Men’s Praise

John 12:42-43 WEB

Nevertheless even of the rulers many believed in him, but because of the Pharisees they didn’t confess it, so that they wouldn’t be put out of the synagogue, [43] for they loved men’s praise more than God’s praise.


Self-protection. We often care more about people’s opinions than we care for God’s opinion. It’s a matter of self-protection. It’s easy to tell if we care more about men’s opinions than God’s. We know it because we do not open our mouths when we should be telling others about Jesus. When people at church have a group opinion, we say nothing if we see a problem with the opinion. We are more concerned with being liked and included so we say nothing.

Those who do open their mouths are subject to derision and rejection. It is not easy to open our mouths for Jesus. But it is important. It is with our mouths that we confess Jesus (Rom 10:9), it is with our mouths that we rebuke sin in other believers, and it is with our mouths that we give God praise. We should also open our mouths to testify of God’s goodness to unbelievers. However, we often keep our mouths closed because we are protecting ourselves.

We can trust God to protect us. In Psalms, there are many verses that talk about the justice of God. The Lord justifies his children. When we trust the Lord fully, we can be assured that his justice for us will prevail. If we open our mouths in love to confront sin in the church, we must be bold. If we open our mouths to witness to the lost, we must be bold. We can’t be like the religious leaders of Jesus’ time on earth. They quietly followed leaders full of sin and disbelief for the sake of inclusion and destroyed the faith of many.


Lord, please help me speak up when I have opportunities to share your love with the lost. Teach me to lovingly rebuke sin in other believers. I pray I will not be ashamed to open my mouth for you. I trust you to keep me safe and justify me when I speak for you. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Pointing to Jesus

John 1:35-37 WEB

Again, the next day, John was standing with two of his disciples, [36] and he looked at Jesus as he walked, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God!” [37] The two disciples heard him speak, and they followed Jesus.


John the Baptist showed his humility by pointing to Jesus. Pride often masquerades as humility. But pride is easy to discern. Pride wants attention, glory, and praise. Ministers struggling with pride draw the attention of the sheep to themselves rather than to Jesus.

Many ministers make themselves so visible the love of the sheep goes to them rather than Jesus. We have all seen the minister that says the most profound and amazing things. The chatter around them goes along the lines of “profound, amazing, brilliant.” You don’t hear much about Jesus from the sheep, rather, you hear about the minister.

Lord, please give me the grace to point others to you and to avoid drawing your glory to myself. In Jesus’ name, amen.