There is a distinct difference between honoring and glorifying the pastor, the pastor is in fact a servant of God who has been called by God to shepherd His flock, nothing more and nothing less. Pastors definitely need encouragement and support from their church members. We should speak words of encouragement to and about the pastor. We ought to speak well of him and embrace his ministry as a gift from God. We need to pray for the pastor always because when the devil comes to church his eyes are fixed on the pastor, the undershepherd of the church. It is Satan's objective to first strike the pastor and then scatter the church.

However, a good pastor is cognizant of the fact that God called the pastor for the people and not the people for the pastor. I have seen many pastors who crave to be elevated and glorified by the church, I've seen some with a great love for money, prestige, and social status. Sadly enough, I've even witnessed certain church members being subjected to some sort of punishment simply because they refused to join in with the rest of the church in elevating the pastor and his lifestyle. Be reminded that it was God who called them to pastor and serve the community in the first place. More to often they are overly concerned about remuneration and their own lifestyle than preaching the Gospel. Be assured that God is always angry with a pastor who would rather feed himself than feed the flock, God does want the church to give the pastor a livable wage or salary. God does want the church to show the pastor much respect, love, and gratitude

In fact, God even wants the church to give the pastor "double honor" and while double honor does not mean double wages, it does mean that the effective pastor should be held in high esteem by the congregation. The Bible is explicit that double honor should be given to the pastor who ministers well and lives according to the Word of God. We should honor the pastor without going overboard so to speak with what we think honoring the pastor entails. The pastor is indeed worthy of double honor but we must be aware of the narcissistic pastor. Beware of the pastor who actively looks for attention, beware of the one who shuns what he thinks is "dirty work" which is a ministerial duty he finds to be beneath him and as a result delegates such a task to someone else in the name of training them for the ministry.

Beware of the one with the pretty robe, the one who hates hospital visits and is too pretty or handsome to step into the baptismal pool on Sunday morning. I am a firm believer that only God is worthy to be praised and "... we are all like an unclean thing, and all our righteousness are like filthy rags..." (Isa. 64: 6) Let's get our priorities straight, let's place God first not the church and not the pastor, but God and Him only.

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Comment by PASTOR CHARLES E BELL JR on July 20, 2009 at 4:57pm

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