Leading with Fear: Gathering or Scattering?

It looks like we are going backwards and the use of making people afraid to gain power and control is again used by several Christian as well as Islamic groups.


Today we present one of the writings of Tony Franklyn, a pastor by St. Mark United Methodist Church, who finds it is a fundamental law of nature itself that we are blessed to be a blessing.

In the previous week we look at our abilities. One of the abilities of life is the ability to see which we can use to see the Work of God in forests,

where tall trees, who block the sun from reaching smaller sprouts eventually fall pray to sickness, die, and then become fire hazards, whose ashes eventually nourish those small sprouts again. {Blessing}

In nature we also have the ability to see the blessings of God.

We see it in the fields who fall pray to swarms of locusts, who must then move on to the next field or starve because of their own insatiable hunger. We see it millions of examples of organisms living together and helping one another find food and safety… and it is the very foundation of agriculture, where we, human beings, protect, preserve, and nurture the land and animals around us so that we too might have food. Whatever blessing any creature possesses, it is made to serve in the natural order of life to bless those around it. {Blessing}

Pastor Franklyn served in about ten different churches and had the opportunity for leading several para-church ministries (ministries outside an “official” church congregation), the two churches he now serves have, according to him, some of the best attitudes towards the ministry of the laity in the church.

He writes

When my people see a need, they do something about it. If a meeting is required, they have a meeting, but they do not let those meetings come to wasted words. They pray, visit, and minister to those outside of their own congregations. They love people as they are and encourage them to grow in Christ. They do not pretend to be any more than they are – people loved by God, sent into His world to share that love. {Life with God: Week 5 – Faith to Serve}

When looking at the Old Testament he sees that

the opportunity to assist Israel in worship of God was a gift and not to be taken lightly. {A Life of Holiness: Week 2 – Priests}

Priests or those responsible for the calling of people to come to God should proclaim the excellencies of the One Who has called them out of darkness into His marvelous light.

[a]But you are “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people of his own, so that you may announce the praises” of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. {1 Peter 2:9New American Bible Revised Edition}

Christ Blessing the Children
Christ Blessing the Children (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The apostle Peter referring to the prerogatives of ancient Israel here now more fully and fittingly applied to the Christian people: “a chosen race” (cf. Is 43:20–21) indicating their divine election (Eph 1:4–6); “a royal priesthood” (cf. Ex 19:6) to serve and worship God in the fellowship under Christ, thus continuing the priestly functions of his life, passion, and resurrection; “a holy nation” (Ex 19:6) reserved for God, a people He claims for his own (cf. Mal 3:17) in virtue of their baptism into Jesus his death and resurrection. This should transcend all natural and national divisions and should unite the people into one community, not creating division, to glorify the one who led them from the darkness of paganism to the light of faith in Christ. From being “no people” deprived of all mercy, those who decided to become a lover of God and came under Christ, being baptised in the body of Christ, have become the very people of God, the chosen recipients of his mercy (cf. Hos 1:9; 2:25).

Those preachers and leaders as well as their flock should be an example for others and should not destroy and scatter the sheep of the pasture of the Most High. And not only god and His chosen prophet Jeremiah warns us to be very careful how we handle our faith and use it to convince others to come to God.

We remember what God says

23 Woe be unto the ro’im that destroy and scatter the tzon of My pasture! saith Hashem.

Therefore thus saith Hashem Elohei Yisroel against the ro’im that shepherd My people; Ye have scattered My tzon, and driven them away, and have not attended to them; hineni, I will attend to you for the rah of your doings, saith Hashem.

And I will gather the she’erit (remnant) of My tzon out of all countries where I have driven them, and will bring them again to their folds; and they shall be fruitful and increase.

And I will set up ro’im (shepherds) over them which shall shepherd them; and they shall fear no more, nor be dismayed, neither shall they be lacking, saith Hashem.

