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Ministry Gifts Pt 2

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We’re going to pick up where we left off last time. We were talking about those in any ministry position need to be proven 1st. 1 Tim 3:1-7; 8-10

I.        In Verse 1 it is talking about an BISHOP or an OVERSEER. Apparently, an OVERSEER is the same thing as an elder.

A.  Within the local church there are Bishop/Overseers and there are Deacons, and of course there are the rest of the saints.

1.   An Overseer is one of several people that are spiritual leaders. There job is to be a spiritual leader, to oversee either the church, or to oversee the souls of the saints in the church.

2.   There is 1 Head Overseer or 1 Chief Overseer and that is the Senior Pastor.

3.   Look at Phil 1:1.

a)    The word bishop or overseer is the Greek word “ep·is·kop·os” Which comes from 2 Greek words, 1 meaning “Over” and the other meaning “Seer or Watchman.”

b)    The Overseers in the church are the board members.

(1)  All the board members could be called bishops, all the associate pastors could be called bishops.
(2)  But there is only 1 senior pastor.     

II.      Now if God does call you to the 5-flod ministry, you need time to be alone with the Lord.

A.  He usually wont call you to minister in your home area, not at 1st. You need to prove yourself 1st.

1.   Jesus wasn’t received in His home town. Paul wasn’t received in Jerusalem.

a)    Now Paul could have come back after he proved himself.

B.  If God does call you, He will equip you. (Supernatural equipment)

1.   Rom 11:29

2.   (Rom 1:6 from the Message translation), “Through him we received both the generous gift of his life and the urgent task of passing it on to others who receive it by entering into obedient trust in Jesus. You are who you are through this gift and call of Jesus Christ!” [1]

a)    You don’t have to struggle to find you position. God will use you right where you are and He will promote.

(1)  If He is not in it, it will fall apart.

C.  Once you know that God has called you, you need to be a man or woman of integrity.

1.   Look at Psa 15:4 (NIV Says, “who despises a vile man but honors those who fear the Lord, who keeps his oath even when it hurts,”[2]).

2.   People who have the call of God on their lives and who are also people of integrity, honest and sincere, will have God’s blessing in ministry.

D.  Develop. Mature. Grow

1.   Ministries are developed. Take time to develop the ministerial gift.

2.   It takes time for people to become equipped to do what God has for them to do. They must not only be equipped; they must mature.

a)     Usually people start out in a different area of ministry from what God called them to.

b)    Saul (Paul) is named as one of the five prophets and/or teachers in Acts 13. Later the New Testament calls him an apostle.

c)     But he didn’t start out with an apostle’s ministry. He started out as a prophet and a teacher.

3.   Philip started out in the ministry of helps (Acts 6:1-6). He was faithful in that office. Later he was moved to the office of evangelist (Acts 8; 21:8).

4.   If God called you to pastor, you will not begin pastoring a church of 2000. You would not know how to handle the job. You may start with a
small flock, or as an assistant, or associate pastor, youth pastor, etc.

a)    God may have called you to be an evangelist. You may eventually preach to 5000. But you won’t start out preaching to 5000. You may start out by preaching to five.

b)    Do not despise the day of small things (Zech. 4:10).

c)     Take time to wait and see what God wants you to do. Let God make you the minister He wants you to be.

(1)  Don’t say, “I choose this office.” You cannot choose.     

