May 05, 2016

Share in the Ministry

I’ve been attending board meetings of an organization whose executive director, rather than delegating work and training others, continues to put on more and more hats. There is no doubt he feels he is doing a good job holding things together. However, from a public perspective the situation is taking on the appearance of an unhealthy one-man-show. Rather than holding things together, things are falling through the cracks. Today’s church is not immune to the one-man-show scenario and many leaders of faith focus on control, rather than on the mission. In the early church the Twelve Apostles understood the importance of the mission, “So the Twelve gathered all the disciples together and said, “It would not be right for us to neglect the ministry of the word of God in order to wait on tables. Brothers, choose seven men from among you who are known to be full of the Spirit and wisdom. We will turn this responsibility over to them and will give our attention to prayer and the ministry of the word” (Acts 6:2-4 NIV).

1 comment:

Steve Corey said...


-----It’s so easy to fall into the trap of thinking you’re right. The mere fact that a person’s self is transparent to him alone, while what can be known about the character and personality of all other people must be estimated by the same kind of observation anything else requires, gives a giant misimpression that, “What I think about things is reality.” It especially works this way in those who have come to the truth and now love it deeply. How preposterous! The idea I might be wrong! By golly, I know the Lord! He talks to me! And He gave me the vision of what the church needs to become! Yah, right. What He said two thousand years ago, and has stuck with it ever since, and has shown it to be true with the tracks of history is, “Let God be true, though all men be false.” (Rom 3:4) Now, lest that church vision He “gave” you had in it a change to this scripture, maybe we should be reconsidering it.
-----God indeed gives the church leaders. And He gives them visions. And the visions have to do with the church. And the Lord’s people are to be subject to them. But leaders are not given without constraint. They were not given to be controllers of the people’s lives, deciders of their convictions, definers of their expressions, assigners of their duties. “Let every one be fully convinced in his own mind,” (Rom 14:5) means everyone, not just leaders, but everyone must be convinced in his own mind rather than in his leader’s mind. We certainly do righteousness by proxy, but we do not do life in the Lord by proxy. We each must live it by what we each come to know of it. The leaders’ authority over the congregation is constrained to only what the Bible specifically applies to everyone clearly. Beyond that, each must be convinced in his own mind, and here the leaders’ only responsibility is edifying the believers within his charge unto better capability of knowing, sort of a teaching and mentor role. For although God gives the church leaders, He also gives the church a head.
-----The Law stood outside the soul, written on a rock, and from there told the soul what to do. The law of love in the new life stands inside the soul written on the heart and leads the soul in its thinking, and therefore in its doing. God’s law is no longer written outside on stone. Therefore, why should the head of the church be outside any believer to be in the heart of someone else, as it would be if church leaders were the head of the church, like they act? The head of the church is inside the heart of each of the church’s members, and from there the head steers the church by steering each thought, feeling, and action of each believer. I’m sorry this takes much elevation away from the mighty loftiness of church leaders, but wasn’t it Christ Himself who put leaders at the very bottom of the church structure so it can be the church Head which is held high?
-----It’s so easy to think we know everything. In a sense, we do know everything. I know everything about that small area of situations and circumstances that are my given duties and responsibilities. Although that’s pretty small, it is to what reality has constrained my knowledge. To presume to know anyone else’s situations and circumstances, duties and responsibilities, beliefs and understanding only makes one falser, more sinful. But that hat’s been put on anyway, to the fracturing of the Lord’s beloved bride into a thousand denominations. Bad church leaders! Bad!

Love you all,
Steve Corey