Monday, January 9th, 2017
Do-Gooders (Part 55)
Learn From Christ
Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.
Matthew 11:29 (NKJV)
I have given you an example, that you should do as I have done to you.
John 13:15 (NKJV)
The one who says he abides in Him ought himself to walk in the same manner as He walked.
1 John 2:6 (NASB)
The Helper, the Holy Spirit, Whom the Father will send in My Name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you.
John 14:26 (NASB)
Most modern educational systems require great amounts of time and money. Grads gain diplomas and certificates: accepted symbols of significance that help secure jobs, income and status. Professionals display fancy papers and get to post letters after their names, like MD, PhD or MBA. The world treasures these prized designations.
Most Christian churches prove no exception. Successful pastors have nifty titles, claiming mastery in theology and grand doctorates in divinity. How else can elders and congregations ensure their leaders are worthy to teach? Looking back at the days when Jesus came, Jews valued religious education and measured rising priests similarly.
Actors, models and talent for Christ: If the world loves papers and titles, so be it, and I can play along. But I don't agree with it in church. Why? Because Jesus didn't agree, and He's my exemplary Teacher. His top disciples were fisherman. And Paul (who had superb credentials) labeled such achievements as rubbish.* Also note: the first century church chose leaders through fasting and prayer.**
I'm not denouncing education. Many of you are splendidly schooled, and degrees can bring platforms for Christ--much like the Lord's invested talents can bring platforms within media. Just don't believe they prove your wisdom, 'For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God' (1 Corinthians 3:19).
So don't just rely on your pastors (nor on man-ordained authorities) to mentor you in your walk with Christ. Open His Book and stay in prayer. He wants to teach you Personally.
To Be Continued...
* 'Whatever things were gain to me, those things I have counted as loss for the sake of Christ. More than that, I count all things to be loss in view of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for Whom I have suffered the loss of all things, and count them but rubbish so that I may gain Christ, and may be found in Him, not having a righteousness of my own derived from the Law, but that which is through faith in Christ...' (Philippians 3:7-9).
** Situations where the early church prayed to decide on their leaders and missionaries:
** Seven Chosen to Serve: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+6%3A1-7&version=NKJV
** Selection of Early Missionaries: https://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Acts+13&version=NKJV
P.S. To read the other devotions in this series, please see the Do-Gooders series.