Paid preachers love being called "pastor" or "doctor" or "reverend," just like the Pharisees loved to be called "rabbi." They love the respectful greetings wherever they go. If these men didn't want to be honored this way, they would not let people use special titles in place of their name, or give them special honor.
Paul was an apostle, but his name was Paul, not apostle Paul. A man can be a leader, but his name is not "Leader Bill." A man can be a pastor, but his name is not "Pastor Smith," nor should his name be preceded by "pastor" when someone speaks of him or to him.
God hates these labels that separate and elevate some men above others. And it approaches blasphemy for anyone to call a man "father" or "reverend," since only God is our spiritual Father, and only God is to be revered. The word "reverend" comes from the word "revere," which means "to be worshipped, revered and feared." It also indicates that one is to be honored, adored and highly respected as being most holy.
Also, there is no such thing as the "clergy." This is another title of elevation developed by men to lord it over the rest of the flock that they have labeled as the "laity." Neither the word "clergy" nor "laity" is found in the Bible, nor are the applications of their meanings.
The so-called "clergy" get to park in special places at the building, and the sign is placed there for them. They love the best seats in the meetings and the respectful greetings wherever they go. They sometime wear special robes or unique clothing or have special collars to get the attention and respect they desire. They love the honor of men and the unjust gain they receive from the members who work for a living. They are acting more like kings and princes than like humble servants of the people and of God. Kings live a life of ease, exalting themselves above the rest of the people and taking what they need from the people; so it is with today's pastors, prophets and ministry "leaders."
"They [the Pharisees] love the places of honor at feasts, and the prominent seats in the synagogues, and greetings in the marketplaces, and being called 'Rabbi' [pastor, reverend, doctor and so on] by men. But do not be called 'Rabbi,' for you have one Teacher, the Christ, and you are all brothers. And call no man on earth your father, for you have one Father, who is in heaven. Nor be called teachers, for you have one Teacher, the Christ. He who is greatest among you shall be your servant. For he who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted" (Matt 23:6-12).
For more on how easy it is to fall into this sin trap, listen to the full episode of The Great Deception on the Charisma Podcast Network here.
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