But not in the way you were thinking.
1 Corinthians reminds us that we treat our pastors like crap.
We have become, and are still, like the scum of the world, the refuse of all things.
So tonight, write your pastor an email. Shoot him a Facebook message. Text him.
Thank him for pointing out your sin, even when it was obvious; for not letting you get away with staying away from church, even when you tried; for caring about you, even when you didn’t care about him; for giving you Jesus, even when you don’t want him to.
For I think that God has exhibited us apostles as last of all, like men sentenced to death, because we have become a spectacle to the world, to angels, and to men. We are fools for Christ’s sake, but you are wise in Christ. We are weak, but you are strong. You are held in honor, but we in disrepute. To the present hour we hunger and thirst, we are poorly dressed and buffeted and homeless, and we labor, working with our own hands. When reviled, we bless; when persecuted, we endure; when slandered, we entreat. We have become, and are still, like the scum of the world, the refuse of all things.
I do not write these things to make you ashamed, but to admonish you as my beloved children. For though you have countless guides in Christ, you do not have many fathers. For I became your father in Christ Jesus through the Gospel. (1 Corinthians 4)
3 thoughts on “your pastor is scum”
I apologize that that looks anonymous. I’m Weslie Odom, Pastor of Grace Lutheran Church in Burkburnett, TX.
Pr. Asburry, the post doesn’t claim that Paul encourages parishioners to think of their pastors as scum, but that because of what God has given them to do they necessarily are scum in the eyes of the world and our flesh. That’s why “we treat our pastors as scum” as “I Corinthians reminds us.”
You’re right that this is salutary for all parties involved.
Question: Is St. Paul encouraging parishioners to think of/treat their pastors as scum/crap, or is he merely saying, “Pastors, *think of yourselves* (as I think of myself) as scum/crap”? These are two different things! The former leads to an unhealthy congregational life. The latter, well, is salutary for both pastor and people.