Five-Fold Today - A New Song and a New Beginning - Idleness - Pull Yourselves Together - His Fullness - Five-fold, Four-fold, One-fold, or Folding Under - Life On The Cutting-Edge - When Christ is Formed In Us

March 25 200l

A New Song and a New Beginning

Stephen Hanson

And I saw an angel standing in the sun, who cried in a loud voice to all the birds flying in midair, "Come, gather together for the great supper of God, so that you may eat the flesh of kings, generals, and mighty men, of horses and their riders, and the flesh of all people, free and slave, small and great.

Then I saw the beast and the kings of the earth and their armies gathered together to make war against the rider on the horse and his army. But the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who had performed the miraculous signs on his behalf. With these signs he had deluded those who had received the mark of the beast and worshiped his image. The two of them were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. The rest of them were killed with the sword that came out of the mouth of the rider on the horse, and all the birds gorged themselves on their flesh.

Then the angel said to me, "Write: `Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!' " And he added, "These are the true words of God." REV 19:17-21 & 9

"Do you hear the music, do you hear the music playing? It is the sound of music in the streets. It is the sound of rain falling upon the window. It is the sound of a choir walking through the woods. What are they singing, you would ask? It is the sound of the Lion and the Lamb. It is the sound after the storm. It is the sound after the battle. It is the sound after the wounded have fallen. It is the sound after the eagles have circled in the sky. There the mighty have fallen in battle. There the evil has been vanquished. There is mourning for those who are lost in battle. But now the land will be healed."

(I saw a scene of a man who had been shooting an arrow in battle. Other arrows had been shot and many had found there place in the men that they were intended for. Some had gone through the shields that they held up in front of them. I noticed the ground, and there were so many bodies on the ground, that one could not distinguish the ground from the bodies. There was blood everywhere from the battle that had been fought. Then I noticed the Lord Himself stepping down from a white horse and a cross was placed upon the ground, and He said: "Now let the rebuilding begin." Then the scene shifted suddenly....I saw a long table, a banqueting table from where the battle scene had been. The entire scene moved off to the left where this table was. Beautiful goblets and serving dishes were being placed there. Then it was as though a curtain was set-up suddenly between where the battle scene was and where the table was now to be. The curtains were being "dropped" upon where the blood had been shed in battle and where the earth had been scarred. The entire earth it seemed, was being blanketed with these curtains, and angels were dropping something upon the earth to create a new beginning, a new earth. Then at the banqueting table, there was a Lion seated at the front of the end of the table, and a Lamb at the other end. All were singing praises to the Lion and the Lamb.)

"Sing the song, sing the song with Me. You will sit with Me at my banqueting table on that day. You will drink from the cup with Me. For we have triumphed together in battle. This is not the end, it is just the beginning of my reign with you."

Stephen Hanson


Ras Robinson

You cannot stop now! This season has been difficult. May I explain to you why? You have given yourself to idleness as to My word. This has resulted in spiritual fatigue. You have become malnourished from your spiritual laziness. There was a time when you were strong as an ox, quick as a lioness. I call you to My word for it is true food and will strengthen and quicken you. You have let sin compromise you. The mirror of My word has shown you again and again your condition before Me but you have chosen to remain lax and sleepy. This is yet another call for you to remember what manner of man you are. I have made you awesomely. You were created in perfection. And you will function best and with the most power when you are full of My word. Stop now and eat. I have prepared a banqueting table before you. You MUST regain your discipline! With all that I have destined you to do and see, you cannot stop now. Awaken, it is time to eat.

Psalm 119:32 "I shall run the way of Thy commandments, for Thou wilt enlarge my heart."

Fullness in Christ Church, Pastor

Pull Yourselves Together

Marsha Burns

The enemy has designed a plan of attack against you, My people, to fragment you. He wants to isolate you and cause you to feel odd and alone. You will suddenly feel like a teenager whose nose is too big. Refuse to yield to these tactics. Rather, take the time to examine the lie that opened the door for this attack. For, I tell you truthfully, that there is a lie at the bottom of these feelings of rejection. Apply the word of truth at the point of wounding, and it will be like a balm of healing. This distraction will cause you to be self-focused and will steal your confidence, boldness and anointing. Rise up in truth and break out of this place of destruction. Faith Tabernacle
Kremmling, CO

