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Keyword: ‘"Ephesians 4:11-13"’

Slaves No More

March 15th, 2014 No comments

freedom

Do you not know that when you present yourselves to someone as slaves for obedience, you are slaves of the one whom you obey

Romans 6:16, portion

Although Paul here was speaking of submission to sin, he spoke of a general principle which holds true in all things.  When we submit our spirits to any thing, we become its slaves.  This is true, whether it is to a job, a spouse, an organization, or any other thing.

Jesus said that, for believers, we are to call no one Rabbi, Teacher, Father, Leader, or Master, for God alone is all of these things (Matthew 23:1-12).  In fact, Jesus Himself said that the Gentiles even consider it to the benefit of those they are leading when they do so, and call themselves their subject’s “benefactors” (Luke 22:25).  But, He said,

But it is not this way with you, but the one who is the greatest among you must become like the youngest, and the leader like the servant. For who is greater, the one who reclines at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at the table? But I am among you as the one who serves.

Luke 22:26-27

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Equipping The Saints

April 22nd, 2012 No comments

But be not ye called Rabbi: for one is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren. And call no man your father upon the earth: for one is your Father, which is in heaven. Neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ. But he that is greatest among you shall be your servant. And whosoever shall exalt himself shall be abased; and he that shall humble himself shall be exalted.

Matthew 23:8-12

The word “minister” comes from the same word meaning “to serve”.  Hence, a minister is a servant, a ministry is a service, and to minister is to serve.  This is the same context that Paul writes that He is the servant, or slave of Christ.  As Jesus said, he who wishes to be the greatest in the Kingdom will be the servant, the slave, of all.

The position of ministry is never one of exalting oneself over another, but rather the serving of another, and being their slave in the Lord.  A minister could be viewed as someone who has something of God so that he has been designated, by God, to help other people find Him as well.  A servant, a slave, never works on his own behalf, for his own name or recognition, but only and always for that of his master, his steward and keeper.

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Charter

February 5th, 2012 No comments

He said to them, Go into all the world and preach the good news to all creation. Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned. And these signs will accompany those who believe: In my name they will drive out demons; they will speak in new tongues; they will pick up snakes with their hands; and when they drink deadly poison, it will not hurt them at all; they will place their hands on sick people, and they will get well.

Mark 16:15-18

In my lifetime, I have been to many prophetic conferences.  I have been equipped, taught, and otherwise prepared and shaped through them.  As the late Jill Austin put it, she felt that conference were becoming the new Seminary for much of the Body of Christ.

Looking over the vast array of conferences, there are only a certain segment of them that interest me today.  The ones with a prophetic bent, the ones open to the manifestations of the Spirit, gifts, healing, prayer, and the like are what I generally go for, without another specific leading.  Certainly, my selection has been biased, I believe for the better, but God is the ultimate judge.

Yet, in the course of my attending many such meetings, it has come to my attention that there is a greater plan, the overall calling, or charter, if you will of many of these conferences.

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God’s Government

January 16th, 2012 No comments

I will give You thanks in the great congregation; I will praise You among a mighty throng.

Psalm 35:18

God’s way for Christians has always been the local church.  And, I don’t mean the house church, primarily.  It is God that has set up pastors and leaders in the body, to equip and teach them, to bring them to maturity in faith (Ephesians 4:11-13).  Even the verse most commonly referred to in the support of the house church indicates both the meeting together in the temple courts as a great assembly as well as house to house, sharing meals (Acts 2:46).

The passage from Ephesians 4 describing ministry roles has two very important aspects.  For some it is a job-description, detailing the calling of some and the role of their ministry.  For others, it could be likened to an street address for being trained.  Those who want to be equipped should find their way around such people that are apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, and teachers, because that is who God has given to do the job.  If you don’t see the job getting done, it could be that you are in the wrong spot!

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What Church Isn’t

December 31st, 2011 No comments

I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.

Matthew 16:18

According to scholars, the first reference Jesus makes to building a “church” or even mentioning the word is this word that He gave to Peter.  As far as I can tell, this is one of the only “nuts” and “bolts” that Jesus ever gives concerning building a church.

Many make a case for either large church or small church based on various scriptures and reasonings.  It is good to point out, however, that the Word actually says they did both.

 Day by day continuing with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they were taking their meals together with gladness and sincerity of heart, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord was adding to their number day by day those who were being saved.

Acts 2:46-47

This scripture makes it clear they met BOTH in the temple as a large congregation, and house to house, which seems to indicate smaller groups as well.  But, what is interesting, is that no where is the character of these gatherings described by what we understand as a ‘meeting’ today.  They met, sure, and they shared.  There certainly would have been some format, but they weren’t doing “Sunday Morning” back then.  They were glad, genuine, and thankful, because they had the Truth.

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If You’re In It…

September 24th, 2011 No comments

If you love Me, you will keep My commandments.

John 14:15

If you’re in it, you will live a certain way.

Most Happy are the Poor in Spirit, for theirs is the Kingdom of Heaven.

Matthew 5:3

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