2. The Original Condition of the Church, the Degradation of the Church, and the Recovery of the Church
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Scripture Reading: Matt. 16:18; Rev. 1:11; Acts 14:23; Titus 1:5; Col. 1:18; 2:19

Matt 16:18    And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.

Rev 1:11       Saying, What you see write in a scroll and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamos and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.

Acts 14:23    And when they had appointed elders for them in every church and had prayed with fastings, they committed them to the Lord into whom they had believed.

Titus 1:5        For this cause I left you in Crete, that you might set in order the things which I have begun that remain and appoint elders in every city, as I directed you:

Col 1:18        And He is the Head of the Body, the church; He is the beginning, the Firstborn from the dead, that He Himself might have the first place in all things;

Col 2:19        And not holding the Head, out from whom all the Body, being richly supplied and knit together by means of the joints and sinews, grows with the growth of God.

 

I.     Our history in the Lord’s recovery is not that of an organization or of a movement; it is a history of recovery—John 1:1; 1 John 1:1:

John 1:1        In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.

1 John 1:1     That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we beheld and our hands handled, concerning the Word of life

A.     In Matthew 19:8 we see the principle of recovery: “From the beginning it has not been so”:

Matt 19:8      He said to them, Moses, because of your hardness of heart, allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it has not been so.

1. Recovery means to go back to the beginning; we need to go back to the beginning, receiving the Lord’s grace to go back to God’s original intention, to what God ordained in the beginning.

2. The word recovery means that something was there originally and then was degraded, damaged, or lost; thus, there is a need to bring that thing back to its original state and to its normal condition—Dan. 1:1-2; Ezra 1:5; 6:5.

Dan 1:1         In the third year of the reign of Jehoiakim the king of Judah Nebuchadnezzar the king of Babylon came to Jerusalem and besieged it.

Dan 1:2         And the Lord gave Jehoiakim the king of Judah into his hand with some of the vessels of the house of God; and he brought them into the land of Shinar to the house of his god, and he brought the vessels into the treasury of his god.

Ezra 1:5        Then the heads of the fathers' houses of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and the Levites rose up, even everyone whose spirit God had stirred up to go up to build the house of Jehovah, which is in Jerusalem.

Ezra 6:5        And also let the gold and silver vessels of the house of God, which Nebuchadnezzar took out of the temple which is in Jerusalem and brought to Babylon, be returned and brought again to the temple which is in Jerusalem, to its place; and you shall put them in the house of God.

B.     When we speak of the recovery of the church, we mean that the church was there originally, that it became degraded, and that there is the need to bring the church back to its original state.

C.     The Lord’s recovery of the church brings us back to the beginning for the fulfillment of God’s eternal purpose and original intention regarding the church—Eph. 1:4-5, 22-23; 3:9-11.

Eph 1:4         Even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world to be holy and without blemish before Him in love,

Eph 1:5         Predestinating us unto sonship through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will,

Eph 1:22       And He subjected all things under His feet and gave Him to be Head over all things to the church,

Eph 1:23       Which is His Body, the fullness of the One who fills all in all.

Eph 3:9         And to enlighten all that they may see what the economy of the mystery is, which throughout the ages has been hidden in God, who created all things,

Eph 3:10       In order that now to the rulers and the authorities in the heavenlies the multifarious wisdom of God might be made known through the church,

Eph 3:11       According to the eternal purpose which He made in Christ Jesus our Lord,

II.   We need to understand the recovery of the church in relation to God’s intention and accomplishment and Satan’s work of destruction—v. 11:

Eph 3:11       According to the eternal purpose which He made in Christ Jesus our Lord,

A.     The New Testament reveals that regarding the church, God has a definite intention, purpose, and goal; first, God purposed, and then He came in to accomplish His purpose—Rev. 4:11; Eph. 1:4-5, 9, 11, 22-23.

Rev 4:11       You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive the glory and the honor and the power, for You have created all things, and because of Your will they were, and were created.

