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Old 12-19-2018, 03:51 PM   #1
MrsS
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Default Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

Our 23 year old daughter shocked us with her recent decision to quit her well paying full time job so that she could attend FTTA this Feb! She feels strongly that she is being called to go. She encouraged us to research, which we did, and we have several huge issues....why are all suggested readings from the same author? Why is every moment of your day regimented if you're suppossed to be learning how to live a 'typical Christiam life'? Why are you not allowed to question in a 'learning environment'? She is unphased by any concerns and remains adament that God is calling her there.
Our family is distraught! We don't know what to do or say!
Please, please.....if anyone has advice?!
Thank you so much
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Old 12-19-2018, 05:27 PM   #2
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

If this was my daughter I would tell her that I was very much encouraged by her burden to "be a doer of the word and not a hearer only" and that I would look forward to any fellowship she has while at the FTTA. I want to hear about all the things she is doing and how she is no longer just a hearer of the word like so many others.

I would also let her know she'll always know when she has truly found God's people because they have love for one another. That would be most apparent in their care for widows and orphans.

Finally, I would tell her the unmistakable tell tale sign of a false group is that they have been "spotted by the world". They have a profit motive that they try to hide but can't.

I would also remind her not to have faith in the Lord Jesus with respect of persons.

The reason we have false prophets is because many have faith without works, that is dead. The desire to have a real, living faith is what lures some to a false prophet.
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Old 12-19-2018, 05:45 PM   #3
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

You need to pray fervently for your daughter and love her like crazy. This is no small decision that she is making. I have a young daughter, she can’t even roll over yet, but I would do everything within my power to keep her away from the FTTA. You need to fight for her, once she’s in there it will be very hard for her to fight for herself.

Lord cover this situation - May your truth be revealed. Protect them from deception and anything that is not in accordance to your will.
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Old 12-19-2018, 06:19 PM   #4
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

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Originally Posted by ZNPaaneah View Post
If this was my daughter I would tell her that I was very much encouraged by her burden to "be a doer of the word and not a hearer only" and that I would look forward to any fellowship she has while at the FTTA. I want to hear about all the things she is doing and how she is no longer just a hearer of the word like so many others.
Ex-member here. I strongly agree with ZNP. Stay connected, stay positive, don't express alarm/dismay. A 23-year old is free to choose whatever. (and 23 year-olds have done lots of dumb things. You have to let them. That is the 'growing up' process).

Then, when you are having 'positive' fellowship, (remember, they want to recruit others inc. family), you have the option to plant seeds. Maybe the daughter brushed them off, but she won't forever. Just keep planting thought-seeds. It is a thought-suppression system. Members survive by repeating mantras from the publisher. You break the cycle by putting in questions from outside, which the mantra-system can't overcome.

Example: Hey, why is this group only run by men, when Watchman Nee got all his training from women? What gives, here? Let her think about it...point out the dozen or so women Nee drew on heavily; where are their counterparts today? If women can't teach, why did Miss Barber teach Nee? In the LSM, you have: A) women can't teach; and B) women taught Nee. They try not to think about this stuff. Your questions make her think about it.

It seems like a small thing, but it's not. It's an opportunity for her to think logically, rationally, critically. We're designed to do this, and happiest when we can. The "absence of choice" and "surrender" paradigm lures many, but it's temporary. She'll escape its pull, eventually, and be better for the experience.

Just stay positive, pray constantly, stay connected to God and your daughter, and plant seeds. God will water them and they'll grow. You see, God made us to think. She's comfortable now in a thought-suppression system (it has its comforts), but eventually God will prompt her and she'll think. She'll begin to question. It's only a matter of time. Your words will sprout and grow.

