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Born to Error

Posted by Ez1 Realty on November 15, 2008

The world is quick to judge church leaders in a most unforgiving manner. I have only one question for an attitude of this nature. Is it Biblical to hold church leaders to a higher standard? If church leaders are to be held to a higher standard God would have explained this in His word. A close examination of God’s word explains in detail the type of leader God has chosen. These choices are examples for us to learn from today.

KJV Genesis 3:12-13

12. And the man said, The woman whom thou gavest to be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I did eat. 13. And the Lord God said unto the woman, What is this that thou hast done? And the woman said, The serpent beguiled me, and I did eat.

The earth’s first parents could not take responsibility for their mistake. Adam blamed Eve while Eve passed the blame to the serpent, hinting that God should have some responsibility because He created the serpent. This was the beginning of sin on earth and the beginning of God’s plan to redeem this fallen race.

Consider this scenario for a moment. The world is plunged into sin through the act of the first created couple. Strange as it may seem this was a part of God’s plan. From our perspective it may have been safer to wait for the second, third or fourth generation. If there was a larger population to choose from it would have afforded a greater opportunity to rely upon a larger group of people with the ability to lead others to the gift of redemption. In hindsight we see that God did not require a large group of people to spread His message to the world. God used the very first couple to spread His word because that is all God required to fulfill His plan. The entire future of this world was held in the hands of the first and only created beings. What would have happened if they had failed?

KJV Genesis 4:8

8. And Cain talked with Abel his brother: and it came to pass, when they were in the field, that Cain rose up against Abel his brother, and slew him.

It did not take long for things to begin to go wrong. Adam and Eve had only two children when the worse case scenario occurred. Cain killed his brother Abel. At this time the future of the world was in the hands of Cain alone but God blessed Adam and Eve with a third child to carry on the message.

KJV Genesis 9:21-22

21. And he drank of the wine, and was drunken; and he was uncovered within his tent.

22. And Ham, the father of Canaan, saw the nakedness of his father, and told his two brethren without.

The earth grew so wicked God had no choice but to destroy it with a flood. What happened to the message that was going out to the world? The first sin was a test centered around obeying the word of God. The same test was given to the world before the flood. The leader of this small group was Noah. His wife, three sons and their wives were the only people saved from the flood, by entering into the ark. Noah spent just over a year on the ark with his family. After the ark rested upon dry ground Noah gave thanks to the Lord by offering a sacrifice from the seven clean animals that he had taken into the ark.

God gave a promise to Noah and his family to never destroy the earth with another flood. Afterwards Noah plants a vineyard, drinks the fermented wine and becomes drunk. In his drunken state he strips naked in his tent. Not the type of behavior you would expect from a man God had said the following about, “And the Lord said unto Noah, Come thou and all thy house into the ark; for thee have I seen righteous before me in this generation.” KJV Genesis 7:1. Nevertheless God stood by Noah, even with the defects exhibited.

KJV Genesis 16:2

2. And Sarai said unto Abram, Behold now, the Lord hath restrained me from bearing: I pray thee, go in unto my maid; it may be that I may obtain children by her. And Abram hearkened to the voice of Sarai.

As time went on God called his next patriarch out of the land of Haran and sent him onto Cannan. From there Abram journeyed to Egypt to avoid a famine. Abram followed God’s voice, relying upon the promises he received. One of the promises God gave to Abram stated, “I will make of thee a great nation, and I will bless thee, and make thy name great; and thou shalt be a blessing:” KJV Genesis 12:2. Human reasoning, time and temptations took it’s toll as Abram waited years for this promise to be fulfilled. At the suggestion of Sara, Abram’s wife, a plan was conceived along with a child with the help of an Egyptian slave named Hagar.

Eventually Abram was given a son by his wife, Sara. His name was changed to Abraham and was later known as the father of all Israelites. With all his faults God never changed His plan and called another to lead His people. This was not the only mistake that Abraham made. Twice he lied to others telling them Sara was his sister. Through all of this God showed patience with Abraham.

KJV Genesis 26:6-7

6. And Isaac dwelt in Gerar: 7. And the men of the place asked him of his wife; and he said, She is my sister: for he feared to say, She is my wife; lest, said he, the men of the place should kill me for Rebekah; because she was fair to look upon.

