #23
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The problem with the unbiblical term "oneness of the Body" is that it implies that there is a larger group that you need to make efforts to be one with. It focuses on being one with a group, rather that with God.

The Bible as far as I can tell does not send this message.

The Bible tells us to "keep the oneness of the Spirit." That is very different from keeping the so-called oneness of the Body.

Keeping the oneness of the Spirit means clinging to Jesus. It means majoring on the majors and minoring on the minors

Keeping the "oneness of the Body" means dropping your personal convictions and engaging in group-think. It means when the chips are down letting others do your thinking for you.
Perhaps the expression "keeping the oneness of the Body" would have that meaning.

I don't see how that is the only reasonable meaning of "the oneness of the Body". To me the "oneness of the Body" indicated that there could be an amazing coordination in service of different saints guided by the Lord's hand.
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Old 03-26-2013, 10:35 AM   #24
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Ok, but you were getting orders from others who were getting orders from Witness Lee. Some were getting orders from those who were getting orders from those who were getting orders from Witness Lee.


No. I did not receive "orders" from anyone in the LRC. I lived in hospitality, did that mean I had to coordinate with the other three brothers, yes. But there was no hierarchy and no orders. Give one example of how you received orders from anyone?

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So long as a group leader surrounds himself with enough "yes men" (the kind that say "even if Witness Lee is wrong he is right!" and "we're Witness Lee's company!") then he doesn't have to proclaim that he is the head....he is by de facto the head.
I was in Taipei in the FTTT when that supposed statement hit the "fan". It was roundly repudiated. Just because there is some idiot somewhere who says something idiotic doesn't make it everyone's reality.

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This is how Witness Lee was able to proclaim "What church do I have? What church is under my control? Why are all you nasty people calling me controlling?"All the while he was controlling people behind the scenes, sending out spies and having them report back to him, and even publically denouncing people as traitors because they dared to question the One Master Builder.

So even if one was hundreds or thousands of miles away, or even across the oceans on a far away continent.....Lee had full control of almost every aspect of your life.
My life? Your telling me WL had spies sent to spy on me? I find that exceedingly difficult to believe. If he was getting reports on me then he must have gotten reports on close to 10,000 saints. Who was giving him all these briefings? Maybe he "spied" on a church or an elder. There is no evidence he spied on me or most other saints. I never considered WL the one master builder and yet I was never denounced as a traitor. I spoke in virtually every meeting, led home meetings, and was outspoken in many other ways as well.

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You read his messages, you pray-read the words to his messages and sang songs based upon his messages. You were lead by men trained by him. This is what we called "the church life". Today, the Blended Brothers are simply continuing on as if Lee was still alive. They speak what he spoke. They teach what he taught and practice how he practiced. They handle those who would question or have the slightest difference of opinion the way that Lee handled them - "Shut up or get out!" And the beat goes on....
I was in the LRC for 20 years. I did not read his messages for the last 10 years. I did not pray read his messages. RG was trained by WL, fair enough, and he was the lead elder for the first 4 years of my LRC experience. However, the brothers in Odessa and NH were not trained by WL. I was in the FTTT and for the first 10 months it would be fair to say I was led by those taking the lead there, and they were trained by WL. But for the next 7 years I wasn't. Due to my poor Chinese skills I spent that time mainly in study and fellowship with English speaking Christians, many of which were not in the LRC. When I returned to NYC you could only consider 1 of the three elders in NY to be "trained" by WL, BC. Of the three elders I had the least to do with BC. I found the other two much more accessible and I lived with JC on the weekends in Dunton house. JC took special pains to make sure he did not parrot WL or reference him or use his messages in any way. Likewise the saints in Dunton house pray read the Bible and made a special issue of not pray reading the "ministry" when I first came. I had no idea what that was all about, but apparently pray reading the messages had been a major issue while I was in Taiwan.
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Old 03-26-2013, 10:37 AM   #25
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Perhaps the expression "keeping the oneness of the Body" would have that meaning.

I don't see how that is the only reasonable meaning of "the oneness of the Body". To me the "oneness of the Body" indicated that there could be an amazing coordination in service of different saints guided by the Lord's hand.
Most Christians would probably view things as you just said, but the Blendeds did not use the expression like that.

Perhaps that is because you didn't stick around to see how the Blendeds used this expression to manipulate their followers. And let's make it clear that these Blendeds learned this from WL.

It is no different from how the media is manipulating public opinion. Behind the scenes the Blendeds sowed seeds of suspicion about TC and the GLA. At elders trainings they would make innuendos that those "in the know" would apply to TC. In trainings they would use code words like the "feeling of the body, the taste of the body, the sense of the body is such and such." Whistler was portrayed by the Blendeds as "the feeling of the body" is to reject the ministry of TC, so we as the "deputy authority of the body" must take action to quarantine TC to maintain the "oneness of the body."

As my old friend Paul Cox used to say, "the feeling of the bahhhhhhhdy."
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Old 03-26-2013, 10:47 AM   #26
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Most Christians would probably view things as you just said, but the Blendeds did not use the expression like that.

Perhaps that is because you didn't stick around to see how the Blendeds used this expression to manipulate their followers. And let's make it clear that these Blendeds learned this from WL.

It is no different from how the media is manipulating public opinion. Behind the scenes the Blendeds sowed seeds of suspicion about TC and the GLA. At elders trainings they would make innuendos that those "in the know" would apply to TC. In trainings they would use code words like the "feeling of the body, the taste of the body, the sense of the body is such and such." Whistler was portrayed by the Blendeds as "the feeling of the body" is to reject the ministry of TC, so we as the "deputy authority of the body" must take action to quarantine TC to maintain the "oneness of the body."

As my old friend Paul Cox used to say, "the feeling of the bahhhhhhhdy."
I knew a number of blendeds: EM, KR, RG, BP, JD, BC. etc. I had no respect for EM as a Bible teacher so if he shared something I would have ignored it. KR also is not a Bible teacher per se, he is a scribe. His modus operandi is to give the greek context and translation of the words. RG is a brother that I had respect for, but not as a Bible teacher. He was diligent and zealous, but a light weight when it came to the Bible and even he knew that. BP was also a gifted brother, not for his acumen in the Bible but for his ability to empathize and sympathize with others. I did not care too much for BC, he is an autocrat. However, since NYC had a very distinct rift down the middle between those who supported LSM and those who didn't and since this rift went all the way up to the elders BC never said anything outrageous that I can recall. JD is not a Bible teacher he is an office manager.

Perhaps what protected me is that I knew these brothers well enough to not accept their teaching as the gospel. Also, since I was in Taipei from 87 to 95 I might have missed a lot. When I did return it was to NYC which is a very special case due to their history.
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Old 03-26-2013, 11:00 AM   #27
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Ok, but you were getting orders from others who were getting orders from Witness Lee. Some were getting orders from those who were getting orders from those who were getting orders from Witness Lee.
That was never so evident as when Max promoted Lee's burden to go to the campuses. I was distinctly told by the older brother overseeing my brothers' house, "yours is not to question authority, only to take orders as to which campus you will be sent to."

And I will readily admit that LC leaders pressured me and manipulated me into making certain decisions that I would not have made on my own.
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Old 03-26-2013, 11:16 AM   #28
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That was never so evident as when Max promoted Lee's burden to go to the campuses. I was distinctly told by the older brother overseeing my brothers' house, "yours is not to question authority, only to take orders as to which campus you will be sent to."

And I will readily admit that LC leaders pressured me and manipulated me into making certain decisions that I would not have made on my own.
Those are some of the most tragic things ever said to a young Christian. Somehow I missed all of that. Probably because I was part of an actual family in the LRC. I chose my own school. And my own job. It was not their decision. If they had suggested another, it would have only happened with the blessing and support of my parents and some research to determine that they had a solid school of business administration, and more particularly, accounting degree. I actually changed from one to another after my sophomore year because the first did not have enough accounting courses. There was no official outreach to the school I changed to. Still wasn't after I made the change.

That probably shows that at some level I was not as "sold out" as some of the others. And it was probably true. I believed that there were levels of commitment. Like levels of "talent." I was satisfied that I would never be an elder. That was not my ambition. And I worried about some of the "hallelujah brothers" that seemed to be almost useless except to be "burning" in the meetings.

That's probably not fair. But there was such an appearance. Some that went to school almost forever. Not just because they couldn't quite get through, but because they wouldn't stick to anything. I always thought that, other than those who would actually be like missionaries to a school, it would be a better testimony for more of the others to get their degrees. And some did. But there were a significant number who just seemed to go to school because it was a "field white unto harvest." The world recognizes fraud, and continually acting like you are in school becomes obviously a fraud.

BTW. This brings up an interesting subject. I know someone on the "inside" that agrees that the claim that Christians on Campus is not associated with the LRC is a lie. They note that the lead ones are on the payroll for the purpose. How can it be otherwise.
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Old 03-26-2013, 12:33 PM   #29
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Oh, please. More OBW lecturing. Your logic here is the same as saying arsenic is not good for you and mudpies are not good for you, so therefore there is not much difference between arsenic and mudpies. Who would believe that? No one, except apparently you.

Unbiblical means teaching a principle that is contrary to what the Bible actually teaches. There is nothing about cars or hamburgers that do that. But "oneness of the Body" distorts the biblical teaching of oneness.
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15:5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.
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15:6 If a man abide not in me, he is cast forth as a branch, and is withered; and men gather them, and cast them into the fire, and they are burned.

Here is a Biblical teaching by Jesus that could be referred to as "the oneness of the Body". (This does not mean that this is or was the intended use by the Blendeds. But I am not familiar with this particular group. I guess my musical tastes never picked up on this group.)

The vine tree and branches can be viewed as the Body. We are to keep the oneness of the Spirit, ie Abide in Christ. If not we also lose the oneness of the Body, are separated from the vine, whither and are thrown into the fire.
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Old 03-26-2013, 02:35 PM   #30
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It does not, despite ZNP's attempts to morph it in, insist upon oneness of the body.
That is a mischaracterization. I never "insist" on the oneness of the Body. That sounds more like "keeping the oneness of the Body".

What I have pointed out is that the Body is intended to be one. You cannot separate the finger from the hand and expect things to be fine. This same concept is portrayed in John 15 except the analogy is to a vine tree instead of the Body. It is also portrayed as amputation.

Now I understand that the way this expression is used by the Blendeds is the real issue. So the concept that a few people receive and then convey the "feeling of the Body" is what is not scriptural. There is no NT basis to follow the speaking of a few people who are short circuiting the Lord's speaking. However, it is scriptural. We saw false prophets do this all the time in the OT. Since this practice of usurping God's speaking to His people is recorded in the Bible it should therefore be considered "scriptural" even though it is clearly a condemned practice. Perhaps that is why you don't like the term.
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Old 03-26-2013, 03:04 PM   #31
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"So the concept that a few people receive and then convey the "feeling of the Body" is what is not scriptural. There is no NT basis to follow the speaking of a few people who are short circuiting the Lord's speaking"

ZNP,

Unless the speaking of one of those few people is the Lord's speaking at that place and time.


Sometimes the Lord speaks directly and sometimes through gifted members and they may be few for the circumstance.


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Old 03-26-2013, 03:39 PM   #32
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Unless the speaking of one of those few people is the Lord's speaking at that place and time.


Sometimes the Lord speaks directly and sometimes through gifted members and they may be few for the circumstance.
The Bible says to prove all things, and we have proven that these so-called "gifted members" called Blendeds at LSM do not speak for the Lord or for the body of Christ. In fact, they regularly mis-represent the Lord by condemning the the greater body of Christ.
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Old 03-26-2013, 03:43 PM   #33
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That is a mischaracterization. I never "insist" on the oneness of the Body. That sounds more like "keeping the oneness of the Body".
You might be right. I did mostly say that you were trying to morph it in, not insist on it.

