Pastor-Teachers

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Dr. Bob, Sep 6, 2004.

  1. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
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    When God gave special ministerial gifts (Eph 4) as a blessing to the churches, there were
    Apostles
    Prophets
    Evangelists
    Pastor-Teachers

    Today we have some doing the work of apostles (missions is very close). Some proclaiming truth. Some gifted for evangelism.

    But we are finding a dearth of pastor-teachers. Men who have a rich education and can expound the depths of the word of God as a teacher must while at the same time shepherding and tending a flock.

    Many think teachers are dry lectures, boring. Heard a man speak like that and some said he was a "teacher-type". NOT SO. He was far from a true teacher.

    We have a thread on whether a pastor/preacher are synonyms. I question anyone called to "pastor" who is not a gifted "teacher".

    Thoughts?
     
  2. Bro.Bill

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    I could'nt agree more. Having said that, if one is truly a teacher then people will learn and not be bored.Most good learning is active.
    On the Pastor part, after you have gone through your training and worked under a pastor then only God can help you if you do it right.
     
  3. Gershom

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    How do we explain 1 Timothy 5:17,

    "Let the elders that rule well be counted worthy of double honour, especially they who labour in the word and doctrine."

    It appears to me that this verse may show us that not all pastors labour in the word and doctrine (teach). Is it so?
     
  4. gb93433

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    I have never been bored by a man who has a passionate walk with God.
     
  5. FHG&OJ

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    I know of a local Church that has about 14 "pastors" who “shepherd” the flock in many different ways, and yet not all of them are good "preachers". The head "Teaching Pastor" is exceptional as a "preacher/teacher" but I don't think he's much of a "pastor" or “shepherd.” Is this possible? One Elder is the “Teacher/Preacher” while the other Elders are the “Pastor/Shepherds.” Should this be? I think it can. But only in a 14-or so pastor setup. A single pastor in a smaller church needs to wear all the hats, if he has no other Elders to look to for help.

    Just because a man is not a good "preacher" does not mean he is not a good "teacher". From my perspective a preacher talks and everyone listens. A teacher talks and people respond. In teaching, a “give and take” process begins and education is conducted. Preaching typically comes from a Sunday morning pulpit (this should include teaching as well), while teaching (as Brother Bill said) comes from a non-pulpit or classroom setting where learning is active.

    Dr. Bob said, “I question anyone called to "pastor" who is not a gifted "teacher".” I would agree with that, they should go hand in hand. But not everyone called to “teach” is a gifted “pastor”; just as not everyone who is called to “pastor” is a gifted “preacher”. Of course we could debate on what “gifted” means.

    Brother Bill said and I agree, “Most good learning is active.” That falls under my definition of Teaching, not preaching. Since it’s typically tough for a large congregation (typically on Sunday) to become “active” without causing disruptions.

    We may be dealing with semantics hear but it seems that one does not necessarily mean the other. It can, and I think it should in an ideal situation, but not everyone, as the apostle Paul professed, is gifted in all areas. Some Pastors must work harder in areas where they are weaker in order to be more effective Pastors.

    For His Glory and Our Joy
    GSW
     
  6. Dr. Bob

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    Welcome, GSW. Have been greatly blessed by your pastor. He is a gifted teacher!

    Certainly some in various "pastoral" ministries may not be the best pulpit expositors. And some who are gifted teachers only may not have any pastoral skills.

    Guess I am talking about the overall evaluation, not the exceptions.
     
  7. Greg Linscott

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    Okay, maybe not everyone on GSW's church staff is the caliber of preacher that the senior pastor is. Few are. However, could you honestly say that most of them are incompetent in their handling of the word, or would not have the skills to shepherd smaller congregations if God would present the opportunity to them?
     
  8. Link

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    The way I am inclined to understand the issue of pastors/teachers and elder-overseers is as follows.

    A teacher is gifted to teach.

    A pastor is gifted to 'tend sheep' (take care of God's people.)

