David Keith Kenemer, MRE
The first day of classes, starting my graduate studies, I went to the course Introduction to Christian Education. The professor, a gentle soft-spoken man who had spent his life serving our Lord in Africa, posed this question, “what is your philosophy of Christian education?” He asked us to take out paper and pen and write 50 words or less answering his question. At that moment in time all of my background, experience, and education came into focus. I just didn’t know it. I sat there dumbfounded and empty. Like many other students I put something down on paper but it was far from reality. The truth was I didn’t have a philosophy of Christian Education.
Today the answer to this question is at the root of all I do and believe. A lifetime has been spent in forming, defining and honing the philosophy of Christian Education upon which I stand. The Word says there are “differences of administrations” and “diversities of operations” but each one must come “from the Lord”, I Corinthians 12. All of us involved in Christian Education will not have the same philosophy, but all our philosophies must be based in the Word of God. It is upon this foundation that I will attempt to clarify The Call for Christian Education.
Dr. Jonathan N. Thigpen was researching his dissertation on the educational influence of Dr. Clarence H. Benson, founder of Evangelical Training Association. He traveled to a senior adult facility in Florida for an interview with Dr. Lois Lebar, the noted professor and writer of Christian Education in the 20th Century. Dr. Lebar was a student of Dr. Benson at Moody Bible Institute along with her sister and lifelong companion Mary Lebar. By the time of this interview she was well into her 80’s and was in regard to family totally alone. Neither she nor her sister ever married. She had given her whole life to Christian Education, serving many years as professor at Wheaton College. The interview took three hours. It covered the entire gamut of Christian Education. It was a highlight in both of their lives. As the time came to an end she said, “Oh, I enjoyed so much talking with you. No one around here ever wants to talk about Christian Education. They want to talk about their children, grandchildren or great grandchildren. They want to talk about their hair appointment or what we’re having for dinner but no one wants to talk about Christian Education.” Jonathan said he started to tell her the truth that came to his mind but thought better of it and closed his briefcase. What he started to tell Dr. Lebar was that “outside that senior adult facility no one wants to talk about Christian Education either.”
It is time we talk about The Call for Christian Education. Let us first look at the title of this project.
- The – individual and personal not general or generic.
- Call – not a profession but the direct will of God for each individual.
- For – the object, the position, the path to our goal.
- Christian – discipleship that brings Christ-likeness.
- Education – Raising the next generation of Biblical disciples.
Let us review the journey that Christian Education has taken from the beginning to our present age. The first Christian Education began with Creation. The first institution God ordained was the home. It is evident that His plan is for parents to educate their children in the ways of God (Deuteronomy 6:4-6) and for grandparents to teach their grandchildren these truths as well (Deuteronomy 6:2). The hymn writer of the Old Testament gave us the center of the bull’s-eye in Psalm 19:7-11 when he said:
7 The law of the Lord is perfect, converting the soul: the testimony of the Lord is sure, making wise the simple. 8 The statutesof the Lord are right, rejoicing the heart: the commandment of the Lord is pure, enlightening the eyes. 9 The fear of the Lord is clean, enduring for ever: the judgments of the Lord are true and righteous altogether. 10 More to be desired are they than gold, yea, than much fine gold: sweeter also than honey and the honeycomb. 11 Moreover by them is thy servant warned: and in keeping of them there is great reward.
True Christian Education is to understand what the law, testimony, statutes, commandments, fear, and judgments of the Lord are. To desire and understand them is more than any amount of gold and sweeter than anything this world has to offer. They are that which sustain us through life and prepare our children to follow in the path of God and footsteps of their forefathers.
It took over 900 years for the completion of the Old Testament scriptures. During that period of time other forms of education evolved. From the life of Moses we know that secular education had to have been well developed for the Egyptians to have accomplished many of their works in engineering, husbandry, and writing. Moses had to have been highly educated during his 40 years in the house of pharaoh. It is interesting that the Lord sent him to Jethro for a second forty years to learn principles of herding sheep and goats in preparation for his last forty years of life. God’s strategy of education is varied yet personalized.
It was during the span of time between the judges and kings that the School of the Prophets was created. These were locations where Samuel, Elijah, and Elisha brought men together to teach the Word of God as described in Psalms 19. With nothing in writing for the masses men were trained who could go out and minister directly to people. The “sons of the prophets” were graduates of an educational program that was intentional in it’s’ purpose.
