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Old 02-02-2011, 08:51 PM   #1
Terry
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Default Accepting and Receiving Believers in Christ

This post is from an email I received from a brother in Malaysia. It's Watchman Nee's message accepting and receiving fellow believers in Christ. The email was in Chinese and used Google for translation. Please bear.

We know the difference between believers and the world to care about have not accepted Christ, does not have the Holy Spirit. People who have the Holy Spirit, is an almost God; does not have the Holy Spirit who, even the Lord is gone. We also know that all listen to the Gospel be saved, had the Spirit, not after the second step of the procedure to the church in the natural elements. If you are living in one place, just naturally is that the molecules of a local church; if it is scattered in various places to have natural elements is that the church universal. Although the number is at best, as long as a true Christian, and everyone naturally into one of the.


』『 One is under the divine, that every believer in common

Reason why the number of the children of God, there are many, scattered in many different places, also live in many different time, but they are before God is still a church? How is able to graft in a fixed place, there are many believers, but they are still in that one place is a church? Why they are one of it? How do so many Christians do one? These different backgrounds, different races, different nationalities, different education, different social, experience different people together, how can one then ask them?

Christian unity is not artificial, not everyone, after discussions, we support the need to unity, so one. Christian unity, is due to the time when people believe in Christ, God the next one 』『 placed in our hearts. 』『 This one is every believer, it is almost common to the Lord's people. Because the children of God, each had this in a mystery 』『 sake of unity, so they can unity. 『This one, termed as the Bible』 『』 unity of the Holy Spirit (Eph. IV 3).

』『 Unity of the Holy Spirit which is shared by Christians of the Holy Spirit

The unity of the Holy Spirit this 『』 which is common to every Christian the Holy Spirit. This is one of us living in the heart of the Holy Spirit, but one Spirit. So He will call every people who live there with him, have another one as his own kind of unity. God is through them that were out from the world, and God called them to each other because of this one. Believers and the world so different from that in this; faithful to each other so the same is here. To know whether the person belong to Christ, is to look at this one; unity among Christians, but also through this one. Christ in the Holy Spirit, that we and the world is different also makes us believers to each other the same.

So is a Christian organization, we therefore can not be separated, not because of any reason why they separate (except for local reasons,) is because there are to each other that we did the same. If anyone does not this one, we can not count him as brothers, but he was an outside person. But if he has this one, he is the people inside; we have are one people, we will not be any reason to separate. All have the Holy Spirit, such a person is, is impossible to separate out. We are fundamentally, life, the mind has been into one of the. Therefore, Paul said, See, I urge you prisoner, since called, walk in a manner to when the ex called commensurate with; humble and gentle, patient, bearing with one another in love, with peace with each other every effort to keep 』unity of the Holy Spirit (Eph d 1 to 3).

We should note that Paul is not to say to one another in unity, but said he should be a conservative one. We can not keep the things we do not have; we can only conservative in what we have. He advised us to a conservative one, because we already have this one, now we shall keep it. Lord did not ask us to unity with other believers, the Lord did not ask us to create a one to, but the Lord told us to keep us in the Lord of the existing one, is that we have been brought by the Holy Spirit with the. When we believe the Lord, we have received the unity of the. We were by the Holy Spirit and the world, but also because of the Holy Spirit inside each other into one of the. And we do not have to create a unity between believers, we have to understand that to see, to acknowledge that we received the Holy Spirit is the believer in the unity of the.

Can not create a unity, but it can destroy the function of this one

We can not create a unity, because we have unity in Christ through the Holy Spirit has. However, we are able to destroy this unity of function, call it God's children can not be revealed. Therefore, we obtained the order, is a conservative should be tried. Poor, how much, we not only does not conservative, they undermine, not to mention trying out.
So, who are our brothers? We do not see their views about the Bible and our common or not, they focus on the same spiritual experience with us or not, their habits, customs, habits, life, interests, and we are the same or not. But all are blood bought, for the children of God, the Holy Spirit lives in him who is our brother. We can not expect the unity of the body, the unity of opinion, or the other one, we can only see the unity of the Holy Spirit. Have the unity that the people in the Lord. And I live with a people who have this one, that is, and I with the Church. We were separated, not only because of the unity and separation; and human joint, can only have this one because of the joint.

How much, when you travel, the train, in the ships, and you meet a quiet, godly man. Then talk, you know he is a owner who is redeemed by the blood, is one of your brothers. Although you have no previous acquaintance with him, but you have hit it off, and feeling what a joy. At that time, your heart is full of unknowingly to his love. This is because you and the unity of the Holy Spirit he has 『. 』Feeling in your heart, that is, the role of the unity of the Holy Spirit. Which when the power of this one which really transcends race, nationality, social difference, and that you complete one in the Spirit. But when you talk about Bible truth, perhaps in the prophecy to see the explanation, and you very different. You love his heart to leak out. You see it? You are now standing in another status, where are you going to find one, but not conservative, not conservative This is a trying one of the Holy Spirit, so the results you might want to broke up. Today, children of God, respectively, because this is not a conservative one.

Seven things prove that the unity of the Holy Spirit revealed

How do we know people have this one it? If this were the unity of the Holy Spirit, in appearance, enough to see what can we do? How can we know he is a brother? So, Paul tells us below, one person who has the Holy Spirit, he must be with us on the other seven things the same. We can not hope for him and us, and everything the same pieces, but we hope he was able to have seven things, and it is we are the same. This seven things that prove that a person has a unity of the Holy Spirit. This is obvious because seven of the Holy Spirit one of the reason that we should be every effort to keep the seven, focusing on the seven pieces. While the rest of the matter is critical, but only seven can be concluded that the traffic we Christians. Therefore, we request people to be limited to the seven.

『Only one body, the Holy Spirit is only one, as you were called in one hope, one Lord, one faith, one baptism, one God, the Father of all, beyond all the above, and through all being, but also to live within us all (Eph d 4 to 6, the original). Here, seven 『a』, is the unity of the Holy Spirit and relevant. Each letter of Christ, is inside the church, we can call him brother, and we have transportation, are due to the unity of the Holy Spirit, in this seven things on the same. The seven 『a』 is shared by every Christian. Do not need one more, one less is not OK. The seven identical, and the people of our transport requirements. Not more than that, can not less than this. Because more than this, to be tempted to shut out some of his brother; less than this, should not the brother inevitably mixed in there. If we are to every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit, we must pay attention to these seven pieces, not the seven other children with God on any problems.

(A) one body and one

We can not and human unity, the first question is what he is not part of the body of Christ. We and the scope of human unity is the body of Christ. Not there, of course, and we have nothing to do in the. Where in there, are, and we have traffic. We can not have chosen the body of Christ traffic. What is Christ's body? The body of Christ, that is, partake of Christ. The body of Christ, there is a better characterization is that Sunday night a cake. You broke it broke it, finished, but brothers and sisters in every pie belly, and if together, it is still a piece of cake. This is the body of Christ. Body of Christ, is that each person has the life of Christ together as a success. You have a little life of Christ, I have a life of Christ, these life together, is the whole of Christ. Each of us is part of the body of Christ. Therefore, to accept a person, regardless of his background, regardless of how his class, no matter how the truth, what matters is to ask if he has points in the body of Christ? If he has inside Christ, he is our brother. If for various reasons, we want to reject a man for his brother; we dare say that he is not a physical body of Christ? If he is, anyway, (in addition to the grounds outside the Bible), we have to accept him. We can not accept these limbs, and refused it a few limbs. We are the same but within a body, there is no separation possible. If both we and his body, we have reason to reject him. If we can not are meant he was not the same members of the body, for we must keep, and his unity. Everyone, we asked him, if it was part of the body of Christ is our brother, In addition to no more requirements.

(B) there is a Holy Spirit

A Christian, not only he has a point inside the life of Christ, and he believed the Lord, but also the Holy Spirit living in him. I have the spirit of my son, but he also had a son, spirit. Perhaps his interest and I am not the same, perhaps he acts the same way and I do not, however, as long as the Holy Spirit inside the same Holy Spirit inside me just fine.

He receives the Holy Spirit is not it? I can not say that the Holy Spirit within him it? I dare say he is affected by the evil it? Perhaps the Holy Spirit when he when he was outside of the table, a little magic, what you dislike. Perhaps you are opposed to such Pentecostal usually the case. However, only one Holy Spirit. The Bible is not to say, is no movement of the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit is not hot events. The Bible is not explicit as to whether a table outside the standards of the Holy Spirit? To whether the Bible is that Jesus is Lord 『』 (Cor-second 3), as a test whether the Holy Spirit. So, in you, tell you that Jesus is the Holy Spirit is the Spirit of the Lord; the spirit in him has told him that if Jesus is Lord, he is also the Holy Spirit. If he received the Holy Spirit, your income is the Holy Spirit, the Holy Spirit is only one, all with a body in the Lord, but there is no separation possible.

(C) only one called hope

This is not to say that all hope is the same. There is only one point is called by the same hope, as Christians books have the same hope. We look forward to what is it? Is hope in the glory of Christ forever. No one who is not the Master and the hope of glory, almost no one is looking forward to the Lord who is not looking forward to days. Called because of there is always a hope of glory. People who do not have a Christian, never mind the glory go to. Such a person, the decision does not belong to the Lord. Our future in heaven is to live together forever, and we did not separate on the ground today may be. We have the same future, when we have the same distance.

(D) a primary


Only one Lord, Jesus. We recognize Jesus of Nazareth, God has made Him both Lord and Christ, so we have to serve Him. Their Lord, our Lord. Each other, the acknowledged master of the serve is one, so we could not separate.

(E) a letter

Here's the letter, the letter of faith. This is a letter 『』 people do not mean the truth of the Bible have the same letter of the Law said. The Bible is no such requirement. One letter refers to the Christian faith of the public said. Do you believe that Jesus is the Son of God, believers to die is to save sinners, to play the sins of sinners? If no such confidence, he does not belong to Christ's. If there is confidence that the person who belong to Christ. All God's children in the interpretation of the truth can have many different views, but the fundamental beliefs but for the same. Do not have faith that people have nothing to do with us; have this faith to our brethren have. We can not expect less than this, less than a Christian would be to mix in it. We can not expect more than this, more will be the true Christians off outside.

