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Old 06-05-2017, 09:10 PM   #1
Bradley
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Question Outer Darkness?

Hey guys,

So having only just recently come to grips with the fact that the ministry isn't what I thought it was and the churches are not God's unique flow on the earth, I'm confused as to what I should believe.

Is there still an outer darkness, the 1000 year 'summer school' for defeated believers?

This was one of my fears about leaving the church for a long time. It'd be nice to get clear on this matter.

Thanks
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Old 06-05-2017, 09:44 PM   #2
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Hey Bradley, when I read your post in the other thread, you mentioned that you are "in the world" - that you listen to worldly music and go to pub...my dear brother, there is nothing wrong with these acts and I personally think you are under the bondage of legalism which is common for many LC Members. For me it took also awhile to finally see the legalistic bondage I had after leaving LC. It takes time. But our God is full of grace.

I'm not sure about what you mean by "1000year of outer darkness". I do know that LC believes in a future 1000-year millienial kingdom and according to them only "the overcomers" will enter into it. But I never knew they said something like the ones who are not overcomers will be sent into darkness.

I personally am a strong amillennialist and as much as I admire Nee, his continuing partial rapture theory is also absurd to me. These however are not dividing issues but do remember that anyone who is in Christ, who partakes in Christ, is an overcomer. We all share His victory and the fear you have is absolutely not a fruit of the Spirit...!


I hope you will be set free from this fear. Legalism breeds fear and guilt but our Lord gives life and freedom.
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Old 06-05-2017, 11:22 PM   #3
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I hope you're right, Fuji!

The LC teaches that all the defeated believers, i.e. the 5 foolish virgins from Matt 25, will miss out on the millennial kingdom and will be cast out into 'outer darkness' for 1000 years where there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth.

It has always struck me as somewhat harsh, like salvation doesn't really help that much if I still have to worry about this 'damnation lite' for being a bad Christian.

When I go to the pub I'm still the nice guy I am everywhere else, right? I'd like to agree with you about that because I'm not being particularly horrible to anyone at the pub. I'm just in a certain location. I'd love to be able to just believe it's okay but the paranoia that maybe I'm just lying to myself is still there. As a result it's easier to just not think about it and not pray. That doesn't help my relationship with the Lord though.
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Old 06-06-2017, 04:35 AM   #4
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Originally Posted by Bradley View Post
Hey guys,

So having only just recently come to grips with the fact that the ministry isn't what I thought it was and the churches are not God's unique flow on the earth, I'm confused as to what I should believe.

Is there still an outer darkness, the 1000 year 'summer school' for defeated believers?

This was one of my fears about leaving the church for a long time. It'd be nice to get clear on this matter.

Thanks
Hi Bradley,

LSM has defined "defeated believers" to be all those in denominations, all those in so-called free groups, all those who leave the LC's, all those who are in LC's but not under LSM's control, all those who do not attend the FTT's, all those in the LC but don't function, etc. etc.

Did I miss anybody?

Exclusive sects like TLR thrive on fear-mongering. They peddle it like the politicians do. Unfortunately, it will take you some time for you to "purge out the old leaven." Yes, there are truths buried beneath LC teachings, but since they remain buried, they are like unsprouted seeds in legalistic soils spoiled by the toxins and pollutants of Lee's relgious system.

I encourage you to spend time getting reaquainted with Jesus and His word. Read the gospels. Build upon the relationship you had when you first met Jesus. He knows you, and He knows what you have been thru. The haunting fear of outer darkness does little to guide one's journey. I encourage you to spend time with the Lord discussing your life, both the failures and the positives. When I was passing thru a valley of the shadow of death similar to yours, I found reading slowly thru the Proverbs was helpful. Ask Him to introduce you to new friends. When you read, try to clear your mind of doctrines, and focus on the verse in front of you. Just you and Jesus and His words on the page. Inquire of Him for something new. Humble yourself to ask. Confess failures without blaming others. This is what I would call the real pray-reading, and provides the real healing of our soul.
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Old 06-06-2017, 06:12 AM   #5
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...I encourage you to spend time getting reaquainted with Jesus and His word. Read the gospels. Build upon the relationship you had when you first met Jesus. He knows you, and He knows what you have been thru. The haunting fear of outer darkness does little to guide one's journey. I encourage you to spend time with the Lord discussing your life, both the failures and the positives. When I was passing thru a valley of the shadow of death similar to yours, I found reading slowly thru the Proverbs was helpful. Ask Him to introduce you to new friends. When you read, try to clear your mind of doctrines, and focus on the verse in front of you. Just you and Jesus and His words on the page. Inquire of Him for something new. Humble yourself to ask. Confess failures without blaming others. This is what I would call the real pray-reading, and provides the real healing of our soul.
Well said, Ohio. I would add, get a new Bible...one without Lee's footnotes. I have an NIV I like to read, but for looking things up, I go to the BibleGateway website and search in the KJV because that's what I grew up reading. A wise person told me once to "read the Bible like it was a book." Just read it. That really helped!

When I left "it" I had fear also. One Bible search you might start with is the words "fear not."

Before I left, I prayed "Lord, please don't let go of me." He never has.

I also determined that I would no longer believe ANYTHING Witness Lee said. NOTHING. I believed THE BIBLE. ONLY the Bible. If Lee happened to line up with Scripture, so be it, but I don't believe it because Lee said it. I believe it because God said it.

I would encourage you not to look for a church. I know. Strange. Instead, look for God's people. Close your eyes to names on the doors, to doctrines, to teachings and organizations. However, if something doesn't sound right to you, it probably isn't. Don't ignore such a warning. We did this and got into troubls.

As you visit places, look for Christians who love Jesus and are seeking Him. Look for Christians who love one another. Keep your eyes open. If you do this...surely the church will find you.

Blessings to you Bradley and Fuji.

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Old 06-06-2017, 08:37 AM   #6
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I would add on to Nell's remarks that you should never just rely on what quickly comes to you are being simply right or being a problem. The longer you were part of the LRC, the more that you first impression will tend to align with its teachings without thinking about it. You will gravitate to its meanings for words. You will presume that the things they thought were bad really are.

If you find yourself in some regular Christian church, you will have a reaction to a choir song, or an electric guitar and drums. Or you will first think you should refrain from taking one of the broken crackers or little-bitty juice cups for communion. And you will recoil at the use of the term "communion."

None of these things are bad. None of them are spiritually deficient. But we got trained that they are. You will have a sort of withdrawal effect when someone triggers one of those things.

But while I do not put much stock in what Lee said about it, there is a reference or two to "outer darkness" in the gospels. And depending on how you read certain parables, there is a question on the simplistic "once saved always saved" doctrine. And it might be about something other than salvation, but rather related to sanctification. But it is not clear. So my tendency is say that "whoever believes," not whoever believed, "shall not perish . . . ." Not sure what that means. It just raises questions.

But I can almost assure you that the things that are touted by the LRC as the ways to avoid outer darkness, the little dark room, or whatever terminology is wanted to be put on this alternate purgatory, are not it, there is some question as to what those verses mean. Those that dismiss it entirely are following a dogma just as much as those who follow Lee's teachings.

The real issue is that no matter how you read it, the answer is in believing (not just having believed), following, and obeying. And that last one more than any other is generally panned by the LRC. They despise obedience. They reject anything that could appear to be from the flesh as if the appearance makes it so. Be moving forward. Not stagnant or in retreat.

And as for whatever those outer darkness for 1,000 years may mean, even if they are actually something like Lee taught, it is not eternity. Allow it to spur you forward. Do not let it freeze you with fear. Do not let it be the reason that you just chuck it all.
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Old 06-06-2017, 08:52 AM   #7
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Well said, Ohio. I would add, get a new Bible...one without Lee's footnotes. I have an NIV I like to read ...
Great suggestions, Nell.

I like the WEB -- World English Bible -- similar structure to what we were used to. It seems to "fit." But I have other Bibles depending on whom I am with. I have grown to love the diversity which different versions provide. I got saved reading a paraphrased version called the "Greatest is Love," so I know there is no "perfect" translation.

Leaving the LC system, especially for the FTT's, is so similar to the early disciples leaving Judaism. Read the Gospel of John again and again. Don't think these young disciples did not have fears leaving the Synagogues and being shunned by old friends and family. It was scary at times! Think about it. Judaism supposedly was God's best. They daily heard how blessed they were compared to those evil (denomi)nations. Their lives revolved around the local Synagogue. They left a highly structured legalistic system, mostly bankrupt of real love, which basically decided much of their life for them. They "love" you if you stay, but no more "love" for those who leave.

Once Jesus came along, the disciples left their little circle of family and friends, starting a new adventure. Fears and warnings and condemnations, from within and without, daily surrounded them. Oh sure there were exciting times with Jesus healing the sick and shaming the hypocrites, but often their days ahead appeared quite ominous. Change was constant, which is frightening in its own right. Many couldn't handle it. Not an easy journey. They knew something was so special about Jesus, yet opposing voices, inside and outside, were everywhere.

Little is said in the Gospels, but I believe that Jesus spent some private and personal time with each of His disciples. He was preparing them to one day walk by His Spirit, the same journey each of God's children were required to make. It was to walk by faith, to walk by what is beyond even what we can see, or feel, or hear, or know. The same walk as father Abraham and the rest of the household of faith. Hebrews 11 shows us some of those, with both the glory and the hardships they encountered. But today everyone of them, without exception, would tell us it was all worthwhile. Even the martyrs would say they wouldn't trade their lives for the world.
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Old 06-06-2017, 12:41 PM   #8
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I love Ohio's post too!

2 featured posts?
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Old 06-06-2017, 01:17 PM   #9
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One of the things you'll find, Bradley, is during this time of separation from the LC the Devil will really try to accuse you and scare you. Fear of "outer darkness" is one of the things he will use against you.

It is not that we don't need to respect that the Lord requires things of us, or may even discipline us when we are judged. It is that the LCM-specific fears should be ignored and you should limit your concern to whether you are obeying the basic commandments to Christians. Are you loving, forgiving, honest, fair? Do you seek to live to God's glory?

Whether you attend the LC meetings, or are in "the Recovery" or read Witness Lee's ministry are not part of that deal. So don't worry about those.

So there is a balance. Yes, God expects us to live obedient lives, but no he doesn't expect us to live them out in Witness Lee's movement or according to Lee's proprietary vision.

God loves you. Find a simple, straightforward, non-weird church that does not try to control you. Keep it simple and stay positive.

My favorite Bible right now is the Easy-to-Read Version (ERV). It's written with a very limited vocabulary, I think about a fifth-grade level. It's great for kids, but I think it does a great job of conveying the essential meaning with minimal confusion. I use it for my daily reading.
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Old 06-06-2017, 04:33 PM   #10
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Many Christians believe in hell for eternity for defeated Christians (they interpret outer darkness as hell not as literal darkness)..consider the 1000 year idea as a blessing. Its purpose is not punishment but training. Its a blessing that God puts us through training not hellfire.

But if Lee is wrong and outer darkness means eternal damnation then there is a lot more to worry.
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Old 06-06-2017, 06:08 PM   #11
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If Lee is wrong...
This was one of the appeals about the recovery, having a solid interpretation of scripture that we all agree on so you can be confident that's what it means. Now its like I'm on my own again.

I suppose thats for the best because I have to actually study the word carefully, instead of just taking someone's word for it!
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Old 06-06-2017, 08:39 PM   #12
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This was one of the appeals about the recovery, having a solid interpretation of scripture that we all agree on so you can be confident that's what it means. Now its like I'm on my own again.

I suppose thats for the best because I have to actually study the word carefully, instead of just taking someone's word for it!
The idea of Lee having a solid interpretation of scripture is just a myth. They may say Lee was using the Bible to interpret the Bible. But if you dig deep enough, you will find it is not the case.

Anyway, back to discussion on outer darkness. Evangelical said most Christians believe the idea of hell for defeated Christians. But I believe more are into "once saved, always saved". The outer darkness idea is not a gernerally accepted view and could be an effort trying to balance between grace and judgement, God's love and righteousness.

Personally, I am inclined more to the view that Christians can fall from grace or leave their faith (or may be they think they believe in God but are actually not). And this will have consequences. Otherwise, a large part of the NT epistles would be unnecessary because those chapters were to teach the believers what not to do.

May be the more important question to ask is whether we truly want to live a life that is pleasing to God and are committed to seek and act in this direction, trusting He will lead us along the path and will judge us appropriately in the end.
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Old 06-07-2017, 12:27 AM   #13
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The idea of Lee having a solid interpretation of scripture is just a myth.
Yes I know this, I was merely saying that the false sense of security thinking that you know the correct interpretation was nice, comfortable. But now I have no such security - because I realise Lee's faults.

I'm more of the 'can't lose salvation' camp also. You can lose fellowship with the Lord and His good pleasure, but even if you're a naughty son who needs discipline, you're still family.
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Old 06-07-2017, 02:45 AM   #14
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. . . even if you're a naughty son who needs discipline, you're still family.
The failure of the gospel of Lee was that it made us introspective & more subjective than we already were. It became the 'gospel of me'. We'd ask ourselves, "Am I going to make it", i.e. achieve the 'kingdom reward' and avoid the 1,ooo-year 'outer darkness'. I believe this is just a house of mirrors. The more we'd look at ourselves, and measure ourselves, and consider ourselves, the more dis-oriented we'd become.

The gospel, the Bible, is about one lonely little man. One pious Jew. His family abandoned him. His disciples fled - the shepherd was struck and the sheep scattered. Those who remained jeered at him, "He trusted in God; let Him (the Father) save him (the Christ) now."

Christ lost everything. But as the scripture says, he trusted in God, and endured to the end; never losing his faith, his hope, or his love. It is his faith that now wells up within us, his hope and his love. It is his holy spirit that now gives us life and propels us forward to the prize of the high calling.

Any way I babble too much. As you can see it's a bad habit with me.
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Old 06-07-2017, 02:53 AM   #15
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It may interest some, that Luther believed in purgatory, throughout the Reformation.

In Defense and Explanation on All the Articles (1521), Luther wrote:

The existence of a purgatory I have never denied. I still hold that it exists, as I have written and admitted many times, though I have found no way of proving it incontrovertibly from Scripture or reason. I find in Scripture that Christ, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Job, David, Hezekiah, and some others tasted hell in this life. This I think was purgatory... in short, I myself have come to the conclusion that there is a purgatory, but I cannot force anybody else to come to the same result.
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Old 06-07-2017, 06:48 AM   #16
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Anyway, back to discussion on outer darkness. Evangelical said most Christians believe the idea of hell for defeated Christians. But I believe more are into "once saved, always saved". The outer darkness idea is not a gernerally accepted view and could be an effort trying to balance between grace and judgement, God's love and righteousness.
The scripture provides much justification for purging / outer darkness / purgatory whatever you may call it. This does not mean we will perish, and it does not mean we will be judged for our sin. Rather the judgment seat of Christ (before the Millennium in contrast with the judgment of sinners afterwards) will reward or punish us based on our works.
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Old 06-07-2017, 07:50 AM   #17
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The scripture provides much justification for purging / outer darkness / purgatory whatever you may call it. This does not mean we will perish, and it does not mean we will be judged for our sin. Rather the judgment seat of Christ (before the Millennium in contrast with the judgment of sinners afterwards) will reward or punish us based on our works.
I understand the justification of the outer darkness. Just that I couldn't find much information on what will happen afterwards. Will those being punished during the Millennium be restored to glory with the other believers?

It is easier to find verses saying it would be worse if believers turn their backs on Christ, for example,

2Pe 2:20 If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and are overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning.
2Pe 2:21 It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them.
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Old 06-07-2017, 08:38 AM   #18
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I understand the justification of the outer darkness. Just that I couldn't find much information on what will happen afterwards. Will those being punished during the Millennium be restored to glory with the other believers?

It is easier to find verses saying it would be worse if believers turn their backs on Christ, for example,

2Pe 2:20 If they have escaped the corruption of the world by knowing our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ and are again entangled in it and are overcome, they are worse off at the end than they were at the beginning.
2Pe 2:21 It would have been better for them not to have known the way of righteousness, than to have known it and then to turn their backs on the sacred command that was passed on to them.
We are all responsible for what we know and how much we have been given. Those ones in these verses may have been believers, even ministers and teachers, born of the Spirit, and if so they will not perish for eternity. They also may be severely chastened by the Lord, however, especially for the damage they have caused to others. And this is the difficulty we face understanding scripture. Salvation in the Bible is far more complex than merely going to heaven or hell. Can one can "lose" his salvation temporarily due to His discipline and thus lose blessings, promises, rewards, and joy while being disciplined? I believe some will be rewarded for some of their works, yet still be disciplined "yet so as thru fire."

My personal feeling is that how much time and how severely we are disciplined depends on us. God's many children are an incredibly diverse lot, from those like Paul who were assured of promised rewards to some naughty prodigals who want nothing to do with God. There is no way to know the future of each one individually, since each will be treated separately by his/her own Master, but I believe in the end, in eternity, all believers will enter into glory with Him. After all is said and done, I believe we all will confess that our Lord is true, He is fair, and how irreproachable and inscrutable are His judgments, for out of Him and through Him, and to Him are all things, to Him be the glory forever, Amen!
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Old 06-07-2017, 09:03 AM   #19
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It may interest some, that Luther believed in purgatory, throughout the Reformation.

In Defense and Explanation on All the Articles (1521), Luther wrote:

The existence of a purgatory I have never denied. I still hold that it exists, as I have written and admitted many times, though I have found no way of proving it incontrovertibly from Scripture or reason. I find in Scripture that Christ, Abraham, Jacob, Moses, Job, David, Hezekiah, and some others tasted hell in this life. This I think was purgatory... in short, I myself have come to the conclusion that there is a purgatory, but I cannot force anybody else to come to the same result.

Please restrict your comments on this topic to Outer Darkness. If you wish to discuss purgatory, please do so by starting another thread.

Thank you--
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Old 06-07-2017, 09:23 AM   #20
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We are all responsible for what we know and how much we have been given. Those ones in these verses may have been believers, even ministers and teachers, born of the Spirit, and if so they will not perish for eternity. They also may be severely chastened by the Lord, however, especially for the damage they have caused to others. And this is the difficulty we face understanding scripture. Salvation in the Bible is far more complex than merely going to heaven or hell. Can one can "lose" his salvation temporarily due to His discipline and thus lose blessings, promises, rewards, and joy while being disciplined? I believe some will be rewarded for some of their works, yet still be disciplined "yet so as thru fire."

