‘preacher’ In The Bible
Then also, some of the Epicurean and Stoic philosophers argued with him. Some said, What is this pseudo-intellectual trying to say?Others replied, He seems to be a preacher of foreign deitiesbecause he was telling the good news about Jesus and the Resurrection.
preach the word be ready when the time is right and even when it is not correct , warn , exhort and encourage , with inexhaustible patience and teaching.
The Individual Choice Method
When the passages are determined by the preacher or the individual church, the preacher has the freedom to work out which passages are studied at particular times. In such a situation, the preacher will sometimes preach through an entire book of Scripture, which generally allows a far more detailed look at the text being studied. Under some circumstances, preachers may prefer to preach through whole books of the Bible systematically over a long period of time. For example, suppose a preacher decides to cover the book of I John. On the beginning week of the series, the preacher may explain and apply 1 John 1.1-4, then 1 John 1.5-7 the following week, then 1 John 1.8-10 after that, and would continue until all of 1 John is covered. Then another book of the Bible is examined, or else a specific topic is covered for a time .
- The key advantage of this system is that the preacher is forced to expound passages that may not be examined or applied normally under a topical series.
- The disadvantage of this system is that certain parts of the Bible may be overlooked. The preacher is also able to ignore those parts of the Bible that might appear to contradict his selected text or his sermon’s points.
Other preachers may preach from isolated texts – from Genesis 1:3 one week, and Isaiah 5:12 the next. Expository preaching does not always have to mean preaching series of sermons on a similar theme or book of the Bible.
Gods Truth Brought Home
What is preaching? Peter Adam defines it as the explanation and application of the word in the assembled congregation of Christ.1 Gods truth is declared by the preacher, and its meaning is brought home to those who listen. Preaching, though, is ultimately divine activity. J. I. Packer says that it is the event of God himself bringing to an audience a Bible-based, Christ-related, life-impacting message of instruction and direction through the words of a spokesperson.2 If this is preaching, then just how important is it? William Greenhill answers, Where the word of God is not expounded, preached and applied to the several conditions of the people, there they perish.3
The Puritan John Flavel, tireless servant of Jesus Christ, insisted that the only preaching which would do him good must be hissing hot.4 He didnt mean he wanted a noisy or showy man in the pulpit, but one who was utterly committed to showing from the Word who Jesus is and why he is therefore so gloriously all-important. Only that sort of preaching brings light and life.
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Handling The Word Rightly
So how do we preachers handle the Bible faithfully and accurately so that Jesus is seen in every passage? After all, many passages of Scripture have no evident reference to Jesus, and the connections we preachers try to make can sound forced and leave our listeners maybe rightly unconvinced. How do we preach Christ from every Scripture so that we are not misinterpreting parts of the Bible, or leaving our hearers in a muddle?
Preachers know that this is a vast area of debate, and different opinions set as hard and as fast as concrete on the subject of preaching Christ from all the Scriptures. My own conviction is that we need to be sensitive to what the text is saying in its context, and then fully alive to the progress of redemptive history in which that text finds its place.
Is that too easy an example? So, what about the passages that dont seem to explore the dominant Bible themes of sin and redemption? Where is Jesus, say, in the protracted romance of Jacob and Rachel, or in the portioning of the land to the Israelite tribes under Joshua, or in the terrible personal conflicts of the prophets, or in the tears of the widows of Elijah and Elishas day? And how can we speak of Jesus when we read of the temple pillars pomegranates?
No text is ever properly handled if people arent led into its truth that Jesus is center-stage in Gods drama.
How Do You Practice What You Preach According To Scripture
The Apostle Paul also references this concept in his letter to the Romans. Similar to Jesus, he is addressing the law-abiding Jews, this time in Rome, when he says:
You, then, who teach others, do you not teach yourself? You who preach against stealing, do you steal? You who say that people should not commit adultery, do you commit adultery? You who abhor idols, do you rob temples? You who boast in the law, do you dishonor God by breaking the law? .
Notice the context tying these two passages together Jesus and Paul are each referring to those who were teaching, preaching, and practicing the Hebrew law.
This is the law Paul was talking about when he told the first Christian Romans, all who sin under the law will be judged by the law . Also saying to the first Christian Galatians, all who rely on the law must keep the entirety of the law .
In other words, according to Scripture, if you are preaching the law, particularly as a means for becoming right with God you had better be practicing the law. It is the teacher who will be judged with greater strictness, after all .
As is shown above, many of the religious leaders were falling short, in this area.
Furthermore, they didnt seem to understand that no one would be declared righteous in Gods sight by any such work of the law , or that no man who relied on the law would be justified before God .
