Now Open: The New Temple of God By Keith Giles

The reason the New Testament church didn’t have buildings? They WERE the building.

The reason the New Testament church didn’t pay their elders, shepherds and overseers? Because you don’t pay your family members to love you or care for you.

The reason the New Testament church didn’t have any blood sacrifice (as every other religion around them did)? Because not only was Jesus the first and ultimate sacrifice, but this new temple, the new priesthood (that’s us) also became the living sacrifices as well (see Romans 12).

So, fast forward 300 years and a Roman Emperor establishes a new way of doing church. He gives them buildings. He pays their leaders. This was a new addition. It had not been practiced until Constantine instituted it.

Fast forward another 400 years: The Church starts to require a tithe from their members. Before this only free will offerings were given.

Fast forward to our day and time: We’re still paying our leaders and building temples to worship in.

I would submit that Jesus had a plan in mind for His Church. He communicated that plan eloquently. He modelled the leadership structure He expected. He knelt down and washed their feet. He told them to do the same to one another. He warned them not to “lord it over” their brothers or to call one another “Father” because they were all brothers and equals in the eyes of God.

The Family of God has one Father. His name is God. The Body of Christ has one head. His name is Jesus.

For over 700 years the church of Jesus took no tithes. All of the money freely given was collected and spent on the poor and the orphan and the widow.

That is New Testament Christianity. If you want to practice something else, something “new and improved” feel right at home. That’s between you and the Lord.

But, as for me and my house, we will follow the New Testament and seek to “Be the Church” that Jesus commanded his disciples to be, by the Grace of God.

If you want to study the subject you will quickly see that the New Testament knows nothing of hierarchy. Plenty of Biblical scholars from all backgrounds and denominations agree on this point…even Catholic scholars! The NT church was not a hierarchy, it was a family.

We are not a franchise or a business, we are an organism that lovingly reciprocates mutual edification and love to anyone who is in Christ, regardless of differences in doctrine or eschatology.

If you want to be a leader in this Church, start serving people. Keep doing that until others around start to serve as you are serving and then you will know that you are leading people to be like Jesus. Remember to teach them how to pass along these things to others.

We are disciples of Jesus. We are called to make disciples who also turn around and make disciples who then make disciples.

The awesome Spirit of the Living God lives within each and every one of us. We are all capable of hearing the voice of the Good Shepherd and He is capable of making His voice heard if we will listen.

We are the temple. We are the priesthood. We are the living sacrifice.

We are the Church.

Keith Giles is the author of “This Is My Body:Ekklesia as God Intended” which is available as a free e-book download at www.WeAreTheTemple.com.

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