After much searching since I became a Christian, I now believe that the brethren movement have the proper structure for church leadership. I’ve rejected clericalism as John Calvin brought that from his RCC background, every born again believer is a minister of reconciliation to the unsaved, and it’s not a separate caste of people calling themselves, Reverend, Vicar, The Minister, priest, clergy ect, all that has come from Catholicism thanks to Calvin and his hero Augustine who is a so called doctor of the catholic church. When I speak to Orangemen at the walks which I’ve gone to for several years now they all tell me they are Christians because some clergyman sprinkled them as a baby, so right away they were given a false hope and like me was lied to from the start so I wrote that tract to explain that water baptism was for adults who are already born again and just shows what has happened to them spiritually,. I read what the catechism says and the guy who wrote that doesn’t explain that baptising babies is unbiblical so Orangemen are confused because like Catholics they think getting sprinkled as a baby made them a Christian, Satan has misled billions by that lie, I wrote something called CALVINISM A DOCTRINAL PERSPECTIVE to explain why I reject Calvinism, and this confusion comes from Calvins love of Augustine, so Calvinism is regurgitated Augustinianism dressed up to look like “Doctrines of grace”. your brother is Christ Brendan.
The word Pastor Is used only once in the bible, In Ephesians 4:11, and the bible doesn’t say what a pastor is, the word means shepherd, and Is used for the elders of a church, for example 1 Peter 5:1-4 “The elders (Plural) who are among you, I am your fellow elder” If anyone had the right to call themselves “Pastor” It was the apostle Peter, but he calls himself elder, he then tells the elders (Plural) in verse 2 to “Shepherd the flock of God serving as overseers (plural) not by constraint but willingly, not for dishonest gain (money) vs 5 submit yourself to your elders (plural)”. The word Pastor is never mentioned once in any church, by any of the apostles, in any of their letters or instructions for church leadership, doesn’t that tell you something?, they didn’t exist in the leadership of any church what so ever, It’s always elders and deacons, the word pastor isn’t even in the concordance of my bible. God has never in his word set up church leadership with one man at the top calling himself “The Pastor” or “The teaching elder/Pastor”. Paul, Peter, John, James, Jude, none of them once refer to Pastor it’s always a plurality of elders and deacons, never one man in charge, It does not exist in the early church set up by God. More than once I’ve been told, “AH! but it’s the teaching elder” where is that in the bible?. In 1 Timothy ch3 under the heading “QUALIFICATIONS OF BISHOPS” (elders) it states in verse 2 that he “Must be blameless, must be the husband of one wife (can’t see how a woman elder can do that?) temperate, sober minded, of good behaviour, hospitable, and able to teach”. So If he can’t teach he shouldn’t be an elder in the first place. In vs 3 It warns “Not greedy for money and not covetous” / wanting paid. It should be noted that every time an Apostle mentions elders and the responsibility of elders they warn about money / covetousness, vs 6 “Not a novice, lest being puffed up with pride he falls into the same condemnation as the Devil” or says oxymoron’s like “I’m first among equals”, vs 8 “Likewise deacons,,,,must not be greedy for money, money keeps getting mentioned. When I mentioned that to a so called Pastor from the U.S. about 20 years ago he E-mailed me and Quoted 1 Timothy 5:18 “For the scripture says you shall not muzzle the ox when it treads out the grain and the labourer is worthy of his wages”. I E-mailed him back to say “Why didn’t you mention the verse before that vs 17 as It’s all part of the same statement by Paul?” vs 17 “Let the ELDERS who rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially those who labour in the word and doctrine” Paul is addressing the ELDERS here not any Pastor, so should we pay the elders? and why If I was an elder would I want paid?. Paul has already stated that “As each one has his gift employ it in serving one another”, the last thing I would think of when serving the Lord is “How much money do I get for this?” that’s unthinkable. One day the church is going to appear at the Bema Seat of Christ, not to be judged as our sins were judged on the cross, but the Bema in 1 Corinthians 3:13-15 is to give rewards as to how we served him as believers, so If I got paid on earth for anything I did for the Lord how could he reward me?, should we be paid twice?, a wage on earth and often a lovely house and then rewarded in heaven?, couldn’t the Lord say “You have already been paid for being a Pastor and what little you done for me, and something I never commanded or set up in church leadership?”that could never happen, It’s a privilege and an honour to serve the Lord and money takes away that honour doesn’t it?. Isn’t Paul the apostle aware of this when in acts ch 20:33 he says “I have coveted no mans Silver or Gold or apparel,” he goes onto say “Yes you yourself know that these hands have provided for my necessities and for those who were with me vs 35 I have shown in every way by labouring like this, that you must support the weak” (not any so called Pastor), he goes onto say “And remember the words of the Lord Jesus that he said “It is more blessed to give than receive”. Paul was probably the greatest apostle, he planted churches, preached, wrote, taught ,mended tents, and never once took a penny and not only that he also provided for those who were with him, all a far cry from those today who set themselves up as Pastors and want a salary, they have a cheek, and a brass neck, what Paul did is the exact opposite from what is going on today in most churches. Again in 1 Corinthians 4:12 Paul states “And we labour, working with our own hands”. 