Clergy-God’s Inheritance

Yesterday, I was having a conversation with another brother in our church about this blog and mentioned briefly the clergy/laity distinction and my desire that someday the word laymen would be extinct from the English language. He in turn informed me that the word clergy actually means God’s inheritance. My immediate reaction caused me to rethink the last statement in yesterday’s post. “We need to celebrate our independence from the clergy and hold fast to our head.” I would now like to recant that statement and in turn say we need to continue to hold fast to the head and each member needs to stand up and take their place as part of God’s inheritance, clergy, and have a restoration of the priesthood of all believers.Today, I decided to do some research on the word kleros, which is where the word clergy derives its meaning. According to Strong’s concordance kleros means: a die (for drawing chances) i.e. a lot; a portion; an acquisition; heritage, inheritance, lot, part.Upon reviewing the 12 passages where kleros appears in the New Testament I discovered it is used 6 times to refer to lots or a lot, 2 times referring to be a part of a group, two times as inheritance and one as allotted portion.

2819 Mt 27:35 lots
2819 Mt 27:35 lots
2819 Mr 15:24 lots
2819 Lu 23:34 lots
2819 Ac 1:17 part
2819 Ac 1:25 part
2819 Ac 1:26 lots
2819 Ac 1:26 lot
2819 Ac 26:18 inheritance
2819 Ac 8:21 lot
2819 Col 1:12 inheritance
2819 1Pe 5:3 allotted portion

I do not see any justification from the New Testament for a select group of people to be referred to as clergy in any way that draws a distinction between the common believer. Paul so often stood for the unity of all believers and that Christ was not divided not nothing should come between fellow believers, he rebuked Peter just for eating with the Jews. How much more so would he rebuke people if he saw what occurs in our churches today.

I would like to focus on the two verses that speak of inheritance.

Colossians 1:12 “giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified us to share in the inheritance of the saints in Light.”

Acts 26:18 “to open their eyes so that they may turn from darkness to light and from the dominion of Satan to God, that they may receive forgiveness of sins and an inheritance among those who have been sanctified by faith in Me”

In both of these verses it appears that inheritance is all of God’s people or something that is shared by God’s people, not a select group of people. In Ephesians Paul tells us that we are God’s inheritance.

Ephesians 1:18 “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,”

The word laity, which comes from the Greek word laikos, is not even in the New Testament scriptures. Even still it is a common word in many churches to refer to the average church goer who is not in a position of leadership. The problem with this word is it takes away from the Lord’s desire for his people. God does not use this word to refer to his people. In his word we are called saints, holy ones, a royal priesthood, partakers of the divine nature, brothers, sisters, children of God, a holy people of God. And in the end of the bible it ends with us being wed to the Lord. He came to die for us that He might have a love relationship with us. I only say this because I hope that each member of the Lord can see them selves through the Lord’s eyes and see how loved they are by Him.