b. Don’t try to be like someone else. Just be yourself. Take the truth of I God’s Word that is revealed to you and let God use your personality to
inject it. Then it becomes your message.
c. Don’t just say, “I’m a teacher.” Stop and wait and find out whether that
is what you are or not.
d. Just because you had one revelation, or given a few words of prophecy,
don’t say, “I’m a prophet.”
From all probability you are not.
Even if your call were a prophet, you couldn’t enter it right away. You
wouldn’t be capable.
God will not violate His own rules. His Word says not to put a novice in
the office of deacon (1 Tim. 3:6). God will not put an immature Christian
or an immature preacher into the office of prophet.
e. Get some spiritual growth and development under your belt before you
try to ascertain and advertise what office you are in.
f. If God called you and set you in an office, you won’t have to advertise it,
anyway. People will find out eventually. If they do not, it is not your
place.
g. If the ministry is there in embryo stage, it will develop as you are
faithful.
h. Realize that the call of God is there. Then be faithful to work for God
wherever you are. (To preach and to teach is always right.) Eventually
— when you reach some maturity, both mentally and spiritually —
God will let you know what your calling is.
5. Take time to wait on God. Take time to fast and pray. Take time to find His
perfect will for your life and ministry.
a. I shall never forget the day I was kneeling at the altar in my church
when I said to the Lord, “Lord, I’ve been waiting on You for 10 years.”
Just as plain as some man talking to me He said, “No, you haven’t. I’ve
been waiting on you for 10 years. I’ve been waiting on you to make up
your mind to obey me. I’ve been waiting on you to make up your mind
to do what I want you to do.”
b. Jesus said to me in the first vision when He appeared to me, “When you
left your last church you entered into the first phase of your ministry.”
I was shocked. I’d been in the ministry 15 years. I said, “Lord, I spent 15
years in the ministry, and You blessed me.”
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He said, “Certainly. I blessed you all I could. I blessed the Word you preached because I honor my Word. That doesnt mean I was honoring you.”
Then He said this, rMany ministers live and die and never get into the first phase of the ministry that I have for them. That’s the reason many of them die prematurely.”
(You see, if you are not in the perfect will of God, you are in a place where Satan can attack you. If you are not in the perfect will of God, it is difficult to claim the highest that belongs to you.)
Live and die! I thought about it through the years. I could have done
the same thing.
“Oh, yes,” somebody said, “the Lord singled you out, though.”
No, He never did a thing until I started seeking Him. He never moved.
He never told me a thing.
c. Stay open to God.
If you settle down into another call, or another area of ministry and don’t keep the communication lines open between you and Heaven, God will let you go on and suffer the consequences of being out of the perfect will of God.
d. When you’re only in the permissive will of God, something won’t seem right to you. You can tell the difference. It’s sort of like washing your
feet with your socks on.
G. Do not intrude into the wrong office.
I think the thing that hinders people in the ministry more than anything else is trying to stand in the wrong office. The tragedy is that people live and die there and never know it.
2. It can cost you your ministry.
a. Charles Finney was the greatest soul winner and evangelist since the New Testament days. He wrote, when he was about 80, “I know many things, deeper things of God, than I am able to teach. If I do teach these things, I lose the ability to win souls.”
Why, if he kiiew these things, couldn’t he teach them? (Of course he could share them with others individually, but he didn’t teach them to the Church at large.) Because that was not his calling. Let the teachers do that. His calling was the evangelistic office. His calling was to win souls. If he got over into the wrong office, he ceased to be a blessing.
b. Part of my calling is to be a teacher. I get more people saved by teaching than I ever did by preaching evangelistic sermons. Because
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I
that is what God told me to do.
3. Intruding into the wrong office can cost you your life.
I a. Holy things are holy. In the Old Testament if someone besides the High Priest intruded into the Holy of Holies, he fell dead instantly. He
had intruded into the wrong office.
b. It is dangerous to play with holy things.
I c. The calling of God is holy.
Id. The ministry of God is holy.
H. Develop Character.
1. More is required of people who are separated unto an office.
2. Set the right example always.
3. Provide things honest in the sight of all men.
4. Fill your place with dignity.
If you are called of God to stand in an office, that office demands respect. If you have respect for the office you are in, you will teach people to have respect for that office.
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RHEMA Bible Training Center
STUDY: THE MINISTRY GIFI’S
Lesson V
VARIETY AND BALANCE
