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Old 11-18-2011, 12:41 PM   #1
Terry
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Default God is Sovereign

I have heard via conversations the practice of severing relationships through the phrase God is sovereign. Before I continue on this thread and since I need to get back to work, does anyone have commentary to offer?
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Old 11-18-2011, 02:44 PM   #2
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Not knowing what kind of relationship you are talking about, I would still give you Jesus' commentary: "What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate."(Mark 10:9) Of course this was referring to the marriage relationship, but there are many other relationships which "God has joined together". Would this principle not apply to all relationships God has joined together?

Too many times man has meddled, and then in the disastrous aftermath he says "God is sovereign". This is not the way of the Lord Jesus. This is not what is taught in the Word.
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Old 11-21-2011, 09:16 AM   #3
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Not knowing what kind of relationship you are talking about, I would still give you Jesus' commentary: "What therefore God has joined together, let no man separate."(Mark 10:9) Of course this was referring to the marriage relationship, but there are many other relationships which "God has joined together". Would this principle not apply to all relationships God has joined together?

Too many times man has meddled, and then in the disastrous aftermath he says "God is sovereign". This is not the way of the Lord Jesus. This is not what is taught in the Word.
Relationships between brothers, relationship between sisters, relationships a brother or sister may share with an assembly, etc.
I will need to elaborate later, but for right now I'll say when a brother or sister isn't being politically correct, action taken regarding the brother or sister is to sever the relationship invoking the phrase, "God is sovereign".
In part because of predestination as in Ephesians 1. God has a plan and when there's differences within the Body, removing a brother or sister from the assembly is part of God's plan. There's qualities of God missing by this approach. Grace and mercy. If we really mean God is sovereign, we will realize God's sovereignty in His grace and in His mercy.
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Old 11-23-2011, 04:19 PM   #4
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Relationships between brothers, relationship between sisters, relationships a brother or sister may share with an assembly, etc.
I will need to elaborate later, but for right now I'll say when a brother or sister isn't being politically correct, action taken regarding the brother or sister is to sever the relationship invoking the phrase, "God is sovereign".
In part because of predestination as in Ephesians 1. God has a plan and when there's differences within the Body, removing a brother or sister from the assembly is part of God's plan. There's qualities of God missing by this approach. Grace and mercy. If we really mean God is sovereign, we will realize God's sovereignty in His grace and in His mercy.
Let's agree that God is Sovereign. Let's also agree that God is Righteous.

Yet again, let us agree that man has a free will given to him by God.

God would never do anything to violate His righteousness. However, there is plenty of scriptural evidence that God allows man to make decisions freely whether they are righteous or not. Still man bears the responsibility for those decisions. Standing before the judgment seat of Christ when we are all judged no believer will be judged according to God's Sovereignty. Just as no believer will be able to point at another's failures and sins and claim those are the reason for their own sins and failures.

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Old 11-27-2011, 09:20 AM   #5
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Originally Posted by Terry View Post
Relationships between brothers, relationship between sisters, relationships a brother or sister may share with an assembly, etc.
I will need to elaborate later, but for right now I'll say when a brother or sister isn't being politically correct, action taken regarding the brother or sister is to sever the relationship invoking the phrase, "God is sovereign".
In part because of predestination as in Ephesians 1. God has a plan and when there's differences within the Body, removing a brother or sister from the assembly is part of God's plan. There's qualities of God missing by this approach. Grace and mercy. If we really mean God is sovereign, we will realize God's sovereignty in His grace and in His mercy.
There are biblical mandates for "removing a brother or sister from the assembly", and not "being politically correct" is not one of them. If this happened in any church I was in, I would immediately exercise that free will that Cassidy talks about and head right out the door. There are too many other healthy, biblically sound fellowships around to take your family to, and not have to fiddle around with people who play these kind of religious games.
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Old 11-28-2011, 11:21 AM   #6
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UntoHim I hear you. I'm sure you know as well as I do, having been immersed in the system for a number of years, it's easier said than done. Realizing the basis of your relationships is remaining in the system. Leave and those relationships will cease. In my opinion that is why it's difficult to leave. In regard to the thread, there is the tendency to disassociate from any personal accountability. I thought Cassidy touched on that point quite well.
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Old 11-28-2011, 03:37 PM   #7
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Terry,

I keep reading your opening post and the very sound of someone severing a relationship with the parting words that "God is sovereign" just sounds nothing short of nonsensical. Sort of like a suicide bomber shouting "Praise Allah!" as he pushes the detonation button, or the inquisitor proclaiming "Hail Mary . . . !" as he orders an alleged witch thrown into the water tied to a boulder to see if they will float.


