My brethren, let not many of you become teachers, knowing that we shall receive a stricter judgment.
James 3:1 NKJV
There is a multitude of people who are eager to be teachers of the word of God, yet the Bible tells us that not many should be. Many are eager to be seen, to be heard, to be important, to be known; and if I’m honest, I struggle with all of these myself at times. Yet the Lord calls those who would glorify Him and leave their selfish desires behind, the Lord seeks those who will lift His name and let theirs fade.
Why do you desire to speak and be heard, is it because of your love for truth or because you believe you know better than others? Do you desire to see the truth spoken, or do you desire the attention and praise? It’s a daily battle in my heart, putting the Lord first in all things is not easy. Our heart’s desires will creep in unnoticed; pride sits at the door constantly. You secretly want to be lifted high, you secretly want to be noticed and esteemed. “They love the best places at the feasts, the best seats in the synagogues, greetings in the marketplaces, and to be called ‘Rabbi, Rabbi’ (Matt. 23:6). The Lord calls those He desires to be teachers, but many assert themselves into the role without being called and reap much destruction because of it.
You may start off well, but it’s how you end that matters. When I was asked to write these devotionals for my church, I did so out of obedience to the call of God. Each time I write, I do so with reverent fear and caution, knowing that mishandling the word of God is a great offense to the Lord and brings with it the possibility of leading untold numbers of people astray. My great desire is not to be seen, known, or recognized, but for truth to be spoken and lives to be changed because of it. If judgment awaits those who are led astray, how much more those who lead them? Have you counted the cost?