Local Church Discussions  

Go Back   Local Church Discussions > Spiritual Abuse Titles

Spiritual Abuse Titles Spiritual abuse is the mistreatment of a person who is in need of help, support or greater spiritual empowerment, with the result of weakening, undermining or decreasing that person's spiritual empowerment.

Reply
 
Thread Tools Display Modes
Old 10-13-2008, 06:03 PM   #1001
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nell View Post
Ohio,

If God wanted to say a few plain words to you/us about idolatry, how would He do it? Is it possible that the Lord has been speaking to you/us through Matt and Jane on this topic? Is it possible that resistance to this topic has drowned out His plain words?

Nell
Nell, God speaks thru his word and He speaks to our heart thru His Spirit. I have learned much from these forums. The best learning for me was to make alive the scripture ... that which I already knew and was very familiar with ... yet was clouded over by certain errant teachings of the ministry. The comments of many ... "here a little, there a little" ... have been quite helpful in my journey. I have two Bibles and a concordance always next to my computer. I have seriously taken this matter of idolatry to heart ... but I am not a blank slate. Many, many things on these forums I have also rejected. Neither do I only accept from some and reject all others. I try to weigh each post on its own merits, as time permits.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-18-2008, 12:37 PM   #1002
Thankful Jane
Member
 
Thankful Jane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Georgetown, Texas
Posts: 301
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
I may have introduced this specific phrase, or its alternate "broad brush," but it was not me who said, "Then I don't think you have gotten it yet. Everyone was brought into the idolatry (me included). All you have to do is study history (including the history of Israel) to see that it is not just the leaders who are held responsible. The whole congregation is held responsible."
Nor was it me who said that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
I mentioned holocaust because that was how the story in Joshua ended. You likened the LC situation to that story in Joshua 7. If we are all idolators like that one in the story, shouldn't all our fate be the same? It's not me who is exaggerating here. How far are you pushing the analogy? He was burned alive. Should we all suffer the same judgment?
Ohio, I don’t see how one man and his family being judged by God is equivalent to the holocaust, but at least this gives me a clue to where you came up with the idea J. I would say in this that you are the one pushing the analogy. My point was that defeat by the devil is a sign of an accursed thing in the camp, not that everyone needs to be burned by fire. Everyone had responsibility to take part in finding and judging the problem openly. This is more in line with my point about the LC situation.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
If I "listen" to the "voices and commands" of others who are elders and ministers, then have I become an idolator? I don't think so. Since when is to "listen to" the same as to "bow down to?" What scripture supports that? I have protested every such assertion on this thread. Don't you think if there was, "at least a possibility that God might consider our behavior (bowing to others voices and commands) to be idolatrous," He would tell us in plain words?
He did tell us in plain words:

"Thou shalt have no other gods before me."

"Whoever you yield yourselves to obey (listen to), his servants you are whomever you obey."

"You cannot serve two masters ..."

If two masters tell you to do something, the one you heed (listen to) is the one you have chosen to serve.

Thankful Jane
Thankful Jane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-18-2008, 12:40 PM   #1003
Thankful Jane
Member
 
Thankful Jane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Georgetown, Texas
Posts: 301
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toledo View Post
I both respect and appreciate your beliefs. I do not agree with you, but it is obvious that you have spent much time before the Lord in prayer, and much time searching through the bible. I do not agree with your interpretation of the scriptures -- you add a lot to the plain word of the bible. However, I respect your right to do so. Our oneness is based upon the Spirit and the divine life that we share, not upon our doctrinal agreement.

If you want to talk about "adding to the plain word of the Bible" maybe you should start with what WL did. Lee made up new concepts and terms and spent thousands upon thousands of pages of text expounding them, for example "the processed Triune God" and "divine dispensing."

I am using the word "idolatry" which is clearly addressed in the Bible and has a spiritual application to us today. In the O.T. we are told in great detail about animal sacrifices and various offerings in order to convey spiritual truth to us. We are helped to understand the reality of Christ's blood and its effectiveness. Today we cannot see Christ's blood with our eyes, but we can apply it by faith and it removes our sins. In the same way, today we may not make physical carved idols and prostrate ourselves before them, but the spiritual truth demonstrated in the detail given us about the children of Israel and idolatry in the O.T. warns us of the dangers we face of committing spiritual idolatry in our hearts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toledo View Post
Ohio has pointed out at least one example above.
Ohio was quoting Matt, not me, so I still have not been given an example of where I said something like this.

I am happy to drop the topic of idolatry. It's been set on the table as food for thought and I do not think it will be easily forgotten. Let God do with it as He will.

Many Blessings in Him,
Thankful Jane
Thankful Jane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2008, 08:02 AM   #1004
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thankful Jane View Post
Nor was it me who said that. Ohio, I don’t see how one man and his family being judged by God is equivalent to the holocaust, but at least this gives me a clue to where you came up with the idea J. I would say in this that you are the one pushing the analogy.
A holocaust is a whole burnt offering which referred to the judgement on the Israelite in Joshua 7. It should be differentiated from "The Holocaust," which occurred during WWII.

You have not addressed the matter I referred to, i.e. to apply the Lord's word in this story to LC idolatry, then we must also face the consequences of this idolatry, which was being burnt alive in front of all Israel.

I don't think it is me "pushing an analogy" here. You brought up Joshua 7 as proof text that all Israel was guilty of idolatry. I disagreed, saying only one was guilty, and his idolatry was a graven image, not the so-called idolatry of the heart.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Thankful Jane View Post
He did tell us in plain words: "Thou shalt have no other gods before me." "Whoever you yield yourselves to obey (listen to), his servants you are whomever you obey." "You cannot serve two masters ..." If two masters tell you to do something, the one you heed (listen to) is the one you have chosen to serve. Thankful Jane
You seem to believe that if we obey a leader, such as an LC elder or minister, then we are guilty of "having other gods before Me," and "serving another master," and hence guilty of idolatry, the worshipping of idols.

I can only guess that this difference of understanding is the source of our ongoing disagreement.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2008, 07:41 PM   #1005
Thankful Jane
Member
 
Thankful Jane's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Georgetown, Texas
Posts: 301
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Sorry, I've never heard of this usage of "holocaust." It brings one thing to mind for most of us. That's what I responded to. I'm done, Ohio. I'm tired of your restating my words in your own words and misrepresenting my meaning. I never said to obey someone is to have another god. I'm not going to repeat for you what I really did say. You don't seem to care. If you do, please reread what I wrote. I clearly did not say this.

I really don't have the heart for anymore of this kind of communicating. I've said all I have to say, so I'm signing off, leaving what I have said on the table. My hope is that people will read my words for themselves, if they are interested, and not take your reshaping to be a true representation of my thought.

Thankful Jane
Thankful Jane is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-19-2008, 08:06 PM   #1006
Timotheist
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Huntsville, AL
Posts: 245
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Good. this topic has been beaten to death... or into a golden calf.
__________________
Timotheist
Timotheist is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-20-2008, 06:16 AM   #1007
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Timotheist View Post
Good. this topic has been beaten to death... or into a golden calf.
To me, it began as a golden calf that some thought they might rise up to tear down.

The Lord judge what the stronghold is.
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2008, 06:29 PM   #1008
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Thankful Jane View Post
Sorry, I've never heard of this usage of "holocaust." It brings one thing to mind for most of us. That's what I responded to. I'm done, Ohio. I'm tired of your restating my words in your own words and misrepresenting my meaning. I never said to obey someone is to have another god. I'm not going to repeat for you what I really did say. You don't seem to care. If you do, please reread what I wrote. I clearly did not say this.

I really don't have the heart for anymore of this kind of communicating. I've said all I have to say, so I'm signing off, leaving what I have said on the table. My hope is that people will read my words for themselves, if they are interested, and not take your reshaping to be a true representation of my thought.

Thankful Jane
Dear Thankful Jane, it's too bad you couldn't just say a friendly "goodbye" without throwing a few insults my way. I have not treated you (or any others) this way.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-21-2008, 08:32 PM   #1009
Peter Debelak
Member
 
Peter Debelak's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Avon, OH
Posts: 306
Default Re: The LCS Factor

The progression/momentum here aches me. How do we keep doing this to/with each other, year after year, decade after decade?

We don't disagree about the fundamentals of our shared faith and hope in Christ. How do our "convictions" about this or that end up in an inability to talk to each other? Of course, each one of us will point to what "the other one" did. But that's the same claim of everyone involved in a dispute of faith - including the RCC, the LC and myself. In response to that, most of us will say, "The difference is, I happen to be RIGHT!" And so it goes, on and on... So how do we stop it? How often, despite genuine conviction, are we able to "turn the other cheek"?

I like both my cloak and my tunic. What must transpire before I can be willing to give them both up?

Really, how do we stop this?

There's going to be a hundred more "LSMs" created by each one of us, in different ways, before we finally get to the root of the problem, if we ever do. Will we just let that future history play out and sort itself out down the line? I pray that we don't.

In Love,

Peter
__________________
"This [book] will perhaps only be understood by one who has himself already [] thought the thoughts that are expressed herein..." Ludwig Wittgenstein, Tractatus Logicus Philosophicus
Peter Debelak is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-22-2008, 01:02 PM   #1010
Nell
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Texas
Posts: 999
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
Dear Thankful Jane, it's too bad you couldn't just say a friendly "goodbye" without throwing a few insults my way. I have not treated you (or any others) this way.

Ohio,

Perhaps you are not aware of it, but you have a habit which is frustrating to me and perhaps others...TJ for example.

Above TJ has tried to communicate to you that you are reshaping her words into something she didn't say. When she tries to communicate this to you, you further misstate and/or reshape, believing her attempt at communication to be an insult. There was no insult. Frank communication is not an insult, it's just ... frank.

I know you believe you have not mistreated others. That may not be your intention, but you have mistreated others. How? I know how much time Jane spends on her posts...days on a post that is important to her. I've done the same thing. When you spend that much time to put something in writing, what you said or didn't say is in black and white. If someone doesn't understand the post, that's different: ask questions and discuss until the author's intent is clearly understood. That's called "communicating".

I've seen you take something in black and white and reshape it into something else. Often something embellished, maybe inflammatory but totally missing the point. The end result? Total miscommunication and a rabbit trail to clean up the mess.

A secondary result? Others may attribute your remarks to Jane (or me). I'm scratching my head saying "WHAT? I didn't say that! Where did that come from?" How frustrating is that?

Is telling you this an insult? No.

Is this frank communication? Yes.

Maybe you don't like it, but that doesn't make it an insult.

Nell
Nell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-23-2008, 06:47 AM   #1011
Nell
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Texas
Posts: 999
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peter Debelak View Post
.... In response to that, most of us will say, "The difference is, I happen to be RIGHT!" And so it goes, on and on... So how do we stop it? How often, despite genuine conviction, are we able to "turn the other cheek"?

I like both my cloak and my tunic. What must transpire before I can be willing to give them both up?

Really, how do we stop this? ...
Peter,

I don't see the "I happen to be RIGHT!" attitude as much as "You happen to be WRONG!" I may think I'm right, but show me where I'm wrong, or show me where I'm "off". Show me in the Bible. If I'm not making my point, ask questions. If I quote a verse that you don't believe supports my theory, ask me to explain.

It's not about turning the other cheek. It's about communication. It may get heated, but that's not a bad thing. As long as the goal is to learn something and/or hear God's word to us, I think we'll be fine. As long as our goal is to understand the point the other person is trying to make, we'll be fine.

It's important to be open to the possibility that you/I/we/Christians can be deceived in our convictions. I have a track record of being deceived. I admit that. I didn't like finding out I was in the fog for 15 years. I've been praying lately for some folks, and my prayer has been "Lord, open their eyes." I've realized something in the process, and have begun to pray also, "Lord, open my eyes, too."

Another goal of mine is simply to be heard. I don't expect everyone to line up behind me and agree, but I would like to be heard...accurately. I would like for people to listen. Restate if you must, but make sure you restate accurately. The way you know if you've restated my point accurately is to ask.

Recently, I believe it was Toledo, repeated the "here I stand" proclamation of Martin Luther. There are matters in the holy scriptures where we must take such a stand. Specifically, the matters of the faith once given, which is where Martin Luther was drawing the line.

There are also matters where we must not take such a stand. I think almost every other topic, other than the faith once given, might fall into this category. I remain convinced about a lot of things. However, I've also had my eyes opened about my former convictions, and been persuaded to give up my beloved cloak and tunic. At such times, I realize once again that I don't know everything, but I worship the God who does.

The painful process of learning to communicate to the point of understanding breaks down...especially in a forum type environment such as this. I hope this provides somewhat of an answer to your questions. As long as the goal is to communicate, we go forward until we learn how. Perhaps the best way is for each one to "speak the truth in love" and give each other the benefit of the doubt that they are trying to do the same.

Nell

PS: One more thing! (Sorry.) To say the equivalent of "that's not true" isn't good enough. What's not true? On what do you base your statement? Chapter and verse. :-)

Last edited by Nell; 10-23-2008 at 07:13 AM.
Nell is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-24-2008, 01:52 PM   #1012
Shawn
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 54
Default Re: The LCS Factor

I don't see much hope in breaking the ongoing cycle of mis interpertations of shared experiences, for as long as we are individuals, we will always see things differently. Our only way to limit the damage is to guard our responses, by remembering that each of us have been shown the Lord's mercy in His recieving of us and thus, should reflect on how we receive each other.

I do believe that due to the painful experiences some have had in the Lords recovery (ie: Texas and Anahiem), when the past is reopened, so also are the wounds. Any attempt to deny these painful moments due to our never experiencing them personally (ie:the GLA), further adds salt to the wound; albeit unintentionally.

In acknowledging this, trying to come to terms of what really happened ends up in a spiraling vortex of misunderstandings and broken fellowship.

I think this is why Paul encouraged us to stretch forward to the things which are before; in doing so we set our eyes on our Saviour and our hope, Jesus Christ.

In doing so do we ignore our past mistakes and bury them? Yes and no; for they are buried in the forgiviness we each have in our Redeemer, who will individually remind us when the time is right for our individual perfecting by exposing our shortages when His grace is sufficient to deal with it. Our attempts to "help" others in examining their past usually ends up in the trash heap of condemnation; even with the noblest of intentions.

May our Lord give us eyes that see others as they are seen by Him and hearts ready to forgive and encourage in His grace and love.

Blessings to all,

Shawn
Shawn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2008, 03:09 PM   #1013
Toledo
I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
 
Toledo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: Toledo
Posts: 85
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
I do believe that due to the painful experiences some have had in the Lords recovery (ie: Texas and Anahiem), when the past is reopened, so also are the wounds. Any attempt to deny these painful moments due to our never experiencing them personally (ie:the GLA), further adds salt to the wound; albeit unintentionally.
It doesn't rub salt in anyone's wounds to remind them that not every place and not every brother was the same. It is fair to commiserate with the damaged saints who were hurt by improper administration in many places. It is not fair to insist that every place was improper.

Insisting that every place was improper leaves us with the misunderstanding that there was no truth ever spoken at any time through Watchman Nee or Witness Lee, that there is no practical oneness available today, and that the personal experience of Christ testified by many is simply untrue. Such would seem to be the position that many have taken; I find it untenable.
__________________
Toledo

Ps 66:12 Thou didst make men ride over our heads; We went through fire and through water; Yet Thou didst bring us out into a place of abundance.
Toledo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2008, 03:32 PM   #1014
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toledo View Post
It is fair to commiserate with the damaged saints who were hurt by improper administration in many places. It is not fair to insist that every place was improper.

Insisting that every place was improper leaves us with the misunderstanding that there was no truth ever spoken at any time through Watchman Nee or Witness Lee, that there is no practical oneness available today, and that the personal experience of Christ testified by many is simply untrue. Such would seem to be the position that many have taken; I find it untenable.
Yes.

I remain cautious and skeptical of claims concerning practical oneness.

I think it is dangerous and damaging to espouse some well-meaning "vision of the church" which would ordinarily be the foundation for such.

Nevertheless, the assembly must and does exist and we can enjoy and participate in it wherever we are. Of this much I am sure.
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2008, 08:52 PM   #1015
Shawn
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Pittsburgh, PA
Posts: 54
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Greetings All,

I think my comments since joining this board and the previous Berean forum have been upholding this very thought; that many have been with the local churches (including myself) and have benefited from the ministries of brother Nee and brother Lee.

My point I made concerning the painful experiences of others in certain localities was made to explain the frustration that was written a few posts before of how troubling it has become trying to get beyond this stumbling block of not accepting others exprience in the local churches and the angry backlash that it produces.

The progression/momentum here aches me. How do we keep doing this to/with each other, year after year, decade after decade?

Peter Debelak


Based on my observation listed in my post, I have given up on trying to convey to others my positive experience in the church, as the replies usually imply that I am an idolator who is blind to the truth as it is percieved by them.

I will always defend the blessed experiences I recieve from my participation in the local church, but I do not feel I can express my past experinces in this forum, as it seems to be counter productive to my fellowship with others who have had poor experiences in the church, who cannot see beyond their anger
to allow that some may have been helped by the teachings in the local church.

I am finding it is better to focus on what lies before us, rather than what lies behind.

Grace to all,

Shawn
Shawn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-25-2008, 09:12 PM   #1016
UntoHim
Grateful Servant
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,768
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Toledo View Post
It doesn't rub salt in anyone's wounds to remind them that not every place and not every brother was the same
Though a true statement, this is rather irrelevant to the fact that there was widespread abuse in the Local Church. Of course not every place or every brother was the same. Nobody has ever said they were!

Quote:
It is fair to commiserate with the damaged saints who were hurt by improper administration in many places. It is not fair to insist that every place was improper.
Nobody on this forum (or anywhere far as I recall) has ever said such a thing. Actually it has been Witness Lee and his followers who have called other Christians, their ministries and meetings improper (and much worse), and they continue to do so to this very day.

Quote:
Insisting that every place was improper leaves us with the misunderstanding that there was no truth ever spoken at any time through Watchman Nee or Witness Lee, that there is no practical oneness available today, and that the personal experience of Christ testified by many is simply untrue. Such would seem to be the position that many have taken; I find it untenable.
Repeating something does not make it true. "No truth ever spoken at any time through Nee or Lee"??? I have never heard anybody EVER say anything even close to this. This is how Witness Lee reacted to criticisms from without and from within - he retaliated with absurd, gross overstatements and exaggerated claims, and then just hoped that something would stick. It made his arguments and self-vindication really, really weak.

Of course there is practical oneness today! Again, who has ever said there isn't? And you know what, I am going to experience practical oneness here in just a matter of hours with the several hundred other brothers and sisters I break bread with every Sunday morning. And, get this, we are going to experience practical oneness without badmouthing one single Christian or Church in our city, or tell them that we are the church and they are not...can you imagine that!

Finally, nobody has said that anybody's personal experience of Christ is untrue. Who ever said such a thing? I was in the LC for many, many years and had a lot of personal experience of Christ. Why would you say such a thing?
UntoHim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2008, 06:27 AM   #1017
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by UntoHim View Post
Finally, nobody has said that anybody's personal experience of Christ is untrue. Who ever said such a thing? I was in the LC for many, many years and had a lot of personal experience of Christ. Why would you say such a thing?
Whoa! ... hold on there fella ... maybe you have forgotten ... this thread got real incendiary when brother Hope gave his "personal experience of Christ" about raising children in Texas, and it was strongly disputed by numerous forum members from that great state as "untrue."
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2008, 08:13 AM   #1018
UntoHim
Grateful Servant
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,768
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Sorry Ohio, what you have posted is not analogous. Hope was not relating his personal experience of Christ, but attempting to claim that things were different there in the church in Dallas. What was disputed was his claim that their was less abuse there in general. Nobody called his experience in raising his children "untrue".
UntoHim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2008, 08:34 AM   #1019
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
Greetings All,

Based on my observation listed in my post, I have given up on trying to convey to others my positive experience in the church, as the replies usually imply that I am an idolator who is blind to the truth as it is percieved by them.

I will always defend the blessed experiences I recieve from my participation in the local church, but I do not feel I can express my past experinces in this forum, as it seems to be counter productive to my fellowship with others who have had poor experiences in the church, who cannot see beyond their anger
to allow that some may have been helped by the teachings in the local church.

I am finding it is better to focus on what lies before us, rather than what lies behind.

Grace to all,

Shawn

Shawn,

The problem is not in others accepting that you have had positive experiences. Everyone knows you have. The problem is in your not facing that those positive experience neither excuse the abuses nor negate their underlying systemic causes.

The problem, which I've seen over and over in all LC defenders on this board, is an inability or unwillingness to straightforwardly confront the possibility of legitimate problems of LC doctrine and practice which by their very nature lead to abuses. I have yet to see any stauch defender of the local ground or the one ministry doctrine ever say, "Hmmm, yes I can see how such doctrines could lead to abuses." No, all they want to talk about how they think these doctrines have blessed them.

For those just joining us, let's review a crucial basic fact. Any religious sub-group that claims to have the one true way over and above all others or that believes it is the only true expression of God in a locality is guaranteed to eventually abuse both members and non-members. That is as true as night following day. And, lo and behold, that's what happened with the LC. That's what I mean when I say the problem is systemic. It's built into the belief system.

If that concept hasn't at least caused you to pause and reconsider, and to take a break from making the defense of your positive experience your top priority, then it's clear you are not listening.

In this case, as far as I'm concerned, it seems focusing on what lies before instead of behind is just a euphemism for wearing blinders.

Last edited by Cal; 10-26-2008 at 08:40 AM.
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2008, 10:47 AM   #1020
Suannehill
Member
 
Suannehill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: North of Mansfield Ohio
Posts: 165
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shawn View Post
...
I will always defend the blessed experiences I receive from my participation in the local church, but I do not feel I can express my past experiences in this forum, as it seems to be counter productive to my fellowship with others who have had poor experiences in the church, who cannot see beyond their anger
to allow that some may have been helped by the teachings in the local church.

I am finding it is better to focus on what lies before us, rather than what lies behind.

Grace to all,

Shawn
Brother Shawn,
We all had good experiences in the LSM. It was very often a reflection of our own seeking and the time of revival around us (60's & 70's). We just absorbed what was spoken. This absorption was not very discerning. I speak for myself now...
I believed ALL the brothers from LSM said. The problem is, they are very fallible men. They added things and gave things their own personal spin. This is not unique to LSM. Most men do this. So, it seems that the folks here are not asking that you forget your positive experiences but that you realize that all spoken from LSM was not pure. These men added things to manipulate us to financially support and uphold them. (this is fact, not opinion)

I must be grateful for all the Lord has led me through because He has used for His end.
Sue
Suannehill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2008, 12:48 PM   #1021
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by UntoHim View Post
Sorry Ohio, what you have posted is not analogous. Hope was not relating his personal experience of Christ, but attempting to claim that things were different there in the church in Dallas. What was disputed was his claim that their was less abuse there in general. Nobody called his experience in raising his children "untrue".
I mentioned his "personal experience of Christ" raising his children in Dallas. He did say his "personal experience" was different from others in many ways. You are just parsing words and playing semantics to say this. If his "personal experience" in Dallas, while he was there, did not involve the so-called "abuse of children," how is that different from his claiming there was "less abuse there in general?"
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-26-2008, 02:04 PM   #1022
UntoHim
Grateful Servant
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,768
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Ohio,
Here is the portion in bold....


Quote:
Originally Posted by Toledo View Post
Insisting that every place was improper leaves us with the misunderstanding that there was no truth ever spoken at any time through Watchman Nee or Witness Lee, that there is no practical oneness available today, and that the personal experience of Christ testified by many is simply untrue. Such would seem to be the position that many have taken; I find it untenable.
The back and forth between Hope and some others regarding the situation in Dallas went far beyond his "personal experience of Christ". As I recall Hope stated that his experience with his children there in Dallas was positive, and nobody doubted that. It was the overall situation in Dallas (and Texas?) that was disputed.

Anyway, we can go round-and-round here. If Toledo wants to clarify what he meant by "personal experience of Christ" he is welcome to do so.
UntoHim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2008, 12:05 PM   #1023
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Apology

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
Dear Thankful Jane, it's too bad you couldn't just say a friendly "goodbye" without throwing a few insults my way. I have not treated you (or any others) this way.
This past post of mine has troubled me for some time, specifically my comment about "throwing insults."

I would like to publicly apologize to Thankful Jane and any others who have read it.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2008, 01:49 PM   #1024
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default A Summary, and an Apology

After Ohio’s apology, I feel compelled to say some things about where this forum is in terms of this thread.

I think that this thread was over-consuming. It ate too many of us up and spit us out. Before Ohio’s post, there had been a total of 1,022 posts to this thread. That makes up 24.7 percent of the entire forum (a total of 4,141 posts to date). (You might see different numbers since they will constantly increase.)