But the problem even there is that it is the stringing of metaphor after metaphor together to arrive at a construct that is not stated. In what is effectively a couple of places, the church is referred to as the body of Christ. And there is a lot of potential imagery that could be brought to bear based on that reference. But is the reference intended to suggest every aspect of being a literal body? The term "body" has been used of many corporate, non-single entities going back to before the NT era. In most of those cases, the constructs of organs, appendages, injury, etc., do not have the same meaning as they do for a human or other animal body.

That is not to say that it could not be implied or meaningful. But scripture does not go there. And bringing in the vine and the branches does not get you there. Honestly, in some aspect I'm sure that the body should be one. But is that oneness any different from the "unity of the Spirit"? And by saying that, I am not expanding the unity of the Spirit to be like everything that you could make out of a metaphorical human body. I am limiting the oneness of the body to the context that we are given — the unity of the Spirit. It is the Spirit that unifies. Yet we must endeavor to keep that unity. But it is not specified in terms of doctrines, meeting places, ground, etc., but just the Spirit. The Spirit is our unity. We are to strive to live like we know it is true. But no one can dictate what that "looks like." They can't ordain that it means certain things that scripture does not dictate.

And scripture dictates fairly little. Other than holding on to Christ/God/the Spirit. Even the verses about the vine and the branches say to hold on to the vine. Not to each other. Or that the fingers should hold onto the hand. Or the shoulder to the torso.

No. You didn't insist. But you are seriously not content to leave it as "unity of the Spirit." You seem to need more definition. A better-defined unity. And it all is speculative at best.

Somehow, I think that loving God and your neighbor will result in unity in the Spirit. Not many have actually tried that. Well, some have. And the largest majority of them are not even evangelical. They are Lutheran, Episcopal, and even (gasp) RCC. They live their faith. We so often do not (and I am including myself in that). We talk about how it should be. We argue over how to meet. We argue over doctrines as if they are crucial to salvation. They don't. Oh, they argue over doctrines, but more often they are clear that, right or wrong, the doctrines aren't our salvation. In the mean time, we (including me) are so focused on "getting it right" that we worry more about our doctrinal statement than obedience. To the extent that we aren't really very obedient.

Yeah, some of those old-line groups are not even sure whether all those miraculous things actually happened or are just part of the story. But they believe in the one the story was/is about. And they act like it. I'm not joining them. But I understand them a little more. And I think that we are too often mired in knowledge and think it will save us.

At some level, I believe that there is a recovery in progress. It is the recovery of God's people from the modern era of apologetics, pseudo-scientific method arguments, and head knowledge. I don't propose that the postmodern way is better. But they actually see the problem.

And this kind of discussion sometimes makes me wonder why I bother with the LRC. They are just another (and worse) version of what is wrong with our emphasis. But I always come back to the realization that I too often tend to just exchange one bad version of evangelicalism for another. Evangelicalism is not, per se, bad. But we have many bad versions of it. And one of the worst is the LRC. It is worse because it not only distracts us from the path, it puffs itself up in its certainty that it has found "THE WAY" and no one else has. That means that it is essentially closed to correction. The rest may not take correction easily, but they are not simply closed.

And for all my talk, I am still in the middle of it all. I think I see something faintly. But I don't know what to do with it and find myself stuck in the very thing that I'm fairly sure needs a serious course correction.

But that course correction is not toward better doctrines or better-defined oneness. Rather it is to a renewed realization of what the gospel is supposed to mean to this life rather than just the next life and the "church life."
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Old 03-26-2013, 04:00 PM   #34
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The Bible says to prove all things, and we have proven that these so-called "gifted members" called Blendeds at LSM do not speak for the Lord or for the body of Christ. In fact, they regularly mis-represent the Lord by condemning the the greater body of Christ.
Ohio, I understand that you feel that way and take every opportunity to reiterate that stance.

Mine was a general observation about "few".
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Old 03-26-2013, 05:57 PM   #35
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You might be right. I did mostly say that you were trying to morph it in, not insist on it.

But the problem even there is that it is the stringing of metaphor after metaphor together to arrive at a construct that is not stated.
The church is the Body of Christ. This is not a metaphor. Amputation resulting in the amputated member withering and dying is stated several times in the NT.

Once you accept that the church is the Body of Christ there is no construct to refer to the "oneness of the Body". Again, the construct comes when you try to create practices like "keeping the oneness of the Body". I never morphed this or insisted this or defended this.
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Old 03-27-2013, 09:45 AM   #36
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"The narrow way is not the ground of oneness, it is the way that leads to life. Our ground is not oneness with the body, it is Christ. Listen to what Paul teaches us in Ephesians 4.1-6"

Ohio,

okay, I did.

Verse 4 says "One Body.."

Verse 5 says "One Lord..."

There are seven ones there in Ephesians 4:1-6 (Body, Spirit, Hope, Lord, Faith, Baptism, God & Father) and all contribute equally to the ground we stand on as believers.

On what scriptural basis do you eliminate the oneness of the first item listed (the Body) in your statement above?
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Old 03-27-2013, 09:59 AM   #37
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"The narrow way is not the ground of oneness, it is the way that leads to life. Our ground is not oneness with the body, it is Christ. Listen to what Paul teaches us in Ephesians 4.1-6"

Ohio,

okay, I did.

Verse 4 says "One Body.."

Verse 5 says "One Lord..."

There are seven ones there in Ephesians 4:1-6 (Body, Spirit, Hope, Lord, Faith, Baptism, God & Father) and all contribute equally to the ground we stand on as believers.

On what scriptural basis do you eliminate the oneness of the first item listed (the Body) in your statement above?
Ohio did not deny there was one Body. He denied that "oneness with the Body" was a proper directive. This was my earlier point as well. Oneness with the Body implies you need to always conform to the group at any cost. It also suggests that conforming to the group is the same as conforming to the Lord. It isn't. But this is how the LRC interpreted it.

Accepting there is only one Body is actually liberating, because it establishes that the directives of any subset of the Body (e.g. the LRC) cannot be absolutely binding, because they cannot claim to be the whole Body that presumably (on their part) you need to be one with.
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Old 03-27-2013, 10:15 AM   #38
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"The narrow way is not the ground of oneness, it is the way that leads to life. Our ground is not oneness with the body, it is Christ. Listen to what Paul teaches us in Ephesians 4.1-6"

Ohio,

okay, I did.

Verse 4 says "One Body.."

Verse 5 says "One Lord..."

There are seven ones there in Ephesians 4:1-6 (Body, Spirit, Hope, Lord, Faith, Baptism, God & Father) and all contribute equally to the ground we stand on as believers.

On what scriptural basis do you eliminate the oneness of the first item listed (the Body) in your statement above?
Look at Paul's admonition carefully ...

The one body, "with all lowliness and meekness, bearing one another in love, is diligent to keep the oneness of the Spirit." (Eph 4.3)

It may seem like a technical point, but the one body does not equal the oneness of the body, and that's why the Bible never uses this expression. The source of our oneness is not in the body, it is only in the Lord Spirit. That's why we must keep the oneness of the Spirit. God alone defines the rules for this oneness, and administrates its reality.

If this oneness were "of the body," then the leaders of the body could define the parameters of this oneness, and this, unfortunately, has been done many times in church history. That is why I have repeatedly said that distorted oneness is perhaps the most destructive heresy of all. Rome today still administrates her version of the "oneness of the body." LSM has their version of the "oneness of the body," and they make up all the rules governing this "oneness."
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Old 03-27-2013, 10:17 AM   #39
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Ohio did not deny there was one Body. He denied that "oneness with the Body" was a proper directive. This was my earlier point as well. Oneness with the Body implies you need to always conform to the group at any cost. It also suggests that conforming to the group is the same as conforming to the Lord. It isn't. But this is how the LRC interpreted it.

Accepting there is only one Body is actually liberating, because it establishes that the directives of any subset of the Body (e.g. the LRC) cannot be absolutely binding, because they cannot claim to be the whole Body that presumably (on their part) you need to be one with.
There is no NT teaching that would suggest that "being one with the Body" trumps heeding your conscience or the Lord's speaking to you or the Lord's word.

On the contrary you cannot "be one with the Body" if you are not "abiding in Christ". If the Blendeds or anyone else taught such a thing it is akin to usurping the headship of Christ. It seems the judgment day just gets better and better.
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Old 03-27-2013, 10:35 AM   #40
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Look at Paul's admonition carefully ...

The one body, "with all lowliness and meekness, bearing one another in love, is diligent to keep the oneness of the Spirit." (Eph 4.3)

It may seem like a technical point, but the one body does not equal the oneness of the body, and that's why the Bible never uses this expression. The source of our oneness is not in the body, it is only in the Lord Spirit. That's why we must keep the oneness of the Spirit. God alone defines the rules for this oneness, and administrates its reality.

If this oneness were "of the body," then the leaders of the body could define the parameters of this oneness, and this, unfortunately, has been done many times in church history. That is why I have repeatedly said that distorted oneness is perhaps the most destructive heresy of all. Rome today still administrates her version of the "oneness of the body." LSM has their version of the "oneness of the body," and they make up all the rules governing this "oneness."
You cannot use "oneness of the Body" in the same way you say "houses of brick". Our oneness is not constructed with the Body. Hence the NT says "Keeping the oneness of the Spirit". The oneness is constructed with the Spirit.

However, the expression "One Body" does allow the expression "oneness of the Body" in the sense of "the plays of Shakespeare". The Body, composed of many members, has an expression that is "one". So then the Body may act in a way that demonstrates miraculous coordination pointing to Jesus as head of the Body. For example Ananias goes in to lay hands on Saul so he can receive his sight, even though Saul has come to the town to find Christians to haul off to prison.

So then WL and the Blendeds use a phrase that is fair and reasonable and create a meaning that is rejected and false. It is as though they have disguised a false teaching in robes of light. Quite artful.
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Old 03-27-2013, 10:36 AM   #41
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Look at Paul's admonition carefully ...

The one body, "with all lowliness and meekness, bearing one another in love, is diligent to keep the oneness of the Spirit." (Eph 4.3)

It may seem like a technical point, but the one body does not equal the oneness of the body, and that's why the Bible never uses this expression. The source of our oneness is not in the body, it is only in the Lord Spirit. That's why we must keep the oneness of the Spirit. God alone defines the rules for this oneness, and administrates its reality.

If this oneness were "of the body," then the leaders of the body could define the parameters of this oneness, and this, unfortunately, has been done many times in church history. That is why I have repeatedly said that distorted oneness is perhaps the most destructive heresy of all. Rome today still administrates her version of the "oneness of the body." LSM has their version of the "oneness of the body," and they make up all the rules governing this "oneness."
Ohio,

Strictly speaking in the Bible there is not the phrase "the oneness of the Body". Nevertheless, that does not mean the thought is absent and a more detailed review of these verses will reveal that it is.

V3 is a charge to the believer to keep the "oneness of the Spirit" in the uniting bond of peace.

That is further defined by the "ones" that follow in verses 4-6 the first mentioned is the One Body.

Or rather think of the ones in v4-6 as the ingredients of V3. to keep the oneness of the Spirit in the uniting bond of peace means to keep the One Body as the first item if you prefer to say it that way. Saying it that way does not feel as grammatically fluid but it is the same thought.

All the ones make up a further definition of V3 and the One Body is the first item.
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Old 03-27-2013, 10:44 AM   #42
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Or rather think of the ones in v4-6 as the ingredients of V3. to keep the oneness of the Spirit in the uniting bond of peace means to keep the One Body as the first item if you prefer to say it that way. Saying it that way does not feel as grammatically fluid but it is the same thought.
Again, it's a matter of subtle suggestion. Once you start talking about the oneness of the Body, rather than the Spirit, the next step is group-think, which is not what oneness is.

Anyway, certainly "keeping the One Body" should not mean setting up shop and declaring that everyone needs to be one with you, as Lee and the LRC did. But of course one reason they made that mistake is they fell in for phrasing like "keeping the oneness of the Body." Which is exactly my point.
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Old 03-27-2013, 11:24 AM   #43
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So then WL and the Blendeds use a phrase that is fair and reasonable and create a meaning that is rejected and false. It is as though they have disguised a false teaching in robes of light. Quite artful.
This becomes more than obvious when they infer that they alone can know the "taste of the body, the feeling of the body, and the sense of the body."