Lets take a look at a few.
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Development Of The Christian Canons
Development of the Old Testament canonDevelopment of the New Testament canonSt. Jerome in his StudyJeromeLatinVulgate
The Old Testament canon entered into Christian use in the Greek Septuagint translations and original books, and their differing lists of texts. In addition to the Septuagint, Christianity subsequently added various writings that would become the New Testament. Somewhat different lists of accepted works continued to develop in antiquity. In the 4th century a series of synods produced a list of texts equal to the 39, 46, 51, or 54-book canon of the Old Testament and to the 27-book canon of the New Testament that would be subsequently used to today, most notably the Synod of Hippo in 393 CE. Also c. 400, Jerome produced a definitive Latin edition of the Bible , the canon of which, at the insistence of the Pope, was in accord with the earlier Synods. With the benefit of hindsight, it can be said that this process effectively set the New Testament canon, although there are examples of other canonical lists in use after this time.
The New Testament writers assumed the inspiration of the Old Testament, probably earliest stated in 2 Timothy 3:16, “All scripture is given by inspiration of God”.
Some denominations have additional canonical holy scriptures beyond the Bible, including the standard works of the Latter Day Saints movement and Divine Principle in the Unification Church.
Ethiopian Orthodox canon
Qualities Of A Pastor In The Bible
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Not everyone can be a pastor, and the Bible contains multiple mentions of the necessary pastoral qualities every potential aspirant should have. Just so you know, we are going to be using the words as overseer, elder and shepherd as synonyms to pastor. With that out of the way, here are some of the verses and chapters that talk about the qualities of a pastor:
- According to 1 Timothy 3:2, an overseer has to be temperate, respectable, above reproach, self-controlled, able to teach and, most importantly, faithful to his wife. The similar sentiment is supported in Titus 1:6, where it is added that the elders children need to believe.
- Continuing the notion of family values, 1 Timothy 3:4-5 states that a pastor should manage his family well, and his children have to obey him, because if he cannot manage his own family, how would he be able to take good care of Gods church?
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There might be more references in the Bible about the qualities a pastor should possess, but these are by far the most prominent ones. We should also add that, even though pastors are usually assumed to be male in the Bible, women can also be pastors, as long as they fit the aforementioned description.
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Tell Us What God Has To Say
In that sermon, I quoted W.A. Criswell , who pastored First Baptist Dallas for forty years. I said then, and I believe today, that his words are an admonition to pastors that I think is right on the money, and I take it as a great challenge:
When a man goes to church, he often hears a preacher in the pulpit rehash everything that he has read in the editorials, the newspapers, and the magazines. On the TV commentaries, he hears that same stuff over again, yawns, and goes out and plays golf on Sunday. When a man comes to church, actually what he is saying to you is this, Preacher, I know what the TV commentator has to say I hear him every day. I know what the editorial writer has to say I read it every day. I know what the magazines have to say I read them every week. Preacher, what I want to know is, does God have anything to say? If God has anything to say, tell us what it is.
This means that if the preaching is to claim authority to be believed, it needs to correspond to what the Scripture teaches. But heres the catch: The desire of the Christian preacher is not that the resting place of the peoples confidence shift from the Scripture to the preacher. He wants them to believe what he says. He wants to have authority in that sense. But he wants the authority to remain in the Scripture itself, not in him and his words.
My heart aches for the pastor who increases his own burden by trying to come up with ideas to preach to his people.
Who Is A Pastor According To The Bible
A pastor has to be a shepherd to their congregation. They must oversee their flock and rely on the power and gifting of the Holy Spirit. One of pastors duties is to be a teacher. They have to provide discipleship and teach the people how to live like Christ. They must feed the church of God with knowledge.
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The Overlap Of Preaching And Teaching
All pastors are called to be teachers . What I mean in that short pithy statement is that I believe Paul to be labeling the office of pastor as pastor-teacher in Ephesians 4:11. Therefore, in every sermon there must be teaching. There is a natural and healthy overlap between preaching and teaching. Not everyone who teaches will make a good preacher. Not everyone who is skilled in the pulpit will make a good teacher. Its often true that people find their calling and giftedness leading them to spend their primary attention on one of the two as opposed to both preaching and teaching. Some elders are certainly gifted teachers, but theyre not equally as gifted in the pulpit. Those individuals typically are not called to be the primary preachers in the life of the church. Many preachers who are obviously skilled in the pulpit are not as skilled in areas of formal classroom instruction or written communication, but there is always a natural and necessary overlap at some level.
