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Authoritative Criteria for Pastors or Church Leaders

The church of Corinth to whom the Apostle Paul wrote the first and second epistle of the Corinthians was divided for various reasons. God does not want a divided church. He wants a unified church. Most people do not know what causes disunity in a church. They use worldly thinking for determining this. The Apostle Paul deals with the way the people there evaluated leaders to eliminate one of the ungodly divisions in the church. Among other points, he says they judge church leaders like they are their own servants, when first they are servants of Christ. Church leaders, pastors, are ministers of Christ, not you. The term “Christ” is no accident, because it is the name of the Lord related to His Messianic role as King. A church leader succeeds with the church when He serves Christ. His service of people will occur in a right manner when He serves the right Master. The church functions like a form of the kingdom on earth. His leaders help push forward the agenda of the true King on earth.

Second, God’s criteria for evaluation of pastors sees them as galley slaves, the meaning of the word translated “ministers” in 1 Corinthians 4:1-2. Galley slaves are not judged by their Masters for their skill, but for their faithfulness. They do not give up on the task at hand, the one given to them by their true Master.

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