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Thread: Is a biblically divorced and remarried man qualified to be a pastor?

  1. #1

    Is a biblically divorced and remarried man qualified to be a pastor?

    I'm trying to discern if I am called into the ministry or not. However, my biggest problem is that I am divorced and remarried. My ex wife left me for another man then divorced me. I got remarried later on.

    What do you think about this situation? Is this a red flag that says "no you can't be called into the ministry" or what?

    Here is what I wrote about the situation. It seems to me like I'm probably disqualified because of that. What if it causes scandal..etc

    Is a biblically divorced and remarried man qualified for the pastorate? « Osage Bluestem

    However there seems to be a need and I really would love nothing more than to be a minister. I don't know. I haven't talked to my pastor about this yet. However I did speak with my cousin who is a SBC pastor/theologian PHD. He said that he wouldn't hire me because where he is at in the southeast it would cause scandal, however he said that out west there is a great need for pastors and teachers and being divorced and remarried wouldn't cause scandal there. However, he stressed I would need to graduate from seminary first and that would be expensive. I don't have a lot of money. If I went to seminary I would have to go at night and find a way to pay for it because I have a wife and three kids. She stays home to nurture the children and I am the provider. In my job I am in charge of a technical department for a security products manufacturer. My title is solutions engineer.

    I want to preach the gospel and minister to the needs of God's people and evangelize the lost. I want to do it all the time. What should I do? I pray about it a lot but I just don't know. I don't want to do the wrong thing in regards to being called. I want to make sure I am called before I act.

    Also I was raised by my grandfather who was a pastor. He is very old and has had a stroke and cannot talk about this with me. As a child I used to go with him to visit and minister to people in their homes, nursing homes, and hospitals. I used to read with him in his study at the church. Is it possible that I just miss those wonderful times? I want to make sure I am really called!

    Here is a short example of his preaching and a photo of the church I was saved and baptized in. We lived accors the street in the parsonage: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GalTUyRTXls He was calvinistic. His favorite pastor was Spurgeon. He didn't confess a confession. He just preached the bible


    Wise biblical advice appreciated.
    David Doss
    First Baptist Church of Colleyville Texas (SBC)
    LBCF 1689

    www.osagebluestem.wordpress.com

  2. #2
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    In the PCA and Calvinist Baptist churches I know of you could be pastor/elder, as desertion and adultery by a spouse are both considered legitimate grounds for divorce and remarriage. Of course I'd assume there would be some probing into why she left, and if anything about you provoked her, and have you fully repented and changed in those areas. ( not saying it was you, just saying how it would be approached).

    I can't speak about your calling, but I can say that generally in a good church there are more opportunities for laymen to minister outside the pulpit than there are willing volunteers. My church has over 400 people and my pastor is certainly not the only guy going to the inner city mission or the hospital or the missions outreaches. Every member of the body of Christ is a "minister" in some capacity. So your burden/desire does not necessarily equate to a pastor-teacher-elder calling, although it might.

    Definitely talk to your pastor, sometimes churches will help with tuition if they think you are called.
    Lynnie

    Attending Maranatha Christian Fellowship

    Central NJ
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  3. #3
    Many people believe that divorced and remarried men should not be pastors because of Paul's instruction that they be "the husband of one wife" Of course others have interpreted this verse to refer to polygamy and not neccesarily divorce and remarriage. Regardless, many see a failed marriage as a sign that a man does not manage his household well and is thus unqualified. I really think that is should be based on the overall evidence in a man's life and not just on one event. You must also judge whether or not the person has a genuine calling, because if they do than who are we to argue with God. As a wise man once said, " The devil never put it on anyone's heart to preach the gospel."
    Bill
    Pitching my tent and building my altar
    (SBC)

  4. #4
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    Never! because obviously divorce is a sin that cannot be forgiven.


    ---------- Post added at 12:37 PM ---------- Previous post was at 12:35 PM ----------

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill The Baptist View Post
    As a wise man once said, " The devil never put it on anyone's heart to preach the gospel."
    The world is full of false gospels preached by false preachers who think they are called of God to deliver that "gospel." Just because you want to does not mean you should.
    B
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  5. #5
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    Case by case basis.

