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John Calvin puts forward a very simple reason why love is the greatest gift: “Because faith and hope are our own: love is diffused among others.” In other words, faith and hope benefit the possessor, but love always benefits another. In John 13:34–35 Jesus says, “A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.” Love always requires an “other” as an object; love cannot remain within itself, and that is part of what makes love the greatest gift.
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ChatterBox

Church of England rejects Gay Marriage

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It seems the rift between the Anglican and Episcopalian churches won't be healed any time soon. The Church of England Synod rejected changes to its stance on gay marriage. I do find myself somewhat concerned by the claims by LGBT campaigners that gay bishops are betraying them. If a bishop isn't married, they should be celebate, so their sexuality is irrelevent. Also a bishop's first loyalty should be to God and the Bible, not his own self-interests, so again their sexuality is irrelevant.

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It seems the rift between the Anglican and Episcopalian churches won't be healed any time soon. The Church of England Synod rejected changes to its stance on gay marriage. I do find myself somewhat concerned by the claims by LGBT campaigners that gay bishops are betraying them. If a bishop isn't married, they should be celebate, so their sexuality is irrelevant. Also a bishop's first loyalty should be to God and the Bible, not his own self-interests, so again their sexuality is irrelevant.

 

Then why are they still identifying themselves as a homosexual? Jesus said that one is guilty of adultery if he looks upon another woman with lust, is not a homosexual guilty of sodomy if he looks at a man or young boy with lust?

 

If he no longer lusts and is sexually inactive then why identify as a homosexual?

 

IMO, the Episcopal church is apostate. Distance yourself from them.

 

God bless,

William

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Then why are they still identifying themselves as a homosexual? Jesus said that one is guilty of adultery if he looks upon another woman with lust, is not a homosexual guilty of sodomy if he looks at a young boy with lust?

 

If he no longer lusts and is sexually inactive then why identify as a homosexual?

Many of these bishops don't identify as gay. The LGBT campaigners identify them as gay.

 

The C of E does allow bishops who are in civil unions, but only if they are "sexually abstinant" a.k.a celebate, again making their sexuality irrelevant in the matter of gay marriage.

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Many of these bishops don't identify as gay. The LGBT campaigners identify them as gay.

 

The C of E does allow bishops who are in civil unions, but only if they are "sexually abstinant" a.k.a celebate, again making their sexuality irrelevant in the matter of gay marriage.

 

You didn't answer my question, though, dear Chatterbox. Are they still attracted to the same sex? I realize not everybody will agree with me, but the qualifications for overseer are spelled out in 1 Timothy 3. I would object to having a homosexual overseer, that is, one that has the desire or attraction to the same sex regardless if they refrain from activity. Again Jesus said that a man that lusts after another woman is guilty of having committed adultery. Do sodomites have some special privilege?

 

3 The saying is trustworthy: If anyone aspires to the office of overseer, he desires a noble task. 2 Therefore an overseer[a] must be above reproach, the husband of one wife,[b] sober-minded, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not a drunkard, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive, 5 for if someone does not know how to manage his own household, how will he care for God's church? 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become puffed up with conceit and fall into the condemnation of the devil. 7 Moreover, he must be well thought of by outsiders, so that he may not fall into disgrace, into a snare of the devil.

 

Now tell me how a single male or a homosexual qualifies biblically?

 

God bless,

William

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You didn't answer my question, though, dear Chatterbox. Are they still attracted to the same sex?
I can't read minds, so I don't know. However I will point out that it is very easy for someone with an agenda to point fingers at an unmarried celebate churchman and say they are gay, and very hard for the churchman to say they are not and be believed.

 

The idea that someone would "give up lust" in this era is completely alien to many people, so obviously 'if he's not married he must be gay...' I've heard that idea expressed about too many churchman, even our local vicar who when he eventually married (a dreadful shock to the local campaigners) then had to face cries that he was using his wife as a cover. Anyone who knew them knew that was rubbish.

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I can't read minds, so I don't know. However I will point out that it is very easy for someone with an agenda to point fingers at an unmarried celebate churchman and say they are gay, and very hard for the churchman to say they are not and be believed.

