One Thing A Pastor Must Do

December 28, 2006

Over at his blog Pure Church Thabiti Anyabwile has been writing a thoughtful series for pastors entitled “What a Good Pastor is to Do.” With time on my hands, I’ve been reading through his posts, a couple every day. Its been a rich time, reflecting on the kind of pastor I am becoming and how far I still have to go. Thanks Thabiti.

Perhaps you don’t have time to read the whole 11 part series. But if you can read just one post, I’d recommend What a Good Pastor is to do, part 7. Here is the opening excerpt:

If you had to boil pastoral ministry down to one thing, what would it be? I know… I know…. You can’t easily boil it down to one thing, even the things we’ve looked at so far from 1 Timothy defy such a question. But if you could, what would it be?

A case could be made for “set the believers an example” in all of life. Jesus tells His disciples that He has set them an example that they should follow what he has done (John 13:15). Elsewhere, the apostle Paul makes that famous statement in 1 Corinthians 11:1 — “Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ.” He tells the Philippians the same thing (Phil. 3:17). And in verse 12 of 1 Timothy 4, Paul says to Timothy be an example in speech and conduct. Perhaps being an example is one way of describing a good pastor. What does a good pastor do? He lives as an example.

Another way of bottom-lining what a good pastor is to do, though, is to consider what function the example plays. In being an example, at the root, a good pastor is teaching. A good pastor is to teach. “Command and teach these things” (v. 11). And that’s what Paul comes to again in 1 Tim. 4:13 – “Until I come, devote yourself to the pubic reading of Scripture, to exhortation, to teaching.” A good pastor is devoted to teaching.

In the remainder of the article, Thabiti unpacks the three main ways to instruct others: through the public reading of Scripture, exhortation and teaching.

To read the rest of the article click here. If you’re interested in the rest of the series, find the links below.
– part one
– part two
– part three
– part four
– part five
– part six
– part seven
– part eight
– part nine
– part ten
– part eleven



  1. you should correct the unfortunate typo in your quote of 1 Tim 4:13 — in the final paragraph of the excerpt

  2. Somehow i missed the point. Probably lost in translation 🙂 Anyway … nice blog to visit.

    cheers, Ards

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