In light of recent news making the round in certain quarters about a certain Pastor, I have been wondering what the Christian response and attitude should be. As a Christian, how should I react or act when a Christian leader is in the news for the wrong reasons? I found an example in Jesus and his followers. Below are some of the lessons I have learnt.
1. Don’t be a betrayer. In Luke 22:48, Jesus asked Judas with disappointment, “do you betray the son of man with a kiss“. Christians, don’t go around badmouthing another Christian, whether they are responsible for their predicament or not. When you do, you are unconsciously handing them over to be mocked and taunted by unbelievers. When you gossip, badmouth and, or speak without love, you are acting like Judas. Stop sharing videos and, or articles publicizing the scandal. Our jobs as Christians is to lift each other up, not to step all over them when they are down.
2. Don’t be a fighter! In Matthew 26:52, Jesus rebuked Peter and said “put your sword back in its place, for all who draw the sword will die by the sword.” Many of us are too quick to jump into the defense of others, especially if it is a beloved man of God that is involved. Jumping in defense is attempting to take the place of God. Jesus told Peter that if he needed rescue, God would send legions of angels. Posting articles and videos in defense of the man of God is unnecessary. Fighting with other Christians who have a different view on the matter is misguided. Defense for a child of God is God’s responsibility, not yours. So please, stop trying to come to the rescue, it leaves a sour taste in the mouth of onlookers.
Does that mean we shouldn’t do anything?
3. Watch and Pray! Jesus took his closest disciples aside and told them he was in great distress. He asked them to watch with him. Imagine how disappointed he felt when he met them sleeping. He said in Matt 26:40 “Couldn’t you watch with me even one hour?”. When a servant of God is in distress, our duty, our only duty to him is to watch and pray. Doing nothing or taking sides or badmouthing will do no good. The best you can do is to pray.
What should you pray for?
4. Pray For God’s will! Jesus wished the distress could be taken away, yet he insisted on God’s will. Rom 8:28 says all things will work together for good if we love God. So pray that the beloved servant of God does not go outside God’s will. That will make things worse. There may be lessons to learn, new heights to reach, corrections to take. Heb 5:8 tells us that Jesus learnt obedience through the things that he suffered. In God’s will, we get to see good come out of bad times.
5. Pray for strength! Luke 22:43 tells us that after Jesus prayed, an angel came and strengthened him. Whether you think what the servant of God is going through is self inflicted or not, pray for strength. Strength to do God’s will, whatever it may be, palatable or not.
I’ll stop here for now.