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A person of moral and/or spiritual leadership should expect to have to live up to higher standards. There is no one more pathetic than the religious leader who is found to have clay feet. We need to consider that you are human. What you do on your own personal time is none of my business. But, if you take a specific position of leadership, you better prepare to live up to it.
A pastor I knew gave into temptation. When his indiscretion was uncovered, he lost his position, his family, his honor, his self esteem. He was a broken man and left in disgrace. I don’t know what eventually came of him, but I saw part of what he went through. He was forced to leave town. Had he been a factory worker living in a poor part of town with no social or religious obligations, our society would not have punished him so severely. His sin would have been as serious in the eyes of his wife, but not as damaging to society. He had a requirement to live up to the standards he preached. He had a requirement to be an example to his flock.
If you are a role model then your sin is compounded and then compounded again by the number of people who look to you.
Will God hold me to a higher standard if I have a position of higher authority? I think so. It is part of the “Talents” parable. If I am given greater authority, then more will be expected of me. Society punished the religious leader greater than it would have punished a common man. I believe God expects more. The one who is given more is expected to return more.
1. Matthew 25:14-30
copyright© 2007 George L Snyder