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What Goes Around

In recent months, there have been several reports of pastors of large organisations, who having succumbed to the temptations of fame and celebrity, have now journeyed upon the slippery slope on which God puts a man when he exalts himself or is exalted by others.

The degree to which men fall of course depends on the height to which they have risen. Indeed, the rise of the popular preacher is at odds with the Christian Church.

The word of God must bring change because it is alarming, and life saving. The word preached from the pulpit must drive the truth into our flesh just as the nail drove pain into the body of our Messiah. You see, the word is a salve for a painful situation, not a sweet or a reward for an unruly child.

Anyone in leadership should be aware of their popularity and the degree to which others depend on them or have come to depend on them. I wrote in my recent article ‘ The lame are healed,' that the word of the Lord came to me, saying, ‘My people are not living the lives they should’.

The article goes on to speak about how, to a greater degree, believers are being spoon-fed the gospel and forgetting the highway we are all called to walk.

The problem, when a high profile leader falls, is that his misdemeanour is broadcast from beyond the walls of the church. Good leaders are the watchdogs in such places, but when they want to emulate the ways of others, they too will fall with them.

The one called to lead the brethren, is called to the front. He must distance himself from others. His role is to lead and not make friends. He can make a brother or a sister but friendships are whimsical.

We are called to help each other through difficult times — warn, rebuke, encourage and discipline one another through the directions scripture offers us.

2 Timothy 3:16-17. 16 All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.

There are safety protocols for ministers because the road out there is a place of shadows.

If love and forgiveness abound, then there is no course for issues to be paraded in public. God has given us the means to deal with misdemeanours in the community of faith.

A passage we know so well — one which is often said during a wedding ceremony truly embeds the course of true love for one another.

1 Corinthians 13: 4 Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5 It does not dishonour others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6 Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the trut