    Nothing ventured, nothing gained.
    Kent
    URCNA
    Toronto

  6. #6
    I don't mean to be harsh but your knowledge of the scriptures and historical Christianity seem to be very incomplete. You seem to have some knowledge concerning some theological issues but it would make me question your ability to understand a calling into the Pastorate. As far as your questioning your ability to be considered based upon your previous marriage that would have to be decided by a careful look at reasons for your wife's departure and the circumstances. And I understand that is not a fun thing to rehash. Many men desire office for various reasons. Pastoring is one of the hardest jobs on the face of the earth. It should take years of training before one enters into this vocation. This can be proven by scripture also. Nothing is prohibiting you from sharing your faith right now. Share it and lead others to Christ in the station you are at. Learn to disciple men on a daily basis. By doing this under the care of your church the men over you can evaluate your abilities and gifts. Confer with your Church Elders, Leaders, and get more acquainted with historic Christianity. Your desire is good. Grow in Grace and the knowledge of the Lord.

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    RPCNA Covenanter's Blog

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  7. #7
    Since your divorce was a biblical one, I believe that you are no different than any other man trying to discern a call.
    J.L.


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  8. #8
    Why the case by case stuff if he's biblically divorced? It's like saying our sins are forgiven on case by case basis.
    Tim Vaughan
    Member, Redeemer Presbyterian, OPC,
    Santa Maria
    California
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  9. #9
    The Bible gives two clear cases of permission from divorce: adultery and desertion.

    If what you said is true about your ex-wife leaving you for another guy, then that is within the acceptable bounds of divorce (And may I add that I'm sorry to hear that, my friend ).
    J. Dean, author
    EPC
    Flint, Michigan

    “If your preaching of the gospel of God's free grace in Jesus Christ does not provoke the charge from some of antinomianism, you're not preaching the gospel of the free grace of God in Jesus Christ.”
    ― D. Martyn Lloyd-Jones

  10. #10
    Quote Originally Posted by J. Dean View Post
    The Bible gives two clear cases of permission from divorce: adultery and desertion.

    If what you said is true about your ex-wife leaving you for another guy, then that is within the acceptable bounds of divorce (And may I add that I'm sorry to hear that, my friend ).
    Thanks brother. It's ok. It was years ago. I'm well over it. Although it was quite the shock at the time.
    David Doss
    First Baptist Church of Colleyville Texas (SBC)
    LBCF 1689

    www.osagebluestem.wordpress.com

  11. #11
    Quote Originally Posted by TimV View Post
    Why the case by case stuff if he's biblically divorced? It's like saying our sins are forgiven on case by case basis.
    Thank you! I could not figure out how that was recurring advice! EVERY man discerning a call/church seeking a pastor is done case-by-case. Sure, we could say, "case-by-case, you will meet some prejudices," but that has nothing to do with should one go to seminary. I mean, every person interviewing for any job, secular or religious, will meet prejudices (he's too old, too young, too fat, too ugly, too handsome, unmarried, remarried, etc...). Being deserted by a wife is not a spiritual flaw of the man's. It is also not a more spiritual prejudice for a church to have. If Jesus allows for divorce in such a situation, it is not a sin. Jesus does not allow sin. If someone else is to then hold that person guilty of sin, they are wrong.
    J.L.


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  12. #12
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    Westminster Confession of Faith

    Chapter XXIV
    Of Marriage and Divorce

    ....
    V. Adultery or fornication committed after a contract, being detected before marriage, gives just occasion to the innocent party to dissolve that contract.[11] In the case of adultery after marriage, it is lawful for the innocent party to sue out a divorce and, after the divorce,[12] to marry another, as if the offending party were dead.[13]

    VI. Although the corruption of man be such as is apt to study arguments unduly to put asunder those whom God has joined together in marriage: yet, nothing but adultery, or such wilful desertion as can no way be remedied by the Church, or civil magistrate, is cause sufficient of dissolving the bond of marriage:[14] wherein, a public and orderly course of proceeding is to be observed; and the persons concerned in it not left to their own wills, and discretion, in their own case.[15]
    This summarizes the doctrine of Scripture to say that the narrow biblical grounds are adultery or irremediable abandonment of a believer by an unbeliever. The aspirational standard is still reconciliation, even in those cases.

