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Why Your Church Isn’t Growing and Maturing w/Alan Hirsch
Episode 38325th April 2022 • Everyday Disciple Podcast • Caesar Kalinowski
00:00:00 00:42:03

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When we talk about how mature our church is, we often think about age, structures, and programs. But the church is none of those; the Church is people. Are your people mature? In this episode of the Everyday Disciple Podcast, we talk about why your church isn’t growing or maturing with our very special guest, Alan Hirsch. Alan is a leading voice in the missional movement of the Christian West and a heck of a great guy! In This Episode You’ll Learn:
  • A surprisingly simple “key” to unity and maturity found in Ephesians 4.
  • How to view leadership and ministry through a biblical perspective.
  • Why you are a gift to your church and community, given by Jesus himself!
  • What happens in a church that doesn’t recognize and embrace all 5 of Jesus’ gifts.
Get started here... From this episode: "Here’s what's exciting... We often use it (Eph. 4) as a leadership conversation, actually in the book of Ephesians, it's not about leadership. The first instance and radical way of taking this is that the heroes of the text would not be a group of leaders from a seminary, it's a group of local hacks and local churches. And they were small house churches, Missional sites."  
Each week the Big 3 will give you immediate action steps to get you started. Start a Missional Community from ScratchDownload today’s BIG 3 right now. Read and think over them again later. You might even want to share them with others…

Thanks for Listening!

Thanks so much for joining us again this week. Have some feedback you’d like to share? Join us on Facebook and take part in the discussion! If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons you see at the top of this page or right below. Also, please subscribe and leave an honest review for The Everyday Disciple Podcast on Apple Podcasts or wherever you listen. Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of the show, and we read each and every one of them. Links and Resources Mentioned in This Episode: Free Download of the Big 3 For Episode #383 Coaching with Caesar and Tina in discipleship and missional living. The Permanent Revolution Playbook 5Q: Reactivating the Original Intelligence and Capacity of the Body of Christ Take the Free five-fold survey here. Missio Publishing – More Missional Books and Resources Caesar Kalinowski’s Website and Blog with Loads of Resources Get Caesar’s latest book: Bigger Gospel for FREE… Click Here Join us on Facebook

Transcripts

Heath:

And my experience in the church, it's always been rather than actually valuing one another's giftings it's the apostles are threats to the shepherds and the prophets are threats to the teachers.

Heath:

And there's this, rather than valuing the beauty of the checks and balances, we're actually opposed to one another and view each other as enemies.

Alan:

Yeah, it's true, Ethan.

Alan:

And that's why I'm in the Ephesians.

Alan:

Texts actually starts in Ephesians four, one and one to seven talks about strive for the unity.

Alan:

The spirit through the bond of peace, you know, you to maintain your sense of connectedness because your diversity will split you apart.

Alan:

If you don't have a deeper sense of unity.

Alan:

And so this is why it's critical to actually strive to, you know, to recognize each other fundamental in Christ are we.

Alan:

Well, there's one church.

Alan:

We all belong to each other.

Alan:

Now you can go diverse.

Alan:

And by the way, guys, I think it's really important for your audience.

Heath:

Welcome to the Everyday Disciple podcast where you'll learn how to live with greater intentionality.

Heath:

Faith that naturally fits into every area of life.

Heath:

In other words, discipleship as a lifestyle, this is the stuff your parents, pastors, and seminary professors probably forgot to tell you.

Heath:

And now here's your host Caesar.

Heath:

Kalinowski

Caesar:

well, here we go again.

Caesar:

Hey, you know what?

Caesar:

It's finally happened.

Caesar:

Tina and I caught the COVID.

Caesar:

Yeah, I thought we escaped it.

Caesar:

We've had all the vaccinations and boosters known to man.

Caesar:

And yet we caught the old Rona virus.

Caesar:

And I'll tell you, what's really ironic about this.

Caesar:

I was just in Raleigh friend of mine.

Caesar:

Daniel said you never got coronavirus yet.

Caesar:

And I'm like, no, I haven't don't jinx me.

Caesar:

Well, I got home from that trip.

Caesar:

And within a few days I was not feeling.

Caesar:

Tina.

Caesar:

Got it first.

Caesar:

And then I got it.

Caesar:

You can probably hear it.

Caesar:

I'm a little congested and, uh, I'm going to have to change course a little bit on today's topic because of this.

Caesar:

I'll tell you about that more in a little bit here.

Caesar:

First.

Caesar:

I want to invite you over to the Facebook group.

Caesar:

If you've not joined us there yet, please do so head on over to.

Caesar:

Facebook, look it up Everyday Disciple Podcast, or you can go to Everyday Disciple dot com forward slash podcast.

Caesar:

And as always, I want to ask, would you please share the podcast with somebody would just send out a link, a mention, a link to something, whatever you're listening on Spotify or an apple podcast or whatever, and just share the show.

Caesar:

If you're finding it to be a blessing and one last.

Caesar:

If you're interested in learning a full framework for discipleship and mission.

Caesar:

If you want to grow in your gospel fluency and learn how to apply and live out the gospel in all of life.

Caesar:

I'd love to tell you more about the coaching that we offer and set up a zoom call.

Caesar:

Get on there with the, explain everything to you.

Caesar:

Tina and I coached together as couples and we would love to coach you and your spouse.

Caesar:

If you're married, if you're not, we still happy to coach you . And we want to set you up for a big win and the ability to make some really big progress.

Caesar:

Moving forward, starting this fall to get all the information you need and to set up a call.

Caesar:

Just go over to Everyday Disciple dot com forward slash coaching Everyday Disciple dot com forward slash coaching.

Caesar:

I'd love to at least talk to you about it.

Caesar:

See what you think, get you the information, and maybe we can get on this journey together.

Caesar:

Now I was supposed to be talking with you today about how to stop taking everything personally, but because of the coronavirus and feeling quite under the weather last few days, the whole brain fog thing has kept me from being able to do the research and pull my thoughts together and the way that I really want.

