1 Corinthians 12:28 “firstly Apostles…thirdly teachers, after that… helps, administrators…”
The word translated “governments” in The King James Bible is also translated “administrations” or “administrators” in the New American and Revised Standard Versions.
In Greek this is the word “kubernesis” which means to steer and is used to designate the pilot of a ship. Anyone knows that unless the pilot is the owner of the ship he does not decide where it goes, he simply steers it where he is told to. God raises up Apostles to pioneer new churches and bring forth new revelations. Once the Apostle is gone the movements or churches that they pioneered are usually taken over by people who have “administrative” gifts. When that happens the movement ceases, there is no more advancing the Kingdom.
Administrators are important and are mentioned in 1 Corinthians 12:28 but the Administrative gift is never to be first or “primary”! When administration is first it causes the movement to enter into a “maintenance mode” and many times it will die!
The reason this happens is because Administrators are not pioneers! They are not the kind of people to take the risks that Apostles will in order to advance the Kingdom of God! Paul uses the word “proton” for “first” Apostles… When administration is “proton” they stop anything new! They want everything to stay the same. To administrators, the “status quo” is good because they can predict what is going to take place. When Apostles are leading the future is not certain and the status quo goes out the window! The favorite verse of administrators is usually that everything be done; “decently and in order”!
For the most part, Christian churches are being run by “Pastors” who are usually gifted Administrators. Traditional Christianity is largely structured around denominations, and most denominational executives are administrators, many of them excellent administrators. Thus, day after day and year after year, administrators are those who make decisions which affect the life and the ministry of the churches under their jurisdiction. The Bible teaches that administrators are necessary because they carry out the vision of the Apostle. Again, without an Apostle leading and administrators leading potentials are usually not reached. But, if an administrator is following an Apostolic Leader they become invaluable because they bring a certain amount of positive tension into the leadership team. They become the ones who, by their gifting, bring balance to the Apostolic Vision.
Many Christian organizations flourish in the first generation and then tend to lose some of their initial vigor after their founder passes off the scene. One of the reasons for this is that the founder was very likely an apostle who carried a “pioneering anointing” and was an Apostolic Leader. But after the Apostle is gone most of the time the person who replaces him turns out to be an administrator. There is a vast difference between an apostle and an administrator. Remember, the Apostle has the “pioneering anointing” while an administrator has a “maintenance anointing”. Both are vital for the healthy life of a Church or Ministry but the “order” that Paul calls for is “Apostles first” casting vision and empowering the people and then the Administrators steering in the direction that the Apostle has called for. The ship is steered properly and it will reach it port!