The Bible View, Volume: 279, November 25, 2010
God uses men and woman for His different purposes. God has delegated many of the needs of His people to different ministries He knows are paramount. One such need that God knows is important is to have a shepherd of a local assembly of believers. That man is called a “pastor” or “preacher”.
Maybe because of jealousy that they are not called to the position of pastoring; maybe knowing they are not scripturally qualified for such a role of leadership; perhaps because they do not agree with how he is performing his ministry, or just having the belief they can do a better job than their pastor, many talk against and about their preacher. What a dangerous mistake they make when they do so.
All throughout the Bible there are examples of how God dealt with those that rose up and spoke against God’s man such as:
- When Miriam and Aaron spoke against Moses, Miriam was plagued with leprosy (Num. 12:9-10).
- When the people of Israel spoke against God and Moses (Num. 21:5-6), God sent fiery serpents to chastise them for their sin.
- When Korah and over 250 others spoke against Moses and Aaron (Num. 16:2-3), God allowed the earth to swallow Korah and the others up.
- When children mocked God’s man, Elisha (II Kings 2:22-23), God allowed two she bears to destroy 42 of the mockers.
- History tells us that Pontius Pilate, who ordered Jesus’ death, died by suicide.
- Judas turned against Jesus, and became so miserable about what he had done against Jesus that he killed himself (Mat. 27:5).
- The thief that perished on the cross with Christ, spoke against Jesus, and did not get saved and go to heaven.
David would not go against King Saul, even though the King did wrong several times against him. David’s heart was, “The LORD forbid that I should stretch forth mine hand against the LORD’S anointed: …” I Samuel 26:11. David knew it was wrong to oppose God’s man. However, today there are many that have not the fear or respect to restrain themselves from talking against or doing ill against the leader God has placed over the local church.
The pastor of any church certainly is not perfect. No one will agree with everything anyone does, let alone the many decisions the local shepherd has to make. He probably would not agree with all we do, either. However, he is the leader of the local church that God has for this time and should be obeyed, respected, and encouraged. Unless when scriptural error is involved, God takes him home, or God relocates him, he is to stay the church leader.
Belittling and questioning his ministries does much damage:
- Murmuring against God’s man is sin, and sin can only do harm to one’s life. One will not be all he can be with any sin in his life.
- Murmuring about another’s work for Christ will put one in a position of judging (Mat. 7:1), and that is the Holy Spirit’s job, in most situations, not ours.
- Complaining about the pastor, or any other church leader or facet of the church, is only going to spread discontent among others. It will sow seeds of discord, and in most cases, will only hinder, not build, the ministry (Proverbs 6:16-19). Division among members will result, when the leader is opposed.
- Speaking against the pastor, or other God-appointed leader, could hinder the Holy Spirit of God from working in one’s life or could bring the wrath of God on the violators.
- Speaking ill against God’s man will not encourage the pastor in doing all he can do. It discourages most pastors, and the body of Christ will surely suffer.
- When we talk about or question what the pastor is doing (or other church leaders, for that matter) we are negating his authority to the listeners. If it is our children that hear us roast the preacher after a sermon, it may not be long until the children lose respect for his ministry, and do not heed the biblical advice that is delivered from the pulpit or classroom. One day the parent may wonder why the children are not following what was taught in church from the Bible. They would never suspect their own bad-mouthing of the preacher in their home had taught them that if the parents do not respect the pastor, then they do not have to.
- Murmuring against the man of God will hinder the effect any ministry has on the neighboring community, if any disunity among church members is heard of by them.
Aaron and Hur knew a principle about helping the man of God that would encourage and help any pastor today. They noticed when Moses’ arms were up while directing a battle, that Israel had the victory over the enemy. When the leader was tired and had not the strength to lift up his arms, the battle was in the favor of the enemy. Aaron and Hur made sure their leader’s arms were held high, so that they would get the victory. They physically held up their leader’s arms.
If more people would realize that honoring God’s man is honoring God and His work, and would encourage and help their pastor, more spiritual battles would be won; and more pastors would be encouraged. Lift up your leader’s arms, do not force them down!