1 Corinthians ch9 Is always a chapter that people quote, when they want, or expect money for what they do for the Lord , If you read this chapter, Paul lists his rights as a minister of Gods word, first of all anyone who is saved is a minister of Gods word when he or she uses the word of God to evangelize or teach others, it’s not a professional qualification “OH! I’m ordained!!” or “OH! I’ve been to bible college,” or “OH! I am the pastor!!”. The bible says “As each one has his gift employ it in serving one another” 1 Peter 4:10, that is how we minister to others, so in vs 9 here Paul quotes Deuteronomy 25:4 “You shall not muzzle the ox when it treads out the grain”, I’ve already shown from 1 Timothy 5:18 that Paul is referring to the elders (plural), not any Pastor, Vicar, Reverend, minister, right Reverend, Priest, Pope, Cardinal, Bishop, etc. So If the “Pastor” wants paid why shouldn’t the elders? and equally?, and why would they want money when Paul or any other Apostle wouldn’t take any ones money?, after stating all his rights Paul says in verse 18 “What is the reward then? that when I preach the gospel I may present the gospel of Christ without charge, that I may not abuse my authority in the gospel” Paul worked to provide his needs and so it should be today, Paul wasn’t a burden on the church unlike today, no Apostle was. Anyone today who wants paid for anything they do are not doing it for the Lord and his glory they are doing it for the money, they are hirelings, they should hang their heads in shame. Paul was a true Pastor, a man who established a church then elders were appointed and he’d move on and establish another church that is what a Pastor done, he didn’t make a nest and say “Right if you pay me a wage then I’ll stay here”. There are a few things the Lord says he hates in the bible, so if we find something he hates it’s very important, in the book of Revelation ch2 the Lord says he hates “The deeds of the Nicolaitans” that is two words in the Greek Nico-to conquer and Laitans-the people, It’s a person who sets themselves up as a middle man between the people and God, that is clericalism and God hates it Clericalism was invented by the Catholic church, and was brought over into Christendom by that false teacher John Calvin who also taught that babies who were sprinkled with water magically entered into Gods family, that is why the CC and the church of Scotland and the free church of Scotland still believe and practice that deception, how many millions have been deceived by that? I was one of them until I got saved. Later on in ch2:15 it says the Lord hates “The doctrine of the Nicolaitans” which means that first it was a practice then through time because they got away with it they turned it into a doctrine, that was the start of clericalism as the CC morphed through time. Look at ch2 again vs 14 “But I have a few things against you, because you have there those who hold the doctrine of Balaam” what’s that?, look at 2 Peter 2:15 “Balaam the son of Beor who loved the wages of unrighteousness” I’d agree with William MacDonald in his believers bible commentary when he said that “This is preaching for hire and God hates it”. In the book of Micah ch 3:11 God judges Israel “Her heads judge for a bribe, her priests teach for pay, and her prophets divine for money, yet they lean on the Lord, and say Is the Lord not among us?, no harm can come to us?”. In Titus ch1 under the heading ORDAIN QUALIFIED ELDERS from vs 5-11 “Not greedy for money” vs11 “Not for the sake of dishonest gain”. The position of Pastor is another branch of clericalism and has no biblical foundation what so ever, the only structure God has given in his holy word for church leadership is a plurality of godly ELDERS and godly DEACONS, the simplicity of that has been changed through time as the enemy has introduced clericalism and money into the church and so corrupted what God has left us with in the bible and the example left to us by the apostles, all the ELDERS according to the bible must be able to teach so that according to Titus 1:9 “He may be able by sound doctrine, both to exhort and convict those who contradict”. If you go to the third epistle of John verse 9 we can see the rise of clericalism at the start of the church age, you will see how Satan was starting to corrupt the structure of the church from the very start, so that instead of a plurality of Godly elders and deacons we have one man who wants to be in charge vs 9 John says “I wrote to you about Diotrephes who loves to have the PREEMINENCE among them, does not receive us. Therefore, If I come, I will call to mind his deeds which he does, prating against us with malicious words, and not content with that, he himself does not receive the brethren, and forbids those who wish to, putting them out of the church”. So here we have one man threatening to put others out the church, being a dictator, and it says, Forbidding those who wish to receive the brethren. This man is controlled by pride, so is it any wonder why God structured the church with a plurality of Godly leaders? and is it any wonder then that Satan wants to do the opposite? Satan wants to put one man at the head in a church or assembly of believers in defiance of the way God has established the leadership of his people, this is the start of clericalism, something God hates, and we should hate it too. Brendan Flynn
Calvinism by Brendan Flynn
|What is a Pastor? By Brendan Flynn|