Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Proper Working of Each Individual

Joseph Herrin (09-02-08)

Note: The first video incorporating audio from the Fort Wayne gathering along with a great number of pictures and graphics is now available for online viewing. Details follow in the article.

Ephesians 4:15-16
But speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him, who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by that which every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love.

There is truly only one ministry in the kingdom of God. This is the ministry of God the Father as directed by His Son and carried out via the Spirit of Christ. Yahweh has a plan that encompasses ages which will culminate in all things being reconciled back to Him through the cross of His Son.

Colossians 1:19-20
For it was the Father's good pleasure for all the fulness to dwell in Him, and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, having made peace through the blood of His cross; through Him, I say, whether things on earth or things in heaven.

The Bible speaks in a very broad sense of this ministry of reconciliation that is specifically the work of Christ (both Christ the Head, and Christ the Body).

II Corinthians 5:18-19
Now all these things are from God, who reconciled us to Himself through Christ, and gave us the ministry of reconciliation, namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to Himself, not counting their trespasses against them, and He has committed to us the word of reconciliation.

It is common today to hear Christians speak of some specific ministry which they feel that they own, or have been entrusted with as with a stewardship. It should ever be kept in mind that the body has only One Head, and this Head directs the entire ministry which is defined as “the ministry of reconciliation.” I have been made a minister in this work of reconciliation. Yahshua has charged me with a specific task to perform, and there will come a day when I must give an account of my performance.

II Corinthians 5:10
For we must all appear before the judgment seat of Christ, that each one may be recompensed for his deeds in the body, according to what he has done, whether good or bad.

I Corinthians 3:10-15
According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building upon it. But let each man be careful how he builds upon it. For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Yahshua Christ. Now if any man builds upon the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw, each man's work will become evident; for the day will show it, because it is to be revealed with fire; and the fire itself will test the quality of each man's work. If any man's work which he has built upon it remains, he shall receive a reward. If any man's work is burned up, he shall suffer loss; but he himself shall be saved, yet so as through fire.

It is continually my aspiration to build carefully upon the foundation that has been laid. I fear to have run my course in vain. It is my passion and desire to know the mind of Christ that I might accomplish His will. I fear to be found building upon the foundation of Christ with some blueprint or pattern that has not been received from Him. In all things I want to be led of the Spirit that the quality of my work might be shown to be as gold, silver and precious stones.

There is no room for selfish ambition or self-direction. Christ alone is the Master Architect of what is being constructed. He is the Alpha and Omega. He was at the beginning, ordering all with precision, and He will be at the end, bringing the desire of the Father to a perfect fulfillment. I must work according to His direction. I must not run out to do a work of my own initiative. I live to do the will of Christ.

I have been entrusted with a ministry. It is not my ministry, so to speak. I am merely an extension of Christ, a part of His body carrying forth His ministry of reconciliation. The same is true of all who are part of Christ. We are to enter into what He is doing, exercising those gifts and callings bequeathed to us at the determination of the Holy Spirit. Yet we are not to employ these gifts as those who are self-directed, but rather as those who are Spirit directed.

Romans 8:14
For all who are being led by the Spirit of God, these are sons of God.

I am confident that I am where the Spirit has directed me, doing that specific work He has called me to do at this very moment. He directed my steps to Fort Wayne, Indiana to give a series of talks that express His mind for His children at this hour. It was a message of the disciple’s cross and of surrender. It was a message of coming judgment, of birth pangs coming upon the earth in anticipation of a mature body of glorified sons coming forth. The Spirit directed me to take the message He placed in my mouth to the nation, and as part of that He has led me to make the message widely available by means of the Internet.

