1 Timothy 3:2-3 Therefore an overseer must be above reproach, the husband of one wife, sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, (3) not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money.
I was thinking recently about this quality that the Lord requires in a pastor/elder called – hospitable. You have probably heard before that it literally means “a lover of strangers.” It is far more than merely hosting hospitality social events. It really is a facet of love. It is loving people who cannot do anything in return for you. It is an objective love that doesn’t show favoritism.
Many of the wicked have what we would call an “elitist” mentality. They are motivated by “what’s in it for me?” because that really is why they do what they do. And so it is when they get into a church leadership position. “What’s in it for me?” they always ask (though usually not out loud). They are a cut above the rest of us rabble. This thinking is an evil leaven that can quickly spread throughout a local church. It is a spiritual pandemic today in fact.
Continue reading “Elitists Love to Creep into Church Leadership Positions”
And we impart this in words not taught by human wisdom but taught by the Spirit, interpreting spiritual truths to those who are spiritual. The natural person does not accept the things of the Spirit of God, for they are folly to him, and he is not able to understand them because they are spiritually discerned. (1 Corinthians 2:13-14)
Christ’s truth looks…stupid. Dumb. Foolish. That is, to a person who is not born again. It is, as Paul says, only by the Spirit that anyone is able to recognize the wisdom of God. After all, so blind is the fallen human heart and mind that as Paul puts it “the rulers of this age” killed the most innocent man who ever lived!
If you find yourself in a local church, for example, where things are being pretty much run as a secular corporation, you can be sure that you are in the midst of a place and people devoid of the Spirit of God. Listen to Paul again:
Continue reading “What Does Christ’s Truth Look Like?”
In the account of the miraculous healing of Namaan the Syrian at the hands of Elisha at Samaria, we see an example of something that is all too common today in the churches. Elisha had a servant named Gehazi and this is what happened after Namaan was healed and after Elisha had declined to take payment from him:
2Ki 5:19-27 He said to him, “Go in peace.” But when Naaman had gone from him a short distance, (20) Gehazi, the servant of Elisha the man of God, said, “See, my master has spared this Naaman the Syrian, in not accepting from his hand what he brought. As the LORD lives, I will run after him and get something from him.” (21) So Gehazi followed Naaman. And when Naaman saw someone running after him, he got down from the chariot to meet him and said, “Is all well?” (22) And he said, “All is well. My master has sent me to say, ‘There have just now come to me from the hill country of Ephraim two young men of the sons of the prophets. Please give them a talent of silver and two changes of clothing.’”
(23) And Naaman said, “Be pleased to accept two talents.” And he urged him and tied up two talents of silver in two bags, with two changes of clothing, and laid them on two of his servants. And they carried them before Gehazi. (24) And when he came to the hill, he took them from their hand and put them in the house, and he sent the men away, and they departed.
(25) He went in and stood before his master, and Elisha said to him, “Where have you been, Gehazi?” And he said, “Your servant went nowhere.” (26) But he said to him, “Did not my heart go when the man turned from his chariot to meet you? Was it a time to accept money and garments, olive orchards and vineyards, sheep and oxen, male servants and female servants? (27) Therefore the leprosy of Naaman shall cling to you and to your descendants forever.” So he went out from his presence a leper, like snow.
Continue reading “Gehazi is Still Among us – and often he is in charge!”