Yeshua Isaiah
Helpful Tidbits for the Disciple's Life                                                                                 May 17, 2010

Learning to Move when the Spirit Moves
My Reflections
The Banqueting Table
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If we truly want to understand "organic church," we need to rip out two pages in our Bibles. Last weekend, while the rest of my fellowship looked on, I demonstrated. I found the page that reads "Old Testament" and tore it out. I did the same with the "New Testament" page. Although 400 years separate what we've come to know as the "Old" and "New" Testaments, it's one book, period (and should be understood as such). The separatation of the Bible into two parts has had huge consequences, mostly negative.

QUESTION/TOPIC IN FOCUS: If we truly want to understand "organic church," we've got to treat the Bible as a unit
Learning to Move when the Spirit Moves
Excerpted from the Book of Exodus
Follow the cloud"In all the travels of the Israelites, whenever the cloud lifted from above the tabernacle, they would set out; but if the cloud did not lift, they did not set out - until the day it lifted. So the cloud of the LORD was over the tabernacle by day, and fire was in the cloud by night, in the sight of all the house of Israel during all their travels" (Ex 40:36-38).
My Reflections 
CrossIn broad strokes, "organic church" means doing church (ecclesia) naturally, organically. It means allowing the church to develop free of pesticides: that is, without the help of manmade contaminants. Organic church also means following the Spirit. Luke writes of such experiences: "When [Paul and his companions] came to the border of Mysia, they tried to enter Bithynia, but the Spirit of Jesus would not allow them to" (Acts 16:7). Was Paul's experience anything new? Absolutely not! God's people have always been, and will always be, led by the Spirit of God (e.g., Ex 40:36-38).
A few years ago, I thought about writing a theological treatise on organic church principles. But I wasn't ready. Today, however, I'm getting closer. I'm closer because I fundamentally understand the "organic" nature of God's Law: the natural beauty of how every command of the Torah (Old Testament) is aimed at helping followers of Jesus (Yeshua) "draw near" (corban) to God.
Confused? If you are, you're not alone. Literally millions of Christians have been trained to generally disregard two-thirds of their Bibles. It's not that we don't respect the first two-thirds, it's that we don't understand it. Fundamentally, we don't understand that grace abounds in Torah. We don't understand that every law (i.e., teaching) is designed to help us intimately embrace some aspect of God's divine nature. We don't understand that if we followed Torah's commands, we'd be like the One we so desperately long to be like: Jesus!
Trying to understand the dynamic nature of the ecclesia (and its missional force) apart from Torah is like trying to understand how a car moves without a firm grasp of internal combustion engines. "But, I don't need to know how engines work," some say, "I just push on the gas and it goes." Well, that may be true of cars, but we're not talking about cars - we're talking about the Word of God and ignorance is not bliss. So, Step 1: rip out those two pages (yes, I'm serious, lighting won't strike). I'll write about Step 2 next time: understanding covenants.
Hope this was of some benefit to you.

Traver Dougherty (bio)
The Banqueting Table