Checks and Balances
(If I Wash Thee Not, Thou Hast No Part With Me)
Compiled by Brother L. Harrell
Matthew 5:19 Whosoever therefore shall break one of these least commandments, and shall teach men so, he shall be called the least in the kingdom of heaven: but whosoever shall do and teach them, the same shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven.
It does not say and differentiate in Matthew 5:19, whosoever shall do and teach a certain age, group of a certain social economical status, a certain gender, shall be called great in the kingdom of heaven. Being led by the Spirit will not cause one to be neglected and/or forsaken. God is faithful and He can not lie.
Psalm 119:90 Thy faithfulness is unto all generations: thou hast established the earth, and it abideth.
In the natural world becoming strong by being weak is a paradox, but spiritually the way down is the way up.
1 Corinthians 1:27-29 But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty; And base things of the world, and things which are despised, hath God chosen, yea, and things which are not, to bring to nought things that are: That no flesh should glory in his presence.
greatest is the lowest person
(meekest). We are called to obey the
Spirit. He has intentions for us. We can accomplish the Law
by dying to ourselves (our lustful fleshly desires) and walking in the
path the Lord has outlined for us. This path may not be glamorous
man. We must lay down our lives to serve our fellowman, and
serve the Lord.
Being set in a status / office that is to the natural world submissive to another position or person is not inferiority. We are commanded to humble ourselves.
Luke 14:8-11 When thou art bidden
of any man to a wedding, sit not down in the highest room; lest a more
honourable man than thou be bidden of him; And he that bade thee
and him come and say to thee, Give this man place; and thou begin with
shame to take the lowest room. But when thou art bidden, go and
sit down in the lowest room; that when he that bade thee cometh, he may
say unto thee, Friend, go up higher: then shalt thou have worship in
the presence of them that sit at meat with thee. For whosoever
exalteth himself shall be abased; and he that humbleth himself shall be
Luke 16:10 He that is faithful in that which is least is faithful also in much: and he that is unjust in the least is unjust also in much.
Many know it is not the will of the Lord for us to “kick down doors” to get ourselves ahead. We need to remain faithful and obey the Spirit. The Lord knew us before we were ever manifested as man or woman, black, white or brown, rich or poor, and knew what gifts and callings were His will for each of us.
1 Corinthians 7:20 Let every man
abide in the same calling wherein he was called.
1 Corinthians 7:24 Brethren, let every man, wherein he is called, therein abide with God.
Many prophets and evangelists are (or should be) submitted to their pastor’s leadership. This does not make pastors greater than prophets and evangelists. Ephesians 4:11-12 lists prophets and evangelists before pastors (1 Corinthians 12:28 corroborates this ecclesiastical ranking). This does not make prophets and evangelists greater than pastors (just as our country's president is not greater than you or me, but is appointed to a high office). We must move “flesh” out of the way so we may do the Lord’s will. (Of course, prophets, evangelists, etc. are to be submitted to their apostle's or bishop's oversight.)
Ephesians 5:1-2 Be ye therefore
followers of God, as dear children; And walk in love, as Christ also
hath loved us, and hath given himself for us an offering and a
sacrifice to God for a sweetsmelling savour.
Ephesians 5:17 Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.
Ephesians 5:21 Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
Ephesians 4:8 Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.
Ephesians 4:11-12 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
1 Corinthians 12:28 And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.
man is not inferior to
the woman, and
the woman is not inferior to man. The adversary loves to falsely
charge divinely appointed order, causing envy and strife, to bring
disorder where order should be.
1 Corinthians 11:11 (NASB)
However, in the Lord, neither is woman independent of man, nor is man
independent of woman.
Ephesians 5:30-31 For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones. For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.
It says in Ephesians 4:16 about Jesus’ body, the church:
Ephesians 4:16 From whom the
whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every
joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of
every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in
Just as U.S.A.'s governments are setup to have distinct and diverse branches share responsibilities of serving / administering by elected representatives (executive, legislation, judicial, etc.), likewise the church is to be administered by those distinct and diverse persons the Lord has elected to do so (in their respective offices without fear of retribution [with exception of impropriety]). The Lord has setup diverse areas of responsibility that help ensure each respective area has proper emphasis. Why does the world accuse the church of neglecting certain duties? The accusations could be because the 5-fold is not functional.
The world has learned that a government such as a democracy that runs without proper checks and balances is dysfunctional. Likewise, a church is dysfunctional that does not have shared loads by those the Lord has elected. Allowing the kingdom of God to reign is in part initiated by allowing what He established to function / reign. (That is His body. He knows what He is doing!) Failure to allow proper ministerial independence (with offices yielding to checks & balances) may be likened to Adolf Hitler's dictatorial actions of humbling / subordinating and ommiting governmental offices, opposition and speech. Building a hedge around oneself from scrutiny is not decency or orderliness.
