Topical - Philosophy of Ministry (Part 7)
Number one there on your notes it says -the wormwoods manual. Now, if you are into C. S. Lewis, Screwtape Letters, there was a little demon that was being trained on how to stump this Christian. So, I’ve kind of taken off on that analogy and it seems as if there is a manual that is out on how to divide a church. Because I have sat and talked with, over the last couple of years several pastors and the things that they have shared, there are similar patterns that take place that it must be something that is designed. Obviously there is no church manual you go to the local Christian Book Store and it says how to divide a church but there is the name of a soul that wants to destroy the unity of the church and so here is the progression that I have just about every pastor that I’ve talked with, these are the steps that take place. Usually, it starts with an individual or a group of people that want to gripe and complain about the pastor. And they want to mummer and gossip and then usually they find a leader, someone that has some sort of leadership abilities within the church and want to bend their ear. And often times that individual is immature and does not realize that they need to stop that, that is why I have given you those books, The Role of the Assisting Pastor to not participate in any gossip at all. It needs to be stopped at that point. And this is where the enemy takes advantage of people that have not been in the ministry and seen the devastation of splits and divisions, they don’t see how it starts off with this small little bit of gossip and backbiting. The Bible is clear, it says if someone has sinned against you, you go and talk with that individual. And that’s the end. And it’s taken care of, you’ve warned your brother, great. But usually, this seems to be the pattern and then this gossip and murmuring spreads and it’s like people of like mind find themselves. Well, what do you think about this? It may start off as, and all of a sudden you have this group of people within the church that are upset and they seem to gravitate to one another like a magnet. They find each other somehow. That’s maybe because some people they talk to they basically say, I don’t want to talk about this, get away from me, until they finally fine… And then there is little pocket of resistance within the church. And then, usually what the next step is, and this is where is starts to get serious, there is the “old secret meeting”. We need to get together and pray about these things that are happening in the church a/k/a “a prayer meeting”. It’s really NOT a prayer meeting it’s very little prayer that goes on, a lot of discussion about an individuals not present which the bottom line…. that is SIN. And this is where the ball really starts to roll. And usually that group points the leader to be their spokesperson or the next leader that they want. Well, you should be the one and see that’s where if you don’t have a humble spirit you can be trapped right into this. You may think, we’ll I’m called of God and maybe this is the way that God is going to bring it about. You know Paul says either he did not want to build upon any one else foundation. I think sometimes just a lack of faith, if God has called you, go out to Tim Buck Two, and start where nobody else is and God will bless your ministry if He has called you, but He won’t steal from another ministry and build on a foundation that someone else has laid. It’s just not biblical. And it’s not something that should be tolerated within the ministry but usually this is what happens. You know, I heard Jeff Johnson when he started out, many years back when he termed the kitchen rebellion. There was a meeting that went on in the kitchen to overthrow him and he’s experienced this sort of thing several times, actually the person who was in charge of his Christian School a few years back, as well as one of the Assistant Pastors decided to literally take over the church, almost like a hostile rebellion and remove Jeff. And so, this happens in large churches and it happens in small churches. But usually there is again, this secret meeting. So, I’m going to tell you this, if someone asked you to a secret meeting to pray about the things that are happening in the church, punch that person out. Well, no don’t do that, but just STAY AWAY from them, because I’m telling you, it’s hard because it is spiritual what is going on and the devil is active trying to destroy the unity of the church and you are going to hear things that are going to cause you to think or doubt where you have never had any doubts before. You are going to be presented with information that the Proverbs says, only a fool listens to one side. You need to listen to both sides, it’s foolish to listen to what just one person says, but what happens so often when these things are so touchy and so personal and they affect you so deeply, once you hear this stuff in your head, it’s hard to get it out or even to deny it. You might say, well it must be true, this person would not lie, you know, why would this be going on and then it just starts to steamroll. Then usually, after that secret meeting there is usually, you know there shouldn’t be any secret meetings going on that the Pastor does not know about. If I as a Pastor cannot walk into a meeting that is happening at my fellowship, something is wrong. That is the bottom line. So, these things are usually hidden and they are spiritual and they come with a guise, well, we need to pray, we are concerned about the church, and the Pastor is not and he’s just there to rip the people off and to abuse them so we are the group that is going to protect the church. Oh, lucky Jesus, he has these people that are so concerned and that is mentality and they are deceived, they are thinking more highly of themselves than they ought to think. Then, it seems like the next step is that they point that leader to take the concerns to the Pastor or even to try and take over at that point. And so now, they have a little momentum, they have some people together and now there is going to be some sort of confrontation and most Pastors, (not all) will say, take a hike and then there is a problem. There is going to be a battle at that point. And then the calling campaign begins. People start using the phone to start calling people they have never talked with in the church before and they are all concerned about them. That is not love that is division. You’re calling someone that you have never talked with in your church to tell them about these facts, supposedly facts that you now have about the Pastor, something is wrong there. You are really not concerned, you are trying to drag somebody down. And again, this just happens to quick, and it’s just like a steam roll, it’s like a snow ball picking up steam and people get caught right in it. And a lot of times what happens is this thing will sweep through a church and some people will get caught up in the momentum and then after when all the tension dies out, they say, what was that all about, why did I get all upset and then their emotions are a little back and they are able to think. But this just sweeps people sometimes innocent people in the process because it is just like a whirl when it blows through the church and this calling campaign will also include people from the past. I was involved in one situation where an Assistant Pastor made an accusation about a Senior Pastor and this Assistant Pastor brought these people, before this guy was even in the ministry to this meeting to kind of support his accusation he was making. And to me, that is the accuser of the brethren. Just bring up things from the past, I mean sometimes years back. And so it just gets sick. To me it is a sick demonic thing that takes place. And then there is the polarization of the church once your rumors start spreading. There are people who are just going to be loyal to the Pastor, sometimes blindly and sometimes that can be wrong, such as, you know I’m in the Jim Jones cult or whatever and no matter what he does he’s okay, he’s of God. But then the church is going to start dividing and then from there it will take many different forms. And what you have is some people that hear when they have never had a reason to doubt the Pastor, now all of a sudden they are doubting him. Other people, because they already have an ax to grind believe it