Wednesday, September 14, 2016

THWARTING THE LEFT'S PLAN TO NEUTRALIZE CHRISTIANITY IN AMERICA

It was just announced that the Obama administration plans to bring thousands of more Syrian refugees into the country next year. This raises the very serious question of why this administration is ignoring the thousands of suffering Christian refugees in the Middle East and in parts of Africa.
Why is the Obama/Clinton administration so dead-set on bringing tens of thousands of Muslim refugees into this country while thumbing its nose at the thousands of Christian refugees who are living under persecution, pain, and in constant fear for their lives.
Eighty-two percent of Iraqi Christians have fled their homes or been massacred. Sixty-six per cent of Syrian Christians have been devastated. The suffering has been horrendous with crucifixions, beheadings, rapes, and homelessness. But who cares? Certainly not the Obama administration or Hillary Clinton.
Too Many Christians in America?
When 27 Iraqi Christians escaped the genocide in their homeland and entered the U.S. via Mexico, they thought they had finally found a safe haven. They were sadly disappointed and shocked when the Obama/Clinton administration rejected their request for political asylum and ordered them deported. 

They were accused of crossing the border with falsified documents. Even if true, it seems like a flimsy excuse in light of how this administration has turned a blind eye to sanctuary cities and so much immigration illegality.
It seems obvious that the Obama/Clinton administration believes that there are already too many Christians in America. How else are we to interpret their actions? How else are we to interpret their choice to bring in tens of thousands of Muslim refugees and ignore the suffering Christians of the Middle East? The technical reasons given ring very hollow.
Make no mistake about it! This is not about compassion on their part. This is about social engineering. This is about changing the religious landscape of America. This is about neutralizing Christianity in America, This is about deconstructing the America we have known.
When the Left uses words like “diversity,” multiculturalism,” and “religious pluralism,” they are code words for “there are too many Christians in America,” especially the kind who take the Bible and their faith serious. In the Left's deplorable way of thinking, such people belong in Hillary's "basket of deplorables."

A saying of the Left is “never waste a good crisis,” and they are certainly making the most of the refugee crisis in the Middle East to further their leftist vision for America. Bill O’Reilly got it right when on a recent broadcast of The Factor, he said,
The radical left immigration vision would profoundly change all of America’s traditions--all of them. And that’s what the left wants. Because that ideology sees the American Judeo-Christian tradition as oppressive, exploitive, and a white privileged legacy. That’s what’s truly going on. And if Americans don’t wise up quickly, the left wing vision of immigration may very well become a reality.
The Plans of Man Can Be Thwarted
Nonetheless, I believe the tables can be turned. Job 5:13 says of God, He traps the wise in their own cleverness so their cunning schemes are thwarted. (NLT). Instead of Christianity being diminished and the Muslim population increased, why cannot this refugee program be turned into a mass movement of Muslims to Jesus Christ.
Such an endeavor is impossible with men, but not with God. Since such a movement can only come from God, it must begin with fervent prayer and lead to Spirit-led appropriate action.
How to Pray
Pray for another Great Awakening in our land. It will resolve so many issues.
Pray for the Muslim refugees that they will come to know Christ, and then reach out to them in Christian kindness when you have opportunity.
Pray for the suffering Christians in the Middle East and Africa who are being ignored by our government. Pray that God will raise up deliverance for them and bring a return of peace to their lives and homeland.
Pray for God’s will to be done in the upcoming election, and then get out and vote.
He Discovered the Key to America’s Greatness
Remember that the ultimate answer for America’s ills will not come from the White House, but from God’s house, as an early unknown visitor to America discovered.
If, as some have thought, this visitor was Alexis de Tocqueville, then it was 1831 and on the heels of the Second Great Awakening. This visitor, whoever he may have been, was searching for the reasons for America’s rapid rise to affluence and power among the nations of the earth.
He recounted how he sought for the secret of America’s greatness in her form of government, her educational system, her vast commerce, and so on. Instead, he found it in something else—something astounding. He wrote,
“Not until I went into the churches of America and heard her pulpits flame with righteousness did I understand the secret of her genius and power. America is great because America is good, and if America ever ceases to be good, America will cease to be great” (Hyatt, Pilgrims and Patriots, 178).
The Way Forward

Pray
that God will awaken the churches of America! Pray that her pulpits will once again "flame with righteousness." Read my book, Pilgrims and Patriots, that documents how America was birthed out of prayer and a great, Spiritual awakening. A nation birthed in prayer and Spiritual awakening can only be sustained by prayer and Spiritual awakening. There are no substitutes.


