Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Connect, Impregnate, Then Teach?

[We talked about connect and impregnate in the last four posts]
"even brand new believers can learn to hear and obey the voice of the Spirit. This seems to be the apostolic strategy in the New Testament; get them connecting with God regularly and normally. Then, and only then, do they need to make sure they got it all right." ross rohde

Look at when new church growth movements have taken root - when the church has gone organic.

The Bible teachers and Pharisees killed off the roll of the Spirit - legalism was Satan's tool aiding them in doing his job.  Then -- the church was born.

The institutional church (in the West think Catholic) killed off the roll of the Spirit - politics, institutionalism, and dead worship were Satan's tools aiding them doing his job.  Then -- the reformation was born.

The fundamentalist movement killed off the roll of the Spirit (in practice - not wordage) - do this, do that, don't do this, don't do that - cultural expectations primary and we're better than sinners and other saints -were Satan's tools aiding them doing his job.  Then -  the charismatic movement was born.

Now, both the charismatic movement and institutional church are once again killing off the Holy Spirit's roll -- in practice and pattern.  Satan's tools?, and through the rise of "if you wish the Spirit to ... then you must do.. or, its cousin, "if it does this or that ... then it's the Spirit" ... when it is merely humans exercising their created spiritual abilities.  "By their fruit you shall know them" roundly demonstrates where the new killing field exist ... especially in the Evangelical, Pentecostal, and Charismatic churches.

What you talking about???

If you watched EAT-PRAY-LOVE, you have seen exactly what I am talking about. 

If you have checked the "acceptable reasons" for divorce in the churches, you have seen what I am talking about. 

If you have checked most of the "media" ministries against the teaching of the whole council of God, you have seen exactly what I am talking about. 

If you have been dinged, or shot at, or "struggled over in the Spirit"  (the new forms of legalism), you have experienced exactly what I am talking about. 

I know a group of ladies who gave up scripture study.  Since God gives the gifts of the Spirit to all who ask.  And they asked then claimed all of them.  Then, exercising their gifts was all they needed for God to bring them the messages and instructions they wanted.  No wait - they "needed."   Never mind what God says is the role he has given scripture or the fact that God's going to do it his way - not some "legal immutable laws of the universe way."  And never mind that the Spirit moves when and where he wills - directed only by the Hand of God never by the hands, minds, demands, claims, etc., etc. of humans.

Satan is busy, his work nearly perfected, with killing off the roll of the Spirit again - so soon - in the killing fields of today.

Believers can learn to hear and obey the voice of the Spirit.  Organically that is the key to life, both rebirth and transformation into the image of Christ.  Organically hearing and obeying the voice of the Spirit remains the only key to impregnation and reproduction of the church in today's world.

"if we hit them with 'perfect doctrine at all costs' right off the bat, we end up with a bunch of immature Christians arguing over who is right. It is a pastor’s nightmare."ross rohde

Each time the roll of the Spirit has been killed off in the churches held one thing was in common.  Somebody or some group decides that certain statements, attended by certain actions evidence faith.  In one guise or another these were paraded out as "perfect" doctrine -- make that better than yours.

Doctrine is important.  The New Testament admonishes us to pass on sound doctrine -- by word and the example of our lives.  But, our humanity, having experienced the power of God to which these doctrines testify and experienced God's work by the Spirit in our own lives, wants that same experience, that same understanding for everyone else. 

Is that bad?  No, unless we then make it our job to insure that the newly converted and the unconverted get it right, i.e., - understand things the way we do, experience the same spiritual works we have. 

We reduce God's roll to what we conceive to be "what God says" or "how God actually does it."  Never mind that the best of our human understanding cannot not plumb the when and how, let alone the where, of the Spirit's speaking and moving.

But we insist - this is how it is!  This is how it must be! 

That's not even close to passing on sound doctrine to those chosen to lead in God's church so that they may teach the brethren and sisters. 

Feeding the meat of sound doctrine to infants leads to colicky babies, upset bowels, and sicknesses that hinder the growth in maturity needed to understand and digest sound doctrine.

We end up -- as Ross Rohde says -- with people fighting over who is right.  After all we're just standing for "the" truth.  Or we end up with one Ross does not mention -- circling the wagons to keep out all who don't see it our way. 
From this cauldron of the devil comes undue criticism.  People who listen to see if the preacher/teacher says the right things -- things the way they understand them.  People not listening for God's instruction on further growth, etc., and then verifying it by searching the scriptures.

(Don't get me started on the biblical illiteracy of today's killing fields.)

"Instead, we get them connected directly with the Holy Spirit and then teach them how to discern good doctrine from weird stuff."ross rohde

Right on Ross.  And so is your conclusion:

Teachers are important to the infrastructure, but their role has to come at just the right time so as not to send the Church into a detour from the direction of the Spirit; which is always going to focus on a continually and rapidly reproducing movement."ross rohde
  • Have you ever wondered why those particular five gifts were mentioned in Eph. 4:11-12 to equip his people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ? 
  • Do the metaphors of foundations and infrastructure make sense to you? 
  • What tools do you now see Satan promoting to aid in the killing fields of churches today?
  • What is keeping us from having a movement of the Spirit? Could it be that Christendom has emphasized certain of these gifts, nearly ignored others, and doesn’t allow them to work together under the coordination of the Master Architect? 
  • What would the Western Church look like if it took these gifts as seriously as we see the Early Church taking them? 

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