Look at ZNP's question on care for the widows and orphans. Very telling. This is a notably non-Christian group in its deeds; it has some theology on love, but no action corresponding to the words. Just keep pointing out this kind of disparity, gently and politely, even as you affirm the common faith. (Don't burn the bridges!!) She'll come back. It's only a matter of time. Stay positive. Praise and bless the Lord. She's seeking him, and will keep seeking, even through this. Just keep seeking after God yourself, and go before. She'll follow eventually.

Lastly, the more you know about this group the better. The more you have knowledge and awareness of what subtle and hidden forces lie behind it, and the more you stay resolutely positive and hopeful, your speaking to her will have great power. God will use you to help her and (perhaps) many more. God will use this experience for blessing. God is good, and powerful, and wise.
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Old 12-19-2018, 06:36 PM   #5
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

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Originally Posted by MrsS View Post
Our 23 year old daughter shocked us with her recent decision to quit her well paying full time job so that she could attend FTTA this Feb! She feels strongly that she is being called to go. She encouraged us to research, which we did, and we have several huge issues....why are all suggested readings from the same author? Why is every moment of your day regimented if you're suppossed to be learning how to live a 'typical Christiam life'? Why are you not allowed to question in a 'learning environment'? She is unphased by any concerns and remains adament that God is calling her there.
Our family is distraught! We don't know what to do or say!
Please, please.....if anyone has advice?!
Thank you so much
I’m so sorry! I grew up in this group. I’ve learned so much in the last few years and my best advice is read the book, “Combating Cult Mind Control” (the re-released edition) by Steve Hassan and follow his instructions to a tee. He’s an expert on this. I made so many mistakes with my family, confronting them with things. Focus on your relationship with her and your family has a chance. Sending you love and peace!
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Old 12-19-2018, 06:40 PM   #6
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

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Ex-member here. I strongly agree with ZNP. Stay connected, stay positive, don't express alarm/dismay. A 23-year old is free to choose whatever. (and 23 year-olds have done lots of dumb things. You have to let them. That is the 'growing up' process)...
This is excellent advice. Very in line with what cult experts advise. That being said, it should be noted that this is HARD to do initially. But, you CAN actually make a plan that’s similar to these approaches. I haven’t seen a better model than Steve Hassan’s for doing this. Experience tends to lead to wisdom though- as seen here!
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Old 12-19-2018, 06:46 PM   #7
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

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Originally Posted by kumbaya View Post
Focus on your relationship with her and your family has a chance.
This is probably critical, because the group operates and gains power by separation, antagonism, and isolation. It is "Us" (pure and undefiled religion, the Body, the recovery, the local church) versus "Them" (Babylon Christianity, the World). As long as you positively reinforce the desire to find and know and serve God, you'll have the lifeline to speak reason into their thoughtlessness. Eventually the strongholds will break.

As long as you don't get labeled "negative", you will have access to her. And with access will come opportunity to respectfully point out that in the Bible, pure and undefiled religion consists of more than sitting interminably in meetings reviewing material from one publisher.
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Old 12-20-2018, 08:53 PM   #8
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

This is possibly superficial, and way off base -- but I'll throw it out, just for a thought. Is it possible that this has to do with a young man she may be interested in? I have no idea how co-ed the FTTA is, so maybe that isn't even an issue -- but it just occurs to me that it could be a reason behind her thinking. Could she be hoping to have a relationship there?

If I am in right field, just know I am wondering, not saying.

I'm just thinking if that were the case, there may be a different way to approach talking to her about it.

Last edited by finallyprettyokay; 12-20-2018 at 08:55 PM. Reason: A further thought.
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Old 12-21-2018, 07:46 AM   #9
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

HEY!!!
Welcome Back!

I think to your thought, it's possible but she will never admit it.


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Originally Posted by finallyprettyokay View Post
This is possibly superficial, and way off base -- but I'll throw it out, just for a thought. Is it possible that this has to do with a young man she may be interested in? I have no idea how co-ed the FTTA is, so maybe that isn't even an issue -- but it just occurs to me that it could be a reason behind her thinking. Could she be hoping to have a relationship there?

