Monday, May 11

Things I wonder about

If there really is only One Body of Christ, why do we persist in separating ourselves from one another and clinging to our denominational distinctives?

Why don't we ever hear any sermons on 1 Corinthians 12:28ff "And in the church God has appointed first of all apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then workers of miracles, also those having gifts of healing, those able to help others, those with gifts of administration, and those speaking in different kinds of tongues..."?

Related to the above question, why aren't our churches structured according to Paul's order, rather than the way we are structured today with Senior Pastors leading the list? Are pastors even mentioned in the 1 Cor. 12:28 list?

Who are the Ephesian 4:11 apostles, prophets, and evangelists amongst us? Can you name any apostles, prophets, evangelists in your church today? What happened to these folks? Have their roles been absorbed by the pastor-teachers in our midst? If so, is this what the Holy Spirit intended?

Were Paul's epistles written to individual local house churches in Corinth, Ephesus, Thessalonica, etc. or were they written to ALL of the Church in each of these cities (house churches-plural?)

Why doesn't Paul ever address his letters to the pastor or leadership of the churches like we do today when contacting churches?

Where in the Bible do we get the idea that listening to a prepared sermon is an essential part of believers gatherings?

Why do we delay baptizing new believers when every instance recorded in the Book of Acts indicates immediate baptism upon profession of faith?

How small can a church be and still be a church? Does the Bible say anything about how big is too big for a church to be?

What is a church? When does a group become a church? What is the Scriptural support for your answer?

Where in the Bible does it refer to believers as members of a local church?

Can believers be part of more than one local church at the same time? (eg. a member at FBC-Dallas, Faith Bible Church, and Misión Evangélica Sión all at the same time) Why or why not?

Does a seminary education help or hinder those seeking to multiply new church starts?

What happened to celebrating the Lord's Supper as a meal? When did we begin substituting the Lord's SUPPER (meal) for a tiny cracker and sip of grape juice?

Where do we get the idea of paid/salaried pastors and church staff when 1 Corinthians 9 is clearly referring to itinerant apostolic workers?

Along these same lines where do we get the idea that "double honor" in 1 Timothy 5:17 for elders refers to a monthly salary and benefits package?

Why do we program our gatherings into hour-long meetings rather than allowing the Head of the Church (Jesus) to lead and move among us as He desires?

Just wondering...

14 comments:

Greg Bailey said...

So good to be willing to ask the questions. How will we ever discover God's complete will if we are not will to ask? Keep asking! Blessings.

westcoastwitness.com said...

Have you been reading Pagan Christianity?

These are questions I've wrestled with myself - good stuff.

Greg referred me here from Facebook.

GuyMuse said...

Greg,Thanks for stopping by. Some of these I believe I am closer to answering, but very far from implementing!

westcoastwitness,I was asking these questions long before Pagan Christianity came along. It is an interesting book, as are most of the writings of F. Viola. Who is Greg?

Will said...

Guy -

A friend of mine sent me your blog. I'm really enjoying reading it and all of those questions are ones that I've been wrestling with over the last few years. I'm about to leave the big "machine" for a simpler, (and I believe) more Biblical approach to church.

Keep up the good work.

GuyMuse said...

Will,

Thanks for stopping by. I just emailed you privately about the matter you wrote about and are excited about the future possibilities. Check out the post just above this one for more information.

Sandi said...

I'm assuming the second commenter was referring to Greg Bailey because I came here because of something he said on Facebook as well.

And a big "Amen!" to a lot of your questions -- our inconsistencies really bother me at times.

GuyMuse said...

Sandi,

Thanks for stopping by and wrestling with these questions with me. If you have any insights to any of them, please share!

Greg Bailey said...

Hey Guy,

I am Greg Bailey. I was a church planting missionary in Benin in West Africa. I am currently in the States, but still have a heart for cross-cultural missions. I really enjoy reading your thoughts. Keep them coming. I have referred several people to your blog. Hope you don't mind. I sent you a fb friend request today. Blessings to you as you serve the King.

