WHO OWNS THE CHURCH(Celestial)??????????
Who owns the church ?????
Is it the shepherds, is it the founder Samuel Bilehou Joseph Oshoffa, or his family or the person that built it, the church patrons or the landlord Shepherd?
You ask,”What manner of question is this”
The truth is God Almighty owns the church
It belongs to him
He declared and said it in CCC HYMN 703
WHEN the Lord descended Celestial Church with the host of Heavenly angels
When the Lord descended Celestial Church with host of Heavenly angels
Oh Lord let’s assure that Celestial Church belongs to him so we might with songs of joy
Praise thee host of holy angels.
Rejoice, rejoice, rejoice
Praise the Father with pure holy love Halleluyah
Rejoice, rejoice, rejoice
Praise the Father with pure holy love. Amen.
But the question is still important. For sometimes it appears that the leaders and shepherds of some church today do not appreciate they are not the owners but stewards of God’s possession
He continued in CCC HYMN 290
HEAVENLY Father owns this Celestial fold
The source of salvation (3ce)
He is the King of glory
When one is privilege to build a church, one is termed the owner of the church in today’s circles.
When the pre-Messianic church killed the Messiah, her leaders, namely, the scribes, Pharisees and Sadducees, did not appreciate they were mere labourers in Yahweh’s vineyard. They considered themselves owners, and therefore became robbers. That was what the Messiah’s parable of the wicked tenants was all about. Let’s recount it in full.
Matthew 21:33 … There was a certain householder, which planted a vineyard, and hedged it round about, and digged a winepress in it, and built a tower, and let it out to husbandmen, and went into a far country: 21:34 And when the time of the fruit drew near, he sent his servants to the husbandmen, that they might receive the fruits of it. 21:35 And the husbandmen took his servants, and beat one, and killed another, and stoned another. 21:36 Again, he sent other servants more than the first: and they did unto them likewise. 21:37 But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence my son. 21:38 But when the husbandmen saw the son, they said among themselves, This is the heir; come, let us kill him, and let us seize on his inheritance. 21:39 And they caught him, and cast [him] out of the vineyard, and slew [him] …. 21:45 And when the chief priests and Pharisees had heard his parables, they perceived that he spoke of them.
Such were the leaders of the pre-Messianic church. Are the leaders of today’s churches any different?
It has therefore become important to remind church leaders, shepherds and general overseers and senior pastor, and reverends, that they are not owners but servants. It is a reminder Apostles Peter and John had cause to deliver in their own way back in the apostolic age of the present church. Let’s hear Peter’s plea.
1 Peter 5:1 The elders which are among you I exhort, who am also an elder, and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, and also a partaker of the glory that shall be revealed: 5:2 Feed the flock of God which is among you, taking the oversight [thereof,] not by constraint, but willingly; not for filthy lucre, but of a ready mind; 5:3 Neither as being lords over [God’s] heritage, but being examples to the flock. 5:4 And when the chief Shepherd shall appear, ye shall receive a crown of glory that fadeth not away. 5:5 Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all [of you] be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.
Those who made themselves “lords over God’s heritage” surely considered themselves church owners. They also could not understand what Peter meant by asking them to be “subject one to another”, and “clothed with humility”.
Apostle John, on the other hand, got personal, contrasting Diotrephes with Demetrius. Hear him:
3 John 1:9 I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. 1:10 Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth [them] out of the church…. 1:11 Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God. 1:12 Demetrius hath good report of all [men,] and of the truth itself: yea, and we [also] bear record; and ye know that our record is true.
Diotrephes behaved like a church owner, broaching no interference in “my church”. He reminds one of pastors that want to make sure their members listen to only what comes from their own lips, or own denomination. It is as though they believe they have the seal of truth and all others liars. No, let the members hear from all lips, but let the pastor help them analyse what they have heard, by the word of life, so they are not tossed about by every wind of doctrine. Yet, if the pastor is not himself or herself grounded in the word of truth, how shall they guide the sheep? They would then rather seek to put them in hideouts. But tough luck in this internet age! No, our Saviour came not to take us out of the world but to make us immune to its errors, that the churches of the living Yahweh should be and remain “the pillar and ground of the truth” (1 Timothy 3:15b).
Back to the false lordship of servants. The example of Moses’ misadventure should teach leaders in trust a lesson or two. When Moses struck the rock, his words showed he saw himself then, not as a servant, but as lord over the people. Let’s hear him carefully:
Numbers 20:10 And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock?
It is true the people had murmured against him, even wanting to stone him, because they were very thirsty (Exodus 17:3-4). He then went to Yahweh who commanded to give them water. But, in executing the command, the servant’s words, “Must WE fetch you water out of the rock?” showed he had forgotten his proper place. The Psalmist therefore recorded that, because the people provoked his spirit, “he spoke unadvisedly with his lips” (Psalm 106:33). His words did not sanctify Yahweh before the people (Numbers 20:12). And so, those lordly words cost him entering the land of Canaan.
You can see then that it is easy to get carried away or provoked to behave like a lord and not sanctify our true Lord.
This sickness of false ownership is terrible. Said the Messiah,
John 5:44 How can ye believe, which receive honour one of another, and seek not the honour that [cometh] from God only?
In the search for false praise and honour, blind rulers and leaders hunger for flattery and sycophancy. Blunt truth they reject as insolence. Therefore, they cannot bear such persons as Nathaniel, whom our Saviour called, “an Israelite indeed in whom there is no guile” (John 1:47). Isaiah tells us, “They make a person an offender for a word” (Isaiah 29:21). This is because they consider themselves above reproach. Therefore, they hate any that reproves at the gate, and “turn aside the just for a thing of nought” (Isa 29:21b). They must be the one to deliver the reproof, or reproof by any other person must be with their consent or in their service!
Owners that have their own agenda cannot subject themselves to naked truth. They therefore, wittingly or unwittingly, choose for themselves servants and assistants from yesmen or yes-persons. Thereby, they open themselves to false and flattering reports. Proverbs 29:12 then becomes fulfilled in their churches as their assistants become “wicked”. And so they build kingdoms of men on miry clay rather than the true Church of the living Yahweh on the eternal rock which is Jesus Christ, the Lord.
The days have therefore come for false church owners to repent and do the first works.
Reference: Bringing back the church