This is actually a continuation of a work that began years ago. The Spirit directed me to write the numerous books and articles that are posted on the Heart4God website that His children could freely read them and come into an understanding of what He is doing in this hour. I have been entrusted with a message of reconciliation that goes beyond the message of salvation. It is a message to come to an end of all initiative; to cease from one’s own works, and to enter into the Sabbath rest of God. When the children of God have ceased from their own labors (whether good or evil) and are living for the will and pleasure of the Father in all things, then reconciliation will be fully manifest. Then it will truly be said among all those who are Christ’s, “It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me.”

God has perfectly fashioned a body for His Son.

Hebrews 10:5
But a body Thou hast prepared for Me...

I am merely one part of this body acting to carry out the ministry of reconciliation that is directed by the Head. Perhaps my ministry as a teacher corresponds to a mouth. Yet a mouth is nothing without the rest of the body fitted to it. It takes an entire body to function properly.

I Corinthians 12:14-18
For the body is not one member, but many. If the foot should say, "Because I am not a hand, I am not a part of the body," it is not for this reason any the less a part of the body. And if the ear should say, "Because I am not an eye, I am not a part of the body," it is not for this reason any the less a part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the hearing be? If the whole were hearing, where would the sense of smell be? But now God has placed the members, each one of them, in the body, just as He desired.

I have heard Christians at times lament the fact that they do not feel a leading to speak and teach in the same way that God has called me. Not all are called to be teachers. Yet EVERY Christian has a calling. Every Christian is a part of the body of Christ. Every Christian has a specific role to play, a work to accomplish for the building up of the body in love and the accomplishment of the ministry of reconciliation.

Romans 12:4-8
For just as we have many members in one body and all the members do not have the same function, so we, who are many, are one body in Christ, and individually members one of another. And since we have gifts that differ according to the grace given to us, let each exercise them accordingly: if prophecy, according to the proportion of his faith; if service, in his serving; or he who teaches, in his teaching; or he who exhorts, in his exhortation; he who gives, with liberality; he who leads, with diligence; he who shows mercy, with cheerfulness.

If you are blessed with the gift of serving or the gift of giving, you are as surely a minister of reconciliation as the one who is called to teach. All are part of the same body, carrying forth the will of the Head, who is Christ Yahshua. What is important is that we all be diligent in committing ourselves to the function appointed to us. All of the body suffers when an individual member is not contributing by performing its function. There are no insignificant members of the body of Christ. Each part has been called to perform a function. If you are sitting idle, giving no attention to the will of God upon your life, then you are dragging down the rest of the body.

If there has been any effectiveness to the work God has called me to do, it has been impacted greatly by the contribution of the others members of Christ. I regularly receive e-mail telling me that someone has prayed for me. Some have asked the Lord to give me wisdom and courage to proclaim truth. They are serving as the bloodstream of the body, providing the precious oxygen that brings life to all the other members. Where would the body be without such a service? It would be a dead corpse.

Many over the years have contributed financially, enabling me to attend to writing, preaching, and teaching. My ability to focus upon teaching has been tremendously enhanced by the financial blessing of others. Paul at times both worked to support himself and taught the people when he was not working. When helpers came to him, or financial help was sent, he was freed to devote himself to preaching and the ministry of reconciliation kicked into overdrive.

Acts 18:2-6
He came to them, and because he was of the same trade, he stayed with them and they were working; for by trade they were tent-makers. And he was reasoning in the synagogue every Sabbath and trying to persuade Jews and Greeks. But when Silas and Timothy came down from Macedonia, Paul began devoting himself completely to the word, solemnly testifying to the Jews that Yahshua was the Christ.

When Silas and Timothy came to Paul, they supplied that which was necessary for Paul’s daily support. He was able to devote himself to the ministry of the word. Who can say how much the service of these two men provided an increase to the kingdom of God? By enabling Paul to attend to His primary call they were building up the body in love.

What is your part in the body? Are you laboring diligently according to the opportunities set before you by the Spirit of Christ that the rest of the body might be enabled to fulfill the ministry of the reconciliation of all creation? This is your stewardship. Are you ready to answer the Lord for the stewardship entrusted to you? Will He say, “Well done good and faithful servant. You have been FAITHFUL with a few things. I will make you ruler over many things.”

