“The Lord is full of mercy, the Lord is kind, the Lord is full of compassion, and the Lord loves to see the work begin for He says the latter glory will be greater than the former.” All these were thoughts that flooded my heart as I sat on the edge of the bed, meditating on the event of that day, and every other day I had felt disappointed.
Just because a man of God misrepresented God does not mean that’s who God is. After all, he is just a man and God is God and hence, I needed the above reminder.
A man full of the Spirit of God once said, “it is much more important to know your God than to know their God!” In my own understanding, it meant that we may learn from other people about God, but it is of paramount importance for a man to personally have a solid, rooted relationship with God in which they encounter and know God for and by themselves. Look at the Bereans. They had a good attitude; receiving the word with eagerness. However, they didn’t stop there, they studied the word to confirm Paul’s message that truly it was the word of God spoken to them (Acts 17:11). A man’s word is only authoritative to the degree it holds true to scripture. Does it mean then we discredit mentors and spiritual fathers/mothers? Of course not! The emphasis is that we ought to know God for ourselves. Consequently, when people we look up to err (which they do), we are not shaken off the faith. Our faith should be anchored in the God of the man and not in men of God. This is because men are flawed, we all are…here and there we allow our flaws to get the best of us and those around us. Therefore, this stands to discredit confidence in fellow human beings, ourselves being of no exception. No one is worthy of our total trust and dependence. This honour is due to God.
Unfortunately, in our era, we have forgotten what it means to seek after God. Many at times we are unable to stand and like the Israelites to say “The Lord our God, is our God.” Therefore, when men fail, we fail with them, when they are shaken, we ourselves are shaken and ultimately when they fall, we fall with them. This should never be the case if we have a personal relationship with God.
The Bible says, “Look up to Jesus or fix your eyes on Jesus the author and the finisher of our faith” (Hebrews 12:2). I love that it says Jesus, not men. It certainly would be a gamble wouldn’t you say to entrust your life to men rather than God who never changes and never fails. Him alone is good. Again, this does not imply you won’t have people you look up to as I have mentioned earlier. While you do, take care, don’t be short-sighted, look past the veil of the flesh. There is God at work in a man and above man. Fix your eyes on Jesus! One thing I really like about this verse is that it further goes on to say, “He is the author and finisher of my faith”. This means He is the one who kindled the faith you and I have, the only one who could. He makes us walk in Him, or to know Him. It is only Him and Him alone who will maintain, sustain it, and ultimately bring our Faith to completion. Why? This is because He says, “When the Son of Man returns will He find faith on earth?” (Luke 18:8). Hence it is our faith in Him that we will be saved, the faith that He reached to its fullness and completion by Himself and for Himself; only as a result of you and me looking up to and fixing our eyes on Him.
The conclusion of the matter is yes, we should be humble and teachable enough to sit at another man’s feet and be taught, trained, reprimanded, and redirected to God. However, we should also be wise enough to recognise that they are just man, whose flesh, wisdom and understanding may fail but when our trust and faith is solely placed in God, He will neither fall nor fail. And when trusted, I can gladly say that He never and cannot misrepresent Himself.