• Why was this site started?

    slide06.jpgLet us begin with a very important fact. The goal of the site is not to criticize traditional or institutional churches. Yes, some of the articles make comparisons and some of the writers do strongly question traditional practices. However, those of us who have created this site did so for several reasons:

  • Our Best Articles

    bestartikle.jWe have over one hundred articles available on our site, so if you are a new visitor, you may be overwhelmed. Where should you start? Here you will find some of our best articles that we have posted since the s...

  • Incarnational Practices

    slide05.jpgYou are church before you do church. This is one of the fueling insights of the missional church movement. This isn't a new idea...but it is pretty provocative, especially when one considers its implications. If we take Jesus at his word when he says (as recorded in John 20:21) "as the Father has sent me, I am sending you," then we realize that our being sent is the basis of our "doing" church. In oth...

  • What is an Organic Church?

    slide04.jpg Organic Church. I've been using this term for around fifteen years now. Today it's become somewhat of a clay word, being molded and shaped to mean a variety of different things by a variety of different people.

    T. Austin-Sparks is the man who deserves credit for this term. Here's his definition:

Friday, 24 December 2010 19:11


Again, we are to demonstrate the Kingdom by how we honor the King. How does the church in the home function? How does a group of Royal Priests function? How do the members of the body of Christ express their common Head? How do the living stones of the temple of the Holy Spirit express their honor and worship to the God who is at home in each of them? The metaphors for the body of Christ in the New Testament range from body, through temple to family and army. The metaphor of audience is never used! The body is not made up of passive observers who pay to watch super leaders do the ministry. We are not divided into clergy and laity, gladiators and spectators. If we believe that the Holy Spirit indwells every believer then we need to see that worked out as every member participates and expresses the Spirit who lives in them.

There are around forty verses which command us to do the one another stuff like “love one another”, “wait on one another”, “bear one another’s burdens”, “speak the truth to one another” and “submit to one another in the fear of God” (for a complete study of this see Appendix #3). If we add the verses which speak of neighbors or brothers the number of relational commandments becomes more than seventy, and of course, among them is the commandment to “Love your neighbor as yourself.”

However, there are only about six verses which instruct us to honor those over us in the Lord. Which set of verses gets the most emphasis in congregational churches? Right! Those few about submission to leaders. This is error by selective emphasis. These verses are used to justify a hierarchy while the majority of the scriptures which speak of a body of holy priests under one High Priest are ignored. This is like the abuse of scripture in the American south where a select, few scriptures were twisted to justify slavery or in South Africa where they were abused to justify apartheid and where the majority scriptures about equality and brotherhood were never mentioned.

Also, almost all of the verses which speak of honoring elders are in the context of the “one another” reality. Thus all of the structural relationships outlined in Ephesians 5 are preceded by “submitting to one another in the fear of God” (Ephesians 5:21). The instruction in I Peter 5:5, “Likewise you younger people submit yourselves to your elders.” is followed in the SAME verse by “Yes, all of you be submissive to one another and be clothed with humility,”.

Yes, there are leaders. Yes, it all rises or falls upon leadership. But as Peter says in I Peter 5:3 we are not to lead “as being lords over those entrusted to us but by being examples to the flock”. Lead by being the first to suffer, the first to lay down your life, the first to forgive and the first to say “I was wrong will you forgive me”.

We lead primarily by example and by influence. A leader who demands submission has lost all moral authority. Do you want bosses and slaves or brothers and friends?

This is not a religious, slave or subservient mentality. This is not some kind of false humility. Yes, we are King’s Kids. Yes, we are the head and not the tail. Yes, we are seated with Christ in heavenly places. But we are to follow the instruction in Philippians 2:5,

“Let this mind be in you which was also in Christ Jesus , who being in the form of God did not consider it robbery to be equal with God, but made Himself of no reputation, taking the form of a bondservant and coming in the likeness of a man, He humbled Himself and became obedient to the point of death even the death of the cross.”

Let that same mind be in you! Thus if Jesus will be the real Head of His body and not just a personal Lord of its individual members, one of the main disciplines of the body is that we learn to lay aside what may be rightfully ours and wait on one another. That is one of the main messages of I Corinthians 11:27- 34. The “reason many are weak and sick among you and many sleep” is not for some personal, private, unconfessed sin. It was their attitude towards the body of Christ demonstrated in how they ate together.

We eat the bread to show that we are one body. We drink the cup to show that we share one life. We proclaim His death until He comes again. We declare the death that made us one. When we come together to eat, we are to wait for one another. What was the problem in Corinth? The Lord’s supper is a real meal. It is not a symbolic meal. The wealthy brought a lot of food and drink and ate until they were full and drank until they were drunk while the poor went hungry. The wealthy were shaming the poor. They were not “discerning the Lord’s body”. The poor are just as much a part of the Lord’s body as the rich. In shaming the poor they were dishonoring Jesus and all that He had died for.

The solution? “When you come together to eat, wait for one another.” (I Corinthians 11:33) And if you are so hungry that you cannot wait to eat? You are to have something to eat before you come so that you do not eat yourself into judgement (I Corinthians 11:34). And if there is a poor man unable to feed himself or his family? Make sure he can eat at home as well so his need is not exposed before all so that your charity preserves his dignity as a member of the body of Christ.

Waiting on one another has many implications. If I have really seen Jesus as my Head, I will honor and wait upon those who are older and more mature in Him than I am. I will recognize Christ in them. That is what is being talked about in Hebrews 13:8, “Jesus Christ the same yesterday, today and forever.” That scripture is not talking only about Jesus. Yes, that is true of Jesus but that hardly needs to be said. What is amazing is that one can so walk in the grace of God that the consistent expression of their daily life is Jesus. That scripture is talking about what we see as the outcome of someone’s life. Do we see Jesus in their lives? That is the faith we are to follow. Individuals in whom we consistently see Jesus Christ never need to demand that anyone submit to them!

If I am really walking with Jesus as my Head, as a mature member of the body of Christ, I will recognize and receive from the newest member of the body. I will see Jesus in them. And if I am secure in Jesus I will never demand that someone submit to me. If they do not see Jesus in me and if the Holy Spirit does not speak to them, why should I? How could I?

Steve and Marilyn Hill.

Steve and Marilyn are the founders and directors of Harvest Now- a ministry committed to making disciples, and multiplying simple communities of disciples with a large focus in Central Asia.

Editors Note: This is an excerpt from the Luke 10 Manual. You can find this book here on our site at this link in the resource section:


The Luke 10 Manual is an inspiring and practical training manual that looks closely at the mission given to us by Jesus.

Using Luke 10 as the background scripture passage, the book answers very practical questions about finding a man of peace, making disciples, and planting churches. The book will challenge your heart as well as give you practical tools for reaching your family, friends, and neighbors.



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