As I have been laboring according to the call upon my life for these many years, I have come to understand how the functioning of the rest of the body contributes to my own effectiveness. In the past six months the Lord has accomplished a number of things that would have been impossible without many parts of the body participating. He called me to leave my employment that I might prepare for an active part in the preparation of His body for His return. Immediately various saints began to send financial support and this enabled me to spend a month camping in April where I sought the Lord daily to know what He would accomplish in coming months. If you have not read the Parables Blog entries for April of 2008, I would highly recommend them. The Lord gave me great understanding of what was to come, and it has enabled me to focus upon those things He would do.

In May I received numerous financial gifts which enabled me to publish four of the twelve books the Spirit has led me to write. At the same time, the prayers of the saints gave me strength throughout the process of submitting manuscripts, approving galleys, and accomplishing this work. More recently, the Spirit directed my path to Indiana to speak at a gathering. The messages He gave me comprise the core of His will and purpose for His children in these last days. I was GREATLY helped by the prayers of many who labored faithfully in this ministry appointed to them. The apostle Paul understood how much the prayers of the saints affected the outworking of his ministry.

Ephesians 6:19-20
And pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel, for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in proclaiming it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.

Whenever some believer writes to me and says they have been praying for me, I always acknowledge their prayers with great thankfulness. I know how deeply dependent I am upon the body for this service. Weak knees are made strong. Timidity is replaced with courage. Confusion is dispelled and clarity comes. Wisdom and insight are granted, and all is accomplished at the prayers of the saints. If God has laid this ministry upon you (and we are all called to prayer for one another), will He say “Well done” when you stand before Him. Will He be able to show you how your prayers impacted the lives of those you labored over? Will He show you the fruit of what you have done?

In coming to Fort Wayne, my way was made clear by the financial gifts of a number of believers. A young man and his wife opened their home to Randy and I in Fort Wayne. They contributed to our needs generously, and I have not known a more abundant hospitality. This warm and generous welcome greatly contributed to an inner peace in speaking to a group of people I had never met before. The fact that I did not need to trouble myself about any personal need freed my mind to focus upon the message to be delivered.

Is your gift hospitality? Is it giving? Then I pray you might do it with excellence even as this young couple did. Truly they will receive a reward for the extraordinary outworking of this opportunity the Spirit set before them.

Recently, the Spirit led me to make audio CD’s available of the talks given in Fort Wayne. A brother in Atlanta wrote to me and offered to take the responsibility of copying all CDs and mailing them out. I was able to send him a master copy of the CD and as requests came in I forwarded them to him. He printed labels for the CDs, and paid all the postage out of his own pocket. This may seem a menial task to many, but it greatly freed me to attend to those other things that were immediately before me. I was able to be more productive because this brother shared the work with me, even as Silas and Timothy made the way easier for Paul.

A week ago a Christian brother in Canada sent a gift to help me with travel expenses. This came at a time when I needed to purchase some software and a lectern and some signs to be used with the presentations the Lord led me to put together. Because of his gift I was able to accomplish that which was upon my heart, and to be at peace that I would yet have gas money to travel to the next place the Lord would send me. My mind was also released to focus upon learning the new software program acquired to create videos, and to attend in an uninterrupted manner to the creation of the first video, a process that took a number of days.

Brothers and sisters in Christ, I want to convey to you that each part of the body has a vital part, something to contribute to the working of the whole, that the ministry of reconciliation might be carried forth. There truly are no Lone Rangers in the body of Christ. We are all very much affected by the faithfulness, or lack thereof, found in the other members of Christ’s body. I encourage you to press in to know your part and to seek to accomplish it with a spirit of excellence. May we have nothing to be ashamed of when we stand to give an account of our stewardship of the gifts and opportunities given to us.

