STUDY ON MURMURING N°7
This teaching is the 7th part in a series of thirteen. Please read the other 12 parts.
Agents of satan are only there to create division and provoke murmuring as you have noticed. Unfortunately, many people end up falling victims of their manoeuvres. As we all saw, the Lord struck tens of thousands of people because of a few individuals. We shouldn't fall into their traps anymore. Henceforth, we should understand that when we walk with the Lord, we are the ones who benefit. Caleb chose to walk with the Lord and he is the one who benefited. Joshua equally chose to walk with the Lord, and he is the one who benefited. The ten others who preferred to go their own way lost everything. So, we must emulate the example of those who have understood. We should no more fall into the traps of sorcerers. To avoid slander and gossip in our midst, we must watch, each time we have a misunderstanding with a brother, to go and meet him first. We must go towards another person only if we first of all met the brother and the problem persisted. It is for this reason that if a brother comes to me with a problem concerning another brother, I will ask him this question: "Have you already discussed with him?" If he says "yes, I already discussed with him but it did not work", I would tell him: "You have done well". And if he tells me "no, I have not yet discussed with him", I will tell him "no, you have not done well".
My own case is different; somebody can notify me about a situation because I am a pastor. But in the midst of brethren, things must not be done that way. Know that you can feel free to confide in me, and I may decide to send you back to the person. But this must not be the case in the midst of Children of God. A brother who has problems with another brother must not approach a third party with that problem. God does not tolerate such things. If you have understood, then the problem is solved.
Question: Talking about this passage from Titus 3:10-11, "10Reject a divisive man after the first and second admonition, 11knowing that such a person is warped and sinning, being self-condemned." I would want to know if it applies to people who are not ignorant or to people who have understood the teachings.
Answer: Already, we endeavour not to condemn people who are ignorant. As you have noticed, whenever we can, we exercise patience. We don't act as if we were gods, or people who have never made mistakes. That is not how we behave; we understand that we ourselves are humans who make mistakes all the time. That's why before judging, before condemning, we consider all these elements. So, you know that before we come out with a sentence, we first of all take time to teach, answer all questions, clarify, exhort and do all that we always do so that Children of God should better understand the teachings. Therefore, if in spite of all this, some choose to do the way they want, it is just a proof that they are accomplishing their own ministry in your midst. You must not tolerate such attitudes in your midst.
So, for you who are listening to this, you have to explain to brethren who are with you. You find it difficult to take certain decisions because you have not yet been bitten by a snake. There is a worldly saying that goes thus: "when you have suffered from snakebite, you will avoid a millipede". Don't wait for snakebite before reacting; obey the Lord's instructions in order not to be bitten. If we conform to the Lord, we will never have this type of problem. But if we do it our own way, we will suffer the fate of Moses and the other people who feared the Lord. Beloved, that's for murmuring.
You understand that the brethren were right when they told us that murmuring is a very terrible sin, because of its numerous tentacles. We have not come across a single case of murmuring where only a single person was punished. Where there is murmuring, there is always more than one person. You see how terrible it is. A sin that always cause the fall of many is a very terrible sin. In the passage of 1Corinthians 10 which the brethren just read to us, we discover that while the Lord was striking adulterers and other abominable people, he also struck the people because of murmuring. Yet, you find very few Christians nowadays who consider murmuring a sin.
When you visit a Church today and hear that someone has sinned, do not bother to ask what he has done, it means that he has committed adultery or fornication. He may be greedy, or he may create division every day, he may do any other thing, all of that is not sin. As long as he has not committed adultery, he is still a good brother. Yet, we are all discovering today that there exist other sins which are as terrible as adultery, or better still, more terrible than adultery. We may say that adultery is not as terrible as murmuring because it concerns only two persons. When two persons were caught in adultery, both of them were stoned, whereas murmuring provokes the death of many people at a time.
So, beloved, avoid murmuring just as you avoid adultery. I was telling Children of God that if we could avoid the other sins as we do for adultery, the Church would have been doing quite well. This is what we can gather from the teaching on murmuring. I think the other groups were abundantly clear on that. So, know that such things can be avoided. How then can Children of God prevent murmuring from penetrating the Assembly? As soon as you find someone murmuring, do not cover him, signal it rapidly. As for slander and gossip, we already spoke about it. If you have problems with somebody, go and settle it with him. If you instead go to a third party, know that you are creating division. This is because the third party will side with you against the other person, which is already division and that's very bad. Know that God doesn't tolerate division. To create division between two brethren is very dangerous. Already, the teaching on discernment is clear enough. We said in the teaching on discernment that God is a God of division, but what kind of division are we referring to? Division between Children of God and children of satan. Whereas when you have problems with another brother in the Church and instead of settling it with him, you meet another person, you are creating division, this time, not between children of God and children of satan but between Children of God. God does not tolerate this type of division.