(F) a dip

Was baptized in it? Is watering it? Is the dip for a while? Is immersed three times it? Water when the surface is facing up it? Or, bending it? Baptist plenty of style, as if it were point to really make a lot of Christians are separated from the outside. The dip here is what does that mean? Paul said, 『Christ divided? Paul crucified for you it? You are the instructions from Paul baptized in the name of it? 』(13 Cor.) From this view, the meaning of a dip, that you whose name baptism is a baptism. Whether you are a wash, dip, and sprinkling; is a Baptist, and dip three times: it was down, is facing up, is spiritual, is water, which are not matter; important thing is, you are Bong who is baptized in the name. If you are baptized in the name of the Lord enough. The meaning of a dip, that is, the name of the Lord Baptist suffered. If the person baptized is the name of the Lord, for they are our brethren. To the biblical point of view, baptism is right. But Paul is not here, pay attention to this. Paul's attention, but men whose name is baptized. If the person is baptized in the name of Christ, that is combined into one.

(G) a God

Do you believe do not believe in God? You believe God is not your father do? With what we believe is a God, and what we believe is a parent of the same. The God, the Father of all, above all on, and through all being, but also all the people living in within us. He is above us, among us, is in us. What we believe is God who have a personality? God is the transcendent? Is not this God is your Father? If what we believe is a God is not the case, we are not Christians. If we all believe this is the Father of all, there are personal transcendent God, for we have no reason to separate.

More than these seven, but the total of all the churches in the industry. But as we test on people, to see whether he is a Christian. We are also united as a Christian basis. Any Christian, regardless of when the people which is in that land, he meant to taste these seven people. Because we all are the reason there are these seven, we were ruthlessly links these seven together. But the Holy Spirit used these seven seven-strand ropes, all ancient and modern Chinese and foreign believers will be tightly tied together, will they join in a group can not be dissolved. In which the Holy Spirit to give us a spiritual unity, but also in the same seven-up indicates that this unity. We Christians do different things between, but those who can not are we, not separate us, because we like the same in the seven, with no way to cancel the similarities. But the unity of these seven sacred, forever. Spiritual, beyond everything. That we can make these seven Christians, and we also put on the seven different kind of people will never combined together. Can destroy the world, time can be in the past, these seven are forever, we combined the seven people to each other can never be separated.

More than another one if we are wrong to immediately be turned into a sectarian. If you said, people must believe in baptism, or believe to be mentioned in the pre-disaster, or believe in the outpouring of the Holy Spirit, or believe that a holy truth, you only, and he has traffic, it is too much. God only allowed to the unity of the seven samples to test whether our brother. Our unity can not be outside of these seven conditions attached. As long as people have this kind of unity of seven, he naturally is the Church. We want to see one thing, all have this kind of unity of seven, is the Church. Seven people have this kind of one to the council, no matter what he is who he is our brother. He is not in the council, the council, is his own business, he has made of light, he will naturally see what is right and what is wrong. We are not no-one as a non-sectarian, as the conditions, but that kind of where the seven people who are our brothers, and we should strive toward their conservative one heart, to get where they are not sectarian. This is very critical.

Our unity is not based on the truth of the church, not based on sectarian out, standing aloof on the status, but whether people like the seven sacred unity is based. In other words, is to see them in the seven samples as we are not the same as last. If the person on the seven samples, like us, regardless of other things to be different, like he always is our brother. (From the work of Rethinking Chapter)
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Old 02-03-2011, 09:11 PM   #2
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I'm reading the same message in my copy of Nee's "The Normal Christian Church Life". On page 74 of my copy, the second paragraph, Nee shares that:

"If in any given place anyone believes on the Lord, as a matter of course he is a constituent of the church in that place; there is no further step neccessary in order to make him a constituent. No subsequent joining is required of him. Provided he belongs to the Lord, he already belongs to the church in that locality; and since he already belongs to the church, his belonging cannot be made subject to any condition. If, before recognizing a believer as a member of the church, we insist that he join us, or that he resign his connection elsewhere, then "our church" is decidedly not one of the churches of God."

Amen to that!

It is entirely a wonder and a shame that this Truth is neither recognized nor practiced by the organization that seeks to claim Nee as one of their own. I do believe, honestly, that were Nee alive today, he would be called an "Opposer".
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Old 02-04-2011, 01:46 PM   #3
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[QUOTE= I do believe, honestly, that were Nee alive today, he would be called an "Opposer".[/QUOTE]

AGREE!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 02-04-2011, 04:10 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by NeitherFirstnorLast View Post
I'm reading the same message in my copy of Nee's "The Normal Christian Church Life". On page 74 of my copy, the second paragraph, Nee shares that:

"If in any given place anyone believes on the Lord, as a matter of course he is a constituent of the church in that place; there is no further step neccessary in order to make him a constituent. No subsequent joining is required of him. Provided he belongs to the Lord, he already belongs to the church in that locality; and since he already belongs to the church, his belonging cannot be made subject to any condition. If, before recognizing a believer as a member of the church, we insist that he join us, or that he resign his connection elsewhere, then "our church" is decidedly not one of the churches of God."

Amen to that!

It is entirely a wonder and a shame that this Truth is neither recognized nor practiced by the organization that seeks to claim Nee as one of their own. I do believe, honestly, that were Nee alive today, he would be called an "Opposer".
Nice quote. Many of us came into the LRC with this understanding, and have watched it morph as men have tried to establish a kingdom for themselves and make merchandise of the saints.
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Old 02-05-2011, 08:42 AM   #5
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From the Normal Christian Church Life
Quote:
"If in any given place anyone believes on the Lord, as a matter of course he is a constituent of the church in that place; there is no further step necessary in order to make him a constituent. No subsequent joining is required of him. Provided he belongs to the Lord, he already belongs to the church in that locality; and since he already belongs to the church, his belonging cannot be made subject to any condition. If, before recognizing a believer as a member of the church, we insist that he join us, or that he resign his connection elsewhere, then "our church" is decidedly not one of the churches of God."
If you remove a little from the first sentence, you have "If ... anyone believes on the Lord, as a matter of course he is a constituent of the church...." This is a true statement. Now Nee was really quite generous in his additions, but he still added something not required. He added "in any given place" and "in that place." But the statement is true without any place at all. Being a constituent of the church in the terms that he is using is not dependent on place, or even time.

For purposes of actually meeting together, there surely is a place. But two sentences later he more clearly says "in that locality" and further confines the discussion to the "ground of locality" that he has already created. He does say that we should not insist that any Christian "resign his connection elsewhere" or "join us." But what is missing from this paragraph is the part where he defines the "right way" that he is not going to insist upon. That is left to Lee who does insist upon it, even somewhat adding it to the basics of the faith. I know some have asked where that was, so I will try to find it again.
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Old 02-05-2011, 10:14 AM   #6
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later he more clearly says "in that locality" and further confines the discussion to the "ground of locality" that he has already created. He does say that we should not insist that any Christian "resign his connection elsewhere" or "join us." But what is missing from this paragraph is the part where he defines the "right way" that he is not going to insist upon. That is left to Lee who does insist upon it, even somewhat adding it to the basics of the faith. I know some have asked where that was, so I will try to find it again.
Nee's definition of a "local church" is not the definition Lee later gave it. The only thing Nee's "local church" and Lee's "Local Church" TM Have in common are the consonants and vowels in the two words.

I went on reading in the NCCL, consider:

"what is true of the universal church is also true of a local church. The universal Church comprises all those who have the oneness of the Spirit. The local church comprises all those who, in a given locality, have the oneness of the Spirit..."

"How are we going to determine who are our brothers and fellow members in the Church of God? Not by inquiring if they hold the same doctrinal views that we hold, or have had the same spiritual experiences; nor by seeing if their customs, manner of living, interests, and preferences tally with our. We merely inquire, are they indwelt by the Spirit of God or not? We cannot insist on oneness of opinions, or oneness of experience, or any other oneness..."

"Denominations are not scriptural, and we ought to have no part in them, BUT if we adopt an attitude of criticism and think "They are denominational; I am undenominational. They belong to sects, I belong to Christ alone" such differentiation is DEFINITELY Sectarian."

"... my fellowship is not merely with those who say, "I am of Christ", but with all who ARE of Christ.... Although these (other believers) say they are of Paul, of Cephas, and of Apollos, yet in FACT they are of Christ. I do not so much mind what they say, but I very much mind what they are.... they are my brethren."

"Our fellowship must with all the believers in a locality, not merely with all the 'un'sectarian believers in that locality. They may make denonminational differences, but we must not make undenominational requirements."


Last weekend I took my family to "Breakforth Canada" in Edmonton, where 15,000 Christians came for a missions conference. Do you know what I saw there? The most real and true expression of the Church Life as Nee foresaw it - a meeting together, a blending, of believers who hold only this in common: The Spirit of God indwelling them!

Praise the Lord! HE is doing the Recovery.... He is doing the building!


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Old 02-05-2011, 11:03 AM   #7
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Default Re: Accepting and Receiving Believers in Christ

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
From the Normal Christian Church Life
If you remove a little from the first sentence, you have "If ... anyone believes on the Lord, as a matter of course he is a constituent of the church...." This is a true statement. Now Nee was really quite generous in his additions, but he still added something not required. He added "in any given place" and "in that place." But the statement is true without any place at all. Being a constituent of the church in the terms that he is using is not dependent on place, or even time.

