This booklet was written in the 1970s to respond to the criticisms of the Christian Research Institute (CRI). CRI has since withdrawn its criticisms and reversed its earlier conclusions (see “A Brief History of the Relationship between the Local Churches and the Christian Research Institute”). The text of this booklet is published here for the historical record, for the important points of truth it addresses, and because CRI’s criticisms, although withdrawn, are still repeated by others.
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The Christian Research Institute has published a booklet entitled, “Witness Lee and the Local Church.” Because this booklet is filled with falsehoods, misrepresentations, and slanderous accusations, it behooves us to issue a reply that the Christian public might know the truth. In the words of the Apostle Paul, we must “put off the lie” and “speak every man truth with his neighbor” (Eph. 4:25). The purpose of this pamphlet is to refute the charge that we are in error concerning the doctrine of God and to give a positive testimony regarding our belief in and experience of the Triune God. As the reader shall see, we in the churches are absolutely for the whole truth of the biblical revelation of God and for the genuine experience of the reality of God. We stand uncompromisingly for the truth and we testify unashamedly of our experience. We do not adulterate the Word of God, but by the manifestation of the truth commend ourselves to every man’s conscience in the sight of God (2 Cor. 4:2).
The desire of God’s heart is to dispense Himself into us that He might have a corporate expression of Himself on earth today. This corporate expression of the Triune God is the church, the Body of Christ, the fullness of Him who fills all in all (Eph. 1:23). The strategy of the enemy, Satan, is to frustrate the dispensation of the Triune God into man. He does this by blinding men’s minds with lies, falsehoods, and deceptions, and by isolating them from the practical reality of the genuine church life. In 2 Corinthians 4:4 Paul says, “In whom the god of this age hath blinded the thoughts of them which believe not, lest the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God, should shine unto them” (Gk.). In these days of spiritual warfare, the “God who commanded the light to shine out of darkness” is still shining in men’s hearts “to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ” (2 Cor. 4:6). One way to stand with the shining of the Triune God and against the blinding activities of the enemy is to sincerely open your mind to the truth. Do not allow your mind to be blinded by lies, prejudices, and preconceived ideas, and do not uncritically take another man’s judgment as your own. Go to the Lord with a proper spirit (Matt. 5:3) and a pure heart (Matt. 5:8) and see what He has to say, for one day, we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ (2 Cor. 5:10) and give an account to Him. The Spirit of truth guides us into all truth (John 16:13). Our confidence is in Him. Are you willing without reservation to give yourself to the Lord (Rom. 12:1-2), to turn your heart to Him and gaze with unveiled face upon His glory (2 Cor. 3:14-18), and to be willing, at any cost, to do His will (John 7:17)? If you are, God will have a free way to work in you and to show you what is on His heart. The Triune God wants to dispense Himself into you and fill your whole being with Himself that you might be a part of His corporate expression. Don’t allow the subtle enemy to rob you of your birthright in Christ. Don’t allow any man to “spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ” (Col. 2:8).
We in the churches, as blood-redeemed and Spirit-regenerated people, care for the whole truth of God’s Word and for the real experience of God Himself. We testify that in His presence we have fullness of joy (Psa. 16:11), that we drink of the river of His pleasures, and that we are abundantly satisfied with the fatness of His house (Psa. 36:8). We invite you to be one with us in believing, with simplicity and sincerity, all that the Scriptures have spoken concerning the Triune God and in opening yourself to Him that you might experience Him as your all in all.
by Ron Kangas
A brother in the church in Anaheim
October 6, 1976
All rights reserved. Reproduced by permission.