Bringing Life To Legalism
I saw a local church’s TV clip that was supposed to be funny. It was titled “What To Do To Fit Into Any Church Service!” The clip suggested things like: do not smoke during service, do not breed your pet ferrets in church, do not play a tuba while sitting in the pew, etc. It was cute but the “DO NOT’s” rang loud and clear in my head. That is just what most non-church people think about church; it is a place filled with a lot of “do nots”!
Pentecost in the Old Testament is called the Feast of Weeks. It celebrates when Moses received the two stone tablets on Mt. Sinai. From 10 simple commandments hewed in stone came the Torah, the first five books of the Bible, the written Word, and the Talmud, the Jewish book to explain the Laws in the Torah. The books of Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy are also books of Law, the “do’s” and “do nots” of the Jewish faith, which conservative Jews follow to the hilt. Often in the Old Testament prophets would arise to warn Israel of what their sins would do only to be stoned for their unpopular revelations of righteousness. Unfortunately all but two would fell dead in the Wilderness of Sin, never entering the Promise Land.
Pentecost in the New Testament is when the promise of the Holy Spirit came upon the Church to teach them all truth. The written Word, the Logos, became the living Word, the Rhema. The band of men criticized for breaking the Sabbath, not washing their hands ceremoniously at meals, eating grain from the fields, etc. when with Jesus, were now living out the Law, the Word, the Logos, that they could not do before the coming promise of the Holy Spirit. Here too, prophets arose and functioned in the church to encourage and to keep the Church’s spiritual life healthy, so that it wouldn’t go back into legalism or apostasy, those very traps the Church found itself in when not allowing the Holy Spirit to lead it.
Today, in the five fold ministry, the prophet is a necessary component, wanting to hear the “heartbeat of the Father”, wanting to “listen to the still voice of the Holy Spirit” and be obedient to it, wanting to bring holiness and righteousness back into the Bride of Christ, the Church, guarding the Church’s “spiritual” life. A person, driven by the passion and point of view of being a prophet, longs for intimate worship with the Father through His Son Jesus lead by His precious Holy Spirit. This type of believer wants the written Word, the Logos Word, to be a “living Word” in his life and in the life of the Church.
A hospital asks a patient if he/she has a “living will” incase they face a death situation. The believer in Jesus Christ has passed from life through death to everlasting life because of the Jesus’ death on the Cross and his resurrection. Prophets want to now know the “will of the Father” that “will” bring “life” to himself and the Church. He wants to know the “living will” of the Father to bring “life”, the Rhema, to the Logos Word, the written Word of the Father.
As we shall see in the next series of blogs, if there ever was a time when the Church needs the passion and point of view of its believers to hear the “heartbeat of the Father” and to feel “alive” in the Word by actively living out the Word, it is today! Join me in this prophetic adventure.