If the Two Witnesses will operate in a level of power and authority which we've never before witnessed in any part of global history; if the Two Witnesses / Two Olive Trees / Two Lampstands really are the Jewish and Gentile believers in Yeshua as Messiah; if the 5-Fold have been called and separated from the general member of the Witnesses, then why are they separated and what is it they are supposed to do in this "Upside Down Kingdom"? How does it all fit together? Is it possible for us to structure this and actually make it work as intended? Can we? Should we? Dare we? Let's find out...
Within this Blog, Links are underlined and marked with an *.
Reading The First 8 Parts of this is Advisable to
fully understand the context of this Chapter.
Today, much of our teaching on the 5-Fold revolves around their governmental mantles of operation. Most of what is taught is after the following manner:
The Apostle governs the “church” commensurate in reach and authority to their sphere of influence (metron in Greek). The Prophet guides the “church” to the heart of God according to their level of faith and ability to prophesy – in other words some are elevated to global influence and some to their own church or city, according to the level of faith and prophetic insight God has granted to them. The Evangelist is all but gone though there are a few holdouts who gather unbelievers and backsliders into the “church”. Those Evangelists who still operate as an Evangelist and not as an itinerant Apostle are said to be moving into “Power Evangelism”. Pastors guard the flock and are said to be the leader over the local “churches”. Teachers ground the “church” with sound doctrine and are the lowest in authority but the highest in accountability.
Please forgive my boldness, but most of what is currently taught concerning the
above paragraph is a lot of man-made rhetoric. Letting Scripture interpret Scripture dispels the myth and opens up a whole new world of understanding the operation of the 5-Fold. Generation after generation, we just keep adding "new revelation" to the innumerable previous generations' "Consensus Theology".
In this book "Quenching the Spirit", author William DeArteaga defines "Consensus Orthodoxy" as, “A term used to refer to the theological interpretations accepted by the majority of religious people during a given time period.”
Most of us are pretty convinced we've found the truth about their functions in something similar to one of the two diagrams. By the way, I was included in that convinced crowd until I learned to use the hermeneutics I'd been taught in Bible College. Let's look at the two primary schools of thought as seen in the following diagrams.
There is without-a-doubt truth in this for certain. The questions I have been pondering, though, are
Is this all true?
Is it the whole truth?
Are we applying this truth properly?
Can we do better?
I have a number of *Free E-books addressing the functions of these “Offices” and will let them speak for themselves, though I must admit my insight is always growing as I learn more about each Ephesians 4:11 Gifts, and I am humbled by how simple it really is once the modern rubble of this powerful ancient well is removed. Some of the rubble we will dig into in the chapter on the Ekklesia. Some I am afraid I will leave to your diligent studies.
Before I reveal my heart and research on the 5-Fold, let's look at the Godhead. They, after all, should be our primary example in all things anyways. In fact, their example is the single most important to this subject as we will soon see.
In the video “The Red Dragon has Landed” I reveal the idea that the hierarchy in the Trinity which we see in Scripture is really a hierarchy in our own heads which we project upon Scripture and call it an interpretation.
Using different wording in that video, I tackle the idea that the Father is the highest and greatest, Jesus is second in command, and Holy Spirit proverbially “takes the 6” (rear). In our human existence it makes perfect sense. We might even use Scripture to justify it. I know I had, for decades. After all, Father must be “First in Authority” because 1 John 4:14 says:
And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world. (TLV)
So then because the Father sent the Son, the Son is like an errand boy or even simply the subordinate of the Father. In suit, the Son sent the Spirit.
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; (TLV)
In our modern theology (what we think about God based on our study or what we've chosen to believe) this shows a hierarchy. We often go a little deeper and use verses such as:
All things are delivered unto me of my Father: and no man knoweth the Son, but the Father; neither knoweth any man the Father, save the Son, and he to whomsoever the Son will reveal him. (KJV)
All things are delivered to me of my Father: and 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. (KJV)
What if I told you that one of the reasons modern Israelis and Jews around the globe usually reject the Gospel is because of this very Christian perception of a hierarchy? An examination of their own theological history reveals an amazing truth. They don't trust their own past theology!
