The Officers of the Lord’s Church – Part 1 – the Pastor

Text: I Timothy 3:1–13.

Introduction: There are two ordained offices in the church today: pastor and deacon. They are both servants of the church. The pastor should take care of the spiritual affairs while the deacon takes care of the natural affairs of the church. In this issue of The Baptist Arrow we will look at the office of a pastor. In the next issue we will deal with the office of a deacon.

Pastor Shepherd

I. THE OFFICE OF A PASTOR

  1. The Pastor’s Calling
    1. Called to Salvation – Salvation comes by a supernatural
      call of God, as God grants repentance and faith to the
      sinner. (Acts 11:18, Eph. 2:8–9, II Tim. 1:9)
    2. Called to the Ministry – The call to preach is a supernatural act of the Lord. Only the Lord can put the desire
      in a man’s heart to preach. (Eph. 3:7, I Tim. 3:1)
  2. The Pastor is a gift to the Church (Ephesians 4:11–16)
    1. Fortheperfectingofthesaints.(v12)Theword“perfecting” is surgical term meaning “to set a broken bone.” The idea is to repair or to restore the saints. (Example: Gal. 6:1)
    2. For the work of the ministry. (v12) The pastor is to equip the saints for service.
    3. For the edifying of the body of Christ. (v12) “Edifying” means “to build up” the body. John Wesley said, “Give me a hundred men who fear nothing but God, and who hate nothing but sin, and who know nothing but Jesus Christ and Him crucified, and I will shake the world.”
    4. For the unity of the faith. (v13) “Unity” means to cause the weak to become strong in sound doctrine and practice. This will prevent divisions that could destroy the church. (Example: I Cor. 1:10–13)
    5. For the unity of knowledge. (v13) The idea is to become fully acquainted in an experiential sense. (Example: Phil. 3:10) By explaining doctrinal truth, defending doctrine, refuting false doctrine, and giving practical application of doctrine, the knowledge of God’s people will increase.
    6. To develop a perfect man. (v13) The term “perfect” speaks of spiritual maturity. This is a slow and gradual process. Our standard is the stature of the fullness of Christ.
    7. The benefits to the body of Christ are listed in verses 14–16.
  3. C. The Pastor’s Charge
    1. The pastor is to preach. It has been said that the man of
      God is to read the text and give the text a voice. (II Tim.
      4:1–2)
    2. The pastor is to be sent out from a local church who has
      the authority to qualify men to the ministry. (Rom. 10:14–15, Matt. 28:18–20)

