Frequently Asked Questions
Witness Lee and Watchman Nee are two of the most influential Christian ministers of the 20th century and the church in Baton Rouge has been a beneficiary of their ministry since our inception in 1962. They both stress the same general theme of the Christian’s experience of Christ as life for the building up of the Body of Christ in many practical ways.
Watchman Nee’s (1903-1972) writings have been appreciated by Christians around the world and translated into many languages. His book The Normal Christian Life has been widely hailed as a Christian classic. He has been included along with such influential Christians as John Wycliffe, William Tyndale, Martin Luther, John Bunyan, John Wesley, George Whitefield, Charles Spurgeon, D.L. Moody, and Hudson Taylor in collections such as Barbour Publishing’s Heroes of the Faith series. In 2009, Watchman Nee’s contribution to the church in China and his influence on Christians in the West was recognized in a Congressional statement on the floor of the United States House of Representatives.
Witness Lee (1905-1997) was a prolific speaker and writer whose ministry produced and served over three thousand local churches worldwide. His monumental work, the Life-study of the Bible, comprises over 25,000 pages of commentary on every book of the Bible from the perspective of the believers’ enjoyment and experience of God’s divine life. These messages continue to be broadcast in multiple languages worldwide across the radio and Internet.
We have a rich fellowship with thousands of other local churches throughout the world to express the one Body of Christ. Members in the church frequently travel to visit other churches both locally and internationally. There are frequent regional, national, and international conferences and trainings throughout the year where we see more of the “breadth, length, height, and depth” of the Body of Christ (Eph. 3:18).
We are not part of any denomination. We follow the New Testament pattern which shows Christ’s believers who congregate only on the basis of the locality in which they live (see Acts 8:1; 13:1; Rom. 16:1; 1 Cor. 1:2). Because we live in Baton Rouge, we meet simply as the church in Baton Rouge. As the church in Baton Rouge, we receive all of the believers in Baton Rouge, as Christ has also received us (Rom. 15:7).
The personal Bible collections of our church members are probably as diverse and expansive as any other congregation. But when we gather together for larger meetings we frequently find it useful to use the same text: the Recovery Version. The Recovery Version of The New Testament is based on the Nestle-Aland Greek text as found in Novum Testamentum Graece (26th edition) and is part of the great heritage of Bible translations through church history (including but not limited to KJV, ASV, NASB, and many other translations). To receive a free copy of the Recovery Version of The New Testament, or to learn more about it, please visit Bibles for America.
God’s intention is that all of His believers would serve Him as priests (1 Pet. 2:5). All Christians have the innate capacity to contact God, worship God, be filled with God, pray to God, speak for God, and represent God (Acts 1:8; 1 Cor. 14:31; 1 Pet. 2:9; Rom. 1:9).
Of course, the ascended Christ has given gifts to the Body which we treasure, including apostles, prophets, evangelists, and shepherds and teachers (Eph. 4:11). There are many who serve as shepherds and teachers among us, including the elders of the church, along with others who have the spiritual gift of shepherding and teaching (1 Pet. 5:1-3; Acts 20:28).
You should expect a warm welcome and to meet some joyful Christians. We love to sing with our heart to the Lord and to speak to one another in psalms and hymns (Eph.5:19). Our gatherings are characterized by mutuality : we encourage praise, prayer, and speaking from one another
(1 Cor. 14:26). Our meetings are frequently punctuated by “Hallelujah!”, “Amen!”, “Oh Lord Jesus!” and other joyful noises to the Lord (Psa. 100:1; 1 Thes. 5:16; Phil. 2:11).
If your worship style is more meditative, you will also feel comfortable meeting with us. We are not for any particular outward form, practice, or liturgy. Our only goal is to worship the Lord in spirit and truthfulness (John 4:24).