Hard truths about pastors

Pastor. File photo

Sun, 1 Mar 2020 Source: James Quansah

There are two types of temples a servant of Christ is required to build — the temple of man and the temple of God. When a pastor acquires a parcel of land and puts up a building for church meetings, he has built the temple of man.

However, when a pastor is used to save a sinner from sin, guides him or her to be indwelled by the Spirit of God, feeds the believer with the undiluted Word of Christ to grow up spiritually to conform to the image of Christ and become a useful vessel in the hands of God, then he has actually built the temple of God.

In fact, a beautiful church building is good for men and women, but a beautiful spirit of a Christian, who is full of the Word and Spirit, is a precious temple of God. On the last day, Jesus Christ will not say to a pastor, “Good and faithful servant” because he built a powerful church building, but because he won a soul, fed him or her with the undiluted Word of Christ, equipped them to conform to the image of Christ and finally presented them perfect to Him (Colossians 1: 28).

A person can be a pastor to people, and not be a pastor of Jesus Christ. A people’s pastor often focuses on his congregation and draws inspiration from them. Such a pastor often preaches and teaches about things that please people and gives prayer points that please them. But true pastors preach and teach for a cause, not for applause.

A pastor of Christ Jesus is first a servant of Christ, and he humbly acknowledges this fact. In Romans 1: 1, the apostle Paul wrote, “Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, called to be an apostle of God…” Thus a servant of Christ focuses on Jesus Christ. He follows Christ, and learns from Him. He has the mind of Christ so he preaches and teaches things that excite Christ Jesus. And he offers prayers, according to the will of God, and for the glory of Christ Jesus.

God knows pastors who are His. Therefore, let every pastor who is a servant of Christ depart from deception, manipulation and tricks. A pastor who considers himself as a servant is humble and faithful. Paul, again, wrote, “This is how one should regard us, as servants of Christ and stewards of the mysteries of God. Moreover, it is required of stewards that they be found faithful.

A servant of Christ is a slave of Christ so he upholds the Lordship and divinity of Christ Jesus with utmost reverence and honour.

He is aware that he must decrease while Christ the Lord increases; he refuses to take the place, dignity and honour due the name of Christ. And such a pastor ministers with Christ in mind; he is Christ-conscious and gospel-focused.

Knowing how to preach, pray or prophesy does not necessarily make any person a true servant of Jesus Christ. Many can do all these things and still be charlatans. But evidently being called, prepared, anointed and sent by Christ Jesus with a clear message to preach and teach the way the Lord Himself and the early apostles ministered to glorify God the Father makes a person a servant of Christ Jesus.

A house is good, but Jesus did not die so that believers can have houses. A car is good, but Jesus did not die so that believers can have cars. An academic degree is good, but Jesus did not die so that we can have university degrees.

Jesus Christ died so that believers may have eternal life. Jesus Christ did not die because people are poor and have no money to provide for their needs. But He died because people have sinned and fallen short of the glory. He died to heal man of the disease of the soul – sin. And He died to restore the broken relationship between God and man.

Brethren, may God open our eyes to set our priorities right. May we look unto Calvary and receive revelation of the purpose of Christ’s suffering and death. Looking unto Jesus is tantamount to looking unto the Way to heaven. And looking unto the Way to heaven is the same as looking unto the Day of Judgment. And looking to the Day of Judgment is hoping to receive eternal salvation or condemnation.

Clericals do not necessarily make someone a servant of Jesus Christ. Vestments or priestly garments do not necessarily make someone a servant of Christ either. Seminaries or Bible Colleges are good, but they do not necessarily make someone a genuine minister of the gospel. In fact, men may train, but ultimately it is the Holy Spirit who makes apostles, bishops, teachers, prophets and evangelists and sets them in the church.

“Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers… (Acts 20: 28). The Holy Spirit who makes overseers is the Spirit of Christ. Jesus Christ tells His ministers, “You did not choose me, but I chose and appointed you…” (John 15: 16). And Paul confirms this saying, “I thank…Jesus Christ our Lord, because he judged me faithful, appointing me to his service (1 Timothy 1: 12).

The greatest servant of Christ is not necessarily the apostle, prophet, bishop or those with big titles, but the one who is humble like a child (Matthew 18: 1- 4). And the secret to receiving more anointing is not in titles or sophisticated priestly garments, but being humble (James 4: 6). To be humble is to refrain from thinking you are better than others, cast down your crown or empty yourself of your title, position or credentials and take on the form of servant to serve others.


Columnist: James Quansah