IF HE is Truly Head of His Church
'When Revelation Comes to the Second, Let the First One SIT DOWN!'
The almost universal (to all “world” religions, including “cultural christianity”) clergy/laity caste system and pre-planned interactive “show” is not in the Bible, nor in God’s Heart and Mind. Jesus spoke out with clarity and forcefulness, and even name-calling, against a system filled with traditions and hirelings and those who elevate themselves over God’s People. Even the “Twelve Apostles of the Lamb” were to be just “brothers amongst brothers” in the “midst” of the Saints, not “over” them, according to Jesus Himself. God is desiring Samuel leadership, in the midst of Life, without title or position, but only love and gift, as needed. Otherwise, we are “rejecting God” by allowing and desiring a Saul type of “leadership” model, according to God’s declaration to Samuel, and to His People. Of course, this is all a radical call compared to the traditions of men that most have been brain-dirtied by for their entire lifetimes. But, until we re-evaluate our ways by the Scriptures, we can only continue to get very lukewarm, leaven-filled results, as modern cultural religion always does.
Here is the essence of one issue we must reconsider: Are our times together “about” Jesus or “FROM” Jesus? Obedience and humility and liberty for ALL the Saints makes all the difference! “From Him and through Him and to Him are ALL THINGS!” The man-made model of “attendance” and “holy man” christianity guarantees IMMENSE loss. Jesus does NOT get HIS Way in you, or through you, or to you as HE pleases when men control—with their “creativity” and power plays. The fear-based, or self-promotion, way is financially profitable and ego elevating for the clergy-caste. No wonder there is so much energy and name-calling when these things are presented to many of them. It is “the Stone the BUILDERS rejected that has become the Chief Cornerstone.” The “builders” are the ones with something to lose. Or at least they THINK they have something to lose, because they have not sufficiently trusted Jesus or His People. Nevertheless, it is absolutely certain that Jesus forbids (Mat.23, etc) such man-made pyramid structures and ALL the religious titles that are so common today. It is shameful and a great loss because His Gifts are wasted, and His Voice is not heard. And this is true even if the “sermon” was “good” or Biblical, or the “music” was “Inspiring.” We’ll spare you the “statistics” of the bad “fruit” relating to modern christianity, in spite of “good sermons” and “inspiring music.” The attendance-based, clergy-controlled religion is not from Him, even if it is “for” Him. It makes all the difference as to whether “the gates of Hell prevail” or whether they are OVERCOME by His daily Life (1Cor. 12, Acts 2:42-47, Heb. 3:12-14). He wants to be HEAD of His Church, not the topic of those gathered in His Name.
In this model pictured below, typical of the religious models in institutions and “house churches,” there is some mere man officially “in charge” through whom everything must pass. He officially starts, officially ends, officially teaches or “assigns” the teaching or “worshipping.” He makes the decisions, answers the questions, and controls the “flow.” This is unBiblical (1Cor. 14:26) and far less than Fruitful. Leaven in the batch, quenched Gifts, and Jesus’ lost Lordship are all but guaranteed in this model. Also, such a “method” is never found in the Bible. That should be quite convicting.
Paul in 1 Cor.14 clearly describes a time when “the whole church” is together. He describes the involvement of all of the Saints who have Jesus living inside. Christians, as described a few moments earlier in the letter (Ch.12), who are living daily together under His Lordship should continue to live as Priests when the church is together in one place. All have opportunity to respond to Jesus and His current Headship, as true Priests, whenever the church is together. There is no domineering or pre-appointed head religious men or women delivering a pre-rehearsed canned speech or song show. This model below of “when revelation comes to the second, let the first one SIT DOWN” is in keeping with the ONLY Picture in the New Testament of Jesus’ Headship in a Meeting in His “Kingdom of Priests.” All of the Gifts poured out upon the Body of Christ, the Church, can FUNCTION at ANY given moment. “When Revelation comes to the second, let the first one SIT DOWN!” saith the Lord. There is no place for controlling who or what may happen, choreographed in advance for oratorical or music, or entertainment, or control purposes.
In a Church where Jesus is presumed currently active, involved, and Alive, rather than a historic relic to be appreciated and venerated and taught about, there is Liberty. Everyone with Jesus living within and functioning as such daily amongst the Believers, has a responsibility to offer their Gifts “unto the edification of the Body.” ALL of Jesus is poured out upon His Body, in ALL of His Gifts—and any Gift may be needed at any given time. If a young man opens up about difficulties in the workplace, or a sister admits she has difficulty with the children, Gifts of Teacher, or Encouragement, or Shepherd, or Helps may all spring up, as “Revelation comes to the second!” This is the only “Picture” of a time when “the whole church is Together” in the Bible. And in this “picture” Jesus is allowed to be a LIVING Head of His own church, rather than a man-made organization, controlled by mere men. Each person indwelt by the Living Christ must be Free to be moved and used by Jesus in response to what is currently happening. THAT alone is the “Body of Christ.” “Meetings” must then be the overflow of what is already happening every day in daily “house to house” Together-Life in Jesus. There must be a place for JESUS to rule and lead through His PEOPLE and His Gifts AT ALL TIMES, in homes and so-called “meetings.” Men will try to mimic this by throwing in a token “ministry time”—whatever that is—but staying in control themselves. Don’t accept any gimmicks when JESUS can instead live through all of His Gifts and People.