 

The idea that someone would "give up lust" in this era is completely alien to many people, so obviously 'if he's not married he must be gay...' I've heard that idea expressed about too many churchman, even our local vicar who when he eventually married (a dreadful shock to the local campaigners) then had to face cries that he was using his wife as a cover. Anyone who knew them knew that was rubbish.

 

I suggest you read what I posted, 1 Timothy 3 doesn't have a provision for single males or celibate homosexuals, it does say that an overseer must be above reproach, and further qualifies. I see no place for single males either, especially homosexual single males (as though there is any other such thing) because Scripture rejects any marriage outside of a man-woman union). I am divorced and remarried, therefore, I do not qualify, but you're suggesting that a homosexual does?

 

Seems to me that the whole ordeal could have been avoided if the biblical outline for overseer was followed.

 

Now to address some objections before they begin:

https://www.biblegateway.com/resourc...er-8217-s-Wife

https://www.gotquestions.org/apostle-Paul-married.html

 

God bless,

William

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Now to address some objections before they begin:

... now where's the fun in that! I object to addressing unraised objections on general principle. :)

 

 

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I suggest you read what I posted, 1 Timothy 3 doesn't have a provision for single males or celibate homosexuals, it does say that an overseer must be above reproach, and further qualifies. I see no place for single males either, especially homosexual single males (as though there is any other such thing) because Scripture rejects any marriage outside of a man-woman union). I am divorced and remarried, therefore, I do not qualify, but you're suggesting that a homosexual does?

 

Seems to me that the whole ordeal could have been avoided if the biblical outline for overseer was followed.

 

Now to address some objections before they begin:

https://www.biblegateway.com/resourc...er-8217-s-Wife

https://www.gotquestions.org/apostle-Paul-married.html

 

God bless,

William

And as I pointed out in my post, with a specific example, married churchmen have been subject to these claims. Being married does not prevent false or unsubstantiated accusations, it simply means the wife is accused of being "in on it".

 

You appear to also be assuming that every claim of homosexuality by the campaigners is valid and correct? As I also said, many of the priests deny these claims completely. Unfortunately a lot of people assume that where there is smoke there must be fire, not someone with an agenda leaping up and down and shouting "fire".

 

Regarding unmarried churchmen, Martin Luther's reformation occurred roughly 500 years after the church formally decreed celebacy, sold the wives of its clergy into slavery and decreed children born to them were illegitimate and slaves (1089), and 1,000 years after the first uncentralised occurances of this(589 A.D - 655 A.D.). Is it really surprising that after another 500 years the church hasn't finished moving back? I'm not kidding about the CofE being conservative, in the sense that it really dislikes change.

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Then why are they still identifying themselves as a homosexual? Jesus said that one is guilty of adultery if he looks upon another woman with lust, is not a homosexual guilty of sodomy if he looks at a man or young boy with lust?

 

If he no longer lusts and is sexually inactive then why identify as a homosexual?

 

IMO, the Episcopal church is apostate. Distance yourself from them.

 

God bless,

William

 

I understand what you are saying, William, and I agree.

 

I also agree about the Episcopal church. It has gone off the rails, and I don't think it bears the marks of a true church any longer.

 

 

 

 

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Regarding unmarried churchmen, Martin Luther's reformation occurred roughly 500 years after the church formally decreed celebacy, sold the wives of its clergy into slavery and decreed children born to them were illegitimate and slaves (1089), and 1,000 years after the first uncentralised occurances of this(589 A.D - 655 A.D.). Is it really surprising that after another 500 years the church hasn't finished moving back? I'm not kidding about the CofE being conservative, in the sense that it really dislikes change.

 

Where does the Bible require ministers in Christ's church to be celibate? It doesn't, but rather teaches the opposite (1 Tim. 3:2-5,12, see 1 Cor. 9:5).

 

I wouldn't consider your definition of Conservatism correct. Isn't there another word that better describes the body or individual that holds others to their own standard outside of Scriptural orthodoxy? Lemme be kind by suggesting "Traditionalist".

 

God bless,

William

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Just out of curiosity, while I do not view celibacy as a requirement, I was wondering if you would reject the Apostle Paul as unqualified to hold a position of authority in the church (and if so, does that bother you)?

