Seven Seasons of the Church
Parallel the Seven Redemptive Gifts ~ Romans 12
Courtesy of Arthur Burk – Plumbline Ministries
SEASON ONE THE PROPHETIC SEASON
About 30 AD – 96 AD
Characteristics: Signs and wonders; beginning of the church; initiative of the prophet seen; desire of the prophet to go one step beyond Jew or Gentile; religious cultures on both sides. The prophet hates tradition; hates ignorance; is willing to stand in own legitimacy; defaults to faith.
SEASON TWO THE SERVANT SEASON
About 100 AD – 400 AD
Characteristics: Great persecution; deepest passion of servant is to prepare a place for God and man to be intimate together; martyrdom, servant gift has highest authority over premature death. The more that died the more were born again because of the anointing of the servant; Constantine; catacombs. God redeemed intimacy and worship.
SEASON THREE THE TEACHER SEASON
Dark Ages, Monastic Era About 476 AD – 1000 AD
Characteristics: Drab and grey; 600 yrs of inhuman behavior; great destruction of church literature in Europe; Ireland became new center for written materials. Teacher is concerned with legitimacy and truth of the message; monasteries became places of stability. Elitism – royalty vs commoners. God redeemed emotional history and groundedness of the church.
SEASON FOUR THE EXHORTER SEASON
The Renaissance, About 1300/1400 AD to 1600 AD
Characteristics: Presentation; pomp and circumstance; abolition of elitism; institutional elitism; Martin Luther; John Calvin; Arch Bishop of Canterbury; great control of the Church of England; Birthing of many denominations for commoners. God redeemed music, dress, beautiful colors, pageantry developed in the church, 4 part harmony developed, beautiful buildings and cathedrals.
SEASON FIVE THE GIVER SEASON
About 1797 – 1899
Characteristics: William Carey, father of modern missions; went to India and birthing of missions began; Moravians of Germany; triumph over nationalism; evangelism not rooted in politics; people heard directly from God through personal initiative. God redeemed personal initiative.
SEASON SIX THE RULER SEASON
About 1900 – 2004
Characteristics: Church learned spiritual warfare ~ build and fight; forceful evangelism; religion, law and rules governed the church; 70’s and 80’s stressed unity; one stayed in their denomination; institutional unity; birth of intercessors; pastors initially very threatened by intercessors; intercessors began cross pollination across denominational lines which has enriched the church; different streams began to emerge; defeat of tribalism in the Body of Christ; emergence of phones and internet gave way for communication of horizontal nature; initiative in the marketplace and it became acceptable to take faith into the business marketplace. Businessmen became legitimized in the church. God redeemed unity in the church.
SEASON SEVEN THE MERCY SEASON
February 2004 to Jesus’ return
Characteristics: The greatest season of all; Intimacy with Father and the message of Father’s love will be predominate characteristic; people will smell the fragrance of Christ; those who get saved in this season will largely reject the religion of the Ruler Season; believers seeking intimacy with Father will find peace and rest which will crush chaos. God is redeeming the culture changing it to release the line between sacred and secular. Jesus will return!