    The grounds are not to be left to self determination.

    I Timothy 3 and Titus I, requiring an exemplary, not perfect, but exemplary life qualification for church officers would seem to indicate if an unbiblical grounds, then a subsequent remarriage being unbiblical disqualifies from church office (minister, elder, deacon, etc.), at least.

    Some would say more.
    [SIZE="2"]Scott
    PCA
    North Carolina[/SIZE]

    [I]Post Tenebras Lux;[/I] [SIZE="2"][I] "And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away." - Revelation 21:4[/I][/SIZE]
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  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by TimV View Post
    Why the case by case stuff if he's biblically divorced? It's like saying our sins are forgiven on case by case basis.
    This isn't about forgiveness of sin Tim. And I think you know that. It isn't like saying our sins are forgiven on a case by case basis. This doesn't have anything to do with forgiveness of sin or sins. It has to do with qualifying for something. You do admit there are qualifications right? A person can be forgiven and be disqualified for position. We can discuss generalities here. Yes, I believe the WCF has it right concerning this issue. That is general. But his Elder's need to find out and discern this as I imagine they will if he pursues this.

    I am seeking to be remarried. It must first be determined whether or not I am eligible to be remarried. Did I have a biblical grounds for divorce? My testimony needs to be investigated by real people about real issues. A discussion forum is not a place to see it up front. The process still needs to be gone through with much humility. And it does rip open old wounds and failures.

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  14. #14
    What do your elders think? That would be the place to start.
    Last edited by KMK; 05-10-2011 at 02:14 PM.


    Village Church of Rosena Ranch

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  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Chaplainintraining View Post
    The world is full of false gospels preached by false preachers who think they are called of God to deliver that "gospel." Just because you want to does not mean you should
    This only applies if your desire is to preach the true gospel.
    Bill
    Pitching my tent and building my altar
    (SBC)

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua View Post
    Because there are factors that play into the qualifications of elder and pastor that have nil to do with divorce and remarriage. That's why.
    I know that. But how does that info relate to this discussion?
    J.L.



  17. #17
    First, on the issue of the meaning of the biblical texts, cf. Saucy, BibSac 131 (July-September 1974) 229-240.

    Second, when I served as a pastor, beyond the issue of a biblical reason for divorce, it was my rule to look at people in terms of their part in the breakup. Having never met too many truly "innocent" parties (like none!), it was important to me to assess how well they had come to terms with their own proportion (even if it was only 5%) of blame for the breakup and confessed their own sin. A self-righteous person insisting on his/her "rights" because he/she wasn't the one to leave impressed me a lot less than a person who could say "have mercy on me, O Lord, for I am a sinner" even if they were in the position of having been divorced by their spouse.

    Third, it will depend on your denomination. Some groups ban ANY divorced people from serving as pastor regardless of the reasons and historical distance of the divorce. Others (mainlines), have some of their top leaders who are currently serving as remarried persons even after "unbiblical" divorces. (I know of a denomination where the top guy was ordained, cheated on his wife, reconciled, cheated on her again with one of his subordinates, left his wife and married his colleague, and kept his ministerial credentials!!! A bunch of the other denominational hierarchy even attended the wedding because they did not want not appear "judgmental"). And, some groups accept the fact of a "biblical divorce" as permitting one to be ordained and serve as pastor. So, yes, it does depend on your group.

    You should seek the counsel of spiritual men you respect who know you well. In my tradition, the call to ministry is tested not merely by subjective feelings of the "called one," but also by the confirmation of the body. If they support and confirm you call, I would not personally see the divorce prima facie disqualifying. Not being a "one woman man" (whether a cheater in fact or a lech who talks about sex inappropriately) would matter more to me than the divorce and remarriage. There are plenty of men in ministry who are not "one woman" men, even though they have never been divorced.

