AVOIDING SUPERIORITY COMPLEX, ARGUMENT, OFFENSE, OR ANY FORM OF HUMILIATION
In contacting people, the elders must avoid superiority complex, argument, offense, or any form of humiliation. A superiority complex is very common in human society. Everyone has his prestige and desires to show that he excels in certain things. People like to show their superiority, but the elders should not have a superiority complex. An elder may be fifty-five years old, and the one he contacts may be only fifteen, but the elder should not care for his status. He should be careful in the way he expresses himself when he speaks with this person. The elder should not feel that he is better or higher than the one with whom he speaks.
In contacting people, the elders should avoid arguments. Arguments do not help people. Rather, the way to contact people is to try to find the opportunity to minister Christ to them, to give them an "injection" of Christ.
The elders should also avoid offense in their contact with others. Whether one comes to us with a good intention or an intention to cause trouble is not our concern. On our side, we should still be proper. If we are not proper with those whom we contact, we will offend them and cause them to close their heart to us. Once people are offended, there is no way for us to minister anything to them. It is also possible that the offended persons will remember the offense for a long time. The elders must also avoid any form of humiliation in their contact with people.
ALWAYS REMEMBERING WELL THAT THE CHURCH
IS NOT A POLICE STATION OR A LAW COURT, AND
THAT WE ARE NOT THE POLICEMEN OR THE JUDGES
In their contact with people, the elders must always remember well that the church is not a police station or a law court, and that they are not the policemen or the judges. A policeman arrests people and a judge judges them. We should not "arrest" or judge anyone. We should only minister life, the gospel, salvation, and Christ. Regardless of what one has done, if he comes to us, we should take the opportunity to minister something of life into him. We should not catch him that we might "arrest" him and pass him on to others who may judge him.
As the leading ones, the elders bear a certain responsibility to consider people’s situations, but they must not forget that their ministry is to minister life. When we know someone’s background, we should not go to others to talk about him. We should go to him, not to talk about what he has done, but to take the opportunity to minister life and light into him. Then he may be enlightened by the Lord, and when he gets home, he may repent. This is the way for the elders to take care of the people in the church.
(Elders' Training, Book 11: The Eldership and the God-Ordained Way (3), Chapter 5, by Witness Lee)