For purposes of actually meeting together, there surely is a place. But two sentences later he more clearly says "in that locality" and further confines the discussion to the "ground of locality" that he has already created. He does say that we should not insist that any Christian "resign his connection elsewhere" or "join us." But what is missing from this paragraph is the part where he defines the "right way" that he is not going to insist upon. That is left to Lee who does insist upon it, even somewhat adding it to the basics of the faith. I know some have asked where that was, so I will try to find it again.
When Nee was speaking the teaching in the greater part of Christianity was that all believers are members of the "spiritual church" and that we are all one in the spiritual church. In this book Nee makes it clear that he thinks we need a more practical oneness. For example, if I only meet with people who agree with me I will never be challenged. But, if I fellowship with OBW he will challenge me, and we will be forced to dig deeper. Can we still be one even though we disagree? In my experience it is brothers and fellowship like this that causes me to stretch forward. Also, there are verses, such as wherever two or three meet together in my name -- clearly this verse is talking about a particular place and a particular time. We can discuss the church in terms of eternity, and we can also discuss it in terms of time and place.
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Old 02-05-2011, 11:09 AM   #8
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Originally Posted by NeitherFirstnorLast View Post
Nee's definition of a "local church" is not the definition Lee later gave it. The only thing Nee's "local church" and Lee's "Local Church" TM Have in common are the consonants and vowels in the two words.

I went on reading in the NCCL, consider:

"what is true of the universal church is also true of a local church. The universal Church comprises all those who have the oneness of the Spirit. The local church comprises all those who, in a given locality, have the oneness of the Spirit..."

Good point. Thanks.

"How are we going to determine who are our brothers and fellow members in the Church of God? Not by inquiring if they hold the same doctrinal views that we hold, or have had the same spiritual experiences; nor by seeing if their customs, manner of living, interests, and preferences tally with our. We merely inquire, are they indwelt by the Spirit of God or not? We cannot insist on oneness of opinions, or oneness of experience, or any other oneness..."

Great point, especially for these forums. We don't all agree, we don't have the same experiences, or opinions, but we still can and should be one.

"Denominations are not scriptural, and we ought to have no part in them, BUT if we adopt an attitude of criticism and think "They are denominational; I am undenominational. They belong to sects, I belong to Christ alone" such differentiation is DEFINITELY Sectarian."

Wow, many of us including TC are saying this about the LRC. Thanks.

"... my fellowship is not merely with those who say, "I am of Christ", but with all who ARE of Christ.... Although these (other believers) say they are of Paul, of Cephas, and of Apollos, yet in FACT they are of Christ. I do not so much mind what they say, but I very much mind what they are.... they are my brethren."

"Our fellowship must with all the believers in a locality, not merely with all the 'un'sectarian believers in that locality. They may make denonminational differences, but we must not make undenominational requirements."

Great point, one of the big issues with the LRC is that they have cut themselves off from other Christians.


Last weekend I took my family to "Breakforth Canada" in Edmonton, where 15,000 Christians came for a missions conference. Do you know what I saw there? The most real and true expression of the Church Life as Nee foresaw it - a meeting together, a blending, of believers who hold only this in common: The Spirit of God indwelling them!

Don't forget the prophesy, the church in Philadelphia will be here at the Lord's return. The fact that the LRC has become Laodicea through their pride does not negate this prophesy, on the contrary it helps confirm it.

Praise the Lord! HE is doing the Recovery.... He is doing the building!


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Thank you for this word.
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Old 02-05-2011, 12:43 PM   #9
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Can we still be one even though we disagree?
Amen brother! Yes we can! Following is a New Testament example in John and Simon Peter.

Peter, turning around, saw the disciple whom Jesus loved following them; the one who also had leaned back on His bosom at the supper and said, "Lord, who is the one who betrays You?" So Peter seeing him said to Jesus, "Lord, and what about this man ?" John 21:20-21

Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the ninth hour, the hour of prayer. And a man who had been lame from his mother's womb was being carried along, whom they used to set down every day at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, in order to beg alms of those who were entering the temple. When he saw Peter and John about to go into the temple, he began asking to receive alms. Acts 3:1-3

These verses in Acts gives an example of two brothers who couldn't be anymore different, going up to the temple together.
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Old 02-05-2011, 05:17 PM   #10
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Saints, I just need to share this too as I read it:

NCCL Page 90 "To have constant and close association with people whose interpretation of Scripture does not tally with ours, is hard for the flesh, but good for the spirit."

"Oh, for Christian tolerance! Oh, for largeness of heart! Alas! that many of God's children are so zealous for their pet doctrines that they immediately label as heretics, and treat accordingly, all whose interpretation of Scripture differs from theirs. God would have us walk in love toward all who hold views contrary to those views that are dear to us."

"(You cannot have) division based upon doctrine. My teaching my be right or it may be wrong, but if I make it a cause of division, then I am guilty of the heresy spoken of here (Galatian 5:20)."

I am guilty too, saints, of wanting very much to soothe my flesh and walk away from the brothers and sisters whom I've come to know because they hold views (specifically regarding the teachings of Lee), that I cannot hold anymore.... but it is good for the spirit, to continue to speak to them the Truth in love - for they too are indwelt by Him. We are called to be light, and salt... not just to the World but to our fellow members of the Body of Christ.

NCCL page 87 "...we must maintain an attitude of inclusiveness, not exclusiveness, towards those believers who are in different sects, for they, as we, are children of God... therefore, they belong to the same church as we do."
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Old 02-05-2011, 05:19 PM   #11
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Quote: "Don't forget the prophesy, the church in Philadelphia will be here at the Lord's return. The fact that the LRC has become Laodicea through their pride does not negate this prophesy, on the contrary it helps confirm it."

Amen. So it does. Even so Lord Jesus, the Spirit and the Bride say "Come!"
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Old 02-06-2011, 11:33 AM   #12
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Nee's definition of a "local church" is not the definition Lee later gave it. The only thing Nee's "local church" and Lee's "Local Church" TM Have in common are the consonants and vowels in the two words.
I will concede that Nee's definition is not entirely the same. But it is more the same than you seem to see. You quoted some of Nee's words that evidence it to me.
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"Denominations are not scriptural, and we ought to have no part in them, BUT if we adopt an attitude of criticism and think "They are denominational; I am undenominational. They belong to sects, I belong to Christ alone" such differentiation is DEFINITELY Sectarian."
The only sense in which denominations are not scriptural is that they are not spoken of in scripture. But neither is the internet. The real problem is not in the banding together, but in the dividing. And Nee does rightly say that when I speak to point out the differences, then I am the one making separation.

But when Nee said that denominations are not scriptural, he meant that they are simply incorrect. He is only one step removed from the ones he chastises. How do you claim to not point out who is and is not denominational yet say that being denominational is against scripture. To step back and then say that you should not care about it is a kind of false humility that masks a position. Nee's position is one thing. He just doesn't fight you about it.

In the same way, he believes that any meeting who are not open to any Christian in any way are being divisive. And his own group would seem to be a model of this. But what if some come among the Little Flock that hold to infant baptism? Who would not remain silent about it? Who even push it? There eventually will be a position taken by the group to either silence them or send them on their way.

And that is the way it should be. But because of that, even the Little Flock is sectarian. It does hold to certain doctrines. But it speaks as if it does not and that others are incorrect for doing so.

That is the problem.

And you are correct to point out that Lee makes a much bigger deal about it all. But the underlying definitions are the same.
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Old 02-06-2011, 11:41 AM   #13
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NCCL Page 90 "To have constant and close association with people whose interpretation of Scripture does not tally with ours, is hard for the flesh, but good for the spirit."

"Oh, for Christian tolerance! Oh, for largeness of heart! Alas! that many of God's children are so zealous for their pet doctrines that they immediately label as heretics, and treat accordingly, all whose interpretation of Scripture differs from theirs. God would have us walk in love toward all who hold views contrary to those views that are dear to us."
And in these I do see an aspect of Nee's heart that was right. It may not be necessarily good for us to be in a state of warring positions with no rudder. But it is very good for us to see more than proofs of the correctness of our pre-defined positions and never even consider the alternatives and their reasoning. In that environment we can never have any hope of certainty. We must start outside our belief and find our way to it.

And unfortunately, Lee excluded any alternative consideration. So within the LRC we did not come to believe anything. We were told what we believed and we said "whatever you say, sir!"
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Old 02-06-2011, 01:33 PM   #14
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I will concede that Nee's definition is not entirely the same. But it is more the same than you seem to see. You quoted some of Nee's words that evidence it to me.
The only sense in which denominations are not scriptural is that they are not spoken of in scripture.

3For ye are yet carnal: for whereas there is among you envying, and strife, and divisions, are ye not carnal, and walk as men?

4For while one saith, I am of Paul; and another, I am of Apollos; are ye not carnal

I think 1 Cor 3:3-4 is speaking of denominations. You might not think so, still to say that there is no discussion of denominations in Scripture is certainly not an agreed on point.


But neither is the internet.

I disagree. Matt 24:27 For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be

This prophecy of the end of the age says that communication around the world will be at the speed of light, this includes all telecommunications. Then in Revelation 13:14 And deceiveth them that dwell on the earth by the means of those miracles which he had power to do in the sight of the beast; saying to them that dwell on the earth, that they should make an image to the beast, which had the wound by a sword, and did live.

15And he had power to give life unto the image of the beast, that the image of the beast should both speak, and cause that as many as would not worship the image of the beast should be killed.

By definition an image that speaks is a "talking picture". The fact that this image can determine who is worshipping and who isn't suggest that it has an intelligence similar to a computer. For John to describe this as "having life" is also an apt description of an internet TV. Internet TV's have just started being sold. I don't think anyone can unequivocally say that this prophecy does not refer to something similar to an internet TV. So even if you don't think it does refer to the internet, to patently say that it doesn't is again a matter of dispute. Finally some consider "the Beast" to be a supercomputer. Again, I think it is an interpretation that has merit and cannot be unequivocally rejected. To say that a "smart phone" or a "smart TV" is an image of a supercomputer that has both life and intellect is probably the best way to describe the current technology to people 2,000 years ago.


The real problem is not in the banding together, but in the dividing. And Nee does rightly say that when I speak to point out the differences, then I am the one making separation.

