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Posts Tagged ‘Five-Fold Ministry’

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Scripture reading: 1 Samuel 17:48-51

1 Samuel 17:48-51 says, “And it came to pass, when the Philistine arose, and came and drew nigh to meet David, that David hasted, and ran toward the army to meet the Philistine. And David put his hand in his bag, and took thence a stone, and slang it, and smote the Philistine in his forehead, that the stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth. So David prevailed over the Philistine with a sling and with a stone, and smote the Philistine, and slew him; but there was no sword in the hand of David. Therefore David ran, and stood upon the Philistine, and took his sword, and drew it out of the sheath thereof, and slew him, and cut off his head therewith. And when the Philistines saw their champion was dead, they fled.”

Notice in this story that David went down to the brook and chose five stones. These five stones are a type of the five-fold ministry which God has put into the church: the apostle, the prophet, the evangelist, the shepherd, and the teacher. We find in Ephesians 4:11 that God has set this ministry in His church. The peculiar and marvelous thing in this story is that David did not use the five stones. He picked up five stones but he only used one. God knew beforehand that he would only need one yet God made him pick up five because five is the number of the ministry that God is going to use to bring down the Philistine, the Antichrist, the false prophet, and Babylon.

The whole picture of the image that Nebuchadnezzar saw in Daniel 2 is in living-action colors. It is depicted in Goliath, the mighty giant, whose spear was like a weaver’s beam. The man was nine to ten feet tall and he was brought down with ONE STONE. Notice that the stone smote him in “HIS FOREHEAD” and sank into his frontal lobe. It was more like a gunshot than a stone. I think the angel of God threw the stone. I do not think it was David’s arm although David did release the stone. The stone was blown by the angel of God right into Goliath’s forehead and smote him dead. The forehead is a type of the soul or the mind. Notice that this thing was DONE BY MAN but actually DONE BY GOD. Man was used of God. After all, the only time man really functions right is when he is used of God.

(Excerpt from The Book of Revelation, Volume 2, pages 211-212)

Thought for today: Let us remember, the only time that we function right is when we are used of God.

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Scripture reading: Psalm 40:7-8

As the days go by, we find God changing the word that comes forth. This is one of the reasons we cannot preach “canned” sermons, because the “can” would be producing the same thing that it produced last year. But we find the word changing and the clarity of it is increasing. Even the same old word is coming more alive. I believe you are finding the same thing: that there is liveliness about the word of God that is coming forth in the body of Christ.

The body of Christ must be alive. The body must minister. God does not have a class of people called ministers. Did you know that? He does not have a class of people called ministers. God has set in the body apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds and teachers. But where is the ministry? The ministry is in the body. This means there is no one who can come and say, “God sent me to minister to you,” unless he is a functioning part of the body. We are only different parts of the body of Christ. The finger is as alive as the toe, but the finger cannot do what the toe does; neither can the toe do what the finger does; but it is just as much alive.

God is directing us to an even more detailed understanding of what the body of Christ really is. He wants us to begin to walk in the body and live in the body. That is, if you cannot live as a body member, you are not of the body. We have too many dead members. Or, let’s put it a little better: members that will not exercise their rights to move and to live and to do what God wants us to do. In other words, God is feeding us more energy now; more life is coming forth now into the body than there was before, because this is the time when we are going to have to rise up and do.

(Excerpt from Led of the Spirit, Foundational Teachings #F077)

Thought for today: This is the time when we are going to have to rise up and do what God wants us to do.

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Scripture reading: Ephesians 4:11-13

When I think of God, I cannot think of Him as a man, as a person. All I can think of is a BIG being, filling the whole space, and filling us. But I can think of Jesus as a man. Do you see how God is good for us? He gave us Someone Whom we can relate to. Now, if Jesus is a person, if Jesus is a man, you must approach Him as a person. I’ll never forget what happened when I prayed the first time, asked Jesus to come into my life and felt the quickening. That means that His blood had touched me; it touched my mind and touched my consciousness. Before that, I was not conscious of God, but now I am conscious of His presence.

