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Consider This

A Scriptural Challenge to all Christians

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Structure of the Assembly

Offices in the Assembly

High Temple Official
This position is one that was given by Yahuwah the Father to one person only, and forever. This same person holds the position today just as when it was given to Him two thousand years ago. He will hold it forever, without possibility of replacement. This person is:

Yahushua the Anointed, our Sovereign.

The term used in many versions for this office, "high priest," is really a misnomer, as the word "priest" is a corrupted form of presbuteros, or elder. The word translated as "priest" in the Ibriy (Hebrew) is kohen (ko-hane'), which literally means one who officiates. This person was the one who did the service of Yahuwah under the law of Mosheh and had to be of the tribe of Lawiy.

This is the same position that in Greek is called hiereus (hee-er-yooce') which means the same thing (literally or figuratively) as the Ibriy term for the position. The "high official" is archiereus (ar-khee-er-yuce), or the high official (literally of the Yahudah, typified by the Anointed). There are no officiators, other than the overseers, in the assembly of our Sovereign, and no "representative on earth," other than all of the living children of Yahuwah.

The "office of bishop" is from the Greek word episkope (ep-is-kop-ay') which by implication means superintendence in the position of leadership in the local congregation. In the Scripture there is always a plurality of these overseers in the local congregation.

The Greek word for the person in this office is episkopos (ep-is'-kop-os) and it means a superintendent. These individuals are also elders, from presbuteros (pres-boo'-ter-os) which is a companion word to presbus which means elderly.

Overseers are always elders, but elders are not always overseers. For an elder to be designated as an overseer he must be senior not only in age but in the faith also and meet the other the requirements stated in the Scripture. Overseers are always male and seniors in physical age and maturity in the Scripture.

The requirements for someone to attain to this office are very simple but strict. They are found in several places in the Scripture, but Sha'uwl (Paul) delineates them very well in the below Scripture.

The position of deacon - From the Greek word diakoneo (dee-ak-on-eh'-o) meaning to be an attendant, i.e. wait upon menially as a host or friend. It is not a position of authority as seen in so many so-called "Christian" denominations. The person in the office is a diakonos (dee-ak'-on-os) who runs errands, acts as an attendant, and as a waiter (at table or in other menial duties), etc.

Gifts of the Spirit

Sha'uwl tells us in no uncertain language that immersed believers are given spiritual gifts by Yahuwah to edify and complete the assembly and that no gift is to be considered better than any other, regardless of what we may think of them. These gifts are not offices in the assembly but are gifts of the Spirit to each and every individual member of the body of Yahushua. The offices delineated above have no bearing on who has what gift. As a matter of fact, most of the gifts are more desirous than being selected as a overseer.

1. Apostles - apostolos (ap-os'-tol-os) - a delegate; specifically an ambassador of the Gospel; officially a commissioner of the Anointed ["apostle"] (with miraculous powers).

An apostle is one who travels around in the name of the gospel and is able through the power of Yahuwah to perform what are usually referred to as miracles. The ones most people are familiar with are the twelve, and Paul.

2. Prophets -prophetes (prof-ay'-tace) - a foreteller; by analogy an inspired speaker; by extension a poet.

Anyone who foretells events through knowledge of Yahuwah's will, no matter how the information is supplied to him (direct revelation, dreams, visions, etc.). Also one who preaches the word of Yahuwah as directed by the Spirit. Also, one who speaks the word in an inspired manner. An evangelist or preacher (see below).

3. Teachers - didaskalos (did-as'-kal-os) - an instructor (generally or specifically).

A person who has this gift is going to be instructing others in the Word, and will be teaching the Word more perfectly to those who desire the knowledge. He will, through the power and guidance of the Spirit, increase their understanding of the Word and provide them with the "meat" of the gospel. The individuals receiving this instruction have to want it, or it will not be well received. If they truly want the teaching, and learn what is offered, they will grow tremendously in the Master.

4. Miracles - dunamis (doo'-nam-is) - force (literally or figuratively); specifically, miraculous power (usually by implication a miracle itself).

The gift of working miracles is a marvelous one that will demonstrate to everyone who sees the miracle that our Elohiym is, and that He is able to perform what He said. Although many people believe that miracles are supernatural, I believe that they are the natural manifestation of the power of Yahuwah. Yahuwah is natural. Mankind is subnatural, a created being, so anything of showing the power of Yahuwah would appear to us to be supernatural.

5. Healers - iama (ee'-am-ah) - a cure (the effect).

This gift of healing is wonderful in that it alleviates pain, suffering, and disease for those who have the faith to receive it. Healers must always keep in mind that it is the power of Yahuwah that is performing the healing and is nothing that they are doing or that they can control.

6. Helps - antilepsis - an-til'-ape-sis; relief:--help.

This is in the sense of giving succor (relief) to those in need.

7. Governments - kubernesis - (koo-ber'-nay-sis) - from kubernao (of Latin origin, to steer); pilotage, i.e. (figuratively) directorship (in the assembly).

Since this gift is the seventh on the list, and overseers are described here, it would seem that all the other gifts are better than being in charge of the flock.

8. Diversities of tongues - glossa (gloce'-sah) - of uncertain affinity; the tongue; by implication a language (specifically one naturally unacquired).

Many people, especially those of the Pentecostal persuasion, like to talk about their "prayer language". These people also usually have a person in their congregation who "speaks" in an "unknown tongue" at sometime during the regular services. Most of the time, the "interpreter" is the hired employee of the "church" (the preacher) and his/her interpretation fits the sermon exactly. This concept is not supported in the Scriptures. This diversity of tongues (languages) is exactly that. In Acts 2:4-11, as seen below, you will see that in fact when the Apostles "spoke with other tongues" they were in fact speaking languages that they did not know and that were the native language of and understood by someone who was present and listening.

Other functions

Words of interest

C.F. Castleberry