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"Recovery/Local Church" and "Recovery Version" Bible

Discussion in 'Bibliology & Hermeneutics' started by Anti-Fear, Jul 18, 2004.

  1. Anti-Fear

    Anti-Fear Repent Now

    I have read extensive apolegetics that state that "Recovery/Local Church" is a cult of Christianity for a number of reasons. This Christian group is the group who runs "Living Stream Ministry" and "Bibles For America"
    They always work really hard to distribute their own Bible version "The Recovery Version" which has more than half space taken up by footnotes with interpretation of the verses. The footnotes are written mainly by Witness Lee I think.

    My questions to you are:
    1. Have you ever heard of Recovery/Local Church? or Recovery Version Bible?
    2. Have you ever been approached by someone from them?
    3. What did you think?

    This group was even rejected by association of Christian group on my university campus because of their teachings.

    The footnotes say somewhre in revelation that all the denominations Catholic, Protestant, and Protestant Denominations are "spiritual fornicators" created by Satan, so in a way that is used to imply that they're one true church.

    There is a number of reasons why this group is considered a cult, but mainly it is because of their interpretations of certain things in the Bible which have become their doctrine that many people see as heretical.

    I think it is best if you read about it for yourself on the following websites:

    Whether you agree or disagree with the information the above links provide is up to you, but I feel it is important that everyone read some of them.

    Before I knew about this group I was invited to Bible studies with them. I went at least 3 or 4 times. The individuals there are good students and seem like honest believers. Then I had some Bible studies with them and the people who lead the Bible study were not honest with me and withheld some things I asked them which they later described or said "let's talk about it later" its that kind of dishonesty that upset me.
    Then I heard from one of them that yes, he believed that all the denominations like Catholic, Protestant, and denominations of Protestant church were "spiritual fornicators"
    In a way, I have to say that my experience has confirmed what the links I provided say.
  2. christian-only

    christian-only defender of the rebirth

    Whoever made the "Recovery Bible" apparently just took J.P. Green's LITV and edited it to conform with the Critical Text. Jay Green's LITV is based on the Received Text (the same Greek text as the KJV) in most places - Green does depart from the Received Text without so much as a note at times. Anyway, since 1881 when Westcott and Hort invented a new "Original" Greek Text (the Critical Text) and since the Revised Version (which later became the American Standard Version) was translated from it, almost all modern translations have been made from it rather than the Received Text. Just about the only modern (that is post-KJV) translations of the Received Text are the New King James and J.P. Green's translations (Modern King James, King James II, and LITV for Literal Version).

    The "Recovery" Version doesn't recover anything. It is basically the NIV with a more rigid style. It has removed the same words, phrases and verses as the NIV, NASB, NRSV, etc. have (because it has been brought into conformance to the corrupt and fabricated text that they were based on).

    In short, I see something wrong with the "Recovery Version." It is not a Bible, but a doubt mechanism and a perversion.

    But what about the idea that the RCC is the whore and Protestant denominations daughter whores? As for this interpretation of Rev 17, it must be noted that ALL the Protestant reformers considered the Roman Catholic Church to be Babylon the Whore, and frequently spoke of it as the church of Anti-Christ, and refered to the 'pope' as the antichrist and man of sin. The fact is, that if he isn't such, there is NO reason for Protestantism to exist! And, since many Protestant churches have followed in the ways of Rome, they do bear a great resemblance, such as daughters do to their mother. In fact, the RCC refers to itself as "Holy Mother Church." So, if the RCC is the Whore (as all the reformers taught), these Protestant denominations are by extension the daughter whores. But what does the Scripture say of denominationalism elsewhere? 1st Corinthians chapter 1 condemns it. So then, if there is anything objectionable in the "Recovery Church's" ideas on this point concerning denominationalism, it is simply this, that they themselves do not have a scriptural name (where is "Recovery Church" mentioned in the Bible?) and the goofy titles (Witness, Watchman) are ver reminiscent of the titles used by a certain other church which they are condemning.
  3. ster

    ster Newbie

    *self reminder to read into this.
  4. Franny50

    Franny50 franny50

    I needed a free bible and was sent a free New Testament Recovery Version byBibles for America.Thanks for the info.
  5. brotherv

    brotherv Loving Jesus that is all

    It has been strongly asserted in one post here that the Recovery Version is a mere redo of the LITV. To quote - "Whoever made the "Recovery Bible" apparently just took J.P. Green's LITV and edited it to conform with the Critical Text. "

    I pulled my LITV and RcV off the shelf to do a brief comparison. Of course since they are translating the same book into the same language we would expect similarities. But you make your own decision.