The next thing that happened to me was that I said, “Jesus, why don’t You come and talk to me?” Now, I am not telling you to say that, because the devil might come and talk to you and you could believe that it was Jesus. That is, however, not supposed to be. The devil is not supposed to be able to talk to you and you believe it is Jesus. Do you know why? The Christ in you will not be happy. Amen. But the relationship between you and Jesus Christ must be such that you know that Jesus is a man, you speak to Him as a resurrected man, and you deal with Him and expect Him to respond to you as a man would respond to you. What kind of doctrine is that? That you would expect Jesus to respond to you as a man would respond to you?

You see, we have made a step backward. Let me tell you why. We were going upward to believe that God has a five-fold ministry in the heavenlies, in the spirit. Jesus Christ is in the five-fold ministry or the left hand, in the natural, among us. But what I have noticed is that we have started not to believe in the five-fold ministry any more. We have started to believe in our abilities to do.

Now, if you have a pastor in your midst, immediately you would have rejected the five-fold ministry, because the five-fold ministry doesn’t have any pastor in it. Those who occupy the place of the shepherd would be too busy shepherding to be able to be fooling around and doing anything else. There is a problem that I see and I don’t know if it is as if you have forgotten, or if you want to be like another church or something, but I don’t see the function of the five-fold ministry. I don’t see the function of the prophet in your midst. As a matter of fact, if the prophet should function, you probably wouldn’t believe it. I don’t see the function of the evangelist. I don’t see anybody evangelizing anything. If the evangelists had the spirit of the evangelist, they would be praying and God would be sending people into your fellowships. Amen. “But why should I leave my church over there with my pastor and come to your gathering with the same function?”

I don’t see the function of the five-fold ministry. You don’t function in the five-fold ministry anymore. I don’t know if you understand what I am talking about. Every ministry of these five-fold has branches in the church among the people. In other words, Christ is working in you. Amen. As Christ is working in you and among you, He will give one a vision; He will give another a dream; He will give somebody something to uplift the brethren. But if I dream that you become a dog and start barking and bite up everybody in the place, what profit is that to everybody? God is telling us to run for our lives, the dog is coming. Don’t you understand? The ministration of the Spirit is to profit withal. If the Spirit of the prophet is in you, you will find that as you begin to function, there will be many more that will be functioning and together it will bring life and not death.

(Excerpt from Keeping in Touch, December 2007, pg. 9-10)

Thought for today: Let us believe in the five-fold ministry that God has in the Earth and not in our abilities to do.

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Scripture reading: 1 Timothy 2:7

A congregation can appoint a teacher, but it cannot give him/her a ministry. God alone sets ministries in the body. The ministry of the teacher must come directly from God. From my own experience, when God tells me what to tell His people, He tells me how to tell it. I teach sometimes with a chalkboard, and the drawings I put on the board are those things which I see in the Spirit.

There are, however, many, many different administrations of the Spirit. Although God deals with me in this way, He may deal with someone else in an entirely different way, BUT with the same result – His people will get the message, and it will be directed by Him.

There are ministries with the same name as gifts of the Spirit, but the ministry is different from the gift. The gift is the manifestation of the Holy Ghost within the believer, working whatever gift God sees fit to bring forth through the individual.

On the other hand, the ministry is a special and more powerful endowment to the church. The minister, therefore, is the gift of God to the church. His endowment is not his own. He cannot preach where he wills, do what he wants, but as an important part of God’s machinery, he must move when and where God wants him to move or go.

Every human being is capable of some gift of the Spirit if he or she surrenders to God, but not everyone is an anointed preacher of Christ. It must be remembered that every believer, as part of a body, is a ministering, functioning part. In a sense, everyone who is born of God is expected to work with the ministry in one capacity or another. Without these sinews of the body, the ministries could not function effectively.

These are the five bars of the tabernacle.

We should not forget one important observation. The golden rings which hold the bars are attached to the gold on the boards, thus signifying that the nature of God in the body is that which holds the ministry, and not the ministry or minister holding the congregation.

(Excerpt from The Pattern, pg. 80-81)

Thought for today: The nature of God in the body is that which holds the ministry, and not the ministry or minister holding the congregation.

