Honor is something I often encounter, but not here in the United States, in this culture. It's a rarity at best! The honor I encounter occurs in others countries and cultures. When I have traveled to Haiti, Africa, Europe and more I have encounter great honor of others and myself. Why is it missing here?
I believe it is missing here for 2 reasons; we don't know what Honor means, and we don't know what God's word says about it.
Here's what I know...Honor is defined as , "high respect, as for worth, merit, or rank: to be held inhonora source of credit or distinction".
Honor is based on position and not performance! Honor is something that is freely given. I think we often confuse honor with respect. Respect is something you earn, and honor is something that we give completely free.
God's Word has a lot to say about honor. There are a few passages that come to mind I think are powerful. Exodus 20:12 and Ephesians 6:2-3 Tell us to honor our parents, not for any other reason than their position as our parents. 1 Peter 3:7 says that we are to honor our wives, simply because they are our wives! Leviticus 19:32 says we are to show honor to those older than us simply based on their age. 1 Timothy 5:3 tells us to honor the widows. Romans 13:7 says that we are to show honor to those who are in authority over us, based solely on their position!
But, the 2 most powerful passages are Romans 12:10 which says we are to out do one another in showing honor. That verse is speaking about all of us showing honor to each other. We should give honor simply because we are all children of God! Then in 1 Timothy 5:17 Paul uses a phrase that appears no where else in the Bible. He says that the pastors, elders, of the church that preach and teach should be "worthy of double honor". Paul uses the most powerful phrases in this area to express the honor we should show those who have taught us God's Word and been the shepherd of God's Church.
That last one is not easy to write for me. Yes, I am a pastor, so it's a good verse for a pastor. But, it's tough because I often feel unworthy and unqualified for that position of honor. It's also difficult because for many years I did not show that level of honor to the pastors in my life. Were it not for great pastors in my life such as my dad, Pastor Tom, Pastor Mark, Pastor Rob, Pastor Rick, Pastor Perry and few others, I would not be the man, husband, father and leader I am today.
The reality is I owe honor to my parents for raising and teaching me, to the older men in my life who have guided me, to the pastor in my life who have instructed me and the authorities in my life who shape me. I owe honor to the people around me because they are the children of God! I owe great honor to my bride for loving me and being my best friend.