of the Holy Spirit 1
The Ministry of
Pastor John Hamel
“And God hath set
some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers,
after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments,
diversities of tongues.” (1Corinthians )
We have seen in
past lessons that the Apostle Paul makes reference to all of the Ministry
offices in three of his Epistles. (Romans 12:6-8; 1Corinthians ; Ephesians ) In our last
five lessons we used Paul’s reference in Ephesians 4:11 as a text Scripture
because it is there that he mentions by name all five-fold leadership
positions. These are the Apostle, the Prophet, the Evangelist, the Pastor and the Teacher.
We will use First
Corinthians 12:28 as a text in this lesson as well because it is here that
Paul mentions the Ministry of Helps.
It is quite
interesting to notice how the Holy Spirit moved on Paul to make mention of
“helps” right in the middle of Apostles, Prophets, Teachers, miracles, then
gifts of healings (a reference to Evangelists) and governments (a reference
to Apostles and Pastors). The Ministry of Helps is such a necessary
Ministry and one that the Five-Fold Ministry Offices simply could never
effectively function without.
In this study we
will look at the Ministry of Helps.
Paul also refers to the office of
“governments” in our text verse. It is not necessary for us to devote
an entire lesson to the office of “governments” because we have covered
this previously. (See the previous studies on this website under
"Holy Spirit: 5-Fold Ministry Offices" covering the Offices of the Apostle and the
Pastor.) Neither will we devote entire lessons to “diversities of tongues” (or the "interpretation of tongues") which
Paul mentions here, because we have also covered these
The Greek word for
“helps” is “antilepsis.”
It means “a support, a help, a succourer
and an aid, to support by way of rendering assistance, especially to those
who are weak and needy.”
Some teach that the
Ministry of Helps is limited to the work of Deacons and Deaconesses
only. This cannot be true because the Apostle Paul refers to other
Helps Ministers besides Deacons and Deaconesses. (Romans 16:3,9;
1Corinthians ; 2Corinthians ,24) Sunday School Teachers,
Children’s and Youth Ministers, Administrative Personnel, Hospital
Ministers, Musicians, Janitorial Staff, etc., would all come under the
heading of Ministry of Helps.
There are many
within the Body who are weak and needy. Brand new Christians are weak
and needy. Older Christians who have never grown in knowledge of the
Word are weak and needy. The Pastor simply cannot minister to the
needs of all of these individuals alone. Without faithful Helps
Ministers the Pastor would quickly burn out.
All Five-Fold Ministry
Offices would soon discover how weak and needy they, too, actually are
without the faithful individuals who are called to the Ministry of Helps.
Because the title
“Deacon” is probably the most used term when it comes to the Ministry of
Helps, we will begin our lesson with this position.
Deacon & Deaconess
In the New
Testament Deacons are never actually referred to as “Helps
Ministers.” But it does not take a degree in Theology to realize that
Deacons absolutely fall under the Ministry of Helps.
The Greek word for
“deacon” is “diakoneo.” It means “to be an
attendant, to wait upon, to serve as a host.”
The word “diakoneo” is from the Greek root word “diakonos.” It means “to run on errands, to wait
on tables, a minister, a servant.” It also means “one who does
servile work and one who renders service without a fee.”
Ministry in the Book of Acts certainly performed all of the above referenced
duties. Deacons were attendants, table waiters, hosts, ran errands,
served and ministered to the physical and material needs of the
people. They also oversaw the receiving and accounting of
As spiritual as this office is, you will not find one
Scripture reference where a Deacon or an Elder or anyone, for that matter,
controlled or manipulated the Pastor. The Deacon under girds the
Pastor’s office. The Deacon does not override the Pastor’s
for Deacons & Deaconesses
In First Timothy
3:1-7 Paul lists qualifications for Pastoral (Bishop) Ministry.
Immediately after the Pastoral qualifications, Paul lists the Deacon’s
qualifications. The Deacon’s qualifications FOLLOW the Pastor’s
qualifications because the Deacons are SUBSERVIENT to the Pastor, not vice
versa. Paul always listed Gifts in order of importance. He did
it with the Offices of the Holy Spirit. He did it with the Gifts of
the Holy Spirit, and he does it with the Ministries of the Holy
“Likewise must the
DEACONS be grave, not double tongued, not given to much wine, not greedy of
filthy lucre; Holding the mystery of the faith in a pure conscience.
And let these also first be proved; then let them use the office of a
DEACON, being found blameless.” (1Timothy 3:8-10)
Deacons are to be
serious, truthful, sober and conscionable, not covetous individuals.
Deacons and Deaconesses must not be polygamists and their families must be
well disciplined. (See verse 12.) They must also be first proven.
I have always looked for individuals who are already performing faithful
service to the Church without being asked to do so. These are the
individuals I consider for the Deacon’s office. The ones who sit
around doing nothing, always asking for a position of authority, I will not
It does not matter
to me whether it is a man or a woman because it does not matter to the
Trinity. (Galatians 3:28) The Apostle Paul highly recommended Sister
Phoebe. She was a servant (Greek: Deaconess) in the Church at Cenchrea serving many leaders, including the Apostle
Paul. (Romans 16:1,2) Paul also commended Mary for her labor in the
Lord. (Romans 16:6)
I would take a faithful woman over a faithless
man any day of the week and vice versa. Anyone who is willing to
under gird my Pastoral position and not override it comes to me by the
leading of the Holy Spirit.
The Holy Spirit had
Deacons under girding the leadership in the Church at Jerusalem. Although
they are not called “Deacons” it is obvious that they fit the definition.
