3-Week Series: Double Blessing


Summary: Why combine the two terms, pastor and teacher into one category? What is the primary roll of the pastor and how is it to be accomplished? The Bible details high standards for those who would be elders or overseers in the church, who can meet these stand

Dakota Community Church

February 17, 2013

Grace at Work - 14

Pastor Teacher

The fourth and final gift listed in our passage is the gift of pastor-teacher.

Ephesians 4:11-13

11 It was he who gave some to be apostles, some to be prophets, some to be evangelists, and some to be pastors and teachers, 12 to prepare God’s people for works of service, so that the body of Christ may be built up 13 until we all reach unity in the faith and in the knowledge of the Son of God and become mature, attaining to the whole measure of the fullness of Christ.

From: Vine's Expository Dictionary of New Testament Words:

Pastor - Poimen - <1,,4166,poimen>

"a shepherd, one who tends herds or flocks" (not merely one who feeds them), is used metaphorically of Christian "pastors," Ephesians 4:11. "Pastors" guide as well as feed the flock; cp. Acts 20:28, which, with ver. 17, indicates that this was the service committed to elders (overseers or bishops); so also in 1 Peter 5:1, 2, "tend the flock ... exercising the oversight," RV; this involves tender care and vigilant superintendence. See SHEPHERD.

Whenever you see the word shepherd in your Bible, you are seeing this Greek word poimen, or shepherds, the same word God used to identify the men He was giving to His churches in Ephesians 4:11

Acts 20:17,18, 28-30

Now from Miletus he sent to Ephesus and called the elders of the church to come to him. 18 And when they came to him, he said to them:

Pay careful attention to yourselves and to all the flock, in which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to care for the church of God, which he obtained with his own blood. 29 I know that after my departure fierce wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock; 30 and from among your own selves will arise men speaking twisted things, to draw away the disciples after them.

1 Peter 5:1-4

So I exhort the elders among you, as a fellow elder and a witness of the sufferings of Christ, as well as a partaker in the glory that is going to be revealed: 2 shepherd the flock of God that is among you, exercising oversight, not under compulsion, but willingly, as God would have you; not for shameful gain, but eagerly; 3 not domineering over those in your charge, but being examples to the flock. 4 And when the chief Shepherd appears, you will receive the unfading crown of glory.

Teacher - Didaskalos - <1,,1320,didaskalos>

is rendered "teacher" or "teachers" in Matt. 23:8, by Christ, of Himself; in John 3:2 of Christ; of Nicodemus in Israel, John 3:10, RV; of "teachers" of the truth in the churches, Acts 13:1; 1 Corinthians 12:28,29; Ephesians 4:11; Hebrews 5:12; James 3:1, RV; by Paul of his work among the churches, 1 Timothy 2:7; 2 Timothy 1:11; of "teachers," wrongfully chosen by those who have "itching ears," 2 Timothy 4:3. See MASTER, RABBI.

1 Timothy 2:5-7

For there is one God, and there is one mediator between God and men, the man[a] Christ Jesus, 6 who gave himself as a ransom for all, which is the testimony given at the proper time. 7 For this I was appointed a preacher and an apostle (I am telling the truth, I am not lying), a teacher of the Gentiles in faith and truth.

Why am I combining the two terms, pastor and teacher into one category?

John Calvin argued that Paul was designating two distinct offices in Ephesians 4.

The pastor preached, counseled, administered the sacraments, etc., while the teacher or doctor did not.


“...there is a distinct class of teachers, who preside both in the education of pastors and in the instruction of the whole church. It may sometimes happen, that the same person is both a pastor and a teacher, but the duties to be performed are entirely different.”

“Next come pastors and teachers, whom the church can never go without. There is, I believe, this difference between them: teachers are not put in charge of discipline, or administering the sacraments, or warnings and exhortations, but only of Scriptural interpretation–to keep doctrine whole and pure among believers. But the pastoral office includes all these functions within itself.” - John Calvin

Well that makes sense and it is also the way that the ministry gifts were presented to me in Bible College as “the five fold ministry” like the fingers on a hand.

Definitely a disputable matter as we discussed last week, though I don’t think any churches will be splitting up over this one.

Here is why I am leaning toward the four fold position:

In the sentence that lists the various gifts, each particular gift is preceded by the word “some”. Yet the recurring “some” is omitted before the word teacher. Pastor and teacher are connected by the simple conjunction “and”.

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