Developing Leaders in the Small Church - Lesson 11

The Art of Teamwork

In this lesson, you will gain an understanding of the importance of teamwork in ministry, starting with the New Testament concept of team ministry. You will learn that ministry is a mutual responsibility shared by the entire church and that each member has a role to play. You'll also discover that we are coworkers with Christ, partnering in ministry and deriving authority from our relationship with Him. The lesson emphasizes the importance of partnering with others in ministry and provides examples from Paul's partnerships in the New Testament. Finally, you will explore the significance of teamwork in ministry, highlighting the benefits of corporate wisdom and the ability to overcome individual weaknesses.
Glenn Daman
Developing Leaders in the Small Church
Lesson 11
Watching Now
The Art of Teamwork

pc108-11: The Art of Teamwork

I. The Concept of Team Ministry

A. Team Ministry in the New Testament

B. Mutual Responsibility and Ownership

II. Co-workers with Christ

A. Partnership in Ministry

B. Authority for Ministry

III. Partnering with Others in Ministry

A. Paul's Partnerships

B. The Ministry of the Whole Church

IV. The Importance of Teamwork in Ministry

A. Corporate Wisdom

B. Overcoming Individual Weaknesses

  • In this lesson, you gain insights into the challenges of serving on a church board and learn about the concept of servant leadership in the Bible, as well as the differences between secular and biblical leadership, with a focus on the role of a shepherd in leadership positions.
  • Through this lesson, you'll gain an understanding of the church as the body of Christ and a spiritual community, focusing on love and interconnectedness, and explore the differences between secular organizations and spiritual bodies, ultimately shaping your approach to spiritual leadership.
  • This lesson teaches the importance of organization in the church, exploring elements found in the Book of Acts and the significance of leadership, emphasizing the church's mission based on the Great Commission and the goal to make disciples.
  • Through this lesson, you will understand the crucial importance of character in Christian leadership, as it demonstrates God's work in our lives, allows for influential leadership, and fosters spiritual growth in others. By learning from biblical examples, you will discover the necessity of relying on God's strength and guidance in your leadership journey.
  • In this lesson, you will gain insight into the importance of the church board's role, focusing on spiritual care and guiding the congregation towards a healthy church, which includes unity, obedience, growth in understanding God's word, active evangelism, and authentic worship, while being motivated by service and eagerness to lead, and understanding the accountability of leadership.
  • Discover the significance of prayer in leadership through the lives of biblical figures like Moses, Samson, and Samuel, and understand how prayer enables leaders to face challenges, find victory despite failures, and maintain spiritual strength.
  • In Lesson 7, you learn about the watchman's role in protecting the church from external and internal threats, the importance of church discipline, and its scriptural basis in Hebrews 12. The lesson emphasizes holiness as the primary goal and discusses the role of discipline in promoting spiritual growth and purity for individuals and the congregation.
  • This lesson teaches you the essential role of shepherding in the church and how to make spiritual decisions that benefit both the congregation as a whole and the individuals within it, emphasizing the importance of prayer, seeking guidance from Scripture, and reflecting the character of God.
  • Gain insight into the challenges small churches face in equipping people for ministry and learn the biblical basis for laypeople's involvement in ministry, understanding how to provide direction, identify spiritual gifts, offer training and mentoring, create opportunities, and give support.
  • Through this lesson, you learn about the church's purpose to glorify God, represent His character to the world, and transform people into the character of Christ, while also understanding the importance of good theology, connecting it to Christian living, and realizing a leader's role in overseeing church theology and fostering transformation.
  • This lesson emphasizes the importance of teamwork in ministry, explaining the New Testament concept of team ministry, the role of coworkers with Christ, and how partnering with others helps overcome individual weaknesses and fosters corporate wisdom.
  • As change agents in the church, the board must adapt to societal changes while preserving the core message of the Gospel. This lesson emphasizes the importance of addressing sinful behavior, examining the health of the church, and learning from the apostles as change agents.
  • In this lesson, you'll understand the crucial role of administration in small churches, focusing on spiritual growth and the effective use of resources for God's glory, as well as the importance of recognizing God's authority and Scripture as the foundation for all administrative decisions.

