CHURCH AS JESUS INTENDED & JOHN 17 UNITY.

In John 17:21, Jesus said that the purpose—goal—of His church here on earth would be accomplished by the testimony of UNITY in His church.

Why is unity so important? “that they all may be one, as You Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe you sent Me” John 17:21. It matters—because when unity is demonstrated to the world, it will be the testimony that Jesus is who He said He is – the only Son of God, Saviour. When Jesus is thus “lifted up” then all men shall be drawn to Him.

Paul continued to emphasise the importance of unity throughout his writings:

 “Be eager to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace.” Ephesians 4:3

This is the vision and purpose Christ has for His body here on earth. Sadly, the world does not see a unified church.

What is the biblical model for unity of the Spirit in the church?

The perfect and highest expression of unity of the Spirit was modelled in the early church after Pentecost: “They continued steadfastly in the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread and in the prayers. Fear came to every soul. And many wonders and signs were done through the apostles. All who believed were together and had all things in common. They sold their property and goods and distributed them to all, according to their need. And continuing daily with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved” (Acts 2:42-47).

Three distinct levels of unity of the Holy Spirit are actually expressed here:

Level 1 – Basics

(v. 42) “They continued steadfastly in the apostles’ teaching and fellowship, in the breaking of bread and in the prayers.”

Level 2 – Signs & Wonders

(v. 43) “Fear came to every soul. And many wonders and signs were done through the apostles.”

Level 3 – A lifestyle of mutual support and sharing all things

All who believed were together and had all things in common. They sold their property and goods and distributed them to all, according to their need. And continuing daily with one mind in the temple, and breaking bread from house to house, they ate their food with gladness and simplicity of heart, praising God and having favour with all the people. And the Lord added to the church daily those who were being saved (Acts 2:42-47).

Each of these three represents a progressively higher level of unity in the church, the body of Christ on earth. And, each of these levels is real, tangible, and measurable—just like the actual resurrected body of Jesus.

When you have time watch Francis Chan talk about church as God intended, with all of us using our Holy Spirit given gifts to further God’s Kingdom. Francis walked away from a church of 5,000 in California, when He was challenged by God that very few in the church were using their gifts, and the other issue was how many were really born again.

In the last days, will we see a church like that in the Book of Acts? Yes! we will, and in fact where the church is or has experienced persecution, we are seeing and have seen a unified church. In the Middle East, particularly Syria, the remnant church is unified and operating as the did the church in the Book of Acts and all three levels of unity are visible. The church in China that came out of 40 years of persecution under Mao, same story.

portion of this article was extracted from “Achieving True Unity of Spirit in Your Church” by Louis Posthauer. He is the executive director of Hunters of the Harvest Ministry.

PROPHECY – IT’S ALL ABOUT JESUS

“The testimony of Jesus is the Spirit of prophecy.” Rev. 19:10

The following is taken from Nelson Walters website http://www.thegospelintheendtimes.com. I have been following Nelson for a number of years and believe God is using him to alert the church in the “last days”. Nelson has just agreed to become a Board Member of a new service, I believe God wants us to provide His church: http://www.powerpointsermons.net. It is early days, as yet, but take a look and give us your feedback.

Back to Nelson: All prophecy is about Jesus and the gospel. The church has lost sight of this. Hopefully, we can regain it. I believed that teaching about the end times was irrelevant and God changed my mind. Jesus opened the scriptures to me as he did with the disciples on the Emmaus Road. He did this so I could write to you and so you then could tell others. It’s simple; it’s not rocket science!

Our Deliverer is Coming! Jesus is about to undo all the tyrannical systems that men have developed over six thousand years .  He is the deliverer of the poor, the oppressed, the enslaved and the broken; and he is coming soon!  King Jesus will reign with justice and mercy.  The end-times are not about the brief birth pangs for that is only part of the process – the end-times are about the birth of his eternal kingdom of righteousness! Jesus is returning to the earth at a specified place. The same place He departed from, the Mount of Olives in Jerusalem.

mount-of-olives-the-place-of-gods-coming-going-and-coming

“The Spirit of the Lord God is upon me because the Lord has anointed me to preach good tidings to the poor.  He has sent me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives and the opening of the prison to those who are bound, to proclaim the acceptable year of the Lord and the day of vengeance of our God; …for I, the Lord, love justice.” (Isa. 61:1-2, 8 NKJV)

At the cross, Jesus set us free spiritually.  At his second coming he will set us free physically.  Everything wrong is about to be made right.

At Pentecost, Peter quotes the prophecy (Acts 2:15-21 NRSV) that foretells the coming of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost plus a darkening of the sun and a blood moon (both on the day of Jesus’ death). He is saying: You have seen all these things since Jesus was crucified. The listeners were cut to the heart because they had seen them! The result was three thousand souls saved in one day. Prophecy = saved souls.