A. One of the most fascinating things concerning the ministry gifts of Christ is their variety.
1. Apostles. The apostle’s office seems to embrace almost every type of mmistry.
2. Prophets. The prophet’s ministry is inspirational. He speaks by direct, divine inspiration and revelation.
3. Evangelists. The evangelist has a direct endowment from the Lord to PREACH the Word.
4. Pastors. Pastors are the shepherds of God’s sheep.
5. Teachers. Those who fill the office of teacher teach the Word, not by natural ability, but by the divine ability of the Holy Spirit.
B. These ministry gifts have been given to the Church so that there may be a balance in the Church.
1. Notice how finely the ministry gifts were balanced in the great missionary center of the Early Church at Antioch (Acts 13:1).
2. The matter of balance is vitally important to be effective.
3. Some churches, prayer groups, and so forth, have no vision but that of the one-person ministry which is expected to meet every requirement.
4. At the other extreme, there are those who place such an undue value and importance upon these gifts that they do not consider a minister to be a blessing unless his or her ministry is continually sprinkled with manifestations of all the spiritual gifts.
C. There needs to be an appreciation of the varied ministry gifts that Christ has placed in the Church, and the realization that all of them are essential to a well-rounded activity and growth.
1. It is not uncommon to hear teachers speak disparagingly of evangelists, calling them superficial and sensational.
2. Evangelists sometimes stigmatize teachers by calling them dry and wordy.
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3. Evangelists and teachers often unite to call the prophets fanatical and extreme.
4. All such attitudes are wrong.
5. There can be extremes in all usage of ministry gifts. Yet we must not
repress, for we may quench the Spirit of God.
D. The divine plan is for each ministry which God has set in the Church to correct
and complement the other, thereby providing check and balance needed.
1. The prophet is to inspire the teacher.
2. The teacher is to steady the prophet.
3. The evangelist is to continually remind us of the lost and dying world and its need for the Gospel.
4. The pastor is to show us that souls still need much caring for after they have been won.
5. And the apostle, above all, is to inspire and lead the way to fresh conquest for Christ and the Church.
E. The ultimate of all ministry is to unite — not divide.
Ephesians 4:13 reads, “Till we all come in the unity,” and not, “Till we all are
divided into splinter groups.”
F. A person can stand in more than one office; we separate them to define them.
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RHEMA Bible Training Center
STUDY: THE MINISTRY GIFTS
Lesson VI
THE APOSTLE
1 CORINTHIANS 12:28
28
And God hath set some in the church, FIRST APOSTLES.
EPHESIANS 4:11
11
And he gave some, APOSTLES....
A. The ministry gift which heads the list is the apostle.
B. The most significant statement of fact in the Bible regarding this office is that it was filled by Christ Himself.
HE BREWS 3:1
1 Wherefore, holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the
Apostle
and High Priest of our profession, Christ Jesus.
C. The Greek word APOSTOLOS translated apostle means one sent forth, a sent one.
D. Jesus Christ is the greatest example of a sent one.
JOHN 20:2 1
21 Then said Jesus to them again, Peace be unto you: AS MY FATHER HATH
SENT ME, even so send I you.
E. A true apostle is always one with a commission — not one who merely goes, but one who is sent.
1. Acts 13 gives a picture of the sending forth of Barnabas and Paul to be apostles to the Gentiles.
F. The signs of an apostle. The Bible speaks of the signs of an apostle:
2 CORINTHIANS 12:12
12
Truly the signs of an apostle were wrought among you in all patience, in signs,
and wonders, and
mighty deeds.
What are these signs?
Signs, wonders, and mighty deeds.
G. To stand in this office, one must have a personal experience with the Lord something very deep and real, something beyond the ordinary. Not just something secondhand or handed down by tradition.
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Paul. Notice something Paul said in defending his apostleship: Am I not an apostle? am 1 not free? HAVE ZNOT SEEN JESUS CHRIST OUR LORD?
.“ (1 Cor. 9:1). Paul did not see Jesus in the flesh as the twelve did. But he
saw Jesus in a spiritual vision (Acts 9:3-6). He had a deep spiritual experience with the Lord. Even his conversion was beyond the ordinary.
Paul had such a deep spiritual experience with the Lord that he could say concerning what he knew about the Lord’s Supper, For I have received of the Lord that which also I delivered unto you.. . .“ (1 Cor. 11:23). He didn’t learn what he knew about this subject from the other apostles. He got it by revelation. Jesus gave it to him.
Paul wasn’t taught the Gospel he preached by man. The Spirit of God taught it to him. But I certify you, brethren, that the gospel which was preached of me is not after man. ForI neither received it of man, neither was I taught it, but by the revelation of Jesus Christ” (Gal. 1:11,12). We have heard someone else teach these things, but Paul had not. Look at the rest of this passage in Galatians concerning Paul’s revelation — proof of his deep experience with the Lord.
