“The chosen is anyone who answers the call.” – Curry Blake.
God is no respecter of persons, what one man can do in Christ another can do. In every congregation, there are apostles, prophets, evangelist, pastors and teachers amongst the crowd, each waiting to be trained and equipped to go out and do the work of the Ministry. Unfortunately, the way most churches are structures, very little equipping goes on.
Ephesians 4:11 – 12 (King James Version) And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
Firstly, the purposes of the fivefold ministry are directed at the saints in the church, not at the world. The Apostles are there to set doctrine and foundation. The Prophets are there to direct and to teach believers to discern the Lord’s voice in their own life and to prophesy in ministry. The Evangelist is there to teach the body how to use the tools of the Spirit, such as healing, prophesy to effectively take a community for Christ. Lastly, pastors and teachers are there to constantly remind and ground believers in the finished work of the Cross and the power of our Inheritance. Unfortunately, we don’t see this model being implemented.
Secondly, the only way to equip and train believers to see them mature, is to give them something to do. How else is a young Prophet going to mature, if he is never given the training and more specifically the opportunity to prophesy? If that young prophet only comes to service on Sunday to listen to another preach, how is he going to grow? How is an evangelist going to learn to teach others if he never goes out and interacts with the Lost and deal with the real challenges to the Gospel that believers will face in the real world? The only answer is to actually do the work of the ministry, and exercise the calling that is there through use.
My point is, everything about maturing as a believer in the New Covenant is about Doing. While most of the church is trying to mature by studying the Milk of the Word, the real growth happens when they start doing the word. For instance, if you want to train a worship leader, nothing grows them faster than putting them in front of a home group where no one knows the words to the songs, and the leader is challenged to create an atmosphere of worship by drawing on the Christ in them. Or as I say at our seminars, nothing matures you faster than the first time you encounter a Demonic Being manifesting before you and you are the only person who has to clean up the mess.
Hebrews 5:14 (King James Version) But strong meat belongeth to them that are of full age, even those who by reason of use have their senses exercised to discern both good and evil.
When Jesus picked his disciples, including Judas, they were in full time ministry from the beginning. Jesus was not bothered about if they would mess up, which they did; nor was he concerned about what people will say about his ministry when Judas betrayed him. The goal of Christ was to reproduce himself quickly. He worked with anyone, from the seventy to even Judas, to get the job done! For those who fall by the wayside, there will be others to take up the work, and at least some work got done during their ministry.
Paul had a similar work ethic; he was less than concerned with the motives of people who preached the Gospel, as long as the Gospel Got preached!
Philippians 1:15 – 18 Some indeed preach Christ even of envy and strife; and some also of good will: The one preach Christ of contention, not sincerely, supposing to add affliction to my bonds: But the other of love, knowing that I am set for the defence of the gospel. What then? notwithstanding, every way, whether in pretence, or in truth, Christ is preached; and I therein do rejoice, yea, and will rejoice.
As leaders, we need to address the Spiritual needs of those in our congregation, and trust the Christ in them from the go, rather than protect our reputations and image. At every meeting, we must be empowering either by laying foundations of Grace, training in healing the sick, prophesy, evangelism, and encouraging each other into participation unto maturity and growth. The fellowship of believers is where we have permission to learn, make mistakes and remain safe, so that when we go out to do the work, we don’t mess up.
Is Today’s Church Leadership backwards?