instantly, oh, yea, I kind of felt something about that. And I found that division often what it is, is manifesting what is already impressively in peoples hearts. There is already a cry for a lack of contentment there in the heart and this is the only sense I can make of things of why God would allow this to happen so often, at least so frequently especially in this day and age of these things taking place is because people are not content, supportive, loyal to the pastor, he is worthy of double honor, to esteem him very highly, and if they are not doing that especially in my mindset is from a Calvary ministry and the focus of the pastor is to teach and if you are not receiving from that teaching ministry, then you are not receiving anything from the church. The way our services are designed and so, their life is stagnating and so here it kind of rises to the surface and as I said, I just didn’t get this from my own experience, but from talking with several pastors over the last few years. These are exactly the things that take place, these are the common denominators. Now maybe the rumors may be a little bit different, but these are the steps that take place. And interesting enough, you are going to find that these are the steps that we find in the Bible taking place when there is rebellion and resistance. As an Assisting Pastor, if you are called to be an Assistant, you need to be absolutely loyal. The pastor needs to be able to turn his back and trust his reputation with you. He is literally putting his reputation in your hands and if you can’t handle that and you can’t support the man, don’t be an assistant, don’t’ be a hireling. Don’t get paid and don’t enjoy the position, you need to be in a ministry to that you can absolutely be loyal to that individual, because you respect and you see the calling of God upon the persons life. Let me tell you this, once rumors get out, there is no way of undoing them. And I want to tell you, we went through this almost two years ago. And literally, every week, I deal with someone asking me, about an accusation that was made about my life. Every week, to this day. Today, I had someone call and they were wondering if we were still associated with Calvary Chapel, and they said, well, I heard that you weren’t and I’m like, well, I mean what could you say, in front of all the evidence, Pastor Chuck Smith comes here and he dedicates the building, I teach at the Calvary Chapel Bible College, I’m entrusted teaching doctrine there as well as Downey as well as at South Bay, I guess I need the man to adopt me formally so people will know that we are part of Calvary Chapel, but even then, I forged the adoption papers, you know, once these things get out, there is no stopping them, that was almost two years later, a lie that went about in my community and spread in the other communities and amazing. But again, whether it’s through the bookstore or whether it is through someone’s life, it’s brought to me. It’s almost two years later, and the pain is less and I don’t have a bitterness but it definitely rises up an emotion within your heart and mind and so these things are devastating upon a church. And so you do not want to be involved at all. If you are in the role of an assistant and things are taking place sometimes, but you know if it’s absolutely true and that person doesn’t belong in the ministry then there are steps in the scripture to take, but if it is not, you need to be loyal, you need to be absolutely loyal and you need to be prepared for that, that is what those books say, that’s the role of the assistant pastor, to be loyal at all times and if you can’t do that, then you are a weak spot that the enemy is going to try and work through. And so, be careful. Now, here are some points just to ponder. Here are some types of things that are common once the scenario happens. Well people say, well how could all these people be wrong. How could all these people in the church be wrong about this? Or how could all these leaders be wrong? Again, these are just things I want you to see in the scripture. Number Two: Many times it’s merely a perception which later turns into an accusation, which later turns into gossip and becomes fact. So someone may perceive something that they don’t like within the church and sometimes, that is just enough when there is this environment of you know, emotion, and division and accusation going through, those things become fact. The Fourth one, it’s amazing, again this one still blows my mind, it’s amazing that people will believe the worst about a pastor verses giving him the benefit of the doubt. The Bible says love believes all things. You know, if someone came up to me and said something about my wife, there would be no way that I would not believe it at all. I don’t care no matter what this persons reputation was or how honest that individual was because I love her, I would refuse to believe it until she told me face to face, yes this is true. That’s what love does. Did you ever see a mom or sons you know serial killer, ah, but he is such a good boy, he could not have done this, that’s because they love. That is love. Even in the face of all the facts. But when these things start happening, you know, it’s amazing how a man’s reputation can just be taken right from him. And just on a personal note, that is difficult to handle, you know, I know for myself I try as a pastor to keep my reputation clean in relationship to women. At fellowship, I do not counsel women on an ongoing basis, I don’t’ meet with them in my office, if I minister to them it is going to be out here publicly in the open or someone else will be present there. I put up protections. Financially, until this accusation came up, I mean basically I didn’t hardly sign any checks at all, people went through records and they found that since 1995, maybe 10 or 15 signatures, so you know, I did not have direct handling of the financing when the offering is taken, its taken, I don’t see it, there are two people that count it, it’s all accounted for, it’s all computerized so it’s amazing how people, you know once you throw the money term out you’ve got people going nuts, they are ready to believe things, and it blows my mind that you know, you could live as a pastor at least in my case for eleven years, trying to keep my integrity and it could be gone in a day. And I could never have it back. And you know, I was a little upset this phone call that I got today and someone gave me some wise counsel. And said, look something was stolen from you that you can never get back. And that is where the pain is and I just had to say, well, that’s true. But you know, the one thing that I did learn is that there is a fellowship in the sufferings of Christ. You know, they accused him of being born illegitimately, they said we’re not born of fornication, yea, virgin birth, right, he says he’s born of a virgin, I mean who is going to believe that story, really. I then He died a criminal, He dies accursed of God, anyone who hangs on a tree is cursed of God, and that is how he died in the eyes of man. And so, I have nothing to complain about in that sense compared to what Christ went through but it still hurts the human emotion and you known, time just went by and it’s just amazing that people that you work, labor with, love, have connections with, friendships, they will believe these things about you and it’s, the only thing I can say is that it is a spiritual thing that God allows to take place because I can’t make any sense of it. Then it goes on to say, usually the allegations cannot be substantiated but once rumor is out, it is too late. So, realize that, and God has built in some protections in the scripture for the protection of a mans reputation but usually that scripture is violated or not even considered, we’ll get to that later. Hot topics, money, or too much power, that’s a real big one, take too much upon yourself, who are you to make that decision, the other one is the close third, is second guessing the decisions about changes. Churches do not like changes and basically, we need the freedom to change as God wants to change things and people like to be stuck in their ways and this is not the way we used to do it and I want it this way and people sit back and analyze it and that somehow becomes related to, well who gives you the right to make those decisions. Never questioned before but in the mist of this environment