His Fullness

Bart DeVries

My people come to Me, come to Me as who you are and not as whom you want to be. Come to Me regardless of what you think or how you feel. Don't you know that I have made you complete through Him? I have given you My Son so that you can walk in total freedom, in total peace and in total unconditional faith. You have not yet seen or experienced the fullness of My Son in your lives, in your ministry, because you have not yet known what it means to walk in the fullness of Christ. It is My desire for you to know and to walk in the fullness of Him, because only then change will come forth in your thoughts, in your hearts, in your lives, in your circumstances and in your ministry. It is my desire to see you grow, to see you bear fruit and to see you change through the plan and destiny I have for you. No thought or dream is too big, no thought or dream is too strange, because know that it is Me who planted those thoughts and dreams in your minds and spirits. Know that it is Me who will work out every detail of everything I once spoke or revealed to you as long as you start trusting Me in everything and start walking in the assurance and fullness of My Son.

For ye says the Lord, know that it is not My intention to set you aside or hold you back from everything I have in store for you. The enemy tried to rob, to kill and to destroy everything what I wanted to do in and through your lives, but as you come in this closer intimacy with Me, I will give you the strength and the courage to pick up and continue where you left. I will give you the courage and faith to have victory in any circumstance, because no longer you will be walking by what you see, but you will start walking by what I have taught you to believe and have faith in. For My son and daughter give Me your heart, and let your eyes watch My ways.

For My thoughts are not your thoughts, nor your ways My ways, says the Lord. Only through a closer and deeper intimacy with Me you will start seeing and understanding the meaning and the fullness of My plans and you will start to realize that what you have seen so far is just very little of what I am well capable to do.

Old bridges will be burnt and new bridges are going to be built, because I am repositioning My soldiers, My warriors My army. I am recruiting a total new battalion of prayer warriors and intercessors who are willing to step out into the frontlines, who are willing to step out into the heat of the fights against evil and darkness. Those who have been in the back rows will be promoted to the front rows. Those who have been rejected by men, will start to receive favour from Me in such an abundant way that the same men who rejected them will confess that it is Me who is giving them that favour and that it is Me Who is in charge.

For those churches and ministries, for those local parts of the Body who are willing to open themselves up for Me and have this desire to receive the fullness of My Son, for them I will make the Way to succeed, to increase and to prosper in their calling and destiny. They will be the ones who will see the fruits come forth of the many seeds they have been faithfully planting over the past years, because they have not been giving up but they have been trusting me in everything. This will be a year where I will start breaking through the denominational barriers and bring those Apostles, Prophets, Teachers, Evangelists and Pastors together in unity for My specific purpose and reason. I will call them to come in unity with Me first, I will call them to come in unity with their flock I entrusted them and only then I will call them out to come in unity with each other. No longer will my Body be as fragile as a jigsaw puzzle, falling apart, being incomplete when a piece is missing or doesn't fit in. I am going to shape, to rebuild and to smooth the edges. I am going to take the roughness away, so that all the pieces will perfectly match and fit together as one Body.

I am calling My Church back to the basics of the Word. I am calling My Church to repent from it's own wicked ways. I am calling out for those who truly want to repent and open up their hearts to receive Me, because I am the Way, the Truth and the Life. Many have been deceived by the plans of Satan, and yes, Satan has been penetrating in the church and families over the last decades. It is My desire to bring forth a true restoration in the Church, based upon My Word and not men's religion. Yes, it is My desire to reveal the Father's heart. The broken hearted will be healed, restored and empowered through My Spirit to do the works of the Saints. I will raise up a mighty army enabled to minister to those who are hurt, discouraged and lead astray.

I am going to give My Body a full understanding of what it means to prophetically declare warfare to every demon and evil spirit in the cities, in the land. I am going to show My Body to take back what is rightfully theirs. I am calling my Body to break free from every spirit of discouragement, weakness, timidity, unbelief, frustration, defeat and failure. You have been set free from all of this through My Son, says the Lord.

Receive this gift, this knowledge and revelation into your hearts and I will empower and strengthen you through My Spirit. Parts of My Body have been walking in defeat, fear and threat, but now is the time to stand up and place the banner over the cities. I am raising up leaders who say "No" to compromising. I am raising up leaders who teach the whole council of My Word, and I am calling you, the sheep, to whole heartedly support them. This will be a year of preparation, sanctification, and re-dedication of many parts of the Body. I will call My people to earnestly search their hearts and look at their motivations and attitudes.

