Wednesday, June 03, 2020

Witness Lee and the local churches:
A Personal Testimony Refuted

4. No Cult Manipulation

Witness Lee and the local churches not manipulating members as a cult

This term implies some action to cause the members to change their thinking for the benefit of the leader. It suggests that there is a motive of self-interest in the manipulator out from which the members are given suggestions or otherwise coerced to take some actions, which they would not have otherwise taken. The result is a loss to the members and a profit to the manipulating leader. However, with Witness Lee and the local churches there is no such manipulation of the members. There is no local church cult. 

Whenever a decision is required regarding a specific course of action no direction is given. Instead, the members are advised to pray and seek the Lord’s leading. No leader or responsible member tells others what to wear, what to buy, whom to marry, what career to prepare for, etc. The decisions belong to the individual members but they are urged to pray. The Lord Himself operates in His members as the head in a body directs its motions. This is not manipulation of members; this is not a local church cult. This is walking by the Spirit.

 The actions of the members are not the result of manipulation by a charismatic leader. They come from the Lord Himself as the Spirit within. As each member prays and comes to the Lord in His word, they are fed with the spiritual food. Food in the physical body is assimilated into the body to sustain it and cause it to grow. The Lord’s members assimilate Him as food to His spiritual body. He causes them to grow with the growth of God. The outward manifestation of this growth is a corporate people operating according to the Lords leading individually and collectively. With Witness Lee and the local churches, it is not a matter of manipulation but the expression of the Lord’s life.

 The benefit is not to the leaders in the church. The profit is to the Lord Himself. No leader in the local churches is being made wealthy or being exalted. Rather, they serve the Lord and His body as slaves. The issue is not self-exaltation but self-effacement. The issue is the glorification, the expression of God. Witness Lee’s realization of his ministry was that it was not something for himself; rather he realized that he was diminished and decreasing for the sake of the Lord’s increase. His final word, “sacrifice,” indicated that his realization was that his entire life was poured out and consumed as a sacrifice for the Lord and His interest. Is this a local church cult? Certainly not!

 With Witness Lee and the local churches there is not a manipulating charismatic leader. Witness Lee was not such a one. He was a spiritual man who led people to love God, worship God, and give themselves to Him. All the glory is the Lord’s. This is not a local church cult. This is the Lord’s Body.

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