Therefore the Lord, the God of Israel, declares: “I promised that members of your family would minister before me forever.” But now the Lord declares: “Far be it from me! Those who honor me I will honor, but those who despise me will be disdained. – 1 Sam 2:30
Here we see God declaring to Eli that His descendants would not as priests. His boys were making a mockery of the sacrifice to God and bullying the people into all kinds of evil. And because Eli would not stop this evil he too was held accountable.
The question for me becomes, do I respect men more than God? Am I willing to stand against evil and sin, especially in the Church when we see it? Eli saw what was wrong and did not intervene. These were men in the “Church,” priests of the Lord. It was their duty to honor God and to serve the people.
I choose to stand against sin and evil. Especially when I see it in the Church. I cannot sit back and abide wickedness, but must root it out. I must do so with loving care and much salt. But I cannot stand back and allow sin to continue. To allow sin to flourish is to allow evil to prevail in the Church. This is to respect men more than God.
Too many times I find fear as the main motivation to keep quiet. They might leave the Church, what if it effects the worship. Perhaps I shouldn’t push them away, doesn’t God want me to love them? All of these are excuses not to do as God commanded. It wasn’t just in 1 Sam that the issue is brought up, in Matt 18, Jesus addresses this very issue.
So, let’s stand strong and resolute. First, I will start with me and my sin, then I must lovingly deal with any other sins in the Church. We can no longer be afraid and respect men over God but must give glory to Him by honoring and keeping the Church Holy.
God Be With You,