Dr. Eddie Hyatt is a Bible teacher, historian and ordained minister with a vision for another Great Awakening in America and around the world. His latest book, Pilgrims and Patriots, documents America's radical Christian origins and is available from Amazon in both Kindle and paperback. Read about his vision for America and the world at www.eddiehyatt.com.


Sunday, September 11, 2016

Paul the Apostle Sends Greetings to a Female Apostle in Rome

In his letter to the church at Rome, Paul sends personal greetings to twenty-four people in the latter part of the letter, i.e., chapter sixteen. These individuals are friends and co-workers who are dear to his heart. 
Of the twenty-four mentioned by name, ten are women. Many of these obviously functioned in roles of leadership in the churches. One woman named Junia is specifically referred to as an apostle. In Rom. 16:7 Paul says, Greet Andronicus and Junia, my countrymen and my fellow prisoners, who are of note among the apostles who also were in Christ before me.
"Junia" is a feminine name and was universally recognized as a female apostle for the first several centuries of the Church’s existence. The famous church father of the fifth century, John Chrysostom, exclaimed, "Oh how great is the devotion of this woman, that she should be even counted worthy of the appellation of apostle" (Hyatt, Paul, Women and Church, 23).
Concerned by the presence of a female apostle, some have attempted to argue that the name should be translated as “Junias,” which is male. There are insurmountable facts, however, that militate against this argument.
First of all, without exception, all ancient Greek manuscripts have the feminine form of "Junia," not "Junias." Secondly, the female name "Junia" was quite common in the first century whereas the male name, "Junias," is unknown. "Junias," therefore, is a hypothetical name put forward by those who assume that an apostle must be a male. Thirdly, as mentioned above, "Junia" was universally recognized as a female apostle for the first several centuries of the Church’s existence.
Why then have some modern translations, such as the 1984 NIV, rendered the name Junias instead of Junia? Dr. N. Clayton Croy, Professor of New Testament at Trinity Lutheran Seminary in Columbus, Ohio, says, “It is hard to see any reason other than the translators’ bias against the possibility that a woman could be an apostle” (Hyatt, Paul, Women and Church, 23).
Well-known New Testament scholar, James G. D. Dunn, agrees and says, “The assumption that the name must be male is a striking indictment of male presumption regarding the character and structure of earliest Christianity” (Hyatt, Paul, Women and Church, 23).
The evidence is conclusive that Junia was a female apostle and recognized as such by Paul himself. The evidence is so conclusive, in fact, that the 2011 edition of the NIV has replaced the word “Junias” with “Junia.”
Paul’s recognition of Junia as an apostle clearly demonstrates that women exercised leadership roles in the New Testament churches. But she is not alone, for a careful perusal of Scripture reveals other women who also functioned in leadership roles Their examples serve as models for women today who also sense the call of God to serve Him in leadership roles within Christendom.


This article is derived from Eddie Hyatt’s latest book, Paul,Women and Church, available in the Kindle format from Amazon and soon to be available in paperback. To see Hyatt’s vision for the church in America and around the world, visit his website at www.eddiehyatt.com.


Thursday, September 8, 2016

HOW I WAS AWAKENED (LITERALLY) TO THE IMPORTANCE OF TEACHING THE EQUALITY OF WOMEN WITH MEN AS PART OF THE GOSPEL OF CHRIST

