In this lesson we
will be studying the importance of hooking up with a local Church, a local Pastor, the Office of
the Prophet and anyone else the Lord directs you to in order to
prosper. It is impossible to prosper supernaturally without hooking
up with God’s New Testament order of government and anyone else He assigns
My Pastor, Dr. Lester Sumrall, was often heard to say, “The
first log to roll away from the fire is the first log to cool off and burn
out. The first banana to be pulled from the bunch is the first banana
to be peeled.” Boy, was he ever right.
“And he gave some, apostles; and some,
prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the
perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of
the body of Christ: … the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by
that which every joint supplieth, according to
the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh
increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.” (Ephesians
God gave what is known as the “Five-Fold
Ministry Offices” to the Body of Christ for a reason. He gave the Evangelist to bring the people of the
world into the Kingdom. He gave the Pastor, Prophet, Apostle and Teacher to get the world out of the
people of the Kingdom.
Everyone has a place and everyone needs to
know where their place is in order to prosper.
In the above verse where Paul said, “The
whole body fitly joined together,” he actually said, in the original Greek,
“Being close jointed and driven, compacted together.”
certain individuals together with other individuals and groups within the
Body of Christ in order to increase us as a whole. It is God Who
decides who will be connected to whom. Not you and not me.
Alone Sets the Members Specifically in His Body
“But now hath God
set the members every one of them in the body, as it hath pleased him.” (1
The Message Bible says, “…God has carefully
placed each part of the body right where He wanted it.”
No one gets to pick and choose where they
are going to attend Church and who their Pastor is going to be. That is the job of the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit places us where the Father tells Him to place us, in
certain Churches, under certain Pastor/Teachers and even Prophets.
agree that everyone has to have a Pastor who has been set over them by the
Spirit of God. I also believe that everyone would prosper
tremendously by also submitting to the Office of the Prophet. God
assigns us where He wants us in order to bring us to a place of spiritual
and financial strength. This way, collectively, we can reach the more
than 3 billion people who have been unreached
with the message of Christ.
Any time a silly goose gets rebellious, breaking from the local Church
and Pastor or Prophet whom God has joined them to, they just hired a short
order cook. They just hired Satan to cook their goose in very short
order. They just became the Prodigal Son. They just broke
Covenant relationship with the Father forming a covetous relationship with
Satan based on self-will and pride. The end result is going broke and
nearly starving to death like the Prodigal in the Bible. Unless, of
course, they repent and go home, like the Prodigal in the
Unhooking from your God-ordained
relationship with Spiritual authorities, without specific permission, will
drive you into poverty. This is what happened to Lot in the
Bible. His natural father died. His Uncle Abraham took him in
as his own son. Abraham trained Lot and helped him to
develop flocks, herds and tremendous wealth of his own. So much so
that there came a grass and a water crisis within the family. This
resulted in strife between Abraham’s shepherds and Lot’s shepherds.
Abraham knew the importance of staying out of strife in order to
prosper. This is what he said to Lot.
“…Let there be no strife I pray thee
between thee and me … separate thyself, I pray thee, from me: If thou wilt
take the left hand, then I will go to the right …” (Genesis 13:8-9)
Notice that Abraham told Lot to “separate”
himself from his uncle. He was telling him to “spread out.” He
explained to Lot that there was plenty of grazing area for
both of them to prosper. All he needed to do to solve the problem was
to spread out a little bit. He did not tell him to break off
relationship. He simply told him to spread out a little bit. Lot took it too
far. He took offense. He packed up and left.
“Then Lot chose him all the
plain of Jordan; and Lot journeyed east;
and they separated themselves the one from the other. Abraham dwelled
in the land of Canaan, and Lot dwelled in the
cities of the plain, and pitched his tent toward Sodom. But the men
of Sodom were wicked and
sinners before the Lord exceedingly.” (Genesis 13:11-13)
Lot took what Abraham
said way, way out of context. This was a very big mistake. He
was not to disconnect from his uncle and connect with the immorality of Sodom. He was only
supposed to spread out to break the power of strife. What Lot should have done
was approach his uncle humbly and in
wisdom, saying something like the following. “Uncle Abraham, I’m not going
anywhere. You are my Divine connection. I would have nothing if
it were not for you and your Jehovah. I’d be a beggar today had you
not instructed and loved me. Here’s what I’m going to do. I’m
going up to the corner and I’m hanging up a sign that says, ‘Sheep for Sale. Lots of
them. Real Cheap.’ Then I’m going to take that money and I’m going to
release all my shepherds with 7 years severance pay. I also want to
ask you to forgive me for the strife between our herdsmen. I just
know it’s got to be my fault. It’s just a simple matter of poor
management on my part. I am not going anywhere. You’re my
supply line, my Divine connection. Without you, I’ll dry up out
here. I’ll end up backslidden and losing my family, too.”
But Lot was dull, like too
many Christians today. He loaded up the moving van and headed for SinCity. He broke
his Covenant relationship with Abraham, cut off his supply line and lost
his mate and his wealth. He became a cave man, living in fear of
everything and everyone.
“And Lot went up out of Zoar, and dwelt in the mountain,
and his two daughters with him; for he feared to dwell in Zoar: and he dwelt in a cave, he and his two
daughters.” (Genesis 19:30)
This is what too many baby Believers still
do today. They get offended at the Pastor for telling them the truth
and they go AWOL (absent without official leave). They start jumping
from Church to Church, looking for someone to tell them only what they want
to hear. They end up placing themselves back under the curse of the Law of Sin and Death and
end up losing everything just like Lot.
Nobody gets to decide where to go to Church
or when to change Churches. God sets the members in the Body where it
pleases Him. (1Corinthians ) It is time
for some people who are reading this study to go home. Go back and ask your Pastor to forgive you for leaving. Just
tell him you missed it, that you’ve grown and he will forgive you. It
will just be a short while before he promotes you, realizing that you
really are a person of conscience and integrity, after all.
Even when it is tough, it is important to
stay where God places us. Do not run when the Pastor
corrects you. Do not run when someone falsely accuses you
or even falsely accuses your Pastor. Do not go AWOL without God’s
permission. Endure hardship right where you are, God is strengthening
you to it for His purpose. (2Timothy 2:3; Isaiah 41:10 Amplified
God wants to prosper you right where you are. If
Almighty God cannot trust you to stay in one appointed place while He is
getting you out of debt and meeting your needs, He knows the following.
He cannot trust you to stay in one appointed place if He prospers you with
supernatural wealth and riches. You will take the money and run.
God wants to show you favor right where you
are. Hang tough even when things are not to your liking, and God will
show you favor. He will introduce you to individuals who He wants to
use to help you.
We will see how this works in part two of this lesson.