II. The Ordination of a Pastor

  1. The Qualifications – The Church is given the authority to qualify men to the ministry. The Church is to qualify men according to Scripture. (I Tim. 3:2–7, Titus 1:6–9)
    1. A Family Man (Titus 1:6)
      1. Blameless – It does not mean sinless but rather “without accusation.” He is not called into account, nor taken into custody on any moral or spiritual charges. (I Tim. 3:7)
      2. One wife – He is a one–woman kind of man; a husband of one wife. (1 Cor. 7:2)
      3. Faithful children – Children who are instructed in the faith.
        1. Not accused of riot – Children who are not wild or untamed.
        2. Not accused of being unruly – Children who are not habitual rule breakers.
    2. A Faultless Man (Titus 1:7)
      1. Steward of God – He manages his own affairs and the affairs of others with trust, responsibility, and accountability.
      2. Not self–willed – He is not stubborn or arrogant.
      3. Not soon angry – He does not lose control, or have a spirit of hostility or resentment.
      4. Not given to wine – He is not a drunkard, or one that is addicted to wine.
      5. No striker – he does not fight with his fist.
      6. Not given to filthy lucre – He is not greedy for money. He does not put a price or charge on the ministry.
    3. A Friendly Man (Titus 1:8)
      1. A lover of hospitality – One who gives practical help to anyone who is in need; friend or stranger, believer or unbeliever. He freely offers his time, his resources, and his encouragement to meet the needs of others.
      2. A lover of good men – He has strong affection for that which is intrinsically good and a genuine love for men who serve with him in the ministry.
      3. Sober – He is sound in his judgment, and able to make decisions based on biblical principal.
      4. Just – A man who is fair in his dealings with others and fair in his business.
      5. Holy – He has a respect for holy things.
      6. Temperate – He exercises self–control, and is one who can bridle his emotions and tongue.
    4. A Faithful Man (Titus 1:9)
      1. Holding fast – The idea is as if someone is pulling against you. He will not compromise truth. “Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught.
      2. Sound doctrine – This speaks of a system of belief. He has the ability to rightly divide the Word of truth.
      3. Convince – This means to point out a fault or to reprove someone.
      4. Gainsayers – Those who speak against, oppose, or contradict. The word “gainsayer” describes men who would speak against the truth of God’s Word. Titus was to appoint qualified elders who would be able to:
        1. Exhort the gainsayers – To come alongside to encourage them with strong force to listen to reason. This calls for some backbone.
        2. Convince the gainsayers – To prove one in the wrong, and show him his error. This calls for a good knowledge of God’s Word.
  2. The Pastor’s Ordination
    1. The word “ordain” means “to place, designate or appoint.” It implies a recommendation to a particular ministry. (Titus 1:5; Acts 13:1–3; I Tim. 2:7, 4:14; Acts 15:40)
    2. In Acts 13:1–3 and Acts 14:26 we see the practice of laying on of hands when the church at Antioch sent out Barnabas and Saul on their first missionary journey.
  3. The Pastor’s Responsibilities – The following five titles describe the work of the Pastor:
    1. His duty as an elder. The title of “elder” refers to the position of the pastor as a leader in the aspect of conducting business. (I Tim. 5:17, Acts 11:30)
    2. His duty as a bishop. The word “bishop” is used five times in the New Testament.
      1. The title of “bishop” describes him as a superintendent or an overseer of a working force. (Titus 1:7; I Peter 2:25; Acts 20:28)
      2. By comparing Scripture references it is obvious that both elder and bishop are designated as the same office. (I Tim. 3:1–2; Titus 1:5–7; Acts 20:28–29)
    3. His duty as a shepherd of a flock. The title “shepherd” implies that the pastor is to have the same relationship with his congregation as the shepherd has with his flock. (I Peter 5:2–4)
    4. His duty as a preacher. The pastor is to proclaim God’s Word through preaching. (I Tim. 2:7; II Tim. 1:11; II Peter 2:5)
    5. His duty as a teacher. The pastor is to teach the whole counsel of God. (Ephesians 4:11–12; Acts 20:27)

III. The Obligations to the Pastor

  1. We should support the pastor. (I Cor. 9:7–14; I Tim. 5:17–18)
    1. Scriptures shows the principle that soldiers, farmers, shepherds and even oxen partake of the fruits of their labor. So should the pastor be supported by the people he serves.
    2. The pastor is to be financially supported by the church. Just as the Levites lived off the people’s tithes, so should the pastor be supported by the tithes that come through the local church. (I Cor. 9:13–14)
    3. Paul quotes from Deuteronomy 25:4 to show that if God grants this privilege of support to oxen, surely the pastor is worth more than the oxen and deserves our financial support.
  2. We should respect the pastor. (I Thess. 5:12–13)
    1. Respect the pastor who teaches you the Word of God to feed your soul and keep you from error. (Heb. 13:7, I Peter 5:1–3)
    2. Respect the pastor by submitting yourself to his leadership. The pastor represents the Lord and he is to lead from the authority of God’s Word. He is not to be a dictator, but rather a leader by example. This will profit the saints.
    3. The pastor will give an account at the Judgment for the souls he ministered too. The people can make his office grievous or joyful. (Heb. 13:17)
  3. We should pray for the pastor. (Col. 4:3; II Cor. 8:4; Rom. 15:30)
  4. We should love the pastor. (I Thess. 5:13; II Cor. 8:7; Col. 1:8)