STATEMENT OF PURPOSE

It is our desire to be a part of that Great Voice filling the earth with the appearing of Him. We are not the total of, nor do we constitute the basis of, the "fellowship of the Son of God" (1Cor. 1:9). But we do desire to be a part of that great "fellowship" and help to bring forth that same "fellowship" in all the body of Christ in all the earth. Through our joint ministries we have committed ourselves to knowing nothing other than or less than Christ Himself; the Eternal, indwelling Son of God. We understand it to be the Father's good pleasure to reveal that Son in every believer who will, forsaking all else, turn their heart and soul to "see" Him. We believe Christ alone to be The Living Word of God in Whom God hath spoken, therefore, He alone is our gospel. He is the substance and fullness of His Body, which Body we are, therefore, the "increase of Christ" defines our view point of ministry. He is our message, and He is our ministry. Currently, we are involved together in Bible conferences, foreign ministry, training centers, distribution of audio, video, and printed material, local gatherings, and internet publication. Covenant Ministries provides, but is not limited to, a basis of covering, fellowship, ministry, and support for those who see their need of and have a desire for such a relationship one with another.

To define our purpose, not only as a fellowship of believers, but as to the gospel and to spiritual life itself in the light of the Truth, we must take the stand taken by the Apostle Paul. That stand which so absolutely dominated and determined his life and ministry to the church (Colossians 1:24-29) was, that for the believer, all spiritual reality and ascendancy; indeed everything of spiritual truth, hangs upon an inward Revelation of Jesus Christ.

Galatians 1:15-16, "But when it pleased God, who separated me from my mother's womb, and called me by his grace, To reveal his Son in me, that I might preach him among the heathen; immediately I conferred not with flesh and blood" . This is the foundation upon which Paul stood, in all of his ministry to the church. Beloved, our lives as children of God, which involve all that we are and all that we do in relation to Christ, rest upon the "inward revelation of Christ," which results in his centrality and supremacy, so far as our lives are concerned. This is true for every believer and the whole body of Christ.

Let me be very specific, because I am speaking of our purpose for existing as a fellowship of believers and the reality by which we do exist as a fellowship in Christ. Our existence and purpose for existing must be utterly and always for the expression of Christ, the revelation of Jesus Christ, and the bringing into view of the Lord Jesus Christ. No assembly, no church, no movement, no testimony, and no fellowship stands justified in its existence from God's standpoint, except to the degree that Christ is expressed by it. We can scarcely be a light in this world, if we ourselves abide in spiritual darkness. Beloved, what Moses "represented" to Israel by the glory, which shined upon his face, Christ himself now fulfills in the church, which is His Body. The Son of God revealed, is the only True Light and Glory of His own House, whose House we are (Hebrews 3:1-6).

In 2 Corinthians 4:1-7, Paul writes that it is through the inward revelation of Christ, that God hath shined in our hearts to give the true light of the revealed knowledge of the eternal glory in the face of Jesus Christ. He says this pointing back to verses 10-18 of 2 Corinthians 3. Without that Light shining in us, we are blind and can do nothing. I am speaking of the Light of His appearing. When everything in us is brought up before the brightness of His appearing, that which is not Christ cannot remain (1 Corinthians 4:3-5). This is so in a very real inward way and in all that we would do outwardly as well.

It is true that our very existence as a fellowship in the Son, is brought upon that foundation: "face-to-face with Jesus." Even our ministry as a fellowship to the body of Christ, is brought upon that same foundation: "It pleased God... to reveal his son in me that I might preach him" . The word that we must focus on here is Him. Paul was not teaching a theology concerning Him or the propagating doctrines about Him, but Paul was declaring the very Person in whose face his soul's gaze was forever fixed. We are to declare the living, indwelling, and revealed Son of God. "That I might preach Him"! That goes straight to the heart of God and to the heart of everything that pleases God. I want to be very clear when I say that it also goes to the heart of our ministry to the Lord's Body everywhere, regardless of the number gathered or the place in which they are gathered. Unfortunately, it seems that so very much of what we call "spiritual activities", have become the means to further a movement or promulgate a teaching to the furtherance of the interests of an institution. However, that with which we are involved, is not a movement, an institution, nor a message, if by message you mean a specific form of teaching or a systematized doctrine. We must be very careful about what we mean by "message." The Gospel is not found in some arrangement of True things or in certain phraseologies or terminologies. The Gospel and the basis of our ministry is Christ himself! It is the preaching of Him...as the Father reveals Him in us. So often a teaching, a movement, a testimony, a message, a mission, and yes even a fellowship has taken the place of Christ Himself. Many use His name and many relate Him to terms such as: "the finished work", "life" , "resurrection", "new creation", "Body of Christ", and even the Cross; then they end up preaching these things in view of self. That is not Christ! The Gospel revealed of God is nothing other than the Son Himself. God does not reveal related things, He reveals the Son of His love in spirit and truth, even in Person. That is the only foundation upon which God builds anything.

There are two things, which become very evident. First, because of the revelation of Jesus Christ (God revealing his son in you) there will be a manifest passion for none but Him. Secondly, where there is an absence of an ever and ongoing revealing of the Son Himself in the soul, we will be drawn after other things. These things will be presented as in His interest and done for Him, but they can never satisfy the heart and purpose of the Father. It is in God's own heart, where we find the purpose for our existence and function in and as a ministry.

Much of what I have said is a reflection upon what Brother T. Austin Sparks has written in his book, "The Centrality and Supremacy of the Lord Jesus Christ." The following is a direct quotation from that book, "The supreme revelation and ultimate exaltation of the Son himself in those who are the redeemed, is the ultimate intention and eternal purpose of God the Father. It is, therefore, most certainly the purpose of our existence as a fellowship of believers and the object of our ministry both within and unto the body of Christ. Whatever function or activity that is undertaken by us as a fellowship must originate from and serve only that purpose."

I will end with one last consideration. Fellowship, which results from God revealing his Son in our souls, is not something we just decide to join or become a member of, but rather it is that into which the Spirit Himself calls us. What is the ground or the condition of the heart that would respond to such calling? Once again, I believe Brother Sparks says it best, "Is it not true with so many, that the Lord has had to bring them to the place where it was a matter of desperation, life or death hanging upon a new knowledge of Himself? He has not been able to give them that inward unveiling until there could be, for them, no more life, no more ministry unless there was a new knowledge of the Lord himself. They wished not to live unless the Lord came unto them in that way where for them everything of spiritual life hangs, not upon religion, not ministry, not religious zeal, but upon the inward revelation of Jesus Christ the Son of God's Love." Beloved, may God gather, in the revealing of His Son, such as have hearts to know Him. I am not speaking of an organization when I say, "Come have fellowship with us, for truly our fellowship is with the Father and the Son."

JW Luman