GALATIANS 1:13-24; 2:1,2
13 For ye have heard of my conversation in time
past in the Jews’ religion, how that beyond measure I persecuted the church of God, and wasted it:
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And profited in the Jews’ religion above many my equals in mine own nation, being more exceedingly zealous of the traditions of my fathers.
15 But when it pleased God, who
separated me from my mother’s womb, and called me by his grace,
16 To
reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; IMMEDIATELY I CONFERRED NOT WITH FLESH AND
BLOOD:
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NEiTHER WENT I UP TO JERUSALEM TO THEM WHICH WERE APOSTLES BEFORE ME; BUT I WENT INTO ARABIA, AND RETURNED AGAIN UNTO DAMASCUS.
How long was Paul in Arabia? No one knows. But it was while he was in Arabia that Paul received the revelation of the Gospel of which he writes in every Epistle.
18 THEN AFTER THREE YEARS I WENT UP TO JERUSALEM TO
SEE PETER, AND ABODE WITH HIM FWEEN DAYS.
19 But other of the
apostles saw I none, save James the Lord’s brother...
21 Afterwards I came into
the regions of Syria and Cilicia;
22
And was unknown by face unto the churches of Judaea which
were in
Christ:
23 But they had heard only, That he which persecuted us in Limes past
now preacheth the faith which once he destroyed.
24 And they glorified God in me.
Three years after Paul returned from Damascus, he went to Jerusalem and
spent two weeks with Peter.
1 THEN FOURTEEN YEARS AYER I WENT UP AGAIN TO
JERUSALEM
with Barnabas, and took Titus with me also.
2 AND I WENT UP BY REVELATION, and communicated unto
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them that gospel which I preach among the Gentiles, but privately to them which were of reputation, lest by any means I should rim, or had run, in vain.
Paul had been preaching for 17 years now. He didn’t know what the apostles preached. He hadn’t heard them. He’d been with Peter only a brief two- week period. After which he preached 14 more years before the Spirit of God revealed to him that he should go up to Jerusalem and communicate with these brethren.
Paul did indeed have a deep religious experience with the Lord Jesus Christ!
H. The work of an apostle foundation layer.
1 CORINTHIANS 3:10
10 According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a
wise master-
builder, I HAVE LAID THE FOUNDATION, and another buildeth thereon. But
let every
man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.
EPHESIANS 2:20
20 And
are built upon THE FOUNDATION OF THE APOSTLES and prophets, Jesus Christ himself being the chief corner stone.
1. The work of the apostle was first to lay the foundation.
2. The first twelve apostles first laid the foundation of the Church as the earliest pioneers and preachers of the Gospel. Secondly, they laid the foundation of the Church by receiving the Holy Spirit.
An apostle’s ministry seems to embrace all other ministry gifts. The distinguishing result is the ability to establish churches.
1. The apostle has the supernatural equipment called “governments” listed in First Corinthians 12:28. (Weymouth translates it “powers of organization.”)
2. After churches are established, apostles can exercise authority over those churches they have established (1 Cor. 9:1,2).
Comments: There are many who call themselves apostles who want to dominate and rule people. They say, “I’m an apostle. I have authority. You have to do what I say.” In New Testament days the apostles could only exercise authority over the churches they established themselves. Paul never exercised any authority over the church at Jerusalem, or any of the churches that other apostles had established.
Remember, these offices are in power and not in name. If the power is not there to establish churches, then they are not apostles.
3. A missionary who is really called of God and sent by the Holy Ghost is an apostle.
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a. Acts 13:2,4. The Holy Spirit said, trSeparate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them.” Then verse 4 says, So they,
being SENT FORTH by the Holy Ghost, departed.
. . .“
They were “sent ones.” They left on their first missionary journey to
the Gentiles.
b. The New Testament never mentions missionaries, yet it is an important office. It is here in the office of apostle.
c. The missionary will have the ability of all the ministry gifts.
1) He will do the work of the evangelist.
He will get people saved.
2) He will do the work of the teacher.
He will teach and establish people.
3) He will do the work of the pastor.
He will pastor and shepherd people for a while.
a) In studying closely the life of the Apostle Paul, we note that he said that he never built on a foundation someone else had laid. He endeavored to preach the Gospel where Christ was not named (Rom. 15:20).
He always stayed in a place from six months to three years.
His real calling was not to be a pastor, but he stayed long
enough to get them established in the truth, and then moved
on.
J. Are there apostles today?
No one, not even Paul, could be an apostle in the sense the original twelve were. There are only twelve apostles of the Lamb (Rev. 21:14).