In other words, even if there can be meaning in the particular statements, there is no meaning in the context in which uttered. To say "God is sovereign" as you sever relations with someone does not seem to mean anything particular. If God is sovereign, then He is the judge of the situation, not the parties to the dispute. Therefore, if I would like to declare that God is sovereign, then I should be prepared to discover that:
  • I have no basis for being partisan in the situation.
  • I am the one at fault no matter how right I think I am.
  • The other is at fault, but if God were sovereign I would overlook the error and remain in fellowship.
  • God really doesn't care about our petty dispute.
I'm sure that there are other possibilities. But simply saying "God is sovereign" does not establish a basis of severing fellowship. And it doesn't establish the correctness of an action.

It sounds more like sprinkling holy water on beef and trying to declare it to be fish.
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Old 11-28-2011, 09:37 PM   #8
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OBW, I see it from a different perspective which is just as nonsensical. From the approach of presdestination. everything is chosen before the foundation of the world. Thus the logic of choices brothers and sisters make is God's sovereignty.
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Old 11-29-2011, 06:32 AM   #9
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I'm sure that there are other possibilities. But simply saying "God is sovereign" does not establish a basis of severing fellowship. And it doesn't establish the correctness of an action.
It sounds more like sprinkling holy water on beef and trying to declare it to be fish.
In this case "God is sovereign" is the Christian version of "Whatever."
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Old 11-29-2011, 07:18 AM   #10
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In this case "God is sovereign" is the Christian version of "Whatever."
In that the adolescent phrase "Whatever!" is designed to be a "discussion-ender," they are similar.

But the saying "God is sovereign" also has the intention of legitimating the views of one side of the discussion. By saying spiritually-sounding things like, "God is sovereign" or "it must be His will," leaders attempt to right certain wrongs. This just perpetuates hypocrisy. When wrong things happen, even if they "appear" vindicated by God, and "appear" to favor their cause, leaders must acknowledge these failings, or they corrupt their followers.

Consider how many of the Blendeds have been corrupted by WL's treatment of John Ingalls and the Anaheim elders for addressing PL's improprieties. These Blendeds (especially BP, RG, FB) knew in their conscience that the Anaheim elders were acting on the Lord's behalf and in the saints' best interest, yet these Blendeds still sided with WL and joined in with his condemnations on all those brothers (including John So, Mill Mallon, and many others.)

Their corruption was later witnessed by numerous GLA churches who were sued by locals instigated by Blended operatives.
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Old 11-29-2011, 09:20 AM   #11
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OBW, I see it from a different perspective which is just as nonsensical. From the approach of predestination. everything is chosen before the foundation of the world. Thus the logic of choices brothers and sisters make is God's sovereignty.
And if that is true, then someone's decision to become a member of the RCC after years as a faithful Baptist is simply a matter of God's sovereignty. And there is no ground for argument over doctrinal differences because God is sovereign. There is no argument for or against the "ground of locality" because God is sovereign. And if He is sovereign, then who are we to try to make anything happen?
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Old 11-29-2011, 11:38 AM   #12
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But the saying "God is sovereign" also has the intention of legitimating the views of one side of the discussion. By saying spiritually-sounding things like, "God is sovereign" or "it must be His will," leaders attempt to right certain wrongs. This just perpetuates hypocrisy. When wrong things happen, even if they "appear" vindicated by God, and "appear" to favor their cause, leaders must acknowledge these failings, or they corrupt their followers.

Consider how many of the Blendeds have been corrupted by WL's treatment of John Ingalls and the Anaheim elders for addressing PL's improprieties. These Blendeds (especially BP, RG, FB) knew in their conscience that the Anaheim elders were acting on the Lord's behalf and in the saints' best interest, yet these Blendeds still sided with WL and joined in with his condemnations on all those brothers (including John So, Mill Mallon, and many others.)

Their corruption was later witnessed by numerous GLA churches who were sued by locals instigated by Blended operatives.
Ohio, you're not far off the track from when I first heard the phrase "God is sovereign". Basically it's a Christian notion that is misapplied. Here's how it is, once you're actrions indicate you cannot be trusted or loyal to a man and his ministry, "God is sovereign". A phrase implying "I am washing my hands of you." Problem with that statement is God does not operate like that. During the 40 years in the wilderness God could had washed His hands of the Israelites, but He did not do that. We all know not one of us can fulfill God's righteous requirement. God's sovereignty is by His grace and His mercy, God sent His Son.
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Old 12-01-2011, 08:31 AM   #13
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When wrong things happen, even if they "appear" vindicated by God, and "appear" to favor their cause, leaders must acknowledge these failings, or they corrupt their followers.