Just as his father Abraham had done, Isaac lied to others about his marital status. This was a trait that seemed to pass from one generation to the next.

KJV Genesis 27:21

21. And Isaac said unto Jacob, Come near, I pray thee, that I may feel thee, my son, whether thou be my very son Esau or not.

KJV Genesis 27:24

24. And he said, Art thou my very son Esau? And he said, I am.

In order to receive the family blessing from his father Jacob followed the instructions of his mother in an elaborate plot to deceive Isaac. Rebekah had convinced Jacob he needed the blessing from his father. Both of them lost sight of God, the source of all blessings.

Through all of these mistakes it seems as if a pattern is formulating. God gives His word in the form of a command or a promise. People believe for a time but soon find one way or another to convince themselves their way may be better way. Eve took the word of a serpent over that of God in an attempt to increase her understanding. Adam followed the advise of his wife. Abraham was given a promise from God that his offspring would be like the stars in the sky. Abraham eventually took the word of his wife over the word of God because they believed Sara was too old to fulfill God’s promise. Rebekah convinced Jacob that the blessing came through Isaac forgetting it was God who gave the promise. In each case, those who God had chosen to lead His people gave into temptation, neglecting the word of God. In each case they thought they had something to gain by doing things their way.

KJV Genesis 38:15-16

15. When Judah saw her, he thought her to be an harlot; because she had covered her face. 16. And he turned unto her by the way, and said, Go to, I pray thee, let me come in unto thee; (for he knew not that she was his daughter in law.) And she said, What wilt thou give me, that thou mayest come in unto me?

Judah was one of Jacob’s twelve sons. For some time the nation of Israel was known by twelve tribes, named after each son. The tribe of Judah was chosen by God to carry the line of David and Christ. How could God choose a man that would even consider having sex with a prostitute? As the story reveals, it was not a prostitute but his deceased son’s wife. God could have chosen any one of Israel’s twelve sons to carry the lineage of Christ. Very little is written about some of Judah’s brothers. Why didn’t God choose one of them? There was a reason God chose Judah, even with all of his faults.

KJV Genesis 34:25

25. And it came to pass on the third day, when they were sore, that two of the sons of Jacob, Simeon and Levi, Dinah’s brethren, took each man his sword, and came upon the city boldly, and slew all the males.

As a whole Jacob’s sons made their share of mistakes. This incident in Shalem was not the only mistake recorded in the Bible. Jacob’s sons also sold their brother, Joseph as a slave. This is the family God chose to lead His people, to make them a nation like the stars in the sky. These are the people that the tribes of Israel were named after. Jacob’s sons found their place in history and will forever be recorded within the pages of the Bible. Why did God use such violent, misguided people who seemed to follow their own values more than God’s?

KJV Exodus 2:11-12

11. And it came to pass in those days, when Moses was grown, that he went out unto his brethren, and looked on their burdens: and he spied an Egyptian smiting an Hebrew, one of his brethren. 12. And he looked this way and that way, and when he saw that there was no man, he slew the Egyptian, and hid him in the sand.

KJV Exodus 4:1

1. And Moses answered and said, But, behold, they will not believe me, nor hearken unto my voice: for they will say, The Lord hath not appeared unto thee.

KJV Exodus 4:10

10. And Moses said unto the Lord, O my Lord, I am not eloquent, neither heretofore, nor since thou hast spoken unto thy servant: but I am slow of speech, and of a slow tongue.

Moses is known as one of God’s greatest leaders. His name is mentioned many times throughout the Old and New Testament. Moses was chosen by God to lead His people out of Egypt and into the promised land. Moses was born a Jew but raised by the Egyptian royal family. God did not choose Moses because of his extensive training and familiarity with the Egyptians. God did not pick Moses because he would be able to use his influence with Pharaoh so God would get His way. God chose Moses in spite of the fact he spent most of his life in the royal courts and temples of the Egyptians. Before God spoke to Moses informing him of His plans, Moses killed a man. Being a murderer did not change God’s decision.

