In Part I of my Preacher’s of L.A.’s Episode Two commentary, we addressed the concept of godly confrontation from a biblical standpoint. My summation was the Bishop Ron and First Lady LaVette Gibson did attempt to employ Jesus’ method of conflict resolution, yet were hampered by the lack of accountability and honesty identified in Bishop Noel Jones and Loretta Jones’ relationship. In this piece, we’ll dig a little deeper into the volatile dinner date and further expound on godly confrontation.
In Part I, I stated, that Bishop Jones’ “obvious lack of confrontation” was “a recipe for disaster.” Some might say, “Well what’s wrong with this arrangement? If they’re comfortable with it, then why should we care?” Great question!
In the Bible, there is an example of another couple where the man allowed his woman to fight his battles for him. His name was Ahab and his wife’s name was Jezebel. Long story short, Ahab saw a vineyard he wanted, Naboth wouldn’t sell it to him, Ahab threw a hissy fit, and his wife said, “I got this boo,” and had Naboth discredit and stoned to death. (See I Kings 21:1-16 for the full story.)
Now there are some obvious differences between Mr. and Mrs. Jezebel and the Joneses. Primarily being:
- Bishop Jones and Loretta aren’t married.
- Bishop Jones sent Loretta to fight their battle; Jezebel volunteered.
- Bishop Jones wants to do ministry, Ahab just wanted some more land.
- Loretta is not a Jezebel whereas Jezebel was the very embodiment of Jezebel–literally! Which leads me to my next point…
Bishop Ron was wrong to call Loretta a Jezebel. (I think the Billiards scene at the Jones residence, after the date, summed that up pretty well. Just two words: “Hear me.”)
I really don’t think Loretta is a Jezebel. And if she is, it would be largely Bishop Jones’ faul. And if you’d like to familiarize yourself with Jezebel, read this. And this. However, I do understand why Bishop Ron called Loretta “Jezzy.”
1) Loretta came in looking for a fight–and she was directed to do so because of Bishop Jones’ instructions. 2) She was rude, condescending, and defensive which, I believe, stems from the insecurity of her relationship with Bishop Jones (i.e. his refusal to commit and define their relationship). And she did all of the talking. Bishop Jones hardly dared to put a word in edgewise until Bishop Gibson invited him into the conversation. He didn’t even attempt to defend Loretta.
Whenever a man/leader abdicates his natural role of leadership or the authority attached to that leadership, he provides an opening to the spirit of Jezebel (or Absalom).
There are two examples of men in the Bible who had women fight battles for them. The first was Ahab who we discussed earlier. And the second was Barak who insisted that he would not go to battle without Deborah. In the end, she acquiesced, yet still fought with him–not for him (See Judges 4 & 5).
Earlier this year, I wrote a post entitled, “The Most Dangerous Leader (Leaders Who Won’t Confront)” and while it is well worth the read in general, it is particularly notable in the context of godly confrontation–or the lack thereof.
When any leader refuses to confront–and yes, I speak from experience–they, unintentionally, set up a person to be a potential Jezebel or Absalom. However you paint it, it ain’t pretty. So while we the viewers could see that Bishop Jones was deferring his authority to Loretta, it appeared to Bishop Gibson that she was usurping it. Thankfully, the Season Two trailers show us that eventually, Bishop Gibson and Loretta will have their come-to-Jesus moment.
When we confront our brothers and sisters in Christ, we must remain level-headed even in our righteous indignation (and yes, as a passionate person, I confess this can be a hard balance to maintain!) and allow the discernment of the Holy Spirit to guide us in our reactions. We won’t always know what’s going on behind the scenes. We won’t always know what (spirit) may be driving a person to do or say a thing. But we do know that words are like toothpaste: once you squeeze ‘em, they ain’t goin’ back in the tube! Whoever made up the poem about sticks and stones was a liar or just hiding under a rock their whole life. Holy Ghost discernment is everything when engaging in godly confrontation!
What has been your personal experience with leaders who refuse to confront?
- Preachers of L.A., Episode 1: Judgment vs. Being Judgmental
- Preachers of L.A., Episode 2: Godly Confrontation, Part I
- Open Letter to the Producers of Preachers of L.A.