My personal feeling is that how much time and how severely we are disciplined depends on us. God's many children are an incredibly diverse lot, from those like Paul who were assured of promised rewards to some naughty prodigals who want nothing to do with God. There is no way to know the future of each one individually, since each will be treated separately by his/her own Master, but I believe in the end, in eternity, all believers will enter into glory with Him. After all is said and done, I believe we all will confess that our Lord is true, He is fair, and how irreproachable and inscrutable are His judgments, for out of Him and through Him, and to Him are all things, to Him be the glory forever, Amen!
Again, Ohio. Well said.

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Old 06-07-2017, 09:33 AM   #21
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It may interest some, that Luther believed in purgatory, throughout the Reformation.
It may interest you that Luther's goal was not to leave the RCC, but to reform it (and only a little, at that). And he did not think that RCC members were not Christian, but only that they failed to have surety about it.

And it may further interest you that the Lutheran church, at least in Luther's time, was only removed from the RCC by lack of association and a very few small doctrinal differences. Pretty much the same as the RCC in almost every way. Not much different from what the Anglicans did.
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Old 06-07-2017, 10:52 AM   #22
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Purgatory is the RCC equivalent of outer darkness. Purgatory also has scriptural basis in I Cor 3.13-15:
Quote:
their work will be shown for what it is, because the Day will bring it to light. It will be revealed with fire, and the fire will test the quality of each person’s work. If what has been built survives, the builder will receive a reward. If it is burned up, the builder will suffer loss but yet will be saved—even though only as one escaping through the flames.
"Saved yet thru fire" defines purgatory. Of course, I have studied enough of RCC history to know how they used this verse and others to plunge the western world into the dark ages, robbing nations of all their wealth. But still, the verse stands, and it speaks to Christians, and not unbelievers.
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Old 06-07-2017, 03:08 PM   #23
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Anyway, back to discussion on outer darkness. Evangelical said most Christians believe the idea of hell for defeated Christians. But I believe more are into "once saved, always saved". The outer darkness idea is not a gernerally accepted view and could be an effort trying to balance between grace and judgement, God's love and righteousness.

Personally, I am inclined more to the view that Christians can fall from grace or leave their faith (or may be they think they believe in God but are actually not). And this will have consequences. Otherwise, a large part of the NT epistles would be unnecessary because those chapters were to teach the believers what not to do
When I was in LC, in some conferences/ training that I went, there was some continuous mocking of Calvinism (even though I'm not a fan of it I don't like their mocking tone) and it's funny because at the same time many of them hold and insist the belief of"once saved always saved" and even more so double predestination, which is the common belief of many calvinists today.

I believe one reason of the epistles constantly telling believers what not do to is to encourage us not to fall back and also, to know that these are the fruits that are only capable to be produced as a result of living by the Spirit, since we all , despite being saved, often still live in the flesh.

I agree greatly that our primary job is to ask the Lord to give us a pure heart that wants to please Him and Him only, now we can only see dimly. When we desire Him only everything will come naturally and we shouldn't be suffering from condemnation as that described by brother Bradley. I hope we go on to use this forum to build each other up and restore one another in His love
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Old 06-07-2017, 03:45 PM   #24
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...many of them hold and insist the belief of 'once saved always saved'
Yeah WL teaches it in the book 'the Joy, Assurance and Security of Salvation'.

The 'constant mocking' you mention - I'm guilty of that too. There's a real culture of ridiculing other Christians in 'Babylon', and everyone does it in the LC so its easy to slip into. Not that that's an excuse. I knew in doctrine that we were Laodicea and not Philadelphia but now its really a deep truth for me.
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Old 06-07-2017, 03:45 PM   #25
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Please restrict your comments on this topic to Outer Darkness. If you wish to discuss purgatory, please do so by starting another thread.

Thank you--
Nell
Its basically the same thing Nell. As Ohio has indicated. So I believe I am on topic.

If we want to include Catholics as Christians..then most Christians believe in some sort of intermediate between earth and heaven. Osas believers are a minority when considering that the largest denominations..catholic ortgodox anglican reject it.
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Old 06-07-2017, 03:49 PM   #26
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We are all responsible for what we know and how much we have been given. Those ones in these verses may have been believers, even ministers and teachers, born of the Spirit, and if so they will not perish for eternity. They also may be severely chastened by the Lord, however, especially for the damage they have caused to others. And this is the difficulty we face understanding scripture. Salvation in the Bible is far more complex than merely going to heaven or hell. Can one can "lose" his salvation temporarily due to His discipline and thus lose blessings, promises, rewards, and joy while being disciplined? I believe some will be rewarded for some of their works, yet still be disciplined "yet so as thru fire."

My personal feeling is that how much time and how severely we are disciplined depends on us. God's many children are an incredibly diverse lot, from those like Paul who were assured of promised rewards to some naughty prodigals who want nothing to do with God. There is no way to know the future of each one individually, since each will be treated separately by his/her own Master, but I believe in the end, in eternity, all believers will enter into glory with Him. After all is said and done, I believe we all will confess that our Lord is true, He is fair, and how irreproachable and inscrutable are His judgments, for out of Him and through Him, and to Him are all things, to Him be the glory forever, Amen!

A classical Lee interpretation...no i should not say that..its not his view its the bibles. Good stuff. Not just Lee..many non osas people believe in Gods chastisement in the next life.
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Old 06-07-2017, 04:49 PM   #27
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A classical Lee interpretation...no i should not say that..its not his view its the bibles. Good stuff. Not just Lee..many non osas people believe in Gods chastisement in the next life.
Stolen from Robert Govett and David Panton.

Many thanks to brother Lewis Schoettle Publishing.
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Old 06-08-2017, 05:48 AM   #28
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A classical Lee interpretation...no i should not say that..its not his view its the bibles. Good stuff. Not just Lee..many non osas people believe in Gods chastisement in the next life.
If we are saved by faith through His grace, then what do you say about those who apparently were born again in their youth, yet spent their life rejecting faith, refusing to believe in the cross of Christ, and rebutting the words of scripture? One notable false teacher in academia comes to mind. How can God now justify them when they refuse to believe?
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Old 06-08-2017, 04:41 PM   #29
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If we are saved by faith through His grace, then what do you say about those who apparently were born again in their youth, yet spent their life rejecting faith, refusing to believe in the cross of Christ, and rebutting the words of scripture? One notable false teacher in academia comes to mind. How can God now justify them when they refuse to believe?
Osas is a false doctrine i believe. If Judas Iscariot a believer and disciple went to hell. Then any believer can.

What does not make sense to me is if Lee intended the outer darkness doctrine to keep people in the recovery out of fear..then why not just reject osas altogether or say that outer darkness is hell. Why not just say that if you leave the revovery you will go to hell. This suggests to me the doctrine was never designed to keep people in the recovery out of fear.
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Old 06-08-2017, 06:23 PM   #30
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Osas is a false doctrine i believe. If Judas Iscariot a believer and disciple went to hell. Then any believer can.

What does not make sense to me is if Lee intended the outer darkness doctrine to keep people in the recovery out of fear..then why not just reject osas altogether or say that outer darkness is hell. Why not just say that if you leave the revovery you will go to hell. This suggests to me the doctrine was never designed to keep people in the recovery out of fear.
I don't think Lee rejected osas. He did not use outer darkness to keep people in the recovery out of fear. He used "overcomer" to lure people into the recovery out of self-righteousness. Fearing God was probably not his concern given he knew God's economy so well and was acting so diligently to help complete God's economy.
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Old 06-08-2017, 07:36 PM   #31
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I don't think Lee rejected osas. He did not use outer darkness to keep people in the recovery out of fear. He used "overcomer" to lure people into the recovery out of self-righteousness. Fearing God was probably not his concern given he knew God's economy so well and was acting so diligently to help complete God's economy.
Is Christ asking us to be self-righteous here?:
Revelation 3:21 "To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne"
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Old 06-08-2017, 07:53 PM   #32
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Is Christ asking us to be self-righteous here?:
Revelation 3:21 "To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me on My throne, as I also overcame and sat down with My Father on His throne"
The point is, God is the only judge to deteremine who are the overcomers.

I often heard brothers and sisters saying they want to be an overcomers as if this is the driving force on how they act. I cannot say this is totally wrong but they may be missing the target.

I strongly believe the true overcomers are those who don't care about whether they themselves would be an overcomer. They simply love and fear God, and care more about how to humbly serve Him and His people.
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Old 06-08-2017, 08:02 PM   #33
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The point is, God is the only judge to deteremine who are the overcomers.

I often heard brothers and sisters saying they want to be an overcomers as if this is the driving force on how they act. I cannot say this is totally wrong but they may be missing the target.

I strongly believe the true overcomers are those who don't care about whether they themselves would be an overcomer. They simply love and fear God, and care more about how to humbly serve Him and His people.
The way to be an overcomer is to not try?
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Old 06-08-2017, 08:13 PM   #34
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The way to be an overcomer is to not try?
Sorry if I didn't express it simple enough for you to understand.

We don't try to be an overcomer. We try to please God.
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Old 06-08-2017, 08:29 PM   #35
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Sorry if I didn't express it simple enough for you to understand.

We don't try to be an overcomer. We try to please God.
We try to please God by being an overcomer.

We please God by
a) not trying to be an overcomer? or
b) trying to be an overcomer?
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Old 06-08-2017, 08:42 PM   #36
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We try to please God by being an overcomer.

We please God by
a) not trying to be an overcomer? or
b) trying to be an overcomer?
Do you purposely try to misunderstand every other poster?
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Old 06-08-2017, 09:02 PM   #37
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The point is, God is the only judge to deteremine who are the overcomers.

I often heard brothers and sisters saying they want to be an overcomers as if this is the driving force on how they act. I cannot say this is totally wrong but they may be missing the target.

I strongly believe the true overcomers are those who don't care about whether they themselves would be an overcomer. They simply love and fear God, and care more about how to humbly serve Him and His people.
i absolutely agree with you. I think we Christians need to STOP putting ourselves in place of God to decide who is "in" the church and who is "not. Similarly, we need to stop taking His place to judge who is an "overcomer" and who is not. In my own opinion there are two sides, everyone who has been saved has overcome already. But we also need to partake of His victory continuously. It's like we have been saved already but still need to "work out" our salvation daily.I believe this view doesn't contradict with Lee's and Nee's however I absolutely disagree with Lee's outer darkness thingy.

That's how I felt too when I was in LC. I was under heavy loads of legalism I didn't know. I constantly suffer from questioning myself ,"am I 'out'? Or am I 'in'" and often times I Feel like I need to squeeze harder to be in the LC circle. My journey in LC began with growing in the Spirit into trying hard with my effort to please the LC system and people.

When we solely focus on Christ, everything will come. There will be fruit bearing. There is no trying to overcome (I'm talking about trying in terms of human effort). Of course we need to cooperate with Him (in LC language) and follow His voice, to keep in step with the Spirit , but it is a result springing from within as a result of us loving and desiring the Lord. Even Nee said so. It's an exchanged life. When we allow Christ to live in us, He will rule and reign and He will do it through us. In Nee's words, victory is obtained, not attained.
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Old 06-08-2017, 09:23 PM   #38
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We try to please God by being an overcomer.

We please God by
a) not trying to be an overcomer? or
b) trying to be an overcomer?
I assumie you are trying to sort things out using logic.

Let me put it this way, trying to be an overcomer is more about "me", trying to please God is more about "Him".

So will you choose (a) or (b)?
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Old 06-08-2017, 09:36 PM   #39
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I assumie you are trying to sort things out using logic.

Let me put it this way, trying to be an overcomer is more about "me", trying to please God is more about "Him".

So will you choose (a) or (b)?
It reminds me of Lee's teaching, that all we need to do is "eat the Lord" , everything else will be taken care of.
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Old 06-08-2017, 10:01 PM   #40
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It reminds me of Lee's teaching, that all we need to do is "eat the Lord" , everything else will be taken care of.
No, this is different.

I was just saying we should set the target right. I didn't say we don't need to do anything.
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Old 06-08-2017, 10:18 PM   #41
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Do you purposely try to misunderstand every other poster?
I doubt that Evangelical misunderstands. He knows exactly what he's doing. Why do I say this? In his own words:

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This is hilarious given what you wrote a few posts ago and contains more "crapola" than anyone else has written. Straw-man's are part and parcel of this sort of discussion - grow up and get over it. I'm not asking for respect, I'm questioning ... .
This post was written to me awhile back on another thread. Click on the little blue arrow for more context. If you find yourself going round and round in circles with him, like the last few "E-posts", just remember that according to Evangelical, that's "part and parcel of this sort of discussion", and you should "grow up." (Mutual respect is not important to him.)

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Old 06-08-2017, 10:38 PM   #42
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I doubt that Evangelical misunderstands. He knows exactly what he's doing. Why do I say this? In his own words:



This post was written to me. Follow the link for more context. If you find yourself chasing your tail, like the last few "E-posts", just remember that according to Evangelical, that's "part and parcel of this sort of discussion", and you should "grow up." (Mutual respect is not important to him.)

Nell
The link is here:

http://localchurchdiscussions.com/vB...ead.php?t=5765

Put simply, I asked about why people were rejecting the "stock standard theological resources" I was using in that discussion to show they are not so different from Lee's interpretation of the Trinity.

Nell, replied in post #158 by saying most of my posts are crapola (his word, not mine). He seemed to misunderstand that I was not asking for respect, but wondering why not only Lee is rejected but also solid theological resources.

Strawman's on both sides are part and parcel of discussion on internet forums. It's a common debate tactic, and also used in politics, sport and many other arenas. That's being pragmatic, not disrespectful or intentional.
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Old 06-08-2017, 10:49 PM   #43
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No, this is different.

I was just saying we should set the target right. I didn't say we don't need to do anything.
Then your view is no doubt summarized by this absurd position you hold:

God wants us to be an overcomer but it's wrong to try to be one.
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Old 06-08-2017, 11:37 PM   #44
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Then your view is no doubt summarized by this absurd position you hold:

God wants us to be an overcomer but it's wrong to try to be one.
Didn't I say "I cannot say this is totally wrong" back in post #32?
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Old 06-09-2017, 02:06 AM   #45
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I doubt that Evangelical misunderstands. He knows exactly what he's doing. Why do I say this? In his own words:



This post was written to me awhile back on another thread. Click on the little blue arrow for more context. If you find yourself going round and round in circles with him, like the last few "E-posts", just remember that according to Evangelical, that's "part and parcel of this sort of discussion", and you should "grow up." (Mutual respect is not important to him.)

Nell
Nell,

Did you see EvanJelly's latest cop-out -- "all he needs to do is eat the Lord"?

Where have we heard that before?

And to show how carefully he pays attention, Jelly calls you a "he."
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Old 06-09-2017, 07:37 AM   #46
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Nell,

Did you see EvanJelly's latest cop-out -- "all he needs to do is eat the Lord"?

Where have we heard that before?

And to show how carefully he pays attention, Jelly calls you a "he."
Ohio,

I noticed. It looks to me like all that "eating" would have produced more fruit...well I guess it has, just not the kind of fruit you want.

It also seems to me that, as believers, on a Christian forum, (I've said this before) Evangelical should understand that we try to hold to a higher standard than your common Internet food-fight. "Strawman" arguments exist for one reason...OK two reasons...deceit and deflection. I believe most of the forum members post their position on a matter with honesty and integrity without subterfuge. Most believe that "strawman" arguments are not acceptable. Not to mention a waste of time and storage space on a server. The ol' "everybody does it...part and parcel" excuse is pathetic. It never worked on my parents.

Yeah...there was a point when E-man seemed to understand that I am a woman...like on the Woman of Chayil thread maybe??? Duh. As he said in his own words...he's not looking for respect...and with that attitude he's not likely to show much toward others...hence the strawman thing.

Hopefully this will help new members get some perspective on ... things.

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Old 06-09-2017, 08:12 AM   #47
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Ohio,

I noticed. It looks to me like all that "eating" would have produced more fruit...well I guess it has, just not the kind of fruit you want.

It also seems to me that, as believers, on a Christian forum, (I've said this before) Evangelical should understand that we try to hold to a higher standard than your common Internet food-fight. "Strawman" arguments exist for one reason...OK two reasons...deceit and deflection. I believe most of the forum members post their position on a matter with honesty and integrity without subterfuge. Most believe that "strawman" arguments are not acceptable. Not to mention a waste of time and storage space on a server. The ol' "everybody does it...part and parcel" excuse is pathetic. It never worked on my parents.

Yeah...there was a point when E-man seemed to understand that I am a woman...like on the Woman of Chayil thread maybe??? Duh. As he said in his own words...he's not looking for respect...and with that attitude he's not likely to show much toward others...hence the strawman thing.

Hopefully this will help new members get some perspective on ... things.

Nell
Nell, he is not looking for respect? Says a bunch about him.

Without respect, there is no humanity, no civilization, no families, no marriage, no church, no nothing. Without respect, we merely begin with ad hominems, and then rapidly deteriorate. I've seen many on the internet, even a few here, that appeared to have no respect for others.

My Mom used to preach that I don't have to like everyone all the time, but I have to respect everyone all the time. Having nine kids, she was forced to do lots of preaching.
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Old 06-09-2017, 08:19 AM   #48
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He is not looking for respect?

There is no humanity, no civilization, no families, no church, no nothing, without respect. Without respect we merely begin with ad hominems, and then rapidly deteriorate.

My Mom used to preach that I don't have to like everyone all the time, but I have to respect everyone all the time. Having nine kids, she was forced to do lots of preaching.
Yup, Ohio. That's what he said. I guess that explains the ad hominems and deterioration. He has tried to explain, re-word, reshape, etc., but no apology, no repentance and most of all, no change in behavior.

Catherine Marshall said: "The first thing to take place in communication is respect. Without respect, communication does not take place." I think she's right.

Nell

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This is hilarious given what you wrote a few posts ago and contains more "crapola" than anyone else has written. Straw-man's are part and parcel of this sort of discussion - grow up and get over it. I'm not asking for respect, I'm questioning ... .
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Old 06-09-2017, 03:31 PM   #49
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Hopefully this will help new members get some perspective on ... things.
Nell, Thanks. He is indeed quite different from the other brothers and sisters I know in the LC.
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Old 06-10-2017, 02:42 AM   #50
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Fuji )"I absolutely disagree with Lee's outer darkness thingy"

Ok, but what are you for?

The outer darkness is....?

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Old 06-10-2017, 04:06 AM   #51
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Fuji )"I absolutely disagree with Lee's outer darkness thingy"

Ok, but what are you for?

The outer darkness is....?

