Bruce Collins, Evangelist

The personal website of Bruce Collins

Who is the best?

Meditation for the week of August 31, 2008

For I say, through the grace given unto me, to every man that is among you, not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think; but to think soberly, according as God hath dealt to every man the measure of faith.

Christians are not supposed to think we are better at what we do than we are. We are to esteem others better than ourselves (Philippians 2:3). We are to listen and not speak too quickly (James 1:19). We can’t strive or quarrel with those who disagree with us, and when we do disagree we can’t be disagreeable (2 Timothy 2:24). How is a person going to win a debate or make a mark for himself in this life with these principles guiding our lives?

We are presently in the middle of a presidential campaign. I have often wondered how those who say they are Christians can even run for the office. I haven’t heard any of the candidates tell their audiences that the other candidate is more qualified than they are. But I have heard why each man thinks he is the best man for the job. In addition, many Christians who are not running for office can get very upset and quarrelsome if you don’t agree with their position on the budget, health care, and so on. They are sure that they know what is best. I confess, I happen to be one of those people. Obviously, I have trouble following the principles that would make me like Christ.

Self-promotion is one area in life where it seems to some of us that God’s way is not the best way. Even those of us who preach the Gospel are affected by this problem. If we preachers really thought others were better than we are, likely others would think that as well and we might not get invited to speak anywhere. We all want to have our little niche today at which we really excel. Then we tend to promote our abilities in that area.

In most cases any success we have in our service as Christians is because we were in the right place at the right time and the Lord in His grace used us. None of us have ever seen a soul saved. We may have been there when they trusted in the Lord but we were only tools that God used. We can’t save and we can’t develop a formula that saves. What we did last time that worked so well will probably only be confusing the next time we try it. We shouldn’t get proud of our ability to “lead people to Christ.” Having said that, there are some people who are true evangelists. They can approach people with the Gospel without offending them, and they can reach people that the rest of us can’t. When we see someone like that, we should ask them how we can help them instead of asking them to help us.

Some of us think we have a handle on church planting. I find it interesting that church planting is promoted as though it were a gift or a command of the Lord. I read in the Bible that I am supposed to preach the Gospel, teach and baptize the converts which includes teaching them about the new testament church. But I have never seen any place in the Bible where church planting was either a gift that God bestows or a command that the Lord gives. So if the Lord has used us in church planting, we shouldn’t think it was because we know what we are doing, However, when we see someone that the Lord is using in a new work, we should ask them how we can help them instead of going to them with the idea of them helping us.

I firmly believe that everything we do should be done with all of our might and to the best of our ability. Sometimes that means finding people to do jobs that we cannot do. No matter how good we may be, there is always someone better. We should be thankful for that and we should help those who are good at what they do. We should not hinder the work of the Lord by thinking more highly of ourselves than we should.

Bruce Collins

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