A psuedo-spiritual intellectualism moved into Judaism at some point between the First and Second Temple eras. The result is a modern Judaism which looks, and is as different, from what God began giving to them at Mt. Horeb (referencing Deuteronomy 18:16) as Modern Christianity is from the First Century Believers of The Way. The gap between the ancient and modern versions of both Judaism and Christianity is immense. This is why several years ago I coined the word “Churchianity” to describe the modern Christian Movement. It is not intended to be totally negative, though I realize it comes across as sarcasm. I now know I am not the only one who has been using this word. Several who research early believers and First Century teaching began using this fictitious word about the same time I did. Frankly, no matter what we do at this point, modern Christianity has become “Church-centric”. We have become a profession no different than an attorney, fireman, paramedic, or doctor. The “church” environment has by in large become an intellectual gymnasium of mental exercises where we piece together mostly humanist theology and psychology. We have lost the tenets of righteousness embedded in the Great Commission and the reality of what it means to truly live it. It's not complicated and can be easily seen in these two segments of (KJV) Scripture:
And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all? And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.
Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends.
Modern Rabbinic Judaism, which was once Pharisaic Judaism, teaches “one God” or monotheism. They also reject a concept of Trinity (regardless of how it is explained) stating it is no different than having a pantheon of gods like the pagans.
Did you know they did not always believe this? A careful search of the documents of the Dead Sea Scrolls reveals the teachings of its likely authors, the Essenes. The Essenes were around in the time of Yeshua/Jesus and had a sort of headquarters at Qumran.
The Dead Sea Scrolls were found not far from this supposed headquarters. Interestingly enough, the Essenes followed a Judaic theology from the First Temple era. This means their theology is older than that of the Pharisees and Sadducees (and the Pharisaic Scribes) with whom we see Yeshua/Jesus interacting so often in the Gospels. There are a few things which can be gleaned from the Essenic writings which I believe may intrigue you. I'll include a few, but one in particular is applicable to this discussion.
The Essenes were governed by a body of respected and proven teachers known as the “Council of Twelve”
The Essenes followed a strict code of Mikvah (personal Baptism) 3 Times Daily
The Essenes were given totally to the teachings of Tanakh and wanted no part of the takkanot of the Pharisees
The Essenes did not interact with the Pharisees or Sadducees on matters of Theology or Doctrine
The Essenes taught a Trinitarian Theology
The last one is obviously what we are looking for here.
Some might say that perhaps Yeshua/Jesus was Essene. I'd be inclined to agree, but honestly, His teaching was so pure and without religious bias, I am finally at a place where I can say I believe He was, is, and will always be the WORD and that settles it for me.
I used to try and figure out what kind of Judaism He taught, I am presently set to believe it just doesn't really matter. Judaism was the vehicle by which He was introduced and by which the people should have been able to see Him coming. The annual Feasts and the Firmament - with all they represent - are a prophetic pronouncement of and were a perfect picture of His coming, arrival, ministry, death, burial, descent into hell, resurrection, ascension, ministry in heaven for a season, returning as Groom/Judge/Commander/King, setting up His Earthly Kingdom, reigning with His Body-Bride, etc.
It was all fouled up when a religious leader thought they could rally the people against an occupying army by changing the calendar God created for us to make it appear as though a Jewish rebel leader was Messiah. So when Yeshua/Jesus arrived, no one recognized Him as they would have if they'd just left it all alone and followed the Plan God had given to them. No, Abba was not surprised by this. In fact it's obvious He used it as part of the Plan.
Otherwise, as Shaul/Paul put it:
I say then, Have they stumbled that they should fall? God forbid: but rather through their fall salvation is come unto the Gentiles, for to provoke them to jealousy (KJV)
The CEV says it this way:
Do I mean that the people of Israel fell, never to get up again? Certainly not! Their failure made it possible for the Gentiles to be saved, and this will make the people of Israel jealous.