Drake
Dear Brother Drake,

Thanks for your question. I said earlier in the second post of this thread (way before it went off topic) that I don't believe there is a future millennial kingdom( I believe there are only two age, and we are waiting for the age to come, and the 1000 year now as in Rev 20 - we are experiencing now as we are kings and priests, Satan is bound because Christ is building His church now and the gate of Hades has no way to prevail it, yes he will be realease one last time yet it's said that he is immediately defeated into second death and has no victory) BUT as I said this is just my view, and who am I ? So this is NOT a dividing issue, and I don't at all like to debate. I'm for CHRIST and I may be wrong.

*BUT* even if there is a millennial kingdom coming soon, I don't believe in Lee's idea of "outer darkness", as described by Bradley and others who have posted here (which is the original topic here), I believe all who are in Christ will enter into kingdom as I believe everyone who partakes of Christ is an overcomer and no one today should be living in fear and condemnation thinking that they have not obtained victory (as I said in Nee's words, victory is not attained by us but obtained already in and through Christ).

If I remember correctly, "outer darkness" in the Bible is for "godless men" and it contrasts with the wedding feast of the Lamb. I don't know much of the nature of it (or in other's words, the nature of hell), but outer darkness signifies a separation from God, which was the first sin of Adam and Eve - wanting to live independently from God (Nee and Lee is heavy on this), in CS Lewis's words: There are only two kinds of people in the end: those who say to God, "Thy will be done," and those to whom God says, in the end, "Thy will be done." All that are in Hell, choose it. Without that self-choice there could be no Hell. No soul that seriously and constantly desires joy will ever miss it. Those who seek find. Those who knock it is opened... I'm aware that Lewis believes in purgatory but that's a whole different topic. But yes, I lean closer to believing that the "outer darkness" is what some call hell because it's a separation from God. And then perhaps some will argue" but hell is the lake of fire and there is light....so it's not darkness..." but I don't believe we should take all these "literally" --- God throughout the Bible is always using various images, symbols to point to the same thing from different angles so that our finite mind can perhaps get a step closer to His infinite mind. It's like, how can He be a lamb but at the same time a lion. But paradox points us to Him!

And so it seems to me Lee's outer darkness contradicts directly to his constant emphasis of once saved always saved. At least during the past years I was in LC, this doctrine was taught all the time I think that's why in LC, with this contradiction, some like Bradley have doubts about their victory or even salvation in Christ. You may not have experienced it but it's not uncommon with former LC members or my current LC friend to suffer from this doubt. It's a heavy burden but His burden is light. He's the author and finisher of faith. My God is not a God that breeds guilt. Godly grief, yes, but not guilt. God doesn't breed a "second-class" Christian. He gives life and peace. And I believe we are all equal before the Lord in terms of standing.

Of course I can be wrong as always but like you asked what am I for? I'm for Christ and who am I? Who can give counsel to the One who knows all things? I hope all I do is to fix my eyes on Him and that I'll continue to learn from you all. I'd rather let it go than to debate. And like a little brother said earlier, I don't think it's our job to take seat of judgment to decide who is an overcomer or who is not. Thanks so much for reading.

There's also an older thread that was about this topic: http://localchurchdiscussions.com/vB...ead.php?t=5079
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Old 06-10-2017, 03:54 PM   #52
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Nell, Thanks. He is indeed quite different from the other brothers and sisters I know in the LC.
You are quite different as well from other brothers and sisters I know in the LC. Most in the LC are not in the Recovery with ulterior motives, as you are. You'd be a prime candidate for the outer darkness I'm sure.
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Old 06-10-2017, 03:57 PM   #53
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Nell, he is not looking for respect? Says a bunch about him.

Without respect, there is no humanity, no civilization, no families, no marriage, no church, no nothing. Without respect, we merely begin with ad hominems, and then rapidly deteriorate. I've seen many on the internet, even a few here, that appeared to have no respect for others.

My Mom used to preach that I don't have to like everyone all the time, but I have to respect everyone all the time. Having nine kids, she was forced to do lots of preaching.
Off topic!. Moderator!
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Old 06-10-2017, 03:58 PM   #54
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Yup, Ohio. That's what he said. I guess that explains the ad hominems and deterioration. He has tried to explain, re-word, reshape, etc., but no apology, no repentance and most of all, no change in behavior.

Catherine Marshall said: "The first thing to take place in communication is respect. Without respect, communication does not take place." I think she's right.

Nell
Yes we've seen no apology or change in behavior from you either, potty mouth Nell. I know you've been stewing over the threads from months ago where I totally destroyed that poorly written Google-book with arguments from NT Greek scholars, and you just took this opportunity to let all that hatred and anger out!
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Old 06-10-2017, 06:20 PM   #55
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Default Re: Outer Darkness?

TO Evangelical and All Forum Members:

I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely apologize to Evangelical for referring to some of his posts as "crapola". I regret this and recognize that it was conduct unbecoming. I ask for your forgiveness and hope you can forgive me for this mischaracterization of some your contributions to this Forum.

Blessings to you all, and peace--

Nell
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Old 06-10-2017, 07:17 PM   #56
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You are quite different as well from other brothers and sisters I know in the LC. Most in the LC are not in the Recovery with ulterior motives, as you are. You'd be a prime candidate for the outer darkness I'm sure.
Evangelical, Thanks. Coming from you, it sounds almost like a blessing.

Your choice of words is quite different from the people I know in the LC. Are you truly a member of the LC?
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Old 06-10-2017, 10:05 PM   #57
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TO Evangelical and All Forum Members:

I would like to take this opportunity to sincerely apologize to Evangelical for referring to some of his posts as "crapola". I regret this and recognize that it was conduct unbecoming. I ask for your forgiveness and hope you can forgive me for this mischaracterization of some your contributions to this Forum.

Blessings to you all, and peace--

Nell
Hi Nell and others,

I would also like to apologize for arguing and counter-arguing with you in a manner which is not appropriate for this forum. I hope you will forgive me for any distress and frustration my posts have caused. I have seriously considered my words over the past days and found them to be below standard. For that I should also thank you for pointing out the shortcomings in my approach and manner.

Sincerely,

Evangelical
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Old 06-11-2017, 03:58 PM   #58
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Evangelical, Thanks. Coming from you, it sounds almost like a blessing.

Your choice of words is quite different from the people I know in the LC. Are you truly a member of the LC?
Hi A little brother,

No I am not a member of the LC, but a member of the Body of Christ in the local church of the locality. Your choice of words as "member of LC" suggests to me you are not part of the Recovery - LC people do not speak like that or consider the LC to be a denomination. They do not consider themselves a capital L C Local Church, and they don't consider themselves a "member of the LC" as you put it. They would say "we are not of the Local Church but are just the church in the locality". This to me raises suspicions that you are pretending to be in the "LC" with some ulterior motive.

I can see why someone might pretend to be part of the LC in order to sympathize and help LC members. But someone in my position on this forum who supports the "LC" when 99% of people on this forum don't, why would I pretend to be in it?
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Old 06-11-2017, 04:12 PM   #59
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Fuji) "Dear Brother Drake,

Thanks for your question. I said earlier in the second post of this thread (way before it went off topic) that I don't believe there is a future millennial kingdom( I believe there are only two age, and we are waiting for the age to come, and the 1000 year now as in Rev 20 - we are experiencing now as we are kings and priests, Satan is bound because Christ is building His church now and the gate of Hades has no way to prevail it, yes he will be realease one last time yet it's said that he is immediately defeated into second death and has no victory) BUT as I said this is just my view, and who am I ? So this is NOT a dividing issue, and I don't at all like to debate. I'm for CHRIST and I may be wrong. "

HI Fuji,

Thanks for your comprehensive reply. I will address each of your points. But last things first.

This is a discussion forum not a debate forum. 95% of the content would not pass as true debate, nor would the cadence of the interaction. There are some exceptions such as the interaction between Evangelical and OBW that resemble a true debate where points are addressed, deconstructed, and then counterpoint's are made. But even those breakdown. Still, a discussion forum like this one, allows for a more fluid train of thought. So let's have a discussion and maybe a little debate. Okay?

So now, the first thing you mentioned which I find puzzling is that Satan is bound at this time. This does not appear to be based in reality or supported by scripture. When I say not based in reality I mean that we can see death, destruction, disease, and all the effects of sin and depravity of the falls. Secondly, there's no scriptural evidence that Satan is not the ruler of this world, and this world, the cosmos, is very much under his rule and reign. Even the Lord Jesus makes the distinction when he says that we are in the world but not of the world. Also, he charges us not to love the world. Clearly, the Lord is building his church in the midst of the corrupted world of Satan. And that is why the church is the called out assembly.

Could you please address those two difficulties by explaining the obvious situation of the world we live in and by providing a scriptural justification for your view that Satan is currently bound and out of commission?

Thanks,
Drake
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Old 06-11-2017, 04:12 PM   #60
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Hi A little brother,

No I am not a member of the LC, but a member of the Body of Christ in the local church of the locality. Your choice of words as "member of LC" suggests to me you are not part of the Recovery - LC people do not speak like that or consider the LC to be a denomination. They do not consider themselves a capital L C Local Church, and they don't consider themselves a "member of the LC" as you put it. They would say "we are not of the Local Church but are just the church in the locality". This to me raises suspicions that you are pretending to be in the "LC" with some ulterior motive.
Evangelical, what is "the Recovery," and how does one join?
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Old 06-11-2017, 04:16 PM   #61
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Evangelical, what is "the Recovery," and how does one join?
Koinonia,

Can you post your question to Evangelical into an appropriate or new thread?

I'm not objecting to sidebar conversations which are a normal part of any human discussion but your question appears like an entirely different subject.

I hope we can get the conversation on this thread focused on the Outer Darkness subject.

Thanks,
Drake
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Old 06-11-2017, 07:58 PM   #62
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No I am not a member of the LC, but a member of the Body of Christ in the local church of the locality. Your choice of words as "member of LC" suggests to me you are not part of the Recovery - LC people do not speak like that or consider the LC to be a denomination. They do not consider themselves a capital L C Local Church, and they don't consider themselves a "member of the LC" as you put it. They would say "we are not of the Local Church but are just the church in the locality". This to me raises suspicions that you are pretending to be in the "LC" with some ulterior motive.
I think you know exactly what my question was and I assume your answer was yes. Let me know if I were wrong. Sorry that I sometimes had problem understanding your posts. A simple "Yes" or "No" will surely make it easier for everybody.

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I can see why someone might pretend to be part of the LC in order to sympathize and help LC members. But someone in my position on this forum who supports the "LC" when 99% of people on this forum don't, why would I pretend to be in it?
Why would I know the reason that you might pretend? I explained my reason well when I asked the question on whether you are a member of the LC (Sorry, I still prefer to use this simpler form instead of the lengthy words of yours). It was that the way you behaved and the words you chose didn't seem to match the general behavioral standards of the LC people that I know.

I do not pretend to be a member of the LC. I am a member of the LC - I was baptized in the LC, I join Lord's Table meetings, I prophesy in the prophesying meetings, I join home meetings, I fellowship with LC brothers and sisters (also with others not meeting in the LC).

That doesn't mean I have to agree with all its teachings.

I do not fellowship in deceitful manner. I don't say Amen to teachings when I do not agree; I don't pray-read outlines; I don't practise "call upon the Lord's name n times"; I let others know I am studying not only LC materials but also "outside" teachings; I expressed my concerns with the "highest peak of the divine revelation";...

I am concerned that some brothers and sisters in the LC might be put to outer darkness not because they were blind, but because they say they see and consider themselves overcomers (John 9:41). And in my personal opinion, the outer darkness might not be something that ends after 1,000 years.

I don't want the LC ends up being the group of people described in Isaiah 66.

16 For with fire Jehovah will execute judgment, And with His sword, upon all flesh; And those slain by Jehovah will be many.
17 Those who sanctify and purify themselves for the gardens, Following after one in the midst, Eating swine's flesh And what is abominable and even mice, Will come to an end together, declares Jehovah.
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Old 06-11-2017, 08:02 PM   #63
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Koinonia,

Can you post your question to Evangelical into an appropriate or new thread?

I'm not objecting to sidebar conversations which are a normal part of any human discussion but your question appears like an entirely different subject.

I hope we can get the conversation on this thread focused on the Outer Darkness subject.

Thanks,
Drake
Drake, I am appropriately addressing this: Evangelical is criticizing "A little brother" for using the phrase "member of the LC," while immediately himself using the phrase "part of the Recovery."
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Old 06-11-2017, 08:22 PM   #64
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I think you know exactly what my question was and I assume your answer was yes. Let me know if I were wrong. Sorry that I sometimes had problem understanding your posts. A simple "Yes" or "No" will surely make it easier for everybody.



Why would I know the reason that you might pretend? I explained my reason well when I asked the question on whether you are a member of the LC (Sorry, I still prefer to use this simpler form instead of the lengthy words of yours). It was that the way you behaved and the words you chose didn't seem to match the general behavioral standards of the LC people that I know.

I do not pretend to be a member of the LC. I am a member of the LC - I was baptized in the LC, I join Lord's Table meetings, I prophesy in the prophesying meetings, I join home meetings, I fellowship with LC brothers and sisters (also with others not meeting in the LC).

That doesn't mean I have to agree with all its teachings.

I do not fellowship with deceit. I don't say Amen to teachings when I do not agree; I don't pray-read outlines; I don't practise "call upon the Lord's name n times"; I let others know I am studying not only LC materials but also "outside" teachings; I expressed my concerns with the "highest peak of the divine revelation";...

I am concerned that some brothers and sisters in the LC might be put to outer darkness not because they were blind, but because they say they see and consider themselves overcomers (John 9:41). And in my personal opinion, the outer darkness might not be something that ends after 1,000 years.

I don't want the LC ends up being the group of people described in Isaiah 66.

16 For with fire Jehovah will execute judgment, And with His sword, upon all flesh; And those slain by Jehovah will be many.
17 Those who sanctify and purify themselves for the gardens, Following after one in the midst, Eating swine's flesh And what is abominable and even mice, Will come to an end together, declares Jehovah.
I am a little confused because you seem to believe the LC is a denomination and treat it as one. A local church member would not normally say "I am a member of the LC" and treat it as a denomination.

The teaching of Witness Lee is clear - we are not a denomination, or a movement, we are just the church in the locality.

Everyone in the local churches that I know never refer to ourselves as the LC or Local Churches, just Christians in the locality.

You will not find Witness Lee refer to us as the "Local Churches" either.

The "Local Church", or "Local Church Movement", or LCM, is how outsiders refer to us, not insiders.

Maybe Drake can help shed light on this, but the language you use and the way you refer to the local churches is different to what I am used to. Or if that is how other members of your church refer to themselves then perhaps your local church has become like a denomination.
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Old 06-11-2017, 08:34 PM   #65
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I am a little confused because you seem to believe the LC is a denomination and treat it as one. A local church member would not normally say "I am a member of the LC".

The teaching of Witness Lee is clear - we are not a denomination, or a movement, we are just the church in the locality.

Everyone in the local churches that I know never refer to ourselves as the LC or Local Churches, just Christians in the locality.

You will not find Witness Lee refer to us as the "Local Churches" either.

The "Local Church", or "Local Church Movement", or LCM, is how outsiders refer to us, not insiders.

Let's get another opinion - Drake?
Please don't waste time on this useless argument. You know what I mean well. You don't need to speak for me. I have said it previously and I will say it again. The LC is not different from denomination.

I don't use the term "we are in the Lord's Recovery". I think this is bearing false witness.

I don't use the term "we are just the church in the locality" because other denominations are also part the church in the locaility. It is not specific to the group of people who only study Witness Lee's teachings.

Hope I have expressed my view clear enough. Please also be reminded that this thread is not about discussion of denominationalism.
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Old 06-11-2017, 08:36 PM   #66
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The teaching of Witness Lee is clear - we are not a denomination, or a movement, we are just the church in the locality.
First, who is "we"?

Next--you cannot rightfully say, "we are the church in the locality." Even WL taught that all believers in a given location constitute the church in that location. Not "we."

Lastly, you are in effect a movement and denomination because--whatever you call yourselves--you are identified (by yourselves and others) as followers of Witness Lee. Otherwise, you would not exist as a "we."
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Old 06-11-2017, 08:57 PM   #67
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First, who is "we"?

Next--you cannot rightfully say, "we are the church in the locality." Even WL taught that all believers in a given location constitute the church in that location. Not "we."

Lastly, you are in effect a movement and denomination because--whatever you call yourselves--you are identified (by yourselves and others) as followers of Witness Lee. Otherwise, you would not exist as a "we."
That is right, all believers in the locality are the church in that location.That is why we reject denominations and do not consider ourselves to be a denomination.
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Old 06-11-2017, 09:01 PM   #68
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That is right, all believers in the locality are the church in that location.That is why we reject denominations and do not consider ourselves to be a denomination.
Did you read what I wrote?
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Old 06-11-2017, 09:02 PM   #69
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Please don't waste time on this useless argument. You know what I mean well. You don't need to speak for me. I have said it previously and I will say it again. The LC is not different from denomination.

I don't use the term "we are in the Lord's Recovery". I think this is bearing false witness.

I don't use the term "we are just the church in the locality" because other denominations are also part the church in the locaility. It is not specific to the group of people who only study Witness Lee's teachings.

Hope I have expressed my view clear enough. Please also be reminded that this thread is not about discussion of denominationalism.
This is why I say you seem different from those in the local church that I know. A local church member would not normally say that denominations are part of the church in the locality or consider the local church to be "The Local Church" as another denomination.
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Old 06-11-2017, 09:02 PM   #70
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Did you read what I wrote?
Yes I did, and I can say "we are the church in the locality" because that is what we are - I am in a church, in my locality, and together we are the church in the locality. We would never say "I am a member of the Local Church denomination" unless we weren't very far into the ministry.
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Old 06-11-2017, 09:09 PM   #71
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A local church member would not normally say that denominations are part of the church in the locality...
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That is right, all believers in the locality are the church in that location.That is why we reject denominations and do not consider ourselves to be a denomination.
Don't you know how confused your mind is? Or is it simply your tactic to evade the more important truth you are afraid to admit?
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Old 06-11-2017, 09:26 PM   #72
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Don't you know how confused your mind is? Or is it simply your tactic to evade the more important truth you are afraid to admit?
Before you say I am confused...
You say you are in the local churches yet reject most of its teachings including Lees ministry. That sounds like a contradiction.
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Old 06-11-2017, 09:37 PM   #73
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Before you say I am confused...
You say you are in the local churches yet reject most of its teachings including Lees ministry. That sounds like a contradiction.
Do you follow the teachings of men or follow God?

