Liturgy

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We were to live by love and charity not by force and not covet our neighbors property through men who called themselves Benefactors like most of the Modern Christians do with their modern Corban. The early Church "fathers" as some call them had a daily ministration provided by Pure Religion so that Christians did not have to go to the "Fathers" of the earth whose welfare was a snare. See The_Liturgy_of_the_Church.

The Christian community was well-disciplined and organized from the bottom up with a system of charity rather than forced taxes. While the Roman system of political control and its usurious economy was breaking down, those who followed Christ were excluded from the dainties of those civic tables. In about AD 150, Justin Martyr, hoping to clear the misconceptions and prejudices surrounding Christianity, wrote the Emperor Antoninus Pius in defense of the Christian faith and allegiance to Christ:

“And the wealthy among us help the needy ... and willing, give what each thinks fit; and what is collected is deposited with the president, who succours the orphans and widows and those who, through sickness or any other cause, are in want, and those who are in bonds and the strangers sojourning among us, and in a word takes care of all who are in need.” Justin Martyr to Emperor Antoninus Pius (Ch. 65-67) explaining the Daily ministration of the Church which exemplifies the Christian conflict with Rome.

Justin would not trade his faith in Christ for the benefits of Rome because he knew that what they offered for his welfare was truly a snare of recompense. Christians “had fallen into such a folly that they would not obey the institutes of antiquity.”[1]

These were the official temples of Rome which had been established by the government for the welfare of the people.

As with ministers like Stephen, we also see the Didache stating: [2]

“Therefore, elect for yourselves bishops and deacons worthy of the Lord, men who are meek and not lovers of money, true and approved, for they also perform for you the ministry of the prophets and teachers.” 15:1

The nature of these appointments would remain the same for centuries. In the 10th century, drastic reforms were enforced to “unify the liturgy” of the Church. This authoritarian call for unity under a centralized Church had been creeping into some Church thinking from the beginning, and now it became a rebellion against the gospels.

Liturgy is defined as “a prescribed form or set of forms for public religious worship.”[3]

It is from the Greek word leitourgi and 'leitourgos [4], meaning “public service” and “public servant” respectively. Liturgy was not about singing and vestments and the smoke and mirrors of modern Christendom. It was about the public servants of the Kingdom of God operating under the perfect law of liberty in true worship of God[5] by service to the people. Liturgy was the common procedure of God’s kingdom in congregations composed of, by, and for the people.

Forms of this same word defined as public service appear numerous times in the New Testament. Zacharias in Luke 1:23 finishes his "days of his ministration" at the temple.[6] Temples in every nation provided actual service of caring for the needs of society and were government buildings providing public service.

Paul talks about the saints, who were the called out being assisted by the offerings of the people using the term leitourgia[7] in 2 Corinthians 9:12 [8]

Because the early Church and the early Christians were following the way of Christ they provided their public service through the "sacrifice and service"[9] of their faith through charity. The public servants of Jesus the Christ did real work and struggle to provide real public service to the people.[10] While this often brought the Church into conflict with Rome and its public service through their temples dependent upon forced offerings and taxation it was a more excellent way.[11] The pure religion of the early Church was often sprinkled with the blood of the ministers and the people through persecution just as Jesus sacrificed himself for us.[12]

The Greek verb leitourgeo[13] meaning to "to serve the state at one’s own cost" also appears in Acts[14] speaking of their daily duty to minister[15] because religion was a duty to God and our fellowman in hope of the Holy Spirit[16] entering into us and writing upon our hearts and minds.[17]

Christ taught and even commanded a different way of public service through charity and faith instead of fealty and force to the little flock he appointed the kingdom to so that we might repent and seek His kingdom of God.

The free systems of tens, hundreds, and thousands, bound together only by brotherhood and love, had been the predominant form of successful voluntary government throughout man’s history. Similar cell patterns were evident in the persecuted Church immediately following Christ. This was the prophecy and plan of God for his called out Church and throughout Europe during the first Millennium until the rise of kings crowned by an apostate church which murdered millions of true Christians.

