"Brethren, I have written a letter unto you" (Hebrews 13:22).

Archived Devotionals

October 19, 2020

Special Treatment?

My Dear Friend,

      It is reported by some that ministers receive special treatment. This is true.

     If truly called, New Testament ministers receive special biblical insights, visions of the Lord, messages from Him, ministry gifts, speaking invitations, calls to missions, and anointings of His Spirit for ministry. And the special treatment doesn't end there.

     Ministers also receive special training from schools and / or the Holy Spirit, special seating at banquets, special honors from religious universities, special visibility at meetings, special influence in church decisions, special gifts from grateful congregants, and, in former years, special discounts on taxes and other items.

     But their special treatment doesn't end with these enviable things.

     Ministers also receive special attention from Satan, special mental and spiritual buffetings from demons, special temptations to sin or selfishness, special calls to fast and pray, special hardships on missions, and a special inner drive to study till they're spent, preach till they're hoarse, and pray while others play.

     They also receive special hatred from cynics, special envy from their peers, special slander from gossips, and special assaults from the violent, cursings from the crude, and micro-criticisms from nitpickers.

     Additionally, they receive special responsibility for souls under their care, special grief when their disciples fail to grow or backslide, and special challenges to graciously correct proud or stubborn Christians - or fellow ministers!

     They also experience special weariness from unrelieved ministry burdens, the special loneliness of truly spiritual leadership, special defeats to keep them humble, and special wounds and heartbreakings that, once overcome, increase their power to comfort the wounded and heartbroken.

     They face special tests of faith, endure special seasons of delay, and suffer specially difficult people who trouble and divide their churches, thorny deacons who usurp their authority, and spiteful enemies who continually nail them to crosses of misrepresentation - while claiming God is with them!

     Besides these special adversities, they face specially close and constant examination by Christ, and receive special punishments from Him for rebellion or unfaithfulness.

     So, my friend, what you've heard is true: ministers do receive special treatment. But in more ways than one! So, as James wisely advises us, we should not rush headlong into ministry blinded by religious ambition, but step into it only when distinctly called of God, well trained in His Word, and sufficiently tested in life - and with a humble heart and sober head, knowing the full scope of the "special treatment" that lies ahead.

     "Not many of you should presume to be teachers, my brothers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly" (James 3:1, NIV). Or, "Don’t be in any rush to become a teacher, my friends. Teaching is highly responsible work. Teachers are held to the strictest standards" (MSG).

"Specially" treated,

Greg Hinnant
Greg Hinnant Ministries

       Greg Hinnant Ministries
PO Box 788, High Point, NC 27261