God met with doubt and opposition while talking with Moses. God did not take no for an answer. This is a lesson church leaders need to make note of when asking members to stand up and lead. Very seldom will church leaders be met with an enthusiastic member while recruiting for key positions. Often times leaders should be cautious of an ambitious member that is quick to take a position offered to them. Moses’ reaction to God’s offer is a lesson. This example shows it is natural for a humble person to turn down a position. This may have been one quality God admired in Moses. It is much easier for the Holy Spirit to lead a humble person than it is to lead an over confident, ambitious mind. We have evidence of this in the reaction Moses displayed when dealing with Pharaoh. Each time Moses relied on God to deliver the alternatives to Pharaoh. Not once did Moses rely upon his own wisdom to deliver a message to Pharaoh. This is a quality to consider when approaching possible church leaders.

KJV Numbers 20:7-12

7. And the Lord spake unto Moses, saying, 8. Take the rod, and gather thou the assembly together, thou, and Aaron thy brother, and speak ye unto the rock before their eyes; and it shall give forth his water, and thou shalt bring forth to them water out of the rock: so thou shalt give the congregation and their beasts drink. 9. And Moses took the rod from before the Lord, as he commanded him. 10. And Moses and Aaron gathered the congregation together before the rock, and he said unto them, Hear now, ye rebels; must we fetch you water out of this rock? 11. And Moses lifted up his hand, and with his rod he smote the rock twice: and the water came out abundantly, and the congregation drank, and their beasts also. 12. And the Lord spake unto Moses and Aaron, Because ye believed me not, to sanctify me in the eyes of the children of Israel, therefore ye shall not bring this congregation into the land which I have given them.

This is Moses’ most famous mistake. After all Moses had done for God and His people, this one mistake cost Moses entrance to the promised land. God never instructed Moses to strike the rock. Even though this rock represented Christ and Christ was stuck by His enemies this was not the example God wanted His people to learn. Moses was only to speak to the rock and it would have brought forth water for the thirsty Israelites, saving them. Another mistake Moses made was to use the word, “we”. Instead of giving full credit to God, Moses shared credit for this miracle with God.

KJV Judges 6:37-40

37. Behold, I will put a fleece of wool in the floor; and if the dew be on the fleece only, and it be dry upon all the earth beside, then shall I know that thou wilt save Israel by mine hand, as thou hast said. 38. And it was so: for he rose up early on the morrow, and thrust the fleece together, and wringed the dew out of the fleece, a bowl full of water. 39. And Gideon said unto God, Let not thine anger be hot against me, and I will speak but this once: let me prove, I pray thee, but this once with the fleece; let it now be dry only upon the fleece, and upon all the ground let there be dew. 40. And God did so that night: for it was dry upon the fleece only, and there was dew on all the ground.

We have seen a number of instances showing leaders chosen by God doubting God’s word. This may be the most famous example recorded within the Bible. Do you think God appreciated being tested? Not only once but twice. Most people have gone through this experience in one form or another. How has giving God a test effected your life? The fact of the matter is, Gideon questioned God, but that was no reason for God to doubt Gideon or turn His back on him.

KJV Judges 14:1-3

1. And Samson went down to Timnath, and saw a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines. 2. And he came up, and told his father and his mother, and said, I have seen a woman in Timnath of the daughters of the Philistines: now therefore get her for me to wife. 3. Then his father and his mother said unto him, Is there never a woman among the daughters of thy brethren, or among all my people, that thou goest to take a wife of the uncircumcised Philistines? And Samson said unto his father, Get her for me; for she pleaseth me well.

KJV Judges 16:1

1. Then went Samson to Gaza, and saw there an harlot, and went in unto her.

Samson is an example of a leader abusing the powers God gave him. Samson was to be prepared for service from birth. In his adult life a Philistine woman caught his eye and all of his training went out the window. Based on the fact Samson went to his parents to tell them to get this woman for him may indicate Manoah and his wife may not have been model parents but this did not alter God’s decision. Samson also had an affair with a prostitute. Not the qualities you would expect to find in a church leader of today, but this is the same trespass responsible for ending the carrier of a number of church leaders through the ages. It seems natural for us to hold church leaders to a higher standard, but at the same time we need to consider why God left us with examples of these less than perfect people who He was able to work with in accomplishing the task at hand.

KJV 1 Samuel 8:1-5

1. And it came to pass, when Samuel was old, that he made his sons judges over Israel. 2. Now the name of his firstborn was Joel; and the name of his second, Abiah: they were judges in Beersheba. 3. And his sons walked not in his ways, but turned aside after lucre, and took bribes, and perverted judgment. 4. Then all the elders of Israel gathered themselves together, and came to Samuel unto Ramah, 5. And said unto him, Behold, thou art old, and thy sons walk not in thy ways: now make us a king to judge us like all the nations.

