God Doesn't Want Lazy, Stubborn Ministers

 By Pastor Benjamin Glaser - Posted at Thoughts From Parson Farms:

The Preaching of the Word and Christ's Call to the Church

Good Morning,

Building a biblical understanding of what a minister is and what a minister is to do in the preaching of the word is the doctrine upon which the Church stands or falls. I know that saying is usually wrapped around Martin Luther’s statement on justification by faith alone, however, I don’t think it is overselling the importance of both the minister and people of God knowing what the former is to be doing to make the same claim about the office the man (and yes, the Bible only knows of qualified men to ordained office) called out takes on when he steps into a pulpit. As our first catechism question makes clear that person must fit the requirements as laid out by Paul in passages like 1 Timothy 3, Titus 1, and Ephesians 4. That calling must be confirmed not only inwardly by the Holy Spirit, but outwardly by the Church.

In our Presbyterian circles that means first of all the session of elders at the local level are to test the man’s holiness, from their personal experience and by examining him as to the seriousness of his commitment. That hurdle being jumped, the individual then is to be overseen, investigated, and supported by the Presbytery, who then after subjecting him to various trials will license and then ordain him to the gospel ministry. All men have clay feet, and while it is certainly the case that some ungodly/wicked men get through that process, there is not a better way than the way our Lord has established for His sheep to be fed, and shepherded in grace. Let’s see the Q/A’s:

Q. 158. By whom is the word of God to be preached?

A. The word of God is to be preached only by such as are sufficiently gifted, and also duly approved and called to that office.

Q. 159. How is the word of God to be preached by those that are called thereunto?

A. They that are called to labour in the ministry of the word, are to preach sound doctrine, diligently, in season and out of season; plainly, not in the enticing words of man’s wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit, and of power; faithfully, making known the whole counsel of God; wisely, applying themselves to the necessities and capacities of the hearers; zealously, with fervent love to God and the souls of his people; sincerely, aiming at his glory, and their conversion, edification, and salvation.

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