But when Nee said that denominations are not scriptural, he meant that they are simply incorrect. He is only one step removed from the ones he chastises. How do you claim to not point out who is and is not denominational yet say that being denominational is against scripture. To step back and then say that you should not care about it is a kind of false humility that masks a position. Nee's position is one thing. He just doesn't fight you about it.

This is a good question and there is certainly one possible answer. Consider Matthew 7:1-6. Verse 1 says judge not lest ye be judged. Then he talks about taking the beam out of your own eye before removing the splinter from your brother's eye. And then we have verse 6 "Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet and turn again and rend you." Now I feel that the words "dogs" and "swine" do not actually refer to animals you would see on a farm, but rather to people. That of course is my understanding, and you are free to disagree. But once you consider that Jesus was referring to people how could I discern who a "dog" or a "pig" was without judging? So Matt 7 creates the same conundrum that you have with WN. But the answer is very simple. Jesus never said "do not judge anyone". He said "Judge not, lest you be judged". This prohibits me from judging others but I am still free to judge myself. So I am free to judge myself if I am sectarian or divisive, but with others I should be general. And no, I don't think that is false humility.

In the same way, he believes that any meeting who are not open to any Christian in any way are being divisive. And his own group would seem to be a model of this. But what if some come among the Little Flock that hold to infant baptism? Who would not remain silent about it? Who even push it? There eventually will be a position taken by the group to either silence them or send them on their way.

And that is the way it should be. But because of that, even the Little Flock is sectarian. It does hold to certain doctrines. But it speaks as if it does not and that others are incorrect for doing so.

That is the problem.

And you are correct to point out that Lee makes a much bigger deal about it all. But the underlying definitions are the same.
Regardless of what is what, we still need to gather together and meet with one another. It is not possible that all Christians will meet together so as you have said we are forced to break up into groups. For WN, the leader of one group, to talk in this way to me is reasonable. You see it as judgement on others, I see it as laying out the path that he is going to take. Towards others we need to be very general, but towards ourselves we have to guard against being sectarian.
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Old 02-06-2011, 08:12 PM   #15
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But what if some come among the Little Flock that hold to infant baptism? Who would not remain silent about it? Who even push it? There eventually will be a position taken by the group to either silence them or send them on their way.
Actually Brother, Nee addresses a similar issue on page 90 of this book

NCCL pg 90 "Romans 14 shows us how to deal with those whose views differ from ours. What would we do if in our church there were vegetarians and Sabattarians? Why, we should consider it almost intolerable if in the same church some of the believers kept the Lord's Day and others the Sabbath, and some of the believers at meat freely, while others were strict vegetarians. That was exactly the situation Paul was facing. Let us note his conclusions. "Now him who is weak in faith receive, but not for the purpose of passing judgements on his considerations." ... "Who are you who judge another's household servant? To his own master he stands or falls; and he will be made to stand, for the Lord is able to make him stand" ... "Therefore let us judge one another no longer, but rather judge this: not to put a stumbling block or cause of falling before your brother."

It is only my opinion from what I have read and experienced in Nee's writing, but I do honestly believe that when Lee told us that he was Nee's co-worker, that he was Nee's chosen successor, that he outright lied. For one, I don't believe Nee ever would have chosen a successor. In fact, and I can't find the quote now, but I recall Nee writing something to the effect that "The Lord chooses his apostles and prophets from obscurity, and does not usually choose successors (and I think Elijah and Elisha was the exception he then referred to) - but otherwise he gave examples of all these people greatly used of God that came from nowhere.

Did Lee know Nee? I certainly believe he did. Did he follow in his footsteps? I don't see any evidence of that. This is what baffles me the most: LSM publishes Nee's books - and Nee's books seem to damn everything that LSM has become - I mean, Nee sheds more light on the corrupt condition of LSM than any of the so-called Opposers have... and yet so many members of LSM don't seem to see it - or if they do, they remain silent on the matter.

I have brought this up to many of the brothers and sisters I fellowshipped with now, and NONE of them have answered me. Oh, I have received some emails that say "Brother, I don't see it that way." But that's the end of the argument. There is no "Brother, I think you missed this..." or "missed that..." or "consider this..." All I get is dead silence or one sentence "I don't think so's". Not a single ministry quote and certainly no scripture quotes.

I don't know how much of Nee you have read brother, perhaps a lot more than I and perhaps that's why you see things differently - but I just really want to encourage all of the Saints to consider Nee apart from Lee. I have always heard those in the LSM church say that "Nee thought the World of Lee", or "Nee always prayed for and praised Lee", or "Lee stood on Nee's shoulders"... but those are things Lee said. I haven't found a quote yet where Nee actually said those things. Have I missed them (and I mean that question honestly, is there something I've missed?)

Also, there is a line in the preface of the Normal Christian Church Life that seems out of place. It doesn't read like something Nee would have said, based on what is in the book and what I've read in his other work. It sounds like Lee, a lot like Lee... so if there are earlier copies of this book available somewhere, I'd really like to check that. This is what is in the last line of the Preface:

"One of the prayers I have offered in connection with this book is that the Lord should keep it from those who oppose and would use it as a chart for attack, and also from those who agree and would use it as a manual for service. I dread the latter far mroe than the former."

It seems an odd thing for Nee to have written this, in April of 1939. Who would have opposed? By his own pen, he talks of receiving all other believers... who would he have feared opposing him? He wasn't a "temple builder", like Lee was.... Or am I wrong?

In Christ,

Ray
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Old 02-07-2011, 05:02 AM   #16
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Actually Brother, Nee addresses a similar issue on page 90 of this book...
I agree with you, I do not find myself at odds with WN speaking. But, often I did not understand what WL was saying and so just decided to be general (let it slide until I do understand). More and more it looks like WL pulled the classic Bait and Switch. For example the church in Odessa was formed as a result of a home meeting among christians that were reading WN. They were excited to learn that there were churches in Texas with "the same vision".
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Old 02-07-2011, 07:36 AM   #17
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I have no problem with viewing Nee apart from Lee. Lee was an authoritarian who demanded that his version of "truth" was correct and that all others were wrong. And he found ways to make the scripture condemn those who disagreed with him.

Nee was entirely different. Well, mostly different.

But the difference is mostly in how he pushed his teachings. Nee put them out there and said "take it or leave it." He was even mostly clear that he did not judge people for disagreeing.

But that is not entirely true. When the example of Romans 14 is mentioned in NCCL, Nee agrees that we should not judge. But when examples are given — ones like being vegetarian or Sabattarian — the part that is skipped is what to do if those that hold those views teach them and encourage others with them within your assembly. I realize that these are poor examples. They aren't even points of the faith. And maybe that is exactly what Nee is doing ... tiptoeing around a real controversy by putting out something that is not a currently relevant point. In the 1st century church, following or not following Jewish or even other religious practices was a current challenge.

And Nee soft-pedals on it. But there is no evidence that he ever faced a real conflict of doctrine within his group. He was clear that he had no say over the positions of others (and that is good). But he carries on as if within those accepting his teaching, all will always be accepted.

Now that is clearly different than Lee. But it misses the whole point of whether the teaching that Nee is pushing is actually correct. That is one of the purposes of this forum. So far, some have brought out some nice sounding passages from Nee's books and fallen all over them as if they are manna from heaven.

Every time I open one of Nee's books due to the recommendation of someone on this forum (or the other forum) I keep finding faulty handling of scripture at the very start of each such book. I have read some of Nee, but it has been a long time. So even if I have read it, I have to go back and read again. Since the first chapter is so consistently the place that the premises of the book are introduced, I have carefully observed how he moves from scripture to premise. So far, I have found little to recommend in his findings. Instead, I have found re-writing of scripture to fit the premise, telling stories to provide an overlay that is made to be the way to understand scripture, and mentioning of scripture but little or no effort to demonstrate how the verses connect to or support the premises.

Therefore, despite Nee's entirely better approach to laying his teachings out (not dogmatic and insisting) I tend to find his teachings to be hollow, anecdotal, and even cultural — all wrapped in Christian and scriptural terminology — but not profoundly Christian. The inner-life books might all be acceptable within a Christian framework, but not authoritative. Those that cover things doctrinal and ecclesiological are entirely too removed from actual scriptural support to be taken as serious theology. And even though the word "theology" might be disdained, it is precisely what books like NCCL, Further Talks, Spiritual Authority, and others are.
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Old 02-07-2011, 01:20 PM   #18
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I have no problem with viewing Nee apart from Lee....
If I understand this post you are saying that Nee wasn't a theologian. With both Nee and Lee I did not care for their topical messages, but I got help from both of them on their exegesis. Probably the biggest help was not in "learning" their teachings, but rather learning to focus on a Bible verse word for word. Coming from my background in Christianity I had never heard anyone do this before, all I had ever heard were sermons where the speaker comes up with his thesis and then supports this with Bible verses. Prior to meeting the LRC I had tried to read the Bible (in High school) and couldn't understand it. I felt I needed a crowbar to get into it. When I read my first WN book I felt I had the crowbar I needed. He explained about types and figures and gave examples of how God spoke in a plain word, and in types and figures. He gave examples of how he prophesied once saying that a certain king would be taken to Babylon in chains and then prophesied a second time saying this same king would never see Babylon. (This of course was fulfilled when his eyes were first gouged out, and then he was taken to Babylon in chains). But examples like this taught me not to jump to a conclusion that there was a contradiction in the word, instead I looked for them because they were like little jewels.

To me the goal was to be able to read the Bible for myself, not to learn someone's teaching. I know that brothers like EM specialized in being able to quote all things WL, I never had the slightest interest in that. I never wanted Life Studies or footnotes, I just wanted to be able to open up the Bible and read it. To be fair I have to thank WN as the first brother that truly helped me do that. I could care less if he wasn't a theologian, because I didn't get any help from theologians (this is my very personal experience and should not be extrapolated as some kind of aspersion on all theologians).
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Old 02-08-2011, 08:04 AM   #19
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If I understand this post you are saying that Nee wasn't a theologian. With both Nee and Lee I did not care for their topical messages, but I got help from both of them on their exegesis. Probably the biggest help was not in "learning" their teachings, but rather learning to focus on a Bible verse word for word.
On your first sentence, you are correct. But I'll get to that later.

