Wow! What a very articulate and piercing chapter this morning! There were parts of this chapter that put a smile on my face, because it seemed almost funny…
Manure always seems just a little bit funny!
Then there was the part of the chapter that just seemed to take a swipe at our own culture and our inability to accept that sin is still sin…and sin still separates us from God! God accuses the Israelites of watering down His holiness and elevating their sinfulness!
17 You have wearied the Lord with your words. “How have we wearied him?” you ask.
You have wearied Him by saying that all who do evil are good in the Lord’s sight, and He is pleased with them…”
But the most powerful part of this chapter for me personally was the first section, where God called out the leadership and held them to account!
Admittedly, my pastor colleagues around the country and I are not Old Testament Israelite priests, but it would seem that the charge God gives is applicable to us pastors!
7 “The words of a priest’s lips should preserve knowledge of God, and people should go to him for instruction, for the priest is the messenger of the Lord of Heaven’s Armies. 8 But you priests have left God’s paths. Your instructions have caused many to stumble into sin. You have corrupted the covenant I made with the Levites,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies.9 “So I have made you despised and humiliated in the eyes of all the people. For you have not obeyed me but have shown favouritism in the way you carry out my instructions.”
In a world that seems to have too many celebrity pastors gone wild, pastor-scandals and pastors who succumb to moral failures, these three verses ring especially loud. But consider how many more pastors there are who ‘have left God’s path’ that never hit the news or blogosphere. Add to this the main-line-church scandals, the numbers of priests charged with sexual abuse of children, the clergy’s involvement in the Canadian residential schools and what used to be a revered position is now “despised and humiliated in the eyes of all the people.”
This chapter is a clarion call for those of us in leadership to check our character and 1“Listen, you priests—this command is for you! 2 Listen to Me and make up your minds to honour My name,” says the Lord of Heaven’s Armies!
HIT ‘COMMENT’ BELOW to share your reflections! You don’t have to complete personal fields to participate! Note that the comments are not monitored and don’t necessarily reflect Riverwood’s teachings.