I have felt greatly helped in putting together this first video. A young man in Christ with whom I have been communicating for some time had sent me two songs he had written and recorded. He gave me permission to use a portion of one of the songs for the introduction to the video. (His name is Michael Shevlane, and the song is called Praise.) I have posted the movie to Google Video as they allow large files to be posted. (Other sites like YouTube have a restriction of files no longer than ten minutes.) I hope to also post it to GodTube in coming days, as opportunity allows.

These messages are not my messages. I am confident that the Spirit of Christ has chosen the message and sent me forth with it. It is something vital for all of God’s people to understand and obey in these days. Great consequences are bound up in whether the children of God perceive these things at this hour, and conform themselves to the revelation being given. All who have prayed and offered service and support are a part of the fulfilling of this call of the Spirit to proclaim these things. It is not my ministry, but the ministry of Christ, whose body I am but one part, as are you.

I want to make known to you some opportunities for your prayerful consideration. I know I am not to perform this work alone. I am dependent upon that which every part supplies. I ask you to seek the mind of Christ to know if there is something specific He would have you do in carrying forth this ministry of reconciliation that belongs to the body of Christ.

I have found that my laptop computer’s age is showing, and it is not up to the task of creating videos. It took five hours to convert this first video of 77 minutes into MPEG4 format. During the five hours I could do nothing else with my computer. The computer also will not burn DVDs, which I desire to do that I might also offer these videos in DVD format to be played in any standard DVD player. My hard drive is also almost full.

I therefore need a much faster laptop computer with the appropriate capacity for this work.

I need to purchase spare bulbs for my projection system. I use the projector when giving presentations to groups. The bulb lasts approximately 500 hours and costs several hundred dollars to replace.

I would like to purchase copies of the four books the Lord directed me to publish that they might be available when speaking to groups, and might be offered freely to those who have no means to pay. 100 books will cost approximately 1,000 dollars. Multiply this by four books and you can see the cost involved.

The first video has been posted online. I need people to pray that God might supernaturally order people’s paths to come across this video and watch it. The effectiveness of any message is completely dependent upon the anointing of the Spirit of Christ. It is just a dead message until He breathes life into it. He is able to convict hearts as they watch, causing them to burn within even as did the men on the road to Emmaus who had the word opened to them by Christ. Pray for this fire to attend the watching of this video, for distractions to be put away, and for God to draw all those to this video who need to receive its message.

I also encourage you to watch the video and to pray about sharing it with others. Send the link to all whom the Spirit might place upon your heart. The hour is truly late. America is about to fall. Birth pangs are upon this world and will greatly intensify. It is an hour to walk wisely, fearing the Lord and separating oneself from all idols and sin.

Please pray that I might continue to know the leading of the Lord in carrying out His will. Pray that I might be strengthened with both wisdom and power to accomplish all He directs me to. Pray for an effectual door of opportunity to be set before me, and for hearts to be prepared. Pray for Randy Simmons, whom God has called to travel with me. He has many battles and an adversary who seeks to devour him. Pray for his peace and that understanding might come, as well as rest for his soul.

Pray that Christ might reveal your part in fulfilling the ministry of reconciling the world to God the Father. The hour is truly late. It is not a time for idleness. We must work while it is still day. The night is coming when no man can work.

You can find the video Signs of Judgment here:

After watching, I invite you to add your comment and rating that others might be encouraged to watch it. I would also like your feedback, as this is my first video, and I am open to suggestions for improvement. But please know that the most important thing is that the Spirit convict hearts as they watch.

I believe I am to create videos of the other talks given in Fort Wayne, and I would greatly appreciate your prayers for this labor.

May you be blessed with peace and understanding in these days.

Heart4God Website: http://www.heart4god.ws
Parables Blog: http://www.parablesblog.blogspot.com

Mailing Address:
Joseph Herrin
P.O. Box 804
Montezuma, GA 31063

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