Samuel was promised to God by his mother even before conception and raised to serve the Lord. At a very young age Hannah delivered Samuel to Eli the high priest. The Bible tells us that Eli’s sons were evil. Eli was not the model father. Samuel appears to be the model leader possessing many great attributes. Samuel anointed the first and second king of Israel. It may have been the lack of a sound parental model that caused Samuel to fail as a parent. Nevertheless, God was able to lead Samuel and make him one of the most effective leaders and a shining star in the history of Israel.

KJV 2 Samuel 11:14-15

14. And it came to pass in the morning, that David wrote a letter to Joab, and sent it by the hand of Uriah.

15. And he wrote in the letter, saying, Set ye Uriah in the forefront of the hottest battle, and retire ye from him, that he may be smitten, and die.

KJV 2 Samuel 13:32

32. And Jonadab, the son of Shimeah David’s brother, answered and said, Let not my lord suppose that they have slain all the young men the king’s sons; for Amnon only is dead: for by the appointment of Absalom this hath been determined from the day that he forced his sister Tamar.

KJV 1 Chronicles 21:1

1. And Satan stood up against Israel, and provoked David to number Israel.

KJV 2 Samuel 24:10

10. And David’s heart smote him after that he had numbered the people. And David said unto the Lord, I have sinned greatly in that I have done: and now, I beseech thee, O Lord, take away the iniquity of thy servant; for I have done very foolishly.

If we were to keep score David may lead the league in errors. David sent Uriah to his death to hide the fact David had slept with his wife, Bathsheba who wound up pregnant. David may have had success as a father but he also had his short comings. His son, Ammon forced himself on his half sister Tamar. David’s son, Absalom attempted to overthrow and take the kingdom from his father. When warned against numbering the people of Israel David gave into temptation and ordered to have them numbered. With all of these defects and more, David was still accounted Israel’s most prominent king.

KJV 1 Kings 11:1-11

1. But king Solomon loved many strange women, together with the daughter of Pharaoh, women of the Moabites, Ammonites, Edomites, Zidonians, and Hittites: 2. Of the nations concerning which the Lord said unto the children of Israel, Ye shall not go in to them, neither shall they come in unto you: for surely they will turn away your heart after their gods: Solomon clave unto these in love. 3. And he had seven hundred wives, princesses, and three hundred concubines: and his wives turned away his heart. 4. For it came to pass, when Solomon was old, that his wives turned away his heart after other gods: and his heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, as was the heart of David his father. 5. For Solomon went after Ashtoreth the goddess of the Zidonians, and after Milcom the abomination of the Ammonites. 6. And Solomon did evil in the sight of the Lord, and went not fully after the Lord, as did David his father. 7. Then did Solomon build an high place for Chemosh, the abomination of Moab, in the hill that is before Jerusalem, and for Molech, the abomination of the children of Ammon. 8. And likewise did he for all his strange wives, which burnt incense and sacrificed unto their gods. 9. And the Lord was angry with Solomon, because his heart was turned from the Lord God of Israel, which had appeared unto him twice, 10. And had commanded him concerning this thing, that he should not go after other gods: but he kept not that which the Lord commanded. 11. Wherefore the Lord said unto Solomon, Forasmuch as this is done of thee, and thou hast not kept my covenant and my statutes, which I have commanded thee, I will surely rend the kingdom from thee, and will give it to thy servant.

Solomon was given the gift of wisdom to lead by the Lord but was still able to turn his back and forget what he had received and who gave it to him. Wisdom is defined as the use of knowledge. Marrying seven hundred wives, housing a host of prostitutes, worshipping a number of false gods and building temples to honor them in does not seem like a proper use of knowledge. God looked on, allowing Solomon to continue in his ways until he finally recognized his errors. The damage was already done. The example Solomon had imprinted on his children and the nation of Israel would leave a lasting impression for generations to come. God took drastic action, taking a part of the kingdom away from Solomon’s son and giving it to another.

