The Call to Preach

Discussion in 'Baptist Theology & Bible Study' started by Andy T., Feb 13, 2008.

  1. Andy T.

    Andy T.
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    Here is an interesting article by Al Mohler on the call to preach:

    http://www.albertmohler.com/blog_read.php?id=1095

    Question: What would you say to someone who has the inward, Spirit-led desire to preach/teach/pastor, but does not have the external gifts evident to be a good preacher/teacher/pastor? By external gifts, I mean good people skills, good speaking skills, etc.
     
  2. TCGreek

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    I would encourage the person to develop them and work hard at it.

    I'm a preacher who stands before my congregation four times a week and I was once the shy type.

    But I worked at it.
     
  3. Tom Bryant

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    As one who was so shy that my older sister used to do my talking for me and had a bit of a stuttering problem, I think the call of God is the absolute. You can work on the other things such as developing a preaching ability or pastoring skills.

    Andy,
    where do you see yourself in this issue?
     
  4. TCGreek

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    1. Great article, BTW. I particularly like this piece:

    "Second, there is the external call. Baptists believe that God uses the congregation to "call out the called" to ministry. The congregation must evaluate and affirm the calling and gifts of the believer who feels called to the ministry. As a family of faith, the congregation should recognize and celebrate the gifts of ministry given to its members, and take responsibility to encourage those whom God has called to respond to that call with joy and submission." (emphasis mine)

    2. It accords with the Scriptures (Acts 6:3-6; 1 Tim 4:14).
     
  5. Alcott

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    For years I have been moving toward-- and am now within a 'cat's whisker'-- of saying the "call to preach" is a lot of baloney. And this idea that God's way of 'calling' is to make one miserable if he doesn't... seems a rather miserable doctrine in itself. For those 10-15 years I considered it, maybe that's what I was expecting-- for him to shove me into it by misery. Well, my adult life has been perpetual misery-- and I'm sure I refelct that well enough-- but I really know it would still be so if I had done that.
     
  6. Jkdbuck76

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    The call to preach is a gift and not a skill. One of the best classes I took in college was Speech 101. Public speaking and "people" skills are just that---skills; something that can be learned.
     
  7. 4His_glory

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    I would say those gifts can be developed with time. Also we need to remember that God uses the foolish things to confound the wise. Starting in the NT and continuing all through church history notices the unlikely people God has used.

    Peter- a fisherman from Galilee (he certainly did not have good people skills to start out with!)
    Paul- a persecutor of the early church
    William Carey- a humble and poor shoe cobbler.

    And we could go on and on. But the point is that God uses the unlikely and unthinkable to effect great change. So a person who seems like an unlikely candidate to be a preacher at first, may become one some day.

    And really which one of is is qualified? I am so unworthy so serve Christ where I do and in the manner that I do that I often wonder why He would call me.
     
  8. lbaker

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    I'm the same way, and sometimes wonder if the "call" comes more from within someone's own consciousness, from their own ideas and ambitions than from an outside source.
     
  9. Aaron

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    If one is equating the "call to preach" with the "desire for the office of bishop," as appears to be happening, then I agree with those who say that the "call to preach" is an illusion.

    What we are called to is service in whatever form that service is rendered. Does one desire the office of bishop, then he is more than welcome to it if he is qualified, and all of the qualifications are aspects of one's character, not some metaphysical calling.

    The difference between an office and a gift is that one can be taken away, and the other cannot. One can disqualify himself from the office of bishop, but one cannot alienate the gift of prophecy.

    Besides, I think most who are going into the ministry do so because of their desire for the preeminence. In my estimation, only about 5% of those who are in the pulpit are truly qualified.
     
  10. Tom Bryant

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    Where do you buy those wide brushes? How do you quantify this kind of accusation?
     
  11. Andy T.

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    Aaron, 5% is unduly harsh. Certainly there are some in the pulpit that are unqualfied, but to say 95% is quite unreasonable.
     
  12. PastorSBC1303

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    Atleast you aren't bitter :saint:

    I ran from the calling of God for awhile and I was the most miserable I have ever been. I finally surrendered to what God wanted and while life has not always been a happy thrill ride, God provides His peace and His joy.

    I agree with this completely. If God calls you, He will change, equip, challenge, convict and lead in whatever way He needs to provide for that calling.

