THE CHURCH THAT JESUS BUILT PART I
"I will build My church and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it." Matthew 16:18
The church that Jesus built is so much different from anything we have ever seen today that to most it would be like an alien world! What the modern world has experienced in most cases is man's feeble attempt to copy something that he has never seen. Today, we just rent a building, fill it with chairs, invite a bunch of folks, preach once a week, take an offering and call it church!
Throughout the world there is one on almost every corner, fast food for believers, but is that what Jesus intended for His called out, Spirit filled saints of the Most High, to vegetate in a religious box once a week and the rest of the time live for themselves? If you really want to know what His church looks like I will warn you if He allows you to see it, you will be convicted to leave what you have joined up with to serve Him in His assembly of saints.
Church is not, nor ever has been, a place to go, it is a living breathing organism, a replica and expression of the Lord Jesus Christ today in the world! What we have accepted as church today is for the most part a Pagan counterfeit of something that never existed and what multitudes do on Sundays has nothing to do with the church that Jesus built!
Who is left among you who saw this temple (house) in its former glory? And how do you see it now? In comparison with it, is this not in your eyes as nothing? Haggai 2:3
THE DIVINE DESIGN
And God has appointed these in the church; first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. I Corinthians 12:28
When Jesus began His ministry on earth He didn't choose twelve pastors to be the master builders who would lay the foundation of His supernatural church, He chose twelve apostles. Apostle means ones sent, men who have within them His divine design.
You will notice in the list of divine appointments, pastor is not mentioned, nor are they mentioned but once or twice in the New Testament because they have a specific gifting to minister those who come to Christ and were never meant to lead because they always pen up the sheep, holding them in a building and not training them for service and sending them out! Jesus said, "Go!" He didn't say build a cathedral and fill it up on Sundays!
Now before you unsubscribe me, I admit there are some godly pastors, some I believe are in fact apostles, but that title is not fully accepted in our modern day church, but must be divinely reinstated in order to build a healthy vibrant expression of the body of Christ! The five-fold ministry giftings mentioned in the book of Ephesians are not a list of job titles or professions, they are divine appointments meant to build up and train the body for service in God's kingdom!
And He 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, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ. Ephesians 4:11-13
THE SIGNS OF AN APOSTLE
Truly the signs of an apostle were accomplished among you with all perseverance, in signs and wonders and mighty deeds. II Corinthians 12:12
The signs of a true apostle always include signs and wonders, not a sign in the yard with the time and temperature as we have today, but mighty deeds and supernatural miracles of healing and deliverance meant to validate the divine order and ministry of the kingdom of God!
The apostles of Jesus performed signs, wonders and miracles seen by thousands as they were trained and equipped by the Lord Himself. On the job training for over three years, receiving instruction in true New Testament righteousness and having the blueprint of His church deposited into their hearts! Today, men and women go to a man-centered seminary to learn Old Testament history lessons, enough Hebrew and Greek to become dangerous, how to preach and captivate an audience and how to effectively run a Christian business!
Does that sound like something Jesus would teach His apostles, no, He taught them what kingdom life was and how to live and walk in the supernatural, being in a world of evil but not being of it. Imagine what these twelve would do on hospital visits today, casting out demons laying hands on the sick and seeing thousands healed and delivered by the awesome power of God! If the divinely appointed five fold ministry of today would teach disciples to follow Jesus and to replicate His ministry to the lost and dying instead of teaching Sunday school for thirty years, the world would indeed be a much different place and millions would come to Christ!
"And these signs will follow those who believe: in My name they will cast out demons; they will speak with new tongues; "they will take up serpents; and if they drink anything deadly, it will by no means hurt them; they will lay hands on the sick, and they will recover." Mark 16:17,18
Your servant in Christ, Tim Laughlin