Are you saying we have to accept all Lee's teachings in order to be "a member of the Body of Christ in the local church of the locality"?
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Old 06-11-2017, 09:42 PM   #74
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Do you follow the teachings of men or follow God?

Are you saying we have to accept all Lee's teachings in order to be "a member of the Body of Christ in the local church in the locality"?
Nope.
Membership is by faith alone and we follow God.
The ministry helps us be the genuine church.
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Old 06-11-2017, 09:43 PM   #75
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Nope.
Membership is by faith alone and we follow God.
The ministry helps us be the genuine church.
So what is your conclusion? Am I a member or not a member?
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Old 06-11-2017, 09:51 PM   #76
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So what is your conclusion? Am I a member or not a member?
If you are a Christian then yes you are a member of the church in the locality. But you are not a member of the Local Church denomination because our membership is only in the Body not a denomination.
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Old 06-11-2017, 10:36 PM   #77
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If you are a Christian then yes you are a member of the church in the locality. But you are not a member of the Local Church denomination because our membership is only in the Body not a denomination.
If you see how many posts we had to go through before you received me as a member, you will find how legalistic the LC has become.

We have just wasted too much time on this and strayed from the more important concern about outer darkness.

And be careful with your answers, I almost think you have accepted there is such thing as "Local Church denomination".
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Old 06-11-2017, 11:21 PM   #78
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If you see how many posts we had to go through before you received me as a member, you will find how legalistic the LC has become.

We have just wasted too much time on this and strayed from the more important concern about outer darkness.

And be careful with your answers, I almost think you have accepted there is such thing as "Local Church denomination".
This is sort of related to the topic of outer darkness because Witness Lee taught that those in the denominations go into outer darkness. It is related to the first post "Is there still an outer darkness, the 1000 year 'summer school' for defeated believers? " I think the topic of "how do we join the Recovery" might be a bit further away from that however.

As a believer, I would always receive you as a member of the local church and the body of Christ. But when you identified yourself as a member of a denomination, I did not receive you because I do not recognize myself as having denominational membership.

It is as though Paul after his conversion would have gone to Peter in Jerusalem and said "dear Peter, I am from the church of Paul", and Peter would have said "what is that?". Peter would probably not have received him.

Anyway that is my perspective as a member of the local church (not Local Church). If there is a local church that considers itself a Local Church Denomination then I guess that would be a denomination!
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Old 06-12-2017, 12:39 AM   #79
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As a believer, I would always receive you as a member of the local church and the body of Christ. But when you identified yourself as a member of a denomination, I did not receive you because I do not recognize myself as having denominational membership.

It is as though Paul after his conversion would have gone to Peter in Jerusalem and said "dear Peter, I am from the church of Paul", and Peter would have said "what is that?". Peter would probably not have received him.

Anyway that is my perspective as a member of the local church (not Local Church). If there is a local church that considers itself a Local Church Denomination then I guess that would be a denomination!
You have managed to confuse me again. Do you receive or not receive a believer who thinks he has joined a denomination? Does he have to leave the denomination in order to be received by you as a member of the local church and the body of Christ?

If Paul had gone to Lee, I guess Paul would be kicked out of the door of the local church to the outer darkness without the chance of saying a word because of his Judaism practices, e.g. He circumcised Timothy, the son of a Greek.
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Old 06-12-2017, 01:07 AM   #80
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You have managed to confuse me again. Do you receive or not receive a believer who thinks he has joined a denomination? Does he have to leave the denomination in order to be received by you as a member of the local church and the body of Christ?

If Paul had gone to Lee, I guess Paul would be kicked out of the door of the local church to the outer darkness without the chance of saying a word because of his Judaism practices, e.g. He circumcised Timothy, the son of a Greek.
Yet Paul resisted Titus being circumcised, that's an interesting discussion in itself.

It depends - does the believer want to fellowship on the basis of his denomination, or does he want to fellowship on the basis of being a believer.

In the early church it was important to be identified correctly because of the spies and persecution.

Am curious - does everyone in your local church believe they are a Local Church denomination?
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Old 06-12-2017, 06:12 AM   #81
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The teaching of Witness Lee is clear - we are not a denomination, or a movement, we are just the church in the locality.

Everyone in the local churches that I know never refer to ourselves as the LC or Local Churches, just Christians in the locality.
And here we have the root of the problem -- the teaching of Witness Lee.

You will play your little word games forever, not because of scripture, but because of what Lee taught. It was this duplicitous double speak by LSM / DCP at afaithfulword during the GLA quarantines that served to educate many of us long time members of the true nature of the Recovery. These master wordsmiths could, in effect, spend an entire document explaining how black was really white using their twisted logic and the vast online ministry of Witness Lee.

"When you find yourself in a hole, stop digging."
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Old 06-12-2017, 08:12 AM   #82
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Am curious - does everyone in your local church believe they are a Local Church denomination?
Don't worry brother, I am only the odd man out. Most in the local church don't think (know?) they are in a denomination yet.

But I noticed they call less and less themselves the church in the locaility. More and more they just say the church or they are in the Lord's Recovery.
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Old 06-12-2017, 08:54 AM   #83
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Don't worry brother, I am only the odd man out. Most in the local church don't think (know?) they are in a denomination yet.
After watching LSM over the years grow and transform itself from a minister and his printing press into this panoptic controller of all things "recovery," subjecting every member LC to its endless whims, I have concluded that that defines denominational evils more than any so-called name, pseudo-name, or non-name.
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Old 06-13-2017, 03:05 PM   #84
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Don't worry brother, I am only the odd man out. Most in the local church don't think (know?) they are in a denomination yet.

But I noticed they call less and less themselves the church in the locaility. More and more they just say the church or they are in the Lord's Recovery.
I would not read too much into whether they add "in the locality" or not to the end. "the church" is much quicker/easier to say and it would not make much sense for us to tell each other the obvious that we are all in the same locality. It is usually only visitors who say which locality they are from.
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Old 08-03-2018, 06:01 PM   #85
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I know this is an older thread, but I see no reason to start a new one as the original subject and initial discussion about it started off good I think. (although it became something of an interesting & amusing study of going "snorkeling in the weeds" with all the sidebars and repeated calls to stay on topic, only to conclude totally off topic! Humans - we be something - gotta love us!) Maybe this time we can stay more on topic . . . mostly . . . sorta . . . kinda.

My current interest in this topic, Outer Darkness, is somewhat because of a recently written book (2015) I just purchased, "Your Eternal Reward: Triumph and Tears at the Judgment Seat of Christ" by Erwin Lutzer. I don't actually have the book in hand (it's being delivered tomorrow), but I have read some of it online. Has anyone else read it or heard of the author?

As others on here have testified, I used to be in general fear & trembling over the WL doctrine of spending a thousand years in outer darkness - if I left the LC. Well I did leave, but the fear has taken me awhile to recover from (yes, I get the irony in using that word). Regardless, I certainly can't ignore all the warnings in the NT about running the race well and not being disqualified (as Paul says). But I believe there is a healthy balance to be found in the word, such as He tells one of the profitable servants, "Well done, good and faithful servant! You were faithful over a few things; I will set you over many things. Enter into the joy of your master!" Here's a key I think: "A FEW things." Maybe this is what it means to be an "overcomer." Not being a SuperSaint, but rather being faithful in a few . . .

Personally, I believe that once we're saved we're always saved ("saved" meaning we've received the free gift of Christ's life in us and become children of Father). However, the Bema Seat will render unto us reward or loss according to our works, according to things done while in this body of flesh (will they will be wood, hay, stubble or gold, silver, precious stones?).

I've got a lot more to say, but that's good to start things off. How about it - let's resurrect this thread on OUTER DARKNESS and see if we can stay on topic this time!

Decent article on Bema Seat at Bible.org HERE
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Old 08-03-2018, 06:56 PM   #86
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As others on here have testified, I used to be in general fear & trembling over the WL doctrine of spending a thousand years in outer darkness - if I left the LC.
Psa 139:8* If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there.*
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Old 08-03-2018, 08:05 PM   #87
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My response is just going to be about my personal experience in the LC on this topic.... but not so much about the accuracy thereof.

Basically:

1. Believers who are overcomers are rewarded with the millennial kingdom. Somewhere along the way I picked up the thought that this involves being friends with lions and having the ability to walk through walls. Even to travel to other planets. Funny to type that out actually.....must be things I heard as a young kid maybe? Cool if true and backed up Biblically though.
2. Believers who are not overcomers are sent to outer darkness for 1,000 years to experience discipline and learn to gain the Lord since they did not do that sufficiently on earth. The gnashing of teeth indicates the regret they feel.
3. After 1,000 years the non-overcomers will now be fully transformed and all believers will enter the New Jerusalem together.

I do not recall ever hearing in trainings and conferences the explicit thought that only those in the LC will be overcomers and those not in the LC will not be overcomers. However, it was definitely said that, essentially, your best hope to be an overcomer was to remain in the LC's (the fear-based thing that keeps you in), which is more than enough to heavily imply without stating it explicitly that if you leave the LCs you will end up in outer darkness. So I certainly see how many could get the thought that LC = kingdom, and denominations = outer darkness.

I was pretty clear, though, that you could be in the LCs and still have a straight shot to outer darkness. That would be those who backslide or are closed to the Lord or do not allow Him to break them down enough, etc. I know this for sure because that described me and I knew for years that based on that I had no hope to make it into the kingdom. In other words, those who have enough oil "make it", and those who did not give themselves to "gain the oil" do not "make it". However, for something with as gigantic consequences as 1,000 years of fun or pain, the fact that there were no parameters given for me to know whether I had enough oil at any given point or would have enough oil at the end of my life, this did inject a fair amount of stress into me. It also gave me very little incentive to "gain the oil" since there was simply no way to gauge the result of my efforts until after it was too late to adjust them! Especially if you throw in the assurance of eternal salvation, it seemed to me that once you were saved, your time on earth then just became "kingdom or outer darkness". I.e. once salvation was under your belt, the WHOLE POINT of your life then became "kingdom or outer darkness". (okay, besides preaching the gospel and bringing others into the full knowledge of the truth). For something so consequential I couldn't understand why there was not some kind of gauge on my arm that showed my current level of oil so I could gas or throttle my openness as needed!

Throw in the "lighthearted" sessions at the trainings where the co-workers would joke by saying, "If you think you are in your spirit, you probably are not! And if you don't think you are in your spirit, you probably are! So best not to think about it at all!" (obviously "in your spirit" = "gaining the oil"). What is anyone supposed to do with that circus merry-go-round of "the Lord's present speaking" rattling around between their ears? The best way for the most important determining factor in my life to be carried out is not to think about it at all? AHHHH!!!
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Old 08-03-2018, 08:39 PM   #88
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My response is just going to be about my personal experience in the LC on this topic.... but not so much about the accuracy thereof.

Basically:

1. Believers who are overcomers are rewarded with the millennial kingdom. Somewhere along the way I picked up the thought that this involves being friends with lions and having the ability to walk through walls. Even to travel to other planets. Funny to type that out actually.....must be things I heard as a young kid maybe? Cool if true and backed up Biblically though.
2. Believers who are not overcomers are sent to outer darkness for 1,000 years to experience discipline and learn to gain the Lord since they did not do that sufficiently on earth. The gnashing of teeth indicates the regret they feel.
3. After 1,000 years the non-overcomers will now be fully transformed and all believers will enter the New Jerusalem together.

For something so consequential I couldn't understand why there was not some kind of gauge on my arm that showed my current level of oil so I could gas or throttle my openness as needed!
That last statement was a hoot! (yeah, I'd like one of them gauge thingies . . .)

I would say your three points sums up the basic concept I got too. One of my questions now is where does the teaching for #2 specifically come from? I do believe in the millennial kingdom, but where does it say that non-overcomers are sent to outer darkness for 1000 years to ripen properly?
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Old 08-04-2018, 06:09 AM   #89
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by J. Hampton Keathley III found HERE
Quote:
THREE VIEWS OF THE BEMA
For a summary of three major views, let me quote Samuel L. Hoyt from Bibliotheca Sacra.

1. Some Bible teachers view the judgment seat as a place of intense sorrow, a place of terror, and a place where Christ display all the believer’s sins (or at least those unconfessed) before the entire resurrected and raptured church. Some go even further by stating that Christians must experience some sort of suffering for their sins at the time of this examination.

2. At the other end of the spectrum another group, which holds to the same eschatological chronology, views this event as an awards ceremony. Awards are handed out to every Christian. The result of this judgment will be that each Christian will be grateful for the reward which he receives, and he will have little or no shame.

3. Other Bible teachers espouse a mediating position. They maintain the seriousness of the examination and yet emphasize the commendation aspect of the judgment seat. They emphasize the importance and necessity of faithful living today but reject any thought of forensic punishment at the Bema. Emphasis is placed on the fact that each Christian must give an account of his life before the omniscient and holy Christ. All that was done through the energy of the flesh will be regarded as worthless for reward, while all that was done in the power of the Holy Spirit will be graciously rewarded. Those who hold this view believe that the Christian will stand glorified before Christ without his old sin nature. He will, likewise, be without guilt because he has been declared righteous. There will be no need for forensic punishment, for Christ has forever borne all of God’s wrath toward the believer’s sins.

This last view I believe to be the one that is in accord with Scripture. Reasons for this will be set forth and developed as we study the nature, purpose, and basis for the Bema. But for now, lest we draw some wrong conclusions, we need to be ever mindful that God’s Word clearly teaches there are specific and very serious consequences, both temporal and eternal, for sin or disobedience. Though we will not be judged in the sense of punished for sin at the Bema since the Lord has born that for us, we must never take sin lightly because there are many consequences.
Numerals added by me.
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Old 08-04-2018, 07:29 AM   #90
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That last statement was a hoot! (yeah, I'd like one of them gauge thingies . . .)

I would say your three points sums up the basic concept I got too. One of my questions now is where does the teaching for #2 specifically come from? I do believe in the millennial kingdom, but where does it say that non-overcomers are sent to outer darkness for 1000 years to ripen properly?
Matthew 18:34 is a starting point.

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Old 08-04-2018, 08:01 AM   #91
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Throw in the "lighthearted" sessions at the trainings where the co-workers would joke by saying, "If you think you are in your spirit, you probably are not! And if you don't think you are in your spirit, you probably are! So best not to think about it at all!" (obviously "in your spirit" = "gaining the oil"). What is anyone supposed to do with that circus merry-go-round of "the Lord's present speaking" rattling around between their ears? The best way for the most important determining factor in my life to be carried out is not to think about it at all? AHHHH!!!
Then I must be in my spirit all of the time. haha ... I was certainly out of my mind in the LC, and for years of cognitive dissonance thereafter. I wasn't in my spirit in those days.

What irony that those that Jesus should have inoculated against the contagion of fear, are fear-mongering about outer darkness.

What's that about anyway? I think it's about contagions. As I remember it, there were always contagions of some sort in the local church. They called 'em waves.

I remember Kangas on the phone with me, trying to get me to come to Anaheim, telling me about a New Wave in Anaheim. But unbeknownst to him, he blew it. He told me that some weren't catching on to the New Wave.

In other words, some hadn't caught the contagion. Looking back I see "The Vision" as a contagion. I should know, I caught it.

But the contagion hardest to fight is fear. I thought Jesus inoculated his followers from the contagion of fear on the cross. I just don't see a lot of evidence of it in many of my Christian brothers and sisters. Many of whom are so fearful they're as skittish as a cat trapped at the dog pound.

Please local churcher's. When fear is guiding you, you can bet your spirit is not. And watch out for other contagions too.

Thanks for a great post Trapped.
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Old 08-04-2018, 08:30 AM   #92
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Matthew 18:34 is a starting point.

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The next verse is about forgiveness. No mention of a thousand years.
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Old 08-04-2018, 10:06 AM   #93
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Matthew 18:34 is a starting point.
Yes. Forgive. Or get tortured.

For that reason a long time ago I forgave Witness Lee. And ever since I keep finding more to forgive him for.

Unforgiveness is torture for the unforgiving. It must be thorough.
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Old 08-04-2018, 11:58 AM   #94
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The next verse is about forgiveness. No mention of a thousand years.
Yep. What does v34 say will happen to those who do not forgive?

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Old 08-04-2018, 12:14 PM   #95
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Yep. What does v34 say will happen to those who do not forgive?

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understood but nothing specifically about a thousand years
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Old 08-04-2018, 12:22 PM   #96
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Yes. Forgive. Or get tortured.

For that reason a long time ago I forgave Witness Lee. And ever since I keep finding more to forgive him for.

Unforgiveness is torture for the unforgiving. It must be thorough.

If you have any more to say about this topic I am all ears. I have a hard time forgiving people, or if I manage to, it is hard for it to last or be "ongoing forgiveness". I know, "Christ is our forgiveness" but some of us have a harder time of it than others. Any more experience or advice would be much appreciated.

Unforgiveness truly is torture for the unforgiving!
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Old 08-04-2018, 01:48 PM   #97
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If you have any more to say about this topic I am all ears.
I was merely responding to Drake's Matt. 18:34 statement, which is about forgiveness, and not outer darkness.
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Old 08-04-2018, 03:54 PM   #98
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I was merely responding to Drake's Matt. 18:34 statement, which is about forgiveness, and not outer darkness.
What jail do the jailers manage? And under what terms do those put into it, get out? .

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Old 08-04-2018, 04:04 PM   #99
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understood but nothing specifically about a thousand years
Right... yet, what is the jail?

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Old 08-04-2018, 04:52 PM   #100
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What jail do the jailers manage? And under what terms do those put into it, get out? .

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What if it isn't translated as "jailer"?
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Old 08-04-2018, 05:19 PM   #101
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What if it isn't translated as "jailer"?
Feel free to provide an alternate POV.
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Old 08-04-2018, 07:54 PM   #102
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What jail do the jailers manage? And under what terms do those put into it, get out? .
According to the story, they get out when they pay their debt. The Greek word is torturers. Are there torturers in outer darkness?

It's a parable. That we are not "given to know," according to Matt 13:11. But it's obvious that Jesus is speaking in imagery.

The lord had compassion/pity, the servant didn't. The servant cast his fellowservant into prison. But for not paying it forward, the lord cast the servant to the torturers. If it means outer darkness are there torturers there?

Speaking of outer darkness. What is the outer darkness? Is it an actual physical place? The actors in the parable are are physical people.