With the creation of the Tabernacle and later the building of the Temple, God instituted corporate worship. Along with that came the opportunity for priest and then rabbi’s, to gather people around them to hear the message from God. As synagogues became the norm education became localized. Rabbi’s started their own schools. Such was the case of a rabbi named Gamaliel. He had a young man named Saul of Tarsus as a student. Education of this type has been going on for centuries. I will never forget seeing this for myself. I was passing a Jewish Synagogue when I looked through a classroom window to see the rabbi sitting in front of a young boy 9 or 10 years old with a textbook which was perhaps the Hebrew Bible. This is religious education.
During the life of Christ He spoke to the thousands on many occasions but He always withdrew to the 12 disciples for more intense training. E. M. Bounds said it wonderfully:
“Men are God’s method. The church is looking for better methods; God is looking for better men. What the church needs today is not more machinery or better, not new organizations or more and novel methods, but men who the Holy Spirit can use – men of prayer, men mighty in prayer. The Holy Spirit does not come on machinery but on men. He does not anoint plans, but men – men of prayer…The training of the twelve was the great, difficult, and enduring work of Christ. Preachers are not sermon makers, but men makers and saint makers, and he only is well-trained for this business who has made himself a man and a saint. It is not great talents or great learning or great preachers that God needs, but men great in holiness, great in faith, great in love, great in fidelity, great for God—men always preaching by holy sermons in the pulpit, by holy lives out of it. These can mould a generation for God.”
The training of the twelve was the great, difficult, and enduring work of Christ. Our Lord created the School of the Apostles. It was a three year program of study; one they never forgot nor could get away from. It changed their lives and they changed the world.
As the Apostolic Era was closing the era of the New Testament Church began. For the next three hundred years the early church struggled to ratify the Canon determining what comprised Holy Scripture. This is important because we are talking about the textbook of Christian Education. This is the center of all education for those who are called Christian, the Christ-like ones. There is no other book upon which our faith is built. There is no other writing that is authoritative in comparison to Holy Scripture. It is our final rule of faith and behavior.
During the earliest years after the first century church education developed in the theological realm. Established schools for Christian Education were found within the early church. Localized at first, gradually broadening to follow the instruction of educational leaders. Men like Clement of Alexandria (150-220), Origen (186-253, Basil the Great (329-379), and Chrysostom (347-407). It was during this time that Christian education became the instruction of men who were to become scholars, ministers, and leaders of the church. This is seen when from (401-451) Benedictine Monks preserved libraries to encourage scholars to study. This was the beginning of the Dark Ages when the Word of God was taken away from the laity and given only to the clergy. This division created a hierarchy within the church.
For a thousand years laity remained in darkness. Not until the printing of the Gutenberg Bible did the divide begin to close. Slowly, so slowly at first almost unnoticeably, laity began to be enlightened. The 16th century brought Reformation to the church. It was only a partial reformation in that Holy Scriptures were given back to the people in a language they could understand. The problem is that they could not read it because they could not read. The reformation was only partial in that knowledge remained held by clergy.
Since the days of enlightenment Christian Education remains divided. In actuality Christian Education was left behind and Higher Christian Education took its’ place. As the Dark Ages began to wane the church became the center of all education. For the next two hundred years all education both secular and religious was formed by the church.
It is not the purpose of this paper to expand upon the progression of Higher Christian Education over the last three hundred years. Rather, it is the purpose of this paper to bring to the forefront The Call for Christian Education. The type of education that is found in the Holy Scriptures, within the New Testament and directly in the passage to the church at Ephesus 4:11-16. There are several passages that we could use but for the purpose of this study we will be looking at this passage because it comes from an apostle speaking directly to a church that he ministered to as a missionary.
When I was attending college the journey from my home to school was over 600 miles. This was in the day before interstate highways. The route took me through the heart of major cities. There were no bypasses. My uncle and his family lived in the Cincinnati, OH area where he worked for General Motors in the Chevrolet Assembly Plant. Usually I would spend the night with them on my way to school. As I was preparing for the New Year he called to ask if I would like to see a car assembled from the beginning to the end. He then said I could choose what type of Chevrolet I wanted to see assembled. I chose the 1966 Chevrolet Impala Super Sport with a 427 engine, four speed transmission, and all the bells and whistles. What an experience it was to see that beautiful car built before my eyes.