Without this rejection of Yeshua as Messiah, there would not have been the opportunity for the non-Covenant peoples of the world to come into Covenant. Shaul goes on to discuss (as you may remember from previous mention) the grafting in of the Gentiles to the tree of Israel and thus the root of Israel which is Yeshua. No our salvation does not come through Israel, though she was the vehicle chosen to reveal our salvation and Judaism was the vehicle which had been chosen to reveal the Savior. Yet, because our God's Covenants are eternal, we could not be introduced into any of this without the Covenant People.
Some Examples of His Eternal/Everlasting Covenants:
Genesis 9:16 – the Rainbow
Genesis 17:7 & 13 – Circumcision/Blood Covenant
Genesis 17:19 – Familial Covenant (Family Lines)
Leviticus 24:8 & Numbers 25:13 – Levitical Covenant
more Scriptures on God's Eternal Covenant(s)
1 Chronicles 16:17,
2 Samuel 23:5,
If the Father is the “head” or “leader” and the Son submits exclusively to Him and the Holy Spirit follows in kind submitting to the other 2, we have a theological mountain to overcome. In fact, it could even be an impasse. What I mean by this, is that if we go back to proper hermeneutics (see *Chapter 2), we must take Scripture in its totality and not follow a theology and /or doctrine in which any one or set of Scriptures contradict others. If we believe the hierarchical model of the Godhead then Scripture definitely contradicts itself. Some examples which immediately come to mind are:
Therefore the Jews sought the more to kill him, because he not only had broken the sabbath, but said also that God was his Father, making himself equal with God.
Who, being in the form of God, thought it not robbery to be equal with God:
Was Yeshua/Jesus an egomaniac? Was He delusional? How else can we quantify His seeing Himself equal with the Father, when He was supposed to be in submission to the Father, unless we understand submission does not mean less than, lower than, or having less authority than the Father? If we view the relationship as hierarchical then we must dismiss these two Scriptures.
Further evidence can be found in the relationship of Yeshua/Jesus and the Holy Spirit.
And I will pray the Father, and he shall give you another Comforter, that he may abide with you for ever; (KJV)
Was Yeshua/Jesus saying “I'm going to make an administrative decision to send someone who will pick up where I left off, now that I have left a strong foundation for them to build from. After all, that is what a good leader does – they lay a solid foundation for those underneath them to build upon and grow from.”?
Or is there more than meets the eye here? The best clue is found in the Greek word for “another” in this Scripture. In Greek the word chosen was 'allos' (ahl-lohs). This word is much more than just “another”. It is speaking to the rank, authority, privileges, method of operation, consistency of what has already been done, and more. It literally means “another of equal value”.
So then we have Scripture which points out that Yeshua/Jesus and the Father are equal and we have Scriptural evidence that Ruach HaKodesh (Holy Spirit) and Yeshua/Jesus are equal in value and authority. If we view Scripture from any other perspective, such as through the lens of a Hierarchy, then we are not seeing the Trinity for who they really are – a Complex Unity! I have dedicated an entire Chapter in Book 1 in the soon to be series “Theology Reconsidered” to this concept and prove the equal and shared authority of the Trinity using the totality of Scripture on the subject.
As of this writing, the e-book is available on Amazon, Barnes
and Noble, our *Website, and about a dozen or so other online
E-Book Distributors. An expanded version is being edited for
print and will be released very soon. Shortly after that the
expanded E-Book version will be available. If anyone purchases
the current version from our website, I will make the update
available at no charge when it is ready.
The Trinity work in such perfect harmony and unity that it can be difficult to distinguish who might be operating at any given time. So it behooves us each to study Scripture diligently with a mindset of learning to recognize their operation from the descriptions within Scripture. There simply isn't space here to do so. What we can surmise from this however is a very important point to our topic.
According to Ephesians 4, Yeshua/Jesus left “gifts” to His Body-Bride.
8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (KJV)
While the verse itself says “men” meaning humanity, it does not specify the gifts I am referring to until vs 11-13 and then it tells us specifically who those particular gifts are for and their purpose(s).
