If you are a student of the Bible, by now you have been taught by a select group of men and women. It is quite obvious that no two ministers are alike, their personalities set them apart. If we let ourselves be offended by a particular behavior we could miss out on a very important revelation we need. Dr. Lester Sumrall loved God’s people but he appeared to have no grace for Christians who played games with God’s Word.
1 Corinthians 2:4 There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.
This Scripture has a two-fold application, it is referring to the gifts of the Spirit and the five-fold ministry gifts. I have had a room full of pastors in our church and they all ministered. None of them bore any resemblance to one another, they all had the same gift but God used their unique personalities. I asked the Lord one day why He called such a vast array of ministers. His response: I knew you would find a couple you would listen to. It is common to be drawn to some speakers and to be repulsed by others. Just because you cannot connect with a particular minister, it does not mean God did not call them and anoint them!
Colossians 4:9 Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you. He will make known to you all things that are done here.
The Apostle Paul was known and accepted in the church, now he is recommending Onesimus to the people. This man was not widely known but Paul had complete confidence in him. I am very careful about recommending a minister to another church because my own integrity is on the line. Association is not evidence or proof of integrity. I once had a couple come from Kenneth Copeland’s church and they were flakey as can be. Not every member of a church is spiritually healthy, God has not yet completed His work in them. I have had pastor friends call me and warn me of a particular sheep headed my way. I have called pastors and alerted them to a potential problem child headed their way. We accomplish two things, we help the person and we shut the door to the devil. It’s a joy to pastor sheep, but we cannot pastor goats or wolves.
1 Thessalonians 5:12 We beseech you, brothers, to know them which labor among you, and are over you in the Lord, and warn you.
I think that often times we are too quick to trust some ministers! Just because a person is charismatic, has a large following or drops the names of notable preachers, it does not make them legitimate. Jesus instructed us in one of His sermons, you will know them by their fruit. It takes time to correctly identify the fruit of a tree, when we rush into something, that’s when we get into trouble. Years ago some young novice boys were in my church and they were trying to convince me to connect with a new “voice” in the town. My response:
I would rather go slow and risk missing a move of the Spirit than to throw caution to the wind and be deceived.
They were deceived.