Caesar:

But I'm really excited about where it's heading and we'll get to that next week on the podcast.

Caesar:

Instead, what I'm going to do is I want to share a conversation with you that Heath Hollins B and I had with Alan Hirsch.

Caesar:

And it's wonderful.

Caesar:

I don't even have to really set it up all that much.

Caesar:

It's about leadership in the church and why we're not seeing people growing to maturity and why our churches aren't even growing the way they should be.

Caesar:

And it's all connected to Jesus and his gifts to us as the church.

Caesar:

So let me just dive in.

Caesar:

I think you're really going to love it.

Caesar:

We're about to talk with one of my favorite people in like all of the world and Christiandom, what a treat Alan Hirsch is, right.

Caesar:

I mean, how many books of his have like just rocked you?

Caesar:

Oh, nonstop.

Caesar:

I've never heard of this guy and I'm just telling you like you, yeah, you needed to, you need to.

Heath:

So for those who don't know, Alan is actually considered among many pastors in even Christian world leaders to be a key mission strategist for churches all across the world.

Heath:

He is the Yoda of the Missional movement, the father of modern missions.

Caesar:

I'll probably call him that and see what he

Heath:

know.

Heath:

So it's, it's such a treat to have him here.

Heath:

I know you guys have been buddies for quite

Caesar:

a while as well.

Caesar:

Yeah, we, we, we met like years ago and yeah, it's just, it's great.

Caesar:

I, you know what he's going to, he's going to, so fill our heads and hearts with some stuff that's gonna like be.

Caesar:

Or like paradigm shifting.

Caesar:

It should be like three episodes.

Caesar:

So let's just go ahead and let's get them on and get rolling because we're going to need the time today.

Caesar:

Okay, man.

Caesar:

Perfect.

Caesar:

Okay.

Caesar:

So I have to say Alan, first off, I'm really grateful that you're on with us.

Caesar:

I think our listeners, many of them are going to know who you are, bro.

Caesar:

They're just, they're going to know the Yoda of Missional and all of life thinking.

Caesar:

And he'd probably hate that.

Caesar:

But, um, but I gotta tell people like Alan and I have been friends for a really long time and I count that a blessing I was going

Alan:

to live in your basement, bro..

Caesar:

Yeah, well, I mean, I would've given you a room upstairs, but, um, yeah, no kidding.

Caesar:

I mean really in Tacoma that would have been something, but we met a long time ago, man.

Caesar:

When, when the Soma days were just kicking in and, and you and Mike Frost were sorta waving this banner of something different.

Caesar:

And we were like, what?

Caesar:

But man, God blessed us with favor.

Caesar:

And we became friends, man.

Caesar:

So I, you and Debs are some of my most favorite people.

Caesar:

Our listeners probably remember when we had Deb, Hirsch on that's Alan's counterpart and just the, the beautiful soul of this world.

Caesar:

And she's awesome.

Caesar:

Hey, so today we're going to get into something that I know is really.

Caesar:

Oh, man, it's become your heart's passion in the, in the grander scheme of all the things that you've helped.

Caesar:

Many of us learn and rethink.

Caesar:

Um, this understanding of APEST, uh, Ephesians four apostles, prophets, evangelists, shepherds teachers, we're going to get into all that.

Caesar:

Um, and I just want to.

Caesar:

start Quickly, Alan, if it's cool by reviewing for our listeners, that critical passage from Ephesians four, 11 through 13, um, and, and, you know, set a little basis for this, because I know we can just skip over this and like, apply it so minimally, but you're going to tell us maybe why we need to rethink some.

Caesar:

So here's the passage for listeners, Ephesians four, Paul's talking to church and he's going so Christ himself gave these gifts, the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists.

Caesar:

The pastors and teachers to equip his people for works of service so that the body of Christ may be built up until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the son of God and become mature.

Caesar:

Wow.

Caesar:

We all want that attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of christ so there's the passage now, traditionally I think we, as the church and leaders within the church have sort of run past this and the deeper implications, the keys to life and maturity that this Jesus wants for us all.

Caesar:

So, um, I remember when, when God started waking me up to some of this and it was because of, you, Alan know, um, I, I just, uh, It was like, why, how come I haven't experienced all this?

Caesar:

Like I run into lots of pastors.

Caesar:

Um, I was pastoring.

Caesar:

Um, but I don't know.

Caesar:

Am I running into like fully formed, mature apostles and, uh, evangelists and prophets and the whole thing, you know?

Caesar:

So anyway, um, so what is the biggest thing from this important part of scripture?

Caesar:

Do you think we've been missing?

Caesar:

Like, if I was to ask it that way before you start teaching, what do you think is the biggest thing we've been missing.

Alan:

Well, actually, I think it's just that we haven't taken the text at all seriously, uh, at, at all.

Alan:

Um, it w you know, Paul in, in, in the texts there, is actually saying that, uh, in his Ascension, which is not an insignificant aspect of Jesus' ministry is going to the right hand of the father.

Alan:

So it's kind of in executive Lordship of the university and he is going up.

Alan:

Ubiquitous APEST apostle, prophet, evangelist, shepherd a teacher to the very foundation of the church.

Alan:

And this is in, his ascension . The other ascension texts by the way, Caesar, as you know, is when we take reasonably serious is the great commission is, is about to go to the father and he is commissions his church and both of these and other ascension texts have a very heavy weight.

Caesar:

Yeah, we put a lot of weight.

Caesar:

We put a lot of weight on the, on the, uh, go and make disciples one.

Caesar:

We don't do it, but we put a lot more weight

Alan:

on that one, but more weight on it than we have on the Ephesians text and be you can't dismiss it.

Alan:

I mean, it's part of the resurrection cycle.

Alan:

So it's got, it's got theological weight, gravitas , you know, so, um, but the problem is that we've pretty much just disrespected what it's saying.

Alan:

So he gives APEST to the church.

Alan:

And you mentioned those terms for the, um, You know, F for, uh, for the maturity of the church.

