> Distinctives > Pastor & Deacons
When working in harmony, they have the potential to turn their communities
upside down for Christ.
When not fulfilling their positions Scripturally, they can tear a church
up and split it "fifty-two ways from Sunday."
Those men who are called
to be pastors do so only with a deep sense of God's moving in their lives.
To enter the ministry without the clear leading of the Holy Spirit would
be tragic. Only those who are definitely called of God should venture
to go forth into the pastorate.
The qualifications for a
pastor are very well defined in the Scriptures.
1st Timothy 3:2 makes it
clear that a pastor (bishop/overseer) must be blameless. Having a
lifestyle that is without blame is by no means an easy task. To do
so, one must be totally reliant on the Spirit and Word of God. Furthermore,
he is to be a married man who is faithful to his wife. Added to that
are the characteristics of being watchful, clear minded, being well behaved,
hospitable to all with whom he comes into contact, and one who is well
studied so that he might be a good teacher of the Bible.
Titus 1:7 goes on to say
that a pastor must also be a good steward with all that God has blessed
him. Whether it be the ability to communicate through preaching or
a tender soul that draws others to a stronger commitment to Jesus Christ,
being a faithful servant is a necessity. Furthermore, the man of
God must not be selfwilled, quick to become angry, one who is given (unable
to control) what he takes into his body, a man who resolves issues with
violence, or is in it for the money (and being a Baptist pastor will definitely
not assure one of becoming independently wealthy any too soon).
The Baptists have been blessed
with many a good man who truly loves God and God's people. These
men have gone on to build ministries that reached their generations for
"...not many wise men after
the flesh, not many mighty, not many noble, are called (1st Cronicles 1:26)."
Therefore, the church that seeks only young handsome rising stars with
natural charisma are doing God a great disservice. Wonderful preachers
of God come in all shapes and sizes and varying degrees of personality.
Yet, all who are called and yielded to him are more than useable and will
be a blessing to any church who is wise enough to call them to minister
to the flock. Barring those who are truly "wolves in sheeps clothing,"
a truly committed pastor will uplift and build a ministry in a community
with a strong evangelistic outreach, effective discipleship teaching programs,
and opportunities for all to serve as God has given each one abilities
"When a man is on fire for God,
people will come from miles around to watch him burn." ~ Dr. Jack
| "This is
a true saying, If a man desire the office of a bishop, he desireth a good
~ 1st Timohty 3:1
The Greek word "diakonos"
is simply translated as "servant" in English. In fact, the word "waiter"
would be just as accurate.
A group of godly men who
love the Lord, are approved by the church, and determine to suppor their
pastor as the leader of the church are a huge blessing to any congregation.
Every pastor blessed with such a group of deacons will find that his ministry
is enhanced ten-fold if not a hundred-fold by having such men to assist
in the work of the local church.
Conversely, any man or group
of men who holds the office while refusing to be a true "servant" can be
an absolute curse and scourge upon the pastor, people, and ministry of
any church so inclined to allow them to continue to hold the position.
If there is any strength
in the leadership of a church, it is because a group of truly spiritual
men are in total support of the man God has called to pastor the congregation.
On the other hand, if there is any weakness the Baptists have endured,
it is their tendency to allow deacon "boards" to run the church and, consequently,
relegate the pastor to second fiddle. Nothing kills the potential
of a church for both spiritual and numerical group more than a handful
of men who consider themselves to be the end-all of whatever happens in
the life of a congregation. Even sadder is a church membership that
allows such men to conduct their business. Deacons who do not see
themselves as true servants should immediately resign their positions and
seek God's forgiveness in having given into the sin of spiritual pride.
A deacon who is truly yielded
to God will find total fulfillment as a servant. By simply making
himself available to support, pray for, assist, and be loyal to the congregation
and the man God has chosen to be the pastor, such a man is a blessing indeed.
May God raise up a new generation
of "diakonos" so that His work might go forward and reach many for Jesus
| "For they
that have used the office of a deacon well purchase to themselves a good
degree, and great boldness in the faith which is in Christ Jesus."
~ 1st Timothy 3:13
|Slippage Questions: Two
Offices of the Church
we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard,
lest at any time we should let them slip." ~ Hebrews 2:1
|Do you understand what the Bible says
in regard to the offices of the church? The pastor? The deacons?
Their qualifications? Their responsibilities?
|Is your church more inclined to follow
the leading of the pastor or the deacons?
|Does the pastor truly love the Lord and
is tender toward the flock as a caring shepherd or does he manifest traits
that are inconsistent with God's Word in regard to the office of the pastor?
|Do the deacons truly love the Lord and
are they tender toward the flock as caring servants or do they manifest
traits that are inconsistent with God's Word in regard to the office of
|Do you support your pastor by encouraging,
praying, and making sure that he is more than able to support his family?
|Are you and your church caring enough
about your pastor to make sure that he is well provided for, has time to
be with his family, and is not hindered by tasks that can be better left
to deacons so that he can devote himself to the spiritual ministry of the
|When was the last time you prayed for
your pastor and his family?
|When was the last time you took your pastor
out to lunch just to let him know how much you appreciate his ministry
to you and those you love?
|When was the last time you sent your pastor
an e-mail or a note to let him know that he is appreciated? His wife?
His children? What have you personally done for them?
|Are the deacons in the church you attend
supportive of the pastor? If not, then why?
|Are the deacons in the church you attend
committed to the Biblical teaching of servanthood?
|If so, do you pray for and encourage them?
|If not, what measures is your church taking
to deal with deacons who are overlording God's flock and doing so unscripturally?
|Can you find one verse in the entire Word
of God that supports the concept of a deacon board that leads the church?