” I am all things to all people.” (St. Paul)
When Paul said this, he was not admitting to being a man pleaser, for to be a man pleaser, Paul would say, is to disqualify one from pleasing God Our Master Jesus, would say, no man can serve two masters, he will hate the one and love the other, but to serve both is impossible. Paul, purpose in being all things to all people, was to be attractive to the Jew and the Gentile, the wise and the barbarian. He was not playing a part, he was putting more attention or a spotlight upon the part of himself that would be more welcomed by his listeners.
Christ, our Lord is a Prophet, Priest, and a King. He fulfilled (3) three offices. In each of these offices He would use different attributes and tools. As Prophet, He would speak boldly to man for God; as Priest, He would humbly petition God, in the stead of others, and as King, He would show forth His authority, might, goodness, and mercy, and graciousness. These are (3) three offices He fulfilled perfectly.
In this article we will write upon the offices we all fill, for example, I am a Christ-ian, a man, a husband, a father, a preacher, a prophet, a priest, a son, a brother, a nephew, and uncle, a friend, an American, a voter, a reader, a writer, etc. In each of these offices, I must think differently and in a way be a different person, if you will. To demonstrate, if one is a husband to a friend that is adultery; if I act as a father to my wife, I am condescending. If I am always the preacher, my children may see me as distant. You get my point.
We should all fulfill our offices when we are in them. We should not bring our offices with us when they are not appropriate. If one is in the office of prophet when one should be in the office of priest, a person in need will feel unheard and they will feel as though they have just heard a sermon and not spoken with a friend. In the office of priest we are to take our friends needs to God and petition Him for them or with them, depending upon their spiritual state.
We should realize to whom we are speaking to and handle them accordingly. When we council another person, sometimes we are a Calvin and sometimes, a Luther. A Calvin is a little more soft spoken, a little more careful and maybe a little more “intellectual”. Whereas, a Luther, though just as sound and well taught, is more to the point and blunt. Calvin makes small flesh cuts, Luther takes the entire arm. Calvin was quoted as saying, “A pastor needs two voices. One voice to in treat the flock and another to chase off the wolves. [paraphrased].” This is fulfilling two offices.
This concept works well in the work place, as well. One might develop a “persona.” In other words, one might put on a costume when in the work place. When I was in the business world, I would not be the typically, reserved, quiet, observer. In stead, I was the out-going, friendly sales guy. Presently, when I step into the pulpit, I am not the nice, friendly, warm and welcoming person I normally am, in stead we are the sober, grave, Spirit-focused, no humoured Bible expositor. I am not a different person or playing a part, we are filling the office of a God’s called preacher.
Another way to look at this concept is, hats. We all wear many hats. There are mom hats, dad hats, employee hats, employer hats, etc. These offices or hats all deserve out full attention and we can wear only one at a time. To wear the employee hat in the dad office deprives both employer and child of their rightful attention and focus. Sometimes, it is needful for a person to take off the parent hat and put on the friend hat when speaking with a grown child and vice versa. Spouses must be able to take off their parent hats and put on their husband and wife hats and enter the man and woman office.
To be successful in each office one needs to be thoughtful and know where one office ends and another begins. One must be aware of what hat is being worn before engaging another.
I hope this all makes sense. Please overlook any spelling, grammar, of punctuation errors.