How shall they hear without a preacher? And how shall they preach, except they be sent? as it is written, How beautiful are the feet of them that preach the gospel of peace, and bring glad tidings of good things! —Romans 10:14-15
Thank God for ministers of old who were willing to hazard their lives for the sake of the gospel. They had a heavenly vision and labored faithfully to preach the hope and judgments of God’s word. The gospel changes lives and in the darkness of our society, there is still need for the truth to be preached. The religious world is full of false prophets and ministers who are preaching a “feel good” salvation and not preaching the message of true repentance and holiness. The full, unadulterated truth still has power to set people free from sin through the power of Jesus Christ.
This quarter the burden is on the subject of the ministry. There is a great need for qualified laborers to answer the call of God and work in the ministry. There is much hypocrisy in the religious world and great damage has been done to the name of Christianity. Let us be reminded of the Biblical qualifications and hold to them as a body of believers. We must not let a common history, friendships, or family cause us to let down on this Bible standard. It is essential for ministers in leadership to stay humble and dependent upon the Lord. There is an equality in the Church of God and it is imperative when duty calls, that ministers not get overtaken by a sense of self-importance or position.
Ministers go through hard times, but there is nothing more fulfilling than to be operating under the anointing of the Holy Spirit. We have been entrusted with this dispensation of the gospel and need to be encouraged afresh to lift our voice as a trumpet and sound with distinction the message of truth. Many times people in the camp are more ready to tear down the preacher than to honestly acknowledge that they do not want the truth. Ministers need to have Holy Ghost boldness and keep on preaching the truth. A compromised message will bring forth compromise and a fanatic message will bring forth fanaticism. It is needful that the ministry swerve not to the left nor to the right.
Ordination is also briefly addressed in this issue. Ordination is a Bible doctrine and it is important that ministers and the saints understand its value. While some shy away from its teaching because it can bring the spotlight on difficult situations, we must be faithful to not let the teaching and practice be lost because of fear. It is a blessing to be able to recognize and ordain ministers sound in doctrine and spirit.
Michael W. Smith