THE MAKING OF a TRUE LEADER – T. Austin Sparks

NOTE: The article below is a little long, but is loaded with powerful insights. Highly recommended.

THE MAKING OF a TRUE LEADER
-by T. Austin Sparks.

We gather from this book of Judges that those who are going to be
instrumental in the Lord´s hands in helping others out of their bad
condition must themselves have shared that bad condition… It is
necessary for a spiritual leader to have suffered in the same trials
as those being led; to have known the same depths of misery, to
have been in the same complicated circumstances, to have passed
through those very problems, and to know what it is to emerge
from a dark, dismal and wretched state. All that makes a leader,
but that also represents the cost to begin with.

The cost of leadership is…

a) …By what course, by what road, is this transition made? Always
through the grave. Before we ever come to spiritual understanding
we shall have all our own understanding pulverized, ground to
powder, so that we do notunderstand anything, and we know it. If
we are asked to explain we can give no explanation. It is not in us
to explain. All understanding has gone. God breaks down the
natural to make way for the spiritual. That transition is through
death, through the grave. Then presently we emerge, and we are
seeing things now from God´s side, we are understanding with a
faculty and capacity that we never before possessed. Somehow
or other a resurrection work has been done; that is, something has
been quickened which we never had before. We are made alive to
that of which we had no knowledge before. We have a new standard
of judgement now, a new standard of values, a new sense of
differences. It is just something done, not something which we
have created or made. It comes, as it were, to birth, and we know
it, and as we move accordingly, in obedience to it, it grows.

There is all the difference between natural understanding and
spiritual understanding, and the difference is between death and
life, and a grave is between. Oh, those dark days, when we lost
all natural understanding and there was no light. It is a terrible cost.

We are not speaking about just understanding certain events. It
may have to do with trials of a certain nature through which we
pass, but it is the general faculty to which we are referring. There
is all the difference between a natural faculty for understanding
things and a spiritual faculty for understanding the things of the
Lord, which cannot be defined, but can be declared as a fact.
That cost is the cost bound up with spiritual leadership.

b) The assurance of understanding

There was a time when some of us were most sure. Oh yes, we
knew, no one could tell us. We were the most sure people. We
could lay down the law to anybody as to what they ought to do.
The Lord has taken in hand and has ground to powder, made pulp
of all that assurance. We have lost all self-assurance. We have
come to the place where we feel that we could question everything
in ourselves, doubt everything about ourselves. We have come to
the place where, when we tell the Lord that we mean to be all for
Him there is something inside which says we meant it, but come
up against the test and we find that we are not that. Peter was a
most self-confident man; “Lord, I will follow thee even unto death.”
I am certain that if we had met Peter later on, after the cross, we
should have found him a man who would never for a moment say
a word about his own certainty or self-assurance. Yet you find the
man marked by boldness; there is nothing more sure than his
statement on the day of Pentecost; but he is a different man. He
has gone through the grave, and self-assurance has been broken
in him and replaced with the assurance of God. There is the full
assurance of understanding of the Lord. It is costly, but it is the
way of spiritual leadership, the way to spiritual values.

c) Active faith

We spoke of active faith. It comes the same way. The time
through which we pass is a time when we lose all. There are
times when we feel that the bottom has fallen out of everything.
What have we to rest upon? Faith. Where is our faith? If God is
not merciful to us it is a poor lookout for us. If this whole thing
depends upon our faith today, the Lord help us!

Yes, these are dark, strange experiences, things you may not
say to the unconverted. They are not bound up with our salvation,
our acceptance before God. It is another side, the side of our
usefulness to the Lord, the measure of our spiritual value to the
Lord for the sake of others. The cost of spiritual leadership and a
faith of this true, pure kind is borne out of a grave. It grows like a
new child; it is quiet, steady faith in God. You have been through
the depths, and you have found the Lord faithful, and you have
had to say, “It was not because of my wonderful faith in God, not
because of my saying I am able to hold on, to persist! God was
faithful to me when I had nothing of faith as far as I was concerned.”
That comes back from the grave. It is the cost of leadership.

d) Initiative

This is quite true also in the matter of initiative. Naturally there
was a time when initiative was not difficult to some of us. The
bigger the proposition the more we gloried in tackling it, and
lacked no initiative in these things. Then the Lord took us in hand
and broke all that natural force, or began to break it, and we came
steadily to the place where, so far as we were concerned, the
initiative left us: that is, the natural initiative, the taking of big
responsibility, and we became deeply conscious that we were
needing a divine energy to move in relation to the Lord´s interests.
And now to some extent we do know that energising of God in
relation to His interests. When we have no natural energy, when it
does not spring from ourselves, and if it were left with us, we
should not do it, we would not move, but just lie there, refuse,
decline, and yet we know that for the Lord´s interests there is an
energy which we have not got. We lay hold of that divine energy,
and the initiative of God is appropriated by faith, and there are
accomplishments.

There is all the difference between that natural go-ahead attitude
in the work of God, and that energising of the Holy Spirit; that
initiative which is of the flesh, and that initiative which is of the
Holy Spirit. You have to pass from the one to the other in a deep
experience, when all that is of nature is broken down, and you
come on to the ground where it is all and only of God. It is a new
creation in Christ Jesus, where all things are out from God, as
manifested in the Lord Jesus Himself.

e) Humility and dependence

The same law holds good. We may have been very independent
or self-dependent, or dependent upon others. The Lord has dealt
with all that, or will deal with it in us, and bring us to a place
where every other kind of support is removed, where all our
independence is dealt with, where our self-dependence is
destroyed, where our dependence upon others is cut away. And
we come out to a place, through trying and painful experiences,
where our dependence is upon God.

Paul is an outstanding illustration of this. There is no character
more self-confident than Saul of Tarsus. In the long-run there is no
one more dependent upon God, and confessedly so. He said:
“We despaired of life.” The sentence of death was upon him, so
that he should not trust in himself, but in God who raises the dead.
The way through is a deep, dark, and painful way, but this is all
the way to spiritual leadership. It is all that is involved in the
transition from the natural to the spiritual, and it all leads to values
for others.

Your value to others in the Lord entirely depends upon your own
measure of knowing the Lord for yourself as your very life, your
wisdom, your strength.

There may be a little weakness in what we have been saying, that
we have dealt with positives rather than negatives. Some are not
in much danger of strong, natural, go-ahead-ness. Perhaps some
are lacking altogether in any kind of strength like that, and may
be saying, “Well, I do not have to be broken down very much,
therefore I cannot come through to very much for the Lord.” Do
not say that, because your painful experience will probably be
from a negative to a positive, not from one positive to another
positive. We mean this, that some timid people will go through
an agony when God brings them out to take initiative. It is an
agony for reticent people to be made to stand on their feet and
take responsibility. They would sooner shrink into a corner, but
the Lord will not let them get away with that. In effect He says,
“You have got to be of value, you have got to count; it is no use
your hiding in a corner, I want values in you for My people.” Then
comes the agony of perhaps having to talk to someone, having to
take initiative for the spiritual help of somebody, when you would
rather be somewhere else, doing something else. It is the
transition from the natural, whatever the natural is – whether
positive or negative – to what is spiritual. It is costly, but it is the
price of leadership, and after all, it is that the Lord should have
His full measure in us, “…each several part in due measure”
(Eph. 4:16). There is a “due measure” from each several part.

f) Loneliness

The cost of leadership is always loneliness. When you are going
through a thing in the hands of God, your one sense is that no
one has ever been through this before. The Lord sees to it that
you do not escape by having someone come along who has just
been through it so that you may throw yourself on them and they
carry you. The Lord allows isolation. But, however it is, it is
always loneliness. That is bound up with leadership. It is as
though you were pioneering and no one has ever gone this way
before; you are alone. It is part of the price, but it must be. No
doubt you have longed for somebody who has been that way to
be alongside of you while you are going through, but the Lord has
not allowed it. We say in effect, “If only we had t heir experience
in this thing to appeal to!” But somehow or other the Lord cuts it
all off from us, and takes us through with Himself alone. If we
refuse to go through with Him alone, we are going to miss the Lord´s object.

g) Misunderstanding

So often accompanying the loneliness is misunderstanding, and
that is the more bitter side. It is the more positive or active side.
Think of Nehemiah. He had to take the lead, the initiative. But it
was not long before not only in his loneliness, but in
misunderstanding and misrepresentation he discovered the cost
of that leadership. All around things were being said: “He is
building this thing to make himself a name! He is going to appoint
prophets to preach about him! He is starting a new movement!”
All the things which were said were lies, false; it was
misrepresentation, misunderstanding. That is simply because a
man or woman has come to know the will of God as it applies to
them, and they are going on in that way of God.

It is strange how people will very rarely give another credit for
walking with God. Others always seem to interpret their
movements as though they had been captured and led astray.
They never give them credit for really walking with God
themselves. They blame someone else, and then blame them for
getting into the hands of someone else. It is a part of the price.

h) Selflessness

It is necessary when counting the cost of leadership to be
selfless and disinterested in the matter. Leaders may labour for
perhaps another generation, for others to enter into their labours,
and they may never see the fruit of their own labours.

Look back over the history of all who have really been used of
God in the lives of His people. Very rarely has their life borne fruit
until they have gone. They have laboured, and other men have
entered into their labours. It means that there is to be no present
glory, nothing for self, no present reward. It is a Moses leading
through the wilderness, up against the real hard, tough side of
things, and then passing out without seeing the fruit. That is the
price of leadership so often; selfless disinterestedness, being
willing to labour, to give one´s life, to suffer, to come to a place of
value for others and never see the full result of it.

That is all we shall say for the time being. It has all come out of
that expression of Deborah: “For that the leaders took the lead in
Israel”. That is the explanation of such deliverance, of a mighty
emancipation, of glorious victory, the changing of the whole face
of things from servile slavery, depression and oppression, to
ascendancy, liberty and progress…

-Original Source-

http://www.austin-sparks.net/english/books/004231.html

Posted in Uncategorized by Andrew on August 22nd, 2012 at 7:46 pm.

129 comments

129 Replies

  1. Elders are manefest by their character and their maturity in the things of God. They do not flaunt them nor do thy wave a banner ‘Look at ME!!’ They are obcure servants that set an example. They support the poor, in fact their heart bleeds for the needy. They are not given to avarice nor do they desire filthy lucre.
    They are given to teaching and guiding not controlling and demanding. They seek not a pedestal or pulpit or podium. They do not take, they give, as all the body parts are taught to do, esteeming others greater than themselves. They do not wish for a personal following but they instruct others to follow Christ.
    They deplore recognition and applause. They abhor presents and gifts. They shudder at the thought of any allegiance to them personally. They tremble at the prospect of favortism being lavished on them by the ‘body’. Double honor is theirs for teaching well and their commitment to study but they would prefer to forgo that acknowlegement.
    These are the marks of true servanthood and eldership. These are the fruits of the truly qualified leader. They look not for the lime-light but seek the Lamb-light as their reward. Nothing on this dismal earth appeals to them. Nothing can tempt them or buy them. Slander is their food and reproach is their mainstay. Rejection by religionists is their meat and their daily diet. To be accepted by the glitter and pomp and success of modern christendom is anathema to their spirit.
    Their joy is to be girded about with a simple apron and on their knees tending to the weary and the castaways, the unlovely, the forsaken, the unwashed, all those who are forgotten at the ‘church house’ door, nay but rather are disdained at the ‘church house’ door.
    They quake at the thought of being called Master, Pastor, Reverend or Apostle. They prefer to just be called brother, a tender to the needs of others.
    They know they have an everlasting bounty waiting in heaven, a reward they feel not worthy to receive, but still the only reward they desire is to hear from the lips of the only true Master, Pastor, Reverend ‘well done thou good and faithful servant’. Their daily rapture is to see the children of men set free from the curses this earth imparts to it’s captives.
    This is their very life. Others finding solace in the Saviour. Redemption in the Redeemer. To find their place and joy in Jesus.
    To be hid in Him and the stench of their own ways and inclinations and religious dreams burned away as the chaff they are.
    Are you looking for a leader? Look hard and long for it may take a while before you come upon him or her, who has discovered this secret path of service. In fact they may not even be where you would expect them for they are not welcome nor are they even given the time of day in most circles we call Christendom. They may not be comely. They may not have money, this latter being a prerequisite for acceptance in most ‘churches’ for ministry. They may not have anyone down here taking notice of their service, but heaven is watching with shere delight this lonely worker. Hell is raging because of the same.
    The ‘church’ needs them but they know not of this character, this simplicity of servanthood. Congregants may hear of these attributes preached on a weekly basis yet not take and handle them experientially. I guess words are cheap as the saying goes. Hear it taught but see it not. How decieved can we be? How far have we fallen. How cheap have we made the gospel and the followers thereof? Then they ship this fruit world wide to make others 2 fold the devils they are.
    I say to the hirelings ‘Let my people go!’ I say to the folks ‘Quit financing this farce that we have so diluted.’ I say further to the folks, ‘pray that God would raise up these true leaders that are after His heart.’ Few there will be that can fit this bill. Few there will be that will dare surrender to this point. God help us! devon and kathy

  2. OUTSTANDING! ! Anyone I’ve ever known that moves deep with God has gone through this.

  3. This remiinds me of an experience a number of years back, prior to being in full time ministry. For three years I went through trying times like I had never faced before, and never thought I might face. I tried to talk to some whom I considered close friends, only to be attacked by these as well. I experienced attacks in emotions, physical, and spiritual, with no way to turn but God. During this time, each morning for three days, I heard a message on a radio station while driving to work in the morning. At no other time could I receive this station. The message was “God can not use you greatly, unless He has allowed you to hurt deeply.” This was based on the life of Joseph. His being sold into slavery, betrayed, and becoming prominent after passing the trials. At the end of the three years I was contacted by a lady asking if I could help her and her friend. When I met them the next day, her friend became very excited, and told me God had shown her my face and asked her to continually pray for me. She had prayed for me for three years, and that very day the trials ended she was released from this intercession prayer. Our only hope is in God through Jesus Christ. He calls others to help in our time of battles.

  4. debylynne Aug 22nd 2012

    “There was a time when some of us were most sure. Oh yes, we
    knew, no one could tell us. We were the most sure people. We
    could lay down the law to anybody as to what they ought to do.
    The Lord has taken in hand and has ground to powder, made pulp of all that assurance.”

    as soon as i began to read this and it IS long and somewhat challenging to be able to truly ‘absorb’ all that is being conveyed BUT one thing truly stood out to me concerning what was said in the quote above…..

    i was put in remembrance of a truly TERRIBLE time that lasted about 4 years and by terrible – i DO mean terrible. it involved so much failure and so much pain and so much ‘loss’ – it affected our family – nearly destroyed it and left scars on all us. it ended with the death of my first husband, the near death of one of my sons and serious problems for 2 other of my sons, the discovery of ‘sexual abuse’ going on by an adopted son toward our adopted daughter who was 5, finding out that this same daughter had serious medical issues that we had been unaware of, and the abortion of my first grandchild…and that is not all, believe me.