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Just out of curiosity, while I do not view celibacy as a requirement, I was wondering if you would reject the Apostle Paul as unqualified to hold a position of authority in the church (and if so, does that bother you)?

 

To begin, the office of Apostle was not brought into question. You realize the Apostle Paul may of have been married or may of have not been married, and could have been a widower? There is no specific mention, however, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, this is a matter of not modeling ourselves after his life (Apostolic Succession), but rather what the Holy Spirit writ. The qualification for Overseer was made - a set of qualifications greater than what is expected from Deacons and Church members.

 

Take for example what Chatterbox wrote (an overseer married). I have heard of entire congregations falling apart because of incidents such as these, because other women were found wanting, hurt, and even jealous when an overseer picked one woman over another. Not to mention there is an issue with whether the Overseer should even court amongst his congregation or outside. An Overseer's qualification also includes children, further problems are the result from congregants that have an issue listening to a celibate man with no family experience whatsoever on matters pertaining to child rearing.

 

I am not suggesting anything the Scripture does not explicitly state. If 1 Timothy's 3 principle is sexual purity, and a celibate life is the epitome of an overseer's life than what is the desire for marriage?

 

God bless,

William

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To begin, the office of Apostle was not brought into question. You realize the Apostle Paul may of have been married or may of have not been married, and could have been a widower? There is no specific mention, however, under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, this is a matter of not modeling ourselves after his life (Apostolic Succession), but rather what the Holy Spirit writ. The qualification for Overseer was made - a set of qualifications greater than what is expected from Deacons and Church members.

 

Take for example what Chatterbox wrote (an overseer married). I have heard of entire congregations falling apart because of incidents such as these, because other women were found wanting, hurt, and even jealous when an overseer picked one woman over another. Not to mention there is an issue with whether the Overseer should even court amongst his congregation or outside. An Overseer's qualification also includes children, further problems are the result from congregants that have an issue listening to a celibate man with no family experience whatsoever on matters pertaining to child rearing.

 

I am not suggesting anything the Scripture does not explicitly state. If 1 Timothy's 3 principle is sexual purity, and a celibate life is the epitome of an overseer's life than what is the desire for marriage?

 

God bless,

William

Haste makes waste, and in my case, I was too pressed for time to properly communicate my point and question.

 

First, my point had nothing to do with the office of Apostle but was focusing on one specific individual ... who just happens to have be widely known in the modern era as "the Apostle Paul". So the reference was just to clearly identify the specific individual that I had in mind.

 

1 Corinthians 7 was written by Paul on the subject of Marriage and Celibacy. While Paul may or may not have been married at one time, there was clearly a period (the writing of his letter to the church at Corinth) when he was both unmaried and celibate and urging others to live likewise to be of greater service to God.

 

1 Corinthians 7:32-35 [NIV]

I would like you to be free from concern. An unmarried man is concerned about the Lord’s affairs—how he can please the Lord. But a married man is concerned about the affairs of this world—how he can please his wife— and his interests are divided. An unmarried woman or virgin is concerned about the Lord’s affairs: Her aim is to be devoted to the Lord in both body and spirit. But a married woman is concerned about the affairs of this world—how she can please her husband. I am saying this for your own good, not to restrict you, but that you may live in a right way in undivided devotion to the Lord.

 

So I acknowledge the criteria for an Elder or Overseer from Scripture (which is not dissimilar to the qualifications for a deacon). My observation, point and question is that a strict reading of those requirements disqualify from service within the offices of the church the very people who would obey Paul's call to serve God with less distraction in 1 Corinthians 7. Indeed, the person named Paul, whom God found adequate to the task of training Timothy and writing the guidelines we are embracing would not, by our strict reading of his letter, be qualified to serve as a Deacon or Elder in a modern church.

 

Are you comfortable with an interpretation of scripture that makes the special dedication of one part of scripture a disqualification for service in another part of scripture?

Are you comfortable with the thought that Paul could be trusted to train Timothy, bring the gospel to the gentiles, correct errors in churches and write most of the New Testament, but cannot be trusted to fulfill the role of Deacon?

