Honoring Biblical Teachers
Early in July of 1973, going into my third year at Dallas Seminary, I was getting ready to head up to Word of Life to teach the Bible for a week of camp. Before we left, Mary and I sat down with a few of the leaders of what would in only a couple of weeks become Midlothian Bible Church. “Dave, we can’t promise you much, but we will provide a place for you all to live. In the backyard there’s room for a garden, and we will promise that we won’t let you starve.”
I was teaching guitar lessons and tutoring algebra at the time. Mary was working for a plastic surgeon in Dallas. Jonathan, our firstborn, was due in October. Here was a group of about eight families in a rural town southwest of Dallas that was serious about starting a new church. We said, yes, and the family of Midlothian Bible Church kept their promise for forty years. In fact, they did a lot more than just keep food on our table. They honored the teaching of God’s Word. The church grew and continues to thrive in its 46th year under a new generation of leaders.
Those were simpler times but the Apostle Paul’s teaching about how to honor biblical teachers is still important.
“Now the one who is instructed in the Word should share all good things with the one who is teaching him.” Galatians 6:6
In those early days we stressed that the church is a family, not a business. At Sunday night suppers, ending in the celebration of communion, we always sang, “I’m so glad I’m a part of the family of God….” Today, in 2019 as Americans, we excel at business and many churches follow this model with a CEO pastor requesting a proper financial package commensurate with his training, experience, and the yearly budget of the church. Maybe we need more of Paul’s emphasis on the church as family—a family that evaluates who they compensate by whether or not their teachers are being used by the Spirit to transform their lives by the careful, faithful teaching of the Word?
LORD, move congregations around the world to honor those who humbly and faithfully study your Word, listen to your voice, apply the Word in their own lives, and then, when they teach, invite others to join in the intimacy with Jesus they are actually experiencing.
For more from Dave Wyrtzen please visit TruthEncounter.com!