Gareth Evans Ministries
"Without faith, it is impossible to please God" Abook about walking in faith and Biblical examaples.
Using Greek and a careful study of the scriptures to refute 9 common false doctrines.
Gareth Evans is an itinerant pastor/teacher with a burden for revival. Formerly a Physics teacher in the UK and Canada, he became a pastor with the Christian & Missionary Alliance in Canada in 1979.
In 1991, he was invited to serve as pastor on board the M/V Anastasis, a medical, missionary ship operated by Youth With A Mission (YWAM). Since leaving that ministry four years later, Gareth has travelled to many countries, encouraging pastors and missionaries.
He has moderated at conferences on Revival, in the USA, Canada and Europe.
He is married to Anne and they have three married daughters, eight grandchildren and four great-grandchildren. Gareth and Anne live in Victoria, in beautiful British Columbia, Canada.
Gareth Evans - Bible Study - Ephesians Part 6
Ephesians Ch.3: A different perspective: Paul is in prison in Rome but he recognizes himself as a prisoner of Jesus Christ. Here again is the dual nature of the believer – in this world but not of it. One’s perspective can make all the difference! Note that vv2-13 are another parenthesis in Paul’s teaching. “For this reason …” is repeated when he gets ‘back on track’ in v14. This is triggered by his consideration of his being ‘a prisoner of Christ Jesus’. He revels in it! He refers again to the great ‘mystery’ he has received by revelation from God. The Gentiles also are to receive blessings from God! That is radically different to current thought among the Jews. Paul has received a new revelation: (v3) It is not something he has discovered – but something God has revealed. It was not thought out, developed, argued through – but revealed. How often great scientific discoveries, wonderful pieces of music or art, have come to the surprise of their personal instrument! Paul has received a ‘grace-gift’ : (v7) This was a gift to preach. Paul teaches elsewhere that there are many ‘grace-gifts’ (charismata) by which we all can be ministers for Christ Jesus. Paul has received a ministry : (v7) He considered this to be an awesome privilege, as all Christian service is. It has the greatest dignity and should never be despised. Paul will glory in his suffering for this great cause: (v13) He did not expect his service to be an easy one. To suffer for Christ is not a penalty; it is our glory for it is to share in the sufferings of Christ himself and an opportunity to demonstrate our loyalty to him. The privilege of ministry: The angels in heaven did not understand this - (v10). The mystery has been revealed and God’s wisdom is now being made known to all creation through the church. So Paul has a double privilege – a) he has received this revelation, b) he can proclaim this message. ie; he has received so that he might proclaim. Such an awesome privilege does not make him proud – rather, it makes him humble (v8). He realizes that his greatness does not lie in himself but in his message. True ministry (eg; preaching) will never cause one to glory in the preacher but in the Christ who is preached. The plan and wisdom of God: Gentiles and Jews are fellow heirs of the riches of God. They are fellow partakers of His promise in Christ (v6). This is not an afterthought of God – it was His intention from the beginning – a mystery now revealed to Paul and to all the angelic beings (rulers and authorities in heavenly places). What is the ‘promise’ of the Father? – see again Study 3. We together have boldness and access through faith. But like all riches that are ours in Christ, they must be appropriated – taken in. What ‘riches’ have you appropriated for yourself? v 14: “For this reason…” – Paul continues his prayer of Ch 1: 15-20 and as he had intended at 3:1. He wants them to receive what is theirs by ‘right’ through the atoning work of the cross – and according to God’s riches in glory (v16). • ‘power through His Spirit in the inner man’ • Christ dwelling in our hearts by faith • Being rooted and grounded in love • Comprehension of God’s vast love for us • Fullness of God. Wow! Now read again Paul’s prayer in 1:15-20 and on to 3:14-19. What is your response? No wonder Paul is again forced to worship! Note also that Paul ‘bows his knees’ whereas the normal posture for prayer to a Jew is standing – this emphasizes Paul’s earnestness in prayer. Note also the things Paul says in this letter about God the Father. • He is the Father of Jesus (1:2,3,17; 3:14; 6:23). This is not paternity, which had no love or intimacy involved, but fatherhood which describes the most intimate relationship of love, fellowship and care. To Paul, God was not just God; He is the Father of Jesus. • He is the Father to whom we have access (2:18; 3:12). • He is the Father of Glory – glorious father (3:14). We have access to the One who is glorious! • He is the Father of all (4:6) • He is the Father to whom thanks must be given (5:20). • He is the pattern of all true fatherhood.