It was 3 a.m. and I suddenly found myself wide awake. Not wanting to disturb Sue, I went into another room where the only light was that which streamed through a window from the moon and a nearby street light. I sat on a sofa enjoying the quietness and solitude of the early morning and lifted my heart to the Lord. 
An Amazing Visitation of the Lord
As I quietly communed with the Lord, I suddenly sensed my insides becoming very still. I then heard the voice of the Lord as clearly as I have ever heard Him. He said, “I want you to be more identified with Sue and what she is doing.” There was a moment of silence and then I heard something that astounded me. I heard Him say, “This message has the power to begin a mass movement from Islam to Christianity, beginning with the women.”
I knew that I was experiencing a visitation from the Lord. I also understood clearly what He was saying to me. Several years before, my wife, Susan, had competed her doctorate in the School of Divinity at Regent University. Her dissertation was on the role of women in the Bible and in Christian history and as a result of her research she had concluded that the New Testament, rightly interpreted, teaches the equality of women with men in all facets of life and ministry.
Her findings were published in her book, In the Spirit We’re Equal, and she had begun teaching this material from a limited platform. I was supportive of her, but not really involved and committed. That morning I knew that God was calling me to get involved because this was not just a “woman issue.” This was a church issue. This was an issue of world evangelism. The eternal destiny of multitudes was at stake.
They Must Hear the True Gospel
As I sat in the darkness pondering what I had just heard, I recalled hearing an African woman—a former Muslim—being interviewed on TV. She told how she had run away from her home in Somalia at a very young age after her Muslim father had arranged for her to be married to a Muslim man in Canada.
She found her way to Europe and the Netherlands where she received an education and was elected to the Dutch Parliament. She also became a very vocal critic of Islam. I recalled the fact that instead of becoming a Christian, she had chosen to become a secularist.
As I thought on this, I realized the probable reason for her not becoming a Christian upon leaving Islam. Why would she exchange a hard form of patriarchy in Islam for a softer form of patriarchy in evangelical Christianity? In both cases she would be required to be under the authority of a male, and after her experience in Islam, that would hold no attraction to her.
If, however, she had heard the message of the woman’s equal acceptance in Christ, and how Jesus was a friend of women and chose a woman to be the first bearer of the good news of His resurrection, it could have been a completely different story. If she had known that Paul, as laid out in my book Paul, Women and Church, had advocated for the freedom of women and their equal acceptance in Christ, it could have made a world of difference in her life.
Also the Key for Revival in Our Day
In her book, In the Spirit We’re Equal, Sue demonstrates how, during times of revival, women seem to always come to the forefront. This happens because in revival the criterion for ministry is the presence and power of the Holy Spirit in one’s life rather than factors such as education and gender.
In the 18th century Methodist revival, John Wesley was challenged when God began to raise up and anoint uneducated men and women to proclaim the gospel. At first he resisted but finally yielded himself to the fact that God was calling and sending forth both men and women even though they were not graduates of Oxford or ordained with the Church of England as was he.
He came to realize that the authority to minister is rooted in one's possession of a divine call or gift, and that ordination is simply the church's recognition of that gift. When challenged as to why he gave recognition to women preachers, he replied, "Because God owns them in the conversion of sinners, and who am I that I should withstand God."
We Must Open Ourselves to the Spirit
Much of the church still refuses to recognize the gifts of its female members and has, thereby, violated Paul's command in I Thessalonians 5:19 not to quench the Spirit. As a result of this disobedience, many gifts have lain dormant while millions have perished without Christ and the church has languished in defeat.
If we want to see genuine revival in our generation and "a mass movement from Islam to Christianity," we must dispense with our traditions and interpretations that have served to muzzle and hobble at least half the members of Christ’s body. If we will move from gender-determined roles to an openness to the Spirit that recognizes His work in both men and women, we could well see the greatest Spiritual awakening and missionary movement the church has yet known.  

Drs. Eddie & Susan Hyatt have been married for over forty years. They have served as pastors, Bible school directors,  professors of theology and have traveled to numerous nations sharing the Good News of what Christ has done for the human race. They presently reside in Grapevine, TX were they are developing the Int'l Christian Women's Hall of Fame and an online college to equip this generation to fulfill its potential purpose. You can check out their vision by going to www.eddiehyatt.com and www.icwhp.org.  










This article was derived from Eddie's latest book, Paul, Women and Church, available now from Amazon in the Kindle format and soon to be available in paperback. To read his vision for a great, Spiritual awakening in America and around the world, visit his website at www.eddiehyatt.com.



