Body Ministry – BT18
Summary of BT13 – BT17!
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The modern church is sure “reading, encouraging, teaching,” and doing stuff the early Church would never think of! So you can see that “The reading, The exhortation, The teaching” in 1 Timothy 4:13 that Timothy was to devote himself to until Paul got there had absolutely nothing to do with the entire OT bible, certainly nothing to do with the OT Law – which by nature makes up 94.7% of the OT. Instead it has to do with the prophetic scriptures concerning saving trusting-relying-faith in Jesus Christ who is the absolute Truth about God (a). It’s about Christ’s logos gospel message of The Truth about Himself and His completely-different and “better” New Covenant. It’s about preaching this gospel that accords with true godliness, not rules and rituals that create an outward form/appearance of godliness but deny the actual enabling-power (c) of/belonging to godliness (b), which is the Spirit-power (c) that is serving, unconditional-love and self-control (d). We see this “trusting-relying-faith and unconditional-love” emphasis throughout Paul’s writings to Timothy (e). He does this 18 more times in other letters! 1 John 3:23, 4:16, and 5:1 couple these 2 official entole commandments of the New Covenant, the only 2 commandments in the NT, into a single commandment from the Godhead! If that is the case, why in the world is today’s churches focusing on the Torah Law of conditional-favor portions of scripture spread out through the entire OT, which only scribes and Pharisees would be interested in? <Notes> a) the living logos Word/Message of God, b) 2 Timothy 3:5, c) dunamis: enabling-power d) 2 Timothy 1:7, e) 1 Timothy 1:5, 14, 2:15, 4:12, 6:11; 2 Timothy 1:13, 2:22, 3:10.
The early Church focused on Christ’s logos gospel message of The Truth, Spirit-baptism and His grace-gifts to grow the Church instead of borrowing practices from the world around them that are actually the “stones” building The Great Wall that’s quenching the Holy Spirit. Shouldn’t we follow their example, even invoking the Holy Spirit as 1 Timothy 4:13 and early Church records indicate? They only had 2 official commandments to keep track of: trusting-relying-faith (a) in Christ and unconditional-love for one another (b). <Notes> a) pistis: relational conviction of trusting reliance, b) 1 John 3:23.
They had Body-of-Christ ministry instead of ministry by a few “paid professionals,” and their so-called “leaders” acted more like servants (even slaves), coaches, and facilitators to help the “saints” be the “ministers,” so that everyone could use their charismata grace-gifts given to them solely by charis unconditional-favor-of-grace. They understood that Christ was their “one leader” (a) and His Holy Spirit the “one teacher, and they were all brethren” (b). Nobody was “hogging the ball” because they understood the Holy Spirit “taught” through each of them, so it was a team effort – see Teach One Another. The Holy Spirit wasn’t quenched as long as they were “discerning the Lord’s Body” and working together “to build up the Church.” In fact, this is likely where they were Spirit-baptized! That’s what happens if you invoke the Spirit! <Notes> a) Matthew 23:10 kathegetes: “properly a leader, someone bringing others ‘down the road of learning’ by needed instruction, used by Dionysius, Thucydides, Plato and Aristotle as ‘educator-facilitator.” This shouldn’t be simply treated “teacher” because Jesus already dealt with this “one teacher” issue in v. 23:8), b) Matthew 23:8 – see Teach One Another – BT10.
The Church was devoted to conversational-prayer with God and each other – this is how they “were taught by God,” devoted to the preaching of the logos gospel message of The Truth that they cried out for boldness to do, and to their koinonia fellowship around the dinner table and discerning together the Lord’s Body and blood – not just Jesus but each other! These are God’s priorities and they were flowing with God’s “living water,” Spirit-baptized with boldness to preach, followed by signs & wonders! Every person was expected to share their grace-gift, their testimony, and what God was prophetically directing them to do in their lives – that’s what made up their Christian fellowship! They were encouraged to take turns so that they ALL could interact, learn, and be encouraged. They brought instruments and songs, even spontaneously by the Spirit, teachings, prophecies, messages of wisdom and revelation, tongues, and interpretations to reciprocally share with one another! They were encouraging/exhorting and admonishing (a) one another. <Notes> a) noutheteo: ‘placing in the mind of’ – urgent reasoning by instruction and warning.
There were supernatural expressions of trusting-relying-faith, healing, miracles, and discerning of spirits – see New Covenant Ways – BT16. There were God-give organizers or managers to manage the care of others, and many who were inspired to serve and help others. They were told to “let go and let God” by surrendering control of their grace-gifts, encouraged to all desire tongues, but especially to prophecy because prophecy is the distinct manner, the actual promise in the New Covenant of God directly-speaking prophetic rhema words to His servants for them to directly akouo hear to understand. When there were Jews there, they read the OT prophecies about Jesus and the New Covenant that they were saved by. Gentile churches never had the scriptures let alone read them! They met in the natural setting of a home and a family – the house, not in artificially sterile environments borrowed from a pagan world that came much later. This too is part of The Great Wall of “stones” borrowed from the world! And when they faced decisions, they came together to discuss them, and get consensus with the Holy Spirit. No wonder the world couldn’t stop them! The Great Wall of clergy and laity wasn’t there to block the flow of the Spirit!
Our music ministry must not be from a select few on a stage or there will always be The Great Wall quenching the Spirit. The entire Body-of-Christ must be “on that stage” expressing their hearts to God. The “coaches and trainers” should only facilitate this – that’s their only job! We must encourage everybody to play or sing by Spirit-power, even that “New Song by the Spirit,” that spontaneous music! The early Church had very few priorities, and being laser focused they were very powerfully-enabling! Let’s return to that powerfully-enabling simplicity!