If I am in right field, just know I am wondering, not saying.

I'm just thinking if that were the case, there may be a different way to approach talking to her about it.
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Old 12-21-2018, 09:11 AM   #10
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

There is an illusion (i.e. sales pitch) that the Full Time Training will positively benefit your Christian walk and understanding of the Bible. Whether this really occurs requires some honest research and evaluation into those who have passed through its 2 year schooling. Like any church program, or college for that matter, we must examine the fruit. The Bible tells us this.

Titus Chu of Cleveland, back in the early 2000's, told us that he asked some of the Blended Trainers for such data. There already was sufficient history with the FTTA to provide meaningful feedback. This data would not be difficult for LSM to obtain, but they balked at such a request. He wanted to know statistics like how many of the FTT graduates (1) served full time at LSM or the LC's, (2) how many grads were still active in the LC's, and (3) and how many grads had left the LC's. Obviously there were a sufficient number of Midwest returning grads by that time to warrant such an inquiry.

MrsS, since we are both from Ohio, I thought it best to respond as I am doing. Before the LC's were targeted for an LSM "QUARANTINE" some 10 years ago, the FTT "trainers" were active in sowing suspicious seeds into all their attendants from the Midwest and elsewhere. Many young people who returned were highly suspicious of LC leadership in this region. Supposedly they were not adequately zealous for the teachings and ministry programs at LSM. These seeds of suspicion damaged the faith of many a young believer who was invested into their program. Their Training Program definitely has hidden agendas beyond what they tell people.

These "seeds" had nothing to do with the truths of the Bible. They had nothing to do with immoral activities. They had nothing to do with anything the Bible would condemn. It was all about Lee. It was all about Lee's books, teachings, and programs. It was all about their "interpretation" of Lee's books, teachings, and teachings. It was all about whether the Midwest LC's, or any LC for that matter, was adequately supportive of LSM. They demanded that every LC and every LC leader be subservient to their every decree. Period! Or else!
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Old 12-22-2018, 10:30 AM   #11
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

Thank all of you who have responded and have been praying for our family!

Our daughter has been indoctrinated with Lee's ideas for over a year now. I am sad to admit that my husband and I were not diligent in our questioning because we were just excited about her zeal for "pursuing the Lord". We did warn her numerous times about reading the same author and expressed our concern with her Recovery Bible, but she assured us she was using multiple translations for study.

Her relationship with a particular family (especially the mother) has been hurting my heart for quite some time, but I misread my discernment for pride and jealousy. She says the woman is her best friend....talks to her late into the evening, numerous bible studies throughout the week and weekends, weekend trips.

We have seen and heard SO MANY of the things I have read on this forum....she refuses to admit the LC is like any other church as it recovered all of the truths that have been lost over the centuries. Calling on the Lord, waking up every morning at 5 or 6am(not a bad thing) to study, studying at lunch at work, reading nightly over the phone. She says her life us just too busy and she can't fit it all in(she lives with us and works, and does LC....that's it). I have told her that Jesus says His burden is light....it shouldn't be this hard to love & follow Christ. Despite her intense study she insists she knows nothing about the Bible and needs FTTA to "increase her portion". We have always been a practicing Christian family as have our parents....our daughter continually tells me that she doesn't know even some if the most basic spiritual truths even though her older and younger siblings say, "we HAVE INDEED been taught these".

So many red flags....oh how I wish we would have interfered last year!

Thank you for your continued prayers!
Merry & blessed Christmas to all!
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Old 12-22-2018, 12:02 PM   #12
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

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Originally Posted by kumbaya View Post
I’m so sorry! I grew up in this group. I’ve learned so much in the last few years and my best advice is read the book, “Combating Cult Mind Control” (the re-released edition) by Steve Hassan and follow his instructions to a tee. He’s an expert on this. I made so many mistakes with my family, confronting them with things. Focus on your relationship with her and your family has a chance. Sending you love and peace!
I agree with kumbaya. Personally if it were my daughter I'd have a family intervention. She's headed into a cult. It's like a drug. Intervention is your only hope.

