x8.........authority to His servants (Mark 13)
28 ¶ Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is near: 29 So ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors. 30 Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done. 31 Heaven and earth shall pass away: but my words shall not pass away. 32 But of that day and that hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father. 33 Take ye heed, watch and pray: for ye know not when the time is. 34 For the Son of man is as a man taking a far journey, who left his house, and gave authority to his servants, and to every man his work, and commanded the porter to watch. 35 Watch ye therefore: for ye know not when the master of the house cometh, at even, or at midnight, or at the cockcrowing, or in the morning: 36 Lest coming suddenly he find you sleeping. 37 And what I say unto you I say unto all, Watch. (Mark 13:28-37)
This end-time prophecy describes Jesus as being--
1. as a man taking a far journey--Jesus, is this man--having accomplished his work in the earth (salvation) He made the way to the kingdom of heaven
2. it says He--"gave authority to his servants,"--He gave authority--power--rights--to His servants. The authority to carry on His ministry purposes (see Luke 4:18) which are to 1. preach the Gospel, 2. feed the poor, 3. heal the sick, 4. bring deliverance, and 5.freely release others to serve God in the same way.
3. "and to every man his work,"--work (Greek: "ergon") to 'every man".
Just as in ephesians 4:11-12
11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
These gifts are described as being for the "work" of the "servants" (ministry), and are unto every one of us--(as it says in Eph 4:7)--
7 But unto every one of us is given grace according to the measure of the gift of Christ.
The clear warning of Jesus is that He comes back and finds you not working--not serving the will of God. That He finds you not doing ministry!
note: an important thing to bear in mind is that for hundreds of years, Christians have developed a "traditional" way of interpreting the word of God. One of the traditional ways of understanding the Bible is the false belief that all or most of the new testament is really instructions for "ministers". (have you ever seen this sub-title in one of our "modern" Bible translations?--this is really the traditional catholic way of reading the Bible--the old testament is mostly instructions for the special few chosen who are "in the ministry"--the old testament Israel is what the majority of people should be preached about--since they are the "congregation"--the "lay-people". Now I know that your church doensn't actively follow this doctrine--but the fact is that all comparisons of the church to being a "type of Israel" are incorrect--the Bible says rather that Israel was a shadow of the church--the old covenant was a shadow of the new. Putting new covenat Christians into old covenant Israels' "shoes" is very incorrect, and just the swame lie that the new covenant promises, minstry and authority, are only for the precious "some" that are "real ministers".
Our entire purpose is simply tohave an open and full discussion of new covenant ministry, authrority and church operation. To encourage all Christians to stop and ask questions about these subjects--and to encourage all to read and study the Bible in these areas.