Muzzle Once Or Honor Twice

Let the elders who rule well be considered worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in preaching and teaching. For the Scripture says, "You shall not muzzle an ox when it treads out the grain," and, "The laborer deserves his wages." — 1 Timothy 5:17-18

So in Jewish culture, the firstborn son received a double portion of their father's inheritance at his death. And what we read here is probably an allusion to this same kind of treatment. This text says the pastor who teaches is deserving of double honor. And the double reference is due in both esteem and compensation.

But the best part of this principle is the word picture. The picture is of a muzzled ox. And why is this important? Because in Deuteronomy 25:4, God established a law for how farmers leveraged animals for their advantage. He understood that people would abuse even the rights of animals by working them to death for their benefit. And that they would become so selfish they would muzzle them so that they could not "slow down" even for a quick bite.

And I want you to know many pastors out there feel this way. I know because they share it with me. They feel overworked and under-appreciated. They feel like muzzled oxen being commanded to put their heads down, keep their mouths shut, and work harder. This is quite an image. If you don't think this is true, think about it for a few seconds. Recall how many critical statements you've made about your teaching pastor this year and weigh that against how many times you have told them you appreciate all the hard work they do for you. I bet the scales weigh heavily in one direction.

So do me a favor today. Tell your pastor, "thank you." Just a note or text is all that is needed. Let's bombard them with the honor that they deserve. And if you want to double it up, pair it with a generous donation or gift card. They will love it. It's more infrequent than you think.

ASK THIS: What's the name of the pastor you need to thank?

DO THIS: Tell them thanks and double it up.

PRAY THIS: God, thank you for the many pastors who have added so much value to my life.

PLAY THIS: Build Your Church.

short | practical | biblical
Read through the Bible daily with Vince Miller.

0 0 votes
Article Rating
Notify of
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

Pastor Todd Lester!

Jeff Falley

Gilbert Kerrigan

Dennis James

I appreciate and thank my Pastor all the time. He is a man after God’s heart.
I do know that there are quite a few “pastors” out there who should not be in the pulpit but that is another conversation for another day. God Bless you Vince and Thank You!

Jeff Brewer

Preaching Minister Andy Weaver, thank you for all you do for our Church and the time you dedicate to your service to the Lord. Your work does not go unnoticed.

Chris Teti

Pastor Doug Moorman

David Josker

Pastor Jason. Thank you for all you do for our church

Jim T

THANK YOU, Pastor Vince! For your inspirational teaching that impacts me every day. There is no better way to start my day than diving in with you to better understand the Word so I can go into the world and apply those teachings.


Giving thanks for Pastor Paul as he is a tireless worker building God’s kingdom!


Pastor Hudson for laboring alone without the help of elders or deacons but still faithful to the work of the Lord. truly a servant worthy of double honor.

Ted Bichsel

As a pastor for mover 40 years I appreciate what you shared. None of us as pastors have gone into ministry for any gain. We went in with open hearts and lives. Although financial blessings have been wonderful. The heartfelt “ no strings attached” affirmation goes deep into a pastors heart.

Cory D

Thanks for your ministry Ted! I don’t know you but I pray for you, your family and those in your flock. Amen brother!

Ted Bichsel

Thanks my friend. God has always directed us through a heart to serve. It has not been without the disappointments and challenges. But God continues to use us. Blessing s

Would love your thoughts, please comment.x