After I posted thoughts yesterday by another blogger on the dangerous ministries of Joel Osteen and Joyce Meyer, I have had many interesting conversations. One was very encouraging. As we were talking in the office this morning about it, one of our staff said, "But Thad, I should be examining everything anyone says with the Word of God." Yes, that's the point. We are all called to take what anyone says about God and filter that through a grid of God's Word. This reminded me of something I wrote in my book, Helping Johnny Listen.
"Do typical church attendees ever think that their churches, their pastors, their teachers can ever teach something that is untrue? Probably most do not, yet they should consider this. Our preachers are only human. That is why we need to make certain we listen alertly" (70).
Do you think your preacher could speak untruth? Do you think your pastor could be wrong? Do you think it could be possible that the person teaching at your church could at some point speak untruth?
My point in this is not to create skeptics. It is not to create a hostility towards preachers. But it is to create a desire to take what is taught and compare it with Scripture. And if something just does not seem right, I would highly encourage you with a spirit of humility, to approach your preacher. The way you approach them will speak volumes about your heart before God. But so will their response. The way your preacher or pastor responds will really tell you how he views the Word of God and truth. And so listen well and approach graciously.
Let me offer one warning at this point. My experience tells me that most Christians do not listen with a discerning ear until they have some unresolved issue with their pastor. When there is conflict, they are very quick to listen and discern and "look for" something to make an issue with their pastor. Let me warn you to not listen in that way. If there is something between you and your pastor, go talk to them, seeking unity.
The goal is not for you to find error in your pastor. The goal is God's glory as we seek His truth with each other that impacts the way we respond to each other. Our goal is Christlikeness, not arrogance that we are right and they are wrong. Don't forget that!