The Culture of Honour
Honour, the Life blood of relationships
The currency of the Kingdom is faith.
The culture of the Kingdom is honour.
What is honour?
Each of New Life’s 5 core beliefs, each of them have a response to them:
Because God is good >>> We dream big
Because Jesus’ blood has paid for everything >>> We trust
Because Nothing is possible >>> We take risk
Because the Kingdom has come near >>> We trust and have hope
Because I am significant >>> I serve
With the last belief, “I am significant” the reality is it is not just me that is significant. We are all significant.
Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection was for ever single person, past, present and future. God’s sending Jesus for us determined once and for all time our value and worth. Something’s value is determined by what someone is willing to pay for it. God traded His Son for you and me. This makes us infinitely valuable.
The Culture of Honour is how to appropriately dignify and respond to the significance of a person.
The Culture of Honour invites me to treat you how heaven sees you, and not how the world sees you or responds to you.
The spiritual dynamics of Honour
Honour is the Means by which we Access the Life of God
Jesus said that:
10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.
The word “abundantly” is the Greek word perissos. It means over and above.
Honour though is the means by which the life of heaven, which Jesus came to bring us, is primarily transmitted to us.
41 He who receives a prophet in the name of a prophet shall receive a prophet’s reward. And he who receives a righteous man in the name of a righteous man shall receive a righteous man’s reward.
Jesus highlights that honour is the means by which we open the door to the gift or grace which God has placed on a prophet, and in doing so we get the prophet’s reward.
Dishonour turns off the tap of God’s Life
Conversely, dishonour has the opposite effect. It closes off the tap of life to us.
1Then He went out from there and came to His own country, and His disciples followed Him. 2 And when the Sabbath had come, He began to teach in the synagogue. And many hearing Him were astonished, saying, “Where did this Man get these things? And what wisdom is this which is given to Him, that such mighty works are performed by His hands! 3 Is this not the carpenter, the Son of Mary, and brother of James, Joses, Judas, and Simon? And are not His sisters here with us?” So they were offended at Him.
4 But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his own country, among his own relatives, and in his own house.” 5 Now He could do no mighty work there, except that He laid His hands on a few sick people and healed them.
In this passage we learn that when Jesus returned home, they were only able to see Him as Jesus the carpenters son. Because they saw Jesus as they carpenter son they were unable to access what he carried as Jesus the Messiah. Dishonour failed to recognize the true dignity of Jesus.
Honour All people
Honour all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.
1 Peter 2:17
Francis Frangipane says this about this verse:
Surely this apostolic leader is not speaking to the church in North America! We want our rights! We are not afraid of any man, be he king or priest. Yes, but the issue is not whether we are afraid; it is whether we are capable of showing genuine honor.
A true North American is typified as one who is his own ruler; he is independent, and unafraid to speak his mind to anyone. Yet, to whatever degree this confrontational attitude is esteemed a virtue in our larger society, it is certainly not a living grace in the kingdom of God. The New Testament Scriptures, in fact, call us to the exact opposite approach in our relationships, where we honor and respect people.
The independent spirit we hold so tightly to works against the idea of honour. Every person has something that God is created them for. Regardless of how they are acting, honour speaks to their worth.
Honour within the Body
In 1 Corinthians 12 the Apostle Paul talks to the Corinthian Church about the need for honouring each other.
20 But now indeed there are many members, yet one body. 21 And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; nor again the head to the feet, “I have no need of you.” 22 No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary. 23 And those members of the body which we think to be less honourable, on these we bestow greater honour; and our unpresentable parts have greater modesty, 24 but our presentable parts have no need. But God composed the body, having given greater honour to that part which lacks it, 25 that there should be no schism in the body, but that the members should have the same care for one another. 26 And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it; or if one member is honoured, all the members rejoice with it.
