Category Archives: Deference

John Wesley’s Advice on How to Vote in an Election

wesley“October 6, 1774
I met those of our society who had votes in the ensuing election, and advised them
1. To vote, without fee or reward, for the person they judged most worthy
2. To speak no evil of the person they voted against, and
3. To take care their spirits were not sharpened against those that voted on the other side.”

― John Wesley, The Journal of John Wesley

Quotes on Deference

  • There is no such thing as being a gentleman at important moments; it is at unimportant moments that a man is a gentleman….If once his mind is possessed in any strong degree with the knowledge that he is a gentleman, he will soon cease to be one. -G.K. Chesterton
  • Every action in company ought to be with some sign of respect to those present. -George Washington

Personal Evaluation: Deference

  • What activities do you engage in that many Christians believe are wrong?
  • Do you use words or expressions that are offensive to others?
  • Are your parents completely happy with your clothes and hairstyle?
  • Have you taken the time and effort to ask your authorities about their preferences and tastes?
  • Do you justify activities because other Christians do it?
  • Do you stand up when women or older people enter the room?

Character Clues

The Titanic’s Last Hero – How a Man Won a Crown of Life by Showing Deference in the Face of Death

John Harper was a passenger aboard the Titanic. As the ship was sinking, he made sure his daughter was safe then gave his life preserver to another who was not a Christian.

Even while perishing in the icy waters, survivors later testified of John Harper leading others to faith in Christ.

How to Demonstrate Deference

At Home

  • Speaking with clean language to other members of the family
  • Dressing modestly in the home so as not to offend
  • Refraining from wrong activities in order to be role models for younger family members
  • Showing respect to parents by not talking back or using ugly words

At Work or School

  • Refraining from words or actions that may offend others

At Church

  • Being willing to put aside my music preferences at church if I know it offends another brother or sister in Christ
  • Being sensitive to the standards of other families and not condeming

Character Definitions of Deference

  • Limiting my freedom so I do not offend the tastes of those around me – Character First!
  • Putting the welfare of others ahead of our own personal pleasures – The Power for True Success
  • Limiting my freedom in order not to offend the personal tastes of those God has called me to serve. Not allowing in moderation what others can then excuse to excess – Character Clues

Bible Stories Related to Deference

  • Matthew 17:25-27 records the story of how Jesus showed deference by paying tax lest others be offended.
  • In Matthew 18:3-6 Jesus demonstrated deference to children.
  • Abraham showed deference to Lot in Genesis 13 by allowing him to choose what appeared to be the most attractive property.
  • Paul showed deference to other believers by refusing to eat meat sacrificed to idols (Romans 14:14-15).

Bible Verses Related to Deference

1096 ginomai ginomai ghin’-om-ahee

a prolongation and middle voice form of a primary verb; TDNT-1:681,117; v

AV-be 255, come to pass 82, be made 69, be done 63, come 52, become 47, God forbid + 3361 15, arise 13, have 5, be fulfilled 3, be married to 3, be preferred 3, not tr 14, misc 4, vr done 2; 678

1) to become, i.e. to come into existence, begin to be, receive being

2) to become, i.e. to come to pass, happen

2a) of events

3) to arise, appear in history, come upon the stage

3a) of men appearing in public

4) to be made, finished

4a) of miracles, to be performed, wrought

5) to become, be made

  • Matthew 1:22 Now all this was done <1096>, that it might be fulfilled which was spoken of the Lord by the prophet, saying,
  • Matthew 4:3 And when the tempter came to him, he said, If thou be the Son of God, command that these stones be made <1096> bread.
  • Matthew 5:18 For verily I say unto you, Till heaven and earth pass, one jot or one tittle shall in no wise pass from the law, till all be fulfilled <1096>.
  • Matthew 5:45 That ye may be <1096> the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust.
  • Matthew 6:10 Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done <1096> in earth, as it is in heaven.
  • Matthew 6:16 Moreover when ye fast, be <1096> not, as the hypocrites, of a sad countenance: for they disfigure their faces, that they may appear unto men to fast. Verily I say unto you, They have their reward.
  • Matthew 7:28 And it came to pass <1096>, when Jesus had ended these sayings, the people were astonished at his doctrine:
  • Matthew 8:13 And Jesus said unto the centurion, Go thy way; and as thou hast believed, so be it done <1096> unto thee. And his servant was healed in the selfsame hour.
  • Matthew 8:16 When the even was come <1096>, they brought unto him many that were possessed with devils: and he cast out the spirits with his word, and healed all that were sick:
  • Matthew 8:24 And, behold, there arose <1096> a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep.
  • Matthew 8:26 And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was <1096> a great calm.
  • John 1:15 John bare witness of him, and cried, saying, This was he of whom I spake, He that cometh after me is preferred <1096> before me: for he was before me.
  • John 1:27 He it is, who coming after me is preferred <1096> before me, whose shoe’s latchet I am not worthy to unloose.
  • John 1:30 This is he of whom I said, After me cometh a man which is preferred <1096> before me: for he was before me.

4285 prohgeomai proegeomai pro-ay-geh’-om-ahee

from 4253 and 2233; TDNT-2:908,303; v

AV-prefer 1; 1

1) to go before and show the way, to go before and lead, to go before as a leader

  • Romans 12:10 Be kindly affectioned one to another with brotherly love; in honour preferring <4285> one another;

4299 prokrima prokrima prok’-ree-mah

from a compound of 4253 and 2919; TDNT-3:953,469; n n

AV-prefer one before another 1; 1

1) an opinion formed before the facts are known

2) a prejudgment, a prejudice

  • 1 Timothy 5:21 I charge thee before God, and the Lord Jesus Christ, and the elect angels, that thou observe these things without preferring one before another <4299>, doing nothing by partiality.