The Way They Were Trained
In each case there was a period of formal and informal training.
- Philip served as a deacon.
- Barnabas worked with Paul and different churches before going out on a missionary journey.
- Timothy and Titus were trained by Paul.
- Apollos had formal training in Alexandria, and was taught more fully by Aquila and Pricilla.
Each spent time in some way developing their faith and their skills.
Today we have Bible schools and Christian universities but we should be aware that the local congregation is still the best place to train preachers.
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Using The Word Pastor In The Way The Bible Uses It
It is very common in religious circles to refer to certain men as pastors. Denominational groups usually have someone known as the pastor of the church. Recent news articles talk about what some youth pastor did. Some religious schools have a spiritual guidance counselor on campus and they might refer to that person as Pastor so-and-so.
So what is a pastor? If we rely on modern usage of the term, various dictionaries define pastor as a minister in charge of a Christian church or congregation or the leader of a Christian congregation. Note carefully the understanding of that term today: the pastor is the leader of the church and is in charge of the congregation. But how does the Bible use that word?
The Greek word for pastor is poimen. The term is found frequently in the New Testament and is only once translated pastors . Every other occurrence of the word is translated shepherd. By definition of the Biblical word, a pastor is a shepherd. Now, who does the Bible identify as the pastors or the shepherds of the church?
The preacher is not by definition, then, a pastor. He is not the leader in charge of the church. He is one of the members of the congregation and is subject to the eldership . He is not on a level above anyone else or to be revered as such thus, there is no special title for him to wear or to be called .
Comfort Hearts With Truth
When we preach, it is to those who are mostly weary, tempted, and weak in faith. We teach them, but we aim to do more than that. We aim to see their hearts comforted by the truth we teach them. Therefore we prepare, pray over, and then declare the truth as it is found in Jesus in order to call our hearers to give themselves to Jesus with renewed hope. The preacher breaks the bread in such a way that the church feeds on Christ from every Scripture.
John Newton wrote to a friend to encourage him in his Christian walk. Of Jesus Christ he said,
To view him by faith, as living, dying, reigning, interceding and governing for us, will furnish us with such views, prospects, motives, and encouragements, as will enable us to endure any cross, to overcome all opposition, to withstand temptation, and to run in the way of his commandments with an enlarged heart.6
This is what we are doing in our preaching. Preaching knows no greater goal, and allows no lesser one.
This article is adapted fromThe Preachers Catechism
Lewis Allen serves as senior pastor of Hope Church in Huddersfield, West Yorkshire, England, which he helped plant after twelve years of pastoring a church in West London.
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Bible Verses About Preaching Importance Of
And Jesus came up and spoke to them, saying, All authority has been given to Me in heaven and on earth.Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit,teaching them to observe all that I commanded you and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.
These twelve Jesus sent out after instructing them: Do not go in the way of the Gentiles, and do not enter any city of the Samaritans but rather go to the lost sheep of the house of Israel.And as you go, preach, saying, The kingdom of heaven is at hand.
And He *summoned the twelve and began to send them out in pairs, and gave them authority over the unclean spirits and He instructed them that they should take nothing for their journey, except a mere staffno bread, no bag, no money in their beltbut to wear sandals and He added, Do not put on two tunics.read more.And He said to them, Wherever you enter a house, stay there until you leave town.Any place that does not receive you or listen to you, as you go out from there, shake the dust off the soles of your feet for a testimony against them.They went out and preached that men should repent.
Diverting The Lord’s Heralds
The work of a preacher is short and simple in its description, but large and vital in its scope. Men dissatisfied with God’s simple work have devised many other roles and works for their “preachers.” By this device, Satan delays, distracts and diverts the important work of the King’s royal heralds into a thousand channels. As churches have expanded their work and mission beyond what the Lord gave, they have expanded the “job description” a preacher. We are told preachers are to be pastors or “shepherds” and counselors busy visiting, overseeing and guiding “the flock.” We are told preachers are to be deacons, caretakers and superintendents managing and supervising the church building and facilities.
A gospel preacher is not a “pastor,” shepherd, elder or counselor. A pastor is a shepherd, the office of an elder, bishop or overseer. This is a different worker for the Lord with a different work. A pastor’s work is to shepherd and oversee the flock, watching for their souls . A preacher appoints men qualified to do the work of a shepherd, but he does not do their work, as he has sufficient of his own .
A gospel preacher is not a “deacon,” servant or caretaker of the church property or work. The church selects and the preacher appoints men as deacons to take care of this business. A preacher is not to leave the Word to serve tables, but give himself continually to prayer and serving the Word .
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