1 Timothy 5:22
Do not be hasty in the laying on of hands, nor take part in the sins of others; keep yourself pure.
The word “hasty” caught my attention the other day. I was watching some brothers and sisters in Christ jump to an individuals aid and start laying on hands and prayer. I know the young man and in agreement of the efforts I joined them and laid hands on them as they prayed. That is when someone asked me;
“Pastor, why are you so slow to lay hands on people?
Well this verse makes me slow down and there are some other reasons that I shy away from the laying on of hands. I guess it depends on how you define “??????”
It is done to frequently.
Once it is done in a church or ministry it often becomes the expectation of others. While I have frequently found myself led to touch someone or send them off (with a shove some times to I confess), I am still more cautious to do it because of the danger of it being common place.
I don’t know them well enough
We are to fast to accept brothers and sisters in Christ. Yeah I realize how dumb that sounds in a world mindset of acceptance and validation. Part of the ease of false teachers infiltration to the church is because the sheep are so trusting.
As a shepherd we should be concerned with this as we work with people coming in and out of the church. There are good people, but often take mind of this. People are watching, not just the frequency but also the quality.
As a sheep we should be more discerning and conscious of who our pastor pays hands on and be watchful over each other. Not saying we should “correct” but that we should should lift up the men of God in our lives. We should protect him as he ministers this way.
I don’t know enough about me.
When I am not pure. The last part of this verse speaks to the purity of the person that is being touched as well as the purity of the individual laying on hands. Do I know enough about the person or the situation or who they are? Yeah I get it, I am made pure in Christ. I can hear the argument in my head. But still this slows me down to make sure I am not being entangled with a false prophet or antiChrist.
I have made this mistake. I have held up hands that brought credibility to someone’s “ministry” just to find out that they are unrepentant in their sin. We must be careful.
So I am NOT telling YOU to slow down in what the Holy Ghost is commanding you to do. I am telling you that we had better be sure. I am often an early adopter of people 🙂 if you are too, listen to the Spirit. Follow that lead and not your own.