C. How to Deal With the Divisions
1. Not Recommending That Any Believer in the Local Churches Have Any Share in the Divisions
In these days, perhaps even more than in the apostle Pauls days, the Body of Christ has been greatly damaged by division. Sharing his feeling based on a thorough study of the pure word of God, Witness Lee says,
In dealing with the divisions that have separated themselves from the genuine local churches and have broken the unique fellowship of the Body of Christ, I would like to present to you my proposal, and I believe that this is according to the holy Word. We should not recommend any believer in the local churches to have any share in the meetings and activities of the divisions. Nevertheless, there may be some who attend the Lords table meeting in a local church and, after taking the table, they leave to go to a meeting of the divisive ones to listen to a message. If any believer in the local churches would attend the meetings and share the activities of those divisions, the local churches should not put him away from the fellowship of the church, as long as he is not infected by and does not promote anything that is divisive. Our dealing with such a person depends on whether or not he has been infected by the germs of division, and whether or not he is passing on those germs to others. If he does pass on those germs, we must advise him not to do this. We cannot tolerate any germs of division (125, 126-127).
2. Not Rejecting Any Believer Who Does Not Promote Anything Divisive, but Considering as Divisive and Rejecting Anyone Who Promotes Sectarian Divisions
Although the believers in a local church should not reject a believer who attends the meetings of a division, Witness Lee points out the New Testaments clear teaching regarding fellowship with believers who promote division:
If any believer who is meeting with any of these sectarian divisions would attend the meetings of the local churches, or contact the believers meeting in the local churches, he should not be rejected, as long as he does not promote anything divisive.
However, anyone who is aggressive for and promotes the sectarian divisions should be considered divisive and should be rejected after a first and second admonition (Titus 3:10). I believe that this is the fair and scriptural way to deal with the divisions that have separated themselves from the genuine local churches and have broken the unique fellowship of the Body of Christ. Anyhow, according to the apostles teaching in the New Testament, anyone who makes the division, who is divisive and bears the germs of division, that is, who is factious, sectarian, we should refuse them (Titus 3:10) and turn away from them (Rom. 16:17) (127).
Copyright © 2001. Living Stream Ministry. All Rights Reserved.