Let me be painfully honest here. This whole line of teaching was developed in the Recovery due to rivalry and selfish ambition for power and glory.

Let me give an example. I heard this testimony back in the late 70's when WL sent out Max to shake up the TC-led Midwest. One of the SoCal young people who was part of Max's entourage to bring us "brother Lee's burden," gave this testimony. "I was traveling across the country enjoying the Lord, until I came to Ohio, and then something started to stink." This was offered as added proof in the meeting that we were not "in the flow," and had somehow deviated from WL's leading because of TC.

At the time I heard this I was in awe that such a person had such a keen nose, and wondered what in the world we were doing that was so wrong. Besides the obvious hilarity of this testimony, we now must consider what was happening behind the scenes in SoCal to cause this novice to travel across the country and make such an outrageous claim. Were all their young people infected with these ugly seeds of suspicion? They obviously came to the midwest to sow these same seeds of discord into all the young people here. And it worked! We had some horribly chaotic and antagonistic meetings as a result. The Bible says, "mark them which make divisions."

What was the source of evil there? Was it simply misunderstandings? You know, "everyone is entitled to mistakes." Absolutely not! The root of the problem was rivalry and selfish ambitions between the workers in the Recovery. That was the source of the teachings which developed into these extraordinary manipulations we now know as "the feeling of the body, the sense of the body, and the taste of the body," which were all built upon their misunderstanding of the "oneness of the body."
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Old 03-27-2013, 12:27 PM   #44
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This becomes more than obvious when they infer that they alone can know the "taste of the body, the feeling of the body, and the sense of the body."

Let me be painfully honest here. This whole line of teaching was developed in the Recovery due to rivalry and selfish ambition for power and glory.

Let me give an example. I heard this testimony back in the late 70's when WL sent out Max to shake up the TC-led Midwest. One of the SoCal young people who was part of Max's entourage to bring us "brother Lee's burden," gave this testimony. "I was traveling across the country enjoying the Lord, until I came to Ohio, and then something started to stink." This was offered as added proof in the meeting that we were not "in the flow," and had somehow deviated from WL's leading because of TC.

At the time I heard this I was in awe that such a person had such a keen nose, and wondered what in the world we were doing that was so wrong. Besides the obvious hilarity of this testimony, we now must consider what was happening behind the scenes in SoCal to cause this novice to travel across the country and make such an outrageous claim. Were all their young people infected with these ugly seeds of suspicion? They obviously came to the midwest to sow these same seeds of discord into all the young people here. And it worked! We had some horribly chaotic and antagonistic meetings as a result. The Bible says, "mark them which make divisions."

What was the source of evil there? Was it simply misunderstandings? You know, "everyone is entitled to mistakes." Absolutely not! The root of the problem was rivalry and selfish ambitions between the workers in the Recovery. That was the source of the teachings which developed into these extraordinary manipulations we now know as "the feeling of the body, the sense of the body, and the taste of the body," which were all built upon their misunderstanding of the "oneness of the body."

Ohio,

Your objections now are quite similar to those of WL and the co-workers back then.

Shortly thereafter, Max was escorted out for such behavior.

Wasn't that an appropriate thing to do at the time?
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Old 03-27-2013, 12:58 PM   #45
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Ohio,

Your objections now are quite similar to those of WL and the co-workers back then.

Shortly thereafter, Max was escorted out for such behavior.

Wasn't that an appropriate thing to do at the time?
Dear Cassidy, you obviously missed the point where I placed the responsibility squarely in Lee's lap. Max was just used as a pawn, and then branded a scapegoat, so that Lee could maintain his pristine image.

Did you find those verses in the book of James where he tells Christians to keep the law?
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Old 03-27-2013, 01:58 PM   #46
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Dear Cassidy, you obviously missed the point where I placed the responsibility squarely in Lee's lap. Max was just used as a pawn, and then branded a scapegoat, so that Lee could maintain his pristine image.

Did you find those verses in the book of James where he tells Christians to keep the law?
Ohio,

No, I did not miss the assertion you made because it is the same one you always make -- WL is responsible for everything that went wrong no matter what he did. However, you want it many ways.


Please explain. The behavior of Max at the time, that you find so appalling, was stopped by Witness Lee. Was that the right thing to do at the time? Do you think Max should have been reeled in?
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Old 03-27-2013, 02:52 PM   #47
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Ohio,

No, I did not miss the assertion you made because it is the same one you always make -- WL is responsible for everything that went wrong no matter what he did. However, you want it many ways.

Please explain. The behavior of Max at the time, that you find so appalling, was stopped by Witness Lee. Was that the right thing to do at the time? Do you think Max should have been reeled in?
I guess I have become a little too predictable. But let's spin that as "consistent."

Max was sent out to shake things up, which really means to undermine the regional and local authorities over the saints. He was only doing what Lee charged him to do, sending the young people to the campuses, and firing the elders who got in his way. So we have to ask what right does WL have to tell all the members of the body what to do? When all those young people rose up in defiance of their elders, they were clamoring for the elders to allow them to carry out Lee's burden, not Max's. Max was simply an intermediary, all his authority came from Lee.

Why does Lee never take responsibility for any of his failures and wrongdoings? He blamed it all on Max. Max took the hit for both of them, and he was shown the door, his reputation forever disgraced. Lee lived another day, his pristine image once again intact.

But let's not forget what was really going on behind the scenes at LSM. Philip Lee, the office manager, was molesting every pretty sister in sight, and when Max confronted him about it, he surely thought that WL would take a stand for righteousness. Boy was he wrong. Lee used the Chinese tradition of payback by shaming his opponent's wife, and thus Sandee Rapoport was ostracized in Anaheim before the church for some supposed "sisters' rebellion."

To display his hypocrisy in full sight, Lee proclaimed that all the members should have acted like cops to stand up to Max. Actually the only brother in the whole sordid affair who acted like a cop was Max, when he tried to protect the sisters by standing up to Philip Lee, daddy's little playboy.
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Old 03-27-2013, 03:39 PM   #48
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I guess I have become a little too predictable. But let's spin that as "consistent."

Max was sent out to shake things up, which really means to undermine the regional and local authorities over the saints. He was only doing what Lee charged him to do, sending the young people to the campuses, and firing the elders who got in his way. So we have to ask what right does WL have to tell all the members of the body what to do? When all those young people rose up in defiance of their elders, they were clamoring for the elders to allow them to carry out Lee's burden, not Max's. Max was simply an intermediary, all his authority came from Lee.

Why does Lee never take responsibility for any of his failures and wrongdoings? He blamed it all on Max. Max took the hit for both of them, and he was shown the door, his reputation forever disgraced. Lee lived another day, his pristine image once again intact.

But let's not forget what was really going on behind the scenes at LSM. Philip Lee, the office manager, was molesting every pretty sister in sight, and when Max confronted him about it, he surely thought that WL would take a stand for righteousness. Boy was he wrong. Lee used the Chinese tradition of payback by shaming his opponent's wife, and thus Sandee Rapoport was ostracized in Anaheim before the church for some supposed "sisters' rebellion."

To display his hypocrisy in full sight, Lee proclaimed that all the members should have acted like cops to stand up to Max. Actually the only brother in the whole sordid affair who acted like a cop was Max, when he tried to protect the sisters by standing up to Philip Lee, daddy's little playboy.
So in brief, the way in which Max was fired was despicable since he was essentially following orders. Firing Max was not so much the issue but the way in which it was done. Second, because Max confronted PL it creates the issue of whether WL merely stabbed Max in the back to cover the sins of his family. Third, why was PL so critical to LSM that WL engineered the Sister's rebellion, Max fiasco and preferred JI etal to leave rather than deal with? Is there some other sin that PL was covering, perhaps with regards to Daystar?

So then, what was the right thing to do?

1. Remove PL. Obviously.
2. Stop trying to subvert the elders in the local churches.
3. Stop maligning innocent sisters, accusing them falsely of being in some kind of rebellion.
4. Repay any money owed the saints from Daystar

In short to "walk worthy of the calling with which we have been called" Eph 4:1
"With lowliness, and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love" Eph 4:2
"Endeavoring to keep the oneness of the Spirit in the bond of peace" Eph 4:3
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Old 03-27-2013, 04:07 PM   #49
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"Max was sent out to shake things up, which really means to undermine the regional and local authorities over the saints. He was only doing what Lee charged him to do..."

Ohio,

So your story is that Witness Lee sent Max out, then when Max did exactly what Witness Lee asked him to do, Witness Lee then fired Max.

All of that for some elaborate power play on Witness Lee's part.

That does not even make sense. That's no way to run a conspiracy!

Max got reeled in for the very things you described he did in the mid-west and in New England and wherever he went. Perhaps because you were a young person "in awe" at Max's ability to "sniff" things out and caught up in the magic of the moment then you might have missed the extreme concern Witness Lee, the co-workers, and churches in many places had about his goings-on once the feedback started coming in.

Far from the massive conspiracy you describe the reality is very simple and not at all complicated. Witness Lee trusted Max as a valued co-worker and was let down, disappointed, and had to make a tough decision.
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Old 03-27-2013, 07:14 PM   #50
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Ohio,

So your story is that Witness Lee sent Max out, then when Max did exactly what Witness Lee asked him to do, Witness Lee then fired Max.

All of that for some elaborate power play on Witness Lee's part.

That does not even make sense. That's no way to run a conspiracy!
You have conveniently forgot about how Max thought Lee was an honorable and righteous man who would obviously take the appropriate measures to deal with his own son and employee, who had regularly molested the volunteer help.

Max was never "fired" for doing what he was paid to do. He was not even fired for dividing churches. He was banished for exposing son of Lee as a profligate philanderer. That was the one unforgivable sin. Their biggest mistake was trusting Lee. They should have called the police.
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Old 03-27-2013, 07:23 PM   #51
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Third, why was PL so critical to LSM that WL engineered the Sister's rebellion, Max fiasco and preferred JI etal to leave rather than deal with? Is there some other sin that PL was covering, perhaps with regards to Daystar?
When I first read all the available accounts on these events, I came to the conclusion that Philip must have blackmailed his father. Why else would any minister allow his wayward son to so destroy his work. He could have just as easily paid Philip to stay at home and watch movies. Why did Lee take such a heavy risk. Lee was forced to sacrifice literally hundreds of saints in order to protect his own reputation. What did Philip have on him? I'm speculating here, but possibly it was related to the death of his mother, and Lee's subsequent remarriage. Otherwise it makes no sense to the American mind. Was this just Chinese culture at work -- the Lee family dynasty.
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Old 03-27-2013, 08:02 PM   #52
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You have conveniently forgot about how Max thought Lee was an honorable and righteous man who would obviously take the appropriate measures to deal with his own son and employee, who had regularly molested the volunteer help.

Max was never "fired" for doing what he was paid to do. He was not even fired for dividing churches. He was banished for exposing son of Lee as a profligate philanderer. That was the one unforgivable sin. Their biggest mistake was trusting Lee. They should have called the police.

The reason Max was relieved of duties, fired, or banished, whatever descriptor you prefer, was for the things he was saying and how he was saying it in the mid-west, New England, and elsewhere. If the incidents with PL had never transpired Max would still have been relieved of duties. You documented the issues in the mid-west and that same behavior was widespread.
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Old 03-27-2013, 08:25 PM   #53
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The reason Max was relieved of duties, fired, or banished, whatever descriptor you prefer, was for the things he was saying and how he was saying it in the mid-west, New England, and elsewhere. If the incidents with PL had never transpired Max would still have been relieved of duties. You documented the issues in the mid-west and that same behavior was widespread.
There are facts that cannot be disputed.

