Saturday, September 3, 2011

Is there a place for feeling inferior in the church?

Pastor Conrad Imbewe is of the RB church in Lusaka, Zambia. He has been writing about their recent conference where Voddie Baucham /'Pastor Zulu' has been preaching....Below is an extract from his blog that has been encouraging to me over the past week (used with his permission) Each society has it's own issues/culture where even as Christians we can feel bias to others, yes... even in the church context! The obvious issues are race and gender but there are still more issues like schooling, how many kids you have, divorce, past mistakes etc which can all be issues that divide and make some in the church feel spiritually inferior... Sometimes God chooses circumstances for us that are not always to our taste or liking. And yet as we walk the life that God has chosen  for us from before the beginning of time, He can be glorified in each and every circumstance - even when we do not like the circumstance we are in or would not have chosen it for ourselves. The truth of the matter is that if we feel inferior due to our circumstances or status we cannot worship and glorify our God as we should.There is no place for inferiority complexes in the church, it is a type of selfish pride, which clings to a 'poor me attitude'; it is a false humility, which can destroy a close relationship with God and fellow believers; for it is a false view of self and is not God's view of us as his dearly beloved children. God in His sovereignty chooses circumstances beyond us, for his own glory, may we with Job, not sin and fall to the ground and worship ( )

Here is a quote from Pastor Conrad Imbewe, it is Voddie Baucham's teaching on the matter, see the original posting here.

" “Pastor Zulu” stated that if you suffer from a spiritual inferiority complex then you undervalue what Christ has done for you. Paul wanted the Gentiles to remember who they were (v.11-13). It is only in realising your former circumstances that you will appreciate your current circumstances in Christ. The Jews were glad to see the Gentiles worshipping Jehovah, but they did not want them in the place where they themselves worshipped him. They were to remain in the outer court. Paul was saying that they were no longer to be in the outer court. The blood of Christ brought them near. This is the highest status that anyone can have before men and God. Don’t undervalue that!

Secondly, if you suffer from a spiritual inferiority complex then you make light what God has done for them—i.e. the Jews (v.14-18). The Jews also needed to be saved (see Romans 2:17ff). What they had in their ethnicity, culture, and religion was not enough. Their problem was a sin problem and so they needed the blood of Christ to save them.

Thirdly, if you suffer from a spiritual inferiority complex then you are accusing God of using some inferior materials in building his church (see v.19-22). Paul here uses construction language. That which is being built is a holy temple. As with any painting, the excellence of the painter is what dignifies materials that he uses. Remember, that the builder is God himself. Thus a chief will sit next to a slave and worship the Lord singing, “In the cross, in the cross, be my glory ever…” This will be even more evident when we are all gathered with the Saviour in eternity. At that point what will matter will not be ethnicity but only the cross. This is what the cross-centred life is all about.

As we streamed out of the Lusaka Baptist Church auditorium, it was evident that skin colour, ethnicity, nationality were overshadowed by the power of the cross. Yes, we had come from different tribes and nations across the world but we were all one in Christ. We went home at the end of the day sensing once again that God has been good to us."

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