Culture of Heaven – A Structural Revolution
“Powerful people don’t live for God’s favor. They live from His favor.” As we serve God and use our favor with Him to love well, without being trapped by narcissism, then we do well.
Culture of Heaven
A Structural Revolution
Powerful people who don’t live for favor, they live from favor.
And the Lord said, “The outcry of Sodom and Gomorrah is indeed great, and their sin is exceedingly grave. I will go down now, and see if they have done entirely according to its outcry, which has come to Me; and if not, I will know.”Then the men turned away from there and went toward Sodom, while Abraham was still standing before the Lord. Abraham came near and said, “Will You indeed sweep away the righteous with the wicked? Suppose there are fifty righteous within the city; will You indeed sweep it away and not spare the place for the sake of the fifty righteous who are in it? Far be it from You to do such a thing, to slay the righteous with the wicked, so that the righteous and the wicked are treated alike. Far be it from You! Shall not the Judge of all the earth deal justly?” So the Lord said, “If I find in Sodom fifty righteous within the city, then I will spare the whole place on their account.” And Abraham replied, “Now behold, I have ventured to speak to the Lord, although I am but dust and ashes. Suppose the fifty righteous are lacking five, will You destroy the whole city because of five?” And He said, “I will not destroy it if I find forty-five there.” He spoke to Him yet again and said, “Suppose forty are found there?” And He said, “I will not do it on account of the forty.” Then he said, “Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak; suppose thirty are found there?” And He said, “I will not do it if I find thirty there.” And he said, “Now behold, I have ventured to speak to the Lord; suppose twenty are found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it on account of the twenty.” Then he said, “Oh may the Lord not be angry, and I shall speak only this once; suppose ten are found there?” And He said, “I will not destroy it on account of the ten.” As soon as He had finished speaking to Abraham the Lord departed, and Abraham returned to his place”.
What was going through God's mind as He watched Abraham cringe his way into the favor of God? “Abraham, I can see the tension in you as you learn to discover my willingness to partner with you”. What was going on in Abraham’s mind as he walked away from that conversation? Did that just happen? It wasn’t about talking God into being nice, it was all set up so Abraham, the father of our faith, could teach us all something about how God invites us to explore His grace and the reality that there are things that we miss out on because we don’t ask.
Abraham was discovering the bounds of his favor with the Lord.
Vs 33 “God turns and goes His way and Abraham his”
Covenant means God has made himself confront-able. Abraham leans into God's grace.
As we discover our favor and grace we begin to get rid of the idea that some people have more power than other people.
Where favor goes sideways
In a prophetic community where words of destiny are the source of our priorities, God is pleased. But if narcissism creeps in then our destiny becomes more about us instead of serving God and using our favor with Him to love well.
Some Christians have trained Church leaders that they are the main reason why we have church. “You better serve it up the way we like it or we will take our money and ourselves and go somewhere else”. Where that type of attitude or culture is, then it's there that we have established a governmental structure that is unbiblical.
1 Corinthians 12:27-31 (NASB)
27 Now you are Christ’s body, and individually members of it. 28 And God has appointed in the church, first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, various kinds of tongues. 29 All are not apostles, are they? All are not prophets, are they? All are not teachers, are they?
God is reintroducing His governmental structure. Apostles first... It doesn’t mean first in importance or anointing or status. It means first in the foundation of what we prioritize. They help us to stay focused on Heaven first. What is heaven saying or doing? It’s under that Apostolic and Prophetic mindset that the teacher, pastor, and evangelist operate more healthily.
Ephesians 4:11-16 Primary focus and attention.
Apostle: Heavens Blueprints: what is structured and happening in the third heaven. Heaven On Earth is their target. They establish an apostolic anointing for people to operate in which include the supernatural presence of God. They are mobilizers
Prophet: The Spirit Realm: Opens the eyes of the peoples hearts so they can make faith-filled Spirit led decisions. Their clock is a digital portal. Everything means something. Be nice to these people, they have a lot going on
Teacher: The Word of God: The anointing of teaching is going to lead everyone to the value of education. They have a need to be right and to make sure that their truth is right. They draw a line and clarify truth and error, and if they don’t watch it, they can dice the body into segments where they draw people to themselves or to a certain truth. This is why teachers should not be first
Pastor: The Church: nurture, people feel cared for. This Office puts attention on the needs of people. They can feel the priority that the pastor places on them. Question: In churches all over the world, how did we change God's design and come up with the concept of Pastor first...? Answer: The people chose this. If they are not healthy, Pastors can spend their lives knocking themselves out by feeling obligated to send the “Do you feel how much I love you?” message. They can slip into the rut that their greatest message is convincing people that “I will respond to the needs that you have”.
Evangelist: The Lost: They think that the most important message in the Bible is Salvation. They don’t even want chairs in their churches. The office of the evangelist is going to prioritize that winning the lost is most important. They have a powerful influence over the value of saving the lost.
When you remove the Apostle and Prophet from the church structure you remove the anointing that prioritizes heaven. When this happens heaven has a hard time breaking into a structure that doesn’t value heaven most. In this culture, we begin to look more like earth than heaven.
When a teacher teaches under an Apostolic office, the way they teach is totally different.
The Pastor begins to teach people how to receive directly from the Good Shepherd instead of an unhealthy relationship with them. The evangelist is all about leaking heaven everywhere they go. This leads to regional and global transformation instead of figuring out who has the best rules.
While it's true that every five-fold leader needs to be a loving shepherd, we are not interested in creating a Pope. We are interested in building powerful people who know how to operate with people who aren’t like themselves. Sometimes priorities are selected that not everyone chose. A healthy five-fold culture will create a place for intense discussion and healthy debate, and then after the huddles over we run the play that the Lord calls.
The government of heaven being established in us is what establishes His government on earth.