2. Movement or Life

Local church movement, Lord’s recovery movement, or An Activity in Life

Chapter one of “Messages in Preparation for The Spread of the Gospel” is Witness Lee’s fellowship in October of 1988 with young workers who were to begin an activity for the Gospel. What follows is from this book. It clearly shows Witness Lee’s correct Biblical understanding of God’s move in life. His fellowship makes clear that he was not promoting a local church movement or a Lord’s recovery movement.

The work of the Lord on earth was never a movement. The Gospels show us that when the Lord Jesus was working for God on earth, He did not advertise or gather huge gathering; He did not solicit any contacts for the sake of the work. All social activities in human society are basically movements. As such they need advertisements and huge gatherings. There is also the need for soliciting contacts as a kind of work. But the Lord was not promoting a movement on earth. Hence, the disciples whom the Lord called were mostly humble people of little education …

The Lord Jesus certainly did not promote a local church movement. Neither did the apostles work in the way of a local church movement.

This was true not only with the Lord Jesus; with the apostles it was the same. … these ones were uneducated and unlearned men (Acts 4). … the apostles were not promoting a movement either.
According to his background, Paul was much more refined than the Galilean fishermen. But neither was his labor for God a work. … After he was saved, he did not promote a movement either. We only see him preaching Christ Jesus everywhere. The Jews were jealous of him; they tried their best to catch him. He was forced to go to Antioch, a place not much noticed by the Jews (Acts 13:1).
In Antioch he did not promote any movement. Acts 13 tells us that … the Holy Spirit separated Paul and Barnabas and sent them out (vv. 2-3). This sending was not a movement; there was no formality. Only a few prophets and teachers laid their hands on them. When they went out to preach the gospel, there was no organization or arrangement. … from the Gospels, the Acts, and the Epistles, we cannot detect any flavor of a movement in the works of the Lord Jesus or of the apostles. … what they did was not a movement but an activity in life. They were a group of people constituted by life. They knew nothing except to act according to life.
After Paul met the Lord on the way to Damascus, he was completely changed. … For Paul, preaching Jesus was not a work; rather it was his living. … Outwardly speaking, going out for the spread of the gospel is a work. Actually, it has to be your living. Some have misunderstood; they thought, “Brother Lee has gone to … promote a great (Lord’s recovery) movement.” But I must tell you soberly that we are not after a movement. To go out for the spread of the gospel is not a movement but a living. When you go out, you are bringing the Lord Jesus and His gospel to people and sharing with them the truth in the Bible. This move of dispensing is not a (Lord’s recovery) movement but a living.

Witness Lee, taking the pattern of the Lord and the apostles in the New Testament, worked according to life, not for the promotion of a “local church movement” or a “Lord’s recovery movement.”


1. God's Move    2. Movement or Life    3. Go Bear Fruit    4. Fresh and Mature    5. Dealing    6. Life Action    Key Verses   

Suggested Sites

Local Churches    Local Church    Lord's Recovery    church in Salt Lake City