11-13 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: (KJV)
In the verses in between Shaul/Paul reveals these gifts were given before His ascension and gives us a short discourse on another matter important to the early believers, which I would like to get into but it may muddy the waters too much at this point. Let's summarize it by saying that in the Didache (records reportedly from the late First Century Believers in Yeshua) we find a number of discussions which would clarify this for you if you want to dig it out. In a nutshell, those 5 Gifts were given to the Body-Bride for perfecting her (remember our discussion on *Hebrews 6:1-4?). Perfection according to the writer of Hebrews meant to go beyond the “First Principles of the Doctrine of Christ” which was also covered in that discussion. If all the things the writer told us were the basics, then somewhere else in Scripture there are the doctrinal issues which will carry us into perfection. These are for all believers NOT just the 5-Fold (as the Ephesians 4:11 Gifts are often called). Before I move on, let me put out there that I do not agree with the teaching that they are “Offices”, as this again comes from the perspective of a hierarchy and not a Complex Unity as we see in the Trinity.
Many have postulated that the ascension gifts found in Ephesians 4 are the totality of the ministry of Yeshua/Jesus to the Body-Bride. I tend to agree because it fits with the overall scheme of Scripture.
Abba and Yeshua are both seen empowering and releasing. As just one example for Abba's empowering and releasing, we see in the garden He told Adam and Eve to steward the earth and to replenish it. Yeshua, when He sent 70 of His followers out 2 by 2 to do the work of the ministry was doing the same thing. Keep in mind, none of those 70 were “Apostles” yet and only 11 ever would be (12 if you want to include the disciple Matthias who we never hear about again after he was made an apostle by the drawing of lots). Some stopped following Him just weeks later when He made a very purposeful speech about eating His flesh and drinking His blood to remove those who were only following for the miracles and free food. All the rest who stayed with Him, followed or watched from afar when He was suffering on the cross. Yet He still empowered and released them into ministry.
We could argue that this was all prior to the cross, but do we not also see Him speaking throughout His ministry about what would happen to Him? It was obviously known to Him, perhaps before He ever began His ministry but after the 40 Day fast in the wilderness. Regardless, He could have stopped empowering and sending at any time simply because of the flakiness of most who followed Him, but He didn't. In this we can see the pattern laid out for the 5-Fold. To empower and release. This brings us to the place we need to discuss the eventual Power Witnesses we will all become and (see also *“Who Are/Were They?”) how the 5-Fold Fits into the Ekklesia. Let's see that by starting at, or more accurately going back to, a most unexpected place in Scripture.
And I will give power unto my two witnesses, and they shall prophesy a thousand two hundred and threescore days, clothed in sackcloth. (TLV)
If the Two Witnesses are the Covenant People Israel and the grafted in Gentiles who, from each people group, have or will have accepted Yeshua as Messiah (Romans 11:23 & 24); and they are the totality of the Ekklesia; I believe by now we've uncovered enough Bible to prove they truly are; then they are the ones clothed in sackcloth (5-Fold included) and we need to understand why.
There are 47 verses in the Tree of Life version of the Bible and 45 in the King James Version. If you read them all you see a very small variety of reasons for wearing sackcloth. All of which revolve around humility or brokenness. We must realize this is an *“Upside Down Kingdom”. Things in the Kingdom of YHVH do not operate according to the principles we see within the kingdoms of this earth. In fact, I've heard it said that they are diametrically opposed to one another. This may or may not be 100% true 100% of the time, but it is true far more often than many of us have accounted for in our theology and doctrine. The idea that an all-knowing, all-powerful God would operate according to the standards of this world is quite ridiculous. Yet we have all still accepted the idea that there is a hierarchy among the Trinity and therefore among the 5-Fold. I wish I had time and space to show you, through even more examples, just how opposite of His Kingdom this really is as the Trinity's leadership, our perceived headship (among believers and in marriage), ministry functions/gifts, local congregational function, and other modern teachings really are, but that would require way too many rabbit trails and I need to stay on task. Perhaps in future work...
