A different way to ‘do Church’
How can we find freedom?
When Christians meet together in largish numbers it is usually for the purposes of receiving something, perhaps a teaching or a worship experience led by a worship leader and his team of musicians. There is good “Old Testament” precedent for this with the Children of Israel receiving their instructions from Moses and God Himself, at the foot of Mount Sinai, or the gatherings around the Jerusalem temple at festival times. But now we have the Torah in our hearts (Jeremiah 31:33) and live as members of the Body of Christ within the Kingdom of God, we can do things a little differently. But do we?
We have been running conferences since 2012 and, at the time of writing this, we are preparing our fourteenth. This has been a moveable feast and it took us to the seventh conference to hit on a formula that defines where we are at and where we would like to be. Now all this talk of “formulae” sounds a bit Greek and you may be wondering where I’m going with this, but, trust me … it’s all going to work out for us!
Our formula, or model, is defined by a word that destroys all concepts of formulae and models. It is the word, freedom. It is a word that extricates us from the structures and controls that the Christian world has inherited from the world that surrounds it and the history that precedes it. It is a dangerous word as it can take us to dangerous places, but that danger can be lessened if there is a solid foundation to ground it in. Our Foundations conferences have the foundation of true Hebraic understandings and an honest desire to allow the Holy Spirit to take us deeper into the possibilities that open up for us in these truths.
So how does this work? The theory was provided in Hebraic Church and summarised earlier. Here’s a more considered explanation from the aforementioned book:
One thing we need to realise is that we may be created in God’s image, but He does things in very different ways from us and it’s a waste of time trying to analyse His motives for doing anything. That doesn’t make our God unfeeling or erratic, it just puts us in our place and encourages us to realise that only God sees the big picture and the far-off consequences. Which brings me rather neatly into time and space.
The Bible shows us again and again that God wants us to consider time over space. Those first Christians were a people of a tradition that stretched back for centuries. They followed the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. They are part of the nation forged by Moses in Sinai and led by David in the Land of Milk and Honey. They knew their history, they revered these men of old and especially those prophets, from Moses to Zechariah, who met with God at a given time, with messages for them all.
We should all be able to recall holy times, when God has visited our lives. This is our on-going testimony, God causes us to remember, to remember and believe, it does far more to sustain and build our faith than any number of clever arguments. We need to earnestly seek out these “God moments” and place ourselves in environments where this can freely happen. And that is our first big thought.
We now move on to space and, in particular, something that turns Greek thinking right on its head. It is the concept of form and function. It arises from a view of things from the perspective of God, rather than the Greek concept of man being at the centre of everything. For God, everything in Creation has a purpose.
The Lord works out everything to its proper end — even the wicked for a day of disaster. (Proverbs 16:4)
For in him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things have been created through him and for him. (Colossians 1:16)
For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do. (Ephesians 2:10)
Those first believers were characterised by the role they had to play, their purposes in the great scheme of things. They all had gifts, in accordance with God’s plan for each individual life.
We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. If your gift is prophesying, then prophesy in accordance with your faith; if it is serving, then serve; if it is teaching, then teach; if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully. (Romans 12:6-8)
Of course, this Scripture was directed at them, but it also applies to us now. But do we really take it on board?
This is an extract from the book, Livin’ the Life, available for £10 at https://www.sppublishing.com/livin-the-life-151-p.asp