Of those posts, 7 people were responsible for 53 percent of them. I was among those. Those posts made up 40 percent of their posts to date.

The person with the highest number of posts to this thread posted only to this thread. And has not returned (at least while signing in) since.

One other essentially left directly from a primary focus on this thread.

Still one other stayed around for a few days after the last post was made to this thread (excluding Ohio’s and this one) and has not returned since.

I am not commenting on the people involved. I’m commenting on the thread — the topic. It had possibilities. But it went places it should not have gone. It took well-meaning people places they might not want to admit that they went.

Each direction had a degree of “truth” to it. Nothing was intended to be mean-spirited (ignoring any comments that clearly were).

But we started to seek out the evil in people. We wanted to drag out every filthy detail as proof of the evil in the LC. We didn’t care if we told stories about people who were not here to defend themselves. It didn’t matter that some may have been just now getting over issues from their place in that mess many years prior. We were going to drag it all back out anyway.

And we got dirty in the process. Sort of like dragging lepers through the encampments of the Children of Israel and making them reach out and touch the rotting skin. We got dirty with the stories. We got dirty arguing about whether to tell the stories. We got dirty playing voyeur as others did the dirty work for us.

-----

I just referred to this forum as a ghost town in that other forum. That was a bit of an overstatement. But the few that remain active seem to be afraid to get into any kind of serious controversy since it does not seem to have been a safe thing to do. Even here in this “safer” forum.

There is much to be done (IMHO) relating to these varied discussions about the LC. But we seem to be excessively soft-peddling now. I’m not suggesting that we get the big guns out again. But we are no longer engaged in seeking the serious errors of the LC, whether in practice or in teaching.

Of course, after the mud from this thread, we need to find the lessons and learn them. It is not always about being right. Sometimes it is better to just agree to disagree.

And maybe Ohio has some of the right idea. We may all find that there are things we said back in this thread that need some apology. My only problem is that if you can’t remember specifically, I’m not sure that reading back through this to find it is a good idea.

But even if I think that I did my best to keep my comments impersonal, I can bet that I failed. If Matt, Jane or John read this and want to show me where I did something specific that I should deal with, please do so. But without that, I can assume that I came across somewhere in my interactions with them poorly. For that I am truly sorry. I did not leave the forum to get away from you. I will admit that the thread was part of the reason, but it was not personal.

For BlessD and others that were trying to understand what was going on, I’m sure I didn’t help. If I said anything that came across as in opposition to you or callous to your situation, please point it out to me and I will apologize even more.

I realize that Matt’s departure may have been as much his need to focus on his duties on the other forum as much as anything. But I can’t help but think that this thread, and even may part in it, was partly responsible for him making that decision.

To borrow from an overused phrase of late, we need to learn how we can better get along even when we disagree.
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-05-2008, 11:18 PM   #1025
kisstheson
Member
 
kisstheson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 281
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Dear ones,

I was so happy to see the posts earlier today from dear brothers Ohio and OBW regarding this thread! Perhaps it is now the Lord’s perfect timing for healing to take place regarding things that were said on this thread.

As brother OBW said:
Quote:
“I am not commenting on the people involved. I’m commenting on the thread — the topic. It had possibilities. But it went places it should not have gone. It took well-meaning people places they might not want to admit that they went.”
Alas! This was very well-said and is so true.

I was really touched by brother Ohio’s repentance. I too was involved in the thick of the battle at times, and I would like to ask everyone to forgive me as well for anything offensive I said on this thread.

There are so many dear ones whom I really miss! If anyone no longer has the time to post or no longer has the burden from the Lord to post, that is certainly understandable. May our God and Father richly bless all such ones. If there is anyone, however, who became discouraged due to the things that were said on this thread, may we all find the grace to repent to one another and to forgive one another. May everything that was said be brought under the cleansing of the precious blood and may we all be set free from any thoughts of condemnation, both towards others or towards ourselves. May the love of Christ reign supreme here.
__________________
"The best criticism of the bad is the practice of the better."
Richard Rohr, Things Hidden: Scripture as Spirituality
kisstheson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2008, 06:15 AM   #1026
Suannehill
Member
 
Suannehill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: North of Mansfield Ohio
Posts: 165
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
I have learned that among those who grew up in the LCS many face social issues. Some that I am familiar with are: alcoholism, homosexuality, sexual promiscuity, divorce, paying for sex i.e. engaging in services of prostitutes, infidelity, porn addiction...

My question is: what role, if any, do you think the LCS played in the development of these behaviors?

As a Mom who raised four kids...I see things a little differently...
Here, the brothers and sisters were a genuine "keeping" factor for my children. Thanks to many in Cleveland and Columbus who labored to their own exhaustion with the young people.
We knew nothing of the foolishness in Anaheim.

However, the corruption of those in California and elsewhere had to have had a ruinous effect upon the spiritual life of EVERYONE receiving materials out of the corrupted well.

Last thought...I did not reject Jim Dobson and other believers who prayerfully had suggestions and ways to help. Poor poor Christianity had practical things to offer that the LC ignored.

Did my children tun out perfectly? Of course not! Did they make many mistakes? OH yes they did.

I was blessed in that the Lord provided a small circle of sisters for me (not in LC) to pray with. We took back our homes from the enemy in prayer. We walked the streets of our tiny town in twos and threes praying as we walked. In a year we had stopped and prayed over EVERY house in town. We prayed over the playgrounds, stores, Post Office and any structure we came upon. We got permission to walk through the halls of the JR High and we prayed over the classrooms. People even would wave and smile and encourage us to keep praying. We went to each other's homes and anointed the home and prayed over each room. It became an incredible time of ministry and Life! I felt like I was in a revival equal to any seen anywhere. I cannot begin to list the things that transpired during these years.

So...while I see the corruption in LC, I cannot blame them for anything in the young people here because the young people were mostly protected.
Sue
Suannehill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2008, 04:31 PM   #1027
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Dear Sister Suannehill,

What a wonderful testimony! I have a dream that many believers would compile such experiences and record them as is mentioned in Mal 3:16, Then those who feared the LORD spoke to one another, and the LORD gave attention and heard it, and a book of remembrance was written before Him for those who fear the LORD and who esteem His name. NASB
Maybe someone would pick this up. The internet gives a way for this to be done on a wide scale.

Hope, Don Rutledge

A believer in Christ Jesus who is seeking to be a true disciple
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-06-2008, 07:18 PM   #1028
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

To all, especially Matt, Jane and John Anderson,

I feel totally ashamed that it took the writing of others to prompt me to do this. I should have come forward long ago. I would visit from time to time and was grieved at how this thread had suddenly gone cold. But here I am today, fully in need of the Lord’s mercy.

I want to publicly apologize to Matt Anderson for the way I communicated to him on this thread. It was rude, insensitive and unbecoming a brother. He did nothing to deserve such treatment from me.

While I couldn’t fully agree with him on the matter of idolatry, there was no excuse to accuse him and try and put him down the way I did. It was also way over the top for me to try and intimidate him by pointing out the difference in our ages. I was truly not acting like the mature one.

I certainly feel responsible for Matt’s and Jane’s leaving. For that I am truly sorry. I would ask you to please accept my apology, and please rejoin us in the hand of fellowship. Your portion is sorely needed.

I sincerely pray that I have caused no long term damage by what I have done. I remember John and Jane from way back, and I hold the Anderson family in high regard. I want to say that before the principalities and powers, in the air, and before all who read these words.

By the Lord’s mercy, from now on, I should like to agree, or disagree with my brothers and sisters in Christ, with the full respect for the Life of the Father which we all hold in common.

Your brother
“Roger”
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-08-2008, 11:11 AM   #1029
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

I myself don't feel I should apologize for anything on I wrote on this thread. But I do wish Jane and Matt would reappear. I miss them.
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-10-2008, 11:14 AM   #1030
awareness
Moderator of Alternative Views
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 7,514
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
For those just joining us, let's review a crucial basic fact. Any religious sub-group that claims to have the one true way over and above all others or that believes it is the only true expression of God in a locality is guaranteed to eventually abuse both members and non-members. That is as true as night following day. And, lo and behold, that's what happened with the LC. That's what I mean when I say the problem is systemic. It's built into the belief system
"Systemic" is just the machinery. It goes deeper. Something animates the system, and that's personality. If anything, the LC was/is a personality cult. It will go down in history as a personality cult.

As personality cults before, so goes the LC. The system goes on long after the personality passes on, carried on by those that are capable and loyal enough to carry the personality forward.

Presently this is the job of the Blended Brothers...

There will always be those that remain loyal, and new ones that develop loyalty, to the LC personalities, Nee & Lee ; just as those today, in the Methodist church, remain loyal to John Wesley. Indeed, as with many Methodist's today, they may not know of John Wesley, and need not know, since the "system" is of John Wesley, and the cult of personality is passed on thru the machinery ; so too will be the case be for Leeites.

So too, the new ones of today may not see the personalities of Nee and Lee in the LC, except thru books (the dead way) or thru the living Blended brothers, (the living animators of Lee & Nee). History of Christianity has proven that personality cults -- like the Millerites of the middle 19th century, that followed William Miller -- continue on even tho the person of the personality cult was totally wrong, as in the case of William Miller.

But, because of Miller, who was wrong time and again with his predictions on the return of Christ, we now have with us the Jehovah Witnesses, and Seventh Day Adventists, who may not even know of William Miller, and would likely be ashamed if they knew they were connected to such a false prophet as William Miller.

There will always be followers that seek human personalities to follow, and personalities that fill that need. Nothing is new.

As time goes on Nee and Lee will be forgotten, but the machinery set up by them will go on. Their personality cults will live on.

Hey, there's way worst things than being in a personality cult. Not everyone will agree with me, but it's not as bad as gambling, drinking, and chasing women ; howbeit both groups wallow in the mud, and are hooked on the flesh. Who cares if it's not as much fun, it's better.

Harold
awareness is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-15-2008, 02:22 PM   #1031
Matt Anderson
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 125
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Roger,

Thanks for the heartfelt apology. Apology accepted. I have had enough experiences with you to know that even though you were upset with some of what I was saying and giving me a "hard time" in return that it was not with any real harmful intent. I knew you were reacting to what I was saying. I resisted some of what you had to say, but not because it was doing me great harm. If you feel I crossed the line in my resistance, please let me know.

Lastly, I know you have an excellent heart and I am privileged to be your brother in the Lord. (Note: I am not saying that to be diplomatic. I mean it.)

Others,

I knew I would be crossing a line that would upset many on the subject of idolatry. Before the Lord, I cannot honestly back away from what I introduced. I can say that some of my points were stated strongly and I cannot say that I have changed my position. It's not out of stubbornness. It's out of conviction.

The entire subject of idolatry is a strong one and I know that most do not agree with my perspective. That is okay with me. There are some times that it is okay to be out on the limb by yourself or as part of the minority. I'm not trying to say that I'm right and you're wrong. I am trying to say that there is something to what I am saying that should be strongly considered in the light of the Word of God. It is very, very difficult to present in this format (an internet forum).

I knew before as I know now that I will not be able to convince anyone of what I am saying. Part of it is the format of dialogue. It requires multiple face-to-face discussions to establish it. I know because I have gone through this exercise on several occasions to try and prove to myself whether my point of view has merit or not. I feel strongly that what I am saying holds water. It's hard to swallow, because it has such a bitter taste. How can it be that those who sought so sincerely to follow the Lord ended up in one of the most serious sins?

I read Roger's apology several days ago and have just decide to respond. I have not been sitting around being offended by anyone on this forum or the previous one. It has not been the cause for my absence.

Just this morning, I resigned from the moderatorship on the other forum. I had been feeling that it was okay for me to do so for the past several weeks. I followed through on it this morning.

I don't want there to be any misconceptions. I did not go away because others disagreed with me. The truth is that I got consumed by work for a period of time. It was a convenient way to cease-and-desist from posting. The other forum practically went dead and I stopped going out there every day. I always have plenty of things to do... I was extremely busy up until a few weeks ago.

Each time I think about these forums, I have the same thought...

I don't want to go back. It's not because I dislike the people. It's because the legacy of the LC and addressing the legacy of the LC is almost nothing but conflict, consternation and suffering for everyone.

-- Some of this conflict and suffering is valuable because it cathartically helps people get through things that were implanted in their souls through a religious experience that was abusive.
-- Some of the conflict is just unnecessary damage.

There could be some things that could happen that would draw me back in, but if the Lord allows me to be free from this then I prefer it that way. I will only return if I am clear that it is a point of obedience to the Lord.

I can surely say that my involvement on the other forum and this thread (which is the only involvement I have had on this forum) has been valuable. I won't go into all of the reasons why.

I should probably close with that.

As for my part, I can also apologize for the way I came across at times. I believe Hope caught the worst of this from me. Sorry, Hope.

I know I can be passionate in my approach at times. Sometimes this turns into arguing. I have had to work long and hard in my life to learn how to exercise more 'self-control' and change my style of communication (less combative). These aren't things that came naturally for me. I've got a quick (and sometimes sharp) tongue. My fingers can move on the keyboard almost as fast as I talk. That's not always good. If you think I am combative based on what you have read on these forums, I can only say that you are seeing an extremely mild form of what I used to be like.

And lastly, I have a second child on the way. We don't know if it is a boy or a girl yet, but it's going to be "fun". Yes "fun" in quotes indicating the facetiousness of my reference.

Matt

P.S. With just a very, very, very small number of exceptions, I have truly enjoyed getting to know a little bit about so many of those who have contributed to this forum and the last one. It is amazing to see how much the Lord loves us and cares for us. I see it when I see what many have been through and how faithful He has been to "restore our souls". For those very, very, very small number of exceptions... I haven't attained to the level of faith required to include you in my comment yet. Still working on it...

Last edited by Matt Anderson; 12-15-2008 at 02:35 PM.
Matt Anderson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2009, 01:34 PM   #1032
juliep
Member
 
juliep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 15
Default Re: The LCS Factor

After reading some of the posts, just wondering if any of you were children who actually grew up in the LC? I did - and was there from the start in Texas in Denton. DJohnson definantely has a good knowledge of what went on and how it felt and still feels. Thank you for acknowledging what we as children went through!
Of course I expect people who were adult at the time probably wouldnt want to think that they hurt their children, who would want to accept such a thing, when denial is much easier on the conscience?
juliep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2009, 02:01 PM   #1033
Terry
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Renton, Washington
Posts: 3,268
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by juliep View Post
After reading some of the posts, just wondering if any of you were children who actually grew up in the LC? I did - and was there from the start in Texas in Denton.
I was one who grew up in the early seventies-mid eighties via LA/Phoenix/Albuerquerque/Anaheim/San Bernardino. My experience was different. Grade school age it was great. Most of my friends were from families meeting in the church. The teen years were not so wonderful. There was more mixture of good and bad experiences. I witnessed a few overreactions and I witnessed much ministering to the young people. Brothers that gave/give themselves to the children's work and to the young people should not be taken for granted. I Corinthians 12:4-12 applies every bit as much to those serving in the children's ministry and those serving in the young people's ministry.

Terry
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2009, 03:09 PM   #1034
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Hey, juliep,

Welcome to our little sandbox. It is so good to hear from you. I would say that if anyone knew about growing up in Dallas, you would be one of those.

I was tempted to say that I would say “hi” to my sister for you, but I don’t think I want to have to dodge where I heard from you at.

In any case, if you were reading through the posts in this thread, you saw us at our worst. And I’m not just talking about other people besides me. We didn’t do so good here. There was plenty to really talk about, but we kept running off into the fringes, hammering square pegs into round holes, and getting out a spray painter to make everything beige. (When you’re a hammer, everything looks like a nail.)

Still, I’m sure you saw yourself in there. I’m glad I was already 18 when I came along. I don’t think I could have stood it from childhood, through adolescence, and then on to college.

As for the LC hurting children, my own were affected indirectly. It was through the self-righteous, better-than-others attitudes displayed by their cousins as they grew up somewhat together. That “togetherness” became less and less so over the years. It’s funny to hear my dad make reference to one of them as only barely spiritual when that one tries so hard to act uber-spiritual in our presence.

Hope you'll stick around.
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2009, 04:22 PM   #1035
juliep
Member
 
juliep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 15
Default Re: The LCS Factor

I'm hoping that this forum will be a bit cathartic. Only just now at age 46 (oh man, am I really that old?) ready to look back at those days growing up in the LC. For those of you who dont know me - I grew up in the LC from the age of 5 (1967) until I was 18. We migrated from Denton, to Houston, to Dallas. I have actually found myself shaking and crying as I read some of the postings...So many memories come back, some not so easy.
Its good to get support from other forum users who know what I am talking about. My prayers and good wishes are sent to all of you.
juliep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2009, 04:45 PM   #1036
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

PHP Code:
I'm hoping that this forum will be a bit cathartic. 
LOL! Welcome Julie...keep reading....it's quite cathartic in here, quite a purging goes on most of the time.

I'd like to consider myself 'all cleaned out'....but if I waaaaaas, I wonder why I'm still here...


Btw, lots of Texans on this forum too...you probably know more of them personally, than I do. I live in Texas also but was never in the churches in Texas. My home church was in San Diego. Good church over all. (LC)

Looks like you live in Hawaii, these days........ nice. Aren't you BLESSED! ?

...I am too...even though I live in South Texas.

I hope you get well aquainted here...and shake off the dust from the past.

A New day has dawned........in Christ Jesus.
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2009, 09:02 PM   #1037
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
Hey, juliep,

Welcome to our little sandbox. It is so good to hear from you. I would say that if anyone knew about growing up in Dallas, you would be one of those.

I was tempted to say that I would say “hi” to my sister for you, but I don’t think I want to have to dodge where I heard from you at.

In any case, if you were reading through the posts in this thread, you saw us at our worst. And I’m not just talking about other people besides me. We didn’t do so good here. There was plenty to really talk about, but we kept running off into the fringes, hammering square pegs into round holes, and getting out a spray painter to make everything beige. (When you’re a hammer, everything looks like a nail.)

Still, I’m sure you saw yourself in there. I’m glad I was already 18 when I came along. I don’t think I could have stood it from childhood, through adolescence, and then on to college.

As for the LC hurting children, my own were affected indirectly. It was through the self-righteous, better-than-others attitudes displayed by their cousins as they grew up somewhat together. That “togetherness” became less and less so over the years. It’s funny to hear my dad make reference to one of them as only barely spiritual when that one tries so hard to act uber-spiritual in our presence.
Hope you'll stick around.
Mike,

Good for your dad.

But I am glad that your children did have some relationship with the cousins and grandparents. Who knows perhaps your children will one day be a source of help to their self-righteous cousins.

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-07-2009, 09:21 PM   #1038
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: Fair and balance for the good of all

Dear Forum,

Yes, the forum can be very cathartic. But like Mike said there is the need to be careful about painting everybody beige. But wounds are real and need healing. I have plenty to do but I spend time on this site because of the pain I have seen dear believers in Christ suffer. Sadly, some dear ones have looked for healing by letting innocent persons have it upside the head. Mutual respect and hearing one another out and no free shots please. (By the way JulieP, this is not directed at you.) I just feel the need to express some concerns in order to keep an atmosphere where you and anyone else can feel free to come and express what is on their heart.

I am curious, why is it so important to paint everyone with the same brush? We have heard repeatedly, over and over how wrong WL was with his sweeping hyperbolic generalization of “poor poor Christianity.” I have heard over and over the quote about “Christless Protestantism.” But do we really think there are not a least a few examples of some places in Christianity that are poor or where Christ has not been seen for a while? If it was wrong for WL to use inductive reasoning and take a specific case or two and make that the indicator of what the whole is, then we should be a little more sober minded and look at things on a case by case basis and learn where the flaws are.

I would propose that we consider the pains, sufferings, stumblings and damages and disillusionments from at least five directions. 1. What was the role of wrong or defective teachings and practices in the local church movement? 2. How much of the pain was caused by plain old human failure or incompetence? 3. What role did the individuals play and what about each person’s own responsibility? Of course, this will vary from case to case. 4. We are dealing with Spiritual matters and we are not ignorant of the schemes of the devil. The devil is seeking someone to devour and accuses the saints night and day. We do have an enemy. 5. As the Psalmist says, life is like the sea seldom at rest. We will all experience disappointments and trouble. I have had bad professors. I have had coaches who did not do things in a fair way. Same with bosses. Same with clients. Same with neighbors. ETC. Some parents have miserable lives after age 35 because of bad children. It does cut both ways. How we react to the troubles that come is a big matter.

Among the true blue LSMers, Witness Lee can do no wrong and is glorious in every way. Kind of ridiculous isn’t it. At the same time, I have seen some former LCers who are convinced that WL is only bad and had only evil motives from the start. Kind of ridiculous isn’t it.

Please, we do need to examine where the movement has come to and how any of us were hurt or stumbled but don’t declare that the church in Stuttgart, Germany was the same as the church in Dallas, Texas or the same as the church in Accra, Ghana. Do not think that James Barber oversaw a local church in the same way as George Whitington. If every place and every elder or co-worker was cut out of the same lump of cookie dough with the same cookie cutter then there could never have been the seven year storm cycle. There would never have been the need for the repeated purging.

In my experience, many dear ones were stumbled because of the usurping of their conscience by the authority structure of the LSM and the excessive pride of the ministry. They were told that their struggles were their own fault. Once they realize that it was not that much their fault, they can have hope of recovering what was lost. Thus, I am not saying no one should rehash the past. On the contrary, we must examine our history. Just beware of becoming a drama king.

Hope, Don Rutledge

A believer in Christ Jesus who is seeking to become a true disciple.

John 8:31-32, Jesus therefore was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, "If you abide in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. " NASB
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 08:30 AM   #1039
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Don,

I must agree with almost all of what you have said. Even within one city, experiences varied. When I think back over the history of this particular thread, I’m reminded how quickly the desire to make everything the same — and really bad — took hold for some. You were one caught in the cross-hairs of that movement.

But on the other hand, I bet that even for all your efforts and observations that made Dallas different from other places (which were, themselves, different from other places) you and I would find that the perspective from others right there in Dallas was different. Julie could probably give us some of the perspective from the younger generation that would surprise us.

When I think back, I realize that while there was a significant collection of generally substantial people, there was always a large number of people who were, metaphorically, like alcoholics who would come to the AA meetings for a period, be sober, but trying to be so without really “doing the steps” as those people say. The result is that they would fall back into their “addiction” for a while, then reemerge with new fervor for “Christ and the church.” It’s almost like being bipolar. Can you imagine being the child of someone going through that?

If there was an “LCS Factor,” this is surely a significant part of it. The constant struggle to be “burning in spirit” when the available supply could barely keep dried grass burning. But when things looked bleak, there was nowhere to turn. You couldn’t go elsewhere because they were all “corrupt” according to the LC mantras. You might take personal exception to this, but the general idea based on the outward words of the “ministry” was that we simply had to fix ourselves by turning more to our spirit.

And that is quite the wrong place to turn. We were being told that the answer was within us. I do not disagree that Christ is in us, but when the focus is to turn to a place inside of us rather than simply to turn to Christ without any concern about where he might be, the focus is wrong. The focus of turning to “our spirit” really means turn within yourself. It does not matter how you try to argue against that, it is what is really happening. Rather than turn to Christ for the supply, we turned to ourselves to find out if there was enough supply already available within.

If this sounds inconsistent with what you thought you were teaching, consider that what was said to be in us was the Christ that had been dispensed into us. (Yes, we now come back to my pet peeve about Lee’s God’s economy = dispensing doctrine.) You might recall that the general teaching was that we were to refrain from doing on our own, but to seek more supply until we were empowered to do. This was what Lee was saying when he said that right and wrong was irrelevant, only the spirit. So if what is in us is only the amount of Christ that had been dispensed into us, then we cannot say that everything of Christ was within us. If we needed more dispensing, then what was within us was not all of Christ.

I see a significant problem when these two thoughts are put together. The God of the universe is within us and that is where you should turn when you pray. But when you find yourself in need, your real need is to get more God/Christ into you. But I thought He was already there. Since the practical, day-to-day living is about what is really available to us for our life, then the reality is that the Christ that is within us is not enough (from the LC perspective). We need more.

Doesn’t that sound heretical? The God of the universe is in you. When you pray, look inside because that is where He is. But when you are short of what it takes to live a righteous life, you pray to the God within you to get some more of Himself into you because He is not enough as it is. So even in LC terms, the idea of turning to your spirit when you find yourself in need would be insufficient because the God in you isn’t enough. You need more.

