Sir Godfrey Gregg D.Div
Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall.— 1 Corinthians 10:12
Have you built any pedestals lately? In the last couple of decades, newspapers and newscasts have been filled with reports of sin in high places. Television evangelists have fallen with embarrassing regularity. Today’s righteous finger pointer often turns into tomorrow’s suspect of impropriety. Only the exposures of political leaders vie with the revelations of religious scandals for front-page coverage.
I’m not sure how the average Vincentian and more, Americans view these scandals. Certainly, the news media seem to delight in their revelations. And comedians have grist for hundreds of new routines. But as a person who also claims to be a born-again Christian and a follower of the same Jesus about whom these men have preached, I am dismayed and angered. When these high profile Christians are impugned, I feel as if the barbs are being hurled at me. Their proven or alleged wrongdoings seem to indict all of us. Maybe you can identify with those feelings.
If we the evangelical Christian community are honest, however, we would have to admit that we are part of the problem. You see, by putting these men on pedestals, we have made them larger than life and we have made them susceptible to the temptations of power and pride.
In reality, they are fallible and sinful human beings, just like you and me. Think of how you would fare if your inconsistencies and secrets were exposed–those angry words, gossip, lust for things, murderous thoughts. But we elevate those with special gifts. We treat celebrity converts with almost worship status.
For many years I have admired our politicians at home and abroad and always want to emulate them until I got deeper into the Christian pathway. I learned over the years that politicians tell you what you like to hear and get your vote. They are all the same and they have failed all of us in one way or another. From my experience, I want to give a little advice. Don’t put your faith in them or in any human being. If you watch them long enough or close enough, they’ll let you down. “Instead, keep your eyes on Christ. He will never fail.”
Who are your Christian “politicians?” A pastor, a musician, a parent, a close friend? By “overrating” you hurt them and yourself. Instead, let us put our Christian leaders in their proper place as fellow strugglers who are striving to be Christ-like and who are using their gifts to serve Him. And let’s uphold in prayer our Christian leaders and those in the spotlight. I pray that God will grant you the courage to break off the old habits and cling to Christ the Author of our Faith.