Monday, March 23, 2015

25 Reasons Summary

As followers of Jesus Christ we want to see His church grow and thrive. We desire to see a healthy church that impacts society for the better. We hope to see a special people stand out for Christ for all the right reasons. Above all, we strive to honor Christ together as we help one another grow closer to Him.

A healthy church is a maturing church. Each member of the body is necessary for the whole to reach its potential. Anything that hinders body growth and body life should be cast aside. As the family of God, we have the joy and privilege of being active agents for Jesus Christ. We do this most effectively as a group. While salvation is individual in nature, body life is most certainly communal. Churches can be what God wants them to be when the people work as one to do the things God wants. Simply put, we all need each other.

Despite generally good intentions, professional pastors hinder body life and growth. For all the reasons I've listed in this series, they harm the church, forcing it into a passive mode of being. Salaried pastors come in between the people and their Lord, taking away many of the privileges that all the people should enjoy. Because of these things, the church as a whole ought to reject the entire concept of pastors as professionals. Instead, the body does much better to recognize elders who are already part of the family.

The church will see an immediate increase in spiritual vitality if it will do away with the professional pastorate. I hope this happens in my lifetime.

3 comments:

Arthur Sido said...

As much as I agree, I think we all know that the end of the professional pastoral system is not going to happen anytime soon. So that raises the question of what to do to move in the direction of a more Biblical model within the existing framework?

FYI, it might be cool to have a list of the links to all 25 posts in this summary post.

Eric said...

Arthur,

I agree completely that the professional pastorate is going nowhere. Moving toward a more biblical model within the existing framework is the challenge. I'm not sure how that will work, but it is certainly worth pondering.

My next post will have links to all 25 posts.

Neil Braithwaite said...

"So that raises the question of what to do to move in the direction of a more Biblical model within the existing framework?"

Seriously? If you can't beat em, join em? Or at least try to fit in somehow?

Is this the teaching of the Apostles in the NT? Is this the attitude Jesus had toward the Jewish "church" and its leaders?

Satan doesn’t fear man’s church, he embraces it. In fact, through Satan’s lies and deception the ekklesia was corrupted by man’s weakness in the areas of power and greed. So in a sense, Satan is the one who built and maintains man’s church. And Satan has no intention to destroy man’s church; on the contrary, he wants to maintain it and grow it because it’s his most efficient weapon to keep people from the truth of the gospel. Likewise, Satan also relies on man’s acceptance of miss-translations and changes of the bible text, especially with regard to the unbiblical word “church.” What Satan does fear however is something that he has absolutely no power over - the true Ekklesia Jesus said He would build – God’s kingdom here on earth.

Jesus and His Apostles warned that Satan would be relentless in his attack on the Ekklesia. And according to scripture, those attacks would be more prevalent when the Apostles would not be around or when they were all deceased. Scripture records that Satan was already hard at work in certain places when the Apostles weren’t physically present to fend off the attacks against the gospel truth. (See Galatians 2)

Is House/Simple/Organic Church turning into just another denomination, and has that train already left the station?

What did Jesus think of the Nicolaitans who had infiltrated the ekklesia in Pergamum? (Rev. 2:6,15)

"The name "Nicolaitans" is derived from the Greek word nikolaos, a compound of the words nikos and laos. The word nikos is the Greek word that means victory as a result of conquest. The word laos is the Greek word for the people. It is also where we get the word laity. When these two words are compounded into one, they form the name Nicolas, which literally means one who conquers and subdues the people. It seems to suggest that the Nicolaitans were somehow conquering the people with the intent of taking over the ekklesia by setting up a hierarchy." Sound familiar?

"In Revelation 2:6, where Jesus told the church of Ephesus, “Yet this you do have, that you hate the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which I also hate.” Jesus was proud of the church of Ephesus for their "hatred" of the deeds of the Nicolaitans, which He also "hated." The word "hate" is a strong word, so let's see exactly what it means. It comes from the Greek word miseĆ³, which means to hate, detest and denounce. It describes a person who has a deep-seated animosity, who is antagonistic to something he finds to be completely objectionable. He not only loathes that object, but rejects it entirely. This is not just a case of dislike; it is a case of pure unadulterated hatred."

If we know the truth, is compromising the teachings and examples of Jesus and the Apostles OK with God so long as we're at least trying?

There comes a point in any ministry when you just have to shake the dust off your feet and move on.

"If you love me, keep my commandments." John 14:15

"Whoever does not receive you, nor heed your words, as you go out of that house or that city, shake the dust off your feet. 15 Truly I say to you, it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom and Gomorrah in the day of judgment than for that city." Matthew 10:14-15

9 Anyone who goes too far and does not abide in the teaching of Christ, does not have God; the one who abides in the teaching, he has both the Father and the Son. 10 If anyone comes to you and does not bring this teaching, do not receive him into your house, and do not give him a greeting; 11 for the one who gives him a greeting participates in his evil deeds. 2 John