 

1 Timothy 3:12 A deacon must be faithful to his wife and must manage his children and his household well. ... Would exclude an unmarried Deacon as well.

 

I guess the question boils down to how can one reconcile 1 Timothy 3 and 1 Corinthians 7 to understand how an unmarried individual may serve God and the Church?

One suggests greater opportunity while the other suggests less opportunity.

 

 

 

 

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My observation, point and question is that a strict reading of those requirements disqualify from service within the offices of the church the very people who would obey Paul's call to serve God with less distraction in 1 Corinthians 7. Indeed, the person named Paul, whom God found adequate to the task of training Timothy and writing the guidelines we are embracing would not, by our strict reading of his letter, be qualified to serve as a Deacon or Elder in a modern church.

 

Are you comfortable with an interpretation of scripture that makes the special dedication of one part of scripture a disqualification for service in another part of scripture?

 

Are you comfortable with the thought that Paul could be trusted to train Timothy, bring the gospel to the gentiles, correct errors in churches and write most of the New Testament, but cannot be trusted to fulfill the role of Deacon?

 

Cannot be trusted? Lets just say that I hope I would take the position of the Bereans in Acts 17, and qualify anyone including the Apostle according to Scripture. Yes, even Paul should be held accountable to them. Fact:

  • Apostle Paul was not an elder: nowhere in the Bible is Paul referred to as an elder. Paul wasn't married: 1 Cor 7:7, therefore was not even qualified: 1 Ti 3:2,4,5.
  • Peter on the other hand, was both a full-time preacher and an elder. 1 Peter 5:1 "I [Peter] ... your "FELLOW elder.

I think what you are putting forth on these matters are "hypothetical" arguments shared by those from the liberal camp. The author made a strict mention outlining the qualifications. So your statement and seemingly "strict" mention to me comes as whether the biblical qualifications should be followed?

 

I reject anyone from the office of overseer that does not qualify. And Yes, I reject the liberal interpretation of Scripture (which clears out churches and probably forums). Matter of fact, I just walked past an Episcopalian church ran by a female pastor. The church has a rainbow promoting homosexuality on the sign for the church, and another sign on the opposite corner saying Illegal Immigrants welcome with a picture attempting to convey Mary and Joseph as such.

 

God bless,

William

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Peter on the other hand, was both a full-time preacher and an elder. 1 Peter 5:1 "I [Peter] ... your "FELLOW elder.

Did Peter have children?

 

1 Timothy 3:1-7 (Qualifications for an Elder)

1 Here is a trustworthy saying: Whoever aspires to be an overseer desires a noble task. 2 Now the overseer is to be above reproach, faithful to his wife, temperate, self-controlled, respectable, hospitable, able to teach, 3 not given to drunkenness, not violent but gentle, not quarrelsome, not a lover of money. 4 He must manage his own family well and see that his children obey him, and he must do so in a manner worthy of full respect. 5 (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?) 6 He must not be a recent convert, or he may become conceited and fall under the same judgment as the devil. 7 He must also have a good reputation with outsiders, so that he will not fall into disgrace and into the devil’s trap.

 

I, too want to be like the Bereans, but I want to avoid becoming like the Pharisee while doing it. :)

So I sincerely question whether the intent of this scripture is to present a checklist that an 'overseer' must:

1. have a wife

2. have children

If he only has one child, would that fail to meet the qualifications for elder?

If his children die, should he be required to step down as elder?

 

Or is 1 Timothy 3:5 more of a summary of the point about the wife and children.

Not that an overseer MUST have a wife and children, but that an overseer must not have his own house in disorder.

 

I am not seeking to cheat or ignore the word, I am attempting to correctly divide it. I wish to take from scripture the lesson Paul and the Holy Spirit intended to convey. Not to subtract from it, but also, not to add to it.

 

God Bless,

Arthur

 

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Or is 1 Timothy 3:5 more of a summary of the point about the wife and children.

Not that an overseer MUST have a wife and children, but that an overseer must not have his own house in disorder.

 

I am not seeking to cheat or ignore the word, I am attempting to correctly divide it. I wish to take from scripture the lesson Paul and the Holy Spirit intended to convey. Not to subtract from it, but also, not to add to it.