This course on developing leaders in the small church emphasizes the importance of leadership development and the challenges small churches face in doing so. It provides a biblical foundation for leadership development, focusing on examples from both the Old and New Testaments. The lesson then outlines principles for developing leaders in the small church, including fostering a culture of leadership development, identifying and recruiting potential leaders, equipping and empowering leaders, and providing ongoing support and accountability. The lesson concludes with strategies for leadership development in the small church, including one-on-one discipleship, small group leadership development, leadership training programs, and mentoring programs.

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The Art of Teamwork
Lesson Transcript

[00:00:00] Has been when working through this whole concept of the what is the function of the board? It's important that we understand that in order for a board to be effective, in order for a church to be effective, they need to work together, both with the pastor, with the board, and with the congregation as an effective team. Now, the whole concept of team is one of those terms that is thrown around quite a bit in our culture today, especially in the business world. It's a very popular notion, but we need to understand that the concept of of a team ministry really is at the heart of the New Testament church, but it's different than the secular perspective when we talk about team ministry. We're talking about the fact that ministry involves the whole Church of God working as God works through people. Together so that they are working together to transform people into disciples of Christ. It's not just when we think about teamwork. It's not just working well together, but it's it's taking on mutual responsibility, mutual ownership for the ministry and for the ownership of helping one another grow in our relationship with Christ. So ministry really is at the heart a team oriented sport, if you would. It's done in partnership with others. Now, the term team does not occur in the New Testament, but the concept we find throughout the whole of New Testament. In the New Testament, we find that there was a Paul referred to others as his fellow workers, as his helpers. The concept there was individuals who were working with him in cooperation to share the ministry and to share the task of reaching people and discipling people and training people. So it has the idea of someone who is a fellow workmen, a helpmate, a an accomplice, someone who's working together to do the ministry.

[00:02:10] And it's really at the heart of what we see in First Corinthians Chapter 12, First Corinthians, Chapter 12. We'll refer to this on several times in this session. We see that the New Testament really prescribes that the church is made up of a number of individuals, each gifted differently, but all functioning together so that as they function together, that brings health to the whole church. Now, it really begins with an awareness that we are coworkers with Christ. We are his partners in ministry. In Second Corinthians chapter six, verse one, we see Paul alluding to this when he makes this statement in Second Corinthians chapter six, verse one. As God's fellow workers, we urge you not to receive God's grace in vain. And He begins there with basing his authority on writing to them based upon the fact that he is a coworker with God. He is partnering together with God. And that's really where team ministry begins. It begins with the awareness that that we are partners with God in ministry. Now, this doesn't mean that we're somehow equal with God and that somehow God needs us to do ministry. But at the heart of the New Testament concept was the awareness that God in His infinite mercy, has chosen to use us as the primary vehicle by which he accomplishes his work here on this earth. And so we become coworkers with him that he uses us to accomplish his mission, his his redemptive plan that he's established from the beginning of creation. Now, we see this really throughout all of the scriptures. It really begins in the Garden of Eden. We're in the Garden of Eden. We find that even though God takes responsibility for sustaining this creation, we find that it's in the New Testament.

[00:04:22] Paul refers to Christ as the one who sustains all creation. But in Genesis, when God created Adam and Eve, he gave them the task of being laborers, of being the ones who would take care of the garden. They were to take care of this creation. And so they became part of his partners in caring for and sustaining creation. We also see it in the nation of Israel as God made the promise to Abraham that through his seed and through him and through his seed, that there would be a source of blessing for the whole world. And so as we look at the the nation of Israel, God did not just work in the nation of Israel. He was working through the nation of Israel to bring his redemptive plan really to the whole of humanity. And so they became partners with Christ, with God in terms of the ministry. And then we find it in the New Testament as well, where the church now becomes this conveyor of God's message to the world. And so we begin with with the fact that we need to be aware of that, our authority for ministry, our authority for serving, our authority, for leading people in ministry comes from our relationship with God and his work through us. And so that's where as we think about teen ministry, it really begins with with God at the center of that, so that we recognize that God is what binds us together in this ministry. Secondly, we need to recognize that we become partners with other individuals. One of the. Things we need to be aware of as we look through the writings of the New Testament, the writings of Paul especially. We see that Paul recognized that they were partners with others.

