What happens when those who are leading in worship actually lead others astray? If the religious leaders are careless, the followers will rarely surpass their example.
2 “And now, O priests, this command is for you. 2 If you will not listen, if you will not take it to heart to give honor to my name, says the Lord of hosts, then I will send the curse upon you and I will curse your blessings. Indeed, I have already cursed them, because you do not lay it to heart. 3 Behold, I will rebuke your offspring, and spread dung on your faces, the dung of your offerings, and you shall be taken away with it. 4 So shall you know that I have sent this command to you, that my covenant with Levi may stand, says the Lord of hosts. 5 My covenant with him was one of life and peace, and I gave them to him. It was a covenant of fear, and he feared me. He stood in awe of my name. 6 True instruction was in his mouth, and no wrong was found on his lips. He walked with me in peace and uprightness, and he turned many from iniquity. 7 For the lips of a priest should guard knowledge, and people should seek instruction from his mouth, for he is the messenger of the Lord of hosts. 8 But you have turned aside from the way. You have caused many to stumble by your instruction. You have corrupted the covenant of Levi, says the Lord of hosts, 9 and so I make you despised and abased before all the people, inasmuch as you do not keep my ways but show partiality in your instruction.”
The Audience (1-2a)
- Priests were the primary spiritual leaders in Israel.
- Levites settled disputes over the law.
- Levites interceded on behalf of Israel.
- Through Christ, we have become part of a royal priesthood.
- As disciple-making Christians, we are responsible for leading someone spiritually.
The Curse (2b-4)
- God giving curses is proof of His faithfulness.
- The manner in which you follow the Lord will directly impact those who look up to you.
- Rejection of the Lord leads to rejection from the Lord.
The Contrast (5-9)
- The focus of our fear is often in the wrong place.
- The temptation is to elevate the worship of ourselves over the worship of God.
- True life and peace come from God, not from man.
- Leaders have a responsibility to proclaim Christ in all they do.
- Followers have a responsibility to pray for all their leaders do.
- Pray for your leader’s:
- Teaching (Acts 20:27)
- Holiness (1 Peter 1:15-16)
- Marriage (Ephesians 5:22-33)
- Perseverence (Hebrews 10:36)