Alan:

I mean, that's important the word is it is in the Greek.

Alan:

teliosei has 'been complete' everything God intended for us.

Alan:

Right.

Alan:

So that's what the word

Caesar:

means.

Caesar:

And by the way, again, for people, we're going to say APEST a lot, and that's an acronym just for those.

Caesar:

Those things, apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors, teacher, or shepherd teacher.

Caesar:

So,

Alan:

uh, yeah, so, so, you know, uh, and then, uh, you know, it, it, it says, you know, um, so that we might attain to the fullness of Christ.

Alan:

I mean, my goodness, surely that's something, every Christian or every church is interested in.

Alan:

And so, you know, I just think we've disregarded the text and they mean a whole lot of political reasons for that.

Alan:

And a whole lot of sociological.

Alan:

Reasons for it about, you know, wanting a, kind of a more equilibrium based organization.

Alan:

But, uh, I think that much of our immaturity, much of our incapacity to be the church that Jesus intended us to be and designed us to be.

Alan:

Isn't it bound up with taking this text very much more seriously than we currently

Caesar:

do.

Caesar:

Alan.

Caesar:

I can remember being then this is way back machine.

Caesar:

Okay.

Caesar:

I remember being at a church building in Ghana and I saw a poster.

Caesar:

I think I probably told you that some were along the road.

Caesar:

I saw this poster for this church event that was coming up and it had pictures of all the people speaking at the event from this church.

Caesar:

And it had underneath their name.

Caesar:

It had like apostle.

Caesar:

It had a evangelist, it had prophet, you know, their names.

Caesar:

So it'd be like, you know, it would be the man or woman.

Caesar:

And they had all these different people represented.

Caesar:

I remember asking a friend of mine who was like really smart teaching pastor at the church.

Caesar:

I was a part of the time.

Caesar:

I said, Hey, there's, you know, I've read this passage in Ephesians.

Caesar:

Obviously I've seen it, but how come I've never seen all these.

Caesar:

I only see pastors.

Caesar:

And then every once in a while you and people fear, you know, they fear prophets, but everybody's called a pastor.

Caesar:

And, um, and then every once in a while there's an evangelist, but that, like, we all think Billy Graham at someone on a stage, you know, who's doing a big show.

Caesar:

Right.

Alan:

Very scary to talk

Caesar:

understanding of it.

Caesar:

Yeah.

Caesar:

Right.

Caesar:

So why do you think, like for the least all of our lives, why do you think we've just so really focused on the.

Caesar:

And to the exclusion of the other four, primarily org or one or two, you know?

Caesar:

So

Alan:

it's the two really it's the shepherd or the pastor and the teacher.

Alan:

Interesting thing, quirky.

Alan:

Okay.

Alan:

But this is really important.

Alan:

I mean, language in the Bible is really important when it, when a word is used regularly it carries weight.

Alan:

It's Revelator really okay.

Alan:

So guess how many times the word for pastor is the word?

Alan:

Um, you know, which I translate, Shepherd's a better translation.

Alan:

How many times does that you think come up for the ministry of believers in the new Testament?

Alan:

Well,

Caesar:

you'd, you'd think it's a ton because every church only primarily

Alan:

has pastors.

Alan:

Exactly.

Alan:

But it's only used once.

Alan:

Dude.

Alan:

once!

Alan:

Crazy is once this is the only place where it's used as a noun to describe the ministry of believers in the new Testament.

Alan:

So it must

Caesar:

be a pretty rare gift.

Alan:

Well, if I think that the imagery is there, there's no question that the function of the Pastor.

Alan:

And the shepherding function is really important.

Alan:

I don't want to dismiss it, but it doesn't carry the weight we put on it.

Alan:

Also, another thing I would say it's when w we use the word pastor, it's not the way the Bible uses the term.

Alan:

We've overblown it to mean everything.

Alan:

It's a catch all phrase for every form of leadership, but actually in the Bible, it's only used once get perspective, you know?

Alan:

Yeah.

Alan:

They

Heath:

tend to be the, the ones when there's only enough budget for one person, it's always the shepherd that gets the budget.

Heath:

Right.

Heath:

Well,

Caesar:

and that shepherd might actually be one.

Caesar:

It might be a teacher, might be an evangelists dabble in a couple.

Alan:

So that's the problem too.

Alan:

The other one is the teacher, right?

Alan:

Which is used about 14 times in that same form.

Alan:

Um, most of the references to teach in a deductive way in the new Testament refers to false teachers interests.

Alan:

Because they screw up the church, right?

Alan:

So the Bible takes it very seriously because it gets into the head and messes with the faith of the church.

Alan:

The interesting thing is that when we get clear teachings in James, that not many of you be teachers, he says because the tongue is second fire.

Alan:

for hell, it's a little rudders that steer the whole ship.

Alan:

It's the fire that causes of conflagration.

Alan:

How do we train people for ministry and standard for teacher primarily and ship itself?

Alan:

Secondary?

Alan:

You have to wonder about our faithfulness and our loyalty to scripture and the beautiful thing guys about, about the APEST thing is a wonderful proportion to it.

Alan:

I call it symmetry.

Alan:

Um, uh, in other words, if you look at the APE, we haven't given definition to these, but, uh, apostle is the one who's most.

Alan:

Kind of feels strongly about the mission and extension of the ministry of the church or the organization.

Alan:

Um, it's pioneering, uh, experimental, uh, entrepreneurial by nature because you have to be trying new things on the edges.

Alan:

Um, the prophet is attentive to God.

Alan:

Um, keeps loyalty faithfulness in our lives who pays attention to God's holiness and his.

Alan:

His justice within the community of faith.

Alan:

Um, the evangelist is the recruiter to the cause.

Alan:

Um, the infectious person, the one who sneezes the message of the church or the, or the organization.

Alan:

So these are actually what I call generator generative forms.

Alan:

The shepherd teacher are what I call operative or sustaining form.

Alan:

And in all movements you need both.

Alan:

You cannot survive.