So who is this God that is all-sufficient and all-powerful but only doles himself out in little bits, keeping you from living the righteous life until you get some more “doling.” I don’t think that God is described in the Bible. Instead, the God in the Bible is all-sufficient and all-powerful. But we are the problem. We do not fail to fulfill the righteousness of the law because we don’t have enough God dispensed into us; we fail because we do not walk according to the Spirit. As long as we are looking into ourselves for the supply, we will fail. That is the law. Even this notion of “turning to your spirit” is about turning to part of me. We say that it is where Christ is. But we lose focus when we put turning to something of us first rather than simply turning to Christ as the answer. We look for some sort of stored up strength — enough dispensing — rather than look to God right now for the strength.

I do not overcome my tendency toward anger at those jerks on the road each day because I prayed a few hours ago. I do it by leaning on God right now. That prayer a few hours ago may have set my path right so that I am quicker to turn to Christ, but it will not be the fix. When the first one cuts in, I may not anger as quickly, but if I am relying on some pile of “dispensing” I will ultimately fail. It is just self effort that starts from a better position than on a day when I have not prayed within the past few hours. My strength is in Christ, not in my store of “dispensing.” I need Christ right now, not a previous store of “dispensed Christ.”
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 08:33 AM   #1040
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default Re: Fair and balance for the good of all

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
Among the true blue LSMers, Witness Lee can do no wrong and is glorious in every way. Kind of ridiculous isn’t it. At the same time, I have seen some former LCers who are convinced that WL is only bad and had only evil motives from the start. Kind of ridiculous isn’t it.
I would agree. But at the same time, I honestly believe that the core of the problems that ultimately cast plagues upon the LCs was there from the beginning. It might have been behind a curtain in the early days in the US, but there is evidence of its presence when WL moved to Taiwan from China. I doubt that it was entirely new then.
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 10:24 AM   #1041
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: Fair and balance for the good of all

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
I would agree. But at the same time, I honestly believe that the core of the problems that ultimately cast plagues upon the LCs was there from the beginning. It might have been behind a curtain in the early days in the US, but there is evidence of its presence when WL moved to Taiwan from China. I doubt that it was entirely new then.
Mike,

I agree that many of the problems and damage can be traced back to China itself. It is kind of like bringing in fruit from another country. The fruit may be tasty but are their any bugs or diseases that we should keep out of the country? For some reason, we USA believers, did not want to recognize the problems even when they began to be manifested: Daystar, Ministry Center, Control of the sharing in the local meetings, charging for trainings and other matters to be discussed later.

Thanks Mike,

Your brother and friend in Christ Jesus,

Hope, Don Rutledge

PS In an earlier post you mentioned that your were 18 when you came to the church in Dallas. Hey, I was only 20 when I came to the church in Waco. I was barely 26 when your family joined us in Dallas.

Last edited by Hope; 01-08-2009 at 10:25 AM. Reason: adding text
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 10:35 AM   #1042
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
Don, I must agree with almost all of what you have said. Even within one city, experiences varied. When I think back over the history of this particular thread, I’m reminded how quickly the desire to make everything the same — and really bad — took hold for some. You were one caught in the cross-hairs of that movement...
Mike,

Great post. I read through it once and nothing seemed off to me but all right on. I would like to respond to each paragraph when I have a little more time. You are touching what I consider to be a critical error and misunderstanding of the "inner life" and of God's Economy. I need to consider a while how to respond as I believe this area is key to understanding many of the things that went wrong and to the disappointments many experienced.

In Christ Jesus,

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 01:20 PM   #1043
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Mike makes a good point that the concept of "getting more God" is misleading and perhaps just plain wrong.

When we really sense the Lord's presence in us it does seem like we have "more" of God. But really, what is happening is that we are getting personally closer to God, and so are more aware of Him. The slang of getting more God is understandable, but it also illustrates again the diversion of the LC view of contacting God versus that of most serious Christians.

The LC saw experiences of God as experiences of his substance--His life, nature and Spirit--which you could get more of, like drinking more milk, which lent to an oddly impersonal personal relationship with Him. Most serious Christians see God as a spiritual personality with whom they can grow in relationship with, as thus become more aware of personally.

This growing sense of God's presence can give the impression one has more God, but probably what has really happened is that God has more of you.
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 02:16 PM   #1044
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

[QUOTE=Igzy;5121]
Quote:
The LC saw experiences of God as experiences of his substance--His life, nature and Spirit--which you could get more of, like drinking more milk, which lent to an oddly impersonal personal relationship with Him. Most serious Christians see God as a spiritual personality with whom they can grow in relationship with, as thus become more aware of personally.
I agree many of the LCrs appear to have an oddly impersonal relationship with the Lord. I think in part it is because there is waaaaaaaay too much emphasis on their perspective of the 'body of Christ' rather than emphasizing a personal relationship with Him, the Holy Spirit, the Father and the Word of God....without checking with the RcVs footnotes to see if they're on the right track...and making sure they have the LSM's blessings on what they are learning.

Time and time again, I get the impression spending time reading messages or going over Lee's teachings take precidence over The Lord Jesus Christ and His Holy Word.

When they make the teachings more important than the Word of God and their personal relationship with Him, it warps their personalities and their ability to think for themselves with the BRAIN God has bestowed on each individual. It also cripples their ability to read the Word of God and let HIM speak to us without the approval of the footnotes or the 'blessing' of Lee's ministry & now the LSM's. It also cripples their ability to have normal, uplifting, edifying, encouraging, healthy relationships with people inside the walls of the LSM and with people outside the LSM.
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 02:25 PM   #1045
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default Re: Fair and balance for the good of all

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
In an earlier post you mentioned that your were 18 when you came to the church in Dallas. Hey, I was only 20 when I came to the church in Waco. I was barely 26 when your family joined us in Dallas.
I knew our ages were not that far apart. I was actually about two months shy of 18 in Jan, 73, when we cut ties with the AOG and came to stay (well, for a while for me).
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 03:05 PM   #1046
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: Age correction

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
I knew our ages were not that far apart. I was actually about two months shy of 18 in Jan, 73, when we cut ties with the AOG and came to stay (well, for a while for me).
I am pretty up tight about getting dates etc correct. In Jan, 73 I was 27 not 26. At this point in the human journey I would say we are about the same. By the way, based on your comment about the traffic in Dallas, be glad you do not live here. NC drivers are much more dangerous and not as skillful as those in Dallas. Add about 150,000 college students in the area and watch out.

Don

Last edited by Hope; 01-08-2009 at 03:06 PM. Reason: grammar
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 06:24 PM   #1047
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Mike,
I can't take it anymore. What IS that avatar?
Roger
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-08-2009, 06:28 PM   #1048
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger View Post
Mike,
I can't take it anymore. What IS that avatar?
Roger
Roger, have you forgotten the Moody Blues?
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 07:51 AM   #1049
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
Roger, have you forgotten the Moody Blues?
Mike is a Moody Blues fans. The avatar is the cover of their fifth album "To Our Children's Children's Children." His signature is the first words from the first track of their fourth album "On the the Threshold of a Dream."

I used to love that fourth album and listened to it over and over. Let's see whether I can remember the first track after not hearing it for about 35 years.

First voice: "I think. I think I am. Therefore I am. I think."

Second voice (mechanical and treacherous): Of course you are, my brrright little star! I've miles and miles of files, pretty files, of your forefather's frrruit. And now to suit, our grrreat computer, your magnetic ink!

First voice: "I'm more than that. At least, I think I must be."

Third voice (reassuring): "There you go, man. Keep as cool as you can. Face miles of trials with smiles. It riles them to believe that you perceive the web they weave. Keep on thinking free." song begins.

Pretty close I think.

I can also remember commercials from Saturday morning TV. I occasionally will burst out with a 45-year-old jingle. My wife thinks I'm crazy.
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 08:53 AM   #1050
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
Mike is a Moody Blues fans.
Sorry, not a Moody Blues fan. But I hope that doesn't affect our fellowship
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 09:17 AM   #1051
UntoHim
Grateful Servant
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,768
Default Re: The LCS Factor

"To our Childrens Childrens Children"

Man oh man, what are they ganna think of us? Lord have mercy.

"For the promise is unto you, and to your children..."
__________________
Now Unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy (Jude 24)
UntoHim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 10:32 AM   #1052
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
Mike is a Moody Blues fans. The avatar is the cover of their fifth album "To Our Children's Children's Children." His signature is the first words from the first track of their fourth album "On the the Threshold of a Dream."

I used to love that fourth album and listened to it over and over. Let's see whether I can remember the first track after not hearing it for about 35 years.

First voice: "I think. I think I am. Therefore I am. I think."

Second voice (mechanical and treacherous): Of course you are, my brrright little star! I've miles and miles of files, pretty files, of your forefather's frrruit. And now to suit, our grrreat computer, your magnetic ink!

First voice: "I'm more than that. At least, I think I must be."

Third voice (reassuring): "There you go, man. Keep as cool as you can. Face miles of trials with smiles. It riles them to believe that you perceive the web they weave. Keep on thinking free." song begins.



Pretty close I think.

I can also remember commercials from Saturday morning TV. I occasionally will burst out with a 45-year-old jingle. My wife thinks I'm crazy.


MOODY BLUES? I never heard of them. Did I miss out? From what you posted they seem to be way to sophisticated and deep for a simple old country boy. After all I was raised in a cane break by an old momma lion. And the ole high toned woman made me walk the line.

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 11:22 AM   #1053
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Roger and all,

Igzy got the facts right, and the words pretty right (if not right on).

Don: While you may not really know who the Moody Blues are, there is a least one song that you probably have heard — Nights in White Satin. I might find one or two others you have heard, like Tuesday Afternoon. Both were from 1967.

They are still performing til this day, often with orchestras. I like the music, and while there are probably things to be said about some of the lyrics, they did have a "philosophy" that represents much of man's seeking. While it did not help them find Christ, it did speak to man's hopes, dreams, doubts, and even fantasies. Sometimes the idea of "knowing the times" can be aided by knowing the writings of the modern poets and philosophers.

In any case, the "by line" tells about me. I spend a lot of time in my thinking. But no matter how certain I appear at times, I understand that I may just be "thinking."
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 01:35 PM   #1054
SpeakersCorner
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
I can also remember commercials from Saturday morning TV. I occasionally will burst out with a 45-year-old jingle. My wife thinks I'm crazy.
Oh, man, have I got that disease. Just recently I caught myself singing, "For every chocolate mousse I miss, for every eclaire I resist, Figurines are sweet revenge."

That one wasn't even popular.

D'ya remember, "Brusha, Brusha, Brusha. Here's the new Ipana with a brand new flavor, It's dandy for your te-e-e-e-eth"?

Or how's about: "Welcome home, Captain Crunch ... we really missed you ... a bunch!"

Or, "I like my chicken, finger-lickin' good ... I like my chicken finger-lickin' good. I like my chicken finger-lickin' good ... real goodness from Kentucky Fried Chicken."

Ah, the memories.



SC
SpeakersCorner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 04:17 PM   #1055
Suannehill
Member
 
Suannehill's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: North of Mansfield Ohio
Posts: 165
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by countmeworthy View Post
OK guys.... where's the BEEF in all this ???
No beef..."Get a bucket of chicken...have a barrel of fun...goodby ho hum..."
(My parents had KFC stores)
Suannehill is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 05:49 PM   #1056
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
"There you go, man. Keep as cool as you can. Face miles of trials with smiles. It riles them to believe that you perceive the web they weave. Keep on thinking free."
Kind of appropriate for the forum, don'cha think?
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 10:12 PM   #1057
blessD
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 73
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt View Post

Others,

...The truth is that I got consumed by work for a period of time. It was a convenient way to cease-and-desist from posting.... It's because the legacy of the LC and addressing the legacy of the LC is almost nothing but conflict, consternation and suffering for everyone.
And lastly, I have a second child on the way. We don't know if it is a boy or a girl yet, but it's going to be "fun". Yes "fun" in quotes indicating the facetiousness of my reference.

Matt
Hi Matt,

I too have been consumed with work and family. But, also, I was doing much better before encountering some of the strife and wrangling on the forum. Maybe I was looking for more of a support group when I wrote of some painful experiences I had in the LC, rather than critique. Anyhow, I wanted to say thanks for writing. I always appreciate what you have to say.

Congrats on the new baby on the way!

Last edited by blessD; 01-09-2009 at 10:36 PM.
blessD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-09-2009, 10:35 PM   #1058
blessD
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 73
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by juliep View Post
After reading some of the posts, just wondering if any of you were children who actually grew up in the LC? I did - and was there from the start in Texas in Denton. DJohnson definantely has a good knowledge of what went on and how it felt and still feels. Thank you for acknowledging what we as children went through!
Of course I expect people who were adult at the time probably wouldnt want to think that they hurt their children, who would want to accept such a thing, when denial is much easier on the conscience?
Hi juliep,
I just wanted to say hello and was happy to see your post appear on the forum. We were friends once upon a time as teenagers in the LC... let's see I am 48, so that would be more than 30 years ago! I like your question about denial.

Last edited by blessD; 01-09-2009 at 11:06 PM.
blessD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2009, 01:14 PM   #1059
Terry
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Renton, Washington
Posts: 3,268
Default The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
Often times, within the Recovery, "the work" with the full-timers as "managers" creates a "business" out of the church, with the many members as "employees" of the enterprise, carrying the latest "agenda" from headquarters. As such, the saints are often poor "employees," since they may not be well-suited for the tasks assigned to them. The leaders, as such, rarely take into account the actual needs and wants of the saints, since their condition takes second place to the "program." This "top down" management style almost becomes synonymous with the definition of a denomination. For such a "business" to prosper, the elders as middle "managers" must be able to hire and fire incompetent performers, else their own performance, as viewed by headquarters, suffers. Hence, the saints, like myself, become a liability, not an asset, to the program.
Hello Ohio,
On your post on middle management. Does that mean elders are not functioning in the way we were once accustomed to? In relation to 1 Timothy. Rather than having the relationship with a locality as a shepherd would be to his flock, what you see are elders functioning as a manager over a franchise? For example promoting Living Stream publications, tithing, training enrollment, etc.
Perhaps what has changed is what their role has become. More involvement with the work aspect and an assumption the flock will take care of the flock?

Terry
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2009, 02:49 PM   #1060
juliep
Member
 
juliep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 15
Default The LCS Factor

This is probably getting redundant for some of you, but I grew up with the Whitingtons since I was 5 years old. My mother and I lived in the "Big House" in Denton way back in the day, with George and Cleo. We used to all walk to Stonewall Elementary School with Grace as our leader - since she was the oldest. Grace - is the oldest, Ginny -one of my best friends growing up (and yes she died of complications from mitral valve prolapse / a malady we have in common and we thought it was funny at the time - that we both had the same thing), makes me cry thinking of her even now...Martha is the youngest girl and Steven is the youngest of all and kept us on our toes! Little rascal - and I say that with much love!
My experience with Cleo was she was the most supportive person in my life. More so than my own parents. In her younger years in Dallas when we kids were in junior high and high school she kept us in line for sure, there was no one like her, and probably won't ever be.
George was always quite, and when I went through some rough times as a freshman in college he was very protective of me from the other "elders" in Dallas and stood by me in a very loving and supportive way (again, more than my own parents). When other people from the local church were judging the Whitingtons were loving!
I was grown and no longer involved with the LC when Cleo was diagnosed with MS, and I have to say (maybe for selfish reasons) I am somewhat thankful I never saw her wheelchair bound and can remember her always as the woman she was when she was healthy and vibrant!
Enough reminiscing for now...
juliep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2009, 06:25 PM   #1061
juliep
Member
 
juliep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 15
Default Re: The LCS Factor

I just finished reading through the previous posts and found all the arguing about what happened in Dallas with the elders interesting. I also was called into one of those meetings at the age of 18 to be confronted alone and with about 6 or 7 elders and no parent present. The elders requested a very detailed accounting of my behavior with another young person in the LC, which I look upon as pretty perverse behavior now that I am an adult. (A young girl alone in a room full of males.) Luckily, it occured to me pretty soon thereafter, that I was an adult at 18 and didn't have to answer to the "elders" anymore. Just mentioning this incident as backup to what the other young sister experienced.
juliep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2009, 08:34 PM   #1062
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

For the record: I was an elder in Dallas for 14 years. I was never in "one of those meetings" with a teenage girl and several elders. In fact I never heard of "one of those meetings" until I learned of "those meetings" here on the forum. Perhaps only these two are the only examples of "one of those meetings." Where did this one occur? I believe that Juliep was not in Dallas at age 18. It would help if some names were clearly mentioned in this case and in the case involving BlessD. It is totally unfair to make these broad general accusations. Earlier a description of George and Cleo Whitington was given. Why not declare or insinuate that this couple was the normal leading one in the Texas area. Maybe they are the typical example. Why insinuate that these mysterious unnamed men represent the sum of the elders and "one of those meetings" is typical? NOT MY EXPERIENCE!!! Please relate things as unique to yourself and do not imply such poor behavior was normal and broad.

Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2009, 09:06 PM   #1063
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by juliep View Post
...George was always quite, and when I went through some rough times as a freshman in college he was very protective of me from the other "elders" in Dallas and stood by me in a very loving and supportive way (again, more than my own parents). When other people from the local church were judging the Whitingtons were loving!..
Who were the other elders in Dallas from whom you needed protecting? I never remember once speaking with you regarding any personal issue either privately or in any group. Why slam "other people from the local church?" Was it the Masseys, the Philleys, the Lurveys, the Lamps, the Wilsons, the Reimers, the Megahans, the Houses, the Kirks, the Brashears, the Jaynes, the Shells, the Hunters or maybe some of the young saints, Phyllis, Mike, Tommy, Randy, Keith and on and on. All of these kind and generous people are some of the other people from the local church. Do you indict them all? I frankly doubt if any from Dallas other than your parents confronted you regarding the issue of your suffering. If I am wrong you can easily identify them to me by private message and I will post regarding my terrible presumption.

Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-15-2009, 10:23 PM   #1064
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
**hit arrow to see post
I have already responded to this post by Igzy. To me it was very accurate. The above is not the entire post but does give a fair both sides evaluation and gives a clear impression about which side of the scales was the predominate side.

Jane Anderson wrote a book about the local church. The book began with an account of a humiliating experience she suffered. The date was 1977. I believe she and her husband had been associated with the local churches since at least 1968. I have found it more than interesting that she starts the story with this event. Any reader would have to assume this was more than an isolated event. Later another humiliating experience is recounted which was suffered by a teenage girl. It has many similarities to her experience.

I can only speak from my experience. From 1965-1986, I cannot recall being in such a called gathering. I knew nothing of the one that occurred in Houston. I heard of some people in some places being called down publicly but never of a called meeting for the purpose of humiliating an individual or group of individuals. Yes, during Max Rapoport's time there were called elders gatherings for this purpose. Yes, there were such meetings after 1986. They were called and directed at specific leading brothers, but not at individual brothers or sisters or teenagers. When I complete my history, I will detail some of these. But I hope to first set a clear stage that this was not the way it always was and it was the great exception to the day to day church life.

I have been on the receiving end of rebukes in private and semi-private gatherings for alleged improper actions in discharging responsibilities related to church leadership. I have witnessed others receiving similar rebukes. I did not appreciate the one way flow and the presumption of the one bringing the rebuke. I would label this according to my definition as bullying.
I have seen a new “flow” presented by an LSM/LC cadre that railed on the brothers and sisters in general and accused them of unfaithfulness, immaturity, dullness, or being cows or such nonsense. I call this bullying. But what Jane Anderson described in her book is beyond bullying. Both her experience and the experience of the young sister are way beyond the line of decency and respect. How accurate are the accounts? I cannot say since I was not there in either case nor did I ever hear of the events until the forums. But I can say this kind of event was not what was going on! What about the 8-9 years before this infamous meeting?

I have witnessed individual elders abuse individual brothers or sisters. I have heard of such instances. These were very rare before the late 70s and were the actions of a very few persons. This should not have happen but it was not the norm.

Thus, posters, be sure, if an individual case is presented in an explosive manner such that it throws an indiscriminant blanket of guilt and shame over many persons and places, I may be compelled to respond. The forum should not be a place where any may take a free shot and vent due to some disappointing experience and not expect any push back. That is the way of the BBs and the LSM. No push back allowed.

If you need to vent and healing often requires some venting, remember not to do to some innocent persons the very thing you suffered. I learned on the forums the term judgaholic. This also cuts both ways. While we critique the Local Church movement, remember Rom 2:1, Therefore you are without excuse, every man of you who passes judgment, for in that you judge another, you condemn yourself; for you who judge practice the same things. NASB

Don Rutledge

Last edited by UntoHim; 01-16-2009 at 03:10 PM.
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 03:56 AM   #1065
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
I have witnessed individual elders abuse individual brothers or sisters. I have heard of such instances. These were very rare before the late 70s and were the actions of a very few persons. This should not have happen but it was not the norm.
Well, then, let me ask you to speak to this, Hope.

Isn't frequency of occurrence an irrelevant consideration if everyone is endeavoring in fear to minimize the frequency?

If my father thrashes me mercilessly with a belt until I am black and blue, though he does that only once, and I remain rightly terrified of it happening again because of subtle threats of a recurrence, is my younger brother unreasonable in concluding that this is a "norm?"

And more to the point of what I think gets you motivated on this topic, does my mother unreasonably bear some semblance of responsibilty in the eyes of my younger brother for the situation continuing, even though I lied to her when she asked me about where the bruises came from?

I know you can't prove a negative, Hope, and I don't ask you to do so.

I just wonder if you agree with my way of viewing such matters.

I admit I might be wrong and I've taken your correction before.

Thank you.
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 06:30 AM   #1066
Matt Anderson
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 125
Default Re: The LCS Factor

juliep,

If you get bothered (as I am right now) by Hope's posts and need some help on this thread, feel free to let me know at mattandersondc@gmail.com.

I'll be glad to help make some room for your point of view to be fully expressed on this thread without feeling like Hope is going to be able to shape the idea that his corner of the LC was somehow much better than other places. You may be completely fine on your own, so it is just an offer.

Let's all keep in mind that, Don, as an elder in his corner of the LC (his locality), wasn't even aware of various kinds of serious church discipline happening right beneath his nose until he came onto this forum.

This is what most call denial. It's very hard and frustrating to deal with others who are in denial and it usually takes some assistance from others. I'll be glad to help. I'll keep my tone and approach above board.

Matt

By the way: The fact that local eldership was constantly overriden and usurped was not a unique situation. It was and still is pervasive throughout the LC system.

Last edited by Matt Anderson; 01-16-2009 at 11:16 AM.
Matt Anderson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 06:44 AM   #1067
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by YP0534 View Post

If my father thrashes me mercilessly with a belt until I am black and blue, though he does that only once, and I remain rightly terrified of it happening again because of subtle threats of a recurrence, is my younger brother unreasonable in concluding that this is a "norm?"
YP, let me add a twist to your hypothetical. Suppose you had an older brother who was a beloved star athlete whom nobody messed with, let alone your dad. He would never know the fear that you or younger brother knew. Bully types tend to pick on those who are more vulnerable. I may be talking hypotheticals here, but these are real people I am thinking of.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 07:11 AM   #1068
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt View Post
By the way: The fact that local eldership was constantly overridden and usurped was not a unique situation. It was and still is pervasive throughout the LC system.
The irony of both Matt's post and Hope's recent posts here and on the "Baptist" thread is this: they appear at odds at first, but I do believe that both are providing fair and accurate assessments. The differences lie in who the "reporter" is and what the "reporter" has witnessed.

For example, my childhood and my LC experiences brought me face to face with some awfully painful times of bullying and abuse. I have watched churches being devastated by it. Not always, of course, and there were times of exceeding great joy, but my final days in the LC reintroduced me to the topic again and again.

SpeakersCorner, on the other hand, who has a similar tenure as me in the GLA churches, sees things differently, and understandably so. Our upbringings, our characters, and our experiences are both different, so one would also expect our views on many details would differ too.

I do hope we could understand this phenomena as we begin to address this topic once again. I know I have a lot to learn, and tolerance, kindness, sympathy, forbearance, and understanding are among those at the top. Perhaps my best help in this arena comes from my wife. Being forced to listen to her extremely different views about the exact same event, has forced me on countless occasions to realize that other people can see things differently.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 07:21 AM   #1069
Terry
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Renton, Washington
Posts: 3,268
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matt View Post
juliep, If you get bothered (as I am right now) by Hope's posts and need some help on this thread, feel free to let me know...
Matt, I am really stunned by your post. I don't doubt the experiences of BlessD, JulieP and others. It is rare, but it does happen. Problem is there is no check & balance. I also don't doubt Hope when he says it's not his experience. I never got the sense Hope was trying to make "his corner of the LC was somehow much better than other places."

Terry
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 08:06 AM   #1070
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default The LCS Factor

That is another wrinkle, Ohio, but it does correlate with what I mean to say.