If it's physical, can we earn wages in outer darkness? And what is it made of? Where is it? Is it worse than this place? Do we still work for food? build houses? invent the use of electricity, and light bulbs? Or is there none of those. We just sit, day and night, in outer darkness, forever weeping and gnashing? If we weep, we must be breathing.

But like Jesus told his disciples, it's not given for us to know.

Regardless of all that, I don't think this parable is about outer darkness. But Matthew is the right place to go to for outer darkness. In all the New Testament only Matthew mentions it. And only three times. Three times in the whole new testament? Paul doesn't mention it. And even the Apocalypse of John don't mention it. What a nebulous place is this outer darkness. Sounds scary tho ... or at least very lonely, and boring. Prolly no internet.
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Old 08-04-2018, 10:59 PM   #103
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I was merely responding to Drake's Matt. 18:34 statement, which is about forgiveness, and not outer darkness.

I did see what you were responding to. I was just struck about your comment that you forgave Witness Lee, and your other statement that "unforgiveness is torture for the unforgiving". In human life this is true! Basically I was asking you to go off the "Outer Darkness" topic just for one post and talk a little more about how you came to forgive Witness Lee. Not because it's Witness Lee, but because you forgave someone. I have a hard time forgiving people myself, so am always looking for others' experience or advice in how to do so. If you don't want to say anything further though, no problem!
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Old 08-05-2018, 04:34 AM   #104
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I did see what you were responding to. I was just struck about your comment that you forgave Witness Lee, and your other statement that "unforgiveness is torture for the unforgiving". In human life this is true! Basically I was asking you to go off the "Outer Darkness" topic just for one post and talk a little more about how you came to forgive Witness Lee. Not because it's Witness Lee, but because you forgave someone. I have a hard time forgiving people myself, so am always looking for others' experience or advice in how to do so. If you don't want to say anything further though, no problem!
Trapped,

"Unforgiveness...how do you do it?" is a great topic which I don't believe has been discussed here. Maybe you would like to start a new thread?

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Old 08-05-2018, 05:21 AM   #105
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It's a parable. That we are not "given to know," according to Matt 13:11. But it's obvious that Jesus is speaking in imagery. .
Awareness,

Matt 13:11 is not about the Lords followers who have the Spirit of God to guide them into all truth (John 16:13). No Christian should fit the description of v 11, 13-15.... but maybe you are right....perhaps some do.

At the end of the chapter you quoted He explains and applies the imagery to one of the parables He just told...so now we know too about the meaning of that parable specifically and the nature of parables and their interpretation generally. Furthermore, we have the Spirit now to guide us and we have the completed Bible. So we have to do due diligence to cut straight the word of God and allow the Lord to shine in us and guide us. We want to be those who have eyes to see and ears to hear... that of course includes the parables and their interpretation (v16).

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Old 08-05-2018, 05:59 AM   #106
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Matt 13:11 is not about the Lords followers who have the Spirit of God to guide them into all truth (John 16:13). No Christian should fit the description of v 11, 13-15.... but maybe you are right....perhaps some do.

Drake
Since I am more familiar with Christians in the LC's, I would say that many of them "fit the description" which Jesus spoke of here in Matthew 13.11-15.

The primary reason is pride. Sadly, the ministry of Witness Lee was a ministry of condemnation (regularly condemning all Christians outside the LCM) which filled his listeners with the arrogant pride of elitism (teaching they are the Lord's best) and exclusivism (teaching no one else has what they have.)

Those in the LCM are like those stuck in Judaism during Jesus' day -- they listen to their leaders' interpretation of God's word rather than directly listening what God is speaking in His word.
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Old 08-05-2018, 09:30 AM   #107
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So where can we look to see the Unfaithful spending a thousand years in outer Darkness?

EDIT UPDATE: My point in asking this is that I heard the "punishment for non-transformed believers is a thousand years in outer darkness to ripened" many times. Where did this come from?
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Old 08-06-2018, 05:33 AM   #108
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So where can we look to see the Unfaithful spending a thousand years in outer Darkness?

EDIT UPDATE: My point in asking this is that I heard the "punishment for non-transformed believers is a thousand years in outer darkness to ripened" many times. Where did this come from?
StG,

It comes from the correlation between parables, such as those we are discussing, and events that we know will occur, such as the judgement seat of Christ, His second coming, His righteous nature to reward and punish, the millennial reign of Christ.....in short, the mysteries of the kingdom.

Have been trying to answer your question, see #99, but you seem to be missing the purpose of the Lords use of parables as described above.

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Old 08-06-2018, 09:15 AM   #109
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StG,

It comes from the correlation between parables, such as those we are discussing, and events that we know will occur, such as the judgement seat of Christ, His second coming, His righteous nature to reward and punish, the millennial reign of Christ.....in short, the mysteries of the kingdom.

Have been trying to answer your question, see #99, but you seem to be missing the purpose of the Lords use of parables as described above.

Drake
Thanks. Yes, I saw that and the follow-on discussion. My question has to do with the time: Why is it the full thousand years, or is it a portion of time - 5 minutes or 500 years? Where specifically do we get the time factor and the teaching I heard much about, that it is 1,000 years?
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Old 08-06-2018, 09:49 AM   #110
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Thanks. Yes, I saw that and the follow-on discussion. My question has to do with the time: Why is it the full thousand years, or is it a portion of time - 5 minutes or 500 years? Where specifically do we get the time factor and the teaching I heard much about, that it is 1,000 years?
Right Sons. The 3 references to outer darkness doesn't specify the sentence. It may only be like a little timeout, to think about what you've done. Surely you're not in there long enough to gnash your teeth completely away.

It's imagery & allegory. The outer darkness is not a real physical place.

But it's a great tool for cults to use for fear-mongering.
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Old 08-06-2018, 02:43 PM   #111
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Thanks. Yes, I saw that and the follow-on discussion. My question has to do with the time: Why is it the full thousand years, or is it a portion of time - 5 minutes or 500 years? Where specifically do we get the time factor and the teaching I heard much about, that it is 1,000 years?
Well StG, the 1000 years is in reference to the Millennial reign of Christ... that age is also known as the kingdom age... it commences with the Lord's second coming and it ends at the commencement of eternity future. As the kingdom age is all about ruling and reigning with Christ on earth and not just about being forgiven and saved from eternal perdition in eternity future then the criterion for entering the kingdom is a higher standard. For example, the parable we were discussing specifically mentions a penalty in "jail" for refusing to forgive. The Lord forgave you as a debtor yet you refuse to forgive other debtors... into the "jail" you rascal!

Some parables appear to indicate that the time out in outer darkness is variable.... that is what we were discussing ..... in reference to the "jail"... where and when is it and what is required to come out of it.

The gospel of the kingdom reconciles the matter of faith, works, reward, eternal salvation. etc. All born-again Christians are saved eternally but not all are counted worthy to rule and reign with Christ during the 1000 year reign on earth... yet at least no later than the end of the 1000 year reign of Christ all will be pure, refined, and part of the New Jerusalem.. every last farthing will have been paid to reference another parable. Some will be counted worthy to rule and reign with Christ for the entire 1000 years as the reward to the overcomer in Revelation 2:26-28 states plainly. No parable there just plain talk.

Some Christians I grew up with lived like the devil.. yet they held that they were eternally saved and that there were no further consequences. Yet other Christians I met with believed that you might be saved in the morning but by evening you could have fallen out of grace because you drank, cussed, or committed some other sin. Both points of view lack the complete revelation of scripture... We are eternally saved by God's grace through the blood of Christ....but there are consequences for our behavior after becoming a christian. We do not lose our eternal salvation but we may lose the reward of the kingdom. It is the most balanced and scriptural point of view that brings all those parts together. I've yet to hear an alternative point of view that reconciles all of scripture related to that ... especially from those who argue against it. Having no explanation of their own they simply remain in unbelief apparently willing to jettison those scriptures that they cannot or refuse to understand. Its also probably fair to say that some that discard the kingdom teachings may have a problem they cannot shake... so as a christian they cannot live in contradiction to scripture ....therefore they convince themselves to dismiss it.. or bury it.... like the parable about forgiveness.

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Old 08-06-2018, 02:49 PM   #112
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What about the "raptured or martyred" talk we used to hear?

And where does that leave Witness Lee for 1,000 years?
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Old 08-06-2018, 02:55 PM   #113
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Right Sons. The 3 references to outer darkness doesn't specify the sentence. It may only be like a little timeout, to think about what you've done. Surely you're not in there long enough to gnash your teeth completely away.

It's imagery & allegory. The outer darkness is not a real physical place
A parable shares a law, reality, or a truth with something else... in this case a matter in the spiritual realm.... don't say outer darkness is not a real physical place or that the suffering is not to such a degree that you will gnash your teeth.

Seems to me brother awareness that you may be guilty of dumbing down the scriptures.. parables are depictions of something very real. Excuse me if I am misreading your characterization of those matters. They are to be taken very seriously.

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Old 08-06-2018, 04:11 PM   #114
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A parable shares a law, reality, or a truth with something else... in this case a matter in the spiritual realm.... don't say outer darkness is not a real physical place or that the suffering is not to such a degree that you will gnash your teeth.

Seems to me brother awareness that you may be guilty of dumbing down the scriptures.. parables are depictions of something very real. Excuse me if I am misreading your characterization of those matters. They are to be taken very seriously.

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Old 08-06-2018, 04:33 PM   #115
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Neither of us knows brother Drake.
What we know brother awareness is that there is substance behind the parables as the one you cited in Matthew 13 clearly states. That parable and its explanation show that the parable represents the responses to receiving the word of the kingdom....and having it snatched away by the enemy, or withered because of persecution or tribulation, or choked by the deceitfulness of riches .. or better those that receive it and understand it produce thirty, sixty, hundredfold....that my brother is a serious and wonderful, (or not), matter.

The parables are provided for His followers to receive and understand. It really is not our place to dismiss the parables.... we have to seek the Lord for their meaning in the context of the entire completed Bible and according to the indwelling Spirit that guides us faithfully. The parable you brought up in Matthew 13 is precisely about our conversation right now..... receiving the word of the kingdom and producing manifold fruit.

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Old 08-06-2018, 05:18 PM   #116
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So where can we look to see the Unfaithful spending a thousand years in outer Darkness?

EDIT UPDATE: My point in asking this is that I heard the "punishment for non-transformed believers is a thousand years in outer darkness to ripened" many times. Where did this come from?
Does this answer your question? The verses below in conjunction with Rev 20. Maybe I'm missing more, I'm sure someone on this forum knows. Lee's words below:

"At harvest time in a field there are surely the firstfruits, the harvest, and the remainder or the gleanings. The rapture of a small number of mature saints will occur before the tribulation. The majority will be raptured during the tribulation because they need the tribulation to cause them to mature. Finally, the last of the crop will be harvested after the tribulation. The harvest of the crop is not in chapters 7 or 8 of Revelation but in chapter 14. This means that it occurs in the midst of the tribulation."

"According to all these verses, we can see that the rapture of the believers will not be accomplished all at one time but rather during a period of about seven years. When will you be raptured during that seven-year period? It depends on the degree of your maturity. If in the Lord’s eyes you are mature and ripe, surely He will take you away before the tribulation begins. This is the way the Lord will use to transfer the reality of the kingdom into the manifestation of the kingdom. In other words, we all must be matured. If we desire to be matured, we must take Christ in again and again, eating of Him, and allowing Him to saturate us all the time. This is the kingdom life that is described and defined in Matthew 5, 6, and 7, a life that is always taking Christ as its nourishment. It is always being saturated, occupied, and possessed by Christ. This is the reality of the kingdom. This is real maturity. If this is our case, when the Lord Jesus comes back, we will be taken as the firstfruits. This means that we will be chosen and selected by Him to be in His army (Rev. 17:14; 19:11-15). The fighting army of the Lord Jesus is composed of the overcoming saints who are living in the reality of the kingdom. They are living in the reality of the kingdom; they will become the fighting army, and after the fighting, they will be the manifestation of the kingdom. As His army they will come with the Lord Jesus to destroy the Antichrist and his army. Then the nations of the earth will become the kingdom of Christ, and the army composed of all the overcoming saints will become co-kings with Him to rule over the earth. They will be transferred into the manifestation of the kingdom during the millennium."

"What then will happen to all the defeated Christians? They will have no share in reigning as co-kings with Christ during the millennium. Where shall they be? While we do not know the details, the principle is clear. When the Lord Jesus returns, the false believers will be bound into bundles and cast into the fire, terminating all the tares in Christianity. The overcoming ones will be chosen to fight the battle with the Lord to recover the earth for the Lord’s reigning. They will be the co-kings with Christ in the manifestation of the kingdom. The defeated Christians will be neither burned up nor enter into the kingdom to reign with Christ. According to Matthew 22:13 and 25:30, these will be cast into the outer darkness where there will be the weeping and the gnashing of teeth.

In summary, today’s Christendom is composed of both false Christians and real Christians. The false Christians are the outward appearance of the kingdom. Among the real Christians, a few are the overcoming ones, and most are the defeated ones. When the Lord Jesus returns, He will first terminate the false Christians, burning up all the false Christians, the tares. Then He will take up all the real ones into the air according to their maturity. At His judgment seat in the air, He will exercise His judgment over all the real Christians to decide who will be selected and chosen. Those will be the overcomers who will return to the earth and fight against the rebellious army of Antichrist. After defeating Antichrist and his army, the overcomers will be Christ’s co-kings, reigning with Him in His kingdom on the earth. That will be the manifestation of the kingdom. That also will be the transfer of the reality of the kingdom into the manifestation of the kingdom. Only the overcomers, those who are living in the reality of the kingdom of the heavens today, will have a share in its manifestation. The manifestation of the kingdom of the heavens will be a reward or prize given to the overcomers.
"
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Old 08-07-2018, 06:32 AM   #117
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Does this answer your question? The verses below in conjunction with Rev 20. Maybe I'm missing more, I'm sure someone on this forum knows. Lee's words below:
Thanks, but I think I already know Lee's teaching on this pretty well. It's just that I like going back to the word with these concepts to see if there really is a firm and accurate grounding, or whether it was just someone's interpretation.

These days I'd truly rather have just two words of revelation directly from the Lord and His word, than 20 volumes of someone else's thinking on a subject!

Don't get me wrong, I don't just immediately dismiss WL's teaching, and will refer to them from time to time, but I endeavor to get rid of any dirty bathwater (and save the baby). So please share verses, and not WL quotes.
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Old 08-07-2018, 03:58 PM   #118
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"Kingdom exclusion" doctrine teaches that unfaithful believers will not participate in the kingdom but be restored at a later time. There are quite a few preachers who teach kingdom exclusion in one form or another, if you look for it.

Why 1000 years? Since the kingdom reign of Christ lasts for 1000 years on earth, it is logical that exclusion from the kingdom will last for the same time period - 1000 years.

There are some questions that remain:

(1) Do unfaithful believers get excluded from the kingdom, or not?
If yes, is it temporary or permanent? If permanent, then this is equivalent to believers losing their salvation, and casts doubt on the doctrine of eternal security. If temporary, then it must be for a certain time period, and 1000 years seems as good a guess as any.

(2) If no, then unfaithful believers enjoy the kingdom with the faithful?

This seems unlikely, given that the kingdom is a reward, and Jesus described unfaithful believers as not receiving a reward, but punishment.


There are two many sources of confusion in Christianity today about these topics :

a) Understanding what is the kingdom? Many believers interpret the kingdom as equal to heaven, and equate this topic with eternal salvation or damnation, and forget about Jesus's kingdom reign on Earth.

b) Understanding eternal security - many believers cannot distinguish between temporal punishment or loss, and eternal loss. This is partly coupled with a misunderstanding that believers remain disembodied spirits within heaven for eternity.
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Old 08-07-2018, 07:10 PM   #119
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"Kingdom exclusion" doctrine teaches that unfaithful believers will not participate in the kingdom but be restored at a later time. There are quite a few preachers who teach kingdom exclusion in one form or another, if you look for it.

Why 1000 years? Since the kingdom reign of Christ lasts for 1000 years on earth, it is logical that exclusion from the kingdom will last for the same time period - 1000 years.
Is it in fact binary, that is, either all or nothing? Rather than telling us it sounds "logical that exclusion from the kingdom will last for . . . 1000 years," please tell us supporting scripture for that all-or-nothing concept.

I mean, much of this whole thing (i.e., Christian theology) doesn't sound logical - the Christian life itself is flat out impossible from man's perspective!
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Old 08-07-2018, 08:26 PM   #120
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Is it in fact binary, that is, either all or nothing? Rather than telling us it sounds "logical that exclusion from the kingdom will last for . . . 1000 years," please tell us supporting scripture for that all-or-nothing concept.

I mean, much of this whole thing (i.e., Christian theology) doesn't sound logical - the Christian life itself is flat out impossible from man's perspective!
I find it interesting that Exclusives have capitalized on their exclusion theology for centuries, with each establishing the standards by which all others fail.
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Old 08-07-2018, 09:23 PM   #121
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Is it in fact binary, that is, either all or nothing? Rather than telling us it sounds "logical that exclusion from the kingdom will last for . . . 1000 years," please tell us supporting scripture for that all-or-nothing concept.

I mean, much of this whole thing (i.e., Christian theology) doesn't sound logical - the Christian life itself is flat out impossible from man's perspective!
Yes, it's a binary question so has a binary answer - there is no other possibilities. That is, it is not possibly to be half in the kingdom and half outside of it. It is not possible to be half saved. It is not possible to be half excluded from the kingdom.

Scripture supporting a logical approach can be found here:

1 Cor 14:33 - God is a God of order and therefore logic.

Romans 1:20 - God is seen in the logic of the universe - the laws of mathematics and physics.

There is a heaven, there is an earth. It is possible for a believer to be only in one place at a time.

So this reduces to four possibilities:

1) Yes to heaven, no to the kingdom
2) Yes to heaven, yes to the kingdom
3) No to heaven, no to the kingdom
4) No to heaven, yes to the kingdom

To pick any of these 4 possibilities at random gives us a 25% chance of being correct. To better our odds, all we need to do is count the number of scriptures which support each of the 4 possibilities. The one with the most scriptures is the most likely correct.
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Old 08-07-2018, 10:08 PM   #122
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"Kingdom exclusion" doctrine teaches that unfaithful believers will not participate in the kingdom but be restored at a later time. There are quite a few preachers who teach kingdom exclusion in one form or another, if you look for it.
From your understanding, what would happen to the dead unfaithful believers? When will they resurrect according to the bible?
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Old 08-07-2018, 11:39 PM   #123
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From your understanding, what would happen to the dead unfaithful believers? When will they resurrect according to the bible?
Everyone resurrects according to Acts 24:15
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Old 08-08-2018, 01:17 AM   #124
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Everyone resurrects according to Acts 24:15
But my question is when. Is this mentioned in the bible?