Monday, September 5, 2016

WOMEN: A KEY FOR REVIVAL AND WORLD EVANGELISM IN THIS GENERATION

This article was derived from the final chapter of Eddie Hyatt's latest book, Paul Women and Church
The issue of women being able to function in any and all roles of leadership in the church is not just a “woman issue.” It is an issue of world missions and the fulfillment of the Great Commission. It is an issue of true revival and an awakened Christianity in this generation. It is an issue of not quenching the Spirit by muzzling half the members of the body of Christ and thereby creating a weak and inept church.
A Personal Awakening
This was made very real to me in 2009 when I had an experience that awakened me to the serious implications of teaching and living the message of gender equality in Christ. Sue had completed her doctoral dissertation on this matter several years before and had published her book, In the Spirit We’re Equal. I was supportive, but not really committed.
On this particular morning I found myself suddenly wide awake around 3 a.m. Not wanting to awaken Sue, I went into an adjoining room. There I sat on a sofa enjoying the quietness and solitude as I thought on the things of God and quietly prayed.
There in the darkness and quietness of that early morning hour, I heard the Holy Spirit speak in my heart perhaps as clear as I have ever heard Him speak. He said, “I want you to be more identified with Sue in what she is doing.” There was a quiet pause in my heart and then I heard words that astounded me. I heard, “This message has the power to begin a mass movement from Islam to Christianity beginning with the women.”
As I sat and pondered what I had just heard, I recalled hearing an African woman—a former Muslim—being interviewed on TV. She told how she had run away from her home in Somalia at a very young age after her Muslim father had arranged for her to be married to a Muslim man in Canada.
She found her way to Europe and the Netherlands where she received an education and was elected to the Dutch Parliament. She also became a very vocal critic of Islam. I recalled the fact that instead of becoming a Christian, she had chosen to become a secularist.
As I thought on this, I realized the probable reason for her not becoming a Christian upon leaving Islam. Why would she exchange a hard form of patriarchy in Islam for a softer form of patriarchy in evangelical Christianity? In both cases she would be required to be under the authority of a male, and after her experience in Islam, that would hold no attraction to her.
If, however, she had heard the message of the woman’s equal acceptance in Christ, and what Paul really taught, it could have been a completely different story. If we want to reach the Muslim word, and all the world for that matter, the message of this book is of vital importance.
A Key to Church Growth
In 1988 I witnessed firsthand what can happen when the church dispenses with gender-determined roles and gives its members equal access based on their gifts and callings. I spent one week in Seoul, S. Korea observing the ministry of the largest church in the world founded by a woman, Choi Ja-shil, and her son-in-law, David Yonggi Cho.
At that time, the Yoido Full Gospel Church had over 600,000 members and was growing at the rate of 13,000 per month. Ninety per cent of those new members were entering the church through the 50,000 cell groups that met weekly in homes and offices throughout the city.
I discovered that of the 50,000 cell groups that were bringing in 90% of the growth, 48,000 were led by women. I looked at the pastoral staff of this massive congregation and discovered that of the approximate 600 pastors, two-thirds were women. I realized that without the active participation of women, this world-renowned church would shrink into a much smaller and insignificant congregation.
During this same time, a friend spent six weeks in Seoul studying the church growth methods of this church. After returning home to America, he wrote a manuscript entitled, Cho’s Secret Weapon--Women.
Cho, now retired, has said that in teaching church growth to pastors all over the world, he tells them that he could never have built such a great church without the full participation of women. In spite of this, he says there is still much resistance to this part of his message.
A Key for Revival
In her book, In the Spirit We’re Equal, Sue has shown how that revival movements in history have always lifted the status of women. This happens because in revival the criterion for ministry is the presence and power of the Holy Spirit in one’s life rather than factors such as education and gender.
In the 18th century Methodist revival, John Wesley was challenged when God began to raise up and anoint women to proclaim the gospel. At first he resisted but finally yielded himself to the fact that God was calling and sending forth both men and women even though they were not graduates of Oxford or ordained with the Church of England as was he.
He came to realize that the authority to minister is rooted in one's possession of a divine call or gift, and that ordination is simply the church's recognition of that gift. When challenged as to why he gave recognition to women preachers, he replied, "Because God owns them in the conversion of sinners, and who am I that I should withstand God."
We Must Open Ourselves to the Spirit
Much of the church still refuses to recognize the gifts of its female members and has, thereby, violated Paul's command in I Thessalonians 5:19 not to quench the Spirit. As a result of this disobedience, many gifts have lain dormant while millions have perished without Christ and the church has languished in defeat.
If we want to see genuine revival and world evangelism in this generation, we must dispense with our traditions and interpretations that have served to muzzle and hobble at least half the members of Christ’s body. If we will move from gender-determined roles to an openness to the Spirit that recognizes His work in both men and women, we could well see the greatest Spiritual awakening and missionary movement the church has yet known.
Paul, I am sure, would approve!


This article was taken from the final chapter of Dr. Eddie Hyatt’s latest book, Paul, Women and Church, in which he demonstrates that Paul was, in fact, an advocate for the freedom of women and a champion for their equality in Christ. The book is currently available from Amazon in the in the Kindle format.




WHAT DR. SUSAN HYATT THINKS OF HER HUSBAND'S LATEST BOOK ON "WOMEN"