1. PL was put in charge of business affairs of the LSM. This man had no business being put into this position. He was not a "godly" man. That decision was made by WL.
2. Max discovered his profligate ways and confronted him on this yet PL was not disciplined or removed. WL was made aware of this issue at this time.
3. PL continued to be a profligate and was discovered by JI etal. This also was brought to WL attention who pretended that this was a "church" matter. PL should have been removed from office at the LSM by WL immediately but wasn't.
4. Max, JI, AK, JS, etc. all came to WL with this issue and instead were banished from the LRC and then a bill of goods was sold to the saints in the LRC.
5. The LSM published a whitewash of the incident.
6. At the time of Max there was also a "sister's rebellion" described in the book "The Thread of Gold". The insinuation of rebellion came from WL.
7. WL perpetrated a lie concerning WN's excommunication. This lie profited him directly as the "closest coworker" to WN and the one who "inherited the mantle" and ultimately became the next "MOTA".
8. WL has built a sect of Christianity based on a very flimsy teaching concerning "the ground of the church" first propagated by WN. This teaching does not hold up to any serious scrutiny.
9. RG and BP and KR replaced the brothers in Anaheim because they would not stand together with JI against adultery. They were willing to close their eyes, ears and mouth to the sins of PL.

The facts that are little less certain:

1. Was Max ousted for being divisive or for confronting WL about PL? There are two accounts on this.
2. Was the sister's rebellion merely a smokescreen created by WL because he feared some sisters were aware of PL's profligacy and would spread this throughout the LRC? This seems to be the best explanation for why innocent sisters were falsely accused and disciplined.
3. Were these shady dealings related to earlier shady dealings with Daystar? Again, plausible.
4. Did WL lie about WN for personal gain?
5. Did WN and later WL use this teaching of the ground of the church for personal gain?
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Old 03-27-2013, 08:32 PM   #54
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The reason Max was relieved of duties, fired, or banished, whatever descriptor you prefer, was for the things he was saying and how he was saying it in the mid-west, New England, and elsewhere. If the incidents with PL had never transpired Max would still have been relieved of duties. You documented the issues in the mid-west and that same behavior was widespread.
No, I don't think so Cassidy. There were many, many saints willing to leave the GLA LC's immediately for greener pastures with Lee. Max converted them into ministry zealots almost overnight, and that was always Lee's goal. I know because I was one of these zealots ready to relocate, like tomorrow. By this point in time TC was viewed as a terrible hindrance to their empire in Anaheim, and a potential rival to their throne.

For Max to go into the midwest and leave with dozens of the brightest young ones would have got him another promotion and a pay raise. He would have returned to Anaheim and entered into their new meeting hall on Ball Road with all the pomp and circumstance of a victorious Roman general. Lee would have called a conference immediately and shared on II Cor. 2.14-16, with Ed Marks giving a glorious testimony to conclude the meeting by reading footnote #1 in verse 2.14.

Cassidy
, think how glorious that would be! Max would then stand up to glowing admirations, and then declare to all the saints that he takes credit for none of this fruit, rather all the fruit belongs to God's New Testament economy, consummated in this little god-man Minister Of The Age from China, to a thousand resounding "amens, oh Lord's, and hallelujahs!" Cassidy can just you see it?!? Can you see the heavenly vision?
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Old 03-27-2013, 08:47 PM   #55
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No, I don't think so Cassidy. There were many, many saints willing to leave the GLA LC's immediately for greener pastures with Lee. Max converted them into ministry zealots almost overnight, and that was always Lee's goal. I know because I was one of these zealots ready to relocate, like tomorrow. By this point in time TC was viewed as a terrible hindrance to their empire in Anaheim, and a potential rival to their throne.

For Max to go into the midwest and leave with dozens of the brightest young ones would have got him another promotion and a pay raise. He would have returned to Anaheim and entered into their new meeting hall on Ball Road with all the pomp and circumstance of a victorious Roman general. Lee would have called a conference immediately and shared on II Cor. 2.14-16, with Ed Marks giving a glorious testimony to conclude the meeting by reading footnote #1 in verse 2.14.

Cassidy
, think how glorious that would be! Max would then stand up to glowing admirations, and then declare to all the saints that he takes credit for none of this fruit, rather all the fruit belongs to God's New Testament economy, consummated in this little god-man Minister Of The Age from China, to a thousand resounding "amens, oh Lord's, and hallelujahs!" Cassidy can just you see it?!? Can you see the heavenly vision?

Ohio
, what I see clearly is that you missed your calling in life as a fictional writer. For a moment there I did feel awestruck. Then the facts came rushing back and I came back down to reality.
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:40 AM   #56
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, what I see clearly is that you missed your calling in life as a fictional writer. For a moment there I did feel awestruck. Then the facts came rushing back and I came back down to reality.
But you have to admit that the post was not detestably "predictable," aye?

Fictionalized perhaps, but as they say, "inspired by a true story."

And surely closer to the truth than LSM's official version of events.
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Old 03-28-2013, 06:30 AM   #57
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But you have to admit that the post was not detestably "predictable," aye?

Fictionalized perhaps, but as they say, "inspired by a true story."

And surely closer to the truth than LSM's official version of events.
Certainly inspired by a true story (and predictable).

However, as with any fictional account inspired by a true story, the dates, events, facts, characterizations, and accuracy are sacrificed in order to appeal to a target audience.

The story of Max's departure is very simple and straightforward. The reasons are discernible just using the facts you have presented about his visit to the mid-west. Though more wide-spread the reason is not any more complicated than that.
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:49 AM   #58
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The story of Max's departure is very simple and straightforward.
And with that we will have to agree to disagree.

The version of events broadcasted by WL and LSM was spin, smokescreen, and slander.

Wasn't his first time, and wasn't his last.
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Old 03-28-2013, 08:05 AM   #59
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Default Re: The Wild, Wild MidWest - All things Great Lakes Area and Canada

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And with that we will have to agree to disagree.

The version of events broadcasted by WL and LSM was spin, smokescreen, and slander.

Wasn't his first time, and wasn't his last.
Okay Ohio and thanks for the dialogue.

Moderator, (Igzy)

I see now what is confusing.... when I reply to a note like this one I see the title "Wild, wild, Midwest..." and think I am in the Wild Wild Midwest thread. But when I scale up to the top view I see this is actually the "ground of the church" thread.

I know you were moving stuff around to keep the topics aligned. Apologies for not recognizing that and adding stuff about the midwest events to this thread. I will look for that in the future.
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Old 03-28-2013, 08:41 AM   #60
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Default Re: The Wild, Wild MidWest - All things Great Lakes Area and Canada

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Moderator, (Igzy)

I see now what is confusing.... when I reply to a note like this one I see the title "Wild, wild, Midwest..." and think I am in the Wild Wild Midwest thread. But when I scale up to the top view I see this is actually the "ground of the church" thread.

I know you were moving stuff around to keep the topics aligned. Apologies for not recognizing that and adding stuff about the midwest events to this thread. I will look for that in the future.
I think this discussion is very relevant to this thread. I gave Ephesians 4:3-6 as what I perceive to be the clear word in the NT concerning the ground on which the Church should be built. However, this is preceded by verses 1 and 2.

Eph
4:1 I therefore, the prisoner of the Lord, beseech you that ye walk worthy of the vocation wherewith ye are called,

You can't talk about "endeavoring to keep the oneness of the Spirit" unless you are walking worthy of the vocation with which ye are called. It seems many on this forum are upset that WL, WN and the Blendeds spend a lot of time talking about "the ground of oneness" yet overlook the matter of walking worthy.

Cassidy and others may argue that WL did walk worthy of the vocation but never answer the question "why did WL appoint PL to run the LSM office? Why when confronted about PL's abuse of women were the messengers always shot? Why did WL stand with PL when he was exposed in sin even though it resulted in various ship wrecks in the LRC? Why was everyone who knew of PL's sins black balled by WL?

Eph
4:2 With all lowliness and meekness, with longsuffering, forbearing one another in love;

Regardless of how you judge WL as to walking worthy of the calling can anyone honestly characterize this man as walking "with all lowliness and meekness"? My definition of meek does not include being litigious. My definition of lowliness does not include proclaiming yourself to be the Minister of the Age, the one true ministry, the only Christian group that is standing "on the proper ground". I don't define "longsuffering" to refer to one or two years before you sue the God men, Mind benders, and every other book on Cults. I don't see any example of forbearance.

4:3 Endeavouring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.

This is part of the problem. The Lord said if you are standing before the altar and there remember that you offended anyone, first go and be reconciled. You can't talk about "the ground of oneness" unless you have first gone and been reconciled. You don't ignore offenses because "that was a long time ago".
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Old 03-28-2013, 09:31 AM   #61
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The story of Max's departure is very simple and straightforward.
Not simple. Not straightforward. Not a "departure" but an "expulsion."

Max was not fired, he was betrayed—much more insidious.

In January of 2006, my son and I sat across the dinner table from Max and Sandee for several hours and heard directly from their mouths the story of what happened to them at Lee’s hand. It was not the story of a boss firing an employee. Max did not regard Lee as his employer, he regarded him as his brother, his dear friend, and a mentor.

Sandee said that both she and Max loved Lee like a father. They spent many hours with him in their homes, often daily. Sandee was a constant helper to the Lees, doing practical things for Lee himself, sister Lee, and even Lee’s daughter. When Sandee talked about Lee to us she always referred to him as “Witness,” never “Brother Lee.” I was stunned by this and commented on it. She said that is how it was among the three of them. They were on a first name basis and had a very close relationship, until the day that Max went to him about Phillip. After that everything began to change.

Max had trusted Lee would do the right thing for the Lord and the church; but instead, Lee began to take steps to discredit Max (and Sandee) and to push them out. He betrayed them and protected his son and himself. As the breakage between Max and Lee began to manifest, Sandee went to Lee in tears trying to bring about reconciliation. Lee was immovable. (So much for the "oneness of the body" and "oneness on the ground of locality.") He forged ahead spreading lies about Max. Those lies persist to this day. When Max and Sandee decided to leave, it was because they were backed into a corner under a tremendous pressure of rejection by all those who believed the lies. If you call taking the only option left to them a "departure," then you can say they departed, but I would call such a pressurized exit an expulsion.

Maybe only God and Lee and Phillip know why Lee did what he did to Max and Sandee, but the fact is that he did it. The fact is that his pet doctrines meant nothing to him when it came to his own personal interests. The fact also is that it is too late for him to make right his sin against Max and Sandee (and many others.) It is also too late for Phillip.

Max did not portray himself as innocent when he gave us his account of events. He confessed that, much to his shame, he had functioned as Lee’s right hand man and carried out his wishes. He had done nothing without Lee’s blessing and approval. This included manipulating churches and elders. Max confessed to us his shame over this fact and made it plain to us that he had thoroughly repented for this behavior, admitting it was fueled by his own ambition.

This is the same kind of ambition that motivated those who helped Lee oust Max and cover Phillip’s sin in order to gain a place at Lee’s right hand. Those same men are continuing today to live out their ambition as some of the Lee-blessed Blendeds.

They continue to support and re-enforce the lies that began in that not-so-simple betrayal. Saddest of all is the fact that they really seem to believe their version of the Max story (as we can see by Cassidy's representation). That's how darkness works.
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Old 03-28-2013, 10:46 AM   #62
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Thanks much, Thankful.

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Maybe only God and Lee and Phillip know why Lee did what he did to Max and Sandee, but the fact is that he did it. The fact is that his pet doctrines meant nothing to him when it came to his own personal interests. The fact also is that it is too late for him to make right his sin against Max and Sandee (and many others.) It is also too late for Phillip.
What you just said summarizes what bothered me the most. All Lee's teachings were for others, but not for him. Not when it involved his "boys."

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Max did not portray himself as innocent when he gave us his account of events. He confessed that, much to his shame, he had functioned as Lee’s right hand man and carried out his wishes. He had done nothing without Lee’s blessing and approval. This included manipulating churches and elders. Max confessed to us his shame over this fact and made it plain to us that he had thoroughly repented for this behavior, admitting it was fueled by his own ambition.
Thank the Lord for this report. As a rule, whenever protracted conflicts occur, and one side claims complete innocence, most probably they are lying. The only difference between Lee and Max in this whole affair was that Max admitted what he had done. Lee admitted nothing.
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Old 03-28-2013, 12:39 PM   #63
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Not simple. Not straightforward. Not a "departure" but an "expulsion."