    BUT BUT BUT – the POINT is this. i remember the VERY moment as i stood in my bedroom and i KNEW that i had been literally ‘stripped’ of everything. of everything i ‘thought’ i KNEW because i THOUGHT i KNEW so many things “about the LORD and how we were to ‘walk out this life’”- and as i stood there, truthfully just wanting to die and leave all this suffering behind, i could seemingly feel myself ‘falling’ into what seemed an abyss of darkness – BUT glory to GOD – it slowly registered that i would NOT fall – that HE WAS HOLDING ME and HE WOULD NOT LET ME GO. HE would NOT let me GO.

    at that moment, ALL i could say to anyone that i KNEW was THAT simple truth – HE LOVES ME AND HE WILL NOT LET ME GO. it is ALL about HIM and none about ME. but i KNEW this and i KNEW in that moment that i COULD live without husband, without children, without anything but i could NOT live without HIM and no one could ever take that TRUTH from me.

    of course, it totally changed the course of my life – that was over 15 years ago and God has been merciful and restored so much. but you don’t walk away from these places ‘going back’ to where you were before – you can’t. you’ve been changed and the LORD, in His goodness, allows us to ‘comfort others with the comfort wherewith WE have been comforted by God’ – the purpose is ALWAYS to ‘mold us’ but it is also for us to ‘give away’ what we have been given – ‘those treasures of darkness’, as it were – so whether you are a ‘leader’ or a ‘pastor’ or a ‘teacher’ or just a ‘believer’ fellowshiping with other needy ones – God has given you MUCH to be able to understand that it is ALL Him and NONE you and to share what you received from HIM with those that need it so badly.

  5. marc wildman Aug 22nd 2012

    Hello,

    Good article but what many of us see approaching is that God is no longer looking for ‘quote’ commanders, trendsetters, generals, chiefs, lords or masters, at least not in the same contextual relationship as many of our predecessors.

    If we look back into the Old Covenant when the Levitical Preisthood was the go-between, in the New Covenant after Jesus died and rose from the dead, something very idiosyncratic happens. Jesus said in his own words in 1 Peter 2: 9; ‘But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.’

    I think the Church has attempted to redefine something God offers every believer by default. This would be the truth that every man/woman is such a priest and if everyone is a high priest, then why leaders? I think Jesus elucidation of leadership may have been much different than what we have seen so far? I no longer call myself a ‘worship leader’ but rather a ‘praise servant? Pastor means to serve in Greek, and the entire conceptualization of Elder’s and Deacons was gesticulated to raise up all believers to be able to contribute and use their specific gifting?

    If we are honest with ourselves the problem, Israel had was demanding a King and in the Church Age men/woman wanted pastors or leaders. If you read any portion of Geroge Barna and Frank Viola’s book ‘Pagan Christianity’, they prove scriptutally, traditionally, historically and with sound evidence that the pastoral ‘one-man-band’ is not scriptural, neither is the tithe, neither is spending billions on buildings, programs, entertainment called worship, nor leadership salaries.

    I won’t argue whether or not ministers should be supported as Andrew and I had that conversation. And, I c ertainly respect his views. So, I am not going to defend that issue but rather point to something greater and that would be where we are headed as the Body Of Christ.

    Much of what I believe is documented by George Barna and Frank Viola, so I will leave it right here; ‘God is not looking for more Kings, or more leaders, and why would we want to build the same thing that hasn’t worked in the past 2000 years?

    God is looking for servants, and empty vessels. He is waiting for men to die to self, cease all striving and wait upon the Holy Spirit. We need to quit trying to reform anything, cease from taking one more step without Christ at the helm.

    I believe the mess we are in today happened when well meaning men and woman forged ahead under their own strength. When leaders build memoriums to their own self, but call it, ‘in His name’ then it’s time to tear those down. I think He may already be doing this–with earhtquakes?

    Jesus said to come to me as children and little kids are always very dependent on the parents. It’s time we gather under a ‘canopy’ of humility, trust, obediece being better than sacrifice, earnest prayer and the laying down of our own plans in exchange for His Word of truth.

    God is obviously breaking our nation and nations all around the world, our finding out that someone besides themselves is in control.

    ‘Yielding’ is the word of the new millennium and when we have done all else ‘stand’.

    Marc Wildman

  6. Desert Rose Aug 22nd 2012

    Here are some of the things that Paul experienced for being a minister of the gospel……found in 2nd Corinthians chapter
    1 1……..
    ….23 Are they ministers of Christ? (I speak as a fool) I am more; in labours more abundant, in stripes above measure, in prisons more frequent, in deaths oft.

    24 Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one.

    25 Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;

    26 In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren;

    27 In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.

    28 Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.

    29 Who is weak, and I am not weak? who is offended, and I burn not?

    30 If I must needs glory, I will glory of the things which concern mine infirmities.

    31 The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, which is blessed for evermore, knoweth that I lie not.

  7. Excellent article and the comments are so well written. Debylynne, yours brought tears to my eyes.

  8. debylynne Aug 23rd 2012

    excellent words, marc wildman. excellent.
    desert rose – the precious Word of God. amen and amen.
    linda – thank you for your kindness. it STILL brings tears to MY eyes as i remember what HE has done for me.

    and marc, i think that is one thing i was trying to ‘point out’ – my ‘story’ is NOT that of a ‘leader’ per se – but, just a ‘common believer’ and, yet, many of the things, if not all, t. austin sparks spoke of in this word could be applied to MY spiritual experience in the LORD…..i DO agree – it is not about a ‘special few’ – it IS about the entire body of Christ.
    i will say, and i mean it in NO way, judgmental or unkind, that there seems to be a tendency in those that are in what we would call ‘leadership positions’ to see themselves as a ‘separate group’ from the rest of the body?? (and probably for the ‘body’ to see them that way, as well) there have been those that i know personally that actually have issues and walls up against the ‘so-called’ body because they feel they have been done wrong by ‘church members’?? i hope i am making this clear. it is HARD to be criticized by those you are attempting to help, i understand. probably the REAL problem lies in that IF you are a sincere and genuine ‘pastor/leader’, the problems are probably because of the multitude of GOATS within the church – not the true sheep.

    all of this comes back to the ‘church’ NOT operating according to the will of the LORD. amen and amen.

    we are one body with different functions – NOT better – NOT more – NOT less – just DIFFERENT….ALL servants – called to be anyway. but, we have ‘elevated’ the ‘giftings of purpose’ in the body to a ‘higher’ position and i truly believe that is WRONG. i apologize if this is somewhat ‘off topic’ :-/

  9. Couldn’t agree more Marc. if you read the whole article from which this was taken
    http://www.austin-sparks.net/english/books/004231.html Sparks points most of this out.The entire article is WELL worth reading as is anything written by T. Austin Sparks.

  10. Andrew Aug 23rd 2012

    I have read a good deal of the book that this article was taken from – by T. Austin Sparks. He most certainly believes in “leaders” – that is what the whole thing is about!

    I have looked at this issue right through the early church and down through Revival history. The fact is, if we do not get God’s “leaders” then we do not get the ‘true church’ back. They are essential. But as Sparks says, they must go through this great ‘death’ – or “deaths” that this article speaks of. They have to go deep in the ‘grave’ with Jesus – death to ‘self’ – in order to be used of Him.

    Bless you!

    Andrew Strom.

  11. Devon ,
    Amen to your post.I have essentially said the same things but you said it better.True Elders lead by example and they don’t lord it over God’s people.It is by their fruits, not there suits,you shall know them.

    Marc Wildman,I agree with some of what Frank Viola says but sorry to say he is trying to carve out his own nitche .I am going to get some comments for what I am about to say but so be it.F.Viola attempts to build a following by promoting women to a place or position that is in opposition to what the word of God says.Frank Viola says “Woman take your high place” by this he means leadership and takes scripture and twists it to support his beliefs on the subject.One example of this scripture twisting concerns the disciples on the road to Emmaus.Frank says one of those disciples was a woman.That is adding to the word of God.My bible says
    1Ti 2:12 But I permit not a woman to teach, nor to have dominion over a man, but to be in quietness.
    For me to make such a statement I am perceived as trying to belittle women and put them under the law.No,I just want to see God’s order established .1Co 11:3 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

    As for the article by Austin Sparks.He had some great insights.I have read all his writings as I am sure many of you have.He knew God.Great article!

  12. debylynne Aug 23rd 2012

    dear brother les
    not wanting to in any way lead us ‘off’ somewhere i am going to say 2 things concerning this:

    1. i agree – he had NO right to say that one of the ‘disciples’ on the ‘road to emmeaus’ was a woman – none – if that is indeed what he said or implied – because that was in no way indicated by the scripture, as far as i can tell. so, that would give me a problem with him right off the bat.

    2. i would recommend david servants’ (from heavensfamily.org) teaching on this ‘issue of women/teaching’ – he points out some very GOOD insights into this passage of scripture that many simply ‘pass over’ and think it is EXACTLY as we ‘read it’. what i mean is – look at the scripture itself….”the head of THE woman is THE man” – we are talking MARRIED people here – for i will tell you NOT EVERY MAN in the body of Christ is my or every other woman’s ‘head’ – only her husband. the passage in 1 Timothy also, he believes, and i agree with him, when taken in context, has do with ‘married couples’ – not just women in general teaching/preaching in any way…….otherwise you do violence to other scriptures such as philip’s daughters who prophesied and to prophesy is not much different than preaching – meaning to speak forth, etc. also the scripture that speaks of a woman praying or prophesying with her head ‘uncovered’ – uhhhh, why would this be an issue unless she was ‘lawfully’ praying and prophesying publicly??

    just some things to consider – i do not personally have the ambition to ‘teach men’ so i don’t have a ‘horse in this race’ :-) but i do think there are other scriptures – just as valid – that are being overlooked by the view you have presented……

    Acts 2:17
    ‘And it shall come to pass in the last days, says God, That I will pour out of My Spirit on all flesh; Your sons and your DAUGHTERS shall prophesy, Your young men shall see visions, Your old men shall dream dreams.

  13. This topic is so rich with truth (and love). Even when we’re not sure we’ll make it, He’s there. We as Christians have to grow in faith, love and understanding to stand when everything around us is falling. Remember the prose about ‘only one set of footprints in the sand’…He is carrying us at times when we feel we can’t walk another step. That’s how I felt during 2 cancer struggles for ten years. debylynne is so right about loving our Lord Jesus above anybody and everything on this earth.

    Although at one time I was a “Do it as I say, for I live it you pagan acting ninny!” Ah, When I finally, totally felll in Love with The Lord, those kind of commands left my tongue forever. It takes years of trial, error and learning; but every step is worth it when our relationship with the Lord becomes so real and personal.

    I have five natural born children, (and one adopted son) all grown up now; 5 are Christians, and the other one just doesn’t know it yet. I wondered why it was too busy at times and lonely at other times. Seven grandchildren and 6 great-grandchildren can be a handful! Then I realized: They are busy living their own Christian adventure. And another wonderful thought came to me; It gives me so much more time talking, praying, singing and fellowshiping with my Life and Savior. How much more wonderful can it be?!

  14. debylynne Aug 23rd 2012

    amen, joan w., amen.

  15. Great comment Marc! And a well written article by T. Austin Sparks, but the Lord doesn’t make ‘leaders’ in the New Covenant, He makes servants and fishers of men! Those whom He breaks, humbles, and molds on His potters wheel so that He can work through them to do His work, will, and good pleasure upon this earth!

    The ones who God will use the most will be the ones who are willing to lay down their lives for the Lord’s sheep and to do all that He commands them for His glory! It’s not about ‘leaders’ at all, and it never was, it’s about God and the Savior of the world Jesus Christ!

    Did any of the apostles, elders, prophets etc… consider or call themselves ‘leaders’ in the first century church?

    Matthew 20:25-27

    “But Jesus called them to Himself and said, “You know that the rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and those who are great exercise authority over them. Yet it shall not be so among you; but whoever desires to become great among you, let him be your servant. And whoever desires to be first among you, let him be your slave—just as the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give His life a ransom for many.”

    The word ‘leaders’, and ‘leadership position’, that’s used so often in the ‘church’ today needs to be changed to the one used by Jesus in scripture, ‘servant’.

    And every spiritual gift that’s given to men and women in the body of Christ is to be used for the edification of all and to build up the body. The one man overseeing God’s people is not God’s order for the New Covenant church of Christ and He will restore His order in these last days.

    Ephesians 4:11-16

    “And He Himself gave some to be apostles, some prophets, some evangelists, and some pastors and teachers, for the equipping of the saints for the work of ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ, till we all come to the unity of the faith and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a perfect man, to the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; that we should no longer be children, tossed to and fro and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, in the cunning craftiness of deceitful plotting, but, speaking the truth in love, may grow up in all things into Him who is the head—Christ, from whom the whole body, joined and knit together by what every joint supplies, according to the effective working by which every part does its share, causes growth of the body for the edifying of itself in love.”

    Notice the plurality of each gift the Lord gave to His church, certainly not what we see today is it?

  16. This is a really good article from T. Austin Sparks…

    I had a vision – I suppose you would call it this – earlier on this year and in the vision I saw Jesus – I suppose it was a picture – I didn’t see His Face – but He was above the earth and we – all those who believed in Him – were all suspended above the earth and we were all looking at Him – we were all fixed on Him – all of us looking forwards towards Him – as I was observing this – or it might have been later when I was re-telling it to a sister – I saw that each Saint shone out to the sides as they were looking at the Lord with their hands up (from memory) the light that was shining out from them – the ones in front of me – was an encouragement for me to keep moving forwards nearer and nearer to Jesus – none of them (the ones infront of me) turned back to encourage me they just kept focusing forwards on Jesus…

    I saw that each one of us were leaders to the ones behind us – in the picture (or vision) there were ones behind me and ones infront of me…

    I see what T. Austin is sharing to apply to each and every one of us who knows the Lord – we are all leaders to the ones who are “coming along” behind us…

    We are each at whatever level in our walk which the Lord has brought us to at this point in time – none of us are looking back – we are all looking forward at Jesus…

    Yes, this is lonely and I am guilty of trying to alleviate that loneliness – or have been – but as we submit to the loneliness and find our joy in Him we are a blessing to each and every one of our brothers and sisters in the Lord…

    Some things no one else can understand…

    But the Lord – everything which the Lord gives us is His gift to us – even through others…

    Just because someone has blessed us in a certain context doesn’t mean that they always will – we are all works in progress…

    Thank you Andrew for sharing this article and Thank You Lord that this article has come into light – give us wisdom that we may understand what You are sharing with us and what You are preparing us for – no matter how painful that may be – give us Your Comfort, in the Mighty Name of Jesus and hold us until You have completed everything in us which You need to complete…

    Thank You Lord…

    Praise Your Holy Name…

  17. Thank you so much for sharing that, Andrew! It was just the encouragement I needed right now. God bless!

  18. Andrew Aug 23rd 2012

    That is correct – they did not use the word “leader”.

    They used the words – “Elders”, ‘Overseers’, Apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds and “Teachers”.

