A Biblical Ministry Model
The Protestant Reformation had its roots in trying to dismantle sacerdotalism within the Roman Catholic Church. Such men like Calvin and Luther understood the fallacy of Catholic priests being placed in the role as mediators between God and His people and using sacraments as their means for control. Yet both of these men, along with most of the reformers, held the opinion the church would not survive without the office of minister or pastor. Such responsibilities like preaching, baptisms and communion were the exclusive privileges of a professional clergy. These men believed God gave special insights and special powers to the pastor and therefore their offices needed to be preserved and kept in high honor.
Moving up the spiritual ladder was just as important then as it is now. Protestant circles will typically denounce the clergy/laity split as unbiblical yet the faithful practice of it continues unchallenged. Church professionals want to keep their jobs and laypeople have chosen to surrender ministry opportunities to the “experts.” In becoming a professional one strives to get to the top where the important service for God exists. On the other hand, the lay person has accepted a lesser role knowing they will never have an opportunity to contribute in a siY1ificant way. Therefore, most organized faith based structures are dependent upon the rich talents of one person, or a team of skilled staff, who have reached the top of the pyramid.
Should it be a Business or Biblical Model?
As these institutionally formatted ministries grow in number the leadership mistakenly desires either more talented paid professionals or gifted volunteers if the budget prevents hiring. Thus we have gotten comfortable with many unbiblical job titles. The Senior Pastor or the CEO Minister, Associate Pastor, Music Minister, Youth Minister, Counseling Minister, Administrative Pastor, Evangelism & Out-each Pastor, and College/Sing1es Pastor are a handful of the obvious. The organizational model is dependent upon a fine tuned performance each Sunday morning with through-the-week ministries supporting the vision of the staff. Thus, “going to church” has become much like attending a concert or a theatrical performance. The professionals get their time to perform (minister) and the attendees get their time singing, listening and giving.
If that is the way it was meant to be then perhaps we skipped over some important instruction by Jesus. Take note on what He identifies as proper attitudes that create faithful leaders within the kingdom Of God. Ifyou want to befirst become last (Mark 9:35). Ifyou want to be great become the least (Luke 9:48). Ifyou want to be the greatest become a servant (Matt. 23: 11). If you want to find your life, lose itfor Jesus sake (Matt 10:39). First of all, what the Lord was saying about spiritual leadership was astonishingly unexpected given the fact that it had never been tried before. And secondly, what the world promotes as the way to success is 180 degrees opposite of what God desires and expects. The world functions from a “top-down” form of leadership by scrambling to the top of the pyramid for success and influence. Jesus demonsfrated that getting to the bottom of the pyramid in order to serve others is the most fruitful.
Church at the Lodge, (Sunday’s @ 9:30 a.m.)
Bill Rose, 530-392-5012; bill@ChurchAtTheL0dge.com; www.ChurchAtTheLodge.com and www.ConversationslnChrist.org
Conversations in Christ, (Radio Show: KNCO 830 AM Dial, Sunday’s 8:30 a.m.)
Biblical Leadership Model (Text)
A dispute also arose among them as to which of them was considered to be greatest. Jesus said to them, “The kings of the Gentiles lord it over them; and those who exercise authority over them call themselves Benefactors. 26 But you are not to be like that. Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. 2 For who is geater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves. You are those who have stood by me in my trials.
29And I confer on you a kingdom, just as my Father conferred one on me. (Luke 22:24-29)
34But they kept quiet because on the way they had argued about who was the greatest.35 Sitting down, Jesus called the Twelve and said, “Anyone who wants to be first must be the very last, and the servant of all.”36 He took a little child whom he placed among them. Taking the child in his anns, he said to them, 37 s,Whoever welcomes one of these little children in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me does not welcome me but the one who sent me.’ (Mark 9:33-37)
Jesus called them together and said, “You know that those who are regarded as rulers of the Gentiles lord it over them, and their high officials exercise authority over them. 43 Not so with you. Instead, whoever wants to become great among you must be your servant, 4 and whoever wants to be first must be slave of all. 45 For even the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.” (Mark 10: 35-45)
Then he said to them, “Whoever welcomes this little child in my name welcomes me; and whoever welcomes me welcomes the one who sent me. For it is the one who is least among you all who is the greatest.” (Luke 9:48)
3 And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. 4 Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. (Matthew 18:3-4)
11The greatest among you will be your servant. 12 For those who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted. (Matt23:11-12)
39Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it. (Matthew 10:39)
Bus I ness model_
Luge 22: 26-27