Posts Tagged ‘faith’

Despair and hope at Christmas

December 23, 2004

I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

I thought how as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along th’unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And in despair I bowed my head:
‘There is no peace on earth,’
I said ‘For hate is strong, and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.’

Then peeled the bells more loud and deep:
‘God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail,
With peace on earth, good will to men.’

Till, ringing, singing on its way,
The world revolved from night to day
A voice, a chime, a chant sublime,
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

— Henry W. Longfellow

In 1863, Longfellow’s son, a lieutenant in the Army of the Potomac (Union, American Civil War), was seriously wounded in battle. This event inspired Longfellow to write this poem.

As I had come to loathe Sundays, I had come to loathe Christmas in Chicago UBF, another insane numbers-fest. The lowest point and the highest point must have been Christmas of 2000 after it became known that Sam Lee was even more of a monster than I had come to consider him. The lowest point was realizing conclusively that I had been in a cult for most of my life. The highest point was that Christmas (and my future) became decoupled from UBF. Christmas became meaningful again.

"the very foundation of their faith"

November 24, 2004

The following post contains an analysis of UBF’s dogmatic adherence to one man that was sent to me in July:

Date Posted: 09:40:13 10/11/04 Mon
Author: ***
Subject: Dogmatic adherence to one man

In reply to:  ***’s message, “Re: UBF Doctrine” on 11:57:44 10/08/04 Fri

>2. Dogmatic adherence to one man’s theology and
>personal opinions: little or no individual Biblical
>insights are encouraged—even in private fellowship—nor
>deviation from the manuscript’s language and main
>points; following one’s own conscience before God
>is often disparaged by core members,

I am so sorry to hear that still many within the circle of the UBF try to mytholigize Samuel Lee. Any good Christian could make a big mistake and even fall into a grave sin. Even the great king and prophet, David also fell into the sin of committing adultery and murder. And yet his sins were forgiven. (Ps. 51) Why? It’s because they were still in the position of fallible sinners rather than in the position of unfallible divinity when their sins were revealed by God himself through men. So Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, all the sins and blasphemies of men will be forgiven them. But whoever blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will never be forgive; he is guilty of an eternal sin.” (Mark 3:28,29) I repected M. Samuel Lee for his gospel business capability. I stll consider to this day that he is a rare kind and genius in organizing people and achieving the unattainable goal in the gospel business by whatever means. But truth and competancy and capability are two different things. What I was really troubled about him was his violating the fundamental principles of God’s truth; he demonstrated and showed me, time and time again, with many evidences that he clearly crossed the line; we who are called by Jesus are the servants of Jesus; we must remain in the position of the servants of Jesus, the forgiven sinners (1 Tim. 1:13,14), not in the seat of Jesus, of the Holy Spirit, and of the Lord God. When we sit in the seat of Jesus or in the place of the Holy Spirit, that’s blasphemy. It was not just a few years that he had practiced that way. His sitting in the seat of Jesus and giving the direction as if he were God himself with such divinity became the very principle of the UBF and the basis and foundation of faith of many in the UBF past 40 years. God is the only sovereign Lord of life. If anyone orders the abortion to a pregnant woman in the name of God’s will, that’s clearly the evidence that he is sitting in the seat of God. M. Samuel Lee was a mere fallible sinner. He too fell into the sin of coveting young women. He made many mistakes as I did in making decisions. He too loved money and power, authority and his own glory so much. His ego was greater than anyone’s. Yes, that’s understandable as a fallible sinner. But what I could not tolerate was that he never repented when the Lord Jesus gave him numerous opportunities to repent. He never repented publically when the Lord Jesus himself exposed the dark side of sins. His ego was just too great that he himself could not become a sinner before many people. He could not repent because he was sitting in the seat of God, and the Holy Spirit, the very foundation of faith of many people in the UBF. How can the righteous one repent?

When I looked upon back my past, … I sometimes wondered why I challenged M. Samuel Lee … and thus lost so much and suffered so much. Later I came to realize that it was not me because I really hated confrontation with M. Samuel Lee. I never intended to break the UBF or challenge M. Samuel Lee. But the Holy Spirit put the flame of fire in my heart when I saw all those blasphemies: For example, … when I heard from the mouth of one missionary who condemned me and challenged me by chanting that M. Samuel Lee’s love equals the love of God and receiving his training is receiving the training from God himself, I was furious instead of becoming intimidated. “His direction is the will of God no matter what (whether it is killing an unborn child or ostrasize good men of God or sacrifice or kill the spiritual life of the children of God for the sake of his gospel business or his name, it doesn’t matter; they are all justified and defended because ‘His direction and his wisdom and his directions’ are always in line with the will of God.”–That was the myth of the UBF; that the Holy Spirit and Jesus and the Lord God himself hate the most as blasphemy.