Hinei, the days come, saith Hashem, that I will raise up unto Dovid a Tzemach Tzaddik [i.e., Moshiach Ben Dovid Yehoshua, see 30:9; 33:15; Zech 3:8 Ezra 3:8; Zech 6:11-12; Mt 2:23; Isa 4:2; 9:2-7; 11:1-12; 53:2,11; Moshiach the new “Joshua” Isa 49:8], and a Melech shall reign and act wisely, and shall execute mishpat and tzedakah in ha’aretz.

In his days Yehudah shall be saved, and Yisroel shall dwell safely; and this is Shmo whereby he shall be called Adonoi Tzidkeinu.

Therefore, hinei, the days are coming, saith Hashem, that they shall no more say, Hashem liveth, which brought up the Bnei Yisroel out of Eretz Mitzrayim;

But, Hashem liveth, which brought up and which led the zera Bais Yisroel out of the eretz tzafonah, and from all countries to where I had driven them; and they shall dwell in their own land.

{Yirmeyah 23:1-8 Orthodox Jewish Bible}

To which pastor Franklyn likes to add that fear is a dangerous thing for leaders to employ and finds it questionable whether we, as God His human agents in leadership should employ fear.

  • Fear = powerful tool in shaping the behaviour of those around us = used to both scatter and gather > Usually to scatter
  • leaders > when using fear to chase away flock from a circumstantial place of danger, or to exert the effort to pour it on and keep them continually afraid and continually following you => brainwashing =   not Godly leadership > abuse of leadership by using fear tactics => price to pay
  • greatest danger of employing fear = working with poison or explosives = weapon which often ones back to harm those who employ it > eliminating ability to choose wisely + freely => crippling  own ability to lead.
The Lord is my Good Shepherd
The Lord is my Good Shepherd (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


Preceding articles

Today’s thought “Ability to receive ableness from God” (May 11)

Today’s thought “Ability to see that God is not dead” (May 12)

Today’s thought “Ability to circumcise your heart” (May 13)

Today’s thought “Ability to assemble” (May 14)

Showing by the scriptures that …

Looking on what is going on and not being of it

Sunday 7 September service: Imitate prophets and Paul

Salvation, trust and action in Jesus #3 as a Christian

Proclaiming shalom, bringing good news of good things, announcing salvation

Hope by faith and free gift

Being in isolation #7 Mission work

Engaging the culture without losing the gospel

Evangelisation, local preaching opposite overseas evangelism

Reasons why you may not miss the opportunity to go to a Small Church

When seeing a biblically sound church

When not seeing or not finding a biblically sound church

Why we do not have our worship-services in a church building


Additional reading

  1. Crisis man needed in this world
  2. More Muslim children than Christian children growing up in our cities
  3. Your position about materialistic desires having conquered the world
  4. When discouraged facing opposition
  5. Bible for you and for life
  6. When looking for God or wanting to relate to the Most High Divine God
  7. A Living Faith #3 Faith put into action
  8. Many forgot how Christ should be our anchor and our focus
  9. Looking for a shepherd for the sheep and goats
  10. When believing in God’s existence and His son, possessing a divine legislation
  11. Is being a humanitarian enough to convey the full love of Christ?
  12. Which is worse–works without faith, or faith without works?
  13. Reflection for today: hating your brother
  14. The Law of Christ: Law of Love
  15. Necessary to be known all over the earth
  16. Necessity of a revelation of creation 10 Instructions for insight and wisdom
  17. From Bibles and other religious writings and those who witness for Jehovah
  18. A Christian has to have eyes and ears and a tongue to use in good ways
  19. Ability (part 7) Thought about the ability to grow as a member of the Body of Christ
  20. Learn how to go out into the world and proclaim the Good News of the coming Kingdom
  21. It is Today
  22. Asia Cahaya Conference focusing on preaching
  23. Jehovah’s Witnesses not only group that preach the good news
  24. Holland Week of billing
  25. Trying to get the youth inspired
  26. What Should I Preach ?
  27. How should we preach?
  28. Preaching to an unbelieving world
  29. Preaching Christ Is Not Enough
  30. Perishable non theologians daring to go out to preach
  31. Daring to speak in multicultural environment
  32. Preaching by example
  33. Christians having the right heart to call others to go to God
  34. Priest, scribes and others with authority
  35. A Synod to speak freely and to listen without reservations
  36. Let us make sure we are not stiff-necked
  37. Preachers should know and continue the task Jesus has given his followers
  38. Beautiful feet of those who announce the good news
  39. Helping websites to prepare for the last days
  40. Our openness to being approachable
  41. Preparing for the Kingdom
  42. Atonement And Fellowship 4/8
  43. What climate activists can learn from Sunday School leaders
  44. A Passover for unity in God’s community
  45. Signs of the Last Days
  46. How do I know if I’m called to ministry?
  47. Reflections on Existence and Teaching
  48. Looking for True Spirituality 7 Preaching of the Good News
  49. Missionary action paradigm for all endeavours of the church
  50. What Should I Preach ?
  51. Who are the Christadelphians