Max was not fired, he was betrayed—much more insidious.

In January of 2006, my son and I sat across the dinner table from Max and Sandee for several hours and heard directly from their mouths the story of what happened to them at Lee’s hand. It was not the story of a boss firing an employee. Max did not regard Lee as his employer, he regarded him as his brother, his dear friend, and a mentor.

Sandee said that both she and Max loved Lee like a father. They spent many hours with him in their homes, often daily. Sandee was a constant helper to the Lees, doing practical things for Lee himself, sister Lee, and even Lee’s daughter. When Sandee talked about Lee to us she always referred to him as “Witness,” never “Brother Lee.” I was stunned by this and commented on it. She said that is how it was among the three of them. They were on a first name basis and had a very close relationship, until the day that Max went to him about Phillip. After that everything began to change.

Max had trusted Lee would do the right thing for the Lord and the church; but instead, Lee began to take steps to discredit Max (and Sandee) and to push them out. He betrayed them and protected his son and himself. As the breakage between Max and Lee began to manifest, Sandee went to Lee in tears trying to bring about reconciliation. Lee was immovable. (So much for the "oneness of the body" and "oneness on the ground of locality.") He forged ahead spreading lies about Max. Those lies persist to this day. When Max and Sandee decided to leave, it was because they were backed into a corner under a tremendous pressure of rejection by all those who believed the lies. If you call taking the only option left to them a "departure," then you can say they departed, but I would call such a pressurized exit an expulsion.

Maybe only God and Lee and Phillip know why Lee did what he did to Max and Sandee, but the fact is that he did it. The fact is that his pet doctrines meant nothing to him when it came to his own personal interests. The fact also is that it is too late for him to make right his sin against Max and Sandee (and many others.) It is also too late for Phillip.

Max did not portray himself as innocent when he gave us his account of events. He confessed that, much to his shame, he had functioned as Lee’s right hand man and carried out his wishes. He had done nothing without Lee’s blessing and approval. This included manipulating churches and elders. Max confessed to us his shame over this fact and made it plain to us that he had thoroughly repented for this behavior, admitting it was fueled by his own ambition.

This is the same kind of ambition that motivated those who helped Lee oust Max and cover Phillip’s sin in order to gain a place at Lee’s right hand. Those same men are continuing today to live out their ambition as some of the Lee-blessed Blendeds.

They continue to support and re-enforce the lies that began in that not-so-simple betrayal. Saddest of all is the fact that they really seem to believe their version of the Max story (as we can see by Cassidy's representation). That's how darkness works.
Thanks for sharing your conversation with the Rappaports.

I do not doubt their description of the relationship between them and Witness Lee at that time and I do not know if a conversation occurred with PL in the late 70's. If so, then it might even have seemed (a long time later) to the Rappaports that their expulsion was tied to a conversation about PL with Witness Lee. And if true then that begs the question if John Ingalls, the leading elder in Anaheim and co-worker of Witness Lee, was part of a PL cover-up for yet another decade for the purpose of ousting Max. I think not.

However, as to the "lies" spread about Max I am not aware of what he meant by that in your conversation with him. If he meant by "lies" those happenings that Ohio observed firsthand and documented in the mid-west and of similar things wherever Max held conferences or meetings then those were not lies but rather eyewitness accounts. All those incidents were recounted with many brothers and leading ones discussing these matters openly. In all those '78 meetings PL never came up as an issue by anyone. Just never mentioned by either side.

Therefore, in relation to Max and his expulsion PL was never a factor. The things Max said and did on the road led to his dismissal.
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Old 03-28-2013, 01:23 PM   #64
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Default Re: That's how darkness works

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Not simple. Not straightforward. Not a "departure" but an "expulsion."

Max was not fired, he was betrayed—much more insidious.

...

Max did not portray himself as innocent when he gave us his account of events. He confessed that, much to his shame, he had functioned as Lee’s right hand man and carried out his wishes. He had done nothing without Lee’s blessing and approval. This included manipulating churches and elders. Max confessed to us his shame over this fact and made it plain to us that he had thoroughly repented for this behavior, admitting it was fueled by his own ambition.

This is the same kind of ambition that motivated those who helped Lee oust Max and cover Phillip’s sin in order to gain a place at Lee’s right hand. Those same men are continuing today to live out their ambition as some of the Lee-blessed Blendeds.

They continue to support and re-enforce the lies that began in that not-so-simple betrayal. Saddest of all is the fact that they really seem to believe their version of the Max story (as we can see by Cassidy's representation). That's how darkness works.
Very interesting. WL's right hand man feels shame and guilt at the things he did at WL's behest. He did these things motivated out of ambition.

I think it is very clear that the same can be said of BP and RG in closing their eyes, closing their ears and covering their mouths when JI visited. They were motivated by ambition. The same can be said of EM and KR. The writing of the whitewash is just one example. They don't allow these guys to get to the upper echelon unless they have done things they are ashamed of. They are much less likely to expose the sins of WL, etal if it involves exposing their own sins as well.

Also, when WL rolls into damage control he begins by slandering and defaming these ones. This is a lot more effective since much of what he says is true. This is why he wants dirt on the "right hand men" before he elevates them to a position where they can see his dirt.

This is "cunning craftiness" whereby "they lie in wait to deceive".
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Old 03-28-2013, 04:10 PM   #65
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However, as to the "lies" spread about Max I am not aware of what he meant by that in your conversation with him.
Oh please. The lies told by Lee and company are that Max and his wife both were staging a coup d'etat to wrest control of the Recovery. They were both leaders of a rebellion to topple the ministry of WL.

Are you trying to say that you never heard this Cassidy? You really expect me to believe that? The whole Recovery heard this repeatedly for years after it happened. The real tragedy is that we never got to hear both sides of the story.
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Old 03-28-2013, 04:15 PM   #66
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Oh please. The lies told by Lee and company are that Max and his wife both were staging a coup d'etat to wrest control of the Recovery. They were both leaders of a rebellion to topple the ministry of WL.

Are you trying to say that you never heard this Cassidy? You really expect me to believe that? The whole Recovery heard this repeatedly for years after it happened. The real tragedy is that we never got to hear both sides of the story.
Well then Ohio, what exactly did Max confess to at Thankful Jane's dinner table?

Was this eyewitness account one of those lies?: " One of the SoCal young people who was part of Max's entourage to bring us "brother Lee's burden," gave this testimony. "I was traveling across the country enjoying the Lord, until I came to Ohio, and then something started to stink." This was offered as added proof in the meeting that we were not "in the flow," and had somehow deviated from WL's leading because of TC."

This incident was not a lie and it was indicative of the problem with Max. Something had to be done about it and was.

Now you are arguing on Max's behalf? Makes no sense.

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Old 03-28-2013, 04:42 PM   #67
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Well then Ohio, what exactly did Max confess to at Thankful Jane's dinner table?

Was this eyewitness account one of those lies?: " One of the SoCal young people who was part of Max's entourage to bring us "brother Lee's burden," gave this testimony. "I was traveling across the country enjoying the Lord, until I came to Ohio, and then something started to stink." This was offered as added proof in the meeting that we were not "in the flow," and had somehow deviated from WL's leading because of TC."

This incident was not a lie and it was indicative of the problem with Max. Something had to be done about it and was.

Now you are arguing on Max's behalf? Makes no sense.

What makes no sense is that WL would castigate Max as being rebellious and trying to establish his own little kingdom based on someone in his group giving this testimony. While at the same time allowing PL to continue molesting sisters as the Business manager of the LSM. That seems to be a scale with uneven weights.
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Old 03-28-2013, 04:46 PM   #68
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Was this eyewitness account one of those lies?: " One of the SoCal young people who was part of Max's entourage to bring us "brother Lee's burden," gave this testimony. "I was traveling across the country enjoying the Lord, until I came to Ohio, and then something started to stink." This was offered as added proof in the meeting that we were not "in the flow," and had somehow deviated from WL's leading because of TC."
Cassidy, that was no "eye witness" account of any thing. That was pure delusion. How in the world does one leave Indiana (or Kentucky) and enter the state of Ohio, and the whole place "stinks" because all the folks back home spread rumors that TC and the GLA were "out of the flow?" Do you really believe that TC stunk up the whole state of Ohio? And that the stink stopped at the borders.

C'mon man!
You thought that was an eye-witness account? That was utter nonsense. Shame on Lee and company for all the damages they caused to so many young children of God! When all these youth finally woke up from their WL-induced stupor, they exited the nearest door. Then Lee had to blame someone for that too. So he used Max. How convenient.

Cassidy, why are you not willing to admit that Lee disseminated and proliferated ridiculous rumors about TC because he was perceived to be a threst to his leadership. The blendeds all got this message, but it seems like these things never got explained to you. Don't you understand what Whistler was all about? Do you still think TC got the boot for wanting clean sheets and playing electric guitars?
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:19 PM   #69
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Cassidy, that was no "eye witness" account of any thing. That was pure delusion. How in the world does one leave Indiana (or Kentucky) and enter the state of Ohio, and the whole place "stinks" because all the folks back home spread rumors that TC and the GLA were "out of the flow?" Do you really believe that TC stunk up the whole state of Ohio? And that the stink stopped at the borders.

C'mon man!
You thought that was an eye-witness account? That was utter nonsense. Shame on Lee and company for all the damages they caused to so many young children of God! When all these youth finally woke up from their WL-induced stupor, they exited the nearest door. Then Lee had to blame someone for that too. So he used Max. How convenient.

Cassidy, why are you not willing to admit that Lee disseminated and proliferated ridiculous rumors about TC because he was perceived to be a threst to his leadership. The blendeds all got this message, but it seems like these things never got explained to you. Don't you understand what Whistler was all about? Do you still think TC got the boot for wanting clean sheets and playing electric guitars?

Ohio, stop putting words in my mouth. I don't care if you agree with me but I do care if you twist my words. It is not befitting a brother.

So knock it off.

The eye-witness account is that you heard a testimony. Now either that "SoCal brother" incident happened or it did not. Of course it did. Understand?

Now it was for those very kind of behaviors that Max was relieved of duties. It's simple. The complaints started flowing in . Your elaborate conspiracy theories are fanciful. It had nothing to do with PL. You are a decade off if you think that. Sorry friend, everything does not fit nicely into your "bad bad WL theory of everything".

You are over-complicating and contradicting yourself in the process. I won't give you the rope to hang yourself. I care for you too much.

Let the reader decide. No further explanation is required.
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:47 PM   #70
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Ohio, stop putting words in my mouth. I don't care if you agree with me but I do care if you twist my words. It is not befitting a brother.

So knock it off.

The eye-witness account is that you heard a testimony. Now either that "SoCal brother" incident happened or it did not. Of course it did. Understand?

Now it was for those very kind of behaviors that Max was relieved of duties. It's simple. The complaints started flowing in . Your elaborate conspiracy theories are fanciful. It had nothing to do with PL. You are a decade off if you think that. Sorry friend, everything does not fit nicely into your "bad bad WL theory of everything".

You are over-complicating and contradicting yourself in the process. I won't give you the rope to hang yourself. I care for you too much.

Let the reader decide. No further explanation is required.
Do you understand that Max confronted WL about PL in the late 70s? This event took place at the same time as the sister's rebellion and preceded the case with JI by a number of years.
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:48 PM   #71
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Ohio, stop putting words in my mouth. I don't care if you agree with me but I do care if you twist my words. It is not befitting a brother.

So knock it off.

The eye-witness account is that you heard a testimony. Now either that "SoCal brother" incident happened or it did not. Of course it did. Understand?

