By Al Collins
I don’t see how any Christian would not be considered a teacher, as each of us should be an example to others of their Christ-filled, Holy Spirit-powered life.
Do Christians, especially leaders, live up to the title ‘teacher’ as defined by God?
How do we know a teacher is from God vs. a teacher that is not? How should a Christian be picked out of a crowd?
Jesus (our pattern for a teacher) taught us that God’s Word is revealed through someone, which is then accompanied by demonstrations of power.
“This man came to Jesus by night and said to Him, “Rabbi, we know that You are a teacher come from God; for no one can do these signs that You do unless God is with him.” John 3:2
Jesus said, “And as you go, preach, saying, ‘The kingdom of heaven is at hand.’ Heal the sick, cleanse the lepers, raise the dead, cast out demons” Matthew 10:7-8. Teaching and then power.
The early Church (Christians, not a building or a denomination), recognized that teachers don’t just talk, they perform signs and wonders to prove that they are a teacher from God. Paul learned this lesson and taught it also.
“And my speech and my preaching were not with persuasive words of human wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, that your faith should not be in the wisdom of men but in the power of God.” 1 Corinthians 2:4-5
Jesus taught that we (Christians) are to speak God’s Word and the Father does the works (miracles) to back up His Word.
When someone wants to operate their own way, isn’t that disobedient, rebellious and prideful? Sinful?
Paul calls such people “puffed up” …
“Now some are puffed up, as though I were not coming to you. But I will come to you shortly, if the Lord wills, and I will know, not the word of those who are puffed up, but the power. For the kingdom of God is not in word but in power.” 1 Corinthians 4:18-10
Sadly, in the denominational era, people prefer to gather around charismatic speakers and talented worship groups, then true teachers of God. Teachers with God’s power operating through them are rejected by many people! Brings out anger too! Like the Pharisees and Sadducees in Jesus’ day, religious leaders today have a death-grip on their word doctrines, shunning the power (Holy Spirit) and those that walk with God.
Without a personal relationship or experiences or encounters with God, people are led into misunderstanding of God and His Word. They seek cultural or worldly acceptance which are failures. They reject those who don’t fall into their structures. Such structures are business-based and religious-based, rather than Kingdom-based.
I had a good self-laugh the other day that I shared with Rhoda when she wondered why I was chortling (that’s a word right?). I was thinking about the popular song, ‘Days of Elijah’, that I’ve seen so many people sing and dance to. I imagined this very hairy, half-naked, man of God Elijah, walking into one of today’s crowd-pleasing assemblies and how he would be treated. A man of God who executed 850 false teachers (1 Kings 18) after fire from God came down from Heaven to consume his altar (now that’s a demonstration of power)! Not only was I chortling about how Elijah would be treated but what would he say?
Picture it. Him standing there watching and listening to people sing about him, coming in ‘declaring the word of the Lord’. Would they listen to his declaration from the Lord to them?
I have my own thoughts on what would happen I’ll keep to myself. I’ll let you develop your own. Chortling is allowed.
Let me say this though, with those you get together with, would Elijah be welcome and want to be part of it or would he be rejected or perhaps walk out shaking his head.
“Any revelation from God’s Word that does not lead us to an encounter with God only serves to make us more religious. The Church cannot afford “form without power”, for it creates Christians without purpose.” Bill Johnson
Be a great teacher of God!