Be A Good Minister--by Timothy A. Southall
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Timothy was a companion of Paul the apostle on some of his travels. He often stayed and ministered after Paul left an area. Timothy was a minister (evangelist) of Christ Jesus (1 Timothy 4:6). In the book of 1 Timothy, Paul gave Timothy specific instructions how a minister is to live. This is probably the best description of the qualifications of a minister.

1 Timothy 4:6A minister is to have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives tales. He is to train himself to be godly, because godliness has value in all things (1 Timothy 4:7-8). His hope is to be in the living God (1 Timothy 4:10). Things like Santa Claus, Easter eggs and bunnies which take Christ out of the picture should not be promoted in the church. A minister must trust God in all things and his godliness should be apparent to everyone.

A minister is to command and teach the Gospel message. He must not let anyone look down on him due to his age. And he is to set an example in speech, life, love, faith, and purity (1 Timothy 4:11-12). Setting an example is vital for a minister. It is also important that his family set an example, for they reflect upon his reputation and ability to maintain his own household. Not setting a good example also gives an appearance of hypocrisy and makes his ministry ineffective or harmful to others-possibly even causing some to stray.

A minister is to devote himself to the public reading of scripture and to preaching and teaching (1 Timothy 4:13). He is to be diligent and devoted in these matters (1 Timothy 4:15). Why is this? One must watch his life and doctrine closely, persevering in them, thus saving not only himself but also his hearers (1 Timothy 4:16).

A lot depends upon a minister living up to these biblical standards. If a minister does not live up to these things, it can adversely affect not only his reputation, his ministry, and his salvation, but also the reputation of the congregation, the effectiveness of the congregation to evangelize, and others' salvation. He must set a good example in all that he does.

Copyright © 1999 Timothy A. Southall. All rights reserved.