Many servants of God are neutralized and eliminated through the fear of men, the respect of men. If you speak the words of God then people will hate you, they will reject, you they will persecute you. You will not be accepted by people if you speak the words of God, and people will leave you. The church members will disappear, the contributions and donations will disappear. They will call your heretic and they will persecute you.
But if you do not speak the words of God, if you compromise for the acceptance of men, you will be neutralized, you will be eliminated. If you respect men more than God then you cannot be a disciple of Jesus Christ, and you cannot bear fruit for the kingdom of God. Many preachers have been compromised, because they were offered a nice positions in churches, provided that they speak the words of the church, that they do not speak harshly, that they do not speak about sin, that they do not speak the words that God gives them to speak. Many are afraid to speak the truth because men will reject them.
Many have submitted themselves to the leadership of the church, to the elders instead of to Jesus Christ, and therefore they have become useless for the kingdom of God. Many of those have been cut off because if they did not bear fruit for the kingdom of God. We will get cut off. The respect for men is a snare, that has destroyed and eliminated many. I want to read for you what happened to a young prophet who respected the old prophet and rather than doing what God told him to do, he listened to the old prophet and he was cut off; he was killed.
I read from 1Kings 13. God sent this young prophet to go and speak judgment against an evil king of Israel, Jeroboam. I read from verse 1: Now behold there came a man of God from Judah to Bethel by the word of the Lord. While Jeroboam was standing by the altar to burn incense, he cried against the altar by the word of the Lord and said: “Oh altar, thus says the Lord Behold a son shall be born to the house of David, Josiah by name; and on you he shall sacrifice the priests of the high places who burn incense on you, and human bones shall be burned on you.” Then he gave a sign the same day saying:” This is the sign which the Lord has spoken, Behold the altar shall be split apart and the ashes which are on it shall be poured out. Now when the King heard the saying of the man of God, which he cried against the altar in Bethel, Jeroboam stretched out his hand from the altar saying: “Seize him!” But his hand which he stretched out against him dried up so that he could not draw it back to himself. The altar was also split apart and the ashes were poured out from the altar, according to the sign which the man of God had given by the word of the Lord. The king said to the man of God:”Please entreat the Lord your God and pray for me that my hand may be restored to me.” So the man of God entreated the Lord and the Kings hand was restored to him, and it became as it was before. Then the king said to the man of God:”Come home with me and refresh yourself and I will give you a reward.” But the man of God said to the king” “If you were to give me half your house, I would not go with you, nor will I eat bread or drink water in this place, for so it was commanded me by the word of the Lord saying:”You shall not eat bread, nor drink water, nor return by the way which you came. So he went another way and did not return by the way which he came to Bethel.
He obeyed the Word of God against the king, but see what happened then. Another prophet, a man of God, came to him and seduced him.
I read from verse 11. “Now an old prophet was living in Bethel and his sons came and told him all the deeds which the man of God had done that day and of the words which he had spoken to the king, these also they related to their father. Their father said to them:”Which way and did he go?” Now his sons had seen the way in which the man of God who came from Judah had gone. Then he said to the sons: “Saddle the donkey for me.” So they saddled the donkey for him and he rode away on it. So he went after the man of God and found him sitting under an oak. And he said to him:”Are you the man of God that came from Judah:” and he said:”I am.” Then he said to him:”Come home with me and eat bread.” He said:”I cannot to return with you, nor go with you, nor will I eat bread or drink water with you in this place, for a command came to me by the word of the Lord:”You shall eat no bread, nor drink water there. Do not return by going the way which you came.” He said to him:”I’m also a prophet like you, and an angel spoke to me by the word of the Lord saying: “Bring him back with you to your house, that he may eat bread and drink water,” but he lied to him.
So he went back with him and ate bread in his house, and drank water. Now it came about, as they were sitting down at the table that the word of the Lord came to the prophet who had brought him back, and he cried to the man of God who came from Judah saying:”This is the Lord:”Because you have disobeyed the command of the Lord, and have not observed the Commandant with the Lord your God commanded you, but have returned and eaten bread and drunk water in the place of which He said to you:”Eat no bread, and drink no water, your body shall not come to the grave of your father’s.” It came about after he had eaten bread and after he had drunk and he saddled the donkey for him, for the prophet whom he had brought back. Now when he had gone a lion met him on the way and killed him, and his body was thrown on the road, with the donkey standing beside it. The lion also was standing beside the body and behold men passed by and saw the body thrown on the road and the lion standing beside the body. So they came and told it in the city where the old prophet lived. Now when the prophet who brought him back from the way heard, he said it is a man of God who disobeyed the command of the Lord, therefore the Lord has given him to the lion, which has torn him and killed him, according to the word of the Lord which he had spoken, which he spoke to him, and he spoke to his sons saying:”Saddle the donkey for me.” And they saddled it. He went and found his body thrown on the road, with the donkey and the lion standing beside the body. The lion had not eaten the body, not torn the donkey. So the prophet took up the body of the man of God, and laid it on the donkey and brought it back, and he came to the city of the old prophet to mourn and to bury. He laid his body in his own grave and they mourned over him saying: “Alas my brother.”
This young prophet listened to the old prophet instead of listening to God. We have one Leader, we have one Lord and Master. If we follow Jesus Christ we must listen to Him and obey Him. We are called to serve Him only, and not be distracted by people. Many servants of God have been neutralized, eliminated and killed by God because they submitted themselves to men, they did not keep on listening to and serving the Lord. The respect of men is a snare that has, and will destroy many. Follow Jesus Christ and obey Him, then you will bear fruit; but if you start respecting men you are not suitable to be a servant of God, you are not suitable for the kingdom of God. You will get cut off and burned.
May Jesus bless you.