May We Become Affiliated With You?
From time to time we receive an email from someone who, in one way or another, says that they would like to join us or to be “affiliated” with us. Some would even like to start or be considered a “branch” of Midnight Cry Ministries in their particular part of the world. While we rejoice that some are finding spiritual blessing and strength as a result of this ministry I feel it is both necessary and profitable to comment on this type of request.
After the church of Jesus Christ was born on the Day of Pentecost the only affiliation that existed was simply those who believed in Christ and had been made one with His people. There were only two kinds of people: those who were in Christ and those who were not. Every believer was automatically affiliated with every other believer simply because they were born of the same Spirit. The outward manifestation of that was that they continued together in fellowship with one another and with the apostles. The relationship was spiritual and not organizational.
Today’s world is full of religious denominations and organizations of every sort. People are not just “Christians,” but “Baptists,” “Methodists,” “Catholics,” and so forth. There is no scriptural justification for any of this. Christ is not responsible for the many denominations and divisions that exist in his name.
Such organization as we have exists solely for simple practical reasons like owning property and dealing with the business aspects of broadcasting and things like that. We are not a denomination. We are not seeking to bring everyone under our particular religious name. Our desire is simply to seek the Head of the Church, our Lord Jesus Christ, and to carry out such ministry as He directs and enables. Whatever spiritual blessings result from the ministry come from Him and not from any virtue or ability in us.
We recognize that every true blood-bought, born-again believer is our brother or sister in Christ. Over the years the Lord has established all sorts of “fellowship” relationships with brothers and sisters in many parts of the world. We welcome everything the Lord does in this regard and desire to be both channels and recipients of every blessing that comes from Him.
We have no “branches” of Midnight Cry Ministries in any organizational sense beyond the four assemblies established by Bro. Thomas who are directly involved together in the ministry. We do have a number of individuals and families in other places that in one way or another the Lord has made spiritually one with us and we rejoice in this! However, the emphasis must always be upon the spiritual bond and not on an “organization.” We also are in contact with ministers in many parts of the world and -- within the limits of the things the Lord has called us to do -- we rejoice in every opportunity to be a help and an encouragement to them and to their people. We encourage every true God-ordained ministry to do as we seek to do: simply to seek God and do what He says!
Some who write do so out of an honest heart, desiring spiritual fellowship. Some, however, write hoping that we will provide some form of support -- often financial -- of their ministries. This is not the way of divine blessing. I often think of what happened early in the ministry of Bro. Thomas. He was among a religious group that recognized in him an evangelistic gift and had offered to support him in a traveling evangelistic ministry. Suddenly, that offer of support was withdrawn and Bro. Thomas cried out to the Lord wondering why it had happened. The Lord drew his attention to Jeremiah 17:5 where it says, “Cursed be the man that trusteth in man, and maketh flesh his arm.” The Lord was showing him that he had been trusting more in these men than he had in the Lord Himself.
There is so much of this in religion today and we would encourage every true minister of Christ to look to the Lord Who has called you for every need related to ministry. He is not poor! He delights in those who trust in Him. See Jeremiah 17:7-8. Carnal religious aspirations are one thing, but whatever is truly of Christ, He will support and back up.
We welcome every spiritual bond of fellowship the Lord brings about. That is all the “affiliation” we need! Beyond that it’s a matter of seeking God and doing what He says.
May God bless you,
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