[00:06:24] It was not a lone Ranger ministry, but they were partners with people. They worked in conjunction with them. And we see that throughout Paul's writings. For example, in Second Corinthians chapter eight, verse 23, he refers to Titus as his partner and fellow worker among you and Phi Lehman chapter verse 17. He refers to Philemon as his coworker in Romans 16, verses three, nine and 21. He refers to Brazil and Aquila and Urbanists and Timothy as being coworkers with him In Philippians chapter two, verse 25, he refers to a paradise as his brother, fellow worker and fellow soldier. In Colossians chapter four, verse 11, he refers to Aristarchus, Mark and Justice as those who were fellow workers for the Kingdom of God and a comfort to Paul. In First Thessalonians chapter three, verse two, he refers to Timothy as his brother and fellow worker. So Paul continually saw himself as working with others to do the ministry. In fact, when we look at the the life of Paul and the Ministry of Paul, it's interesting how much we see his his partnering with others in ministry. For example, Titus in the Ministry of Paul, there was Titus spent over 13 years working together with Paul. Timothy worked nine years together in the same place with Paul. We see Luke working with Paul for six and a half years. Aristarchus worked for six. Another six and a half years equivalent of Priscilla, worked for four years with Paul in his ministry. Takacs worked for four years. Mark worked for two and a half years. So there was a number of individuals that Paul continually had around him. So we always think of Paul is going out and starting these churches and planning these churches and going to to Athens and going to Rome.

[00:08:39] And yet, as he did so, he always went together with other individuals so that there was a team ministry within his life as well. But that's really the nature of the whole church. That ministry really has been given not to a select few. As we think about the ministry of the church. It wasn't given just to the apostles. It wasn't given just to the elders or to the pastors and teachers that Paul mentioned in Ephesians. It was given to the whole church to do the ministry. So in Ephesians chapter four, verses 1113 through 13, we find that the purpose of leadership is not to do the work of ministry, but rather to equip others to do the work of ministry in First Corinthians Chapter 12. Again, we look at that passage and we see over and over again that Paul pictures the church is a body, that here is this body. And and in order for it to function properly, every part must be doing its job so that the I cannot say I'm not I don't need the hand and the hand can't see, I don't need the eye. But but they need to recognize that they all are needed, that they do different functions within the team, if you would, within the body. But they're all working together to do effective ministry. And so the New Testament writer saw that ministry is not just for a select few and often times in the church, especially in the small church. We approached the church as though the ministry is the job of the pastor. That's his job. He does the the bulk of the ministry, especially even in terms of the adult ministry. And we recognize, well, he can't do everything. So we we we see that we'll do the children's ministry, but we let the pastor do everything else.

[00:10:37] And that's really a misguided concept that as we look in the New Testament, the task of the pastor is not to do the ministry. It's to equip people to do the ministry of the church. And so we see in Scripture over and over again the importance of this concept that ministry needs a number of people working together. We see it, for example, in the Book of Proverbs, where we see that wisdom points to the importance of many advisers in Proverbs Chapter 11, verse 14. It says this is this. For lack of guidance, a nation falls, but many advisers make victory. Sure. So that there was a recognition by the the by the sage, by the wise man that corporate wisdom. Always exceeds individual wisdom. So the more the people are involved in terms of the decision making process and the more input they're giving into ministry, the healthier the body will be. We also see it in the Book of Ecclesiastes in chapter four, where a plurality of individuals overcomes individual weaknesses. Ecclesiastes chapter four. It says this is this two are better than one because they have a good return for their work. If one falls down, his friend can help him up. But pity the man who falls and has no one to help him up. Also, if to lie down together, they will keep warm. But how can one keep warm alone? Though one may be overpowered, two can defend themselves. A quart of three strand is not equally broken. Now, one of the problems that we often have is when we view the pastor as the main one to do the work of the ministry. The result is the whole ministry stands or falls based upon the strength of the pastor.

[00:12:56] And what we fail to recognize is that the pastors are still human. We still have our faults. We still have our failures. We still have our weaknesses. And in fact, we will inevitably make mistakes, sometimes major mistakes that will impact the whole church. And so when this happens, people are ready to rid themselves of the pastor because he failed to to keep the church going. But the problem is not with the pastor. The problem is with our whole approach to leadership and our whole approach to ministry, where we place all the focus upon the one individual, rather recognizing that it takes the whole body of Christ. And if the whole body is doing the ministry, then it's going to minimize the mistake of the one person, even if that one person is the pastor. And that's true on the board, that if the whole board is working together to oversee and do the ministry of the church, then it. It protects the church from those weaknesses that we all have because we all bring different strengths and weaknesses to the table. And by working together, we we are stronger because we over we can overcome the weaknesses of the individual. And that was the whole point here of Ecclesiastes. The whole point that he's making is that the more people that are involved, the stronger it is, because when one falls, there's others to carry the load and to lift that person up. We also find in the New Testament that the plurality of leadership was the norm. And again, we've we've talked about this before in the previous sessions, about how in the New Testament there was a plurality of elders that the term elders never used in a singular form when it's referring to the leadership of the church.