  • (If anyone does not know how to manage his own family, how can he take care of God’s church?)

An Overseer must be one who keeps his family in good order:

  1. That rules well his own house, that he may set a good example to other masters of families to do so too, and that he may thereby give a proof of his ability to take care of the church of God: For, if a man know not how to rule his own house, how shall he take care of the church of God.

You're stating that a family is optional when the Scriptures are asking for proof to be provided by an example? How is your denomination vetting their overseers (important question to everyone)? This text clearly suggests that the minister will be married, indeed “the husband of one wife.” It does not say, “if married, the husband of one wife.”

 

Lemme shift from myself to someone like Albert Mohler:

 

Importantly, the text’s concern does not end there. The pastor is to “manage his own household well, with all dignity keeping his children submissive.” Once again, it does not state that a single minister is an impossibility, but it does hold out the expectation of a married pastor with a wife and a household, including obedient children.

 

Why is this so? Paul makes clear that this is all part of the minister’s credibility, “for if he does not know how to manage his own household, how will be care for God’s church?” Evidently, the ability to lead a family is an important sign of the ability to care for the family of faith.

 

A similar teaching is found in Titus 1:5-9:

 

This is why I left you in Crete, so that you might put what remained into order, and appoint elders in every town as I directed you — if anyone is above reproach, the husband of one wife, and his children are believers and not open to the charge of debauchery or insubordination. For an overseer, as God’s steward, must be above reproach. He must not be arrogant or quick-tempered or a drunkard or violent or greedy for gain, but hospitable, a lover of good, self-controlled, upright, holy, and disciplined. He must hold firm to the trustworthy word as taught, so that he may be able to give instruction in sound doctrine and also to rebuke those who contradict it.

 

Once again, the normative expectation is that the pastor is a married man with wife and believing children. This does not mean that an unmarried minister is not “above reproach,” but it does indicate a default position of marriage within the context that not only states the fact but also places it within the larger context of the pastor’s qualifications.

 

Why is this so? Beyond what has already been stated, the married pastor has the protection of a wife, the status of a leader in the home, the fulfillment of the marital relation, and thus the freedom to relate to the congregation as one who is already committed within the covenant of marriage, and who is able to serve as a model for other men within the congregation and the watching community.

 

So, then, what about Paul’s teaching in 1 Corinthians 7 concerning celibacy? There are two important passages within this chapter that directly address the question:

 

Now as a concession, not a command, I say this. I wish that all were as I myself am. But each has his own gift from God, one of one kind and one of another. To the unmarried and the widows I say that it is good for them to remain single as I am. But if they cannot exercise self-control, they should marry. For it is better to marry than to burn with passion. [i Corinthians 7: 6-9]

 

The unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to please the Lord. But the married man is anxious about worldly things, how to please his wife, and his interests are divided. And the unmarried or betrothed woman is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit. But the married woman is anxious about worldly things, how to please her husband. I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord.” [1 Corinthians 7:32-35]

 

Furthermore, Jesus spoke of those whom he described as those “who have made themselves eunuchs for the sake of the kingdom of heaven.” [Matthew 19:12]

 

There is obviously great honor directed here to those who can live without spouse for the sake of the kingdom. Paul describes their service, like his own, as undivided in interest. A married man must be concerned about how to please his wife, while the unmarried man has an undivided interest and is thus more free to serve the Lord in what, as Jesus made clear, is service for the sake of the kingdom of heaven.

 

So, this is not a blanket statement affirming the priority of singleness, but instead affirming a state of uncompromised (not burning with passion) celibacy for the sake of kingdom service.

 

Note that this passage is addressed to all Christians, not specifically to ministers. Without doubt, an unmarried Christian with the gift of celibacy is more free for Gospel service and Great Commission deployment than a married pastor.

 

But Paul is not contradicting himself, and his advice concerning pastors stands.

 

I was asked for my advice and counsel on this issue, and I provided it in summary. I stand by my counsel. I do not have the right nor textual authority to state without equivocation that a pastor cannot be unmarried (as in never married), but I can advise that the logic of 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9 will lead most congregations to a very clear expectation, and that this expectation will be reflected in congregational intuitions as well.