Other Verses Related to Deference

  • 1 Corinthians 10:32 Give none offence, neither to the Jews, nor to the Gentiles, nor to the church of God:
  • Romans 14:15 But if thy brother be grieved with [thy] meat, now walkest thou not charitably. Destroy not him with thy meat, for whom Christ died.

Beware of Offending a “Little One”

“It were better for him that a millstone were hanged about his neck, and he cast into the sea, than that he should offend one of these little ones” (Luke 17:2).

Anna Rose loved children! She had a foster home, and would take in the children nobody else wanted. She tells in her book, Gentle House, about one little misplaced boy from Latvia, who, during the Second World War, was taken to America, and passed from one foster home to another. Nobody could deal with him. The fact that he could hardly speak a word of English made the situation even more difficult. Finally they asked Anna Rose if she would take him. She said, “Yes!” She relates the story in her book:

”And so it was settled and [he] was allowed to come with me. As we drove home in the May sunshine, I said to him, ‘You know, my house isn’t big and grand like the one you were staying in before.’ To this he replied, ‘No worry. Big house, no matter. I want a gentle house.’ I wondered exactly what he meant by a ‘gentle house,’ but he did not yet have the words to make me understand.”

Later, when he was going off with the scouts to camp for the first time, she watched him…”and as he stepped out on the porch, he paused, put out his hand and stroked the porch railing. Then he spoke – almost in blank verse: ‘Good-bye, house – my dear, dear house. You are my home. Try to be here when I get back. You are a gentle house.’ ‘What is a gentle house?’ I asked him. He was indignant: ‘How is this, you do not understand? A gentle house is a place where you feel so safe.’

One of your children’s greatest fears is that their mom and dad will divorce. Since one out of every two marriages is ending in the divorce courts, chances are that some of your children’s friends at school come from split homes. They’ve watched them try to deal with the emotional struggle that affects all children in a divorce situation. They’ve seen the hurt and the sense of rejection, and they secretly wonder when the same thing might happen to them.

As much as divorced parents try to avoid offending and damaging their children, it is unavoidable. And the hurts and scars will often be carried by them for the rest of their lives.

Not only do we need to provide our children with the security of our love and acceptance of them; children also need the security of knowing that mom and dad love each other and that there is no hint or possibility of divorce.

Today would be a good time to reaffirm your marriage commitment to your spouse. Then, assure your children of your commitment as a couple and give them the security of knowing that divorce will never be a consideration for your marriage.

Morris Hull, Home Life Ministries

Don’t Get Offended!

“Great peace have they which love thy law: and nothing shall offend them” (Psalm 119:165).

We offend one another regularly by our wrong words, actions and attitudes. Some times we even offend people by doing what is right. Jesus offended people regularly by speaking the truth. It is so easy to offend other people. Especially if you’re in leadership, you’ll understand that you can’t please all of the people all of the time, but you can sure make them all mad at you.

Many are offended by the Gospel message. Jesus said in Matthew 11:6, “And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me.” Now, for fear of offending anyone, we dilute the Gospel message so much that it no longer has the power to save because we fail to talk about sin and judgment and personal responsibility. But the Bible tells us that the Gospel will offend. We just need to make sure that if people are going to take offense, that it’s because of the conviction brought about by the message, and not because of the wrong attitudes of the messenger. That’s why the Bible tells us that we are to speak “the truth in love” (Ephesians 4:15).

The word “offense” means a stumbling block: something that can cause you to fall and bring about your ruin.

It’s common for people to think that whenever there is a conflict between two people that the offender is the one with the spiritual problem. But the person against whom the offense was committed has an even greater potential for sin. The offender may or may not have done wrong. If he has done wrong, he needs to take responsibility for his wrong words or actions or attitudes and he needs to make it right. But the person who has been offended needs to be on his guard.

As Jesus has His last parting words with His disciples in the upper room just before His crucifixion, He says in John 16:1, “These things have I spoken unto you, that ye should not be offended.” A spirit-filled follower of Jesus Christ is not easily offended because he realizes that God uses even our enemies and critics to accomplish His purposes in our lives. A true Spirit-filled Christian will not take up an offense against someone or on behalf of someone else. Certainly there are going to be disagreements, but the moment that disagreement turns contentious, the moment there is bitterness or hatred then you have stepped across a line that can bring all kinds of destruction to your relationships.

Let’s not be so easily offended by others. Remember that we are all in process. Let’s be as patient and kind with each other as the Lord is with us.

Like the Scrubbing of a Doctor’s Hands

Dr. Maltie Babcock was approached by a member of his congregation who was concerned about his health. Handing Dr. Babcock some theatre tickets he said, “Take these. You need the recreation of going to this play.” His pastor looked at them. Seeing they were tickets to a play of a kind he could not conscientiously attend, he said kindly, “Thank you, but I can’t take them. I can’t go.”

“Why not?” the physician asked.

“Doctor, it’s this way. You’re a physician – a surgeon, in fact. When you operate, you scrub your hands meticulously until you are especially clean. You wouldn’t dare operate with dirty hands. I’m a servant of Christ. I deal with precious human souls. I wouldn’t dare do my service with a dirty life.”

-The Expositer

Courtship Covenant

A Covenant

Between a Father and a Daughter

as Witnessed by the Lord Jesus Christ

We Agree Together to Seek God’s Best Concerning

a Future Life Partner


I will protect you from unqualified men.

I will teach you God’s principles of life.

I will pray for you and for God’s choice of your life partner.


Father’s signature


I will keep myself pure for my husband.

I will obtain your blessing on my courtship.

I will wait for your full release before entering into marriage.


Daughter’s signature


Pastor’s signature