Eph 1:4         Even as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world to be holy and without blemish before Him in love,

Eph 1:5         Predestinating us unto sonship through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will,

Eph 1:9         Making known to us the mystery of His will according to His good pleasure, which He purposed in Himself,

Eph 1:11       In whom also we were designated as an inheritance, having been predestinated according to the purpose of the One who works all things according to the counsel of His will,

Eph 1:22       And He subjected all things under His feet and gave Him to be Head over all things to the church,

Eph 1:23       Which is His Body, the fullness of the One who fills all in all.

B.     The New Testament also gives us a clear record of how God’s enemy came in to destroy what God had accomplished—Matt. 16:18; 13:24-32:

Matt 16:18    And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.

Matt 13:24    Another parable He set before them, saying, The kingdom of the heavens has become like a man sowing good seed in his field.

Matt 13:25    But while the men slept, his enemy came and sowed tares in the midst of the wheat and went away.

Matt 13:26    And when the blade sprouted and produced fruit, then the tares appeared also.

Matt 13:27    And the slaves of the master of the house came and said to him, Sir, did you not sow good seed in your field? Where then did the tares come from?

Matt 13:28    And he said to them, An enemy has done this. And the slaves said to him, Do you want us then to go and collect them?

Matt 13:29    But he said, No, lest while collecting the tares, you uproot the wheat along with them.

Matt 13:30    Let both grow together until the harvest, and at the time of the harvest I will say to the reapers, Collect first the tares and bind them into bundles to burn them up, but the wheat gather into my barn.

Matt 13:31    Another parable He set before them, saying, The kingdom of the heavens is like a mustard seed, which a man took and sowed in his field,

Matt 13:32    And which is smaller than all the seeds; but when it has grown, it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of heaven come and roost in its branches.

1. The satanic way to destroy God’s accomplishment has an inward aspect and an outward aspect:

a. The inward aspect is to damage and corrupt God’s people—Acts 5:3.

Acts 5:3        But Peter said, Ananias, why has Satan filled your heart to deceive the Holy Spirit and to put aside for yourself some of the proceeds of the land?

b. The outward aspect is to destroy God’s accomplishment—Matt. 13:32.

Matt 13:32    And which is smaller than all the seeds; but when it has grown, it is greater than the herbs and becomes a tree, so that the birds of heaven come and roost in its branches.

2. Satan produced many substitutes for Christ, divided the Body of Christ, and killed the function of the members of the Body by the clergy-laity system—Col. 2:8; Rev. 2:6, 14-15.

Col 2:8          Beware that no one carries you off as spoil through his philosophy and empty deceit, according to the tradition of men, according to the elements of the world, and not according to Christ;

Rev 2:6         But this you have, that you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.

Rev 2:14       But I have a few things against you, that you have some there who hold the teaching of Balaam, who taught Balak to put a stumbling block before the sons of Israel, to eat idol sacrifices and to commit fornication.

Rev 2:15       In the same way you also have some who hold in like manner the teaching of the Nicolaitans.

C.     Because God is a purposeful God with an eternal purpose and because once He has determined to do something, nothing can change His mind or stop Him; after Satan’s destruction God comes in to redo the things that He had done before—Ezra 1:3-11; 6:3-5.

Ezra 1:3        Whoever there is among you of all His people, may his God be with him; and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and let him build the house of Jehovah the God of Israel—He is God—who is in Jerusalem.

Ezra 1:4        And everyone who is left, in whatever place he sojourns, let the men of his place support him with silver and with gold and with goods and with cattle, besides the freewill offering for the house of God, which is in Jerusalem.

Ezra 1:5        Then the heads of the fathers' houses of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and the Levites rose up, even everyone whose spirit God had stirred up to go up to build the house of Jehovah, which is in Jerusalem.

Ezra 1:6        And all those around them strengthened their hands with vessels of silver, with gold, with goods, and with cattle and with precious things, besides all that was offered willingly.

Ezra 1:7        Also King Cyrus brought out the vessels of the house of Jehovah, which Nebuchadnezzar had brought out from Jerusalem and had put in the house of his gods;

Ezra 1:8        And Cyrus the king of Persia had them brought out by the hand of Mithredath the treasurer and had them enumerated to Sheshbazzar the prince of Judah.