    [25+ years ago I had to confront and then "out" my mentor in ministry for having an affair with one of my parishioners. It turned out that she was one of more than 100 that he cheated with over a decade, sometimes different women in the same week. Yet, now in his late 70s, he is STILL married to the same woman, his wife of nearly 60 years. Definitely NOT a "one woman man" by the standards of the Pastoral Epistles. My point is that the biblical standards are tougher than a simple "divorced" or "not divorced" criterion would indicate.]
    Dennis E. McFadden, Ex Mainline Baptist (in Remission)
    Atherton Baptist Homes, Alhambra, CA, President/CEO, Retired
    Emmanuel Lutheran Church (LCMS), Fort Wayne, IN

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  18. #18
    Quote Originally Posted by DMcFadden View Post
    First, on the issue of the meaning of the biblical texts, cf. Saucy, BibSac 131 (July-September 1974) 229-240.
    Dennis, is that Bibliotheca Sacra by DTS?


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  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua View Post
    Just because a man has been biblically divorced and remarried, doesn't mean that he is qualified to be a pastor.
    Oh, so you were just joking, like with your "yes, someone, somewhere, has an opinion on that," type answers! Sorry! I missed that!
    J.L.



  20. #20
    This is a complicated matter. It must first be determined that he didn't drive his wife away to another man also. There is a lot to look at concerning this. There is a lot to peer into theologically. A simple statement concerning a wife's departure might not be enough. It does have theological ramifications. It will affect his view of theology and knowing God. It will matter on how he discerns and counsels. His Elders are the best place to start with this. The unfortunate thing is that the SBC is very lax and doesn't understand a lot of this. I am a Reformed Baptist theologically for the most part. I do know of SBC guys who do not think he is qualified. From what I understand if he held to John Piper's position he wouldn't even be considered qualified to be remarried. Thus, he wouldn't be qualified for a position of leadership in the Church.

    http://www.desiringgod.org/resource-...position-paper

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  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by PuritanCovenanter View Post
    I don't mean to be harsh but your knowledge of the scriptures and historical Christianity seem to be very incomplete. You seem to have some knowledge concerning some theological issues but it would make me question your ability to understand a calling into the Pastorate
    Obviously we can all agree that there are many qualifications that must be met before one can become a pastor, but you seem to be suggesting that in depth knowledge of theology and church history are also prerequisites. I do not see this as being biblical because the men that Jesus chose to be his disciples were for the most part uneducated. Obviously one needs to be knowledgable before they can presume to teach, but that is what seminary and the church are for. To say that someone cannot even consider becoming a pastor because they do not yet possess the neccesary knowledge is wrong in my opinion.
    Bill
    Pitching my tent and building my altar
    (SBC)
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  22. #22
    Quote Originally Posted by PuritanCovenanter View Post
    A discussion forum is not a place to see it up front. The process still needs to be gone through with much humility. And it does rip open old wounds and failures.
    Well, I have respect for the views here and I just wanted to discuss it. I have emailed my senior pastor and asked him to talk to me about it. Just wanting to see what you guys thought. We're not in the same denomination anyway for the most part. Looking for biblical advice on a subject I'm sure every pastor here has experience with.
    David Doss
    First Baptist Church of Colleyville Texas (SBC)
    LBCF 1689

    www.osagebluestem.wordpress.com

  23. #23
    Quote Originally Posted by Joshua View Post
    In one sense, yes. In another sense, it's perfectly acceptable to say that something needs to be dealt with on a case by case basis since circumstances are not universally applicable to everyone. The better way to ask the question would have been "Does a man's biblically justified divorce automatically disqualify him from consideration of office?"
    I can't argue with you there. Wow, does that mean I'm dreaming?

    I guess I was answering your question: "Does a man's biblically justified divorce automatically disqualify him from consideration of office?"

    I think some are answering yours and some are answering his and some are answering other questions altogether! I think some aren't answering whether he's biblically qualified, but what is their or a denominations's opinion regarding the qualifiability of a justifiably divorced man.