Now it was for those very kind of behaviors that Max was relieved of duties. It's simple. The complaints started flowing in . Your elaborate conspiracy theories are fanciful. It had nothing to do with PL. You are a decade off if you think that. Sorry friend, everything does not fit nicely into your "bad bad WL theory of everything".

You are over-complicating and contradicting yourself in the process. I won't give you the rope to hang yourself. I care for you too much.

Let the reader decide. No further explanation is required.
Amen! Let the reader decide!

What words did I put in your mouth? You tried to twist my post about a ridiculous testimony into an eyewitness account that exonerated Lee.

I caught you playing games with me, and you tell me to "knock it off" and get a rope and hang myself.

Thankful Jane
gave an account of her sit down conversation with the Rapoports to support what I have posted. You obviously are unaccustomed to actual facts, so now you say my fanciful accounts are elaborate conspiracy theories.

Go back and read. Get your facts straight. Oh that's right you have no facts. You only have what Lee told you.
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Old 03-28-2013, 06:58 PM   #72
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During this recent exchange with Cassidy, his underlying premise has been that Max came to the GLA and caused trouble, and so WL deservedly removed him from leadership. For a quarter century I also believed this version of events, that Max was a loose cannon which had to be reeled in. That's what we all saw on the surface. We never knew what happened behind the scenes in Anaheim. That information was withheld from us.

But who gave Max the authority and the direction to do what he did during those chaotic times? When all was said and done, Lee basically washed his hands as though he knew nothing at all. All this time he was merely sitting at home reading his Bible.

When Pilate spoke to the Lord, he brought up the matter of authority. Jesus let him know that his authority was given to him from above. When Max came to the GLA with his burden to pry the young people away from the LC's, the only reason he was even allowed to come was that his authority came from Lee. He knew it, we knew it, and Lee knew it.

When Lee decided to abandon Max for reasons related to Philip Lee, and he disowned any involvement with Max's travels, in the eyes of the whole recovery Max bore complete responsibility for everything. But what did the Lord tell Pilate, "he who delivered Me had the greater sin." The Jewish leaders thought they were absolved from all responsibility since Pilate crucified Jesus, but God sees things differently.
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:26 PM   #73
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Well then Ohio, what exactly did Max confess to at Thankful Jane's dinner table?

[/COLOR][/I]This incident was not a lie and it was indicative of the problem with Max. Something had to be done about it and was.

Now you are arguing on Max's behalf? Makes no sense.

Based on how I read Thankful Jane's post, Max was admitting he was ambitious and eventually repented for his ambition. In years since, how forgiving has been the LC attitude towards Max? Does it matter he went to Francis Ball's memorial service? In the past I did ask a tenured responsible brother about Max. "Oh he was ambitious." Many who had been in the local churches in the 1970's would agree Max was ambitious. What is debatable is if Max's confrontation of Phillip Lee expedited Max's departure from the local churches.
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Old 03-28-2013, 09:03 PM   #74
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I think it is very clear that the same can be said of BP and RG in closing their eyes, closing their ears and covering their mouths when JI visited. They were motivated by ambition. The same can be said of EM and KR. The writing of the whitewash is just one example. They don't allow these guys to get to the upper echelon unless they have done things they are ashamed of. They are much less likely to expose the sins of WL, etal if it involves exposing their own sins as well.
The portion of ZNP's post I put in bold because that account is fund in John Ingall's book Speaking the Truth in Love. John was with Ken Unger (who passed away last ummer) when they visited Benson and Ray. The response BP and RG gave indicates culpability on their account. IMHO BP and RG most likely did not need to be told anything of PL they did not already know.

When ZNP speaks of "the upper echelon", as it currently implies Blended bros. If all persons involved in the late 80's turmoil were to be transparent, it would be exposing of many current blended brothers. The only one I'm aware of wo had publicly repented for any role was MC.

When Steve Isitt wrote to DT in 2001 in good faith for fellowship through In Wake of the New Way, in retrospect Steve probably thought DT would reciprocate in good faith. As we now know, that did not happen. Very likley DT gave a word of fellowship to someone which issued in Steve's discipline. IMHO there was and still is too much pride to repent for roles in the late 80's turmoil.
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Old 03-28-2013, 09:21 PM   #75
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Based on how I read Thankful Jane's post, Max was admitting he was ambitious and eventually repented for his ambition. In years since, how forgiving has been the LC attitude towards Max? Does it matter he went to Francis Ball's memorial service? In the past I did ask a tenured responsible brother about Max. "Oh he was ambitious." Many who had been in the local churches in the 1970's would agree Max was ambitious. What is debatable is if Max's confrontation of Phillip Lee expedited Max's departure from the local churches.
For years I heard MR was ambitious, JI was ambitious, TC was ambitious.

What is wrong with Christians being ambitious?

It is truly stupid that ambition in the LRC is so condemned.

We should, however, be talking about how WL and PL and BP and RG etc. were just as ambitious.
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Old 03-28-2013, 09:39 PM   #76
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For years I heard MR was ambitious, JI was ambitious, TC was ambitious.

What is wrong with Christians being ambitious?

It is truly stupid that ambition in the LRC is so condemned.

We should, however, be talking about how WL and PL and BP and RG etc. were just as ambitious.
No argument here. Can anyone say there is not a double-standard in regard to ambition in the LC history?
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Old 03-29-2013, 04:37 AM   #77
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Based on how I read Thankful Jane's post, Max was admitting he was ambitious and eventually repented for his ambition. In years since, how forgiving has been the LC attitude towards Max? Does it matter he went to Francis Ball's memorial service? In the past I did ask a tenured responsible brother about Max. "Oh he was ambitious." Many who had been in the local churches in the 1970's would agree Max was ambitious. What is debatable is if Max's confrontation of Phillip Lee expedited Max's departure from the local churches.
If you look at this incident in isolation a case can be made, as Cassidy did, that WL did what any responsible supervisor / boss would have done. However, as Thankful Jane pointed out the way in which Max was dismissed was not in any way justified. But if you also look at the sister's rebellion you cannot explain that incident with anything that Max did other than the fact that Max and Sandy knew about PL.

What bothers me most is how does a so called spiritual brother full of spiritual discernment like WL put a lascivious man like PL into the position of office manager of the LSM. If you argue that he wasn't aware of what kind of man PL was that is equally heinous, this was his son and he doesn't even know what kind of man he was? If he was hoping for some kind of change in response to being put into this position it is still a failure on his part, yet as soon as Max confronted him that should have been the end of the experiment. Dealing with Max doesn't in any way explain the lack of dealing with PL, on the contrary it highlights the hypocrisy. And the hypocrisy continues as JI and others also complain about PL.

Cassidy's explanation is woefully inadequate. Why did WL put PL into that position in the first place? No explanation. Why didn't WL deal with PL when his sexual abuse was first brought to WL's attention? Why didn't WL deal with PL when others also confronted WL about PL? Why choose shipwreck instead of dealing with PL?

The first time I met PL it was abundantly obvious to me this was a lascivious man that had no business handling the things of God. Why didn't WL see this? Why didn't RG or BP see this? How can you trust their judgment when it is so plainly deficient.
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Old 03-29-2013, 04:41 AM   #78
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No argument here. Can anyone say there is not a double-standard in regard to ambition in the LC history?
There is no double standard as far as I have seen. Brothers who are chosen for the top echelon exhibit ambition because they are willing to compromise. For example, RG and BP were willing to look the other way as PL abused saints (remember one of the abused sisters was sent to Houston, they were fully aware of who this man was) in order to satisfy their ambition.

However, this ambition is referred to as "aspiration", good ambition. This is as long as they are yes men. As soon as they get a backbone, like Max, they are booted out for "ambition".

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil.
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:03 AM   #79
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Cassidy's explanation is woefully inadequate. Why did WL put PL into that position in the first place? No explanation. Why didn't WL deal with PL when his sexual abuse was first brought to WL's attention? Why didn't WL deal with PL when others also confronted WL about PL? Why choose shipwreck instead of dealing with PL?

The first time I met PL it was abundantly obvious to me this was a lascivious man that had no business handling the things of God. Why didn't WL see this? Why didn't RG or BP see this? How can you trust their judgment when it is so plainly deficient.
So many legitimate questions ... why? why? why? ... surrounding WL and PL.

Here's another one -- why didn't someone call the police on PL?
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Old 03-29-2013, 06:28 AM   #80
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So many legitimate questions ... why? why? why? ... surrounding WL and PL.

Here's another one -- why didn't someone call the police on PL?
Perhaps one of the motivations for having this big defense team was in anticipation of possible lawsuits.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:34 AM   #81
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There is no double standard as far as I have seen. Brothers who are chosen for the top echelon exhibit ambition because they are willing to compromise. For example, RG and BP were willing to look the other way as PL abused saints (remember one of the abused sisters was sent to Houston, they were fully aware of who this man was) in order to satisfy their ambition.

However, this ambition is referred to as "aspiration", good ambition. This is as long as they are yes men. As soon as they get a backbone, like Max, they are booted out for "ambition".

Woe to those who call evil good and good evil.
The double-standard I see is calling a brother ambitious because he won't kowtow any longer. While the same brother was kowtowing, he wasn't ambitious.
While MR, JI, JS, TC, BM, NT, etc were in the LSM fellowship they were not considered to be ambitious. As soon as a politically incorrect stance was taken, these brothers were out of fellowship because they were ambitious.

Same can be said for the current blendeds. They're not considered to be ambitious. As soon as one of the blendeds does something politically incorrect, that blended brother(s) will be considered ambitious.

Generally speaking to say one is ambitious can have a negative or positive connotation. In the LRC code-speak, ambition is considered a negative word. Yes, aspiration can be a LRC code-speak for positive ambition.
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:52 AM   #82
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What bothers me most is how does a so called spiritual brother full of spiritual discernment like WL put a lascivious man like PL into the position of office manager of the LSM. If you argue that he wasn't aware of what kind of man PL was that is equally heinous, this was his son and he doesn't even know what kind of man he was? If he was hoping for some kind of change in response to being put into this position it is still a failure on his part, yet as soon as Max confronted him that should have been the end of the experiment. Dealing with Max doesn't in any way explain the lack of dealing with PL, on the contrary it highlights the hypocrisy. And the hypocrisy continues as JI and others also complain about PL.

Cassidy's explanation is woefully inadequate. Why did WL put PL into that position in the first place? No explanation. Why didn't WL deal with PL when his sexual abuse was first brought to WL's attention? Why didn't WL deal with PL when others also confronted WL about PL? Why choose shipwreck instead of dealing with PL?

The first time I met PL it was abundantly obvious to me this was a lascivious man that had no business handling the things of God. Why didn't WL see this? Why didn't RG or BP see this? How can you trust their judgment when it is so plainly deficient.
With both Phillip and Timothy, Witness loved his sons. I believe Witness wanted his sons to be successful businessmen. Through the local churches, Witness did what he could within his power to make that possible. First was Timothy's role in Daystar and later Phillip's role in Living Stream Ministry. Whenever there were issues with sisters where Timothy and Phillip were concerned, it was these sisters and their families that were sent out of the area.
I am sure there are those that have criticism towards the Anaheim elders when the PL issue first came up in the late 70's and didn't deal with it for another 10 years. In the late 70's if MR, FB, and GG knew about it, wouldn't AK and JI had known about it too? Maybe they thought WL had dealt with PL and it was considered closed until it happened again? I don't know which is why I'm raising these questions.

RG and BP knew about Phillip. They admitted knowing when JI and KU met with them in the late 80's. Maybe RG and BP tolerated and condoned Phillip's actions because they saw by supporting Phillip, it was just a "stepping-stone" to support Witness and his ministry? In another way to re-phrase it, "the end justifies the means".
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Old 03-29-2013, 10:55 AM   #83
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But if you also look at the sister's rebellion you cannot explain that incident with anything that Max did other than the fact that Max and Sandy knew about PL.
There is a little more explanation that can be given.

