Why the Change in Terminology??

Discussion in 'Pastoral Ministries' started by Dr. Bob, Jan 29, 2006.

  1. Dr. Bob

    Dr. Bob
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2000
    Messages:
    29,402
    Likes Received:
    12
    Ordained Catholics are called "PRIESTS". This is NOT, of course, a Bible term for ordained men.

    The Bible calls them "ELDERS".

    Okay, why, then do most Baptists call them "PASTORS"? That word (used only ONCE in the New Testament) is just a small description of what an ELDER does.

    I was called a "Pastor" for years in the ministry. I was "Pastor Bob" until I earned my first doctorate and then became, duh, "Dr Bob".

    Now I list my title as "Teaching Elder".

    Wonder WHY the change in biblical terminology is so popular in Baptists who claim fidelity to the Bible in all things!! And WHY we use "pastor" rather than "elder" in most of our churches.

    No fight. No agenda. Just curiouser and curiouser as I get older. Thanks.
     
  2. gb93433

    gb93433
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Jun 26, 2003
    Messages:
    15,496
    Likes Received:
    6
    In modern-day terminology I see the elder who preaches and teaches well as the pastor. He is the elder who is especially equipped to preach and teach well.
     
  3. bapmom

    bapmom
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2005
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    0
    Ive always seen the pastor as distinct from an elder only because he is the man hired to do the main job of leading the church. If not hired as in "paid position", at least the one elected to be the head Elder.

    Wouldn't that sort of terminology be one of those things that really doesn't matter all that much in the greater scheme of things? I think I'd put it right with the fact that we use the term "trinity" all the time, even though that particular word is not found even once.
     
  4. USN2Pulpit

    USN2Pulpit
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 19, 2003
    Messages:
    1,641
    Likes Received:
    0
    uh-oh, the term "hired" instead of "called"

    ...but I know what you're trying to say! ;)
     
  5. SaggyWoman

    SaggyWoman
    Expand Collapse
    Administrator
    Administrator

    Joined:
    Dec 15, 2000
    Messages:
    17,933
    Likes Received:
    8
    The called vs. hired is an interesting differentiation.

    How do you get rid of "called" people.....?
     
  6. bapmom

    bapmom
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 3, 2005
    Messages:
    3,091
    Likes Received:
    0
    I wasn't actually trying to make a differentiation between "hired" and "called". But when looking at the term "pastor" we tend to think of it as a position within the church that is filled by one specific person. There can be many "elders" in a church, but only one who is the head "pastor".

    Somebody has to be in charge, or there's just chaos.
     
  7. Brother Ian

    Brother Ian
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 27, 2005
    Messages:
    1,065
    Likes Received:
    0
    The deacon board calls them to go somewhere else. ;)
     
  8. Johnv

    Johnv
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2001
    Messages:
    21,321
    Likes Received:
    0
    I don't think there's a nood to split hairs over symantics. The pastor/minister/priest, etc is typically understood to be the ordained person in the pastorate position. Elders, etc, are typically thought of to be the lay persons who assist the pastor. That's how we use the terms today (though it varies from church/denom to church/denom), and that's perfectly fine. So long as we understand what scripture referrs to in specific offices (regardless of what those offices were called) then that's fine.
     
  9. PastorMark

    PastorMark
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2006
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    0
    I've never really thought about this, but could it be because Pastors are often younger than their congregation members?

    It might seem odd for an 80 year old member to refer to the Pastor as "elder" if he is only 35 or 40. If this is the case it is probably just because of the connotation placed on the word "elder" in our society.

    Likewise, I think the reluctance to use the title "bishop" is probably due to society associating that term with catholicism and the negative implication of that association.

    Pastor Mark.
     
  10. R.D.

    R.D.
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 16, 2006
    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    0
    What's the history of the term "Reverend"?
     
  11. TaterTot

    TaterTot
    Expand Collapse
    Guest

    and so many people try to differentiate between a God called and seminary trained pastor, as if they cant both be combined. Neither are in the bible, nor is reverend
     
  12. Joseph_Botwinick

    Joseph_Botwinick
    Expand Collapse
    <img src=/532.jpg>Banned

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2000
    Messages:
    17,527
    Likes Received:
    0
    Tater,

    I agree. Nowhere in the Bible is there a requirement for seminary training in order to be a pastor.

    Joseph Botwinick
     
  13. Salty

    Salty
    Expand Collapse
    20,000 Posts Club
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Apr 8, 2003
    Messages:
    22,109
    Likes Received:
    219
    Bapmom said:
    "Somebody has to be in charge, or there's just chaos".

    I would have to agree with that 103 3/4 %

    As pastor, I would NEVER want to be considered the Priest. I am not THE INTERCESSOR.

    As far a Rev, I have come across some people who will not discuss "religion" with you unless you are a "Reverend". I do use the title, but only for the purpose of showing I have been set apart.

    Salty

    PS call me what you want, just dont call me late for supper.
     
  14. MikeinGhana

    MikeinGhana
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2005
    Messages:
    356
    Likes Received:
    0
    Funny, here in Ghana a man is called Pastor so and so if he is not ordained. When he does get ordained he is called Rev. so and so. I am called Rev. Dr. Mike, so as to distinguish me from a medical doctor. No, the Rev. title does not make a vicar or priest or anything like that. It is just a way that people here show respect for the office of an elder/pastor.
     
  15. Len

    Len
    Expand Collapse
    Member

    Joined:
    Jul 24, 2005
    Messages:
    30
    Likes Received:
    0
    In the church I attend, all Elders are Pastors and vice versa, and the title of Elder is used formally, while the title Pastor is used in general conversation, church bulletins, the website, etc. It doesn't matter if a Pastor is "full time" (financially, not ministerialy) or not, he's still both.

    Never, to my knowledge is the term Reverend used of our current Pastor in the context of the local church's ministry, however he is also a volunteer consultant to our regional association, and the prefix Rev. is appended to his name on their printed materials. I don't think he he hates the term, but he prefers Pastor. When I asked him to be my best man, he requested to be called "Pastor" not "Rev." in the newspaper announcement; the newspaper did not comply with that request. Go figure.

    I find PastorMark's comment that perhaps Pastor is used instead of Elder because of age to be quite interesting. I could certainly see that being the case in some instances. Any one else think so?
     
  16. Bible-boy

    Bible-boy
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Sep 1, 2002
    Messages:
    4,254
    Likes Received:
    0
    The same way as you deal with the "hired" guys. You apply 1 Tim. 5:17-22 and if necessary Matt. 18:15-20.

     
  17. Joseph M. Smith

    Joseph M. Smith
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 27, 2006
    Messages:
    1,041
    Likes Received:
    0
    Before we hurry off too far in rejecting the term "Priest", let's remember that that is just a French-origin variant from the Greek, "Presbyteros", translated "Elder". In other words, "Priest" in its original meaning was the same as "Elder". But of course history has given the term new meanings, which I along with all Baptists I know of do reject.

    As for the theory that we would find it odd to call young men "Elder", I know that I always find it amusing when those pink-cheeked young Mormon missionaries come to my door wearing a nametag that dubs them "Elder". They are at least fifty years younger than I! (Of course when I tell them my name and that I am a Baptist minister they age in a hurry!
     
  18. EdSutton

    EdSutton
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2006
    Messages:
    8,755
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hmmm. I distinctly remember reading somewhere about believers being made a kingdom of priests.
    Ed
     

Share This Page

Loading...