    Matthew 1:1-2
    LITV - The Book of the generation of Jesus Christ the son of David, the son of Abraham: Abraham fathered Isaac, and Isaac fathered Jacob, and Jacob fathered Judah and his brothers.

    RcV - The book of the generation of Jesus Christ, the son of David, the son of Abraham: Abraham begot Isaac, and Isaac begot Jacob, and Jacob begot Judah and his brothers,

    Matthew 5:3
    LITV - Blessed are the poor in spirit! For theirs is the kingdom of the Heavens.

    RcV- Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of the heavens.

    Matthew 28:19
    LITV - Going, then, disciple all nations, baptizing them into the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit;

    RcV - Go therefore and disciple all the nations, baptizing them into the
    name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit.

    John 3:16
    LITV - For God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that everyone believing into Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.

    RcV - For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that everyone who believes into Him would not perish, but would have eternal life.

    Acts 8:1
    LITV - Saul was consenting to the doing away of him. And in that day a great persecution took place on the church which was in Jerusalem; and all were scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles.

    RcV - And Saul approved of his killing. And there occurred in that day a great persecution against the church which was in Jerusalem; and all were scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles.

    Romans 8:6
    LITV - For the mind of the flesh is death; but the mind of the Spirit is life and peace;

    RcV - For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the spirit is life and peace.

    Romans 8:15
    LITV - For you did not receive a spirit of slavery to fear again, but you received a Spirit of adoption by which we cry, Abba! Father!

    RcV - For you have not received a spirit of slavery bringing us into fear again, but you have received a spirit of sonship in which we cry, Abba Father!

    Galatians 3:24
    LITV - So that the Law has become a trainer of us until Christ, that we might be justified by faith.

    RcV - So then the law has become our child-conductor unto Christ that we might be justified out of faith.

    I Timothy 1:13
    LITV - Hold a pattern of sound words which you have heard from me, in faith and love in Christ Jesus.

    RcV - Hold a pattern of healthy words that you have heard from me, in the faith and love which are in Christ Jesus.

    Hebrews 1:1-2
    LITV - In many parts and in many ways of old, God spoke to the fathers in the prophets; in these last days He spoke to us in the Son, whom He appointed heir of all; through whom He indeed made the ages;

    RcV - God, having spoken of old in many portions and in many ways to the fathers in the prophets, Has at the last of these days spoken to us in the Son, whom He appointed Heir of all things, through whom also He made the universe;


    While by no means an exhaustive study, I find very little similarity between the two translations. Even in punctuation there are significant differences.

    I am not that familiar with the LITV but it appears to also be a good standard translation along with the Recovery Version. Of course there are differences otherwise we would only need and there would only be one translation. All the good translation work paves the way for what we can hope would be ever better and more accurate translations. Thank the Lord for all those who labor in the field of linguistics and translation so we can enjoy God's word to the full.
  6. ptashman

    ptashman Newbie

    Hank Hanegraaff wrote an article on this group. To read it, just google "equip we were wrong Hank Hanegraaff".
  7. Silvanus1

    Silvanus1 Guest

    I observed a lot of this “cult” stuff happen from a distance and it eventually caught my interest enough to do some research. The site http://an-open-letter.org will tell you everything you will ever want to know about Witness Lee, LSM, and the local churches. Otherwise, here is what I found:

    First of all, Living Stream Ministry (LSM) and the local churches are actually separate entities. The only connection between the two is that the local churches follow the ministry of Watchman Nee and Witness Lee, which is published by Living Stream (many churches follow one ministry and use their publications almost exclusively; not a crime). Furthermore, Bibles for America (BfA) is another totally separate entity. Their only relation with LSM is that LSM gives BfA permission to give out LSM books for free. No relation between BfA and the local churches. Despite this, many think they are the same organization or branches of one organization. Though I can see why they think that they are the same, the fact is that they are not and they are run by different people.