Alan:

Let me put this in context of any organization in, in, in any organization, HR human resources is that part of the organization that looks after onboarding, uh, uh, you know, compliancy to policy, procedure, teaching sides of things.

Alan:

So people are aware of what they're doing and they know also conflict resolution, human flourishing, and development, all that stuff.

Alan:

Right.

Alan:

Really important.

Alan:

Every organization needs it.

Alan:

I think it does.

Alan:

Yeah.

Alan:

I asked the question.

Alan:

Can you run an organization on H R alone?

Alan:

The answer is no look likely, even an HR company, can't run an organization there on HR alone.

Caesar:

Yeah.

Caesar:

They've got sales people, recruiters, they've got development, new ground, new frontiers, all that.

Caesar:

They don't exist as an HR company even.

Alan:

So why in the church do we think we can run the church on HR alone and get away with it?

Alan:

And be healthy I would argue guys, that's where we are.

Alan:

Dysfunction comes from.

Alan:

We are trying to do the ministry of Christ, which is a five fold form, he embodies those in the perfect form, gives it to the body of the embodiment of Christ.

Alan:

So we're trying to do what Jesus did, which is what the church is meant to be doing.

Alan:

We meant to take what Jesus did and extend it.

Alan:

We don't produce.

Alan:

We Jesus didn't we take it and we extended, right?

Alan:

We, our job is to embody it.

Alan:

We'll pass it on.

Alan:

The thing is we turn it only do two parts of Jesus's five-part ministry.

Alan:

And we, and then there is our dysfunction friends.

Alan:

I mean, you can't do it any other way

Caesar:

Alan.

Caesar:

I hope our listeners are picking up on, on this because this just lays out why we see such a rapid decline.

Caesar:

In our lifetime of the church and people, uh, engaged in the kingdom of God and the, and, and the formal organization of the saints as the church, because we clearly, no one could argue that we see full mature functioning of all five of these functions.

Caesar:

We've, we've kind of retreated to a maintenance mode.

Caesar:

Of of some teaching and soul care, but where's the expansion.

Caesar:

Where's the, where's the adapting to cultural shift.

Caesar:

Where's the new frontier.

Caesar:

Where's the understanding as people change in their

Alan:

speaking truth to power, truth, to power, and then recruiting, getting people excited about the cause of which we're part of, which is evangelists truth to power, which are prophetic thing to, to call, to account the church in our unfaithfulness cause done men we've demonstrate every year more and more how unfaithful the church can be.

Alan:

Um, you know, we need the prophetic voice to hold us to account, you know, and to call us to relationship and God here, but taking those out, we can never be faithful.

Alan:

We can never extend.

Alan:

Uh, and you know, I mean, you know me well enough, my real passion is to see the church become a movement again, that can extend and adapt and evolve.

Alan:

If you take the one most likely in the organization of the church.

Alan:

So to remind the church of its centeredness it's is the Missio function.

Alan:

missio and mission, the same word.

Alan:

The one is, is going to remind you of that is the upper Stella, which is the sent one.

Alan:

If you take the sent one out, if you exclude in principle before you've even started the possibility of Epistolic ministry, then what actually happens is that you forget the church forgets it doesn't understand giftedness.

Alan:

So.

Alan:

You can ask most people in most churches define an apostle, and this is what happens.

Alan:

Right.

Alan:

You get, get this or, uh, uh, they're in the Bible, um, uh, Which is, they are in the Bible, but they also outside the Bible because it was a secular function.

Alan:

So that's not even really correct answer.

Alan:

Um, and then the other one, uh, there were 12 of them, which is not a correct answer either because there were more than 12.

Alan:

Um, and one was a woman.

Alan:

Uh, there were, at least 30 is what we can determine in scripture then we got named.

Alan:

But here's the thing.

Alan:

If you exclude that.

Alan:

And by the way that the term is used over 80 times, eight zero, as opposed to the one for shepherd, work it out.

Alan:

Most people can't define it.

Alan:

And so there's our problem.

Alan:

We don't understand the missionary or the entrepreneurial function.

Alan:

Cause we don't, we can't even, we're not allowed to use that language without kind of getting our asses caned

Caesar:

and you know what, you know what, echoes through my brain right now, as you're just talking.

Caesar:

And I think about, you know, in the Acts passage where it says this, the early church, they sat regularly, they sat at the feet of the apostles, right?

Caesar:

Yeah.

Caesar:

Meaning maybe they were just soaking in like, Hey, what's next?

Caesar:

Where are we go?

Caesar:

What are you hearing from God?

Caesar:

And who as a church do we sit at the feet of.

Caesar:

Teachers pastors, maybe an evangelistic pastor, someone like bill Hybels or whatever, right?

Caesar:

Yeah.

Caesar:

But, but how many churches, if you said, listen, maybe what's going on with our decline, uh, denominationally or just individually as a church body?

Caesar:

Um, maybe it's because we have never said at the feet of an apostle and in fact we're afraid of them, you know,

Heath:

it's what I've in my experience in the church, it's always been rather than actually valuing one another's giftings.

Heath:

The apostles are threats to the shepherds and the prophets are our threats to the teachers.

Heath:

And there's this rather than valuing the beauty of the checks and balances were actually opposed to one another and view each other as enemies.

Alan:

Yeah, that's true, Ethan.

Alan:

And that's why, I mean, the Ephesians texts actually starts in Ephesians four, one and one to seven talks about strive for the unity.

Alan:

What the spirit through the bond of peace, you know, to maintain your sense of connectedness, because your diversity will split you apart.

Alan:

If you don't have a deeper sense of unity.

Alan:

And so this is why it's critical to actually, you know, strive to, you know, to recognize each other, fundamentally in Christ where there's one church, we all belong to each other.

Alan:

Now you can go diverse.

Alan:

And by the way, guys, I think is really important for your audience.

Alan:

What's exciting.

