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LoveofTruth

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  1. The Rule of faith and practice is not scripture alone PART 1 (Contnued in part 2) A correction to the “sola scriptura” teaching, which says “scripture ALONE”. Now, at first glance some may think that I am teaching that scripture is not a rule of faith and practice. I am not quite saying this, I am saying that scripture is not the first primary rule of faith and practice, even though I would say it is the secondary rule. The primary rule of faith and practice is to live and walk and move in the power of the Spirit (Gal. 5:16, 25 Rom. 8:2,5,6,9-16 KJV), in Christ in the new creation (Gal. 6:15,16 KJV) where God dwells in all believers (1 Cor. 3:16, 1 John 4:15 KJV) and where he works in us to will and to do and to make us perfect unto every good work, working in us that which is well pleasing through Jesus Christ (Heb. 13:20,21 Phil 2:13 KJV). It is the anointing that teaches us all things, (1 John 2:27 KJV) and if any man have not the Spirit of Christ he is none of his (Romans 8:9) and if he does not have the Spirit he cannot know the things of God or the scriptures (1 Cor 2 KJV) . The scriptures were given by the Spirit (2 Timothy 3:16) and no man can even know the scriptures unless they are in the first rule which is to be in the Spirit (Romans 8:9 KJV). If any man have not the Spirit of Christ they are none of his (Romans 8:9 KJV). The Holy Spirit is the one who guides us into all truth (John 16:13 KJV). It is the grace of our Lord that is with our spirit (Philemon 1:25 KJV). No man can even know the Son of God except the Father reveals him. This inner witness in our spirit is vital to knowing God and living in the spirit. “no man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father; and who the Father is, but the Son, and he to whom the Son will reveal him.”(John 10:22 KJV) So, for a man to say “I know who the Son of God is” by scripture "alone" without a spiritual revelation is not accurate. Yes, scripture testifies of the Son of God and Jesus work for salvation and the gospel is according to the scriptures and many prophecies and much more. However, the scriptures were given by the Spirit to the men who testified and who were led to write them. But to know who Jesus is as the Son of God is a revelation of the Father and to know the Father is a revelation of the Son. It is not the scriptures that give an inner witness of themselves, but it is the Spirit that bears witness. The scriptures are able to help us as we have faith in Christ Jesus. “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God:”(Romans 8:16 KJV) Christianity is new life the Spirit of Christ (2 Cor. 3:6, Gal 615,16, John 15.:1-6,2 Cor 13:5 KJV) And true worship is to worship in spirit and in truth (John 4:23 KJV). Unless Jesus is in us and we in him we can do nothing, as Jesus said, “4 Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself, except it abide in the vine; no more can ye, except ye abide in me. 5 I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing.”(John 15:4,5 KJV) As highly as I regard the holy scriptures and see them as the secondary rule. I cannot say that they are “alone” the only rule for believers. However, if a man is in Christ he will be led by the Spirit into all truth and this would include the scriptures of truth and the true believer who now is in the Spirit and the faith which is in Christ Jesus can understand the scriptures. We even see this in a favorite verse many quote to teach “sola scriptura” “5 And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:”(2 Timothy 3:15,16 KJV) Here we see that it is by faith in Christ Jesus that any can understand the scriptures. Again the first primary rule is the spirit and to live in faith in Christ. Paul said “11 For what man knoweth the things of a man, save the spirit of man which is in him? even so the things of God knoweth no man, but the Spirit of God. 12 Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. 13 Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. 14 But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”(1 Cor 2:11-14 KJV) Yet today many think they can know the things of God without His immediate revelation and Spirit leading them to all truth. Or even if they acknowledge the Holy Spirit guiding them, they still say “sola” scriptura” or scripture alone. I wonder how a person thinks they can know anything of the Spirit unless they are born again and live and move in the spirit. Jesus said , “Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.”(John 3:3 KJV) The pharisees had scripture and studied it and could quote many things yet they did not know Jesus in front of them and they did not come to him to have life. They could not see spiritual things. But they could read scripture and study languages and try to understand with their natural carnal mind. They thought (like some today seem to imply,) that they had eternal life in the scriptures but Jesus said, “Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me. 40 And ye will not come to me, that ye might have life. “(John 5:39 KJV) Jesus also said they did not know the scriptures or the power of God (Matt. 22:29 KJV) even though they might have thought they did. They also did not have His word abiding in them “And ye have not his word abiding in you: for whom he hath sent, him ye believe not.”(John 5:38 KJV) The seed is the word of God sown in the hearts of all (Luke 8 Gal.3 1 John 3:9) and is near all (Acts 17 Romans 10: Hebrews 4:12,13 KJV), though not in them or in union with them until they receive him at salvation, this is a great attainment where they will be born again, born from above by the Spirit of God (John 6:63, 1 Peter 1:23, James 1:18 KJV). This inward life is the first rule of Christianity and by which we understand the scriptures. The anointing teaches us all things, and yes all things would include the secondary witness or rule of the scriptures as we are taught by the Spirit. “ But the anointing which ye have received of him abideth in you, and ye need not that any man teach you: but as the same anointing teacheth you of all things, and is truth, and is no lie, and even as it hath taught you, ye shall abide in him.”(1 John 2:27 KJV) Jesus one time opened the believers hearts to understand the scriptures. This is still the way men understand scripture “ And beginning at Moses and all the prophets, he expounded unto them in all the scriptures the things concerning himself....32 And they said one to another, Did not our heart burn within us, while he talked with us by the way, and while he opened to us the scriptures?”(Luke 24:27,32 KJV) Many today try to take out the spiritual aspects of Christianity and reduce it to a intellectual attainment or carnal reasoning with the wisdom of men and excellency of speech. Paul as led by the Spirit rebuked such thinking “And I, brethren, when I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom, declaring unto you the testimony of God....4 And my speech and my preaching was not with enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power: 5 That your faith should not stand in the wisdom of men, but in the power of God... we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery,...But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.”(1 Cor 2:1,4-6, 11-14 KJV) The Primary Rule To clarify what this first rule is, here are some scriptures. “15 For in Christ Jesus neither circumcision availeth any thing, nor uncircumcision, but a new creature. 16 And as many as walk according to this rule, peace be on them, and mercy, and upon the Israel of God.”(Galatians 6:15,16 KJV) The word “rule” means - “sphere, standard, rod, boundary.” To live in Christ as a new creation is to live in spiritual life with Jesus Christ in you and the spirit of God leading you and teaching you all things. This is the primary rule, as Paul said. We are to walk according to this rule. And except a man be born again he cannot see spiritually anything of the kingdom. “For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God.” (Romans 8:14 KJV) “Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.”(John 16:13 KJV) But some seem to say regardless of this, “We can know all about the things of God by our study of Greek and Hebrew and with our human wisdom in reading other commentaries and with all our human intellect and books." The issue they deal with, is that God said they cannot know the things of God unless they are spiritual ( 1 Cor 2 etc) . So again how do they think to understand spiritual scripture if they are not being led by the Spirit of God which is the first primary rule. If they can admit this then they should not use the expression “sola scriptura” or scripture ALONE. Jesus also showed a difference of the Old Testament worship and the worship God seeks after. “But the hour cometh, and now is, when the true worshippers shall worship the Father in spirit and in truth: for the Father seeketh such to worship him. 24 God is a Spirit: and they that worship him must worship him in spirit and in truth.”(John 4:23,24 KJV). PART 1 (Contnued in part 2 and 3) Part 2 continued... THE PERFECTING OF THE SAINTS In scripture we SEE different ways that God makes believers perfect. 1. God works in them to make them perfect “Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, 21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.”Hebrews 13:20, 21 JV) This is the first primary rule of faith and practice to have God in us and working in us and this is where we have the anointing that teaches us all things (1 John 2:27) and Jesus Christ in us ( 2 Cor 13:5 KJV). Without this rule of God in us we cannot know anything. “15 And let the peace of God rule in your hearts, to the which also ye are called in one body; and be ye thankful. 16 Let the word of Christ dwell in you...”(Colossians 3:15, 16 KJV) The word “rule” here means "to govern" And who cannot say this is the primary rule in our heart in the spirit.? 2. The body of Christ and ministry for the perfecting of the saints. I showed above, it is God working by the first rule in all believers, then by this rule the body can function and work and Christ effectually worketh in all “11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: ...15 But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: 16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.”