Foreword to Paul Women and Church
by Susan Stubbs Hyatt
D.Min., MA, MA, BCA, Cert. Life Coach, Lic. Teacher.
President/CEO, God’s Word to Women, Inc.
“God, why do you hate me?” asked a young lady when she read the translation of Paul’s words. A new believer from Romania, she was studying the New Testament after having recently accepting Jesus as her Savior and Lord. And when she arrived at Paul’s writings, she was stunned by what he seemed to be saying about her, as a woman. It was so different from the acceptance and joy that faith in the Lord Jesus had given her. She was confused and demoralized.
Thank God! She was enrolled in one of Eddie’s courses in Bible college and heard the truth. The truth that you will read in this book witnessed with her heart and revived the Life of the Spirit in her inner being. No more confusion!
Whether we are willing to acknowledge it or not, this woman’s experience of suppression and subordination is repeated in the lives of most Christian women, with varying degrees of intensity. That is to say, what we experience “in the Spirit” is so opposite to what we are told that the Bible says about us as women.
This is the fault of ill-informed Church leaders who willingly take Paul’s writings out of context and impose ideas opposite to what Paul himself believed, lived, and taught. It is the fault of traditional translation and interpretation informed by the pagan thesis that women are evil, inferior, unequal, and unclean.
Contrary to this is the Biblical thesis that men and women are equal in terms of substance and value, privilege and responsibility, function and authority, in all areas of life and leadership, ministry and marriage. This is what Jesus taught, what Creation teaches, and what the Holy Spirit has taught throughout Church history, both individually in the hearts of true Believers, and corporately through Holy Spirit revivals. It is also what Paul teaches in His Epistles, correctly understood.
Now, Eddie has extended and deepened my own Biblical, theological, and historical research in this area, strengthening our understanding of the Biblical truth. I am thrilled! Like me, he has been willing to risk rejection, slander, and misunderstanding to proclaim the Gospel in all of its fullness for the sake of God’s people and His Kingdom.
Eddie first developed the material in this book in a 10-lesson course by the same name. From the beginning, it was clear that he needed to capture his findings in book form, and now he has done this. I know the good fruit will be abundant and will remain, setting free the captives from traditional lies propagated by an ill-informed Church and various socio-religious cultures.
This book comes at a critical time in history. From the time of the Reformation, beginning with Martin Luther’s proclamation of the doctrine of the priesthood of all believers, a gradual Restoration of the Biblical Message and the Gospel of Jesus Christ has been occurring. After centuries in the Dark Middle Ages, the Reformation brought Light by putting the Bible in the hands of the masses, with leaders like Martin Luther (1483-1546) and George Fox (1624-1691) introducing a social model in which both girls and boys were educated and taught to read so that they could gain knowledge of Scripture and develop Biblical lifestyles. Scripture in the hands of Believers gave the Holy Spirit substance with which to work, and from that beginning of Reform, have come Revivals, each of which has Restored a strategic Biblical, Gospel doctrine.
Now is the time that God, through informed study of Scripture and the ministry of the Holy Spirit by highly educated Believers, is restoring the truth of Biblical equality. We are honored to do our small—but strategic – part in God’s Big Plan.
As you read this important Bible study, allow the Holy Spirit to birth a greater sense of personal responsibility in you and to awaken new hope in your spirit and soul to fulfil your reason for His having given you both life and New Life. As you do this, men will find freedom from the ungodly load of responsibility imposed on them by unbiblical teaching, while women will find new freedom to walk out God’s will and purpose. You will discover the joy of functioning, not on the basis of gender roles defined by fallen, religious culture, but rather, according to the leading of the Holy Spirit in accordance with your natural and spiritual giftings; your unique, God-given personalities; and your eternally important, God-ordained purpose and commissioning.
If you are truly serious about being a Disciple of Our Lord Jesus Christ, this book is for you.

This is the Foreword to Paul, Women and Church, a brand new book by Dr. Eddie Hyatt, available from Amazon in the Kindle format.