Alan:

We often use it as a leadership conversation, actually in the book of Ephesians, it's not about leadership, not in the first instance of radical way of taking this is that the, the, the heroes of this text would not a group of leaders or a seminary is a group of local house and local churches.

Alan:

Right.

Alan:

And they were small house churches, Missional size churches.

Alan:

So when it says in verse seven.

Alan:

So to each one of us, grace has been given as Christ has apportioned it.

Alan:

Right.

Alan:

We have to send that to each one of us means that all of us, every, all of God's people are, is somehow in the framework here everyone's being referred to.

Alan:

So all of us will find a broader sense of calling.

Alan:

And that's what I think it is.

Alan:

It's vocation and calling within the five, somewhere within the categories of five or a mixtures of the five and I think that is the remarkable thing.

Alan:

Everyone can find themselves.

Alan:

epistolic in nature sensing, they got the entrepreneurial instinct.

Alan:

They're risk takers by nature.

Alan:

What you know, they might , not be leaders the stage, they might just something have a natural instinct for it.

Alan:

Or someone naturally instinctively prophetic folk God attentive.

Alan:

Justice oriented.

Alan:

Um, some are just naturally evangelists, man.

Alan:

Anyone with an apple Mac is an evangelist stroke.

Alan:

Yeah, you're right.

Alan:

It's good news.

Caesar:

It's super good news.

Caesar:

Hey, so, so a lot of this is covered actually in permanent revolution, last book, um, which just game changer for, uh, yeah, I remember you had sent me an advanced copy of that years ago.

Caesar:

Same to you and many other people, if the church actually read this and believed what scripture said, game-changer, I mean, like the whole thing would just be rocked on its axis.

Caesar:

Now, now just flash back to a few months ago, I remember when you were still finishing up five Q your newest book, and you were telling me why you were so excited about it and how God had actually, as you were researching and writing this, and just really spending time with the Lord, how God has been revealing some pretty big stuff for you personally, and how it was growing.

Caesar:

Your love for Christ, even you remember that?

Caesar:

Yeah.

Alan:

Well it coincided with a very wonderful time in my own life of a great sense of renewal in prayer.

Alan:

And I, I don't think that's coincidental.

Alan:

I don't think it's, I'm not claiming anything more than just, I I've had a fantastic renewal in the Lord for the last seven or so years.

Alan:

And, um, Somehow when the writing, it just came to the forth at that point.

Alan:

But, but here's the thing is that, I mean, I've always loved this text is it goes back as far as I can remember.

Alan:

I think it's really important to what it means to be a movement.

Alan:

You have to.

Alan:

To be a movement.

Alan:

You have to have Missional capacity and leadership and functionality and you can't do it without APEST.

Alan:

I've always felt that.

Alan:

Yeah.

Alan:

So that's, you know, permanent revolution.

Alan:

It comes up in just about all my books.

Alan:

Okay.

Alan:

But then what actually began to take place and five-fold, I was really interested in, what did it mean to look at an organization or a church as an organization, through the lens of the fivefold?

Alan:

Not just as people.

Alan:

Individuals, but look at the organization in that term.

Alan:

And what actually happened is that I thought that's a pretty easy go.

Alan:

I've done serious hefty books on this.

Alan:

I'll get this done in 10,000 words and give it away as a free ebook.

Alan:

What actually began to happen is that I got to delve into this idea of functions and looking at, in the created order that in all of God's world, everywhere.

Alan:

These patterns are evident.

Alan:

They call archetypes, which are recurring patterns or themes or concepts that come through culture history.

Alan:

We know them archetypes in personality.

Alan:

Why is it some of us similar and how are we different?

Alan:

It's all about archetypes, right?

Alan:

So this is actually, when you look at that, man, it just opens the game up because what you're looking at, this is what began to blow my head off is that actually it's a way of categorizing broader culture.

Alan:

Broader capacities and you can look way outside the church.

Alan:

Hey, connect some

Caesar:

dots for us here in that.

Caesar:

So like, I think probably I'm sitting here listening to this.

Caesar:

A lot of our listeners are, are they work at churches, many people, uh, they're thinking about their own church structure, polity, you know how the leadership is structured and they're going, wow, this is opening up some new thought to me.

Caesar:

Um, let's, let's drop this down.

Caesar:

Let's drop the cookies down a little lower on the shelf.

Caesar:

Since like you just said a few minutes ago, the Jesus is talking.

Caesar:

Uh, I mean, Paul is talking to the whole church here that what Jesus has given, it's not just a leadership passage.

Caesar:

And so let's, let's talk a bit about like, how does, how does this organizational structure in archetypes?

Caesar:

How does it even begin to play out?

Caesar:

Just everybody has a job.

Caesar:

And if it's not at a church, which is going to be most people, how does even understanding this and how the church connects to culture?

Caesar:

Like, let's just talk a little bit about that.

Caesar:

Well,

Alan:

in a sense, the church has a body of christ ultimately takes what Jesus.

Alan:

Jesus's ministry and its job is to live out what Jesus equates to it, not just to five, but definitely including the five fold.

Alan:

And I think the fivefold really is a great way of understanding the ministry of Jesus.

Alan:

So for all of us, that matters because all of us are ministers in every sphere and domain of society.

Alan:

Every believer has.

Alan:

Some sort of vocation, some sort of calling that's distinct to them that only they can do.

Alan:

And I believe that by beginning to see how we're shaped in Christ, um, for our distinctive contribution, APEST plays a very significant role in that.

Alan:

Uh, and the language of Ephesians.

Alan:

Again, I don't want to be geeky.

Alan:

It hints at identity shaping it's called the indicative mood.

Alan:

It shapes who we are.

Alan:

So I would argue that everyone could find themselves in this.

Alan:

You know, and by the way, just this is quirky.

Alan:

But the interesting that the language has said of APEST precedes the church.

Alan:

It's not particularly church language.

Alan:

I mean, the word apostle was the secular function.

Alan:

The Bible takes it over and gives it a nuance, but it's still a function that had the same definition as what it's useful as

Caesar:

evangelists.