Consider how many of the Blendeds have been corrupted by WL's treatment of John Ingalls and the Anaheim elders for addressing PL's improprieties. These Blendeds (especially BP, RG, FB) knew in their conscience that the Anaheim elders were acting on the Lord's behalf and in the saints' best interest, yet these Blendeds still sided with WL and joined in with his condemnations on all those brothers (including John So, Mill Mallon, and many others.)

Their corruption was later witnessed by numerous GLA churches who were sued by locals instigated by Blended operatives.
Also consider another matter which is in line with Ohioís point that an unrepentant Lee was responsible for corrupting his followers:

As of a few years ago, it became a matter of record, published by a participant in the event, that in the early 1980s Witness Lee advised five leading brothers in Texas (Benson Phillips, Ray Graver, Don Looper, Joe Davis, Don Rutledge), some of whom are now Blendeds (BP, RG, JD), to cover up the sexual sin of a fellow Texas elder by moving him to another city rather than do what the Word clearly required (I Tim 5:20). In so doing, Witness Lee disobeyed the Word of God and led these elders to do likewise.

1Jn 2:3 And hereby we do know that we know him, if we keep his commandments.
1Jn 2:4 He that saith, I know him, and keepeth not his commandments, is a liar, and the truth is not in him.

In this we see Lee, unrepentant of his cover-up concerning his son, repeating his sin, teaching others to do the same, and opening the door to further defilement in the body of Christ. According to the reporting elder, from that time forward these Texas elders began to lie about the reason for the sinning elderís sudden departure to East Texas. In the years that followed, the sinful brother, whom Witness Lee and the five Texas elders did not love enough to rescue by obeying the dictates of the Word, brought in more defilement among Godís people.

My husband and I were witnesses to him stealing another brotherís wife, cruelly dumping his own wife, and then marrying the brotherís wife. The new couple immediately began to appear at gatherings of brothers and sisters without so much as a word of repentance.

The ripple effect of Leeís not walking in truth in this matter continues to this day, three decades later. That is a story in itself. As recently as within the past two years, my husband and I have been negatively impacted by it in specific ways.

Did Lee ever repent to the Texas elders or to the brother he didnít love enough to allow him to be biblically disciplined? Did he repent to the two families that were destroyed as a result? Did he repent for the resultant shame brought to the Lordís name? Where is the repentance of the three current Blendeds? Their sin has come to light now, and all we hear is crickets.

1Pe 1:15 But as he which hath called you is holy, so be ye holy in all manner of conversation;
1Pe 1:16 Because it is written, Be ye holy; for I am holy.

Concerning the uncleanness of these leaders, men who claim to be ministers of the Word of God, should we just say that God is sovereign? Should we close our eyes, cover our ears, shut our lips, and let their teachings and practices continue, uncontested, to hold sway over so many of God's children? Or should we do what the Bible commands and expose such works of darkness (Eph 5:11) and let the light of God make manifest what is true?

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Old 12-04-2011, 06:41 PM   #14
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Concerning the uncleanness of these leaders, men who claim to be ministers of the Word of God, should we just say that God is sovereign? Should we close our eyes, cover our ears, shut our lips, and let their teachings and practices continue, uncontested, to hold sway over so many of God's children?

Thankful Jane
History has indicated the answer is yes eventhough the answer does not concurr comprehensively with God's Word.
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Old 12-05-2011, 12:24 PM   #15
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Concerning the uncleanness of these leaders, men who claim to be ministers of the Word of God, should we just say that God is sovereign? Should we close our eyes, cover our ears, shut our lips, and let their teachings and practices continue, uncontested, to hold sway over so many of God's children?
Thankful Jane, I did answer yes to your first two questions. Upon consideration I felt to go into detail. Certain brothers don't want to be contested, just go on positively. Any Biblical direction would be Matthew 18:21-22.

Then Peter came and said to Him, “Lord, how often shall my brother sin against me and I forgive him? Up to seven times?” Jesus *said to him, “I do not say to you, up to seven times, but up to seventy times seven.

It's been well documented your dealings with Benson, Indiana's with Ron Kangas and other regional co-workers. I'm sure in each geograsphic region there are more examples. Point is an emphasis placed on forgiveness. In other words the onus is placed upon the offended ones to forgive rather than the offenders to repent.
What about James 5:16?

Therefore, confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another so that you may be healed. The effective prayer of a righteous man can accomplish much.

Rather in my living James 5:16 is a heart matter. If the Holy Spirit convicts regarding a certain offense towards a certain brother or a certain sister, I confess my sin to one another.

In closing as many messages given by the blended brothers, many I have heard are far more weighted towards the kingdom age. Whereas the age of Grace appears to be just a footnote to the completion. I offer this for consideration of the thread, it is God's sovereignty there is an age of grace. For all who read, let's not take grace so lightly. Consider your heart. Take care of relationships; past and present.
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