x437........Covering The Leadership of the Holy spirit--(Satan's big Plan)
"Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come." (John 16:13)
The Holy Sprit is meant to be the leader--the Guide of the church.
The Bible tells us exactly how the Holy spirit will lead when Christians are meeting together. In 1Corinthians chapter 14, some very specific rules are set forth, all of which have the point of allowing the Holy Spirit to lead the gathering. It was assumed as common knowledge in the days of the Bible that God the Holy Spirit was the leader--He was communicating the will of Christ to the people (Christ the Head of the church). This was why there is so little mention of "church government" in the new testament. When we read the NT we are reading the account of an apostolic revival, which Jesus began in Israel, and His followers continued to the outer reaches of the world they knew. The Holy Spirit operated every aspect of this revival (which began when Jesus was baptized in the Spirit at the very beginning of His earthly ministry.)--and the simpe assumption which the NT operates under is the understanding that He is the leader in all things. The understanding is that God the Holy Spirit was readily, on a daily basis, teaching and speaking Christ's instructions, through all the church--through "every man" (see 1Corinthians 12-14).
[Hint: He still would like to do this--if we would start to believe the way they did back then!!]
People have always tried to "fit" human government into the new testament. We have operated the organized church on principles which are borrowed from the old testament. We should recognize that every form of government which Israel went thorough in the OT failed--from priest to judge to king--all fell to the sin of the leaders--and in many instances brought about devastation to Israel. Yet it was clear that in the OT, it was God' highest will that all of Israel become priests unto Him, and spread His law and His grace throughout the world. The 1st century Jews who became the first Christians understood this perfectly well--they understood Jesus' rejection of the OT rules and rulership--and they understood that they were going to all minister----that they were all meant to serve God in their priesthood. They understood that God was calling them all to be "priest and kings in the earth".
"And hast made us unto our God kings and priests: and we shall
reign on the earth." (Revelation 5:10).
"Who also hath made us able ministers of the new testament; not of the letter, but of the spirit: for the letter killeth, but the spirit giveth life. (2 Corinthians 3:6).
But the ministry and priesthood of all the people was being operated by the Holy Ghost. And there were specific rules and commands which the Bible tells us in order to keep the Holy Spirit as leader, and not allow man's rule into the church or the operation of the church. In his re-iteration of the commands of the Lord about church service--
"If any man think himself to be a prophet, or spiritual, let him acknowledge that the things that I write unto you are the commandments of the Lord." (1Corinthians 14:37)
The apostle Paul makes it very clear that God wills to speak through "everyone". He says very clearly that the Holy Spirit will give utterance--(whether it is in tongues or not) to whomever He chooses when Christians are gathered together. And this utterance will come out perhpas as tongues (in which case the interpretation should be sought) or the prophetic word. The prophetic word simply means speech that is understandable to the listeners (it is not necessarily prognostication or predictions of the future--although this could be the case). This prophetic word is meant to direct the church--
"How is it then, brethren? when ye come together, every one of you hath a psalm, hath a doctrine, hath a tongue, hath a revelation, hath an interpretation. Let all things be done unto edifying." (1Corinthians 14:26)
This prophetic word will be directed into either a psalm (a song). a doctrine (a teaching), a tongue or interpretation, or a revelation. And as it says--"every one of you" has the right to receive and speak this word in the church. This is how the Bible says that God will lead. This is what the Bible says we must do--that we must "ALLOW"--in order for God the Holy Spirit to be the Guide--the leader.
There is no description of what we believe as being "proper church organization and government". There is no scripture which says that the pastor--or any leader--will be the person who receives all the revelation or teach all the doctrine within the church. (But how many times has the Lord given you a word for your church--and if you dare to speak it--someone will say "Don't you think that the Lord would give that word to the pastor?"!!!)
This concept of the Holy Spirit speaking through anyone is demonstrated throughout the NT especially in the book of Acts-
1* ¶ Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul. 2* As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. 3* And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away. 4* ¶ So they, being sent forth by the Holy Ghost, departed unto Seleucia; and from thence they sailed to Cyprus. (Acts 13: 1-4)
Here is one of the examples of the operation of the Holy Ghost through the prophetic word. Notice: within the church there are prophets and teachers--(it does not says hat they were the leaders of the church!--and there is not a "pastor" in site!). They are shown "ministering" (serving ) the Lord--fasting--praying--and suddenly the Holy Ghost says something--(the Bible does not specify how He speaks--or through whom--this was the common, day-to-day operation of the church)--it is the Holy spirit which leads--which gives the direction--which ordains the ministry. It is NOT the rules or the customs of man.
For example it does not say what we might be our experience in the church of today--
"Saul had attended the church at Antioch for many years, he had attended church faithfully--and assisted the leadership in every way he could. He was faithful in his tithing, and served as an usher for many years--he had been tested and proved by the pastor, and was someone whom it was know could be trusted. He attended Bible college and graduated with honors. At this point it became clear to the pastor that Saul was ready, that he had been tested and proved and found worthy to be a minister. So the church raised money and sent him out to preach the Gospel." (Acts of Pastors 13: 1-4)
[note: If we do things this way, isn't it possible for God the Holy Spirit to be hindered? If we are so very very sure how people ought to be released to ministry, do you think it is possible for us to miss leading of the Spirit?]
In the Bible it was God the Holy spirit--speaking through whomever He chose, which lead the church, which ordained the ministry. He decided exactly who to send. He decided and lead the church directly--but only because these prophets and teachers--these people (already functioning in their ministries!) were obedient to operate the church the way that the Bible says to.
The leading of the Holy Spirit was not covered by a cloak of deception--by the cloak of tradition. Of course we know who "covers"--right?
"Thou hast been in Eden the garden of God; every precious stone
was thy covering, the sardius, topaz, and the diamond, the beryl, the onyx,
and the jasper, the sapphire, the emerald, and the carbuncle, and gold:
the workmanship of thy tabrets and of thy pipes was prepared in thee in
the day that thou wast created. Thou art the anointed cherub that covereth;
and I have set thee so: thou wast upon the holy mountain of God; thou hast
walked up and down in the midst of the stones of fire. Thou wast perfect
in thy ways from the day that thou wast created, till iniquity was found
in thee. By the multitude of thy merchandise they have filled the midst
of thee with violence, and thou hast sinned: therefore I will cast thee
as profane out of the mountain of God: and I will destroy thee, O covering
cherub, from the midst of the stones of fire." (Ezekiel 28:13-16,