From the Bishop's desk...
The Church is God's idea. He sent Jesus to launch it through His twelve apostles. Reading the
Book of Acts, especially the first four chapters, reveals a fascinatingly wonderful creation that
Jesus called His Church. It was something that seems too good to be true, but we know what
we read is true and this is an accurate historical account of the Church in its infancy. The
questions ministers and scholars have been asking for hundreds of years: "What happened to the
Church?", "Why has it changed so much?", "Can we replicate in the modern-day Church what we
see in the Book of Acts?"

The evolution of the Church into what we see today has not been of God's doing. We have not
somehow 'progressed' beyond where those early Christians were in Jerusalem. Man has veered
from the course set by Jesus. I am fully convinced we can return to what we read in Acts if we
will return to the original design for the Church and cast off the traditions of men and remove
the carnal practices that have displaced truth. When we honestly re-read the Scriptures and
follow the pattern for the Church they followed, we will get the same result they got. That is
what we want!

The Church is not nearly as complex as we ministers and theologians have made it. In fact, its
simplicity is perhaps one reason 'thinking men' have tended to twist and adjust it to conform to
more religious-looking methods and beliefs. Religion in and of itself is the reason why our
Church of today has very little resemblance to the first century Church. Religion is man's ideas
of how to reach God, how to impress God, how to gain His favor, and how to insure eternal life
through performance. Once religion was introduced into the Church, it went downhill from
there. But the end is not yet and I know God is not finished with us. His Church will arise once
again to become all that He intended for it to be from the very beginning - strong, dynamic,
earth-changing.

The wineskin must be changed. Jesus teaches us a truth that applies to this very subject when
He discusses trying to put new wine into old wineskins. The dynamic, expanding force of the
new wine must have a container that will move with it and conform to the inward power. The
full outpouring of the Holy Spirit prophesied in the Word is being restrained and delayed
because we are unable to receive it in the Church's present form. If we rebuild the Church
according to its original design, (made of living stones) the Lord will fill it with His might and
power and then will we experience what the first century Church experienced.

Join your heart with mine and let us see an "apostolic revolution!" Let the true Church arise -
the apostolic Church - the one Jesus designed and handed off to the twelve who built it under
the guidance of the Holy Spirit. If I can assist you in making the transition from the
organizational model of the Church to the apostolic model, contact me and I will be honored to
help.

                                                                                 Bishop Randy Barnett