Your Ministry – In the Pew or with One Another

What you can do while while sitting or standing in a pew?

While sitting or standing in a pew or auditorium seating, your ministry options are severely limited. You can listen, pray and worship, silently agree or disagree with the sermon and put money in the collection plate.

Do you know that the word “pulpit” only occurs once in the Bible (Neh 8:4)? Pew, clergy, sermon and laity do not occur at all.

Paul asked, “How is it then when you come together?” Then, told the Corinthians how to observe common courtesy when ministering with one another (1 Cor 14). He also chastised believers eating habits when participating in the Lord’s Supper (Ro 14). They were not sitting in a pew.

Today, many Churches do communion the fast food way with those cute little plastic containers that contain ¼ ounce of grape juice and a thin round piece of something white and call it the Lord’s Supper or Communion. What happened to dining table food and fellowship?

Why do we have Church that way? What happened to the proper working of each part of the body of Christ? “…to equip the saints, to do the work of ministry, and to build up the body of the Messiah until all of us are united in the faith and in the full knowledge of God’s Son, and until we attain mature adulthood and the full standard of development in the Messiah.Then we will no longer be little children, tossed like waves and blown about by every wind of doctrine, by people’s trickery, or by clever strategies that would lead us astray. Instead, by speaking the truth in love, we will grow up completely and become one with the head, that is, one with the Messiah,in whom the whole body is united and held together by every ligament with which it is supplied. As each individual part does its job, the body builds itself up in love” (Eph 4:12-16). ISV

Church evolved to the current state away from New Testament biblical ways over the first 3 centuries. In 313 AD, the Roman Emperor Constantine declared all Roman citizens Christian. He soon provided the existing clergy with temples as extravagant as those of the heathens, dressed clergy in royal vestments and backed them with the sword of Rome. Thus the clergy laity class distinction was entrenched. That catastrophe evolved into the dark ages until the Protestant Reformation partially reversed it.

In order for the Church Jesus is building to be relevant in our different cultures, much more one another participation is required of us.

At least 95% of your ministry occurs outside of a pew.

If you are limited to attending a pew bound Church, you can still communicate and interact with your family, brothers and sisters in Messiah and unbelievers you know. That is where each individual part of the body of Christ is unhindered in doing its job.

Enjoy togetherness with family and minister to one another—communicate with one another, hug one another, laugh with one another, cry with one another, pray for one another, read the Bible together, have table fellowship with one another around the Lord’s Table, speak highly of our Father, His son Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit to one another …

Extend family togetherness to fellow saints in your homes. The following three articles by Kretzmann give much insight on how to go about that.

In order for the Church Jesus is building to be relevant in our different cultures, much more one another ministry is required of us.

Peter wrote his letters giving comfort and encouragement while showing us how we are to spend our earthly lives in anticipation of life in the world to come. Thus we become relevant in the midst of worldly culture.

1 Peter 4

1 Since, then, Christ has suffered in the flesh, you also must arm yourselves with a determination to do the same—because he who has suffered in the flesh has done with sin—2 that in future you may spend the rest of your earthly lives, governed not by human passions, but by the will of God. 3 For you have given time enough in the past to the doing of the things which the Gentiles delight in—pursuing, as you did, a course of habitual licence, debauchery, hard drinking, noisy revelry, drunkenness and unholy image-worship.

4 At this they are astonished—that you do not run into the same excess of profligacy as they do; and they speak abusively of you. 5 But they will have to give account to Him who stands ready to pronounce judgement on the living and the dead. 6 For it is with this end in view that the Good News was proclaimed even to some who were dead, that they may be judged, as all mankind will be judged, in the body, but may be living a godly life in the spirit.

7 But the end of all things is now close at hand: therefore be sober-minded and temperate, so that you may give yourselves to prayer. 8 Above all continue to love one another fervently, for love throws a veil over a multitude of faults. 9 Extend ungrudging hospitality towards one another.

10 Whatever be the gifts which each has received, you must use them for one another’s benefit, as good stewards of God’s many-sided kindness. 11 If any one preaches, let it be as uttering God’s truth; if any one renders a service to others, let it be in the strength which God supplies; so that in everything glory may be given to God in the name of Jesus Christ, to whom belong the glory and the might to the Ages of the Ages. Amen.

12 Dear friends, do not be surprised at finding that that scorching flame of persecution is raging among you to put you to the test—as though some surprising thing were accidentally happening to you. 13 On the contrary, in the degree that you share in the sufferings of the Christ, rejoice, so that at the unveiling of His glory you may also rejoice with triumphant gladness.

14 You are to be envied, if you are being reproached for bearing the name of Christ; for in that case the Spirit of glory—even the Spirit of God—is resting upon you. 15 But let not one of you suffer as a murderer or a thief or an evil-doer, or as a spy upon other people’s business. 16 If, however, any one suffers because he is a Christian, let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God for being permitted to bear that name. 17 For the time has come for judgement to begin, and to begin at the house of God; and if it begins with us, what will be the end of those who reject God’s Good News? 18 And if it is difficult even for a righteous man to be saved, what will become of irreligious men and sinners?

19 Therefore also, let those who are suffering in accordance with the will of God entrust their souls in well-doing to a faithful Creator. 1 Peter 4 WNT

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