then that’s when people start thinking about stuff. Now, next one, even when proven to be wrong the gossip will still continue, the man will be blamed. Now, I found that a division happens and let’s give the pastor the benefit of the doubt at this point, he is innocent, he didn’t do this thing, he is falsely accused. Division happens later on, still the rumors, like I said and then he still is the bad guy because he did this mean thing to the people at the church. You see, all these things that I am mentioning here, we are going to find them also in the scripture. And you don’t even have to look very hard for them. (Motives??) is the harder judged, well, he just doesn’t care about the flock like he used to. You know, like they know what is in that persons heart and you know, how could you prove or disprove, all you can say is, I love the flock, end of story. People that love you and respect you say amen, and move on, others question, they are looking for something. See, if you are looking for something, you are going to believe the tainted things. And again, that is where the loyalty of the heart is to be in the church if these things are going to be avoided, and I think this is why church division happens because there is not that loyalty, and there isn’t that humility. You know if you look at Philippians Chapter 2, you know we look at that as a big major doctrinal statement about how Christ humbled himself in becoming a man, but Paul’s main point there is to say if you want unity in the church, this is the mindset you have to have, the same mindset of the humility of Christ. You know, if there is any consolation of the spirit, you know fulfill my joy and be like minded. Just like the mind that was in Christ, so that’s why the people start thinking more of themselves. People start thinking you know, we are the ones that are the real care and concern for the church. You know this man does not have that anymore. Then at the bottom, there is a total lack of concern for unbelievers and new converts who are just going to be destroyed in this process. You know, a new Christian is not going to understand this. If you’ve been around the church for awhile, you do begin to realize that people are not perfect here, there are sinners here. And you realize that there is going to be conflict, there are going to be mistakes but as a new Christian you just think, oh they are so perfect and holy and when this happens in the leadership, you know, it buckles them. First of all there are non-Christians around well, who needs this? I could watch this on Channel 13 wrestling. You know, there is a battle and so they don’t know, they associate the gospel, they associate Jesus with our bickering and fighting, and that’s not taking into consideration. It’s like there is a rush to judgment, let’s get this taken care of and more pastors are paying very close attention at least in the Calvary’s that I know of, redoing their bylaws and making them fit to the style of ministry we have because many were done, like myself, I came into a ministry, I could care less about a bylaw. I didn’t know what a bylaw was and I didn’t know what the church constitution was and I figured we have the Bible, let’s go for it. But in these times, people who have never been concerned about a bylaw all of a sudden want the bylaws and say, how could I get this power. And to me, if a bylaw gives you power, then something is wrong. If you are resting on a bylaw to bring in a change of the pastor then something is not right in that situation. So, a lot of the Calvary guys what they do, some of the bigger ones especially, no one on their church is on their board. They have other pastors on the board. So, if a decision needs to be made whether this guy is going to be yanked out or not, it’s by people that he knows and that he trusts and if he is deserving to be yanked out then he should. And usually pastors realize that you do get somebody with a little, whether it is a power struggle or what, they are able to be calm in the situation and look at it. And I am on a couple of boards like that. You know, there a lot of different ways people are doing these things. To me, a church needs to be run as a church not as a corporation, that should not be the focus. We have to be, by the state law and we need to meet those laws because we are handling finances and all that sort of aspect but you know, when we start focusing on that, I think that is a shame. But there are ways within the bylaws where the pastor has the power to hire and to fire. And you know, to be able to protect themselves, because these things they usually do get to the board and it could get ugly. So each church has a little different way of doing things, but basically, within the last eight months, I talked with another pastor within our community. They went through a radical church split, right here in the City of La Mirada, I talked with a pastor two cites down the road that happened a year, before it happened to our church and he is still hurting, he is not over it. Just this last week, I went out to lunch with a guy who is in the process of this taking place, another Calvary and then I found out that my pastor, not Pastor Chuck but Pastor Mac, he recently experienced the same thing. So, it’s happening at a pretty fast rate, and at our last Pastor’s Conference we had one guy give a statement that Calvary is coming out with a new way to plant churches and that is the Assistant Pastor leaving and taking a group with him. And you know it was a joke, but it wasn’t funny. And it’s sad because it is true. And so it is just happening within the church, you know across the board. Not just in Calvary but in all groups. I think it is just a time that we are in right now and all I can do is teach you to say, don’t have any part in it. Because the bottom line is God could really care less what you think about me. Just because you have these perceptions, let’s say you think I’m the worse guy and I shouldn’t be the pastor, do you think that God really cares? Because God knows my heart, you don’t. If God’s hand is upon me, your opinion does not matter whether you think God should bless me or not. God is going to do what He is going to do and so these people that try and manipulate power and push power around, hey, God is in charge you know, and God is going to bless who He is going to bless, and it’s not going to be based upon the circumstances. And people’s sometimes their opinion becomes fact. And they are convinces but that is when you have to let the Lord work these things out. Well, let’s look at number 16 and 17. Think of all the things that I just said and it’s going to be amazing how we are going to see the same things in this rebellion of Kora and Datham. vs. 1 - Now Kora, the son of Ishar the son Kohaf, the son of Levi, with Datham and Ibarium the sons of Iliab and Ahn the sons of Pilaf the sons of Ruben took men and they rose up before Moses and the sum of the children of Israel, 250 leaders of the congregation representative of the congregation men of renown Two-hundred and fifty leaders came against Moses, how could these guys be wrong? How could 250 leaders of Moses who are close to him, be wrong about their perspective of his leadership? Well, literally, they are dead wrong and they are going to be dead. So, this is one of the things that builds momentum, well how can the assistant pastor or that person who works so closely with him who knows him, be wrong? How could the Pharisees be wrong about Jesus? How could all those churches be wrong about the apostle Paul? Read his writings, there is contention there. To the Galatians he says, What did I do wrong? You were ready to give your eye to me at one point. So, people can at one point be ready to lay it on the line and the next moment reject you. So don’t get caught up in numbers, all these people. I’m going to try and share some personal things with being a little general. When all this thing happened in our situation and I got a letter from a guy and he said, well, when it first happened, I thought there is no way this could be true about you Brian, I know you, you’ve ministered to me, you’ve taken time out to care for me, BUT, when I saw who the people were that were making these accusations are, I knew it to be true. And he said , you need to repent. You don’t belong in the ministry and you are the one dividing the church, because these guys cannot be wrong. And