|This is an edited transcript of the message I spoke at the School of the Word on Aug.14
How would you like to learn three Greek words today:
prothesis (purpose), koinonia (communion), and agape (selfless love).
These are three characteristics of God’s household, the ‘Oikos’ that we spoke about in the first message. We said that the people of the ‘Oikos’ of God make up the Ecclesia.
The Ecclesia is made up of:
-> members who position themselves next to each other in the battlefield, bound together by the bonds of love.
(remember here what we spoke about the great commandment in the Law, that the way we show our love for God is practiced and manifested through how we show love to the person in the closest proximity to us)
Also, the Ecclesia is made up of:
-> “members of one another” like the members of a physical body;
-> sons of the same ‘Oikos’-Household of God, which (Oikos) has the identity of the Father of the Household where the children have “koinonia”-communion (fellowship) with one another (remember here what we said in the first message about pater-father and patria-fatherhood).
So these are the three major characteristics that define the Oikos-Household of God; the first is the prothesis, and that is the purpose, which explains:
-> why does the ecclesia exist;
-> why and how does the ecclesia fulfill the eternal purpose of God;
-> why does God need an Oikos-Household that is made up of Patriae-fatherhoods on earth (?)
The second is koinonia, the communion (fellowship) with each other, and the third is the agape, the selfless, sacrificial love for each other that binds us together in a way that we form the body that can fulfill the prothesis, the purpose of God.
Out of plenty of scriptures from the pre-Christ era (which are relevant to the subject) I chose a small portion out of 1 Chronicles 7.
(At the School I said) We shall not read every word. I will move through several verses reading only what is related to the oikos and patria. I take for granted that you can follow through from the previous teaching (concerning these words oikos and patria).
(Here below is the full text from which I read only the highlighted words)
1 Chronicles 7:2 The sons of Tola were Uzzi, Rephaiah, Jeriel, Jahmai, Jibsam, and Shemuel, heads of their father’s house. The sons of Tola were mighty men of valor in their generations; their number in the days of David was twenty-two thousand six hundred. 3 The son of Uzzi was Izrahiah, and the sons of Izrahiah were Michael, Obadiah, Joel, and Ishiah. All five of them were chief men. 4 And with them, by their generations, according to their fathers’ houses, were thirty-six thousand troops ready for war; for they had many wives and sons. 5 Now their brethren among all the familiesof Issachar were mighty men of valor, listed by their genealogies, eighty-seven thousand in all. 6 The sons of Benjamin were Bela, Becher, and Jediael–three in all. 7 The sons ofBela were Ezbon, Uzzi, Uzziel, Jerimoth, and Iri–five in all. They were heads of their fathers’ houses, and they were listed by their genealogies, twenty-two thousand and thirty-four mighty men of valor. 8 The sons of Becher were Zemirah, Joash, Eliezer, Elioenai, Omri, Jerimoth, Abijah, Anathoth, and Alemeth. All these are the sons of Becher. 9 And they were recorded by genealogy according to their generations, heads of their fathers’ houses, twenty thousand two hundred mighty men of valor.
What can we learn from this? We spoke in the previous message about the (pre-Christ) shadow on the earth that revealed the heavenly kingdom that descends from above. And we explained how this shadow on the earth, made up by the people of Israel explained to us on whose throne Jesus came to sit, as the angel announced to Mary:
Luke 1:31 “And behold, you will conceive in your womb and bring forth a Son, and shall call His name JESUS. 32 “He will be great, and will be called the Son of the Highest; and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. 33 “And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and of His kingdom there will be no end.”
These words of the angel, which were the most significant announcement that Heaven could make about Mary’s coming son, reveal both: the pre-Christ earthly Kingdom, which was the “model” (the shadow on earth), and the “Kingdom of which there will be no end” which descends from above, which is the Kingdom of Heaven that Christ came to reveal. So, what does the pre-Christ “model” teach us?
David was made King over a Kingdom and that Kingdom was made up of genealogies, and fathers’ houses, where everyone was a son of somebody (that was their primary, biblical identity which explains how God sees each one of us too)…
… where the blood of the animlas that saved them from the oppression and slavery of Egypt, was the mark on the fathers’ houses that provided protection for those who were the children inside the house. The “blood of the animals” was the earhtly shadow of the Blood of the Lamb of God, Jesus, and the “father’s house” was the earthly shadow of the ‘Oikos’ of God, which is the Ecclesia both universally, and in each local expression.
What is the eternal prothesis-purpose of God which is revealed in that He created the earthly Kingdom of David to be a shadow of another Kingdom coming from heaven? – of which Jesus is the King and we (the redeemed of the Lord, the members of the Ecclesia) are the “Jews” – circumcised NOT in the flesh, but in the heart (?)…
… called to be edified, to be built up, to learn what our Kingdom looks like, (i.e.) the heavenly Kingdom by looking at that shadow on earth so that we can find our place in the Kingdom of Jesus who is seated on the Throne of David.
