AtServiceThis is one of those traditions which seems to be predominantly found in the black church. But first thing is first. What is an armor bearer in the bible? As per Got Questions:

In Scripture, an armor-bearer (also spelled armorbearer and armor bearer) was a servant who carried additional weapons for commanders. Abimelech (Judges 9:54), Saul (1 Samuel 16:12), Jonathan (1 Samuel 14:6-17), and Joab (2 Samuel 18:15) had armor-bearers/armorbearers. Armor-bearers were also responsible for killing enemies wounded by their masters. After enemy soldiers were wounded with javelins or arrows, armor-bearers finished the job with clubs or swords. After the time of David, armor-bearers are no longer mentioned, likely due to the fact that commanders began to fight from chariots (1 Kings 12:18;20:33).

Now as those from other churches may not know what an armor bearer is in today’s churches, let me give you a little summary. An armor bearer is basically like a preachers right hand man/woman and serves them basically, like a glorified personal assistant. Some of their duties include (and I am not making this up), carrying the pastors bible and books, getting their water to quench their thirst while they are preaching, wiping the sweat off their head with a towel while they are preaching, bring and preachers bodyguard. Picking up the pastor and driving him to church. You don’t believe me? My friends across the pond at Real Talk Radio made me aware of this armor bearer ‘training’ video

Notice that one of the first thing that he says is that it will be less scriptural (in fact I didn’t hear any in this clip)

According to the video, the armor bearer:

  • will watch out for his wife
  • will watch out for his kids
  • will have closer access than the average church member
  • represents the preacher (note…not Christ)
  • ‘covers’ the preachers
  • ‘softens the blow’ for those who want to have access to the pastor
  • should be willing to change their schedule, their lifestyle and their work so that they are available for their Pastor
  • should be willing to use up their work vacation days to serve the Pastor

He also stated that that he was there early washing his pastors car and it caused problems in his marriage. If that isn’t a red flag, then I don’t know what is.

In some churches they MUST be a tither and ‘must make the advancement of the leader the important goal’. That alone flies in the face of scripture and borders on idolatory. In John 3:30 John the Baptist stated that he must decrease and Christ must increase but many churches are looking to increase the profile of their pastor.

If this sounds unbiblical and unhealthy to you, that’s because it is. Maybe its just me but it sounds very close to a slave and not a servant. You do not see any disciples in the new testamant who had an armor bearer as it is today. The closest person I can see was Peter in the Garden Of Gethsamene when he drew his sword to protect Jesus and Jesus told him to put it away so there goes that theory

When James and John wanted to be Jesus’s right (and left) hand men in Mark 10:35-45, Jesus told them that “even the Son of Man came NOT to be served but to serve” but for some reason , they get it twisted and think that they are greater than Jesus and should be served by their armor bearer at every opportunity. This is NOT biblical and is a tradition of man.

So how did we get from the biblical definition of an armor bearer to what we have today? The answer is that they have equated the armor bearer in the old testament carrying the weapon to the armor bearer today carrying the sword (the bible). This is a classic example of eisegesis which is a common practice with many traditions . They have come up with a idea and read it INTO the scriptural text. Instead of using exegesis and getting their doctrine OUT of the text. Let the scripture speak for itself and not what you want it to say.


Related Posts:

The traditions of men making the Word of God of none effect – Introduction

The traditions of men making the Word of God of none effect (Part 1) : Pleading the blood

The traditions of men making the Word of God of none effect (Part 2) : Tithing

The traditions of men making the Word of God of none effect (Part 3) : Getting a confirmation from God

The traditions of men making the Word of God of none effect (Part 4) : Getting slain in the spirit

  1. Andy says:

    I’ve witnessed this behaviour at first hand, with no shortage of sycophants scrambling to take up the role.

    It’s all part of the abuse of congregations by church leaders; I’ve seen “love offerings” for the pastor’s new car extracted from people who can barely afford the bus fare to church.

  2. michael m says:

    Not many comments so far Alan . But it’s not surprising as perhaps it is not a common practice seen amongst the run-of-the mill local churches ?. Some Pastors could do with extra moral support and encouragement there maybe . Paul says something like ; Give double honor to those who preach and teach , for they look after your spiritual welfare . (or should do :)). But the kind of support and respect may be what needs to be looked at . Do we pray enough for our pastors that they may lead their churches right and do what is expected of a pastor. Andy has noted ‘ sycophants’ , scrambling for a place of honor ?. ‘Love offerings’ made to the well off – some by probably by good intentioned appreciative admirers . It may be difficult to say when enough is enough ?.

  3. Andy says:

    BBC Radio 4 will be broadcasting a documentary about ‘prosperity gospel’ churches on Monday 27 May at 8pm:

    “Controversial, contested and on the rise in Britain: Prosperity Gospel is a movement within Christianity which says that if you believe you will be blessed with prosperity. Or, in other words, Christianity will make you rich.

    The last time Nigerian born writer Dotun Adebayo returned to his country of birth he saw a Church Pastor driving a car through poverty stricken streets with a bumper sticker that read “God is great, life is sweet!” In Nigeria prosperity and the Gospel are apparently not in conflict. But in this programme Dotun sets out to discover why the prosperity Gospel of his Nigerian upbringing is flourishing in Britain.

    He visits the fastest growing church in Western Europe and hears powerful sermons mixing theology, finance and self-help. He meets people who claim their lives have been transformed by the message and others who were left feeling cheated, lied to and lost.

    With congregations in their thousands and bank balances in the millions Dotun explores how the churches raise vast revenues through donations from congregations. Perhaps you can’t subject God’s work to a financial audit but Dotun seeks to uncover where the money goes and what those that give receive in return.”

  4. says:

    Yes to the contraly,the traditions believes on its on ways how things happens without involving the word of God, that makes people who believe in tradition not to find time to involve God in their plan that’s why they do not break through.
    Sent from my BlackBerry® smartphone

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