I’m saying, read your Bible, just because there are a lot of leaders, do you think Absalom was right when he kicked David out of his own kingdom, his own son? I mean, how could the guys own son be wrong, you know, hey, that is what I am saying, it doesn’t matter whose perspective it is, people can come to the wrong conclusions. Men have renowned in the church, leaders, it could be all the leaders, with the entire board, it could be every person in charge of every ministry, it doesn’t make them right. So that gives people credence, it must be true because these men of renown are saying this. And once that happens, the pastor sunk basically, and that is what gives some of this gossip the momentum and the authority. They gather together against Moses and Aaron and said to them, you take too much upon yourselves. That’s really the bottom line, you have too much power, you have too much authority, you have too much authority to make decisions. For all the congregation is holy, every one of them and the Lord is among them, hey the Lord is with us, we can make decisions as well, we’re holy, we are holy like you, we’re spiritual, we’re spiritual like you and a leader is going to say, you’re right. I agree, the Lord is with you, the Lord has given you a ministry, carry that ministry out, but He hasn’t given to you my ministry. We’re not going to team teach on Sunday morning, because one person that God has appointed to lead the flock, to teach them. And I believe that is the greatest place of leadership in the church, standing behind the pulpit giving out the Word of God. That makes that person the leader, what ever title that person has, that person is the one that God’s hand is upon and blessing and ministering to the flock. So, God appoints. And it’s not as if I take too much upon myself, I really believe that it was given to me by God. I think God appointed me. God gave me authority, I didn’t take up authority upon myself and I agree, everyone else is holy. Where we are a priesthood of believers but does it mean that there are not positions of authority within the church? See, here, he wants congregational rule. Hey, all the congregation is holy, we could all make decisions. And that seems to be one of the hot topics. And the Lord is among them, Why then do you exalt yourself above the congregation of the Lord. Why do you exalt yourself above the congregation of the Lord. So, here we have again, taking too much power. So, Moses heard it and he fell on his face, now he didn’t faint because he was shocked, he began to pray. And that is heavy duty and that is why God appointed this guy. He didn’t get into a slug fest with him, didn’t get angry with at this point didn’t start calling them names and he spoke to Kora and all the companies saying “Tomorrow morning the Lord will show who is his and who is holy and will cause them to come near to Him, that one whom He chooses he will cause him to come to near to Him.” So, Moses is comfortable, they say hey, if God doesn’t chose me, I don’t want this position. If God chooses me, I’ll stay with it. So you know, as a Pastor it ‘s not like you are holding on to some position, God gives it to you and if He chooses not to have you there any longer than, so be it. There is nothing sacred about this spot, it’s what is it that God has, let God choose. Who has God appointed. Moses wanted to know. And He is putting it in the Lord’s hands. Maybe the Lord is moving him out, maybe the Lord is setting him aside and maybe these guys are the true leaders, we’ll let God choose. Now unfortunately, you can’t exactly do this in the church today, sure let’s have a church meeting and those that want so and so you set on one side of the church and the others sit on the other side of the church then which ever side of the church then which ever side of the church the ground opens up and swallows those people, they chose badly. You better make sure, right? But Moses is saying, Look, let God settle this issue and that is where you just have to have confidence that God has called you. You haven’t pushed yourself in, God has appointed you and He will protect you. He will make it known who He chooses. Now it probably won’t be as dramatic as Chapter 16, but He will have his way to honor the person he has appointed in situations like this. So, he tells them, you come near, do this, take censes of all your company, put fire in them, put incense in them before the Lord and it shall be that the man whom the Lord chooses shall be the Holy one. And you take too much upon yourselves, you sons on Levi. See, they had a responsibility of helping in taking the implements of the tabernacle and tearing parting of it which is a wonderful privilege, these guys were priests. They had a special role within the priesthood these families, but it was not enough, they wanted just a little bit more power and Moses sees that, but men don’t know their own heart and that is why I say, a lot of times it is a person of power of some place of influence but secretly in his heart maybe that individual doesn’t even realize it but he wants more authority in the church. And you can tell by the accusations, hey you have all the authority to make decisions, I’m just as spiritual as you or need to spread that responsibility around. It’s not being satisfied with the ministry that individual has been given by God, he wants more. And Moses sees that, he says, you take too much upon yourselves you sons of Levi and then Moses said to Kora, here now you sons of Levi, is it a small thing that God of Israel has separated you from the congregation of Israel to bring you near to himself to do the work of the tabernacle of the Lord and to stand before the congregation to serve them, so again, it’s individuals that had of what men of renown that had that place of responsibility in the Nation of Israel. They had a wonderful privilege that others did not have in the Nation of Israel, but it was not enough. And this is the one thing that we have to make sure for all of our own hearts that we are not power hungry, position hungry. Just want whatever the Lord has given to me and we come back and say we’re just some profitable servants doing whatever God’s commanded us to do and we should be shocked that the Lord would use us rather than wanting more power. We sing that song, more love, more power, but I don’t think it’s in that sense. But here they had a wonderful privilege, see here again, it’s humility that brings unity. It’s hidden pride in the heart that causes these forces to come. And that He has brought you near to yourself, you and all your brothers and the sons of Levi with you are seeking the Priesthood also? Therefore you and all your company are gathered together, Look what it says, against the Lord, this is where you better make sure that if that Pastor is called of God, whether you like him or not. You’re coming against someone God has appointed you’re coming against the Lord, you’re not coming against that man. Romans 13 says that the governing authorities that God puts in are ministers. If you’re resisting him you are resisting God. How much more in the church? And this is why I think the effect upon peoples lives are so dramatic because they see it as a church issue or as I think someone who is in leadership position realizes hey, they’re messing with the Lord, don’t they have any fear of God. That ‘s the other comment that I would receive from other pastors, is don’t these people have the fear of God in their heart, that, hey the Lord is the one who has appointed me, they are coming against Jesus Christ, it is His church. Whom the Lord appoints, He will take out if He wants to, but man does not appoint and man does not take away. Again, it’s pride to think that I could remove this individual because the perception that I have. And that perception becomes fact and goes around and so Moses says, hey you are gathered against the Lord. So the bottom line is think twice, because your life will never be the same, nor will the life of your family ever be the same. If you come against someone in leadership and they are appointed by God because most people, as you asked don’t come back and repent and apologize. They stay convinced in their heart and the stubbornness and sometimes you see the fruit of that. There are others that do repent, I think God forgives, just like any other sin but this is the seriousness of it. So, I believe that anything that