[00:14:50] It's always used in the plural that. That, for example, in the Book of Acts, there was no one individual that was responsible for the oversight of the church, that it was all the leaders that were involved in terms of the ministry. We also find that teams were appointed in the early church to lead the church. In Titus chapter one, verse five, Paul writes to Titus, and he says, I want you to appoint elders plurality of leadership. To oversee the church. We also see it in the selection of the deacons in Acts chapter six, verse three, that when a problem arose and a need for more leaders to take responsibility, that the apostles, instead of taking that load upon themselves, said, okay, let's appoint not just one individual, but appoint a team of individuals to oversee this particular ministry of caring for the widows so that we would make sure that the needs are being met. But it really was an outgrowth of the practice of Christ. Where did the disciples learn team ministry? They learned it from their master. When Christ sent out the Apostles, the disciples in Luke Chapter ten versus one through 24, when he sent them out on their first venture of kind of going out on their own and doing some evangelistic work, he sent them out in pairs as a team to do the ministry because Christ understood that we need one another. We see it throughout the whole of Scripture that all the great leaders of the Bible, all those individuals that we look to as the the leaders of of the people of God, they all had others that help them. We think of Moses and him, and he had Aaron. We had Paul and Barnabas, We had Barnabas and Mark.

[00:16:53] And so there really was the concept of the team within. The New Testament within the scriptures. So the question we have to wrestle with is what is it that makes up a good team? What are the ingredients of an effective team? And understand. I think we need to understand that effectiveness in ministry and effectiveness in team ministry doesn't begin with organization. It begins really with character and it begins with who we are. And that's really where the foundation of of effectiveness begins. It starts with our character, and it begins really with faith. If we're going to function as a team, we need people on that team who have faith, faith in what God can do. In Nehemiah, Chapter two, verse 20. Nehemiah, we find, was called to rebuild the city of Jerusalem. The city of Jerusalem seven years earlier had been ransacked. It was in ruins and as a result people were discouraged. And so God called Nehemiah to come back and lead in the process of rebuilding the walls of Jerusalem. But he couldn't do it alone. It was much too massive a responsibility. He needed help of others. And so he called upon the leaders of the people there in Jerusalem to join with him in this task. And he called upon all the people to join with them in this task if they were going to rebuild the walls of Jerusalem. But it wasn't long before opposition started to arise. There were those that opposed the rebuilding of Jerusalem. There were those that did not want to see that the city was reestablished as a stronghold in the area. And so they began to oppose and and bring opposition against that process. And in response to the ridicule that they were receiving, Nehemiah made this statement.

[00:18:58] He says, The God of heaven will give us success. We, his servants will start rebuilding. And really, that was more than just a response to send a ballot and to buy. And those who were opposing it was also a reminder to the people that the task of the ministry was really accomplished by trusting in God, trusting in what God could do, and in his equipping power for ministry. And so we find again in chapter four, verse 20, when they were faced with the threat of a physical attack. Nehemiah reminded them, Our God will fight for us. That's really the start. If we are to have an effective team, all of us need to have a firm awareness of what God can do. We need to have faith that God can accomplish His purpose through us. Secondly, there needs to be loyalty on the team. In First Chronicles chapter 12, verse 33 After the death of Saul, there was a very real threat and in many ways it was already a reality of a civil war going on within the nation of Israel, as there were those who are trying to gain the power that God had established to be on the shoulders of David. And while God had ordained David to be his his king, there were those who were trying to. Lead a coup against that and establish themselves. And so we find in verse 33 that as David was facing this and facing this insurrection, that the men of Zebulon gave David their undivided loyalty. And as a result of that loyalty, they helped David to stand firm and establish his kingdom. You see, loyalty is an essential part of a team. But it's not just loyalty to the team. It's also loyalty to the ministry and to the church.

