Tuesday, September 15, 2009

When not to Judge Part 3


"Moreover it is required in stewards that one be found faithful. But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by a human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself. For I know nothing against myself, yet I am not justified by this; but He who judges me is the Lord." 1 Corinthians 4:2-4 (NAK)


Thirdly, don't judge by Ministry Style.

Ministry style and ministry content are not the same thing. A certain ministry style may offend you, not because it is sinful or wrong but because it is different to what you are used to or what you prefer. However, if the content of a ministry is heretical, with false doctrine, then it is wrong no matter what style it comprises of.

We know that some in the church at Corinth were judging Paul on his ministry style, especially his personal delivery. Compared to other teachers of the Word there he seemed to lack certain speaking skills (see 2 Corinthians 11:6) and he was rather odd in appearance with some physical problems (though we are not told what they were exactly). Later this proved to be a real problem in the Corinthian Church with many preferring self proclaimed leaders who had more of the style the locals preferred but who were teaching heresy!

What is more important, style or truth? I would rather listen to a stuttering, boring Bible teacher who is teaching the truth from God's Word than to a well polished, enjoyable, entertaining, motivational teacher who throws in Bible verses but whose teaching is not Scripturally sound.

So, when a ministry is Biblically sound it does not really matter what style it takes, as long as the style does not cause one to sin. We may have a preferred style but we must not judge other ministries purely on our preferences.

Even when we do see other ministries that teach heretical content we should not publicly pronounce judgement on that ministry unless we have the authority to do so. I have seen many so-called "Discernment Ministries" on the Internet, exposing and shaming many other ministries, claiming them heretical. Who gave them the authority to do this? We have authority to openly judge and correct wrong ministries if they are under our jurisdiction, but if they are not then we should bring it to the attention of those who actually have the authority to do anything.


Hands up, hand down, noise level high or low,
Jumping up, falling down, dancing or no,no,no!
Red faced preacher shouting out or church mouse teacher so sane,
As long as the truth is being proclaimed, it's all lifting up His name!


"Father, thank you for creating us all so very different. However, sometime that means other's ministry style can offend me or cause me to judge. Help me not to ctiticize wrongly concerning ministry style but to loving listen and learn from the truth they do proclaim. Amen!"

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