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"If you have not chosen the Kingdom of God, it will make in the end no difference what you have chosen instead" 
CS Lewis

 Apostolic Order 

  Apostolic Order

THEOCRACY (Thee ah' kra kee) Term not found in the Hebrew Bible, yet descriptive of a type of government in which Yahweh was king over Israel. In Israel, Yahweh was viewed as the sole Sovereign from which other authorities derived legitimacy.

A.  It’s His Church - it belongs to Him

Eph 5:25  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;
Acts 20:28  Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers, to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
Mat 16:18  And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it.

B.  He is the Head of the Church

Eph 1:22 -  Eph 1:23  And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be the head over all things to the church, Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.

C.  Apostolic Order - the order of first things first

1 Cor 11:33  - 1 Cor 11:34  Wherefore, my brethren, when ye come together to eat, tarry one for another.  And if any man hunger, let him eat at home; that ye come not together unto condemnation. And the rest will I set in order when I come.

·        set in order    -  1299. diatasso, from G1223 and G5021;  to arrange thoroughly, i.e. (spec.) institute, prescribe 

Col 2:5
  For though I be absent in the flesh, yet am I with you in the spirit, joying and beholding your order, and the stedfastness of your faith in Christ.

·        order  - 5010. Taxis, tax'-is; from g5021 regular arrangement, i.e. (in time) fixed succession (of rank or character), official dignity

Titus 1:5
  For this cause left I thee in Crete, that thou shouldest set in order the things that are wanting, and ordain elders in every city, as I had appointed thee:

·        order   -   1930. epidiorthoo  from G1909 and a der. of G3717   to straighten further, i.e. (fig.) arrange additionally

1909. epi, ep-ee'; a prim. prep. prop. mean. superimposition (of time, place, order, etc.), as a relation of distribution [with the gen.], i.e. over, upon, etc
3717. orthos, or-thos'; prob. from the base of G3735; right (as rising), i.e. (perpendicularly) erect (fig. honest), or (horizontally) level or direct

1Th 3:10*  Night and day praying exceedingly that we might see your face, and might perfect that which is lacking in your faith?

Ro 1:11*  For I long to see you, that I may impart unto you some spiritual gift, to the end ye may be established;

Isa 9:6 - 7  For unto us a child is born, unto us a son is given: and the government shall be upon his shoulder: and his name shall be called Wonderful, Counsellor, The mighty God, The everlasting Father, The Prince of Peace.  Of the increase of his government and peace there shall be no end, upon the throne of David, and upon his kingdom, to order it, and to establish it with judgment and with justice from henceforth even for ever. The zeal of the LORD of hosts will perform this.


D.  What is “Order”

2. a . A condition of methodical or prescribed arrangement among component parts such that proper functioning or appearance is achieved

a . The established system of social organization:

b . A condition in which freedom from disorder or disruption is maintained through respect for established authority:

·        Order   -   3559. kuwn, to be erect (i.e. stand perpendicular); hence (causat.) to set up, in a great variety of applications, whether lit. (establish, fix, prepare, apply), or fig. (appoint, render sure, proper or prosperous)

·        establish   -  5582. ca'ad, saw-ad'  to support (mostly fig.):--comfort, establish, hold up, refresh self, strengthen, be upholden.

·        judgment   -   4941. mishpat, mish-pawt'; from H8199                            a verdict (favorable or unfavorable) pronounced judicially, espec. a sentence or formal decree (human or [partic.] divine law, individual or collect

·        justice   -   6666. Tsedaqah from H6663;  rightness, subj. (rectitude), obj. (justice), mor. (virtue) or fig. (prosperity)

·        6663. tsadaq  prim. root; to be (causat. make) right


I.  Order in the Godhead

A.  The Father

1 Cor 11:3 But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.

1 Cor 15:27 - 1 Cor 15:28  For he hath put all things under his feet. But when he saith all things are put under him, it is manifest that he is excepted, which did put all things under him.

And when all things shall be subdued unto him, then shall the Son also himself be subject unto him that put all things under him, that God may be all in all.

B.  The Son

1 Cor 3:23    And ye are Christ's; and Christ is God's. 

Mat 28:18   And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.

John 5:30   I can of mine own self do nothing: as I hear, I judge: and my judgment is just; because I seek not mine own will, but the will of the Father which hath sent me.

Psa 110:4   The LORD hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.

C.  Holy Ghost

John 14:26  But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.

John 15:26  But when the Comforter is come, whom I will send unto you from the Father, even the Spirit of truth, which proceedeth from the Father, he shall testify of me:

John 16:13 - John 16:15 13Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, that shall he speak: and he will show you things to come. 14He shall glorify me: for he shall receive of mine, and shall show it unto you. 15All things that the Father hath are mine: therefore said I, that he shall take of mine, and shall show it unto you.


II.  Order in Creation

Gen 1:1 -  Gen 1:2 

 In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.  And the earth was without form, and void; and darkness was upon the face of the deep. And the Spirit of God moved upon the face of the waters.

