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Daily Bread - September 27, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 02 October 2018 09:18
Ephesians 4:11 - And He gave the apostles, and the prophets, and the
evangelists, and the pastors, and teachers.

The Gifts Won for the Church - Part 3: Prophets

The prophetic office ('prophetes') of the New Testament begins with John
the Baptist, but like all offices, finds its ultimate fulfillment in Jesus
(Luke 7:28; John 4:44; Acts 3:22, 7:37; Deuteronomy 18:15). As in the Old
Testament, the prophet is one who makes known, or unveils, the Word of God.
The prophets have always been the chief spokesmen for God, and it was from
the prophets we received the majority of the Old Testament writings.
Although there are those who have almost exclusively associated the
prophetic office and gift with the word of knowledge in foretelling future
events, the Scripture does not have such a narrow view. This confined
definition is from the post-Christian era. The primary role of the prophet
is consistent with the ministry of Jesus, Who made known the will and
commands of the Father. The prophets (besides Jesus) listed in the New
Testament begin with John the Baptist, followed by Anna; then finally,
Agabus, Barnabas, and others, some of which are not distinguished from
teachers (Luke 2:36; Acts 11:27-28, 13:1, 21:10).

The prophet is the speaker who makes known the will of God. The chief
action of the prophet is to prophesy. The chief gift characterizing the
outpouring of the Holy Spirit is prophecy. The Spirit of the Lord has been
poured out upon all flesh, and the testimony of that outpouring in a
person's life is the gift of prophecy (Acts 2:17). Paul said it was one of
the ways he communicated the Word of God to the hearer (1 Corinthians
14:6). Prophecy is something everyone is called to both covet and do, and
each person is called to function in the gift in the Church (1 Corinthians
14:24-31, 39). The prophet is the one who can speak out as the oracle of
God, declaring His divine will. Peter demands if anyone speak on behalf of
Christ Jesus, that they speak as the oracles ('logion') of God (1 Peter
4:11). Most importantly, these attributes of prophecy would be the hallmark
of the one who operates in the office of a prophet.

Thank you, Lord, for Your Church, the pillar and ground of the truth. (1
Timothy 3:15)
 
Daily Bread - September 26, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Wednesday, 26 September 2018 09:59
Ephesians 4:11 - And He gave the apostles, and the prophets, and the
evangelists, and the pastors, and teachers.

The Gifts Won for the Church - Part 2: Apostles

A New Testament apostle ('apostolos') is a divinely-appointed
representative of Christ Jesus. Jesus had many disciples, but out of those
He appointed twelve apostles (Matthew 10:1-4). It was these that Christ
Jesus sent out to do His work. The word 'apostolos' means "to send forth."
Jesus was sent forth by the Father, and then He sent forth the apostles
just as the Father had sent Him. Within the framework of this meaning, we
find 'apostellein,' and its Hebrew counterpart 'shalach,' used many times
in the Old Testament, LXX, and BHS respectively. One great example in the
Old Testament is Isaiah 6:8, "Also, I heard the voice of the Lord saying,
whom shall I send, and who will go for us? Then I said, Here am I; send
me." The same could be said of Abraham, Moses, and others. It is important
to recognize that in every example, both in the Old and the New Testaments,
an 'apostolos' is called and sent by a sovereign act of God in which He was
personally involved in the sending.

The apostle Paul, who was appointed as an apostle to the Gentiles, would be
our chief example of an apostle apart from first twelve. It would be
through the apostle Paul where we would find an example of how apostles
might come into being after the ascension of Jesus. Of course, it is
important to recognize all of these gifts were given to the Church after
the ascension. The first twelve were only unique in light of the fact that
they were the first, but they were certainly not the last. The apostles are
the foundation of the Church, both at the beginning and today. Without
them, the Church would lack what Christ Jesus gave for the perfecting of
the saints (Ephesians 2:20, 4:11-13; 1 Corinthians 12:28).

Thank you, Lord, for Your Church, the pillar and ground of the truth. (1
Timothy 3:15)
 
Daily Bread - September 25, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 25 September 2018 08:49
Ephesians 4:11 - And He gave the apostles, and the prophets, and the
evangelists, and the pastors, and teachers.

The Gifts Won for the Church - Part 1: Introduction

These special gifts Christ Jesus won for the Church reveal the offices that
have been set in the Church, and not the specific individuals in those
offices. The Champion and Captain of our salvation Who won these gifts for
the Church is the chief example of these special anointings and gifts. We
may find the true definition and example of apostle, prophet, evangelist,
pastor, and teacher in Christ Jesus. To be placed in one of these offices,
one would have to be called, not by men, but by the Lord Jesus Christ,
Himself.

Of the five offices, apostles and prophets are given a premier role in the
Church. These are the first two offices placed in the Church, and they
function as the foundation upon which the Church is established (1
Corinthians 12:28; Ephesians 2:20, 3:5). It certainly is noteworthy how the
apostles related the word 'episkope' to the office of the apostle, an
office which they held (Acts 1:20). 'Episkope' is also translated in the
New Testament as "bishop," "elder," and "overseer" (Acts 20:28; 1 Timothy
3:2; 1 Peter 2:25, 5:2).

Thank you, Lord, for Your Church, the pillar and ground of the truth. (1
Timothy 3:15)
 
Daily Bread - September 24, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Tuesday, 25 September 2018 08:47
Ephesians 4:9-10 - Now that He is ascended, is it not He Who also went down
first into the lower parts of the Earth. He that descended is also He Who
ascended up above all the Heavens, so that He might fill all.

Jesus died and descended down into Hades. Just as Jonah was three days and
three nights in the belly of a whale, Jesus was in the lower parts of the
Earth (Jonah 1:17; Matthew 12:39-40). He went down and preached to the
spirits in prison (1 Peter 3:19). Paul referred to this as the "place of
the deep" ("abyss" or 'abyssos') in Romans 10:7; and also, "under the
Earth," as in Philippians 2:10.

The first dimension of His descent was when He laid aside His eternal glory
as the Word and took on the robes of flesh to die at Calvary and destroy
death (Hosea 13:14; 1 Corinthians 15:26; 2 Timothy 1:10; Philippians
2:5-11; Hebrews 2:14). Christ Jesus, having destroyed him who had the power
of death, spoiling and making an open shame of him, has the keys of Hell
and death (Colossians 2:15; Hebrews 2:14-15; Revelation 1:18).

Unto You, Lord Jesus, shall every knee bow! (Isaiah 45:23; Romans 14:11;
Philippians 2:10)
 
Daily Bread - September 22, 2018
Written by Pastor Mark Spitsbergen
Saturday, 22 September 2018 11:00
Ephesians 4:8 - On which account He said, "Ascending up on high, He led
captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men.

Conquest, Spoils, and the Establishment of the Church - Part 4

All those things that God the Eternal Word had possessed were restored unto
Him when He returned unto the Father; but when Jesus ascended up on high,
He had also won access into that realm for every man. Satan could no
longer, by right or claim, stand between God and men to prevent the good
things of Heaven. Through the gifts Christ Jesus gave, He poured out access
to all His glory and authority over everything contrary to His ways -
especially power over the enemy of man: the devil. Christ Jesus and His
Church are inseparable; and through our connection one to another as the
members of His Body, the fullness of God is revealed among us (Ephesians
1:23; Colossians 1:24; Matthew 28:18-20).

Reveal Yourself mightily through Your Church, Lord! (Isaiah 40:5)
 
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