Ezra 1:9        And this was their number: thirty gold dishes, one thousand silver dishes, twenty-nine knives,

Ezra 1:10      Thirty gold bowls, four hundred ten silver bowls of a different kind, and one thousand other vessels.

Ezra 1:11      There were five thousand four hundred vessels of gold and silver in all. Sheshbazzar brought up all of them with those of the captivity who were brought up from Babylon to Jerusalem.

Ezra 6:3        In the first year of King Cyrus, King Cyrus made a decree concerning the house of God at Jerusalem: Let the house be built, the place where they offer sacrifices; and let its foundations be raised, its height being sixty cubits, and its width sixty cubits,

Ezra 6:4        With three layers of large stones, and one layer of timber; and let the expenses be given out of the king's house.

Ezra 6:5        And also let the gold and silver vessels of the house of God, which Nebuchadnezzar took out of the temple which is in Jerusalem and brought to Babylon, be returned and brought again to the temple which is in Jerusalem, to its place; and you shall put them in the house of God.

D.     God’s redoing of what He has accomplished is His recovery; this is to bring back whatever has been lost and destroyed by Satan and to recover the church according to His eternal purpose and original intention—Matt. 19:8; 16:18.

Matt 19:8      He said to them, Moses, because of your hardness of heart, allowed you to divorce your wives, but from the beginning it has not been so.

Matt 16:18    And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.

III.  In order to recognize the need for the recovery of the church, we need to know the original condition of the church and the degradation of the church:

A.     The original condition of the church had the following characteristics:

1. In the original church there was no hierarchy among the believers—Rom. 12:4-5:

Rom 12:4      For just as in one body we have many members, and all the members do not have the same function,

Rom 12:5      So we who are many are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.

a. The believers were all brothers without distinction in rank—Matt. 23:8.

Matt 23:8      But you, do not be called Rabbi, for One is your Teacher, and you are all brothers.

b. As members of the Body, the believers coordinated with one another on an equal level, and each one fulfilled his particular function—Rom. 12:4-5.

Rom 12:4      For just as in one body we have many members, and all the members do not have the same function,

Rom 12:5      So we who are many are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.

c. The believers were all priests to God, without an intermediary class or the distinctions between clergy and laity—1 Pet. 2:5, 9.

1 Pet 2:5        You yourselves also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house into a holy priesthood to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

1 Pet 2:9        But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people acquired for a possession, so that you may tell out the virtues of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

2. The early church was completely separated from the world; it was in the world but not of the world—Rom. 12:2; 1 John 2:15; 2 Cor. 6:14-17.

Rom 12:2      And do not be fashioned according to this age, but be transformed by the renewing of the mind that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and well pleasing and perfect.

1 John 2:15   Do not love the world nor the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, love for the Father is not in him;

2 Cor 6:14     Do not become dissimilarly yoked with unbelievers. For what partnership do righteousness and lawlessness have? Or what fellowship does light have with darkness?

2 Cor 6:15     And what concord does Christ have with Belial? Or what part does a believer have with an unbeliever?

2 Cor 6:16     And what agreement does the temple of God have with idols? For we are the temple of the living God, even as God said, "I will dwell among them and walk among them; and I will be their God, and they will be My people."

2 Cor 6:17     Therefore "come out from their midst and be separated, says the Lord, and do not touch what is unclean; and I will welcome you";

3. The original church forsook idols and fully allowed God to speak—1 John 5:21.

1 John 5:21   Little children, guard yourselves from idols.

4. There was only one church, one expression of the Body of Christ, in a locality—1 Cor. 12:27; 1:2; Rev. 1:11.

1 Cor 12:27   Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually.

1 Cor 1:2       To the church of God which is in Corinth, to those who have been sanctified in Christ Jesus, the called saints, with all those who call upon the name of our Lord Jesus Christ in every place, who is theirs and ours:

Rev 1:11       Saying, What you see write in a scroll and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamos and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.

5. The churches were one in fellowship, but each one was independent in administration, and there was no head church or federation—1 Cor. 10:16.

1 Cor 10:16   The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the fellowship of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the fellowship of the body of Christ?

