By Donald Gee
“And the Word of God increased: and the number of the disciples multiplied in Jerusalem greatly; and a great company of the priests were obedient to the faith.”
What did it this time? Organization! Some people think organization is of the devil. God help them. I read in verse one, “And in those days, when the number of the disciples was multiplied, there arose a murmuring of the Grecians against the Hebrews, because their widows were neglected in the daily ministration.” That’s when the trouble happened, “when the number of the disciples were multiplied.” You can’t run a thing the same way when it is multiplied as you did when it was beginning. You can take it from the Word of God that when a thing grows you are going to have troubles that you won’t have when it is smaller. Don’t be so silly and sentimental as to be always wanting the old days back when there were only a handful and very few troubles. Some people can’t bear big meetings because there is likely to be trouble in them.
Now because there was trouble they dealt with it. Some folks say, “Let’s just pray and preach and forget about it.” No. Get it by the scruff of the neck and deal with it. Don’t run away from it. Be a man and face it. The twelve called the multitude of the disciples together. That was an act of courage. They “faced the music.” Then they said, “It is not reason that we should leave the word of God, and serve tables.” Reason is what we need sometimes. We need a lot more reason in Pentecost. Our testimony has suffered in many places because it has not been presented reasonably. God help us to be reasonable.
“Look ye out among you seven men of honest report, full of the Holy Ghost and wisdom, whom we may appoint over this business. But we will give ourselves continually to prayer, and to the ministry of the Word. And the saying pleased the whole multitude.” The Church did its first bit of organizing and it saved the revival. Let’s pull this “dragon” out and have a look at it. When you start talking about organization some people nearly faint. This is the principle; it is always right to organize sufficiently to meet a felt need. That is the principle. Have you got it? I know organization is a dangerous thing. I know that organization can kill revival. When they first organized the Assemblies of God I would not touch it, but the Lord cured me. I am just as free as any man in the Assemblies, and I have the benefit of being checked up by my brothers and sisters.
Organization is a deadly thing when you go beyond the need. The sort of men I am afraid of in the church are those who love organization for organization’s sake. Some men are made that way. They love organizing everything. If you go into their offices you can see that everything is in its place. They love talking and discussing matters and they simply gloat in resolutions and two thirds majorities, etc. They are the men who do the mischief. Chain those fellows up and don’t let them out till we are through with the business meeting. If you organize for the love of it you will kill the revival.
Organize only enough to meet a felt need. From 1906-1924 we had no Pentecostal Movement to speak of in Great Britain, but since we have organized, the work has grown by leaps and bounds. There were two reasons why we organized. Before we organized we were being simply swamped by false doctrines and false preachers. Now we demand a certificate of fellowship. If you are thinking of going to Great Britain to preach, be sure to take along your certificate. The first thing we’ll ask you for will be your credentials. Take my advice and stay here if you haven’t credentials. There is no opening for you without them. We have to safeguard the church that God has put in our charge.
The other thing that we were longing to do was to put on a bigger missionary program and to get out a good paper and a song book. Unless we got together we couldn’t do these things, and they were becoming urgent needs. Now our missionary work is growing. We have more missionaries on the field than we ever had. God is blessing Scriptural organization. When it is meeting a need, organization is Scriptural and right. If you won’t organize, your revival will explode and go to pieces.