You could even add another layer in that you and the younger brother didn't have to fear the dad while the older brother was around.
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 10:12 AM   #1071
finallyprettyokay
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 127
Default Re: The LCS Factor

When I read Hope's most recent posts concerning juliep's post, my first thought was 'here we go again'. I was stunned, also. But for different reasons, I think. Once again are we going to examine someone's experience, attacking? Hope, I understand that you don't want to see people you cared about having insinuations addressed at them. Here's the fact: I think most of us reading wouldn't even know who those people were, if their names were given. And no one has ever suggested that you were there in that meeting. It seems that we just believe you when you tell us you weren't there. Could you believe the sisters that tell us their experiences?

On the other hand, Hope, it feels like you are really free to throw out Max's name as the source of so much wrong. What a double standard.

Juliep, thanks for posting. It takes a lot of bravery sometimes to post here. It does for me.

Lots of people were treated very badly lots of times. It was not good.

fpo
finallyprettyokay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 10:14 AM   #1072
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
Mike makes a good point that the concept of "getting more God" is misleading and perhaps just plain wrong.

When we really sense the Lord's presence in us it does seem like we have "more" of God. But really, what is happening is that we are getting personally closer to God, and so are more aware of Him. The slang of getting more God is understandable, but it also illustrates again the diversion of the LC view of contacting God versus that of most serious Christians.

The LC saw experiences of God as experiences of his substance--His life, nature and Spirit--which you could get more of, like drinking more milk, which lent to an oddly impersonal personal relationship with Him. Most serious Christians see God as a spiritual personality with whom they can grow in relationship with, as thus become more aware of personally.

This growing sense of God's presence can give the impression one has more God, but probably what has really happened is that God has more of you.
The Local Church people will insist that they are not a religion. However, one of the clearest evidence that a group has gone the way of religion is their drift towards works. This concept of "getting more of God dispensed into your being" has altogether to do with works.

You are right Igzy. We do not get more of God, we simply draw closer to Him. We have already received the all of God that we are going to receive. We cannot go to the dispenser and pump more into us.

Why do I say works? Well this idea of "God's dispensation" (as in dispensing, like a dispenser) leads to having to do something to get more of God. If you "call on the Lord" more, you will get more of God. If you "prayread" more, you will get more of God. If you go to all the meetings, you will get more of God than some who choose to miss some meetings, and so on, and so forth.

I can remember being in the Catholic Church with this kind of mentality. If I do more Novenas, I will be more pleasing to God. If I say more rosaries, I will score more brownie points with God. If I give to the foreign missions, and go to mass faithfully, and...so on, and so forth.

Remember this? If you do all that is expected of you, you are a "good brother," or sister. If you are found wanting, "Oh, brother you need to..."

Roger
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 10:51 AM   #1073
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Hello fpo,

Quote:
Originally Posted by finallyprettyokay View Post
When I read Hope's most recent posts concerning juliep's post, my first thought was 'here we go again'. I was stunned, also. But for different reasons, I think. Once again are we going to examine someone's experience, attacking? Hope, I understand that you don't want to see people you cared about having insinuations addressed at them. Here's the fact: I think most of us reading wouldn't even know who those people were, if their names were given. And no one has ever suggested that you were there in that meeting. It seems that we just believe you when you tell us you weren't there. Could you believe the sisters that tell us their experiences?

On the other hand, Hope, it feels like you are really free to throw out Max's name as the source of so much wrong. What a double standard.

Juliep, thanks for posting. It takes a lot of bravery sometimes to post here. It does for me.

Lots of people were treated very badly lots of times. It was not good.

fpo

In an earlier post, I mentioned,
Quote:
I would propose that we consider the pains, sufferings, stumblings and damages and disillusionments from at least five directions. 1. What was the role of wrong or defective teachings and practices in the local church movement? 2. How much of the pain was caused by plain old human failure or incompetence? 3. What role did the individuals play and what about each person’s own responsibility? Of course, this will vary from case to case. 4. We are dealing with Spiritual matters and we are not ignorant of the schemes of the devil. The devil is seeking someone to devour and accuses the saints night and day. We do have an enemy. 5. As the Psalmist says, life is like the sea seldom at rest. We will all experience disappointments and trouble. I have had bad professors. I have had coaches who did not do things in a fair way. Same with bosses. Same with clients. Same with neighbors. ETC. Some parents have miserable lives after age 35 because of bad children. It does cut both ways. How we react to the troubles that come is a big matter.
Please note my third criterion. It is very important to make cases specific and not throw everyone under the bus. On the other forum, I addressed several specific instances of abuse and error which I considered to be important in evaluating the LSM/LC movement. In all cases I was very specific. In one I referred to a case of a prominent leader who had a moral problem. I named the five men who failed to properly deal with the matter. I was one of the five. Thus, no one could cast aspersion on George Whitington, or Tim House or Lusby Kirk or Robert Raye or Clem Rogers, or Jim Coleman etc. I could have said several elders from several local churches in the Texas region made the unscriptural decision to let a fellow elder go regarding immorality and then covered it up. Had I taken that route, about all you could say is "Don Rutledge is a man without a conscience" and "how unrighteous!" Because I was very specific, innocent brothers were spared and the real culprits could be brought to account, including me. I was sent some very strong admonitions regarding my failure and the eventual consequences for my unfaithfulness. I received many urgings to make amends and repent. I deserved them all and received them as from the Lord.

I will refer to a second case, which I brought out into the open, that is the fathom church in Dallas bank account used to transfer Living Stream Money to disgruntled Daystar investors. I told exactly how I learned of it's existence and exactly who was involved. Thus, George Whitington, Don Looper, Joe Davis, Ray Graver, Tim House, Jim Coleman etc were not by mere association with the local churches in Texas implicated. I received several hot posts and messages about how stupid, incompetent, unqualified, weak, blind and conscienceless I was. I admitted all charges were true and I deserved the approbation. The blame came to the rightful person, yours truly. But I could have said that the church in Dallas was in on a money laundering type scheme and let the entire congregation or at least all the elders and maybe some deacons be condemned.

It is a very serious matter to bring charges against the Lord's children and against any in leadership. 1 Tim 5:19-20, Do not receive an accusation against an elder except on the basis of two or three witnesses. Those who continue in sin, rebuke in the presence of all, so that the rest also may be fearful of sinning. Please note the very specific parameters here. The charge is against the specific elder. It has the basis of two or three witnesses. Only those who continue in sin are to be rebuked in the presence of all. Paul does not exhort the church to accept all charges leveled so that wounded saints can be healed and to condemn all elders so that all will be thoroughly and forever scandalized.

Have you ever noticed the verses immediately before the above admonition. 1 Tim 5:17-18, Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who work hard at preaching and teaching. For the Scripture says, "You shall not muzzle the ox while he is threshing," and "The laborer is worthy of his wages." I greatly appreciated two items of juliep's posts. She gave credit to George Whitington and his wife Cleo. She referred specifically to James Barber as a source of her pain. I have acknowledged my agreement with her on both points based on my own experience. But I cannot acknowledge that which I do not know and simply accept any and every charge against the whole blame lot of local churchers and all who have labored among them. There should be more witnesses and confirmation. If asking for that is "denial," then we need the Lord's mercy to rescue us from our self delusion. Could it be that excising verses 17 & 18 from the elder accusing verses is "denial." When you consider the LC factor, is only the bad and ugly allowed not the good, bad and the ugly. The BBs only allow the good and their witness has very little credibility. Some critics of the LSM/LC only allow the bad and ugly and seem to be guilty of the denial charge they may level at others.

Don Rutledge

PS FPO, Matt and all my friends and Christian brothers and sisters, please feel free to let me have it. I can use all the help I can get. I love you for being so open. It is a good thing to be able to dialogue. Thank you all for reading and responding and allowing me to participate in this forum.

There is Hope for us all.
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 11:02 AM   #1074
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
Roger and all,

Igzy got the facts right, and the words pretty right (if not right on).

Don: While you may not really know who the Moody Blues are, there is a least one song that you probably have heard — Nights in White Satin. I might find one or two others you have heard, like Tuesday Afternoon. Both were from 1967.

They are still performing til this day, often with orchestras. I like the music, and while there are probably things to be said about some of the lyrics, they did have a "philosophy" that represents much of man's seeking. While it did not help them find Christ, it did speak to man's hopes, dreams, doubts, and even fantasies. Sometimes the idea of "knowing the times" can be aided by knowing the writings of the modern poets and philosophers.

In any case, the "by line" tells about me. I spend a lot of time in my thinking. But no matter how certain I appear at times, I understand that I may just be "thinking."
I often like to listen to "Dust in the Wind," by Kansas. My wife will sometimes put it on loop while working in the kitchen. That's a gospel message right there.

I know someone locally who told his mom that if he ever died before her, he wanted her to play it at his funeral. Little did he know that he would die just a few years later in a tragic accident. It spoke to many a young heart, at a time when they were being reminded that life doesn't just go on forever.

One time when I was going through a particularly difficult time, several years ago, the Lord spoke to me through the song by Bette Midler, "The Rose." I know, not very "spiritual," huh?

What spoke to me was that no matter how hard and long the winter, somewhere beneath that deep snow is a seed that will in the spring become a rose.

Roger
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 11:14 AM   #1075
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Hello Hope,
I hate getting into these types of discussions...but since you asked 'for it' I'd like to share a couple of my observations in a KIND but yet admonishing way.

1) Could you NOT have WELCOMED JulieP FIRST to the forum? Where are your manners dear brother!!!

2) She didn't ACCUSE YOU of being in the meeting she was in ! Maybe it happened before you were an elder OR maybe the other elders never told you about it.

I don't KNOW but you don't need to get soo defensive if meetings like this didn't involve YOU. If she had accused you of being in that meeting and you weren't then you have every right to speak up.
Take it at face value. It happened to them and you weren't involved nor were you told about it.

Btw, my experience in San Diego was not bad..but if someone told me they had meetings with the elders there while I was there and their experience was not good, my heart would go out to the person. It STILL would not change my experience.

Otherwise, take it at face value. It happened to them and you weren't involved or told about it.

Now. Go hug your wife !
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
For the record: I was an elder in Dallas for 14 years. I was never in "one of those meetings" with a teenage girl and several elders. In fact I never heard of "one of those meetings" until I learned of "those meetings" here on the forum. Perhaps only these two are the only examples of "one of those meetings." Where did this one occur? I believe that Juliep was not in Dallas at age 18. It would help if some names were clearly mentioned in this case and in the case involving BlessD. It is totally unfair to make these broad general accusations. Earlier a description of George and Cleo Whitington was given. Why not declare or insinuate that this couple was the normal leading one in the Texas area. Maybe they are the typical example. Why insinuate that these mysterious unnamed men represent the sum of the elders and "one of those meetings" is typical? NOT MY EXPERIENCE!!! Please relate things as unique to yourself and do not imply such poor behavior was normal and broad.

Don Rutledge
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 11:27 AM   #1076
juliep
Member
 
juliep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 15
Default The LCS Factor

Dont know how to quote the post I am responding to but this is about Hope actually saying he doubts what I posted earlier about my experience with some of the elders in Dallas really happened. How ridiculous. I have better things to do as an adult 46 year old woman than try to make up things from way back then. Of course it happened, and if that hurts someones feelings I'm sorry, but truth is truth.
I kept the post fairly vague on purpose so as not to accuse anyone in particular because I'm not here to for that purpose. I'm trying to find the other kids who were around at the time I was (long time ago - late 60's to early 80's). My guess is most of the adults in that time period may not know what we are talking about, as kids go through experiences and share things among themselves that the adults around them are not privy too.This will be the only time I respond to an accusation like this, and if thats the kind of thing that goes on in this forum - I'm out. I thought it was a safe place we could share our experiences...
juliep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 11:32 AM   #1077
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Hi, Brother Don,

I think it's just that the tone of your response to Juliep seem to imply that what she was saying couldn't possibly be true. But I can fully understand your not wanting to be associated with the scene she described. I mean 6 or 7 grown men locked up in a room with a teenager, wanting to know the details of her encounter with a young man. How creepy is that?

Anyway, I was not part of that situation, being in another Texas city at the time. So I'm just an objective observer. As such I can only say that I believe the both of you. I can't conceive of accusing either of you of bearing false witness.

Yes, there is hope for all of us. My eyes water to think of it.
your brother


Roger
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 11:33 AM   #1078
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by YP0534 View Post
That is another wrinkle, Ohio, but it does correlate with what I mean to say.

You could even add another layer in that you and the younger brother didn't have to fear the dad while the older brother was around.
I thought about that, but it mostly never happened. I have never seen one brother protest public abuses on behalf of another. Maybe it happened, but I never saw it. I have heard of some, however, who "resisted politely."

Mostly, I was trying to portray the scenario that two people with different backgrounds, though they were in the same environment, would be treated differently, and hence have different observations to report.

For example, one of the brothers I served with as deacons was a champion fighter. He got his too, but was not treated as badly as I. I wonder why.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 11:39 AM   #1079
juliep
Member
 
juliep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 15
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Last response to this post by Hope. I lived in Arlington at age 18, but was still going to meetings in Dallas (actually playing guitar, although I wasn't that good). I was a freshman in college at UTA. I am indeed relating incidents and experiences unique to myself! And when talking about George and Cleo I am speaking about them on a personal, practical level not as representatives of the LC. Maybe its time to not have such an attachment to what or who everyone used to be in the LC. Life has moved on and those positions and authorities no longer exist. Everyone here is now just a person. I'm not going to get pulled into arguing on this forum - this is the last time I will respond to this kind of stuff ( and stuff is what it is) my life has moved on for the most part and I dont have such an emotional attachment to put time and effort into arguing about this stuff.
Looking to find my fellow childhood friends, and hopefully we can start emailing. Aloha from Hawaii!
juliep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 11:57 AM   #1080
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by juliep View Post
Aloha from Hawaii!
Yeah, juliep, just rub it in. We are here freezing with neg 20 - 30 deg windchills.

A-froz-a from Ohio to you too.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 12:21 PM   #1081
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by countmeworthy View Post
Hello Hope,
I hate getting into these types of discussions...but since you asked 'for it' I'd like to share a couple of my observations in a KIND but yet admonishing way.

1) Could you NOT have WELCOMED JulieP FIRST to the forum? Where are your manners dear brother!!!

2) She didn't ACCUSE YOU of being in the meeting she was in ! Maybe it happened before you were an elder OR maybe the other elders never told you about it.

I don't KNOW but you don't need to get soo defensive if meetings like this didn't involve YOU. If she had accused you of being in that meeting and you weren't then you have every right to speak up.
Take it at face value. It happened to them and you weren't involved nor were you told about it.

Btw, my experience in San Diego was not bad..but if someone told me they had meetings with the elders there while I was there and their experience was not good, my heart would go out to the person. It STILL would not change my experience.

Otherwise, take it at face value. It happened to them and you weren't involved or told about it.

Now. Go hug your wife !
Countmeworthy, You are a real hoot, "Go hug your wife!" I am on my way as soon as I finish this response.

Actually I did welcome Julie to the forum. Here is the private message I sent her on 1/07/09. The family letter we receive comes from her mother.

Julie,

It was a pleasant surprise to see your postings. We get your family letter every Christmas from Ann. We enjoy reading it.

I will always have good memories of your family and I hope you are well and happy.

In Christ Jesus,
Don Rutledge

I did acknowledge that she had been hurt by a prominent leading one, namely James Barber whom she referred to.

Here is what I said.
Quote:
I just learned of matters where he hurt Juliep. I am so sorry for that. Juliep, I never knew a thing. I knew that James and his best buddy in Dallas did not like your parents and hurt them on occasion. I am glad to learn that you seem to be doing well.
I also acknowledged her being hurt in a private message. When I saw her initial post, I was informed by another poster that she had been hurt by James and Gene Deberry. That is all I know about any from a local church treating her poorly. I did ask her in a PM if she could tell me where this "one of those meeting" occurred and who was there.

Here is her post I responded to.
Quote:
I just finished reading through the previous posts and found all the arguing about what happened in Dallas with the elders interesting. I also was called into one of those meetings at the age of 18 to be confronted alone and with about 6 or 7 elders and no parent present. The elders requested a very detailed accounting of my behavior with another young person in the LC, which I look upon as pretty perverse behavior now that I am an adult. (A young girl alone in a room full of males.) Luckily, it occurred to me pretty soon thereafter, that I was an adult at 18 and didn't have to answer to the "elders" anymore. Just mentioning this incident as backup to what the other young sister experienced.
Dear sister, you referred to your time in San Diego. Suppose someone had told you that the elders in groups of 6-7 or more were hauling in young teenage girls to interrogate and humiliate them would you have been a little shocked and wondering if the report was at least a little over the top. So far I cannot come to any other conclusion. Please see my earlier post about 1 Timothy chapter five and bringing accusations against an elder.

I am very serious about my time here on the forum and am a little bit of a stickler for accuracy and not accusing the innocent. Elders deserve fair consideration just as much as a dear precious young sister. I will defend the young sister. But I will not fire from the hip at elders who ever they may be.

Thanks again for your push back. It is a wonderful thing that we can dialogue and learn together.

In Christ Jesus,
Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 12:29 PM   #1082
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
We are here freezing with neg 20 - 30 deg windchills.

A-froz-a from Ohio to you too.
Hey, Ohio,

In the summer in Arizona they tell me "but it is a dry heat." I have heard from the Great Lakes "but it is a fresh cold."

Don Rutledge

By the way, Where is Al Gore when we need him?
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 12:52 PM   #1083
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default Re: The LCS Factor

I started a response to this but had to go back to working for a while. Now I find that much of what I said has been said by others. My own comment to Don that has not been said thoroughly I will leave as it was.

Don: This means that everything could be happening just as they say, even more often that you knew. You seem to rush to protest too quickly. I do not doubt what you are saying. But it comes off more like ducking when the casual observer might expect someone with the character they see from you elsewhere to come and provide consolation without digging into the hurt of the issue. There is probably some value in eventually getting some idea who the perpetrators of these debacles was because it might provide some insight into the workings of the dichotomy of the eldership in Dallas, as well as other cities. If you truly are innocent of these things (and I generally believe you when you say you are) you were surrounded by others who managed to do great harm right under your nose.

Having said that to Don, I say to all that while I am no more than about 5 years older than Juliep, I was unaware of these kinds of things as what happened to Julie and BlessD. And if it had been something that was being spoken of outside of the actual participants, I probably would have eventually heard. (I must confess that despite what so many said about my Mom at her funeral, she was very strongly opinionated, and also a little bit of a gossip, although generally only within the family. So if there was anything that got to her ears in any way, shape or form, I would eventually hear at least something about it, even if vague and thirteenth hand.)

What seems to be missed is that Matt made essentially as rash a statement as Don might have seemed to make. To come here and state that he is going to dictate how some discussion will be continued is quite interesting. Unless he has moderator privileges that have not been made public, I’m not sure what he means by his statements. While we may say that Don has protested in a poor way, I also say that Matt has interjected himself in such an authoritarian way as to be acting similar to the elders he seeks to chastise. That kind of attitude was prevalent in the earlier portions of this discussion. I thought we left that kind of authoritarian bully pulpit when we left the LC. Matt, your objectivity was damaged by this thread. You really need to do something to correct that. Not for us, but for yourself. You seemed as hard-pressed to get everyone, especially the church in Dallas, at least as much as you accuse Don of trying to say every place was not the same.

There are two issues in the stories told by Julie and BlessD. First, there is a hurt that may or may not be healed. We should be careful that we do not trample them as we rush off to judge the perpetrators. The second issue is the perpetrators and the ways in which they operated. It is reasonable to try to discover more of the facts behind these stories. Unfortunately, those facts will likely be revealed only by the very ones who are hurt by the process. So we need to be careful how we ask. Whether or not an accurate assessment, in the case of BlessD, there was some concern that requests for details sounded more like attempts to disprove the story. Assuming that was not the case, it does point to our inability to act with compassion. Ever watch one of those TV crime shows like Law and Order where the husband or wife of someone just murdered across town is asked some rather pointed questions by the detectives? Sometimes it is clear that they should have either phrased it differently, or waited a little bit before asking. How often does the way the question is asked sound as if they are accusing the deceased of “asking for it?”

I just poked a stick at a couple of friends in public. (And they, or others, may consider this to be a rather pompous attitude to take.) But they were not entirely alone in any of what has gone on before. They were just the ones to speak up this time. In some ways, both are right and both are wrong. I pray that this is taken in the attitude in which it is offered.
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 01:23 PM   #1084
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
By the way, Where is Al Gore when we need him?
He's re-defining 'Global Warming' as 'Climate Change'.
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 01:35 PM   #1085
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

[QUOTE=Hope;5269]
Quote:
Actually I did welcome Julie to the forum. Here is the private message I sent her on 1/07/09.
Now Don. I am working on attaining the MIND of CHRIST but...I haven't attained to the level of reading PMs supernaturally! Did you welcome her publicly on this forum? If you did, I missed it...and I apologize in advance.

Quote:
I did acknowledge that she had been hurt by a prominent leading one, namely James Barber whom she referred to.
I was more concerned with this statement you made:

Quote:
For the record: I was an elder in Dallas for 14 years. I was never in "one of those meetings" with a teenage girl and several elders. In fact I never heard of "one of those meetings" .... NOT MY EXPERIENCE!!!
She never said YOU were in those meetings. Your response came across (to me) as if you were defending yourself. You had nothing to defend. You were not there and again...she was not accusing you or reminding you that you were.

Now. Go give your wife another hug.
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 01:38 PM   #1086
Terry
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Renton, Washington
Posts: 3,268
Default The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by juliep View Post
My guess is most of the adults in that time period may not know what we are talking about, as kids go through experiences and share things among themselves that the adults around them are not privy too.This will be the only time I respond to an accusation like this, and if thats the kind of thing that goes on in this forum - I'm out. I thought it was a safe place we could share our experiences...
I was a high schooler 1983-1986. There was an incident I was witness to. One of my peers was the direct receiver. To this day I do not know if he ever told his parents what happened to him.
At different times many of us encounter experiences that makes one think "where did that come from?". As a teenager I was taught to submit to your elder. Even if I thought the elder brother or the elder sister was out of line, it was I who needed to submit.

Terry
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 02:24 PM   #1087
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
Hey, Ohio,

In the summer in Arizona they tell me "but it is a dry heat." I have heard from the Great Lakes "but it is a fresh cold."

By the way, Where is Al Gore when we need him?
I have never heard the term "a fresh cold" about the weather we are having ... and I have been to Arizona many times hiking in the Catalina mountains and sweating like crazy! Who makes up these expressions anyways?

And, btw, Al Gore is here! He invented the internet forum didn't he?
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!

Last edited by Ohio; 01-16-2009 at 02:42 PM.
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 03:01 PM   #1088
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Like most former elders of the LCS it is apparent that Hope has never left it in mind and heart and probably not bodily if his church in Raleigh is anything like the other LCS spin offs.

The argument that you can't paint everything with a broad brush is frivilous. A mere red herring. Everybody with any degree of intellegeince knows that a system like LCS will contain both good and bad elements. What Hope is denying is that certain things took place in the place where he was. Either Hope is lying or those reporting it are lying. Or Hope is claiming ignorance of the events in question. And if he did not know they took place that does not = that they did not take place only that he was ignorant of it. But knowing the track record the LCS and its leaders can anyone really think that such abuse of the young is outside the realm of the very possible nay the very probable?
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 03:47 PM   #1089
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Looking at these posts it sounds like a big misunderstanding to me.

Remember Igzy's #1 Rule of Message Boards, it will save you lot of grief and embarrassment. It is...

Don't... Get... Touchy

Now, if anyone posts, "Who are you calling touchy? I wasn't getting touchy," I'm going to shoot them.
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 04:00 PM   #1090
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by YP0534 View Post
Well, then, let me ask you to speak to this, Hope.

Isn't frequency of occurrence an irrelevant consideration if everyone is endeavoring in fear to minimize the frequency?

If my father thrashes me mercilessly with a belt until I am black and blue, though he does that only once, and I remain rightly terrified of it happening again because of subtle threats of a recurrence, is my younger brother unreasonable in concluding that this is a "norm?"

And more to the point of what I think gets you motivated on this topic, does my mother unreasonably bear some semblance of responsibilty in the eyes of my younger brother for the situation continuing, even though I lied to her when she asked me about where the bruises came from?

I know you can't prove a negative, Hope, and I don't ask you to do so.

I just wonder if you agree with my way of viewing such matters.

I admit I might be wrong and I've taken your correction before.

Thank you.
Dear Brother YP0534,

The hypothetical father you described bears a lot of responsibility for how he disciplined the son. I do not know if you are a father but it is an awesome responsibility. Your children may be helped a little by consistent excellent parenting and then you can blow years by one bad day. Once the abuse has been administered, it seldom is forgotten. The siblings also are greatly influenced by the one bad day. But as a parent you can not give up. God is merciful.