As we approached the end my uncle spoke of the workers who had assembled the Impala. He then pointed out that they were not the workers who had prepared the outcome we had just seen. Then he talked about the design staff, the engineers, those who had built the body, the motor, the transmission and all of the other thousands of parts that had been assembled,
Let us look at this passage of scripture by starting at the end and working ourselves back to the beginning. It was Covey who said in his book Seven Habits of Highly Effective People that you “must begin with the end in mind”.
Using the illustration of that Super Sport let’s look at verses 15 &16 to see the end in order to begin. Paul says in these verses that the goal is to be mature in our daily walk with Christ. This is the finished product:
15 But speaking the truth in love may grow up into him in all things, which is the head, even Christ:
16 From whom the whole body fitly joined together and compacted by that which every joint supplieth, according to the effectual working in the measure of every part, maketh increase of the body unto the edifying of itself in love.
I John 4:18 says “There is no fear in love but perfect love casteth out fear…” One of the signs of Christian maturity is the ability to be transparent with our brothers and sisters in this journey of faith. It must begin in our homes with our mates, our children, grow out to our extended family then be evident in our church family as well, both local and universal. We know how the world reacts in relationships. Within the household of faith we must love one another. “You may not like me but you have to love me because if you are a follower of the “narrow way” then I am your brother.”
Our obedience is given not to an individual but unto Christ. He is at the head of the table. He is the Christ. When I was in graduate school I served a congregation that had been a member of the Old Dunkard Church. They practiced a threefold communion service. They had the light meal, communion, followed with feet washing. They set their table in the shape of the cross. The leaders of the church sat on either side of the center. At the head of the center was an empty chair. A place was set, communion bread and cup. He was there. We all felt His presence. He is the Christ.
I believe this is what Paul is saying in verse 15. There must be maturity in Christ.
In verse 16 three words ring out – fitly, compacted and increase. The picture is one of each part of the body working in unison with another and that part working with the first. To me it is like our Westminster Mantel Clock. Hundreds of parts, three winding stems that chimes every quarter hour, half hour and gives us the hour even in the middle of the night. All of the pieces are individually moving together for the good of the whole. Synergy is the outcome.
The second word is compacted. This is a reminder of being pressed down into proper position, much like a piece in a puzzle. The work is not complete if even one piece is missing or out of place. I have a place in Kingdom work that no one else can fill. Each follower of Christ has a place in Kingdom work that no other can fill. It is only when each person is compacted into their place where Kingdom work can flourish to the greatest degree of success. The whole is dependent on the individual and the individual is certainly dependent on the whole.
The third word gives the result, increase. Once my father came to Christ he often quoted John 3:30, “He must increase; but I must decrease.” Only when each piece is willing to be fitted for service and pressed into position can the body grow. We must be willing to surrender what we desire in exchange for what He desires. Even Jesus had to be willing to say this to His father in order to become the Messiah, the Christ. “Not my will but thy will be done.” That is only possible when we are willing to give up our status as an infant and become mature in Christ. One of the main reasons the church is not showing increase today is that we are not willing to “grow up” into Christ.”
There are two possibilities in our journey to maturity. Ephesians 4:13 & 14 give us the outcomes. Verse 13 shows the result if the process, using the illustration of the 66 Impala the assembly, is successful. It says:
13 Till we all come in the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, unto a perfect man, unto the measure of the stature of the fullness of Christ:
The word till connects verse 12 with verse 13. This is the product at the end of the assembly line. The unity of faith is the process that leads us to be mature followers of Christ. It is when we discover the knowledge of the Son of God, that Jesus is the embodiment of God Himself, which is the level of maturity Paul is challenging the church at Ephesus to become. This is what brings us to the unity of His body. As dad said, “in order for Jesus to rise up I must go down.” Unlike secular education in the world’s system Christian Education is a level field where all are equal based upon Christ and Christ alone. When we discover His fullness we will be one. “Jew or Greek, bond or free.” The goal of Christian Education is to take a follower of Christ from where they are to where God wants them to be, formally educated or not.
