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  I.     The Gift Of Teaching.

A.     What Is It?


1.       The ability to explain Scripture and apply it to people's lives.

a)        This Is Evident From A Number of Passages.

1)        Acts 15:35, Paul and Barnabas are in Antioch "teaching and preaching the word of the Lord."

2)        At Corinth, Paul stayed one and a half years "teaching the word of God among them" (Acts 18:11).

3)        Likewise “a certain Jew named Apollos, an Alexandrian by birth, an eloquent man,… had been instructed in the way of the Lord; and being fervent in spirit, he was speaking and teaching accurately the things concerning Jesus” (Acts 18:24–25).

4)        Paul tells the Romans that the words of the Old Testament Scriptures "were written for our instruction (or "teaching," Gk. didaskalia)" (Rom. 15:4).

5)        Paul writes to Timothy that "all scripture" is "profitable for teaching [didaskalia]" (2 Tim. 3:16).

6)        And the readers of the epistle to the Hebrews, though they ought to have been teachers, needed rather to have someone to teach them again "the first principles of God's word" (Heb. 5:12).

b)        Living Links In An Unbroken Chain (2 Timothy 2:2)

1)        The Gospel is to Be Proclaimed From Generation to Generation.

William Barclay comments, “The teacher is a link in the living chain which stretches unbroken from this present moment back to Jesus Christ. The glory of teaching is that it links the present with the earthly life of Jesus Christ” (The Letters to Timothy, Titus and Philemon [Philadelphia: Westminster, 1957], 182). In every generation, God has raised up new links in this living chain of faithful men to pass on the good news of Jesus Christ to the people of their day.

1.         Women Can teach younger woman (Titus 2:3-4)

2.         Woman can teach children (2 Timothy 1:5)

3.         Woman can pray (Acts 1:12-15) & hold pray meetings in house (Acts 12:12)

4.         Phoebe was a helper in the church (Romans 16:1-2)

5.         Woman gave of their financial resources (Luke 8:1-3)

6.         Every believer is to be a teacher (Col. 3:16; 1 Pet. 3:15; cf. Deut. 6:7; 2 Tim. 3:15).

2.       It Is More Than A Skill.

a)        Waiting Upon the Lord In Study (1 Corinthians 11:23)

This is my prayer that whenever I stand before you to teach the Word of God, that what I deliver to you is from the Lord Jesus Christ.

1)        The Gift of Teaching Does Not Always Work

·         There are times when I get up to teach & the anointing isn’t on me; the message is not flowing.

·         Other times the message just flows, the thoughts, ideas, and inspirations—the anointing is there.

·         The fact that sometimes the gift is there and sometimes it isn’t indicates that teaching is not a natural ability; you can’t do it anytime you choose.

·         It is a gift of God, and you must depend upon God for its exercise.

3.       The Difference Between Teaching & Preaching.

a)        The Apostle Paul Had A Threefold Ministry (2Tim.1:11). 

1)        Preaching is Declaring or Heralding the truth of God to bring people to a saving knowledge of Jesus Christ.  It is evangelistic, proclaiming God’s Good News that He has provided for the forgiveness of sins through His crucified Son, who took our guilt and died in our place. Preaching persuades people to receive Jesus Christ as their Lord.

2)        Teaching enables those who have accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord to grow in the grace and the knowledge of God (2Pet.3:18).  Preaching is for the sinner; teaching is for the saint. 

(a)      Hebrews 5:12-6:2 – The church needs more teaching so that more believers will grow and become mature in their relationship with Jesus Christ.

1.         Foundations are important but you have to build on them.  Once the foundation is laid, you must construct the building. 

2.         We must not stay in an infant state—Lets grow to maturity.     

(b)      1 Corinthians 3:1-2 – Paul wanted to teach the Corinthians the deeper things of the Spirit, but could not because they hadn’t grown up. 

1.         Paul said they were (“men of flesh” jealousy & strife).

(c)      1 Peter 2:1-2 – In order for a Christian to grow he or she must lay aside sin.

1.         As the Word of God taught and obeyed real spiritual growth comes.

2.         Once a person comes to faith in Jesus Christ, his or her greatest need is to be taught the Scriptures.

B.     The Purpose of the Pastor Teacher (Ephesians 4:12-15)

1.       The Abilities Needed For This Ministry Is Threefold.

a)        Instructional—Ephesians 4:11-12

1)        Equipping is the Greek word katartivzwv (katartizoµ).

(a)      This word, translated “mending” in Matt. 4:21, occurs in the description of Christ’s call to James and John. He summoned them while they were “mending their nets,” that is, equipping their nets for fishing. This suggests that a major function of a leader is a figurative mending of the saints—getting them ready for service.

(b)      1 Thessalonians 3:10 – the translation of this word is “complete” or “perfect” in NKJV. The apostle Paul wanted to return to the Thessalonians to “complete what is lacking in your faith,” that is, to finish what he had started earlier.

(c)      Galatians 6:1 – also has katartizoµ, this time in the sense of restoring a sinning brother.

(d)      1 Timothy 3:2 –  a leader must be “able to teach.”

(e)      Titus 1:9 – he must “be able both to exhort in sound doctrine and to refute those who contradict.”

