From the Thirty “Questions
and Answers” CD set
What Does a Good Pastor/Teacher Look Like?
A good pastor and body of ministers in a church should focus on making God real to the people who meet at the local church. These people should be the ones who take the reality and truth of God into their daily lives. The ministries of a church should be to heal the broken, refresh the weary (Rev. 3:15), and to “strengthen, encourage, and comfort” (1 Cor. 14:3) The pastor/teacher does not do the work of the ministry. The pastor/teacher prepares God’s people for the work of the ministry. Ephesians 4:11 says Jesus “gave some. . .to be pastors and teachers, to prepare God’s people for works of service so that the body of Christ may be built up.” A misconception is that the local church is the ministry. It is not. The work of the ministry occurs outside the local church. Often you hear pastors encourage people to get involved in the ministry. They ask for ushers, baby sitters, or help in the parking lot. These are not the “works of service” Paul refers to in Ephesians 4. These are an extension of the foundational calling of the pastor/teacher. Pastors have a tendency to collect people. Not until the pastor/teacher realizes where they stand in the hierarchy of God’s plan are they able to fulfill their role.
A church should NOT look like this:
Here the pastor/teacher has the vision and believes the church is the ministry. The people are simply there to support the vision and ministry of the pastor/teacher. This is usually done by giving money and doing the things that need to be done for the pastor/teacher to be “effective.” Here the ministry, or “works of service” are taken from the people and replaced with the vision of a man. It may be a good vision. It may include God’s plan for the pastor. But, it is still not the “works of service” that the people are to be prepared for. In this model the pastor is at the top and collects people.
A church should look like this:
Here pastors “prepare God’s people” (not the pastor’s people) for the gift and ministry God has called them. The people do the “work of the ministry” and build up the body of Christ. Here the pastor/teacher is the servant to those who do the ministry. People come to the local church for refreshing and healing. A healthy church will have people ministering at work, at home, and in their own “ministry” empowered by the Spirit. Teaching is not the pinnacle of ministry. It is foundational. A church that does not produce is underdeveloped.