The 21st Century Retooling of the Church – Part XXXXIV
In my last blog, I proposed a challenge to embrace a different form of church structure that would promote “accountability” and “service”, embracing both control and the moving of the Holy Spirit. If it is a pluralistic model, not of offices, but of believers “serving” through a God given passion or point of view, how can it work if pluralistic leadership has not been embraced by most of the Church over the last twenty centuries? Again the key to any pluralistic leadership is I John 3:15, the principle of “laying down your life for your brethren.” That is what Jesus did for us, and a model of what we should be doing for one another.
I also proposed that no one of the five fold points of view or passions of service is ever “the head” of this pluralistic team, not even the apostle. Only the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of Jesus Christ, can be the head. I proposed that any of the five fold passions can be aroused by the Holy Spirit’s call to meet a specific situation at a specific time with the other four passions beside them to bring unity, stability, and accountability. As a different situation arises, a different passion can arise to effectively address that situation, again with the other four passions support, encouragement, and covering. Leadership can be a rotational things as the Holy Spirit rises among individuals and the group. (Thus in my diagram, the star is in a circle, and the circle can be rotated at any time by the leading of the Holy Spirit.)
In my diagram, each point of the star is created by the “relationship” of each of the five fold to the other four. Each relationship is reciprocal: as one serves, one becomes accountable to the other, and vice versus. The “laying down of one’s life” produces the heart of service and the acceptance of accountability to passions and points of view that are so drastically different from one’s own. The power of the star is its diversity, the many faceted ways it can look at and approach situations. The unity of the five is its strength due to the power of the cross (See earlier blogs: where the “supernatural” (John 3:16) dissects our “natural” world (I John 3:16) forming the Cross.) with the “laying down one’s life” becoming the central principle of unity.
Under this structure, the Church would remain Biblically “sound” under the guidance of the passions of the teacher, prophet, and apostle, preventing heresies and restoring the “apostle’s teaching” back into the Church restoring its unity. Under this structure, the Church would become Biblically “alive” as the teacher bases everything the group does on the Bible, the Logos, the written word, translating it into to Rhema, or living Word, the shepherd instructs the believers in Jesus how to daily walk out these Biblical principles, the prophet living out the written Word, the Logos Word, the living Word, through the Rhema Word, the evangelist exposing this Rhema Word, grounded in the Logos Word, to an unbelieving generation through power and truth (as they did in the book of Acts), and an apostle “seeing over” how the Holy Spirit is orchestrating unity and ministry through this group through “service” and “accountability” by releasing and with holding those passions and points of view when needed.
Wow, the 21st Century Church would become “Acts”-ive again like the 1st Century Church did. A community of breaking bread together, meeting one another’s need, a Church without want, a Church with power, would again be established. “Relationships” between brethren would again be the key of what “Church” is! But at what price? The price of the Cross: the “laying down of one’s life”.