"We see, in many a land, the proudest dynasties and tyrannies still crushing, with their mountain weight, every free motion of the Consciences and hearts of men. We see, on the other hand, the truest heroism for the right and the greatest devotion to the Truth in hearts that God has touched. We have a work to do, as great as our forefathers and, perhaps, far greater. The enemies of Truth are more numerous and subtle than ever and the needs of the Church are greater than at any preceding time. If we are not debtors to the present, then men were never debtors to their age and their time. Brethren, we are debtors to the hour in which we live. Oh, that we might stamp it with Truth and that God might help us to impress upon its wings some proof that it has not flown by neglected and unheeded." -- C.H. Spurgeon . . . "If ye continue in my word, then are ye my disciples indeed; And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free." John 8:31, 32 . . . . .


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Monday, May 29, 2023

TTUF TOPIC # 4: What About Church Life? PART 2 of 3

GOD has granted members of the church with special giftings that are used for the blessing and equipping of the church at large, for the work of the ministry:

11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors, and teachers; 12 For the perfecting [equipping] of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: 13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fulness of Christ:

Notice the order in which these members are listed: apostles are first, then prophets, then evangelists and pastors and teachers.

Before the church even existed, there were the 12 apostles, and after the resurrection and ascension of Christ into heaven, the apostles played a central role in spreading the Gospel (MARK 16:14-16), teaching the Word (ACTS 4:18; 5:25; 6:4), giving themselves to prayer (ACTS 6:4), and establishing churches (ROM 11:13; ACTS 15:41; 2 COR 11:28). Before the completion of the New Testament Scriptures, GOD provided New Testament prophets, but it should be noted, no doctrinal truth was given to the church by prophets, only by apostles (Luke being the only exception).

Prophets were for the leading of the church, giving direction and would be used of GOD to expound on Scripture and encourage the saints (1 COR 14:2,3), rather than to declare new inspired truth (that would equate to Scripture).

Evangelists – even the very word has the same root word in the Greek for “angels” – and angels are basically messengers from GOD; evangelists are likewise messengers that bring the Gospel, which means “good news”. Check out the link above on the Gospel if you haven’t already done so).

Then there are pastors and teachers – (elders of the church) that see to the spiritual needs of the body: Bible teachers feed the LORD’s sheep the Word of GOD. Pastors do the same, but get more involved personally, inspecting people’s lives, marking spiritual growth, bringing correction, and exhortation to individuals.
For more about preaching - what pastors most often to, but not exclusively; and about teachers - what teachers do, check out this article!

Both pick up where evangelists leave off: evangelists bring lost souls into the kingdom of GOD; pastors and teachers will feed and disciple those brought into the kingdom and are intent in encouraging the spiritual growth and maturity of the church (ACTS 20:28; 2 COR 1:4; ROM 12:4-9; COL 2:5).

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