6. The churches honored Christ as the Head and allowed the Holy Spirit to have authority—Col. 1:18; 2:19; Acts 13:1-2; 10:19-20; 11:12.

Col 1:18        And He is the Head of the Body, the church; He is the beginning, the Firstborn from the dead, that He Himself might have the first place in all things;

Col 2:19        And not holding the Head, out from whom all the Body, being richly supplied and knit together by means of the joints and sinews, grows with the growth of God.

Acts 13:1      Now there were in Antioch, in the local church, prophets and teachers: Barnabas and Simeon, who was called Niger, and Lucius the Cyrenian, and Manaen, the foster brother of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.

Acts 13:2      And as they were ministering to the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, Set apart for Me now Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.

Acts 10:19    And while Peter was pondering over the vision, the Spirit said to him, Behold, there are three men seeking you.

Acts 10:20    But rise up, go down and go with them, doubting nothing, because I have sent them.

Acts 11:12    And the Spirit told me to go with them, doubting nothing. And these six brothers went with me also; and we entered into the man's house.

B.     The degradation of the church involved hierarchy, union with the world, idols, divisions, not allowing God to speak, having organization for unification, and usurping the headship of Christ and encroaching on the authority of the Holy Spirit.

IV.  The recovery of the church has been gradual and progressive:

A.     Before the end of the first century, the Lord’s recovery began, and century by century the recovery has continued on—2 Tim. 2:19-26.

2 Tim 2:19    However the firm foundation of God stands, having this seal, The Lord knows those who are His, and, Let everyone who names the name of the Lord depart from unrighteousness.

2 Tim 2:20    But in a great house there are not only gold and silver vessels but also wooden and earthen; and some are unto honor, and some unto dishonor.

2 Tim 2:21    If therefore anyone cleanses himself from these, he will be a vessel unto honor, sanctified, useful to the master, prepared unto every good work.

2 Tim 2:22    But flee youthful lusts, and pursue righteousness, faith, love, peace with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.

2 Tim 2:23    But foolish questionings and those arising from an untrained mind refuse, knowing that they beget contentions.

2 Tim 2:24    But a slave of the Lord ought not to contend but be gentle toward all, apt to teach, bearing with wrong;

2 Tim 2:25    In meekness correcting those who oppose, if perhaps God may give them repentance unto the full knowledge of the truth,

2 Tim 2:26    And they may return to soberness out of the snare of the devil, having been caught alive by him, unto His will.

B.     In the sixteenth century Martin Luther rose up to begin the Reformation, and the sealed Bible was unlocked; based upon the Bible, he recovered justification by faith, but the proper church life was not recovered—Rom. 1:17:

Rom 1:17      For the righteousness of God is revealed in it out of faith to faith, as it is written, "But the righteous shall have life and live by faith."

1. The Protestant churches were not separated from the world, and they did not eliminate the intermediary class.

2. Among the Protestant churches there were more divisions, and the various denominations did not put away organization for unification.

3. The denominations did not allow Christ to have the absolute position and did not allow the Holy Spirit to have absolute authority.

C.     In the eighteenth century Zinzendorf was raised up by the Lord to lead the Moravian brothers to a recovery of the church life; they were separated from the world, removed distinctions of rank, emphasized fellowship and coordination, endeavored to keep the oneness, removed formal organization for unification, and allowed Christ to be the Head and the Holy Spirit to rule among them.

D.     In the nineteenth century the Lord raised up a group of brothers in England, who went further in the recovery of the church life—Rev. 3:7-13:

Rev 3:7         And to the messenger of the church in Philadelphia write: These things says the Holy One, the true One, the One who has the key of David, the One who opens and no one will shut, and shuts and no one opens:

Rev 3:8         I know your works; behold, I have put before you an opened door which no one can shut, because you have a little power and have kept My word and have not denied My name.

Rev 3:9         Behold, I will make those of the synagogue of Satan, those who call themselves Jews and are not, but lie-behold, I will cause them to come and fall prostrate before your feet and to know that I have loved you.

Rev 3:10       Because you have kept the word of My endurance, I also will keep you out of the hour of trial, which is about to come on the whole inhabited earth, to try them who dwell on the earth.