From Rev 20, only the overcomers (first resurrection) and the "rest" (after 1,000 years) were mentioned.

4 And I saw thrones, and they sat upon them, and judgment was given to them. And I saw the souls of those who had been beheaded because of the testimony of Jesus and because of the word of God, and of those who had not worshipped the beast nor his image, and had not received the mark on their forehead and on their hand; and they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years.

5 The rest of the dead did not live again until the thousand years were completed. This is the first resurrection.

6 Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no authority, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.
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Old 08-08-2018, 02:24 AM   #125
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1 Cor 15:52 and 1 Thess 4:16 indicate that all believers in Christ will rise when Christ returns. Which would contradict Rev 20:4-6 if understood to mean that only the overcomers are resurrected in the first resurrection.

My understanding is that when Christ returns, all believers receive immortal bodies which are capable of existing for 1000 years.

Rev 20 that you quoted refers to the portion of these resurrected believers, the overcomers, who enjoy the reward of the kingdom.
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Old 08-08-2018, 07:13 AM   #126
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Do those in outer darkness avoid the resurrection (either one), or are some of the resurrected thrown into outer darkness? Or ... are we thrown into outer darkness when we die, and resurrection frees us?
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Old 08-08-2018, 07:29 AM   #127
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Yes, it's a binary question so has a binary answer - there is no other possibilities.
Brother, other than the two verses you site, this is largely your opinion (or someone else's). Of course I don't disagree that God Himself is logical according to His own logic (and not man's)

So the original question stands - Where in scripture does it say the "cast into outer darkness" ones spends a full 1000 years there, and not some portion thereof?
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Old 08-08-2018, 08:44 AM   #128
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Brother, other than the two verses you site, this is largely your opinion (or someone else's). Of course I don't disagree that God Himself is logical according to His own logic (and not man's).

So the original question stands - Where in scripture does it say the "cast into outer darkness" ones spends a full 1000 years there, and not some portion thereof?
StG,

You may be thinking about these verses:

Matthew 5:25-26: "Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.26 Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing."

This may allow for some variation of the final farthing (one cent) payment according to the amount owed. God is righteous and the rewards and punishments He issues are variable. Perhaps that applies to the time in "prison".

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Old 08-08-2018, 09:33 AM   #129
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StG,

You may be thinking about these verses:

Matthew 5:25-26: "Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.26 Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing."

This may allow for some variation of the final farthing (one cent) payment according to the amount owed. God is righteous and the rewards and punishments He issues are variable. Perhaps that applies to the time in "prison".

Drake
That's a stretch. It does not answer Sons' question? What about, 'there is no verse that supports 1000 yrs in outer darkness?' If that's the case? and prolly is.
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Old 08-08-2018, 09:37 AM   #130
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StG,

You may be thinking about these verses:

Matthew 5:25-26: "Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.26 Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing."

This may allow for some variation of the final farthing (one cent) payment according to the amount owed. God is righteous and the rewards and punishments He issues are variable. Perhaps that applies to the time in "prison".

Drake
That's actually not a bad passage to support the contention of time in outer darkness! As you said, it also allows for some variability with the length of time (not just 1000 years).

So someone builds with all six things in 1st Corinthians 3 (wood, hay, stubble, gold, silver, precious stone), as I suspect will be the case with most all of us. The building work is tested by fire. I suspect most all of us will suffer some loss with burnable things we've built with. Is there some percentage point of works that are burned (compared to the total) when we then wind-up going into the outer darkness, like 25%, 50%, 75% or what?

He does tell the two faithful servants in Matthew 25 that they were "faithful in a few things, enter into the joy of Your Lord."

My point is we often think we have to be "Faith SuperSaints" in order to get the reward and not go to outer darkness. (Accordingly, what about Sampson who messed up a lot, yet ended his life well and got mentioned in the Hebrews 11 faithful list?)
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Old 08-08-2018, 11:34 AM   #131
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That's actually not a bad passage to support the contention of time in outer darkness! As you said, it also allows for some variability with the length of time (not just 1000 years).
If you find yourself in outer darkness keep your chin up. At least it's not in the fiery hell.
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Old 08-08-2018, 11:40 AM   #132
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That's actually not a bad passage to support the contention of time in outer darkness! As you said, it also allows for some variability with the length of time (not just 1000 years).

So someone builds with all six things in 1st Corinthians 3 (wood, hay, stubble, gold, silver, precious stone), as I suspect will be the case with most all of us. The building work is tested by fire. I suspect most all of us will suffer some loss with burnable things we've built with. Is there some percentage point of works that are burned (compared to the total) when we then wind-up going into the outer darkness, like 25%, 50%, 75% or what?

He does tell the two faithful servants in Matthew 25 that they were "faithful in a few things, enter into the joy of Your Lord."

My point is we often think we have to be "Faith SuperSaints" in order to get the reward and not go to outer darkness. (Accordingly, what about Sampson who messed up a lot, yet ended his life well and got mentioned in the Hebrews 11 faithful list?)
StG,

Your POV is not far from mine on this topic.

However, the bar was high in some situations... to those in Smyrna the criterion for an overcomer was:

"Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life."

Though becoming an overcomer may not mean we are tested unto death... yet, we have to overcome the situation we are presented with. Peter was eventually crucified but John died isolated on Patmos at ripe old age. Perhaps others lived a full life and died in old age. Some were martyred young like Blandina of Lyons. They had their own situations to overcome.

Yet, for whatever situation we are in He is faithful to provide grace to overcome. He also will fairly and righteously judge our response to His grace given. He told Paul "My grace is sufficient". He does not wink at a slothful servant.... we know He is strict with His own but He is also generous to those that are faithful with what they are given. I believe the time out in outer darkness is measured because He is measured in His judgments. What is the payment of the 'last farthing"? He knows us and we can trust His judgment. We have faith in His righteousness. He is also severe to His enemies, will slay them, give them to destruction, and many will perish in unbelief.

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Old 08-08-2018, 11:46 AM   #133
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If you find yourself in outer darkness keep your chin up. At least it's not in the fiery hell.
This is true. If you find yourself at the judgement seat of Christ having a conversation about what you did after becoming a christain, you have cleared the first hurdle.... eternal life and not eternal perdition in the lake of fire. We received the eternal indestructible life of God at the moment we believed.

Now, what happens next is entirely based on what happened after you believed... the parables regarding the kingdom, some we have been discussing, are instructive.

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Old 08-08-2018, 01:15 PM   #134
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I find it interesting that Exclusives have capitalized on their exclusion theology for centuries, with each establishing the standards by which all others fail.
By his own criteria Witness Lee was a defeated believer. He told us the two conditions to make it were either to be raptured or martyred. He said that he believed Watchman Nee was surely martyred, dying in a jail. But he gave himself no such out.
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Old 08-08-2018, 02:01 PM   #135
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By his own criteria Witness Lee was a defeated believer. He told us the two conditions to make it were either to be raptured or martyred. He said that he believed Watchman Nee was surely martyred, dying in a jail. But he gave himself no such out.

Nnnnnn... no.

By make it, I assume you mean as an overcomer....

Yet, he did not teach that ONLY by rapture or martyrdom does one become an overcomer. First, all christians will be raptured to face the BEMA.. only then is their worthiness to participate as co-ruler with Christ decided.

He did say that if you were a Firstfruit then you were an overcomer.. a clear reference to the reward of the overcomers in Revelation 3:10.

Second, he said on more than one occasion that martyrdom was a sure thing because that one "loved not their life unto death" a clear reference to the spiritual battle waged in Revelation 12:11 and those that overcame the devil and his assaults.

But I agree that he never discussed himself as an overcomer.... that is the Lord's decision.. not yours and not mine.

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Old 08-08-2018, 02:59 PM   #136
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Nnnnnn... no.

By make it, I assume you mean as an overcomer....

Yet, he did not teach that ONLY by rapture or martyrdom does one become an overcomer. First, all christians will be raptured to face the BEMA.. only then is their worthiness to participate as co-ruler with Christ decided.

He did say that if you were a Firstfruit then you were an overcomer.. a clear reference to the reward of the overcomers in Revelation 3:10.

Second, he said on more than one occasion that martyrdom was a sure thing because that one "loved not their life unto death" a clear reference to the spiritual battle waged in Revelation 12:11 and those that overcame the devil and his assaults.

But I agree that he never discussed himself as an overcomer.... that is the Lord's decision.. not yours and not mine.

Drake
He taught that only by rapture or martyrdom could one participate in the Millennial Kingdom. The rest had to wait 1000 years, per Revelation 20:5. Like Darby before him, he thought he'd get raptured.
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Old 08-08-2018, 03:07 PM   #137
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Brother, other than the two verses you site, this is largely your opinion (or someone else's). Of course I don't disagree that God Himself is logical according to His own logic (and not man's)

So the original question stands - Where in scripture does it say the "cast into outer darkness" ones spends a full 1000 years there, and not some portion thereof?
It is based on logic which is both God's and man's and that God is fair and a God of order. It is not fair to reward faithful with 1000 years and unfaithful less than or more than 1000 years. Just as it is not fair to reward believers with eternal life but temporal death for unbelievers.

God gives eternal life and eternal death. Logically the time period for rewards should match the time period for punishment. An eternal reward is matched by eternal punishment. A 1000 year reward is matched by a 1000 year punishment. You can see how 1000 years is the most logical number we could think of.

Thinking about the implications of a belief that it is not 1000 years. The idea that it is not a full 1000 years would mean that at some time during the 1000 year reign of Christ, these believers are accepted into the kingdom. More than 1000 years would mean they miss out on other things they are supposed to have.

To be fair to all, this would mean that Christ would have to give unbelievers an opportunity to repent and become saved after the age of grace has ended.
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Old 08-08-2018, 03:09 PM   #138
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StG,

You may be thinking about these verses:

Matthew 5:25-26: "Agree with thine adversary quickly, whiles thou art in the way with him; lest at any time the adversary deliver thee to the judge, and the judge deliver thee to the officer, and thou be cast into prison.26 Verily I say unto thee, Thou shalt by no means come out thence, till thou hast paid the uttermost farthing."

This may allow for some variation of the final farthing (one cent) payment according to the amount owed. God is righteous and the rewards and punishments He issues are variable. Perhaps that applies to the time in "prison".

Drake
I see that maybe relating to the quality of punishment not the quantity. The quantity is fixed, the quality varies depending. Luke 12:47-48 shows a different number of lashes.
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Old 08-08-2018, 03:33 PM   #139
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But I agree that he never discussed himself as an overcomer.... that is the Lord's decision.. not yours and not mine.
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So having only just recently come to grips with the fact that the ministry isn't what I thought it was and the churches are not God's unique flow on the earth, I'm confused as to what I should believe.

Is there still an outer darkness, the 1000 year 'summer school' for defeated believers?

This was one of my fears about leaving the church for a long time. It'd be nice to get clear on this matter.
Well he may have not discussed himself as an overcomer (that actually went without saying)...but Witness Lee was not shy about telling impressionable young people and gullible older ones how to be an overcomer - It was to be a faithful and devout member of the Local Church - HIS CHURCH - The Local Church of Witness Lee. Those poor souls in "poor, poor Christianity" were surely going to be the ones in outer darkness. Why? Why it was for the unforgivable sin of not following the person and work of Witness Lee. Haven't ever heard of the man? Oh well, sucks to be you! And God help those Christian apologists who were exposing the false teachings and aberrational practices...They were going straight to outer darkness...do not pass go, do not collect $200...It's extra weeping and extra gnashing of teeth for you guys! See ya in 1,000 years, you opposers and destroyers of God's building!

Of course our friend Drake is going to say "I never heard such things!" and "I don't recognize that Local Church!" Good for you my man. Glad you lived such a "sheltered church life". But many of us were not so lucky. Hundreds upon hundreds, probably thousands upon thousands, were not so lucky. Message after message, conference after conference, training after training, year after year, it was pounded and ingrained into the hearts and minds of the faithful - Go to meetings, EVERY meeting! Go to the conferences and trainings, EVERY conference and EVERY Training! Memorize the outlines! Buy those life studies! Pray read! Call on the Lord! And most important....believe with all your heart, and all your soul and all your mind that Witness Lee is the One Minister with The One Ministry for The age. Did all that? Good. At least you have a shot at being an overcomer.

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Old 08-08-2018, 04:22 PM   #140
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1 Cor 15:52 and 1 Thess 4:16 indicate that all believers in Christ will rise when Christ returns. Which would contradict Rev 20:4-6 if understood to mean that only the overcomers are resurrected in the first resurrection.

My understanding is that when Christ returns, all believers receive immortal bodies which are capable of existing for 1000 years.

Rev 20 that you quoted refers to the portion of these resurrected believers, the overcomers, who enjoy the reward of the kingdom.
I see agreement rather than contradiction in those verses. Paul could have been referring only to those who join Christ's reign for 1000 years.

1 Thes 4:16 talks about the "dead in Christ". Firstly, I doubt whether we can say the "unfaithful believers" died in Christ. I think many of them die in the world instead. Then,

1 Thes 4:17 Then we who are living, who are left remaining, will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air; and thus we will be always with the Lord.

So those who resurrected and meet the Lord in the air will not be separated from the Lord anymore, no casting out.

For 1 Cor 15, if you continue to read until 15:58...

1 Cor 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.

If the "we" and "all" in 15:51 means two groups of people ("overcomers" and "unfaithful believers"), it doesn't quite make sense Paul concluded with 15:58 asking the brothers to be steadfast becaue it would make no difference.

Rev 20 shows clearly there are only two resurrections - those who resurrect to reign with Christ for 1,000 years and "the rest" after 1,000 years.

So I believe there is no such thing as 1000 years of punishment or chastening in outer darkness for unfaithful believers.
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Old 08-08-2018, 04:22 PM   #141
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I see that maybe relating to the quality of punishment not the quantity. The quantity is fixed, the quality varies depending. Luke 12:47-48 shows a different number of lashes.
So are you saying time or severity are variable?
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Old 08-08-2018, 04:32 PM   #142
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So are you saying time or severity are variable?
time fixed severity variable.
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Old 08-08-2018, 04:54 PM   #143
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So I believe there is no such thing as 1000 years of punishment or chastening in outer darkness for unfaithful believers.
The unfaithful servant in Matthew 25 is cast into outer darkness - how long will this be?

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"And cast the worthless servant into the outer darkness. In that place there will be weeping and gnashing of teeth." Matt 25:30
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Old 08-08-2018, 05:18 PM   #144
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The unfaithful servant in Matthew 25 is cast into outer darkness - how long will this be?
Continuing in Matthew 25 Jesus speaks to the final judgement and puts folks in two categories. Is this before or after he sends believers to face the temporary and variable condemnation of the “outer darkness”?
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Old 08-08-2018, 05:30 PM   #145
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Continuing in Matthew 25 Jesus speaks to the final judgement and puts folks in two categories. Is this before or after he sends believers to face the temporary and variable condemnation of the “outer darkness”?
Now you would have to go and ask that!

As an older brother I know likes to say, "Good luck trying to get all those squirrels up the same tree!"
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Old 08-08-2018, 05:44 PM   #146
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Now you would have to go and ask that!

As an older brother I know likes to say, "Good luck trying to get all those squirrels up the same tree!"
I’m not sure if others have read this, but this article shares a POV that differs from Lee’s.

https://bible.org/article/“outer-dar...suburb-or-hell
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Old 08-08-2018, 06:38 PM   #147
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He taught that only by rapture or martyrdom could one participate in the Millennial Kingdom. The rest had to wait 1000 years, per Revelation 20:5. Like Darby before him, he thought he'd get raptured.
Nnnnn..,,, still no,

Of course one cannot participate as a co-ruler unless they be raptured,,, every born again believer is raptured. But being raptured does not guarantee that one will rule and reign with Christ. The criterion to be raptured is being regenerated... to be one who rules and reigns requires something more than just regeneration. iIf he said something else then you can clear it up by providing the reference.

Perhaps our misunderstanding is terms. Please reread #116 and then advise if that is what you meant... that is what I mean.

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Old 08-08-2018, 06:45 PM   #148
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The unfaithful servant in Matthew 25 is cast into outer darkness - how long will this be?
How would I know? The bible didn't say explicitly.

But in my personal opinion, it would be forever. Matt 25 is different from Matt 5 or 18 where the people are sent to prison until the debt is repaid. Those people are under the custody of the jailer. I see those imprisonments in Matt 5 and 18 as God's disciplinary action in present life.

The servant in Matt 25 was not only unfaithful, he was worthless to his master. God's people are His treasure and this worthless servant is probably not one of them. If we interpret darkness as without God's presence, how can that worthless servant become more worthy without God's help there in the outer darkness? That's why I think he probably will stay there forever.
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Old 08-08-2018, 07:38 PM   #149
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Well he may have not discussed himself as an overcomer (that actually went without saying)...but Witness Lee was not shy about telling impressionable young people and gullible older ones how to be an overcomer - It was to be a faithful and devout member of the Local Church - HIS CHURCH - The Local Church of Witness Lee. Those poor souls in "poor, poor Christianity" were surely going to be the ones in outer darkness. Why? Why it was for the unforgivable sin of not following the person and work of Witness Lee. Haven't ever heard of the man? Oh well, sucks to be you! And God help those Christian apologists who were exposing the false teachings and aberrational practices...They were going straight to outer darkness...do not pass go, do not collect $200...It's extra weeping and extra gnashing of teeth for you guys! See ya in 1,000 years, you opposers and destroyers of God's building!

Of course our friend Drake is going to say "I never heard such things!" and "I don't recognize that Local Church!" Good for you my man. Glad you lived such a "sheltered church life". But many of us were not so lucky. Hundreds upon hundreds, probably thousands upon thousands, were not so lucky.

-
That is all very interesting UntoHim but it is not even rational and it is inaccurate.

However, I won’t refute the dreadful account of your experience in the local churches. Not mine but yours. I did attend almost every training and conference for twenty years, bought the books, etc. called on the Lord and absolutely fell in love with Jesus to a depth I never experienced before. My love for the Lord has only grown over these past 40 years. I can only hope that in the path you have chosen that you also have found the peace that passes understanding and your love too is ever increasing.

Now the inaccurate part of your note is that Witness Lee did not claim that to be in the local churches would result in becoming overcomers. Rather he said that if you enter the life practices your chances may increase... but there is no guarantee.