Now what about your parallel to an elder or leading brother who abuses one of the sheep. Scary!! Consider the following verses:

James 3:1, Let not many of you become teachers , my brethren, knowing that as such we shall incur a stricter judgment.

1 Thess 5:12-14, But we request of you, brethren, that you appreciate those who diligently labor among you, and have charge over you in the Lord and give you instruction, 13 and that you esteem them very highly in love because of their work. Live in peace with one another. 14 And we urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with all men.

Heb 13:7-8, Remember those who led you, who spoke the word of God to you; and considering the result of their conduct, imitate their faith.

Heb 13:17, Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you. NASB

A brother seems to be much better off if he never has any kind of leadership or responsibility. Consider the very very high standard for a leader, "And we urge you, brethren, admonish the unruly, encourage the fainthearted, help the weak, be patient with all men." Too often I fear I was found encouraging the unruly, admonishing and discouraging the fainthearted, hindering the weak and being frustrated with all.

Now here is one of the problems with evaluating the Local Churches. An elder pulls a stunt in someplace USA. Real saints are stumbled and wounded. This story becomes a proof case for the state of the whole. Is this a proper evaluation? What do you think?

Were the child molesters in Boston in the Catholic church what you could expect in a Catholic church in Houston Texas? What if you found a pedophile in a Catholic high school in Houston? Case closed?

What if we discovered that some poster, maybe me, was a little loose with the facts in order to make his point. Do we throw out the entire forum and further does this allow the BB's to dismiss all who protest their practices?

Over the years there were many storms in the LSM/LC. In every storm there were very sincere, pure brothers and sisters who protested some damaging practice. At the same time, there were some unruly ones who seemed to see this as an opportunity for whatever motive they had. The LSM would throw the genuine protestors into the same bucket as the disorderly ones and use this to discredit any protest. Thus, I am compelled not to be loose when building a proof case of abuse and error.

On the other hand, can you condemn all fathers in all places because of a few child abusers. I once heard a radical, man hating, woman’s libber declare that every father was a potential child molester. Maybe she had had a negative experience or her best friend had had an abusive father. Then does that make it all right for her to make such a sweeping accusation. That charge did lodge in my brain. Sometimes I will be in a wonderful couples home and the children will be frolicking with the dad and that terrible hateful charge will come to my mind.

I need to stop here. Thanks for the post and the set up illustration.

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 05:16 PM   #1091
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
On the other hand, can you condemn all fathers in all places because of a few child abusers.
OK but see, that's really nothing to do with my illustration.

It's OK though. Don't worry about it.

I'm really just suggesting that ALL of us are hurt because SOME of us are hurt and ALL of those with responsibility (including maybe me) end up bearing SOME responsibility.

From my perspective, it's not really even relevant to say "I didn't know."

Still, obviously no one can be required to entertain anything other than the formal indictments against elders in accordance with proper scriptural precepts!

I'm not really comfortable even going there with regard to what happened to me personally, similar to what others have testified to, so the likelihood of satisfactory proof of such things remains slim. And the expectation that the walking wounded who have had their reputations publicly smeared will muster what it takes to proceed through formal channels with the very people who have wounded and smeared (or their compatriots) is totally unrealistic to me. But perhaps one day two or three will stand together against an oppressive elder as you envision and not be shunned for their rebellion.

They will certainly be far more transformed than I am if they can do it!

Anyhow, if the father next door never addresses or even notices my bruises, it's not his fault at all.

You are right about that.
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 05:21 PM   #1092
finallyprettyokay
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 127
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Well, I admit I was touchy when I wrote. So far, I am not feeling too much grief and embarrassment. Yet.

Quote:
I will refer to a second case, which I brought out into the open, that is the fathom church in Dallas bank account used to transfer Living Stream Money to disgruntled Daystar investors. I told exactly how I learned of it's existence and exactly who was involved. Thus, George Whitington, Don Looper, Joe Davis, Ray Graver, Tim House, Jim Coleman etc were not by mere association with the local churches in Texas implicated. I received several hot posts and messages about how stupid, incompetent, unqualified, weak, blind and conscienceless I was. I admitted all charges were true and I deserved the approbation. The blame came to the rightful person, yours truly. But I could have said that the church in Dallas was in on a money laundering type scheme and let the entire congregation or at least all the elders and maybe some deacons be condemned.
Don, I remember quite well when you wrote about Daystar/money. I was so moved by your sense of contrition. I PMed you and then decided to post what I had written -- do you remember? I had no idea that you had been getting 'hot posts and messages' --- that was certainly not what I wrote to you. It never even occured to me to question your experience, or your present response to that experience.

Mistakes? Boy howdy. I've made more than a few, and there are things from my LC time that I regret. And things happened to me or around me that were not at all right. People humilated and shamed in small ways or in big ways. It was a very toxic place.

Quote:
Dear sister, you referred to your time in San Diego. Suppose someone had told you that the elders in groups of 6-7 or more were hauling in young teenage girls to interrogate and humiliate them would you have been a little shocked and wondering if the report was at least a little over the top.
I was in San Diego also. If someone related a story like this to me I think I would wonder about it. Of course I would. But what I know for sure is that we all have done things that seemed okay at the time, but that we just didn't think through. My mom was always saying to me 'think!'. Sometimes I still get caught not thinking something through. So if someone told me this story and it involved people I knew to be good, decent, God-loving people, I would wonder if they had thought it through. And I would wonder if the young person in the story had recovered pretty well from it.

I think Roger hit it when he said your tone seemed to imply that you didn't believe her. And he hit it when he said he believes you both. Exactly.

And my guess is that anyone that was involved in such a meeting with a young person looks back with contrition. I hope so. It was a very very toxic place and really bad things (large and small) happened to people, but still -- mostly, we were good people trying to follow God. Let's try to understand and support each other as we share and make sense out of things that happened.

Not-Touchy-Enough, Igzy? I hope. No, Don's hope. I'm

finallyprettyokay sorta okay?
finallyprettyokay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 06:20 PM   #1093
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Finallyprettyokay,

Thanks for the post. My heart is warmed. I sincerely desire that we can put all this behind us.

I do remember your kind post. May the Lord bless and remember you for your kindness to a brother who had failed.

I am going to make one more post on this topic and then I am probably saying goodbye to this thread except for reading the responses to my final post.

I look forward to seeing you on another thread. I would love to meet you in person some time.

In Christ Jesus,

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 06:27 PM   #1094
finallyprettyokay
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 127
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Ahhhh ---- Shucks.
finallyprettyokay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-16-2009, 08:19 PM   #1095
blessD
Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2008
Posts: 73
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
For the record: I was an elder in Dallas for 14 years. I was never in "one of those meetings" with a teenage girl and several elders. In fact I never heard of "one of those meetings" until I learned of "those meetings" here on the forum. Perhaps only these two are the only examples of "one of those meetings." Where did this one occur? I believe that Juliep was not in Dallas at age 18. It would help if some names were clearly mentioned in this case and in the case involving BlessD. It is totally unfair to make these broad general accusations. Earlier a description of George and Cleo Whitington was given. Why not declare or insinuate that this couple was the normal leading one in the Texas area. Maybe they are the typical example. Why insinuate that these mysterious unnamed men represent the sum of the elders and "one of those meetings" is typical? NOT MY EXPERIENCE!!! Please relate things as unique to yourself and do not imply such poor behavior was normal and broad.

Don Rutledge
I read this yesterday and wanted to respond, but took a day of break to meditate and pray about what to write. To this comment, "It would help if some names were clearly mentioned in this case and in the case involving BlessD", I would like to say, Hope, I sent you details of my story referenced on this forum in a private message and CCd Thankful Jane as a witness. I gave you details, names, places, and times. I do not wish to give those details publicly and believe reasonable persons would understand without me spelling it out.

I have no motive than to say the truth and talk to others about the journey of healing from such wounds. I know from other friends there were more than 2 instances of such things that went on. Those friends would not 'set foot' in this forum or anywhere else that the LC is discussed.

Honestly, I quit coming to the forum because of this type of response. It reminds me way too much of things I left far behind.
blessD is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 07:39 AM   #1096
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
Dear Brother YP0534,
Now here is one of the problems with evaluating the Local Churches. An elder pulls a stunt in someplace USA. Real saints are stumbled and wounded. This story becomes a proof case for the state of the whole. Is this a proper evaluation? What do you think?
Were the child molesters in Boston in the Catholic church what you could expect in a Catholic church in Houston Texas? What if you found a pedophile in a Catholic high school in Houston? Case closed?
Case closed? I dunno.

You see, if you heard about child molestation in Boston and a couple of other places, you can be certain that there is the potential for child molestation in a Catholic church in Houston, or anywhere else. Why?

The Catholic Church creates an atmosphere for that kind of thing, starting with the hard line law of celibacy. Then they take these young men, who are trying to hold down a campfire with a cotton sheet, and put them in situations where they will be working alone with young altar boys, and wives of other men who absolutely adore their priests.

That right there is a prescription for disaster. It leaves open the possibility for all kinds of sexual abuse throughout the whole system, although it doesn’t take place throughout the system.

History records every kind of sexual abuse and perversion that can be imagined, having happened in the Catholic Church; because the leadership created that kind of atmosphere, starting with the first bright penny who got the idea that God was telling him that priests should be celibate.

The problem is that all priests throughout the whole system are absolutely loyal to the system. So when a priest in Boston abuses a child, he might be shuffled away somewhere secretly, with the hope that eventually all will be forgotten. And, although no priests in Houston might have ever been close to doing such a thing, they will defend, directly, or indirectly, the actions of the system.

I’m sorry, but your response to the report of abuse in the Local Church sounds so familiar. The “innocent” priest in Houston will insist that these are just isolated incidents, and that the system really is quite good. Actually, the system is rotten to the core. The tragedy is that you have these men who know nothing about the Holy Spirit, trying to tame the flesh with religious ordnances. It’s a recipe for disaster.

The Local Church created an atmosphere for abuse. The basic problem is reverence for the leadership. This starts with the number one, “Apostle for the Age,” and “Acting God.” Nowhere was the absolute reverence for Witness Lee stronger than among some of the Texas brothers. You have said as much in your book.

With this kind of reverence comes a sense, on the part of the followers, that Lee and his closest associates can do no wrong. On the part of the leadership, it makes them drunk with power. It makes them feel good, on some level, to have saints scraping and bowing at their every word.

It has been my observation that the root problem with the Living Stream Church is an improper view of, and a dying loyalty to Witness Lee. It would also appear that with many who have left, the LSM style problems that continue to hang on with them, is still their refusal to cast Witness Lee in the proper light.

Mind you, brother, I am not accusing you of anything. I respect your history, and have never heard anything out of order about you. But the system you are defending is ripe with potential for all kinds of abuse.

Roger
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 08:46 AM   #1097
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Roger,

Your’s is a very good rebuttal to my very weak and faulty analogy.

Right on regarding the "idea" or "ideal" that messed up everything.

I certainly did not mean to come across as a defender of that system. Lord help us!!! But I cannot side with the idea that it is nothing but corruption and all the people there are worthless or of no value. I will come down on the damage that Max Rapoport caused but I will first tell of the positive things he did. I certainly appreciate the help in Christ I received from him.

It is an interesting phenomenon that among those still in the local churches, they cannot acknowledge that any former members or leaders had anything good but rather just write them out of their history. But I have seen some former member do the same thing, that is that those in the local churches and the current leaders are only corrupt and have never given them anything of Christ.

Don
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 08:57 AM   #1098
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by blessD View Post
I read this yesterday and wanted to respond, but took a day of break to meditate and pray about what to write. To this comment, "It would help if some names were clearly mentioned in this case and in the case involving BlessD", I would like to say, Hope, I sent you details of my story referenced on this forum in a private message and CCd Thankful Jane as a witness. I gave you details, names, places, and times. I do not wish to give those details publicly and believe reasonable persons would understand without me spelling it out.

I have no motive than to say the truth and talk to others about the journey of healing from such wounds. I know from other friends there were more than 2 instances of such things that went on. Those friends would not 'set foot' in this forum or anywhere else that the LC is discussed.

Honestly, I quit coming to the forum because of this type of response. It reminds me way too much of things I left far behind.


Dear Posters,
By the way, I have never referenced this incident except to respond to posts.

(By the way, am I allowed to respond or are certain personalities off limits. Please spell out who is in a safe zone. Sorry to bring it up but Phillip Lee had a safe zone. Benson Phillips had some brothers and sisters that were in a safe zone. With God there is no partiality. )

I have asked for details since these two “one of those meetings” have now been trumpeted as some type of proof case. Matt has used the title “shaming meetings.” Now we have an official practice. His mother’s book is launched from her rough treatment by Benson Phillips in what could be I suppose “a shaming meeting.”

It seems to me that these incidents are presented as critical to a particular evaluation of the local church movement.

I wonder how many teenage girls have been counseled by a Southern Baptist pastor who asked an associate to witness for his own protection. I never questioned that there was some kind of counseling sessions, and it seems they did not go well, but that is not how some have attempted to use the supposed “shaming meetings.”

Now here is the part from BlessD’s PM to me that supplied the details to put to rest the accuracy and fairness of the report attributed to her. She did identify herself and her parents and who she was living with in Houston. She identified the young boy she liked. She described the dining room in the “big house.” By the way the name big house was used to distinguish it from the tiny cottage on the property known as the “little house.” My memory is very good regarding that house. I was very much into the details when we purchased it and refurbished it. I also was the first resident. The dimensions of the dining room were 12x16. BlessD mentions going to a bed room to pray with her parents and some of the elders.There was a tiny bed room just past the living room which could be used for a single guest and had a couple of chairs for counseling etc.

The actual PM:
……..
"As eldership attendees go, Houston was there with at least 4 in attendance, Austin was there with at least 3-4 in attendance, OKC was there with 4-5 in attendance, Dallas was there with 3-5 in attendance, averaging 16 elders or representatives *altogether*. I believe Ron Kangus(sp) and family was resident to the home next to the hall. He may or may not have been present.
I believe what you say that you were not present and have written you the same *publicly*. I will be happy to write another public post making it clearer that I am agreement you were not there."

She later corrected the part about Ron Kangus as he has never lived in Dallas.

I am pretty well done with this. It is very difficult to address an “idea.” Some in the heart of the LSM/LC have an “idea” which they promote and defend. The term “recovery” is essentially an idea or ideal. Another “idea” is that of the one man of the age or the one oracle of the age. On the other forum there were defenders of “the idea.” They would come on and quote this and that from Witness Lee and essentially say, “You see, WL stood for the idea.” No evidence that the so called local churches or ministry had missed the mark in practice or teaching could be examined because WL clearly was for “the idea,” “the ideal.” Any action which did not support this ideal was bad and unacceptable behavior.

By way of illustration of this fact of human behavior and sociology, for you, Igzy, OBW and other poets and bards who post here, John Denver once sang out “Thank God I’m a country boy.” Sarah Palin repeatedly proclaimed that she had “small town values.” On the other hand that infamous Texas philosopher, Willy Nelson sang, “a cowboy ain’t nothing but a slow moving song.” By the way “Texas” is not so much a place but is an idea.

This thread is more of a presentation of an idea than anything else. All posters who have attempted to participate and not supported the idea that “the LSM/LC system was a uniform cultish group which controlled and damaged people and children have been pretty much expelled and eliminated.

I am glad I am not a country boy any longer. John Denver can have it. Living hard is not for me. My country girl sweetheart chewed tobacco and it sure does mess up the kissing. Just kidding. Never happened. It is just a little light motif. You can have the small town life. No problem if that is where you are but some of the nicest people I know live in Manhattan. (It is the tourists there that are rude.)

One of the huge problems with the local church movement, especially in the early days, was that so many brought in their “idea” of what they would like the Christian life to be. Jesus did say we need to deny our self. We had our “crucified life” crowd who quoted Jean Guyon and sought to make life miserable for everyone. John wrote clearly “Love not the World.” Some insisted that only those who dressed simply and lived a puritan life were growing spiritually. I personally like this one and an ascetic life. We had our “what is God doing in this age” crowd. They were on the move and wanted to be right in the center of whatever up-to-date revival was happening. We had the “I want to be the disciple of an apostle like Timothy to Paul.” James Barber was the greatest proponent of this idea. Some believed a committed group could move as one and save the world. Max Rapoport was one of the leaders of this group. There were lots of different “ideas.” Benson Phillip believed the Lord wanted to restore a federation of churches to a New Testament standard and send out a committed cadre that would reform Christianity. Some were “going to bring the Lord back.”

It is very difficult to simply have fellowship with the Father and the Son and one another when the brother or sister is deep into “the idea.” This thread has resulted in many leaving this forum because their portion was rejected because they were not in on a certain idea. Their testimony was disregarded. Yet if someone had a good horror story to tell about a local church elder or whatever, they are a hero or heroine. Think about it. Do some posters treat the other posters based on what is their point of view. The same persons have heralded ole Hope as wonderful as long as he is exposing Benson Phillips etc. but let him not agree with a certain negative view and he has reverted to a mean local church elder who wants to hush up the saints.

I have been told in no uncertain words that the forum is not the place to give balancing points of view. If you have the idea that “I must destroy the local churches right down to its roots in order to save as many of the innocents as I can,” well there is not much chance of having a dialogue.

I just read the book about Josh Hamilton, “Beyond Belief.” He went through eight rehab programs which all failed. His clear conclusion was that every place wanted him to blame his parents and he could not accept that therefore they could not help him.

On this thread, I have resisted the ideologues narrow prescriptions. I never went after Juliep or BlessD but they were utilized to support an idea. May we all bring these matters to the Lord and let His light shine.

Hope, Don Rutledge

A believer in Christ Jesus who is seeking to be a true disciple.
John 8:31-32, Jesus therefore was saying to those Jews who had believed Him, "If you abide in My word, then you are truly disciples of Mine; and you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. " NASB

I have one more post for this thread which I may post later today. After that I plan to only read the thread from time to time and will note and consider any responses.

Last edited by Hope; 01-17-2009 at 09:02 AM. Reason: spelling
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 09:15 AM   #1099
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
Roger,

Your’s is a very good rebuttal to my very weak and faulty analogy.

Right on regarding the "idea" or "ideal" that messed up everything.

I certainly did not mean to come across as a defender of that system. Lord help us!!! But I cannot side with the idea that it is nothing but corruption and all the people there are worthless or of no value. I will come down on the damage that Max Rapoport caused but I will first tell of the positive things he did. I certainly appreciate the help in Christ I received from him.

It is an interesting phenomenon that among those still in the local churches, they cannot acknowledge that any former members or leaders had anything good but rather just write them out of their history. But I have seen some former member do the same thing, that is that those in the local churches and the current leaders are only corrupt and have never given them anything of Christ.

Don

Don,

I hope I have not left anyone with this impression: "nothing but corruption and all the people there are worthless or of no value." If I did, then it was not my intention.

The vast majority of the saints in the Living Stream Church are precious and sweet. There are a wide range of reasons why they are there. Some are there because they say they "see the vision." Some are there because they love the atmosphere. Others don't know themselves why they are there, and I would even imagine that there are a good number who are held there by fear, because they have fallen for LSM scare tactics. Nonetheless, they are all precious and sweet.

Also, the vast majority of the elders and deacons are precious and sweet. I can remember most of them with nothing but fondness.

Lest I be called a Lee hater, I must also say that I received tremendous help from the ministry of Witness Lee. That help comes at a high price, but...help nonetheless.

I guess all this should preface my statement that the system is rotten to the core.

BTW, I am an x devout Catholic. I have similar views concerning them.

Roger
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 10:17 AM   #1100
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
This thread is more of a presentation of an idea than anything else. All posters who have attempted to participate and not supported the idea that “the LSM/LC system was a uniform cultish group which controlled and damaged people and children" have been pretty much expelled and eliminated...

This thread has resulted in many leaving this forum because their portion was rejected because they were not in on a certain idea. Their testimony was disregarded. Yet if someone had a good horror story to tell about a local church elder or whatever, they are a hero or heroine. Think about it. Do some posters treat the other posters based on what is their point of view. The same persons have heralded ole Hope as wonderful as long as he is exposing Benson Phillips etc. but let him not agree with a certain negative view and he has reverted to a mean local church elder who wants to hush up the saints.

I have been told in no uncertain words that the forum is not the place to give balancing points of view. If you have the idea that “I must destroy the local churches right down to its roots in order to save as many of the innocents as I can,” well there is not much chance of having a dialogue.
In my estimation, this is a very peculiar construction of the history of this horrible thread, which is here for all to review if they dare and have much time.

As I recall, many of those who insisted that there be uniform acceptance of their idea that the Local Church experiences were uniformly a terror and a result of "idolatry" are the ones who up and left the discussion at the point that a consensus built against THEM (led mostly by Ohio, in my recollection).

In fact, it appears to me that those of us who remain active here are the ones who readily and reasonably concede our positive experiences in the context of having actually moved forward from that point.

I'm not sure who opposed the strictly negative idea of the Local Church and were "pretty much expelled and eliminated" for it, but perhaps someone can call them back to the fellowship? (I do miss Peter's portion terribly, I must admit, but I'm pretty sure he wasn't driven off by this.)
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 12:49 PM   #1101
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by YP0534 View Post
As I recall, many of those who insisted that there be uniform acceptance of their idea that the Local Church experiences were uniformly a terror and a result of "idolatry" are the ones who up and left the discussion at the point that a consensus built against THEM (led mostly by Ohio, in my recollection).

I'm not sure who opposed the strictly negative idea of the Local Church and were "pretty much expelled and eliminated" for it, but perhaps someone can call them back to the fellowship? (I do miss Peter's portion terribly, I must admit, but I'm pretty sure he wasn't driven off by this.)
I hesitate to add anything to the discussion here, but ... my goal was and is still to provide a "fair and balanced" approach to LC/LSM topics. I am very sorry if I appeared to be the "leader" that caused many posters to leave. I do regret that I did appear to be an "enemy" of both sides, while trying to take what in my mind was the "middle ground." Most of all, I do regret the many friendships I thought I had made on this forum, because of differing viewpoints which we all held dearly, myself included. While I often protested making "broad brush generalizations," I myself am also guilty of the same fault.

This thread did highlight to me my very first impression when finding the LC forums in the summer of 2005, i.e. many dear saints were hurt by what I came to call "the program." More than any discussion in recent years, this thread caused my heart to ache. Many times I tried to stop posting, but then I would read another post, and found that I just had to respond. I remember many times my wife concluding to me, "why do you waste your time there?" Hers is a difficult question to answer. I don't have an answer, but for some reason, I'm still here.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 01:36 PM   #1102
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Roger has said it best.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger View Post
The vast majority of the saints in the Living Stream Church are precious and sweet ... Also, the vast majority of the elders and deacons are precious and sweet. I can remember most of them with nothing but fondness.

Lest I be called a Lee hater, I must also say that I received tremendous help from the ministry of Witness Lee.

I guess all this should preface my statement that the system is rotten to the core.
And YP has correctly noticed that the ones that seemed to want to carry this thread to the worst extremes have essentially vacated.



My assessment is that:
  1. While there is both sound doctrine in the LC, it is buried in leaven, self aggrandizement, and false teachings cloaked in Biblical terms.
  2. While the LC and the LSM are full of precious and sweet Christians, the structure around them is full of corrupt, greedy, and/or self-centered men who will use the money of the loyal for their own personal gain or that very loyalty for their personal prestige.
Don: While each church was surely unique, the spread of the “ministry’s” control was unstoppable. The church in Dallas may not have been an open source of the kind of things that BlessD and Juliep speak, but it was used for them anyway by the hierarchy that surrounded you/us. You do not do yourself any favor by seeking to spare anyone or anyplace of inquiry.

Despite my statements elsewhere that the LC is a sound evangelical group with problems, here I say that those problems are so strong and high that there is little chance of saving it. (I hope that the GLA can prove me wrong.)

Truth is in Christ, not the LC. The LC has become corrupt. It began long ago, even before Benson visited Houston to shame Jane. Much of it was for so long hidden, even from you. But you began to see it some period before you left. It has continued to grow. It is time to open the gates of the LC and let the flock out of their captivity.

For those who revere Lee, it is time to stop. He may have brought much truth together in a way we had never seen it done before (at least in the 60s and 70s). But he mixed that truth with leaven. It has been chemically changed from pure truth to yeast-truth. You can no longer separate the two. You must start over. To do so does not require Lee or Nee, else you risk reintroducing the leaven you seek to expel.

Lee also brought much of the corruption upon himself through his money schemes which he mixed with the church, then in pushing his immoral son on the churches through the LSM and lying about those who sought to bring that shame to an end.

Unfortunately, that means that those wonderful, sweet, pure Christians are constantly being inundated with that leaven, to their detriment, and associated with the sins of their leaders by their silence, especially when they simply look the other way due to following the unbiblical teachings of deputy authority.