It is My desire to see the Church well prepared and operate in the fullness of My Son. I am calling My church to become one of heart, I am calling My church to fully understand My heart. Only through a closer intimacy with Me it will be possible to receive the fullness of My son.

You have been crying out for signs, wonders, miracles. You have wanted to see the impossible to happen, but yet have you been ready for this? Have you prepared your lives, your churches to receive all of this? Yes, it is My desire to give you all of this, but you need to be prepared! I am calling the leaders back to the Cornerstone, I am calling them back to simplicity of ministry. Visions of men will die in order to give birth to My visions and even through the times of transition I am calling My Body to welcome this new move which is leading towards My fullness released in the Church.

I will never leave nor forsake you, I have given you My Son Jesus Christ, to lead you to guide you and have victory over every attempt from the enemy. Trust Him, seek Him, follow Him, let His character develop in yours and you will receive and understand His fullness.

Five-fold, Four-fold, One-fold, or Folding Under

Timothy Early

{An imaginary conversation - but very real indeed} Hey, it's really great to be a servant of the Lord! Yes, I agree! But you're not hitting first base unless you are a part of the five-fold ministry.

Five-fold ministry, what's that?

Well you know, it's the only ministry in the church worth fighting over. It gives you titles, prestige, honor, and reward. In fact, you can get a pretty good salary being one if you play all of your cards just right.


Yes, it's the in thing to do.

Wow, I never realized that being a {What do you call it, Five-fold?} minister had so many exciting benefits and rewards to come with it.

O, but that's not all my little small fry. You see, I am one of those Five-fold persons too. In fact, I am called to be the apostle, prophet, evangelist, pastor, and teacher, all rolled up into one, sort of like a delicious piece of candy with all of your favorite flavors. Yep! That's me all right, the one and only five-fold minister of the hour.

O well, I guess I don't stand a chance then, if you are all of these things wrapped up into one.

Rolled up or wrapped up, my friend, I am the five-fold minister of the hour. If you want anything from God, you can come through me, I've got the goods you know. Just the same, cheer up and get over it, for maybe God will call you into the five-fold like me, but I doubt it seriously. For no one can function in the five-fold like me. And baby, I mean no one! {At this point, the person ends the discussion with high praises and some of the top ten tongues - ebo, shattah, hiah, emmomosiah, etc.}

As dear, precious, and important as the the ascension gifts ministries are in Ephesians 4:11-16 and 1st Corinthians 12:28, still, many hold to a warped notion and curiosity about them. For some, the five-fold is a clergy or priest craft over the laity, {Doctrine of the Nicolaitanes - seizing power over the laity - Revelation 2}, and for others, it is the only way to fly. Still, many others are rather confused over the idea of there being such a phrase, while others would shun the idea, stating that it restricts Christ's anointing in his body to a select five. Of course, there are countless many of saints that esteem and value the ascension ministries as valid and vitally needed, but the question now is, how do you perceive Christ's administration in his body?

Whether you are 5-fold, 4-fold {treating the pastor-teacher as one}, one fold, or at this point feel like folding under, here's the real deal...

According to Ephesians 4:12, Jesus continues to give us these ministries to perfect or equip the saints for the work {Greek - ergon, deed, toil, labor, act - ergonomics} of the ministry. Ergonomics is the study of the problems of people in adjusting to their work environment; especially, the science that seeks to adopt work or working conditions to suit the worker. Here, the process of the five-fold involves a ministry of relating and re-relating the saints in the work of the ministry, through D.R.A.F.T. {Dependability, Responsibility, Availability, Flexibility, Teachability}. But Tim, what exactly is the work of the ministry?

The term "ministry" in Ephesians 4:12 is derived from a Greek word "Diakonia" meaning "attendance, aid, and relief." Diakonia implies the service or the work of a "Diakonos" or deacon. Whether it is diakonia {attendance, aid, relief}, diakonos {deacon, attendant, waiter on tables or menial tasks}, diakeneo {verb form} {to be an attendant, wait upon}, or diako {to hasten after, pursue, or to run on errands}, it all contributes to a most needed and distinguished quality in ministry called serving.

The one chief purpose for the ascension ministries is to develop within the saints the character to serve {as a deacon}, to develop leadership by view of serving, even in menial tasks. Now I know that a number of eyebrows have been raised, to think that one is receiving the call to serve. Why, aren't we supposed to be trained in a new dynamic dimension of ministry that will show marvelous evidence that we are truly called into the five-fold ministry? Shouldn't I become ordained or something now that I have been perfected and matured through the ascension gift ministries?