1 Cor 12:20-26
Paul commands us to honour every member, actually giving to the “unseemly parts” more abundant honour. We are so used to honouring the super stars of the church. But what about those who have no title but are part of the church. What about those who quietly serve behind the scenes. Jesus sees everything, especially the things we do for Him in secret. He dignifies this more than the public parading of the more visible members.
Dishonour within the Church is rampant. It is a “hangover” from our protestant heritage. The quarter of the church we are a part of is the “Protestant Church.” The original Protestants were so named because they were “protest-ants” who were protesting the errors of Catholicism. The Protestants chose to split from the Catholic Church. In its entire history spanning two millennia the Catholic Church has split just twice. The Protestant Church has split over 33,000 times! Perhaps the reason for this is that the Catholics, despite their many challenges, maintain an honour for their leaders. They call their spiritual leaders “fathers.”
Honouring our Political Leaders
Honour all people. Love the brotherhood. Fear God. Honour the king.
1 Peter 2:17
Who are the kings in our midst today? Our political leaders.
God designs a flow of life the happens through politicians that causes a blessing to come upon the people.
David was trying to be killed by Saul. He went nuts towards him. Threw spears and hunted him like a wild beast. Yet David chose to protect the dignity of Saul even when it seemed God had placed Saul into his hands.
2 So Saul chose 3,000 elite troops from all Israel and went to search for David and his men near the rocks of the wild goats.
3 At the place where the road passes some sheepfolds, Saul went into a cave to relieve himself. But as it happened, David and his men were hiding farther back in that very cave!
4 “Now’s your opportunity!” David’s men whispered to him. “Today the Lord is telling you, ‘I will certainly put your enemy into your power, to do with as you wish.’” So David crept forward and cut off a piece of the hem of Saul’s robe.
5 But then David’s conscience began bothering him because he had cut Saul’s robe. 6 He said to his men, “The Lord forbid that I should do this to my lord the king. I shouldn’t attack the Lord’s anointed one, for the Lord himself has chosen him.” 7 So David restrained his men and did not let them kill Saul.
1 Sam 24:2-5
When we dishonour our leaders we turn the tap of blessing off over the country. It is not that we cannot speak up and stand for the things we believe in but we need to do so with honour and respect.
Often out of fear to how we perceive our political leaders to be doing we end up partnering with the political spirit. The political spirit divides. It asks us “Are you for us or against us? Whose side are you on?” It is demonic in origin. The Devil’s name means divider. It is his job description.
Honouring our parents
Honouring your parents does not mean you have to agree with your parents or even do everything they tell you to do. Moreover, if a parent is acting in an unsafe way towards you it is entirely appropriate to create safe boundaries for yourself. That said, regardless of how they are treating us, we are still required to treat them with honour and dignity. Even when we are sinned against by a parent we are responsible for our actions and attitudes towards them.
The consequences of honouring ones parents is that it oils the cogs of life in such a way that it causes life to go well for you. Derek Prince once said that, “In all my experience in Christian ministry, I have never met a person who dishonoured their father and mother who had it well with them.”
2 “Honour your father and mother.” This is the first commandment with a promise: 3 If you honour your father and mother, “things will go well for you, and you will have a long life on the earth.”
Eph 6:2-3 (See Exo 20:12; Deu 5:16)
How to turn the tap of blessing back on in our life
Recognition – If we recognize that we have responded towards someone in our life with dishonour we need to take ownership for our personal actions.
Repentance – We stop doing what we have been doing.
Forgiveness – We need to receive God’s forgiveness for the action. We also might need to express our forgiveness towards the person we have acted in a dishonouring way towards.
Blessing – Once we have done these steps we need to pronounce a blessing towards them. The Bible tells us that “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head” (Rom 12:20). The instruction by Paul to show kindness towards someone that had wronged you had the effect of heaping coals on someone’s head. The phrase is an idiom for bringing purity to someone. Literally the act of blessing causes heaven to touch their minds in a way that the come into their right minds. That is one of the things that happens when we bless someone that has wronged us. Our actions of kindness literally sanctifies them.