Caesar:

So it

Alan:

was prophet and prophet to you.

Alan:

Yeah, that's exactly right.

Alan:

So all the functions exist outside of the church.

Alan:

Boom.

Alan:

Here's the thing is that they, yes, they broken cause in the fallen world, they don't perfectly carry the weight that God intended for them in designing them in the first place, but they still reflect something in his nature.

Alan:

And this is true to our doctrine of creation and our theology of the creator, um, which is another aspect of 5Q.

Alan:

Uh, so, so I would say that all of us are, we can find creational design, but also in sense of, you know, in the church, you can find more continuity w what you do inside and outside the church church for us is a Sunday affair.

Alan:

You know, it's locked in on, on, you know, on the weekends, perhaps the Bible churches , it's called the called out ones who live their life in the context of every sphere of society . That is everyone's in the ballgame and Jesus is renewing the entire world through renewing his church because the church has connected with him and

Caesar:

his churches people.

Caesar:

So it's the knowing of people and their true identity in him,

Alan:

the body of Christ.

Alan:

And here's the thing also for organizations.

Alan:

And I would say this.

Alan:

If let's say your body and my body, my mind is getting a little old actually to be the same age.

Alan:

I think it's getting a little more, but the thing is with our bodies, getting a

Caesar:

little, we're getting a little

Alan:

older, bro, we are getting grumpier, but, uh, actually for me, the prophetic is beginning to assert itself.

Alan:

Again, that makes me grumpy.

Alan:

Well, we'll go there.

Alan:

The thing is your body, your mind has 10 different systems in it.

Alan:

So it has the endocrine, that's the chemicals stuff.

Alan:

Uh, the, um, the cardiovascular, the blood and the veins and all that stuff.

Alan:

And then the neuro neurological, it's the brain nerves, um, digestive reproductive data that 10 of them, right?

Alan:

If your body let's say, if one of them goes down, I mean a body.

Alan:

By the way, it's a system everything's connected to everything else.

Alan:

Your body is not linear.

Alan:

It's happening all at once.

Caesar:

Yeah.

Caesar:

You don't go like, well, I just don't use my cardiovascular.

Caesar:

I just, I just, you know, I don't go

Alan:

there.

Alan:

Yeah.

Alan:

I try not to use mine, but you have to use it every now and again.

Alan:

It's all happening at once.

Alan:

And so here's the thing.

Alan:

If one of your systems goes down, how are you feeling guys?

Alan:

Not so good.

Alan:

Right?

Alan:

You might be going to the doctor and two goes down.

Alan:

Now you definitely at the doctor and you may be in hospital.

Alan:

Three goes down, you're definitely hospital.

Alan:

Maybe in life support, four goes four goes down, you did, right, because your system fails or can't contain.

Alan:

So here's the thing is that we're operating on a, to two have a five-fold system.

Alan:

The system cannot work that way.

Alan:

It's not designed for that.

Alan:

So we actually like a body that's got most.

Alan:

60% of our functions are missing,

Caesar:

you know, and I even just think of this from a, like a day to day aspect of, cause I bet we could line up a, you know, a hundred Christians Alan and ask them, so of those five, APEST, uh, which do you think in greatest measure, Jesus has gifted.

Caesar:

You know, with, you know, are you more apostle, are you more prophetic or you are, you know what I'm saying?

Caesar:

Like if we ask the average Christian, they'd say never gave it any thought.

Caesar:

I know I'm not a pastor, cause I don't want to have to, you know, write sermons every week.

Caesar:

It's like, that's not even the function of a pastor anyway.

Caesar:

So I, I think your average Christian, but then think about this now, as we engage the world, we engage culture, business, healthcare, politics, uh, you know, a coffee shop, any of it, people are going like, well, I guess even if I knew which of the five I was.

Caesar:

You know, well in line gifted with, um, I guess the only way you engage the culture though, is through the gift of evangelism.

Caesar:

And we don't have a right understanding of that.

Caesar:

So what I'll do is I'll preach really hard to people about their sin and how different we are and how they need to get in line and start coming to church.

Caesar:

And it's like, I only have one system.

Caesar:

I only have one channel to go through.

Caesar:

It's not even who I am and no one had the world, which perfectly operates in the systems.

Caesar:

Everybody getting to be who they are.

Caesar:

It goes, nah, I'm rejecting that, that doesn't even fit.

Caesar:

I don't even hear that.

Alan:

No, I agree.

Alan:

I think that's because we don't have the language to name what is real and share.

Alan:

Language is really important in this room.

Alan:

Again, I don't want to get Diggy here on it, but it's language is a critical part of culture.

Alan:

And the fact that most people don't know what an apostle or a prophet and barely understand what an evangelist is and overload what a pastor.

Alan:

It's a huge problem for, for us as God's people.

Alan:

Cause we are called to attend to theology of God words on the matter the Bible matters to us.

Alan:

We need to reform ourselves with the scriptures net.

Alan:

Hey,

Caesar:

so as we start to move towards wrapping up Alan, I have to say, okay, so I want people to begin to understand this more deeply.

Caesar:

So I'm going to, I'm just going to say, so Alan is now, he's not on the he's my bro.

Caesar:

He's not Hawking anything trying to make another quarter off a book.

Caesar:

I want, I want to tell people, get out and get permanent revolution, get five Q like go deeper into this.

Caesar:

This is so key to your own understanding of your own identity in the function of the church as a church, body and within culture.

Caesar:

But also Alan, I know you've got a really.

Caesar:

Great assessment, online assessment that both individuals can take and you've got even organizational ones, right?

Caesar:

Can we get the links

Alan:

to those?

Alan:

Yeah.

Alan:

So the organizational ones are new and again, that came directly out of five Q in fact, I think precipitating reason why I wrote so, so they, they look at organization, but the, the place you can get just about anything related to APEST, at least my articulation is on five Q.

Alan:

That is the numeral five Q.

Alan:

Central.com and then just look under the various links for the tests and the assessments and the books.