Gareth Evans - Bible Study - Ephesians Part 7
Ephesians 4: 1-16 I trust we have learned to SIT (2:6) and consider what it is that has thrilled Paul and caused him to pray such wonderful things for us (1:15-19; 3:14-19). He has received a revelation of God’s mystery and given a ministry to preach to the Gentiles that they also, have become inheritors of God’s Promise. They also, have become members of the Kingdom, empowered and led by the Holy Spirit of covenant promise, as given by prophets of old. Now Paul builds on that doctrine with words of exhortation (Chs 4-6) – principles and precepts. Having learned to SIT, we are now encouraged to WALK. Rise with thy risen Lord, ascend with Christ above, and in the heavenlies walk with Him, Whom seeing not, you love. Walk as a heavenly race, Princes of royal blood; walk as the children of the light, the sons and heirs of God. A B Simpson 4:1: WALK in a manner worthy of your calling: - with humility, gentleness, patience, tolerance – in love. Elsewhere these may be seen among the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22,23). They take time to grow! In passing: as we consider those fruit, we see that they grow more ‘exotic’ (rare) as we read along. Further, the first three (love, joy, peace) are ‘inward’; the second three (longsuffering, gentleness, goodness) relate mostly to my response to others, while the last three (faith, meekness and temperance) speak of my response to God. (Words as in KJV). Humility is knowing myself as I really am. False humility (Oh, I’m nothing but a worm!) is a sickness akin to pride. Gentleness (praotes) is elsewhere translated as ‘meekness’ – teachability or pliable. Longsuffering – endures to the end, patience with men. Tolerance with love – bearing with one another. This ‘love’ is ‘agape’ – which seeks nothing but the highest good. Vv 3-6: We must be diligent to preserve the Unity of the Spirit. Jesus prayed the night of His crucifixion that we might be ‘ONE as I and the Father are One’ (John 17). Why is this so important? Read the prayer of John 17. It is the foundation stone of all witness to a lost world. There is one body – made up of all believers, born again of His Spirit, Jew and Gentile. It is important we recognize the body and honour it. See the danger of 1 Cor 11:29,30 in the context of the eucharist. There is one Spirit – by whom we are called into unity and by whom we are empowered to live this life as witnesses. There is one hope in which we can put our confidence – the fact of salvation, only through the death and resurrection of Jesus. There is no other hope – no other way. There is one Lord who alone is worthy of our service and praise. “May the Lamb that was slain receive the reward of His suffering”. There is one faith – “without which it is impossible to please God”. There is one baptism – this leads to much debate! Is it water baptism or the baptism with the Holy Spirit? Are either of these the ‘one baptism’? I think not, as many in the ‘Body’ have not been baptized in water nor with the Holy Spirit. In 1 Cor 12:13 we read that ‘the Spirit has baptized us all into the Body of Christ’. Is this referring to water baptism? – I believe not. John preached a ‘baptism of repentance’ (Mark 1:4) of which water baptism was a symbol. Jesus came ‘preaching the baptism of repentance for the remission (sending away) of sin’ (Luke 3:3). Note that repentance is here called ‘a baptism’. In Acts 19:4 Paul says that John preached the baptism of repentance – not with the baptism of repentance. This included saving faith in the Lord Jesus, or regeneration. Again, Paul calls repentance a baptism in Acts 13:24. The one baptism, I suggest, is that of the necessity of repentance. There is one God and Father of us all – the eternal, all present, all knowing One. Vv 7-11: When Jesus ascended on high, He gave gifts to His bride – precious gifts – charismata (gifts of love). Those listed for us are found in 1 Cor 12 and Romans 12 as well as here. Note that these three contexts are the same ones that emphasise the interrelationship of the Body of Christ, indicating that the ‘gifts’ are for use in the body and not as individuals. We have ALL been given such gifts to a measure (v7 and 1 Cor 12:11) but here we read of the five-fold ministry gifts of apostles, prophets, evangelists, pastors and teachers. The quotation of vv7,8 is from Psalm 68 which describes the King’s conquering return. Vv 9,10 are in parenthesis. Vv 12-17: Their ministry is clear – it is to equip the saints that they (the latter) should do the work of ministry. Note the character of a mature believer: unity in faith; knowledge of the Son; a measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ; no more tossed about as children; sound in doctrine; speaking the truth in love (integrity); growing up. Christ is the Head, we are the body, fitly operating in unity so that the Body may build itself up in love – an answer to the Lord’s Prayer of John 17.
