The Meeting Place or The Market Place: debate
By Roger Pawsey
There is a debate about whether prophecy is for the Market Place or the Meeting Place. The arguments put forward for the exclusive use of the gifts in either place are disingenuous.
Let us look at each extreme and why these views are generally expounded
Market Place Exclusively
The Market Place use of spiritual gifts describes their use in every day life outside of church. Where ever people gather together in their every day life experiences like: work, school, colllege, supermarket, Doctor's waiting room. In fact, where ever people gongregate or community assembles.
Our reliance on God the Holy Spirit must be evident in our evangelism to a lost world. Spiritual Gifts should and we must expect them to confirm the truth of the word of God .
Mark 16:15 He said to them, "Go into all the world
and preach the good news to all creation.
The use of Spiritual Gifts in every day life shows that the church is a representation of Christ and that his redemptive work continues through the church. A restriction of the supernatural element of the church is is based on dubious teaching. By the exclusive use of Spiritual Gifts outside of the Meeting we can stanch the flow of Spiritual Gifts.
This emphasis in operating in spiritual gifts generally comes from an insecurity in the leadership or an imaturity in the congregation. Either way they are in danger of quenching the Holy Spirit. Some churches cynically introduce this approach to control or moderate the use Spiritual Gifts in meetings instead of providing the appropriate teaching.
Meeting Place Exclusively
The Meeting Place refers simply to a church meeting a normal Sunday service. Although it includes all Christian Meetings.
I Corinthians 14 is clearly for when we come together, that is the church in fact 1 Corinthians14:26 says "What then shall we say, brothers? When you come together,...."
It is, also obvious, from scripture that a meeting place is the place for the use of Spiritual gifts. Yet it is equal obvious that Spiritual gifts should be in operation in our every day lives as we take our stand as witnesses in a degenerate world.
This emphasis in operating in spiritual gifts generally comes from a fearful leadership or congregation. Either way they are in danger of quenching the Holy Spirit. Some churches cynically introduce this approach to control or moderate their embarassment at the use Spiritual Gifts instead of providing the appropriate teaching.
The Complete Picture
We should not try to box God in to a corner of the canvas but allow Him free reign in the whole of our lives. He is either Lord of all or not at all.
Either Market Place or Meeting Place promoted exculsively will bring a unhealthy emphasis in the use of Spiritual Gifts. We need to bring teaching that brings deliverance from the things that motivate either stance.
Personally I have prophecied in a number of different places
Let us not shy away from sound doctrine but rather let us embrace sound doctrine recognising our need to change to align with scripture.