would happen to me here as a church is really not ultimately against me, it’s against the Lord and people have to deal with the Lord. My position or my reputation means nothing, it’s all about Christ. So, we are dealing with serious business here and see when people are in this whirlwind of emotions, they are not thinking, they’re emotions are five steps ahead and they are being drugged by those emotions. And that’s why things just happen so quick. And basically Moses just said you are gathered against the Lord and what is Aaron that you murmur against him. And Moses sent to call Dathan and Abyraim the sons of Eliab but they said we will not come up, this is a small thing that you have brought us out of the land of flowing milk and honey to kill us in the wilderness that you should keep acting like a prince over us, moreover you have not brought us into a land flowing with milk and honey nor given us inheritance of fields of vineyards where you put out the eyes of these men, we will not come up. So, then there are more accusations, you brought us out here to die, you’re not a good leader, you’re not taking us to where you said you were going to, and on and on it goes. vs. 15, then Moses was very angry, when I saw that today, I was a little comforted to be honest, you know I’ve had my moments of anger, I’ve had my moments of anger of people destroying other people’s faith. I mean a situation we had, there were non-Christians present. I think of this one gal that was just getting off drugs, came back to church for two weeks, she was gone after that for awhile, you know, I’d call her up and pray for her, she just had no care or concern for that sister, you know there was an anger that was there. And again, it wasn’t so much towards me, it was the effect that it had on peoples lives. Even some people are there in the church and maybe they didn’t know me as well and they are wondering what’s going on here, did this guy do something or what’s going on and I don’t fault them. You put all this junk in peoples head and it gets them messed up. So there is anger because you’re hurting God’s people ultimately. So, you know the reason I want to be very blunt is that I want to make sure that if you are going into ministry you have no part of this. I’ll tell you what, if the pastor has done something wrong and you remain loyal to him, God will bless you for that. You come against him and try to root him out in a hostile thing, you are going to be held accountable for that. You remain loyal, you remain loyal, you deal with it properly within the scripture, God will take care of it. But don’t be the agent that all this junk comes through. You know, I think of Saul, he was a pretty rotten guy wasn’t he? And what did David do? Served him. Blessed him. And David was able to come out of that situation unscathed not a rotten heart or a bitter heart, so you may think you are doing the right thing in driving someone out but you know, you will never be the same after that. And that ‘s why I’m saying, you just remain faithful to what God has called you to do and your role is to support the man that God has appointed. Again, if you cannot do that, then you need to move on. You need to move on quietly, don’t pull a train like the pied piper bringing people out, kicking and screaming, let God handle the situation, but you have to remain faithful to your situation. Then Moses was very angry and said to the Lord, do not respect their offering, I have not taken one donkey from them nor have I hurt one of them. And Moses said to Korah, tomorrow you and all your company be present before the Lord, you and they as well as Aaron. So, Moses was able to pray, Lord you know, you know what these people are saying is off-base. I haven’t taken anything from them, I haven’t abused the authority that you have given me, I haven’t taken anything away from them, you know that Lord, you work it out. And as a Pastor, I say you need to be able to pray, for you know these things are not true, you handle it. Each of you take a sensor and put incense it and each of you bring his sensor before the Lord 250 sensors, you also Aaron, each of you with a sensor. So, every man took his sensor, put fire in it, laid incense on it and stood at the door of the tabernacle of meeting with Moses and Aaron. I wish there was video in this day. And Korah gathered all the congregation against them at the door of the tabernacle of meeting. Then the glory of the Lord appeared to all the congregation, so now the people are with these guys. So, they influence now the entire group and there are estimates of 1 to 2 million people. So you have 2 million vs. 2. So, we think majority rules in the United States. It’s what God thinks, that is what counts. We got two people standing against this entire nation. So the Lord spoke unto Moses saying speak to the congregation saying get away from the tents of Korah, Dathan and Abiram. Then Moses rose and went to Dathan and Abiram and the elders of Israel followed him. So, now he does have some helping him. And he spoke to the congregation saying depart now from the tents of these wicked men, touch nothing of theirs less you be consumed in all their sins. So they got away from around the tents of Korah, Dathan and Abiram and Dathan and Abiram came out and stood at the door of the tents with their wives, their sons, and their little children. See their little kids are with them. Then Moses said, by this you shall know that the Lord has sent me to do all these works for I have not done them of my own will. Again, Moses concern, hey, you need to know God’s called me and God’s worked these things through my life, I haven’t done these by my own power. God has anointed me, God’s appointed me and He is the one blessing. If these men did now like all men or if they are visited by the common faith of all men then the Lord is not sent me. But if the Lord creates a new thing and the earth opens it’s mouth and swallows them up with all that belongs to them and they go down alive into the pit, then you will understand that these men have rejected the Lord. That would be pretty obvious wouldn’t it. We wouldn’t have to say, I wonder who the Lord’s picked here. Then it came to pass as he finished speaking all the words that the ground split apart under them and the earth opened it’s mouth and swallowed them up with their households and all their men with Korah with all their goods. So they and all those with them went down alive into the pit, the earth closed over them and they perished from among the congregation, then all Israel who were around them fled at their cry, for they said less the earth swallow us up also. And a fire came out from the Lord and consumed the 250 men who were offering incense. Oh, torched them.
You know, fortunately I guess, church splits are not going to be that dramatic. But God will communicate through who he has appointed. Because sometimes it is confusing saying, maybe this is right, maybe it isn’t, God will communicate somehow. And I remember standing in front of my church saying, I know some of you may have doubts and concerns right after we went through this I said, either you believe me and you’re going to follow me and be loyal or you’re not, it’s either in your heart or it isn’t. But I’ll tell you what, here is how God will communicate it. If I keep preaching the Word of God here and people keep getting saved and the Lord brings the increase in the church, that is the evidence. Because who caress what I think, who cares what you think. Let’s just continue to make room for the Lord to continue to bless and if he continues to bless then he has obviously spoken these things were not true. And you know obviously at the beginning we went through some difficult times, but ever since that the Lord has greatly blessed us. He has blessed me more in the last year, personally, last year in so many months then in all the ministry that I spent all those years laboring for the first ten years. And I’m not doing anything different. I’m not a different person, it’s not like I’m some wiser because I went through that experience, no. I’m doing the same thing that I’ve done since the first day that I started pasturing here, and God is blessing it and that’s just the bottom line. And to me that’s where my comfort is. Again, I don’t care what people think, I can’t be worried about what others are thinking, I want God’s blessing. I was listening to a