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7th-Jan-2006 03:47 pm
The "UBF=God" equation is really at the heart of the whole UBF calamity.

It stands short for the following beliefs:

UBF is "God's ministry"
UBF leaders are "servants of God"
UBF leaders convey the will of God to you
UBF leaders' commands to you are God's commands to you
UBF leaders' orientation is God's orientation for your life
You need to obey UBF leaders as you would obey God
Training by UBF leaders is training by God

What is "faith" in UBF? Actually it is faith in "UBF=God."

I think this problem deserves its own thread.
In the comment section I will explain more.
7th-Jan-2006 04:32 pm (UTC)
I forgot another very strong motivation for people to believe in the equation “UBF=God”:

5) Because it is convenient

What do I mean with this? As we know the Bible defines faith as “being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do *not* see.” Therefore faith is a pretty difficult thing. We want to cling to something that we can *see*. Here is where UBF jumps in.

Reading the Bible is difficult, because you have to interpret what you are reading. There are thousands of opinions about the meaning. Whom can I trust? Myself? A certain denomination? Actually, you are challenged to read and think about every Word of God for yourself, and meditate on it in the light of what the rest of the Bible says, and with the help of what our ancestors of faith have already written. But still, you have to compare and read many sources and judge who is right. Even more complex, Luther may have the right teaching in one part, and Calvin in another part, and both may be wrong in a third question.

You can simplify this a lot of you simply assume that UBF’s interpretation is the correct interpretation. No need to read anything else except your leaders’ messages (or Samuel Lee’s which is actually the same). No need for reading various commentaries or forming your own opinion. No need to learn Greek or Hebrew or read about the historic environment. No need to study Church history. No need to read various contemporary interpretations and sermons. Everything becomes so simple. You don’t need to chew; you only need to cud and rehash what others are spoon-feeding you or even spitting pre-chewed into your throat.

Same with obedience. I assume that many ordinary UBF members have the honest desire to show God that they are obeying him. How can you do that? If I put myself under the axiom of UBF=God, then it's very easy. Simply obey whatever the leaders tell you. How can I show I have faith? Again, simply obey. Marry the first one they propose to you.

You don’t want to have an invisible God and an invisible Holy Spirit guiding you. You want a real, visible man to guide you, “God's servant.”

In the end, you can spare a lot of thinking, doubts, decision-making, research, headache and accountability once you swallow the UBF=God equation.

During the reform movement, this was also the easiest way for many. No need to judge whether certain testimonies, reports, suggestions were right or wrong. No need to research and examine. From the beginning, it is already clear that everything can only be malicious slander if the equation UBF=God holds.

Yes, I know, following UBF=God can also be inconvenient. Not only when UBF chose the wrong spouse but also because you have to put yourself under tutelage, you have to incapacitate yourself, you have to let others rule over your life, sometimes abusing you, which can sometimes come close to a mental or spiritual “rape”. Later, after you left UBF, you will hate yourself for having done this, and probably even many inside struggle with it. On the one side they are very “proud that they are so humble”, on the other side, adult people are not made for such slavery and dependence, God wants them to mature and make own decisions and God will judge according to our own decisions only. “I only obeyed orders” was no excuse for the Nazis in the Nürnberg court, and is no excuse for Christians in the final judgement. The question is not whether you had faith in UBF=God, but whether you had faith in the gospel.
8th-Jan-2006 12:11 am (UTC)
Part I

What do I mean with this? As we know the Bible defines faith as “being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do *not* see.” Therefore faith is a pretty difficult thing. We want to cling to something that we can *see*. Here is where UBF jumps in.

Reading the Bible is difficult, because you have to interpret what you are reading.

There have been so many questions about the meaning of certainty. I am reading an interesting book by Morris R. Cohen titled “Reason and Nature.” According to him there are different types of certainty: psychological certainty and logical certainty. Psychological certainty is like that you are certain of the existence of your two hands when you see them in front of you. Logical certainty is more like mathematical certainty such as you are certain that the sum of two even numbers is even. They used to talk about the certainty of empirical science such as Newton physics but these days they prefer to use probability rather than certainty after Heisenberg’s uncertainty principle was accepted.

When we study the Bible or when we hear a message based on a passage in the Bible, we should require them to have some degree of certainty based on sound theological certainty. What is the most serious problem with UBF bible study or messages? It is that they lack this certainty. The whole UBF teaching is completely based on one person Samuel Lee’s opinion. His opinion which is not supported by any sound theological certainty is imposed on people in UBF as if it contains divine(?) certainty or as if it is God’s own word. But as we can see very clearly in most of his teachings, his teachings do not deserve the claim of the status of being logically certain or theologically certain. They mostly appeal to psychological certainty as we can see in his horror stories.

Continues in Part II...
8th-Jan-2006 12:11 am (UTC)
Part II

Any type of bible study or Sunday messages must be supported by some degree of theological certainty and logical certainty. We cannot base our faith only on psychological certainty. Faith is not psychological certainty anyway. Faith is based on the word of God. Then clearly we have the question of how we are going to study the word of God so that we can claim some degree of certainty of what we study. Samuel Lee one person cannot answer all the questions regarding the methodology. But UBF has set up the power structure to make everyone believe that Samuel Lee and his methods are the only methodology everyone should follow. If anyone goes against it, he/she is a proud rebel. This clearly is nonsense that should exist only in North Korean regime. That is why Christian theology has been developed: to study how we are going to do this and to know what is considered biblically sound. Since theology itself is not going to be perfect, we also have to investigate theology itself so that we can improve theology to become more bible-centered. So I guess bible study could be very difficult when it is a lot easier to simply obey what is told to do.

That is why we have full-time pastors who devote their full time studying the word of God and prying to God. But in UBF the full-time pastors devote their full time only to glorify Samuel Lee and his theology and devote all their energy to protect the power structure set up by Samuel Lee in UBF against all the “enemies” who “attack” divine(?) UBF system. Since they are having hard time recruiting new members, they now try to force 2nd gens to participate in this divine(?) mission of maintaining the power structure for the glorification of Samuel Lee.

But they must learn from their own history and their own mistakes. They must open their eyes to clearly see why God had to split UBF into two. But again this will be impossible because they do not try to see the spiritual meaning of UBF split. They only see it as the work of rebels, the enemies of divine(?) UBF system who loved easy-going life more than UBF’s divine(?) mission of glorifying Samuel Lee through 1:1 bible study. So they are blind. Maybe I should say that they have become blind by Samuel Lee’s fabricated theology.
8th-Jan-2006 08:51 am (UTC)
And, though they believe Samuel Lee's interpretation is certain, they are not actually aware that it is his interpretation only. They believe that they "simply" study the Bible. They believe that they don't interpolate or extrapolate. They believe that they don't read the Bible selective. They think all other read selective and "interpret", but they only "read and obey". For rhe more intellectual among the members, Samuel Lee has made up the story that he (Lee) had invented what he called "inductive Bible study", the best method to be sure what the Bible really means. Lee officialy explains his idea as to not have any theological system and interpret the Bible in the frame of this system, but let it speak for itself. But the truth is of course completely different. As we know so well, Lee has very well set up a theological system, and the Bible is always read on the background of this system in UBF. What UBF claims and what UBF practices are often diametrically opposite, but still people are fooled by that.
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