[00:21:07] Because we need to recognize if we're involved in ministry, there's going to be pressure, there's going to be challenges, there's going to be discouragement, there's going to be stress. There's going to be even suffering. There's going to be times when we are we are attacked, when we are assaulted by people, not physically, but verbally in ministry staff. And if we're not loyal to the ministry, we will easily abandon the team at the first offense and the first problem at the first point of discouragement. When it starts getting tough, we're going to leave. And so there needs to be loyalty that's built upon a commitment not just to our personal agenda, but to the strength and the betterment of the team and the accomplishment of God's will as God seeks to work through us to accomplish his task. So there needs to be loyalty on the team. Thirdly, there needs to be cooperation in Philippians chapter one, verse five. Philippians chapter one, verse five says, I think in verse, beginning in verse three says, I think, my God, every time I remember you in all my prayers for all of you. I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the Gospel from the first day until now, that that whole idea of partnership that that they were involved in their ministry, there was a cooperation. They were working together to accomplish what God had established. Since that's what ministry is all about, that's at the heart of ministry that we're working together in concert with one another. See, that's cooperation. That means we set aside our personal agendas. And while we voice our our views and we we give our input, we recognize that we're willing to set aside our personal agendas for what is best for the whole.

[00:23:18] Fourthly, effective teams involve sacrifice. Ministry is costly. It's going to cost us our time. It's going to cost us really at all levels of our life. It's going to cost us our energies. It's going to cost us even our money and our finances. It's going to cost us our personal comfort. And we're involved in ministry. It's going to exact a toll upon us, both spiritually and emotionally. Jeremiah Face this In Jeremiah chapter 12, he had gone into to the ministry as a prophet, expecting God to do incredible things. And when things were not going well and things were going difficult, we find that in chapter 12. He began to complain about to God about this and began to to question is call into question the wisdom of God in calling him. And as a result, in verse five, we read this where God challenges. Jeremiah says, If you have raced with men on foot and they have worn you out, how can you compete with horses if you stumble and save country? How will you manage in the thickets by the Jordan? In other words, if you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. If we're going to be involved in ministry, we need to recognize we're going to have to make sacrifices. How many times have we come to a meeting? And our focus is more on how quickly we can get out of the meeting and get home to to watch the football game or or to do whatever around the house, rather than saying, okay, we're going to we're willing to stay as long as it's needed for us to be effective in accomplishing what God has established for us. You see that sacrifice. Effective teamwork involves mutual ownership into the ministry so that everyone takes responsibility.

[00:25:19] We don't just come and give our input, but we take ownership of what the church is doing. We see it is our responsibility to see that things are done, to be involved in the work, to see that the church is healthy. Again in Nehemiah Chapter three. We find that in the process of rebuilding the city, they were hindered because there were certain noblemen, certain leaders from Tekoa, who were unwilling to do the work. In verse five. And so as a result of that, they were they were singled out and rebuked. But we also find in verse 20 that Baruch said that by was zealously accomplishing his section, repairing his section. So that's ownership where we take responsibility and we we don't say it's other people's job. We don't keep pointing to others saying it's their job to do it, but rather we take responsibility and say it's our job to do the ministry. Effective ministry and team work also involves mutual submission. Ephesians chapter five, verse 21. Paul writes, He says, Submit yourselves one to another. Now we know later on he talks about marriage in the next verse, but it begins here. And it's not just talking about marriage is talking about really the whole of the church. There is mutual submission. There's a willingness that we're willing to set aside our viewpoints. And while we're open and honest to discuss issues when decisions are made, and those decisions may not be the decision that we wanted, but because there is mutual submission, it means that we support that decision once it is made. Even if we disagreed with it, we still stand behind it because nothing can destroy a team and nothing can destroy the effectiveness of a ministry more than an individual who goes out and tries to submarine a decision because he didn't agree with it.

[00:27:26] C Teamwork involves mutual submission one to another and involves mutual love for one another. First Corinthians chapter 13, verse seven says, Without talks about, without mutual love, demonstrated that there won't be a caring for one, another won't be a trust of one another. We will be concerned about the well-being of one another. You see, that's what teams do. It's more than just saying we're going to work together. It means that we're actively care about one another because we're part of the body of Christ and we want to see the body of Christ grow. Effective ministry involves and teamwork involves mutual trust. When we talk about trust, what we're talking about is, is that we will think the best of people, not the worst. It's always amazing how quickly we jump to conclusions that when someone does something that we don't agree with or we don't understand, we immediately jump to the conclusion that the other person has improper motives. See, that's a failure to trust. Trust is when we look at the other person, we may not understand what they're doing. We may not understand why they're doing it, but we nevertheless trust. But what they're doing. Is with pure motives, we think, the best of one another. And then lastly, it involves mutual acceptance. Romans Chapter 15, verse seven. He says, except one another. Then, just as Christ accepted you in order to bring praise to God. So Paul calls upon us to accept in another, but he gives the standard and he says the standard is God's acceptance of us. Now the question is, how does God accept us? He accepts us unconditionally with all of our faults. He doesn't demand that we change before he accepts us. In fact, Scripture says while he we were still enemies of his.