This website will show that specific and significant earthshaking events are about to occur according to prophecy in these years prior to the tribulation and the rapture. Christians across the globe can use these scriptures containing fulfilled prophecy to reach millions of the lost, but only if they know the prophecies. If the church is unaware of the prophecies, a major source of revival is lost. What is our responsibility to let them know? You may be asking, “Why don’t I know these prophecies?” Yes, we explain that on this website as well.

Encouragement of the Saints

Fulfilled scripture will have a glorious effect on the saved as they know that prophecies leading up to Christ’s return are happening before their eyes. How many lives might change as believers turn from self-absorption to focus on their Master’s business?  Prophecy = saved souls.

The Great Apostasy

 The Bible is clear there will be a great falling away from the faith.  Paul has written that this great apostasy precedes the revealing of the Antichrist  (2 Thess. 2:3).  Jesus’ own words are “The love of most will grow cold” (Mt. 24:12 NIV).  If the church is prepared for the deception that is coming, how many churchgoers might be spared? What responsibility do we have to prepare them?

At the mid-point of the Olivet Discourse, Jesus told a brief parable about the need to be watchful.

But be sure of this, that if the head of the house had known at what time of the night the thief was coming, he would have been on the alert and would not have allowed his house to be broken into.  For this reason you also must be ready. (Matt. 24: 43-44 NASB)

The “heads” of God’s “house” on earth are you and I, the leaders of the church.  I believe this passage teaches that we have personal responsibility to be watchful so that our churches do not suffer loss.  We must do what we can to prevent our adversary from “breaking into” our churches and causing church goers to stumble.  This website goes into considerable detail about this parable and about the Great Apostasy.  Prophecy = saved souls.

Sanctification

After presenting his prophetic teaching in the Olivet discourse, Jesus began to apply it. In the parable of the faithful and the evil slaves he equates not thinking about the master’s return with unrighteousness:

But if that wicked servant says to himself, “My master is delayed,” and begins to beat his fellow servants, and eats and drinks with drunkards … (Matt. 24:48-49 ESV)

Peter speaks of the connection between prophecy and godly living as well:

But the day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar; the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and everything done in it will be laid bare.  Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people ought you to be? You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God and speed its coming. (2 Pet. 3:10-12 NIV)

Teaching about our blessed hope energises the church and is the factor that helps us keep our eyes on Jesus. Most of my pastor friends instinctively know that living righteously before the Lord certainly saves souls. Right now some are afraid to follow through. Despite their reluctance: prophecy still = saved souls.

This is God’s equation. This is his heart. This is why a quarter of the Bible is prophecy. “The testimony of Jesus is the spirit of prophecy.” How did we forget that as a church? Come join me on the journey. At least bookmark this website. You might want to refer back if you see those earthshaking events we will be talking about begin to happen.

Next we will see how to implement God’s equation, prophecy = saved souls.  We will also present all the major themes in this website and how  they relate to God’s heart for the lost.

Have I sparked your interest in connecting with Nelson’s website. I hope so.

The New Reformation in these Last Days

This documentary is changing the world right now! It shows how life must have been for the first disciples of Jesus who walked around on earth and why the gospel flooded the whole earth. It shows what the life of a Christian should look like – a life where signs and wonders are following us.

SHARE this movie with as many as you can.

Download this movie to show to your church / home group / friends
https://thelastreformationmovie.com/d…

RELIGION OR JESUS?

Like the Pharisees and Sadducee’s are we playing church. The Book of Acts (Bible) tells us what the Christian life should look like and what is the church. Back then, the church grew phenomenally (3,000 on day 1) as believers operated with the gifts of the Holy Spirit given at Pentecost . Paul taught that when people repented of their sins, accepted Jesus as their Lord and Saviour and were baptised (demonstrated their dying to the old life and born again), they would be filled with the Holy Spirit. They were dead and now in Christ they are alive, eternally alive. Their body is the temple of the Holy Spirit and they are now the church. He taught the priesthood of all believers. Jesus expects us to make disciples wherever He has placed us, whatever our calling, bearing in mind work is a calling whether it is business by building culture and meeting people’s needs, a teacher, a farmer, a lawyer, a plumber.

The big question, is the church functioning today as presented in the Book of Acts and if not why not?

Torben Sondergaard is doing a great job demonstrating the church as it was in the book of Acts. The following video provides an answer to the question I have just posed. You need to watch Torben’s video, The Last Reformation (YouTube) to see Christians operating in the marketplace as in the book of Acts.