Unfortunately there is a second possibility found in verse 14:
14 That we henceforth be no more children, tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive;
This possibility can be summed up with one word, unstable. It seems the choice is simple, we either follow the path the apostle is outlining in this passage or we will see the church filled with instability. Paul describes the characteristics of a child. He uses the term he witnessed many times onboard ships, being tossed about by the unpredictable wind. In the spiritual realm it is the issue of doctrine. What is truth? Those who have false doctrine are cunning, crafty, and they wait for the chance to deceive. When my brother-in-law passed away after a three year battle with Leukemia there came to the home a sympathy card from a person unknown by the family who lived 140 miles away. Inside was a tract from The Watchtower Society. This sect of false doctrine watches the obituaries in an effort to catch people at a time of weakness. They lie in wait to deceive.
Verse 12 is a process that takes the church to discipleship in Jesus Christ.
12 For the perfecting of the saints, for the work of the ministry, for the edifying of the body of Christ:
The duration is found in the word till that begins verse 13. Like the challenge of our Lord in Luke 15 concerning the lost sheep “till you find it” there is no end to time only the fulfillment of the charge.
The Amplified Bible translates this verse as “His intention was the perfecting and the equipping of the saints (His Consecrated people), [that they should do] the work of ministering toward building up Christ’s body (the church). Paul is stating that it is the church laity that is to be prepared to be the ministers.
A statement I have often said through many years of watching the ministry develop in just my lifetime is, “you can’t hire professionals to do what God called laity to do.” I got this by watching my own church for the first third of my life. The foundation of the church was built around laity. I really did not realize there was a difference in ministry. I was taught the importance of ministers and we gave them high regard. I was also taught that God had a calling on every Christian to do His Will and there could not be a greater calling.
The church today is divided into two groups of Christians that of clergy and laity. When we look at the organizational growth of the first church in Jerusalem we see they went outside the apostles (clergy) and called men of high Christian character to be servants (laity). This was done to make it possible for the apostles and the first generation ministers to stay in the scripture. Where is the church today? How much time can be spent in the study of the scriptures while doing the whole work of ministry in the church?
A person who has not reached a state of maturity cannot minister properly and effectively. There is no state of perfection but there is a position of maturity in our life with Christ. These are the people that are to do the day to day ministry (laity). Paul uses the illustration of the church being the body of Christ. Building up the body is the result of maturity (perfecting) and equipping (work of the ministry) that results in the strongest body of believers possible. Again we see that there is a level field. Each person has a responsibility and no one person is more important than another person.
It has often been said, “a chain is only as strong as the weakest link.” This can be a similitude of what Paul is telling us in verse 12. The body is only as strong as the weakest person in the ministry of the church. When any of us come into the body of Christ we all are weak yet it is those who are stronger who are called upon to help those who are weaker (Romans 15:1). That is the message of being a Christian.
Let’s go back to the illustration of my uncle’s assembly line. That is what the apostle is showing here in verse 11, the team that it takes to produce a mature believer in Christ.
11 And he gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; and some, pastors and teachers.
Paul gives to the church at Ephesus four different ministries that it takes to equip the laity within the church to be capable of ministering the work of God. This is the work of the apostles, the work of the prophets, the work of the evangelist, and the work of the pastor/teachers.
Apostle is the title given to those who had been taught by, ministered with, and witnessed the risen Lord. They were the first generation of disciples. These men having experienced being taught directly by Christ were to become the examples which the body of Christ, known as His church, would follow. After the death, burial, and ascension of our Lord it was this select group of men who would provide the church, through the ages of time, the tool upon which the Christian faith is dependent, the Bible, the Word of the Living God.
There are two passages that show the importance of this role. The first is found in Acts 2:42 “And they continued steadfastly in the apostles’ doctrine…” The second is Acts chapter 6 with the controversy that erupted. Verse 2 “Is it not reason that we should leave the Word of God, and serve tables…” In both of these verses the task assigned to the apostles is directly tied to the purification of scripture. It is apostles who keep us faithful to the teachings of our Lord.
The second member of the team is the prophet. Hearing this word we immediately turn to prophesy and think of the men in the Old Testament who were called Major and Minor Prophets. The word prophet is that of the one who proclaims the message of truth or the truths of God. Some might think this may have something to do with telling of the future. This is not what this word is describing. It is talking about the person that proclaims the preacher.
The third word is evangelists. Notice that in the list of ministries in this verse each one is in the plural. This is the only time in scripture that this form of the word is used. It is thought that the task assigned to this role is the person whose desire is to lead people to Christ. This would be what we would call missionaries. Though all Christians are called to be witnesses there are those gifted with a passion to see people come to Christ. This is our first line of offense and so highly needed within the church today.