Questions, questions, and a whole lot of questions.

The ascension ministries instill a divine commitment and challenge within the saints to rule through serving. In fact, it places a premium on developing right character and manhood before ministry, something Jesus had 30 years before public ministry.

The ascension ministries motivate and steer our heart towards a sound godly approach to the work of the ministry, imparting a measure of who Christ is, what these ministries are given for, and acknowledging in some degree our purpose, place, and potential in the earth.

The ascension ministries helps you to run on errands, yes, to serve in menial tasks. For whether you are a prophet or an apostle, when you become a part of a new ministry, you may not be a novice to the work of the ministry in general, but you become one in another sense to the new ministry you have become a part of. Whether it is a local church, a network, or some apostolic team ministry {ATM}, you are being proven, fitted, and processed to work in this new capacity, although the concept of ministry is not necessarily new too you.

If you are currently functioning in some dynamic sphere of ascension gift grace, or whether you aspire to become something awesome in the five-fold dimension, the character of service is imparted to balance our motivation, methods, and mentalities toward the work of the ministry, and not to view the five-fold as a bunch of glory boys or glamour girls.

For a prophet {or budding prophet} can learn quite a lot through the character of serving, even while asked momentarily to serve in areas not well recognized for public prophetic display. The same with an apostle who is new to another work, as he or she is becoming adjusted to their new environment. {The same with any ascension gift or saints in general}

Once you are born again and Spirit filled, it is important to to reach and fulfill your potential and given purpose in the body. But as you are processed for your purpose, it will develop preparation before presentation, serving before being seen, hearing before being heard. It will ignite within you the glorious unfolding of the character of Christ within, for each ascension ministry is Christ multiplied, Christ realized, Christ amplified.


  • All 5-fold may shepherd, but a pastor has been given a special grace there to serve.
  • All 5-fold are elders, {implies character, manhood to ministry, a ruling function
  • All 5-fold are governmental, but the apostle carried a special grace here to serve
  • All 5-fold may prophesy, but the prophet has a special grace to serve here
  • All 5-fold may teach, but the ascension ministry teacher is graced to serve here
  • All 5-fold may evangelize, but the evangelist is specifically graced in this area
  • All 5-fold are equal in esteem, worth, and value, but not in anointing and ability
  • All 5-fold are given to the entire body of Christ, and serve the local church

False Five-fold Ministry

The false five-fold ministry is recorded in the gospel of John chapter 10. It is a striking contrast from the Good Shepherd, and are noted in the following...

False 5-fold steals, kills, destroys...

  1. Thief {steals cleverly, sneaky}
  2. Robber {violently takes by force and constraint}
  3. Stranger {foreign voice that know not the sheep}
  4. Hireling {cares for the $$$, not for the sheep, leaves sheep}
  5. Wolf {scatters the sheep, devours the sheep}

Another look at the false five-fold from Isaiah 14:12-15 {The 5 I's - I trouble}of the Self-Willed Life {the Idolatrous self, the ultimate I, me, myself, and I, period}

  1. I will ascend into heaven - opposes the prophet and it's revelatory source
  2. I will exalt my throne above the stars of God - opposes the apostle, gov't of God
  3. I will sit upon the mount of the congregation {place of control} - opposes pastors
  4. I will ascend into the heights of the clouds...opposes far reaching evangelist
  5. I will be like the most high - opposes the teacher come from God {John 3:2}


According to 1st Corinthians 1:27-28, God sees potential in us, even in the most loathsome conditions of frail man. For in these two verses, the Lord has chosen and elected {pre-destiny}an emerging company of a five-fold kind...

  1. God has chosen the Foolish Things of the world to confound the wise...
  2. God has chosen the Weak Things of the world to confound the mighty...
  3. God has chosen the Base Things of this world {He's been in the basement}
  4. God has chosen the Despised Things of this world {God so loved}
  5. God has chosen the things that are Not, or is Nothing in this world...

All of these are important to the mind of God, regardless of their personal condition. Whether they have never preached on a pulpit or have never seen one, God has ordained a people unto himself when the religious system rejected them. God the Father has purposed a people from all stocks of life for his intended purpose.