    Ephesians 4:11 mentions certain people who are gifted to both pastor and teach God's people. This doesn't mean that there aren't some gifted to pastor who are not very gifted in teaching (though taking care of God's people in this way would probably require _some_ gifting in teaching.) There may also be some teachers who are not especially gifted at the pastoral side of things.

    Some people think of a 'pastor' as someone who stands up once a week and gives a sermon, preaches weddings, and funerals. I understand 'pastor' to refer to someone who really watches over the lives of his brethren, helping them overcome sin, nurturing them when they are week. This involves getting _close_ to the sheep and building up relationships.

    I DO NOT BELIEVE THAT BEING A PASTOR/TEACHER QUALIFIES SOMEONE TO BE AN OVERSEER IN THE CHURCH.

    This, I believe, is one of the biggest misconceptions in the evangelical movement-- the idea that a 'pastor' in scripture is the exact same thing as being an overseer of the church.

    The elders of the church ARE told to 'pastor' the flock of God. But the scripture does not teach that all who are gifted to pastor are already elders. It does not teach that all who are gifted to pastor are in 'church goverment' per se.

    The apostles did not appoint 'pastors' per se, to oversee the local churches. They appointed elders. Scripture also refers to elders of the church as 'overseers.' There are actually _requirements_ for being an overseer listed in scripture. An overseer must first rule his own house well, and have his children obey him with the proper respect _before_ being put in charge of the house of God.

    The word 'elder' implies that the person in question is an older man. In the Old Testament 'elders' had a significant role in leading the people of Israel on the national, tribal, and city level. The New Testament carries on this tradition. Who would question that the 'elders' of the Old Testament are actually older men? Why should we assume differently in the New Testament? After addressing the elders in I Peter 5, Peter tells the younger, likewise ye younger submit yourselves unto the elder. Notice the age difference.

    An elder is a mature man. There are many young men gifted in the things of the Lord, gifted to teach, and perhaps even gifted to 'pastor' in the Ephesians 4:11 sense. But if a man has not lived long enough to fulfill the character requirements of I Timothy 3, then we should not see him as an elder of the church. Let him use his gifts, yes.

    There are young men gifted to do great works for God. An elder can be put in a position of authority in the church after he has proven himself through his godly life. But it is also to have a 'measure of rule' that corresponds to ones evangelistic work. Though Paul lived a godly life, he doesn't claim this as the source of his 'measure of rule' in Corinth. His 'measure of rule' extended to Corinth because he had introduced the Gospel to the Corinthian church. He had done so with his coworkers, Timothy and Silas.

    Timothy exercised some apostolic authority together with Paul in certain areas. Perhaps this was why Timothy was qualified to appoint elders, older than himself, in Ephesus, because he had participated in foundation laying work there.


    Something else to notice about elders is that we don't see one 'Chief Pastor' in every church in the New Testament, except the Lord Himself. The rest of the elders are undershepherds. We see elders shepherding as a _group_, not one senior pastor in a church.

    Elders were put in their positions of authority by meeting up to the Biblical qualifications, and not because they graduated a theology school. The church should be teaching what is necessary for church leaders to know. Leaders should be teacing other leaders in the context of the church community freely, without charging tuition.
     
  9. Pastor Larry

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    In the list of job qualifications in 1 Tim 3, there are only two skills: able to teach and able to lead (or oversee). Teaching is a vital part of the pastor's ministry and if he cannot do it, he is not qualified to teach.

    Ability to teach is something that must be cultivated. Good teachers are not born; they work very hard and it comes with much experience. You cannot judge a fresh graduate from seminary by the same standard as a seasoned veteran in the ministry. People also have different styles of teaching.

    But I agree that teaching is an absolute necessity and there is a great dearth of it in our churches.
     
  10. Major B

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    Many folks ignore the list in Titus, which supplements and overlaps the 1 Tim list. There is an important refinement there which relates to the pastoral instructions given Timothy and to the Ephesian elders. Note that the pastor-teacher must be knowledgable enough to defend the faith against false teachers.


     
  11. rufus

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    Dr. Bob said,

    I'll Amen that!
     

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