study that Bryan Broderson was doing on the radio today and Moses and his conversation with the Lord and the Lord said, well, I’ll send an angel with you, and he said no, if you are not going, I’m not going, I want your presence. And really, that’s all I want, that’s all I care about is God’s blessing upon my life in the ministry that he has called me to and that is what is important to me. What people think about it, again, that is not going to hinder the power or the work of God. So, that I think is the evidence. Because all they can do is make all these accusations but who does the Lord bless? Who does the Lord continue to use? To me that is speaks volumes. Now, if you are married and you have kids, you get involved in some sort of rebellious things, these families were affected and I believe your family will be affected. I think you allow your kids to see you do this, they think it’s okay and acceptable. And I don’t think they will ever view your pastor the same way ever again. So you are sewing in them the seeds of rebellion in the future and maybe even towards yourself. It’s kind of interesting you see what is happening here in Numbers 16? Aaron was involved with this against Moses earlier, him and his sister. And so the kind of thing that he set, came right back to haunt him now. They were picking on Aaron too remember, Moses said, well what does Aaron have to do with this. So, I do believe there are consequences. You know, blessed are the peacemakers. When you want to have peace, be a peace maker. You want to have seeds of rebellion sewn down in the hearts of your kids, let them see you rebel against any authorities that are here in the land. You set an example for them. It’s okay for you to rebel against authority that God puts up, then they are going to assume that’s alright and there is definitely an affect in the hearts of the kids and it’s amazing to me what parents are involved in these church issues will allow their kids to hear. You know parents can’t handle it, why would they bring their kids through these issues and let them try to deal with these emotions. It affects them more than we realize, you know. We try to shelter my kids, unfortunately they were young, still are and they just kind of, all of a sudden some of their friends were not around. What’s going on? Well, you know, some people decided to leave, kind of left it at that . And you know, trying to preserve them from having any attitude towards people. You know, I know how hard it was on me and my wife, let alone to put my child in that and you know, they are clueless. And so, you have to be careful, this is deadly stuff. vs. 36 through 41, then the Lord spoke to Moses saying tell Alliazer the Son of Aaron the Priest to pick up the sensors out of the blaze for they are holy and scatter the fire some distance away. The sensors of these men have sinned against their own souls. Notice that , they sinned against their own soul. They caused it upon themselves. They brought God’s judgment upon their own life. They are going to experience a consequence of rebelling against the Lord. What’s going to happen is because their life is going to suffer Moses and Aaron are the ones who are going to be at fault. This is an amazing thing when the church division happens and this group goes through it and they are hurt and broken, Oh, you know we went through all this pain, it’s the Pastor’s fault. They cause it, they start it, it originates in their own mind, they’re hurt, oh, I’m hurting because of him. It’s amazing that is what is going to happen, and I read it, they sinned against their own soul and they caused it, it’s their fault. You know, it’s hard for me to have a great degree of compassion if someone walked up and they took a hammer and started beating up on themselves and say feel sorry for me. It’s like, you caused it. I didn’t do anything to harm you. And then you get blamed. So they sinned against their own souls. They brought death upon themselves. Involved in rebellion you are bringing on the consequences upon your life and if you are married, have children upon your household. Because look at vs. 41, on the next day all the congregation of the Children of Israel murmured against Moses and Aaron saying, “You have killed the people of the Lord.” See, you can’t win in these situations. This is what happens after the division, even though again, let’s say a person is 100% innocent. It happens against them, they are accused of all these things all these people are upset and you caused this pain on these people. You’re the one causing division. See, it’s like again, there was a handbook that was written and these are the same things that happen, again, every pastor I’ve talked with, it’s like they’ve experienced Numbers 16 and after they go through it, they are still the bad guy. Amazing. Now it happened that when the congregation gathered against Moses and Aaron , gee they are going for round two, they didn’t learn. That they turned toward the tabernacle immediately and suddenly the cloud covered it and the glory of the Lord appeared then Moses and Aaron came before the tabernacle meeting and the Lord spoke to Moses saying get away from among this congregation I’m going to consume them in a moment and they fell on their faces. Now that speaks volumes to me what my response needs to be. I need to be praying for these people because when you come against someone that the Lord has appointed there are consequences. Rather than to get wrapped up, oh, my feelings, this and that and woe is me, but we pray for those for mercy upon their lives. Because again, I think it’s demonic when it happens. I mean, how could it be spiritual to divide a church. How could that be the spirit of the Lord? Does God allow and bring good from a situation, yes he can, because he is God, but it’s not the Holy Spirit motivated. And that is what these people think that they are being led by the Holy Spirit because they are the ones who have concern for the flock. And usually it’s at the cost of one person, tear apart this persons reputation. What they do not realize is not everyone thinks the way they think and they don’t speak for the congregation and what they are doing is they are hurting all these other people that do love that pastor. So, it’s not spiritual, it’s not led by the Holy Spirit and I believe it is demonic. And you don’t want to have anything to do with demonic activity. And then the bottom line is that in Numbers Chapter 17 Moses says, okay I’m tired of it, all you guys get a stick and put it in here and whoever God chooses, he will make it manifest and Aaron’s rod buds and Moses brings it out and says, God has chosen Aaron. So, again, Moses leaves it up to the Lord, who has God appointed, it’s Aaron because God brought fruit from his life. God made it evident. I think that is what you have to look for, not perceptions and here say and gossip and rumors. But, who is God blessing? Who is God bearing fruit through? Let me give you a couple of other Scriptures on the last page, things that you need to absolutely be aware of. 1st Timothy Chapter 5 vs. 19 – It says, do not receive an accusation against an Elder accept from two or three witnesses. Two or three witnesses. One person go off the wall and not like the guy and make up or perceive something. And a witness isn’t just someone who says, yes, I agree with that, I agree that is a bad decision. But a witness is that something is definitely wrong. And this Scripture gets violated in these rushes to judgment. You just need one person, oh this is the person, let’s bring him out, he saw this! And they violate the Word of God over and over again in these situations. One guy that as I said, I just met with recently, someone in the degree of responsibility at the church broke into the computer system and illegally basically stole some financial records or took some financial records. And he went around with these records in an envelope and said “I have enough evidence, right here against this man.” Nobody ever looked at the records or opened it and said what’s in there. But that was one of the basis of authority to bring up this uprising. Then this calling campaign happened, oh yea, we have the records. You know, two or three witnesses. So again, the Scriptures are clear, the Scripture has a built in protection for the people that God appoints. Now is someone is sinning, it says those who are sinning rebuke in the presence