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I hear the names of John Rice, Bob Jones, James Crumpton, Lee Roberson, Jack Hyles, et. al. held in great esteem and even near reverence.
They were all used of God and that is true.

A recent thread seems to point out something I believe to be another truth. Don't exhalt any created man. The best honor you might give these men,
if you need to, is to tell how God used them for His glory and not hold up their personal lives. Stop putting IFBers and IFB up on a pedestal...
we are just men and we fail. If you look into any personal life you will find chinks in the armor.

Admire the spiritual strengths exhibited in their ministry but, don't admire the man. It's not the man that does anything but rather the Spirit of
God working through him. Marvel at the wonders of the Spirit working through these men but, not the man. At some point these men surrendered
to God and God took His humbled spirit for God's glory not the glory of the man.

So, all of the "oh no I never" "wow I would never have thought" "I can't believe or can hardly believe" stem from misplaced honor resulting in
disappointment.

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I hear the names of John Rice, Bob Jones, James Crumpton, Lee Roberson, Jack Hyles, et. al. held in great esteem and even near reverence.
They were all used of God and that is true.

A recent thread seems to point out something I believe to be another truth. Don't exhalt any created man. The best honor you might give these men,
if you need to, is to tell how God used them for His glory and not hold up their personal lives. Stop putting IFBers and IFB up on a pedestal...
we are just men and we fail. If you look into any personal life you will find chinks in the armor.

Admire the spiritual strengths exhibited in their ministry but, don't admire the man. It's not the man that does anything but rather the Spirit of
God working through him. Marvel at the wonders of the Spirit working through these men but, not the man. At some point these men surrendered
to God and God took His humbled spirit for God's glory not the glory of the man.

So, all of the "oh no I never" "wow I would never have thought" "I can't believe or can hardly believe" stem from misplaced honor resulting in
disappointment.



So true! My hubby and I agreed long ago that the phrase "great men of God" should actually say "men of a great God!"
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And what we tend to forget is that many "great" men and women of God are not famous - simply doing the Lord's will for their lives under the radar.


Absolutely. In fact, our preacher talked about that last night. His message was about humility, something that, sadly, is lacking so much today in every area!
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Yes, absolutely, people do tend to put their "heroes" up on a pedestal. People should not do so and really should only hold the Godhead in such high esteem; but that does not mean that it is fair game to tear those men of God down unfairly or based upon false accusation.

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Scripture tells us we are only to follow men in so much as they themselves are following Christ. Only in those areas any of us truly follow Christ are we worthy of following. The truly great men of God are humble, they don't shine the light upon themselves, they don't call attention to themselves. We are to be fishers of men, not followers of men. If we lift someone up to the point to where we are saying "I'm a follower of ______" instead of saying "I'm a follower of Christ", then we are in sin. This is one of the great dangers in all the different "camps" within IFB. Some in those camps are far too attached to the "camp", or the percieved leader of the "camp", and they give loyalty and attention to them that should go to Christ.

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yes, but how does one discern bet\ween due recognition and praising men? If we say any good at all, we are accused to praising and "worshiping" men, while criticism is running rampant. Most, if not all of us, know that we are to follow God and Him only, but what we then tend to ignore the man who has suffered in His behalf, and willingly given his all to the Lord.. His example can be an encouragement to us also.

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yes, but how does one discern bet\ween due recognition and praising men? If we say any good at all, we are accused to praising and "worshiping" men, while criticism is running rampant. Most, if not all of us, know that we are to follow God and Him only, but what we then tend to ignore the man who has suffered in His behalf, and willingly given his all to the Lord.. His example can be an encouragement to us also.


We certainly shouldn't turn silent regarding great men of God out of fear our statements may be used to attack us. It's our duty to encourage those who are serving God faithfully, such as our pastors, as well as others. If our recognizing of godly men is focused upon the fact they are great men of God because they are following and serving God, then such praise is also upon the God they serve.

It's when we lift up a man as if he himself is above others because he's better than others, has some special walk with God nobody else has, or can have, that he has some sort of special revelation or understanding of the Bible that God hasn't granted to others, and we hold a man up saying that we will support and follow him no matter what, then we are exaulting the man.
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yes, but how does one discern bet\ween due recognition and praising men? If we say any good at all, we are accused to praising and "worshiping" men, while criticism is running rampant. Most, if not all of us, know that we are to follow God and Him only, but what we then tend to ignore the man who has suffered in His behalf, and willingly given his all to the Lord.. His example can be an encouragement to us also.


Marvel at the wonders of the Spirit working through these men but, not the man.

Isaiah 10:15 Shall the axe boast itself against him that heweth therewith? or shall the saw magnify itself against him that shaketh it? as if the rod should shake itself against them that lift it up, or as if the staff should lift up itself, as if it were no wood.

So, is there anything wrong with saying..."God used (name) in a mighty way and glorified His (God's) name, through missions, etc." ...I don't think there is but care must be taken not to lift up the instrument God used in place of the work God performed.
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Marvel at the wonders of the Spirit working through these men but, not the man.

Isaiah 10:15 Shall the axe boast itself against him that heweth therewith? or shall the saw magnify itself against him that shaketh it? as if the rod should shake itself against them that lift it up, or as if the staff should lift up itself, as if it were no wood.

So, is there anything wrong with saying..."God used (name) in a mighty way and glorified His (God's) name, through missions, etc." ...I don't think there is but care must be taken not to lift up the instrument God used in place of the work God performed.


Agreed!
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Marvel at the wonders of the Spirit working through these men but, not the man.

