If you’re working for Ford Motor Company, then Ford is paying you to minister inside their company. Unlike the “four wall church,” your ministry is self-supporting. In fact, you, and all the other marketplace ministers like you, support the local “four wall church” with your tithes and offerings!
I can’t seem to get the concept of the 11/12th church out of my mind. So rather than try, I am going to share with you some of the things I have been coming across in Scripture.
We can all agree that “first the natural and then the spiritual,” right? Based on the Bible verse:
But it is not the spiritual that is first but the natural, and then the spiritual. 1 Corinthians 15:46
God’s original plan was to have the Nation of Israel to be the salt and light of the world. As a people, or nation, they were supposed to share God’s kingdom principles with the surrounding people, in word and deed, so that non-Jews could enjoy a relationship with the Creator too.
Now if you [the Nation of Israel] obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’” Exodus 19:5-6
History has shown, and the Bible testifies, that the Nation of Israel was not successful in that charge. Enter Yeshua HaMashiach (Jesus the Christ).
When Jesus was on earth, He preached the good news of the Kingdom of God and He destroyed the works of the devil. When He ascended into Heaven, He left the “family business” to the church (aka the Gentiles, His body, the New Testament church, etc)
But you [the New Testament church] are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God’s special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 1 Peter 2:9
It’s important to note here that that the Nation of Israel was not cut out of God’s plans. God simply allowed the non-Jewish people of the world to become His chosen people based on a relationship with Him through faith in His Son, Jesus (in the Bible they are called the church, saints, or the Body of Christ).
I ask, then, have they [the Nation of Israel] stumbled in order to fall? Absolutely not! On the contrary, by their stumbling, salvation has come to the Gentiles [the New Testament church] to make Israel jealous. Romans 11:11
OK, with that groundwork laid, let’s continue with our discussion of how the “people of God” are supposed to be a holy nation, a royal priesthood…
Time doesn’t allow for a full explanation of the duties of the Levitical priesthood in the Old Testament, but most people know that one tribe out of the 12, the Levites, were in charge of the ministry before the Lord in the Tabernacle, and later in the Temple. That left the other 11 tribes to do what? “Just work to support the priests through their “secular” work by paying tithes and offerings?” “Were they really let off the hook of being a nation of priests too?!? That’s not what the Old Testament teaches, nor is it what the New Testament teaches…
Both the Old and New Testaments make it very clear that the ENTIRE “nation” is to be a royal priesthood.
So let’s break this down a little. It’s easy to see how the 1/12th church comprised of the priests in the Old Testament ministered to the Lord in their Temple duties. And it’s pretty straight forward how the 1/12th “four wall church” leaders in today’s churches do- we see them on Sunday, sometimes Wednesday night Bible studies, at weddings and funerals, right? So what do they rest of us do? How do WE function as a “nation of priests” in the world of not-yet-Christians?
Besides, sharing our faith…how do we use our spiritual gifts in the marketplace? How do we disciple and minister to those we lead at work?
The purpose of this Bridge blog is to explore those questions… and just importantly, ANSWER them! And provide real-life EXAMPLES of what it looks like to be an 11/12th Marketplace Minister, how to bring the Kingdom of God into our 9-to-5 lives and how WE destroy the works of the devil Monday through Friday.
My hope is that some of you that are more familiar with this concept would be willing to share how you use your spiritual gifts in the workplace. How are you destroying the works of the devil in your 9-to-5? Starting with real-life examples, I hope to springboard into how we can work more intentionally with the leaders in the “Sunday church” to bridge that gap of being the 12/12 church 24/7…TOGETHER!
Please post whatever you feel others might benefit from….