    I think the comments regarding re-establishing the man's innocence in a divorce are a little off. That should probably be discerned at the time of divorce or regarding church membership. Right? I mean, the church should have judged and dealt with that already. But to take a man who has already been "approved" innocent by the church and say, "Well, what did you do wrong in that marriage?" doesn't make sense to me. Of course every person in every marriage does really annoying, even hurtful things. But those don't give the other person the right to leave. If the divorce has been established as justified, I don't think what the offended partner did really matters. If he did do something that gave his wife the biblical right to leave, then he is already not in a justified divorce.

    I think those things regarding what sins did he commit against his first wife as well as what sins does he commit now, etc, should play into the "should I go to seminary" conversation, but that is the same with any other man. So in general, regarding qualification, I think a man who has been justifiably divorced is the same as a man who has only been married once/not married. I am willing to be convinced otherwise and I'm not speaking for personal reasons. My husband has only been married to me and is not seeking to be a pastor--so I'm not just saying what I want to be true.
    J.L.



  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by KMK View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by DMcFadden View Post
    First, on the issue of the meaning of the biblical texts, cf. Saucy, BibSac 131 (July-September 1974) 229-240.
    Dennis, is that Bibliotheca Sacra by DTS?
    Yes it is! Robert L. Saucy, "Husband of one wife," Bibliotheca Sacra 131 (July-Sept. 1974): 229-240.

    However, it appears that DTS does not sell back issues that old. Is there another source?

    ----------------

    Found it: http://www.biblebb.com/files/elder.htm


    Village Church of Rosena Ranch

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  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by TimV View Post
    Why the case by case stuff if he's biblically divorced? It's like saying our sins are forgiven on case by case basis.

    Biblically divorced? I've heard and read quite a lot of the view that there is no such thing as a biblical divorce. Marriage is once and that's it while both are alive. And these are individuals that are in admired standing by denoms represented here, nobody off the deep end.
    Kent
    URCNA
    Toronto

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by torstar View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by TimV View Post
    Why the case by case stuff if he's biblically divorced? It's like saying our sins are forgiven on case by case basis.

    Biblically divorced? I've heard and read quite a lot of the view that there is no such thing as a biblical divorce. Marriage is once and that's it while both are alive. And these are individuals that are in admired standing by denoms represented here, nobody off the deep end.
    So Jesus and Paul were wrong, then?
    Eric
    PCA
    Calgary, Alberta CANADA
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  27. #27
    Eric,

    There is a respectable argument that sees the Erasmian position (divorce permitted for adultery and desertion) as a revisionist "liberalizing" misreading of Jesus and Paul. At one time (nearly 30 years ago when doing my D.Min.), I actually held to the consanguine marriage view as the most biblically defensible one for a variety of reasons grounded in the meaning of the words of Jesus and Paul. Since then, however, my thinking has returned to the Reformational view as the normative one.

    Ken, gone to Rotary when you asked your question. I'll get you a copy of the article by Saucy.
    Dennis E. McFadden, Ex Mainline Baptist (in Remission)
    Atherton Baptist Homes, Alhambra, CA, President/CEO, Retired
    Emmanuel Lutheran Church (LCMS), Fort Wayne, IN

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  28. #28
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    Quote Originally Posted by ericfromcowtown View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by torstar View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by TimV View Post
    Why the case by case stuff if he's biblically divorced? It's like saying our sins are forgiven on case by case basis.

    Biblically divorced? I've heard and read quite a lot of the view that there is no such thing as a biblical divorce. Marriage is once and that's it while both are alive. And these are individuals that are in admired standing by denoms represented here, nobody off the deep end.
    So Jesus and Paul were wrong, then?