HIS heart of “a Kingdom of Priests”—with Jesus truly and practically as Head of His Body—is our topic here. And, of course, this discussion is not about some childish and unBiblical version of “amateur hour” and everyone “taking turns” and the “pooling of ignorance” and opinion, or “everyone is supposed to say something” and “if you spoke more than 5 minutes ‘last week’ then you can’t talk ‘this week’, blah blah. Certainly His Church is not a “democracy.” His Church is to be a Theocracy where ANOINTING and GIFTS and HIS CURRENT THOUGHT Rule over our interactions in surprising and ever-changing, unplanned ways. At times (unplanned) one person may be responding to God out loud for a long period of time. But he is not “expected” to this time or ever.
There is liberty and obedience to His Ways in 1Cor. 14. But, keep in mind that Paul also addressed in this chapter possible abuses by people ignoring headship, or taking advantage of their “liberty” due to ambition or emotion or lack of wisdom. Again, remember that the entire context for 1Cor. 14 includes “chapters” 10-13, where God’s Heart is that His People live as “one Loaf” discerning the Body and DAILY living out their lives intertwined just as the hand is intertwined to the fingers and wrist. In this context of Biblical LIFE in the church, 1Cor.14 can also be obeyed. “When revelation comes to the second, let the first one SIT DOWN.” No “show” and no “holy man” running the show. “He is the same yesterday, today, and forever!” Fear, greed, power, and ambition of a few cannot be permitted to rob His People of their Inheritance. Jesus is ALIVE and SPEAKING through His Gifts “as He wills” when we are truly His Body, rather than acting out a ceremony on a holy day.
Yes, there may be “overseers” who serve and help facilitate. And, yes, there will be times for “proclamation” to unBelievers in public as Paul did in certain instances recorded in the book of Acts. Still, unlike today, even in the times of “proclamation” there was “dialogue” (the Greek word of what happened in Troas)—not uninterruptible “monologue.” And this “proclamation” type of situation with unBelievers in Ephesus or Athens shouldn’t be confused with times when “the whole church is together.” (Certainly, though, unBelievers will often be present when the Family of God is together—1Cor. 14.) Times when the local Body of Christ is enjoying one another all in the same place is clearly different than when one is “street preaching” to a collected mass of unBelievers. As one example, Paul used a pagan “school” for the purpose of speaking to unBelievers about Jesus (Acts 19:8-10), spreading God’s Word to “everyone in the Province of Asia.” This, of course, is different than when the church, the Redeemed and Indwelt, are meeting together as in 1Cor. 12-14 or Acts 20 where Paul “dialogued” (as mentioned the Greek word) with his Family until dawn in an informal environment.
Jesus desires to build His Church that the gates of Hell no longer prevail against! “THIS is HOW all men will know you are MY Disciples.” He wants US together to “become a habitation” for Him—daily, intertwined “joined and knit together,” and “contending as One Man for the Faith.” And in this daily intimacy of “mother, brother, sister” Quality of Life Jesus has authored, THEN all of His People (from the overflow of “daily” totally intertwined lives, Acts 2:42-47, 1Cor. 12-13) MAY be used by the Spirit of Christ, at any given time. It’s simple really. : ) JUST as when He was here with us in the physical body, JESUS gets the say. When we are not quenching His Spirit with man-made plans and hierarchies and liturgies and traditions and showmanship, and independent worldly lives, He is free to express Himself and His Gifts, just as when He was here in the physical body. His current Thought and Anointing, whether for a moment or “until dawn”—that is our passion. “When Revelation comes to the second, let the first one sit down…!”
Having said all that, it’s essential to say again that NONE of this really matters much if there is no Quality of daily Life as is described in 1Cor. 12-13 as the prerequisite for “chapter 14.” In fact, without that daily Life this is somewhat “dangerous.” We can’t simply talk about “meetings” without missing something very crucial. The Topic is much larger. This is about the Dynamic of Jesus’ Life in His People! And worldly, disConnected, self-centered living by religious people is why the pre-arranged show by a holy man became an obvious “safeguard” from strange, wild-eyed, sinful men using ‘“freedom” as a platform for their ambitions. Quality of daily life, 1 Cor. 12-13, is a prerequisite and assumption for the Freedom in 1 Cor. 14.
We must combine these previous “pictures” regarding the times when Saints are together en-masse as a Priesthood rather than “audience”, with the Intended (Eph. 3:10) daily Life of Acts 2:42-47, 1Cor. 12, Heb. 3:12-14, and a “HUNDRED mothers, brothers, and sisters.” Jesus said this IS the Plan. It is Quality of Life He has called His People to live out Together that is at stake here, not “meeting format”! He desires an Inheritance, not a “meeting” or “knowledge transference” or “emotional singing”. His Heart is for a Corporate Man, Luke 9:23-27, 57-62—true Christianity, “from the least to the greatest” clothed with HIS Spirit.