 

I can also offer my own personal experience. I was called as pastor of a small country church when I was engaged to be married. This sweet church took a risk with a young seminary student who was anxious to be married and just waiting for the date to arrive. I can testify that my ministry was transformed the moment I showed up back at the church with Mary, my wife. My relations with church members of both sexes took on a much more natural shape, and this was amplified with married couples of all ages. When children came, my ministry in later years was also deepened and widened.

 

My experience is not normative, Scripture is. Nevertheless, my own experience helps me to understand the logic of these key New Testament texts. I know countless unmarried men and women who are serving the Kingdom of Christ with distinction and dedication. I am so thankful for their commitment and service. But this does not change the fact that when the Bible speaks of the teaching office in the church, it speaks of a man who is expected to be married.

 

God bless,

William

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You're stating that a family is optional when the Scriptures are asking for proof to be provided by an example?

I do not have the right nor textual authority to state without equivocation that a pastor cannot be unmarried (as in never married), but I can advise that the logic of 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9 will lead most congregations to a very clear expectation, and that this expectation will be reflected in congregational intuitions as well.

 

 

I wholeheartedly embrace a married elder as the "normative expectation". It was your statements interpreting 1 Timothy 3 as an "unequivocal condition" (which appeared to contradict the spirit and letter of 1 Corinthians 7) that rubbed my fur the wrong way. Even Mohler failed to meet your test in his life and claimed that he did "not have the right nor textual authority to state without equivocation that a pastor cannot be unmarried".

 

How is your denomination vetting their overseers (important question to everyone)?

Sorry, I can't really talk about modern Elders and Deacons in any of several denominations without bouncing your profanity filter.

Suffice it to say when I read what the Bible says an Elder and a Deacon are to be and do, and compare that to what the modern church (small 'c') calls them to be and do, somebody is goin' to have 'splainin' to do!

 

Your Friend in Christ,

Arthur

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As a statement of practical application, I believe that a married itinerant evangelist will face struggles that an evangelist with the gift of celibacy (the true gift and not merely an unmarried evangelist struggling with his passions) would not. However, I do not believe that this means that God would never call a married man to itinerant evangelism. He will have additional struggles and require additional grace, which God will provide.

 

Likewise, I believe that an unmarried Pastor, Elder, Deacon will face issues, struggles and problems that a married Pastor, Elder and Deacon would avoid. For this reason, it seems far more likely that God would call married men to these positions. If for no other reason, than the time spent dealing with a family will have trained him for the job as the time spent in Potiphar's house and prison trained Joseph for his work under the Pharaoh. However, I do not believe that this makes it impossible for God to call an unmarried individual to service as a Pastor, Elder or Deacon. God could even call someone to whom he had granted the gift of celibacy. It does mean that an unmarried Pastor, Elder or Deacon will face additional struggles, many of which you pointed out and Mohler confirmed, in that he will not relate as directly with the typical married congregant.

 

I do see this as a serious matter and someone claiming an 'extraordinary' calling (outside the normative expectation) should be subject to extraordinary vetting and expected to provide extraordinary evidence that God has called them to this position and will provide the grace to accomplish it. It is not, however, our job to declare 'disqualified' any individual that God may have raised up simply because they do not look like we think an Elder or Deacon 'should' look ... married with two or more children. (Acts 10:15)

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I wholeheartedly embrace a married elder as the "normative expectation". It was your statements interpreting 1 Timothy 3 as an "unequivocal condition" (which appeared to contradict the spirit and letter of 1 Corinthians 7) that rubbed my fur the wrong way.

 

This is what rubs me the wrong way. Albert Mohler said, "This sweet church took a risk with a young seminary student who was anxious to be married and just waiting for the date to arrive."

 

Chatterbox expressed earlier that she cannot see into the person in question. Really, we don't need to, the Scriptures are qualifying and ask for proof as an example. While his "sweet little church" may have thought it right to "risk" or even "gamble" with the lives of the families in question I do not find that to be in the "spirit" of what was writ.

 

Really, I don't feel sorry for some groups or church bodies that ignore Scripture in favor of any "sentimental feelings", and we read about them every day in the news. I believe the Scriptures have our best interest at heart.

