The five-fold ministry that God gave to the church was given to build up the church and help believers to build up one another for the glory of God. Take a moment to consider this practical visual demonstration; if you look at your left hand you will see a thumb, index finger, middle finger, ring finger, little finger.

1 ~ The thumb being the ministry of an apostle,

2  ~ The index finger being the ministry of the prophet,

3  ~ The middle finger being the ministry of an evangelist,

4  ~ The ring finger being the ministry of a pastor,

5  ~ The little finger being the ministry of a teacher.

The word Apostle in the Greek is apostolos meaning envoy, founders, missionary, a divinely appointed messenger. An apostle helps bring stability and well-balanced teaching which edifies and encourages. Notice the thumb can hold things and brings balance to the hand.

The word Prophet in the Greek is prophetes meaning one who speaks an inspired utterance. It is one who knows the mind of God, and as the index finger, he or she points the way forward.

The word for Evangelists in the Greek is euangelistes meaning proclaiming the gospel of the good news about Jesus. One who preaches a focus on the death, burial and resurrection and is a powerful witness of Jesus Christ, including the impact that the good news has on mankind’s relationship to God. The middle finger is the tallest finger; it is the one reaching out more than all the others to see souls saved.

The word for Pastors in the Greek is poimen meaning a shepherd who takes care of the sheep, one who looks after the sheep, takes care and tends for them. Appropriately then, the ministry of a pastor goes to the ring finger, the finger which many believe leads straight to the heart. A pastor is one who has a heart for the people to care, look after and tend to as a good shepherd over God’s flock.

The word for Teacher in the Greek is didaskalos meaning to teach, instruct, one who provides information and instructions in a manner intended to produce understanding, one who speaks with authority. The little finger is by no means the least, yet it is the one that the whole hand leans on. The one who teaches God’s word does so with authority as one speaking the words of God, one who opens up the Scriptures and explains God’s will and His heart for His people.

My friend, now let us look at the palm of one’s hand and there see your name engraved upon His hand surrounded by the five-fold ministry that God has given the church to prepare you and equip you for every work in service to God, so everyone may be built up in the most holy faith. This entire five-fold ministry God has given just for you, wow! What an amazing, caring, loving God you have.

God bless you, Pastor Matthew.

It is very easy to just follow the crowd and end up warming yourself with the wrong fire. Here, Peter was following afar off, but we cannot follow Jesus from afar off, for when we do, we start to substitute things for what is real. Then, before you know it you are warming yourself with the wrong fire and with the wrong company who have no time for the things of God. You cannot find a substitute for the Fire of the Holy Spirit!

It was while Peter was in the company at the wrong fire, trying to keep warm, that he compromised his integrity and denied Jesus. Not once, but three times did Peter deny he knew Jesus. But the grace and love of God can restore the vilest offender. Peter, in the book of John chapter 21, was forgiven and restored by Jesus. Out of that personal and close relationship with Jesus the true Fire of the Holy Spirit can be truly known.

As Peter and the disciples gathered in the upper chamber at the time of prayer, there came a blowing of a mighty wind and tongues of fire that rested upon each one of them. The Fire of the Holy Spirit burned within them with a power and passion in God. Now, here Peter sat while the True Fire burned and fell upon each and every one of them.

The question is asked, “Will you be found at the fire trying to keep warm in the company of mockers, or sitting in the upper chamber warmed by Fire and power of the Holy Spirit?”

My friend, it is far better to be seated in the place of prayer, the place of power, than share a fire to stay warm in the company of mockers. It is far better to be baptized with the Fire and power of the Holy Spirit and let His Fire burn within your hearts to be His witnesses and declare His wonders and win souls, rather than be sitting at a fire trying to just stay warm. Let His Fire not only warm your bodies, but also fill your life with His flames of passion and power with Fire of the Holy Spirit, to do His will.

God bless you my friend, Pastor Matthew.

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