The “eye” is the overseer of the church body who is supposed to feed the church.
Acts 20:28-29 KJV (28) Take heed therefore unto yourselves, and to
all the flock, over the which the Holy Ghost hath made you overseers,
to feed the church of God, which he hath purchased with his own blood.
(29) For I know this, that after my departing shall grievous wolves
enter in among you, not sparing the flock.
Not everyone is an “eye”. We are many members but of one body….the body of Christ.
1 Corinthians 12:14-21 KJV (14) For the body is not one member, but
many. (15) If the foot shall say, Because I am not the hand, I am not
of the body; is it therefore not of the body? (16) And if the ear
shall say, Because I am not the eye, I am not of the body; is it
therefore not of the body? (17) If the whole body were an eye, where
were the hearing? If the whole were hearing, where were the smelling?
(18) But now hath God set the members every one of them in the body,
as it hath pleased him. (19) And if they were all one member, where
were the body? (20) But now are they many members, yet but one body.
(21) And the eye cannot say unto the hand, I have no need of thee:
nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you.
If the “eye” is evil….greedy for gain…covetous, then he is not feeding the church because he cannot “see” as he has no understanding of the good news nor the Scriptures.
If he is not feeding the church with the Word of Truth, then there is “darkness” in the church body. There is a lack of knowledge as he handles the Word of God deceitfully in the ears of others. The blind leads the blind and they both fall into the ditch…the grave. Their end is destruction.
2 Corinthians 4:1-7 KJV (1) Therefore seeing we have this ministry,
as we have received mercy, we faint not; (2) But have renounced the
hidden things of dishonesty, not walking in craftiness, nor handling
the word of God deceitfully; but by manifestation of the truth
commending ourselves to every man's conscience in the sight of God.
If the good news is hid (as they cannot understand it) from those who are preaching themselves, it is because the “god of this age” (their belly is their god) has blinded the minds of them of those who really do not believe lest the LIGHT of the glorious good news of Christ should irradiate them.
If the good news is hid from the eyes of their understanding, then those that they are “preaching” to certainly cannot understand it. The whole church body is then full of “darkness”.
(3) But if our gospel be hid, it is hid to them that are lost: (4)
In whom the god of this world hath blinded the minds of them which
believe not, lest the light of the glorious gospel of Christ, who is
the image of God, should shine unto them. (5) For we preach not
ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your servants for
Jesus' sake. (6) For God, who commanded the light to shine out of
darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the
knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
If we focus on acquiring earthly things…. putting much emphasis upon them, then the “thieves”…the “preachers”… who are greedy for gain can “break through and steal” from you. They use that unhealthy earthly focus within us to exploit us and lead us astray from the Way of righteousness. The thieves come only to steal, kill and destroy as they lead many astray from the path that leads to life.
Matthew 6:19-24 KJV (19) Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon
earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break
through and steal: (20) But lay up for yourselves treasures in
heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do
not break through nor steal:
But if we are always treasuring…focusing on…. those things from above (love, peace, joy, patience, gentleness, generosity, etc), then the “thieves” cannot come and lead us astray with their handling of the Word of God deceitfully for their own unjust gain. They have no power to deceive us then.
(21) For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also.
If the “eye”…the overseer…is single-minded (the eye is "single") in serving God, then the whole church body shall be full of Light….the Light of the knowledge of God.
(22) The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be
single, thy whole body shall be full of light.
But if the “eye”…the overseer of the church body…is evil (greedy for gain), then the whole church body is full of darkness as he is not feeding it with the Word of Truth.
Yet, many in the church think that the "light" that the covetous preacher gives them (but really leads them astray) is the truth. They receive his words as truth and knowledge when it is really darkness. They assume the darkness is light as they receive those who are only preaching themselves and are not servants. They put darkness for light (Isaiah 5:20). If the "light" within the church body is really darkness, then how great is that darkness.
(23) But if thine eye be evil, thy whole body shall be full of
darkness. If therefore the light that is in thee be darkness, how
great is that darkness!
The covetous preacher cannot serve two masters. The “eye” MUST be single-minded in serving God and not double minded (serving God supposedly AND mammon). He will either hate the one and love the other or hold to one and despise the other. It can NOT be both ways.
(24) No man can serve two masters: for either he will hate the one,
and love the other; or else he will hold to the one, and despise the
other. Ye cannot serve God and mammon.
This is why Paul told the overseers (the “eye” of the church body) to take heed to themselves and to the flock. The only way to be able to feed the church is to not covet after its “silver, or gold or apparel” but work with their own hands to support their own earthly neeeds.
Acts 20:33-35 KJV (33) I have coveted no man's silver, or gold, or
Paul labored with his own hands (as a tentmaker) to support his own earthly necessities. An overseer must be with him on this.
(34) Yea, ye yourselves know, that these hands have ministered unto
my necessities, and to them that were with me.
He has shown the overseers of the church all things so that they may be able to feed the church with the Word of Truth. It is more blessed to give than to receive.
Laboring with their own hands for their own earthly necessities would also support the “weak”…the weak consciences of the outside world who see the preaching for money going on inside the churches and blaspheme His holy Name because of it.
(35) I have shewed you all things, how that so labouring ye ought to
support the weak, and to remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he
said, It is more blessed to give than to receive.
The overseer must be with Paul in this (working with his own hands to support his own earthly necessities in order to not covet after the church’s money). The overseer is to be followers together of Paul in this.