Rev 3:11       I come quickly; hold fast what you have that no one take your crown.

Rev 3:12       He who overcomes, him I will make a pillar in the temple of My God, and he shall by no means go out anymore, and I will write upon him the name of My God and the name of the city of My God, the New Jerusalem, which descends out of heaven from My God, and My new name.

Rev 3:13       He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says to the churches.

1. In the hands of the Brethren, the Bible was truly an opened book, a shining book, for they absolutely obeyed the Lord’s word; many important truths were released through them—1 Tim. 2:4.

1 Tim 2:4      Who desires all men to be saved and to come to the full knowledge of the truth.

2. They absolutely eliminated hierarchy and were brothers together and members one of another with an emphasis on mutual love and fellowship.

3. They eliminated sectarianism and maintained the testimony of oneness.

4. However, in certain aspects they were a failure, and because of this the Lord could not go on at that time anywhere in the Western world.

E.      We need to see the crucial points of the recovery of the church in the Far East:

1. In 1933 and 1934 we clearly saw a crucial matter—the principle of the church taking a locality as its boundary—Acts 14:23; Titus 1:5; Rev. 1:11:

Acts 14:23    And when they had appointed elders for them in every church and had prayed with fastings, they committed them to the Lord into whom they had believed.

Titus 1:5        For this cause I left you in Crete, that you might set in order the things which I have begun that remain and appoint elders in every city, as I directed you:

Rev 1:11       Saying, What you see write in a scroll and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamos and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.

a. On the one hand, this prevents division and confusion; on the other hand, it also prevents “extra-local” unions.

b. According to the teaching of the Bible, the church in each locality should live directly before the Lord and be responsible to the Head, Christ—Col. 1:18; 2:19; Acts 13:1-2.

Col 1:18        And He is the Head of the Body, the church; He is the beginning, the Firstborn from the dead, that He Himself might have the first place in all things;

Col 2:19        And not holding the Head, out from whom all the Body, being richly supplied and knit together by means of the joints and sinews, grows with the growth of God.

Acts 13:1      Now there were in Antioch, in the local church, prophets and teachers: Barnabas and Simeon, who was called Niger, and Lucius the Cyrenian, and Manaen, the foster brother of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.

Acts 13:2      And as they were ministering to the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, Set apart for Me now Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.

2. We kept the principle of the administration of the church being local and the fellowship of the church being universal—14:23; 2:42; 1 Cor. 10:16-17:

Acts 14:23    And when they had appointed elders for them in every church and had prayed with fastings, they committed them to the Lord into whom they had believed.

Acts 2:42      And they continued steadfastly in the teaching and the fellowship of the apostles, in the breaking of bread and the prayers.

1 Cor 10:16   The cup of blessing which we bless, is it not the fellowship of the blood of Christ? The bread which we break, is it not the fellowship of the body of Christ?

1 Cor 10:17   Seeing that there is one bread, we who are many are one Body; for we all partake of the one bread.

a. The church in each locality has its own administration, and the administration of the church cannot go beyond the local boundary.

b. The fellowship of the church should not only be local; rather, it should be universal because it is the fellowship of the Body of Christ.

3. We clearly saw that churches in different localities should not have an organization for unification, for all churches should be directly under the ruling of Christ, the Head, and should directly obey the authority of the Holy Spirit—Col. 1:18; Acts 13:1-2.

Col 1:18        And He is the Head of the Body, the church; He is the beginning, the Firstborn from the dead, that He Himself might have the first place in all things;

Acts 13:1      Now there were in Antioch, in the local church, prophets and teachers: Barnabas and Simeon, who was called Niger, and Lucius the Cyrenian, and Manaen, the foster brother of Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.

Acts 13:2      And as they were ministering to the Lord and fasting, the Holy Spirit said, Set apart for Me now Barnabas and Saul for the work to which I have called them.

4. We emphasized the universal priesthood; that is, we stressed the fact that every believer is a priest—1 Pet. 2:5, 9.

1 Pet 2:5        You yourselves also, as living stones, are being built up as a spiritual house into a holy priesthood to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ.