·        form  -   8414. tohuw, to'-hoo; to lie waste; a desolation (of surface), i.e. desert; fig. a worthless thing; adv. in vain:--confusion, empty place

·        void    -    922. bohuw, bo-hoo; (mean. to be empty); a vacuity, i.e. (superficially) an undistinguishable ruin:--emptiness, void.

Gen 1:3 -  Gen 1:4

 And God said, Let there be light: and there was light.  And God saw the light, that it was good: and God divided the light from the darkness.

·        divided   -   914. Badal  to divide (in var. senses lit. or fig., separate, distinguish, differ, select, etc.):--(make, put) difference, divide


III.  Order in the Family

Genesis 2:18 - 25 (KJV) And the LORD God said, It is not good that the man should be alone; I will make him an help meet for him.  19And out of the ground the LORD God formed every beast of the field, and every fowl of the air; and brought them unto Adam to see what he would call them: and whatsoever Adam called every living creature, that was the name thereof.  20And Adam gave names to all cattle, and to the fowl of the air, and to every beast of the field; but for Adam there was not found an help meet for him. 21And the LORD God caused a deep sleep to fall upon Adam, and he slept: and he took one of his ribs, and closed up the flesh instead thereof;  22And the rib, which the LORD God had taken from man, made he a woman, and brought her unto the man.  23And Adam said, This is now bone of my bones, and flesh of my flesh: she shall be called Woman, because she was taken out of Man.  24Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh.  25And they were both naked, the man and his wife, and were not ashamed.

1 Cor 11:3  But I would have you know, that the head of every man is Christ; and the head of the woman is the man; and the head of Christ is God.


Ephesians 5:25 – 5:33 (KJV) 25Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;  26That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,  27That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot, or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.  28So ought men to love their wives as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife loveth himself.  29For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:  30For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.  31For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.  32This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.  33Nevertheless let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself; and the wife see that she reverence her husband.

Colossians 3:19 (KJV) 19Husbands, love your wives, and be not bitter against them. 

1 Peter 3:7 (KJV) 7Likewise, ye husbands, dwell with them according to knowledge, giving honour unto the wife, as unto the weaker vessel, and as being heirs together of the grace of life; that your prayers be not hindered. 

1 Corinthians 7:3 - 5 (KJV)
3Let the husband render unto the wife due benevolence: and likewise also the wife unto the husband.  4The wife hath not power of her own body, but the husband: and likewise also the husband hath not power of his own body, but the wife.  5Defraud ye not one the other, except it be with consent for a time, that ye may give yourselves to fasting and prayer; and come together again, that Satan tempt you not for your incontinency.  

1 Corinthians 7:3 - 5 (TMNT)  The marriage bed must be a place of mutuality—the husband seeking to satisfy his wife, the wife seeking to satisfy her husband. 4Marriage is not a place to “stand up for your rights.” Marriage is a decision to serve the other, whether in bed or out5Abstaining from sex is permissible for a period of time if you both agree to it, and if it’s for the purposes of prayer and fasting—but only for such times. Then come back together again. Satan has an ingenious way of tempting us when we least expect it.


Colossians 3:21 (KJV) 21Fathers, provoke not your children to anger, lest they be discouraged.
Ephesians 6:4 (KJV) 4And, ye fathers, provoke not your children to wrath: but bring them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord. 

Ephesians 5:22 - 25 (KJV)   Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as unto the Lord.  23For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the savior of the body.  24Therefore as the church is subject unto Christ, so let the wives be to their own husbands in every thing. 

Colossians 3:18 (KJV)  Wives, submit yourselves unto your own husbands, as it is fit in the Lord. 

1 Peter 3:1 - 2 (KJV) Likewise, ye wives, be in subjection to your own husbands; that, if any obey not the word, they also may without the word be won by the conversation of the wives;  2While they behold your chaste conversation coupled with fear. 


Ephesians 6:1 - Eph 6:3 Children, obey your parents in the Lord: for this is right.  Honour thy father and mother; which is the first commandment with promise;  That it may be well with thee, and thou mayest live long on the earth.

Colossians 3:20 (KJV) Children, obey your parents in all things: for this is well pleasing unto the Lord. 

IV.  Order in the Church

·     The Church and the Work

Acts 13:1 - Acts 13:3

Now there were in the church that was at Antioch certain prophets and teachers; as Barnabas, and Simeon that was called Niger, and Lucius of Cyrene, and Manaen, which had been brought up with Herod the tetrarch, and Saul.

As they ministered to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them

And when they had fasted and prayed, and laid their hands on them, they sent them away.

The Five-fold Ministry  (Doma Gifts)

Eph 4:10  - 11  He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.)  And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers;

A.  Apostle

·     Definition - 652. apostolos; from G649; a delegate; spec. an ambassador of the Gospel; officially a commissioner of Christ ["apostle"] (with miraculous powers):--apostle, messenger, he that is sent.

