GIFTED WITH GIFTS C
But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift. 8 Therefore He says: “When He ascended on high, He led captivity captive, And gave gifts to men.” 9 (Now this, “He ascended”—what does it mean but that He also first descended into the lower parts of the earth? 10 He who descended is also the One who ascended far above all the heavens, that He might fill all things.) 11 And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, 12 for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ.
When he ascended—GOD is meant in the Psalm, represented by the ark, which was being brought up to Zion in triumph by David, after that “the Lord had given him rest roundabout from all his enemies” (2 Sam 6:1–7:1; 1Chron 15:1–29). Paul quotes it of CHRIST ascending to heaven, who is GOD.
The worship of David’s Tabernacle included singing, instrumental music, standing, kneeling, bowing, upraised hands, clapping and dancing. Davidic worship fulfills the command of Jesus to “love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind and all your strength” (Mark 12:30).
When David performed the transference from the Tabernacle of Moses to his own Tabernacle, a new priesthood was installed with new rules. The new guys were allowed to enter before the Ark with boldness in simplicity as they entered the Most Holy Place (1 Chronicles 16:37). There were spiritual recorders present to write down the spontaneous songs, skilled musicians playing their instruments, and spiritual sacrifices were being offered to the LORD (1 Chronicles 16:37-43; 27:6; Psalm 116:17).
During this time, there were actually two Tabernacles, one on Mt. Gibeon offering animal sacrifices under Moses Tabernacle and on Mt Zion offering the sacrifice of praise, with two priests, Eli and Samuel. If you have ever wondered how David could go before the Ark in the Tabernacle, let me offer an explanation:
When David was first anointed among his brothers, Samuel took the Horn of Oil and poured it over him. The same thing happened the second time he was anointed. David was anointed a third time after he began reigning as King over the people. The royal Scepter had been promised to the Tribe of Judah (Praise) in Genesis 49:8-12, which happened to be David’s Tribe. It was at this anointing that all of Israel accepted his Kingship.
These three anointing’s represent the three offices that his seed Jesus would fulfill by type in Jesus’ threefold expression of ministry. Jesus is:
PROPHET Ministering the Word. 1 Kings 19:16 lets us see that at time s prophets were anointed just like kings were. All true prophets are anointed by Holy Spirit.
KING This is the ministry of ruling and reigning. 1 Samuel 10:1 demonstrates that the Kings were anointed to rule.
PRIEST The ministry of reconciliation. Priests were anointed for sanctuary ministry (Exodus 30:20; Leviticus 21:12).
David as Priest – The release of this office did not happen until the third anointing. The significance of this event demonstrates that David shadowed the order of Melchizedek as a King-Priest. This amply illustrated when he captured Zion (Melchizedek’s home) and set up the Tabernacle of the LORD and then began exercising priestly prerogatives.
If David had presumed to by a priest or a king-priest, God would have judged him. God didn’t and David acted as a King-Priest in the tabernacle of David. David wore a linen Ephod just like the priests. David put the Ark in the tent. David also blessed the people in the name of the LORD of hosts, which was a priestly blessing (2 Samuel 6:18 & Numbers 6:24-27). David also offered burnt offerings and peace offerings before the LORD. This shows us that David officiated as a Priest-King after the Melchizedekian order. David served as a fore runner for his Son Jesus, who would combine the three offices into one person as the LORD’s anointed.
The prophet Amos spoke of the Church – he said “In that day will I raise up the tabernacle of David that is fallen, and close up the breaches thereof; and I will raise up his ruins, and I will build it as in the days of old.” (Amos 9:11) This prophecy was interpreted by the leaders of the first century Church as being fulfilled in their day: And after they had become silent, James answered, saying, “Men and brethren, listen to me: 14 Simon has declared how God at the first visited the Gentiles to take out of them a people for His name. 15 And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written: 16 ‘After this I will return and will rebuild the tabernacle of David, which has fallen down; I will rebuild its ruins, and I will set it up; 17 so that the rest of mankind may seek the Lord, even all the Gentiles who are called by My name, says the Lord who does all these things.’ 18 “Known to God from eternity are all His works (Acts 15:13-18).
James quotes from Amos 9 to show that the salvation of the Gentiles is a fulfillment of Old Testament prophecy, and that they were living during the time of the restoration of the Tabernacle of David. The Apostles knew that the Church was the restored Tabernacle of David, the place where Christ is worshiped, speaks prophetically and exercises His authority. The result of the Church flowing in Davidic worship, prophecy and authority was a great harvest of souls.
What is the church?
The church is the body of Christ, And He put all things under His feet, and gave Him to be head over all things to the church, 23 which is His body, the fullness of Him who fills all in all (Eph 1:22-23). The Bible says “in the world we are like Him” (1 John 4:17) Love has been perfected among us in this: that we may have boldness in the day of judgment; because as He is, so are we in this world. Something is wrong when people write off the church and say they love Jesus
CHURCH AS A FIELD
Where the people come to do the work of the Lord-where the farmer plants his crops is where he works. Jesus said the “world is the field” (Matt 13:38) The field is the world, the good seeds are the sons of the kingdom, but the tares are the sons of the wicked one. When the church is the field, the Emphasis becomes: getting buildings full.
Visibility-Significant PR role-programs & productions & promotion become critical to attractions over people. Goals: Defined by numbers in attendance as a definer of success. Goals are adjustable: we can change our definition of success, quality, not quantity.
Budget: when attaining budget is a primary goal, operating the church to get money, serious confusion between ends & means-shouldn’t be surprised when people write the church off as irrelevant & opposed to Jesus.