The crucial ingredient to their success was the implementation of the Ten codes of God’s law summarized in the virtuous application of Christ’s two commandments. Love God and His ways with all that you think and do, and actively love your neighbor's rights to his property and family, his life and liberty as much, if not more, than you love your own. The Church that comes together according to these ancient patterns and righteousness can overcome all tyrants, despots, and enemies of freedom and liberty under God. They may be sustained by their love in famine and blight. They may exit bondage and prosper in the wilderness. They can weather the greatest storms and cataclysms of history, both past or future. They can and will inherit the earth with the humility of their love in daily sacrifice, which is the communion of Christ. [see Chapter 4 of Thy Kingdom Comes.]

“And in that day seven women [churches] shall take hold of one man [Christ], saying, We will eat our own bread, and wear our own apparel: only let us be called by thy name, to take away our reproach.” Isaiah 4:1

Disconnectedness to do your own thing goes contrary to the communion of Christ. The seven women have a liturgy in selfishness. The women admit reproach, but they do not seek the righteous way of repentance. Their aim is to do the same as they did in their former life-situation. It appears they would compel that one man to serve them and to hide their sin.

God’s ministers and all those people who seek His kingdom, who minister one to another, do not exercise authority nor compel the service and labor of their neighbor; they act in accordance with the manner and means of the liturgy of Jesus Christ, and they must not forsake the coming together for the assistance of the congregations of the People and the Church. They are to worship and pay homage to the God of us all, and to our King, Jesus the Messiah, through an active network of faith, hope, and charity, which is love.

Eucharist is the Greek word for being thankful for the opportunity of giving, which is the Communion of Christ in us.

Our bread is shared; it is cast upon the waters. Justin explained this food to 'help the needy' is called the 'eucharist'. Thankful givers supplied the food when they assembled together on Sunday. This was the welfare assistance in God's kingdom, and thankful needy ones receive it. The needy ones did not pray to Rome for assistance. They sought the communion of Christ, which was nutrients flowing to the portion of the body of Christ that had need.

This interacting and nurturing by the eucharist, which for the sake of liberty was of and for and by the people, was the liturgy, and this is the worship of God.

Certain men crept in unawares

Jude 1:4 “For there are certain men crept in unawares, who were before of old ordained to this condemnation, ungodly men, turning the grace of our God into lasciviousness, and denying the only Lord God, and our Lord Jesus Christ.”

When the people depended upon the offerings of charity of the Church rather than the compelled contributions of Egypt, Rome, Judea or Babylon, etc, they found they must change. They have a new master they pray to. That master operates a system based on love, not force. John the Baptist and Jesus offered a different way than the world at that time.[18] It is a different way than the world at this time. It is The Way of Christ.

Over the ages, the actual corporeal and incorporeal service of the church to the people became little more than superstitious religious ceremonies designed to give the people a feeling of being justified in the delusion that they were worshiping God. In truth they were actually sacrificing upon the altars of the Nicolaitans.[19] This is the error of Balaam and the antithesis of Christ.

In the early centuries, the people were dependent upon the network of the Church to sustain them in the hard times of Roman and Judaic collapse. Today, many Churches preach tithing, but they send the people to benefactors who exercise authority one over the other, contrary to the precepts of Christ.

His Holy Church has no authority to dictate a ‘unified liturgy’. That is to say, we cannot compel the manner of public service, like other governments do, nor can we exercise authority over the choice and liberty of each other.

The church does have an obligation to care for the needs of the flock of Christ, the people hearing His voice, and the ones seeking the kingdom of God and His righteousness. It has a mission to serve the people so that they need not pray to the benefactors of the world. What we write is about that network used by Abraham, Moses, and Jesus Christ to edify the Kingdom of God which is within our reach.

Every man and woman must strive to follow the precepts of Christ in protecting one another as God’s altars of living earth. The ministers of the Church---who set aside some of their personal liberty to serve God by serving His people---are the living stones of His altar, performing an important function of representation. His Church must preach the kingdom of love and liberty. It is to facilitate the communion of the people in faith, hope, and charity, so that they learn and live the gospel of the kingdom as free souls under God. We must all unlearn the ways and the practices of the world that are contrary to the ways of Christ and His Holy first century Church. Worldly ways have crept into our thinking over the last two millennia.[20]

We must examine the meaning of phrases like worship services, kingdom of God, first century Church, congregations of the people, and pure religion. We must look at the particular directives of Christ and show true faith in the whole gospel of the Kingdom.