Other than that, if that don't work, then, hope and pray that she will learn for herself that Lee's local church is a cult.

Best wishes.
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Old 12-23-2018, 08:50 PM   #13
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

ZNPaaneah, the healthy approach you suggested sounds like the book of James - a crucial part of the Cannon which we know was often looked down on in the LC. The words of James coupled with the epistles of John are an excellent yardstick by which to measure fruit. In addition to maintaining a healthy relational love with her daughter (no matter what happens), I would encourage MrsS to trust in God more fully and say a big NO to Fear. May the Joy of the Lord be her strength! PS
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Old 12-24-2018, 07:07 AM   #14
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ZNPaaneah, the healthy approach you suggested sounds like the book of James - a crucial part of the Cannon which we know was often looked down on in the LC. The words of James coupled with the epistles of John are an excellent yardstick by which to measure fruit. In addition to maintaining a healthy relational love with her daughter (no matter what happens), I would encourage MrsS to trust in God more fully and say a big NO to Fear. May the Joy of the Lord be her strength! PS
I had many challenges this year. Sometimes fear would come - a knocking. I continued to trust the LORD in my situations, still Praising, Blessing and Giving Thanks no matter the outcome.

Suddenly, the Holy Spirit prompted me to pray a simple surrendering oration: Father.. YOUR PERFECT WILL BE DONE in this matter.
No need to go into details but I can tell you, God turned everything upside down for my 'enemies'!! All anxiety and fear shriveled up and the Peace of God enveloped me. The FAVOR of God began to bless me like never before.

I have made the prayer "THY PERFECT WILL BE DONE in me today" and in every situation I encounter including family issues.

PRAYER:
FATHER GOD, LORD JESUS CHRIST, HOLY SPIRIT. May Thy PERFECT WILL BE DONE in this young woman who wants to go to FTTA. She may want to go but what is YOUR PERFECT WILL for her life? MAY it be that THY PERFECT WILL be done in her life, to the Glory and Praise of Your Holy Name. Amen.

Glory and Praise to KING JESUS.
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Old 12-24-2018, 01:22 PM   #15
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Thank you for your continued prayers!
Merry & blessed Christmas to all!
Merry Christmas to you and your family - as the character Tiny Tim said at the end of the story, "God bless us all!" Though it's simple, childlike and brief, there's such hope in those words, such faith, such perseverance and endurance. And there's such a largeness and generosity of heart: you see, he included Scrooge in the "us". Yes, may God bless us all; this is the Spirit of Jesus.

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Originally Posted by countmeworthy View Post
All anxiety and fear shriveled up and the Peace of God enveloped me. The FAVOR of God began to bless me like never before.

I have made the prayer "THY PERFECT WILL BE DONE in me today" and in every situation I encounter including family ..
Amen, and amen.
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Old 01-02-2019, 03:49 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by MrsS View Post
Our 23 year old daughter shocked us with her recent decision to quit her well paying full time job so that she could attend FTTA this Feb! She feels strongly that she is being called to go. She encouraged us to research, which we did, and we have several huge issues....why are all suggested readings from the same author? Why is every moment of your day regimented if you're suppossed to be learning how to live a 'typical Christiam life'? Why are you not allowed to question in a 'learning environment'? She is unphased by any concerns and remains adament that God is calling her there.
Our family is distraught! We don't know what to do or say!
Please, please.....if anyone has advice?!
Thank you so much
MrsS,

You obviously love your daughter very much and you apparently want just what you believe is best for her. We all want that for our children. Your daughter is a young adult and from your description she has had a deep and moving experience of the Lord so she wants to pursue Him more. No doubt that desire for the Lord would please any parent as I'm sure it does you. Correct?