Monday, August 29, 2016

One Little Word Dispels the Notion that Paul Silenced Women

Many people both inside and outside the church know that Paul said something about women being silent in church. They can’t tell you where the passage is found and they know nothing about its context, but they are certain that they understand what Paul meant.
The truth is, however, that Paul never told women to be silent in the church, as will be shown in the following essay. The passage in question is I Corinthians 4:34-35 and reads,
Let your women keep silent in the churches, for they are not permitted to speak; but they are to be submissive, as the law also says. And if they want to learn something, let them ask their own husbands at home; for it is shameful for women to speak in church.
There are several immediate and glaring problems with taking this passage at face value. First of all, it is out of character with what we know of Paul from Acts and his other letters where he recognizes women as his co-workers and even recognizes a woman apostle in Romans 16:7. Secondly, this passage is also out of character with what Paul has said earlier in this same letter where women are allowed to pray and prophesy if, for cultural reasons in Corinth, they wear a head covering. Thirdly, what “law” is being referred to in this passage? There is no such law in the Old Testament that demands female silence in the public assembly.
Perhaps the greatest challenge for taking this passage at face value is the fact that it is a part of a larger dialogue about Spiritual gifts and, in typical Pauline fashion, inclusive language is used throughout the discussion. In I Corinthians 14:23, for example, Paul speaks of the potential of the whole church coming together and all speaking with tongues. Then in vss. 24 & 31, he speaks of the potential for all to prophesy. In vs. 31 he says all may prophesy that all may learn and all be encouraged.
In no way does Paul imply that all does not mean both men and women in these verses. If he had wanted to exclude women he could have done so by using gender-specific language, but he doesn’t. Verse 21 in the KJV has Paul saying, In the Law it is written, with men of other tongues and other lips will I speak to this people. “Men,” however, is not in the Greek, but was added by the translators. The NRSV got it right by translating the Greek phrase as, By people of strange tongues . . ..
In a similar way, vs. 27 in the KJV has Paul saying. If any man speak in an unknown tongue . . .. Again, the KJV translators have taken a lot of freedom, for the Greek word translated “man” is tis and actually means “anyone.” In this whole discussion about prophecy and tongues in the church, Paul is obviously careful not to exclude anyone from participating because of their gender.
We must remember too that Paul did not write in chapters and verses. These divisions were not introduced into Scripture until the fourteenth century. This means that we cannot arbitrarily lift this passage from its context, which is the discussion about Spiritual gifts where he uses gender-inclusive language indicating his assumption that both women and men functioned in these gifts in the church gathering.
Attempts to Solve the Dilemma
Indeed, I Corinthians 4:34-35 is so out of character with the rest of this letter that it has led some good evangelical scholars to conclude that Paul did not write these verses. This is the position of Dr. Gordon Fee, a renowned New Testament exegete, who believes that an early scribe/copyist (remember they didn’t have photo copiers) added these words and they found their way into the text (Gordon Fee, The First Epistle to the Corinthians, 699-708).
Another solution offered by those who already have a bias against women leaders in the church, postulates that this passage bans women from judging the prophecies that come forth in the church gathering. According to this theory, women can prophesy but they cannot judge or discern the prophecies, as was commanded in 14:29. According to the proponents of this theory, women are here forbidden to judge prophecies in the congregation because this would put them in a position of authority over their husbands.
This is the position of Wayne Grudem who insists that Paul’s concern in 14:34-35 is to “preserve male leadership in the teaching and governing of the church” (See chapter 47 of Grudem’s Systematic Theology). Fee, however, points out that this passage is so far removed from the command of 14:29 that one wonders how the Corinthians themselves would have made the connection. He then takes Grudem and others to task, saying, “Nothing in the passage itself even remotely hints at such a thing” (Fee, The First Epistle to the Corinthians, 704).
An older solution to this passage postulates a segregated church gathering with men and women seated on opposite sides of the aisles. According to this theory, Paul, in this passage, is addressing the problem of women calling to their husbands across the aisle and asking questions about what is happening in the meeting. “George, did you hear what he said?” “John, what did he mean by that?"
The problem with this theory is that it assumes a “church” situation that did not exist. There is no evidence that either Jesus or His disciples segregated the disciples according to their gender. In the Upper Room on the Day of Pentecost, men and women mingled and prayed together freely (Acts 1:14; 2:1).
This theory also assumes a traditional church setting with a “church” building with divided seating and an aisle in the middle. The fact is, however, that there is no evidence of a church building for the first two hundred years of the church’s existence. During the New Testament era, Christians met primarily in homes. Their gathering itself constituted the “church,” not the building in which they met. The meetings were personal and informal and provided the context of passages such as I Corinthians 14:26 where Paul recognizes that when the Corinthians come together for “church,” all are involved. Each of you has a Psalm, has a teaching, has a tongue, has a revelation, has an interpretation . . ..
The idea of women calling across the aisle to their husbands as the context of the passage in question, is a simplistic answer that has no basis in either Scripture or history.
The Answer is Found in One Tiny Word
This answer to this dilemma comes to light when we recall that, in this letter, Paul answers questions that have been posed to him by the Corinthians in a previous letter written to him. He begins his answer with the phrase “now concerning” and often quotes what they have said in their letter to him.
A clear example of this is I Corinthians 7:1 where he says, Now concerning the things of which you wrote to me: It is not good for a man to touch a woman. There is wide-spread agreement among New Testament scholars that the part of the phrase, it is not good for a man to touch a woman, is a statement made by the Corinthians in their previous letter to Paul. He repeats it here as a means of introducing the topic for discussion. 
Another example is 12:1 where he says, Now concerning Spiritual gifts, an indication that he is now addressing questions they had posed to him about Spiritual gifts. Not only in 7:1 and 12:1, but in other sections of the letter, such as 1:12 and 3:4, Paul alludes to things the Corinthians themselves have said and then responds. There is strong textual evidence that in 14:34-35, Paul is quoting what the Corinthians said in their letter to him for the purpose of refuting it.
This is indicated by Paul’s use of a tiny Greek word at the beginning of vs. 36, and coming immediately after the statement about women being silent. It is the word η, which is often used in Greek as an “expletive of disassociation” such as the English, “Rubbish!” or “Nonsense!” or “Get out of here!” Although the word can have various uses, this use was common in the New Testament era and is often used in this manner by Paul himself.
In I Corinthians 6:15, for example, Paul uses η in this way as a rebuttal to a rhetorical question. After informing the Corinthians that they are members of Christ’s body, he asks, Shall I then take the members of Christ and make them members of a harlot? He then answers his own question with η, which both the NIV and NRSV translate as “Never!” The NKJV translates it as “Certainly not!”