We are told that we should not be like The governments of the world who call themselves benefactors and public servants but who rule over the manner and means of the sacrifices of the people by ruling over the people and the people ruling over their neighbor, exercising authority in the provision of their own welfare. Such welfare has always been a snare and a stumbling block for the people, from David[21] to Paul[22] and even down unto this very day. Through covetousness, such systems make the people little more than human resources,[23] slaves to serve the will of despots and tyrants.

The leaders of the Church are the antithesis of such institutions of men which exercise authority one over the other. They show their faith in Christ by their provision of good service.[24]

The people who seek the righteousness of Christ and His kingdom care for the welfare of each other through the bonds of love, in a network of charity ministered to by those living stones of God’s altar of their choosing. Through a process of forgiveness and a communion of thanksgiving, the Holy Spirit shall write the liturgy of God on the minds and hearts of the whole body of Christ, providing salvation in this world and the next.

See The_Liturgy_of_the_Church

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Footnotes

  1. Edict of Tolerance at Nicomedia, Emperor Galerius’ April 30, 311.
  2. The Didache is mentioned by Eusebius (c. 324) as the Teachings of the Apostles following the books recognized as canonical (Historia Ecclesiastica III, 25): ...
  3. The American Heritage ® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition,
  4. 3011 ~λειτουργός~ leitourgos \@li-toorg-os’\@ from a derivative of 2992 Laos/people and 2041 ergon work, deed, laborer; TDNT-4:229,526; {See TDNT 434} n m AV-minister 4, he that ministers 1; 5 [see also liturgy, 3008, 3009, 3010, & 3011.]
    1) a public minister, a servant of the state
    2) a minister, servant
    2a) so of military labourers
    2b) of the temple
    2b1) of one busied with holy things
    2b2) of a priest
    2c) of the servants of a king
  5. See Appendix 3 of Thy Kingdom Comes. What is worship.
  6. Luke 1:23 And it came to pass, that, as soon as the days of his ministration <3009> were accomplished, he departed to his own house.
  7. 3009 ~λειτουργία~ leitourgia \@li-toorg-ee’-ah\@ from 3008 [leitourgeo minister 1) to serve the state at one’s own cost 1a) to assume an office which must be administered at one’s own expense ]; n f AV-service 3, ministry 2, ministration 1; 6 [see also liturgy 3011, 3009, 3010.]
    1) a public office which a citizen undertakes to administer at his own expense
    2) any service 2a) of military service 2b) of the service of workmen
    2c) of that done to nature in the cohabitation of man and wife
    3) biblical usage 3a) a service or ministry of the priests relative to the prayers and sacrifices offered to God 3b) a gift or benefaction for the relief of the needy
  8. 2 Corinthians 9:12 For the administration of this service <3009> not only supplieth the want of the saints, but is abundant also by many thanksgivings unto God;
  9. Philippians 2:17 Yea, and if I be offered upon the sacrifice and service <3009> of your faith, I joy, and rejoice with you all.
  10. Philippians 2:30 Because for the work of Christ he was nigh unto death, not regarding his life, to supply your lack of service <3009> toward me.
  11. Hebrews 8:6 But now hath he obtained a more excellent ministry <3009>, by how much also he is the mediator of a better covenant, which was established upon better promises.
  12. Hebrews 9:21 Moreover he sprinkled with blood both the tabernacle, and all the vessels of the ministry <3009>.
  13. 3008 ~λειτουργέω~ leitourgeo \@li-toorg-eh’-o\@ from 3011; TDNT-4:215,526; {See TDNT 434} v AV-minister 3; 3 [see also liturgy, 3008, 3009, 3010, & 3011.]
    1) to serve the state at one’s own cost
    1a) to assume an office which must be administered at one’s own expense
    1b) to discharge a public office at one’s own cost
    1c) to render public service to the state
    2) to do a service, perform a work
    2a) of priests and Levites who were busied with the sacred rites in the tabernacle or the temple
    2b) of Christians serving Christ, whether by prayer, or by instructing others concerning the way of salvation, or in some other way
    2c) of those who aid others with their resources, and relieve their poverty
  14. Acts 13:2 As they ministered <3008> to the Lord, and fasted, the Holy Ghost said, Separate me Barnabas and Saul for the work whereunto I have called them. and in Paul's letter to the Romans

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