    Just consider the source, assume he is always right :rolleyes: and ignore him.

    For anyone to say those kind of things is simply ridiculous and there is no way to back that up with fact.
     
  13. Trotter

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    To those who have not been called, it is just a notion someone hatches in their own head. To those who had heard that call, it is a never-ending roar. There really isn't any middle ground.

    I ran from that call, but it was still there. I won't say that life became rosy once I accepted it, though. It was still the same life, but I didn't have God trying to convince me like He had been.

    I am not a pastor, and may never be one. I am a teacher by gift, and have been approved by my former church as a preacher of the gospel... I just don't have the "fire and brimstone" style that is so common in my area. I still have the same call that I had from the beginning, though.

    External gifts are not a requirement, thankfully. They are helpful, though. I am able to "put the cookies on the bottom shelf" when I preach/teach, and this helps many to understand what is being communicated. As far as any other external gifts, I missed out. Someone else got the good looks and charming personality.
     
  14. PastorSBC1303

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    Excellent statement, that is about the best I have ever seen it worded.
     
  15. 4His_glory

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    Amen and amen. I can see why some who are not called look upon it as something strange and distant. But its one of those things you have to experience to be able to understand. I can not picture myself doing anything else but serving God in full time ministry. Like the prophet Jeremiah said- it burns in my bones. This is impossible to explain to others.

    How can you say that? Most pastors I know are the unsung, unheard but faithful laborers of the Master and they are perfectly content to stay that way.

    Begin a pastor or missionary or in some other type of full time ministry is not a "glamorous job." It is a task the requires more than just physical and mental labor, but emotional and spiritual as well. It is very exhausting and draining at times. Trust me, there have been times I cried my eyes out and poured my heart out to God to lead me to something different that would be "easier". But then that God-exalting, Christ-magnifying, burning passionate desire to serve God fills my heart with joy and I am once again set upon my task and calling.

    If God never called me, I would never continue doing what I do.

    Blessings all.
     
  16. tinytim

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    I feel sorry for you my brother... you seem to be really disillusioned by Christians...

    So, 95 of every 100 preachers are not qualified...

    That means Satan is more powerful than God... Not.

    I would say maybe 1 out of every 12... the same ratio Jesus had... is not qualified... but that is my opinion...

    But having dealt with you, and reading your posts, you have such a high standard that has to be met... that even some preachers in the Bible would have a problem pleasing you... so your 5% doesn't really surprise me...

    But I do hope one day, you can shed this anger and pessimism that prevails in your posts.. YOu are very intelligent.. and God can really use someone like you to work for him.. if you would understand grace.
     
  17. Trotter

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    Yes, and yes. I don't know at the times I have prayed and asked God to take the away that call. At times I live in such frustration because of it... but my circumstances are not the norm. That doesn't change the situation, though. At least getting to teach the teens gives me an outlet.
     
  18. Rex77

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    Quote
    ---------------------------------------------------------
    Question: What would you say to someone who has the inward, Spirit-led desire to preach/teach/pastor, but does not have the external gifts evident to be a good preacher/teacher/pastor? By external gifts, I mean good people skills, good speaking skills, etc.
    ------------------------------------------------------------

    Reminds me of story told by J Oswald Sanders. of a preacher in New Zealand who could not say 2 words without stuttering. when talking .

    But as soon as he started to preach he would speak with perfect diction
    as clear as a bell.

    When asked why he was able to do this he would reply, he did not know
    but he said it made him very humble and dependent on the Holy Spirit.

    God always finds a way.


    Another man I knew in Sydney murdered the Queens english yet preached in churches all over Australia , and wrote Eternity all over the country
    and led to Eternity displayed on the Sydney harbour bridge NYE 2000
    yet he could hardly write his own name when he wrote in perfect copperplate ETERNITY
    You can hear him speak in an interview With Arthur Stace on the website below.
     
  19. gb93433

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    "An empty bag makes the most noise."

    Those who are making disciples have no time to make such noise but are rather so busy with their call that every Christian should be doing as well.
     
  20. LeBuick

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    I'm still the shy type and if it were not for the Lord and my love for the brotheren I don't think I would make it to the pulpit on Sunday.
     

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