(Ephesians 4:11-16) Notice, that Christ works effectually in every part of the body. This is the first rule of God working in individuals and then the body God works by his spirit in the body of Christ also and this is how he edifies the body and perfects the saints 3. The scriptures are able to make us perfect unto every good work THROUGH FAITH which is in Christ Jesus. “16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.”( 2 Timothy 3:16 KJV) So in these three ways we see the MORE complete UNDERSTANDING OF THE RULE. - The primary rule of God is by His Spirit working in us to make us perfect. - The work of God in the body of believers and the gifts in ministry to each other to perfect the saints - The Holy scriptures which are able to make us perfect through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All these work together to make us perfect. But nothing can happen unless we are in the primary rule of the Spirit and life. The scriptures don’t of themselves lead us into an action unless we are in faith in Christ. The anointing teaches us of all things and believers are to be led by the Spirit, then the scriptures will work in us, for the word of God works in those who believe (1 Thess 2:13 KJV). For example, the scriptures teach the various qualifications of an overseer (Bishop) in 1 Timothy 3. But many believers can see such a list and say they meet them. The list itself does not tell you or make you an overseer. Yet, we can know those who are called of God to such a function by examining the sc ripture list there and other places. This is done as we also see them manifest the gifts and call of God. They also hold fast the faithful word and “have the rule” in this respect and have spoken the word of God. But the scripture in 1 Timothy doesn't itself make them an overseer or "bishop". We read in scripture that the Holy Ghost made them overseers (Acts 20:28 KJV) This is as believers follow the primary rule of God’s Spirit calling, giving life, empowering, witnessing to our spirit, directing, leading and teaching us all things So we see that God makes us perfect directly in our hearts, He works in the entire body to perfect the saints and he uses scripture to make us perfect unto every good work. All these work together as the rule of faith and practice. But each in the proper place. But if some say “sola scriptura” with no clarification, this can led many to deny God’s immediate work and revelation to the heart and the leading of the Spirit in all things. Some may go as far as to say God does not speak in any believer today and we can only know God by the scriptures. Some may think they can know the things of God by simply studying scripture and Greek and Hebrew and human reasoning alone. While it is important to study (2 Timothy 2:15 KJV) this kind of study is to follow the leading of the Spirit and anointing (1 John 2:27, John 16:13 KJV) and what things are freely given to us of God (1 Cor 2:10,12 KJV). Studying Greek and Hebrews will tell you the meaning of words (and that is good) but it will not tell you the real spiritual meaning of what Jesus is saying. No man knows this but by the Spirit as we read (2 Cor. 2:13,14 KJV). For example, Jesus said “Verily, verily, I say unto you, Except a corn of wheat fall into the ground and die, it abideth alone: but if it die, it bringeth forth much fruit.”(John 12:24) A person can study the meaning in Greek of each word and still not know what Jesus is talking about. They may say “well, the word “Verily” in Greek means “firm, trustworthy, etc” or the word “corn” means, “kernal or seed”, or the word, “ground” meaning “earth, land, the solid part of whole terrene globe”. But to know this does not tell you what spiritual truth Jesus is speaking. If we do not see the spiritual we may think Jesus is simply giving advice about farming etc. I like when Jesus said this and I think it is very applicable today as well, "In that hour Jesus rejoiced in spirit, and said, I thank thee, O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that thou hast hid these things from the wise and prudent, and hast revealed them unto babes: even so, Father; for so it seemed good in thy sight.”(Luke 10:21 KJV) If a person could simply study Greek and Hebrews and read the bible and think he is fit for ministry, then any unbeliever could do as much and simply take other men’s words from commentaries or his own speculations and reasonings and piece together a few text and comments and be a minister in an assembly. But this is not the way Christians are to walk, nor the rule of faith and practice. We see some today who are very similar to the pharisees who seem to deny Gods immediate voice and His Spirit in the heart leading and giving gifts and revelation. From such men we may get many false doctrines and error. In fact, all false doctrine has come out of the men who do not listen to the Spirit and who have not been given things from God and who have been misled by the fleshly mind, doctrines of devils or traditions and commandments of men. Yes, all spiritual leading and every aspect of our walk must be tried and examined and yes we must appeal to all three aspects of the rule. To God directly, to the body of Christ and the holy scriptures. The witness of all three must be in harmony. But, we do not eliminate God’s Spirit directly and immediately working in us, or the body of Christ and cling to scripture alone. The word “alone” or “sola” is what troubles me, because the pharisees had scripture alone yet were without Jesus. It is true they added to scripture many of their own traditions and commandments as many do today as well. But they did not have Jesus word in their hearts. He was not in them and they were not in him for the most part. But, if we rightly use scripture and the way it is to be understood and applied then it is very profitable and needful. And remember that no prophecy of scripture is of any private interpretation, but holy men of God spoke) as they were moved by the Holy Ghost. So, to understand the spiritual things they wrote all must be in the Spirit and led by the Spirit. Continued in part 3... Part 3 continued from part 2... Objections: Some will object and say, that Paul is saying that only scripture is able to make us perfect unto every good work and they will quote 2 Timothy 3:16, where it says that the Holy scriptures are able to make us perfect unto all good works. They will stress that there is nothing else. Answer: I agree that holy scripture is able to work in those that BELIEVE. But even in the letter to Timothy we read that this is effectual only in those that have faith . Without faith it is impossible to please God. And Christ dwells in the heart by faith. Faith is the substance of things hoped for the evidence of things not seen and Christ in you is the hope of glory (Hebrews 11, Colossians 1) We also read that the primary rule is that God works in us to will and to do and to make us perfect unto every good work, working in us through Jesus Christ (Hebrews 13:20,21 Phi. 2:13 KJV) So, while scripture (the word of God that is written down when given to men by the Spirit) bears witness with the seed or word sown in the heart ie. Christ the true Light that lighteth every man that cometh into the world, then we see that scripture alone does not make a person perfect unless they are in faith. The word only works in those that believe. Otherwise all the pharisees would have been made perfect by simply reading the scriptures and trying in their best human effort to walk in them and understand them. But they did not do this and they did not hear Jesus voice in their hearts or have His word abiding in them. Jesus also said they did not know the scriptures nor the power of God and they were inwardly ravening from the Spirit though they outwardly appeared righteous to men. They thought they had eternal life in the scriptures, but they did not. Objection 2 Some will say, that to put the Spirit of God as the first rule we open up to all sorts of heretics who will say that they hear from God and even though what they say is contrary to scripture. Answer: No, we can hear what any man says as he claims to be led, but all must be judged. It is judged by the Spirit in our hearts that bears witness, and the body of Christ as a whole who can judge all things that are said (1 Cor 14:29, 1 John 4:1, 1 Cor 5:12, 1 Thess 5:21 KJV)and by the scriptures as well, that will never contradict a person who is truly led by the Spirit. If they do claim spiritual revelation and leadings all must be judged. If a man is found to be a heretic, reject after the first and second admonition (Titus 3:10 KJV). And yes, all three aspects of the rule are needed. God leading in the anointing which teaches us all things, the body of Christ and the holy scriptures. Objection 3: But if you claim an immediate leading of the Spirit and God working in you, you would have to add any words and leading of men today to the scriptures. Answer: No, this is not the case. Many things were said by Jesus that are not written down and many had prophecies that are not written down and other words from God and leading's in their life. If we are led by the Spirit we are the sons of God, if not we are in darkness. If we live in the Spirit let us also walk in the Spirit. We do not add to scripture . God only chose certain men to write scripture and certain words to put in scripture. But God has spoke though all believers and works in all believers.. Even the closed canon we believe by faith. Objection 4: But the church has taught for a long time “sola scriptura” and how can you say they are wrong. Answer: The very scriptures I quoted in this discussion say they are wrong. If a person does not have the Spirit of Christ he is none of His and he can know nothing. The churches through history have had many errors and issues to deal with, this is nothing new. We could go over the many issues in the reformation times, or even in the times of the early church we see many issues as well. The scriptures were given by the Spirit of God and only known by the Spirit. How can we say otherwise. Can any man claim to know the things of God in the scriptures unless he is in the spirit? Unless he has God reveal them to him.? The sad thing is that many do