 

My experience is not normative, Scripture is.

 

I'm glad Albert M. expressed this. I'm glad that he acknowledges that Scripture is the standard and not his past experience.

 

I was asked for my advice and counsel on this issue, and I provided it in summary. I stand by my counsel. I do not have the right nor textual authority to state without equivocation that a pastor cannot be unmarried (as in never married), but I can advise that the logic of 1 Timothy 3:1-7 and Titus 1:5-9 will lead most congregations to a very clear expectation, and that this expectation will be reflected in congregational intuitions as well.

 

Interesting. I wonder whether this has more to do with his church's government.

 

God bless,

William

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This is what rubs me the wrong way. Albert Mohler said, "This sweet church took a risk with a young seminary student who was anxious to be married and just waiting for the date to arrive."

 

Chatterbox expressed earlier that she cannot see into the person in question. Really, we don't need to, the Scriptures are qualifying and ask for proof as an example. While his "sweet little church" may have thought it right to "risk" or even "gamble" with the lives of the families in question I do not find that to be in the "spirit" of what was writ.

 

Really, I don't feel sorry for some groups or church bodies that ignore Scripture in favor of any "sentimental feelings", and we read about them every day in the news. I believe the Scriptures have our best interest at heart.

I can relate to your feelings. I would not advocate going contrary to scripture because it "just felt right". [ugh] I know many people see no problem with divorced or remarried Pastors and Elders, but I always thought it was a huge deal. Not because 'divorce' was some sort of unpardonable sin, or because of some harsh legalism, but because it strikes to the very heart of what scripture was saying. If they could not manage their own house, should they really be managing God's house? "Please, o pastor on his third marriage, what advice do you have for my struggling marriage ... I think I may want to do the opposite!" How about the old verse about first removing the beam from your own eye before you come to remove the speck from mine.

 

Just out of curiosity, should an 'overseer' have at least 2 children as well (strictly your opinion) as proof of his ability to manage his household?

[if not, why is the wife necessary and the children optional ... from a Biblical perspective?]

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I can relate to your feelings. I would not advocate going contrary to scripture because it "just felt right". [ugh] I know many people see no problem with divorced or remarried Pastors and Elders, but I always thought it was a huge deal. Not because 'divorce' was some sort of unpardonable sin, or because of some harsh legalism, but because it strikes to the very heart of what scripture was saying. If they could not manage their own house, should they really be managing God's house? "Please, o pastor on his third marriage, what advice do you have for my struggling marriage ... I think I may want to do the opposite!" How about the old verse about first removing the beam from your own eye before you come to remove the speck from mine.

 

Just out of curiosity, should an 'overseer' have at least 2 children as well (strictly your opinion) as proof of his ability to manage his household?

[if not, why is the wife necessary and the children optional ... from a Biblical perspective?]

 

Our church is actually looking for a Pastor now. If my information is up to date there are currently 20+ candidates in line, and they are being screened at this time. The process has been ongoing for near half a year. They will eventually be brought before a session for a vote. I find this thread very valuable, because these things are certain to be an issue, and every "member" has a vote and the right to speak and present a case which can help others.

 

I think if a young Albert M. were to apply to our church, his best chance would have been an internship.

 

To answer your question. Yes, just because one child can be raised right does not mean that more than one child being raised in obedience is evidence of one child's uprearing. However, there is an exception when it comes to deacons. Read 1 Timothy 3:12 "Let deacons each be the husband of one wife, managing their children and their own households well." Deacons are plural and the phrasing allows for one or more child. This is unlike the wording in 1 Timothy 3 which addresses the Overseer, where there is no plural exception. Paul could have worded it the same, and the most simple interpretation supports more than one child, anything else shifts the burden of proof on the shoulders of someone attempting to make such case. We can learn a lot from a candidate, IMO, by how well they handle the word of God in making such case which will reflect down the road in other areas.

 

God bless,

William

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To me gayism is an abomination.In sodom it was widely practised.It made God ever so angry that he made up his mind to destroy a whole city.He wiped out every living being in that place.we as christians must call it as it is.its a vice that can rocket Gods anger to heights to no return.Am sorry for being so blunt and direct but i think the church is right on this one

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