In 32 years of ministry it has not been my nature to defend either myself as a pastor or others called to serve the Lord as such, but rather to leave that to the Lord. But our nation is in grave danger and anything that would contribute to making that worse concerns me.
So humbly, respectfully, but with a bit of edge I would like to ask something of all fellow conservatives, especially those who attend church.
We as Christians are called to speak the truth in love, we are called to correct, restore, rebuke, but never to simply condemn or attack.
Over the past few years, but in particular the last year or 2 I have read repeatedly, “Pastors are weak, Pastors are failing God, Pastors are afraid of losing their 501 C 3 status, and so on. There may be pastors who are; no in fact I know there are pastors who are. But the inference of 99% of what I have read implies “all pastors.” I can’t speak for other pastors but I know that every time that I read it where it implies all I get angry.
You see, I know thousands of pastors who are not weak in the pulpit, who lead boldly, and pay a dear price for it often. But most of them have one thing in common, a church body that supports them encourages them, and who model that same behavior. I find that many who make that criticism couldn’t hold a candle to most of the pastors I just mentioned.
So here is my request. First, do you know what your pastor thinks? Have you ever had a conversation in front of, rather than behind his back? Some of you will say yes. And some will be right in saying they weren’t received warmly. And I would understand your concern. But most have never gone to their pastor, found out what he believes, why he believes it, what he fears, how they can help and support him, what they can do to help him get educated more. In other words be an Aaron and Hur and hold up his arms in the battle.
For one thing, most pastors don’t fear losing the 501 c 3. They fear that deacon board, or those 8 big tithers who have gone out of their way to say his ministry can be short lived if he doesn’t get off that politics stuff. I know 12 years ago I faced that.
Before you criticize him for being afraid of being put out of ministry, consider that he has a family, he is human, he has fears, and yes even times where his faith is weak. Ask yourself, if I go to work and my boss tells me ‘if you don’t stop talking either about God or politics I will fire you’, what do you, or have you done. It’s scary. Yes they should trust, but we all should live a sinless life too. Anyone want to take that one on?
Here are ways you can help. First do some research, study up on Black Robe Regiment pastors (Revolutionary War era pastors). Get him some information, like the DVD “the Role of Pastors & Christians in Civil Government,” by David Barton. Buy him the “Americas Heritage” series for his birthday or Christmas: http://www.wallbuilders.com/MED_ahs.asp
Or do this, here is a link for Pulpit Freedom Sunday: http://www.speakupmovement.org/church/LearnMore/details/4702
Gather all the information you can find and go to your pastor, ask him if he would pray about being part of it. Don’t assume he won’t give him a chance; perhaps he won’t at first but in time will come back with a yes.
Better yet, if you really want to help him, for Pastors Appreciation Day or some other event as a gift, pay his way to the Annual FRC pastors conference that is held each May in Washington D.C. It’s all about pastors and boldness in govt. Here is the link for that: http://www.watchmenpastors.org/events/. Cover his $199.00 registration and cost to get there. The hotel room and all his meals are included in the cost, along with an incredible group of speakers.
If you are a Tea Party, or 912 or AFP member invite him to an event with you. Perhaps ask him if he has ever shot a gun and take him to the range.
Purchase a copy of the DVD series “The Truth Project,” and ask him if he will teach it as a Bible Study night series.
The ways are endless but unless you try, you will be no more than a critical voice speaking out about a less than perfect man of God. I realize that some might think I’m just a pastor trying to cover his own guilt but nothing would be further from the truth and those who know me would laugh at that. I won’t bloviate on what gives me the right to speak, but suffice to say I have more than paid my dues for speaking out on all issues, more so since September 11, 2001–and I will continue to as long as there is breath in this body.
I will ask that before you speak critical words about your pastor, you have given him every chance to learn and grow and become courageous enough to speak out. Even David knew well enough to not improperly do harm to Gods anointed when Saul was still King. God is big enough to raise up and or remove.
Just asking that you give it thought. God bless.
Pastor Jack L. Martin Sr. Senior Pastor Praise Family Worship Center Assembly of God Hudson, Fl.
- Black Robe Regiment pastor
- Pulpit Freedom Sunday Pastor
- Chaplain 912, and Tea Party
- 1st and 2nd Amendment conference speaker
- Constitutionalist and patriot