    You couldn't have meant to be that crass in your response.
    Kent
    URCNA
    Toronto

  29. #29
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bill The Baptist View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Chaplainintraining View Post
    The world is full of false gospels preached by false preachers who think they are called of God to deliver that "gospel." Just because you want to does not mean you should
    This only applies if your desire is to preach the true gospel.
    These false preachers believe that they are preaching the true gospel. I am not saying that the OP is going to preach a false gospel. I was merely showing that the quote is not really true to reality.
    B

  30. #30
    Quote Originally Posted by PuritanCovenanter View Post
    I don't mean to be harsh but your knowledge of the scriptures and historical Christianity seem to be very incomplete. You seem to have some knowledge concerning some theological issues but it would make me question your ability to understand a calling into the Pastorate. As far as your questioning your ability to be considered based upon your previous marriage that would have to be decided by a careful look at reasons for your wife's departure and the circumstances. And I understand that is not a fun thing to rehash. Many men desire office for various reasons. Pastoring is one of the hardest jobs on the face of the earth. It should take years of training before one enters into this vocation. This can be proven by scripture also. Nothing is prohibiting you from sharing your faith right now. Share it and lead others to Christ in the station you are at. Learn to disciple men on a daily basis. By doing this under the care of your church the men over you can evaluate your abilities and gifts. Confer with your Church Elders, Leaders, and get more acquainted with historic Christianity. Your desire is good. Grow in Grace and the knowledge of the Lord.
    I know I'm not a theologian. I also understand that you and I have some differences of view in certain areas, but I believe I have a solid grounding in scripture and that with God's help and seminary I could do the job. I'm sure I'm not spry enough to ever pastor a big church of thousands but there are small churches in places that need a pastor who would do his best to be faithful to the word and meet their needs in Christ. I would love to do that, I just want to make sure I'm really called first before I go and spend all of the money and time on seminary. I don't care how much a church would pay. I expect it wouldn't be much but I can work two jobs as long as the Lord gives me health and stamina. I believe that if I'm really called the Lord will provide a place for me to work.
    Last edited by Osage Bluestem; 05-10-2011 at 04:54 PM.
    David Doss
    First Baptist Church of Colleyville Texas (SBC)
    LBCF 1689

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  31. #31
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    Quote Originally Posted by Osage Bluestem View Post
    I'm sure I'm not wise enough to ever pastor a big church of thousands but there are small churches in places that need a pastor who would do his best to be faithful to the word and meet their needs in Christ.
    In my opinion, more wisdom is needed at the smaller churches vs. the megachurches. A pastor of a small church has to wear many hats, but many times the pastor of a megachurch won't.
    B

  32. #32
    Quote Originally Posted by Chaplainintraining View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Osage Bluestem View Post
    I'm sure I'm not wise enough to ever pastor a big church of thousands but there are small churches in places that need a pastor who would do his best to be faithful to the word and meet their needs in Christ.
    In my opinion, more wisdom is needed at the smaller churches vs. the megachurches. A pastor of a small church has to wear many hats, but many times the pastor of a megachurch won't.
    Thanks. I'm sure that's true. I was just thinking about all of those people in a large church that the pastor is responsible for. I imagine it's a hard job trying to keep track of them. I changed the word to "spry."
    David Doss
    First Baptist Church of Colleyville Texas (SBC)
    LBCF 1689

    www.osagebluestem.wordpress.com

  33. #33
    Quote Originally Posted by torstar View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by TimV View Post
    Why the case by case stuff if he's biblically divorced? It's like saying our sins are forgiven on case by case basis.

    Biblically divorced? I've heard and read quite a lot of the view that there is no such thing as a biblical divorce. Marriage is once and that's it while both are alive. And these are individuals that are in admired standing by denoms represented here, nobody off the deep end.
    WLC Q. 139. What are the sins forbidden in the seventh commandment?

    A. The sins forbidden in the seventh commandment, besides the neglect of the duties required,[780] are, adultery, fornication,[781] rape, incest,[782] sodomy, and all unnatural lusts;[783] all unclean imaginations, thoughts, purposes, and affections;[784] all corrupt or filthy communications, or listening thereunto;[785] wanton looks,[786] impudent or light behaviour, immodest apparel;[787] prohibiting of lawful,[788] and dispensing with unlawful marriages;[789] allowing, tolerating, keeping of stews, and resorting to them;[790] entangling vows of single life,[791] undue delay of marriage,[792] having more wives or husbands than one at the same time;[793] unjust divorce,[794] or desertion;[795] idleness, gluttony, drunkenness,[796] unchaste company;[797] lascivious songs, books, pictures, dancings, stage plays;[798] and all other provocations to, or acts of uncleanness, either in ourselves or others.[799]
    The WLC clearly implies that there are 'just' divorces.


