The Theory of Reserve
One does not have to mingle with ministers very long to discover there is often one message delivered to the lay-members and another message believed by the clergy. This practice is spoken of as the doctrine of ‘reserve.’ It is a theory, held by many, that the clergy reserves the right to limit the congregation to a watered down doctrine, because they judge their congregation incapable of dealing with some of the facts revealed in the Sacred Writings.
The theory of reserve is the widest spread and the most damaging theory practiced in the churches today. This theory teaches it is right to withhold, disguise, or even sometimes deny certain elements of truth in an effort to protect the simple minded from mind-boggling revelations. After all, they reason, you are their sheep, and they have the responsibility of choosing what you should eat and what you should not eat.
I have talked to ministers concerning certain scriptures, such as the twelfth chapter of First Corinthians, and their excuses are: “My people are not ready to receive that,” or, “My organization will not permit us to teach that.”
Look at the simplicity of this vitalizing message: “Now concerning spiritual gifts, brethren, I do not want you to be ignorant: You know that you were heathens, carried away to these dumb idols, however you were led. Therefore I make known to you that no one speaking by the Spirit of Yahweh calls Yasha accursed, and no one can say that Yasha is the Anointed except by the Holy Spirit.
“There are diversities (differences) of gifts, but the same Spirit. There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all. But the manifestation of the Spirit is given to each one for the profit of all: for to one is given the word of wisdom through the Spirit, to another the word of knowledge through the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healings by the same Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another discerning of spirits, to another different kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. But one and the same Spirit works all these things, distributing to each one individually as he wills. For as the Body is one and has many members, but all the members of that one Body, being many, are one Body, so also is ‘Christ.’
“For by one Spirit we were all baptized into one Body—whether Jews or Greeks, whether slaves or free—and have all been made to drink into one Spirit. For in fact the Body is not one member but many.
“If the foot should say, ‘Because I am not a hand, I am not of the Body,’ is it therefore not of the Body? And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I am not of the Body,” is it therefore not of the Body? If the whole Body were an eye, where would be the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where would be the smelling?
“But now Yahweh has set the members, each one of them, in the Body just as he pleased. And if they were all one member, where would the Body be? But now indeed there are many members, yet one Body. And the eye cannot say to the hand, ‘I have no need of you’; nor again the head to the feet, ‘I have no need of you.’ No, much rather, those members of the Body which seem to be weaker are necessary. And those members of the Body which we think to be less honorable, on these we bestow greater honor; and our unpresentable parts have greater modesty, but our presentable parts have no need. But Yahweh composed the Body, having given greater honor to that part which lacks it, that there should be no schism in the Body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honored, all the members rejoice with it. Now you are the Body of Christ, and members individually.
“And Yahweh has appointed these in the church: first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, administrations, varieties of tongues. Are all apostles? Are all prophets? Are all teachers? Are all workers of miracles? Do all have gifts of healings? Do all speak with tongues? Do all interpret? But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way,” 1 Corinthians 12:1-31.
A person does not have to be a college graduate to clearly see these scriptures do not describe most modern church meetings.
The usual excuse is that these gifts were given on a part realm to establish the Church and since that which is perfect has already come then that which is in part has been done away with.
Do they really believe that? No! Not if they have studied the scriptures they cannot believe that. Look closely at their so called scriptural excuse:
“Charity never fails: but whether there be prophecies, they shall fail; whether there be tongues, they shall cease; whether there be knowledge, it shall vanish away. For we know in part, and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect is come, then that which is in part shall be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known,” 1 Corinthians 13:8-12.
Does this text teach us that the gifts have been done away with? The same preacher that will tell you it has will also tell you that prophecy is speaking of preaching when you ask him/her the meaning of the word as it is used in other scriptures.
Has preaching the Gospel been done away with? Has knowledge been done away with? Have tongues (languages) ceased? Of course not! Prophecy is not preaching, and knowledge shall not pass away, they will increase until we are swallowed up into perfection.
Has the Church come into the unity of the faith unto a perfect man? Certainly not! These ministers know the gifts of the Spirit are set in the Church to accomplish that feat.
Paul confessed that he had fed with milk and not with meat. Then we must say that the teaching of water and Spirit baptisms, communion, body ministry, gifts of the Spirit, restitution of all things, regenerative birth and immortality are the milk of the Word; therefore, these revelations were for the baby Church and have now passed away along with languages, prophecy, and knowledge.
According to Hebrews 6:1-2, the doctrine of baptisms and laying on of hands is a more advanced teaching than the principle doctrine, which is faith and repentance from dead works. “Let us go on,” says Paul, that is, strive for progress. If we follow the leadership of the Spirit, we will grow, but do we not continue to have babies and children in the Church that yet have need of the milk?
“And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers; For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the Body of Christ: Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of Yahweh, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ: That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive; But speaking the truth in love, may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ: From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplies, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, makes increase of the Body unto the edifying of itself in love,” Ephesians 4:11-16.
If the Church has come into its maturity (and I say it has not), does it now zap all new converts into the fullness of the stature of Christ instantly? Think on this. Look inside the Church and you will agree that they do not. The meat that would help the young to mature above their babyhood is usually withheld by their leaders in fear of confusing them. I do not know why they worry about confusing members, usually it would be impossible to find a more confused lot than is found in these churches that hold to the doctrine of reserve.