In Ephesians 3:8-12 we read:
Ephesians 3:8 To me, who am less than the least of all the saints, this grace was given, that I should preach among the Gentiles the unsearchable riches of Christ, 9 and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God who created all things through Jesus Christ; 10 to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known by the church to the principalities and powers in the heavenly places, 11 according to the eternal (prothesis) purpose which He accomplished in Christ Jesus our Lord, 12 in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in Him.
Before we were born, before there was Light, God had a prothesis, a purpose, and He said: “I will make My wisdom known to the principalities and powers”. How? “I will build up on earth an Oikos that will perform the duty of the Ecclesia which will manifest my wisdom in the face of the enemy”.
That is why I started my previous teaching on the basis of the sons standing together in the battle. That is why the basis of my teaching on the Ecclesia is more on the basis of a battlefield than anything else. And then, by learning through the earthly shadow, the earthly Kingdom of David revealed the design of God whereby we go to the battle after we have become approved, faithful sons of our Father’s House.
Jesus confirmed this eternal prothesis-purpose of God when he made His constitutional declaration in Matthew chapter 16. This may be the most significant portion of Scripture perhaps in regards to the entire Bible (perhaps), but certainly concerning the ‘Oikos’-Household of God. And that is because Jesus made this constitutional declaration;
Matthew 16:18 “And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. 19 “And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
He said: On this rock I will build up my ecclesia…
Here we need to stop so that I can give you a bit of the background. The word recorded here which is translated as “build” is in line with what we spoke in the previous teaching, where we explained the word ‘Oikos’ how it comes from the Hellenic version of the pre-Christ scriptures, the Septuagint.
And Jesus said in Matthew 16:18 “I will OIKO-domeo (build-up) My Ecclesia”.
Actually, if we were to translate literally what He said – let me first say it in the original Hellenic (here in Latin letters) “oikodomeso mou tin Ekklesian” – what does that mean in English:
I will build an Oikos to Myself; I will build-up a structure that is an Oikos-household to Myself, that is the Ecclesia.
To be precise He did NOT say, “I will build up my church” – literally He said: “I will buildto myself an Oikos, and it will be the Ecclesia” – and what will this Ecclesia do?
Let us get this right: Jesus first builds up to Himself an Oikos – His Oikos on earth, and this structure (the Oikos) that he builds up is ‘The Ecclesia’ – which means what?
— Just a brief background (before we continue on Matthew 16) —
The word ‘Ecclesia’ is not a religious word. In the days of Jesus, and from more ancient times, the religious gathering of the Jews was called “Synagogé”, in English “Synagogue”. In the Bible we read that Jesus taught in their Synagogues. Everywhere the Jews met for religious purposes, it was a Synagogue.
Jesus could have said, I will build up my own Synagogue, but He did not!
He used a word that came from the secular world; which means what? The word “Ecclesia” stands for the gathering of the eligible elders of a city who have juridical authority over the people of that community.
The municipality leaders of Athens 2500 years ago were called the ‘Ecclesia of Athens’. The pagans of Ephesus who gathered to judge Paul (in the Book of Acts 19:32, 39) are recorded in the Scriptures as the “Ecclesia of Ephesus” – an absolutely secular word not related to religion (but one that is even related to legal matters–see Acts 19:39) – why would then Jesus choose this secular word?
Because the purpose for his Oikos-household is NOT to be a religious gathering.
The prothesis-purpose of this Oikos-household is to fulfill God’s eternal prothesis:
-> to make the wisdom of His Father known to the powers and principalities of this world!
(that is why God sent Jesus to the earth, to establish the Ecclesia through forgiven sinners, saved out of the grip of Death by the Blood that Jesus shed on the cross, acquired on to God as a people who make up a special nation on earth, which is the Royal Priesthood of Jesus – that is what the Bible teaches us)
— And so (back to Matthew 16:18) —
Jesus continued His constitutional declaration, saying:
This Household (oikos) that I raise up as a structure (domeo) to Myself, the Ecclesia, meaning, the eligible elder saints who have juridical authority in the Courts of Heaven… THAT is what I shall raise up to myself – and what will be the result?
-> the gates of Hades will not prevail!
Then Jesus continued (verse 19): I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven; whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
You can see that the constitutional declaration of the establishment of the Ecclesia that Jesus in person spoke out, not only reveals the nature of the Oikos-household of God but also explains that the reason it would be formed would be to fulfill the eternal prothesis-purpose of the Father.