    Secondly, the local churches are theologically NOT a cult. Experts such as Hank Hanegraaff, Gordon Melton, and even those at Fuller Theological Seminary have made this clear on numerous occasions. Nearly all the talk that the local churches are a cult is based on work done by Gretchen Passantino and her late husband at Christian Research Institute (CRI). However, Passantino publically admitted that she was wrong, that the work was very much incomplete and unprofessional, and she avidly stated that the local churches are not and never were a cult or aberrant (you can find this information by CRI here: http://www.equip.org/localchurch/. Others that have stated that the local churches are perfectly fine include Elliot Miller of CRI, those at Christianity Today, Michael Hyatt (Chairman and CEO of Thomas Nelson Publishers and former chairman of the Evangelical Christian Publishers Association), and many more. However, some of these Christian leaders have clearly stated that they disagree with Witness Lee and the local churches in certain MINOR points such as small details of the rapture. Despite this, they strongly assert that they fully agree in the major points of doctrine, such as those concerning the Trinity, and that the local churches are genuine Christians with no reason to be called cultic or aberrant.

    And feel free to look at other forums like I did. However, I found that many of the ones on these forums saying negative things about LSM and the local churches don’t really know what they are saying and base everything on hearsay or obsolete research (the writers of which personally state that the research is wrong). However, you can put almost whatever you want on forums.

    Also, there was a comment in the first entry stating that the local churches think they are the only true church. In CRI’s We Were Wrong, it is clear that this is the last thing they are saying. The local churches do NOT say that they are “the ONLY church.” Rather they are saying, “we are not the only church, we are ONLY the church.” Catch the difference? Those who accuse the local churches for saying they are the only church are very mistaken.

    Thirdly, I think the footnotes in the Recovery Version Study Bible are well done. Remember it is a study Bible so by definition it should have a lot of notes to help you study the Bible. I have many different translations of the Bible, some have footnotes to help me study. Some people ask why there are so many notes in the Recovery Version Study Bible. The reason is that the Recovery Version Study Bible tries to open up the entire Bible so there is going to be a lot of notes. If you don't like them just get the one without notes. So far the Recovery Version is my favorite. The footnotes in the Recovery Version that people condemn all concern the same content which forms less than 1% of what is actually in the study Bible. The other 99% of the notes are great in my opinion. As for the translation itself, there are many places where the Recovery version is much more accurate than any other translation I’ve seen (I say this mostly for the New Testament since I can read Greek but not Hebrew). However, a large part of it is similar to other translations because they are translating the same thing into the same language, as noted in a previous entry.

    I may not meet with the local churches but I do make part of my living studying theology and out of my many Bible translations the Recovery Version is the most accurate and concise I have found. The notes in the Recovery Version Study Bible, though some of them still bother me, are also the most helpful of any study Bible I have come across.

    Fourthly, I have been approached by people from the local churches and they have proven to be some of the most upstanding Christians I have ever met. Of course, some of them are younger and more immature and have offended me at times with some extreme statements but even they are still better Christians than many other Christians I know.

    Interesting quotes:

    Fuller Theological Seminary-“It is the conclusion of Fuller Theological Seminary that the teachings and practices of the local churches and its members represent the genuine, historical, biblical Christian faith in every essential aspect.”

    Christianity Today vol. 50 no. 3 p. 27- “Just to be clear, the Local Church/Living Stream are not even close to being a cult…We agree with a Fuller Theological Seminary study that concluded the Local Church represents a ‘genuine, historical, biblical Christian faith in every essential aspect.”

    Hank Hanegraaff- “Finally, the local churches are an authentic expression of New Testament Christianity. Moreover, as a group forged in the cauldron of persecution, it has much to offer Western Christianity.” “We Were Wrong,” Christian Research Journal (CRJ), vol. 32, no. 6, p.4

    Gretchen Passantino- “The local churches believe the essentials of orthodox Christian theology and should be embraced as brothers and sisters in Christ rather than opposed as believers in heresy. I pray other apologist will rescind their condemnation, if not reengage the issue to the same depth we have.” “We Were Wrong,” Christian Research Journal (CRJ), vol. 32, no. 6, p. 50.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jun 12, 2013