Qualifications and Duties of Pastors
“...train yourself for godliness; for while bodily training is of some value, godliness is of value in every way, as it holds promise for the present life and also for the life to come.”
1 Timothy 4:7,8
Authorship uncertain (2nd-4th centuries)
“In this manner let examination be made when [a bishop] is to receive ordination, and to be placed in his bishopric, whether he be grave, faithful, decent; whether he hath a grave and faithful wife, or has formerly had such a one; whether he hath education his children piously, and has ‘brought them up in the nurture and admonition of the Lord’; whether his domestics do fear and reverence him and are all obedient to him: for if those who are immediately about him for worldly concerns are seditious and disobedient, how will others not of his family, when they are under his management, become obedient to him?”
That word, “management,” is telling, I think. Being a bishop was not a merely pro forma calling. They were expected to provide hands-on oversight and leadership for those pastors and churches in their charge. In order to do this, they had to be the kind of men whom people were willing to follow, even, to obey. They had to have a certain gravitas about them which showed to all that they were serious about the work of ministry and the Kingdom. Serving Christ as a pastor is serious business. Do the people we serve really believe that we really believe that?
What do you understand by the term, “gravitas”? Would you describe your ministry as reflecting that idea? Should it?
For more insight to the work of pastoral ministry, order the book, Pastoral Ministry According to Paul: A Biblical Vision, by James W. Thompson, from our online store.
Pastor to Pastor brings the insights of great servants of God from the past to pastors in our own day, to link our ministries with theirs in the grand tradition of building the Church of our Lord Jesus Christ.