If the Witnesses/Ekklesia are wearing sackcloth when they prophesy for 3 ½ years; if their fiery preaching causes the great revival amidst the great falling away; if they cause droughts to prove Abba's supremacy over creation; and if they can cause plagues to show His impending judgment, what does the sackcloth mean?
You probably got it in one try. They have allowed their own wills to be broken and replaced by His will, intent, and purposes for their lives. Their arrogance has been replaced with a heart of servitude to the Father. Their entire being Spirit, Soul, and Body have been brought into subjection to the Plan of our Heavenly Abba. If they, being the general members of the Ekklesia, then what of the Ephesians 4:11 Ascension Gifts / 5-Fold?
Thinking from our own realm of understanding, we can get caught up in a lot of theological debate about how we must perceive this. This would then lead to another host of arguments about how to apply it all as doctrine (what we do in relation to our theology). If we use proper hermeneutics and put it to the test of the Trinity's Complex Unity, there can be but one answer.
And whosoever of you will be the chiefest, shall be servant of all.
Of all the teaching I have had; from the pulpit to my doctoral studies, I have only once heard or read a message or lesson declaring that the 5-Fold are servants to the Body-Bride. Even then it was as “Servant Leadership”. Yet Shaul/Paul says nothing of leadership or authority in his Ephesians 4 discourse on the Ascension Gifts. Am I saying there is no leadership among them? Absolutely not! But to show you exactly what I am saying will require just a bit more information. There are other places which a "type" of authority is seen, but we must view it through the Scriptural basis of service as we see in Mark 10:44. For far too long we have instead used the lense of Hierarchy in place oe "Equal and Shared Authority" and "submission one to another". We tend to use the example of the body that Shaul uses in the latter part of Ephesians 4 to justify a hierarchical view of the 5-Fold.
from whom the whole body, being joined together and being held together by every ligament of its supply, according to the working in the measure of each individual part, the increase of the body makes for itself, to the building up of itself in love. (Berean Literal Bible - BLB)
Just because vs 15 says 'Christ is the head' it in no way says or even implies the 5-Fold are other controlling parts of the Body. In fact it simply says we are ALL PART OF THE SAME BODY - inferring an equality as much if not more so than any inferred theory of hierarchy. If we superimpose the total message of Yeshua and of written Scripture over this dilemma which would stand out more strongly, a message of service to one another or one of some being in charge of others? It all comes down to this...
If the 5-Fold Ascension Gifts are the divided totality of the ministry of the Christ to the Body-Bride, and if any part is being suppressed by any other part, the Body-Bride is NOT receiving the fullness of the ministry of Christ and we will NEVER be brought into complete Unity (below).
Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ: (KJV – emphases mine)
This prophetic insight from Shaul is happening even as I write this. The process has been going on since the First Century believers laid a solid foundation for us and we as the Body began moving away from it less than 400 years later. We are just now seeing the beginning of the move back to their understanding accelerating.
The prophecy of “the last shall be first and the first shall be last” is occurring. This prophecy is not about humility or brokenness and yet is still important to insert it here. This prophecy in Matthew 20:16 is the end of a parable of the early and late workers who received the same pay for their efforts. It is literally saying that those who are the last generation will be given the same work for the same pay. It is not necessarily, however, pointing to eternity as the pay. I propose we are seeing it happening now because much modern “revelation” is really a re-digging of ancient wells and the results of that digging is our “pay”. In other words, “the last generation of the ekklesia will be just like the first generation of the ekklesia”.
The problem is, we cannot be this if we continue to put earthly kingdom principles to work in our busyness of doing Kingdom Work. We need to invert this thing and realize the word “minister” means to SERVE, not to be served! We must act according the the verb minister before we qualify to be called by the noun minister!!
We need to go low to be used mightily. We need humility to do greater works.