Gareth Evans - Bible Study - Ephesians Part 2
Let us center our thoughts on the phrase “in Him”. V3: God has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in heavenly places in Him. Such blessings are ‘in heavenly places’ but sadly, many of us live outside that realm! They are ours only as we abide in Him. V4: In Him we have been chosen so that we might be holy and blameless before Him. This gives us access to God. We are not chosen because of any merits of our own, but our choosing is ‘in Him’. Just as God prepared an ark for the saving of Noah and his family, so an ark is prepared for those He has chosen to be His. That ark is Jesus. There is no salvation outside of Him. V5: In love, we have been predestined to become ‘sons’ – joint heirs with Jesus of the riches of the Father. He wants to make us like Himself so that we might be ‘to the praise of His glory’. “May the Lamb that was slain receive the reward of His suffering” – Moravian motto. He is worthy of our lives. Is what you live for worth Christ dying for? Secular humanism declares that man exists for the benefit of man; Christian humanism declares that God exists for the benefit of man; true Christianity declares that man exists for the benefit of God! (1 Cor 8:6). V6: He has bestowed grace upon us – “in Him” the beloved. God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense! V7: In Him we have redemption – have been purchased back from slavery; forgiveness complete and free. This is due to His grace lavished upon us. V9,10: The mystery – only known by revelation – that at the end of all administrations (dispensations) God will bring together all things in Christ – both in the heavens and on earth. All creation, angels and fallen angels, the redeemed and the non redeemed, will be subject to Him. Natural man cannot receive such revelation – it is foolishness to him. (1 Cor 2:14) V11: We have received an inheritance in Him. Not earned or as a reward! Ours simply because we are ‘in Him’ and God is pleased to bless us (see Romans 8:17). This is all done so that we might respond to ‘the praise of His glory’. V13: In Him we have been ‘sealed’ with the Holy Spirit of Promise. What is the promise? Acts 1:4. Such ‘sealing’ brings power to be His witnesses; stamps on us the likeness of the ‘seal’; is a pledge (arrabon) as a foretaste or sampling of what is to come. These riches are all ours “in Christ” – but we must appropriate them for ourselves!! Paul is so carried away with this thought that he cries out his wonderful prayer for us that we might know (experience) these riches now. This begins another anthem of praise waxing lyrical about the exalted glories of Jesus (v20-23) and our position in Him. Identification with Christ (being ‘in Him’) is a major emphasis of Paul’s. We are reckoned to have died ‘in Him’ and have risen ‘in Him (Rom 6:11). That is accounted to us so that the Father now only considers us ‘in Him’. He does not see our sin for the SON has got in His eyes!! We were identified with Adam as our “federal head” and became sinners through his sin of disobedience. However, the second ‘Adam’ came to be the federal head of a new race of people – those He has redeemed through His shed blood and resurrection. (See Romans 5). This concept of identification is common to Jewish thought – though contrary to our independency. Ch 1:20-23: God has exalted Jesus far above all principalities and powers – these are names of the recognized angelic beings, both good and evil. He is above them all and cannot be overcome by them. Ch.2:1-6. And you also ..! We were dead as we walked according to the things of this world. But God, rich in mercy and love, has raised us up and seated us in heavenly places in Christ Jesus!! Now!!!
Gareth Evans - Bible Study - Ephesians Part 8
Ephesians 4:17-32 We are to “walk in a manner worthy of our calling”. (4:1) We are to “walk no longer as the Gentiles in the futility of our mind.” (4:17) We are to “walk in love, just as Christ also loved you.” (5:2) We are to “walk as wise men not as unwise.” (5:15) “I’m not interested in your talk - show me your walk!” Your walk is determined by the ground on which you stand. Vv 17-24: A contrast between the old nature and the new nature, (‘Gentile’ and New Man). The old man walked in darkness, lacking understanding, ignorant and excluded from the life of God because of hardness of heart -given to sensuality and impurity with greediness. These are all in contrast to what is demanded by the truth you have found in Christ. Paul uses three very strong words to depict the heathen mind. “hardness of heart” – porosis – petrified rock – calloused so as to lose all feeling. “abandoned to sensuality” – aselgeia – does not care how he appears to others in his sensuality. “impurity with greediness” – pleonexia – accursed love of possessing – lust for that which one has no right to. We are to “lay aside” the old self; We are to be renewed in the spirit of our mind; We are to “put on” the new self. These are actions we are accountable for – it is a continual attitude. Consider here, Romans 12:1,2. How then does one “do it”? In the remainder of this letter Paul gives us some suggestions: Vv 25 – 32: Firstly, he deals with our relationships with others – communication. Here are four principles which should govern us: • Do not tell lies – even half truths are lies. Consider the cover-ups we do almost daily. “What’s wrong?” “O, nothing!” when we are hurting inside. • Be current – do not let the sun set on your squabble. Deal with it today. It will produce a ‘root of bitterness’ otherwise (Heb 12:15). • Attack the problem, not the other person. Speak only that which edifies. Remember, the battle is with the enemy, not fellow-members of the Body. • PROact, not REact! Look for ways to turn enmity into unity. Consider: i) What are lies? – speech, silence, actions, etc. ii) What is the right kind of ‘anger’? Righteous anger that changes situations – eg; Wilberforce and slavery. iii) How do we “give the devil an opportunity’? He will sow distrust and turmoil. iv) Why does Paul write here about stealing? A demand for honesty/integrity in action as well as in words. v) What are some unwholesome words we might say? Paul ends the chapter with a list of things which should go from life: • bitterness – long-standing resentment. • wrath and anger – short term (temper)and long term anger. • clamour and slander – loud talking (raised voices) and insulting language. • malice – bitterness of spirit to another. Instead, we are to be kind – as defined by tender hearted, forgiving.
MY MINISTRY TESTIMONY
What a Privilege!
I have never forgotten those early experiences of ministry as the Lord has led me on into wider fields of service. The journey has been through many valleys and over many high places but never with His hand leaving mine as I cling on to Him.