I am really pleased that you brought this subject up.
There seems to be a growing tendency for the members of an assembly to question and even challenge their pastors concerning their doctrines (preaching, teaching, instructions, authority, etc.) This perception is either real or simply preceived, which one is still unclear. The one thing we can be certain of, however, is that the rebellious elements of any given congregation (group, organization, etc.) is getting more public with the advanced use of Internet communication links. People are feeling freer to publicly express their dissatisfaction with their religious leaders.
There also appears to be two primary reasons for this. First, because many people, especially here in the West, do not like being told what to think, do, or say. It is the ‘I am my own man’ approach to life. Second, the growing criticism from the saints of their church leadership is actually justified.
While it is now easer to ‘vent’ one’s rebellion against local church leadership via Internet forums and social communication groups such as Facebook, it is now an accepted practice to ‘pastor bash’ and to engage in local backbiting, and the spreading of contention, controversy, etc. across the nation – even further. At the same time, the moral and ethical failings of those in spiritual leadership are also being publicized to a greater extent than ever before. From Catholic priests to pastors of mega churches, they are being caught in their stumbling, often with video tape and arrest documents being posted on-line. What was once frequently hidden from view (and hushed up) is now displayed in national exposure.
There is one addition source of fuel for this growing bonfire of criticism. It is that there are actually some saints that are starting to not only read the Bible on their own, but actually starting to study it – intently – separate from the religious indoctrination and denominational propaganda that often times masquerades as sound biblical teaching. Legitimate questions arise for which it is unacceptable to openly discuss, like why does the pastor say this verse means such and such, when to me it plainly says so and so? Why should such issues only be discussed only behind ‘closed doors’, if they are allow at all? What is happing is the a growing number of saints are tired of being jut plain old saints, they want something more, such as to fulfill their own calling and gifting of God within the body of Jesus Christ, not just to be another income source for the pastor.
Truth does not require defending, and questions and open discussions are welcomed. On the other hand, deception of every kind and stripe, requires silence and acceptance in order to continue.
Thank you for your view and contribution. I see all these as devil's devices to run down the latter days church and saints. Instead of the ministers to be gospelers they are turning to gossipers unconsciously. I know heaven will intervene.