Alan:

And by the way, really important for you and me.

Alan:

I mean, you publish the permanent revolution playbook, which is really good.

Alan:

Six week group study, where everyone comes to self-insight by, you know, learning together and individually is really great resource Caesar can

Caesar:

provide.

Caesar:

And it's a great starting point for, for staff and teams.

Caesar:

Just to start to say, Hey, let's, let's start leaning into this instead of going, wow, that's too heavy.

Caesar:

We'll just stay, we'll stay anemic.

Caesar:

And we'll stay really, you know, at a disadvantage here.

Caesar:

Like, no, let's go for fullness.

Caesar:

Let's go for maturity.

Caesar:

So yeah, we'll put links to all that stuff.

Alan:

Click on the show notes and just one more shout out on things that.

Alan:

Uh, it should be about two months before it's published because it's going to print us right now for print type setting is I have a book which has kind of like an a minus in the best sense, like a dummy's version of five Q, which is, which is aimed at really helping what we call L 50 level leaders, um, leaders of 50 people in the church and, you know, which is where most of us have to live, uh, helping them kind of get a handle on that.

Alan:

And not having to have a degree.

Caesar:

Right?

Caesar:

Which means that's going to be super helpful for like , small groups who lead missional communities.

Caesar:

We're not talking, people are leading movements, we're talking regular

Alan:

people and people haven't been to seminary people to which you don't have to go to be a minister.

Alan:

You already are one, but we have to educate ourselves.

Alan:

Typically when the church in this regard has let us down really badly not giving us a tradition that enables us to talk about APEST at all.

Alan:

Well, yeah.

Heath:

So Allen.

Heath:

As far as we're shutting things down, I have a quick story.

Heath:

And then a question for you.

Heath:

Um, a couple years ago, you were up here in Tacoma doing, uh, the future travelers event.

Heath:

And we got a few minutes together and I was, I was kind of venting to you that I'm kind of wired apostle prophet by nature.

Heath:

And I was in a church that was very shepardy, uh, teacher.

Heath:

And I was, I thought I was the crazy person.

Heath:

I thought I was going senile.

Heath:

And you had made a comment that you said you got to remember Heath, that nobody runs.

Heath:

The Shepherd's out of 10.

Heath:

No, one's shooting the shepherds.

Heath:

They're going after the apostle prophets.

Heath:

And I was, and then you kind of talked about.

Heath:

How, how each of those functions plan out, you know, the Shepherd's hunker down and they're going to see that church into a church of eight members that has been around 300 years and the apostle prophet evangelist or long gone onto something new.

Heath:

And, uh, as I I'm sure you don't even remember this conversation, but I just want to say thank you because you know, I'm still bleeding for the future of the church.

Heath:

I'm still serving the church because of that encouragement.

Heath:

And so I just wanted to say personally, thank you

Alan:

for.

Alan:

Thanks brother.

Alan:

And listen.

Alan:

Okay.

Alan:

We'll just say on, on as we tie it up, but honestly, I can't say the stronger, I believe this more with all my heart, that it's all five have got to be active and the counterbalance is what I could gain a call symmetry that each counterbalances the biases of the other.

Alan:

And this is why I need you to be.

Alan:

If all apostles hang out.

Alan:

That's not a pretty place to be, to be very honest with you.

Alan:

It's driven, demanding dead bodies all over the place.

Alan:

If all prophets hangout, it gets wacky very often than you don't have to think very hard about that.

Alan:

That way.

Alan:

You know, you can see movements go wacky, uh, evangelists hanging out.

Alan:

It's like an Amway conference, right?

Alan:

There's everyone's got something to sell.

Alan:

In other words, they needs a balance.

Alan:

All pastors hang out a lot of back rubbing, you know, Yeah, whatever, all teachers, it's all about ideas.

Alan:

You know, it's all five need to be in dynamic, dynamic, systemic relationship to each other.

Alan:

So it's five fold, not one fold, not four, four it's five fold, at least five fold to be biblical.

Alan:

All

Alan:

right.

Heath:

So here's my question for you.

Heath:

I love your, your heartbeat for the church and the future of the church.

Heath:

And I think very few people have influenced me nearly as much as you have in thinking about, about the church.

Heath:

My question for you is.

Heath:

As a little grim, but let's say you had five minutes left to live.

Heath:

What would be your, what would be your parting words to the, to the church and church leaders in those lay people that something that you would really want to communicate?

Alan:

Well, uh, I'm, I'm more convinced again, the core of our dysfunctions and our problems is that we just don't understand Jesus, um, APEST part of that.

Alan:

Cause I think even Jesus is the perfect APEST but much bigger is that I think the church, which has meant to be the body of.

Alan:

Christ, barely.

Alan:

It ought to be dialectically, uh, ought to be an index between body of Christ and Christ.

Alan:

I mean, to be some sort of symmetry there.

Alan:

Right.

Alan:

Um, I just think the church doesn't get Jesus.

Alan:

And I think to the degree that we failed to get Jesus, right.

Alan:

Everything else goes wrong.

Alan:

And, um, and so I think our Christology understanding of who Jesus is and his role within the People of God.

Alan:

It's pretty screwy.

Alan:

And I think that if, if the only thing we do is to correct at that level fall in love with Jesus again, and to seeing the fresh as the center of the church, I think everything else heals as a result, Jesus must become Lord again,.

Alan:

As well as savior.

Caesar:

That's beautiful.

Caesar:

And that's that's yeah.

Caesar:

Isn't that the gospel that Jesus is Lord and that's it.

Caesar:

Wow.

Caesar:

So you've had five minutes.

Caesar:

So at least you should take 30 minutes in before your dying last breath to say, I know I love Debs, like with all my heart and all the time, you know, you got to throw that in there.

Caesar:

At least brother,

Alan:

I do love Debbie.

Alan:

She's such a gift to me, man.

Alan:

I'm just so grateful

Heath:

for, and we were talking even before we started recording this podcast.