    Since these roles all carry “authority” in the Body – preaching, guiding and feeding the sheep, etc – aren’t they ‘leaders’?

    I find the “anti-leader” diatribes on here so UNBIBLICAL and so HARMFUL to the Body.

    Bless you all.

    Andrew Strom.

  19. atherton Aug 23rd 2012

    There is only one true leader, Yeshua. All others are teachers and messengers.

  20. To say that there are no “leaders” in the NT church is unbiblical.

    There are a few (not many) references that identify the following as leaders:
    1) apostles
    2) Jesus
    3) Judas (called Barsabbas) and Silas

    Also, Hebrews 13 refers to some unnamed leaders who brought the readers the word of God.

    However, these references to Christian “leaders” are extremely few when compared to the many references to the leaders of the Jews or the synagogues.

    I think the nature of leadership and the qualifications for leadership in the church differs greatly from the common perception of what leadership is.
    NT leadership is clearly defined by Jesus:

    Luke 22 “The kings of the Gentiles exercise lordship over them, and those in authority over them are called benefactors. 26 But not so with you. Rather, let the greatest among you become as the youngest, and the leader as one who serves. 27 For who is the greater, one who reclines at table or one who serves? Is it not the one who reclines at table? But I am among you as the one who serves.

  21. Andrew Aug 23rd 2012

    Anyone who speaks with “authority” from God is a leader. Pure and simple.

    Should they “Lord it over” the flock? -Certainly NOT!!

    Without godly leaders we will not see the New Testament church return. All those who refuse to acknowledge this are very likely to miss out, in my view.

    Bless you!

    Andrew Strom.

  22. I have no problem with Christian leaders who conform to the biblical profile – but how many come close?

  23. debylynne Aug 23rd 2012

    tyronepalmer – i thought what you shared was VERY clear and VERY true…..i don’t think we should make it an ‘issue’ of ‘names’ – BUT the truth is that ‘servant’ carries a VERY different connotation in our time than ‘leader’ :-/

    that is a problem – the very word ‘leader’ has come to mean something ‘distasteful’ to much of the body of Christ, i fear. conjures up thoughts of dominance and control and manipulation.

    i am NOT anti-leader – not if we are talking about the true servants of God fulfilling their function in the body and serving that body with their gifts.

    tim – i thought what you shared was also VERY clear and Biblically sound.

    the article is awesome but i DO believe the Biblical truths therein apply to ALL believers as we are called to be ‘servants’ to the Body of Christ in one way or another, aren’t we??

    why does it seem that there are always two categories?? ‘leaders’ and ‘followers’. THAT bothers me but i’m not sure exactly why – except there is NO division in the Body of Christ but men seem to make it so…..

    Serve God with Spiritual Gifts

    3 For I say, through the grace given to me, to everyone who is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think soberly, as God has dealt to each one a measure of faith. 4 For as we have many members in one body, but all the members do not have the same function, 5 so we, being many, are one body in Christ, and individually members of one another. 6 Having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us, let us use them: if prophecy, let us prophesy in proportion to our faith; 7 or ministry, let us use it in our ministering; he who teaches, in teaching; 8 he who exhorts, in exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

    as you see in the above passage, the emphasis is on EACH ONE doing what God has placed them in the body to do. and ALSO that it does say in the next to the last sentence, ‘he who LEADS….’

    i still think the biggest ‘conflict’ here may be in our definition of terms but i’m just an old lady so what do i know!!?? :-)

  24. debylynne Aug 23rd 2012

    i apologize – that portion of scripture came from Romans 12 and i just realized that i did not post it!!

  25. Andrew Aug 23rd 2012

    DebyLynne, I agree with much that you say.

    The real reason why so many have become “anti-leader” is that we have seen so many poor leaders in the Body in recent years.

    But the sad thing now is that many so despise leadership that it is no longer possible for them to be part of true ‘Body Life’. Even good leaders will be rejected by those who are in this place. Thus real Body Life is almost “impossible” with such people.

    I find this very sad.

    Bless you!

    Andrew

  26. ValleyAnt Aug 23rd 2012

    Andrew, thanks for sharing this. So many have been hurt by so-called leaders, and while Grace must be extended to all of us who fit that profile, leadership and God’s order must not be thrown out with horrible or miserable, false, self-centered leadership, otherwise the enemy has accomplished his intention for placing and promoting so many impostors and hirelings in the churches.

    Les, I agree that God is wise and wisely set the man to be the head of the woman. I used to believe that men and women should be equal in that errant way. God’s ways and laws and motives for the order He set are good.

    Debylynne, God set the man first to be the woman’s covering. It’s not about importance but about order. Two can’t be first. Even with God, who is a perfect Tri-Unity, there is an order according to order, not importance. If you resist what God has clearly determined and written for everyone’s good in this, you may want to consider changing your heart on the matter.

    Tyrone, God doesn’t throw out what is defiled but seeks to restore it. When words and things and people that God sees as good are defiled, we should seek to restore them and not reject them. You quoted Matthew where Jesus says there are leaders in the Kingdom. Is man’s excess to then nullify God’s Word. Was Jesus only Servant and not Leader; does He impart only part of Himself to us and not the Whole. If we are called only to serve and not lead, what are we doing marrying, having kids, seeking to teach others about Christ, and doing all the other things that befit leadership. If we defend God’s perfect Word more than we oppose man’s imperfect doctrines, then we are doing His will. ‘Leader’ is still a good word.

    Andrew Horton’s vision is fitting: instead of moving towards the Lord, too many of us seem focused on who is or isn’t worthy of the title or subtitles of ‘leader’. For those who suppose God’s Kingdom will be manifest on earth with power (‘effect’; 1Cor. 3:1-5, 4:20) without the government and order of leadership He has set up, show wisdom by acknowledging truth rather than redefining it. Parents take their rightful titles (as dad and mom) as should those God calls; and some Christians say the enemy is weak and powerless, yet the Bible refers to [them] as ‘princes, the mighty, the fierce, authorities, etc.’, while Jesus outright speaks of some of these ‘weaklings’ instead as ‘strong men’. There is no false humility in Christ but truth. Let’s call things as they are; let leaders be leaders. God deals with true, false, and fallen leaders; He doesn’t cut them all out of existence to make error void.

    Deborah said in language we can all understand about this ‘hotly debated’ truth: “When leaders lead in Israel… bless the LORD… My heart is with the rulers… Bless the LORD.” Amen. God’s heart certainly is with the leaders too (and He doesn’t approve those who reproach even ungodly leaders), so our hearts shouldn’t be contrary to them.

  27. Ibelieve Aug 23rd 2012

    ValleyAnt

    Very good comment. Divine order was established by God Himself and who are we to question the way God in His Wisdom designed things.

    Yes its about order and it is not dealing with with equality or importance……………

    The problem with so many today is that leadership roles become a career and not a calling. They see it as opportunity to make money, travel, and they love the praises of men in the market places.

    Lord Bless,
    Gary

  28. The Lord is raising up Leaders! Sons to be Exact. Sons who are like Him! That is the manifestation of the Sons of God! Creation is waiting for it, moaning and longing for it, as we are. Praise God that he has been doing this hard work in us to “Conform us into the Image of His Firstborn, the Son of Promise.” I am much encouraged that the Lord has chosen to Break into pieces all that was in us that hindered Him! God will deal with the Pharisees, and He will raise up His Servants. He always did it and He WILL Do it AGAIN! Blessings to the Broken, Mike

  29. Teshuva Aug 23rd 2012

    When one can “lead” by example they might have a following. Yeshua gave us this example.
    In other words I have seen many “leaders” that have horns like a lamb but speak as a dragon.
    One can have all the knowledge about God they want, but that does not change the heart, because it takes the spirit of God to do that. This was one of the best pieces of advice I have ever received, from a true leader.
    As for those who say women can not do this or that. I marvel at the fact that you believe in the power of God to call men and women the bride but deny His power to make a woman a son. If our focus is on the body parts of speaker instead of on the words of the speaker then we are walking in the flesh, and are over looking the fact that females are made one with Christ as are males.

  30. sharon Aug 23rd 2012

    Yes it was a long read. However the trip it made through my heart, was worth the time.
    Most can say, been there done that. What a beautiful gift grace is.

  31. I agree with you Andrew that anyone who speaks with “authority” from God is a leader. Also that true leadership is always necessary in the body of Christy. Unfortunately these type of leaders are very scarce in the church right now among present day “leadership”

    I do see leaders with authority from God being raised up from what the church would usually call the laity. Many “ordinary” Christians that have been through Gods furnace are starting to take true leadership roles in the church, much to the resentment of traditional leaders. Home churches seem to be one area where Gods Spirit is moving, at least in my experience.

    I have been to dozens of “Spirit filled” churches in my area and they are as dead, controlled and legalistic as any other denomination you will find.

  32. Kathleen in WA State Aug 23rd 2012

    One reason we see so little of the noble leadership encapsulated in the article is because, as Mr. Sparks rightly points out, it contains “no present glory”. That’s a tough pill for many of today’s (and yesterday’s) leaders to abide.

    The other item in the article I found to be significant is the “counting the cost” element. So few understand the burdens or the lonely road associated with noble men.

    May men & women of such character be raised up for a time such as this.

  33. debylynne Aug 23rd 2012

    valleyant – i don’t disagree with God’s order – at all – i believe completely in it…i think i must have been unclear in my post. i am simply saying that when you examine ALL the scriptures that pertain to ‘women’ you would find what seems to be ‘contradiction’ if you do not go further into examining these passages. there is no contradiction in the Word of God and SO – the error is always on our part if we seem to find it so.
    i simply suggested david servant’s teaching because he goes into ALL the scriptures that reference this subject in order to find the ‘whole truth’ of what the LORD GOD was meaning – not just our ‘surface interpretation’ of the seeming ‘facts’. that is all.

    i have found, over the years, that even we, the ‘enlightened ones’ of the New Covenant are guilty of simply accepting what has always been the ‘bent’ put on a certain passage without laying out the WHOLE counsel of God in a matter.

    Scripture interprets scripture……amen? amen.

    :-)

  34. All seems true to me. In the days we are living in though it probably applies to everyone who will survive as part of the remnant in the western world not just leaders.Or moreover soon all Christians in the end times globablly, be they leaders or not.

  35. On the women issue I was always perplexed by St Pauls teaching that women should not teach or have authority over men. They do in our schools etc. It is as clear as day light though in scripture, so we either submit to Gods word on this or compromise /rebell in favour of the worlds view.
    .
    Ive since noticed and experienced myself that whenever this is not followed a jezebel spirit manifests upon the woman, no matter how well intentioned she is in leadership over a man, and hthe man is spiritually made infantile by this spirit with his faith always weakened by submiting to the womans authority.

    It doesnt say woman cant prech though or lead other women but lets not replace Gods clear word on this with C20th culture as this will always lead to harm and the woman missing her true calling.

  36. P.S another thing Ive noticed is a spirit of confusion in the atmosphere in churches that have women in leadership/teaching – since the congregation know this contradicts the very scruptures she claims to be a teacher of. This atmosphere then assisits satan in bringing deception to such churches. This is therefore a major issue NOT JUST A SIDE ISSUE.

    The greatest in the kingdom doesnt even have to be a leader (thats the worlds view), its the servant, and they sometimes do their word quietly out of the public eye to be rewarded in heaven. As Jesus said many who appear first will be last in heaven and vica versa.

  37. debylynne Aug 23rd 2012

    dear ones
    it seems that the ‘women teaching’ issue has ‘taken hold’ here in the dicussion – i do not believe that i was the one who began it – just one that commented on it.

    i am NOT advocating women teaching men – i want to be clear on that. why?? because, i myself am not SURE what the scripture truly teaches and if i am not sure, i lean on the side of caution. i see scriptures that seem to indicate BOTH sides of the debate and that is why i have said ‘scripture interprets scripture’ and if there IS confusion, it is NOT the fault of God’s Word, but our view of it.

    please let me also state that i personally believe it is God’s perfect will that the ‘governmental’ positions within the church be filled by MEN. when we are talking about the ‘gifts’ though – hmmmm – that is somewhat of a different story – i think we would have to agree SCRIPTURALLY that the LORD uses both men and women……so, does that mean that ‘prophesying and preaching’ and something entirely different??

    something to ponder, perhaps, but i do not want to lead this discussion away from the original topic!! as i said, i have ‘no horse in this race’ since i am NOT trying to ‘advocate’ anything in the ‘women’ issue – merely suggesting that we don’t always truly understand what the scriptures are conveying because we just accept things at face value WITHOUT examinining them in light of other scriptures in the Word of God.

    love to ALL in Jesus’ name :-)

  38. debylynne Aug 23rd 2012

    sorry
    in the end of the third paragraph, that SHOULD say “so, does that mean that ‘prophesying and preaching’ ARE something entirely different??”

    of course, there ARE differences, i know that…but, what i’m asking is in relation to the central question here – if a woman prophesies something from the LORD and it contains ‘instruction’ does that mean she is ‘teaching’ men??

    as i stated – i believe completely that it is God’s perfect will that men hold the GOVERNMENTAL positions (for lack of a better word, perhaps??) within the church – but, are the gifts limited to ‘male/female’ guidelines??

    i.e. ‘sons and daughters shall prophesy’ or are we saying that the ‘daughters’ would only prophesy to WOMEN?? did philip’s daughters only prophesy in ‘women’s meetings’?? i have to say HONESTLY that if that were so, i believe the scripture would have conveyed such…..curiouser and curiouser :-)

    doesn’t ‘authority’ have to do with ‘church government’?? whereas the gifts are NOT in that same category?? are teaching/preaching gifts??

    PLEASE, do not think i am trying to be ‘argumentative’ because i’m trying to advocate ‘womens’ rights’ etc. i’m NOT. as i stated previously, when i was reading david servant’s teachings and he was laying out the WHOLE Word of God on this matter, in order to clear up what can seem CONFUSING, i found that my ‘ideas’ had to be rearranged somewhat when i looked at ALL the scripture that pertained to this subject. that is all.

    “study to show thyself approved, a workman needing not to be ashamed, RIGHTLY dividing the Word of Truth.”

    amen!!

