Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Watchman Nee

English: Photo of Watchman Nee 中文: 倪柝聲的照片
English: Photo of Watchman Nee 中文: 倪柝聲的照片 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Watchman Nee (November 4, 1903 – May 30, 1972) Chinese Christian who became a leader in the Church in China by beginning the use of homes for meeting. He started the home meetings in the 1920s when he was only 17. He was the ninth child of a second generation Christian family in Foochow China. He had been dedicated to the Lord by his mother before his birth. He was exceptionally intelligent and excelled in school graduating from Anglican Trinity College but he did not attend theology school gaining his extensive knowledge by reading widely while practicing dedicated spiritual exercises. In the early years he divided his money into three classes: one third he spent on his own needs, one third he gave to help others and one third he used for the purchase of books. He accumulated three thousand volumes over his lifetime. He had an unusual ability to glean facts and retain information from reading. He also exhibited determination in learning to apply spiritual truths. 

When he was a teenager he fell in love with Charity Chang,the daughter of an old family friend. She was not a Christian at the time and ridiculed Jesus in Watchman’s presence. He struggled with it but decided to end their relationship. Ten years later after she had completed college she attended meeting in Shanghai. She had become a Christian and during one of his conferences, they were married. He suffered greatly with chronic illnesses through which she attended him.

His ministry began in personal study to understand and practice the  consecrated life, and his vision was for home churches to become 
true unity of spirits. He rejected the denominational boundaries he felt were detrimental to spiritual unity. He traveled to the United States and England, but his mission was directed toward China. 
After his marriage Charity nursed and support him during his frequent illnesses. He suffered for about ten years with Tuberculosis and later with a severe stomach disorder and very painful angina pectoris.

In 1942 he left his ministry to help his brother’s failing business. 

By 1948 he turned the business over to the church and resumed his 

ministry again. In 1949 the Communist Party gained control in 

China and the Christian Church came under severe persecution. He 

was arrested in 1956 and accused of many false crimes including 

tax evasion, bribery, and cheating on government contracts. He 

spent the last twenty years of his life in prison. Only Charity was

allowed to visit him. Charity died in 1971 and he followed her in 

May of 1972.

His writings continue to inspire Christians all over the world. His 

grandniece was given access to a note left under his pillow which 

she memorized and reported. She said it was written in a large unsteady hand. It said: Christ is the Son of God who died for the redemption of sinners and resurrected after three 
days. This is the greatest truth in the universe. I die because of 
my belief in Christ. Watchman Nee."

This information was gleaned from Wikipedia.

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