It would seem that for you the impression of such a vast array of verses brought to bear on any particular subject lead to your own digging into those verses. For many, and in hindsight, for me, the result was that we were impressed with the vast array of verses and concluded that it meant that the position being put to us must be correct. What I have been finding in both Nee and Lee is that there is always a vast array of verses. But I have begun to dismiss much of that array as not actually supporting the premise.

Example. About three years ago there was some discussion concerning a particular chapter of The Economy of God. It had been years since I had read it, and I noted that there were assumed positions used in that chapter, so I went back to the beginning. My first discovery was that the first chapter in which the definition for "economy of God" was provided, there were virtually no verses and the one that really counted was clearly misread, or misinterpreted. Then in chapter two there began to be many verses. But it was like pumping up a point that had been stipulated before a trial began. Virtually none actually spoke to the real point of the chapter. But a whole lot made mention of God the Father (for example). Once the obvious and redundant were excluded, there was not much left. And what was left did little for the premise Lee was trying to support. He was relying on the fact that many references were correctly used to state that God the Father was God made whatever he said about the real point correct. Too many agreements and your defenses go down.

And just because there are a lot of verses, NT and OT, that have a Nee or Lee overlay on it does not make the verses truly relevant. But we accepted them as so.

To the extent that I am now more inclined to really get into what scripture is saying, there might be some truth to the notion that my time in the LRC has influenced me greatly. But it is more in the way of realizing that the local context is very important (and virtually ignored by at least Lee) and that it must be taken into account before things that seem similar from other places in scripture are considered as further information.

And that further information needs to be considered carefully before assuming it is a correct comparison. For example, for Lee, leaven was always bad. Yet when Jesus told the parable of the leaven, the Kingdom was like leaven added to bread. It was not the bread into which something improper was added. And the parable of the mustard seed. In the Middle East, the mustard plant is exactly as described by Jesus. It is not some abnormality for it to grow to be 12 feet tall and have birds in it.

But Lee said it was and we believed it.

And back to the "theologian" issue. Lee clearly stepped off my map as even a reasonable armchair theologian a long time ago. That first chapter of TEOG is just one example. But when we began to discuss certain things by Nee concerning the church, I read into Further Talks on the Church. Same when someone started posting quotes from Spiritual Authority. In both books, Nee took verses and argued that they said things that they clearly did not say. In at least one case he went so far as to replace one word for another — not because it was argued that the Greek, Hebrew and/or Aramaic had been mistranslated, but because he said it really meant the alternate anyway. When I read Sit Walk Stand I realized that it was not a wrong way to categorize the chapters and portray it. But neither was it the way and clearly not the only way. And as I was nearing the end of the "Sit" section, I saw it fairly plainly — wait here until you get enough of something before you move on to stand.

And if the wait was before going forward into battle as a spiritual leader, that is probably quite reasonable. But if it is to wait before you begin to walk according to the Spirit, to put off the evil desires and lusts of the flesh, etc., then other scripture makes it clear that this is not correct. And Nee didn't quite say it so clearly as Lee did. So it may be that he only laid the groundwork but didn't actually go there.

But no matter how much he read, he was mainly doing his "theology" in isolation. He may have had ME Barber to "beat him up" at times, but do we consider her to be some fount of theological wealth? And she surely did not come up with the things that Nee did.

Nee and Lee both pushed one side of the Christian faith. That is the knowledge, spirituality, and worship side. And all the knowledge, spirituality and worship you can do does not evidence true belief in Christ. Belief in Christ requires obedience. It requires that we put the knowledge to work. And that work is not in high meetings and better messages and "truths." It is in how we live our daily life.

I note that Matt 5 actually says that anyone who teaches less that the whole law and keeping it will be last in the kingdom. And while Nee may not have taught that we can ignore it like Lee did, he seems to think that it will fall on you if you do the spiritual stuff enough. That is very inner-life. Then Lee comes along and says that right or wrong is irrelevant if you are in the spirit. That is to directly contradict the Great Commission's command to teach them to obey. It makes obedience irrelevant if you are spiritual.

To the extent that Nee's inner-life teachings help you in your overall walk in life, that is fine. But he is no theologian of true consequence. He is a spinner of tales and overlays. And he did think that God was speaking specially to him and it made his words important because no one else could come up with them. (Read the prefaces and forewords to The Spiritual Man.) And the loose way he danced around the actual scripture, I would agree that no one else would come up with his stuff. And his pupil, Lee, did even more of the same but as an authoritarian and the claim of the one true minister for God.

This is my opinion. But it is not just hollow nay-saying, but from a level of study that keeps finding the same errors every time I look.
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Old 02-09-2011, 08:38 PM   #20
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To the extent that Nee's inner-life teachings help you in your overall walk in life, that is fine. But he is no theologian of true consequence. He is a spinner of tales and overlays. And he did think that God was speaking specially to him and it made his words important because no one else could come up with them.
http://wordnetweb.princeton.edu/perl/webwn?s=theology

Theology: "the rational and systematic study of religion and its influences and of the nature of religious truth."

Rational? Systematic? A study of religion and its influences?

Where is Christ and His life in that? Where in the doctrine and dogma can He be found? Are you certain He is there, because I've spoken with a number of pastors and priests who faithfully attended and even taught seminaries, and of His living, they knew nothing. Their understanding of scripture was very rational. They were, as Pastor Perry Rockwood would call them, "religious but lost". Pharisees could also recite scripture backwards and forwards, and could give you endless interpretations; but when they looked God Himself in the face they didn't even know Him; and they hated what they saw.

Nee would never have wanted to be called a theologian, I am certain of that.

As for God speaking specially to him, doesn't God speak specially to each one of us? Christ said:

John 10:27 "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow Me"

Nee taught this truth as well... and Nee also revealed which brothers and sisters he learned from in his books - and he both commends and recommends them... and he goes further to teach us also to value ALL of our brothers and sisters in Christ, even to the very least of the least of all the saints. He said "God did not give us all the light. If somebody gives us more light, we should be very glad to receive it!”

Brother, I have struggled a great deal with the lack of evangelization, the outward display of our faith for the furtherance of the Kingdom by the preaching of the gospel... But our Lord Jesus Christ said:

John 15:4b "...the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me."

Inner-life teachings are not untrue, brother. Unless we abide in Him, and He in us, we cannot bear fruit. We can rationally apply scripture all we want, there will be no blessing.... But if we abide in Him, and He in us, we will bear fruit. A tree is known by it's fruit. We don't need to know about Christ, brother. We need to know Him.

Nee knew Him.

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Old 02-10-2011, 03:47 PM   #21
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Theology: "the rational and systematic study of religion and its influences and of the nature of religious truth."

Rational? Systematic? A study of religion and its influences?

Where is Christ and His life in that?

....

Nee would never have wanted to be called a theologian, I am certain of that.
First, bringing one of the definitions of theology out and using it to defend Nee not being a theologian does not do him much service. Theology is the totality of the realm of the study of God. Some follow a systematic approach. Others do not. Some lean heavily on the rational while others a kind of Christian mysticism.

And it is true that if your goal is just to get the terms and phrases right and know the stuff, then there is a legitimate question about whether Christ is actually in it other than in name. But most of the true theologians are engaged in their endeavors for the purpose of helping to lead the church forward in its practical and real experience of Christ and in obeying rightly. That is precisely what Nee and even Lee set out to do. Many will disagree with the direction that Nee and Lee took, including the lack of true understanding of the meaning of so much of what they expounded upon, even going so far as to reinterpret it through the lens of their culture and biases. But they took on the role of theologian whether they like the word or not. And since Lee (for sure) basically took his positions regardless of the position of any before him, including Nee, and accepted no help in coming to those positions, he was the worst kind of theologian — one with no base of support or critique.
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As for God speaking specially to him, doesn't God speak specially to each one of us? Christ said:

John 10:27 "My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow Me"
This is not an invitation to the creation of unsupportable theology. (Yeah, you don't like that word. But it is very applicable.)
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Nee taught this truth as well...
"This truth" is what truth? And is it truth? Just because you include scriptural words does not make the totality of the words spoken into "truth."
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Inner-life teachings are not untrue, brother. Unless we abide in Him, and He in us, we cannot bear fruit. We can rationally apply scripture all we want, there will be no blessing.... But if we abide in Him, and He in us, we will bear fruit. A tree is known by it's fruit. We don't need to know about Christ, brother. We need to know Him.
No. Inner-life teachings are not simply untrue. But some of them are untrue. And the way you phrased this little portion I quoted is one of those untruths. It suggests that we should not obey, but rather abide until obedience comes. Scripture is very clear that it is the other way around. Take the following:

John 14:23 “Jesus answered and said unto him, If a man love me, he will keep my words: and my Father will love him, and we will come unto him, and make our abode with him.” This verse makes it clear that the Father and the Son will abide with those who love him (the Son) and keep his words. So what came first? It is clear that the abiding going on here is predicated upon love and obedience.

John 15:10: “If ye keep my commandments, ye shall abide in my love; even as I have kept my Father’s commandments, and abide in his love.” This one is even clearer. It says "keep my commandments" as the predicate for abiding in His love. So there is no real love unless you are keeping his commandments.

John 8:31-32 “To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’ ” I really like this one. You cannot seek your way into the truth that sets you free. You cannot abide your way into the truth that sets you free. You can only "hold" your way to that truth. And to hold to teachings is not to defend them, or assent to their truth, but to obey them. So once again, obedience precedes truth. That is the truth.

Now when it comes to evangelizing, it may be true that you must be at the point of abiding before you can bear this kind of fruit. But fruit is of all kinds. It is in kindness, meekness, gentleness, long suffering, etc. Much of this is what we are commanded when you properly understand how to love your neighbor as yourself, or even keep the 10 commandments.