  39. debylynne, You are putting words in my mouth and I might ad you are trying to teach a man.To prophecy is one thing (and there is more than one form of prophesying) ,to be a prophet is another.Miriam prophesied in the form of song. She also tried to put herself on the level of Moses(big mistake).
    Why didn’t the Lord just use philip’s daughters to prophecy to Paul instead of bringing Agabus from Judaea ?
    Give me an example of a woman in the new testament teaching a man ,other than Jezebel .Junia can’t be used because opinion on whether Junia is a man or woman is evenly split.Priscilla was with her husband Aquila and THEY….
    I am not trying to belittle women or “put them in there place”. Numerous women ministered to Jesus and Paul as well but you didn’t see any of them filling in for Paul.You didn’t see any women going out with there own calling.You did see Jewish women being stirred up and being stirred up against Paul.
    Here in America in the southern states especially you have men driving their evangelist,pastor ,prophetess ,apostle wives to various meetings to speak.This is out of order and is an abomination in God’s eyes.Paul said I would that men lift up holy hands to God.
    Women are a weaker vessel and not just physically.
    Paul said:1Ti 2:14 and Adam was not beguiled, but the woman being beguiled hath fallen into transgression:
    Paul was not talking about a husband and wife,he was talking about man and woman.The woman was deceived.
    Please don’t mention Deborah.She like Miriam prophesied in the form of song.Barack was acknowledged in Hebrews not Deborah.
    I think I am staying within the topic of this post which is leaders.
    Thank you Andrew.
    God Bless
    P.S. I have been happily married for 43 years.I love my wife and she loves me.I don’t Lord it over her nor make her do anything.When we used to go to “church” I didn’t
    make her sit on the other side. :-) By the way Sarah did call Abraham Lord.
    I didn’t write the scriptures,God did.

  40. Oswald Chambers asks us, “Do I. Think of physical things, or spiritual things,
    as being more real.”

  41. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    dear les
    i was not aware that i was ‘putting words in your mouth’ – i don’t see that even now?? could you please point out specifically how i did that?
    brother, i am NOT trying to be contentious with you. i live in the south, as well. i am an almost 59 year old woman and i am puzzled by your ‘rancor’?? i’m NOT challenging you, brother.

    look, this isn’t even the topic of discussion. i’m NOT disagreeing with the WORD OF GOD, by ANY means – i am simply saying that i’m not SURE we have clearly understood the LORD’S meaning in these scriptures.

    i have only asked questions for consideration. that is all. if you have a problem with that, brother, YOU have the problem.

    brother, i think you have some issues that have NOTHING to do with me and perhaps, you should ‘rethink’ your position in this.

    if andrew felt the way you did, then women would not be allowed to even express their views or opinions in this forum – because of the ‘danger’ of inadvertantly ‘teaching a man’.

    i think we have passed ridiculous here and i do NOT think that it pleases the LORD (please forgive me if you interpret that as ‘trying to teach you’.

    in love

  42. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    and, just for informations sake, i also am happily married to a very godly man that i am submitted to in the Lord and have NO problem with it whatsoever – BUT, he is a very loving man that ENCOURAGES me to share what the LORD shows me with him and says that it helps him greatly – i am his ‘helpmeet’ in all ways and he is not threatened by my ‘knowledge or understanding of the things of God’ whatever little bit they may be.

    i am truly truly GRATEFUL to the LORD to be in such a marriage – i am blessed.

  43. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    i apologize – i need to clarify something i said earlier as i seem to have confused my brother with what i said.

    i said that i BELIEVED that men were called by God to fill the ‘government positions’ which would INCLUDE the ‘office of the prophet’ – i thought i made it plain. i’m sorry if i didn’t.

    i was speaking of ‘spiritual gifts’ as in prophesying – but which CAN contain ‘words of instruction’, and how would this be viewed if the LORD were using a woman to prophesy??

    sigh…..i am sorry that this is ‘gone round the bend’.

  44. A question was sent in recently to the R Morning live programme conducted by a man and woman reverands, both of the Elim Church in the Spanish area which Revelation TV is broadcasting. It was about women in leadership and ministering and was this biblical. The male presenter refused to discuss the matter only to say that he supported the woman situation.
    That is why RTV is allowing Joyce Meyer on this tv station. This is seen elsewhere on other tv stations where women are leading men at conferences, gatherings, and having their own prorammes on christian tv stations.
    Comments were made on their web site about the WoF leadership and its dealings with false teaching and prophecy. Similar comments were made about the leadership of RTV allowing cults such as the Roman Catholic Church and the Seventh Day Adventists being entertained on this tv channel. There were other comments made why is RTV centering on the UK and yet nothing is being said about Spain.
    The leadership did not wish to answer these questions which believers noted. So what did the tv channel do? They deleted all of these questions raised.
    This reflects to quality of leadership in the western church of the 21st century.
    No accountibility or responsiblity. And why? So many are paid hirelings and either do as they please or instructed by within the church system to do as what they are paid to do.
    So Andrew, thanks for this important issue about leadership.
    What bretheren are becoming aware is that it is the “blind who are leading the blind” hence what is happening within the christian church.
    We need shepherds in the Body of Christ who care for the flock and not run away when the tough gets going. We need shepherds who do not fleece the flock. We need shepherds who preach the unadulterated Word of God. And we need shepherds who will stand up and be counted and are willing to lay down their lives for the Lord Jesus. Not to build empires and misuse scripture for their own personal gains.
    For what is happening about the coming world wide revival which so many are proclaiming, the reality for all to see has become the Great Deception.

  45. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    amen, colin.

  46. Christian Aug 24th 2012

    Who hasn’t noticed the explosion of churches who are now lead by husband and wife leadership teams? Does being the wife of a pastor bring an automatic calling? Where do we see anything like this in the bible?

    The whole issue of questioning if there are Leaders in the church in general, and ignoring God’s word on women in leadership specifically, makes perfect sense when we consider that the Devil is at the head of the line when it comes to rebellion against God’s authority. Satan loves to bring disorder and hates God’s order and authority. I think that another poster got it totally right when they said this is a much more serious issue than what we may first think it is.

  47. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    i do NOT think that being a pastor’s or ANY “leaders”‘ wife brings an automatic ‘calling’ of that woman to be MORE than that – i.e. a pastor’s wife. i believe the LORD calls MEN into ‘leadership’ positions, if we’re going to call them that – but, i also know that the LORD has called many women to serve Him when no man would…..selah.

    it IS about ‘order’ – without question.

    i am going to introduce one more time, the name of david servant of http://www.heavensfamily.org. a man. the overseer of a VERY godly ministry of which i believe andrew is very much aware of and supports. i was sharing from what HE – david servant – had taught – not my own ‘original’ thoughts….

    so, at least, if any on here have a problem with his teaching – you should, perhaps ‘check it out’ since it IS coming from a MAN. and then you would be in the position to more accuately REFUTE what he presents instead of relying on my own pitiful attempt to convey it.

    i TRULY think that would be wise – do not ‘judge’ a matter precipitously – i think that would be the best thing, don’t you?

    i humbly submit this to you all – receive or reject it – according to your own wishes. but PLEASE hear what i am ACTUALLY saying. i DO NOT BELIEVE THAT WOMEN SHOULD BE IN GOVERNMENTAL POSITIONS WITHIN THE CHURCH. PLEASE….my whole question here was whether the NO TEACHING OF MEN BY WOMEN was TRULY directed at ALL MEN BY ALL WOMEN or whether a SPECIFIC problem in a SPECIFIC church was being addressed (these WERE letters to ‘particular’ churches with particular issues) and whether some of the scriptures referred to would be more ACCURATELY interpreted when applied to the MARRIAGE situation. and, also, how the gifts of the Holy Spirit flowing through WOMEN would fit into this ‘women must never open their mouths in the presence of men lest they ‘inadvertantly’ teach them something’ scenario!! that is all. period.

    thank you for being so gracious and i AM truly sorry that this whole conversation has been turned into a point of ‘contention’, which we know grieves the HOLY SPIRIT.

    in love

  48. I have stayed within the perimeters of the topic which is leadership.Women when they do lead or are in a decision making situation tend to do so through their emotions.I can see you are getting emotional.Men tend to lead or make decisions based on reason or logic and tend to be less emotional.In all areas God has placed man in authority.
    Mankind ever since the garden has tried to rebel against God’s judgements and his penalties for sinning.Man is trying to break the curse imposed by God without submitting to God.One of the judgements was spoken to the woman(Eve).Gen 3:16 Unto the woman he said, I will greatly multiply thy pain and thy conception; in pain thou shalt bring forth children; and thy desire shall be to thy husband, and he shall rule over thee. Woman with the help of false teachers are rebelling against this judgement along with all the other judgements that the Lord spoke.Satan is busy trying to destroy the family unit and one of the ways is to skew God’s order of authority.Sound leadership is found in those that understand God’s order and live by it.
    The world is in total rebellion right now .Man doesn’t want to submit to God and woman doesn’t want to submit to man.Women take your high place.I am woman hear me roar.Joyce Meyer is leading thousands astray with the help of her submissive husband.
    Here is what we are to look for.Here is the coming leadership of God.
    Rev 12:5 And she was delivered of a son, a man child, who is to rule all the nations with a rod of iron: and her child was caught up unto God, and unto his throne.
    Rev 14:1 And I saw, and behold, the Lamb standing on the mount Zion, and with him a hundred and forty and four thousand, having his name, and the name of his Father, written on their foreheads.
    That name is (nature,character,authority) of God.
    These are the Manifest Sons of God that feed(teach)the woman in the wilderness.
    Christianity is about to go into the wilderness(7 years).
    Do you feel the hatred of the world against God’s people growing?The woman (church) will submit to that leadership of the Manchild in the wilderness.This Manchild is made up of men.Now if you can’t receive that then it is you that has the problem because you will miss it if you can’t see it.God has some wonder things for woman ,God Bless them but leadership in our out of the “church”is not one of them.
    God Bless

  49. Judges 4:4-5

    Amplified Bible (AMP)

    4 Now Deborah, a [a]prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, judged Israel at that time.

    5 She sat under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim, and the Israelites came up to her for judgment.

    Deborah is quoted in the article and she was without a doubt, the Judge (leader) of all Israel.The Lord was with her.

    1 Corinthians 11:3

    Amplified Bible (AMP)

    3 But I want you to know and realize that Christ is the Head of every man, the head of a woman is her husband, and the Head of Christ is God.

    1 Corinthians 11:3

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    3 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

    This verse is misused so much because people use human reasoning rather than let The Holy Spirit show them.It is very simple , there is just one head in all this.There are no layers of heads.It does NOT mean that Christ is the head of the head of man and that second head (man’s) is the head of woman.Is Christ not the head of woman? He is.Is God not the head of man? He is.One head of all us, God Himself.The head and what the head is head of( the body) are one and cannot exist apart.It is saying we are all one in Him.People put in the layers of authority because they wish to replace Christ as head of His Church and have man run things instead of The Holy Spirit. No man should try to come between his wife and The Lord.

  50. Andrew Aug 24th 2012

    Jeff – I like that you quoted Scripture on this-

    Judges 4:4-5
    Amplified Bible (AMP)

    4 Now Deborah, a [a]prophetess, the wife of Lappidoth, judged Israel at that time.
    5 She sat under the palm tree of Deborah between Ramah and Bethel in the hill country of Ephraim, and the Israelites came up to her for judgment.”

    I agree that generally, men are in ‘Government’ all through Scripture. This is God’s way.

    But the above Scripture shows us clearly that God reserves the right to call and anoint women as He wills. And we had better respect it when He does.

    This is what I always look for – the true ANOINTING of God.

    But overall I agree with most here – that ‘Government’ roles (so to speak) are male roles.

    Bless you!

    Andrew Strom.

  51. Averyl Aug 24th 2012

    While I do not despise leaders, it’s difficult to know who has that role with God’s authority, when so many think they have it.

    Many have a subtle desire to control others, which is the spirit of Jezebel & because it replaces the control of the Holy Spirit, is anti-Christ.

    I think that as the Church MATURES, there should be no arguement about what Paul said to the early Church re the role of women. The Church should be entering the place where there is neither male nor female, all submitting one to another in the fear of God.

  52. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    quoting les

    “Women when they do lead or are in a decision making situation tend to do so through their emotions.I can see you are getting emotional.Men tend to lead or make decisions based on reason or logic and tend to be less emotional.In all areas God has placed man in authority.”

    dear brother – when have i EVER in this whole discussion implied that i thought WOMEN SHOULD BE LEADERS??

    the answer – NEVER. even though, as our brother jeffM has clearly pointed out – God HAS used a woman to ‘lead’ before.

    brother, i don’t think you actually READ what i post and perhaps that is because you think i might be trying to ‘teach you’ – rest assured – i have no hope on that score.

    you made the statement above that you ‘can see that i am getting emotional’….really?? that is TRULY amazing that you have the gift of being able to DISCERN my emotions without having any true interaction with me…….hmmmm.

    having said that, i COMPLETELY agree that men, as a RULE, have a ‘better emotional makeup’ when it comes to the responsibilities of leadership. i do. you will get no argument from me whatsoever on that.

    but, since that was NEVER the issue and NEVER the question, it has very little relevance here.

    in His love (and a little bit of frustration, too lol!! ;-))

  53. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    thank you andrew – thank you thank you thank you!!!!

  54. Ibelieve Aug 24th 2012

    Steve good comment.

    Interesting if you read what Deborah said:

    8 And Barak said to her, “If you will go with me, then I will go; but if you will not go with me, I will not go!”

    9 So she said, “I will surely go with you; nevertheless there will be no glory for you in the journey you are taking, for the Lord will sell Sisera into the hand of a woman.” Then Deborah arose and went with Barak to Kedesh. 10 And Barak called Zebulun and Naphtali to Kedesh; he went up with ten thousand men under his command, and Deborah went up with him.

    She was willing to let a man receive any glory from this battle but he had no back bone so to speak.

    Most women today are vehement on this issue which shows a different spirit then Deborah.

    As for women in ministry, I am surprise we do not see any mention of them ministering with the Apostles. In fact very little is said even about the Apostles wives.

    I know it mentions them being used in prophecy but can we take these verses and try to prove they should be leading men when the Bible says they are not to usurp the authority over a man.

    Yes women teach in school but its generally to children.

    All I am saying is the Bible presents a whole different picture on this, and I don’t think we should add to the scriptures to try to prove a point and start making women pastors over God’s sheep like we see in the dead church system.

    Lord Bless,
    Gary

  55. From the above article:

    e) Humility and dependence

    The same law holds good. We may have been very independent or self-dependent, or dependent upon others. The Lord has dealt with all that, or will deal with it in us, and bring us to a place where every other kind of support is removed, where all our independence is dealt with, where our self-dependence is destroyed, where our dependence upon others is cut away. And we come out to a place, through trying and painful experiences, where our dependence is upon God…

    ..Your value to others in the Lord entirely depends upon your own measure of knowing the Lord for yourself as your very life, your wisdom, your strength.

    *******

    This to me describes a disciple of Christ Jesus, one who has agreed to being ‘disciplined’ by Him – although we may call it ‘refined’, ‘purified’, ‘chastised’ – the act of cleansing the vessel that each one of us is, that we might be of use to Him.

    My own definition of a ‘leader’ (in Christian terms) is someone who leads all others toward Christ Jesus as Lord, in the same way that the Holy Spirit leads all toward Jesus as Christ and Lord, and He (Lord Jesus) leads all toward our Heavenly Father.

    ***

    Thankyou Andrew for this article, I too have spent time with T.A-S teachings :-)

  56. Man in control at church, instead of Christ, exists because the way of having a meeting is designed to make it impossible for Christ to run things.A group that is unable to follow Christ can not be led by Him, so man takes over.The meetings include people who will not do what Jesus tells them to do, so a worldy system of government replaces His way of doing it.It’s the same with your life, if you won’t do what He says , He is not in control, you are.His leaders are there to help everyone do His Will, not run things.But it only works with people who will do what He says.

