LIVE ABOVE BOARD
“Here I stand. Testify against me in the presence of the Lord and his anointed. Whose ox have I taken? Whose donkey have I taken? Whom have I cheated? Whom have I oppressed? From whose hand have I accepted a bribe to make me shut my eyes? If I have done any of these, I will make it right” (1 Samuel 12:3 NIV).
It really saddens me to hear the news about the conviction of David Yonggi Cho, the founder of Yoido Full Gospel Church, Seoul, South Korea (that is considered as the world's largest megachurch). Cho was convicted of embezzling $12 million in church funds. He was sentenced to three years in prison and was also fined $5 million. This message is not intended to ridicule the more the revered man of God, neither is it an avenue for antagonists of Christianity to oppose it. Rather, it is intended to serve as a warning to every Christian (and even non-Christian) to do everything in his/her capacity to live above board wherever he/she finds him/herself.
Samuel (in the Bible) could boldly challenge the people of Israel to mention if in any way he had done anything wrongly against anyone. The people testified that he had lived above board when he was discharging his duties as a priest, prophet and the judge of Israel (see 1 Samuel 12:1-5). Samuel had the privilege of misusing his position to his own advantage, but he did not do so. Daniel as a captive was privileged to find himself in a place of authority in a foreign land. The Bible records about him that he “...distinguished himself among the administrators and the satraps by his exceptional qualities that the king planned to set him over the whole kingdom. At this, the administrators and the satraps tried to find grounds for charges against Daniel in his conduct of government affairs, but they were unable to do so. They could find no corruption in him, because he was trustworthy and neither corrupt nor negligent. Finally these men said, ‘We will never find any basis for charges against this man Daniel unless it has something to do with the law of his God’” (Daniel 6:3-5 NIV).
Samuel was a religious leader while Daniel was a political appointee. Both of them lived above board. How many of our religious/spiritual leaders today (not to talk of political leaders/appointees) are living above board? If an investigative panel is constituted today to investigate you, will you not be found wanting? Before you raise an accusing finger at David Yonggi Cho or anybody for any wrong doing, firstly examine yourself. Nobody on earth is perfect. Nevertheless, do everything in your capacity to live above board.
In His service,
Bayo Afolaranmi (Pastor).
Prayer Point: Pray that you will be able to live above board in all your endeavours.