Isaiah 10:15 Shall the axe boast itself against him that heweth therewith? or shall the saw magnify itself against him that shaketh it? as if the rod should shake itself against them that lift it up, or as if the staff should lift up itself, as if it were no wood.

So, is there anything wrong with saying..."God used (name) in a mighty way and glorified His (God's) name, through missions, etc." ...I don't think there is but care must be taken not to lift up the instrument God used in place of the work God performed.

:clapping:
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:clapping:


LuAnne,
We IFBers will continue to suffer disappointment if we watch these men fail before our eyes...and so much more as the day of our Saviors reappearing draws near. Therefore it is SOOOO important to keep our eyes on the Lord and in the Word to guard ourselves. Also, we must exhort our brothers and sisters to guard themselves.

Mark 13:22 For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.

There will be some extraordinary events coming to pass. They would have to be nearing the miraculous to come close to seducing us.
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All true, but what one man thinks exalts a preacher may be praise to His God, since it is very basic knowledge that the Lord does the work, and not the man. I am not trying to make a big issue of this, because we believe the same in it, but just wondered if it was directed at anyone in particular since it is common knowledge that it's all of the Lord, and not of man. I have heard people say that some "worship" so-and-so, and put him on a pedestal, but perhaps he simply loves the preacher as well as the Lord of the preacher. If I wee to talk about my preacher, and the great man of God he is, some would no doubt accuse me of exulting him too highly; it is because I think highly of him because I know the Lord uses him greatly.

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LuAnne,
We IFBers will continue to suffer disappointment if we watch these men fail before our eyes...and so much more as the day of our Saviors reappearing draws near. Therefore it is SOOOO important to keep our eyes on the Lord and in the Word to guard ourselves. Also, we must exhort our brothers and sisters to guard themselves.

Mark 13:22 For false Christs and false prophets shall rise, and shall shew signs and wonders, to seduce, if it were possible, even the elect.

There will be some extraordinary events coming to pass. They would have to be nearing the miraculous to come close to seducing us.

Amen, and amen! I've known so many who've been hurt due to the fall of a man they've looked up to...because their loyalty was to the man and not to Christ.

irishman - I agree with you, too. I think my preacher is a man whom God has used greatly, and it is because he has been willing to surrender totally and be used. We don't worship him, and if he thought someone did, he would highly discourage it. Problem is, there are people who do, in effect, worship their preacher. I well remember the anecdote one preacher related - how a young fellow needed his shoe tied, so the pastor tied it. As the boy walked away, he said to his mom, "Mom, did you see God tie my shoe?" According to the story, the adult's reaction was to chuckle...and no correction was given to the boy. Could the story be made up? It sure could, but even if it were, it shows the mentality of that preacher. If it really happened, he should have made it clear to the lad that he wasn't God. If it didn't happen, the preacher had bigger problems....

I, too (as well as my hubby) think highly of our pastor because of his willingness to be used of God.
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"just wondered if it was directed at anyone in particular"

No one in particular, I wanted to exhort not reprove or rebuke. I think it's like the sermon we've heard before...we all need to hear it again.


We too have a good pastor and need to hold him up before the Lord in prayer.
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Never forget though that many times those who are used mightily of God are the men and women who are willing to sacrifice the most for Him. This isn't meant to glorify the person, but rather to give an example of what it takes to be used of God.

As far as glory goes, I think all of agree that we'd rather be humbled to get our glory up in Heaven at the Judgment Seat of Christ as our Lord gives us a crown for service, than to receive the cheap praise of men.

Some of the people that will be getting the most rewards in Heaven are little old ladies who pray for the big guns that get all the praise of men.

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Never forget though that many times those who are used mightily of God are the men and women who are willing to sacrifice the most for Him. This isn't meant to glorify the person, but rather to give an example of what it takes to be used of God.

As far as glory goes, I think all of agree that we'd rather be humbled to get our glory up in Heaven at the Judgment Seat of Christ as our Lord gives us a crown for service, than to receive the cheap praise of men.

Some of the people that will be getting the most rewards in Heaven are little old ladies who pray for the big guns that get all the praise of men.


I would give that an Amen.
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All true, but what one man thinks exalts a preacher may be praise to His God, since it is very basic knowledge that the Lord does the work, and not the man. I am not trying to make a big issue of this, because we believe the same in it, but just wondered if it was directed at anyone in particular since it is common knowledge that it's all of the Lord, and not of man. I have heard people say that some "worship" so-and-so, and put him on a pedestal, but perhaps he simply loves the preacher as well as the Lord of the preacher. If I wee to talk about my preacher, and the great man of God he is, some would no doubt accuse me of exulting him too highly; it is because I think highly of him because I know the Lord uses him greatly.


True enough, but I would say it is better to err on the side of caution. One thing to consider is that even if someone is doing right, God is using them, and you and others appreciate it it is easy to accidentally give them a swollen head of pride with profuse complements even if that wasn't your intention and they didn't want to go there either. For me personally, I prefer to give and receive complements and encouragements that are are either very mild or very general. Blow by blow examples of how God used what someone else did, wrote, or said in your life are better without specific names attached most of the time unless there is a particularly good reason for doing so. Pastors in particular seem to have problems with this, on the one hand they get nasty letters or criticisms that are depressing, and on the other hand they get gushing letters about how God used them and profuse praise. The natural "defense" mechanism is to try to ignore the criticism and accept the complements which easily leads to a head swollen with pride; sometimes without the person even realizing it. Most people can get hit with pride pretty easily when complemented, but pastors hear things that can push them that way more often than most. Occupational hazard I suppose.
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