Friday, April 21, 2017

Low To High

This morning I'm thinking of perspective and leadership because of this passage...

"Wherefore he saith, When he ascended up on high, he led captivity captive, and gave gifts unto men. (Now that he ascended, what is it but that he also descended first into the lower parts of the earth? He that descended is the same also that ascended up far above all heavens, that he might fill all things.) 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:" - Ephesians 4:8-12 KJV

In a way, this concept is beyond us but Jesus 'fills all things' because He has experienced the lowest position and now occupies the highest position. Why would that be so? He was and is God. Still, This is what the Bible declares.

I find it interesting that God uses this concept to transition into talking about leadership. God's power structure for His Church isn't based on power or resources it is based on knowledge and perspective.

Jesus dove deep into humanity and after His death into Hell itself. He went where we are and then down to where the souls that died were and experienced what they experienced firsthand.

Now He has chosen leaders like that. He has men who came from the lowest places and commissioned them to talk about the highest loftiest truths. These people are gifts from a King who is seated on a throne.

"For he grew up before him like a young plant, and like a root out of dry ground; he had no form or majesty that we should look at him, and no beauty that we should desire him. He was despised and rejected by men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief; and as one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not." - Isaiah 53:2-3 ESV

Jesus didn't look like a King when He was on Earth and let's face it the men He sends often don't look like leaders. They are proclaimers, gatherers and teachers. The leadership is shepherd leadership. Instruction is the gift and it isn't always valued.

Jesus fills all things now. His experience spans the length and breadth of human experience and the gifts He gives are based on that experience.

The world is full of leaders. Every area has it's local and regional politics. People also claim spiritual leadership roles. Many who do aren't what they seem to be.

If I find a person winning souls I mark them as a leader. If a person gathers when everyone else is scattering... if words of wisdom point me to God and present Him as better than I thought He was and use the Bible as their text as pointing to Jesus as the reason they do what they do... if that is what is happening then there is the sense that those people are gifts from God.

If the One who fills all things is doing a work in the world I want to recognise and support that work. It may look like 'a root out of dry ground' but it is more than it appears to be.


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