Obedience is what is commanded of us. Read the "Great Commission." Go. Disciple. Baptize. Teach to Obey. Not a word about abiding. Nothing about teaching the truth that sets them free. If you read back through John, you will find that those who follow and obey are given much — abiding, truth, the light of life, God's love. Those do not come first. They are the results.

It seems too clear that those who are obeying have the abiding. So abiding is not something that you seek to do independently. It is a truth if you are obeying. If you are not obeying, it is not happening.

And this is where the overall effect of inner-life teachings goes astray. They are too focused on seeking after the mystical things. Seeking after the results of obedience and following without obeying or following, but by seeking the result of them anyway. If they would obey and follow, they would find that they do not need to seek those things. It will be theirs.

The problem is that they have redefined too many of the things into something mystical that could never arise from such a simple action as obedience. They need to make it into something that is a feeling and is achieved by doing mental/spiritual things. That is a fraud and a distraction.
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Nee knew Him.
At some level, I cannot disagree. But he did not know Him so well that he could expound not being into being in terms of his theology.
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Old 02-10-2011, 07:39 PM   #22
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"Today if you have left the denominations and have seen the church, then only the Word of God can be the standard. Consider a brother who is born again. Can you say that he is not a brother? He is a brother if he knows the truth clearly, and he is still a brother if he does not know the truth clearly. If he stays at home he is my brother, and if he falls into the ditch by the street he is still my brother. If there is a problem, I can only blame my Father for begetting him. The special characteristic of Philadelphia is brotherly love—today this way is the only way for us to walk. But we should never have this kind of attitude: I love the brothers who are clear and the brothers who are lovable, but those who are not lovable I will not love. Whether he is clear or not, that is his business. We should never say, "You are a rebellious one." What we see this year, we did not see last year. Perhaps next year he will also see what we have seen this year. While he reads the Bible, the Lord will also show him the light. God's heart is great; so ours must also be great. We must learn to have a heart that is large enough to include all of God's children. Whenever we say "we" and yet do not include all the children of God, we are the biggest sect, for we are not standing in the position of brotherly love but exalting ourselves. The way of Philadelphia is the way we must take. The difficulty lies in the fact that Philadelphia includes all the brothers, yet some are not able to include as much."

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Old 02-10-2011, 10:34 PM   #23
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most of the true theologians are engaged in their endeavors for the purpose of helping to lead the church forward in its practical and real experience of Christ and in obeying rightly.
Who then do you judge to be a true theologian, and who else do you judge to be false?


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....It suggests that we should not obey, but rather abide until obedience comes.... obey them... So once again, obedience precedes truth.... keep the 10 commandments... Obedience is what is commanded of us. Teach to Obey... those who are obeying have the abiding... It is a truth if you are obeying. If you are not obeying, it is not happening... Seeking after the results of obedience... If they would obey...
...a simple action as obedience.
Brother, you put a great deal of emphasis on obedience; and it is true that we are to be doers of His Word and not hearers only - but I wonder at the theology you have arrived at here, for the emphasis seems entirely not on what Christ has done for us, but on what we must accomplish for Christ. That is a heavy, heavy burden - and I fear none of us are up to that challenge, nor ever will be.

Do you believe we can keep the 10 Commandments? No one in the Bible apart from Christ Himself has ever been able to do that.

Do you believe you can keep them brother? Do you believe you need to keep them before He will abide in you? I know I cannot keep them, and thank the Lord for His cleansing blood and atoneing sacrifice for my sins - for without Him I am as nothing. I need to turn to Him constantly to try to keep my feet to the narrow path and not mistep; and by the Holy Spirit in me He keeps my way lit, and reproves me when I am wrong. No brother, the Law is still in effect - but it's effect is to condemn, for none can keep it.

2 Corinthians 3:6 "He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant – not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life."

Paul understood that the letter of the law brings us to the knowledge that we cannot live a holy life in our own selves. We need God’s Spirit to help us and we need Christ’s forgiveness and the Father’s constant mercy toward us.

In Christ,

Ray
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Old 02-11-2011, 05:57 AM   #24
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Brother, you put a great deal of emphasis on obedience; and it is true that we are to be doers of His Word and not hearers only - but I wonder at the theology you have arrived at here, for the emphasis seems entirely not on what Christ has done for us, but on what we must accomplish for Christ. That is a heavy, heavy burden - and I fear none of us are up to that challenge, nor ever will be.
Christ has done much for us. And he gives it to us based on our belief. But belief is not something that you did, but something that you do.

And belief is not just about accepting that the things Christ did were true. It is not arguing for them. It is in obeying. And I say obeying because much of what he said was commands to be obeyed. It is too clear that to read it in some other way means you have to ignore the obvious meaning and find another. I know that someone will point out that some verse says that God has hidden his riches such that not everyone will find them. Yet it is funny how virtually no one seems to think that the clear reading is correct. That makes me wonder if that is the reason that they are not finding it. They think that forcing some metaphor, overlay, or ill-fitting clothes on the verses will reveal the truth when it is right there in front of them and only those who approach it with the simplicity of a child can see it.

And there is no simplicity in almost any inner-life teaching. Especially those from Nee and Lee. Even with all the claims that "this is simply that."
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Do you believe we can keep the 10 Commandments? No one in the Bible apart from Christ Himself has ever been able to do that.
So you have an excuse for disobedience.
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Paul understood that the letter of the law brings us to the knowledge that we cannot live a holy life in our own selves. We need God’s Spirit to help us and we need Christ’s forgiveness and the Father’s constant mercy toward us.
But that is not all that Paul said. Most of the "you can't do it" understanding that we think we get from Paul is actually misunderstanding. He was very clear in Romans 8. Right after painting such a bleak picture of our ability to do it on our own, he said "Hallelujah!" followed by "we are freed from the law of sin and death by the law of life." But he didn't stop there, he almost immediately said that we fulfill the righteousness of the law by walking according to the Spirit. And he said that where we set our mind is the key. We have a choice to set our minds to disobedience (set the mind on the flesh — the place that cannot do it) or set it on the Spirit which aids us to fulfill that righteousness rather the lusts of the flesh.

And Peter said the same thing when he said that we have everything required for godliness. He did not mean for spiritual, ethereal, inner-life activities. He meant righteousness. And he did not suggest that we lacked and should seek for something more before we try to do it. Sort of like a Pentecostal seeking after the "gift of the Holy Ghost with evidence of speaking in tongues." Until you have it, you will simply fail according to much of their theology. I've been there and have some knowledge of it.

Jesus said that if you actually believe then you obey. And if you obey, then there is an abiding. In that abiding the rest can happen. You are saying that we can skip over the obedience part and go straight to the abiding and that it will eventually fill in the righteousness for you. Scripture does not say that. It says that if A (obedience) then B (abiding, God's love, truth that set us free). You are busy trying to do it the other way around. You are trying to find a way to obtain abiding, God's love, and truth without obeying. Jesus gave the way and you seek another.
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Old 02-11-2011, 11:06 AM   #25
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But he didn't stop there, he almost immediately said that we fulfill the righteousness of the law by walking according to the Spirit.
Amen brother, and to walk according to the Spirit you first need His indwelling presence - without which you cannot possibly hope to fulfill the righteousness of the Law.

....And that is no excuse. Christ came to heal the sick, and not for the 'righteous' Pharisees, who by their own estimation needed no physician - because they were the very best of all the theologians.
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Old 02-12-2011, 08:48 AM   #26
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There is self righteousness that masks itself as obedience. It is just disobedience dressed up in religion. True obedience of faith, first of all requires the heavenly vision! "I has not disobedient to the heavenly vision" Acts 26:19.

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Old 02-12-2011, 09:03 AM   #27
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Amen brother, and to walk according to the Spirit you first need His indwelling presence - without which you cannot possibly hope to fulfill the righteousness of the Law.

....And that is no excuse. Christ came to heal the sick, and not for the 'righteous' Pharisees, who by their own estimation needed no physician - because they were the very best of all the theologians.
And where do we get his indwelling presence? Do we have to do spiritual things for it? The answers I find in scripture are at two levels. First, there is the kind of indwelling that comes with belief. We receive the Holy Spirit at that time. The second is the kind that is linked to obedience. And in the kind of scenario that Paul describes in Romans 8, the obedience and indwelling occur together. Paul does not say to wait for indwelling that will enable you to do it. He effectively says to trust in the one who will enable you, agree that it is true, and step out to do it with the understanding that you have his aid for the job. It is not wait for it to fall on you. Neither is it simply do it and hope he eventually comes along and helps you out. It is step out in the assurance that He is helping you as you take that first step.

And as I have recently said in another place, if you are busy doing spiritual/mystical things without obedience you are not engaged in a Christian/scriptural endeavor. If you are seeking the truth to set you free so that you will then obey, you will not find the truth. If you are seeking to abide in Christ so that you can eventually obey, then you are not abiding. Read the verses. John 8, John 14, Romans 8. Read Peter. We have what is needed for godliness. If you seek something more before you act in obedience, then you are seeking something that is not of God. It may look like it is of God. It may be described in the terms of scripture. But it is not truly of God because He says that you only get there the other way around.

Don't think that this is old-hat to me. I am just coming to realize this. And I cannot say that I am succeeding at it in all ways. Far form it. But I see where 38 years of wrong thinking dies hard. That wrong thinking was put in my by the LRC. 14.5 years of it. But it didn't just go away over the next 23.5 years. I see in another post where you mention some LRC theology as being wrong. So I have a little idea that you are outside of that system. But even after all these years, that system is still lurking in me. How is it still lurking in you? I am not entirely sure that I see what I am now speaking about clearly enough to say it is obviously true. But it is looking more and more that way to me.

And hearing those old LRC phrases like "the 10 commandments were never intended to be obeyed" are just plain wrong. (You did not say that.) It is obvious that we are not, in ourselves, able to truly obey them. But we were given that yardstick for more than just to prove we could not. We were expected to try, fail, and repent to God. Then, after Jesus came, we were expected to believe into Christ and get the source of power to actually fulfill them. And a lot more. Like don't even look on another woman with lust (as an example that is stated clearly in scripture).

