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Saturday, December 08, 2007

I discovered "Slice of Laodicea" blog tonight. I recommend it.

One of the entries concerned the woes at ORU, and the less-than-connubial bliss of Richard and his missus. It linked to a worldling who has a clearer picture of How Things Should Be than do most church folk.

To drub the equine carcass again, The Local Church is the basis of the work of the Kingdom of God. The Scripture says it is the church for whom Christ died. The local church is the platform from which our Kingdom work is to done. Church giving is always a local affair, except in the case of Paul collecting offerings from multiple churches to aid the Jerusalem church during a time of famine. The local congregation maintains the local work, and elders (pastors, shepherds) are paid from thence, if they choose to receive it. The local church model is to train and send out "apostles" (sent ones) to plant other local congregations, establish mature church leadership, and then report back home.
There is no New Testament model for a congregation "hiring a preacher" to either lead the church, or do a majority of the teaching / preaching / community work.

Sorry, it is NOT in there. Even Timothy and Titus do not indicate that their position was "pastoral" in the current sense; rather they were to establish an eldership and diaconate based upon the character attributes listed in their epistles from Paul. Read the book of Acts, and the "Timothy and Titus epistles" to get a sense of the New Testament way of doing the work of the church.

The modern church (local congregation) is few and far between, that measures up to the New Testament model.

As has been said elsewhere, there is no Biblical command or example for "para-church" evangelistic associations, missionary societies, or (shudder) TV ministries. The local church is to accomplish all the goals set before it by the Lord, itself. God has gifted, instructed, commanded, and equipped the church to do the work, if we will but DO it.
We have been suckered into following a foreign model, foreign to Divine Will. We thus open the door to deception.

Deception like that of hearing the cries for money to send to teachers and preachers who purport to be doing God's Work for us.(Of course as "partners", so we get credit as well!) Individuals send money to people who only offer their word that they are doing God's Work. Whole congregations send money to "ministries" to help do Kingdom work. Good idea, but not according to Hoyle.

Church, you are wasting your (and God's!) resources to support Home Offices, and ministries with lavish expenses, when YOU (and I) are to be doing the work, ourselves, at home. Try giving locally to accomplish God's work God's way. You may be surprised at the results. I believe God might be pleased if you do things His way, as well.

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