FREE EBook –
Separation of Church & Ministry
Thomas Spencer – TheBibleGuy.com
Chapter 1–WHAT THE TRUE CHURCH REALLY IS!
DEFINE THE TRUE CHURCH (The called-out ones) The following are my working scriptures in (NKJV) unless otherwise specified. From my Book Church What it is…
Colossians 1:13 “He has delivered us from the power of darkness and conveyed us into the kingdom of the Son of His love.”
Matthew 16:18 “…I (Jesus) will build My church…”
Matthew 18:20 “For where two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”
Ephesians 3:10 “…now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places,”
After Bible College in 1982 I prayed this prayer: “Lord Jesus help me to flush the toilet on everything I learned here and as I personally go through Your Word again may only the things that are Truth remain.” I am asking you to do the same. We have to start asking some foundational questions like: in the above scriptures where do we get the idea that the Church is a building or non-profit organization where we have to be concerned about pews, hymnals and TV cameras?
Here is a simple working process to a definition:
The True Church is not A something, it is WHEN something. The True Church is WHEN two or more followers of Jesus connect. The smallest, purest form of Jesus’ Church is an individual family starting with the husband & wife:
Ephesians 5:22-33 “Wives…husbands…This is a great mystery, but I speak concerning Christ and the church.” The True Church could grow larger in number with a granddad, grandmother, children or grandchildren! But The True Church is not limited by size; it could be five families gathering together or an entire city gathering together. So to call a building a church is not just “mincing” words or semantics, it is the foundational building block of deception, which Satan has used; through false religion to paralyze The True Church.
The True Church is not limited by; time, days or special places. The True Church is WHEN or whenever, wherever, at any time or all the time!
The True Church does not even need money to exist or function! Oops, was that a bombshell? I have walked in this revelation for over 25 years and sometimes words just pop out without the process of my revelation. So here was my foundational question to our Lord Jesus; “What is the absolute minimum The True Church needs to BE The True Church?
Answer: one born again person is only a Christian, it takes a minimum of two True Followers of Jesus that connect or come together to cause the wonderful miracle of the presence of our Lord Jesus, the very Son of God to manifest. That is it, that is The True Church! That is the FREEDOM & POWER that terrifies Satan himself! That is “…the manifold wisdom of God … made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places,” Ephesians 3:10.
Think about it; two Jesus following women bump into each other in the produce section of the grocery store and one sister says: “A colleague at my work has been attacked with cancer would you pray?” The two may shake hands, like a typical greeting In a public market (not attracting any unnecessary attention) pray a simple prayer of agreement and at that very moment, the presence of our Lord Jesus will manifest, God is glorified, cancer is healed and Satan is once again defeated!
Therefore: here is my shocking list of what The True Church does not need: money, tithe, buildings, hymnals, a once a week religious “service,” toilet paper, bank account, governmental non-profit status, sound system, praise & worship leader or team, youth pastor; for that matter it does not need: Apostles, Prophets, Pastors, Evangelist or Teachers to function on a daily basis at all.
*Disclaimer: Ephesians 4:11 which are authority gifts chosen and given to The True Church by Jesus Himself are exactly that – Gifts to the Church, gifts to equip The True Church to do the work of the ministry. Here is the challenge: this new wine; the miracle power of The Holy Spirit working in us, which is bubbly, powerful, a little vinegary, explosive has got to function and operate within a NEW Wineskin that is not dry but rather flexible and able to handle seemly random acts of the miraculous at any moment.
Here is what The True Church is all about:
Worship-prayer, fellowship, singing, did I say prayer, reading of God’s Word, the Lord’s Supper which is a full-group-meal (not a cracker & a little cup of juice) remembering Jesus until He calls us home.
Evangelism-sharing what Jesus has done for you, to a world that has no hope, water baptism (usually a dad baptising his children or new believers in the Kingdom).
Discipleship-through relationship, we will be teaching & training others to follow Jesus.
Leadership– “And He (Jesus) Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ,” Ephesians 4:11-12. Even though you will be connected to these gifts… God’s Household or Church is “…built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone.” Ephesians 2:20 …every meeting will not have these gifts present.
“I (Paul) myself am convinced, my brothers and sisters, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with knowledge and competent to instruct one another.” Romans 15:14
Man, I get excited as I even think of this freedom!