Here's the thing. Your daughter encouraged you to investigate. This forum has been part of your investigation but have you reached out to other parents whose children have gone to the FTTA? They might give you additional insight. Or, this friend's mother you mentioned. Might be beneficial to discuss it with her and share your concerns. Still, why not request someone from the local church to speak with about it? or request a meeting with the administrators in FTT... or ask for a private tour of all the aspects of the FTT your daughter will experience. If you are close enough you can also attend some of the meetings of FTT or a graduation.

These are merely suggestions..... with these you might gain additional insight. It may change your view or may solidify your view... but it will remove much of the unknown and much of the uncertainty.

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Old 01-21-2019, 11:33 AM   #17
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Your daughter is a young adult and from your description she has had a deep and moving experience of the Lord so she wants to pursue Him more. No doubt that desire for the Lord would please any parent as I'm sure it does you. Correct?
If her daughter had contacted the Jehovahs Witnesses in University, and was now off to their main training compound, or if she was likewise off to serve the LDS for two years on a mission, or the Unification Church, would this statement of a "deep and moving experience of the Lord" be correct? Or no?

Drake you're making a subjective assessment, obviously biased, about someone else's subjective experience, that this was an "experience of the Lord"; if it was the Mormons or the Moonies you probably wouldn't, even if under simiolar circumstances. You're passing off your subjective assessment as if it were objective fact. "When we do it, it's 'of the Lord', when others, not so much."

Conversely, if her daughter had come home after University and announced that she was going off to seminary to study to become a Baptist minister, the mother might not object, or as strenuously. Why? Again, some subjective response (from the mother) is involved. The mother might be more comfortable, and familiar (but she might also have more objective, 'red flags' in her consideration). There's always bias and subjectivity involved, on all parties'. But the local church passes off their biased assessments as if they were objective truth, and dismisses others' as unfounded. I've never seen such weak, self-serving logic, as with this group.
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Old 01-21-2019, 03:14 PM   #18
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If her daughter had contacted the Jehovahs Witnesses in University, and was now off to their main training compound, or if she was likewise off to serve the LDS for two years on a mission, or the Unification Church, would this statement of a "deep and moving experience of the Lord" be correct? Or no?

Drake you're making a subjective assessment, .....
aron,

I think everyone is making a subjective assessment... you... the parents.... me..... that is why I suggested the parents (as the daughter also encouraged them), to find out more. Investigate and see, go and talk, and remove as much uncertainty as possible.... it may or may not change their view... it may solidify their current view.... I don't know, you don't know, they don't know until they find out more.

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Old 01-22-2019, 01:43 AM   #19
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I think everyone is making a subjective assessment... you... the parents.... me..... that is why I suggested the parents (as the daughter also encouraged them), to find out more.
Drake,

You said, "Your daughter is a young adult and from your description she has had a deep and moving experience of the Lord so she wants to pursue Him more." One could have as easily said, "Your daughter is a young adult and from your description she has come under the sway of a mind control cult, who are pulling her in deeper." The difference between the two statements is from the viewpoint of the speaker. Witness Lee in his career made many such assertions, statements supported only by his sentiments, and his desire that things be so.

"Test all things; prove what is good."

I've told my story here, that as a naive college student I thought that sitting in a chair and yelling Bible verses was to "experience Christ" and to "gain more God"; but in the FTTA they told us not to waste our time, quote-unnquote, on those who could not repay us in this age but to go after "good building material". These and a number of other experiences led me to believe it was a sham.

Later, Al Gore invented the internet and I read about Daystar and Timothy Lee, and about Philip Lee aka "The Office". I found out more, as you said. I read the testimonies of Jane Anderson and others. Steve Isitt had done an investigation, as you helpfully suggested, and by God's sovereignty Steve shared the results with the public.

It turns out that "the experience of Christ" sold in the local churches is more likely the experience of manipulation and deception.
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Old 01-22-2019, 04:39 AM   #20
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"Test all things; prove what is good.".
Right Aron.

