Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Instructions For A Young Preacher #14

1 Tim. 5:1 Rebuke not an elder, but intreat him as a father; and the younger men as brethren; 2 The elder women as mothers; the younger as sisters, with all purity. 3 ¶ Honour widows that are widows indeed.

There are several things to consider for the young preacher in these verses, the first of which is not to rebuke an elder. To rebuke here means to deride with words, to chide or to be arrogant against a person. Do not think your older members or older preachers are castaways to be regarded as garbage ready to be taken to the dump. Do not talk them down to your peers or your friends. Do not disregard them, but consider them as a great help to you in your ministry.

Intreat an elder as a father. This word for intreat means to plead with, to summons, to ask advice. The longer a person lives, the more experience he has had, and the better tool he will be to the young preacher who will come to him for advice and counsel. Young preacher, instead of reading the advice of young men in their books, looking to always do something new or modern, take the time to ask advice from an elder, an older preacher, who may be much wiser than you think. If you do not like his advice, at least take the time to consider it due to his greater experience and wisdom that comes with age. Many of our older preachers are not nearly as ignorant as they may look. If they have been faithful to reading and study, they may be able to give a young preacher some very good advice that will save the young preacher many hours of study or even from much embarrassment. Call an old preacher to your side; call one on the phone; go to one's house; and sit down and talk and pray with him. You may be surprised at the blessing he may be to you.

Intreat the younger men as brethren. Neither should the young preacher disdain or malign his peers. He should call them to his side, also, and teach them what he knows, some of which he may have learned at the side of an elder. Then encourage the younger men to be chase, pure, and faithful to the Lord. Then the churches may look forward to the younger men growing into men of knowledge and sincerity. This takes much prayer and consideration, and we must always be at work trying to encourage our young people to consider the things of God as being more valuable than the things of the world.

Intreat the elder women as mothers. I have many mothers. Sometimes I do not like what they say to me, but I always love them. These are spiritual mothers which I have acquired down through the years, and I have been reprimanded by them as well as praised by them. We should also intreat these wonderful women to be alongside us in our work of the Lord. Paul depended heavily upon women to do the work God had given him to do, and we should do the same.

Intreat the younger women as sisters, with all purity. The young preacher should not be "free with the women." He should respect the younger women very highly and be careful of any temptation that he may have to be less than chase with them. He must keep himself at all times in company with others while speaking to a young lady. He should never, ever allow himself to be alone with a young lady due to the possibility of being overcome with temptation. Satan is sly, and he will draw a young preacher into sexual temptation quickly, because he knows, along with the love of money, this will destroy a young preachers' ministry more quickly than anything else.

Honor widows that are widows indeed. Honor them with your prayers, your kindness, your help, leading the church to care for them and help them financially or otherwise if necessary. Keep a close watch on the widows. Many have families to help, and they should help their own; but sometimes the time comes when the churches need to help their widows. Paul has much to say about this in the following verses, but that will not be discussed here.

So, young preacher, love those old, wrinkle-faced preachers. Go to them for advice. Let them pray with you and for you. Take the young people, especially the young men, and allow them to see you talking with the elders and seeing your deportment with the ladies. They have no better example to follow than you, young preacher. Paul said it well when he said in 1 Cor 11:1 Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.

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