It is very dangerous for brethren to be divided. We studied this on the teaching on discernment. If you have a problem with your brother, go and settle it with him. If you don't agree, you can now contact a third party. But to contact a third party without attempting to settle the matter with your brother is a very bad thing. This is how such problems are solved. We also saw how to solve minor problems. If you want to discuss with a brother, even if it is not about a problem, approach the brother in question. Never bypass a brother to inquire something about him from a third party. It's not really proper. When we avoid such minor errors, we prevent satan from trapping us.
This is how we can practically resolve such problems in our midst. So, if you see somebody murmuring, contact me immediately. Let's not suffer in vain for people who will make us lose our blessings as the third group said. Please, help me not to lose my blessings by pointing out all those who hide in our midst to murmur. When we identify them, we will know to avoid them in order not to fall into their traps. We can expel them, and even if we don't put them out yet, we will know how to interact with them in order not to fall victim of their venom. So, this is how we can succeed in resolving this problem in order not to find ourselves in the same difficulty like our brother Moses.
Question: what attitude should we adopt towards colleagues and classmates who push us to murmur?
Answer: that is different; understand that what we are examining here has nothing to do with pagans, yet, if you allow a pagan to take you to Hell, then you have not understood anything. This is not the kind of murmuring that we are talking about here. In reality, what the brother is explaining concerns people who make us feel uneasy in the world. They may be our colleagues, our classmates. In short, people we frequent in the world and who through their attitudes make us to murmur. No, this type of murmuring is very different from what we are examining here. This type of murmuring in world is part of the persecution that we suffer in the world. What must we do? The solution is just to avoid such people as most as we can. But remember that they are not the only ones; even the world makes us to murmur. When you follow the news, at times, if the radio is in your hands, you can fling it on the floor. Because what you listen to will annoy you to the extent of making you murmur. But that is not the type of murmuring we are referring to here.
As long as you fear God, you shall always have colleagues or classmates who will cause you to murmur. It is for you to manage the situation well. Since you know that they are pagans who have nothing to do but to make you feel uneasy through their attitude. You must manage the situation wisely while avoiding murmuring, since murmuring would make you to be angry and to lose your peace for nothing. Know that anger is not something good. So, this has nothing to do with what we are saying. What we are examining here, are problems in the midst of God's Children, i.e. so-called children of God who always create disorder in the midst of God's people. It's this type of murmuring which is very dangerous. But for pagans, we know in any case, they will make us murmur. If you are with pagans who never cause you to murmur, you need to examine if they are really pagans or if you are really a Christian.
Question: we notice that in the passages that we have read, they only talk of murmuring against servants of God or against God, and not murmuring against brethren.
Answer: In reality, it's because murmuring in the midst of brethren is what we prefer to call slander or gossiping; since normally when you have a problem with your brother and approach him the matter is resolved instantly. Does murmuring exist among brethren? The answer is yes; but God qualifies it differently. The type of murmuring which you have developed here is that which so-called children of God practice against God or against servants of God. It is one of the points that we shall revisit, since all the groups have developed the aspect according to which murmuring against a servant of God is in reality murmuring against God. Since people think they are grumbling against a man forgetting that in fact they are murmuring against God. Murmuring among Children of God or among brothers and sisters, is what we describe as slander and gossip. When your brother does something and you find yourself grumbling unnecessarily or contaminating someone else with it, it is instead abnormal. It is what we just studied, go towards your brother and tell him what you have in mind. And by the grace of God, the problem will be resolved. In most cases, it is in that manner that problems are resolved. We always have misunderstandings. Yet, when you choose to do otherwise, to talk about it to others instead of settling it with the brother concerned, you make it a more serious problem and it becomes very dangerous.
Question: Can a leader keep his wife informed about all the problems that brethren confide in him?
Answer: Normally that is not how it is supposed to be. Let me explain why. Whenever I meet elders, we always revisit this topic, since there is a teaching for elders on how to be discreet. I have always advised elders and leaders in general to be discreet. And for elders and leaders who are married, this instruction is given in a severe manner. Given that when one is married, he is always tempted to explain everything to his spouse which is very dangerous. When we had meetings with pastors, leaders and elders, we came back to this topic. And I told them that in reality, when a pastor has a wife who fears God; her role is to support him in his ministry by interceding for him. With such a wife he may be allowed to discuss everything with her. And a wife who is seed of God and fears God knows her place, and knows how to shut her mouth. Such a woman will never find herself doing what she is not authorized to do. And she will never say what she is not supposed to say.
