Craving Compliments

The greatest temptation for any minister is pride. A great sign of pride in a minister is a willingness to compromise the message of Christ to get strokes from his flock. Calvin addresses this when he comments on the phrase from Luke 6:26 “Woe to you when all men speak well of you.”

“Was there ever a more detestable conspiracy? Prophets and teachers of the church whose task is to instruct-mere fiddlers, playing sweet songs which tickle the ears of their audience but which achieve nothing! Meantime the flatterers are lavish in their praise, ‘Ah! An outstanding teacher! An excellant man! What more could we ask for?’ So while some crave compliments and others tell them what they want to hear, our Lord Jesus Christ gives the lie to all such notions: Woe to you when men speak well of you. ‘In the end,’ he says, ‘ you will see that the false prophets deceived you with their flattering words. Cursed are you if the world speaks well of you.'”