So, whether you measure up or not to the expectations of men, or the lavish appeal that some have turned the five-fold into, rest assure, God has not forgotten you in the global scheme of things. Whether it is important to you to consider a functioning place in the five-fold ministry, or a deep desire to grow under the loving grace of the five-fold ministry, you have a relevantly important place, purpose, and potential in Christ. it does not matter at all if you are never tagged, titled, and licensed by some to be a minister of the gospel. For the moment you become joined through the oneness of Christ, you become a minister {servant, service, attendant, aid, etc.} in the body of Christ, far from the massive appeal of the clergy-laity system. You are just as much a part of the body of Christ as the person pioneering hundreds of churches overseas. You are very much esteemed and valued by the Lord as any other. For your purpose, place, and potential is making room for promotion, prosperity, and posterity. You are given through Christ with a meaningful purpose, regardless of education, lack of finances, or personal hardships. You are his, his minister, his servant, his loving grace to the body, without ever having to be deemed as five-fold. You're simply his!

As we stop, please take note of the 6 "R's of the five-fold ministry. We developed these over the years from our Global School of Ministry, and would like to encourage you in receiving and releasing the five-fold ministry into your life.

  1. Revelation of the five-fold ministry - 1 Corinthians 2:10; Galatians 1:12; Ephesians 3:3; Daniel 2:29; Amos 3:7; 2 Peter 1:12; 1 John 2:7-8
  2. Restoration of the five-fold ministry - Acts 3:21; Ephesians 4:13; Philippians 1:6; 1 Corinthians 15:25; James 5:7
  3. Recognition of the five-fold ministry - 1 Samuel 10:5; 1 Kings 17:24; John 4:19
  4. Receiving of the five-fold ministry - Matthew 10:40-41
  5. Releasing of the five-fold ministry - Deuteronomy 15:1-2; Isaiah 61:1-4; Psalms 133;1-3
  6. Reward of the five-fold ministry - Matthew 10:41-42; Hebrews 10:35; 1 Timothy 5:18; 2 John verse 8; Hebrews 11:6; Revelation 22:12

Tim and Theresa Early
FAP International

Life On The Cutting-Edge

by Pastor John Kempf

The Progressively Advancing, Pioneering Life of the Believer Life On The Cutting-Edge A dynamic and biblical way of living

Meditate upon these things; give thyself wholly to them; that thy profiting may appear to all. 1 Timothy 4:15

The Apostle Paul ardently admonished Timothy to totally commit himself to diligently and relentlessly giving first place, the utmost priority to practicing, cultivating, and mediating on the sacred things of God (1 Timothy 4:8, 4:13. Cf. 2 Timothy 2:15). The predictable outcome of such consecration would be Timothy's profiting, which would become obviously and irrefutably apparent to everyone around him (1 Timothy 4:15).

In 1 Timothy 4:15, the word 'profiting' is prokope (Strong's #4297). This is a powerfully relevant word, it warrants careful consideration.

Prokope means to cut forward, to blaze the way, to make a pioneering advance. Prokope refers to a blow that moves foward, i.e. furtherance (Wuest Word Studies in the Greek New Testament, Volumen II, page 76; St. Paul's Epistles, by R.C.H. Lenski, page 648; Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Tesament Words, page 901 and 478).

Summarily, it is time for the church to deliver the necessary blows against the kingdom of darkness that open door for foward progress. It is time for the body of Christ to forcefully and powerfully blaze the way, pioneering foward advancemet. Which brings up another aspect of 1 Timothy 4:15.

As Timothy fervently consecrated himself to a holy and passionate pursuit of godliness (1 Timothy 4:8), ensuring that his lifestlye was congruent with his own preaching-meaning he was not a hyprocrite (1 Timothy 4:12), as he delved deeply into scripture learning from and conforming to its sound doctrines (1 Timothy 4:13), and as he paid particular attention to the Holy Spirit and His giftings (1 Timothy 4:14), Timothy would have a conspicuously powerful lifestyle. What does all of that mean to us today?

The sanctified lifestyle of the New Testament believer blazes the ways, it strikes forceful and effective blows at impedements and obstacles thereby demolishing those things standing in the way of forward momentum and progress in both spiritual and natural life (Mark 11:23). Such a lifestyle pioneers advancement for others that observe it, also leading them into new, deeper, higher, more profoundly meaningful and gratifiying dimensions of spiritual and temporal life (1 Timothy 4:15).

Accordingly, through the anointing of the Holy Spirit, redeemed men are supposed to flesh out an entirely new normative standard of living that the unsaved percieve is superior to theirs.