[00:29:39] He died for us. So when we talk about acceptance, we're talking about we need to accept one another's with its faults, with our weaknesses, because when we're involved with people and we're involved in a team, we're going to get frustrated. There's a things that they will do that we disagree with. There are times that they will lose their temper. There are times that they will act out sinfully. And so do we rush to judgment or do we rush to forgiveness? Do we see their faults or do we see the power of God's grace working in their life to overcome those faults and forgive those faults? You see that mutual acceptance? That's the foundation. For effective ministry without those things, without these these ingredients. And we can list more. But without them, we can organize and we can plot out how to have an effective team. But without the right spiritual foundation, it's going to falter. But once that's established, okay, now the question becomes how do we start building teams within our church, especially on an organizational level? How do we we start developing a ministry so that. There's teamwork within the whole church, and the whole church is working together to accomplish the mission of reaching people for Christ and discipling them to be followers of Christ and then equipping them to be servants of Christ. Well, really, it begins with the board. We need to recognize that teamwork in the church starts right here. If we as a board are not working together. With one another and with the pastor, then they will never be effectively implemented within the church. It starts with us and it starts with a recognition that there is shared leadership, even though there is different functions. Now, as we think about leadership and you can see on the diagram there that if we're to understand this whole concept of of team ministry, we need to recognize what the team is.

[00:31:58] The team begins with God at the center. We're working in conjunction with him as he works through us, as he empowers us through the work of his spirit, as he equips us for ministry, that we're we're a part of his ministry. And so the focal point is our relationship with God. That's what the glue, if you would, that keeps us together. Then within that, we have the role of the pastor, the role of the board, and the role of the congregation. Now we are to work together as a team, but we need to recognize that we have different functions within the church. Now, I want to just kind of explore a little bit about this, and I want to challenge you to continue to think through what is the different functions of the pastor from a biblical perspective. What is the function of the board and the elders? And then what is the function as the congregation, the rest of the the people within the church and how they have different functions, but how we work together. So let's begin with the pastor. The primary role of the pastors we look in scripture is to provide spiritual training and instruction. His primary focus of his giftedness is not is not to. Do the ministry. But we find that he has to equip others to do the ministry. In Ephesians, in this passage that we often go back to, but we continually need to be reminded of because of its importance in terms of our understanding of of the role of the pastor, the role of the board and the role of the church. But it says in verse 11 of Ephesians chapter four, it was he who gave some to be evangel, some to be prophets excuse me, some to be apostles and to be prophets, some to be evangelists and some to be pastors and teachers.

[00:33:59] Then in verse 12, he gives us the reason why these were given, or the purpose of it was to do what was to prepare God's people for the work of service so that the body of Christ would be built up until we all you reach unity in the faith, in the knowledge of the Son of God, and become mature attain to the whole measure the fullness of Christ. In other words, the primary role of the pastor is to equip the rest of the church. To then serve one another minister to one another so that as we're all ministering, the church becomes mature. And so how does the pastor do that? Well, we find in Timothy is Paul writes to Timothy, a young man in ministry, a young man starting out as a pastor, and he writes to him and challenges him that his primary role is to preach and teach the scriptures. In Second Timothy chapter four, verse two, he says, Preach the word. Be prepared in season and out of season. Correct, rebuke and encourage with great patience and careful instruction. So at the most crucial role that the pastor has is this preaching ministry. I see it again in first Timothy in chapter four, when again, as he writes to Timothy, he says in verse 11, Command and teach these things. Don't let anyone look down on you because you're young. But set an example for the believer in speech, in life and love and faith in impurity until I come. Devote yourself to the public reading of Scripture, to preaching and to teaching so that the role of the pastor then, is to primarily provide biblical instruction to teach us how to live for Christ, and then how to serve Christ and utilize our gifts within the context of the ministry that Christ ordained.