1 Pet 2:9        But you are a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people acquired for a possession, so that you may tell out the virtues of Him who has called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

5. We also emphasized the Body’s coordination in service, exhorting all the saints to keep the principle of the Body by serving together in coordination—Rom. 12:4-5; 1 Cor. 12:12-27.

Rom 12:4      For just as in one body we have many members, and all the members do not have the same function,

Rom 12:5      So we who are many are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.

1 Cor 12:12   For even as the body is one and has many members, yet all the members of the body, being many, are one body, so also is the Christ.

1 Cor 12:13   For also in one Spirit we were all baptized into one body, whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free, and were all given to drink one Spirit.

1 Cor 12:14   For the body is not one member but many.

1 Cor 12:15   If the foot should say, Because I am not a hand, I am not of the body, it is not that because of this it is not of the body.

1 Cor 12:16   And if the ear should say, Because I am not an eye, I am not of the body, it is not that because of this it is not of the body.

1 Cor 12:17   If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole were the hearing, where would the smelling be?

1 Cor 12:18   But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, even as He willed.

1 Cor 12:19   And if all were one member, where would the body be?

1 Cor 12:20   But now the members are many, but the body one.

1 Cor 12:21   And the eye cannot say to the hand, I have no need of you; nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.

1 Cor 12:22   But much rather the members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary.

1 Cor 12:23   And those members of the body which we consider to be less honorable, these we clothe with more abundant honor; and our uncomely members come to have more abundant comeliness,

1 Cor 12:24   But our comely members have no need. But God has blended the body together, giving more abundant honor to the member that lacked,

1 Cor 12:25   That there would be no division in the body, but that the members would have the same care for one another.

1 Cor 12:26   And whether one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or one member is glorified, all the members rejoice with it.

1 Cor 12:27   Now you are the body of Christ, and members individually.

6. We emphasized the practical service in the church—Rom. 12:5-11.

Rom 12:5      So we who are many are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another.

Rom 12:6      And having gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith;

Rom 12:7      Or service, let us be faithful in that service; or he who teaches, in that teaching;

Rom 12:8      Or he who exhorts, in that exhortation; he who gives, in simplicity; he who leads, in diligence; he who shows mercy, in cheerfulness.

Rom 12:9      Let love be without hypocrisy. Abhor what is evil; cling to what is good.

Rom 12:10    Love one another warmly in brotherly love; take the lead in showing honor one to another.

Rom 12:11    Do not be slothful in zeal, but be burning in spirit, serving the Lord.

V. The Lord’s recovery is different from today’s Christianity; it is impossible for there to be reconciliation between the recovery and Christianity—Matt. 13:31-33, 44-46; Rev. 18:4; 19:1-3, 7-9:

Matt 12:31    Therefore I say to you, Every sin and blasphemy will be forgiven men, but blasphemy against the Spirit will not be forgiven.

Matt 12:32    And whoever speaks a word against the Son of Man, it will be forgiven him; but whoever speaks against the Holy Spirit, it will not be forgiven him, neither in this age nor in the one to come.

Matt 12:33    Either make the tree good and its fruit good, or make the tree corrupt and its fruit corrupt; for by the fruit the tree is known.

Matt 12:44    Then it says, I will return to my house from which I came out. And it comes and finds it unoccupied, swept, and decorated.

Matt 12:45    Then it goes and takes along with itself seven other spirits more evil than itself, and they enter in and settle down there. And the last state of that man becomes worse than the first. Thus shall it be also with this evil generation.

Matt 12:46    While He was still speaking to the crowds, behold, His mother and His brothers stood outside seeking to speak to Him.

Rev 18:4       And I heard another voice out of heaven, saying, Come out of her, My people, that you do not participate in her sins and that you do not receive her plagues;

Rev 19:1       After these things I heard as it were a loud voice of a great multitude in heaven, saying, Hallelujah! The salvation and the glory and the power are of our God.

Rev 19:2       For true and righteous are His judgments; for He has judged the great harlot who corrupted the earth with her fornication, and He avenged the blood of His slaves at her hand.

Rev 19:3       And a second time they said, Hallelujah! And her smoke goes up forever and ever.

