Our church is in the midst of searching for a new pastor to lead our church. We have embarked on a journey that seems to be a daunting task indeed. When you think about the size of our church (800+/- Members) we are going to be hard pressed in Kansas to draw someone with the experience (desired) to lead our congregation. I get the sense that most people will want someone who is dynamic and easy to listen to each week. Somebody that is "relevant" and who uses "application" so that I can apply the passage preached to my daily life. So, that I can see how it fixes my life right now. And the only thing I hear being looked at is the passages of 2 Timothy for leadership skills and those things that Paul passed along to Timothy, but they miss the entire pulse that is beating in Paul's heart. Boom, boom... boom boom.... what is that I hear? It is the Gospel. It is Christ and Him crucified. Let's not just look at the leadership attributes and the ability to keep the audience's attention but let's look at how Paul wrote to all the churches. He always drew them back to the Gospel and to Christ.
So, I guess I just disqualified about 98% of the pastors out there who might fit the bill by their leadership abilities alone. So, now we're left with trying to find the 2% that will actually stand firm and preach the Gospel on a regular basis but to most people that would be boring and not "practical" for the audience.
Here is a interview question I would like to ask this would-be pastor.
If he sides with the associate pastor and says he would agree to what was requested... I would say this pastor is no longer a candidate for leading the congregation.
However, if he were to say.... Let's see how Paul handled similar situations in his day and if he were to say.... "sounds like I need to preach the Gospel first, just as Paul did, and then point people to what marriage and relationships are all about, then I would consider looking at this pastor further.
There is no excuse for deviating from the gospel or from Christ and Him crucified. Anything else is just a distraction from what Paul has shown us and has reminded us of in his epistles.
And if you get a chance listen in to those fine chaps on the White Horse Inn or on Issues Etc. You will truly be blessed.
Grace and Peace, Chris Coram Deo!!!
Modern Reformation Magazine - Interview with... R.C. Sproul
MR: Dr. Sproul, do you think that in some ways Evangelicals are carried along like the general culture with an obsession of power rather than a concern for preaching Christ crucified?
Sproul: Yes, I think it is just another dimension where the Evangelical church is playing catch-up with the world and trying desperately to address the culture with some degree of relevance, but as has been the case almost consistently in this century, we're following rather than leading.
MR: So what do you tell people who say that church is boring, and all we're trying to do is make it a little more relevant?
Sproul: When people say to me that for them church is boring, I don't challenge that assessment. They are giving me, I presume, an honest expression of how they feel at church; they're bored. And I think it is true that for most people church is boring. But I think the reason for that is that people are not sensing or having an awareness of, or experiencing in any viable way, the presence of God. I don't think there has ever been a human being in all of human history who, in the midst of an acute sense of the presence of God, was bored. Some people are terrified, some are angry, some weep, some are frightened and so on, but boredom is not a human response to the presence of God.