This use of η to dispute a previous statement is confirmed by the massive Greek-English Lexicon by Liddell and Scott, which gives a definition of η as “an exclamation expressing disapproval.” This means that in I Corinthians 14:34-35, Paul is quoting what the Corinthians have said about women being silent and then responds with “an exclamation of disapproval” that may be translated as “Nonsense!” or “Never!” or “Certainly not!” 

Dr. Eddie L. Hyatt is an author and Bible teacher with a vision for another Great Awakening in America and around the world. His latest book, Pilgrims and Patriots, documents how America was birthed out of a great Spiritual awakening and is available from Amazon and his website at www.eddiehyatt.com


Thursday, April 7, 2016

4 REASONS YOU SHOULD EMBRACE THE COMING RESTORATION OF THE 8-FOLD MINISTRY

NOTE: This is a satirical lampoon  directed at the outlandish logic and hermeneutic too often on display in the modern charismatic/prophetic movements

And God has appointed these in the Church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues (1 Cor. 12:28).
The passage above, 1 Cor. 12:28, clearly teaches an 8-Fold Ministry. God is about to restore this ministry to the Church. This will be the final stage of the restoration that has been going on since the time of Martin Luther, and will bring the church into an incredible place of maturity and power.
Many, no doubt, will do a disservice to the body of Christ by continuing to promote the old, traditional 5-fold ministry, for it is still true today as it was when Jesus said to the religious leaders of His day, You reject the commandment of God in order to keep your traditions (Mk. 7:9). Like the Pharisees of Jesus’ day, many will reject the present, revelation truth of the 8-Fold Ministry in order to cling to their old, traditional 5-fold ministry. But for those who are willing to embrace this final work of restoration, they will experience a new and unprecedented release of God’s glory and power in their lives.
In this article I will share 4 compelling reasons why the 8-Fold Ministry should be recognized and implemented in the Church today. The reasons are: (1) God’s Prophetic Timetable indicates that 2016 is the year the restoration of this ministry will begin; (2) The 5-Fold Ministry may not have been Paul's idea; (3) The prophetic significance of 8 is far superior to that of 5; and (4) The 8-Fold Ministry will generate more power than a 5-Fold Ministry. I will also discuss the unique characteristics of the 8-Fold Ministry.
Reason #1
God’s Prophetic Timetable
The prophetic significance of the number 8 strongly suggests that the restoration of the 8-Fold Ministry will begin this year. God works through times, seasons and numbers. This is the year 5776 on the Jewish calendar. If you multiply the number 8 by 470 and subtract it from 5776, you get 2016. Is this a mere coincidence? I don’t think so! This is God’s prophetic timetable for restoring the 8-Fold Ministry to the Church in 2016.
Reason #2
The 5-Fold Ministry May Not Have Been Paul’s Idea
There is a good chance that Paul never wrote about the 5-fold ministry, but that someone using his name came up with the idea. For example, Paul was very close to the believers in Ephesus, having founded the church there and many or most of them being his converts. But none of them are ever mentioned in this very generic letter to the church at Ephesus.
To see what I mean, just look at Acts 20:36-38 where Paul is about to depart from a meeting with the elders of the church at Ephesus. As he makes preparations to leave, they all start crying and hugging and kissing him. What a sight! That Paul would write a letter to these same people and never mention any of them is kind of far-fetched, and has led some scholars to conclude that Paul didn’t write this letter.
So, right up front, there is a question whether Paul himself ever knew of a 5-fold ministry. On the other hand, nobody questions that Paul wrote 1 Corinthians 12:28. So, we are on much safer, Biblical ground if we let go of the 5-fold ministry and go with the 8-Fold Ministry.
Reason #3
The Prophetic Significance of 8 is Far Superior to that of 5
Are there any significant 5s in the Bible? The best I have heard for 5 is that the 5 smooth stones that David took out of the brook, when he went out to face Goliath, represents the 5-fold ministry. David, however, only used one of these stones to kill Goliath.
To use this example, we would have to conclude that God has set 5 ministries in the Church, but He only uses one of them to defeat the enemy. So, if we go this route we are eventually left with only a 1-fold ministry. But maybe this has validity and actually confirms the many churches today that are functioning with a 1-fold ministry.
Nonetheless, there is much more prophetic significance to the number 8. Eight is the number of “new beginnings.” Jesus arose on the 1st day of the week, which is the 8th day—the day following the 7th day. Some are talking about the Church being in the 3rd day. They are obviously lagging behind. This is the time of the 8th day Church--the Church of new beginnings.
We recently entered a “new century” and a “new millennium.” Only the 8-Fold Ministry, the ministry of “new beginnings” can lead us into the “new thing” that God has for us in this new century.
Reason #4
The 8-Fold Ministry Will Generate More Power
We see from Scripture that in the realm of the spirit there is a multiplication of power when there is an increase in numbers. For example, Deut. 30:30 says that one chases a thousand but two puts ten thousand to flight. From this we can see that the 8-Fold Ministry will be far more powerful than a mere 5-Fold ministry.