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Scripture reading: Ephesians 4:11

The word “shepherd,” translated “pastor,” does not give any minister absolute charge over any congregation. It gives him the responsible position of being answerable to the “Chief Shepherd” for the ministry to care for the sheep given to him. Therefore, while he is caring for sheep in the congregation, there are others who would be caring for lambs, and others neither sheep nor lambs, but sons – little sons and big sons. Therefore, in God’s Order, we FIND A PLURAL MINISTRY OF ELDERS WORKING TOGETHER.

It is very easy to discern the true God-appointed shepherds, as different from the man-appointed ones or the self-appointed ones. In Ephesians 4:11, we notice that the Word says that “He gave some, Apostles, etc.”

A man-made apostle is an alien creature in God’s business, yet all the churches appoint their own trainees to positions. Divine Order is totally rejected in the modern church as recorded in 2 Thessalonians 2:3.

“Let no man deceive you by any means: For that day shall not come, except there come a falling away (rebellion) first, and that man of sin be revealed, the son of perdition.”

History is repeating itself. Just as Israel turned away from God to the dumb idols of the nations, even so, 90% of the church has turned from God to worship buildings, and pews, money and status – rebelling against God. Jesus Christ, our Lord, said that this would happen before His return. He gave a parable of the wheat and the tares in Matthew 13:24-30. Then from 37-43, He gave the meaning of this parable of the Kingdom of Heaven.

Matthew 13:37-43, “He answered and said unto them, He that soweth the good seed is the Son of man; The field is the world; the good seed are the children of the kingdom; but the tares are the children of the wicked one; The enemy that sowed them is the devil; the harvest is the end of the world; and the reapers are the angels. As therefore the tares are gathered and burned in the fire; so shall it be in the end of this world. The Son of man shall send forth his angels, and they shall gather OUT OF HIS KINGDOM all things that offend, and them which do iniquity; And shall cast them into a furnace of fire: there shall be wailing and gnashing of teeth. Then shall the righteous shine forth as the sun in the kingdom of their Father. Who hath ears to hear let him hear.”

The above passage outlines the condition of the church before Christ comes. It clearly shows that there is at this time a rebellion in the church, against the Master of the Vineyard, and that He is waiting for the time of His judgment to separate the wheat from the tares. From what I can observe, the tares have taken up the chief corners of the streets of our cities with magnificent edifices. They occupy the major positions of authority in the vast majority of the congregations of the world. They are the richest institutions on earth, but we understand that the time of harvest is very near, even at the door.

The true shepherd seeks the glory of the Lord. The false shepherd seeks the glory of his denomination, or group, or nondenominational denomination, or something else beside Jesus. The question here arises, what is meant by seeking the glory? The question brings us back to the teaching of the “firstfruits.” Whatever is the focal point of our operation and programs is the thing that is first in order of priority. Are we more interested in holding our members than in their spiritual growth? If we are more interested in their spiritual growth, even if we lose them, then Christ is first. Are the shepherds God-trained, God-appointed men, or man-appointed pastors, herdsmen, cowboys, man-appointed, Seminary-trained after the order of man, Romish? As God-appointed shepherds, they would be laying down their lives and not looking after their own enrichment or status. Then that is putting Christ first. Is the shepherd striving to do the will of the Father, rather than to please his congregation and the other church leaders around? Then he is Christ centered. Is the shepherd making plans for bringing in money in the church? Then he is NOT Christ centered but otherwise centered. Is Christ the whole motivation of the church? If so, then they are putting Christ in His rightful place – first. A shepherd, therefore, is not a hireling. He cannot be bought or fired, because he is working with God Himself who trained and sent him, and he will teach every sheep to follow Jesus Christ. Every God-appointed shepherd knows that the word shepherd is not a title like the “Names of Blasphemy” – Reverend, Pastor, Father, Holy Father, Pope etc. (Revelation 17:5) – but that it is a spiritual endowment, a deep compassion in the heart for God’s children everywhere. It is a gift of the Spirit, and we should only be under-shepherds with Jesus Christ.

(Excerpt from The Pattern, pg. 77-79)

Thought for today: Remember: A shepherd, therefore, is not a hireling. He cannot be bought or fired, because he is working with God Himself who trained and sent him, and he will teach every sheep to follow Jesus Christ.