In another post you mentioned several names and family names to suggest that those could not be so corrupt and that they would not knowingly tolerate such corruption. You may be correct with respect to the 70s, but we are no longer sure that any of those are clearly not now corrupted at some level (although I'm fairly sure that some are not). In any case, there are several leading ones in the Texas region who were that corrupt at that time. Ignoring BP, I think that at least one of them was in Dallas from about 1975. Some of the others in those meetings may have merely been invited to observe the control that others could exert. I'm sure that it was effective.
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 04:00 PM   #1103
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger View Post
I hope I have not left anyone with this impression: "nothing but corruption and all the people there are worthless or of no value." If I did, then it was not my intention....
Hi Brother Roger,

No, you have not left the impression that "nothing but corruption and all the people there are worthless or of no value."

Is not it so interesting that you would proclaim that many of the people are worthwhile but the system is "rotten to the core." You also say the same regarding the Catholic system. Sound familar. Can we say that some New Testament passages apply? Eph 4:14, As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves, and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; (a system of error) NASB or perhaps we could look at Acts chapter 20, Acts 20:30-32, and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore be on the alert, remembering that night and day for a period of three years I did not cease to admonish each one with tears. NASB


Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 09:07 PM   #1104
UntoHim
Grateful Servant
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,768
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger View Post
Actually, the system is rotten to the core. The tragedy is that you have these men who know nothing about the Holy Spirit, trying to tame the flesh with religious ordinances. It’s a recipe for disaster....
It has been my observation that the root problem with the Living Stream Church is an improper view of, and a dying loyalty to Witness Lee. It would also appear that with many who have left, the LSM style problems that continue to hang on with them, is still their refusal to cast Witness Lee in the proper light
Roger covered a lot of ground in this post here... I will just hit upon what I think are some of the most important issues at hand.

LCS stands for "Local Church System"...the thread starter can correct me if I'm wrong. At the risk of getting into trouble with the semantics police, I prefer to call to The Local Church a “religion” rather then a “system”, and here is why - A system (e.g. a belief system) can be examined, studied and critiqued totally apart from the people who imbibe and practice it. This is virtually impossible to do with a group such as The Local Church. Furthermore, “systems" rarely develop into world-wide cults... one never hears of a "system cult" causing all sorts of problems in society or running off to a secluded jungle to commit mass suicide. Frequently these groups developed into what is sometimes called “a personality cult”. Thankfully, most of these do not go to the extreme of the worst case scenario of mass suicide. **And no, I am NOT comparing the Local Church to Jim Jones’ Peoples Temple – only to show the extremes that some religious groups which are dominated by a single personality can go to.

For all their efforts, denials and insisting to not be known as a “religion”, Witness Lee and his followers sure did a bang up job of forming, growing and promoting a rather complex and comprehensive religious organization, complete with it’s own creeds, rules, cultural norms, leadership structure and headquarters. In retrospect, all these things existed while Witness Lee was alive as well; but at that time they were passed on directly from the person and work of Lee himself. In a sense, the person of Witness Lee continues in the form of “The Blended Brothers”, who claim to be “Brother Lee’s continuation”, and his work continues in the form of “The One Publication” – simply Lee’s spoken ministry in printed form.

For years and years, Lee claimed that the Local Churches were not an “organization” but rather an “organism”. So how is it that when the lead “organism” (or at least the heart and soul of the organism) is dead and buried for over a decade, can they still claim to be a living organism? Well the answer is very simple – it is because The Local Church of Witness Lee has NEVER BEEN an organism at all, it is and has always been a religious organization, or more simply put – A Religion.

Ok, I’m drifting here…let me try to reel this post back in…

Roger quoted: “The tragedy is that you have these men who know nothing about the Holy Spirit, trying to tame the flesh with religious ordinances. It’s a recipe for disaster....” While I think the term “nothing” here may be a little over-the-top, “almost nothing” would not be a stretch at all when it comes to Witness Lee and many of the leaders in The Local Church. Many modern-day evangelical Christians define “religion” as man’s fleshly attempt at following and/or representing God without the benefit of his blessing or presence, and the genuine love and potent power that comes with them. Church history is replete with almost countless examples of Christian groups that got a good start, only to fall away and eventually deteriorate into dead religion, or even worse. Most of the time the fall can be directly attributed to the phenomena Roger has so aptly described above… “tame the flesh with religious ordinances”. When will we ever get it through our thick heads that “the spirit is willing but the flesh is weak”? Ummm… the religionists there in Anaheim and on the Internet rail against contemporary Christian worship and music as “the works of the flesh”, all the while they do almost nothing that does not require copious amounts of the works of the flesh. And this is what religion does – it turns the relying on the working of the Holy Spirit to the relying on the works of the flesh.

Let’s boil this down to the lowest common denominator. Would the Holy Spirit abuse? Would the Holy Spirit round up a teenager and force her to confess before a bunch of stuffy older men that she had broken one of the cherished religious ordinances? (thou shalt not hold hands or kiss until you’re engaged to be married). Would the Holy Spirit round up a grown, mature woman, in front of those same older, stuffy dudes, and claim that she was starting some rebellion because she was getting together with other sisters, getting into the Word and other forms of Christian literature? (thou shalt only read Living Stream material) Would the Holy Spirit make some Christian brother stand up in front of hundreds of people and reveal certain peculiarities and character flaws, or have them pointed out to him from somebody behind a microphone? (remember those “perfecting” meetings?)

Bottom line: The Holy Spirit works on hearts and minds, He is saving the transformation of our flesh until the next age.
__________________
Now Unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy (Jude 24)
UntoHim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 09:22 PM   #1105
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Witness Lee used public shaming and intimidation tactics and the lemming leaders under him followed suite. That's what they were trained to do and they did it basically by rote. The latest example of this was the ridiculous Whistler "outing" of Titus Chu. Per Phillip's and Yu's own admission they asked themselves: "What would Witness Lee do?" Then they did it. And any honest person from the GLA will admit that Chu has used the same type of tactics in his region.
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-17-2009, 10:56 PM   #1106
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

“The tragedy is that you have these men who know nothing about the Holy Spirit, trying to tame the flesh with religious ordinances. It’s a recipe for disaster....”


Actually, I was talking about the Catholic clergy. But in reality, since the renewal movement has made good ground in the RCC, there are some who do in fact know something of the move of the Holy Spirit.

Roger
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 03:54 AM   #1107
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ohio View Post
I do regret that I did appear to be an "enemy" of both sides, while trying to take what in my mind was the "middle ground."
I never perceived any "enemy" situation, Ohio.

I observed you admirably defending what also seemed to me to be somewhere around the "middle ground" in the discussion.

I only meant that consensus coalesced around your adamant stand.

I hope you would not regret too much.

I really appreciated it.
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 07:25 AM   #1108
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Like most former elders of the LCS it is apparent that Hope has never left it in mind and heart and probably not bodily if his church in Raleigh is anything like the other LCS spin offs.
I do not know if we are a "spin off" or not. We enjoy the headship of Christ. Only He is Lord. He speaks to us individually and corporately. He walks in our midst as the High Priest triming the wick of the Lampstand that it might shine brighter.

We are not of any ministry or gifted member. We receive all whom the Lord has received. We endeavor to honor the uncomely members which is about all of us. We are not great. We are not special. Christ is special and all His believers are special.

We sing, (but probably not so good) we pray, we testify, some teach the word, some speak a current word from the Lord to us.

We have all ages together from young teenagers to those in their 80s. Several families are there which span three generations. Some of the third generation are teenagers and they love and comfort the older saints. The toddlers and babies are loved by all.

No teenagers are hauled into rooms with stuffy old men but many of the teenagers do consult older saints for advice and direction.

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 08:00 AM   #1109
UntoHim
Grateful Servant
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,768
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger View Post
Actually, I was talking about the Catholic clergy. But in reality, since the renewal movement has made good ground in the RCC, there are some who do in fact know something of the move of the Holy Spirit

Opps...my bad Are you sure that wasn't a Freudian slip?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
...No teenagers are hauled into rooms with stuffy old men but many of the teenagers do consult older saints for advice and direction
Actually what I said was "stuffy OLDER men", not "stuffy old men"

I knew I should have just stayed out of this one. I should have just made my post the one sentence.
"Bottom line: The Holy Spirit works on hearts and minds, He is saving the transformation of our flesh until the next age" This pretty much says everything I was trying to say anyway
__________________
Now Unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy (Jude 24)
UntoHim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 09:19 AM   #1110
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default Lord, check my attitude.

People who are endeavoring to go on as best they know how should be given encouragement and challenge and not be summarily dismissed.

I may take issue with some people's seemingly unexplored underlying assumptions, but I recognize that I too have much to learn and seek to learn what I can from Him through them.
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 09:34 AM   #1111
UntoHim
Grateful Servant
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,768
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Thanks YP....

And all God's people said.... and all God's people said.... oh come on gang....

A-M-E-N !
__________________
Now Unto Him that is able to keep you from falling, and to present you faultless before the presence of his glory with exceeding joy (Jude 24)
UntoHim is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 10:39 AM   #1112
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Oh ya I forgot Hope. Wherever you are is always OK.
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 12:04 PM   #1113
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Oh ya I forgot Hope. Wherever you are is always OK.
Dear djohnson,

Let me see now. Did you not read and commit rather sharply when on the other forum I exposed my own misdeeds and those of some I was with.

Hope, Don Rutledge

PS Can you define what you mean by "is always OK?" Even with Paul the apostle things were not always OK. 2 Cor 4:7-9, But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the surpassing greatness of the power may be of God and not from ourselves; we are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not despairing; persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; NASB

I know a lot about the phrase in bold.

By the way, can you live with it if some from the old local church may have been struck down but are not destroyed?
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 01:26 PM   #1114
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Dear Brother Mike,

I am a little put out with you. I need to get on with other things besides this thread but you keep putting out these excellent posts with such concise and pointed insight. You make me think and consider and then desire for your points to be expanded through some dialogue.

So cut it out!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
Roger has said it best.
And YP has correctly noticed that the ones that seemed to want to carry this thread to the worst extremes have essentially vacated.
True, but if you go back a bit and if you were reading my PMs and emails you will notice that some are making ole Hope an issue. Here is a sampling. There are some comments by me in ( ).

1. In denial (in denial of what?)

2. Like most former elders of the LCS. (This from djohnson who was never in a local church. Can someone clarify what most former elders of the LCS are like?)

3. Hope has never left it in mind and heart and probably not bodily if his church in Raleigh is anything like the other LCS spin offs. (Again from djohnson who was never in a local church. So how can I get a LC lobotomy and a heart transplant that would satisfy my dear loving critics?)

4. If you truly are innocent of these things. (Tell me again what I am guilty of.)

5. We may say that Don has protested in a poor way. (Please educate me on a better way to present my observations.)

6. You accuse Don of trying to say every place was not the same. (Wow, I am guilty as charged.)

7. There was some concern that requests for details sounded more like attempts to disprove the story. Assuming that was not the case, it does point to our inability to act with compassion. (Could it be that the details would have confirmed the story? This is where you are over my head. If the shoe was on the other foot, I would have rushed in with details and confirming witnesses. Why do you think the LSM is scared to death regarding my coming history?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
My assessment is that:
  1. While there is both sound doctrine in the LC, it is buried in leaven, self aggrandizement, and false teachings cloaked in Biblical terms.
  1. Yes, to leaven. Yes, to self aggrandizement. Yes to false teachings cloaked in Biblical terms. But what false teaching are not found to be cloaked in Biblical terms? ESPECIALLY YES TO SELF AGGRANDIZEMENT AND CRITICISM OF EVERYONE ELSE.

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by OBW View Post
  2. While the LC and the LSM are full of precious and sweet Christians, the structure around them is full of corrupt, greedy, and/or self-centered men who will use the money of the loyal for their own personal gain or that very loyalty for their personal prestige.
Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
Don: While each church was surely unique, the spread of the “ministry’s” control was unstoppable. The church in Dallas may not have been an open source of the kind of things that BlessD and Juliep speak, but it was used for them anyway by the hierarchy that surrounded you/us. You do not do yourself any favor by seeking to spare anyone or anyplace of inquiry.
Despite my statements elsewhere that the LC is a sound evangelical group with problems, here I say that those problems are so strong and high that there is little chance of saving it. (I hope that the GLA can prove me wrong.)
Truth is in Christ, not the LC. The LC has become corrupt. It began long ago, even before Benson visited Houston to shame Jane. Much of it was for so long hidden, even from you. But you began to see it some period before you left. It has continued to grow. It is time to open the gates of the LC and let the flock out of their captivity..
Mike this is one of the most insightful statements I have read on the forum. Some very, as you say, corrupt, greedy, and/or self-centered men who will use the money of the loyal for their own personal gain or that very loyalty for their personal prestige, did get into the churches and work. See Acts chapter 20,

Acts 20:28-31, “Be on guard for yourselves and for all the flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. I know that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; and from among your own selves men will arise, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after them. Therefore be on the alert,” NASB

My failures from my viewpoint mainly are around the fact I was not on the alert. I even encouraged the wolves and those who were looking for a following. I believe the Lord has forgiven me and I have confessed to many of the brothers and sisters and if there are anymore to whom I owe repentance I hope they will come forward.

Yes, I agree that by 1974-75 it was too late. The die was cast. Not only was the spread of the control of the ministry unstoppable but also the corruption and attack on the independence of the individual church and brothers and sisters was beginning to be an ongoing phenomenon. Thus, I earlier said to you that if you had stayed in Dallas rather than moving to Irving things would have gone about the same.

Yes, there were many hidden things and many surprises. There was always more than one thing going on. There was always similar words but different definitions.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
For those who revere Lee, it is time to stop. He may have brought much truth together in a way we had never seen it done before (at least in the 60s and 70s). But he mixed that truth with leaven. It has been chemically changed from pure truth to yeast-truth. You can no longer separate the two. You must start over. To do so does not require Lee or Nee, else you risk reintroducing the leaven you seek to expel..
It is a shame but it is true. I just cannot read Lee. I have not been able to since around 1989. I tried to recently. Here in Durham we have a few gospel friends. They are happy to come to our homes for refreshments and some social contact and we have been having a short gospel sharing with them. I recalled a publication by WL called “Gospel Outlines.” I looked it up on their web-site. I tried to see how it might help but I felt I was wading through a knee deep East Arkansas river swamp. You ought to visit their web-site. It is unique in its reverence to the man WL and his heritage.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
[*]Lee also brought much of the corruption upon himself through his money schemes which he mixed with the church, then in pushing his immoral son on the churches through the LSM and lying about those who sought to bring that shame to an end...
TRUE and very tragic.

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
Unfortunately, that means that those wonderful, sweet, pure Christians are constantly being inundated with that leaven, to their detriment, and associated with the sins of their leaders by their silence, especially when they simply look the other way due to following the unbiblical teachings of deputy authority...
RIGHT AGAIN

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
In another post you mentioned several names and family names to suggest that those could not be so corrupt and that they would not knowingly tolerate such corruption. You may be correct with respect to the 70s, but we are no longer sure that any of those are clearly not now corrupted at some level (although I'm fairly sure that some are not). In any case, there are several leading ones in the Texas region who were that corrupt at that time. Ignoring BP, I think that at least one of them was in Dallas from about 1975. Some of the others in those meetings may have merely been invited to observe the control that others could exert. I'm sure that it was effective.
No need to pursue some of the general charges by the formerly teenage sisters, it is a real tar baby. But as to the person you are referring to. He was who he was without any help from WL or James Barber. Sadly the way the leadership structure was set up he was able to bring in his own problem ways. Eventually he alienated so many in Texas he had to leave. Then in the Oklahoma, Kansas, Colorado area the same thing happened. Sad. Too many others were hurt. He was not all bad but got no help. I should have been much stronger as also George should have stood up to him. MY BAD. I do not blame WL for the fruit of this brother. George and I are also guilty for letting his flesh damage others.

He would not have invited others to witness him abuse a saint. That is one problem I have with the details of the two stories. I do not agree that anyone extra would have been invited to a meeting of confrontation in order to learn how to shame or control.

Criticizing people behind their back and the cowardly method of attacking people in public where there will not be push back was an awful trait of WL that was not checked and was picked up by others. This was a huge personal flaw that along with family loyalty and unchecked ego eventually swallowed up WL’s positive portion.

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 01:29 PM   #1115
kisstheson
Member
 
kisstheson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 281
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Dear ones,

It has now been two full years since I left the LC. I have spent most of those two years re-discovering the riches that abound in the entire Body of Christ. Very recently, this thread has prompted me to spend much time with the Lord going back and considering “the LCS factor” in my own life and in the lives of my family. What really was it that we touched there in the LC? What was pure, refined gold and what was dross? What part of the LC, both the good and the bad, remains with me to this very day?

Right now I have only questions and not many answers. Very unexpectedly, I was reading in the book Simplicity: The Freedom of Letting Go by dear brother Richard Rohr and I came across a section that touched me deeply:

Quote:
The Perils of New Communities

There is a danger in spiritual riches. The corruption of the best is the worst of all. Our gift and our sin are two sides of the same coin . . . We can do the right thing for the wrong reasons. But that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t try to do the right thing. The point is that we always have to be mindful of its dark side too. It’s always very humbling to do that . . . The more spiritual it looks, the more dangerous it is. The spiritual life is a very risky adventure, but what’s the alternative?
“There is a danger in spiritual riches. The corruption of the best is the worst of all. Our gift and our sin are two sides of the same coin.” Dear Lord, that really speaks volumes to me and helps to put my LC experience into perspective. Don’t ask me how, dear brothers and sisters, but this word is somehow working inwardly and helping to heal me.

I don’t know what I am trying to say . . . too many conflicting emotions . . . too many things I have not adequately thought through . . . too little maturity on my part . . . All I know is that I love you all in Christ, beloved ones.

May our dear heavenly Father have mercy on us all.
__________________
"The best criticism of the bad is the practice of the better."
Richard Rohr, Things Hidden: Scripture as Spirituality
kisstheson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 03:02 PM   #1116
Terry
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Renton, Washington
Posts: 3,268
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post

1. In denial (in denial of what?)

2. Like most former elders of the LCS. (This from djohnson who was never in a local church. Can someone clarify what most former elders of the LCS are like?)

6. You accuse Don of trying to say every place was not the same. (Wow, I am guilty as charged.)

7. Why do you think the LSM is scared to death regarding my coming history?)
1. I believe this applies more towards current lc/lsm leadership than it is towards those who have left. Not complete denial of abuses, but definitely denial when saying there's no politics in the recovery.

2. Each former elder are different. One may not want to talk about the past. One may open up when asked. One may be willing to tell it like it is.

6. Every place is not the same. I lived in various localities as a child and met in one as an adult. New Mexico, Califronia, and Washington are each different. I read the Thread of Gold. I cannot relate to her experiences. Even if California was different than Texas doesn't mean what happened in Texas never happened. Just different localities with different leadership.
I would ask towards those who were raised in the local churches, the locality you grew up in recieves you as the prodigal son while localities you didn't grow up in doesn't receive you as lovingly?

7. I haven't heard a word LSM is scared of Hope's historical narrative. What is this based on.
Would this have any relation to LSM conducting a formal survey of those who met during the Eldon Hall period?

Terry
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 03:27 PM   #1117
juliep
Member
 
juliep's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Location: Hawaii
Posts: 15
Default Re: The LCS Factor

(I have to apologize once again, I am not akamai enough to know how to quote what I am responding to with this post.) We obviously have several subjects going back and forth in this Thread. However, here goes...(oh - that's a Hawaiian word for knowledgeable,fun huh?)

I will use one name here since Don hinted at him in a recent post. Gene Deberry (sp?) was definantely involved in my experience with the elders as a teen. It sounds like this may be a surprise to some readers - but Gene was not alone - he and other elders were present at the meeting. (I dont know, I must have been an important person if this was not his norm - Lol) And no, as much as Don would like me to, I am not going to mention other names. I don't think it is appropriate.

I only mentioned the bare facts of the incident as a means of support for BlessD and others. This was a very terrible time in my life and I don't wish to rehash in every detail what happened. Besides the fact (and I apologize for being rude) anyone reading the posts about this incident, but not directly involved, you dont need to know the specifics - in my mind, its only curiosity seeking at this point. So as to relating more info as clarification - its not going to happen. And de facto - if a person is wanting clarification then obviously that person wasn't involved, as I'm sure readers of the forum can surmise for themselves.

If persons dont want to believe my account of what happened to me, then don't...As I've said before the intention of speaking out about this incident was a way of support and verification for others who went through the same or similar experiences...I believe that has happened, so I am satisfied with how I have handled this subject.
I have enjoyed hearing from everyone and the wonderful support that is out there. (For the most part.)

Oh, this might be interesting for some readers - I lived in the Big House in Dallas just like Hope did. I was in the 5th grade at the local elementary- some of my fellow students along with their families ended up in the LC in Dallas. I remember it was a surprise when one family in particular showed up at a meeting out of the blue (OBW). LOL (Forgive me for the mention.)
We had single sisters living with us at the time. There were 3 upstairs bedrooms and the sisters lived in one of the bedrooms, my sister and myself had the middle bedroom (the third of my 4 siblings was born near the end of our residency there) and my parents occupied the third bedroom. Downstairs we had use of a small living room and the kitchen. However, there were two other large rooms we were not allowed to use because they were used during the week and on week-ends for prayer meetings, childrens meetings, and various other meetings and church related activities. And then of course the back room served as the service office back in those days.

I remember sometimes a brother or sister would be maning the post but if not my mom would have to run answer the church phone, on rare occasion I answered if she was busy and couldnt get to it. We got some bizarre calls from neighbors wondering what was going on at the property. As you can imagine they were not always nice.
Thanks for letting me reminisce, amazing how many memories are coming back as I post... So long ago, but yet still so present.
Aloha
(As you can see, I removed myself as far as possible and still be in the U.S.) Lol
juliep is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 04:21 PM   #1118
Paul Cox
Member
 
Paul Cox's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 183
Default Re: The LCS Factor

I think djohnson has made it a point to not let us know if he has ever been in the Local Church or not.
Roger
Paul Cox is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 05:17 PM   #1119
aron
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Natal Transvaal
Posts: 4,926
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by kisstheson View Post
What really was it that we touched there in the LC? What was pure, refined gold and what was dross? What part of the LC, both the good and the bad, remains with me to this very day?
I really appreciate the quote from Rohr, The more spiritual it looks, the more dangerous it is. The spiritual life is a very risky adventure, but what’s the alternative?

When I came in the LC, as a newbie believer, not knowing my "begats" from my "beatitudes", I was strongly impressed with the spiritual nature of the fellowship I'd found. Compared to this, the worldly gatherings elsewhere couldn't compare.

It took a long time for the dark side of the spiritual scene I'd found to manifest itself. Satan is not called the subtle one for no reason (Of course we all are partly dark; only Jesus is fully in the light; I am not saying this to judge anyone. I merely point out this fact as an assent to kts' quote of Rohr).

I really thought I was free from any peril, once saved and in the LC. "Just do whatever they tell you; everything will be fine." No, sorry: the peril which always accompanies any spiritual light was there, hidden from me, the trusting rube. I couldn't imagine how such light could have any dark aspect.

"If then the light that is in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!" Matt. 6:23

Eventually, under much pain and duress, I learned that the only "safe" course for me was to admit that I was full of darkness. This truth is irrespective of how many conferences I've sat through, how many verses I've bellowed with the faithful throng. I had to admit my darkness. Then and only then could I begin to be led into the light. Those who think they can see will remain in darkness (cf John 9:41). The LC brethren did in fact see quite a lot relatively speaking, but then they made the great error of thinking that they saw. Only God can see. When we erroneously think that we can see, we inadvertantly thrust God away, and our light becomes darkness. (As soon as someone claims that they are at the "high peak" of truth, this should be a clear warning that the pillars of their house are crumbling around them).

btw, imho the alternatives to the risky adventure (see Rohr's quote, above) of the spiritual life are two. The first is a life of sin. God is holy and this is abhorrent to Him. The second alternative is a life of religion, thinking that one is holy like God. God hates this even more! See Matthew 21:31 - "The tax collectors and the harlots are going into the kingdom of God before you" (!)

But I am probably digressing by now...
aron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 05:59 PM   #1120
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Hope in the description of your LCS spin off in Raleigh you neglected to mention what isn't OK about it. No need to mention that Paul did this about various situations in the NT. We are already aware of that.