a. The Bible gives the qualifications for the original twelve when they were to select one to take Judas’ place.
ACTS 1:15-22
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And in those days Peter stood up in the midst of the disciples, and said, (the number of names together were about an hundred and twenty,)
16 Men
and brethren, this scripture must needs have been fulfilled, which the Holy Ghost by the mouth of David spake before concerning Judas, which was guide to them that took Jesus.
17 For he was
numbered with us, and had obtained part of this ministry.
18 Now this man purchased a field with the reward of iniquity; and falling headlong, he burst asunder in the midst, and all his bowels gushed out.
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And it was known unto all the dwellers at Jerusalem; insomuch as
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that field is called in their proper tongue, Aceldama, that is to say, The field of blood.
20 For it
is written in the book of Psalms, Let his habitation be desolate, and let no man dwell therein: and his bishoprick let another take. 21 Wherefore of these men WHICH HAVE COMPANIED WITH US ALL THE TIME THAT THE LORD JESUS WENT IN AN]) OUT AMONG US,
22 BEGINNING FROM
TIlE BAPTISM OF JOHN, UNTO THAT SAME DAY THAT HE WAS TAKEN UP FROM US, MUST ONE BE ORDAINED TO BE A WITNESS WITH US OF HIS RESURRECTION.
b. To be one of the twelve apostles of the Lamb, one had to have accompanied them — the apostles and Jesus — all the time Jesus went in and out among them for the three and a half years of His ministry. Paul was not with them.
The original twelve were sent ones to be eye witnesses of the ministry, the works, the life, death, burial, resurrection, and ascension of the Lord Jesus Christ. They stood in a place no other apostles or ministries can ever stand.
2. There are apostles today in the sense thatBarnabas and Paul were apostles.
a. In addition to calling Jesus Christ an Apostle, and the twelve apostles of the Lamb, the New Testament calls several others apostles:
1) Barnabas and Paul (Acts 14:14).
2) James the Lord’s brother (Gal 1:19).
3) Andronicus and Junia (Rom. 16:7).
4) Silvanus and Timotheus (iThess. 1:1; 2:6).
5) Apollos (iCor. 4:4-9)..
6) Two unnamed brethren (2 Cor. 8:23).*
7) Epaphroditus (Phil. 2:25).*
*The word translated “messenger” in these verses is the same Greek word translated “apostle” elsewhere.
3. Does the office of apostle exist today? Thank God, it does. Let’s go back to Ephesians 4.
EPHESIANS 4:8,11-13
8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended upon high, he led captivity
captive, and gave gifts unto men...
11
And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some,
evangelists;
and some, pastors and teachers;
12 For the perfecting of the
saints, for the work of the ministry, for the
edifying of
the body of Christ
13 Tifi we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the
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Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fuiness of Christ.
a. If God has taken any of these ministries out of the list, the Bible should have told us that He gave them for just a little while.
b. ALL of these ministry gifts were given for the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the Body of Christ. This includes apostles.
c. For how long did He give them? All of them were given 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.”
K. What marks do we look for in an apostle today?
1. Outstanding spiritual gifts.
2. Deep personal experience.
3. Power and ability to establish churches.
4. Able to provide adequate spiritual leadership.
Comments: If God did call you to be an apostle, I wouldn’t bother about it. You won’t start out there anyway. Paul didn’t start out there. Acts 13:1 reads, Wow there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon
and Lucius.
. . and Manaen . . . and Saul.” Each of these men was either a prophet, or a teacher, or a prophet and a teacher (one can stand in more than one office). So Paul was, we know from study of the Scriptures, both a prophet and a teacher. Acts 14:14 calls him an apostle. He became an apostle.
Remember this: Don’t get taken up with names and titles. If I didn’t know what God called me to, I wouldn’t bother a minute about it.
If I sensed the call on the inside of me, I would just preach and teach and then let God eventually set me in the office He has for me.
Barnabas and Paul were not set in the office of apostle to begin with, but God eventually did set them there.
And also remember this: God rewards faithfulness. He doesn’t reward offices.
A prophet won’t receive any more reward in that day than a janitor who was faithful in his ministry of helps.
Higher offices do not receive any more reward; there is just a greater responsibility.
God rewards faithfulness!
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[1]Peterson, Eugene H. The Message : The Bible in Contemporary Language, Ro 1:5-6. Colorado Springs, Colo.: NavPress, 2003.

[2]The Holy Bible : New International Version, Ps 15:4. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1996, c1984.

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