The irrational component of your note is the allegation that only those in the Lords recovery will be overcomers. The church age is now ~2000 years old. There have been overcomers throughout every age. Revelation 2 & 3 show this clearly. Brother Lee taught nothing different Within the Catholic Church there are overcomers, as in the Protestant churches. We don’t know who the overcomers are... but we should aspire to be an overcomer, well pleasing to Him. That is why I appreciate this ministry, in spite of all the problems, ... the Lord Jesus just keeps supplying grace upon grace. Hope it is the same for you.

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Old 08-08-2018, 07:40 PM   #150
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How would I know? The bible didn't say explicitly.

But in my personal opinion, it would be forever. Matt 25 is different from Matt 5 or 18 where the people are sent to prison until the debt is repaid. Those people are under the custody of the jailer. I see those imprisonments in Matt 5 and 18 as God's disciplinary action in present life.

The servant in Matt 25 was not only unfaithful, he was worthless to his master. God's people are His treasure and this worthless servant is probably not one of them. If we interpret darkness as without God's presence, how can that worthless servant become more worthy without God's help there in the outer darkness? That's why I think he probably will stay there forever.
Hmmm, that is an interesting thought, but I don't think I agree with the eternal outer darkness thing. He was a bone fide servant and had been given things by his master, so he's a son in my thinking. The word for worthless could also be translated unmeritorious or unprofitable. Many know what it is like to have a son, yet they are basically unprofitable. We still love them and wouldn't punish them forever . . .

Yet it is a serious matter to fall into the hands of the Living God, and judgment does begin at His house!

So perhaps there are two basic principles that we can all agree on that are true from the word:

1. We are reborn with a gift of new life - His life - in us, and therefore children of God saved eternally.

2. There are many warnings in OT and NT telling us we are accountable - there is some degree of scrutiny by God in the next life (and also this life) - for our works after we receive the new birth.


We might not know exactly what the accountability looks like, but I am convinced it is there - just way, way too many places the word talks about this. One brother I know says it's good enough just knowing these two basic things: {we are eternally saved; yet we're accountable for our works} and that is good enough for him to be motivated to seek Him continually!

So is there agreement on these two basic concepts?
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Old 08-08-2018, 08:23 PM   #151
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-1

I agree with those two. I propose a third.

3. God is righteous and His judgments are just. He is strict yet He is fair in all His ways.

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Old 08-08-2018, 08:33 PM   #152
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-1

I agree with those two. I propose a third.

3. God is righteous and His judgments are just. He is strict yet He is fair in all His ways.

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AMEN and agreed! Maybe just add to #1 or #3 "He loves us"
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Old 08-08-2018, 08:49 PM   #153
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AMEN and agreed! Maybe just add to #1 or #3 "He loves us"
Yes brother.. I’m on board!
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Old 08-08-2018, 08:52 PM   #154
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We might not know exactly what the accountability looks like, but I am convinced it is there - just way, way too many places the word talks about this. One brother I know says it's good enough just knowing these two basic things: {we are eternally saved; yet we're accountable for our works} and that is good enough for him to be motivated to seek Him continually!

So is there agreement on these two basic concepts?
I prefer a little twist: {True believers are eternally saved; and they're accountable for their works.}

I have to constantly examine my faith to determine whether I really am a true believer, whether I walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which I have been called.

As A W Tozer said, "The man who is seriously convined that he deserves to go to hell is not likely to go there, while the man who believes that he is worthy of heaven will certainly never enter that blessed place."
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Old 08-08-2018, 09:00 PM   #155
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Drake? Do you think ALL of the forum members and readers and lurkers are ignorant of the teachings and practices and history of the Local Church of Witness Lee? I think some are. And thankfully if they stick around for a little bit they won't be.

"My dreadful account of my experiences in the Local Churches"? Nah, I never mentioned anything about "my experience" in the Local Church of Witness Lee in recent posts. In fact, you know about as much as my experience in the Local Church as I know about yours. You have your "experience" and I have mine. If you think your "experience" cancels out the FACTS OF HISTORY you are sadly mistaken my man. There are too many people on this forum and elsewhere who know something different than the "party line". You see, some of us were there at the feet of Witness Lee for years and years...some like me, for decades. You and Ron Kangas cannot edit out what we heard and saw. Sorry to burst your bubble my man. As you have noted just recently...you are entitled to your own opinion....you are not entitled to your own facts.

There is a reason why there are testimonies on this very forum of former AND SOME CURRENT members of the Local Church of Witness Lee who have plainly and clearly stated that they have concerns and doubts about Witness Lee's teachings regarding "Outer Darkness". Of course they are simply reiterating the same concerns and doubts that people, within and without of the Local Church, have expressed for about 40+ years now. Much of the concerns stem from Witness Lee and his followers claiming that he was the only person speaking as God's oracle on earth. (A claim, by the way, that you have never disavowed)

The bottom line, in my view, is not whether or not there will be rewards for those who have been "a good and faithful servant"....that is clearly stated in the Word. The issue is the basis upon which the "unfaithful" servants will be judged. Will these unfaithful servants be judged upon the Person and work of Jesus Christ the Righteous, or upon the person and work of a a man and his "ministry"? I am very confident about the first...I'm very doubtful and suspicious about the latter. Of course my "experience" (such as that may be) leads me to have lots of confidence and even boastfulness in the judgments and righteousness of Jesus Christ...and not so much in the judgments and righteousness (or lack thereof) of Witness Lee.

So, the question of "Outer Darkness", and the rewards and "punishments", and the implications for us believers in the here in now, can (and should) only be understood in the light of the Scriptures, and the common interpretations and understandings of learned and wise men since the beginning. Needless to say, Witness Lee is not to be considered among the "learned and wise men since the beginning"....not even close...not even in the ballpark.
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Old 08-08-2018, 09:24 PM   #156
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"My dreadful account of my experiences in the Local Churches"? Nah, I never mentioned anything about "my experience" in the Local Church of Witness Lee in recent posts.
Why of course you mentioned your experience in the local churches.... a few hours ago you stated...

Post #139 UntoHim> “Of course our friend Drake is going to say "I never heard such things!" and "I don't recognize that Local Church!" Good for you my man. Glad you lived such a "sheltered church life". But many of us were not so lucky. Hundreds upon hundreds, probably thousands upon thousands, were not so lucky. Message after message, conference after conference, training after training, year after year, it was pounded and ingrained into the hearts and minds of the faithful - Go to meetings, EVERY meeting! Go to the conferences and trainings, EVERY conference and EVERY Training! Memorize the outlines! Buy those life studies! Pray read! Call on the Lord! And most important....believe with all your heart, and all your soul and all your mind that Witness Lee is the One Minister with The One Ministry for The age. Did all that? Good. At least you have a shot at being an overcomer. “

That is pretty “recent”,

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Old 08-08-2018, 10:07 PM   #157
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What is the part of my post that you quoted that is not a fact?
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Old 08-09-2018, 02:47 AM   #158
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The RecV footnotes in Rev 20 & 12 verify what was clearly and repeatedly taught: that participants in the Millennium were either killed (martyred) during the church age or the great tribulation, OR got raptured at the start of the GT. No other route was offered.

It seems current LSM operatives either studiously ignore this teaching, or try to quietly modify it. But back in the day, it couldn't have been made more categorically clear, and as UntoHim and others relate, it was often held over us.

But now Lee, by not being either killed or raptured, has fallen in his own pit that he's dug for himself.
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Old 08-09-2018, 05:12 AM   #159
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We might not know exactly what the accountability looks like, but I am convinced it is there - just way, way too many places the word talks about this.
Drake and Evancelical have show you the truth of Witness Lee, we can learn from this speaker who recovered this truth. Many believers miss this.
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Old 08-09-2018, 06:17 AM   #160
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Drake and Evancelical have show you the truth of Witness Lee, we can learn from this speaker who recovered this truth. Many believers miss this.
Have LSM leaders surreptitiously changed the footnotes to the RecV online version? This 'truth' seems to be changing, over time.

1. Who gets to participate in the 1,000-year kingdom? Has the roster changed, now that Lee has died, and was neither raptured or martyred?

2. What happens to those "in Christ" who don't get raptured or martyred? Outer darkness, or some less unpleasant fate?

I clearly remember the "raptured or martyred" teaching, and the participants in the trainings looking at each other afterward and mouthing those phrases, and my paper RecV seems to bear that out unequivocally in its footnotes. But now the LSM sings a new song? A new 'truth recovered'? The age has turned? Are we now recovering Lee from himself?
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Old 08-09-2018, 06:39 AM   #161
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What is the part of my post that you quoted that is not a fact?
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UntoHim,

We’ve already covered this ground..To recount...

In #149 I laid out what was inaccurate and irrational about your #139 post. I also interpreted the characterizations of your experience stated in #139 as “dreaded”..... Oh, the drudgery of it all! Meeting after meeting, conference after conference, the pounding into your head, the ingraining of messages into the faithful! Oh, that pray reading! The agony of calling on the Lord! I pity the gullible. Thank God I, UntoHim, am enlightened now and not like that Drake who lives a sheltered church life! ....

Is it more accurate to interpret your description as joyful?

In response to “dreaded” you emphatically stated in #155 that you never shared your experience in recent posts. To that I pointed out in post #156 that in post #139 you used the phrase “many of us were not so lucky” while describing events and practices in the local churches in your time there.

If you are not included in the “us” part of your statement then what exactly do you mean by “us” if it doesn’t include you? If by “not so lucky” you did not mean your church life experience was dreaded then exactly where on the scale of dissatisfaction do you put your experience? I mean seriously brother, one only needs to read one of your colorful tirades against Brother Lee and the local churches to know just how discontented you are about the whole experience.

And yet, it was your experience and I’m not refuting that... but what you cannot get over is that I went through all the same trainings, conferences, meetings, life practices, and the storms.... no shelter there. Just a different outcome. I might have even sat next to you or perhaps we had a meal together. What I can tell you is that after 40 years in the local churches and under this ministry I love the Lord Jesus more than ever, He continues to shine, draw, and impart life into me. And I really hope you too have found the peace that passes all understanding and that He has given you a joyful heart wherever you ended up.

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Old 08-09-2018, 07:03 AM   #162
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The RecV footnotes in Rev 20 & 12 verify what was clearly and repeatedly taught: that participants in the Millennium were either killed (martyred) during the church age or the great tribulation, OR got raptured at the start of the GT. No other route was offered.

It seems current LSM operatives either studiously ignore this teaching, or try to quietly modify it. But back in the day, it couldn't have been made more categorically clear, and as UntoHim and others relate, it was often held over us.

But now Lee, by not being either killed or raptured, has fallen in his own pit that he's dug for himself.
Aron,

Your post is uninformed .... perhaps willfully.

Read post #116 carefully. Believers are harvested before, during, and at the end of the great tribulation. Then...

“When the Lord Jesus returns, He will first terminate the false Christians, burning up all the false Christians, the tares. Then He will take up all the real ones into the air according to their maturity. At His judgment seat in the air, He will exercise His judgment over all the real Christians to decide who will be selected and chosen. Those will be the overcomers who will return to the earth and fight against the rebellious army of Antichrist. After defeating Antichrist and his army, the overcomers will be Christ’s co-kings, reigning with Him in His kingdom on the earth,” Witness Lee

In addition the dead in Christ, those not alive during the great tribulation, saints throughout the centuries, will also be judged in the air and many of them also will return with the Lord Jesus as part of His bridal army.

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Old 08-09-2018, 07:30 AM   #163
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The RecV footnotes in Rev 20 & 12 verify what was clearly and repeatedly taught: that participants in the Millennium were either killed (martyred) during the church age or the great tribulation, OR got raptured at the start of the GT. No other route was offered.

It seems current LSM operatives either studiously ignore this teaching, or try to quietly modify it. But back in the day, it couldn't have been made more categorically clear, and as UntoHim and others relate, it was often held over us.
It was very common for us young brothers in the LC to look at each other and say something like, "Well this is the only way we're getting in (to the millennial feast)!" and would make a gesture of neck-chopping with our hand (as in beheading). We would all knowingly nod and laugh in a pained sort of humor . . .

In fact, a brother and I used to do that as recently as maybe 10-15 years ago in Scottsdale. Thankfully we've received (and are receiving) fresh light from the Lord! (And it was a fresh knowing of His love that started opening the word to us in a clearer way.)
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Old 08-09-2018, 08:03 AM   #164
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The bottom line, in my view, is not whether or not there will be rewards for those who have been "a good and faithful servant"....that is clearly stated in the Word. The issue is the basis upon which the "unfaithful" servants will be judged. Will these unfaithful servants be judged upon the Person and work of Jesus Christ the Righteous, or upon the person and work of a a man and his "ministry"? I am very confident about the first...I'm very doubtful and suspicious about the latter. Of course my "experience" (such as that may be) leads me to have lots of confidence and even boastfulness in the judgments and righteousness of Jesus Christ...and not so much in the judgments and righteousness (or lack thereof) of Witness Lee.
I am basically fine with where this thread has gone since I "rebooted" it (from where it was over a year ago). I do believe that WL went too far and planted damaging seeds of fear about outer darkness, and how one could easily wind-up there for 1000 years. Yup - been there, done that and wore the T-shirt plumb out a while ago! Praise the Lord He has shown, and is showing us that fear is not the basis for His motivation and dealing with us - NOT AT ALL. His basis and His motivation toward us is that of a loving Father who wants a real and living relationship with His children. That is His purpose. Yes, He will get His purpose (His family), but He is not a giant steamroller who delights in crushing us if we get in His way (that's what I used to imagine). That makes no sense to me now.

"There is no fear in love; perfect love drives out all fear. So then, love has not been made perfect in anyone who is afraid, because fear has to do with punishment. 1 John 4:18 No way to say that better!!!

But, let me also say I am thankful to the Lord that He specifically led me somewhere which taught there was accountability for our works in this life (namely the LC). The unfaithful servant in Matthew 25 was afraid of the Lord and this resulted in him acting in unprofitable ways, and shows he was not perfected in love. Fear; Unfaithfulness; Not truly knowing Christ in his life (so he viewed Christ inaccurately) = a result of not profiting in his works.

The Lord gave me smaller doses of the Recovery than He did many others (let me say I am most thankful for His love to me and His timing of where He's led me). Others spent more time under the ministry of WL, and this doctrine of God crushing them if they (for instance) left the LC, and probably got more of this errant teaching into them than what got into me. But praise Him for fresh light regarding His love for us!

So again, all of us have some basic agreement on the below three principles in the word, right?

1. The Father loves us and we are reborn with a gift of new life - His life - in us, and therefore children of God who are true believers are thereby saved eternally.

2. There are many warnings in OT and NT telling us we are accountable - there is some degree of scrutiny by God in the next life (and also this life) - for our works after we receive the new birth.

3. God is righteous and His judgments are just. He is firm yet He is fair in all His ways.


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Old 08-09-2018, 09:44 AM   #165
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I agree with those two. I propose a third.

3. God is righteous and His judgments are just. He is strict yet He is fair in all His ways.

Drake
Some further thought on this - the word "strict" - could we change that to "firm" perhaps? Strict often conjures up a picture of Sister Mary Elephant coming to gleefully whack someone with a ruler.
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Old 08-09-2018, 11:22 AM   #166
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Some further thought on this - the word "strict" - could we change that to "firm" perhaps? Strict often conjures up a picture of Sister Mary Elephant coming to gleefully whack someone with a ruler.
sure... change it.....
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Old 08-09-2018, 11:56 AM   #167
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It was very common for us young brothers in the LC to look at each other and say something like, "Well this is the only way we're getting in (to the millennial feast)!" and would make a gesture of neck-chopping with our hand (as in beheading). We would all knowingly nod and laugh in a pained sort of humor . . .
I also remember the pained sort of humour. The oracle has spoken, told us our destiny, and now we deal with it. Slogans were born, "Even when he's wrong he's right" or "raptured or martyred" were examples.

But according to Drake we mis-remember? Hard to believe if what we heard was made so stark.

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“When the Lord Jesus returns, He will first terminate the false Christians, burning up all the false Christians, the tares. Then He will take up all the real ones into the air according to their maturity. At His judgment seat in the air, He will exercise His judgment over all the real Christians to decide who will be selected and chosen. Those will be the overcomers who will return to the earth and fight against the rebellious army of Antichrist. After defeating Antichrist and his army, the overcomers will be Christ’s co-kings, reigning with Him in His kingdom on the earth,” Witness Lee

In addition the dead in Christ, those not alive during the great tribulation, saints throughout the centuries, will also be judged in the air and many of them also will return with the Lord Jesus as part of His bridal army.

Drake
Please show the RecV footnote that supports the second paragraph. I've seen footnotes of verses for the quoted part. But nothing for the second part.

It may be that WL was so convinced that the Lord would return for himself and his followers in the LC that he simply glossed over the second part, of the believers who have gone on before. And now that he's died we mis-interpret his mis-emphasis? Again, the parallel for Darby is worth noting. Darby was absolutely convinced that Jesus would return to take him & the Brethren alive.
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Old 08-09-2018, 01:30 PM   #168
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Please show the RecV footnote that supports the second paragraph. I've seen footnotes of verses for the quoted part. But nothing for the second part.
ummm. aron.

Let me get this rock fetch straight.... you want what about this statement?

"In addition the dead in Christ, those not alive during the great tribulation, saints throughout the centuries, will also be judged in the air and many of them also will return with the Lord Jesus as part of His bridal army."

... because you do not believe Witness Lee taught which part?

Exactly, what did he not teach about that statement that you want a reference of?

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Old 08-09-2018, 02:00 PM   #169
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ummm. aron.

Let me get this rock fetch straight.... you want what about this statement?

"In addition the dead in Christ, those not alive during the great tribulation, saints throughout the centuries, will also be judged in the air and many of them also will return with the Lord Jesus as part of His bridal army."

... because you do not believe Witness Lee taught which part?
It's called a footnote. You are giving me a statement with no source. You often ask for sources of statements; so where is the Biblical source (verse + RecV footnote) for your assertion of Lee's supposed teaching?
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Old 08-09-2018, 02:20 PM   #170
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It's called a footnote. You are giving me a statement with no source. You often ask for sources of statements; so where is the Biblical source (verse + RecV footnote) for your assertion of Lee's supposed teaching?
I will give you a reference..... however, I am asking specifically what aspect of the statement are you in disbelief about?

You don't think Witness Lee believed the dead in Christ can be overcomers? You don't think he thought they would be raised at His coming? You don't think he believed they would be judged at His coming?

Be specific.