Some the from the "old local church"? That is an interesting thought. Is there a "new local church"?
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-18-2009, 07:18 PM   #1121
kisstheson
Member
 
kisstheson's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 281
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
It is a shame but it is true. I just cannot read Lee. I have not been able to since around 1989. I tried to recently. Here in Durham we have a few gospel friends. They are happy to come to our homes for refreshments and some social contact and we have been having a short gospel sharing with them. I recalled a publication by WL called “Gospel Outlines.” I looked it up on their web-site. I tried to see how it might help but I felt I was wading through a knee deep East Arkansas river swamp. You ought to visit their web-site. It is unique in its reverence to the man WL and his heritage.
I fully sympathize with you, dear brother Hope. If you go to austin-sparks.net, you should find a refreshing change. Yes, this site is a repository containing many writings and audio speakings from TAS, but it does not reverence the man TAS. Statments like the the following one can be found at various places on this site:

"Based in Honor Oak, London, TAS (as he was affectionately known) was not lacking in opposition and rejection to himself and his ministry in the denominational circles of the day, he felt he should neither defend himself nor promote himself. Something which becomes clear when reading the writings of T. Austin-Sparks is that very little information is given about himself or his personal life; instead the focus is consistently upon Christ as his (and our) Life. Your attention is continually directed away from the messenger to the One Who is the Message: 'For we preach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. (2 Cor 4:5).'"

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
Criticizing people behind their back and the cowardly method of attacking people in public where there will not be push back was an awful trait of WL that was not checked and was picked up by others. This was a huge personal flaw that along with family loyalty and unchecked ego eventually swallowed up WL’s positive portion.
Ah, yes. How sad. The flip side to being a "seer of the divine revelation in the present age" is the very real danger of developing a terrible sense of pride and an unchecked ego. A part of my previous quote from dear brother Richard Rohr stated: "The more spiritual it looks, the more dangerous it is." Engaging in the business of seeing "high peak" revelations without the counterbalancnig humiliations from some "thorns in the flesh" is perilous indeed! Pride and an unchecked ego are sure to result. Just like the seven scrawny cows seen in Pharoh's vision, the "scrawny cows" of pride and an unchecked ego can easily swallow up the "fat cows" of previous positive portions.
__________________
"The best criticism of the bad is the practice of the better."
Richard Rohr, Things Hidden: Scripture as Spirituality
kisstheson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 07:43 AM   #1122
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
I am a little put out with you. I need to get on with other things besides this thread but you keep putting out these excellent posts with such concise and pointed insight. You make me think and consider and then desire for your points to be expanded through some dialogue.

So cut it out!!!

...

But as to the person you are referring to. He was who he was without any help from WL or James Barber. Sadly the way the leadership structure was set up he was able to bring in his own problem ways.
Don,

I never try to be that troublesome. It is just the nature of a seriously introverted INTP. (Google that. It is an eye-opener about my temperament.)

As for the one you mention as just being who he was, I think I already knew that, but no matter why or how, he was a problem right there among us.

While there are many other comments I could make here, I will note that you sent me an IM to which I would love to respond. You will need to delete some messages first because it won’t let me send anything to you.
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 10:28 AM   #1123
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Hope in the description of your LCS spin off in Raleigh you neglected to mention what isn't OK about it. No need to mention that Paul did this about various situations in the NT. We are already aware of that.

Some the from the "old local church"? That is an interesting thought. Is there a "new local church"?
djohnson,

We all have a great need to be more Christlike. We need more love for Christ and for one another and for the lost and dying world. Many of us, especially me, are too often caught up with our own selves and self interests. We are often slow to respond to the promptings of the Lord during our daily living. We need to be strengthened to pray more. We need more time in the Word of God. We are desirous of being better parents and have a long way to go. These are just a few of our short comings. We could go on for quite a while pointing out flat spots and failures among us. We are not great. We are not special. About all we can boast of is Christ. He is so merciful and kind. If you ever visited, you would have plenty of ground to admonish. We would hear you out and bring your criticisms to the Lord. Perhaps we could have a two way fellowship as Paul with the Roman Christians, Rom 1:12, that is, that I may be encouraged together with you while among you, each of us by the other's faith, both yours and mine. NASB

"Old local church" meant not the present local church. As far as I know, except for me, none of the saints with whom we gather has seen a local church meeting for probably 15-20 years.


In Christ Jesus,

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 10:32 AM   #1124
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Roger View Post
I think djohnson has made it a point to not let us know if he has ever been in the Local Church or not.
Roger
Actually djohnson has posted that he was never in a local church but has a friend who was in a local church and his friend knew Max Rapoport. djohnson has posted that he developed an interest in the local church based on his friendship with the former member and the former member keeps him updated.

Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 11:56 AM   #1125
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

What is the present local church Hope?
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 01:40 PM   #1126
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
What is the present local church Hope?
Are you playing with me? The churches under the LSM umbrella claiming to be the "recovery" linked to the Watchman Nee tradition.

Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 03:18 PM   #1127
AndPeter
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 32
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hope View Post
Actually djohnson has posted that he was never in a local church but has a friend who was in a local church and his friend knew Max Rapoport. djohnson has posted that he developed an interest in the local church based on his friendship with the former member and the former member keeps him updated.

Don Rutledge
djohnson's friend perhaps is his alter ego. (Mirriam-Webster definition of alter ego: :(a) a second self as a trusted friend (b): the opposite side of a personality)

Steve
AndPeter is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 04:44 PM   #1128
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Would that make your alter ego Peter, Steve?

Why not pay attention to content instead of figuring out how someone fits into comfortable predetermined pigeon holes?

Hope so are you saying there was an old local church and now there is a new local church and the new local church is the present local church and this all refers to the LCS/LSM?
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 05:57 PM   #1129
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

djohnson,

How many times have you analyzed my posts based on my being a former elder? Even when I speak of the Lord’s work among an assembly of believers here you assess it as an LCS spin off since you know I was once an elder in the local church in Dallas. Why do you use information about me to critique but who you really are and what your experience is is not important in evaluating your content? Why the double standard?

Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 07:42 PM   #1130
Terry
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Renton, Washington
Posts: 3,268
Default Re: The LCS Factor

djohnson there is The Local Church and then there is a local church. The Local Church is reference to fellowship of specific assemblies that were once local churches. Since the formation of Living Stream Ministry, these local churches have over time become ministry churches known as The Local Churches.
A local church may be identified as any Christian assembly in the community which you live. I meet with a local church, but it's not a Local Church as identified through LCS.
In response to Hope, isn't there no LCS spinoff without LSM? Once you remove LSM from the equation a big chunk of the system is gone.

Terry
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 07:56 PM   #1131
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Hope I have stated on numerous occasions what my experience of the LCS is and how I gather my information. It is no mystery.

Is the church you are currently involved in not a break away from the LCS church? Are not the leaders there former elders in the LCS outlet in Raleigh? And are you not involved with other LCS spin offs e.g. in southern California who are also break aways from the LCS and whose leaders are also for the most part former elders in the LCS?
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 07:58 PM   #1132
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Terry so the First Baptist Church where you live is a local church?
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-19-2009, 08:47 PM   #1133
Terry
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Renton, Washington
Posts: 3,268
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Terry so the First Baptist Church where you live is a local church?
Welcome back dj. There is no "First Baptist Church" where I live. There is Calvary Baptist Church, Highlands Community Church, etc. Each assembly are locally accessible. I've met with several of them. Each minister Christ to brothers and sisters locally. In this sense it is a local church.

Terry
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 12:01 AM   #1134
finallyprettyokay
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 127
Default Re: The LCS Factor

djohnson:

I was gone from the forum for several months, didn't have internet access. So I may have missed something -- I feel like I did. I'm wanting to get it -- we'll see if I do.

Some quotes - from you:

Quote:
Is the church you are currently involved in not a break away from the LCS church? Are not the leaders there former elders in the LCS outlet in Raleigh? And are you not involved with other LCS spin offs e.g. in southern California who are also break aways from the LCS and whose leaders are also for the most part former elders in the LCS?

and from kisstheson:

Quote:
It has now been two full years since I left the LC. I have spent most of those two years re-discovering the riches that abound in the entire Body of Christ. Very recently, this thread has prompted me to spend much time with the Lord going back and considering “the LCS factor” in my own life and in the lives of my family. What really was it that we touched there in the LC? What was pure, refined gold and what was dross? What part of the LC, both the good and the bad, remains with me to this very day?
and
Quote:
I don’t know what I am trying to say . . . too many conflicting emotions . . . too many things I have not adequately thought through . . . too little maturity on my part . . . All I know is that I love you all in Christ, beloved ones.

So, here is what I don't understand. Is there some inherently wrong with being a spin off from the LC? And I guess I should maybe have a more clear definition of what that means. Does it have to do with people who used to be in the LC being in a group together, and the leaders of that group used to be leaders in the LC? Is that pretty much it? I wonder if I am missing something -- why that idea or that way of being a group would be so bothersome to you. What am I missing?

Don't get me wrong -- I don't think I would ever want to meet in one of those groups. It just isn't for me. Maybe I am more like a recovering alcoholic who doesn't even want to live near a bar. Or drink an O'Douls. Maybe I just need a lot more distance to have my life feel sane and balanced to me. I have a friend in one of those groups and when I talk to her I think yikes, I wouldn't want to do that. But it seems to work really well for her. We all have the same God, but different paths. That's why it's a personal relationship.

So I am just not sure why you seem to be so upset with Don about this part. I think he has shared that his group has ex-members, and once mentioned he was going to California to meet with another 'spin off' group. I think he was going to do some speaking there. But so what? We came through fire, and we are all working out the salvation of the rest of our time in this life, before God with (at times) fear and trembling. My husband and I go to a demonination. Love it. Love the people. Pastor is a good friend. We do service in different forms. Someone else meets with a non-demoninational non-affliated church and loves it. Someone else meets with a different demonination than the one we sort of stumbled into, maybe really different. And loves it. Some one else is in a spin off. Is being a spin off inherently wrong?

It seems like you are so angry with Don about this, and I just don't get it. Oh, don't get me wrong again -- I have had some issues with Don, and have written about it. I don't know if the idea that you or someone close to is close to Max is true -- doesn't matter -- maybe it's an urban legend . I know Max very well and he has been part of my story since I was 17. (Oh, my. My recent birthday makes that 40 years yikes!) . I feel like Don is too hard on Max, that he isn't fair. I don't claim any lack of bias in my feelings. I love Max. And his family. They are part of me, part of my history. Well, I have written about this several times, but I have a feeling I haven't convinced Don to come into the light and see this my way. Still, I think I have remained mostly respectful and kind. If not, I'm sorry and shame on me, I know better.

So I am not saying don't be angry when you need to be. I just want to understand what it is you are saying, and why.

And then I quoted KisstheSon because what he wrote touched my heart deeply. He has written this sort of thing before, I think. And this seems to me a really good reason why this forum may exist. To help each other, encourage and support each other while we detox. The LC toxin is hard to shed, and not having to do it alone sure helps.

So, I am hoping we can get this tone back on this forum -- we don't all agree, we won't and can't (more 'an likely). But we can be gentle and respectful and try to realize we are all figuring this out, and trying to do it together, not on our own.

Is there any way we can all leave behind the accusing tones and words?

Could we pick right up on what KTS said there and see if he needs something we can help give him? Fill in other examples, to complete this thought --- you all know what I mean.

It's late. I'm tired. I hope you are all well. I have a big day ahead of me tomorrow, watching the tv, celebrating. So, everyone sleep tight, don't let the bed bugs bite. Stay warm.

finallyprettyokay


---

Last edited by finallyprettyokay; 01-20-2009 at 12:02 AM. Reason: my terrible spelling
finallyprettyokay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 04:07 AM   #1135
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
I have stated on numerous occasions what my experience of the LCS is and how I gather my information. It is no mystery.
No ... djohnson ... I do believe it was Norm who stated what your "experience in the LCS has been and how you gathered your information." He referred to you as PK ... a Person of Knowledge.

Not only is FPO a little bewildered here, but many others on this forum including myself have often wondered why you continually bear such animus towards others once associated with the LC's. I too, hailing from Ohio, have received some of it from you.

Your recent line of interrogations against the poster Hope seems to indicate a personal enmity based on some foreknowledge which goes far beyond a "casual LC relationship" which you have on occasion purported.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 07:42 AM   #1136
Overflow
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 21
Default Re: The LCS Factor

After leaving a system of confused scripture, legalistic focus and egocentric belief of being God's only saving grace....I have issues with believing that an LC elder could healthily step into the leadership of another church without serious counseling and detoxing! HOPE how did you transition away/search out the deception from truth that was ingrained in you during your time with LC!?!?
Overflow is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 08:49 AM   #1137
finallyprettyokay
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 127
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Overflow wrote:
Quote:
After leaving a system of confused scripture, legalistic focus and egocentric belief of being God's only saving grace....I have issues with believing that an LC elder could healthily step into the leadership of another church without serious counseling and detoxing! HOPE how did you transition away/search out the deception from truth that was ingrained in you during your time with LC!?!?
Hello Overflow. I don't think we have cyber-met. Welcome.

This is great, what you wrote. I would just add that how did any of us transition out of the deception from truth? Painfully, mostly. Speaking for myself, it was a mess inside of me. For years. Everyone has a different story on that --- one of the best parts of this forum is sharing how that worked for each of us. I'm just not so sure that it would be any harder (or easier) for someone that had been an elder. Maybe. Different issues, I guess. Detoxing is never easy.

Good to read from you, Overflow.

fpo

--

Last edited by finallyprettyokay; 01-20-2009 at 08:51 AM. Reason: typo
finallyprettyokay is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 09:01 AM   #1138
Oregon
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2008
Posts: 67
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Overflow View Post
After leaving a system of confused scripture, legalistic focus and egocentric belief of being God's only saving grace....I have issues with believing that an LC elder could healthily step into the leadership of another church without serious counseling and detoxing! HOPE how did you transition away/search out the deception from truth that was ingrained in you during your time with LC!?!?

Hi Overflow.

Please don't equate your experience with those who have a history in the local church. They may not be the same at all. I don't believe HOPE needed any detoxing. There are a lot of dear saints....including leading ones no longer in the local churches related to LSM. The thought that they need some kind of detoxing is just way over the top.
Oregon is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 09:50 AM   #1139
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Overflow View Post
After leaving a system of confused scripture, legalistic focus and egocentric belief of being God's only saving grace....I have issues with believing that an LC elder could healthily step into the leadership of another church without serious counseling and detoxing! HOPE how did you transition away/search out the deception from truth that was ingrained in you during your time with LC!?!?
Greetings Overflow,

I agree with you. If one of the dear brothers from the past suddenly began to meet with us, I would love him and treat him with kindness and have the best of hope for him. But he would need to learn and relearn many things before he would be effective in building up others.

We have had a few former leaders from free group type fellowships come to meet with us. Unfortunately, some felt that were the answer to our need and assumed they would be immediately raised to a leadership position. That is a problem since the assembly where I gather does not have a formal leadership structure. We have no apostle who is appointing elders or extra local work to which we belong. We are a family. All participate in decisions regarding the church family from direction to discipline. We are very different from the old local church I knew. About the only thing similar is some meeting practices such as any can call a hymn. Many give personal testimonies regarding their experiences of Christ. Any can call for specific prayer at any time. We do refer to each other as brother and sister but not always or even most of the time. We do have ministry of the word but that occupies a minority of the time. A conference or retreat type gathering is rare and is for a specific purpose related to local needs. We have no ongoing conference schedule to enable some worker to speak.

As far as old brother Hope, Don Rutledge, how did he detox. For six years I did not open my mouth in any Christian gathering, not to pray, to give a testimony, to share the word or to ask a question. I visited denominations, Bible Churches, Free Groups, home meetings etc. I only spoke when spoken to. Mainly I listened and sought to learn from the Christ in the believers. I made friends with several pastors and had good fellowship with them and members of their congregations and I still do. Monthly, I supported missionaries financially, and I still do. I gave money for summer mission trips of children of friends and I still do. My wife and I shared the good news of Jesus Christ with friends, co-workers and friends of our children. My wife and I prayed together every morning. I read the Bible daily. I did not read any LSM literature and I still do not, but did read a few other authors but mainly only the Bible with no footnotes etc.

We occasionally crossed paths with saints from the past and enjoyed being with them. We lived in the county and were somewhat isolated. We stayed in touch with some in Raleigh who had been rejected by the LSM. They took most of the initiative and were incredibly kind toward us. Gradually we began to see them more often. Eventually around 1996-7 we began to join them in meetings on a more regular basis. I continued to say and do very little.

Over time the number has increased from a handful of former local churchers huddling for warmth. We never claim to be “God’s only saving grace” whatever that means. Today, some may say I have some type of leadership but whatever that may be is not official but only spiritual and comes only from mutual respect for one another.

Overflow, I trust this helps a little.

In Christ Jesus,

Hope, Don Rutledge

I just have one question. Overflow in your post you wrote, "I have issues with believing that an LC elder could healthily step into the leadership of another church without serious counseling and detoxing!"
I cannot ever recall claiming to be a leader anywhere. I know of no reference to my stepping into the leadership of another church. Can you let me know where I may have given the thought that I was anything at all? I surely do not want to be self assuming. If I have, please get me straight.

Last edited by Hope; 01-20-2009 at 10:25 AM. Reason: adding text
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 11:05 AM   #1140
Overflow
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 21
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Thanks HOPE for your explanation. I guess I did assume that you were in leadership based on you speaking at guest local churches. I have other questions but I'll have to think a bit more before I speak!

Also "the only saving grace" is in reference to the view that the original LCers took towards other believers....in truth, the only way of course to eternal life is through Jesus' righteousness, shed blood and love for his lost children...nothing to do with Witness Lee. I apologize, I don't have all the LC (past, present, separated group lingo figured out).
Overflow is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 11:25 AM   #1141
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Ohio & FPO I have no animus towards those in the LCS or those who left it. I merely question those who say they left it but appear to have merely duplicated it elsewhere. Surely you agree that leaving such a system in heart and mind is difficult even if one physically moves on to another church e.g. ABC Community Church. One would conclude that leaving it in heart and mind is even more difficult if one continues in a physical place that basically mimics what one supposedly left behind. A reasonable position don't you think?
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 11:53 AM   #1142
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

No animus just assumptions and accusations I suppose? How would you know if the assembly in Raleigh or Durham NC is a duplication of the LCS? How would your know if they are basically mimicking what was supposedly left behind? My reasonable position is you must have some personal agenda and perhaps a little animus for some reason. Maybe it is just your personality?

Otherwise please spell out the mimicking and duplicating.
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 12:46 PM   #1143
Overflow
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 21
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by finallyprettyokay View Post
Overflow wrote:

Hello Overflow. I don't think we have cyber-met. Welcome.

This is great, what you wrote. I would just add that how did any of us transition out of the deception from truth? Painfully, mostly. Speaking for myself, it was a mess inside of me. For years. Everyone has a different story on that --- one of the best parts of this forum is sharing how that worked for each of us. I'm just not so sure that it would be any harder (or easier) for someone that had been an elder. Maybe. Different issues, I guess. Detoxing is never easy.

Good to read from you, Overflow.

fpo

--
I'm sorry I haven't officially introduced myself. My dad is a former LC elder. He and HOPE are long time friends (with lapses in communication based merely on distance in residence).

Thanks for the welcome Finally Pretty Okay! I've lurked here from time to time, but have never felt comfortable to type until now. Because of my upbringing, I tend to run from people that are strong in defensiveness. From my experience there are certain people in this world that consider themselves VIPs (I think that the LC was GREAT at creating them). From my vantage point, VIPs are never wrong and despite all the reasoning, logic and heart presented to a VIP from the peanut gallery, VIPs are stuck being right! Because I've never seen a VIP (a person stuck being "right" at all cost) actually rethink and be willing to grow, I guess my faith is somewhat weak in feeling hope for those on this forum that continually defend the LC or any branch attached or detached.

And that's my reason for inquiring about the means to getting healthy after a lifetime of believing falsehoods about scripture and turning inward and depending on self or 'our spirit' instead of depending on Christ's strength, wisdom, peace, etc. All textbook problems associated with spending time in the LCS. I know there isn't an easy answer, especially if a person is still in denial (1). there ever was a problem and (2). that they were a part of the problem (regardless of the time spent outside of the system, for some reason I've yet to understand up to this point, there is a strange allegiance).

My constant prayer is that God will help me steer clear from ever being a VIP and help me to live as a servant. I'm constantly having to apologize to my children because being raised in such a legalistic, dictatorship household makes it harder for me to parent in a way that builds my kids up rather than builds myself up. I need humbleness, meekness and lots of forgiveness.

Hope that makes sense?!?!
Overflow is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 01:41 PM   #1144
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Overflow View Post
After leaving a system of confused scripture, legalistic focus and egocentric belief of being God's only saving grace....I have issues with believing that an LC elder could healthily step into the leadership of another church without serious counseling and detoxing! HOPE how did you transition away/search out the deception from truth that was ingrained in you during your time with LC!?!?
Overflow,
Welcome as well.

I know you are asking Hope about how he detoxed (or detoxing still perhaps??)

But I'll share what has helped me...

Reading spiritual books that are not by Nee or Lee or those authors recommended by Lee.

For ME...Joyce Meyers helped me alot become 'normal'. I began to watch Christian TV. There are some very good teachers and some that are not good..

Most importantly, I focused on the Lord Jesus Christ and concentrated on what a scripture that spoke to me really meant. Getting the LC definition or attitude can be challenging...especially when it comes to the book of Ephesians which was something we devoured year after year while I was there.

I still call on the Name of the LORD...but I call on His Name with Respect, with Adoration, with Love. His Name is HOLY. His Name is Sanctified and we should NEVER, EVER take His Name lightly.

I also have a relationship with the HOLY SPIRIT. He is GOD and He is the VOICE of GOD and the Eternal Spirit of God. I LOVE the HOLY SPIRIT. I speak to the HOLY SPIRIT and ask for His Guidance and for His Counsel and His Leading. He leads us into the Paths of Righteousness. Righteousness is Christ Jesus Himself. Righteousness is GOD.

I have always known the Spirit, the Life Giving Spirit, the Holy Spirit lived in me but my relationship was pretty much with the Son Jesus Christ...not with the Holy Spirit per sae.

Once I began to learn more about the role of the Holy Spirit in the God Head, and I began to have a relationship with Him, talking to Him, Loving Him as much as I love the Son and the Father, my life totally changed from the inside..and BLESSINGS began to pour down on me. The Presence of GOD in my life intensified. It is something I cannot explain.

I also want to add...my understanding and relationship with the Holy Spirit began about 2 years ago. I am not the same person I was when I came on board the Nee, Lee forum on the other site in 2006.
I also have a relationship with the Father..the Creator of Heaven and Earth too. I will admit my relationship with getting to know the Father is more difficult for me than my relationship with The SON and the HOLY SPIRIT. But I'm working on my relationship with my Heavenly Father.

I do go to 'church' mainly for Worship..and to hear the WORD of God outside my house and outside the TV realm.

May the LORD heal you and strengthen your heart, your MIND, your Soul as He strengthens your spirit In Christ Jesus.
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 01:47 PM   #1145
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Overflow View Post

I've lurked here from time to time, but have never felt comfortable to type until now. Because of my upbringing, I tend to run from people that are strong in defensiveness.

I need humbleness, meekness and lots of forgiveness. Hope that makes sense?!?!
Overflow, that makes a lot of sense, and welcome to the forum!

I also lurked here for a while before posting, then I learned that the forum is a "great equalizer." Each of us is equipped the same -- each has a keyboard and an "off" switch. Hence, none of us needs to be intimidated by those "strong in defensiveness," and we have had plenty of those.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 01:55 PM   #1146
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Ohio & FPO I have no animus towards those in the LCS or those who left it. I merely question those who say they left it but appear to have merely duplicated it elsewhere. Surely you agree that leaving such a system in heart and mind is difficult even if one physically moves on to another church e.g. ABC Community Church. One would conclude that leaving it in heart and mind is even more difficult if one continues in a physical place that basically mimics what one supposedly left behind. A reasonable position don't you think?
djohnson, that's like assuming that no matter where I ever will meet ... I will still love good food. What's wrong with me? No matter how far I distance myself from the LC system, I still love potluck dinners. I can't help myself. I am just mimicing my old ways. I am the total opposite of a "picky eater." The LC made me this way. I can go thru the line and try 2 dozen different dishes without overflowing my plate. What can I do? I tried to leave the "love feasts" in heart and mind, but I can't do it. I am ruined forever.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 02:41 PM   #1147
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Overflow View Post
Because of my upbringing, I tend to run from people that are strong in defensiveness.
Because of my upbringing I tend to punch those people in the mouth. Takes all kinds, I guess.
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 02:49 PM   #1148
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Ohio your analogy escapes me. Please allow me to offer one for your consideration:

A priest of the RC decides that he doesn't like what the pope is doing and he and a group within the larger congregation determine to move down the street (or better yet have a lawsuit over the property) and start their own thing. All else remains the same: practices, liturgy, doctrines, etc. (including him being a priest) except they switched from claiming the pope is the sole authority to a authority. Do you honestly expect me or anyone else to seriously believe that the priest left the RC lock, stock and barrel? Sorry but the credulity required for such a belief is beyond my capacity and I'm sure beyond that of many others.
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 03:35 PM   #1149
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
A priest of the RC decides that he doesn't like what the pope is doing and he and a group within the larger congregation determine to move down the street (or better yet have a lawsuit over the property) and start their own thing. All else remains the same: practices, liturgy, doctrines, etc. (including him being a priest) except they switched from claiming the pope is the sole authority to a authority. Do you honestly expect me or anyone else to seriously believe that the priest left the RC lock, stock and barrel? Sorry but the credulity required for such a belief is beyond my capacity and I'm sure beyond that of many others.
That is EXACTLY what Martin Luther did when he separated himself with the Pope's teachings.