Rev 19:7       Let us rejoice and exult, and let us give the glory to Him, for the marriage of the Lamb has come, and His wife has made herself ready.

Rev 19:8       And it was given to her that she should be clothed in fine linen, bright and clean; for the fine linen is the righteousnesses of the saints.

Rev 19:9       And he said to me, Write, Blessed are they who are called to the marriage dinner of the Lamb. And he said to me, These are the true words of God.

A.     The recovery of the church is for bringing us out of the unscriptural system of clergy-laity back to the beginning for the pure practice of the church life according to the divine revelation—2:6, 15; Matt. 16:18; Eph. 2:20-22.

Rev 2:6         But this you have, that you hate the works of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.

Rev 2:15       In the same way you also have some who hold in like manner the teaching of the Nicolaitans.

Matt 16:18    And I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.

Eph 2:20       Being built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Christ Jesus Himself being the cornerstone;

Eph 2:21       In whom all the building, being fitted together, is growing into a holy temple in the Lord;

Eph 2:22       In whom you also are being built together into a dwelling place of God in spirit.

B.     The history among us has been one of coming completely out of Christianity without compromise—Ezra 1:3-11; 6:3-5; Rev. 18:4.

Ezra 1:3        Whoever there is among you of all His people, may his God be with him; and let him go up to Jerusalem, which is in Judah, and let him build the house of Jehovah the God of Israel—He is God—who is in Jerusalem.

Ezra 1:4        And everyone who is left, in whatever place he sojourns, let the men of his place support him with silver and with gold and with goods and with cattle, besides the freewill offering for the house of God, which is in Jerusalem.

Ezra 1:5        Then the heads of the fathers' houses of Judah and Benjamin and the priests and the Levites rose up, even everyone whose spirit God had stirred up to go up to build the house of Jehovah, which is in Jerusalem.

Ezra 1:6        And all those around them strengthened their hands with vessels of silver, with gold, with goods, and with cattle and with precious things, besides all that was offered willingly.

Ezra 1:7        Also King Cyrus brought out the vessels of the house of Jehovah, which Nebuchadnezzar had brought out from Jerusalem and had put in the house of his gods;

Ezra 1:8        And Cyrus the king of Persia had them brought out by the hand of Mithredath the treasurer and had them enumerated to Sheshbazzar the prince of Judah.

Ezra 1:9        And this was their number: thirty gold dishes, one thousand silver dishes, twenty-nine knives,

Ezra 1:10      Thirty gold bowls, four hundred ten silver bowls of a different kind, and one thousand other vessels.

Ezra 1:11      There were five thousand four hundred vessels of gold and silver in all. Sheshbazzar brought up all of them with those of the captivity who were brought up from Babylon to Jerusalem.

Ezra 6:3        In the first year of King Cyrus, King Cyrus made a decree concerning the house of God at Jerusalem: Let the house be built, the place where they offer sacrifices; and let its foundations be raised, its height being sixty cubits, and its width sixty cubits,

Ezra 6:4        With three layers of large stones, and one layer of timber; and let the expenses be given out of the king's house.

Ezra 6:5        And also let the gold and silver vessels of the house of God, which Nebuchadnezzar took out of the temple which is in Jerusalem and brought to Babylon, be returned and brought again to the temple which is in Jerusalem, to its place; and you shall put them in the house of God.

Rev 18:4       And I heard another voice out of heaven, saying, Come out of her, My people, that you do not participate in her sins and that you do not receive her plagues;

C.     There should be no bridge between the local churches and Christianity; we should be what we are without compromise or pretense, maintaining the gap between us and Christianity—1:11; Gal. 1:4.

Rev 1:11       Saying, What you see write in a scroll and send it to the seven churches: to Ephesus and to Smyrna and to Pergamos and to Thyatira and to Sardis and to Philadelphia and to Laodicea.

Gal 1:4        Who gave Himself for our sins that He might rescue us out of the present evil age according to the will of our God and Father,
 
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發表時間 :
2017-10-15 23:19:44
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發表人 :
Kuann Hung
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老洪的 IT 學習系統
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