Sidenote: Some say greater works means more in volume not in size or intensity. I would remind those who teach this that Yeshua/Jesus' shadow never healed anyone, but Peter's did. That's a greater work in size and intensity for certain. Please, can we stop making up theology based on our temporal and often terrible memory of Scripture? Yes, we will all make mistakes of this kind, but if we are always reminding others that our theology (what we believe about God) should point everyone back to the Trinity through our doctrine (what we do in relation to our theology) then even our errors can be exposed through maturity and humility, corrected , and the Body-Bride can learn from it and move on. Instead we just seem to keep trying to build a “post-millennial kingdom” (referencing the out of control Kingdom Now Theology/Dominionism from earlier chapters) out of every ministry and have forgotten about His Kingdom all together except as a great marketing scheme to build upon and grow our own kingdoms.
This Kingdom Now Theological nonsense has grown like “tares among wheat” from contextual error(s) in “interpreting” Scripture which have a foundation in the Greco-Roman concept of a hierarchic Godhead we've already disproved in this chapter. Further, from this same set of contextual errors we have obtained a pyramid scheme leadership in the Body-Bride at every level. The Corporate ministry tree has rooted its way in from the grassroots local levels all the way up to the power brokering global levels and is simply not found in Scripture when a Hebraic context is applied.
I have spoken of this next thought often in the last few years, but it bears repeating here. In Revelation 2:6, Abba states clearly that He hates the Nicolaitans.
Nicos was a First Century agnostic who'd been mistakenly made a deacon in the Jerusalem congregation. Among his many odd beliefs was that his wife was too beautiful to be kept to a single man and so as an act of piety he was offering her to other men for pleasure. He and his followers (after being excommunicated) continued teaching this and other heresies abroad. So the historical reference to him in this context is obviously appropriate.
I want to look at this a bit differently though, because it applies here.
If we analyze the label God uses – Nicolaitan, we find something interesting. It is a compound word using 3 Greek basal words to create a single thought. It literally means “defeated laity”. It doesn't take much research to find that the general attendees of any congregation are usually called the laity. So then who is or has defeated them? Well, it isn't until after the incline of the Constantinian era that we begin to see the real fruit of the hierarchic view of the Godhead. Therefore, it stands to reason that we also find the incline of a hierarchic view of the Ephesians 4:11 Ascension Gifts in the same era. Who then can we surmise defeated the general congregants or “the laity”? It requires no special detective gift from Holy Spirit to draw the line between A and B here. Though they called them by different names, the “Offices” of the early Catholic Church are the very ones who made it impossible for every believer to be empowered. We have made progress in this area, but we are still not back to the example given by our beloved Trinity.
So how do the Trinity operate and how
can the 5-Fold emulate the example?
If we look at Scripture using contextual hermeneutics (see *Chart from Chapter 2), the Trinity seems to operate from an "Shared and Equal Authority" using a posture of “Prefer and Defer”. Each preferring the other over themselves and always “testifying” of the others while deferring to each other's area(s) of function. In other words, if a situation requires judgment, who would step up? Right, the Father because He occupies that function – Luke 18:2-8. If an attorney is required to help solve a problem, who's gonna' get the call? Correct Yeshua/Jesus because He is the mediator – 1 Timothy 2:5. If an activist is needed to bring awareness to an injustice who will take the job? Absolutely, because Holy Spirit is always convicting the world of sin - John 16:8.
They often do crossover work too, just as sometimes an apostle is prophetic, or a prophet is evangelistic, or as in an evangelist having a shepherding heart, or a shepherd being apt to teach, or a teacher having an apostolic methodology. This does not mean they occupy one another's gift, simply that they can and sometimes do function to a lesser degree in the graces which others carry. I don't want this to be about the functions of the Gifts though. Rather, I want to focus on the operation of the Gifts.
I can count on one hand the number of “churches” I've personally witnessed, in over 30 years of ministry and 10+ in international ministry, which freely allow all the 5-Fold to operate equally using a prefer and defer methodology to determine who does what - by the leading of Holy Spirit. But, that is the example we truly see among the Trinity. They can work as a Complex Unity because there is no positioning for promotion, no self-motivated agendas, no contending for being the greatest. If there were any of that, they would accomplish it by serving the other two all the more feverishly without a selfish intent. Almost like a child-like game of outdoing the others' acts of service for the sheer enjoyment of the acts of service.