not seek God's leading in this or to hear His voice and so they go about in carnal apprehension and human reasoning thinking to know the things of God. This is part of the problem. They can be distant from God and inwardly ravening even though outwardly appearing righteous unto men (Matthew 7:15 KJV). It doesn’t mean that all who are believers will always understand certain things easily. But to be led by the Spirit and have the anointing teach us all things is safer than man’s human reasoning and endless human wisdom in trying to know the things of God. A summary The scriptures testify of Jesus and are given by the Spirit, but they are not Jesus himself. Just by reading the scriptures doesn’t mean a person hears God’s word or have the Spirit revealing spiritual things to them. The Pharisees thought they were right with God and they thought they had eternal life in the scriptures but they didn’t (John 5:39 KJV). Jesus said they did not know the scriptures or the power of God . They did not even know the Lord in front of them, the Word made flesh. They also did not have his word abiding in them (John 5:38 KJV). Men all through history have often missed the spiritual understanding of things. This is obvious in many of the things they say and do and in their understanding the doctrine. They often cling to the natural and human reasoning. But, If just reading scriptures with the natural mind made someone hear God’s word and be a minister then all the Pharisees would have heard and known God’s word by their reading scripture alone. But instead we read John 8 :43,47 KJV “ Why do ye not understand my speech? even because ye cannot hear my word.. He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear them not, because ye are not of God.” This was spoken to those who had scriptures and read them and who had even heard His voice audibly, but did not hear His word... Obviously by their simply by reading scripture did not mean they heard Gods word . I welcome any discussion on this and comments. God bless
  2. I hear with spiritual ears some can hear but not hear
  3. WOMAN'S ROLES IN THE CHURCH Women’s ministry and roles in the church Before I even address this issue, I want to say at the forefront that women can be functional members of church gatherings and they can speak in the meetings, but there are parameters to this order as well and these become necessary when they overlap with the order of a family and their roles with their husbands and in relation to men in general. I am fully aware that this understanding is not easily received by many today especially in the world we live in where women’s lib groups and the roles of men and women have blurred the harmony that can and should exist in this. But as in all things, God’s word and His order is what we should always seek to walk in. To have woman teachers over men and leaders over all causes a hinderance to God’s order. This again sets up a one woman ministry over others. This is very similar to the one man pastor ministry over all and it has similar problems where the body is quenched from mutual edification and ministry in the gatherings. Having a male or female over all as a "pastor or teacher" creates the same error. But this is complicated if the woman is teaching and usurping and judging over the man. This error also extends to women in the gathering who may not have entered into a wrong oversight over men but simply try to judge and teach over men. Since the very beginning after the fall of Adam and Eve God said, “16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception; in sorrow thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. “(Genesis 3:16) This word is echoed all through the Old Testament and into the New Testament. We see Paul touch on this in relation to women when he saw a problem in the Corinthian church. “Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge. 30 If any thing be revealed to another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace. 31 For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted. 32 And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. 33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. 34 Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law. 35 And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church.”(1 Corinthians 14:29-35) This section has been misunderstood by many and still is. If we examine this closely with the rest of scripture we will see that this section is not stopping women in Christ from speaking in a certain manner, but rather it speaks if them not speaking in judgement of their husbands and by extension other men in the meetings. It does not stop them from speaking in the spirit as we will see in this discussion. The first consideration that Paul makes here about women in the assemblies is that ” they are commanded to be under obedience, as also saith the law”. This law must refer to the Mosaic law and verses similar to the one we read in Genesis 3:16. Because Paul did not speak the cultures of men and their commands for the church He spoke and wrote the "commandments of the Lord" (1 Cor 4:347 KJV). Paul began to speak about the prophets speaking two or three and the other JUDGING, this aspect of judging what is said, was not permitted for women, because it would go against the law of God and cause women to dominate and not submit to their husbands. Paul said that wives should submit to their husbands in all things, “Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord. 23 For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the saviour of the body. 24 Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. 25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church..,”(Ephesians 5:22-25) The husband and the wife are to typify Christ and the church (Ephesians 5:30-32) and to interfere with this example to the world hinders the lesson and truth if the matter. But back to 1 Corinthians 14. We see that this judging of men in prophecy was causing some confusion in the church as Paul said, vs 33 when Paul told them that “God is not the author of confusion”. this confusion related to many aspect here but included was the woman issue of judging or questioning their husbands in the meetings. It would seem from Paul's words that a man spoke some prophecy and his wife questioned him publicaly. Sometimes questioning a person is like a judgement, For example, the wife could have said, “ how do you know that is from God it didn’t sound right? Or they could say, "but what you said goes against other teachings, are you sure God told you that? Etc." this would cause possible back and forth contention as well. Paul says for the wives to ask questions at home not in the church. In this kind of judgment of prophecy they are to be silent . To rebuke or judge their husbands would go against Gods order for the family and the man ruling over his own home, particularly those who were in oversight (1 Timothy 3:5). But consider if a woman is over all in an oversight role, as we can see in many places today, and they had to rebuke and judge men in sin and their husbands. this causes a confusion. if the husband is under her in the gatherings and yet at the home he is the one to “rule” his own house this is a contradiction of order.We read in scripture a clear order when Paul wrote, "A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach;...4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; 5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) Notice that the overseers ( Bishops) must rule well their own house. It does not say "if a woman knoweth not how to rule her own house." But rather "if a man knoweth not how to rule his own house". This is God's order for the home. So imagine if that same family where the man was ruling his own house and he was one of the elders in the home meeting in his house once a week, where the wife in the meeting judged him and he had to submit to her teaching over him. This would cause confusion. Now some might say well that only relates to married couples what about single women who are not married? Here we must use sound wisdom and examine scripture wisely. In 1 Corinthians 14 Paul said to the whole church , “Let your women keep silence in the churches”. This “Your women would seem to cover all the women in the gatherings as well. Even though Paul adds more about married women, when he says after this “And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: “. But right after this statement he says. “for it is a shame for women to speak in the church”. Paul mention women in general here which would include married and single women . He didn't say let your married women keep silent in the church. This command to the church was by extension for all women, because the married women are to be examples to the unmarried women, the older women and married ones are to teach the younger to love their husbands and to submit etc .The elder women are to be examples to the younger women in all good things teaching them by example to be keepers at home and how to obey their husbands when they do get married, if they do. Or how to behave around men in the gatherings etc. Can you imagine if a unmarried woman took this judging role because she was not married and during a meeting she had to rebuke and judge with bold questioning a man in the meeting. But what if that man in the days following was to be engaged and then married to her? And in a few months she could not rebuke him then? This again creates confusion. Or what if a woman took this oversight role and became an overseer and judged men and then she got married and could no longer do this? And what if an overseer had daughters in the meeting, should they also rebuke and judge their father publically? No, they should not. Or if a single woman was there and the man she was going to marry in a week was sitting by should she be able to judge him one week and then the next week when married she cannot do so? This would all cause confusion. The elder women are to be examples to the younger women in all good things teaching them by example to be keepers at home and how to obey their husbands when they do get married, if they do. Or how to behave around men in the gatherings etc. If men were to see single women judging men in general this would not help the single women to find husbands, and to learn to submit to their husbands in all things. The men in the meeting may be turned from pursuing then in marriage because of this. No, this judging and usurping role over men should not be taken by any woman , not just married women. What if some still say, no, it is only for married women. Then you would have a gathering that is filled with single women judging men and even the married women’s husbands and yet the married women can say nothing in this matter they would be watching the single women and many times younger women, judge their own husbands and they couldn’t do this in the meetings themselves. Again all this would create confusion and disorder . But Paul speaks more about this in his letter to Timothy when he said, “But I suffer not a woman to teach, nor to usurp authority over the man, but to be in silence. 