Thoughts on Ordination

Thoughts on Ordination I. How do you know you're called to the ministry? 1. The standard answers: A. I just feel God calling me. B. God told me. C. I have always wanted to be a preacher. D. My mom/dad/grandma told me that they knew from the time I was a boy that I was going to be a preacher. 2. A desire to be a pastor is a good thing (1Ti 3:1), but the desire alone is not sufficient to make a man called of God. A. There are many who desire to be teachers of the law who know not what they are talking about (1Ti 1:7). B. Korah desired to have the office of the priesthood which was not his to have (Num 16:1-4, 8-10). 3. It should be a relief to a man wondering if God has called him to the ministry that he need not guess, but that he will be told that God has called him. A. God instructs his ordained ministers to ordain elders (Tit 1:5). B. Those ministers are to find faithful men to whom God has given the ability to teach, and commit the preaching of the gospel to them (2Ti 2:2). i. Commit - To give to some one to take care of, keep, or deal with; to give in charge or trust, entrust, consign to (a person, his care, judgement, etc.). ii. The duty of preaching the gospel is committed from a pastor to another able man. a. The gospel was committed to Paul (1Co 9:17; 2Co 5:19; Gal 2:7; 1Ti 1:11). b. Paul then committed it to Timothy (1Ti 1:18 c/w 1Ti 4:14 c/w 2Ti 1:6; 1Ti 6:20) c. Timothy was to then commit it to other faithful men (2Ti 2:2). C. Those ordained/appointed ministers are to ordain/appoint able men (Tit 1:5). i. Ordain - II. To appoint, decree, destine, order. 10. trans. To appoint (a person, etc.) to a charge, duty, or office. ii. Appoint - II. To determine authoritatively, prescribe, decree, ordain. 7. trans. To determine authoritatively, prescribe, fix (a time, later a place) for any act. iii. Ordaining and appointing are the same thing (Tit 1:5; 1Ti 2:7 c/w 2Ti 1:11). iv. The office of the pastor/elder/bishop is conferred by ordination/appointment by one ordained minister to another faithful man. a. Jesus was appointed by God (Heb 3:2). b. Jesus then ordained Paul (1Ti 2:7). c. Paul then ordained Timothy (1Ti 4:14 c/w 2Ti 1:6) and Titus (Tit 1:5). d. Timothy and Titus were then to ordain others (Tit 1:5; 2Ti 2:2) who would be able to do likewise (2Ti 2:2). D. It is ministers, not seminaries or Bible colleges, to whom God has given this charge and responsibility. E. Ministers are to find men who meet the qualifications that God has given for the ministry (1Ti 3:2-7; Tit 1:6-9). i. These instructions are given to ministers, not those who want to be, or think that they should be ministers. ii. A potential minister would do well to try to live up to these qualifications, but it is his pastor who is to look for men under his oversight that meet these qualifications. F. One of the qualifications is that the man must be apt to teach (1Ti 3:2; 2Ti 2:24). G. The man whom the Lord has given the ability to teach must first be proved (as a potential deacon must be likewise) before he is ordained to the office (1Ti 3:2,8,10). i. He must serve in the gospel with his pastor as a son with the father (Phi 2:22). ii. This is the proof of a potential minister. iii. Proof - (from Prove v.) 1. a. That which makes good or proves a statement; evidence sufficient (or contributing) to establish a fact or produce belief in the certainty of something. †to make proof: to have weight as evidence (obs.). H. Finally, once a man has been proven, God will call that man to preach to people who desire him by having them call him to preach to them (Act 16:9-10). i. A call to a ministry is the call to the ministry. ii. In order to answer a call to a ministry, one must be called by God to the ministry. iii. By this, a potential minister can assuredly gather that the Lord has called him to preach the gospel. iv. Once God has called a man to a ministry, his pastor lays his hands on him and ordains him and sends him off (Act 13:2-3). 