They should go straight to the source and see for themselves. Test it, prove it.

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Old 01-22-2019, 07:43 AM   #21
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Right Aron.

They should go straight to the source and see for themselves Test it, prove it.

Drake
Yes bro Drake. Good advice. I can't think of a better anti-mind control cult verse than I Thessalonians 5:21. Testing and proving requires independent thinking. A big no-no when I was in the LC.

So right on brother. Let's hope daughter takes it to heart.
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Old 01-29-2019, 07:54 AM   #22
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Since I heard of this concern last December I have continued to pray for all involved. Last night I read the responses and thought Drake made a good point to see if the family could visit the training center and contact the mother who is involved with with the daughter. Two of my children passed through that Bible school and I was concerned enough to take a week to join them to see what it was like. I stayed at the training center with my son and participated in all of the activities. I ate with them, prayed with them, studied the Bible with them, witnessed with them. I observed their behavior and manner of life in the training center, in homes, in service, and before outsiders. This helped me a lot to understand and support my children then and now.
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Old 01-29-2019, 08:45 AM   #23
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Finally, I would tell her the unmistakable tell tale sign of a false group is that they have been "spotted by the world". They have a profit motive that they try to hide but can't.
Dear ZNPaaneah,

I do not understand what you mean by “spotted by the world” and “profit motive”. Could you explain for me?

I know that every Believer should be a witness of Jesus Christ and be willing to suffer for the gospel. Also, our Lord told us to do business until he comes and to make a profit from the talent he gave us. I believe theses to be spiritual in meaning but also gaining lost souls for the Kingdom of God. I think you are referring to something different.
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Old 01-29-2019, 09:23 AM   #24
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Since I heard of this concern last December I have continued to pray for all involved. Last night I read the responses and thought Drake made a good point to see if the family could visit the training center and contact the mother who is involved with with the daughter. Two of my children passed through that Bible school and I was concerned enough to take a week to join them to see what it was like. I stayed at the training center with my son and participated in all of the activities. I ate with them, prayed with them, studied the Bible with them, witnessed with them. I observed their behavior and manner of life in the training center, in homes, in service, and before outsiders. This helped me a lot to understand and support my children then and now.
The problem with investigation is, at what point do you stop? Just visit LSM and get their side of the narrative? How about talking to the myriads of broken souls spit out of their system, who couldn't be sufficiently "one" with the overseers? How much weight to give such complaints? The LSM publishes "Affirmation and Critique" of other Christian walks, shouldn't they also allow critique? Why is everyone who discusses a bad experience there branded as having a dark heart, rebellious against God, etc?

I know a lot of people give glowing testimonials. But so do the Mormons. How to objectively assess this group?

I lived in a "brother's house" for years in college. Was very active. Had a great time and left on good terms (I was dissatisfied with the direction things were going and wanted to pursue other opportunities). Started out again, in a homeless shelter. Just kept going, but "positive for the ministry" and its teachings.

Later, I read the testimonies of many and realized others were not as fortunate as I was. Then I began to critically examine their ideas and began to realize why so many had a bad time of it. I began to post my critiques on another forum populated by LSM loyalists, and they let me know on no uncertain terms how I was slandering God's elect etc. What an eye-opener that was! How come LSM can critique everyone else?
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Old 01-30-2019, 02:46 AM   #25
aron
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The problem with investigation is, at what point do you stop? Just visit LSM and get their side of the narrative?
The local churches of Living Stream Ministry strongly discourage independent investigations, saying you will find "negative" things and be "poisoned". My reply is, if you only visit their training campus, go to a meeting and listen to a message, and read one or two of their tracts, although you may get an initially favorable impression, is that sufficient to come to a conclusion?