13 For Adam was first formed, then Eve. 14 And Adam was not deceived, but the woman being deceived was in the transgression” 1 Timothy 2:12-14) Here again we see that women are not to teach, and this must be understood of a teaching gift over the man, for older women can teach younger women (Titus 2:3,4) . A teacher gifting has to rebuke and correct and judge error as part of that role. Paul says clearly that this is not allowed for women over the men . They also must not “usurp authority” over the man, this word “usurp” means, “ to act of oneself, or to dominate, “. This again goes in line with Paul’s words to the Corinthians about judging men in the meetings which is similar to usurping. Some may try to say that Paul is simply speaking here of a cultural issue and that this is not for us today. But in the same chapter a few verses previous Paul said, “...I speak the truth in Christ, and lie not...”(1 Timothy 2:7) Paul was not speaking the cultures of men but “the truth In Christ”. And in 1 Cor 14 he was speaking the commandments of the lord for all the churches of the saints, not just Corinth, as scripture teaches. In this section of scripture in 1 Timothy 2:7, Paul goes back to creation to prove what he is saying, hen he refers to Adam not being deceived but the woman being deceived (1 Timothy 2:13,14) Here he is not speaking and grounding what he said on the “cultures of men”. This reference to Eve being deceived would also clarify another reason for women not dominating, judging and teaching over men. Paul’s implication, however it may sound to today’s world, is that the woman was deceived not the man implying that their may be something that the devil found in women particularly to cause such deception and to sin. Yes, men can and are deceived many times. But we must hear what scripture says and reject the modern traditions and worldly wisdom we see everywhere.Paul is clearly implying that this would be spiritually dangerous to let women teach, lead and rule over men. But, having said this , to silence women from all speaking in any way in the meetings creates a hindrance to the body also, women can speak in God’s order. Just as a woman judging, dominating or questioning her husband in the church is against Gods order, so also is hindering women from using their gifts and not allowing women any ministry in the church . While women are not to take oversight over men they may still , prophesy, have a testimony of Jesus, which is the Spirit of prophecy, sing in the spirit and pray and testify of the good work that Jesus is doing and many other aspects of love and encouragement in the Spirit to others in the body, do evangelism etc. All of this, as with the men as well, is to be done as they walk in the Spirit and abide in Christ leading. As we can read in scripture, Christ as the head of the body works effectually in the measure of “every part” of the body into the edifying of itself in love (Ephesians 4:15 ,16). This working in the BODY is not just working in men, but women also . All Christians have Christ in them. It is also true as Paul said, “...there is neither male nor female: for ye are all one in Christ Jesus.”(Galatians 3:28) While this is true in the Spirit and as we are all members of the body of Christ. In the natural we are still either male or female and certain parameters apply as long as we are in this present world. But if some are contentious here and say, no there is no distinction we are not male not female, if it is a man who says this ask him is he a man or a woman? And can he give birth to children? Obviously this verse applies to the believers as they abide IN CHRIST and this is related to spiritual reality, not the physical realm. When a man or woman have a revelation or prophecy for example it is not so much them that speak but they are speaking in the spirit. Jesus said similar to the apostles when he sent them out, “But when they deliver you up, take no thought how or what ye shall speak: for it shall be given you in that same hour what ye shall speak. 20 For it is not ye that speak, but the Spirit of your Father which speaketh in you”(Matthew 10:19,20) When a woman has a prophecy, that is not her speaking from herself but she speaks the truth in Christ. If a woman shares a testimony, prophecy, prayer, song or some spiritual gifting in Christ, and the men do not feel usurped or dominated over this speaking is not hindered. But, if the woman goes beyond this and usurps, (acts of herself or dominates over the man) then this is unruly and they must be warned (warn the unruly Paul said). Part of the reason for men and women’s roles and the order here is for the family as well. A family is a mini society and the family is very important to a God. If the family is in order this will reflect to all those around but if the family is divided and in disorder this will affect society in a negative way as well. If we look around at today’s society we can see the family under constant attack. Even the very definition of marriage between a man and a woman is in tension and horrible sin is creeping it’s way into our society and into the church gatherings. Yet in the church there is a liberty for women to function as well in God’s order that is. There are many examples of women speaking “in Christ” in the bible, here are just a few, “...But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth...”(1 Corinthians 11:5) Here we see that women can pray and prophesy . And prophecy was one of the spiritual gifts given to the church and to be sought after (1 Corinthians 14) . prophecy edifies the church and is one of the ways women and men can speak in Christ and one way that they can both speak into the church when they cone together. Here are just a few verses showing that women can speak in this way, “ 17 And it shall come to pass in the last days, saith God, I will pour out of my Spirit upon all flesh: and your sons and your daughters shall prophesy, and your young men shall see visions, and your old men shall dream dreams: 18 And on my servants and on my handmaidens I will pour out in those days of my Spirit; and they shall prophesy: “(Acts 2:17,18) This is all part of the Spirits working in the New Covenant. And there was no distinction of this prophecy being only outside if the church. In fact it is distinctly mentioned as being for the church (1 Corinthians 14) “...Paul’s company departed, and came unto Caesarea: and we entered into the house of Philip the evangelist, which was one of the seven; and abode with him. 9 And the same man had four daughters, virgins, which did prophesy. “(Acts 21:8,9) Here we see that Paul and his company went to the home of Philip While meeting in the home of Philip was a church gathering in his house we can safely assume that the daughters were known to prophesy in that gathering. At least all Paul’s company and Philip were aware of this. As scripture clearly shows, the church met in homes. Philips home would have had Paul’s company and perhaps others there and this would have been one place where the daughters could have been known to prophesy . But can women prophesy or speak in a church? In 1 Corinthians 11:5, Paul says ,”But every woman that prayeth or prophesieth”. Some will say this is not in a church gathering but this is speaking out side the church and that Paul is speaking about women who pray publicly or prophesy publically only. The thing is, Paul mentions no specific locations here for praying or prophesying. If we closely examining this section of scripture such a position is not sound. this passage extends to all prophesying in the meetings or wherever it may be done. This is an issue, because some try to use this chapter to say women cannot pray or prophesy in Christian gatherings, in connection with 1 Corinthians 14 where it speaks of women not speaking in the church. but by taking this view the function of the body is hindered again.The kind of speaking is what is being discussed. To have a revelation or prophecy of anything from the Lord or prayer in the spirit etc, or a testimony of Jesus, is not the woman speaking of herself. But God giving revelation in the spirit in Christ. But the silencing of women and their functioning in the body under Christ headship when gathered is found in a general way in many assemblies already, where most women and men for that matter are not allowed to minister in the assembly and where all are under the man called “the pastor” who in his role is unbiblical also. He hinders body ministry among all the believers, not just among the women only. So in one sense mist women are already silenced by today's order of men. In Gods order however, women can speak in certain ways in Christ in the gathering although they are excluded from speaking in judgement or dominating by usurping authority over the man. When considering praying and prophesying in 1 Cor. 11:5, Paul also includes men in this as well in Chapter 11 when he says, “Every man praying or prophesying,” (1 Corinthians 11;4). So if we are to take the argument of some then men also should speak in prophesy only outside of the church by this chapter. But of course this is not the case when we consider the whole of scripture and this is not the New Testament pattern we see with women either.Men and women can pray and prophesy in the church gatherings. As Paul said in 1 Cor 14. You may all prophesy one by one. And we know that women can also prophesy. The audience Paul is writing to in 1 Corinthians, is whole church and more than likely it was read in the church as were other letters (Colossians 4:16). The church he is writing to is not a building or religious system, but a gathering of believers in Christ who most likely met in homes as we have already discussed. Paul expected this letter to be read to the church . “Unto the church of God which is at Corinth...”