The Roles of the Saints in Ministry

by Lee Buford on January 28, 2011

The idea of knowing your role is crucial in most aspects of our society. More importantly, the act of fulfilling the obligations associated with your role is crucial to the success of most endeavors we take on as individuals, teams, and families. And to ensure such boundaries are defined and obligations are met, we create job descriptions, titles, and requirements that correspond to our respective roles in life, perceived or real in nature.

It seems a bit too common today, however, for many people to expect someone else to do the job, whatever the job may be. We see it at work, we see it on television, and we see it in our homes. We even see it in our churches, and, not surprisingly, we’ve all been guilty of passing the buck at one point or another…perhaps without even realizing it.

Think about the following two verses from the book of Ephesians:

11And he gave the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers, 12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ, – Ephesians 4:11-12

Note the “role, purpose, or job description” of the apostles, the prophets, the evangelists, the shepherds and teachers: to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ.

All too often we view our roles as “non-staff” church members with a consumer mindset…we show up on Sunday to take in all “they” have to present this week. When a visitor shows up we expect they will be greeted by a member of the staff, visited by a pastor, and/or invited to small group or Sunday School by one of the leaders. If someone is in the hospital, or going through a troubling time or situation, we make sure we let one of the pastors know…so THEY can go pray or help. We’re doing our “job” by letting them know where and when they need to go do theirs.

That’s what they’re there for, right? That’s their “job,” right? Clearly, from the scripture above, the answer is “NO.”

Sure, pastors, elders, and church leadership take on a lot of these things and more. And in many cases and scenarios they do so out of love and care for people like you and me. There is a genuine responsibility to undertake matters related to the biblical roles of their leadership positions and callings. But clearly there is a burden to bear for all of us in the work of ministry and the caring for our brothers and sisters in Christ.

We, the Saints, are accountable for our own roles in ministering to other saints.

Think about these things as you go to church this weekend. Who could you greet, welcome, and encourage. Who could you pray for? Who could you invite to your next small group or Sunday School gathering? Who could you take to lunch next week? To whom could you pay a visit, at the hospital or at their home? How can you play a bigger role in the building up and encouragement of the body?

Or, at least, how can you (and I) play the role we’re called to play?

{ 1 comment… read it below or add one }

Santana December 4, 2015 at 1:22 am

Leadership the ultimate cnaillg!Are you are looking for leaders? They are mostly the ones with knifes in our backs and are very close to their families. God has raised a mighty army (battle ready) that is lying dormant in the wait. The wait for what, “you ask?”The Apostolic Leadership of the Saints.There is no more Discipleship in the church. (Like old) Mostly, because no one has the time to deal with other person’s mess. We need to go back to the basic. We must turn off the technology and turn on the Bible. We’re to business trying to entertain people into leadership that they cannot hear God for themselves. A true leader is against the world system (Saints) because God’s Words is the final authority.Be Transform by the Renewing of our minds, not Technology’s false hope. I’m not bashing technology because I’m in the multimedia field. But God has shown me that we’re teaching with our own testimony not God’s Word (which brings men unto salvation).We must encourage other to Read and Study their bibles daily. (This is God Holy Words of information and instruction) Leadership comes from the Word of God.God transformed me from a life without a father into a grace knowledge of knowing God as my true Father. I trust and believe that our testimony is for edifying God’s kingdom.We must, now, ask ourselves are we really doing God’s Will?Romans 12:1-2 (NIV)Living Sacrifices 1Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God—this is your spiritual[a] act of worship. 2Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. We must bring the Fire of the Word of God to our Churches in order to lead other into leadership which is the ultimate Calling. Our Faithfulness and joy will bring light to a dark world.


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