4:9-12 Two are better
than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up
his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he
hath not another to help him up. Again, if two lie together, then
they have heat: but how can one be warm alone? And if one prevail
against him, two shall withstand him; and a threefold cord is not quickly
falsely claim five-fold
operation. While an institution may possess five-fold gifting,
that does not mean there has been proper implementation of what God has
purposed. (Therefore they may not
be a five-fold ministry). A democratic government [or church
government] is not
balanced if the same person that sits in the executive office, also
sits in the judicial, and/or legislative, and/or has vast powers to
office holders, and/or controls the media, caucus, or convention.
Don’t we know God
with His infinite wisdom has
already addressed and bound the powers that have us confounded?
He did not ordain
evangelists [including godly media in their respective offices] and the
Sabbath for no significance. If demagoguery reigns [whether
actual / officially or de facto] (such as was
the case in Ezra 4:2 & 8), likely God
through the [diverse and independent] five-fold is not being given
freedom to reign.
One will say, I don't
see the [natural] necessity [for this order]... It is a spiritual
battle that the Lord sees [and those He has revealed it to]. You
can't see behind closed doors. You can't see the adversary and
his agenda. You can't see all the snares (If you could, it would
be much of a snare). Walk by faith in his love and appointed
The Scribes and
Pharisees did not find Jesus
worthy to edify them by their standards. Many of us have done the
same, finding various persons appointed by the Lord, in various offices
appointed by the Lord, not worthy to minister to them. (This is
not a suggestion that certain persons walking unrighteously or
unqualified should not
be excluded from service).
Where is the perfect apostle / bishop (Except Jesus)? Where is the perfect minister of the other various offices and gifts given to the church? (As a unit we are perfect). We must take caution not to repeat the sins of Jeroboam, setting up golden calves to replace what God has setup (our own self, associates and system being the idol we find ourselves following). Failure to allow various offices operate free of coercion differs with the law of Christ / the law of faith.
Hosea 4:6 (NLV) My people are
destroyed because they have not learned. You were not
willing to learn. So I am not willing to have you be My
religious leader. Since you have forgotten the Law of your God, I also
will forget your children.
The woman is under man's authority (woman needs to be in agreement with man). Regardless of man being in position of authority, man needs to work with woman. Man and woman need to be united with and under authority of the Lord who is Head of all. (See 1 Corinthians 11:11-12) Likewise, various offices and gifts have appointed authority and order that must be respected.
Romans 14:7 For we are not our own masters when we live or when we die.
Where edification is not involved:
It is not
proper for a man to attack a woman or for a woman to attack a
man. Likewise, it is not proper for members of the body to attack
prophets, for pastors to attack ministers, for senior bishops or
regional bishops to attack evangelists, etc. God did not set up
ministerial offices for us to carnally tear them down.
If ministers are
fearful of other ministers,
members are fearful of ministers, ministers are fearful of members or
members are fearful of other members, there is imperfect love going on
(See 2 Timothy 1:7).
example of irresponsibly: If a person was part of a group of sales
persons and the leader was to reach his [or her] quota, then the leader
was to suspend all other sales (since he is satisfied with his goal,
depriving the other sales persons from reaching their quota), there
would be some unhappiness within the group. Under such selfish
conditions, and it would be unreasonable for the leader to believe
there would be harmony that is necessary for the group to progress
properly. Such an action is not a fruit of the Spirit.
Unlike the example just given of a group of sales persons, members of a body must be in agreement to prosper as a team. Disharmony is not agreement, and is not love. Many operate in disharmony, ignorantly expecting the benefits of harmony.
We have been given
commandment and example by
Jesus Christ to serve (See John 13:15 & Hebrews 10:24-25) and to
be served by our
brothers (See John 13:8). When Peter, the Senior which the church
was built on, tried to resist being
ministered to, he was informed that if he was not going to be served,
he would have no relationship with the Lord. We must serve each other and
be served by each other. This requirement is not optional (See 1
Corinthians 12:28). (Yes, teamwork is a necessity).
John 13:6-8 Then cometh he to Simon
Peter: and Peter saith unto him, Lord, dost thou wash my feet?
Jesus answered and said unto him, What I do thou knowest not now; but
thou shalt know hereafter. Peter saith
unto him, Thou
shalt never wash my feet. Jesus answered him, If I wash thee
not, thou hast no part with me.
Corinthians 12:27 (NLT) Now all of you together
are Christ's body, and each one of you is a separate and
necessary part of it.
2 John 1:9 (KJV)
Whosoever transgresseth, and abideth not in the doctrine of Christ,
hath not God. He that
abideth in the doctrine of Christ, he hath both the Father and the Son.