(1 Corinthians 1:1 ) What Paul refers to here is for all believers everywhere and not just for the Corinthians. this can be seen in the same chapter 11 , shortly after mentioning praying and prophesying, “16 But if any man seem to be contentious, we have no such custom, neither the churches of God” 1 Cor 11:16. Here we see that what Paul taught here was for all the other churches of the saints as well. And so he is again speaking of believers assembling together. So in the gathering of the saints at Corinth, prophesying is to be allowed in the gathering and to be done the way he defines it . While it is true that believers can pray and prophesy outside of meetings, the whole context would seem to be for the churches. Now, some will see chapter 11: 17 where Paul said. “Now in this that I declare unto you I praise you not, that ye come together not for the better, but for the worse”. This is seen by some as if Paul is now referring to the gatherings and not previously when he spoke of prophesying And praying for men and women in verse 5? This is not spoken here, Paul is merely telling them of another point of correction which he defined in their gatherings as a problematic area. He is speaking to the church and particularly when they gather on many parts. Previously he was teaching on aspects of prophesying and dealing with some contention about it and clarifying the issue. Paul wanted the whole church to prophesy (1 Cor24:??) , and this was not coming together for the worse. But the issue of the supper and the correction needed was a different issue and as Paul said they came together for the worse and he could not praise them . Paul had already praised them for spiritual gifts and prophecy would be part of that when he said, “That in every thing ye are enriched by him, in all utterance, and in all knowledge; 6 Even as the testimony of Christ was confirmed in you: 7 So that ye come behind in no gift”(1 Coronthians 1:5-7) So Paul had already praised them for this but he could not praise them in coming together for their error in the supper. To make a separation from the meetings where prayer and prophecy were part of and to try and say they are speaking here of activity only outside a church meeting, is confusing here. In the same letter to the Corinthians in chapter 14 Paul says “Follow after charity, and desire spiritual gifts, but rather that ye may prophesy”. Here he is speaking to the whole church of Corinth and tells them ALL to desire this and not just men. We have already read in Acts 2 that the Holy Ghost was poured upon men and women and both can prophesy. Prophecy is not men speaking of themselves, but a God given ability and revelation. So whether men or women prophesy in the gatherings or out of them it is still the same gifting and God given ability . And all believers can seek for this gift as Paul directed. If this gift in the gatherings was just for men Paul would not have made such a general statement. The plain sense of this teaching is for all the church. By telling the whole church that they can all seek prophecy, this directly links to women prophesying in Chapter 11 and Paul does not divide prophecy to in or out of the meetings. The prophecy Paul tells them all to desire, is for the church when gathered . What can be clearer here that prophecy is also for the church, and a desired gift for all, “ Wherefore tongues are for a sign, not to them that believe, but to them that believe not: but prophesying serveth not for them that believe not, but for them which believe”(1 Corinthians 14:??) Here Paul shows that prophecy is for believers particularly and for edification in church gatherings. And as such, women can speak in meetings in this way as well. God told them that “your sons and daughters shall prophesy”, by saying , your “sons and daughters,” this implies that the family at least is aware of this and can see them do so. And this family extends to the family of God. For we are all brothers and sisters and we are all members one of another with Christ working effectually in every part and in women as well. Paul says as much here, “So we, being many, are one body in Christ, and every one members one of another. 6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, whether prophecy, let us prophesy according to the proportion of faith”(Romans 12: 5,6) Paul does not make a distinction here of men prophesying or women, since both have the gift , he simply says, that we are ONE body and members one of another. And we cannot say that one part is not needed, (1 Corinthians 12) When men or women prophesy Paul says that anything can be revealed to another that sitteth by, and he dies not make distinction here of men or women only the parameters of judging and submission of women in this. This is for the gathering of believers . But it is also for those who are outside if the church even when we gather, those who are unbelievers when they come among the church, as Paull said , “But if all prophesy, and there come in one that believeth not, or one unlearned, he is convinced of all, he is judged of all: 25 And thus are the secrets of his heart made manifest”1 Cor 14: 24,25.) Again this prophesying is not done outside the gathering here but in the gatherings and is for believers and unbelievers and for any who may come among us. So in this sense, we can see that the church is gathered together as the body of called out believers and the public aspect of prophesying could be said to be spoken to those who are among us as unbelievers, for they are not truly “IN” the church but outside the church. They are not in Christ so prophesying to them would be in a sense, public. But all this prophesying can and is able to happen in the gatherings and by men and women as well. If men say still that prophecy can be done by women outside the assembly of believers but not in the church. This raises many strained questions. Like , what if they are in the presence of other Christian men and maybe their husbands outside the gatherings, perhaps in the streets and they prophesy? Is this allowed? Or do they have to be alone when praying and prophesying? What if other Christians walk by and gather around them and hear them prophesy outside and there were mostly Christians listening should they not speak then? This creates a unusual strain. But also note that when prophecy happens some may be convicted or judged of secrets. This is not the woman judging but God by the spirit and His word. Just as Deborah was a prophetess and judged Isreal, it was not her but the Spirit of God in her speaking. But in the church when the prophets speak two or three the other can judge , but women cannot enter into this judgement and espescally in judging or questioning their husbands in usurping authority over them in the meetings. Also praying is mentioned in 1 Corinthians 12:5 as well. And praying is also speaking, is this praying only to be done outside in the market place ? Are they to pray to be seen of men? Paul speaks similarly of praying in the spirit in 1Corinthians 14 as well and again as prophecy this is "In Christ, in the spirit". And women can pray as Paul said in chapter 11. This praying is also for the church and another way women can speak as they are led by God. Testimony is also allowed for women in the meetings as we read, “...for the testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy. “(Revelation 19:10) And as we have considered women are given the gift of prophecy and prophecy edified the church. Women can also testify of the resurrection and speak this way into the assembly and where men are gathered. “Saying, The Son of man must be delivered into the hands of sinful men, and be crucified, and the third day rise again. 8 And they remembered his words, 9 And returned from the sepulchre, and told all these things unto the eleven, and to all the rest. 10 It was Mary Magdalene, and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles”(Luke 24:7-10) We see here that the women were among the first to speak of the death and resurrection from the dead of Jesus. The apostles being gathered together did not silence them. But some will object and say. What if a christian woman has a husband and he doesn't believe does she still have to submit to him and obey him? They get upset at this point and angry and imply that she does not have to obey. But she must obey him unless he tries to cause her to sin against God. She ought to obey God rather than men. This may be similar to how believers are to obey governments as best we can unless they tell us to go against God. But Peter is clear on their question here as we read, "Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives; 2 While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. 3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; 4 But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. 5 For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, who trusted in God, adorned themselves, being in subjection unto their own husbands: 6 Even as Sara obeyed Abraham, calling him lord: whose daughters ye are, as long as ye do well, and are not afraid with any amazement." and yes husbands love your wives even as Christ loved the church.... In summation 1. Women can speak the truth in Christ where they are led. 2. This speaking may be in prayers, testimony, prophecy, and revelation as God leads. 3. The kind of speaking not permitted is judging of the men or questioning them and any usurping or dominating over the men. This is partly due to the roles men play in oversight and in their homes and in connection to the family and the type of man as Christ and woman as the church. . I pray the Lord help me to speak truth here and that this would help the order of God among the saints. I welcome and love correction if it is needed. Please consider and comment. God bless. I can say my heart goes out for any women who has been gifted by God. God will make a way for your gift to be used and known. But let God's word and order in the gatherings and in the home guide you in truth.