of all that the rest also may fear and he says if I tell you to charge you before God to do this without partiality. So there is a sin that is going on, it says handle it. It has to be confirmed by two or three witnesses. Not two or three disgruntled church _______. But two or three witnesses. Again, that’s the protection, for the pastor, for the elder but also protection for the flock, if something is going on, these things need to be substantiated. And in my situation somebody read Matthew 18 to our congregation and it sounded as if people had come to me one on one, then two or three witnesses and now it needs to be brought before the church. And I was accused of these things that it was the first time I was being accused of it. Never talked about it, it wasn’t two or three witnesses. Just a violation of Scripture but the Scripture Matthew 18 was read – set the stages up, we went through biblical procedure. And it just wasn’t right, wasn’t correct. And so, you know, all I can say is that I am still feeling the effect of it today. So don’t have anything to do with it. If you do, don’t call me and say you need some help. Don’t say you went to Calvary Chapel Bible School, that’s not the type of disciples that we want to see raised up in the Ministry. We want to see people that are humble and loyal, not going to allow this tragedy to continue in the church. You know those books that you have on Role Assisting Pastor to me from a pastor’s perspective are invaluable. I’ll tell you what, let’s say, I’m a pastor and I didn’t know those books were available and someone gave them to people that were working with me, I’d want to kiss that man for discipling people with that mentality. For myself, I guess I just underestimated, I just didn’t think these types of things would happen, but now I like that book a lot , I read it, this is what we are all about. So, here it says by two or three witnesses. Now, I want to continue a little bit tonight but also next week what I want to look at is, men in the bible other than Moses that have went through this and how they responded to it to get an example. But what I want to look at tonight is Joseph. Look with me over at Genesis Chapter 45 – here is what I want to share with you, God selected Joseph, God was going to bless him, his father gave him maybe a little too much favoritism and the other brothers became jealous which is natural and normal but it’s not normal to tell your dad, your son died and to sell him off as a slave. Jealousy okay, we could understand a bit there but what they did was rotten and horrible. So, he sold off into slavery he goes there and God starts raising him up, because God’s hand of blessing was upon him. He’s lied about them not he is thrown into prison, he is there in the prison and he is raised up to the leader of the prison. Finally he gets out of prison and obviously you know the rest of the story. God is going to use the guy. It doesn’t matter what his brothers thought of him or anybody else, Pottifer. And that’s the thing that is encouraging to me is that it doesn’t matter what people say or people think, God is going to accomplish through my life what He is going to accomplish. And I think that one of the real test is not just going through the difficult situation but then how do you treat others after that? And in Genesis Chapter 45, this is where his brothers are before but he had the power to squash them. And I think this is the greatest test that Joseph faced. Not being in the pit, not being in prison but right here. After all these years, all power just to say, they’re gone, they’re dead. So that wasn’t in Joseph’s heart. I think this is a real test. Once you make it through, now how are you going to treat others that have wronged you. I think that is what God brings us to. And so, he shows them there in verse 3 then Joseph said to his brothers, I am Joseph, does my father still live? But his brothers could not answer him because they were dismayed in his presence. Then in Chapter 50 they still are not sure because when his father dies vs. 19 they came and said remember when Dad was alive he said don’t harm us. So they thought Joseph was now and the father was dead and he was going to get him vs. 19 – Joseph said to them, do not be afraid for am I in the place of God? See, when your life has been judged and you know it’s not right, you don’t now want to judge others. Because you realize that peoples perception could be wrong and my perception of that individual could be wrong. Shows you pretty clearly not to judge. Don’t put yourself in the place of God. But as for you, you meant evil against me but God meant it for good in order to bring it about as it is this day to save many people. And your confidence has to be in the Lord, that if God allows these things to happen but He also means it for good. Even though man’s intentions may be wrong , may even be evil, God is able to turn it around for good. And I know for me, I sure stand here as a testimony of God turning things around. I definitely hit the lowest point in my ministry two years ago December when we went through a situation and then we were over here in the office over here on Leffingwell, I hated that office, there were cockroaches there, three doors down there was a bar, someone got shot right outside of our office, there were drug dealings going on, just a bad place, plus no matter what you did to it, it was a depressing environment. And I wanted to get out of there and we tried to look for places and literally it was either two or three places that we tried to get in, they changed owners or they went in default or bankruptcy, it was just really bizarre. It was like I felt like the Lord had us there, not that I wanted to be there. Well the thing almost burned down. There was a fire that started at the bar and came right to our building and by the Grace of God a friend that I went to High School with and played football with was a Fireman out in a Station out of Whittier and said we are going to stop this fire right here, I know the pastor of this office. And so they stopped it right there and our part of the building did not burn because they were chopping away at the roof. It had a little hole in ours. Well, in December it rains, so the whole place smelled like smoke and then it rained so we had to move all of our stuff up against the wall and we had this little answering machine, and I put something on there like “Well, I’d like to answer the phone but we’ve been through the fire and the flood and waiting for the small still voice.” So, then I get a phone call and I have to deal with all this stuff that we went through. Here I am standing in my office, holes in it, smells like smoke, it’s flooded out, everything is against the wall, half my church is gone and I get a call saying, “we need to handle this stuff that’s happening at the church.” You know, I almost passed out. It just hit me like a, I had to sit down then I had to go through this whole thing of unwinding what happened. Can’t get any lower. But after that, the Lord started to bless, we moved like four doors down from where the office was in the little …. the office turned into about the size of the stage, we had to cram everything in there, then we eventually moved to where we are, where our offices are on Leffingwell, at the same time we negotiated to get the bookstore and that by miracle of God got off the ground and right after that, be able to come in and buy the church. Then to have Pastor Chuck come out and dedicate it, was really one of the highlights for me, just the joy and now the Lord has blessed my own personal ministry through a radical way. I have the opportunity to teach every day. The only day that I don’t teach the Bible is on Saturday’s and I relax and I am with my family. And so I’m teaching all over the place and that is what God has given me to do. So, God has just poured out His spirit upon the things that He has called me to do. And we were down at the pit in one point believe me, the people were hurting, I was hurting and I could not come to church and express that, I couldn’t really say anything, I didn’t want’ to add fuel to anyone’s anger or frustrations of questions until I could be somewhat quiet about it but yet on the inside, and then God just started to build and to rebuild and what was meant to try and destroy actually it’s tuned around to be God’s blessing. And God does have a way of