For, in the Holy Ghost anointed and energized life, the spirit of poverty-lack, insufficiency, deficit-is erradicated, genuine and lasting emotional and psychological healing prevails, the shackles of every form and expression of captivity are broken, spiritual sight-the capacity to see and comprehend things spiritual is restored, and in every other arena of life the redemptive power of God makes all things new (Isaiah 10:27, Luke 4:18, 2 Corinthians 5:17).

This is where the church is supposed to be, this is the standard, lets raise the banner and go forward with it!

To be continued....

In His service and yours,
Pastor John

Sword Of The Spirit International

When Christ is Formed In Us

Pastor Francis Frangipane

The intercessory prayer of the Apostle Paul was not just a prayer for protection or for a few blessings to rest upon the saints. He said, "My children, with whom I am again in labor until Christ is formed in you" (Gal 4:19). Paul was "in labor" to bring forth the actual spirit of Christ within the church. Let me say it again: his goal was Christ, not merely Christianity!

Any mother can relate to the focused intensity of labor pains. This was how the apostle prayed for the church, as though he were giving spiritual birth and would continue to be in labor until the person, power and nature of Christ Jesus Himself was functionally formed in the disciples.

We know "theologically" that Jesus is within us. But has He taken over our form? It is one thing to accept Him as our source of help in time of need; quite another dimension to have Him dwell in us as God in His earthly temple.

We must realize that Jesus wants more control over us than an occasional thank-you during life or merely the right to our souls at death. Our Lord desires to be FORMED in us--take our form and be manifested through us. We are to literally, substantially and physically become Jesus' body upon the earth.

Jesus said, "Truly, truly, I say to you, he who believes in Me, the works that I do shall he do also; and greater works than these shall he do; because I go to the Father" (Jn 14:12).

It is one thing to have faith in Jesus; it is quite another thing to have the faith of Jesus, where He expresses His assurance of the miraculous through us! It is marvelous when we share with Him isolated moments of loving fellowship, but it is something else when His love, after conquering us, conquers and liberates our world around us!

We must perceive the awesome connection, the flow of power, the oneness Jesus came to establish between Himself and His body. Though He is not on earth in His own earthly body, He is on earth in our bodies! There is no separation between Jesus and His believing church! (See Rom 8:38-39)

A Body God Has Prepared

In the tenth chapter of Hebrews we see again, in principle, this reality: "Therefore, when He comes into the world, He says, 'Sacrifice and offering Thou hast not desired, but a body thou hast prepared for Me; in whole burnt offerings and sacrifices for sin Thou hast taken no pleasure.' Then I said, 'Behold, I have come (in the roll of the book it is written of Me) to do Thy will, O God'" (Heb 10:5-7).

When the Spirit of Christ comes into the world, He comes not just to exchange an old religion for a new one. Rather, He comes to inhabit, actually take the form of man, and "to do God's will" within us!

We have been "set apart" by God not just to become good people, but to have Christ's love, His faith and His power revealed through us. Paul urged us to be "transformed by the renewing of your mind" (Rom 12:2). Mark's gospel tells us that Jesus "...appeared in a different form" to two disciples. (See Mk 16:12) It is not unlike Jesus to take a different form. Jesus took over Paul's form, Peter's form, John's form--His disciples lost the limitations of who they were prior to Christ's indwelling them. Yes, each retained his unique personality, appearance and history, but even there the influence and fulness of Christ could be seen. They actually became His body, His temple, His bride, His branches the very extensions of Himself in the earth!

Jesus wants to take over our form as well. He wants to give us a new identity in Him. This is what Paul meant when he wrote, "I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God" (Gal 2:20).

From the moment you were saved, another Person, Christ Jesus Himself, entered your life! The objective of Christianity is not merely to get you to stop smoking and going to clubs, but to fill your life with Jesus! This is why Paul's concern was not simply a prayer for the Galatians' physical or financial well-being. He knew God's plans were for Christ to come forth in them. Paul was in labor, travail, to give birth to Christ in the church.

At the same time, it was not really Paul who was in labor, but Christ within Paul who desired to come forth in the Galatians. For too long we have looked to men to guide us, but as Jesus is truly formed in His people, we will not look to mere men for constant care and guidance. For Jesus Himself wants to empower us and lead us on into His glory.

This must be the goal and prayer of every church leader: to see Christ take over the church. We must go beyond possessing doctrines about Jesus and become a dwelling place for Jesus. We must not cease our pursuit until Christ is formed in us.

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