We are seeing something today in the church and in our society at large that I have not previously witnessed to this extent in my lifetime. Deficiency in the character of people. Personality disorders are increasing in the general population. One of the main personality disorders arising in our time is narcissism. This occurrence is having a very adverse effect in our world and in the church. People with functional narcissism often seek positions of power and influence. They are found in greater numbers among CEO s, politicians, ministers of religion, and in other positions of decision making and authority. Scripture says that in the last days people will be given over to a reprobate mind because they will not accept the truth but prefer to believe a lie. I think that we are into those days now.
Narcissism is filtering down to the average person in our day from upper echelons. People are engrossing themselves in the culture and the often perverted teachings coming from places of higher authority in our lives. People do this seemingly unquestioning, even in the church. Christians are accepting of any book, any new thought, any teaching, as long as it has the ‘christian’ label.
People having narcissism personality disorder are looking for power, control, and ‘food’ to feed their need. This requires that they put on a false personality before others. What you see is not them. You see the false person. This person does not have normal human emotions. They mimic emotions that they have seen on other people’s faces for particular circumstances in their own lives. This narcissistic condition emerges in their very young years. Emotionally they remain very young and self-centered throughout their lives. They make extremely poor marriage partners because whoever marries them marries an emotional child. They can make the ‘hard’ decisions because they do not feel guilt or remorse for their actions. They cannot love as a normal person can. The main emotions that are real for them is anger and rage.
When we think of this type of person being a pastor, a government leader in a position of trust, a company manager or owner making decisions that affect hundreds maybe thousands of lives, we get a picture of the devastation that this personality disordered person makes on society. Church leaders with this condition are no exception. Many other church leaders are following them because these people may be successful by worldly standards. Pastors who are their followers then lead their own flocks into error and possible destruction.
We are currently living in extremely precarious times as Christians. We are going to have to exercise judgment and discernment within and without the church. We have the authority to do so according to scripture. We must judge the spirits. We must look at the fruit. We must analyze the lives of our leaders to see if they are being true. To not do this is foolhardy in our day and time.