It took Lee over a year to get rid of Max after the initial conflict over Phillip. Sandee told us that if Lee had done something against Max too fast, it would not have worked well because there were many brothers and sisters in Anaheim who loved Max and Sandee for the personal care they had received from them. Sandee said that when they first moved to Anaheim, they had found a lot of hurt and wounded brothers and sisters who needed help. They began taking care of them--praying for them and fellowshipping with them to help them with practical life matters such as marriage difficulties, etc. This kind of care went on for several years before Max went to Lee about Phillip. Because of Max and Sandee’s hands-on care, many Anaheim brothers and sisters would not have been easily turned against them. Sandee said that Lee himself had very little interaction with the “common” brothers and sisters in Anaheim. She thinks that after the Max went to him about PL, Lee realized he was vulnerable in Anaheim because of the saints’ love for Max and Sandee. He had to find a way to gradually discredit them.

The first step he took was to speak against Sandee publicly in a meeting. He did this at a Middle Age conference that was being held in Anaheim while Max was at a young people’s conference in Chicago (pretty sure it was Chicago). Lee’s speaking against Sandee occurred Memorial Day weekend 1977. What Lee did was a very hurtful to Sandee, not only because of their personal closeness to him, but also because during the previous few years, she and two other sisters had been in constant (weekly, I believe she said) fellowship with Lee and the Anaheim elders about how they were caring for the Anaheim brothers and sisters.

At the Middle Age conference Lee publicly corrected Sandee and the other two sisters for sitting together in meetings. This might seem to be a little thing, but it sent a loud message that Lee was not pleased with Sandee. Sandee said things began to change from that time forward. She and the other sisters could not understand why Lee did this publicly, when he easily could have said this to them in one of their private meetings with him. Someone called Max in Chicago to tell him what Lee had done, and he came home immediately. This was when Max and Sandee first began to realize that Lee was changing his face toward them and to suspect that it was because of Max’s action concerning PL, which had occurred shortly before this.

By the summer of 1978, things had progressed to the point that what had gone on with the sisters in Anaheim was being characterized as a “sisters’ rebellion” and what Max had been doing was being portrayed as damage to the recovery because of his independent ambition.

Max and Sandee left in the fall of 1978.
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Old 03-29-2013, 11:20 AM   #84
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The first step he took was to speak against Sandee publicly in a meeting. He did this at a Middle Age conference that was being held in Anaheim while Max was at a young people’s conference in Chicago (pretty sure it was Chicago). Lee’s speaking against Sandee occurred Memorial Day weekend 1977.
I can definitely confirm that Max was in Chicago (at their old meeting hall in the former masonic lodge) for a young people's conference Memorial day weekend in 1977.

In the last meeting it was announced that the conference was to continue the following weekend with Max sharing "more of Lee's burden." The following weekend we all returned, but Max did not come. We were never told why.
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Old 03-29-2013, 11:26 AM   #85
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Sandee told us that if Lee had done something against Max too fast, it would not have worked well because there were many brothers and sisters in Anaheim who loved Max and Sandee for the personal care they had received from them.
Reminds me of the Wizard of Oz where the witch turns the hour glass over and says "these things have to be done delicately, delicately"
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Old 03-29-2013, 11:53 AM   #86
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Reminds me of the Wizard of Oz where the witch turns the hour glass over and says "these things have to be done delicately, delicately"
And all the little Munchkins sang ...
You're off to see the Wizard
The Wonderful Wizard of Oz
You'll find he is a whiz of a Wiz
If ever a Wiz there was.
If ever, oh ever, a Wiz there was
The Wizard of Oz Is one because
Because, because, because, because, because ...
Because of the wonderful things he does ...




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Old 03-29-2013, 02:12 PM   #87
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Well then Ohio, what exactly did Max confess to at Thankful Jane's dinner table?
Cassidy,

Just for the sake of accuracy ... The Rapoports (this spelling is correct, I believe) were not at my dinner table. What I said was, “across the dinner table.” We met at a restaurant for dinner.

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However, as to the "lies" spread about Max I am not aware of what he meant by that in your conversation with him.
Again, for the sake of accuracy...What you wrote sounds like Max said that lies were spread about him. I did not write that Max said such. He may have, but I don't remember that he did. What I remember is that Max and Sandee told me the truth of what happened to them and how it progressed. I made the observation in my post that lies were spread about him because of the things I heard with my own ears in 1978. I heard things which were represented as the truth about Max that did not match with what the Rapoports told me in person.

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All those incidents were recounted with many brothers and leading ones discussing these matters openly. In all those '78 meetings PL never came up as an issue by anyone. Just never mentioned by either side.
I find this response to be rather curious.

First of all, were you there? How do you know this? Which brothers and leading ones were present recounting and discussing these matters openly? Where did they have such discussions? In the interest of bringing truth to light, please share facts you know and can support.

When you write, "In all those '78 meetings PL never came up as an issue by anyone. Just never mentioned by either side," does this mean you were in all those meetings? Does this mean that Max was present to represent his "side"? If this is not what you mean, then what sides are you referring to? Please answer and help me get the picture out of my mind of an open recounting and discussing scene similar to Whistler 2006.

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Therefore, in relation to Max and his expulsion PL was never a factor. The things Max said and did on the road led to his dismissal.
You are making an absolute statement here as if it was a matter of fact. Exactly how do you know PL was never a factor? Were you a witness or directly involved in some way during that time?

Thanks for taking the time to answer my questions.

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Old 03-31-2013, 08:42 PM   #88
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In all those '78 meetings PL never came up as an issue by anyone. Just never mentioned by either side.

Therefore, in relation to Max and his expulsion PL was never a factor. The things Max said and did on the road led to his dismissal.
I'll start by reiterating what I said in post #73, Max's confrontation with Philip most likely expedited Max's dismissal. No matter how old your children are, you will take exception to anyone touching your children. From the context of a father's love for his son, I believe Witness Lee took exception to Max confronting his son Philip.
As far as Philip Lee being an issue in the late 70's, I think it is all relative. I was in Anaheim 76-79. I know a sister who served at Living Stream after the Ball Road building was completed. Philip Lee was a non-issue to her. Conversely I know a brother who withdrew from the Church in Anaheim during the building project. Philip's lack of character and role with the ministry was an issue.
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Old 04-01-2013, 01:29 PM   #89
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Well I'm wondering if Cassidy has moved into his friendly-ghost-disappearing mode. This is what I remember happening the last time I asked him a question. I think that question was about Lee's teaching on "He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit."

Or it could be he's just tired from a conference or some such this past weekend and just hasn't been up to foruming ....

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Old 04-17-2013, 10:40 AM   #90
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Well I'm wondering if Cassidy has moved into his friendly-ghost-disappearing mode. This is what I remember happening the last time I asked him a question. I think that question was about Lee's teaching on "He that is joined to the Lord is one spirit."

Or it could be he's just tired from a conference or some such this past weekend and just hasn't been up to foruming ....

Thankful Jane
It was truly amazing how ole Cassidy just vanished into thin cyber air after a few pointed questions from the peanut gallery.
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Old 04-24-2014, 08:22 AM   #91
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

[Watchman Nee (1) received or inherited a lot of “Spiritual Life” (Christ Himself) from many servants of God, especially from T. Austin-Sparks whom he first met in 1933. (2) he also received a lot of “church management” (????), or so-called “Bible Truths” (really not Truths, but only things, Jesus Christ is the sole Living Truth). He especially got the “local church” (one locality, one church) teaching or method from the Exclusive Brethren in London, while he was with them in 1933. After that time, he practiced or carried on this method in China. Witness Lee was the strongest exponent of this teaching in the Far East, and later in the USA and elsewhere! Unfortunately, this teaching leads the people of God into legalism and exclusiveness. Legalism and exclusiveness are deadly to life in Christ! “As of things that are made” - Heb 12:27 refers to this kind of man-made legalism and exclusiveness. Please read TAS’s book "According to Christ".Based on what he wrote, I think that Watchman Nee changed his position on this Locality teaching after 1951-1952. For example in a poem he wrote:

"He (not Locality) is most dear to me, The loveliest of all;
One whom my soul does seek, One whom I ever call.
He (not Locality) is my aid, in need, My help, in helpless hours;
Most precious at all times, Most faithful at all hours.
He (not Locality) is my endless joy, Changeless as years go by;
He (not Locality) is most dear to me, No greater love have I."]

We five young people had not met TAS (T. Austin-Sparks) yet and the Holy Spirit had not yet opened the eyes of our hearts so we were all following Watchman Nee’s teaching and method and unconsciously fell into legalism (or dictatorship, which condemns others) and exclusiveness (egoism and monopoly). Later, Witness Lee sent each one of us to other places in Taiwan to work. We were called to build up the body of Christ in our mind, but in fact, we really built the New Denomination (the Local church) in our hearts. At that time, no preacher, no elder, or anybody gave us higher spiritual light. Watchman Nee’s teachings were the highest in our minds.
excerpt from testimony of Herald Hsu...
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Old 04-24-2014, 10:37 AM   #92
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[Watchman Nee (1) received or inherited a lot of “Spiritual Life” (Christ Himself) from many servants of God, especially from T. Austin-Sparks whom he first met in 1933. (2) he also received a lot of “church management” (????), or so-called “Bible Truths” (really not Truths, but only things, Jesus Christ is the sole Living Truth). He especially got the “local church” (one locality, one church) teaching or method from the Exclusive Brethren in London, while he was with them in 1933. After that time, he practiced or carried on this method in China. Witness Lee was the strongest exponent of this teaching in the Far East, and later in the USA and elsewhere! Unfortunately, this teaching leads the people of God into legalism and exclusiveness. Legalism and exclusiveness are deadly to life in Christ! “As of things that are made” - Heb 12:27 refers to this kind of man-made legalism and exclusiveness. Please read TAS’s book "According to Christ".Based on what he wrote, I think that Watchman Nee changed his position on this Locality teaching after 1951-1952. For example in a poem he wrote:

"He (not Locality) is most dear to me, The loveliest of all;
One whom my soul does seek, One whom I ever call.
He (not Locality) is my aid, in need, My help, in helpless hours;
Most precious at all times, Most faithful at all hours.
He (not Locality) is my endless joy, Changeless as years go by;
He (not Locality) is most dear to me, No greater love have I."]

We five young people had not met TAS (T. Austin-Sparks) yet and the Holy Spirit had not yet opened the eyes of our hearts so we were all following Watchman Nee’s teaching and method and unconsciously fell into legalism (or dictatorship, which condemns others) and exclusiveness (egoism and monopoly). Later, Witness Lee sent each one of us to other places in Taiwan to work. We were called to build up the body of Christ in our mind, but in fact, we really built the New Denomination (the Local church) in our hearts. At that time, no preacher, no elder, or anybody gave us higher spiritual light. Watchman Nee’s teachings were the highest in our minds.
excerpt from testimony of Herald Hsu...
Concerning the "Locality law", brother Sparks wrote to us in Manila from London on April 12, 1962:

"I can only take any position on what I believe to be fundamental. For me, the basis (or ground) of the Church is quite fundamental. I cannot accept that the basis is what is called "Locality". I believe that where Christ truly is, even if it be in only "two or three" there the Church is in effect. Christ is the "foundation" (or ground), and "other foundation can no man lay". But when I have said that, brother, I feel that you are, perhaps unconsciously, involved in the "Locality" position. Do you know that that is precisely and positively the teaching and position of the people called "Exclusive Brethren"? This teaching first went to Shanghai with the leading Exclusive Brethren who tried to capture the whole work of brother Nee. Brother Nee refused to be made an official part of that body, but the teaching got in, and has gone on ever since. When I came to Manila and Hong Kong I was very sorry to see that in both Assembly Halls there were for sale many of the books from the Stow Hill Bible Dept. in England. I feared that this would lead to both exclusiveness and division, and as late as last year one of the biggest divisions took place among them. Their whole church teaching is based upon this "Locality" law. (That is, the church ground.) Brother Lee is the strongest exponent of it in the Far East. I love brother Lee and will do all possible to avoid separation from him. We must all fight hard to prevent divisions, and our ground must be Christ in all His own... I shall continue to pray for you all, and that the Lord will get a great victory over all the evil powers which are working so hard to bring dishonour upon His name everywhere... Give my greetings to all the brothers and sisters.