His followers are called Lutherans. If you've ever been to a Catholic mass and then to a Lutheran service or an Episcopalian service, you might think you're in a Catholic mass without the statues & the kneeling pews.

Not EVERYTHING about the LC was wrong. Unfortunately, too many LC leaders as elders did not study the Word and meditate on the WORD without Lee's 'blessings' and Lee's 'vision'.

That is why I think a lot of people affiliated with the LC are screwed up in the head. NOT ALL I emphasize...NOT ALL.

Forums like this one are very helpful for people to talk about their experiences and get help because only people in the LC know exactly what it was to be in the LC.... just as a former Catholic understands the RCC better than a Buddhist or Hindu does, if they were never in the RCC.

People here are trying to grow close to the LORD JESUS and read the scriptures in a FRESH LIVING way..and to fellowship and help one another. Our Thread of GOLD is CHRIST JESUS and the WORD of GOD...but our history also connects us.

Nothing wrong with 'keeping' the good and throwing out the bad!!

I think the gospel 'love' feasts were GREAT. For the most part, I enjoyed the testimonies after the messages when I was in the LC...so long as they weren't off the wall or out in left field which sometimes happened.

If the church where Hope meets and probably shepherds has gospel feasts, testimonies,...SO WHAT ??

What became a turn off for me...was when the testimonies started like this "Praise the Lord for Brother Lee'. 'Brother Lee is the up to date apostle of the age'.. :rollingeyes2:

I know not EVERYONE still dresses in the LC uniform and wears their hair the same way..but we did back in the day.

Now...the RcV is the bible they read...and not w/o checking the footnotes FIRST! If the Holy Spirit is showing them something in the scriptures but the footnotes say something else...then Lee is right not the Holy Spirit. And that's wrong!

A few years ago, I started examining certain subject matters like 'Outerdarkness', and more...I began to consider somethings the Scriptures were revealing to me, so I went to the RcV..and re-read what Lee said about it. Then I went to other sources and through research and prayer, the Lord revealed to me, Lee's view is WRONG.

Darkness is darkness and in GOD, there IS NO Darkness at all...not outer not inner...NONE...Zippo...Nada...

But this is not a topic I'm going to discuss. I was merely using it as an example to show people never QUESTIONED Lee's teachings and that is why there was poor leadership, poor eldership/shephards...'cause they took Lee's word without checking the scriptures thoroughly and asking the Holy Spirit to reveal the Word of God clearly as God sees it.

It's no wonder the Presence of God is not there.
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 04:11 PM   #1150
Ohio
Member
 
Ohio's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Greater Ohio
Posts: 11,865
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Ohio your analogy escapes me. Please allow me to offer one for your consideration:

A priest of the RC decides that he doesn't like what the pope is doing and he and a group within the larger congregation determine to move down the street (or better yet have a lawsuit over the property) and start their own thing. All else remains the same: practices, liturgy, doctrines, etc. (including him being a priest) except they switched from claiming the pope is the sole authority to a authority. Do you honestly expect me or anyone else to seriously believe that the priest left the RC lock, stock and barrel? Sorry but the credulity required for such a belief is beyond my capacity and I'm sure beyond that of many others.
djohnson, your analogy escapes me. Never saw it happen.

At least my analogy had practical application in the LC's. How about we address specifics rather than hypotheticals which don't apply.

For discussion purposes, roughly how many public meetings have you been to? Ever been to a leaders meeting? A prayer meeting? Ever start a church from scratch? Ever participate in the breaking of bread? How many different cities? How many saints have you talked to? Etc.
__________________
Ohio's motto is: With God all things are possible!.
Keeping all my posts short, quick, living, and to the point!
Ohio is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 04:45 PM   #1151
OBW
Member
 
OBW's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: DFW area
Posts: 4,034
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Analogies are only as good as the attempt to be analogous. In other words, if your analogy fits, then it may shed light on reality. But if it does not fit, it is useless. Just because you create an analogy that has a surface appearance of a match does make it accurate.

There is a logical fallacy relating to erroneous analogies (I forget the fancy term). So just because you can refer to a RCC group that splits off but continues to look like the RCC, it does not mean that every group that splits off will look like the RCC, or whatever group they split off from. Analogies do not prove anything. They only help analyze reality to the extent that they actually match.

And the creation of an analogy does not prove a match.

Mike
__________________
Mike
I once thought I was. . . . but I may have been mistaken — Edge (with apologies)
OBW is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 05:04 PM   #1152
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
Analogies are only as good as the attempt to be analogous. In other words, if your analogy fits, then it may shed light on reality. But if it does not fit, it is useless. Just because you create an analogy that has a surface appearance of a match does make it accurate.

There is a logical fallacy relating to erroneous analogies (I forget the fancy term). So just because you can refer to a RCC group that splits off but continues to look like the RCC, it does not mean that every group that splits off will look like the RCC, or whatever group they split off from. Analogies do not prove anything. They only help analyze reality to the extent that they actually match.

And the creation of an analogy does not prove a match.

Mike
Mike,
I'm not sure if your comments here are in reference to my post or DJ's or both of ours.

So to clarify what I was trying to say:

In life, there are building blocks to imrove life. Henry Ford may have invented the car...we still drive cars but not the Model T. We don't criticize Henry Ford for the clunker he invented. We move on and keep trying to improve on something that has been of great benefit.

Nee, Lee and others...might have seen a different way to meet and worship the LORD other than attending a church service with the preacher at the pulpit. Thus the local churches...... For some, it worked. When it got stale or whatever...we left...

It is too bad the LC turned out to be an organization after all.

Nontheless, God is still GOOD..ALWAYS was..ALWAYS WILL BE!!!

Hope my comments make sense.
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 05:22 PM   #1153
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

OBW what you say is true: just because a group that splits off from the RC continue to look, smell and act like the RC doesn't mean all will. My analogy applies to those LCS spin offs that indeed do look, smell and act like the group they supposedly left.
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 05:23 PM   #1154
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
Because of my upbringing I tend to punch those people in the mouth. Takes all kinds, I guess.
I wish you had been in my locality, back when, my friend...
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 05:24 PM   #1155
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

I have seen it happen Ohio. And because you haven't only means you haven't.

About the LCS: I think the information I have provided in this forum speaks for itself. If it has not been accurate please feel free to point out what is erroneous.
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-20-2009, 06:01 PM   #1156
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by OBW View Post
There is a logical fallacy relating to erroneous analogies (I forget the fancy term). So just because you can refer to a RCC group that splits off but continues to look like the RCC, it does not mean that every group that splits off will look like the RCC, or whatever group they split off from. Analogies do not prove anything. They only help analyze reality to the extent that they actually match.
"Religious people who leave their sect build the same thing."

pfft

It's just an over-generalization.
http://ksuweb.kennesaw.edu/~shagin/l...is-overgen.htm
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 08:16 AM   #1157
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
OBW what you say is true: just because a group that splits off from the RC continue to look, smell and act like the RC doesn't mean all will. My analogy applies to those LCS spin offs that indeed do look, smell and act like the group they supposedly left.
Depends on the look, smell and act you are talking about. Some are good, some are bad. There are a lot of wonderful things about the LC folks. They are, by and large, very good Christians. This is part of their look, smell and act.

The bad stuff comes through their hierarchical and exclusive organizational model (although they would deny that it is either until doomsday), which may in part be fed by their somewhat impersonal connection with God (i.e. he is more a Commodity to them than a Person sometimes.)

The problem is not: No signs, no name, dorky clothing, testimonies, old hymns, odd terminology, calling, pray-reading, shouting, fist-shaking, going to conferences, having one cup, calling it the Lord's Table, sitting in circles, carrying black satchels, etc, etc, etc. All that stuff is part of their look, smell and act, and it doesn't mean much, really. It's just what is obvious.

The problem is the authority model--"The Ministry" and "The Ground." If you see or smell those then you've spotted a problem.
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 09:39 AM   #1158
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

I'm not sure how you are defining "good Christian" but either way that is not what I have been discussing. The issue I am trying to address is those who claim to have left the LCS and yet in fact remain "there" for all intent and purposes.

About "the ministry" and "the ground". Do you really believe for example that those in the GLA have rejected these notions? If anything "the ministry" now = Titus Chu and they embrace the doctrine of dirt as closely as they ever did.
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 10:00 AM   #1159
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Dear dj,

In fairness, you weren't talking about the GLA, either. You were talking about Don Rutledge. Let's try to keep things straight.

And I probably would define "good Christian" pretty much the same way you do.
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 10:05 AM   #1160
aron
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Natal Transvaal
Posts: 4,926
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
Depends on the look, smell and act you are talking about.

The problem is the authority model--"The Ministry" and "The Ground." If you see or smell those then you've spotted a problem.
I agree. I really don't care what books people read, what songs they sing, how they sing them. Whether they pray in a sing-songy way, a chanting way, an "arms in the air with wiggly hands" way; on their knees, seated, or standing; to the Father, the Son, or the Holy Ghost/Spirit. What Bible they use, etc.

But if they think they have some "ground" to boss me around and tell me how to conduct my christian affairs, then that smell, look, and act becomes perverse. Other than that, and other than open sin, I don't see where I or anyone has the right to judge what the other servants of the Master are engaged in. Unless djohnson's sources have clear and specific info on the lording over believers (see 1 Peter 5:3) in what he refers to as LC-spinoffs, then he is engaging in supposition. Perhaps TC, and others, remain domineering as when they were Lee's lieutenants. Still, I would rather see case by case, specific instances, and especially patterns of abusive "shepherding", before I could assent to the idea that things have remained the same outside the LSM umbrella as before, when under it.

djohnson, I share your distaste for the dominion over the precious saints of God, and your abhorrence for the abusive systems. It is, to me, as as much an offence as it is to you. To counter this unfortunate trend, we can be steadfast in our holding forth the truth, such as little we have it, and be examples of the forbearance of God toward our fellow pilgrims and sojourners as they struggle back into the light of the Father.

djohnson, I recall your signature line saying, "My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ". I hope this joy extends to fellowship with all the believers. This fellowship may include reproving and remonstrating, but also might occasionally consist of rejoicing in the common faith of our fellows, in the process of turning from darkness to light. All of us believers are only partly in the light. We all have "ground" to cast stones at one another. Hopefully we have ground, as well, to encourage, strengthen, and support the journeys of our fellows as well.

Having said that, I always appreciate your posts. They are invariably bracing and refreshing to one who was in the "garlic room" for a long time. I appreciate your spirit, and I always sense you speaking for many who cannot speak, pressed down under the weight of silence.
aron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 10:15 AM   #1161
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Aron I appreciate your post but I thought Igzy was referring to the "ground of locality" doctrine in his post and not a general concept of ground as in a person having the "ground" to do this and that with others. In any event that was what I was addressing i.e. the doctrine of dirt.

Igzy initially I was addressing Hope but I think the conversation has since expanded.
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 11:27 AM   #1162
aron
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Natal Transvaal
Posts: 4,926
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Aron I appreciate your post but I thought Igzy was referring to the "ground of locality" doctrine in his post and not a general concept of ground as in a person having the "ground" to do this and that with others. In any event that was what I was addressing i.e. the doctrine of dirt.
You are right; I dragged my own little drum into the conversation and started beating it. The "smell and taste" test of LC-or-not is, for me, whether people are bossing others around, and telling them how to conduct their spiritual affairs, both individually and collectively. That is what I read into Igzy's reply to you, and why I referenced 1 Peter 5:3.

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Igzy initially I was addressing Hope but I think the conversation has since expanded.
Well, perhaps Igzy & I took things beyond where you might have intended. But in reference to Hope, and what he has shared; I don't have any insight to the doings of his folks there in NC & his connections elsewhere. Perhaps you have sources "offline" which have given you concern. But I don't see any references in his writings that he holds the "ground of locality" as giving his fellowship the preeminence among all the fellowships of believers in his geographic region. I am not very interested in the "doctrine of dirt", pro- or con, so perhaps I have waded into waters of which I am not suited.

But I was under the LC system for some years, and saw the spiritual paralysis, even rigor-mortis, resulting from the authority model which is invested into the ground of locality. I often sense in your postings some indignation at the re-chaining of the children of God, who after being freed from sin became entangled again in the yoke of deceptive doctrine. I agree, and share this indignation, but I don't see where Hope is keeping folks in this stronghold; rather I see him trying to emerge from it. In this I have an outsider's view, because I don't read every post nor remember everything I've read. So if my comments are unwarranted here please forgive me for intruding where I don't have "ground" to do so.
aron is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 12:14 PM   #1163
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
The issue I am trying to address is those who claim to have left the LCS and yet in fact remain "there" for all intent and purposes.
This is exactly ~why~ these forums are helpful to many. There is a 'stronghold' in Lee's ministry to the extent when people leave, they are left with a lot of confusion in their thinking.

They don't want to dress, talk, act like they did but it's in them..to some extent even in me. It's hard for them to forget what Lee and to a smaller degree Nee wrote about this subject or that subject.

It's not easy to stop speaking the LC lingo for many.

Let me give you an example. I grew up as a Catholic. I grew making 'the sign of the cross'...In the Name of the Father, In the Name of the Son, and in the Name of the Holy Ghost.

(Most of us..never respected that 'prayer'. But we all still 'crossed ourselves'.)

Do you know how EASY it is for me to make the 'sign of the cross' even though I have not been a Catholic for 40 some years?

If you were raised as a Baptist, Mormon, Buddhist, making the sign of the cross is not in your blood! Seeing someone make it might even look 'foreign' to you.

The LC was never a non Christian cult...We believed & still believe in the Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. We believe Jesus died and rose and because of His resurrection through confession of Faith and Repentence His Blood cleanses us and He lives in us through the Holy Spirit who is God. God lives in us. The Father, the Son and the Holy Spirit. We believe in the Bible. We read the Bible.

Why did I share that?? Because it goes to show, getting the religousness of doing things is not easy for any former LCr.

It is a process..and not an easy one...and for those who had been in the LC for umpteen years and in a leadership position to boot as Hope and others, it's even more difficult to shed off the 'old wineskin' and put on the NEW WINESKIN! But with GOD anything IS POSSIBLE!

Jesus is OUR SAVIOR..and behold HE makes all things New!
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 12:48 PM   #1164
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

countmeworhty I agree that it must be difficult which is why I continue to ask the question: knowing it is so difficult why would a leader (or anyone) who sincerely wants to leave the LCS simply duplicate it down the street? Would that not add to the difficulty?

Perhaps I could use another illustration: suppose I immigrant from India to the U.S.A. and declare that I really want to leave my Indian culture behind and become immersed in America. But when I arrive I move to an Indian community, I befriend other Indians, I don't learn English, I don't apply for citizenship, etc. In essence what have I done? Moved geography and nothing else. Is it a difficult process? Undoubtedly. But my way of going about leaving what I say I want to leave is not making any easier is it?
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 02:57 PM   #1165
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

dJ,

Got it. Just as I always suspected. Nothing and no associations can remain that can be identified with the local churches and WL etc. A totally brand new look and culture is the goal for all former members .

1) Join an existing Christian group

2) Separate yourself from all former associates

3) Never use any terms from the old culture

4) Join officially a mainline or clearly identifiable traditional Christian group

5) All remnants of the old culture, that is local church, disappear.

You might consider the following verses:
1 Cor 4:2-4, But to me it is a very small thing that I should be examined by you, or by any human court; in fact, I do not even examine myself . NASB

John 7:24, "Do not judge according to appearance, but judge with righteous judgment." NASB

Fortunately, we live unto the Lord and Romans 14 applies to myself and to all former members. Rom 14:7-11, For not one of us lives for himself, and not one dies for himself; for if we live, we live for the Lord, or if we die, we die for the Lord; therefore whether we live or die, we are the Lord's. For to this end Christ died and lived again, that He might be Lord both of the dead and of the living. But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we shall all stand before the judgment seat of God. NASB

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 03:05 PM   #1166
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Igzy initially I was addressing Hope but I think the conversation has since expanded.
The way I read is that you started out by saying Hope needed to be detoxed or put through therapy before he could lead another Christian group. Your evidence was that he had started something that was pretty much the same as what he had left. But you didn't point out how it was the same. My point was that some things of the LC, though possibly not according to your or my taste, are more or less benign. What is not benign is their authority model. The root of all the LC's problems stem from that.

So my point is that if Don started a church in Raleigh with all the benign practices of the LC (pray-reading, fist-pumping testimonies, etc, etc), but without the sick authority model (Ministry and Ground) then though his group might in some ways look very much like an apple which didn't fall far from the tree, in fact it would be something very different.

I know Don has discarded the LSM's view of "The Ministry," and though I'm less clear on his views of locality, I know he doesn't make an issue of it (at least here) nor delude himself into thinking everyone in Raleigh should be meeting where he meets.

So where does that leave your comments about Don?
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 03:07 PM   #1167
Cal
Member
 
Cal's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: USA
Posts: 4,269
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
countmeworhty I agree that it must be difficult which is why I continue to ask the question: knowing it is so difficult why would a leader (or anyone) who sincerely wants to leave the LCS simply duplicate it down the street? Would that not add to the difficulty?
What was toxic that Don duplicated?

Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
The issue I am trying to address is those who claim to have left the LCS and yet in fact remain "there" for all intent and purposes.
This is worth addressing. But you go too far by accusing Don of being one of these people. At the very least you should broach the issue with a little more sensitivity, if only because Don is probably your senior. (Sorry, Don.)
Cal is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 04:10 PM   #1168
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Igzy I don't recall saying Hope had to detox or go through therapy I think that was a new poster a while back who suggested that. Nor do I know how old Hope is. I am addressing a very simple issue: those (not just Hope) who say they have left the LCS and in actuality have not i.e. the gap between what they say they have done and what they have in fact done.
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 04:12 PM   #1169
djohnson
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 318
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Hope I think item one on your list might have been a good starting point!
__________________
My greatest joy is knowing Jesus Christ!
djohnson is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 04:15 PM   #1170
countmeworthy
Member
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: in Spirit & in Truth
Posts: 1,241
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
So my point is that if Don started a church in Raleigh with all the benign practices of the LC (pray-reading, fist-pumping testimonies, etc, etc), but without the sick authority model (Ministry and Ground) then though his group might in some ways look very much like an apple which didn't fall far from the tree, in fact it would be something very different.
Excellent point there Igzy my friend.
__________________
Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.
(Luke 21:36)
countmeworthy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 05:15 PM   #1171
Hope
Member
 
Join Date: May 2008
Location: Durham, North Carolina
Posts: 313
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Igzy View Post
The way I read is that you started out by saying Hope needed to be detoxed or put through therapy before he could lead another Christian group. Your evidence was that he had started something that was pretty much the same as what he had left. But you didn't point out how it was the same. My point was that some things of the LC, though possibly not according to your or my taste, are more or less benign. What is not benign is their authority model. The root of all the LC's problems stem from that.

So my point is that if Don started a church in Raleigh with all the benign practices of the LC (pray-reading, fist-pumping testimonies, etc, etc), but without the sick authority model (Ministry and Ground) then though his group might in some ways look very much like an apple which didn't fall far from the tree, in fact it would be something very different.

I know Don has discarded the LSM's view of "The Ministry," and though I'm less clear on his views of locality, I know he doesn't make an issue of it (at least here) nor delude himself into thinking everyone in Raleigh should be meeting where he meets.

So where does that leave your comments about Don?
Hi, Igzy

I cannot recall any fist-pumping testimonies in Raleigh or Durham. But again that was never my style. We are pretty laid back and most testimonies are given while remaining seated. Since we have only one larger all together meeting in a week the format of the majority of the gatherings is very informal and usually in various homes. Thus this atmosphere carries over to the corporate meeting. Since 80+% has never been to a local church training or to a local church meeting, we really do not know how to carry out the format from there. (You or dJohnson would need to come and show us how to do it.) I once had business in San Antonio and took a young associate who also met with us. While there we went up to Austin and visited the Sunday morning meeting. My young brother-colleague was hilarious to watch. He had never seen anything like it. You would have thought he had gone to Mars.

You former Texas local church folks have to realize that North Carolina is very laid back. The Andy Griffin show is not far off. In fact we are so informal, you community church folks may find us too slow and unorganized. The meeting time is in fact more of an arrival time. There is lots of milling around and greetings and hugs and laughing. Sometimes 20 minutes will pass before anything gets started that includes everybody. I know it would drive all you more programmed believers a little batty. It does me too at times but I just fit into what the saints prefer.

My understanding of locality is simply versus a federation with a headquarters. It is that Christ is the Head of the Body practically not by way of the universal church but locally. Christ desires to shine through the lampstand into the darkness of the lost world locally versus some world wide ministry. My understanding of the terms in the New Testament of the church in _______ (a city) has to do first with the mission of the church which comes from the Greek word more accurately translated Assembly. It was the assembly of the citizens of a city state who assembled to carry out the interests of the city. Citizen responsibility and the essential recognition of Christ as the Head is the primary characteristic of a local assembly. When we say the church in Raleigh or the church in Durham, we have our responsibility as members of Christ body in our mind. We are not thinking "we are it."

Oneness of the Body of Christ is not the focus of locality at all. Practical oneness is a by-product of endeavoring to keep the oneness of the Spirit. Oneness results from not showing preference for particular members but bestowing more abundant honor on the uncomely members. It comes from the strong bearing the weaknesses of those without strength.

Oneness means we receive and accept all whom the Lord has received. Oneness means not passing judgment on other believers for some doubtful opinion or practice.

Claiming something or other called "the ground" is merely children playing. Practicing all that the church in ______ implies is a high calling. Lord have mercy on us. How we have failed so many times.

A believer in Christ Jesus,

Hope, Don Rutledge
Hope is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 05:40 PM   #1172
YP0534
Member
 
YP0534's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Posts: 685
Default Point of Clarification

Quote:
Originally Posted by Overflow View Post
After leaving a system of confused scripture, legalistic focus and egocentric belief of being God's only saving grace....I have issues with believing that an LC elder could healthily step into the leadership of another church without serious counseling and detoxing! HOPE how did you transition away/search out the deception from truth that was ingrained in you during your time with LC!?!?
Quote:
Originally Posted by djohnson View Post
Like most former elders of the LCS it is apparent that Hope has never left it in mind and heart and probably not bodily if his church in Raleigh is anything like the other LCS spin offs.

The argument that you can't paint everything with a broad brush is frivilous. A mere red herring. Everybody with any degree of intellegeince knows that a system like LCS will contain both good and bad elements. What Hope is denying is that certain things took place in the place where he was. Either Hope is lying or those reporting it are lying. Or Hope is claiming ignorance of the events in question. And if he did not know they took place that does not = that they did not take place only that he was ignorant of it. But knowing the track record the LCS and its leaders can anyone really think that such abuse of the young is outside the realm of the very possible nay the very probable?
djohnson is clearly right that the comment about "detoxing" and "counseling" was not his

djohnson only said that Hope never really left the Local Church
__________________
Let each walk as the Lord has distributed to each, as God has called each, and in this manner I instruct all the assemblies. 1 Cor. 7:17
YP0534 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 08:52 PM   #1173
Terry
Member
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: Renton, Washington
Posts: 3,268
Default Re: The LCS Factor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Overflow View Post
After leaving a system of confused scripture, legalistic focus and egocentric belief of being God's only saving grace....I have issues with believing that an LC elder could healthily step into the leadership of another church without serious counseling and detoxing!
In considering your post, much detox was preceeded with bouts of depression? I don't agree being an LC elder can translate to leadership in another church. I believe many of these elders were appointed based on their gifts. Some initially balked and had to be talked into accepting the responsibility. If these elders truly wanted a leadership capacity, wouldn't they had remained with the LSM fellowship?

Terry
Terry is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 01-21-2009, 08:58 PM   #1174
UntoHim
Grateful Servant
 
Join Date: Apr 2008
Posts: 2,768
Default Re: The LCS Factor