With so much power at our disposal to live God's righteousness, why do we continue to say we cannot and sit around in defeat, seeking after alternate sources of power? It is, in part, because snake oil salesmen have convinced us that we need the truth that sets us free first, then we will be able to obey. But scripture says otherwise. It says that if we obey, then the truth that sets us free is ours. Doing it the other way around is to search the scriptures to find God, but ignore God standing in front of you.
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Old 02-12-2011, 09:11 AM   #28
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There is self righteousness that masks itself as obedience. It is just disobedience dressed up in religion. True obedience of faith, first of all requires the heavenly vision! "I has not disobedient to the heavenly vision" Acts 26:19.
And with this twisted view of how real Christians get it right, true obedience is dismissed as "religion" (meaning the definition from Lee's lexicon) and is scorned. Instead you seek to find truth to set you free while declaring that you will not obey because it is just religion. Well, that "religion" is actually following the words of scripture. Your "superior" religion is not. I'm not sure what god you follow. Your god denies the words of scripture. He just wants people falling prostrate before him all day long. And your god wants you to write your own scripture — scripture with no real reference to what we know to be true scripture.
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Old 02-12-2011, 09:29 AM   #29
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And with this twisted view of how real Christians get it right, true obedience is dismissed as "religion" (meaning the definition from Lee's lexicon) and is scorned. Instead you seek to find truth to set you free while declaring that you will not obey because it is just religion. Well, that "religion" is actually following the words of scripture. Your "superior" religion is not. I'm not sure what god you follow. Your god denies the words of scripture. He just wants people falling prostrate before him all day long. And your god wants you to write your own scripture — scripture with no real reference to what we know to be true scripture.

What did I say I would not obey? You say I do not obey. Sounds very much like the accuser of the brothers in my ears. Are you in obedience as you hurl out insults and accusations accusing me of disobedience?

"I was not disobedient to the heavely vision".

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Old 02-12-2011, 09:40 AM   #30
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What did I say I would not obey? You say I do not obey. Sounds very much like the accuser of the brothers in my ears. Are you in obedience as you hurl out insults and accusations accusing me of disobedience?

"I was not disobedient to the heavely vision".
Yes, you did mention one thing that you would obey. And you take those words as if they are tied to a command to ignore all other aspects of obedience.

Why do I say this? Because you belittle and despise those who obey in what you term to be "lesser things." But Jesus did not term them in that manner. He said that it was all to be obeyed. Yet you despise it if it is not something ethereal, like a "heavenly vision." You will obey that. But you are busy defining your reasons for not obeying the other things.
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Old 02-12-2011, 10:02 AM   #31
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Yes, you did mention one thing that you would obey. And you take those words as if they are tied to a command to ignore all other aspects of obedience.

Why do I say this? Because you belittle and despise those who obey in what you term to be "lesser things." But Jesus did not term them in that manner. He said that it was all to be obeyed. Yet you despise it if it is not something ethereal, like a "heavenly vision." You will obey that. But you are busy defining your reasons for not obeying the other things.

There is no obedience to or in "lesser things" without full time obedience to and in the greater and first things.....Love the Lord with all your heart and all your soul and all your strength and love your neighbor as yourself. To do this we must see the Lord beyond the power of our own heart and soul and strength and we must see Him in others as in ourselves. To do this requires the divine intervention of faith. To do this requires the revelation of His son in us in all things! I despise all spirits that teach an "obedience" that is not first of all and forever found in the heavenly vision of His appearings within and around.

Hey, it's good to dance with you Michael, in the steps of the faith of the obedient on this sabbath of the Jews.

We write in the name of Jesus Christ.

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Old 02-12-2011, 03:31 PM   #32
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And where do we get his indwelling presence? Do we have to do spiritual things for it? The answers I find in scripture are at two levels. First, there is the kind of indwelling that comes with belief. We receive the Holy Spirit at that time. The second is the kind that is linked to obedience. And in the kind of scenario that Paul describes in Romans 8, the obedience and indwelling occur together. Paul does not say to wait for indwelling that will enable you to do it. He effectively says to trust in the one who will enable you, agree that it is true, and step out to do it with the understanding that you have his aid for the job. It is not wait for it to fall on you. Neither is it simply do it and hope he eventually comes along and helps you out. It is step out in the assurance that He is helping you as you take that first step.
Amen! Yes, have assurance that He will give you what you need, when you need it. I have never suggested we ought not do works - I have stated however, that we are Saved not by works; but for works. Again, be doers of the Word, and not hearers only. At the same time, realize that Christ's command to His disciples upon leaving them was for them to wait in Jerusalem for that day of Pentecost, when they would be filled with the Holy Spirit and could then go forth and fulfill His commands with the Power of the Holy Spirit. They could not go out before hand, and Christ knew they could not. Therefore He asked them to wait for the coming of the Holy Spirit, poured out from on High by the The Father.


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And as I have recently said in another place, if you are busy doing spiritual/mystical things without obedience you are not engaged in a Christian/scriptural endeavor. If you are seeking the truth to set you free so that you will then obey, you will not find the truth.
Amen! Again, I agree. I have said that I have been distraught by the lack of Christian works within the LSM churches. There is no call to, say, aid the people of Haiti as they rebuild - all the while evangelizing them. Even the Bibles for America and Bibles for Canada program, which seem on the surface to be healthy Gospel preaching, really have a second purpose: To spread the work of LSM. The Bibles are free to those who receive them, but as LSM is the printer (as sole owner of Bibles for America), and since the 'local churches' pay for those bibles, really - this is again a matter of Mammon. Although the Gospel may be spread, one must question the motives of the heart when it is done is such a way as this. The Word gives life, and we do not need the words of man to add to it. But I digress.... No brother, in this I agree with you: It is wrong to teach that to sit back and "enjoy" is the sole purpose of the Christian life. Such Christians are of no use to the Lord, and He testifies to this in His Word to those in Laodicea.


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And hearing those old LRC phrases like "the 10 commandments were never intended to be obeyed" are just plain wrong. (You did not say that.) It is obvious that we are not, in ourselves, able to truly obey them. But we were given that yardstick for more than just to prove we could not. We were expected to try, fail, and repent to God. Then, after Jesus came, we were expected to believe into Christ and get the source of power to actually fulfill them. And a lot more. Like don't even look on another woman with lust (as an example that is stated clearly in scripture).

With so much power at our disposal to live God's righteousness, why do we continue to say we cannot and sit around in defeat, seeking after alternate sources of power? It is, in part, because snake oil salesmen have convinced us that we need the truth that sets us free first, then we will be able to obey. But scripture says otherwise. It says that if we obey, then the truth that sets us free is ours. Doing it the other way around is to search the scriptures to find God, but ignore God standing in front of you.
Brother, in Christ I love you - though I don't know you as a person in flesh and blood I know you by the passion you exhibit here. Please don't take anything I have written to you as a criticism. It would be wrong of me to criticize you, as you are a child of God no less than am I. And I too struggle - we all do; it is normal Christian living. If there is no struggle, as even Paul testified to (the things I do I do not want to do, and the things I want to do I do not do), then I cannot imagine that the life of Christ is there at all.

Brother, I amen 99% of what you say, my only concern (and perhaps I am wrong in my understanding of what you have written), is that you are placing the emphasis on the doing before the indwelling presence of God - which, if we truly have it, ought to be that which motivates us to do. A tree is known by it's fruit - and if we have Him in us; if the branch Abides in the vine, it ought to produce fruit. There are many we both know who produce no fruit, but who might talk a very good game. They certainly sound like they're really abiding, and certainly may act like it, but there is no blessing. We are given discernment in a certain measure - and the more time we spend with Him, in His Word, in His presence in prayer, the more discernment we may be given. With this discernment we might see that there is no evidence of the life of God in some. When we see this, we need to encourage them - and pray for them - and trust that God has put them where they are and you where you are for a purpose.

I think we have exhausted what can be said on this subject to eachother, I want only to leave you with one story from His Word which I've been considering:

Matthew 19:16-23 "Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?”
“Why do you ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, keep the commandments.”

“Which ones?” he inquired.
Jesus replied, “‘You shall not murder, you shall not commit adultery, you shall not steal, you shall not give false testimony, honor your father and mother,’ and ‘love your neighbor as yourself.’”
“All these I have kept,” the young man said. “What do I still lack?”
Jesus answered, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me.”
When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth. Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Truly I tell you, it is hard for someone who is rich to enter the kingdom of heaven."

First, this man does not see Jesus for who He really is: The Son of God and God the Son, the Christ, the Messiah. He sees Him only as a good teacher. Many of the lost in religion see Him this way today. They do not know Him at all, although they believe they do because they might know a good deal about Him.

Second, this man asks Jesus what he must do to inherit eternal life. He places the emphasis on his own doing. Why? Because he is looking for a pat on the back: He claims that he HAS kept all of the laws since his youth. Now, if that were really true - then surely the Lord need not have died on the cross for the sins of the World. This man says he overcame where everyone else on Earth (except perhaps Enoch, who was taken up bodily?) failed. Where Adam failed. Where Cain failed. Where Noah failed. Where Abraham failed. Where Jacob failed. Where the tribes of Israel failed. Where Peter failed. Where Paul failed. But this man testifies that he did not fail.

He is a fool, and Christ exposes him by stating that he must keep the commandments if he wants eternal life. That is why He said it; to expose him - not to teach us that we need to keep the commandments to inherit eternal life. I don't know of single Saved Christian or Observant Jew who could say that they can keep the commandments. It is why God gave us the Blood. To wash us clean. I need to turn to Him daily - hourly - with every word I write here. I need to ask, "Lord - keep this angry flesh of mine quiet - and cover me when I write. Lord, Your words, and not mine - please Lord!"

When the man asks what else he must do, Christ tells him. And now the man shows us his true condition: Even though he claims to love the Law, and to have ALWAYS obeyed it, when offered eternal life he shows that the price for it is too great for him. Christ does not offer to abide in Him because he kept the law, Christ tells him it isn't enough. There's more. "Give your life to Me.", is another way to say what He said. And ultimately, that's what we really need to do.

