Over the last few days my Twitter feed has been full of shenanigans from the SBC annual convention in the US. I’m obviously not part of the SBC, I live in the UK, but it’s highlighted some things that have got me thinking…
Some of the many topics flying around have been the role of a pastor, the definition of a pastor and complementarity. Cards on the table, I am a complementarian, I believe that the roles of being an elder and publicly preaching God’s Word to the gathered church are reserved for men. I’ve written about this before here, in a 4 part series.
As I’ve sat and watched Christians argue with each other, we should probably stop that by the way, I have realised that we’re a bit of a selective bunch.
Many Christian’s argue against women being pastors, but at the same time find it easy to gloss over other issues in their churches, such as;
- Having elders who don’t teach
- Having elders who are actually deacons with a different title
- Allowing leaders to function who have been disqualified by their actions
- Not intentionally investing in a new generation of prospective elders
- Having elders who care more about the church and it’s reputation than the members
It is so easy to become a church who have tunnel vision, focusing on the one issue, at the neglect of everything else. Complementarity is an important issue that has a significant impact on the day to day of the church. But a ‘failure’ to practice complementarity cannot become the focus whilst neglecting other important issues.
The church can become a place that focuses so much on particular issues, but forgets others. Sure, there are matters that require our care and attention more than others, but that shouldn’t come at the cost of doing our jobs properly. We are called to follow Jesus and be like Him, not to be selective in the things that we like and don’t. Obedience is complete, we’re called to die to self and to live for Christ.
That kind of discipleship mean renouncing our preconceived ideas, following Jesus faithfully and not picking and choosing the parts of the Bible to follow or not.
Do not become a selective church or Christian who have eyes only for specific things. Instead be a church that focuses on Jesus and forgets about the issues of the world. Be a God-glorifying church not a selective Church.
You’ll see that it honours Jesus more and helps you see people as image bearers of God who should want to live for Him. that will leave you not to judge them but to love them as the Lord does.