(f)        Hebrews 13:7 the writer describes leaders as those “who spoke the word of God to you,” thus implying that leaders are communicators.

(g)      Without the solid teaching of the Word of God, believers remain in a state of arrested spiritual development.

My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.  Because you have rejected knowledge, I also will reject you from being My priest.  Since you have forgotten the law of your God, I also will forget your children (Hosea 4:6)

b)        Shepherding the Flock of God.

1)        Shepherding Duties Link Closely With Teaching Duties.     

(a)      Acts 20:18 and 1 Peter 5:2 have commands for church leadership to feed the flock of God.

1.         Teaching imparts a body of knowledge, but “shepherding,” imparts a life more broadly.

a.         In 1 Thessalonians 2:8 – Paul shows this distinction where he says, “Having thus a fond affection for you, we were well-pleased to impart to you not only the gospel of God [teaching] but also our own lives [shepherding].”

(b)      Acts 20:28 Paul admonished the Ephesian elders “to shepherd the church of God.”

1.         It is God’s Flock – 1 Peter 5:2 notes the same stewardship when Peter tells his fellow elders to “shepherd the flock of God among you.”

2.         The church leader is an under shepherd who will give an account to God (Heb. 13:17), so he must shepherd with utmost care.

2)        How Is He To Do This Shepherding?

(a)      Acts 20:28-32 – to face the reality of enemy attacks.

1.         Warn the flock (v.28) of attacks.  Attacks will come through the efforts of “savage wolves” who will arise from within the flock (v. 30).

2.         The enemy will try to divide the flock, necessitating constant watchfulness by the church’s leaders (note the command “be on the alert,” v. 31).

3.         Leaders must “admonish” and intimately involve themselves with the people “with tears” (v. 31). Ultimately, they must entrust the flock to God through prayer, with the assurance of growth in the flock through study of the Word (v. 32).

c)        Administrative or Overseeing.

1)        Acts 20:28 calls the Ephesian elders “overseers.” First Peter 5:2 tells the leadership to “exercise oversight.”

(a)      Oversight Involves Ruling.

1.         Hebrews 13:7 – refers to ruling in a reference to leading.

2.         Hebrews 13:17, 24 – refers to the ruling function.

2)        How are leaders to rule?

(a)      Jesus told His disciples in (Matt. 20:25–26) that they were to be servants, not lords.

(b)      Peter gave the same advice in (1 Pet. 5:3): “Nor yet as lording it over those allotted to your charge, but proving to be examples to the flock.”

(c)      As Christ was a servant (Matt. 20:28; John 13:1–16), so leaders are to follow His example and be servants of the church.

C.     Teaching In the Old & New Testament.

1.       The Old Testament.

a)        The Lord Promised Moses He Would Be his Teacher.

1)        Exodus 4:10-15 – The Lord tells Moses He will “teach” him & “instruct” him in what to do.

2)        2 Chronicles 15:3 – Israel was in a terrible situation caused by a lack of teaching.

(a)      Teaching has always been crucial for the people of God.  That is why the promise of Nehemiah 9:20 is so precious!

2.       The New Testament.

a)        The Ministry of Jesus Was Largely a Ministry of Teaching.

1)        Throughout the Gospels We Find Him Teaching the People About His Father.

(a)      58 times in the Gospels Jesus is addressed as “master,” which means “teacher.”

(b)      Matthew 28:19-20 – Jesus tells His disciples this, “teaching them to observe.”

b)        The Ministry of Paul. 

1)        Paul taught for an entire year in Antioch (Acts 11:26).

2)        Paul and Barnabas—Paul (Saul) is named in Acts 13:1 as a teacher in the church in Antioch, while Acts 15:35 tells us, “Paul and Barnabas also remained in Antioch, teaching and preaching the word of the Lord, with many others also.”  Paul not only taught but also preached, exercising a combined gifting.

(a)      Expositional Teaching.

1.                 Paul spent a year teaching the Word of God in Antioch, a year and a half teaching in Corinth (Acts 18:11), and two or three years teaching in Ephesus. 

2.         Paul declares to the Ephesian elders how he kept back nothing that was profitable to them (Acts 20:26-27). 

3.         Ezra gave expositional teaching to the Israelites (Nehemiah 8:8) 

So they read distinctly from the book, in the Law of God; and they gave the sense, and helped them to understand the reading. (Nehemiah 8:8 NKJV)

3)        One Must Be Anointed To Teach the Word of God.

(a)      Without the Holy Spirit we cannot even know spiritual truth, much less teach it

The natural man does not receive the things of the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him; nor can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. (1 Corinthians 2:14 NKJV)

(b)      Paul desired that his preaching would be a demonstration of the Spirit’s Power not him trying to persuade men intellectually (1Cor.2:4-5; 1 John 2:27). 

(c)      The Holy Spirit enables the Christian to apprehend God’s Word with spiritual discernment, wisdom, and understanding.

(d)      Psalm 119:11 – In the practical sense, our holiness is directly proportional to our knowledge of and consequent obedience to God’s Word.  The more complete our working knowledge of the Bible is, the less susceptible we are to sin and error.

(e)      2 Timothy 2:15 – study to show yourself approved!

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