KJV 1 Kings 11:29-31

29. And it came to pass at that time when Jeroboam went out of Jerusalem, that the prophet Ahijah the Shilonite found him in the way; and he had clad himself with a new garment; and they two were alone in the field: 30. And Ahijah caught the new garment that was on him, and rent it in twelve pieces: 31. And he said to Jeroboam, Take thee ten pieces: for thus saith the Lord, the God of Israel, Behold, I will rend the kingdom out of the hand of Solomon, and will give ten tribes to thee:

KJV 1 Kings 12:32-33

32. And Jeroboam ordained a feast in the eighth month, on the fifteenth day of the month, like unto the feast that is in Judah, and he offered upon the altar. So did he in Bethel, sacrificing unto the calves that he had made: and he placed in Bethel the priests of the high places which he had made. 33. So he offered upon the altar which he had made in Bethel the fifteenth day of the eighth month, even in the month which he had devised of his own heart; and ordained a feast unto the children of Israel: and he offered upon the altar, and burnt incense.

KJV 1 Kings 12:13-14

13. And the king answered the people roughly, and forsook the old men’s counsel that they gave him;

14. And spake to them after the counsel of the young men, saying, My father made your yoke heavy, and I will add to your yoke: my father also chastised you with whips, but I will chastise you with scorpions.

Jeroboam was to rule the ten northern tribes of Israel. These tribes withdrew from the two southern tribes of Judah and Benjamin because of the harsh words of Rehoboam. One would think Jeroboam would have been thankful for the opportunity to serve the Lord in such a high capacity and strive to lead his kingdom in the way of the Lord. Quite the contrary occurred. Jeroboam began what was to be known as the downfall of the kingdom of Israel. Jeroboam formed two golden calves, much like those formed by Aaron in the wilderness when Moses was on the mound receiving the ten commandments from the Lord. He offered these golden calves to his people as the gods that would lead them. Jeroboam also set up a feast day onto himself much like the feast days God had given to Israel in the time of Moses.

KJV 1 Kings 15:1-3

1. Now in the eighteenth year of king Jeroboam the son of Nebat reigned Abijam over Judah.

2. Three years reigned he in Jerusalem. And his mother’s name was Maachah, the daughter of Abishalom.

3. And he walked in all the sins of his father, which he had done before him: and his heart was not perfect with the Lord his God, as the heart of David his father.

The Bible records the reign of the kings of Judah and Israel. This is common throughout the history of the two nations. The kings, nations and people became more and more evil. The kingdom of Judah had the occasional king that walked in the ways of the Lord and reformed the country for a time. But as soon as the kingdom changed hands the nation was plunged back into darkness and sin. Even though the kingdom of Judah was handed down from father to son, it seemed as if the son had a difficult time following in the footsteps of the father and a harder time following after God.

KJV 1 Kings 15:25-26

25. And Nadab the son of Jeroboam began to reign over Israel in the second year of Asa king of Judah, and reigned over Israel two years. 26. And he did evil in the sight of the Lord, and walked in the way of his father, and in his sin wherewith he made Israel to sin.

KJV 1 Kings 16:29-30

29. And in the thirty and eighth year of Asa king of Judah began Ahab the son of Omri to reign over Israel: and Ahab the son of Omri reigned over Israel in Samaria twenty and two years. 30. And Ahab the son of Omri did evil in the sight of the Lord above all that were before him.

As for Israel, the ten northern tribes seemed to be on a path bent on destruction. The leadership of the northern kingdom of Israel was handed down from father to son for a time and afterwards changed hands by violence and assassinations.

KJV 1 Kings 19:2-3

2. Then Jezebel sent a messenger unto Elijah, saying, So let the gods do to me, and more also, if I make not thy life as the life of one of them by to morrow about this time. 3. And when he saw that, he arose, and went for his life, and came to Beersheba, which belongeth to Judah, and left his servant there.

It did not take long for Elijah to forget how God had sent fire down upon the sacrifice he had prepared and how he was able to make the false prophets of Jezebel look like fools. Elijah had stood alone in front of four hundred and fifty of Jezebel’s prophets, made fun of them and in the end had them slain. But when he was threatened by a single woman, Elijah forgot all that God had done, turned tail and ran.

KJV Jeremiah 1:4-6

4. Then the word of the Lord came unto me, saying, 5. Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations. 6. Then said I, Ah, Lord God! behold, I cannot speak: for I am a child.

Jeremiah had the same excuse as Moses, he did not think he was suited to lead.