  4. What is interesting, is I have shared some of these things on some other forums and post and many agree and are excited about body ministry. I have also shared these things with many believers and churches over the years many agree and some do not. I hear often from those who are in the various religious systems and organizations who seek hard to defend their order. But they cannot do it using scripture. Some will rush in a frantic search for some so called "church Fathers" who may give them some material. But I do not put men above that which is written. Jesus spoke of this order and he did so also through men like, Paul and Peter and others and we see this order shown in scripture in many many places. Over 30 years I have never heard one scriptural argument that stands against the order of God I share in these post. God bless I hope to hear any thoughts and discussion on this important matter.
  5. "16 And what agreement hath the temple of God with idols? for ye are the temple of the living God; as God hath said, I will dwell in them, and walk in them; and I will be their God, and they shall be my people. 17 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you. 18 And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty."(2 Cor 6:16-18) I was thinking of these verses and Mystery Babylon, known to some as the harlot church. We see a physical type of the spiritual harlot "8 Remove thy way far from her, and come not nigh the door of her house: 9 Lest thou give thine honour unto others, and thy years unto the cruel: 10 Lest strangers be filled with thy wealth; and thy labours be in the house of a stranger; 11 And thou mourn at the last, when thy flesh and thy body are consumed, 12 And say, How have I hated instruction, and my heart despised reproof; 13 And have not obeyed the voice of my teachers, nor inclined mine ear to them that instructed me! 14 I was almost in all evil in the midst of the congregation and assembly."(Proverbs 5:8-14) Revelation 18:4 "And I heard another voice from heaven, saying, Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues." Now we may go most places in evangelism and to win souls. But there is a principle here.
  6. TO THE CHURCH IN THY HOUSE Here are some verses showing the pattern and order as led by God that the church met in homes to consider “And suddenly there came a sound from heaven as of a rushing mighty wind, and it filled all the house where they were sitting” (Acts 2:2) "And they, continuing daily with one accord in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, did eat their meat with gladness and singleness of heart,47 Praising God, and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily such as should be saved. ( Acts 2:46,47) Notice that they were not driven into homes because of persecution. They had favour with all the people. In fact Paul ( Saul) knew just where to find them when he persecuted the church "As for Saul, he made havock of the church, entering into every house, and haling men and women committed them to prison."(Acts 8:3) Here are some more verses showing the order, or pattern of the church. "And how I kept back nothing that was profitable unto you, but have shewed you, and have taught you publicly, and from house to house,"(Acts 20:20) "Greet Priscilla and Aquila my helpers in Christ Jesus:...5 Likewise greet the church that is in their house." (Romans 16:3,5) "The churches of Asia salute you. Aquila and Priscilla salute you much in the Lord, with the church that is in their house.)1 Cor 16:19) "Salute the brethren which are in Laodicea, and Nymphas, and the church which is in his house."(Colossians 4:15) "And to our beloved Apphia, and Archippus our fellowsoldier, and to the church in thy house:"(Philemon 1:2) "If there come any unto you, and bring not this doctrine, receive him not into your house, neither bid him God speed:"(2 John 10) "Whose mouths must be stopped, who subvert whole houses, teaching things which they ought not, for filthy lucre's sake."(Titus 1:11) "14 And a certain woman named Lydia, a seller of purple, of the city of Thyatira, which worshipped God, heard us: whose heart the Lord opened, that she attended unto the things which were spoken of Paul. 15 And when she was baptized, and her household, she besought us, saying, If ye have judged me to be faithful to the Lord, come into my house, and abide there. And she constrained us...40 And they went out of the prison, and entered into the house of Lydia: and when they had seen the brethren, they comforted them, and departed."(Acts 16:14,15,40) "And ye have respect to him that weareth the gay clothing, and say unto him, Sit thou here in a good place; and say to the poor, Stand thou there, or sit here under my footstool:"(James 2:3) Footstools are in houses. It is clear that the Christians met in homes instead of man-made buildings that are unbiblically called "churches", or "the house of God". Unlike the O.T., Christians had no command or example to build temples or large edifices called "the church". The New Testament pattern and order that the apostles set up under Christ headship was to meet in homes around Christ as the head. This is clearly seen in all over the New Testament and for the first 250 to 300 years of Christian history. They did so because Christ was leading them to do so through the apostles. So why would we want to do anything else? Acts 7:48 "Howbeit the most High dwelleth not in temples made with hands; as saith the prophet,"
  7. I believe this is what she said and Ii reacted to it " I challenge you, the home churches you have started, with this passage (Acts 5:15-16 ) to put your beliefs in action we are told Jas 2:14 What doth it profit, my brethren, though a man say he hath faith, and have not works? can faith save him? Act 5:15 Insomuch that they brought forth the sick into the streets, and laid them on beds and couches, that at the least the shadow of Peter passing by might overshadow some of them. Act 5:16 There came also a multitude out of the cities round about unto Jerusalem, bringing sick folks, and them which were vexed with unclean spirits: and they were healed every one. " anyway, I am simply speaking the truth from scripture.