I'm asking you to be specific because I heard variations of that statement from Witness lee so many times that I find it incredulous that you doubt he believed and taught every word of it. It is so fundamental to his eschatology.

However, it has been decades and perhaps time is taking its toll. So, be specific about the things you do not think he believed. If there are multiple items list them.
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Old 08-09-2018, 09:41 PM   #171
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I will give you a reference..... however, I am asking specifically what aspect of the statement are you in disbelief about?

You don't think Witness Lee believed the dead in Christ can be overcomers? You don't think he thought they would be raised at His coming? You don't think he believed they would be judged at His coming?
The topic is on "outer darkness", or what WL called the "1,000-year summer school" where defeated believers went for remedial spiritual maturing. Weeping, gnashing of teeth & so forth.

I remember the LC slogan "raptured or martyred" as how to get into the "wedding feast" of 1,000 years, as taught by WL. Poster StG seems to remember similar rhetoric & teachings (post #163).

Then I look into the RecV footnotes and see the support for this:
__________________________________________________ ___

Revelation 20:6 Blessed and holy is he who has part in the first resurrection; over these the second death has no authority, but they will be priests of God and of Christ and will reign with Him for a thousand years.

Footnote: Not only the resurrected overcomers, such as the man-child in and the later martyrs, but also the raptured living overcomers, such as the firstfruits, have part in the issue of the first resurrection.

Life-Study: Revelation 15:2 says, “And I saw as it were a glassy sea mingled with fire, and those who had come off victorious from the beast and from his image and from the number of his name, standing on the glassy sea, having harps of God.” We may call those mentioned here the late overcomers, the believers who pass through most of the great tribulation and who overcome Antichrist and his worship. These are those referred to in 14:12 and 13, who will be martyred under the persecution of Antichrist, then resurrected to reign with Christ in the millennium (20:4).

Revelation 14:15 And another angel came out of the temple, crying with a loud voice to Him who sat on the cloud, Send forth Your sickle and reap, for the hour to reap has come because the harvest of the earth is ripe.

Footnote: The harvest of the earth is God's people on earth, the believers in Christ. At His first coming to the earth, the Lord sowed Himself into His believers. All the believers since that time, who have received Him as the seed of life, have become God's crop on the earth. The first-ripe ones will be reaped as the firstfruits to God before the great tribulation. The majority will ripen with the help of the sufferings in the great tribulation and will be reaped, raptured, at the end of the great tribulation.

Revelation 12:11 And they overcame him because of the blood of the Lamb and because of the word of their testimony, and they loved not their soul-life even unto death.

Footnote: Unto death indicates martyrdom. The overcoming believers who constitute the man-child do not love their soul-life even unto death.
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I don't see anything in Revelation 20 (the only place which specifically mentions the 1,000-year kingdom) on those who are already dead but not martyred participating. Neither verse nor footnote. Nor do I see it documented in other sections. All I see are 1)resurrected martyrs and 2)living "raptured" overcomers.

All of this seems to jibe with my and StGs memories. But you say WL taught differently.
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Old 08-09-2018, 10:47 PM   #172
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-1

Aron,

I don’t disagree with any of that... but there is more about this topic than what is found just in the book of Revelation .

You are engaging in selective reading... ignoring the whole in favor of a part. Did Witness Lee only teach on this topic from the book of a Revelation? No, of course not.

So, I asked you three questions about what you thought Witness Lee did not teach or believe on this topic. I asked because you need to be clear about what you want me to elaborate on and provide a reference.

Let’s go there now. Please answer those questions.

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Old 08-10-2018, 02:55 AM   #173
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...there is more about this topic than what is found just in the book of Revelation .

You are engaging in selective reading... ignoring the whole in favor of a part. Did Witness Lee only teach on this topic from the book of a Revelation? No, of course not.
The topic of the 1,000 year kingdom is found only in a few verses in Revelation 20. It doesn't reference Paul's epistles (one might wonder if it avoids them). Witness Lee made what appear to be categorical statements about participation in this kingdom, using slogans to encapsulate his teachings. I remembered one - "raptured or martyred". I provided quotes which appear to align with my memory. (SonstoGlory has similar memories).

You have to bear with me, as my memories of the time are now going on 30 years. But I do remember the slogans! They were useful then and still are!

You made a generic statement and I asked for attribution. Apparently you're now stonewalling. Which is fine - I expect little else.
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Old 08-10-2018, 04:42 AM   #174
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The topic of the 1,000 year kingdom is found only in a few verses in Revelation 20. It doesn't reference Paul's epistles (one might wonder if it avoids them). Witness Lee made what appear to be categorical statements about participation in this kingdom, using slogans to encapsulate his teachings. I remembered one - "raptured or martyred". I provided quotes which appear to align with my memory. (SonstoGlory has similar memories).

You have to bear with me, as my memories of the time are now going on 30 years. But I do remember the slogans! They were useful then and still are!

You made a generic statement and I asked for attribution. Apparently you're now stonewalling. Which is fine - I expect little else.
Ok.. I’m trying to help you remember.

Your recollections are in part.

If you are going to restrict your understanding of the millennial reign of Christ to a verse at the end of Revelation... and then ask me to explain what Witness Lee taught about the millennial reign and the overcomers just from that.. then you are not only engaging in selective reading but are trying to win an argument by selecting facts.

Besides that, If there is any stonewalling Aron it is on your part right now. You have p,entry of time to construct arguments from one book of the Bible but you cannot find the time to answer yes or no to three simple questions. I think the reason is obvious, you know and I know that once you incorporate all that Witness Lee taught on this topic your argument folds like a house of cards. You prefer to keep making assertions about what he taught based on a few selective verses because to open the aperture to include what he taught in whole allows you to frame his teaching in a way that suits your point of attack.

Else, you are not only stonewalling, sadly, you appear to be engaging in the deceitful art of sophistry.

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Old 08-10-2018, 05:46 AM   #175
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I'm haven't been ignoring the conversation between Aron & Drake, but I woke up this morning with this thought in me. The servant who is given over to the "jailers" (Matthew 18: 21-35) to repay his king everything was a matter of forgiveness. The king forgave his debt, but this slave did not forgive his fellow slaves of their's. He became very demanding and even beat his fellow slaves. This demonstrates how much unforgiveness was in him.

This section in Matthew 18 starts (prior to the parable) with a discussion about forgiveness, and Jesus tells them to forgive "70 times 7." I think this shows that God takes forgiveness very seriously. A HUGE price was paid for this - Christ was sent to suffer and die for complete forgiveness. Everything was given in order to forgive us. And He did it in such a complete way that He says He won't even remember our sins! He uses phrases such as, "as far as the east is from the west" is how far they are removed (Psalm 103:12), and says plainly that He will "remember your sin no more." (Isaiah 43:25; Hebrews 8:12)

So my thought is that since this parable ends with the unforgiving slave being thrown into jail, until his entire debt is paid, it is a warning specifically about us having any unforgiveness in our lives.
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Old 08-10-2018, 06:44 AM   #176
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Another great post Sons.

Plus, let's keep all this in perspective. What's a 1000 yrs? but alas, only a day.
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Old 08-10-2018, 07:36 AM   #177
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Plus, let's keep all this in perspective. What's a 1000 yrs? but alas, only a day.
Yes, I had the same thought. But that was said of the Lord, not us!
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Old 08-10-2018, 08:05 AM   #178
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Yes, I had the same thought. But that was said of the Lord, not us!
Well then, reigning with the Lord for a 1000 yrs will be a only a day. But if it doesn't apply to outer darkness, than outer darkness is in our solar system, and we're narrowing in on where it is. Maybe it's in the illusive dark matter out there somewhere. But it's going around the sun, every 365 earth days.

Teeth means food. Hope there's a kitchen and bathroom there. We can feel around in the darkness.

I know, this sounds absurd. That's why I think it's symbolic, not literal.
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Old 08-10-2018, 01:06 PM   #179
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So where can we look to see the Unfaithful spending a thousand years in outer Darkness? I heard the "punishment for non-transformed believers is a thousand years in outer darkness to ripened" many times. Where did this come from?
Witness Lee would say something like "The whole Bible shows us. . ." then make a pastiche out of a few disparate verses and there was our 'present truth'. In this case, he cobbled together the 1,000-year "millennial kingdom" of Revelation (see e.g., "they lived and reigned with Christ for a thousand years" in 20:6) with gospel parables teaching responsibility and its consequences. But Jesus never spoke of a thousand-year prison in his parables, and John never wrote explicitly of a thousand-year prison (except for Satan) for "defeated believers" as a direct analog to his "wedding feast of the Lamb". This composite imagery was assembled by Lee.

In my case, I remember Lee in his spoken messages stressing to us the points "raptured or martyred". . . when I looked at the RecV verses in Revelation 20, on the 1000-year kingdom, it seemed to agree with this, and the footnotes were explicit and categorical as I remembered. I then checked the references in the footnotes in Revelation 20 - taking the reader to Revelation 12 (the man-child), Revelation 14, Revelation 15, and the commentaries seemed to concur - see post #171. (Drake says I put together a 'selective' reading but the verses were linked by RecV footnotes and cross-references, and thus were 'selected' by LSM! And all showed this "raptured or martyred" theme.)

Yet Lee himself was neither raptured nor martyred, and I publicly asked where this left him. He'd stressed to us that Nee had been martyred, and thus had his ticket punched. But what of Lee, I wondered?

Now, this question doesn't mean Lee was either wrong or right, but that he put together a personalised view. I think that he, like Darby and others before, was sure that he'd be raptured anon with his close acolytes and this would validate all his special claims. Now that he's buried, why should we uncritically submit ourselves to his personal theology? "But it's in the Bible!!" That's what the Jehovah's Witnesses say, and the Christian Scientists, and all the rest. I can put some verses together and make any claim I want. Why should Lee's claim, based on his own subjective pastiche, own anyone else's psyche?

It's fear, folks. He used fear to control, and manipulate, and coerce others. He set his son Timothy repeatedly into the church coffers (1962 Worlds Fair, then the Daystar Motor Home Corporation), and both walked away scot-free. Is this an overcomer? We know about his injection of other son Philip into church leadership, and Philip's subsequent and repeated encroachments. . . by his own yardstick Witness Lee failed. I don't think we should cow abjectly before his theology. Like it's objective and unquestionable 'truth'.

For freedom Christ has set us free; stand fast therefore, and do not be entangled again with the yoke of slavery. The "1,000-year prison" teaching should not be received uncritically as if it were from God. Question it - challenge it - test it - prove it.
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Old 08-10-2018, 01:40 PM   #180
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If we today are so easily confused about the usage, and meaning, of a word like "ministry", then how much more so if we see something like "Peter's angel" in Acts 12, or "The Spirit not yet [given]" in John 7, or the imagery to the seven churches in Asia in Revs 2 & 3, or the Great Angel of the OT. To declare a word or phrase's meaning because it fits our preconceived notions, when we have almost no idea of the shared understandings, several thousand years ago, between the writer and readers, seems presumptuous.

Beware of teachers who confidently proclaim that they have the definitive understanding, and "this means that", simply because it fits their scheme which they peddle for fun and profit. It's a confidence game and they're selling themselves and their assurance, above any objective, realized "truth", including Jesus Christ Himself. If they can convince their hearer that they are sure, this reassures and calms (read: stupefies) the mark, who then takes shelter under their ministration, even if it has little bearing on the text at hand. Thus we hear, "Our brother" told us this, or that, so relax and assume that we now have reality firmly in our sights. Beware: it's a perilous journey, and these are the hidden reefs we were warned against.
When people peddle something like the "Thousand year prison" as a pillar in their own personal kingdom-building programme, beware. Prove all things.
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Old 08-10-2018, 03:37 PM   #181
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I'm haven't been ignoring the conversation between Aron & Drake, but I woke up this morning with this thought in me. The servant who is given over to the "jailers" (Matthew 18: 21-35) to repay his king everything was a matter of forgiveness. The king forgave his debt, but this slave did not forgive his fellow slaves of their's. He became very demanding and even beat his fellow slaves. This demonstrates how much unforgiveness was in him.

This section in Matthew 18 starts (prior to the parable) with a discussion about forgiveness, and Jesus tells them to forgive "70 times 7." I think this shows that God takes forgiveness very seriously. A HUGE price was paid for this - Christ was sent to suffer and die for complete forgiveness. Everything was given in order to forgive us. And He did it in such a complete way that He says He won't even remember our sins! He uses phrases such as, "as far as the east is from the west" is how far they are removed (Psalm 103:12), and says plainly that He will "remember your sin no more." (Isaiah 43:25; Hebrews 8:12)

So my thought is that since this parable ends with the unforgiving slave being thrown into jail, until his entire debt is paid, it is a warning specifically about us having any unforgiveness in our lives.
What if the verse in Matthew 18:35 isn't translated as "jailer" how does that help or hurt this narrative of "Outer Darkness"?

The greek word here in Matthew 18 is basanistēs, meaning tormentor, Strongs G930.

Jailer, on the other hand - (See Acts 16:23 as an example) is desmophulax, meaning one who guards the prisoners.
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Old 08-10-2018, 07:18 PM   #182
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This composite imagery was assembled by Lee.
You say it so much better than I do.

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It's fear, folks.
Fear with "Overcomer." Overcoming meant that we had to be more given. more committed, and more driven for "the ministry."

Overcomers are special. They aren't like the rest of the ordinary saints. They're the ones that are truest to Lee, like the Blended Brothers, the living example of what it means to be an Overcomer.

Then ... if you aren't going to be a overcomer, you risk outer darkness ... and then fear stepped up.

I see cultic methodologies going on?
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Old 08-10-2018, 09:36 PM   #183
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I have friends in the LC who have resigned themselves, because of this teaching, to never being overcomes. They literally told me, "we'll never be overcomers, but, oh well." It's almost a joke. They have no hope. That's the sad reality that people have when belief and faith in Jesus and what he accomplished isn't seen as enough.
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Old 08-11-2018, 01:12 AM   #184
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I have friends in the LC who have resigned themselves, because of this teaching, to never being overcomes. They literally told me, "we'll never be overcomers, but, oh well." It's almost a joke. They have no hope. That's the sad reality that people have when belief and faith in Jesus and what he accomplished isn't seen as enough.
There's nothing in the teachings that says overcoming is by our own efforts. That more reflects their lack of faith in the Lord's work and His ability, than anything Lee or Nee or the local churches actually teach.

For example, here are a few quotes from Lee and Nee showing that we cannot overcome by our own efforts:

But just as one cannot be saved through good works, one cannot overcome through good works.
~ Collected works of Nee, Overcoming Life

Do not try to overcome sin, nor to conquer your weakness , Life-Study of Genesis, Witness Lee

We may think that since the Lord has told us to overcome, we must therefore try to overcome, ......It does not mean this at all. ~ Witness Lee.
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Old 08-11-2018, 01:30 AM   #185
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You say it so much better than I do.


Fear with "Overcomer." Overcoming meant that we had to be more given. more committed, and more driven for "the ministry."

Overcomers are special. They aren't like the rest of the ordinary saints. They're the ones that are truest to Lee, like the Blended Brothers, the living example of what it means to be an Overcomer.

Then ... if you aren't going to be a overcomer, you risk outer darkness ... and then fear stepped up.

I see cultic methodologies going on?

Nothing like this is taught in the local churches or by Nee or Lee and I have never heard of outer darkness being used as a weapon of fear. You have this perspective about overcomers because you are viewing them from the point of view your own degraded condition.

Rather than overcomers being someone special above and beyond a "normal Christian" - an overcomer is someone who is a normal Christian. Every believer is meant to be an overcomer.

In other words, it is not that the bar to be an overcomer is set too high above and beyond a normal or ordinary believer, it is that the bar to being an overcomer is set at 'normal' but it might look high for someone who is in a very poor condition.
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Old 08-11-2018, 01:56 AM   #186
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As much as some of you have tried to exaggerate the teachings about outer darkness and the supposed fear it brings - I think it pales in comparison to Christian teachings about hell and eternal torment, particularly those which do not believe in eternal security (and there are many of them). Youtube is full of them.

Some have alleged or implied that the outer darkness teaching is meant to keep people in the recovery. I find that unlikely given that the non-OSAS teachings are better suited for that.

The outer darkness teaching serves no purpose to the recovery other than being a way to reconcile Arminian and Calvinist teachings with a view towards unity. For this reason the teaching is unifying, not divisive. It lets the Calvinist believe that they will not lose their salvation, and it assures the Arminian that no crime will go unpunished.
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Old 08-11-2018, 04:59 AM   #187
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Yes, I had the same thought. But that was said of the Lord, not us!
A 1000 years in outer darkness is a very long time. Even a 20 year earth time jail sentence is a Very long time... multiply that x 50 and suddenly it has your attention.

Compound that with the incarceration definition that LofT prefers... not with a jailer... but a torturer. That should cause every believer to pursue the Lord and His interests, with purity of heart and forgiveness toward one another, diligent in all things and not slothful, redeeming the time as the day draws near, all the days of our lives.

If you think it is a fearful concept, then it is a healthy one for you to have. As Evangelical says, some of you are overplaying the fear aspect. Yet, whether you believe it or not does not change that there will be a judgement and the consequences are laid out in the Scripture there for us to consider. Furthermore, you heard it here so you will be without excuse. I myself do not live in fear and I do not know anyone that does... however, there are times it needs to brought to remembrance and the Spirit within nudges me back with grace and life.

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Old 08-11-2018, 05:48 AM   #188
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(Drake says I put together a 'selective' reading
Yep.

Reminds of a nice young Muslim man I once talked to.

I was preaching the gospel to an Imam and some of his followers...... an intense encounter as you might imagine. After an hour or so, not sure exactly cuz time flies by when you’re having fun, and the screaming on their side subsided a few decibels a young man pulled me aside, handed me a KJV Bible, and challenged me to show him where it says “Jesus is God”. Several verses came to mind and as I started to thumb through to them he added “but you can only use the verses in RED”. He meant of course that He only wanted the proof from the actual quotes of Jesus as indicated by the red text in his Bible.

That is selective and that is what Aron is also doing.. pivoting his argument on “1000” or limiting it to the book of Revelation. Plugging his ears to the whole in favor of a part to support his argument. In so doing he is violating an important matter concerning the Word of God. He is breaking it. Jesus told the Jews they were doing this when He referred to Himself as the Son of God and He challenged them concerning their own teaching “gods” in Psalm 82. He said the scripture cannot be broken. Aron’s argument fails were he to allow Brother Lees teaching on the subject from whole Bible.... so he slices and dices the Word of God... breaking it.

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Old 08-11-2018, 06:13 AM   #189
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