Adrian Pirness | Shepherd's Voice June/July 2021 - Home and Family Article --
If we look back in history, we can find out that the word minister comes from Latin and it means “a servant.” In the following interview, Adrian Pirness, LLC Mission Director, tells about ministers.
Why do we have ministers?
We know God’s written Word is found in the Bible. We understand that the key that opens God’s Word is the Holy Spirit. God speaks to us in this time through the spoken Word. We hear the spoken Word when we go to services and listen to the sermons.
How do we get ministers?
Throughout time, God has called servants – ministers – to serve the congregation. Read more about this on page 3.
Who gets to be a minister?
In God’s kingdom, we understand that God calls men to serve in the duty of being a minister. People themselves do not try to become ministers. In some places, it is possible to study theology and through these studies, God may call a student to become an ordained minister.
If God calls one to serve, we accept it and we understand that it is good. God knows what gifts He has given, and He knows how to use these gifts to meet the congregation’s needs. When men are asked to serve, all that is required is that they speak how they believe, and that they have a believing heart and want to care for their faith.
How does a minister know what to say?
The congregation prays and the minister also prays that God who knows all things would give the words that are necessary for a particular sermon, for this moment in time, and for these listeners. A minister can also prepare by reading articles written about the Bible text, or by listening to sermons kept before on that text and topic. Above all, we trust that God will give the words we need.
Is it scary to go in front of lots of people to talk?
A minister feels his own lackings and may wonder how God would be able to speak through me. So it is not even the size of the group of listeners that might make one fearful, but rather one’s own doubts. It can make the minister feel very humble and small.
How can a minister serve when he feels lacking or fearful?
The brothers and sisters in faith, the congregation gathered there join in praying that God would open His Word. And the minister can also feel these prayers. These prayers, and also the songs sung before services, comfort and support the minister and give him strength to speak.
Why does the minister start the service with a prayer?
When we pray, we share thoughts and hopes with God. At services, the whole congregation can join in praying. We quieten our hearts and pray to God that He would speak to us through the minister. The minister sometimes asks God for a service blessing. This means that we ask God to care for and comfort all listeners, and that God’s children would be reminded that we are on the way to heaven. We pray that God would feed us through His Word, that He would give what we need for our life and faith.
Why does the minister ask for a blessing?
When a minister is serving, God speaks to the congregation, and He also speaks to the minister directly. The minister may feel his own sinfulness and doubts. Then he wants to hear the gospel, the message that his sins are forgiven in Jesus’ name and precious blood. This most important message is also said to the listeners. They too, however they find themselves, have permission to believe their sins forgiven in Jesus’ name and blood!
Things to Visit About:
1. Why does the minister read a Bible text at the beginning of the sermon?
2. What kinds of things do ministers talk about in their sermons?
3. How can we help support those brothers who serve as ministers in our congregation?