Further reading

  1. This Is War!
  2. Gathering Together His Elect
  3. Congregations and Prickles
  4. Thoughts On the Authority of Scripture
  5. Tell Me The Story….Write on My Heart Every Word
  6. Baptism, Preaching, and Politics
  7. The Strange Effects of Preaching
  8. The Walk Out
  9. Review: To Fly, To Serve
  10. Let Them Have More Of Jesus Christ
  11. The Mission
  12. Improving the Preacher-Listener Connection
  13. Last week’s sermon: The Good Shepherd
  14. Bonus Sermon – The Bap Shepherd
  15. As in the Heart, So in the Ministry
  16. An Effective Template for Preaching Christ-Centered Sermons
  17. Doubt (and Hip-Hop)
  18. Poor Preaching
  19. Three Types of Bad Preaching (And Their Remedies)
  20. Exegeting my own heart
  21. Calvin’s Company of Pastors
  22. Eloquence is Only a Tool
  23. Angles on Preaching IV – by Geoff New
  24. Teach the Truth!
  25. Serving and Suffering Under the Cross: Martin Luther on the Visible Sign of the Militant Church  Reformission Monday)
  26. Who Influences Me: Expository Preachers
  27. No Better Preaching Than the Gospel
  28. Full until it Overflows
  29. How Jesus Brought the Light to His Dark Mission Field and How We Should Bring It to Ours (Just Jesus Evangelistic Campaign, Day 104 / Day 471 since Jan. 1, 2016)
  30. The Politics Of The Church
  31. Why the Church Sucks at Teaching
  32. On The Perils Of Preaching On Mother’s Day
  33. ~You are the Master~
  34. “Knowing God and Rejecting that Knowledge” – Romans 1:18-23 – Service and Sermons from St Peters.
  35. Reflections from Sunday School: The True Value of the Bible (Apr. 9, 2017)
  36. A Faith You Can Believe
  37. The Importance of Expository Preaching of the WordBook Review: Progress in the Pulpit
  38. Book Review: The Minister as Moral Theologian: Ethical Dimensions of Pastoral Leadership, by Sondra Wheeler


Myabishai's Blog

Leading with Fear: Gathering or Scattering?

Jeremiah 23:1-81

Restoration after Exile

Woe to the shepherds who destroy and scatter the sheep of my pasture! says the Lord. Therefore thus says the Lord, the God of Israel, concerning the shepherds who shepherd my people: It is you who have scattered my flock, and have driven them away, and you have not attended to them. So I will attend to you for your evil doings, says the Lord. Then I myself will gather the remnant of my flock out of all the lands where I have driven them, and I will bring them back to their fold, and they shall be fruitful and multiply. I will raise up shepherds over them who will shepherd them, and they shall not fear any longer, or be dismayed, nor shall any be missing, says the Lord.

The Righteous Branch of David

The days are…

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