Titus 1:9 - Holding to the faithful word, which is according to the teaching of the apostles, that he may be able both to exhort by the healthy teaching and to convict those who oppose.

A Pattern of Twisting

Those who fashion themselves "Concerned Brothers" (CBs) demonstrate little concern for fairly and accurately quoting those they criticize or whose words they twist to give their contentions an appearance of credibility. This alone should cause the saints in the Lord's recovery to reject their writings as unworthy of serious consideration. The following articles illustrate how the CBs have manufactured meanings in the co-workers' words through distortions of context and outright fabrication:

These are just a sampling of the twistings of our brothers' words by the dissenting ones in their public statements. There are others. This list may grow as further twistings come to light and as time permits to adequately document them.

During the litigation concerning The God-Men, Dr. J. Gordon Melton testified that the author of that book had "...fairly consistently taken statements, usually individual sentences from the middle of paragraphs, out of context and made them to appear to say things that they were not even talking about." It is disturbing to see brothers who have been among us employing the same methods to assail the co-workers and to manufacture support from the ministry of Watchman Nee and Witness Lee for what are in fact deviations from their teaching and pattern.

We would remind the dear saints in the Lord's recovery of the apostle Paul's words concerning those who are contentious and wrangle over words and who are diseased with questionings:

1 Tim. 6:4 - He is 1blinded with pride, understanding nothing, but is 2diseased with questionings and contentions of words, out of which come envy, strife, slanders, evil suspicions.

fn. 6:4 1 - See note 62 in ch. 3. Teachings that differ from the healthy words of the Lord always issue from people's pride and self-conceit, which blind them.

Note 2 on 1 Tim. 3:6 says: Lit., beclouded with smoke. Pride here is likened to smoke that beclouds the mind, making it blind, besotted with the self-conceit of pride.

fn. 6:4 2 - To question and contend about words is a disease. Diseased here is in contrast to healthy in v. 3.

2 Tim. 2:14 - Remind them of these things, solemnly charging them before God not to have contentions of words, which is useful for nothing, to the 1ruin of those who hear.

fn. 2:14 1 - Or, overthrowing. Lit., catastrophe.

1 Cor. 11:16 - But if anyone seems to be 1contentious, we do not have such a custom of being so, neither the 2churches of God.

fn. 11:16 1 - The custom of contention, disputation, and debating. Neither the apostles nor the churches tolerated any disputation concerning the apostles' teaching.

fn. 11:16 2 - That churches here is plural indicates that all the local churches are independent of one another, yet they all act in the same way according to the apostles' teaching.

2 Tim. 2:23 - But 1foolish questionings and those arising from an untrained mind refuse, knowing that they beget contentions.

fn. 2:23 1 - Or, stupid.

Titus 3:9 - But 1avoid foolish questionings and genealogies and strifes and contentions about the law, for they are unprofitable and vain.

fn. 3:9 1 - The positive things stressed in vv. 4-8 should be affirmed strongly and consistently, such as our Savior God, Jesus Christ our Savior, the Holy Spirit, God's kindness, love, mercy, grace, and eternal life, with His acts of justifying, saving, washing, regenerating, and renewing. These are the Triune God with His attributes and virtues, plus His divine actions in His eternal salvation; they are things of life, which belong to the tree of life (Gen. 2:9) and produce heirs who will inherit all that God is to them. The negative things dealt with in vv. 9-11 should be avoided, such as foolish questionings, genealogies, strifes, contentions about the law, and factious, opinionated men. These are matters of (deadening) knowledge, which belong to the tree of knowledge and kill their victims. The things of life, which belong to the tree of life, should be stressed, whereas the matters of knowledge, which belong to the tree of knowledge, should be avoided.

Furthermore, those who are practicing such things should take heed to the words of wisdom recorded in Proverbs:

Prov. 6:14 - With perverseness in his heart, he is devising evil continually; he injects discord.

Prov. 6:16-19 - [16] There are six things that Jehovah hates; indeed, seven that are an abomination to His soul: [17] haughty eyes, a lying tongue, and hands that shed innocent blood, [18] a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that hurry to run to evil, [19] a false witness who utters lies, and one who injects discord among brothers.

Prov. 12:22 - Lying lips are an abomination to Jehovah, but those who deal faithfully are His delight.

Prov. 13:10 - Through pride comes nothing but strife, but wisdom is with those who receive counsel.

Prov. 16:28 - A perverse man spreads strife, and a whisperer separates close friends.

Prov. 26:21 - As charcoal to hot embers and wood to fire, so is a contentious man to kindle strife.

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