·        649. apostello, ap-os-tel'-lo; from G575 and G4724; set apart, i.e. (by impl.) to send out (prop. on a mission) lit. or fig
Two Kinds of Apostles

1Co 3:6* -  11*  I have planted, Apollos watered; but God gave the increase.  So then neither is he that planteth any thing, neither he that watereth; but God that giveth the increase.   Now he that planteth and he that watereth are one: and every man shall receive his own reward according to his own labour.  For we are labourers together with God: ye are God's husbandry, ye are God's building.   According to the grace of God which is given unto me, as a wise masterbuilder, I have laid the foundation, and another buildeth thereon. But let every man take heed how he buildeth thereupon.   For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

B.  Prophet

·     Definition - 4396. prophetes, from a comp. of G4253 and G5346; a foreteller ("prophet"); by anal. an inspired speaker

C.  Evangelist

·     Definition - 2099. euaggelistes, from G2097;  a preacher of the gospel

·        2097. euaggelizo, yoo-ang-ghel-id'-zo ); from G2095 and G32; to announce good news ("evangelize") espec. the gospel

D.  Pastor

·        Definition - 4166. poimen,   a shepherd

·     vines  -   "a shepherd, one who tends herds or flocks" (not merely one who feeds them), is used metaphorically of Christian "pastors," Eph. 4:11. "Pastors" guide as well as feed the flock; cp. Acts 20:28, which, with ver. 17, indicates that this was the service committed to elders (overseers or bishops); so also in 1 Pet. 5:1, 2, "tend the flock ... exercising the oversight," (rv); this involves tender care and vigilant superintendence.

E.  Teacher

·     Definition - 1320. didaskalos, from G1321;  an instructor

·        1321. didasko, did-as'-ko; a prol. (caus.) form of a prim. verb  dao (to learn); to teach

The Local Church


·        Vines   - presbuteros  -   (3) in the Christian churches, those who, being raised up and qualified by the work of the Holy Spirit, were appointed to have the spiritual care of, and to exercise oversight over, the churches. To these the term "bishops," episkopoi, or "overseers," is applied (see Acts 20, ver. 17 with ver. 28, and Titus 1:5,7), the latter term indicating the nature of their work, presbuteroi their maturity of spirtual experience. The Divine arrangement seen throughout the (nt) was for a plurality of these to be appointed in each church, Acts 14:23; 20:17; Phil. 1:1; 1 Tim. 5:17; Titus 1:5. The duty of "elders" is described by the verb episkopeo. They were appointed according as they had given evidence of fulfilling the Divine qualifications, Titus 1:6-9; cp. 1 Tim. 3:1-7; 1 Pet. 5:2;
·     Vines  -  episkopos  - lit., "an overseer" (epi, "over," skopeo, "to look or watch"), whence Eng. "bishop," which has precisely the same meaning, is found in Acts 20:28; Phil. 1:1; 1 Tim. 3:2; Titus 1:7; 1 Pet. 2:25. See OVERSEER.
·        Presbuteros  -    "an elder," is another term for the same person as bishop or overseer. See Acts 20:17 with verse Acts 20:28. The term "elder" indicates the mature spiritual experience and understanding of those so described; the term "bishop," or "overseer," indicates the character of the work undertaken. According to the Divine will and appointment, as in the (nt), there were to be "bishops" in every local church, Acts 14:23; 20:17; Phil. 1:1; Titus 1:5; Jas. 5:14. Where the singular is used, the passage is describing what a "bishop" should be, 1 Tim. 3:2; Titus 1:7. Christ Himself is spoken of as "the ... Bishop of our souls," 1 Pet. 2:25


·        vines  -   diakonos (Eng., "deacon"), primarily denotes a "servant," whether as doing servile work, or as an attendant rendering free service, without particular reference to its character. The word is probably connected with the verb dioko, "to hasten after, pursue" (perhaps originally said of a runner). "It occurs in the (nt) of domestic servants, John 2:5,9
·        Diakonos is, generally speaking, to be distinguished from doulos, "a bondservant, slave;" diakonos views a servant in relationship to his work; doulos views him in relationship to his master. 
·        Note: As to synonymous terms, leitourgos denotes "one who performs public duties;" misthios and misthotos, "a hired servant;" oiketes, "a household servant;" huperetes, "a subordinate official waiting on his superior" (originally an under-rower in a war-galley); therapon, "one whose service is that of freedom and dignity."


·        vines  -   kubernesis - from kubernao, "to guide" (whence Eng., "govern"), denotes (a) "steering, pilotage;" (b) metaphorically, "governments or governings," said of those who act as guides in a local church, 1 Cor. 12:28. Cp. kubernetes, "a pilot," Acts 27:11; Rev. 18:17.


·        vines  -   antilepsis  -  properly signifies "a laying hold of, an exchange" (anti, "in exchange," or, in its local sense, "in front," and lambano, "to take, lay hold of," so as to support); then, "a help" (akin to B, No. 1); it is mentioned in 1 Cor. 12:28, as one of the ministrations in the local church, by way of rendering assistance, perhaps especially of "help" ministered to the weak and needy.

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