Four years ago, I wrote a post called “What should a new pastor do?” It’s a short post, but it presents pastors/elders/overseers in a way that I’ve rarely seen them presented. I’d love to have your input.
Before commenting on ETS, I wanted to bring up an issue that was recently introduced by Matthew McDill. Someone asked him the following question: “What should a pastor do during the first year of a new pastorate?”
As Matthew correctly recognizes, this question assumes that a new pastor is also new to a church. However, there is another assumption included in this question: a person should do something different once they are pastor. According to 1 Tim 3 and Titus 1, a person should only be recognized as an elder/overseer if that person is already functioning in a pastoral role. Caring for people and leading as an example are requirements for those who oversee the people of God (Acts 20; 1 Peter 5). If a church recognizes that God is already using one of its members in a pastoral role, then there is nothing new for that person to do. They should continue to live for God as they have been doing.
There is another assumption found in the question. The question assumes that a pastor’s duties include institutional administrative responsibilities. In other words, now that a person is a pastor, he has organizational resposibilities. But, is this assumption scriptural or traditional? Should a church (or pastor) assume that a pastor should administer the organization? I have previously suggested that Scripture does not place administrative responsibilites on the elder. If this is correct then, once again, there is nothing new required of a “pastor.”
What do you think?