There is a discussion over whether the next two words are two separate ministries or two different task placed in one role. An indicator is the use of the word some. You see it used before the words apostles, prophets, evangelist and pastors but not before the word teacher. There is a possibility that Paul is tying the work of the teacher to the ministry of a pastor. Is he saying the pastor who teaches?
It is clear that he is saying it takes all of these roles coming together to be that which the Lord uses to “equip the saints to do the work of ministry.” Let us see how these four callings produce mature believers to build a unified body for our Lord. Let’s return to the term apostles. Do apostles exist today? If one of the conditions of being an apostle is that you must have seen the risen Lord then it is impossible for anyone to hold the authority of being an apostle. The greater question is does the work of the apostles continue today. We see in the building of the first church at Jerusalem, as previously stated, the first generation believers “continued in the apostle’s doctrine.” The title of apostle does not exist but does not the work of the apostle go on through the ministry of those who continue in the purification of our Lord’s teachings and doctrines He gave to His disciples? We are grateful to those who spend their life in doctrine, theology, and the defense of God’s Word (apologist).
Being a prophet not in the sense of those found in the Old Testament but those who went about preaching the kingdom of God. John the Baptist and even our Lord went out proclaiming the day of the Lord had come. The sermon Peter preached that brought the great rushing wind of the Holy Spirit is perhaps the most powerful sermon ever proclaimed. Preaching is what our Lord uses to bring people to Himself. No matter what era of church history you examine you will find it is through the proclamation of the gospel that brings the new birth.
Evangelists are the igniters of the church. They, like Paul entering Ephesus, bring the gospel for the first time or like D. L. Moody’s’ return to places that one time knew God bringing revival fire to that which was dead. They are vitality to the church.
There is a specific calling to be pastors and teachers. These are men who give their lives to equipping the church for ministry. The passion of the apostles, prophets, and evangelist is also found in those who pour their lives into “faithful men who shall be able to teach others also.”
II Timothy 2:2. There is a calling for the “shepherd who equips.” Unfortunately this important part of the plan has been overlooked and dismissed in the church today. Because of the way ministry has developed in the Western Church we have, for all practical purposes, combined these four roles into one person and called him pastor or preacher or as we are seeing today a new term becoming popular, that of senior pastor. Perhaps that term is becoming popular because churches now have junior pastors.
Many reject the belief in a plurality of elders within the local church. Yet this scripture shows us that it takes a plurality of gifts and ministries to equip the laity within the church to become mature believers in order for them to become a part of the discipleship ministry. It is not the purpose of this document to change our belief in church polity but it is our purpose to challenge the church to become Biblical in the approach it uses to accomplish the ministry God has called us to do.
There is a difference in the ministry of being a preacher and being a teacher. Dr. Lois E. LeBar comments on this in her classic book Education that is Christian:
In a day when the preaching ministry of the church is producing results, the teaching ministry is lagging far behind. In Scripture these two ministries are not the same, as we sometimes assume them to be. Two distinct words are used. Christ Jesus came preaching, for He first proclaimed e Hto anyone who would hear that the kingdom of God was at hand. Then when He had chosen His disciples and when He was sought by people who had witnessed His authoritative preaching and His signs, He spent most of His Time teaching. He is more often called Teacher than Preacher.
The importance of teaching is held by Paul in I Corinthians 12:28,
And God hath set some in the church, first apostles, secondarily prophets, thirdly teachers, after that miracles, then gifts of healings, helps, governments, diversities of tongues.
Teaching, or disciple making, is the method God has chosen to train the next generation of Christians into the church. If we fail to disciple then the time of our existence as Christians is limited. In Ephesians Paul is adding to this ministry the work of equipping people within the local church so they can minister.
My interests in these matters deepened with an article written by Harold Harrison in Contact Magazine January 1973, The Lamentations of a Sunday School Student. The article shares the condition of Sunday School at that time. He uses as an illustration of those conditions a report derived from a Bible placement exam given to incoming college students. He says that of the 281 incoming students all but 12 had been regular attendees of Sunday School. The results were very revealing:
- 79% failed to identify Matthew as the tax collector turned disciple
- 74% could not name the father of Joseph and his brethren
- 70% did not know in which Bible book the Ten Commandments are found
- 70% could not name the book which records the history of the early church following the ascension.
