Jesus said that the teachers of the Law ‘sat in Moses seat.’ That the people were to listen to what they taught them, but that was all. To do as they did was to participate in their hypocritical ways. Jesus pronounced “Woes” upon these “scribes and Pharisees” for their pridefulness and deliberate misdirection—they did it all in the name of God’s holy law (Matthew 23). Jesus’ brother, James, would later warn Christians: “Let not many of you be teachers” (James 3:1). A “stricter judgement” was promised. Such is the weight of responsibility that Christians carry when they step up to say, “Thus, saith the Lord!”
May God richly bless our preachers and teachers of the Gospel. Much of the church’s teaching and preaching goes on in our local congregations. Many preachers are paid, but there is always a team of volunteer Bible class teachers teaching adults and children. It can sometimes appear to be a thankless job. The ‘seasoned survivors’ have long since given up relying on thanks and praise—they are ‘Doing this thing for the Lord!’ Ira North used to say: “As the Sunday School goes, so goes the congregation.” For the most part it is our sisters who bear the main load of the Sunday School programmes. The youth are often taught by ‘youth ministers’ or some of the brothers on rotation. Adult Bible classes are the domain of men who are trusted teachers. Many elders, deacons and preachers are regular teachers of these classes. Praise God for all the love and sacrifice put in by all our teachers—we are going nowhere without you. New congregations must be planted. The role of our preacher-missionaries is never to be diminished.
But the role of the ‘in house teaching team’ is no less vital for the growth and stability of those new congregations. Education and Encouragement is needed today for our teachers and future teachers. Much prayer and planning is necessary – Lock-Down is a good time for reflection. Where to begin…? All of us can start with these words: “Well done teacher! How can I help without getting in the way of your good work for Jesus?” You will make a friend for life and You will be surprised at the outcome.