WALKING WITH JESUS MINISTRIES

 
 
TUESDAY TEACHINGS
 
 

 

TRANSFORMATION OF THE CHURCH

Changes God requires in His church today in order to produce the perfected 'bride of Christ'

 

 

INTRODUCTION

Today we will consider the 3rd remaining relational aspect, relationship with the world.

 

 

 

BACKGROUND

CHURCH
CHURCH
CHURCH GOVERNMENT

 

The full background to this teaching is available online at this link
DEFINITIONS (For serious students only)

 

 

Online links to scriptures (New International Version [NIV] unless otherwise stated) are shown in blue

 

THE RELATIONAL CHURCH

 

For God's New Testament church is simply RELATIONAL. Relational in 3 ways.

1. RELATIONAL WITH GOD

2. RELATIONSHIP WITH FELLOW BELIEVERS
 

 

3. RELATIONAL WITH THE WORLD

 

The third area of relationship required of us is interaction with non-believers.

This is, of course, highlighted in what we call 'The Great Commission'.

 

 

Matthew 28:19-20a

 

 

Over my Christian life I have tried, in my own way, to do my best to fulfill this command of Jesus. I am not an evangelist in terms of gifting, and am, in the natural, shy about sharing as much as I personally should about Jesus on a one to one basis. I am not ashamed of Christ but, as I mentioned last week, tend to be a better listener than talker.

However, I did pen the Walking With Jesus discipleship course, which has helped numbers of people to be pointed in the direction of Jesus, as well as helping many believers deepen their relationship with Him. Some time ago, a lady came into our shop. She saw WWJ course on the counter and commented and commented to Cathy Mumby, our shop manager, that she became a Christian through the course. Unfortunately I was not there to speak to her. But it was a boost when Cathy M. told me!

 

 

 

Over the years of being in full time ministry, I have been able to share the Gospel message in many different countries and have seen good numbers of people come to Christ through the conviction of the Holy Spirit. Many more have received Holy Spirit baptism, and large numbers have also committed to a deeper level of discipleship, of obedience to the will of the Father in their lives.

To be honest, I thought I had been doing a reasonable job in doing my bit to fulfill the Great Commission - and that I would continue to do similar things over the years to come.

 

 

 

Imagine my surprise then when, during my last trip to Africa, the Lord changed my direction! "How could you Lord? Surely, 'full-time ministry' is what you have called me to, and is the ultimate way of serving you?"

God is full of surprises! More often than not, we don't want to know of them, preferring to carry on carrying on in our comfortable ways! GOOD in themselves, but are they really GOD? (one less O!)

I thought I had left the commercial world behind forever. In the natural I love the challenge of business. But God had called me to the 'better things' of full time ministry forever, or so I thought.

 

 

 

I have had to change my thinking on 2 counts. Firstly, the assumption that full time ministry is better, and secondly, that forever is not in God's vocabulary when it comes to His desires for me as an obedient servant. For a servant must always by available to, and obedient of, his or her master's call.

 

 

 

The Lord had other ideas! As I so often find out, His ways are not my ways! And His way for me is not my way for me! I so often hear people ask the Lord to fulfill their heart's desire, but very rarely hear anyone ask Him to fulfill HIS hearts desire for them! This is a key difference between the world of kings and the world of the kingdom.

When I returned from Africa, I had to go through a revolution in my thinking. "Lord, do you really want me to go back into business? Why Lord? Surely what I am doing now is the best way to build your kingdom?"

The Lord needed to show me some things! For in the world of kings, the realm in which most of the church lives today the king, the pastor, leader or tele evangelist is put up on a kingly pedestal (and pulled down!) by the people, other leaders, and sometimes even the state. To become a king today, you need an educational qualification and an official appointment by a human organisation, such as a denomination.

 

 

 

Please see my heart! I am not saying that all formal church leadership is evil and wrong! It has served the church over the past 2000 years and will continue to do so in the future. But the Lord is saying that there is a different way, one that has always been there, one which He now wishes to develop in a way that will build His kingdom upon the earth before His great and glorious return.

 

 

 

The Lord was showing me He wished me to witness into the community, that His kingdom will be built through His people interacting with others, by becoming His light to the lost.