Again, think of other fringe or cultic groups: JWs, Mormons, SDA, etc. If your assessment is limited to reading their promotional tracts and visiting a "Potemkin village" or two, what will be your conclusion? And are you really following the Berean example? God is willing to be tested. If any group or teaching is not, then that should automatically put us on high alert.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Potemkin_village
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Old 01-30-2019, 03:09 AM   #26
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Default Re: Daughter wants to leave for FTTA

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The problem with investigation is, at what point do you stop? Just visit LSM and get their side of the narrative? How about talking to the myriads of broken souls spit out of their system, who couldn't be sufficiently "one" with the overseers? How much weight to give such complaints? The LSM publishes "Affirmation and Critique" of other Christian walks, shouldn't they also allow critique? Why is everyone who discusses a bad experience there branded as having a dark heart, rebellious against God, etc?

I know a lot of people give glowing testimonials. But so do the Mormons. How to objectively assess this group?
By its fruit. You objectively assess this group by its fruit.

Fruit: pain and suffering caused by the practices of "the ministry" over a lifetime. One or two examples might be suspect, but this forum is only one example of the fruit of its pattern of massive abuse.

Consider, though, that the LSM shows you only the fruit it wants you to see. We saw this with the all expense paid Hank Haanegraaff and Christian Research Institute "Wine and Dine" tour of the Far East which produced the "We Were Wrong" article. We see the campus ministry which doesn't even admit its affiliation with the LC and WL ministry, including scripted meetings for new recruits. All the while, the LSM call is to "pay no attention to the man behind the curtain." A policy of deceit.

Then there's this:
10 Out of the same mouth proceedeth blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not so to be.
11 Doth a fountain send forth at the same place sweet water and bitter?
12 Can the fig tree, my brethren, bear olive berries? either a vine, figs? so can no fountain both yield salt water and fresh. James 3

If people can't see that legalized infantiside is pagan, heathen and as morally depraved as it gets, how can they see the practices of the LSM/LC as abusive and toxic? What does it take for people to WAKE UP?

"If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how great is that darkness!" Matt. 6:23b

Do we see a pattern here? There's an old saying: You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.

Nell
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Old 01-30-2019, 07:20 AM   #27
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You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make him drink.

Nell
But you can ride him into the water ; like their deceitful campus ministry ; fallaciously riding them into the lake of Kool-Aid.

This is not Christian to me. By their fruits.
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Old 01-31-2019, 02:25 AM   #28
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And are you really following the Berean example? God is willing to be tested. If any ministry is not it should automatically put us on high alert.
The testing has gone on for nearly 2,000 years: the Hebrew scriptures had indicated the resurrection from the dead (tho the Saducees demurred), and the coming Messiah; the Christian testimony (the NT &c) was that Jesus the Nazarene fulfilled both. This testimony has been examined by scoffers and skeptics alike, and it's still here, with power undiminished.
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By its fruit. You objectively assess this group by its fruit.

Fruit: pain and suffering caused by the practices of "the ministry"
The fruit of the "recovered extras" of the Little flock/Lord's recovery restoration movement are all too evident, from "the ground" to "the high peaks". But I thank God because this turning-aside-to-vanity experience made me value the simplicity and the purity of the gospel all the more.

With Dorcas in Acts 9, there's no mention of her theology. But the testimony of the faith and love of Christ operating through her is palpable. It is beautiful and real. This is the testimony of the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead: "...she was full of good works, and acts of charity" (v.36, ESV), the very things spoken of Jesus (Acts 10:38), the very things I heard dismissed at FTTA as "a waste of time". Instead, we were supposed to fill our lives with two things: burrowing into one man's abstruse, idiosyncratic theology, and recruiting others to do the same.

Again and again "the testimony of Jesus Christ" (cf Rev. 1:2) has been sifted, and again and again it's validated itself. It's come through the proverbial fire, wind and rain. It's capable of expressing all "the power of an indestructible life" (Heb 7:16), and doesn't need our recovery.
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