  8. God's Order in the Church God’s order in the body of Christ is His spiritual working in every part as he leads and empowers believers in all things. Though hidden from the eyes of natural men, it is there nevertheless. This order begins in the spirit and the patient waiting on God as He leads into all gifts, ministry, fruits of the Spirit and sets the order. No person can know this order unless they are in Christ, and walk in the spirit. But sadly, many Christians today are drawn away from God’s order and rule in their hearts into a religious form of man’s order and exalted leaders. Man’s order does not begin in the spirit, it begins in man’s natural mind and human wisdom, and is regulated by programs and traditions of men in the rudiments of the world that can make the word of God of no effect. Jesus said, “I will build my church” and he is fully able to do this by his power and might, which he has been doing all along. But If you ask many believers today, “how is a church built?” They would say something like, “well, first you save up money for years with a gathering, or one that meets in a school or community center and then you buy a piece of land or go into debt, hire a construction crew and you pay them to build the church building. Then you put some pews in it, build an altar and pulpit, have a Pastor over all and make a name for it, put a sign up on the lawn, register with the government and there you go, the church is ready. Then the whole assembly comes in and sit in rows facing the back of each others heads as they look forward to the exalted man on the podium, or “altar”, who gives a message to the church every week. But this is not how Jesus Christ builds his church, nor has he ever built His church this way. Christ builds his church from the inside out and this work starts from within all believers. The “church” is the body of Christ (Eph.1:22, 23) and a living organism. It is a spiritual house made up of living stones (1 Peter 2:5), which is built up in the revelation of Jesus Christ. This is the starting point of Jesus building. It is not a man made religious building or a corporation with bosses and employees. Jesus Christ is the head of the church, which is his body, he is not the head of institutions and man made forms. The Lord Builds the House In God’s order, all believers must “...grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.“ (Ephesians 4:15,16). This edifying (or building up) of one another in love is how Christ builds His Church from the inside out. In God’s order He arranges all things after His mighty working in the saints (Heb. 13:20, 21) as believers labourer together with him (1 Cor. 3:9). This order begins in the peace of God and by His rule (or governing) in the spirit (Col.3:15,16) as we wait on the Lord for ministry in the body one to another (Rom. 12:3-8). Only then can we grow up into him (Eph. 4:15). Despite the multitudes of believers who gather in these religious forms, with their various spiritual moments, the evangelistic aspects and some other good ministration seen in many of them, there is a great problem in the churches today and it must be addressed. It is still true today that, “Except the Lord build the house they labour in vain that build it” (Psalm 127:1). Many christians who gather today may seem to be rich and increased with goods and think they have need of nothing, but many are unaware that they are “wretched, and miserable, and poor, and blind and naked” (Rev. 3:17). Jesus said these serious words to the Church of Laodicea, but he also said, “Behold, I stand at the door, and knock: if any man hear my voice, and open the door, I will come into him, and will sup with him and he with me” (Rev. 3:20). Jesus wants to dwell in the hearts of all those who will open to him and to “sup” with them, and to participate with them in the assembly as they gather. Without this participation of the Lord among the church they are in danger. Jesus said to the Laodicean church, “I will spue thee out of my mouth.” (Rev. 3:16). Similarly, all should consider this question, “is Jesus Christ standing outside knocking or is he in the midst being able to effectually work in believers as they assemble?” For Christians to be able to function fully as the body of Christ, they need to withdraw from man’s order (2 Thess. 3:6, Rom. 16:17, Eph. 5:11) and walk in God’s order, even though this will be very hard for some. The commands of the Lord in this order were spoken of by Paul to the Corinthians when he said “...when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying...Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge. 30 If any thing be revealed to another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace.31 For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted... If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord.” (1 Cor. 14:26, 29-31, 37). Peter also spoke of this order and said, “As every man hath received the gift, even so minister the same one to another, as good stewards of the manifold grace of God. 11 If any man speak, let him speak as the oracles of God; if any man minister, let him do it as of the ability which God giveth: that God in all things may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom be praise and dominion for ever and ever. Amen.” (1 Peter 4:10,11). If anyone neglects or hinders the ministration of the gifts from God to one another they will not be good stewards of the grace of God and they quench the spirit. This one aspect alone is so different than most assemblies today, where all the body is stifled and silenced by the one man pastor ministry and the commands of men, with their programed order, where all are bound up and unable to freely edify one another. Instead they are drawn to the exalted man who does most of the ministry. This is wrong and needs to change. Scripture speaks of a plurality of “elders in every church” (Acts 14:23, James 5:14, 1 Peter 5:1,2 Titus 1:5). Never do we read of one man in the New Testament called “The Pastor” over all doing most of the ministry and getting a regular salary. Furthermore, we read of the church gathering in homes and having a meal together as they wait on the Lord and ministered to one another, in prayer and fellowship. The institutional church structures today with their programs and clergy, have hindered many of these functions in the church. In fact, when examining man’s order as opposed to God’s order we see that almost everything that is done today, from walking into a large building with a denominational name, called a “church”, and everything that is on man’s programed order, from the Pastor’s role over all that often quenches the spirit in others, to their “services” that do not allow the body to minister freely, with the pastors sermon, the pulpit, worship leaders, women leaders, false authority, collections, constitutional laws of man, ushers, theater type environment, salaried ministers, tithing, tax exemption rules, altars, rituals, exalted priest, the silent body ministry, show time religion, no consensus decisions and many more, are all based on the traditions of men and not after Christ. A Wise Master Builder God’s order was revealed to apostolic workers and also handed down to believers in scripture. Paul said that God made him a wise master builder (1 Cor. 3:10), to lay the foundation and to show God’s order for the churches. We see men like Timothy and Titus bringing others to remembrance of Paul’s ways in Christ (1 Cor. 4:17) and the order he handed down was for every church everywhere (1 Cor. 4:17, 1 Cor 14:33). God’s Order in Scripture “For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:” (Titus 1:5). Here we see that Paul had a definite “order” for them to be in. The order Paul speaks of here was given by the command and leading of the Spirit and it was not by man’s order and wisdom, with programs and philosophies based upon traditions of men. Paul often warned christians against following man’s traditions and order and to beware of anything that was not after Christ (Col. 2:8). In writing to the Colossians Paul also said, “For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ.” (Col. 2:5). This “order” among the Colossian believers was a spiritual order and Paul was able to behold it in the spirit. This is God’s order, not man’s order and to walk in this order a person must be in faith and the leading of the Spirit. No man can make this happen in their lives or in the assembly, although many try to. Paul wrote of how believers “ought” to behave in the church and said, “But if I tarry long, that thou mayest know how thou oughtest to behave thyself in the house of God, which is the church of the living God, the pillar and ground of the truth.” (1 Timothy 3:15). All believers should keep this order, “Therefore, brethren, stand fast, and hold the traditions which ye have been taught, whether by word, or our epistle.” (2 Thess. 2:15). Paul taught the same things “everywhere” and in “every church”. (1 Cor. 4:17). So are any churches today exempt? Why would any christian want to do anything different? “The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD...” (Psalm 37:23) This has always been God’s way. True spiritual authority flows from Christ to the body as we all live and speak the word of God. Authority is not a static position (Matt. 20:25-27), but only as we abide in Christ and are directed by Him ( John 15:5).
  9. No, I believe you were the one who brought it in by your challenge. I do not forsake the order God sets in the church. In fact I teach it and I have been teaching it in this threat as well. I use sc ripture for this teaching and you have no scriptures that justify one man over a church called the pastor who does most of the ministry and who is exalted over all as the head or a Lord (or king type) over all. I wonder how you van trust many of the so called "Pastors" today who go directly against Gods order set for the churches and His commands for such order? I speak of the order of God for the churches where all can edify one another in Christ as they are led and where their is eventually a plurality of elders/overseers in every church. Here are just a few of the verses that speak of this order and commands, 1 Cor 14:26-38, 1 Peter 4:10,11, Ephesians 4;11-16, Colossians 3:15,16, 1 Thess 5:11, Romans 12:1-7, 1 Cor 12. And we read of this order here, Titus 1:5, Colossians 2:5, 1 Timothy 3;15, 2 Thess 2:15. We are also warned about going away from Christ the head and the warning of allowing a man to spoil us through vain deciet and after the traditions of the world, and the philosophies and rudiments of the world (Col 2:8) You are in great error here. I am not against God's authority to establish Hos Church. read my initial post again. It is Jesus Christ who builds his church and he begins this work in every believer ( Ephesians 4:15,16, Hebrews 13:20,21)). You have in fact rebuked all the men and pastors who do not follow Gods order and commands for the church by your words. For they have no justificaton for many of the things they do and their call and maintenance and ministry. In fact, when examining man’s order as opposed to God’s order we see that almost everything that is done today, from walking into a large building with a denominational name, called a “church”, and everything that is on man’s programed order, from the modern Pastor’s "role" over all that often quenches the spirit in others, to their “services” that do not allow the body to minister freely, with the pastors sermon, the pulpit, worship leaders, women leaders, false authority, collections, constitutional laws of man, ushers, theater type environment, salaried ministers, tithing, tax exemption rules, altars, rituals, exalted priest, the silent body ministry, show time religion, no consensus decisions and many more, are all based on the traditions of men and not after Christ. I challenge you to prove by scripture alone that there is to be a one man called the Pastor over all the church who does most of the ministry and gets a salary and who is to direct all the services of the assembly. If you can't find him then you need to recant your words towards me here . And direct them to that man and such assemblies that do not allow God to move freely among believers.