  57. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    how did this become a discussion about women as LEADERS??
    have you never noted that it was BOTH aquila (obviously a husband NOT threatened by his wife) and priscilla – BOTH, who took apollos (a MAN) aside to ‘instruct’ him more clearly in the way of the LORD. and that they are both addressed several times by paul and priscilla is actually (gasp) put FIRST in a couple of those ‘addresses’. paul actually took BOTH of them with him, as well…..hmmmmm…

    perhaps there is something here that is NOT being ‘seen clearly’.

    the biggest problem i see with the ‘attitude’ some men adopt because of these scriptures is that of ‘thinking more highly of themselves than they ought’…simply because they are male.

    personally, i have NO problem with men in the body – not as leaders – not as followers – not as anything, as long as they are true committed believers willing to ‘submit yourselves one to another’ and leave any false pride out of the picture.

    we are blessed to have a very godly pastor – he ‘leads’ well and is a very humble man. his wife helps in any way he asks her to and he is NOT offended by women sharing their convictions, beliefs, and understanding of the scriptures with ALL there – but, HE is the pastor – not his wife. :-) i’m very thankful for such a pastor.

  58. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    amen, roger – good observation. yes.

  59. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    jeffM – i think that is what we were referring to earlier on about the ‘terms’, as andrew commented about, as well. the word ‘leader’ has come to mean something ugly and almost repulsive because of the abuse of men in their ‘supposed’ roles of leadership.

    that has made people wary – we were in that kind of man dominated ‘church’ for many years and were trained to NEVER question the ‘man of God’ lest something terrible come upon us…..we are a LIVING BODY – MADE UP OF LIVING STONES – NOT an ‘organization or a business’ and you are right – that is EXACTLY what many have tried to turn the church into – a corporation with themselves as the ‘unquestioned HEAD’.

    hopefully, the LORD will be able to CHANGE the way the wounded see ‘leaders’ and IF they will be true godly leaders as this article lays out – i believe it WILL change.

  60. debylynne, my point, in a round about way ,was to say that a true leader can only lead true followers of Christ. How can you lead people who won’t do what Jesus says ?You end up becoming one of them.

    A true leader leads people in always doing His Will. Everyone doing what Jesus says is the last thing that will ever happen at most meetings.So even the best leader learns to not do His Will at church because that is what happens.

  61. Brother Amartey Aug 24th 2012

    Only true leaders, called of God, go through stuff like this ! I tell you, it’s not easy, but the Lord is faithful and will complete what He has begun, and will not share His glory with anyone !

  62. I love T Sparks’ insights. As for leaders, my approach is very simple.
    What are they building?
    If ‘being anointed to lead’ makes them more visible, driven, ambitious and attention seeking – I doubt their anointing. True anointed leaders pour their lives out in serving, building and lifting high the name of Jesus and his kingdom…not their own profile and ambitions.

    Willie Seymour was one of my all time favorite leaders. He was powerfully anointed to lead, yet wasn’t insecure when others had gifts that he didn’t flow in. He feared drawing attention to himself, not climbing up on a huge platform, glowing with spotlights and large screen images of himself: he hid, prayed and preached on his knees and focussing the people upon the King of Glory.

    When we see the anointing fall on leaders in the bible, it is often followed by the assessment and realisation of their own unworthiness. They were people of incredible authority and power in God, but also humble people, quick to fall to their knees or faces before God. Unlike many modern ‘leaders’ they knew the true source of their calling, power and ability was not themselves. When they forgot this they would begin a course of departing from God and quickly fall, or cause great hurt to the kingdom

    As with any idolatry – we must repent of ‘pastor worship,’ turn from our worldly and fleshly practices and turn to God, crying out for true leaders and deliverers.
    I don’t see this happening at present – most ministry is personality, program, publicity and ‘come and follow me and my ministry’ driven.

    It deeply disturbs me that I sense that same spirit of looking to man in some who post here, as though we just need to sort ourselves out. This is the root of our deception not the cure!
    We need to humble ourselves, fall in love with , seek and trust the one who said ‘I will build My Church.’ Otherwise we are doomed to ‘business as usual.’

  63. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    JeffM – amen, brother – i understand what you are saying and it is foundational TRUTH.
    brother Amartey – He WILL finish what He has begun – yes, He WILL.
    gary – thank you. you’ve drawn a very CLEAR delination between what SADLY is and what MUST be. i HATE the idea of ‘business as usual’ – Lord, help us.

    brother les, i just want to say to you that i am sorry if my words were in any way ‘offensive’ to you. truly. please forgive me. i do NOT want to grieve the LORD by ‘insisting’ on being ‘accurately heard and interpreted’ as my right. i am a ‘bondslave’ of the LORD and the only ‘rights’ i have are those that bring glory to Him.
    so, please, let us not have ‘division’ in this.
    love in Him
    dl

  64. gary, the lack of humility is partly a result of how people view the annointing and ministry. The Lord finally was able to undo what I learned about it in church. He told me that The Lord does not annoint people, so thinking that “I am annointed “will just fill you with pride .He annoints ministry and in Christ’s Kingdom there is only the one ministry, Christ’s ministry.So if you call it “my ministry “you are taking some credit for what the ministry does , that is just glory grabbing.

    So the annointing rests upon Jesus’ ministry and He gets all the glory because it is all His work.Of course He can use us in His ministry , but it is never our ministry, it is His.Now in the world you can have a ministry (false) and YOU can be annointed (false), but it is not apart of Christ’s Church.

  65. Here is what Paul had to say about His calling.

    1st Corinthians 15:9-11

    “For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me. Therefore, whether it was I or they, so we preach and so you believed.”

    1st Corinthians 3:5-8

    “Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed, as the Lord gave to each one? I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase. Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor.”

    2nd Corinthians 1:23-24

    “Moreover I call God as witness against my soul, that to spare you I came no more to Corinth. Not that we have dominion over your faith, but are fellow workers for your joy; for by faith you stand.”

    Paul clearly understood what it meant to be a minister of the Lord’s sheep and that’s my understanding as well.

  66. Ibelieve Aug 24th 2012

    Les wrote:
    This Manchild is made up of men.Now if you can’t receive that then it is you that has the problem because you will miss it if you can’t see it………………..

    Les
    I believe the Manchild is made up of women and men as the scriptures show nowhere that this is just men.

    As for the woman who has a place prepared for her this is the unbelieving church that goes through the first three years of tribulation.

    Even though the scriptures do not give a full view totally of what will take place in these end times, we cannot limit the Lord in thinking that a woman could not be raised up to function in some capacity in leadership. What if the men of today are like Barak and will refuse to go into battle?

    The one thing I do know is that they (women) will not be calling people names and slashing out at those who oppose them. This is so unChristlike.

    If someone does have the true calling they will exhibit the traits that we see in the article above.

    I see so many who want to take on men and come on with a know it all attitude when this subject is brought up. This is what shows me that many are not called because they are on the defense. One with the true calling will just rely on the Lord to deal with the matter and will not be running around defending self.

    As the article above explains the true nature of leadership, it is by no means exhaustive in its interpretation.

    Lord Bless,
    Gary

  67. “…he who humbles himself will be exalted”(Matt 23:12)
    Leading requires faith
    Faith in God
    This means that you expect God,but leave all else to him.
    What,where,when,how,&who are his choice not ours
    Deny your self is not optional
    Don’t follow anyone without this kind of faith
    Positive/Prosperity leaders are exalting self.
    This is the error of Balaam-Jude 11

  68. There are two views: the first is that there are Christian leaders and the second is that we should have no leaders other than Christ. They are both right, because they each relates to a different concept of leadership. The first is a concept of leadership in the sense of leading the way. The second is a concept in the sense of the submission of one’s will to the will of a leader, and this can be to none other than Christ. When it is to man, there is, by definition, an idolatry of leadership and then abuses inevitably follow. This is very common, and reasonable fear of this should not be dismissed as a “diatribe” against the idea of leadership.

    The first type of leadership is given to individuals with a maturity in the faith in order to set an example to those who are less mature, and it is conditional. Perhaps, the best example of this type of individual is Paul, and he says conditionally in 1 Corinthians 11:1,

    “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.”

    He does not say follow me, because I am an apostle; but follow my example because I am following the example of Christ. The implication is that if Paul did not follow the example of Christ, then others should not follow the example of Paul, and then he would then cease to be a leader.

    May God will raise up godly Christian leadership in the Church, that is, those individuals who lead the way in living the cross. This surely requires the process that Austin Sparks write about.

  69. I am deeply grateful that God gives us leaders. Gods leaders don’t sign up of their own selfish ambition and they are never self made. They are God called, God made and are gifts from God to the world.
    Those God called leaders are normal in every sense of the word -self centred and selfishly ambitious men with many mixed motives UNTIL. Until God does this strange and brutal work on them and in them Sparks speaks of. Then they are unselfconsciously broken, stunningly beautiful on the inside and fragrant with grace and power.
    These are Gods gifts to the church even tho most of the time the church gives them no credit yet their divine influence is weighty beyond measure.
    Many claim this place for themselves but these God made leaders would never make such a claim of themselves. Like John who simply referred to himself as “the one the Lord loves” .
    Thank God that he loves us that much as a church- that he is willing to break and crush and seemingly squander a mans life in painful preparation to give us such men.
    In our generation of selfishly ambitious self men leaders thanks be to God he still has these gems among us.

  70. Thanks Mark&Barry- Sounds right
    We are under the curse of ,Give us a king
    We got Saul
    We need David(by the way he was emotional)
    Leadership is not just bad in the church,it’s bad in all areas and all countries.
    We don’t want humble leaders, so we don’t have them.
    Saul was tall,good looking,and persuasive,just like our leaders today.
    God. Ordained Jeremiah,not man

  71. Andrew Aug 24th 2012

    Barry – excellent comment, my friend.

    Truly.

    Bless you!

    Andrew

  72. “THE SPIRIT OF THE LORD IS UPON ME, BECAUSE HE ANOINTED ME TO PREACH THE GOSPEL TO THE POOR. HE HAS SENT ME TO PROCLAIM RELEASE TO THE CAPTIVES, AND RECOVERY OF SIGHT TO THE BLIND, TO SET FREE THOSE WHO ARE OPPRESSED, TO PROCLAIM THE FAVORABLE YEAR OF THE LORD.” (Luke 4:18-19 NASB)

    But you have an anointing from the Holy One, and you all know. (1 John 2:20 NASB)

    I believe our mandate – as the Church of Jesus Christ on earth – is to fulfil what Jesus began when He was on earth (that Luke 4:18-19 mandate has not changed and will not change until we leave earth)…

    The same Anointing which – the same Holy Spirit who – was upon Jesus is upon us in all the different ways which He anoints us to complete the “good works” which He prepared beforehand that we should “walk in”…

    For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand so that we would walk in them. (Ephesians 2:20 NASB)

    Love in the Lord,

    Andrew

  73. DeWayne Aug 24th 2012

    We do need leaders, my understanding of these being the Aministrative gift’s, and these gifts then support and enable the growth of the Servant gift’s… and all of these gifts at work bringing the entire body (church) into unity and maturity.

    It is interesting that Paul with the ‘first gift’ (of leadership) as an Apostle, thought himself the least.

  74. Amen to Mark and Barry comments, and to Andrew S., and Andrew J.H. :-)

    To those who ask where are these Godly ‘leaders’ – they are few, but they among us. They are members of Christ Jesus body.

    They teach His truth, and will not compromise His truth, so they are not popular, they are lonely, and they are misunderstood – and they redirect any who try to follow them, always confessing Jesus as Christ and Lord..

    If they are ‘foundation stones’, then they are prepared (by Him) to be walked over, (and take no offence) by other ‘living stones’ who seek Christ Jesus our risen Lord.

  75. DeWayne Aug 24th 2012

    Paul apparently at (one) time had a problem with (some) women, however what is interesting afterward was Paul meeting Aquila, and in keeping with the times then mentioning Piscilla & Aquila (Acts18:18), Piscilla & Aquila (Acts 18:19), Piscilla & Aquila (Acts 18:26), asking greetings for Priscilla & Aquila… and oh yes, greetings also for Aquila & Priscilla (1 Cor 16:19).

    Gal 3:28-29 “There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” [NIV]

  76. DeWayne Aug 24th 2012

    Addendum:
    What of the woman without a husband, certainly Christ Jesus is her cover… not her hair.

    Verse does say, 1 Cor 11:3-5 “Now I want you to realize that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of the woman is man, and the head of Christ is God. Every man who prays or prophesies with his head covered dishonors his head. And every woman who prays or prophesies with her head uncovered dishonors her head — it is just as though her head were shaved.”

    This is a spiritual measage concerning order, not of Office or gift nor works of service, least of all abject authority… but of (proper) respect.

  77. ValleyAnt Aug 24th 2012

    What a blessing to see such commoness and agreement. This article and its comments are a blessing to me and are edifying. “Fragrant with Grace and power.” What a splendid and succinct and beautiful way to put it, Barry. Paul speaks of being the very Fragrance of Grace Himself (Jesus Christ) to everyone in every place… and no one is equal to the task.

    I wanted to respond to the abundance of good and edifying comments on here, but then I would be publishing my first book in doing so :) However, I felt moved (hopefully by the Lord Himself) to respond to one person: Debylynne. Debylynne, I am glad not to be the Lord, because God’s heart aches and is weighed (but not beyond God’s strength) with the injustices that are going on in our world. If you can receive it, may God give you great peace according to His Grace. Amen.

    Also, I acknowledge that there’s been a lot of suppression and repression of women by men since the Fall (including in the churches), but God knows (is watching and is ‘taking notes’/recording everything and all inequity). God is patient (and He is kind; amen), and He will make right what is wrong and restore, as Caleb did for his seven daughters, the inheritance (freedom without restriction) of all (male and female) as there is no male or female (none more important than the other) in Christ’s economy or Kingdom or ‘rule book’. If your heart is right and walks behind the Lord (Jesus), then trust God (Father) who is not a man but is 100% good without any darkness (without duplicity, favoritism, taking sides, preferential treatment). He will restore.

  78. Ibelieve Aug 24th 2012

    I agree with the many comments that we should have Leaders in the church. God has ordained this from the beginning and He is going to have leadership in the body of Christ until He returns.

    That is just a Bible fact.

    The difference between Saul and David was that Saul sought to please the people while David only wanted to please the Lord.

    Those following after God’s heart are few and far between but they are out there.

