What are some of the key ingredients of these apostolic equipping centers?
1) They must be “kingdom-minded” and not individualistic oriented. The individual calls are important but they must be able to submit one to another!
2) They must be founded in “father/son” relationships. And in a region or city, that means not necessarily “one father” but that there be multiple fathering relationships that honor and respect each other. Now in a house, local assembly and fellowship, there is only one “founding father”, and those sons and daughters that are birthed have the DNA of the apostolic father! Then, through maturity and multiplication, there can be a “succession” and synergy of fathers raised up as mature sons.
3) The church, the true ecclesia, must be more than a local fellowship, it must be recognized as “one church (corporately) in the city/region/area!” True pastors should always be functioning in the plural, as city elders, working with apostles and prophets and teachers in the city. Set Ministry according to I. Co. 12:28, is not just limited to a “local church” function, but should be an apostolic team or presbytery made up at least 2 or 3 seasoned, recognized apostolic elders with teaching and prophetic grace!
4) At the same time, respect and honor must be given to each house, local assembly and fellowship to the leaders, whether they are called bishops, pastors, senior leaders or apostles. Each house represents a tribe, and has a unique DNA that only they have, and that is why there are those called to be a part of those various tribes. There were 12 tribes of Israel, but they were all Israel! Trans local apostles do not rule over pastors and congregations just because they are apostles. Servant leaders are called to uphold one another and not move out of their spiritual metron– measure of rule and grace.
5) There are, I’m sure, a lot more, but if we are not seeing city transformation through the saints of God being equipped, empowered, and mobilized to serve in their vocations and occupations, then we are not truly apostolic. This gathering unto ourselves, and ruling with an fist of iron, is not the new order of the kingdom. We must not be “tight-fisted” but must be “open-handed” even with our sons. It is not our church, and they are not “my” sons. These are sons of God who have been called and set apart as saints, and the saints are the family of God made up of a “many-membered body”, the church! When we honor and love unconditionally, we can begin to “release” the saints and the sons because they have been birthed, trained, and raised up in trans-generational order of the kingdom!