  10. What you said and the challenge, reminds me of this "8 And when Herod saw Jesus, he was exceeding glad: for he was desirous to see him of a long season, because he had heard many things of him; and he hoped to have seen some miracle done by him. 9 Then he questioned with him in many words; but he answered him nothing."(Luke 23:9) "38 Then certain of the scribes and of the Pharisees answered, saying, Master, we would see a sign from thee. 39 But he answered and said unto them, An evil and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given to it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas:"(Matthew 12:38,39)
  11. You must be aware that the temple was in Jerusalem. There was no Temple in Rome or Corinth etc. The temple was warned against by Stephen who echoed the word from the Old testament Acts 7:49 Heaven is my throne, and earth is my footstool: what house will ye build me? saith the Lord: or what is the place of my rest? God did not even want a temple in the Old testament. But he allowed it as a type. Just as he didn't want them to have a king, but allowed it. Yet he warned them about what would happen when they had a king. They also stopped wanting to have God rule over them by having a king. Also, The temple was not a place for church meetings and ministry and a meal together, songs etc. This was done in homes. We read this pattern all through the New testament. We read of the "church which meets in their home". The temple still was allowed to go for a time and the time of reformation was at hand. But even when believing Jews went into the temple all through Acts, they were still under the law and the customs and did animal sacrifices in the temple etc. Read Acts 2, 15, and Acts 21. The temple by no means justifies the large man made structures today where many are gathered in to listen to a one man show and have a exalted man on a platform where they all look at the back of each others heads and listen to a pre programed message and form. The early church did not do this. These are the traditions of men that make the word of God of no effect. The word that is made of no effect is the word that commands all believers to edify one another and share and use their gifts as they wait on God and to minister to one another as good stewards of the grace of God. To not do this means they fight against the commandments of the Lord and are not good stewards. as sc ripture shows, (1 or 14:26-38, 1 Peter 4:10,11, Romans 12:1-7, Colossians 3:15,16, Ephesians 4:11-16, 1 Thess 5:11 etc etc.
  12. It is not scripture, for they had scripture already 2 Timothy 3:15,16, which was able to make them perfect unto all good works. They had God working in them which makes them perfect unto all good works, they had all things that pertain to life and godliness already. Also Paul said he would see it himself when he said then shall I be known... as scripture shows, "15 And that from a child thou hast known the holy scriptures, which are able to make thee wise unto salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. 16 All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: 17 That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works." (2 Timothy 3:15-17) "20 Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, 21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen."(Hebrews 13:20,21) Paul said about that section and that which is perfect coming "but then shall I know even as also I am known." so obviously this relates to Paul himself as well. we read another section which is similar to this and this gives us the answer "10 That I may know him, and the power of his resurrection, and the fellowship of his sufferings, being made conformable unto his death;11 If by any means I might attain unto the resurrection of the dead. 12 Not as though I had already attained, either were already perfect: but I follow after, if that I may apprehend that for which also I am apprehended of Christ Jesus."(Philippians 3:10-12) Consider what i say and I pray the Lord will give you understanding. Yes, I have seen many of these things in truth. I do not speak about the many false men out there who or any other ministry.
  13. God cannot be put to the test. He gives gifts as he sees fit. But in our ministry we have seen healings, demons cast out revelations, prophecy, miracles and wondrous things. On more than one occasion, this has also been done while street preaching to crowds and as we raised our hands in the air in the name of Jesus a demon possessed man fell often to the ground screaming. We have seen many miraculous things but there is also special miracles that god did to some. These "special"Miracles, are not done in every situation. "11 And God wrought special miracles by the hands of Paul: 12 So that from his body were brought unto the sick handkerchiefs or aprons, and the diseases departed from them, and the evil spirits went out of them."(Acts 19:11,12) But it sounds like you may not have a certain faith for God to do such things. I have seen so many miraculous and wonderful things I can tell you they are real and all Gods work is for today as well as then. I simply speak of God's order in the gatherings and the freedoms he commands for all and yet this causes some to get very upset and stand for a one man pastor ministry over all. They know that when they gather usually all are not free to minister and share as they are led and only the one man pastor ministry that is set up is. But they will till try to defend this by saying, this order is different on a testimony night under the strict control of the pastor, or if they have a guest speaker who is under the watchful eye and control of the pastor and denominational guidelines etc. Rarely if ever are all allowed to edify one another as they are ld by God and wait on Him. In fact, many do not even believe we are to wait on God for gifts and revelation and doctrine and whatever God gives in the gatherings. Instead they follow a religious form and "sermons" so called, that are set by the time clock and no one is free to minister at any time n the gatherings but the pre-ordered program set up by the pastor or a few others.
  14. There were apostles before the resurrection and after the resurrection. The apostles Jesus sent out such as Peter John and others, had to see the life of Jesus from John until his resurrection as we read in Acts 1. But the apostles after the resurrection (Ephesians 4:8-11) are for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry for the edifying of the body of Christ. These are still needed today and there is not one verse that says apostles and prophets have ceased, nor one verse that says the gifts have ceased. We see other apostles after the resurrection, like Paul, Timotheous, Silvanus, Barnabas and possibly Titus. We also read of prophets after the resurrection in Acts 13 and other places. In fact in Corinth, Paul said to let the prophets speak two or three. I also reject the Roman Catholic version of the so called "apostolic succession". Paul was an apostle not of men nor by men but by Gods direct call. All the gifts are given by God, not by men. No man can study his way into a gift in a school. I am also fully aware of the false doctrine that tries to say the gifts have ceased. But they have not. There is not one verse that says they have ceased for the church. In fact we can read all through ancient history of the church about such gifts still working.
  15. Yes, and notice God gave not just pastors as gifts to the church, The word "pastors" in the plural form here is the only place in the new testament we find this word (as a noun in the KJV). Yet somehow this pastor gift had dominated over christendom. What happened to the apostles, prophets, evangelist and teachers? and for that matter read the rest of the section in Ephesians 4:15,16 and ask what happened to the rest of the body edifying ITSELF in love in Christ as he works effectually in every part to edify one another? Paul said some of the commands of the Lord for church order here. I simply repeat them and these are for all the churches of the saints everywhere, not just for Corinth. "26 How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying. 27 If any man speak in an unknown tongue, let it be by two, or at the most by three, and that by course; and let one interpret. 28 But if there be no interpreter, let him keep silence in the church; and let him speak to himself, and to God. 29 Let the prophets speak two or three, and let the other judge. 30 If any thing be revealed to another that sitteth by, let the first hold his peace. 31 For ye may all prophesy one by one, that all may learn, and all may be comforted. 32 And the spirits of the prophets are subject to the prophets. 33 For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints. 34 Let your women keep silence in the churches: for it is not permitted unto them to speak; but they are commanded to be under obedience as also saith the law. 35 And if they will learn any thing, let them ask their husbands at home: for it is a shame for women to speak in the church. 36 What? came the word of God out from you? or came it unto you only? 37 If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord."(1 Corinthians 14:26-38 38 But if any man be ignorant, let him be ignorant.
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