    Village Church of Rosena Ranch

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  34. #34
    Quote Originally Posted by torstar View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by ericfromcowtown View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by torstar View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by TimV View Post
    Why the case by case stuff if he's biblically divorced? It's like saying our sins are forgiven on case by case basis.

    Biblically divorced? I've heard and read quite a lot of the view that there is no such thing as a biblical divorce. Marriage is once and that's it while both are alive. And these are individuals that are in admired standing by denoms represented here, nobody off the deep end.
    So Jesus and Paul were wrong, then?

    You couldn't have meant to be that crass in your response.
    Perhaps I should have worded my response differently. Matthew 5:32 and 19:9 seem pretty clear that divorce in some cases is permissible. 1 Corrinthians 7:15 also seems like a clear exception. The writers of the Westminster Confession seem to agree with me here (Chapter 24, V and VI). While I wouldn't want to appear crass, it seems that anyone who held a contrary view, if not "off the deep end," would certainly be counter-confessional (in so far as their denom held to the Westminster Confession). I plead ignorance on what, if anything, the Three Forms of Unity may say on divorce.

    My apologies for helping to derail this topic, as the OP was not dealing with divorce and remarriage, but on the biblical qualifications of holding office.
    Eric
    PCA
    Calgary, Alberta CANADA

  35. #35
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    Quote Originally Posted by Osage Bluestem View Post
    changed the word to "spry."
    I think that word works much better
    B

  36. #36
    Quote Originally Posted by Bill The Baptist View Post
    To say that someone cannot even consider becoming a pastor because they do not yet possess the neccesary knowledge is wrong in my opinion.
    First off, reread my comment. I didn't say what you implied.

    Quote Originally Posted by PuritanCovenanter View Post
    You seem to have some knowledge concerning some theological issues but it would make me question your ability to understand a calling into the Pastorate.
    That is what I said. That is why I asked him to do what I implored in following comments and to work under the guidance of his church so they could evaluate if he had the gifts and talents. BTW, the disciples were not uneducated when they started to minister.

    Quote Originally Posted by Bill The Baptist View Post
    I do not see this as being biblical because the men that Jesus chose to be his disciples were for the most part uneducated.
    Bill, you are gravely mistaken here. The disciples were not uneducated. They spent three years or so with God the Son. Now I imagine that they had been given a great deal of education by him.


    (Act 4:13) Now when they saw the boldness of Peter and John, and perceived that they were unlearned and ignorant men, they marvelled; and they took knowledge of them, that they had been with Jesus.
    Also when we look at St. Paul he was a very educated man by the standards set up in their society. He was educated by Gamaliel. Even after his very pointed charge by Jesus, he still didn't set out to go do ministry right away. He went to Damascus. There he preached and grew in the faith. He went away and spent a few years growing in the faith. Also notice that Paul didn't depart Antioch without the commission of the Church. He worked under the authority of the Church still. He just didn't go off to do ministry because he was called. He worked within boundaries and learning.

    In light of all of this I would ask that you read what I said first. Don't make blind assumptions. Also go and see what I recommended. If I am wrong I will apologize and rectify. I am not always correct.
    Last edited by PuritanCovenanter; 05-10-2011 at 06:16 PM.

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  37. #37
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    David, since you attend a SBC and live down south no a divorced man, can not be a pastor. Down south in the SBC from what I understand they will not tolerate a divorced minister. But if you came up north they will considered you depending on the reason for divorce. I know pastors from up north who could not get a church down south due to being divorced. Some of these SBC state conventions even called up north wanting to know why divorced men are being ordained.

    As far as needing to go to seminary in the SBC or most Baptist churches this is not required. I have been a messanger from my church to other churche's that ordained men who did not attend seminary. Or have degrees. The two most common ways are to have a pastor and x amount of messangers of like minded Baptist churches come together and question (test) the man. Or your church itself can license you and ordain you. There are diffrent ways to go about it.