    Lord Bless,
    Gary

  79. Peter Hudson Aug 24th 2012

    In discussing LEADERSHIP and bibllical principle of being shepherds of the flock, I believe quality is lacking as so with accountability and responsibilty.
    Instead, we have an abuse and the misuse which has affected the modern western christian church. It is different when looking at the Body of Christ who follow the teachings of the Lord Jesus Christ. The Body of Christ not only follows but act and carry out His instruction. But within the christian church, man made teachings and practices have become the norm.
    It has become noticeable how ministers, which will be followed by bishops later, are woman, contrary to the Word of God. Woman preachers are seen everyone from the pulpit, conferences, and at large gatherings, doing their own thing, quoting scripture out of context to suuport their authority, using the name of Jesus, prophesing this and that as they go, and in some instances have looked at their audiences and to the cameras saying “you men out there – listen!”
    This is nothing but disobedience and the reality is is that they are mocking the Lord Jesus, but our Heavenly Father as well. Unbiblical and nothing to do with the Holy Spirit which they are saying publically that they have been “anointed” by.
    This is dangerous but has become acceptable within the christian church but has nothing to do with christianity.
    Lets go back to LEADERSHIP. How can these things happening considered to be “godly” and Holy Spireit inspired.
    There was the Reverand Mike Reid at a charismatic church in Chelmsford, UK, who was exhornourated to become a “bishop” whereby the congregation were expected to submit to his authority and position. So what happen next? His wife was promoted to pastor. Later on he decided to have an affair. This was kep hidden for some time. The rest is history.
    Then we have Kenneth Copeland who is worshipped by charismatics and Word of Faith. He does what he wants and continues what he intends to do. So does his wife leading and preaching to every Tom, Dick, and Harry. They call this LEADERSHIP.
    Is scripture inspired by God in this area? In reading His word I believe so but these folk, they remind of the Watchtower Sociiet does in keeping the hold of their leadership which has nothing to do with the Word of God but is a form of religion imposing at stranglehold on matters and its leadership.
    This has become infectious now seen within the christian church.
    So I agree with Andrew and in anothing comment.
    This is the GREAT DECEPTION for the Last Days. This can be seen in government regarding leadership. It is most apparent in the christian church.
    We need shepherds, not paid hirelings, and what is being predicted for the Anglican Church…women bishops!

  80. John S Aug 24th 2012

    Thanks Andrew for new contribution you have made for the web site. Also to be able to view the comments made.
    From my opinion and circumstances involved with leadership in the church, this has gone from bad to worse when those in such positions should looking after and dealing congregations.
    Women have taken the role of leadership when biblical teaching instructs “no.”
    Having read the comments made concerning women in church leadership, the situation in so many churches, and who are at the helm of christian organisations, females are at the forefront and this is contrary to scripture.
    Overall, the quality of leadership is going down hill fast with no brakes being applied. This has become and is accepted as normal for this century.
    This is seen on christian tv, at christian gatherings and celebrations, etc, etc.
    It reveals who are following the teachings of Christ or playing about with religion, especially the name of Jesus and using christianity as their tool but resulting in deception.
    I watched Rory and Wendy Alec the owners of the God Channel. The screen was split into two parts with him and his some of the supporters on the tallest peak in Scotland on the left hand side of the screen while his wife was on the right side.
    They were all making (false) prophetic utterances over Scotland and what God was going to do, and during this, they were speaking gibberish (in tongues) with no interpretation. All were claiming to have received the “anointing” and what they said on live tv was anointed by God.
    They failed to mention that Scotland was under judgement from Almighty God because the country acceptance of same sex marriages and homosexuality. They kept on saying that the christian church in Scotland would have revival and it would spread elsewhere throughtout the country and the UK.
    Hmmm…have we not heard this before naming one so called prophetess called Jean Darnell who said practically the same thing for Scotland years ago. But NOTHING ever happened.
    This is called leadership.
    Utter rubbish whereby that missing word is not mentioned or spoken about..REPENTANCE.
    As believers have already made their comments about, the christian church needs GODLY LEADERSHIP.
    I can only see this in His Bride, the Body of Christ – not in the harlot church which is emerging with its false teachings and prophecies.
    Blessings to all!

  81. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    thank you, valleyant, for your kind and comforting words – they are appreciated.

  82. doug p. Aug 24th 2012
  83. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    johnS – reading your post i realized that virtually ALL of these ‘so-called’ leaders – male AND female that are clearly NOT true ‘leaders’ in God are from the ‘polluted charismatic river’ – those of us who have been part of this river in the past were truly deceived but THANK GOD – many have woken up and others are waking up.
    i honestly cannot think of ONE ‘woman’ in this bunch that i would cross the street to listen to – no, i would run the other way – but, in all honestly, nor would i listen to ONE man in this ‘group’ either.

    deception is an ‘equal opportunity employer’, i’m afraid.

  84. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    also from your post

    REPENTANCE – what a BEAUTIFUL word…amen? amen.

    i find myself praying many times for God to move as He did in the Hebrides – for men to fall on their faces in fields and wherever they may be in repentance, crying out for salvation….for the Spirit of God to move on the people here in our small town and surrounding area – where people have seemingly ‘heard it all’ when it comes to the preaching of the gospel but lives remain unchanged.

    i know the LORD will move in whatever way is right in HIS eyes – but, oh, how i LONG for true repentance to hit the hearts of men and women – to see the POWER of the GOSPEL truly truly CHANGE THEM.

    and for LEADERS who will preach REPENTANCE – you speak truth, for there don’t seem to be many that do……

  85. Gary Gorham Aug 24th 2012

    Perhaps we are doing it wrong? A manager assembles people and material to achieve a goal. He has a plan and goes about bringing the people and materials that are needed to execute the plan. Once the objective is achieved the manager goes on to another project. He or she works themselves out of a job so that the people become able to sustain the the purpose of the goal themselves. If the five fold or four fold ministry what ever your doctrine allows, were really a gift from God to the church, then once that message is received or imparted sufficiently to the satisfaction of the sender it would be time to move on. From time to time revisits may be needed to tweak the operation but surely the sender has an abundance of gifts to take care of that. The responsibility is to the sender not the people who are the recipients of the gifts. They would not then glorify the gift and idolize it the the determent of their relationship with the sender. Our problem today is not leadership it is headship, we have abandoned our head and our purpose to become Him in the earth, instead we have chosen our own ways and in those days there was no king in Israel and every man did what was right in his own eyes. You want to hear repentance then repent of your idols for the kingdom is at hand and we have been found sorely lacking. For it is written As He is so are you in the earth.

  86. I just want to say that there are those out there who know they have been called to leadership in the Body of Christ, and that this has been partly but not fully recognized by others. They also have gone through something like the process that Austin Sparks writes about, although they may not fully recognize it. Also, everyone’s experience is different, and Austin Sparks writes from a good perspective but his own perspective. This is the time when new leaders should begin to emerge by walking in the first steps that God your Father has placed before you. Do not be held back by the fear of failure, by the fear that you will make the same mistakes of your predecessors. This very fear of presumption in you has been there by the One who has called you: it is to qualify you, not to hold you back. The time is short, and God-ordained leadership needs to rise up and seize the day.

    PS. A message to the Davids: Do not try to replace Saul. God will make a space for you.

  87. debylynne Aug 24th 2012

    brother gary
    i had written a post and then did not post it….i was thinking about how we put ‘men’ in a place that is truly the LORDS’ and all the damage that comes out of it……how it is truly ALL about the LORDSHIP of Jesus Christ and how, we, as people, seem to be continually placing ‘men’ in His place…..

    i’m not saying we should NOT have ‘leaders’, because of many things – including the weakness of men and a tendency to ‘go astray’ BUT, if a man were such a leader as is described in this article – if a man had been through such a ‘training’ in the LORD – would he not realize when it was time to step back?? to NOT make people ‘dependent’ on HIM but always on the LORD JESUS??

    let’s face it – there are men in positions of leadership that do NOT want ‘their’ people to get ‘past’ needing them or else they would lose their ‘kingdom’ – their ‘place’ – their ‘position’ but we all know, those are NOT true leaders in God.

    while honestly, i’m not sure i can adequately grasp all the ramifications of what you are saying, i hear something that rings true. the ‘leader/servant’s’ purpose is to ‘help us grow up and be conformed to HIS image’ – not just ‘maintain’ a ‘flock’ and ‘keep them in order’………….hmmmm

  88. There 2 kinds of leaders.
    First the one that gives you a fish(you will be dependent on him.
    Second the one who will teach you to fish,you can do without him.
    Who has more love for the sheep.
    Jer6:13&14&jer8:10&11 take of leaders you don’t want to follow.
    They are given to covetousness(God’s leaders don’t need to ask for money.
    George Muller never asked for money.
    Also, they don’t know how to heal the wound of the sheep.
    The true Shepard, pick’s up the sheep, pulls out the burr’s and puts oil
    In the wound.
    If your leader is not performing this way-RUN

  89. Gary Gorham Aug 25th 2012

    Debylynne, Our problem began with Adam when he chose eve over God. At that time his spirit died and the soul of man rose out of its place to fill the vacuum and self was created, a cooperation between woman’s deception and man’s rebellion thus sin, self indulgent nature, entered the scene. This is the nature or paradigm that has governed man for 6 thousand years. Men cry out to God wanting Him to kill self, but alas if He did He would destroy His creation. Rather Yashua says deny self and submit to the will of God as He did and follow Him. Much of the difficulty we experience is our insistence of going to the tree of death to obtain life. It is not wrong to educate mind anymore that it is wrong to discipline the body. However both of these are to be in subjection to the spirit. We declare we have the mind of Christ when really we use the tree of knowledge of good and evil to explain the things of God. The very scriptures men proclaim plainly say that the carnal mind is not capable of understanding the things of God. There is One who inspired all the writers and it is Him of whom Yashua speaks when He says the Spirit of truth shall disclose things of Me and will lead you into all truth. It is written do not be conformed to this world but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind. As the butterfly yhe way to metamorphosis is the rest. It is written a law will go forth from Me and I will cause My judgement to rest to be a light to the peoples. Praying in the Spirit and humbling yourself and ceasing from all your labors will achieve this. With stammering lips and another tongue I will speak to this people herein is your rest here is your repose, but you would not. Because they did not love the Truth I will give them a deception.

  90. debylynne Aug 25th 2012

    amen rick – that is why i am so thankful for the ‘pastor’ we have – his heart always seems to be to turn people to JESUS – not him – and he does NOT ‘ask for money’ – i’ve never been in that position and i’m not passing ‘judgment’ on anyone in this – we all KNOW about the UNtrue ‘shepherds’ that just use the flock – but there ARE those that are TRUE and they do NOT walk in that.

    THANK GOD – MAY HE RAISE UP MANY MORE

  91. Desert Rose Aug 25th 2012

    Here is my personal view on women in leadership…. ……….The bible always gives us the picture of the church as a family, You have the father, mother and children, this is how it should also be in the spiritual sense, If a women is the pastor of a church and is not married then that church is really with out a father and is not a healthy church. If the women is a pastor and is married than the roles are switched and that church will not be a healthy church. Now some women are gifted to teach and evangelize… Marilyn Hicky teaches around the world and there is nothing wrong with that. her husband Wally is the pastor of thier church in Denver. Joyce Meyer is not a pastor but is also a teacher and evangelist. and there is nothing wrong with her ministry. A pastor position is the role of being over men but not the teaching or the evangelist, if that was the case Jesus would of never ministered to the woman of Samaria because she went and evangelized the whole city..Kathryn Kaulman was not a pastor but also a teacher and evangelist and the list goes on. As you can see i am a women and do not agree with women as pastors but I do believe in women teachers and evangelists……

  92. debylynne Aug 25th 2012

    i understand what you are saying, desert rose. i know that kathryn kuhlman (whose ministry WAS truly of God) DID say that GOD had called a man, but when he would not come, God called her…….whether this is how it actually was – only the LORD knows, but that was her belief.

    i DO have some issues with joyce meyer – NOT actually because she is a woman ‘in ministry’ because i know that her husband is ‘viewed’ as the actual ‘head’ of it, as it were. be that as it may – i have more issue with her because of joel osteen, etc. and her NOT taking a stand concerning the ‘false feel-good gospel’ coming out of houston and other places, as well.

    i HAVE to agree with you in that the LORD uses ‘whosoever will’ if i may take some liberty with that ‘phrase’……i do NOT think the LORD is nearly as ‘concerned’ as men are about the whole male/female situation – there is simply so much more of the HEART matter here rather than the ‘letter of the law’.

    having said that….the Word of God DOES say this in Isaiah
    Isaiah 3:12
    As for My people, children are their oppressors, And women rule over them. O My people! Those who lead you cause you to err, And destroy the way of your paths.”

    seems ‘cut and dried’ doesn’t it?? it is a ‘shame’ according to this for children to ‘oppress’ and women to ‘rule’ and yet………the LORD HIMSELF has used women in just such places of ‘seeming authority’ even if Deborah were the ONLY one we could easily point to – STILL – she is the ‘one’ that MAKES us realize that Gods’ ways are HIS and we do NOT understand them all – no matter how many verses we quote and THINK we understand.

    do you think that perhaps, in the above verse, the LORD were pointing out the FAILING of the men of israel – that there were NONE that wanted to ‘take responsibility’ and that it was the men that were at fault rather than just pointing at the women and laying the blame at their door?? women that obviously were NOT the right ones to lead, because the people of israel were being led astray – if those that GOD calls will not ‘step up’, someone else always will.

    the pharisees KNEW the law – the ‘letter of the law’ and ADDED so much to it…..but they did NOT understand the HEART OF GOD and when the LORD JESUS came and ‘seemingly’ BROKE the law – they wanted to destroy Him – this VERY God that they did NOT recognize – the One whose ‘law’ they were so ‘intent’ on keeping……

    this is really the burden of my heart in all of this – we look at a verse and we THINK we ‘understand’ EXACTLY what it means and so we ‘build our theology’ around it and beat others down with it when they do not ‘comply’ and yet…if we would but EXAMINE all the scriptures pertaining to this thing, i think we might see MORE than we do at ‘first glance’….i just think we might.

    my struggle is not with a ‘woman leader’ although i honestly have to say that i do NOT desire to see women in ‘leadership’ positions. i think you are RIGHT, desert rose, about the ‘father’ position. my struggle is that many people do not bother to examine the WORD OF GOD from a place of humility – of wanting the LORD to truly show them if they are in error – instead they take THEIR stand and look for scriptures to ‘support’ it.

    everything that i have tried to say on here has been said from a place of seeking to understand – of seeking to come to a place where ALL the scriptures fit together and give a CLEAR picture of the ‘heart of GOD’ in the matter…..sometimes the LORD doesn’t want us to just KNOW what the words ‘say’ – but to KNOW His heart and WHY He said them – what was the reason behind the Word……not always, i know some things we just have to ‘accept’ and walk in – but, don’t you think that the LORD desires us to pursue Him? to pursue understanding about WHO HE IS and the reasons HE does many things……He has never been looking for ‘robots’ to just ‘do His bidding’ but for FRIENDS – for those that would seek to UNDERSTAND His heart….at least that’s the way i see it.

    i set my heart several years ago – to not just take a scripture or two and build ANYTHING on it, but to examine the Word of God in depth on any subject and find what i believe is called by the Jewish people ‘a faithful saying’ – meaning it is a BALANCED Word – taking ALL God’s Word into consideration on that subject before ‘drawing a conslusion’ – that has been my heart throughout this whole discussion – looking at the whole picture, the whole counsel – that is all. if we do not, we have to ‘set aside’ some scriptures to ‘promote’ others and i do NOT for one minute believe that is God’s will and i do NOT believe there is ANY ERROR in the WORD OF GOD.

    i humbly submit this – my thoughts – my heart – not because i think i KNOW but because i WANT to know HIS ‘perfect’ will and wisdom in this matter.

