In very recent times, it has become the norm for people to get ‘dragged’, especially on social media platforms and to be honest pastors have gotten a fair share of this ‘dragging’. Whether it is a boorish OAP or an eccentric musical artiste, most people just feel that pastors are not doing what they are supposed to be doing; hence, they are deserving of criticism and public backlash. But the real question is – what is the biblical role of a pastor? Except in the cases of downright illegal activities, I believe it is out of place to criticize someone for doing the very things he/she should be doing.
The advent of Social Media which has empowered people with tools to vocalize their feelings about a variety of subjects, including subjects they know next to nothing about.
When I think of people voicing out their opinions on matters they know nothing about, my mind always goes to those ‘vox pop’ sessions were people are asked questions on the streets. Why don’t some those people just say ‘I don’t know’ and walk away? I believe that simply saying you don’t have the answer is nobler than sounding incoherent and extremely ignorant. However, now I feel like I am deviating from the topic.
Another question would be- if there is a biblical reference to what a pastors role is? The straight-up answer to that question is Yes! The Bible tells us what a pastor’s duties are within the societal context and to his flock. So, without further dallying.The Bible tells us what a pastor's duties are within the societal context and to his flock. Click To Tweet
The Biblical Role of A Pastor?
Ephesians 4:10-16 tells us why God gave us pastors, amongst other ministry gifts. And yes, pastors were given by God, let that sink in the next time you plan to question their purpose. As a member of the church, you should have a ministry gift, because God gave to us. So, you are actually very wrong ‘Dear Unpastored’ Christian.As a member of the church, you should have a ministry gift, because God gave to us. So, you are actually very wrong ‘Dear Unpastored’ Christian. Click To Tweet
However, within those verses, we see the biblical role of a pastor and other ministry gifts. Ephesians 4:12 tells us that they were given to equip the saints for the work of ministry and for the building up of the body of Christ. The next two verses tell us what the result of equipping and building will be and it is that the church comes to the unity of the faith, which is the knowledge of Jesus Christ, then we become mature as a result and the sign of our maturity is that we are no longer susceptible to false teachings and doctrines.
This might seem like a lot, so let me summarize it for you- your pastor’s job is to teach you the word of God properly so that you, in turn, can effectively teach others and you become less likely to be deceived into believing contrary opinions. With this, we can conclude that the primary job of the pastor is to teach his flock. This becomes the yardstick for measuring a pastor by, not his acts of philanthropy or his input in the politics of the day.Your pastor's job is to teach you the word of God properly so that you, in turn, can effectively teach others and you become less likely to be deceived into believing contrary opinions. Click To Tweet
In Acts 6 a problem arose within the church that centred around the daily distribution of food, the Apostles’ response as the overseers of the church was very apt. The apostles said ‘we cannot leave the ministry of the word to serve tables’. That was their job, the ministry of the word.
As amazing as miracles are, the working of miracles is not a Pastor’s job. A pastor must have the miraculous in his ministry, but that should not be the basis for verifying his credibility.As amazing as miracles are, the working of miracles is not a Pastor's job. A pastor must have the miraculous in his ministry, but that should not be the basis for verifying his credibility. Click To Tweet
The reason being that signs and miracles are not unique to pastors alone. 2 Thessalonians 2:9-12 talks about lying wonders in connection with ‘the lawless one’. Even as far back as the time of Moses, when he showed them the sign of the rod turning to a snake, the magicians also replicated the same miracle. It is however worthy of note that the rod of Moses swallowed the rod of the magicians, meaning that God’s power way surpasses any tricks the devil has up his sleeves.
The yardstick for measuring a pastors ministry must be his ability to rightly teach the word of God and not just the miracles that accompany his ministry. In the book of Acts we see repeatedly miracles followed up by sermons because the work of building up the body of Christ is done by the accurate teaching of the word(Acts 2:1-41, Acts 3, Acts 14:7-18). Even Jesus during his earthly ministry followed up his miracle of multiplying bread, with a teaching (John 6). But many Christians today act as the Jews did in Acts 6, they followed Jesus as long as he was meeting their physical needs (healing and feeding) but left him once he started to teach them the truth.
A pastor’s proficiency in the word of God is the basis by which he should be paid (1 Timothy 5:16-17). Yes, pastors should be paid, because preaching is their work. Please go back and read the reference from the book of First Timothy. Also, within the same book of first Timothy, there are requirements a pastor must meet, to be eligible for the office, but his primary assignment is teaching (1 Timothy 3:2-7).
So, in conclusion, I have told you what a pastor’s job is. With that parameter, you can access your pastor. Ask yourself the following questions- How much effort does my pastor put into teaching me the word of God? Have I grown in my understanding of what it means to be a Christian? Can I effectively share my Christian experience with others? Do I know what Jesus Christ really came for and how it pertains to me? Am I really trained to spot false doctrines when I hear them? If you can’t properly answer the questions above, it may be that your pastor is not doing his/her job.
Now you know what the biblical role of a Pastor, we will love to know what you think in the comment session or if you have any questions share them with us.
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