If an elder has such a wife, he can discuss everything with her because they form a body and are united in the ministry. But you need to have such a wife! And it is dangerous for a servant of God to believe that he has such a wife whereas in reality he does not. This is why God gives us instructions. So, except God shows you clearly that she is a God-fearing woman, don't share with her some of the things that God confides in you. If not, it will be catastrophic for the Church. I explained to you how Pastors' wives are often leaders of groups of gossip and slander in the Churches. And they do so with a lot of pride because they cherish the post of Pastors' wives that they occupy in the Church. So, each time the pastor recounts the life of a brother or sister to his wife, she in turn recounts it to the others, and that's how the gossip network is maintained in the Assembly. She does it just to show that she knows everything. It comes out clearly that in most cases; it is the pastor's wife who leads the gossip group in the Church. If you find a pastor's wife who behaves as such, know that it is at least a proof that she is a sorceress and not a servant of God.
Question: if a leader has a problem with a brother or sister and that problem is resolved, can he talk about it to his wife?
Answer: if there are cases where for example a problem between a leader and a brother is resolved, is it of any essence to recount it to his wife? The answer is no. Why no? Because women are who they are, at times something that you had already forgiven and forgotten, your wife takes time to reflect over it and asks you how you manage to forgive that easily. It suffices that you have a problem with a brother, you meet the brother and the matter is resolved. If you attempt to tell your wife and she receives it otherwise, and starts telling you: "did that brother have the guts to say that to you", you who had already forgiven, you may start thinking over it and say to yourself: "Oh it seems as if I was too quick to forgive. Did I really reflect over it before forgiving?". If for example your wife goes further and says: "No I cannot tolerate this, that brother can't say that to you", you will get angry again, thereby cancelling the understanding that you had already reached with the brother. You think over it and say: "Aha! My wife is right, the brother would not have spoken to me like that, the brother should not have addressed me that way". And when you meet the brother you would say: "I want us to come back to the problem that we had the other day". Just because you went back and told your wife and she proved to you that you should not have quickly forgiven the brother like that.
It is better to handle it as we saw. If you had a misunderstanding with a brother and resolved it with the help of God, there is no need to tell your wife. It is better to stop it at that level. For, if your wife manages it poorly, the consequences will be heavy. Whenever a problem is resolved, it is needless to meet a third party again. When the matter is not resolved, that is when you can meet a third party. But once the problem is resolved, it is better to leave it at that level.
Question: what about a leader's wife? After resolving a problem with a brother, could she explain the matter to her husband to see if that can be an element of discernment?
Answer: Yes, to the leader yes, she can tell him. I pointed out something a while ago and I would like to insist on it again. Know that there things that you cannot tell brothers and sisters but you must tell your pastors. Let that be very clear. I pointed this out clearly when I was making allusion to the case of a brother who has problems with another brother and prefers to contact a third party. If that third party is the pastor, there is no problem. For the pastor is just there to know what is happening in your midst and resolve it so that it should not persist. It is rather delicate when you approach another person who is not the pastor.
I have always told you that before the Lord, we must always endeavour to answer the question why. If a brother has a problem with another brother and prefers to approach a third party, and the Lord asks him "why did you approach a third party instead of the brother concerned?" what answer will he give the Lord for example? He shall be blocked; whereas if that third party is the pastor, he could say "Lord, I went to him because he is our pastor ". I think he is better placed to resolve this problem, counsel me about it"; in such a case, it will be understandable.
You see that when our desire is to advance with the Lord, everything is at our disposal to help us attain that objective. So, to come back to our sister's question, if the woman who settled the matter is the Pastor's wife or the leader's wife, it's normal to speak about it to the pastor. For the pastor is there for everyone. And he will know how to better manage the situation. When you tell him, the advantage is that it gives him some elements of discernment. Because it is thanks to what you share with us that the Lord grants us the grace to know what is happening. The discernment that we have does not only come from visions, dreams and revelations that the Lord gives us. The Lord gives us a greater portion of it through information that brethren give us. So, if you have such information and you don't share with your leaders, that won't be good.
Concerning murmuring, we told you not to hide anything from your leaders; you must inform your pastors or leaders about everything which is susceptible to create problems. These elements help servants of God to understand what is happening. To see what satan wants to do, to recognize people through which satan can pass to harm us. And when they know all this, they take measures beforehand to escape all the traps. On the contrary, the opposite is not acceptable. If it's the leader who resolves the problem, he must not tell his wife. But if it is the wife who resolves the problem she has to tell the leader.
Grace be with you all who have Jesus Christ as Master!
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