- 65% failed to identify Solomon as the famous wise man of the Old Testament.
- a60% could not name a single parable of Jesus.
I realize that this data is almost 40 years old. I intentionally used it to pose this question; do you think that the condition of our Christian Education is any better today than it was then? The same type of testing is still being done across the country today in Christian schools of Higher Education. There are 135 questions given similar to those asked in the article by Mr. Harrison. The score for the 2011/2012 year was 36.52. Unfortunately it does not appear that anything has changed.
In preparation for this study I conducted focus groups of local pastors studying deductively the Ephesians 4 passage. As a part of that study I developed a questionnaire concerning the role of Sunday School within local churches specifically concerning the Sunday School Director. Let’s look at the results of that research:
- _____ Number of churches?
- _____ Number of Sunday Schools?
- _____ Number of Sunday School Staff?
- _____ Number of individuals the pastor is ministering to?
- Do you have a Sunday School Director or Superintendent?
- _____ Yes _____ No
- Has your Sunday School Director received training concerning their task and role?
- _____ Yes _____ N0
- Do you know any training material for your director?
- _____ Yes _____ No
- Would you like to receive information to help your Sunday School Director?
- _____ Yes _____ N0
As you can see when it comes to equipping the Sunday School Director/Superintendent it is none existent. Look at the impact that an equipped director would have. How many Sunday School staff members could be affected? How many people ministered to by the pastor could be affected by the staff if they had a trained director? This is the purpose of Ephesians 4 and II Timothy 2:2 as well. To equip the leader of the Sunday School to equip the staff who in turn will be able to disciple the people. This will bring a 4:13, 15 & 16 church and not the verse 14 church. What type of church do you have today? What kind of church is the most prevalent among us today?
In the late 1990’s I served as the National Church Training Consultant for Evangelical Training Association. I received a call from the president, Dr. Jonathan N. Thigpen. He wanted me to travel to the denominational offices of a member denomination. He said that various departments of their association were having difficulty ministering together. There was division among their leaders and they had asked for ETA’s help. They had 6800 churches in the United States and around the world. I was to meet with the assistant to their leader, the director of their publishing company, the director of marketing, director of finance, sales representatives and the order receiving staff.
When I asked Jonathan what he wanted me to do his only instruction was for me to go do what I do. I searched my heart and my soul for guidance. The day came for my appointment and I traveled to their offices. When I arrived most of the people were in the room. I was greeted and introduced. It was a very somber room.
I did exactly what my professor in graduate school did. I provided them with paper and pens asking them to write down their philosophy of Christian Education. I told them they had twenty minutes and walked out of the room. Walking away from the door, leaving it cracked open, I poured myself a cup of coffee and sat near the door. For the first ten minutes it was very quiet. Then minute by minute conversation began to rise. Within just a few minutes the group became very vocal and there was a great amount of tension. At the twenty minute point I walked back into the room. Immediately there was silence. I asked for them to show me their writings. Not one single person had written anything. They didn’t have a philosophy of Christian Education. Here they were leaders of a denomination of 6800 churches with over 500,000 members but there was not a common bond of ministry among them. Each department was doing their own thing and they had no synergy. There were no areas where they worked together for the common benefit of the whole. In the end the road ahead proved to be very difficult. For some it was impossible to be a part of the solution.
- We must begin to do the work of God from His perspective and not from our traditions. A conclusion I have come to in my life is “If you want God’s power you must have God’s Blessing. In order to have God’s blessing you must do God’s work God’s way. If you don’t do God’s work God’s way you won’t receive His blessing If you don’t receive His blessing you will not receive His power. Remember, He is the one who said ‘Without me you can do nothing’.”
- The church must deal with the issue of the pastor preacher and the pastor teacher. Paul says there are four roles that God uses to equip the laity within the church to do the ministry of the church. As a part of this we must deal with the placement of the minister who is a preacher but is not a teacher. Where in Ephesians 4 do we place this area of ministry? As a part of this study we will need to look at the development of ministry in the Western Church as we know it today.
- If we are willing to deal with these issues we will see a great improvement in the life of our people, a nurturing to maturity. They will have greater knowledge and understanding of God’s Word. They will become stronger disciples and will be better prepared to minister to the church and community.
- If we can do a better job with our Christian Education we will be able to send to our schools of Higher Christian Education a better and more mature student.
- We must realize there is a cost to choosing this type of discipleship.