There is a pervasive problem in our modern day among evangelical churches. The problem is in finding a pastor.
It should not be this difficult or take so long, nor should there be so many churches without pastors. The reason that this is such a huge problem for churches is simply because they are going about it all wrong. It has become a secular pursuit, in which the man of God must subject himself to worldly methods of seeking employment. Do you want a man of God or someone who can apply for an executive position?
If you want a true man of God do not say that you are looking for a man who can do something secular, such as, ‘you will fit in if you are into hunting’.
John 12:20,21 Now there were some Greeks among those who were going up to worship at the feast; these then came to Philip, who was from Bethsaida of Galilee, and began to ask him, saying, “Sir, we wish to see Jesus.”
If you are a true church then you are wanting a minister of the gospel that will minister in such a way that you will see Jesus. A true minister will proclaim: ‘For we do not preach ourselves but Christ Jesus as Lord, and ourselves as your bond-servants for Jesus’ sake’ [2 Corinthians 4:5].
What to Specify in Your Prayers for a Pastor
It is without a doubt that prayer is the most important thing in finding a pastor. That should go without saying, but there is something else that should be a given. It is what to specifically pray about in looking for a pastor.
What I am referring to relates to an underlying issue that is part of a larger problem among churches. So many churches are in such a fix simply because they have become termination points or solitary mountains instead of being what Jesus intended. I am referring to being places where pastors are born.
- If the previous pastor did not mentor men for the ministry then it is no wonder why your church is in this situation
- If the church has made too much of one man and it is too big for any man in the assembly to occupy the role, then this can only mean one thing
It means that your church is not a biblical Christian ministry. What is needed by such a church is a tearing down of what is political and replacing it with what is biblical. The reason this problem is so pervasive is that so many pastors are threatened by other men taking the ministry away from them and they worry about how the pulpit time will be shared. When men prophesied at the tent of meeting and Joshua said that they should be restrained, Moses was not filled with such carnal worry.
Numbers 11:29 But Moses said to him, “Are you jealous for my sake? Would that all the LORD’S people were prophets, that the LORD would put His Spirit upon them!”
Consider these texts as well: Mark 9:38-40; Phil. 2:19-22.
When we construct an unbiblical ministry it necessarily becomes impossible for God to answer our prayers. How can God answer our prayers when it is not for a pastor of His way and choosing? If you do obtain a new pastor of the unbiblical sort, when he leaves, and he will eventually, you will be where you are now, but all over again!
Christian ministry should really be very simple and never facing this problem, let alone a pervasive problem. If you find your church stuck in this rut then do this and God will answer your prayer for a new pastor. Take on board the biblical way of churches being places where pastors are born and take it before the Lord of the harvest [Matthew 9:36-38]. Make it a matter of purpose, that as a church you are saying to the Lord that you only want a pastor who will fulfil this mandate from God, and God will send such a pastor to you.
Pray for what God wants and then you will obtain what only God can provide.
Think about it. Satan wants churches to become dysfunctional in raising up ministers of the Word. He has been so successful that just about any mega church that loses its pastor is not able to fulfill the role from within its own large membership! This should cause us to stop and think. The reason no man from the membership can occupy the position is simply because the former pastor has made himself so important and he has not done what is biblical. Ironically, by failing to raise men up for the same position, the former pastor has rendered his own lasting usefulness to be of significant doubt.
The same dysfunctionality is found in small rural churches. Why was it not considered important that other men in the small assembly should be trained for the ministry? This is why so many rural churches die, simply because they have lost sight of how important every work is and how essential it is to the vision and health of every church. Everyone in the church participates in a man of God being made ready to do the ministry and this communicates significance and gospel participation for everyone in the church.
Anticipate in Faith that He Has Already Answered the Need
Is there not a young David among you, though “inexperienced”? Is there not a man among you whom the Lord can use, even as he looks to the Lord to enable him to provide for his young household and their spiritual wellbeing? Is there not a seasoned saint in the assembly, that though the world says he is retired, he is able to edify the people of God? Cannot all of these labor together and strengthen one another to the fulfilment of the Christian ministry?
What ever happened to having faith in God? Is God distant? Does not God provide by means that often surprises us? Has He not already provided for the church’s need? Maybe what is really needed is that greater faith to see it?
Mark 11:24 Therefore I say to you, all things for which you pray and ask, believe that you have received them, and they will be granted you.
What makes a man able for the ministry is not a piece of paper, though biblical training may be of some help, but it is the support of the people of God that makes all the difference. The man of God is the arrow, the congregation the bow. They both need each other! Even Jesus could not do many works in His home town because of the people’s unbelief [Matthew 13:53-58].
A Few Other Texts of Scripture
Mark 6:4 Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and among his own relatives and in his own household.”
1 Samuel 16:6,7 When they entered, he looked at Eliab and thought, “Surely the LORD’S anointed is before Him.” But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at the height of his stature, because I have rejected him; for God sees not as man sees, for man looks at the outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart.”
Titus 1:5-9 For this reason I left you in Crete, that you would set in order what remains and appoint elders in every city as I directed you, namely, if any man is above reproach, the husband of one wife, having children who believe, not accused of dissipation or rebellion. For the overseer must be above reproach as God’s steward, not self-willed, not quick-tempered, not addicted to wine, not pugnacious, not fond of sordid gain, but hospitable, loving what is good, sensible, just, devout, self-controlled, holding fast the faithful word which is in accordance with the teaching, so that he will be able both to exhort in sound doctrine and to refute those who contradict.