Supernatural and Anointed Teaching
A commitment versus a Gift.
I wanted to ask you a question, sorry to interrupt. The five-fold ministry you see in Ephesians…I went down to a church the weekend while we were away, and I think I got a part right in that they meet together and everybody brings a word or a song. But they don’t believe in leadership.
I believe in leadership, but I just don’t believe in positional leadership.
Well their leader does I suppose. What struck me was the absence of teaching.
Okay. That’s a problem.
I would say that the five-fold ministry doesn’t operate to bring to maturity the whole thing just of teaching. So this kind of fear develops that all of the teachers are now going to be leading us. That seems to be for them a bit of a problem.
Well, what is the great commission—which wasn’t five-fold anything? It is to go into every nation and make disciples, baptize them in the Name of the Father, Son, and the Holy Ghost, and teach them to obey everything I have commanded you. The very great commission itself is that we should be teachers of the commands of Jesus and help people obey His commands. The Hebrews writer said, “…you all ought to be teachers by now.”
Yeah, but don’t you also think…if you look back to the early church and the Jewish believers in the synagogues, they always had teachers per se. They were raised up by God.
In the synagogues?
They would have had rabbis, teachers…
Sure, but I don’t know that they were raised up by God.
Well, maybe not in the synagogue. But there were the priests and the prophets, some were raised up and some weren’t.
I believe in being called back to small groups where everybody participates, all one body, and as you say having responsibility to one another. But I would say one of the dangers I see in the movement is not having teachers who are going to be able to take people to maturity. You’re going to get a bit of a problem because you get these new believers and…when I was in this group, I could tell that they didn’t even have a clue about some of the foundational basic things of the Word of God. I saw them as babies that were not going to be brought to maturity because they believed, “we don’t want anyone to be set apart.”
I’m glad you brought that up because that’s definitely not what we’re talking about here tonight. Our seven-year-olds, and I guarantee it and can prove it, are far more spiritual than most pastors I know around the world. And it’s because of “we all ought to be teachers by now” and because of the gift of teaching. And I would tend to think it’s probably four-fold instead of five. “Shepherds and teachers” can imply that it’s shepherd-slash-teachers. So apostles, prophets, evangelist-good news teller and shepherd/teacher, instead of shepherd and teacher.
But regardless, Romans 12 speaks of first apostles, second prophets, and then teachers. There is a gift of teaching beyond question. There is a way you distinguish between “you all ought to be teachers by now” and the gift of teaching. In one case a “teacher” (“you all ought to be teachers”) is somebody who has a commitment to knowing the Word of God and “being ready to give a reason for the hope that lies within you.” And “As you rise up, as you sit down, as you walk along the way,” you teach your children and you encourage one another daily.
The gift of teacher, on the other hand, is something that’s supernaturally anointed. Meaning not that they have a position where they’re the official boss and “Come, sit, and listen to me every Sunday.” But they take responsibility to enlighten and to make certain that the quality of what is being taught isn’t just a bunch of riff-raff disconnected thoughts.
For example, when we’re all together in the church that I’m part of, you can hear the commitment to teaching and sharing and admonishing and encouraging that’s based on just being a Christian. And then you can hear something that’s clearly the gift of teaching that is supernatural and from heaven. Both are true. “But when you come together, brothers, everyone has a word of instruction, a song, or…” Everyone has a word of instruction? Well, I guess that means there’s not an official person that takes control of the teaching. Everyone has a word of instruction, but that doesn’t mean everyone has the gift of teaching, and you’ve got to really have both. Because one is out of faithfulness and the other is out of supernatural provision that touches something that can’t be touched just out of faithfulness.
When the whole church is together you’ll hear a brother say something that’s penetrating and true and touched his heart, and it’s line upon line, precept upon precept. It’s just right and true and it’s clear. And then somebody else will add something that has meant a lot to them recently. It’s a kind of word of encouragement. And then a sister will say, “Ya know, I wrote this poem when I was spending some time this morning with God and it’s on that same topic.” And so that becomes teaching and encouragement.
And then somebody with the gift of teaching that has no name tag and feels no obligation to be the official teacher all of a sudden you’ll hear something that comes clearly from on High and just pulls all these things together in this supernatural way and it’s riveting. It’s just absolutely riveting and so clear it’s unforgettable.
So would you not have people—like Paul who came and talked until midnight or whatever—who come and actually teach you for an hour?
Sure we have people from all over the world that come with us, and if they have that supernatural gift, that’s great. Paul dialogued with them until midnight. That’s the Greek word. He didn’t “preach” until midnight. He dialogues… Greek word. He dialogued with them, which means when revelation came to the second, the first one sat down.
Paul was probably more gifted than anybody else in the room. Paul was leaving in the morning so he probably dominated the time. But he did dialogue with them, because that’s what the word is in the Greek. Which means if somebody else also had that supernatural gift and they said, “Excuse me Paul could I add this?” Paul wanted to hear the Jesus in them.
To the Romans he said, “We need to be mutually encouraged. I definitely want to give you my gift, but Jesus lives in you, too, and it’s the same Jesus. I’m very willing to shut up and sit down so revelation can come to the second.”
Probably Paul had the strongest gift there and he was leaving in the morning. Those things combine to the fact that his gift probably did dominate. Because they’re going to have a lot of chances after he’s gone to go on with what he said and to share their observations with each other. Supernatural teaching that builds upon what he had to say because his time was really short. He was leaving in the morning so they broke bread and just spent a little time raising somebody from the dead and then went on.