We should heartily seek to operate this way at every possible level of 5-Fold ministry. It won't be something we get correct right away, it is after all a “Complex Unity” not an Easy Unity. But, if ALL the 5-Fold are to position themselves to operate in the fullness of the Two Witnesses/Ekklesia then we MUST put on sackcloth and learn to interact just as our ultimate examples found in Father, Son, and Ruach HaKodesh/Holy Spirit.
We must also realize the mandate to go lower than the Body-Bride in true God given humility. If we are to minister to them, then that means serving them. Not in the “pastors serve as the head of the local church” mentality – as just one example. But instead as the, 'I cannot not serve enough because the Spirit of God has given me a supernatural grace to serve' mindset. This does NOT mean to give in or bow down to abuse. That is a topic for another time, but here is hint *Matthew 18:15-18.
Humility and brokenness-to-self are the key. Prayerful repentance over the mess we've made of it all is the avenue. Proper understanding and application of Scripture (as outlined many times already in this work) are the vehicles.
A return to the relational model of ministry Yeshua/Jesus operated in is essential if we are going to see the rise of an End Times 5-Fold which is actually capable of training the Body-Bride to do the work of the ministry (which is the works of the Two Witnesses). By relational ministry I mean local congregations need to set aside the man-made rhetoric to fully embrace a sola scriptura structure within the congregation. *Remnant Nation (formerly *Harvest of Hope International) has now been teaching these principles for a few years.
Everyone loves the miracles, signs, and wonders they begin to operate in after our training on such. They love to amen the principles on the Ekklesia and bringing God's Kingdom to earth (our perspective not Dominionism). We have even been atta-boy-ed by ministries which say they want to get back to the First Century teachings we present. Not one has restructured, no one has stepped down from a man-made ranking of "authority", no one has empowered their people to flow freely in following their 1 Corinthians 12 gifts. It seems to just go right back to business and busyness as usual when we are finished and leave. That's changing this year.
Announcement: I am committed to see this done, even if it means losing all contact with my peers who reject the ideas of the First Century believers. I'll gladly be a man of no reputation, just like my Savior if it means providing the Body-Bride with a Biblical alternative to Churchianity. I've evangelized, pastored, planted, assisted, you name it for 30+ years and now it's time to build something using the blueprint of Scripture. If any of of our teaching moves you, convicts you, causes you to take a pause and rethink what you've been taught - then maybe Holy Spirit is marking you to be a part. Use the Contact Us page of our website to send me a note.
In order for the 5-Fold to Un-fold, we need to see a return to these very discarded values from our predecessors. When we do, the respect which we misinterpret as a part of the perceived hierarchy of the 5-Fold will be revealed organically. We won't have to demand authority, we will have earned it. We will not need to tell the flock to line up, they will or they will leave because their hearts were not right to begin with. Perhaps some will stay and grow and perhaps they will stay and be a thorn, it doesn't matter. If they are there we are obligated to serve them and see them grow according to the parts of Ephesians 4 no one preaches much about (namely verses 12 & 15,16) or use the Matthew 18 model cited above.
While they were also not perfect, they were not 2000+ years removed from the direct teachings of Yeshua/Jesus after those teachings had been ransacked by a power-hungry Church-State that decimated the numbers of it's followers and the destroyed or hid many missing records of the earliest believers. Now, as traces of that information is being found and we finally have enough pieces to begin putting it back together, we have an obligation to do so. There is great reward to be gained by doing so, but our motives must first be to gain a renewed intimacy with Trinity, as the firstfruits of our LORD's efforts at Calvary purchased for us all. The true power and authority of the 5-Fold is rooted there.
Wanna' do what the Two Witnesses are Prophesied to Do?
Go Low and stay there.
Called to and wanna' be a great
Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor, or Teacher?
Do the above and learn to prefer and defer the other 4 – get self out of the way.
Wanna' be part of the End Time Warrior-Princess Bride of Yeshua/Jesus?
Position yourself properly by learning to worship Him in His Love Language.
The 5-Fold are not a modern day “Justice League”
until they are first the modern day “Lay down my
life (self) for others (prefer and defer) League”.
Until next time.....
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