Pastor Appreciation Month: Day #17
October is Pastor Appreciation Month.
Take time today to express to your pastor how much he means to you.
The Prerequisites for the Pastor (I Timothy 3:1-7)
I Timothy 3:1-7, “This is a true saying, if a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good work. 2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, vigilant, sober, of good behaviour, given to hospitality, apt to teach; 3 Not given to wine, no striker, not greedy of filthy lucre; but patient, not a brawler, not covetous; 4 One that ruleth well his own house, having his children in subjection with all gravity; 5 (For if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God?) 6 Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover he must have a good report of them which are without; lest he fall into reproach and the snare of the devil.”
The pastor who shepherds’ today’s church also fulfills the New Testament role of elder and bishop (overseer), and is responsible to God for the spiritual welfare of the church (Acts 20:28). When Christ returns, He will judge and reward these pastors (elders), according to their faithfulness in leading the church to accomplish God’s will (I Peter 5:4). There are at least seven different titles for the New Testament pastor. The term elder is used over 20 times, emphasizing the pastor’s wisdom and maturity. The title bishop emphasizes the administrative function of the office. The word pastor emphasizes the responsibility of caring for the church, as a shepherd cares for the sheep. The word preacher emphasizes the ministry of publicly proclaiming God’s Word. The title teacher emphasizes that the pastor should be “apt to teach.” The pastor is also called a servant, reminding him that he is to minister to others; and he is a steward, managing the property of others (the church of Christ).
You will find the terms elder, overseer, and shepherd. These are not three offices, but three different aspects of the office.
Paul describes the pastor’s position as one that takes work to achieve. Three terms are used referring to the leader of the church in the New Testament.
(1) The term bishop literally means ‘overseer.’ God has given him the general oversight for the local church.
(2) The term elder is also used interchangeably for bishop as in Titus 1:5-6. An elder was one of authority either by age or rank. The application of the term is essentially that of authority.
(3) The term pastor literally means a ‘shepherd’ and speaks of tender care and feeding of a flock. Each of these three terms refers to the same individual. The difference lies in the various aspects of leadership. This speaks of the oversight, authority, and tender care. An analogy might be found in a husband and/or father in a home. The two terms, elder and bishop, refer to the same office. They differ only in their origins. In modern terms, they are the equivalent of the ‘pastor.’
I Timothy 3 can be divided into three parts as follows:
A. The Director in the Church (I Timothy 3:1-7)
B. The Deacon in the Church (I Timothy 3:8-13)
C. The Doctrine for the Church (I Timothy 3:14-16)
1. The Position of the man of God (I Timothy 3:1)
The office of a bishop. The office of a bishop speaks of overseership, charge, the office of an elder. This demands two things. The first is responsibility; the second is accountability. For any church to be a successful church, it must have good leadership. No church rises above its leadership. Dr. Lee Roberson says, “Everything rises or falls on leadership.” In I Timothy 3, the Word of God deals with the positions and the people that fill the position of leadership in the local churches. There are two offices in the church. First, the office of pastor and second, the office deacon. The office of pastor is the highest officer in the church called by God. There is no doubt “the office of a bishop” refers to the pastor.
2. The Passion of the Man of God (I Timothy 3:1).
A God-called pastor will desire this “good work”because God has placed that desire in his heart. When you hear a preacher say that God has called him to preach, that is what he is saying.
3. The Person of the man of God (I Timothy 3:2-7).
There are seventeen qualifications listed for the man of God here in (I Timothy 3:1-7). None of us are perfect, but at the same time these qualifications must not be ignored.
Notice I Timothy 3:1-7. The man of God is to prove himself as:
a. Successful Person (I Timothy 2a).
(5) Good behavior
(6) Given to hospitality
(7) Apt to teach
(8) Not given to wine
(9) No Striker
(10) Not greedy of filthy lucre
(12) Not a brawler
(13) Not covetous
(17) a good report of them which are without
b. A Successful Partner (I Timothy 3:2b).
(2) The husband of one wife
c. A Successful Parent (I Timothy 3:4-5).
(14) One that ruleth well his own house
(15) Have his children in subjection with all gravity
d. A Successful Preacher (I Timothy 3:6).
(16) Not a novice, lest being lifted up with pride he fall into the condemnation of the devil.
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Dr. Blackman is passionate about helping others grow in the grace of the Lord. His devotions are centered on how to grow closer to the Lord through a personal relationship.