Facility is vitally important-bigger, better, state of the art building, more people in the field-enormous building means great work for God.
Ministry mindset: centers around a professional-pulling people out of culture into church-everything is designed to attract people. Ministry becomes a positional identity within the organization-title & position rule. All arrows point inward. Leads to identity crisis of normal believers about service, as faith becomes a spectator sport.
Motivation: Getting people in-
Danger: Pastors become superstars-platform style is magnetic-warm & caring personality-exude charm & self confidence-administrative capacity rivals CEO-becomes a political puppet
End Result: sub-culturization or Mediocrity
Spiral: 1st generation, highly motivated-excited-budget met, new people attending-building on the way.
2nd: not children, but second wave of people after church is well established-settles into compromise-comfort & ease sets in-time of personal sacrifice ends-enjoy the fruits of the labor
3rd: Mediocrity-little activity-faces change as pastors come & go-desperate attempts to create motion usually fail-pastors get discouraged & either leave or settle into mediocrity
Only hope: rise of a new superstar.
Subculture: system within a system-establish a community with uniformity-don’t have to worry about violating our idea of error or unpredictability filtering in.
We institutionalize revivals.
CHURCH AS A FORCE
Church is people not building-where they are, ministry happens in Jesus name. Ministry is given to people, not just professionals. Wimber-“Everybody gets to play. If we create places where only a few can participate we’ve missed the call of the Kingdom…” If you want to experience the love of Jesus, love what Jesus loves. Jesus passionately loves His church. Become like Jesus and love what He loves, the church!
Emphasis: Worship, training, fellowship-these are the things that produce Spirit filled people who can meet others needs. We gather to scatter. Gatherings in the building are not just work, they are times of R&R they are celebrations. R & R: rested and restored for the field work
Goals: wholeness, equipped & released… Holy Spirit who fills the leadership can fill all of us. Evangelical Christians have a lot of religion in their hearts, some in their heads, little in their feet. Wrong approach-pastors don’t do it all-pastors are to “prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up (Eph 4:12).
Ministry: Break down the clergy-layman distinctions. I don’t believe in vertical relationships in the church, nor do I believe in an elite group in the church.
Motivation: healing agency in the community, not a refuge from the community. We don’t want to compete with the worlds-family, school, entertainment all have a proper place.
Danger: loss of control, as people begin to follow the Lord in developing ministry opportunities
You are never able to be defined by what you aren’t, you are defined by what you are. Be conformed into the image of Jesus who saved you and is transforming you.
11 This verse is a commentary on the quote in verse 8, Christ’s giving gifts to Christians. The gifts to the church are gifted people. The subject He is emphatic in the Greek. It denotes that Christ Himself gives the gifted people. The differing kinds of gifted people are listed in the predicate accusative, so the NIV correctly translates it as , gave some to be. The first two, apostles and prophets, have already been mentioned in 2:20 and 3:5 as the foundation gifts to the church. The apostles include the Twelve, who had the office of apostleship by virtue of being with Christ (Acts 1:21-22) and having been appointed by Him (which would also include Paul; 1 Cor. 15:8-9; Gal. 1:1; 2:6-9). But “apostles” also included others who were recognized as apostles, such as James (1 Cor. 15:7; Gal. 1:19), Barnabas (Acts 14:4, 14; 1 Cor. 9:6), Andronicus and Junias (Rom. 16:7), possibly Silas and Timothy (1 Thes. 1:1; 2:7), and Apollos (1 Cor. 4:6, 9). Apostles, then, were those who carried the gospel message with God’s authority. “Apostle” means “sent as an authoritative delegate.” “Apostles” were literally made to order messengers carrying out their sender’s mission, backed by the sender’s authority to the extent that they accurately represented that commission. In the New Testament, the term applies to commissioned agents of Christ authorized in a special way (gave some/more authoritatively set apart than others) to declare and propagate his will.
As in many ancient lists, some of these terms may overlap considerably as the Greek indicates an especially strong overlapping connection between “pastors” and “teachers.” There is shared, common focus and basis of authority as bearers of Christ’s presence and message. The authority is resident in their words and works and their spiritual gifting. As in the case of Jewish teachers of God’s message (as opposed to the chief priests), none represents institutional authority in the sense of a supralocal church hierarchy, which does not seem to appear until the early second century. In my opinion, this is the mistake of some of our generations voices who are advocating new apostolic networks (read denominations), as they are rebuilding the system that replaced the apostolic community. Together these ministers of God’s Word were to equip all God’s people for their ministry (4:12–16).
12 The term for “training” or “equipping” was used in the Greek culture to describe the work of philosophers and teachers.
Now here’s a novel concept, these Apostles and the people they led and influenced became an apostolic community under Kingdoms Chief Apostle, Jesus, Therefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and High Priest of our confession, Christ Jesus (Hebrews 3:1). Acts 8:1, 4 tells us that when the great scattering happened, it was the people, not the Apostles who left and spread the Gospel initially, At that time a great persecution arose against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered throughout the regions of Judea and Samaria, except the apostles… Therefore those who were scattered went everywhere preaching the word.
Why do I point out the combination of people, Apostles and scattered company? They both operated under Holy Spirit, who by nature is Apostolic (sent from Jesus as a dora gift). Spirit’s nature and personality are apostolic, And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” (Galatians 4:6)!” This is why we are to be people who are always seeking outpouring. When Spirit pours out, a true activation of apostolic ministry follows because He is apostolic. God the Spirit is invasive, life changing and supernatural. Wherever He comes, wherever He is welcomed, the end result will be miracles, invasions of His life and transformed lives through His ministry of reconciling people to Jesus Kingdom.