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Scripture reading: I Corinthians 12:4-7

Have you ever found yourself in a situation where you idly say, “Oh, God! Poor me!”? I’ve got a name for that. It’s the “poor me spirit.” “Poor me! Poor me!” You are saying, “Poor me!” instead of doing what God wants you to do. When some of you get into trouble and start having sin problems, it means that you are not practicing righteousness. You are not doing what God wants you to do, so He leaves you in the hand of the enemy to torment you.

What God is speaking to me about is the five-fold ministry, and how the five-fold ministry is dished out here and there among the people. Each person has his own part of the ministry. God will appoint a man and anoint him with the prophetic ministry; ALL of you have the prophetic ministry in you. You all have a little part. Have you ever considered it? The Bible couldn’t even name it. It says, “diversities of operations” (I Corinthians 12:6). “Diversities of operations.” It simply means that you have a dream, and the dream has a meaning to God’s business, and God may give you one dream and give another one another type of dream. There is one brother who has two types of dreams. He is either dreaming about his Father’s house, which is God’s house. Or, he is dreaming about the Post Office. As far as I am concerned, the word “postman” definitely means “messenger.” God is talking about His messenger, and He is talking about carrying the message to one place or another. If God wants to tell the brother that we should go down the back side of a city and preach to the disadvantaged, He sends him down there in a dream as a postman with letters to deliver.

Do you understand how God works? God is working with you, but you don’t even know it and take it lightly. Now, if your mind is all corrupted, if your mind is filled with what you want (for example, somebody wants a husband or a wife), don’t bother paying much attention to your dreams. Do you hear me? Just get cleaned up, because your mind is the place through which God is going to minister to you. Amen.

God is saying that He wants to walk in you, to talk in you, to be your God and for you to be His child (Leviticus 26:12).

(Excerpt from Keeping in Touch, December 2006, pg. 6-7)

Thought for today: Do not say, “Poor Me!” but rather do that which God wants you to do and thus practice righteousness.

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Scripture reading: II Corinthians 6:16

The reality that God is bringing us into at this time is the reality of the ministry of God depicted by the hand. God put a five-fold ministry into the world, and the five-fold ministry is in the church. God does not want to walk with you. He wants to walk in you. The Spanish have a way of saying, “vaya con Dios” (walk with God). It is no longer walk with God. It is no longer the Adam manifestation when he walked with God in the garden. He wants the Christ manifestation. God wants to walk in you. Let’s prove it. I think it is in II Corinthians where God blessed a man named Paul, and He gave him to us. The man began to see the beauty and the glory of God in the Old Testament as no other man that we have known. Paul was seeing by the Spirit the reality of Christ, and he experienced the awaking of the mind of man to the presence of God. That is what we are talking about, and that is what we need today.

II Corinthians 6:16 says, “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.”

It is the inner walking of God in us that is designed to make us the hand of God. This is the Lampstand operation in the Tabernacle. The Lampstand is hollow in the middle, and the oil is poured down into it and comes up to a level in the seven lamps; the wicks go down into the lamps and they are lighted. Oil represents the Holy Spirit, gold is the divine nature, and the wick is humanity. Humanity dipped into divinity – the oil seeps into the wick so that the wick becomes totally saturated, and that oil is going to prevent that wick from burning. You can use a wick in a lamp for a long time because of the oil that is in the lamp. The Spirit of God must permeate your being and take a hold of you, in order for you to produce God.

What God is saying in this illustration of the Lampstand is that the five-fold ministry is not always what we think it to be. We are looking at the five-fold ministry as the brothers and sisters who function in the preaching and the teaching and so on. That is not it! What it IS is that EACH OF YOU is a part of this five-fold ministry. You have some silent parts that support the rest. You are not seeing my liver, my heart or my lungs, but you are seeing the manifestations of those organs. Do you understand? So the silent members inside are even much more important than the ones that you can see function. Amen.

What God is saying is that His right hand and His holy arm (see Psalm 98:1) are not only the Spirit of God who works in you, but you become a part of the hand of God because you lift together with God. God needs you and He anoints you for a specific purpose and for that purpose only.

(Excerpt from Keeping in Touch, December 2006, pg. 4-5)

Thought for today: You have been anointed for a specific purpose and for that purpose only. Do not get diverted from it!

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