  93. debylynne Aug 25th 2012

    and, yes, desert rose, are we not ALL called to be ‘witnesses’ – to ‘evangelize’ as it were, even if we don’t carry the title?? i believe we are, no matter WHO we are.

  94. Tiffany Aug 25th 2012

    EXCELLENT and of TRUTH is this article! Bless you Andrew for sharing!!

  95. Tiffany Aug 25th 2012

    @Barry, what you wrote were GREAT words of wisdom, those words need to be shared with every professing believer and ALL who are in leadership roles within the body of Christ. EXCELLENT, EXCELLENT words Barry! Thank you!!

  96. Desert Rose Aug 25th 2012

    @ Debylynne.. yes I remember reading about how Kathryn said that she was not the first one that God had called to that ministry and I dont think it is because she was a women I believe it is because the call to that ministry and the ministry that the apostles were apart of is a very difficult task/job that Jesus would not want to put on any women. There are women who are very tough who could do that type of ministry and Kathryn was one of them. As gentle and beautiful as Kathryn was she was also a very,very hard worker, she was very diciplined and that she died a thousand deaths. simply put ministry is not easy. we read all that the apostles went through and not to mention how they died.. I know I could not do that type of ministry that Kathryn did but that does not mean that God can not use me in some ways…
    As for Joyce Meyer she has a very powerful testimony of her dad abusing her physically and she has had many ~issues~!! and God has helped her and now she helps others, (we live in a world with alot of hurting people) My husband and myself and thousands have been blessed by Joyces ministry.. God has made us all different. her ministry is mostly to the hurting and that God can help you through your issues and she has beautifully done that and helped others I really admire Joyce and am grateful how God is using her…..

  97. Ibelieve,It is interesting what you have to say about the manchild .That fact that their are men in the manchild company there is no doubt and I don’t think one could disagree.Unless a person doesn’t believe in the manchild company ministry to begin with,then you would have a whole other subject.All the types in the scripture speaking of the manchild ,are men.Since by the mouth of two or three witnesses let a matter(doctrine,teaching) be establish,I would like it if you would share the scriptures with me that says women are in the manchild .The very title should tell us something.This same reasoning can be applied to women in the position of leadership.Not only do we have two scriptures showing men in the position of leadership we have countless scriptures to support it.Show me two or three scriptures in the new testament that places women in position of leadership and I am speaking of five -fold ministry as it is known by(elders).
    As I said before I am not belittling women ,God has wonder giftings for women,they can teach children and all that goes with it.They can teach other women.They can be a help meet.Great intercessors .Actually it is the devil and the world that belittles women that want to be a mother or wife instead of pursuing a career .
    I was addressing Marc concerning being careful what you receive from Frank Viola because he is causing trouble in marriages by his unbiblical teachings concerning women.
    He doesn’t teach as Peter taught 1Pe 3:1 In like manner, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, even if any obey not the word, they may without the word be gained by the behavior of their wives;
    1Pe 3:2 beholding your chaste behavior coupled with fear.
    Concerning Deborah,she did not want to go with Barak he insisted and was willing to forgo the glory of victory.Because his faith grew in the process leading up to the battle and the going into the battle he was mentioned as one of the men of faith in Hebrews.
    Today women jump at the chance to lead.They have Joyce Meyer as their example.These type of women if they can’t lead from the platform they will lead behind the scene.
    Deborah was humble and meek and she was a mother in Israel not Thee Mother of Israel.
    As for deliverers ,people with a true calling and anointing ,they will come when the people cry out to God as they did over and over in the book of judges.
    We mustn’t be fooled by what we see today and if we are looking for someone within the apostate church system to emerge as a leader and with the anointing then you are looking in the wrong direction.Look outside the box,think outside the box.
    Mat 24:5 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am the Christ(anointed); and shall lead many astray.
    When we look on tv or behind the pulpit we can see this scripture being fulfilled.
    We hear this too from people like Kenneth Copeland,I AM.
    Mar 13:6 Many shall come in my name, saying, I am he; and shall lead many astray.
    the word he in this verse was added it is in italicized .
    Kenneth Copeland says I AM all the time .
    God Bless

  98. debylynne Aug 25th 2012

    desert rose
    i understand what you are saying about joyce meyer – in the past i found much in what she was sharing – i knew about her situation with her father and the many that she seemed to be able to help – as i said, my only real problem with joyce is that i saw her with joel osteen and she did NOT ‘call him out’ on his refusing to stand up for the gospel of JESUS CHRIST. i do NOT understand that – i really don’t. joel osteen is a ‘motivational speaker’ or ‘life coach’ i think is the term but he is NOT a minister of the gospel and he is NOT telling those thousands of people the truth. i was very disappointed that joyce just chatted and acted like they were ‘best buddies’ – it made me question everything about her ministry. i am NOT against her, but i cannot trust her because i cannot help but feel that she took the ‘easy’ road in this siutation.

    if andrew and others like him operated that way and refused to address the HARD issues in ministries, where would we be??

    the LORD bless you and may He lead us ALL into truth.

    love
    dl

    dear les
    i do not for a moment believe that kathryn kuhlman ‘speaks’ to benny hinn. as to whether her ministry was for the LORD or herself – only HE knows that and we will have to wait and see. as for benny hinn – no, i have no use for ANY of that nor any of the WOF camp. period. don’t trust them – consider them GREAT deceivers and they GREATLY misrepresent the Word of God.
    i don’t think we can ‘fairly’ label joyce meyer as a feminine ‘kenneth copeland’ – there are some major differences i think between them BUT, as i said, i do not trust her because she did not stand up to the ‘misleading gospel’ that joel osteen preaches and i just can’t find any excuse for that.

    kenneth copeland and that whole ‘bunch’ are almost UNbelievably arrogant – it is mind boggling what they can say about themselves….i know others may disagree but i have NO USE for their ‘gospel’ whatsoever.

    the LORD bless ya’ll
    dl

  99. Ibelieve Aug 25th 2012

    Les,

    Would like to share on this, but we have been asked to stay on “subject” dozens of time in the past.

    I respect Brother Andrews wishes on this.

    Lord Bless,
    Gary

  100. Andrew Aug 25th 2012

    Thanks, Gary.

    Yes – best not to get too far off topic.

    Thanks to all.

    -Andrew

  101. Val sm Aug 25th 2012

    I agree that we need leaders in the body, something that appears to be clear in the NT. I agree with Andrew on what he says about God anointing who He will, and that we must respect that. There is a difference between the word/ ministering of a woman who is under male authority, and one who sees herself the ” leader” in a situation….kind of an “off” spirit…..a subjective comment I guess but I have seen it myself. I long to see men truly rise up and lea d, as they are desperately needed. In my understanding, prophesying is simply delivering a message from God….that can certainly come in many forms…..there is in that context neither male nor female….it was women who delivered the first news of the resurrection….I’m sure glad they spoke up! May God raise up His kind of leaders in this hour! I am married to a man who is a leader in the body of Christ, and in my experience I end up going through those trials hand in hand with him….we work together, but he is the one with the final word, and I would not have it any other way. Men have the natural make up to lead, and I am thankful for that. I wouldn’t want the responsibility!

  102. Foolhardy Fred Aug 25th 2012

    I am very concerned about the concept of “the anointing.”

    A former Pastor of mine stated,
    ” I do not care what the Bible says I only care about my anointing.”

    He had been boasting about some Latter Rain imparted anointing he was supposed to have received and was allowing all manner of false teaching and practices into the church

    Clearly there is something very wrong with anything that leads to an attitude such as this.

  103. debonnaire Aug 25th 2012

    i am less concerned by the lack of leaders , than by the lack of hearing to what the Holy Spirit says.
    Often , people want leaders but they don’t want to (or can’t) hear with their own ears.
    i have been in places where there are leaders called by God , and their anointing and authority is often not what people expect to be.
    Jesus says : Take up my yoke upon you, and learn of me, because I am meek, and humble of heart”.
    Honestly , do people want leaders like this , or leaders like in the world ?

  104. Ibelieve Aug 25th 2012

    The article reads; the making of a “True Leader”.

    I don’t understand why some of the comments are stating certain people are good leaders and the fact is they are making millions off the Gospel.

    This brings the question, Is it possible someone in the ministry can become rich if they are a good orator? Is this what the gospel is about?

    I speak of the ministry of Joyce Meyers.

    She lives in a multi million dollar home, her husband drives a 100,000.00 car. Her children drive expensive cars as well. Just google her house to see the lavish lifestyle she is living from the rewards of her followers.

    Is this the making of a true leader?

    I cannot imagine Paul or any of the Apostles making millions off the gospel, driving around in gold laden chariots to preach the abundant life message.

    There is something terribly wrong when we see people heralding these hollywood christians as being great leaders.

    This does not mean a minister needs to live in a cave to prove he is serving the Lord.

    But gathering wealth and telling others to pursue it just seems like the wrong message here friends.

    Lord Bless,
    Gary

  105. Ibelieve Aug 25th 2012
  106. zeal4thyhouse Aug 25th 2012

    Ibelieve,

    I totally agree with what you said. Some people on here are deceived.
    And then they want to teach others, but they cannot recognise the wolves in sheep clothing.

    Bless you all

  107. Thank you Ibelieve for your self-restraint .
    Every preacher and televangelist on tv here in America is just as dangerous as Todd Bentley and KCP in their own way.Destructive demon doctrine is what they teach under the guise of God’s anointed leaders
    I would like say more but will stay within topic.
    I will say I know Benny Hinn isn’t talking to Kathryn or any dead person ,he is talking to demons just as Todd is.

    Thank You , God Bless

  108. Foolhardy Fred Aug 26th 2012

    I have been warned that I “will be hurt if I dare to question the “anointed ones.” This seems to me to be a doctrine of demons introduced into the church by seducing spirits to lure the undiscerning and the uncaring or the just plain scripturally ignorant and spiritually naive away from the narrow path for salvation provided by God. The following provides an excellent summation of what is going on and how the committed Bible believing christian should respond.

    The devil is not fighting religion. He’s too smart for that. He is producing a counterfeit Christianity, so much like the real one that good Christians are afraid to speak out against it. We are plainly told in the Scriptures that in the last days men will not endure sound doctrine and will depart from the faith and heap to themselves teachers to tickle their ears. We live in an epidemic of this itch, and popular preachers have developed “ear-tickling” into a fine art.

    –Vance Havner, Playing Marbles With Diamonds

    For such are false apostles, deceitful workers, transforming themselves into the apostles of Christ. And no marvel; for Satan himself is transformed into an angel of light.

    –(2 Cor 11:13-14)

  109. Andrew Aug 26th 2012

    Fred – I agree that we need to question when we see things that are unbiblical – and it is important to challenge the “false”.

    But I also believe that care is required of those who challenge “authorities”. We need to be accurate, clear and not “rebellious” in attitude. I see a lot of inaccurate “smearing” of all kinds of ministries on the Net, done in completely the wrong spirit. I do not believe this helps.

    Bless you!

    Andrew Strom.

  110. Foolhardy Fred Aug 26th 2012

    I agree entirely with that Andrew. Tragically people have been terrorised by false teaching to the point of meekly surrendering their salvation in order to follow “anointed ones” without question.

    What I am referring to is based on personal observation and experience or authenticated eye witness accounts of false teaching and occultic New Age practices.

    The “anointed one” that I have had the most recent experience with has preached that the worst sin imaginable is to dare to question the anointed ones. He does this whilst introducing ALL of the popular heresies and occultic and New age practices of which I am aware are in vogue within the apostate church today.

    I have not witnessed any unnecessary smearing but am aware that this man has falsely accused me, slander might perhaps be appropriate, to people whom I have tried to help out of the web he has them trapped in.

  111. Foolhardy Fred Aug 26th 2012

    Andrew,

    could you please provide some examples of the

    “inaccurate “smearing” of all kinds of ministries on the Net, done in completely the wrong spirit”

    that you refer to so that we may understand what it is that you are referring to as I have seen none of this.

  112. Peter Hudson Aug 26th 2012

    Someone sent me a link to God TV and what the owners said about Scotland.
    Well, I spotted at the top left hand with the screen split into two between Wendy Alec on the right hand side and her husband and followers on the left, was in a square about sending gifts and donations to God TV and pledging money to a UK telephone number which was their contact number for the UK.
    What they said, prophesied, and spoke in tongues, was man made and bore no witness to the Holy Spirit which Alec and Rory said that they had the anointing and had been anointed by God to say so.
    I watched Joyce Meyer later on God TV. She too was supposed to had been anointed by God to say the things she said to the very large gathering of her followers.
    WHAT NONSENSE ! They seem to be God’s PAs’ in what they do, proclaim, and prophesy.
    The Body of Christ needs to be warned about them. For those within the Christian Church are not taking heed.
    Andrew, this is not smearing and inaccurate. They do what they do and this is nothing but DECEPTION. This kind of leadership is the BLIND LEADING THE BLIND!!!!!!!

  113. Andrew, Thank you for passing on this excellent article! Thank God for the leaders, and for the followers as they follow Christ! Have you heard the lyrics to Casting Crown’s song “City on the Hill”…that song has been on my heart all week. Bless you!

  114. watchful Aug 26th 2012

    I think there is much to learn from realizing that David already was a leader of men and was fighting the Lord’s battles long before being crowned. Spiritual authority is not like earthly authority – spiritual authority doesn’t lord it over the people of God like the pagans do, but allows them freedom to follow or not to follow at any time and learn from their own mistakes, etc. Spiritual authority doesn’t need the approbation of man to make it ‘official’ – the Spirit of God is His own authority and blows where He wills. Sheep recognize their Shepherd when He speaks or moves through anyone and they will love and respect Him, and spiritual leaders will recognize and accept that goats might be a bit problematic until and unless they leave their goat-like carnal ways behind and grow to become sheep, and will bear with them accordingly.

  115. Before you decide to warn or not , you might want to study Ezekiel Chapter 3 and
    Also Chapter 33.
    I believe it says that if you know to warn and do not-there blood is on you.
    Is there an easy way to interpret this word.
    This is not just speaking of leaders,however they will be judged by-to whom much is given much is expected.
    Let’s face it ,the reason we don’t warn is the responsibility.