The apostles worked night and day with their own hands to support themselves. They did forgo this power to get paid money from the church and the overseer today is expected to walk after their example and not walk “disorderly”.
Philippians 3:17-21 KJV (17) Brethren, be followers together of me,
and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.
MANY walk as the enemies of the cross of Christ. They have no understanding of the good news of Christ who died for us so that we may have His eternal life in this life that we are experiencing in the here-and-now.
(18) (For many walk, of whom I have told you often, and now tell you
even weeping, that they are the enemies of the cross of Christ:
Those who are walking as enemies of the cross of Christ are perishing from this earth. They have no understanding of the good news as they only serve for their own belly…..their god is their belly…as they mind earthly things (how to get paid for preaching in order to get what to eat, what to drink and what to wear).
(19) Whose end is destruction, whose God is their belly, and whose
glory is in their shame, who mind earthly things.)
Our citizenship is in Heaven. Yet, they are not focusing on those things above from where we look for the Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who shall change (transfigure, transform) our humiliated earthly mortal bodies like unto His. Only by keeping His daily sacrifice within our mortal body….the “working” within us…. is He able to subdue all things unto Himself.
(20) For our conversation is in heaven; from whence also we look for
the Saviour, the Lord Jesus Christ: (21) Who shall change our vile
body, that it may be fashioned like unto his glorious body, according
to the working whereby he is able even to subdue all things unto
The enemies of the cross of Christ have no understanding of this as they perish from off this earth because of the serving for their own belly…and the blind leading the blind both go to the grave.
Through the “working”….always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus…is He able to subdue all things unto Himself as His life manifest in our outer mortal flesh giving us His eternal life in this earth.
2 Corinthians 4:10-11 KJV (10) Always bearing about in the body the
dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made
manifest in our body. (11) For we which live are alway delivered unto
death for Jesus' sake, that the life also of Jesus might be made
manifest in our mortal flesh.
The apostles of Christ labored night and day and did not speak flattering words in order to get their earthly needs met. They preached the gospel of God without charge.
1 Thessalonians 2:3-10 KJV (3) For our exhortation was not of deceit,
nor of uncleanness, nor in guile: (4) But as we were allowed of God
to be put in trust with the gospel, even so we speak; not as pleasing
men, but God, which trieth our hearts. (5) For neither at any time
used we flattering words, as ye know, nor a cloke of covetousness; God
is witness: (6) Nor of men sought we glory, neither of you, nor yet
of others, when we might have been burdensome, as the apostles of
Christ. (7) But we were gentle among you, even as a nurse cherisheth
her children: (8) So being affectionately desirous of you, we were
willing to have imparted unto you, not the gospel of God only, but
also our own souls, because ye were dear unto us. (9) For ye
remember, brethren, our labour and travail: for labouring night and
day, because we would not be chargeable unto any of you, we preached
unto you the gospel of God. (10) Ye are witnesses, and God also, how
holily and justly and unblameably we behaved ourselves among you that
The "tradition"...the transmission...of the apostles of Christ is for the leaders...the "overseers"....the "eye"... to work with their own hands to support their own earthly necessities.
We also must not sit together with those who are walking "disorderly" and not after the transmission of the apostles of Christ to them.
2 Thessalonians 3:6-15 KJV (6) Now we command you, brethren, in the
name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that ye withdraw yourselves from every
brother that walketh disorderly, and not after the tradition which he
received of us.
The apostles of Christ did not eat any man's bread for nothing but worked night and day so as not to be chargeable to any. They did not preach for a paycheck but preached the good news without charge.
(7) For yourselves know how ye ought to follow us: for we behaved not
ourselves disorderly among you; (8) Neither did we eat any man's
bread for nought; but wrought with labour and travail night and day,
that we might not be chargeable to any of you:
It is not because the apostles of Christ did not have the power to do so but they did forgo that power to make themselves an example for us to follow today.
It was they back then that had that power to make a living off the body of Christ and it was their decision back then not to do so as Jesus commanded to "freely give" as they freely received and now it is binding on those who came after them not to preach for a paycheck.
(9) Not because we have not power, but to make ourselves an ensample
unto you to follow us.
The apostles of Christ: "this WE COMMANDED you, that if any would not work, neither shall should he eat". This is to those who make a living off the church and are not working with their own hands (at their own jobs) to support themselves.
(10) For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if
any would not work, neither should he eat.
Those who are disregarding their command are walking "disorderly" and are not doing anyone good as they have no knowledge. They are "idle" even in their preaching as they are not feeding anyone with the Word of Truth as they have no understanding.
(11) For we hear that there are some which walk among you disorderly,
working not at all, but are busybodies.
They are to hear the command of the apostles in the Lord Jesus Christ that with quietness (be silent at the hearing of the truth of this letter) they work with their own hands to support their own earthly necessities: what to eat, what to drink, what to wear. They are to go to work and eat their own bread.
(12) Now them that are such we command and exhort by our Lord Jesus
Christ, that with quietness they work, and eat their own bread. (13)
But ye, brethren, be not weary in well doing.
If any man does not obey the word of the apostles by this letter (after having been known the truth of the matter), then note that man and have no company with him...yet do not treat him as an enemy but admonish as a brother (remembering to not be weary in well doing).
(14) And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man,
and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. (15) Yet count
him not as an enemy, but admonish him as a brother.