Understanding Purpose in Christian Ministry (Part 6)

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By Pastor Raphael Adegoke 

11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; 12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ: (Eph. 4:11-16)

Blessed be the name of the Lord. It is a great thing to be back again this week. May the grace of God always be sufficient for us. Amen!

Last week, on this series, we considered distinguishing between Spiritual Gift and Spiritual Office, this is because many take spiritual gift for spiritual office and vice-versa and thereby operate at a level below their natural and supernatural abilities. This is catastrophic.

Today, we shall be considering the Spiritual Office as a Gift. From the chosen text, it is clear that it is Christ who gives Spiritual Office. This giving of Spiritual Office is in two dimensions. (1) The giving of a Spiritual office to an individual, that is, Christ making an individual, through the imparted gifts of the Holy Spirit, an Apostle, a Prophet, an Evangelist, a Pastor or a Teacher.  (2) The giving to a people, a Spiritual Office, that is, Christ determining whom to give to a people per time, whether an Apostle, a Prophet an Evangelist, a Pastor or a Teacher.

It is unfortunate today that the lack of understanding of purpose in the Christian Ministry has made a lot of people to be mentored into the office Christ has not given them. Also, many ministers have mentored another (mentee or employers) and have given them to a people (congregation) that Christ hasn’t designed them for. This is a common abnormally in the Body of Christ today that makes the perfecting of the saints a bit difficult.

It must be noted that we don’t desire and we don’t get trained into a Spiritual Office just as we don’t make any Spiritual Office out of anyone for ourselves. It is a gift. Many ministers today will face rejection and frustration because they operate in Spiritual Offices not theirs and function amongst a people they are not assigned.

A people had no choice than to go to John the Baptist in the wilderness to question him about the activities of Jesus Christ. His response  to them was a revelation of an understanding of his ministerial mandate and limitations.

23 Now John also was baptizing at Aenon near Salim, because there was plenty of water, and people were coming and being baptized. 24 (This was before John was put in prison.) 25 An argument developed between some of John’s disciples and a certain Jew over the matter of ceremonial washing. 26 They came to John and said to him, “Rabbi, that man who was with you on the other side of the Jordan—the one you testified about—look, he is baptizing, and everyone is going to him.’ 27 To this John replied, ‘A person can receive only what is given them from heaven. 28 You yourselves can testify that I said, ‘I am not the Messiah but am sent ahead of him.’ 29 The bride belongs to the bridegroom. The friend who attends the bridegroom waits and listens for him, and is full of joy when he hears the bridegroom’s voice. That joy is mine, and it is now complete. 30 He must become greater; I must become less.’ (John 3: 23-30)

Apostle Paul, a very successful minister, makes us to understand that one of his secrets was the understanding of purpose.’For God, who was at work in Peter as an apostle to the circumcised, was also at work in me as an apostle to the Gentiles.’ (Gal. 2:8).  God works in every individual according to design. We also attain our best according to the workings of God we allow through us according to His design.

It’s high time we stopped making out our lives what Christ hasn’t given us and giving to a people whom Christ hasn’t given them. Not until this is done, we will keep producing out of ourselves or out of a people, unperfected and unassigned saints, for the work of the ministry.


Pastor Raphael Adegoke is a Pastor in Christ Apostolic Church (Nigeria & Overseas) and a Lecturer in Christ Apostolic Church Theological Seminary.

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