William Booth, the founder of the Salvation Army, had this understanding in relation to preaching. "No sort of defense is needed for preaching outdoors, but it would take a very strong argument to prove that a man who has never preached beyond the walls of his meetinghouse has done his duty. A defense is required for services within buildings rather than for worship outside of them."

Mother Teresa and Brother Andrew, who come from the most structured church of them all, also had this kingdom revelation in terms of working in the community.

 

 

 

Kings have palaces (church buildings) to which people are invited in. The kingdom however, is built by disciples being the living Word in their own communities and in others to which the Lord calls.

So now, through Seekers Megamarts, we provide a service into our local community, selling recycled clothing and other goods at prices people can afford, and using surpluses, both money and clothing, to fund projects in Africa, to help the poor there help themselves.

The organisation works on a mixture of paid, partly paid, and voluntary Christian and non Christian staff, all depending upon people's circumstances. Kathy and I work voluntarily, as Kathy still provides our family income through her paid nursing job. Our managers are paid a full wage. Some others work hour for hour, paid and voluntary, others receive petrol vouchers to contribute towards their transport costs.

Bibles and Christian books given to us are given away to others. The Walking With Jesus Course is also available free of charge. We are open about our Jesus motivation, but do not evangelize overtly.

The organisation is still evolving so we don't pretend to have all the answers.

 

 

 

To be really honest, living this life, where people can see me warts and all, is far more difficult than sending out teachings over the internet and visiting countries for a short time, speaking at conferences or crusades. Even when approaching this type of ministry with the attitude of a servant, it is all too easy to slip into a kingly mode!

While honesty about my shortcomings etc., has always been something that I hope has made this ministry somewhat different to some, interacting with people through the challenges (and there are many of them currently!) of day to day life and business, truly forces one to servanthood, if one wants to be like Jesus.

Of course, the buck stops with me. There are hard decisions I have to make, as much as I can under the leading of the Holy Spirit. Jesus had to too! He chose to die! But my primary purpose and motivation is to serve others, not to build up my own kingdom.

PS: Since first writing this 11 years ago the second hand clothing business grew greatly to 11 shops, before being sold. Now we are, to our great surprise, living in Kenya, where we have built an eye nd general hospital.


"Lord, help me I pray, to put You first, and to serve others as you would have me do, so that your kingdom may come, that your will may be done on earth as it is in heaven. Amen."

 

 

NEXT WEEK: TRANSFORMATION OF THE CHURCH: 3. FROM KINGS TO KINGDOM continues

 

With the conclusion of my testimony.

 

 

A NOTE FROM DAVID

 

There is a saying, 'God works in mysterious ways'. He has certainly done that in my life!

We certainly should not try to out think Him! Which we all do from time to time!

Our task is simply to listen and obey.

JESUS: BACKGROUND

Chief Priests, Ordinary Priests, and Levites


The office of high priest carried with it a number of unique privileges and responsibilities. He alone was permitted to enter the holy of holies on the Day of Atonement to atone for the sins of the entire nation. As head of the Sanhedrin or Jewish supreme court, he presided over the nation's highest administrative and judicial body. His daily life was governed by the strictest rules of ceremonial purity. His death was viewed as an act of atonement and was marked by the release of a condemned murderer. Even if he retired from office he continued to wield great influence.

 

 

So until next week.......
MAY GOD BLESS YOU AND YOU BLESS GOD!

His servant and yours

Learn more about us at...

www.wwj.org.nz/about.php

 

 

Previous parts of this Series (When applicable) are available to be read at:
www.wwj.org.nz/tuesday-teachings

 

 

 

A DAVID'S DOODLING

919. Christian maturity develops as we submit to the will of God for our life.

David Tait         

 

 

 

Earlier Series of "Tuesday Teachings" can be read at:
www.wwj.org.nz/tuesday-teachings

 

 

Check out the WWJ website for….

More David's Doodlings: www.wwj.org.nz/dd.php
Till Death do us Part!: http://www.wwj.org.nz/tddup.php
Pets Rule!: http://www.wwj.org.nz/pets.php
The World's Greatest Groans: http://www.wwj.org.nz/groans.php

 

 

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