    I have know pastors that have a PHD, also pastors with no or very little education and they were very godly and effective men. Also some of the educated men I knew were not as good as the non educated men.

    The one thing I have heard a lot was some Baptist men will compare themselves to C H Spurgeon or John Bunyan who were not educated at a school of higher learing. I try and remind them that they were very gifted men used by God and they should go to school.

    As another poster said talk to your pastor, deacons, and your church members. This is the best place to start. They who know you best will be able to tell you if they think you are qualified for the ministry.

  38. #38
    From the The Form of Presbyterial Church-Government (Westminster Standards)

    (2.) He shall be examined touching his skill in the original tongues, and his trial to be made by reading the Hebrew and Greek Testaments, and rendering some portion of some into Latin; and if he be defective in them, enquiry shall be made more strictly after his other learning, and whether he hath skill in logick and philosophy.

    (3.) What authors in divinity he hath read, and is best acquainted with; and trial shall be made in his knowledge of the grounds of religion, and of his ability to defend the orthodox doctrine contained in them against all unsound and erroneous opinions, especially these of the present age; of his skill in the sense and meaning of such places of scripture as shall be proposed unto him, in cases of conscience, and in the chronology of the scripture, and the ecclesiastical history.

    (5.) He shall also, within a competent time, frame a discourse in Latin upon such a common-place or controversy in divinity as shall be assigned to him, and exhibit to the presbytery such theses as express the sum thereof, and maintain a dispute upon them.
    The Reformed view is that a minister of the word should be educated. Whether that education comes by way of a seminary is a different discussion.


    Village Church of Rosena Ranch

    Transformation Ministries

    "Preparing a sermon is like cooking a meal. You need pots and pans and utensils, but you don't bring them out to the table where people are eating." Derek Thomas


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  39. #39
    Quote Originally Posted by PuritanCovenanter View Post
    This isn't about forgiveness of sin Tim. And I think you know that. It isn't like saying our sins are forgiven on a case by case basis. This doesn't have anything to do with forgiveness of sin or sins. It has to do with qualifying for something. You do admit there are qualifications right?
    Of course there are qualifications. And of one of them means more than one wife (not at the same time) then someone who's wife died can't be qualified. Like Jessi said, a biblical divorce is like whether the man needs glasses, or has thinning hair.
    Tim Vaughan
    Member, Redeemer Presbyterian, OPC,
    Santa Maria
    California

  40. #40
    Quote Originally Posted by TimV View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by PuritanCovenanter View Post
    This isn't about forgiveness of sin Tim. And I think you know that. It isn't like saying our sins are forgiven on a case by case basis. This doesn't have anything to do with forgiveness of sin or sins. It has to do with qualifying for something. You do admit there are qualifications right?
    Of course there are qualifications. And of one of them means more than one wife (not at the same time) then someone who's wife died can't be qualified. Like Jessi said, a biblical divorce is like whether the man needs glasses, or has thinning hair.
    Tim, You ought to know what I am saying. You need to read through the thread. I was addressing your first comment. You have rabbit trailed. I addressed your accusation. You made a false pretense in bringing in the forgiveness issue. Now you are taking it a step farther and ignored that I said that I agreed with the WCF in this thread.

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    "Our object should not be to have scripture on our side but to be on the side of scripture; and however dear any sentiment may have become by being long entertained, so soon as it is seen to be contrary to the Bible, we must be prepared to abandon it without hesitation."
    William Symington


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The PuritanBoard exists to promote robust discussion of theology in a Confessionally Reformed context. The modern trend of short statements of faith belies the many places where the Scriptures teach with great clarity. Though our respective Reformed confessions sometimes disagree, we believe that Churches have been given the gifts of teachers and elders to lead to the unity of the faith and the result of that unity is a Confessional Church confessing together: "This is what the Scriptures teach." The Confessions are secondary to the authority of Scripture itself but they arise out of Scripture as a standard exposition of the Word of God.