In my recent reading of books of BDH’s ministry, my impression was that two main themes are dominant. The first is what a wonderful man JSH was, and the next is control, authority, submission and subjugation. The first theme may be largely a means towards the second, so my overall impression is that Hales Brethrenism is more about control than anything else. It is a means by which the few can exercise control over the many.
Here is an example taken from Vol. 38 page 247 (Nottingham, 20 April 2005)
There are hundreds of similar examples. Later, I shall post some examples to illustrate more specifically the many facets of his followers’ private lives over which BDH exerts extreme control, a level of control that in my opinion is grossly inappropriate.B.D.H. Yes. I think the word, control, is a critical matter. Certain things have got out of control really, got out of hand. The beauty of this chapter shows how elements, which by their very nature and character would be opposing David's authority and kingship, are subdued, and they bring gifts. Whether we are prepared to submit to the idea of rule and control. It's really basic. It should become attractive to us. Younger persons should find the idea attractive. When we are carrying on lawlessly, and without restraint, out of control, it only leads to famine, and disaster, destitution. Whereas being subdued, recognising the authority that's in the assembly, recognising the special place, you might say, that Christ has, involving the power of the Spirit, and the idea of kingship, the idea of absolute monarchy, to recognise it, what I'll find is prosperity, would you say?
K.W.B. Did Mr. Symington say about this that it wasn't a question of annihilation here, but they became contributors?
B.D.H. Yes. Showing, really, that grace is on the throne. Of course, if we resist it, and we rise up against it, then we'll have to reckon with God's judgment. See, there are difficult elements at times in our assemblies, just rising up against authority, really any idea of authority, they resist—tendency to just rise up against it, and attack it even. These elements have to be subdued and subjugated.
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