  116. It will fall…

    The false system which has invaded the Church will fall…

    The thing which will break it is a heart seeking the Glory of God…

    We each – those of us who have been born again of the Holy Spirit of God – have a heart which seeks to Glorify Him (even if we don’t know it yet)…

    We have what it takes to cause this system to fall…

    As we pray the prayer which He (Jesus) taught us to pray we are praying for the destruction of this false system…

    It has always been this way…

    It will fall…

    The false system will fall…

    He is calling us to be battering rams – battering rams in the spirit (the spiritual realm) – as He leads us to cause this system to fall and to cause the establishment of His System – His New Testament Church – where He has always intended it to be…

    Error came in, error needs to be removed…

    It will be…

    He will not let it remain…

    This is done in the spirit (the spiritual realm), then it is experienced in the natural (in this earthly realm of which we are a part)…

    This really does require our lives – it is not a a “tack on” or something which we can “make a few comments on” and “hope” that that will somehow make a different – it really is about laying down our lives for His Glory – we will lose all that is precious to us – we must lay down our lives to see this accomplished but if the Lord has laid this on your heart then you will find yourself unable to do anything else but…

    Thank You Jesus…

    Thank You that You are carrying us – as we surrender to You, You are carrying us and even as we’re not (as things are “too hard” for us) You’re still carrying us and will enable us to “come up” to the surrender which You have called us to make – laying down our lives to see the establishment of Your Kingdom in the hearts and souls and minds and lives of Your Children all over this world and to see the establishment of the Unity of which You spoke Lord Jesus in John 17 where You said that we would all be One so that the world would believe that the Father sent You and Loved us even as He had Loved You…

    We are in Your Hands…

    Use us for Your Glory…

    Thank You Jesus, Thank You Father, Thank You Holy Spirit…

    Thank You Lord…

    Our Father who is in heaven, Hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done, On earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from evil. (Matthew 6:9b-13a NASB)

    As You sent Me into the world, I also have sent them into the world. For their sakes I sanctify Myself, that they themselves also may be sanctified in truth. I do not ask on behalf of these alone, but for those also who believe in Me through their word; that they may all be one; even as You, Father, are in Me and I in You, that they also may be in Us, so that the world may believe that You sent Me. The glory which You have given Me I have given to them, that they may be one, just as We are one; I in them and You in Me, that they may be perfected in unity, so that the world may know that You sent Me, and loved them, even as You have loved Me. Father, I desire that they also, whom You have given Me, be with Me where I am, so that they may see My glory which You have given Me, for You loved Me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father, although the world has not known You, yet I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me; and I have made Your name known to them, and will make it known, so that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.” (John 17:18-26 NASB)

    Glorify Your Name in all the earth…

  117. Foolhardy Fred Aug 25th 2012 SAID:
    I am very concerned about the concept of “the anointing.”
    A former Pastor of mine stated,
    ” I do not care what the Bible says I only care about my anointing.”
    ___________

    I also have very SERIOUS concerns about the way the term “anointing” is used today. It is very RARELY given a biblical application. It has taken on a life of its own which has nothing to do with anything scriptural.

    I recommend that people go to scripture and see what the bible ACTUALLY says about “anointing” – when is it used? What does it describe? Who is anointed? Under what circumstances and for what purpose?

    Then can we make sure that any reference we make to “anointing” conforms to the SCRIPTURAL application and not to an over-accepted Pentecostal/charismatic tradition

  118. Many leaders refer to “the anointing” as the justification for what they do and what they teach. They also cite “the anointing” as their unchallengeable authority – discouraging scrutiny and criticism with the warning “touch not the Lord’s anointed”. But is their idea of “anointing” compatible with scripture?

    I did a study on this a few years ago and have posted what I found in articles on my blog:

    http://onesimusfiles.wordpress.com/2012/08/27/anointed-with-what-and-for-what/

  119. Ibelieve Aug 27th 2012

    Fred,
    Looking for examples?

    If someone is telling us that a ministry is okay and we can follow and support it,

    Then we should be told if in reality they are milking the body of Christ or preaching heresay, otherwise we are being deceived in thinking the wrong thing.

    There is a fine line in a local situation where someone was offended at a ministry or they stepped on someones toes with the Word in that case it would be smearing the minister. I don’t know of this being on the net but I am sure it is out there.

    What is bad about the big name ministers who are into preaching wealth is that many of them hold to heretical doctrines as well.

    Many of the big name preachers today believe that Jesus went to hell and became sin. They say He became an adulterer, fornicator, etc. They are mis interpreting the greek and this doctrine came from E.W. Kenyon. This is a heretical doctrine.

    Jesus was pure and Holy at all times, for God cannot sin. He was Holy on the cross, during the time He was off, and then when He rose from the dead He was still pure and Holy. What happened at the cross is that Jesus bore away our sins.

    The making of a true minister would be that he would never call Jesus anything but Holy.

    This doctrine going around could be called the Jesus died spiritualy doctrine and it is promoted by Copeland, Meyers, etc..

    This I think is where the body of Christ should be warned when it is heretical or misleading the body of Christ.

    Lord Bless,
    Gary

  120. ValleyAnt Aug 28th 2012

    There are many false female leaders in Christianity because there are few known or true male ones. False female leaders are like both satan’s way of gloating about how far we are from God’s original design for the Church and God’s merciful way of showing us how far we are from His perfect will for the Church.

    God has made it clear that leadership rests squarely with men. The part of women who see this great absence of godly leadership is not to seek to ‘do it better’ but to pray for God to ‘bring forth’ the true male leaders just as Anna, seeing plainly the ungodly leadership in Israel, continued in the temple in prayer for years for “the Consolation of Israel” until He arrived. Amen. But men also should pray without ceasing until true male leaders are ‘brought forth’ just as Simeon also did who saw and held Jesus before Anna did. Again, responsibility lies first on men.

    Trying to get back on topic, I don’t think anyone would boast about trials they suffer for leadership, therefore leaders today who aren’t humble are not walking in obedience (even if the Lord uses their ministry). Listening to a message in church yesterday about the Samaritan woman at the well, I began to understand by Jesus’ interaction with her that it will, as seen with Jesus, take male leadership that’s full of the authority reserved for those who love (this type of Love mixed with authority will overcome difficult obstacles and personalities such as the warring and rebellious Jezebel spirit among Christians and in the world).

    I believe God, knowing that perfect Love overcomes ALL, attempts to through trials ‘press’ this selfless Love into leaders (to make them ‘suited for EVERY task’ so they are able in all instances and not just some); however, many called to be leaders in God (even called to high places of honor in Him) reject the call due to the bereavement the flesh goes through and the requirement to love selflessly, ‘the most punishing requirement’ for the flesh. I presently know a man who is undoubtedly called to spiritual fatherhood; he’s long rejected the call, though the Lord still hasn’t removed the Grace and wisdom on him for spiritual fatherhood, and I assume he already has rehearsed the ‘reasons’ (for disobedience) he’ll give before God ‘in that day’. Anyway, in favor of those who reject trials sent for preparation, any preparation is hard; but God gives Grace to those who are WILLING to submit to Him. His sufficient Grace will be the justification for judgment and mercy regarding that particular matter.

  121. # 1 requirement of a leader is stated in Matt 20:26-28.
    Your leader should bring you up in the way you should go.
    That’s what god purposes you for.
    1 Cor 12/Rom 12/ Eph 4 enable you.
    Your leader must know this about you or he/she won’t be of help.
    If you don’t know these facts, find a new leader.
    Despise, not prophecy.

  122. I think you are seeing many things with clarity as the Lord gives you wisdom Valley…

    It’s interesting to see what Paul boasted about (2 Corinthians 11 & 12)… :-)

    I’ve often thought that just like we love because He (Jesus) first loved us, so our wives are empowered to love as they see us (their husbands) loving them…

    I’ve got a long way to go in that respect (as my wife would gladly testify)… :-)

    But I believe that as Christian husbands love their wives as Christ loved the Church the Jezebel spirit which has been rampant will be overcome and subdued…

    It is also true that this spirit opposes the reception of God’s Love through Christian husbands…

    It hates Unconditional Love…

    It wants a love which is conditional and based upon performance – therein it has its control – in the failure of the Christian husband to perform and meet its expectations (even if these expectations appear to be God’s – or are spoken to the Christian husband as being God’s) and the ability to “keep him under bondage” because of his failure – but the True Love of God which we offer does overcome this and also gets the flesh out of us at the same time as it shows us how much of the “love” which we offer our wives is actually “conditional” based on our responses to the Jezebel spirit’s reaction through our wives to our “efforts” to love them (whether we are “hurt”/”turn away” or whether we forgive and continue Loving them with more and more and more of God’s Love)…

    It’s all good… :-)

    It’s the reversal of our failure in the Garden to protect our wives…

    We chose them over God – as someone shared earlier – and for that we have all this pain with them “desiring” us, i.e. desiring to control us, and now we have to “rule over” them, i.e. resist this desire to submit to their control over us – which we can only do in the Holy Spirit and not in the same control which they are exercising over us (which helps us to overcome our problem with conditional love and conditional acceptance and teaches us to Love as Christ Loved the Church, i.e. expecting nothing in return)…

    Expectation is the key here…

    The enemy means it for evil but the Lord means it for good…

    There can only be one person in control of a Christian husband and that Person is the Lord…

    Not his wife, not another woman, not his Pastor and not any other respected Christian Leader…

    Trust is the big issue for the wife in this equation…

    If the Christian husband is not offering the Love of God then it is very difficult for the Christian wife to submit to what it is that he is offering…

    I’m not talking about that instance but the instance in which the Christian husband is more and more and more offering his Christian wife the Love of God as the Holy Spirit enables him…

    If the Christian wife resists this then she finds herself resisting the Lord as it is the Holy Spirit Himself who is offering this Love to her through her husband…

    Only the Lord can help someone to receive His Love – no one can force anyone else to receive the Lord’s Love…

    It’s either in someone’s heart to receive it or it is not (and if it’s not and the person knows the Lord then there are reasons from their background – the sins of the forefathers – which prohibit them from being able to receive the Lord’s Love through their Christian husband)…

    If the Christian wife does not receive the Love offered by the Christian husband then the Christian husband needs to exercise God’s “perfect patience” (as Paul tells us God exercised with him) and wait for the Christian wife to be granted the ability by God to receive this Love which God is offering her through her Christian husband – if the Christian husband waits and waits and waits and keeps waiting then if he surrenders to wait his entire life – the Lord will breakthrough on his behalf – because “love never fails”…

    Love in the Lord,

    Andrew

  123. ValleyAnt Aug 28th 2012

    Amen, AJH. I’m lucky to not yet be married, otherwise my wife would testify of my failings on a daily basis :)

    I often wondered why such an infamous, wicked, and prevalent spirit/problem as Jezebel isn’t given much mention in the NT (aside from Herodias and Jesus’ mention of it in Revelation). However, I’m understanding now that that spirit is indeed shown us in the NT on numerous occasions but beneath the surface of what’s written (as the Bible teaches much more beneath the surface than it does in its written words). God’s perfect Love takes great precedence, not warring in return with Jezebel but overcoming with superior might (ie. Love, ‘the victory that overcomes the world’) the hurt, betrayal, and woundedness that Jezebel often squats on in those through whom it operates.

    As you said, Andrew, Jezebel hates love; the more pure the love, the more it hates and avoids it. As one of the top bondage-brokers (principalities who major in enslavement and enslaving people) among ruling spirits, it hates everything that is able to lead to freedom for the person through whom it operates and for those under its rule; but when the Lord confronts a person operating in Jezebel, He has its number already and has planned the meeting ahead of time. As you said, His perfect “Love never fails.” Amen.

  124. “I often wondered why such an infamous, wicked, and prevalent spirit/problem as Jezebel isn’t given much mention in the NT ”
    __________

    Maybe the lack of attention should be a clue that man has added a lot of his own imagination to the idea of “Jezebel” to create teachings not supported by scripture. If its not there (in scripture) why add it? And why make man’s additions more authoritative than scripture.

    That practice is at the heart of all false teaching.

  125. Foolhardy Fred Aug 28th 2012

    False teaching must be resisted whenever and wherever it is found.

    Hold fast to the traditions you have been taught by Word or by our epistle is the instruction of the Apostle Paul that rings true to ALL committed Bible believing (REAL) christians.

    FALSE leaders do not merely step on toes they introduce heresies and deceive people into surrendering their salvation in the name of the doctrines of demons introduced to the churches (local or otherwise) by seducing spirits.

  126. The charismatic church I attended kept telling me that I has a Jezebel spirit within me despite me being a spirit filled born again christian.
    All because I dare question false teaching and prophecy they gave to the congregation from the likes of those preaching dominion and name and claim it theologies.
    So I left the church to go to an Anglican Church only to be told that women Bishops in leadership is OK and same sex marriages should be acceptable in the christian church.
    I don’t go to any other church and have remain churchless due to these things happening.
    Hopefully, I will find a christian home group who will not look down upon me and belittle me.
    There is not much biblical teaching in the churches and no support if you are not in the “clique.”
    So sad as what is happening and continues to go on. My worse enemies have been those who claim to be christians.

  127. Andrew Aug 28th 2012

    Very sad, Carol.

    Such a mess in the church these days…..

  128. ValleyAnt Aug 28th 2012

    Onesimus, the lack of attention for Jezebel in the NT is due to God’s wisdom as with all things not given special attention in the Bible (and there are many). When Martha busied herself doing what was not ‘required’ by the Lord, Mary sat still at Jesus’ feet doing what was ‘desired’ by Him. So, Jesus said to Martha, “You are worried about too many things. Only one thing is needed.” David offers counsel on what that one thing is in Ps. 37: “Do not fret because of evildoers… For they will soon be cut down… Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for Him; do not fret because of… him who brings wicked schemes to pass… Do not fret– it only causes harm.”

    If you’re set to resist false doctrine more than to defend through confirmation God’s Word, you put yourself in a position of resistance (constant warfare and unrest) rather than confirmation (“quietness and confidence”– Isa. 30:15); you will undoubtedly find yourself fretting and may end up resisting the Spirit of Christ just as the Pharisees did many of who sincerely tried to resist error and apostasy. You are worried about too many things, but only one thing is needed: “Trust in the LORD and do good; dwell in the land, and feed on His faithfulness. Delight yourself in the LORD” (Ps. 37). As for the lack of attention regarding Jezebel that you mentioned, the Lord Himself is the One who took time out to mention Jezebel by name or give her any attention in the NT. This is why He must be our wisdom and not ourselves.

  129. Ibelieve Aug 29th 2012

    Forgive me here but I could not help but think of this scripture regarding Jezebel.

    Jesus mentions Jezebel in the book of revelation as having an influence in the church of Thyatira:

    20 Nevertheless I have a few things against you, because you allow that woman Jezebel, who calls herself a prophetess, to teach and seduce My servants to commit sexual immorality and eat things sacrificed to idols. 21 And I gave her time to repent of her sexual immorality, and she did not repent. 22 Indeed I will cast her into a sickbed, and those who commit adultery with her into great tribulation, unless they repent of their deeds. 23 I will kill her children with death, and all the churches shall know that I am He who searches the minds and hearts.

    He goes on to say that He will cast those who commit adultery with “her” into great tribulation.

    Here God mentions this woman who teaches and seduces His people and “calls herself” a Prophetess.

    Is this a literal woman or the spirit behind those who mislead Gods sheep?

    Lord Bless,
    Gary