I am so sorry that some people have absolutely no discerning mind that they keep on going back to the endless and vain myth. Yes, that was the doctrine of Samuel Lee upon which he had built UBF, and the principle of UBF. It was not Jesus, the Christ and Lord upon which the UBF had been built. In the end Jesus’ name was used because M. Samuel Lee’s name was above the name of Jesus within the realm of the UBF. It was not me or Korean shepherds who tried to crush this myth. It was the Holy Spirit Himself, Jesus Himself that crushed this myth. How foolish are the people who try to pick up the broken pieces and try to put them into a whole thing; and try to push the myth of Samuel Lee all over again!

I understand many people in the UBF who feel so insecure when their foundation is shaken; so they have to defend M. Samuel Lee not because they really want to defend him but because they based their whole life of faith on him rather than Jesus, the Christ and the Lord. They don’t admit it but Samuel Lee is a little bit larger than Jesus in their life of faith.

Heavy lifting on "marriage by faith" I

November 5, 2004

Chris Z., formerly of a German UBF chapter, did some heavy lifting in September of 2003 on the UBF practice of “marriage by faith.” Of particular interest to me is his description of the upside down concept of doing things “by faith” in UBF:

Second, I want to point out that “marriage by faith” is, of course, a euphemism, a terrible misnomer. For what has UBF “marriage by faith” to do with faith? Or let us ask differently: What kind of faith is meant here? In the Bible, the word “faith” has a well defined meaning. It has to do with righteousness, with forgiveness of sin, with resurrection, with trusting in God the creator. But nowhere it is mentioned in connection with marriage. There are similar misconceptions in UBF, like “examination by faith.” When I was a sheep, a UBFer told me that someone made his diploma “by faith.” What’s that? I really was stunned. I always thought that if you study hard, using your God-given capabilities, you will pass your examination. But they believed that you don’t need to learn and study hard, but instead give your time for mission, and then you will be blessed by passing the exam. I think that’s a misconception. The diploma is a recognition of your knowledge in a certain area. If you don’t have that knowledge, I think you don’t deserve to get that diploma, regardless how much you worked for mission or spend your time doing other good deeds. I think it is OK and even virtuous if somebody voluntarily and consciously offers a part of his time for studies for mission or other good deeds. But he or she should not expect to get the same degrees or degree as if he had worked only for his or her study. He or she should instead voluntarily and consciously take the loss of getting only a Bachelor instead of a Master or only being a B-student instead of an A-student. That’s a real Christian attitude. Losing instead of winning, but consciously, for the sake of God. Let us take an example where this will be very obvious: Someone is studying medicine. Now, during his time as a medicine student, he spends nearly all of his time for UBF activities, instead of learning the various diseases and medical science (Don’t tell me you can do both at the same time – you always have to cut back: You study will always suffer if you devote your time to UBF.) At the end of his study, this student expects God to pass the exam with the best degree by faith (though he has not learned so much as other students who devoted their full time for medicine study). Would this be just? Also, would it be responsible? Assume that student gets a job as a head physician, having passed his excellent exam “by faith” – but without real medical knowledge. Would you like to get operated by him? How could he do his job well and with responsibility? Again by faith? Just praying before every operation without actually knowing what to do? I think you see that “exam by faith” is a misconception, too. You can pray that you get the grades you deserve (not less) and be thankful for the talents that God gave to you, but you should not expect him to give you degrees which you do not deserve. However this is obviously the idea of UBF behind the concept of “examination by faith.” I think it is wrong. Hebr 11:24 says “By faith Moses, when he had grown up, refused to be known as the son of Pharaoh’s daughter.” He could not have both – a title, recognition and honor – and serve the people of God. So he deliberately suffered loss, he deliberately gave up his position as a prince. I think that’s the Christian way. On the other hand, if you think you got the talent by God to be a good physician, and help many people, then you should focus on that God-given gift, and take it serious, and not concentrate on UBF-style mission (you can be a good witness in your doctor’s practice instead). I am digressing, but I just want you to challenge you to question the (ab)use of the word “faith” in UBF, not only in the expression “marriage by faith.”

Take a few minutes to read the whole thing.