[00:36:10] We also see that that pastor's role, he's there to provide spiritual care along with the elders for those going through crisis. We see that the pastor, his his function is also to provide guidance in terms of setting the overall vision of the church. Now, this doesn't mean that the pastor has to set the vision and direction of the church, but one of his roles is to facilitate and guide the church in determining where God wants it to go. Another role of the pastor is really on a practical level in terms of the organization, is to oversee the daily operation of the church because he's there on a full time basis. He's taking care of the the the daily functions, if you would, of the congregation. And that's really one of his roles. Now, as we look at that role and compare that to the the the rest of the board, really the role of the board as we look at in both in Scripture and then just on a practical level, first of all, is again, to provide spiritual care to people going through crisis. We see that in James chapter five in that passage we've looked at earlier in some of the earlier sessions, but in chapter five, verse 14, he says, If any of you sick, he should call upon not just the pastor but upon the elders of the church to pray over him and anoint him with oil in the name of the Lord. That's crisis care. That's one of our roles as leaders within the church, as board members. We also are responsible to to help resolve and oversee the resolution of conflicts within the church. Conflicts are a part of of ministry that are part of life. And so one of the roles that we have as a board is to make sure that we're dealing with conflicts in a way that protects the congregation and protects even the board and the pastor with those conflicts.

[00:38:24] And part of that is that we deal with the complaints, with the problems that arise. One of the mistakes that we often make on a board is that we put it upon the shoulders of the pastor to deal with conflicts and to deal with complaints within the church. And the result is, is as a pastor tries to deal with them, those people that are either in conflict or have problems within the church, they start to direct their anger and their frustration at the pastor and eventually undermines the pastor and his his position within the church. And so as a board, we need to recognize that's our responsibility as well, so that when someone has a problem, we deal with it on the board level so that if they don't like the decision that that was made, now they're not just them against the pastor or them against one of their individual, that they're now challenging the authority of the whole board. So we need to deal with it on a board level. Another function in terms of the role of the board is to approve and evaluate decisions that affect the whole congregation. Now, again, part of this will determine be determined by your own individual church polity, depending on whether you're a congregational run or maybe more of a elder run church. The degree by which this will be played out. But still the board takes responsibility for overseeing these major decisions. The board's also responsible for establishing the policies within the church. The board is responsible to oversee the direction of the ministries of the church and oversight. So we're dealing with the issues. We're dealing with the organizational issues. We deal with the legal and the financial issues as that's the function of the board.

[00:40:21] And then there's the function of the the congregation. The congregation, first of all, is responsible to select and recognize the spiritual men within the church that are to be the leaders. We see that in Acts chapter six that the Apostles didn't appoint the leaders, rather, the church appointed the deacons. They were the ones that were to recognize and appoint those who would be the leaders. The responsibility to the congregation is also to hold the leadership accountable. So the leadership is accountable where we're leading the church, how we're leading the church, they hold us accountable to that. In Acts chapter 14, verse 27, we find that Paul and Barnabas had to give a report to the whole church in terms of what was going on with the Gentile ministry, and they held them accountable to that. Thirdly, the congregation is to provide the final approval for discipline issues in Matthew chapter 18 and First Corinthians chapter, Chapter one, that they're responsible to to be kind of the final step in that discipline process. The congregation is also to provide final oversight in terms of the ministries. And again, that's going to depend somewhat upon whether where the church polity is in terms of how much authority is given to the coronation, how much authority is given to the elders, whether it's an elder run church or a congregational church. The church also provides final approval for major decisions that affect the whole body. The church is also responsible to exercise their spiritual gifts. So they're responsible to be involved in ministry and to to equip others for ministry as well so that they recognize the ministry is not just the job of the pastor or the board or a select few, but the whole congregation takes ownership for the ministry of the church.

[00:42:33] So there's different functions that we have. There's and there's overlap in those functions. But we recognize that as a team, we are working together within the differences that we have, but we're working together to accomplish the ministry. And again, if the church is going to be effective, especially a small church, if we're going to be effective, it takes everyone working together and it starts with us as leaders in the church. It starts with us as as pastors and as board members that we're working together. Because if we're not working together, it's going to cause division within the whole church. And when the church starts breaking down in teamwork, so we're now no longer working together. We're working in conflict or with one another. The result will be the church ministry will be hampered. The church ministry will eventually be destroyed. And that's why we see churches getting themselves in trouble because it starts with us in ministry. Effective churches have effective teamwork.