KJV Daniel 4:1-2

1. Nebuchadnezzar the king, unto all people, nations, and languages, that dwell in all the earth; Peace be multiplied unto you. 2. I thought it good to shew the signs and wonders that the high God hath wrought toward me.

KJV Daniel 4:30-31

30. The king spake, and said, Is not this great Babylon, that I have built for the house of the kingdom by the might of my power, and for the honour of my majesty?

31. While the word was in the king’s mouth, there fell a voice from heaven, saying, O king Nebuchadnezzar, to thee it is spoken; The kingdom is departed from thee.

Nebuchadnezzar wrote a small part of the Bible despite the fact he wavered in his belief. Nebuchadnezzar had a tendency to sway back and forth in his beliefs.

KJV Hosea 1:2-3

2. The beginning of the word of the Lord by Hosea. And the Lord said to Hosea, Go, take unto thee a wife of whoredoms and children of whoredoms: for the land hath committed great whoredom, departing from the Lord. 3. So he went and took Gomer the daughter of Diblaim; which conceived, and bare him a son.

Hosea, one of the minor prophets of the Old Testament married a prostitute.

KJV Jonah 1:3

3. But Jonah rose up to flee unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord, and went down to Joppa; and he found a ship going to Tarshish: so he paid the fare thereof, and went down into it, to go with them unto Tarshish from the presence of the Lord.

Jonah tried to run away when the Lord sent him to Nineveh to deliver a message. God would not take no for an answer and had Jonah delivered via a fish.

KJV Matthew 16:22-23

22. Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee. 23. But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.

The Bible points out Peter had a hard time learning what Jesus was preaching. It seems all of the disciples had a hard time understanding. God proceeded with His plans, even though it meant leaving the outcome in the hands of a group of people who had a hard time understanding exactly what Jesus was teaching.

KJV Mark 14:10-11

10. And Judas Iscariot, one of the twelve, went unto the chief priests, to betray him unto them. 11. And when they heard it, they were glad, and promised to give him money. And he sought how he might conveniently betray him.

Jesus even chose a leader who would not only deny Him but plotted to turn Him over to the enemy for a ransom. Strange is it may seem, this was all part of God’s plan. A plan that may seem difficult for us to understand at times, but look at the facts. After being with Jesus for over three year, not one of His followers understood any part of this plan.

KJV Mark 14:68

68. But he denied, saying, I know not, neither understand I what thou sayest. And he went out into the porch; and the cock crew.

KJV Mark 14:70-72

70. And he denied it again. And a little after, they that stood by said again to Peter, Surely thou art one of them: for thou art a Galilaean, and thy speech agreeth thereto.

71. But he began to curse and to swear, saying, I know not this man of whom ye speak.

72. And the second time the cock crew. And Peter called to mind the word that Jesus said unto him, Before the cock crow twice, thou shalt deny me thrice. And when he thought thereon, he wept.

Without a doubt this story about Peter holds a very important lesson for all of us. Peter later went on to become one of the key leaders in the early church. Peter stumbled and fell. Peter failed along the way and faced trials he could not understand, but he made it through all of them. Peter was made stronger when he had to face Jesus. Peter was never asked to explain himself or his actions. Peter was asked to proclaim his love for his savior.

KJV Luke 1:20-21

20. And, behold, thou shalt be dumb, and not able to speak, until the day that these things shall be performed, because thou believest not my words, which shall be fulfilled in their season. 21. And the people waited for Zacharias, and marvelled that he tarried so long in the temple.

Zacharias, the father of John the Baptist, doubted the angel that met him in the temple and gave him the news that his wife was to have a son. This cost him his voice for a time but God stood by Zacharias.

KJV Luke 5:8

8. When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus’ knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord.

Simon admitted he was a sinful man and unworthy of following Jesus. That never changed His mind, Jesus had selected his followers, those that would soon lead the church, nothing could deter those plans. Jesus did not choose the most influential people. These were not the most intelligent, the richest or the most confident people. Jesus did not choose people who occupied positions that would aid His work on earth. Jesus chose common everyday people. In most cases, Jesus chose people others would have never considered for leadership positions.