healing the heart as well because the first service that we had here at this church was literally from one Sunday to the next year, that same Sunday in December where you had this tragedy take place. And to me it was God saying, “My hand is upon You.” That’s what I needed. I’m not sure if your perception is right, God has called me. But other people’s perception that I did something wrong, I want God’s perception. And only I’m to know that is that is He blessing the ministry that He has called me to? And to me that is the bottom line. And we’ll close with 1st Corinthians Chapter 4 – When we went through our situation, we were going through 1st Corinthians, kind of appropriate. And the day that we had a blow out on Sunday at our first service at the second service we continued through 1st Corinthians and this was the passage that we were in. – It says this, let a man consider as a servant of Christ and stewards for the mystery of God. What is required in stewards that one be found faithful. Look at this part, but with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by a human court. When Paul had to say, I do not care what you think about me. Because they are resisting his leadership, he had to write a second letter and the second letter pretty much emphasizes his authority as an apostle. He had to say, look, I don’t care what you think about me or any human court. He said, it’s a small thing. It bugged him a little but it was a small thing. So, I mean he was human and it bothered him but he said it was a small thing. He says in fact, I do not even judge myself. See a lot of times, we do not know our own heart, do we? The Proverbs says, every man proclaims his own goodness, he says let others proclaim your goodness. No one could know there own heart, it is deceptive. So, Paul says, I don’t judge myself, for I know nothing against myself, you know I’m not justified by this. So, I could think, hey, I ‘m a good guy, I didn’t do anything. That doesn’t mean I’m right, does it? But he who judges me is the Lord. The Lord is going to communicate, like Moses, hey . . I was put through a test. God’s called you, he’ll take your offering, if not, it’s going to die and a new thing is going to happen. So, we’ll let the Lord decide. Therefore, judge nothing before the time, that’s counsel. Paul is again reflecting on his life, he says, I’m just a servant of God. God’s called me and I need to be faithful to what he has called me to do. So as far as you judging me, I’m not going to let it trouble me, but judge nothing before the time. See, you don’t’ have the ability to judge your own heart, and you especially do not have the ability to judge someone else. Well, again when these things are happening and emotions are flying, I think it’s demonic, people all of a sudden have these great insight of what is in your life. It’s stated as fact. And it is believed as fact, so Paul says, judge nothing before the time until the Lord comes who will bring to light the hidden things of darkness and reveal the counsel of the heart that each one’s praise will come from God. So, you do as a Pastor come to the point of basically saying “ I could care less what you think about my life.” I am going to honor the Lord, I am going to be faithful to him. And if you can’t do that, don’t be a Pastor. Or go Pastor a church where there is a congregational vote and let everyone else decide all the things. Because if you care what people think you won’t teach properly, you won’t teach with authority when you come to certain passages. You won’t make the right decisions, it’s going to offend people. You know people are going to be bent because this decision has to be made and some will like it and some don’t, you just care, God what do you want here? What’s your desire for the church? You’re the Head of the Church, what do you want in this situation and your heart has to be free from that, from concern of others. So, if you always need to be accepted by people then you need to get over that. And the only way to get over it is to have people hate you. Then once you get enough people hating you, it’s like, take a number, you know. It doesn’t bother me anymore. Line up. And you do come to a point where you realize it just doesn’t really matter anymore what the church thinks, it’s what the Lord thinks. And when I stand before the Lord it says your praise will come from Him. And so, you don’t need the acceptance of men. Paul says, if I am a pleaser of men then I can not be a servant of Christ. And being in the ministry, again, I’m just thinking from the Pastor’s perspective, you have to be a leader. You have to realize that things you do and say are going to ruffle people’s feathers, they are not going to like it. But that has no bearing on the way you lead and what you teach. You just go for it, you do what is pleasing to God and you don’t have to worry about it. That’s your focus. And you have to say, well, whatever you think about me just does not bother me that much. And then if you think about it, if you look at just about every leader in the Bible they are rejected to one degree or another. So, why should I think my ministry should be different, why do you think your ministry should be different. You work in the Jr. High ministry, don’t expect every body to love you. Don’t expect those Jr. Higher’s to say, Ah, that was the best lesson I ever learned, I can’t wait for next week. If you serve in the children’s ministry, parents are not going to come back and thank you for years of service and labor in there, teach the Bible, I mean I don’t want to be all pessimistic but I’m just saying, hey you just have to serve the Lord. That’s what you are in it for and you have to take the good with the bad. You have to be free from outward constraint, what people think, just have to come to that point, I don’t care and that gives you the freedom to serve the Lord. So, I’ll tell you what? If you want to survive through difficult times in the church, other people may be going haywire around you, you remain loyal to the one God has appointed. If God removes that individual, he is able to do that, He does not need your help. He’ll bring things, the Bible says, be sure your sin will find you out. It will be obvious and it won’t be in a hostile environment where people are you know, what do they call it? A Kangaroo court or you’re dead before you even go in there, it’s already settled. It will be obvious and evident and God will bring it. See because again, if you remain faithful to what God has called you to do, hey that person is wrong, God will deal with them. God will work it out, and if you are the one that is supposed to be in that position, God will raise you right up into that spot. Promotion does not come from the East or from the West but from the Lord. You know, also the other thing is God’s choice is not our choice, is it? Remember Samuel, “Ah, this must be the anointed of the Lord, Look at Him!” Then he goes through all the sons and says, do you have anybody else? Oh, there is a little guy out there in the field, you know I didn’t even consider him and that was the one the Lord picked. So, the Lord doesn’t always pick the ones that the people might pick. God knows that heart and he alone knows the heart and so we need to trust Him, you know, sometimes you have to leave these things to the Lord. You know, I guess what I am trying to say is, Let’s say a pastor has done something shady. And it really can’t be proven or disproven or maybe it is, it has no bearing on you and in the way you are supposed to treat someone the Lord’s appointed. If you want your heart to remain right in the ministry. Because what happens often times, is that people go through this and it takes them years later before they ever get involved in another church. And they are shelved for a time because of the hurts and the pain. But you just stick with what God has called you to do, He asked you to support this man until the Lord removes him. If he keeps him there, you keep being faithful. You will be alright. You get involved in this stuff, you’ll get eaten up. And too much has already happened and is happening in the church. And so I guess I just stated it as a warning for you to chew on some things, he who has ears let him hear what the Spirit of God is wanting to say, hopefully I am preventing things in the future or maybe preparing you for some things you will face in the future.
END OF TAPE.