We need to renounce what we have for Christ; and we must never think that we need to qualify ourselves before He will equip us. He equips us, and by this we become qualified.

Worship, praise, and enjoying Him in our 'inner life' are normal, natural and healthy parts of our Christian living... but the proof of the reality of this inner life comes in the outward expression of His living in us. We do step out, and step forth, and share what He calls us to share. In the moment when we need to speak for Him, His Word (if we abide in it), will come forth. We can fulfill the Great Commission only through Him, and never apart from Him. He never intended us to fulfill it without Him - that's why the Father sent another helper.

If keeping the Law were enough, then Judaism would have it right and we Christians would all be wrong. We would have no hope.

Do not let the trials of your experience within LSM sour so much of your enjoyment that you would oppose all that they taught. They certainly got a lot of things wrong - but the greatest lies contain a good deal of truth too, brother. That's why the Enemy is so good at confusing us - he knows how to dose just enough of the healthy food with his poison.

I close in Christ, and I thank you for your fellowship.

In Him,

Ray
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Old 02-14-2011, 11:00 AM   #33
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Default Re: Accepting and Receiving Believers in Christ

Ray,

Three comments.

First, we are mostly speaking the same thing in different ways. Due to the nature of the teachings that I feel compelled to speak against (to the extent that I see them as actually harmful) I do what many others do and highlight the parts they are missing. I ask those engaged in the discussion, or just reading it and considering in silence, to take a hard look at the portions that do not support what I see as an out-of-balance teaching at best, and even just plain wrong at worst.

Second, I have less concern about the mammon side of the Bibles for America thing. What I really see is a way to distribute Lee's erroneous footnotes to the unsuspecting that would never actually buy anything published by LSM. The result will be a few who get caught in their snare. I don't even care that they might then actually buy a lot of LSM materials. I care that they are getting too much error in what they will read from it.

And last, because of the lies and errors within the LRC teachings, along with the abusive, controlling nature of the leadership, starting back with Lee himself, I can only see a system of error that deserved to be refused (in Paul's terms). Lee did not qualify to be counted among the ones that the Corinthians could have been fighting over because he did way too much for his own belly. And he taught too much contrary the actual truth of the Bible. To the extent that he actually taught something right, it can be found elsewhere. To even suggest it as a reasonable source of truth is to also place a pack of lies into the meal and hope that the reader can tell the difference.

And one more item (now making it four), if the Law was all that it was, the Jews still weren't right. That is unless you are also including the sacrifices that were not only required when you failed, but expected because you were going to fail. If we are just talking about the Law in terms of doing the righteousness, then the Jews had no lock on it other than to say that within the covenant they had, they did finally (after having the idolatry knocked out of them during the exiles) understand that they were to keep trying, and that they were to keep sacrificing because they would fail. But Christianity is the replacement, the new covenant, because it changed it from do it — or more rightly, try to do it — fail and sacrifice, to believe, take on the writing of the law on your heart, set you mind/will on the Spirit and succeed because the Spirit will succeed in us as we step out in faith. If you think that I am saying that we are now just supposed to do it like a good Jew did without the benefit of something higher than ourselves to help is in it, then either you are misreading me or I am not making myself clear.
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Old 12-11-2012, 08:34 PM   #34
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Default Re: Accepting and Receiving Believers in Christ

As I was reading in The Ground of the Church and the Service of the Body which was from 1957, Witness Lee essentially said unless a gross sin has been committed, we must receive all whom God has received.

Spoken in 1968 from The Practical Expression of the Church on pages 66-67, Witness Lee had this to say:

God's receiving is based upon Christ's receiving, and Christ's receiving is in accordance with our faith in Him. Whoever believes in Him, He will receive. Whoever receives Him, He will never reject. He said, "Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out" (John 6:37). Since coming to Him, beleiving in Him, receiving Him, is the only condition for Christ's receiving, so we must receive people upon the same basis with nothing added. As long as anyone believes in Christ our Lord, as long as he receives Him as his personal Savior, we must receive him with nothing else required. Regardless of how he may dissent in so many other things, as long as he is a real believer in the Lord, we have no choice but to receive him, for the Lord has received him. This is why the Apostle said, "Wherefore receive ye one another, as Christ also received us to the glory of God." We must receive whoever Christ has received. We must have such a proper receiving of all the saints that we may keep the proper unity; otherwise, we can never keep ourselves from being sectarian and causing such confusion and damage to the church life. To practice the church life by keeping the proper unity, such a general receiving is necessary. May the Lord have mercy upon us!

An amazing word by brother Lee in 1968. When we meet in the local churches today can the same words be a testimony of the practice? Unfortunately not! Many of us can name brothers who would not be welcome. Not due to a gross sin, but something far trivial.
When Brother Lee said, "we must receive him with nothing else required", today it is just the opposite. Something else is required. I've been to many local church meetings in anxiety wondering, "will I be escorted out? I'm a so-called opposer." What I do oppose is the absence in practicing receiving as in the ministry portion I've quoted.
Former elders wouldn't be welcome. Something else is required.
Brothers and sisters under unscriptural discpline. Something else is required.
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Old 12-12-2012, 07:59 AM   #35
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Default Re: Accepting and Receiving Believers in Christ

Quote:
Originally Posted by Terry View Post
As I was reading in The Ground of the Church and the Service of the Body which was from 1957, Witness Lee essentially said unless a gross sin has been committed, we must receive all whom God has received.
The problem here is that to Witness Lee, disagreeing with anything he teaches, with any practice that he establishes or approves of, or that his authority is absolute, permanent and final, IS A GROSS SIN. And this kind of attitude was not new to Lee when he came to America - there is ample evidence that this goes all the way back to Watchman Nee in Mainland China.

Quote:
Spoken in 1968 from The Practical Expression of the Church on pages 66-67, Witness Lee had this to say:
God's receiving is based upon Christ's receiving, and Christ's receiving is in accordance with our faith in Him. Whoever believes in Him, He will receive. Whoever receives Him, He will never reject. He said, "Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out" (John 6:37)...
Quote:
An amazing word by brother Lee in 1968.
Yes, an amazing word....but this is the problem, they are JUST words. This kind of "receiving" was rarely practiced, and when it was it was with a view to get the received one to become a follower of Witness Lee and the religion he invented. Once you were firmly ensconced within the confines of the LC, your "reception" was always based upon your reception of the person and work of Witness Lee. Admittedly, it did not look like this when we were on the inside looking out, but now, looking from the outside in, it is painfully obvious. Lee may have spoken like this in the 60s, but we now know that he did not practice this kind of receiving even back in the early days in Taiwan, even less after he established the Movement here in America.

Now, all these years later, what is the fruit of Witness Lee's kind of receiving? What is the attitude and actions of his most close and fervent followers? Do they receive other Christians in the manner described in Lee's words? No, they do not. They do not because Lee never did either. They are doing what Witness Lee did. It is the old tried and true "do what I do and not what I say".

Notice that this is one of the main characteristics of those churches which find themselves breaking away from the LSM/LC Movement - they find that they can only return to biblical Christianity when they begin to practice the biblical mandate to receive all those whom Christ receives. Of course this immediately puts them out of the good graces of the Local Church faithful. After all, other Christians have a different "flavor".
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Old 12-12-2012, 11:58 AM   #36
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Default Re: Accepting and Receiving Believers in Christ

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Originally Posted by UntoHim View Post
Yes, an amazing word....but this is the problem, they are JUST words. This kind of "receiving" was rarely practiced, and when it was it was with a view to get the received one to become a follower of Witness Lee and the religion he invented. Once you were firmly ensconced within the confines of the LC, your "reception" was always based upon your reception of the person and work of Witness Lee. Admittedly, it did not look like this when we were on the inside looking out, but now, looking from the outside in, it is painfully obvious. Lee may have spoken like this in the 60s, but we now know that he did not practice this kind of receiving even back in the early days in Taiwan, even less after he established the Movement here in America.
Having spoken to current members in the local churches and former members in the local churches who were there in the 1960's. This very much how it was on the matter of receiving. Something changed along the way, the nature of receiving became more narrow than God's receiving.
Your post I see as a fair description how receiving in the local churches is today. If you don't see the vision of the ministry, receiving is comparable to the rich man/poor man as seen in the book of James. There is an attitude of "personal favoritism" if you do have the vision of the ministry.
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Old 12-12-2012, 01:50 PM   #37
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Default Re: Accepting and Receiving Believers in Christ

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Having spoken to current members in the local churches and former members in the local churches who were there in the 1960's. This very much how it was on the matter of receiving. Something changed along the way, the nature of receiving became more narrow than God's receiving.
Referencing Indiana's original thought in that other thread, one might conclude that when the churches were the lampstands, the Recovery door was open to receive all believers in Christ, but when the ministry became the lampstand, then the doors rapidly shut.
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Old 12-12-2012, 08:21 PM   #38
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Default Re: Accepting and Receiving Believers in Christ

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Originally Posted by UntoHim View Post
After all, other Christians have a different "flavor".
I know that "flavor" is an innuendo meant to belittle non-LSM Christianity. As Christinaity apart from the ministry is equated to religion. How do you know? Have you met with Christians in an assembly part from LSM publications? Of course, being raised in the recovery the local churches was the only Christian environment I knew.
Step outside LSM oriented Christian fellowship and you'll realize there are Christians just as zealous for the Lord as you saw in the local churches. UntoHim, you say a different flavor? Well brother, at the community church I meet with I can testify to a different flavor; humility, grace, and mercy just to name a few. Oddly enough being raised in the local churches I never knew what grace was or what it was to give grace. Not until one of the Saturday morning brother's breakfasts at the community church. "Other Christians have a different flavor"? Instead of receiving it as a belittling innuendo, I say thank you for this different flavor.
Thank you for being able to witness a dissenting church elder being blessed and prayed for.
Thank you for the brother who took me aside and helped me see the practical application of giving grace.
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