Try to imagine how important each position was to become. Jesus was about to give His life for the forgiveness of sin. Jesus must have known the plans the devil had already implemented in an attempt to lead the maximum amount of people away from the truth concerning His sacrifice. Jesus knew the opposition this little group of people would be facing. Jesus Himself cast Satan and his followers out of Heaven. Jesus knew exactly how powerful Satan was and how far he was willing to go. These people were being cast into the middle of a war and these disciples were the leaders at the very top. Neither one of them had the experience required to start a new church or lead a rebellion against Satan and his followers. Why did Jesus choose these twelve people to become His closest followers?

KJV Luke 7:20

20. When the men were come unto him, they said, John Baptist hath sent us unto thee, saying, Art thou he that should come? or look we for another?

John the Baptist and his followers were not sure Jesus was the Messiah.

KJV Luke 8:2

2. And certain women, which had been healed of evil spirits and infirmities, Mary called Magdalene, out of whom went seven devils,

Mary Magdalene was once possessed by seven devils. This did not make a difference to Jesus. She was one of His closest and most dedicated followers. Mary may have been the first person to see Jesus when He rose from the dead. She was the one that carried the news of His resurrection to the other disciples.

KJV Luke 22:3

3. Then entered Satan into Judas surnamed Iscariot, being of the number of the twelve.

One of Jesus’ followers, Judas became possessed by Satan and sold Jesus to the Pharisees.

KJV Luke 22:24

24. And there was also a strife among them, which of them should be accounted the greatest.

After being with Jesus for more than three years the disciples still argued among themselves who was the greatest. What did Jesus feel when He witnessed this type of behavior?

KJV Luke 24:10-11

10. It was Mary Magdalene and Joanna, and Mary the mother of James, and other women that were with them, which told these things unto the apostles. 11. And their words seemed to them as idle tales, and they believed them not.

KJV Mark 16:11

11. And they, when they had heard that he was alive, and had been seen of her, believed not.

When Jesus rose from the dead the disciples did not believe the report brought to them by Mary Magdalene, even though they saw Jesus raise a number of people from the dead and were told about this event and when it would occur. “And as they came down from the mountain, he charged them that they should tell no man what things they had seen, till the Son of man were risen from the dead. And they kept that saying with themselves, questioning one with another what the rising from the dead should mean.” KJV Mark 9:9-10.

KJV Acts 8:1

1. And Saul was consenting unto his death. And at that time there was a great persecution against the church which was at Jerusalem; and they were all scattered abroad throughout the regions of Judaea and Samaria, except the apostles.

Saul, who was later named Paul, became one of the most effective leaders of the early church and wrote the majority of the New Testament. Previously Saul persecuted the church and watched many of them go to their deaths.

This is the mystery of redemption. Imagine if you will, an all powerful, all knowing God, creator of the universe, relying upon normal everyday, sinful people to carry His message of forgiveness throughout the world. God does not make an attempt to hide the facts. To the contrary, God puts the errors of His followers in writing and preserves these messages throughout the ages. Why does God trust His message to less than perfect people? Why doesn’t God just do the job Himself? If we have mastered the airwaves transmitting pictures and over thousands of miles, imagine what God could do if He chose to bring a message to this world? Wouldn’t it be much easier if God just showed Himself, gave us an option of worshipping Him or perish?

Maybe that is the answer. God cannot give us an option? A detailed study of the plan of salvation makes it clear that God and His law are on trial. A complete study of the plan of salvation will answer the following questions. Can sin be controlled? What would happen if sin ran its course to a complete and utterly sinful world? Is there a flaw in God’s law? Can the law be changed or altered? Each answer is obvious but how do these answers help us to understand why God uses sinful people to carry His word? There is no other way. The fact that God uses these people is evidence of God’s forgiveness, which is the only enticement God uses to attract followers. God has preserved the actions of His followers as an illustration to shows us how far God’s forgiveness extends.

God has a history of choosing people that are less than perfect. One reason for this may be that Jesus does not look for people that are self-confident. Over confidence may cause a situation where people will eventually take credit for the work themselves. Look at the example given when Moses struck the rock. Moses used the word, “we”, taking credit away from God and taking a portion for himself. This may not seem like a major sin by itself but it can have a tendency to grow. One may go from the belief that God was able to accomplish a task with their help. Later this same person may begin to believe they can do everything on their own. Soon this person is not working with God at all but working for himself. Much like the state God found Saul in the New Testament.


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