by Tad Lindley
Some of you already think that I made this up just from reading the title. Nobody would be stupid enough to do that. If you don’t like the preaching just quit the church and go somewhere else for crying out loud, but don’t kill the pastor.
Well, I didn’t make this up, it is absolutely true. The pastor was preaching hard against sin. He was calling for people to repent. The preacher’s name was John. And he had a man who started coming to his services. The man enjoyed Rev. John’s preaching. He began to be convicted by the word of God and started making changes in his life. Just like what may have happened to you when you started living for God, not everyone was happy about it. Even close family members might not have wanted you to give up your old ways.
The night he preached against homewreckers
One time Rev. John preached against homewrecking. By that I mean adultery, stealing other women’s husbands and vice versa. Now this man who had started coming to church and was enjoying the preaching had a little bit of a situation at home. I hate to talk about another fellows issues, but I have to for you to get the picture. This guy had stolen another man’s wife, and was living with her. But it wasn’t just some other man’s wife, it was actually his brother’s wife he had stolen.
You can’t preach that in my ears!
That was one of the last messages that Rev. John ever preached, because the new guy who was coming by to hear the preaching and happened to be remarried to his brother’s wife, also happened to be the king, King Herod to be exact. Herod was faced with a dilemma: do I modify my life to fit the word of God, or do I surround myself with people who will tell me I am alright the way I am. He did what any offended king would do, he had the preacher thrown in the hoosegow. Now his “wife” Herodias was so riled up that she hated the preacher, and she arranged through trickery to get King Herod to murder John the Baptist. You can read the historical accounts in Matthew 14:1-12, Mark 6:14-29, and Luke 9:7-9.
You’d never kill the preacher, but…
Of course the death of John the Baptist is an extreme case. And yet even on the planet today, there are many pastors in Communist and Muslim nations who are in every bit as much danger as John the Baptist was. I would like to think that in the United States most pastors are not at risk of being thrown in jail or murdered for preaching what the Bible says. You’d never kill a preacher for hurting your feelings or offending you with the word of God.
If he preaches on your home turf
But let him start preaching on your home territory. Let him get up in the pulpit and preach against exploiting the poor and the elderly for their money, but you love winning at bingo and suddenly your sin has been called out. Suddenly you have two choices, you can either thank God for sending you a wake up call, or you can’t get mad and quit church. Or if you live in Bethel, you can just go find a church that doesn’t care whether you gamble against poor people and the elderly and keep doing it. (see I Timothy 6:10, Proverbs 14:31, 22:16 and Matthew 6:24)
Listen, if your preacher is calling you to repent from sin, and he is preaching from the Bible you had better thank God, because there are plenty of pastors out there who are afraid to preach the truth. So if you are fortunate enough to have one that loves you more than he wants you to like his preaching, please make the right choice, humble yourself, pray, seek His face, and turn from your wicked ways.
Herod killed his pastor. Would you please thank yours instead?
Tad Lindley is a minister at the United Pentecostal Church in Bethel, AK.