4. So how do I know that I have been called by God to the ministry? A. My pastor, who is an ordained minister, saw me as a man who met the qualifications for the ministry stated in the word of God. B. My pastor saw that God had given me the aptitude to teach, which is a key condition given by the word of God to be a minister. C. I was proved by my pastor by serving with him in the gospel as a son with the father, according to the word of God, preaching in our church and others of like-faith. D. The Minneapolis Church also recognized these qualities in me and desired to have me be their minister and, in similar manner to the man in Macedonia, called me to preach the gospel unto them. E. It is for these reasons, which are in perfect accord with the word of God, that I have assuredly gathered that the Lord has called me to be a preacher of the gospel. F. Because I know that I have been called of God, I also feel that I have been called of God and I desire the office of a bishop, which is a good thing (1Ti 3:1). II. Overcoming fears and excuses. 1. Excuse #1: Lord, I'm too young. A. Jeremiah said the same thing when God called him (Jer 1:5-6). i. God told him to zip it and to go to whom He sent him and tell them what He told him to tell them (Jer 1:7). ii. God told him not to be afraid of their faces and that He was with him (Jer 1:8). B. Paul told Timothy to let no man despise his youth (1Ti 4:12). C. Jesus was only 30 years old when he entered his ministry (Luk 3:23). D. Elihu was wise beyond his years and showed that you don't have to be old to be wise (Job 32:4-11). E. Meditating, studying, and doing God's word will make you wiser than your teachers and the ancients (Psa 119:98-100). 2. Excuse #2: Lord, I'm not eloquent; I can't speak well. A. Eloquence and charisma aren't necessary qualifications for the ministry. B. Moses used this excuse (Exo 4:10). i. Moses wasn't eloquent. a. Eloquent - 1. a. Of persons: Possessing or exercising the power of fluent, forcible, and appropriate expression. b. Fluent - 1. That flows, flowing. ii. Moses was slow of speech. iii. God wasn't buying it and told him that He would be with him and teach him what to say (Exo 4:11-12). iv. Though Moses didn't think he was an eloquent speaker, he was a mighty speaker and doer (Act 7:22). a. Mighty - 1. Possessing ‘might’ or power; powerful, potent, strong. b. A man can be a powerful speaker, though he may not be a smooth speaker. c. God's word is powerful, even if the preacher isn't (Jer 23:29). d. God uses earthen vessels to be His preachers (2Co 4:5-7) so that the glory will all be His. e. We are not sufficient of ourselves to be God's ministers (2Co 2:16). f. Our sufficiency is of God who makes us able ministers (2Co 3:5-6). C. Paul was not an excellent orator. i. Paul's speech was contemptible (2Co 10:10). a. Contemptible - 1. To be despised or held in contempt; worthy only of contempt; despicable. b. Contempt - 1. The action of contemning or despising; the holding or treating as of little account, or as vile and worthless; the mental attitude in which a thing is so considered. c. Despicable - 1. To be looked down upon or despised; vile, base, contemptible. ii. Paul was rude in speech (2Co 11:6). a. Rude - II. 8. a. Of language, composition, etc.: Lacking in elegance or polish; deficient in literary merit. b. Elegance - 2. Of spoken or written compositions, literary style, etc.: Tasteful correctness, harmonious simplicity, in the choice and arrangement of words. c. Polish - n. 1. The act of polishing or condition of being polished; smoothness and (usually) glossiness of surface produced by friction. iii. Paul wasn't one to preach with excellency of speech or with enticing words of man's wisdom (1Co 2:1-4). a. Excellency - 1. Excellence b. Excellence - 1. The state or fact of excelling; the possession chiefly of good qualities in an eminent or unusual degree; surpassing merit, skill, virtue, worth, etc.; dignity, eminence. c. Enticing - That entices or instigates; insidiously attractive; alluring, beguiling, seductive. d. Paul was not an unusually "good" preacher that could charm people. e. This ensures that men's faith is not in the wisdom and ability of the preacher, but in the power of God (1Co 2:5). f. God's word will go forth and it will accomplish its purpose (Isa 55:11). g. God is not impressed with smooth, enticing speech (Isa 30:10; Jer 23:32). 3. Excuse #3: Lord, I don't have an impressive appearance. A. Paul's bodily presence was weak (2Co 10:10). B. God is much more concerned that a man is strong in faith than in frame (Psa 147:10-11). C. The primary strength that the ministry requires is in wisdom and knowledge. i. Wisdom brings strength and stability (Pro 24:5; Ecc 7:19; Isa 33:6). ii. Wisdom is better than strength (Ecc 9:16). D. Men may look on outward appearance, but not God (1Sa 16:7).
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