Leadership#2. “Teachers are leaders.”

Leadership#2. “Teachers are leaders.”

“Let not many of you become teachers, my brethren, knowing that as such we will incur a stricter judgment” (Jm.3:1).

It can be argued that everyone is a ‘teacher’ (small ‘t’), but only some are ‘Teachers,’ (capital ‘T’). Biblically, this is so. Since a congregation’s teachers are responsible for the transfer of Holy Scripture from the text to the hearts and minds of those before them, they had better know what they are talking about.

On any given Sunday in the churches of Christ there is an army of Sunday School teachers and preachers breaking forth the Bread of Life to the brethren. What is taught ‘from the front’ of classrooms and auditoriums is the religion that will impact lives for generations to come—be it good, bad, or otherwise!

At first glance it seems strange that the apostle Paul would tell Timothy—a seasoned preacher—that he “must not be quarrelsome, but be kind to all, able to teach, patient when wronged” (2Tim.2:24). But it shouldn’t surprise us that a man’s “ability to teach” can be paralysed when surrounded by the troublemakers, the unkind, and those who wrong him. However, he is a leader and must, with the help of God and the faithful brethren, preach the Word…in season and out of season (2Tim.4:2).

This is especially so with our Elders. Paul says of them: “An overseer, then, must be…able to teach (1Tim.3:2). Being a Shepherd of the congregation, he must know his Bible well. If not, he will be unable to refute those who contradict sound doctrine (Titus 1:9).

Some congregations have an abundance of good teachers, while others struggle to fulfil their requirements. Our good teachers must be encouraged according to their needs, or they will eventually burn out. Our bad teachers, who shouldn’t have been there in the first place, need to be encouraged to find something else to do. If you have bad teachers, you have bad leaders.

James was not just trying to kill somebody’s dream of being a Bible teacher when he spoke of ‘stricter judgement.’ He was calling us to the seriousness of the job at hand. First and foremost, the teacher is speaking on behalf of God. If they do not know what they are talking about, or if they treat it with a take-it-or-leave-it attitude, they will be subject to greater condemnation.

If you are a good teacher, may God bless you as you lead souls to Truth.

John Staiger

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