GuyMuse said...

Greg,

Thanks for the kind words, and for sharing with your friends. Your thoughts and comments are always welcome, as well as those of your friends. I just added you as a FB friend.

love101 said...

Guy - Praise Him.
Thank you for your service.

Saw your blog on Blogger under missionaries.
Seems you're having a blessed time serving in Ecuador.

Loved your list of questions for Mon. May 11th.
You mentioned denominations
and how they separate the body of Christ.
Titles seem to do that. Whether it's Baptist,
Lutheran, Assemblies of God.
Or conservative, liberal, Evangelical, Charismatic, Pentecostal.
Or Apostle, Prophet, Evangelist, Pastor and Teacher, Clergy, Laity.

It seems titles become idols
and pastors become masters.

Job 32:21 Let me not, I pray you,
accept any man’s person, 
neither let me give flattering titles unto man.
  22 For I know not to give flattering titles; 
in so doing my maker would soon take me away.

In Mat 23 To His disciples Jesus said...
Not to be called Rabbi or Master.

Matthew 23:8  But be not ye called Rabbi:
for one is your Master, even Christ; 
and all ye are brethren.

Rabbi - #4461 rhabbi {hrab-bee'} Rabbi,
a title used by the Jews to address their teachers .
 
Rabbi - Dictionary - an ordained teacher,
The spiritual head of a congregation.

Rabbi - Strongs - my master,
as an official title of honor: Master, Rabbi.

Matthew 23:10 Neither be ye called masters:
for one is your Master, even Christ.

Master - Dictionary -
a man who rules others or has control,
authority, or power over something;  
specifically, a man who is head
of a household or institution; 

Master - Strongs # 2519,  kathegetes -
from  strongs# 2596  + # 2233 (to lead) - 
A guide, teacher, master.

The Interlinear Bible-
Nor be called leaders,
for one is your leader the Christ. 

Phillips Modern English-
you must not let people call you leaders, 
you have only one leader, Christ.

Today’s English Version-
nor should you be called leader, 
your one and only leader is the Messiah.

The Amplified-
you must not be called masters ( leaders ) 
for you have one master ( leader ) the Christ.

The Lord removed me from the religious system that I served some years ago. 

I no longer serve two masters.

Rule of thumb. If you have to ask the questions
you already have the answers.

I pray that you would hear His voice clearly
as you search for truth.

Thought this complimentary
e-book and website
might be a benefit to you
and those you serve.

God's Words of Comfort & Healing 
The Book  ✧  The Posters  ✧  The Words

An Absolutely Free E-Book and Website.
A Totally Free Download At:
 web.me.com/love101

Lots of 8x10 wall posters
proclaiming The Word of God.
Great for decorating kids rooms
and hospital rooms
and prison cells
and...

Two Free E-Books and stuff about Jesus
collected over the years.

If you read "Love is Rising" in
God's Words of Comfort & Healing 
let me know what you think.

It's for folks dealing with a broken heart
and feeling unworthy. Yes even believers.
They're not able to love and accept themselves
as Christ loves and accepts them.

Most think that they have to be both
The Potter and the clay.

Thanks

Be blessed and be a blessing.

A. Amos Love - Love101faith@me.com

GuyMuse said...

Love101,

Thanks for stopping by and for sharing all the good tips and verses. Thanks also for the website for the free downloads. Sounds like an interesting site!

Ur Man CD said...

Thank you so much for these questions, which I know are not just here to tickle ears and get people thinking, but also to get us acting on what we know from Jesus shows us. King Arthur directed me here, so I knew it would be worth my time, but it exceeded even King Arthur's suggestion.

GuyMuse said...

Ur Man CD,

Thank you for stopping by and for the comment. It is encouraging to see that more and more people are beginning to ask these same kinds of questions. Asking questions can rock the boat, but sometimes the boat needs rocking!

John Blake said...

I've really loved reading your blog since I found you on Twitter. I read the questions over the phone to my grown PK son tonight and we had a great discussion.