The 8-Fold Ministry of the Apostle

In his 8-Fold Ministry list, Paul lists the apostle first. We should not make too much of this since in 1 Cor.4:9 he thinks God has put the apostles last and says they have been made as the scum of the earth. And in 1 Cor. 13:13 Paul lists faith, hope and love, these three, and then turns around says that love, which he listed last, is the greatest of the three.
So, it is not always that easy to tell what Paul thinks about something by the lists he makes. Sometimes the very thing he esteems the most, he puts at the end of the list; and the thing he thinks least of, he puts at the top of the list. And sometimes he puts something on one list and then leaves it off another list.
Pastors & Evangelists Not Part of the 8-Fold Ministry
For example, in the 8-Fold Ministry there is no mention of a pastor or evangelist. Paul obviously did not see these as being important or he would have listed them here. This is confirmed by the fact that in all his letters to churches, Paul never addresses a pastor or evangelist, or even refers to one. In a personal letter to Timothy, he tells him to do the work of an evangelist, but that is about it in regards to pastors and evangelists. This is because the 8-Fold Ministry brings the Church into a place of maturity where these ministries are no longer necessary.

Restoring the 8-Fold Gift of Steering

One 8-Fold Ministry gift that is desperately needed today is that of “steering.” The NKJV calls it administrations. The Greek word is kuberneseis and it originally referred to a steersman who guided a ship. In his Greek-English Interlinear, Alfred Marshall translates the word as governings and it obviously refers to steering, guiding and giving direction.
This gift is greatly needed to steer the other ministry gifts in the proper direction. Many thought that with the recent restoration of apostles and prophets everything would be fine. Instead, things have gotten worse because the new apostles and prophets have had no one to steer them in the right direction. As we see a restoration of the kuberneseis, and the other ministry gifts becoming aligned with it, we will see a release of power in the Church unknown since the 1st century.
To get the restoration of this gift moving, I am considering calling myself “Steersman Eddie Hyatt,” or maybe “Governor Eddie Hyatt.” But since others will also be using this as a title once the restoration gets under way, I will probably use “Senior Steersman” or maybe “Presiding Steersman.” I would use the Greek word, but I don’t think “Kuberneseis Eddie Hyatt” sounds impressive enough--and that’s what it’s all about, isn’t it?
The Sum of it All
If you feel challenged in accepting my argument for the 8-Fold Ministry, don’t feel badly. I have the same problem with much teaching that is being propagated today in charismatic/prophetic circles. Nonetheless, I think I have presented a pretty convincing argument. Maybe there is something to this 8-Fold Ministry after all. (smile)
Finally, on a more serious note, here are 5 points I hope you take way from this essay.
(1) Avoid building a doctrine on one passage of Scripture. Like a house of cards it will come crashing down. We must compare Scripture with Scripture and have the overall testimony of God's word underneath our feet.
(2) Avoid “sensationalism,” which is defined as “the use of exciting or shocking stories or language at the expense of accuracy, in order to provoke public interest or excitement.” This happens too often in charismatic circles.
(3) Avoid spiritualizing and making predictions based on the Jewish calendar that dates the present year at 5776. This AM ("in the year of the world") calendar was unknown to Jesus and the New Testament writers. It was codified by Maimonides in the 12th century based on earlier rabbinic deliberations and speculations.
(4) Stay away from numerology. There are numbers with symbolic meaning in the Bible, but numerology projects spiritual and even magical powers to certain numbers and certain arrangements of particular numbers.

(5) Never forget that the goal of Scripture is relational--to bring people into a closer relationship with God through Jesus Christ. Paul’s stated goal in life was, that I may know Him . . . (Philippians 3:10).

Dr. Eddie Hyatt is an author, Bible teacher and ordained minister. To read about his vision for another Great Awakening in America and around the world, go to his website at www.eddiehyatt.com. His books on the church renewal and Spiritual awakening are available from Amazon and from his website. His latest book is entitled The Faith & Vision of Benjamin Franklin.