Saturday, February 19, 2011

The Call of the Conduit

Notwithstanding the sad state of the pastoral ministry, both here in the Philippines and abroad, the call to preach and teach the oracles of God has never lost its gravity and importance. God, in His gracious condescension, has seen it fit to course His faith-building blessings through jars of clay, and the determination of whether one is among those chosen to be conduits of His speech must be taken very seriously.

On a subjective, personal level, determination can be commenced by asking oneself, "Do I love to study the Word of God?" "Do I endeavor to obey the Word of God?" "Do I have a desire to teach the Word of God to others?" This is in keeping with what the priest Ezra was described as being and doing, "For Ezra had set his heart to study the Law of the Lord, and to do it and to teach his statutes and rules in Israel" (Ezra 7:10).

On a more objective note, the estimation of the elders of the church play the most important role in this determination. The exercise of one's gifts in the church context gives the elders the data that they would need in ascertaining (with prayerful consideration) whether the love of God's Word, the life of God's Word, and the teaching of God's Word are apparent in the individual. This process of submitting to the authority of the Church simply recognizes the Christ-representative function of the eldership and the Lord's able use of ordinary means.

Dr. Dennis Johnson has more: "Discerning One’s Call to the Ministry" and "Confirming One’s Call to the Ministry"

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