Let me not, I pray, show partiality to anyone;
Nor let me flatter any man.
I once read a story of an incoming pastor that spent weeks growing out his beard, dressed himself as a homeless man, and sat outside the church he was preparing to oversee. After not being approached, he went inside the church and asked people for money to buy food, most of which declined. Then he walked to the front of the church and sat in the front row, only to be escorted to the back by the ushers.
Whether it was a true story or not, it teaches a powerful lesson in partiality (favoritism). God shows no partiality, and neither does a person wise in the ways of the Lord. Your social status, job, wealth or lack thereof, influence, etc, are of no consideration in the eyes of the Lord. He speaks to whom He will speak, and He uses whom He will use, regardless of how they are viewed in the world’s eyes. The Lord made a shepherd into a king (1 Sam. 16:12), a young man into a prophet (Jer. 1:5-6), and a prisoner into a ruler (Gen. 41:41). He used lepers to bring good news (II Kin. 7:10) and women to announce His resurrection (Mark 16:9). If the Lord of all creation shows no partiality, should we not do the same?
Over the past year, the Lord has taught me to speak what He says to whom He sends me, regardless of who they are, because the message doesn’t belong to me. From the small to the great the Lord will speak, because He shows no partiality. Some of the most powerful and intimate words I’ve received for others were for the lowly and outcast, not the prominent. I was focused on the outward appearance, the title, and the social status, but the Lord sees the heart (1 Sam. 16:7).
When the Lord comes again in all His glory, He will sit and judge the nations, separating the righteous from the unrighteous (Matthew 25:31-46). Read the parable of the sheep and the goats, and you will see the defining difference between the two: the sheep showed no partiality. How would you have treated the pastor in disguise?
And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’