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Teaching Workshop: The Motivations for Teaching

Posted by on Jan 11, 2012 in discipleship | 5 comments

Teaching Workshop: The Motivations for Teaching

Over the next few weeks, I’m planning to lead a “Teaching Workshop” for the church on Sunday mornings. We’ll work through a few passages of Scripture and discuss together what those passages say about teaching and teachers.

This is not a workshop about how to put together a teaching outline or how to study commentaries or other reference materials. Instead, we will discuss a broad and general view of teaching through Scripture. I hope that this workshop will be helpful for people teaching in any context.

This is the general outline that I plan to use for this workshop (I’ve updated the outline since the last post):

Part 1: Who Teaches?
Part 2: The Motivations for Teaching
Part 3: The Essence of Teaching
Part 4: Teaching When the Church Gathers

For each week’s workshop, I plan to put together a short worksheet to guide our discussion. This is the worksheet for the first week’s session. This lesson will be called “Part 2: The Motivations for Teaching.” Many of these motivations are not related specifically to teaching, but are related to our relationship with response to God as well as other people.

Feel free to discuss or ask questions in the comments.


Teaching Workshop

Part 2: The Motivations for Teaching

Note: To begin this workshop, I need to specify that I believe that all Scripture is in agreement when it comes to teaching. I will approach all passages as if they agree with one another.

I recommend reading the following passages so that you will know the context and background of the specific parts that we will discuss together. As you read, pay attention to the context as well as what the author says about motivations: Matthew 22:34-40; Matthew 28:18-20; John 14:15-18; John 21:15-19; Acts 5:29-32; Acts 20:17-21; Romans 1:7-12; 1 Corinthians 10:31-33; 1 Corinthians 12:4-7; 1 Corinthians 14:1-5, 26-32; Galatians 5:13-14; Ephesians 4:7-16; Colossians 3:12-17; Hebrews 10:19-25; 1 Peter 4:7-11; 1 John 4:16-21; 1 John 5:1-5.

I. Love for God

The first and greatest commandment can and should be one of the motivations for everything that we do (and perhaps the foundation for everything that we do). (Matthew 22:37 – and parallel passages; John 21:15-17)

II. Submission/Obedience to God

We are commanded to teach. Is it enough to simply do something (such as teach) because we desire to submit to God and obey him? (John 14:15; Acts 5:29-32; 1 John 5:2)

III. Honor/Glorify/Worship God

When we speak to others in various ways (including teaching), we can glorify God. Of course, this is true of serving as well as speaking. (1 Corinthians 10:31; Colossians 3:16-17; 1 Peter 4:10-11)

IV. Love for Others

The second commandment is like the first commandment. In fact, if we do not love others, then we do not love God. (Galatians 5:13-14; 1 John 4:20-21)

V. Desire to Benefit Others

All spiritual gifts (including teaching) are given for the benefit of others, not for the benefit of the one exercising that gift. (1 Corinthians 12:4-7; Acts 20:20)

VI. Desire to Disciple Others

Teaching is part of helping people following Jesus Christ (that is, to be his disciples). If we want to disciple people, then we will also want to teach people. (Matthew 28:19-20; Ephesians 4:11-13, 16)

VII. Desire to Build Up Others

Everything that we do when we gather together should be for the purpose of building each other up toward maturity, faith, unity, and love. (Romans 1:11-12; 1 Corinthians 14:26; Hebrews 10:24-25)


Comments are closed. If you would like to discuss this post, send an email to alan [at] alanknox [dot] net.

  1. 1-11-2012

    Shouldn’t we teach because someone wants to learn from us? What I mean is this: I see a lot of teachers who are self appointed yet from whom nobody really wants to learn. I was probably one of those teachers at some point. Didn’t people flock to Jesus and *ask for his teaching? The disciples sure did. But, we don’t do it that way. We decide God wants us to teach and then we try to find someone to listen. I’m just wondering if it shouldn’t be the other way around. Be prepared to teach, and then when asked, do so.

  2. 1-12-2012


    Thanks for the comment. That’s a good point. I may bring that up Sunday.

    I do think that many churches spend a tremendous amount of time, energy, and resources attempting to disciple people who are not interested in growing in maturity.


  3. 1-15-2012


    Really appreciate your thought process and your questions. Gooooood stuuuuufffffff 😉

    “Shouldn’t we teach because someone wants to learn from us?”

    “We decide God wants us to teach and then we try to find someone to listen. I’m just wondering if it shouldn’t be the other way around.”


  4. 1-15-2012

    Thanks, A.
    Alan, if you discussed this today, I’d love to hear how that discussion went..

  5. 1-16-2012


    I plan to publish a short “reflections” post like I did for the first session.