“And in those days,
when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of
the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in
the daily ministration. Then the twelve called the multitude of the
disciples unto them, and said, IT IS NOT REASON THAT WE SHOULD LEAVE THE
WORD OF GOD, AND SERVE TABLES. WHEREFORE, BRETHREN, LOOK YE OUT AMONG
YOU SEVEN MEN OF HONEST REPORT, FULL OF THE HOLY GHOST AND WISDOM, WHOM WE
MAY APPOINT OVER THIS BUSINESS. BUT WE WILL GIVE OURSELVES
CONTINUALLY TO PRAYER, AND TO THE MINISTRY OF THE WORD. And the
saying pleased the whole multitude: and they chose Stephen, a man full of
faith and of the Holy Ghost, and Philip, and Prochorus,
and Nicanor, and Timon,
and Parmenas, and Nicolas a proselyte of
Antioch: Whom they set before the apostles: and when they had prayed,
they laid their hands on them.” (Acts 6:1-6)
In this case the
Deacons were appointed to meet the physical and material needs of those who
could not care for themselves. They were chosen because they were
honorable and had a good report. This means they were proven, even as
Paul told Timothy. (1Timothy 3:8-10)
Stephen started out
as a Deacon and ended up with a powerful, mighty anointing. (Acts 6:5-8:2)
Philip, the Evangelist, started out as a Deacon in Jerusalem and he ended up as
the New Testament consummate Evangelist.
Some individuals start out
in the Ministry of Helps and end up being promoted into the Five-Fold
Ministry Offices. Others have an Anointing and a commitment that
causes them to stay with their Pastors or Ministry leaders forever.
These individuals will stand before the Bema (Reward) Judgment Seat of
Christ and share the same rewards of those whom they served. (Matthew ; Romans ; 2Corinthians )
God does not reward offices.
God rewards faithfulness and obedience to
When the Amalekites attacked Ziklag
they took all of the women of the city captive. David set out in hot
pursuit of the Amalekites, leaving some men
behind to guard their property. Once the women were rescued, some of
the rescuers complained to David. They felt that the men who stayed
behind with the supplies should not share in the spoil that they brought
back with them.
David rebuked them, telling them in essence, “They
were as faithful as you were to do what I told them to do. They will
receive the same reward that you received.” (1Samuel 30:24)
should keep this in mind because everyone is called to some sort of Christian
service. (Matthew 25:14-30; 28:18-20; Mark 16:15-20; 2Corinthians -20)
There are a host of other
“helpers” referred to in the New Testament as ambassadors (2Corinthians
5:20), fishers of men (Matthew 4:19; Mark 1:17), laborers (1Thessalonians
3:2), men of God (1Timothy 6:11), lights (Matthew 5:14; John 5:35),
messengers (2Corinthians 8:23), partners and fellow helpers (2Corinthians
8:23), soldiers (Philippians 2:25; 2Timothy 2:3,4), stewards (1Peter 4:10),
witnesses (Acts 1:8; 5:32) and workers (2Corinthians 6:1).
& the Ministry of Helps
In Second Kings
chapter three, Mesha, King of the Moabites,
rebelled against Israel and Jehoshaphat
needed God’s counsel for the coming battle. He called for the Prophet
Elisha to give him that much needed counsel and Elisha did something quite
“And Elisha said,
As the Lord of hosts liveth, before whom I stand,
surely, were it not that I regard the presence of Jehoshaphat the king of Judah, I would not look
toward thee, nor see thee. BUT NOW BRING ME A MINSTREL. AND IT CAME
TO PASS, WHEN THE MINSTREL PLAYED, THAT THE HAND OF THE LORD CAME UPON
HIM. AND HE SAID, THUS SAITH THE LORD, MAKE THIS VALLEY FULL OF
DITCHES … And this is but a light thing in
the sight of the Lord: he will deliver the Moabites also into your hand.”
the solution to Israel’s problem but not
before calling a minstrel or a musician. When the musician played, Elisha’s anointing was stirred, the
Hand of the Lord (always symbolic of the power of God) came upon him and he
went into the Spirit realm and prophesied.
It is so much easier for any Minister to
get into the Spirit when working with musicians who live right, pray and
consecrate their abilities to the Lord. It is so much easier for a
Minister to step into the Spirit when surrounded by musicians who
understand that their Gifts are of God, by God and for God.
understands this more than some musicians I have worked with in Ministry.
The biggest problem I have had with Helps
Ministers, as a Pastor, has been with musicians who operate in pride.
Let me say here, also, that the best Helps Ministers I have ever
worked with have been musicians who refuse to submit to the spirit of
pride. People like this are tremendous, tremendous blessings.
People naturally enjoy anointed music and
have a tendency to exalt the musician. Just look at how people in the
world exalt popular singers and musicians. Musicians who work for God
must constantly remind themselves that their abilities are to point people
to the Almighty, not to themselves.
Music Ministers are not
entertaining an audience. They are leading a congregation in worship.
I have had to make some very difficult
calls at times that made me very unpopular with musicians. I have had
musicians walk away from their commitments, literally cursing me because I
had to remind them that their Gifts were being misused through pride and
arrogance. They were grieving the Holy Spirit and everyone in the
congregation was losing out because of it.
how music destroys his works in the Earth, bringing the Anointing that
drives out evil spirits. (1Samuel ) He fully
realizes that the primary way to cause musicians to be ineffective is
through human pride.
Wherever musicians understand the difference
between fleshly entertainment and the Anointing of God, the power of Satan
is broken and human beings are set free.