Author: Ron Graham
A Preacher’s Needs
—Special ministers in the churches
The church needs evangelists, preachers of the gospel. They help the church to grow. They have a solemn charge to keep and a hard work to fulfill (Ephesians 4:11-13, Romans 10:13-15, 2Timothy 4:1-5). But they also have needs.
You have full-time, part-time, and spare-time preachers. Do you recognize them, and the importance of their work? Do you give thought to helping their ministry?
This lesson shows what a preacher needs from you constantly. Consider these needs of the preacher...
1 A prayer
- The fervent prayer of a righteous person avails much (James 5:16).
- God uses your prayers along with the evangelist's work to spread the gospel. He is preaching. Are you praying? (2Thessalonians 3:1-2).
2 A push
- Not the push of pressure. He doesn't need you on his back. He needs the push of encouragement. Be like the Philippians who encouraged Paul (Philippians 2:1-2).
- Not the push of “busy work” —work that keeps someone busy like counting seeds, but produces nothing but neglect of the weightier matters (Matthew 23:23). The preacher's task is to preach. Let him get on with that task. That's his real work (1Timothy 4:6-16).
3 A place
- What is a preacher without a place to preach?
- Paul sometimes had trouble with being in the wrong place, and he left and went elsewhere (Acts 19:8-9). By contrast, Peter on the day of Pentecost found himself in just about the best possible place (Acts 2).
- By "place" I don't mean just the physical place, but the occasion and opportunity.
- Many churches today "hold services" two or three times a week. They make them as dead and dull as can be. Only half the people attend as should. The announcements are a mumble jumble. The prayers are long winded. The singing is unrythmic, out of tune, and down in one’s boots.
- The preacher needs a better place than that —a place where there is a sense of occasion and where the servants serve in the manner Christ desires (1Peter 4:10-11).
4 A paycheque
- The Lord directed those who preach the gospel to get their living thereby (1Corinthians 9:7-14).
- Those who are taught should support those who teach them (Galatians 6:6).
- The labourer is worthy of his hire (Luke 10:7).
- Nobody in the church should be in need. This includes the preachers (1Thessalonians 4:11-12, Ephesians 4:28).
- Can we condemn those who stoned the prophets if we ourselves starve our preachers?
5 A preacher
- Yes, that's right. A preacher needs a preacher!
- Timothy needed Paul to teach and train him (1Timothy 3:14-15).
- Others needed Timothy to teach and train them (2Timothy 2:1-2).
- Well trained and able evangelists need to train others well, and enable them.
- We are commanded to recognize, esteem, and love, those who labour among us (1Thessalonians 5:12-13).