Ezekiel 34 is a scathing chapter where God has Ezekiel prophesy against the shepherds (ie. Pastors / spiritual leaders) of His people. It is worth reading as the parallels to our current status of the people of God (Body of Christ) and is very close to the likeness of the time the Lord had Ezekiel prophesy to the shepherds in his time. The chapter even speaks of the coming ‘Shepherd’ which is a direct prophesy about Jesus. This is literally referring to the New Covenant that would be ushered in through the sacrifice of Jesus. The old practice of a priestly cast offering a blood sacrifice for sins would be fulfilled by Jesus through His blood sacrifice, and all those accepting His sacrifice would become ‘priests’ under the New Covenant.
But the break away from the old Pharisee priest synagogue system was very difficult for the Hebrew people as it was all they knew. Paul and Peter went through several rounds of debates over this issue as God began to send His messengers into the entire world with the Gospel, and grafting in the Gentiles (anyone not Jewish) into the family of God. The New Covenant was a radical change that brought the spiritual life of an individual to a different level via the very indwelling Presence of the Holy Spirit actually within every individual who asked for Him. No longer was the Old Covenant priest system needed as the Holy Spirit became their Teacher.
Yet old ways are hard to leave. And there were many debates in the first century church over this issue. Yet the evidence of the Holy Spirit is hard to deny, and humility was now required from anyone attempting to be in a real spiritual leadership role. Things especially got worse spiritually for the Body in the years around 300AD when the current Roman Caesar Constantine made Christianity the empire’s state religion, and turning all of the Roman pagan temples / buildings into Churches along with all of the pagan priests becoming Christian Priests. Basically the Old Covenant system was restarted again. We still have that model represented today in almost all modern Churches Catholic and Protestant.
Paul in his letter to the Ephesians in chapter 4 talks about the leadership God wanted for the Body of Christ. It had four to five roles depending on how you interpret the passage. These roles were to equip the Body of Christ. And as we know Christ’s Kingdom is exactly opposite of the earthly kingdoms with the greatest being the least, and the one’s with the greatest gifting being required to serve the least gifted. These 4/5 roles were to guide the Body of Christ into a relationship with the Holy Spirit where the HOLY SPIRIT would teach, guide, and instruct every individual in daily life. Unfortunately most of the system now has the Pastoral role usurping every other role of the fivefold including the role of the Holy Spirit in the lives of the ‘flock’. The Pastor now has the duty of teaching, guiding, and instructing the ‘flock’ in the way the Pastor thinks they should go. So most of the flock now shops around for a pastor that ‘scratches their ears’ in what they want to hear. And the system becomes a ‘game’ and a business of who can gather the most ‘sheep’ and build the biggest money chest, buildings, and flashy entertainment ‘worship service’. Are your spiritual leaders teaching and guiding you into a deeper walk with the Holy Spirit? Are they showing you how that is done and walked out daily in your life?
This will all lead to Jesus rejecting all the leaders who are not listening to Him, and promoting those individuals who DO listen to Him. The academic systems that are SO compromised against the Holy Spirit will be done away within the remnant Body of Christ. What will be required is a genuine Spirit led evidenced life lived out in obedience to the Spirit of God, who truly wants to guide people into a life filled with relationship with Him via the Spirit of God. The ‘career’ minister with all of the ‘perks’ will be no longer allowed in the remnant. The Holy Spirit will once again take His rightful place with the leading of the Body of Christ. This will cause the remnant to become persecuted by the Organized Institutional Church, just as the Pharisees were the very ones to persecute Jesus and His followers. Big religion and big government ALWAYS hate the moves of God. So the movement back into the local small group meeting from home to home will be seen as the enemy by the local institutional Organized 501c3 Church, AND the government. Like in China ONLY state approved Churches will be allowed, and everything else (underground Churches) will be illegal and subject to arrest, persecution, and torture.
Read Ezekiel 34 for yourself and ask the Holy Spirit about it … and the current condition of the Body of Christ today. Then listen closely to what the Holy Spirit tells you specifically. Which group do you want to belong to? TC2 people don’t have any questions about that choice, they already know deep within their hearts.