Qualifications for the Ministry
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Qualifications for the Ordination of Ministers
Delete Move to Wishlist. Wishlist is empty. Delete Move to Cart. Email someone my wishlist. Recipients Name. Recipient's email address. Your name. Your email address. Enter a message. Send me a copy of this email. Continue Not? Log in to speed up the checkout process. Log In. If an elder who does not qualify Biblically is placed in authority before an Assembly, that ministry will inevitably suffer.
Men are being ordained who fail in one or several key qualifications laid down in the Word. It is nothing less than a sin to lay hands on a man who does not have the Scriptural credentials, because to do so violates plain commands of the Bible. When Yahweh sets the qualifications for eldership in two New Testament chapters — 1Timothy 3 and Titus 1. Behind everything a man says is the testimony of his own life. This is vital, because above all else the office of minister is a spiritual trust. He is responsible for the spiritual guidance of those he serves. He is his own opposition.
Nothing tells us more about a man than his relationship with those closest to him.
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Is he a good husband and father who receives praise from all? Does even the world recognize him as an honorable individual? Are his wife and children in the faith? Has he proven himself by converting those closest to him? Paul is quite specific on this point. The candidate for eldership must have already led his family to the truth he holds dear, which is the same thing he will be doing in the ministry. This qualification speaks volumes about the man and his ability and desire to admonish, guide, and influence others for Yahweh.
Often Paul refers to saints in his life as his children. Because spiritual leadership is like parenting, where you interact with others and set a living example for them, besides teaching and instructing them. The standards Yahweh establishes for the office of ministry are not debatable. Simply put, certain men are fit for leadership while others are not. ALL the qualifications set forth in the Bible must be met before one is considered for such an important and influential office. Any minister who ordains men for their tithing record, friendship or their ability to massage his ego is falsifying the Word and doing irreparable damage to those brethren he has vowed to serve scripturally in all things.
Such dereliction of duty and lack of concern for the Body of Messiah are inexcusable. Yahweh went to great pains to ensure that the right men were chosen for His service. Each was specifically chosen out of the world to serve Him, some with much effort. Are we to do less today? Mistakes made in choosing such men will assuredly return one day to plague and even destroy a work. Above all, a minister is a leader. A leader is one whose life is so exemplary that others want to copy it. At its essence, leadership means being an example. Therefore, the very character of a man forms the basis for his ministry.
If he fails to be a model of what he speaks and teaches, he will not be believed. Paul constantly had to remind himself not to act with duplicity. The strength of what a man says rests in his own virtuous life.
All admonishment he gives to others ultimately is judged by whether he lives what he says. Paul explains that a minister like himself must be a good example. He will be doing much the same for the Assembly as he does for his family. People need a proper standard to follow, because in essence, everyone should strive to attain the ideal expected of elders and deacons. We respect and emulate those who have the highest of character.
Where else should we expect to find such examples if not in the ministry? Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith. In no profession is it more crucial to embody the highest standards in all aspects of life than for a man who represents the very teachings of the King of the universe! An elder is a servant and the finest example of the kind of life Yahweh expects in all His people.
They are too wrapped up in achieving personal goals in a position they see not as a righteous witness in humble service and sacrifice, but as a position for power and personal glory. For a bishop must be blameless, as the steward of Elohim; not selfwilled, not soon angry, not given to wine, no striker, not given to filthy lucre; But a lover of hospitality, a lover of good men, sober, just, holy, temperate; Holding fast the faithful word as he hath been taught, that he may be able by sound doctrine both to exhort and to convince the gainsayers. No honest minister can ever read these qualifications without reevaluating himself each time he reviews them.
The qualifications for eldership, from verses , can be divided into four categories. The first is sexual purity, then family leadership; the third is general character, and the last is ability to teach. A candidate for ordination must qualify in all four areas. When he does, he will be above reproach.
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If he fails to measure up to any one of these, he must not be ordained. Remember, Yahweh Himself set up those standards to be followed. Those men who would argue and contest the standards because they would be permanently disqualified need to consider that half the population is prohibited from the ministry simply by their gender. Women are unable to serve as elders 1Cor. Right-hearted women accept the fact that Yahweh made them females and go on living their lives to please Him, knowing they can never be ordained.
Similarly, men who are not qualified should simply accept that fact. There are other important and necessary ways each can serve the Body. No wonder that this issue was of the utmost concern to the Apostle Paul, and others. Paul is the senior elder speaking to the young evangelist Timothy in 1Timothy 3. He realized that the congregation may not always like the selections. To arm the leadership in their choices, Yahweh inspired Paul to establish very specific qualifications they were to follow.
The highest of standards along with the right motivation will give the people the right example they desperately need. All of this is to say that no one but those of impeccable integrity and the right qualifications must be considered for ordination. Therefore, Paul warns in 1Timothy not to lay hands on any man if he:. Is it wrong to expect more from elders and deacons? Of course not.
That is exactly what we are to do. These were exceptional men. Men of proven dedication and ability who had impeccable reputations. They were to serve as deacons, showing us that even the lower levels of office demand the same high qualities in a man, 1Timothy Yahweh Himself does! She cannot be faithful in all things if she is rebellious when it comes to the Faith.
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A man whose wife and family are not with him in the Assembly is not the proper example to the membership. His ability to convince and convict is seriously lacking, notably through his lack of initiative with his own family. On the other hand, if he has children who believe and are not rebellious, they will never bring scandal upon his good name and leadership.
Now we can see more clearly some of the reasons behind these qualifications.