Heath:

If you've not heard episode one 14, Uh, redeeming sexuality with, um, Alan's wife, Deb Hirsch.

Heath:

Unbelievable.

Heath:

She's

Caesar:

awesome.

Caesar:

At this, my favorite episode we've ever done.

Caesar:

Yeah, this is probably this one.

Caesar:

I have to fight about that later.

Caesar:

I don't know.

Caesar:

I have to see how

Alan:

no, no, we take her she's she's a great communicator.

Alan:

And on topic she's so good.

Caesar:

Hey, Alan, thank you so much for this, uh, your time.

Caesar:

I know you're crazy busy.

Caesar:

We're friends, but still man, like to, just to make the time and get on here with us and, and jump on the Skype.

Caesar:

I appreciate it so much.

Caesar:

I love you.

Caesar:

I miss you man.

Caesar:

Talk to you later.

Caesar:

Okay.

Caesar:

Thanks again, brother.

Alan:

God bless everyone.

Alan:

cheers.

Heath:

Wow.

Heath:

My mind is

Caesar:

fried right here.

Caesar:

holy cow it there again.

Caesar:

You know, I said this at the front end.

Caesar:

I, we probably should have done three episodes because this topic is packed and Alan is such, unbelievable.

Caesar:

Yeah.

Heath:

Do the Hirsch, the Hirsch family together, like we said, just a few minutes ago, episode one 14, and redeeming sexuality with Deb Hirsch's wife.

Heath:

If you've not heard that, I'd encourage you to go back to that.

Caesar:

Yeah.

Caesar:

We're not, we're not hitting that too hard, like for you folks, please go check that out.

Caesar:

Anyway.

Caesar:

Dynamic duo.

Caesar:

Well, anyway, we were, we're running fast and we're probably running long a little bit at this point.

Caesar:

So let's jump into the big three and as always, I'll send you a printable PDF of this week's big three as a free download.

Caesar:

All you have to do is go to Everyday Disciple dot com forward slash big three.

Caesar:

I would say, first one is, uh, an Alan source of this, th this Ephesians four passage about APEST apostles, prophets evangelists, shepherds teachers is not a leadership passage, it's to leaders, but it's to every believer.

Caesar:

And if you go and look in the context, that's who Paul's talking to, the apostle Paul is talking to, and I think it's so key.

Caesar:

Don't miss it.

Caesar:

That that is a passage for you.

Caesar:

I read this for years as, okay.

Caesar:

So leaders.

Caesar:

Yeah, leave it to the truth.

Caesar:

This is how you'll accomplish everything in the church.

Caesar:

Sure.

Caesar:

How you will know its exact opposite.

Caesar:

The passage is how the church will grow to maturity in sharing these gifts.

Caesar:

And Jesus knew it.

Caesar:

So he gave these gifts, which are people in all these forms.

Caesar:

These five forms is fivefold gifting.

Caesar:

So every don't miss that.

Caesar:

Okay.

Caesar:

Yep.

Caesar:

Okay.

Caesar:

In second.

Caesar:

Key from this Alan sort of wrap this up was, is key from this passage and really everything that in our lives, as Christians, that leads to maturity and unity is a falling deeper in love with Jesus and becoming so caught up with his person and his words and understanding his heart and his life and his mission.

Caesar:

Yeah.

Caesar:

So like, it's very easy with someone as smart as alan to just take this very cerebral, like, wow.

Caesar:

My mind's blown.

Caesar:

I'm going to get the book.

Caesar:

I'm going to read it.

Caesar:

I'm going to have the knowledge, just remember knowledge putts puffs up.

Caesar:

And I can tell you what being his friend Alan is.

Caesar:

So.

Caesar:

in love With Jesus.

Caesar:

We were just, you and I were just talking offline a minute ago, like wow.

Caesar:

As Alan and Deb, maybe the two nicest people like on this planet planet, you know what it is, they are deeply in love with Jesus man.

Caesar:

And so don't miss that as, as, as you try to dive into APEST to understand it, this is Jesus.

Caesar:

Who's the perfect Apess blend who is here to fill the world with his father's glory says I'm going to give these gifts to you because you're a part of my body now.

Caesar:

Don't take it just as fundaments, you know, P like tools in the toolbox.

Caesar:

This is the heart of our Lord.

Caesar:

Okay.

Caesar:

The third, We need to believe that the church and your family and your city and all this world need you to embrace this and embrace your full identity in Christ and the gifts that he's given you and made you to be in the world.

Caesar:

So by blowing off like, well, I don't know.

Caesar:

I know I'm not a pastor, like, but.

Caesar:

By understanding the gift that Jesus has given you, and then embracing that we will never see the whole world filled with God's glory and that's, God's eternal purpose.

Caesar:

Sure.

Caesar:

And that won't happen until, and unless we learn and embrace the authority and the privilege that we've been given, and we act within that and share these gifts with not only the church

Caesar:

but the world.

Caesar:

And you think about it, like so many of us, like our highest goal in life within the churches, like to be on staff or to like, I'd like to be a, I like to be a lead usher someday, you know, you know, we need those, right.

Caesar:

But it's like, you're, you were not created to ush with the best of them.

Caesar:

Like you, you have been gifted as an apostle or an evangelist or a prophet in, in, you need to embrace that.

Caesar:

And you need to share that gift both within the church.

Caesar:

And just out in the world because God is going to uniquely act and speak within you, he need to show the world what he's like and draw all men unto himself.

Heath:

Wow.

Heath:

That's beautiful, man.

Heath:

Hey, time is up.

Heath:

But Alan Caesar kill your

Caesar:

buzzkill, man.

Caesar:

It's always times up watching the

Heath:

clock down like the referee because everyone hates the referee.

Caesar:

I'm always like, Hey, we'd like to y'all were in a structure.

Caesar:

I was wondering why big, giant black and white stripes.

Heath:

I got a whistle, I haven't used it..

Heath:

Thanks for joining us today for more information on this show and to get loads of free discipleship resources, visit Everyday Disciple dot com.