Temple Baptist Church - 7-2-2008
2 Corinthians 10:1-18
A. In this chapter of 2 Corinthians, we find once again people within the church body withstanding the man of God. This is an age old problem as God’s Word says, “Smite the shepherd, and the sheep shall be scattered.” In the absence of Paul, there were some in the church who did not follow his leadership and did not respect his place of authority.
B. Though in a place of God given authority, Paul was not brash or proud. Paul was a very meek and gentle man.
1. Paul was a man of weak physical appearance – verse 10
2. Paul was a man of contemptible speech – verse 10
C. He loved these people as only a pastor could. He gave his life for them but there were always a few who would take advantage of his gentleness and withstand his words.
2 Corinthians 12:15 And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved.
D. Paul could be very bold and forward when the time came also. He is now writing in boldness to the church because, evidently, there had been some in the church who criticized him in his absence.
1. They said that he was doing his will and not God’s will – vs. 2b (They doubted his motives.)
2. They withstood his authority – vs. 8-11 (His authority was God given, not man given.)
3. They compared themselves with him – vs. 12-13 (Though all were saved and in Christ, Paul’s position was God ordained and he was different.)
E. Churches have been weakened and divided by the mentality that the pastor is not “permanent party” in the church. Pastors are now “outsiders” who will stay for a few years at most and the either move on or be voted out. Neither of these things are scriptural as God’s men were called of God to churches and remained there: loved, respected, and even feared. Today, out of the will of God Pulpit Committees wave “carrots” under the noses of “hireling prophets” who change churches based upon salaries and benefits instead of God’s calling. These “pastors” are not God called to churches; they are man called! Where the pastor once had the power and authority to “church” the divisive and wicked, he is now the recipient of being run off. Vote them in (which is not a biblical principle) and vote them out (which is not a biblical principle). The only biblical reasons for the pastor having to leave is open sin or heresy!
F. Paul is admonishing the church in respect to their attitude toward and treatment of God’s man. The Bible is full of examples of people who did such things and what God both said and did about it. I will give you some good, spiritual advice tonight concerning God’s man and you relationship to him. I preached on this subject some time ago so will not repeat that message but the Bible says that you are to:
1. Respect your pastor.
2. Love your pastor.
3. Trust your pastor.
4. Pray for your pastor.
5. Protect your pastor.
6. Cooperate with your pastor.
7. Encourage your pastor.
8. Appreciate your pastor.
9. Pay attention to your pastor.
G. Here are some ways in which to “Be Careful With God’s Man.”
1. Be Careful How You Treat God’s Man - 2 Timothy 4:14 Alexander the coppersmith did me much evil: the Lord reward him according to his works: (Shimei cursed David and died. The Amalekite killed God’s man and died.)
a. David had both cause and opportunity to kill Saul - 1 Samuel 26:8-11a Then said Abishai to David, God hath delivered thine enemy into thine hand this day: now therefore let me smite him, I pray thee, with the spear even to the earth at once, and I will not [smite] him the second time. 9 And David said to Abishai, Destroy him not: for who can stretch forth his hand against the LORD’S anointed, and be guiltless? 10 David said furthermore, As the LORD liveth, the LORD shall smite him; or his day shall come to die; or he shall descend into battle, and perish. 11a The LORD forbid that I should stretch forth mine hand against the LORD’S anointed:
b. Be careful how you treat him! 1 Timothy 5:1 Rebuke not an elder, but intreat [him] as a father; [and] the younger men as brethren; (Be good and gentle with him as God will keep him straight. That is not your job!)
2. Be Careful How You Speak About God’s Man – 3 John 9-10 I wrote unto the church: but Diotrephes, who loveth to have the preeminence among them, receiveth us not. 10 Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth [them] out of the church. 11 Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God. (Korahs who have no fear to speak out or oppose God’s man.)
a. Be careful what you say to others. Speaking against God’s man brought leprosy to Miriam!
b. Be careful what you hear about God’s man! 1 Timothy 5:19 Against an elder receive not an accusation, but before two or three witnesses. (When someone speaks against your pastor, tell them to be quiet! They normally know who will listen and who will not. They will pull you aside privately and speak against him.)
3. Be Careful How You Side Against God’s Man – 3 John 10-11 Wherefore, if I come, I will remember his deeds which he doeth, prating against us with malicious words: and not content therewith, neither doth he himself receive the brethren, and forbiddeth them that would, and casteth them out of the church. 11 Beloved, follow not that which is evil, but that which is good. He that doeth good is of God: but he that doeth evil hath not seen God.
Numbers 16:23-26 And the LORD spake unto Moses, saying, 24 Speak unto the congregation, saying, Get you up from about the tabernacle of Korah, Dathan, and Abiram. 25 And Moses rose up and went unto Dathan and Abiram; and the elders of Israel followed him. 26 And he spake unto the congregation, saying, Depart, I pray you, from the tents of these wicked men, and touch nothing of theirs, lest ye be consumed in all their sins. (When someone withstands your pastor, get away from them!)
2 Thessalonians 3:14-15 And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed. 15 Yet count [him] not as an enemy, but admonish [him] as a brother.
4. Be Careful And Protect God’s Man - 1 Samuel 26:15-16 And David said to Abner, [Art] not thou a [valiant] man? and who [is] like to thee in Israel? wherefore then hast thou not kept thy lord the king? for there came one of the people in to destroy the king thy lord. 16 This thing [is] not good that thou hast done. [As] the LORD liveth, ye [are] worthy to die, because ye have not kept your master, the LORD’S anointed. And now see where the king’s spear [is], and the cruse of water that [was] at his bolster. (Protect and stand up for God’s Man)
a. By Disassociation With Those Who Oppose - 2 Thessalonians 3:14 And if any man obey not our word by this epistle, note that man, and have no company with him, that he may be ashamed.
b. By Association With Those Who Follow - Philippians 3:17 Brethren, be followers together of me, and mark them which walk so as ye have us for an ensample.
Conclusion: As God’s man will give an account at the Judgment Seat Of Christ for his dealings with you, I believe that you will give an account in this life for your dealings with him! Love him as he loves you and you will never regret it.