The Struggle for Definition


I feel compelled to reply to the recent series of posts which started with
“The Diaspora” then “Ministry Dependence” and now your reply Richard
“Pastor’s Perspective”. What strikes me in all of these posts are the vast
differences we have in the simple definition of terms being used.

As an example, during what is called the “walking treaty” in the mid
1700’s in Pennsylvania between William Penn’s sons and the Lenape indian
tribes, there was a land for goods deal. For starters, the indians had no
“concept” of land ownership. The land belonged to all so when the english
came and asked if they could “have” some land they thought they meant to
“use” the land or “share” the land and not “take” the land. The indians
readily agreed because they believed the land did not belong to them
(ownership wise). The indians were “rudely” awakened when the english
asked to hunt on what is now Manhattan and after coming back after their
winter migration found a fort on the land and the indians effectively
kicked off.

The walking treaty was to give over as much land as could be walked in 3
days. To the indians “walking” meant walk some, hunt some, and generally
getting from here to there in no real hurry. To the english it meant
hiring professional runners. So way more land was taken than intended to
be given by the indians and this lead to a massacre of innocent Moravian
missionaries and an ensuing war.

See, the terms we are speaking mean VASTLY different things to one
another. Take the simple work “church”. To one person that means ANYONE
who goes to or attends a christian organization. To another it means a
“remnant” of those within the church who really are following the Lord as
His disciples. To some leader means “in charge” while to others leader
means “living example” and has nothing at all to do with earthly
authority. To one “organized” means a visible sign that everything is in
it’s place while to others it means that everything is were I put it. Two
very different things.

This “chasm” between your post Richard and the two previous posts is
because of the vast difference in the definition of terms, specifically
because of the vast difference of term definitions between prophets and
pastors. This difference in term definition is the physical manifestation
that we as yet have not come to a place of unity in the Spirit but rather
are still abiding on the “natural” or “earthly” plane (what Paul described
to the Ephesians as carnality).

When the Lord told us in Ephesians 4 that His intention was to raise up
“the church” that would be mature and edify itself in love and be raised
up to reflect Christ Himself was He referring to “all” within a christian
organization or only those who truly believe? Yes the “invitation” is to
all but not the promise of being part of that glorious building. The
promises are given to those who believe. Paul told the Galatians that the
Jerusalem that is seen in the natural is still in bondage (not a partaker
of the promises as the natural seed Ishmael was not) but the New Jerusalem
IN THE SPIRIT is free and thus the partaker of the promises (as was
Isaac). Jerusalem here is put allegorically for the religious seat as
Jerusalem was the religious center.

The belief is manifest by action taken by the believer which is to pursue
the Lord. Seek and you shall find. Those who diligently seek Me will find
Me. Even in this we have to define terms. Some take “pursuit of the Lord”
as “works” for the local body and “ministry” while others take that
“pursuit of the Lord” as allowing Him to cleanse us from the inside then
being able to after His dealings to do His will.

With this said, it is evident to me, and I will challenge you to ponder
this, that we have not as yet seen the “corporate church” (ekklesia)
manifest itself IN THE NATURAL. It always exists in the Spirit but not yet
in this realm were the Lord intends on making the kingdoms of this world
His. What we have is an invitation set forth by the Lord for individuals
to come to Him so once He has finished hewing out the stones “off site” He
will then set those stones into place to form the completed building
prophesied in so many places biblically. Before you outright reject this
as “silly” or “preposterous” really ponder the meaning of the “terms”
being tossed around today.

Perhaps one of the things that makes us so vastly divided in terms is the
fact that none of us are really walking “in Christ”. Ouch! But I lump
myself in that statement. Because of this some of our term definitions are
from the Lord and some are our own. Thus there is just enough leaven to
keep us completely divided as a body but not enough for us to detect that
something is actually wrong and thus keep us from “questioning”.

Another thing, could it be possible that we are trying to fit what we
“see” now into a biblical model that is based on a church that has not yet
manifest itself in the natural? If this is the case then it is no wonder
why we never can agree on terms nor can our current church model ever
match the biblical one.

These are all questions for you to ponder.

What one person defines as anointing another simply would call “talent”
and visa versa. I could go at infinitum on this but if we are not in
“unity” with the Lord (in Christ, in the Spirit, in fellowship with Him),
which is really the key, meaning individuals walking in the unity with
Christ. then how can we ever expect to see a whole group of believers (the
church) walk in unity and fellowship with one another. After all, out
unity is suppose to be “in Christ”. If we fail as individuals to “enter
in” then how can we lead others to that place? We cannot and will be as
the Pharisees who do not enter in themselves and hinder those who would.
We will as a people still abide on the earthly plane that is yet ruled by
satan were there can only be division and confusion.

One of the “signs” that we are “becoming” a true corporate church is that
we have ONE HEART and ONE MIND and that we all SPEAK THE SAME
THINGS. This
is a sign that we are abiding in the Spirit and not on this earthly plane.
This unity is not by concession but rather because we have all heard the
same things from the Lord and have got our definitions from one source.

I hope this gives you some things to consider.

Comments are closed.