Yours in the love and grace of our Lord Jesus,

T. Austin-Sparks"
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Old 04-19-2016, 04:18 PM   #93
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The first step [Lee] took was to speak against Sandee publicly in a meeting. He did this at a Middle Age conference that was being held in Anaheim while Max was at a young people’s conference in Chicago... at the Middle Age conference Lee publicly corrected Sandee and the other two sisters for sitting together in meetings. This might seem to be a little thing, but it sent a loud message that Lee was not pleased with Sandee. Sandee said things began to change from that time forward.
Lee said, "Who among you have I controlled?" But the reality was, if Lee publicly criticized something even so small as who you sat with, you were marked out.

This is actually an insidious type of control. Once the Maximum Leader gives even subtle cues that you're not in favor, invisible wheels start to turn and the system grinds you to dust.
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Old 04-19-2016, 06:53 PM   #94
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Lee said, "Who among you have I controlled?" But the reality was, if Lee publicly criticized something even so small as who you sat with, you were marked out.

This is actually an insidious type of control. Once the Maximum Leader gives even subtle cues that you're not in favor, invisible wheels start to turn and the system grinds you to dust.
Even though they held a Kangaroo Court in Whistler, you got to at least give the Blendeds a little credit when they quarantined Titus Chu. At least they attempted to gather witnesses together.

Lee and Chu, however, always acted unilaterally in their public shamings, humiliations, and disciplines. We had a poster here recently who was thus expelled by TC in a meeting I was once at. There was no reason or information provided, and I doubt if TC considered he even had the need to provide it.
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Old 04-20-2016, 06:49 PM   #95
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There was no reason or information provided, and I doubt if TC considered he even had the need to provide it.
Don't need evidence and don't need facts.

"Opinions all provided. The future pre-decided."

This is how it is. Opinions of those in the lead become the basis of public opinion via peer pressure. As a result these opinions are treated a factual. Who needs facts and evidence? That might cause someone to become inwardly disturbed.
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Old 07-14-2016, 10:45 AM   #96
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Originally Posted by Elden1971 View Post
Concerning the "Locality law", brother Sparks wrote to us in Manila from London on April 12, 1962:

"I can only take any position on what I believe to be fundamental. For me, the basis (or ground) of the Church is quite fundamental. I cannot accept that the basis is what is called "Locality". I believe that where Christ truly is, even if it be in only "two or three" there the Church is in effect. Christ is the "foundation" (or ground), and "other foundation can no man lay". But when I have said that, brother, I feel that you are, perhaps unconsciously, involved in the "Locality" position. Do you know that that is precisely and positively the teaching and position of the people called "Exclusive Brethren"? This teaching first went to Shanghai with the leading Exclusive Brethren who tried to capture the whole work of brother Nee. Brother Nee refused to be made an official part of that body, but the teaching got in, and has gone on ever since. When I came to Manila and Hong Kong I was very sorry to see that in both Assembly Halls there were for sale many of the books from the Stow Hill Bible Dept. in England. I feared that this would lead to both exclusiveness and division, and as late as last year one of the biggest divisions took place among them. Their whole church teaching is based upon this "Locality" law. (That is, the church ground.) Brother Lee is the strongest exponent of it in the Far East. I love brother Lee and will do all possible to avoid separation from him. We must all fight hard to prevent divisions, and our ground must be Christ in all His own... I shall continue to pray for you all, and that the Lord will get a great victory over all the evil powers which are working so hard to bring dishonour upon His name everywhere... Give my greetings to all the brothers and sisters.


Yours in the love and grace of our Lord Jesus,

T. Austin-Sparks"
In the LC, there is the narrative that TAS didn't 'see' the church and thus he split from Lee. From this letter, it is clear that it was just the opposite. TAS saw exactly where the ground of locality teaching was headed, he had the foresight that Lee didn't posses.

Lee, of course, didn't like the criticism of his prized teaching, and he acted accordingly. It was an easy excuse to split from others, and this was exactly how the ground of locality was subsequently employed.
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Old 07-14-2016, 02:15 PM   #97
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

Division among Christians is what I would consider to be an insurmountable problem with respect to what we are capable of solving. It falls on none of us to find a solution, and it would be presumptuous to think otherwise. That doesn't mean that Christians are endorsing division just because we aren't actively trying to solve the problem of division. It is an unfortunate fact of life that most realize is out of their control. Regarding division, my feeling is that our duty as Christians is to each do our own part, meaning that we don't purposely cause division. We aren't responsible for what others do or don't do.

I think that as Christians, there are plenty of problems out there that are perhaps 'tempting' us to find a solution to. In other words there are some problems best advisable to be left alone. This is where maturity comes into play. Mature Christian leaders should understand the problems facing Christians and should also understand what problems can be tackled, and what problems would just lead people on a wild goose chase. Nee and Lee were not mature leaders. The letter referenced in my last post demonstrates that Lee didn't have basic foresight to understand possible outcomes in forcing the matter of the ground. One immediate outcome was that it caused a division between little flock congregants and those under TAS' ministry. It took no time at all for it to start causing problems. TAS had obviously given the notion of the ground some thought and he saw exactly where it was headed.

What Nee and Lee did was to magnify the very problem they were trying to solve. Denominations seek to achieve unity through doctrinal agreement. That's a problem in and of itself, but Nee proposed that unity be achieved through a 'franchising' agreement. It's a difference in approach, but the same exact principle - unity through something other than Christ.

It seems clear to me that an obsessive pursuit of oneness is indeed a wild goose chase, and a ill-advised pursuit all together. Look at how big the LC has been on the notion of 'oneness'. Have they not had among the ugliest splits and divisions imaginable? How could that possibly happen if oneness was their goal? Weren't they all about oneness? They were indeed all about 'oneness', in fact they were obsessed with it. Virtually every LC split was rationalized by claiming that a dissenting group was harming oneness or creating division. Therefore you had to participate in the split and take a side in order to maintain 'oneness'. How ironic! Of course, in the LC, the missing part of the 'oneness' equation is Christ. Oneness isn't found or achieved in doctrinal unity or municipal unity. It is also not something to obsess over. As mentioned, the LC is an example of what happens when you take proposed solution to a problem and obsess over it. You end up with a much worse problem.
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Old 07-14-2016, 08:08 PM   #98
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

Quote:
Originally Posted by Freedom View Post
Division among Christians is what I would consider to be an insurmountable problem with respect to what we are capable of solving. It falls on none of us to find a solution, and it would be presumptuous to think otherwise. That doesn't mean that Christians are endorsing division just because we aren't actively trying to solve the problem of division. It is an unfortunate fact of life that most realize is out of their control. Regarding division, my feeling is that our duty as Christians is to each do our own part, meaning that we don't purposely cause division. We aren't responsible for what others do or don't do.

I think that as Christians, there are plenty of problems out there that are perhaps 'tempting' us to find a solution to. In other words there are some problems best advisable to be left alone. This is where maturity comes into play. Mature Christian leaders should understand the problems facing Christians and should also understand what problems can be tackled, and what problems would just lead people on a wild goose chase. Nee and Lee were not mature leaders. The letter referenced in my last post demonstrates that Lee didn't have basic foresight to understand possible outcomes in forcing the matter of the ground. One immediate outcome was that it caused a division between little flock congregants and those under TAS' ministry. It took no time at all for it to start causing problems. TAS had obviously given the notion of the ground some thought and he saw exactly where it was headed.

What Nee and Lee did was to magnify the very problem they were trying to solve. Denominations seek to achieve unity through doctrinal agreement. That's a problem in and of itself, but Nee proposed that unity be achieved through a 'franchising' agreement. It's a difference in approach, but the same exact principle - unity through something other than Christ.

It seems clear to me that an obsessive pursuit of oneness is indeed a wild goose chase, and a ill-advised pursuit all together. Look at how big the LC has been on the notion of 'oneness'. Have they not had among the ugliest splits and divisions imaginable? How could that possibly happen if oneness was their goal? Weren't they all about oneness? They were indeed all about 'oneness', in fact they were obsessed with it. Virtually every LC split was rationalized by claiming that a dissenting group was harming oneness or creating division. Therefore you had to participate in the split and take a side in order to maintain 'oneness'. How ironic! Of course, in the LC, the missing part of the 'oneness' equation is Christ. Oneness isn't found or achieved in doctrinal unity or municipal unity. It is also not something to obsess over. As mentioned, the LC is an example of what happens when you take proposed solution to a problem and obsess over it. You end up with a much worse problem.
Excellent post Freedom.
I would add even if we are conscientious to be receiving and accommodating there are certain items such as race, language, etc that are unavoidable no matter how much we want oneness. Chinese will prefer Chinese speaking. Filipinos will prefer Tagalog speaking. Ones from Central and South America will prefer Spanish speaking. It's not that they want to be divisive nor do we as English speaking, but it comes down to preference.
One item of division that can be avoided is the matter of practices. If a practice is to receive a particular minister or ministry, division is sure to follow. Just as Paul indicated in 1 Corinthians 1:11-13

"For I have been informed concerning you, my brethren, by Chloe’s people, that there are quarrels among you. Now I mean this, that each one of you is saying, “I am of Paul,” and “I of Apollos,” and “I of Cephas,” and “I of Christ.” Has Christ been divided? Paul was not crucified for you, was he? Or were you baptized in the name of Paul?"
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Old 07-17-2016, 08:39 AM   #99
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

As Freedom implied, oneness is experienced precisely by NOT attempting to achieve it by any means other than clinging to Christ and Christ alone, and this attitude requires a maturity that neither Nee nor Lee nor any of the current leaders apparently obtained.

The lesson is WE cling to Christ and HE works out oneness. This can be experienced in various ways, mundane and exceptional, throughout our days as God leads--from simply not pressing a non-essential point too far with others, to many churches in a city joining hands for the common goal of the kingdom. But it always happens with each of us being willing to hold onto Christ alone. It is never achieved by some person or group claiming they are the IT to which everyone else needs to submit.

I think the Lord had big plans for the LCM, but the leadership totally screwed it up by instead clinging to their delusion that they have a monopoly on God. What remains is a small, quirky, somewhat sad denomination. Many good Christian are there. But then, many good Christians are in a lot of places.
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Old 07-17-2016, 09:28 AM   #100
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

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Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
I think the Lord had big plans for the LCM, but the leadership totally screwed it up by instead clinging to their delusion that they had a monopoly on God. What remains is a small, quirky, somewhat sad denomination. Many good Christian are there. But then, many good Christians are in a lot of places.
I believe so too. And for that matter, the Lord has big plans for all His children.

Like you said, what destroyed the LCM was the leaders at LSM placing themselves above righteousness, thinking that the "end justified their means," and fearful that God's light shining in the "wrong" place would bring an end to His blessing. In other words, cover misdeeds at LSM with fig leaves so that God will not know what really is happening there. Did Lee and the Blendeds really think that by deceiving saints thousands of miles away, they could hide their sins from The Light?
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Old 07-17-2016, 06:06 PM   #101
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Default Re: The ground on which the church should be built

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The lesson is WE cling to Christ and HE works out oneness.
Oneness is something that involves a simplicity that is not found in the LC. In John 17 when Jesus prayed that all the believers would be one, it was as simple as that. He prayed. He didn't organize. He didn't obsess over it. He just prayed.

One of the lessons my LC experience has taught me is just because something is seemingly important doesn't mean that it's something that we obsess over or try to figure out ourselves. Related to the matter of oneness, WL couldn't stop talking about the church. Of course, the church is important, but as it relates to us, it is simply the assembling of believers. There's no hocus pocus to it. WL basically placed a greater importance upon things like oneness and the church than Christ. He presumed to imply that there is a correct way to "do church" (ironic huh?). He presumed that there is a correct way to "do oneness". He didn't have the faith or maturity to let these things work out through Christ alone.
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