who minister by night in the house of the LORD.
Lift up your hands in the sanctuary
and praise the LORD.
bless you from Zion. (Psalm 134:1-3)
The teachers of the law and the Pharisees sit in Moses’ seat. So you must obey them and do everything they tell you. But do not do what they do, for they do not practice what they preach. (Matthew 23:2-3)
Even though the authority was wrong Jesus told the people they must remain in obedience, just don't follow their example. A few decades later this authority was destroyed by the Romans. God has his way with dealing with authority gone wrong. But we have been told to honour, respect and obey:
The elders who direct the affairs of the church well are worthy of double honor, especially those whose work is preaching and teaching. For the Scripture says, “Do not muzzle the ox while it is treading out the grain,” and “The worker deserves his wages.” (1 Timothy 5:17-18)
In fact, we are told there is a natural blessing when we choose to lift up those who minister among us instead of tearing them down and criticizing:
Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account. Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you. (Hebrews 13:17)
The task of ministry is hard enough without being loaded down with the criticism of those who are being served. Have you ever experienced it? Perhaps you were volunteering to serve a dinner to the homeless and you heard some complaining and criticism from those who were receiving the free meal. How did it make you feel? Did it tarnish the experience, maybe rob you of some of the joy? Those who minister among us, in whatever ministry it may be, have made great sacrifices to be obedient to God. They have set aside their own interests and desires for the sake of other people. What they have done deserves honour, respect and support from the rest of the Body of Christ. Their task can sometimes be heavy but the cheering crowd can often lighten that load.