CALL TO OBEDIENCE #356
Reimar A.C. Schultze
by Pastor Reimar A. C. Schultze
Necho king of
To “meddle” is “to involve oneself in a matter often without invitation.” All of us have meddled and have been meddled with. Happy is the man who does not meddle in what is not his business. His burden is lighter and his days are brighter. However, every godly person is called upon to meddle, invited or uninvited.
We are our brothers’ keepers and must “meddle” to help the ungodly find everlasting life. James said, Therefore to him that knoweth to do good, and doeth it not, to him it is sin (James 4:17). When Paul addressed incest in one of the churches and drunkenness in another, he certainly was meddling appropriately. God speaks to all of us in Ezekiel: When I say to a wicked man, 'You will surely die,' and you do not warn him or speak out to dissuade him from his evil ways in order to save his life, that wicked man will die for his sin, and I will hold you accountable for his blood (Ezek. 3:18 NIV). The Great Commission is a call to meddle. The backslider, the sinner, the Buddhist, the Muslim and the communists say: keep out, but Jesus says: go in.
There are two things that make most of us hesitate to meddle with the sins of others:
1) We feel that we have enough sin in our own lives that we have no right to meddle with the sins of our brothers. But Jesus’ plan of redemption is not for us to continue in our sins, but to get rid of them so that we can help our brother to get rid of his. Jesus said, first take the plank from your own eye, and then you will see clearly to remove the speck from your brother's eye (Matt. 7:5 NIV). The moment you stop helping others to salvation, the rivers of life stop flowing into your heart (Rev. 12:11).
2) Many of us will not meddle with our brothers because of the fear of man. We are more concerned about preserving our popularity than losing our life for the gospel's sake.
Although we are called upon to meddle with men's souls, we are never called upon to meddle with God. Let us learn something from two great men who meddled with God.
King Josiah is one of the most under-advertised kings in
Let these stories suffice to demonstrate at least two common principles that are at work when the godly get into meddling, and they are:
1. Whenever, through a process of success and accomplishments in the work of God’s ministry, HIS ministry becomes OUR ministry, we are at the meddling edge.
Both Josiah and Moses took the ministry away from God. Both of them suddenly, unbeknownst to themselves, had the "I" rise up within them. They had been blessed so long and were so successful that they came to think that they were not just representatives of God, but began to act as equal partners with Him. The result was that they no longer moved with Him, but ahead of Him. If we don't keep our hearts with all diligence, success can get to our heads and we will get into territories that are not ours to conquer; we will start ministries that are not ours to start; we will strike rocks we should speak to and we will put ourselves above others in judgment. We will meddle with God whom we claim to represent.
2. Whenever doing ministry becomes more important than walking with God on a consistent daily basis, we are at the meddling edge.
When you make walking with God a secondary thing to anything you do, you will not walk with God. Our first calling is always to walk with God, only then will His ministry flow out of us. Never let yourself think that Martha’s choice to work was better than Mary’s choice to rest at Jesus’ feet (Luke 10:39-42). If we don't walk with God, if our ministry comes out of religious ambition, all our religious work will be wood, hay and stubble. Jesus said, “Every plant, which my heavenly Father hath not planted, shall be rooted up” (Matt. 15:13). God can do nothing through us until we walk with Him and abide with Him. Otherwise, all that we sow will be tares: look-alikes but not the real thing. God said to Abraham, “walk before me and be thou perfect” (Gen. 17:1). To Josiah and Moses, walking with God had moved to the back burner. It cost both their ministries.
Now, let us look at what went wrong with Josiah and Moses in the light of New Testament teachings on the
Now, being practical: among the first to know that we are out of the Kingdom are our spouses. The wife of a man of God is like a canary in a coal mine. When there is a slight amount of poison gas, the canary dies. Once a man has crossed over from God's ministry to his ministry, from walking with God to running his religious machinery, he becomes harsh, demanding, inconsiderate and neglectful of the needs of his wife. The wife now becomes a maid, a servant or a secretary. She is the first to get the gas, the children are next; soon the poison spreads to others. And my friend, the frequent claims of “we give God all the glory" now only serve as a smokescreen to cover a fallen man.
“He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the LORD require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?” (Micah 6:8)