“Pastor, is it scriptural for a pastor to ask a member to sow a seed before he will pray for him?”
Any pastor that does that is either a native doctor or is just suffering sublime poverty. I also hear that some of them reject seeds sown by members, claiming that the seed is too small for the blessing they want to release upon them.
This idea was gotten from the old testament, specifically a father and son relationship, where Isaac told his son to get him venison so that his heart would be joyful enough to bless him. That was the old testament, now we don’t need venison to have joy, joy is a fruit of the spirit.
Pastors now want to be the spiritual father of their members, some of them would even consider it an insult if a member calls them pastor. They’d rather be addressed as “My father”.
Pastoring and fathering are two different things. While pastors feed God’s sheep, fathers are confidants who take the figure of God over a person’s life, such that people don’t need to look too far to find God, they just look at their father in the faith. Although Jesus spoke against spiritual fatherhood, but we see Apostle Paul address Timothy and many others as “son”. In other words, Apostle Paul had become a representation of God to them, since we can only have one father, who is God the Father.
I believe the office of a father is the exclusive reserve of people who are sold out to God and can mentor people in the way of the Lord through their lifestyle, just like apostle Paul and Abraham. God by Himself called Abraham our father and even admonishes us to observe his ways. Fathers are literally prisoners of Christ, as Apostle Paul calls himself. They have unconditional love for their begotten just as God has unconditional love for us. They are not selfish people. Let’s read from scriptures:
1 Corinthians 4:
14 I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you.
15 For though ye have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.
16 Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me.
17 For this cause have I sent unto you Timotheus, who is my beloved son, and faithful in the Lord, who shall bring you into remembrance of my ways which be in Christ, as I teach every where in every church.
Did you notice verse 15? The Apostle acknowledged that its possible to have many instructors, in terms of pastors and teachers of the gospel, but you can’t have many spiritual fathers. He also didn’t say you can’t have more than one spiritual father, rather because of the sacrifices involved in being a spiritual father, you’re blessed to even have one. Any Christian that has more than one genuine spiritual father cannot fail in life.
In verse 16, he admonished his sons to be followers of him, and further emphasized it in verse 17 by sending his first spiritual son Timothy to tell them to walk in his ways which is in Christ. The ways of a father are always in Christ, and that’s why even God would readily refer you to them. If God has ever told you to follow someone, then you’ve found yourself a father.
Don’t get me wrong, if God wants you to listen to a person’s teaching, He won’t tell you to follow the person, He’d tell you to listen to him, or He’d just tell you the person is your pastor. But if He wants you to be a son, He’d tell you to follow. Many people have followed great preachers to hell. They preach well but have demonic character flaws that could easily destroy the scent of their message in your heart. Let’s be sensitive enough to know when to only listen and not follow. Not everybody is worth following. They’d preach good, but destroy the good preaching with their character.
So, if you claim that your spiritual father is making financial demands from you before the bless you, that’s not God’s idea of spiritual fatherhood. Spiritual fathers mentor sons and deploy them to change the world. Their reward is with God, not with the sons. Ofcourse they’d reap the benefit of fatherhood, but not through making demands.
If the material thing that someone gives to you stirs up joy or an anointing to bless the person, then your anointing is suspicious. The tricky part is that God may answer the prayers you pray for the person, but just because God answered doesn’t mean approval. While the person may receive the blessing, you who released the blessing is materialistic, not spiritual. The only thing that should qualify anyone for blessing from me is the hunger I see within that person, not the gifts the person gives to me. It’s poverty mentality that makes some pastors think of receiving before and after they release a blessing.
If you give me a gift just because you want to receive a word of blessing from me, you might be surprised that I might only say a big “Thank you”. If it’s blessing you want, come with hunger, not gifts. The blessing is not for sale. Someone once told me to stop saying “thank you” each time he sows a seed into my life, rather I should bless him. I found that hilarious I tell you. Don’t get me wrong, giving me a gift or sowing a seed into my life or the life of any anointed vessel is already a blessing to you, and you don’t require any extra declaration from the person.
I hope this has brought enlightenment to someone.
Remain ever blessed!