As I was sweeping the parking lot at work today, God brought to my mind a sermon that I heard on the radio on the way to work this morning. In the message, the teacher was saying that we need qualified people as pastors and leaders in the church. That we shouldn’t just put anyone in those positions.
God told that this is very true. But He went on to say that the problem lies in what the teacher giving the message and other believes makes a person qualified.
God told me that what most churches and people think makes a person qualified to be a pastor or in any kind of ministry is not what makes a person qualified.
Most churches and people of this world think that having lots of education, lots of degrees on the wall and lots of letters behind your name is what makes a person qualified to be in ministry. That going to the right seminary or school is what makes you qualified.
But this is not what makes a person qualified to be in ministry.
What makes a person qualified to be in ministry is being called by God and equipped to do the work by the Holy Spirit.
The example God brought to my mind is Paul the Apostle. Though Paul had all the right education, went to the right school, and had the right pedigree, he counted it all as rubbish.
Paul was taught at the feet of Gamaliel (Acts 22:2b-3). Gamaliel was a prominent Pharisee, Teacher of the Law and a member of Sanhedrin (Acts 5:24).
In Philippians 3:4-7, Paul writes: If anyone else thinks he may have confidence in the flesh, I more so: circumcised the eighth day, of the stock of Israel, of the tribe of Benjamin, a Hebrew of the Hebrews; concerning the law, a Pharisee; concerning zeal, persecuting the church; concerning the righteousness which is in the law, blameless. But what things were gain to me, these I have counted loss for Christ.
Paul counted all his education as nothing. So what did Paul say qualified him to be an Apostle? In 1 Corinthians 15:8-10 Paul tells us: “Then last of all He was seen by me also, as by one born out of due time. For I am the least of the apostles, who am not worthy to be called an apostle, because I persecuted the church of God. But by the grace of God I am what I am, and His grace toward me was not in vain; but I labored more abundantly than they all, yet not I, but the grace of God which was with me.
So the lesson God told me to share with you that it is not education, having countless degrees on the wall or lots of letters after your name tha makes you qualified. It is God who makes you qualified. It is God who equips you to do the work He calls you to do. He equipped that church to do the work He gave them to go when He poured out the Holy Spirit on the church (Acts 2)
God also equipped us by giving us the written work, the Bible. As it is written in 2 Timothy 3:16-17: All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Now, God and I are not saying that education is bad. God told me that education is of some value and is a great tool to have. But it is not what qualifies you to be in ministry.
So if you feel the Holy Spirit leading you to go to a Bible collage or and seminary, follow that leading and go. Just make sure that as you’re being taught, ask the Holy Spirit to tell you is what is being taught is the truth or whether it is a doctrine of man. Search the scriptures to see if what you’re being taught is true or not (Acts 17:11).
Now 98% of Bible colleges and seminaries are not trying to deceive people, purposely teaching bad doctrines or false teachings. Most are just repeating what they were taught having not checked to see if it’s accurate or not.
But sadly, there a 2% (if not more) that are intentionally teaching false doctrines and deceiving the people who attend them. Their goal is to destroy the child-like faith of those who attend them.
These students go there hoping to grow there faith by learning to better to understand the word and more effectually teach the word. Only to be taught to pick the word of God and debate what each and every word could mean (assigning so many possible meanings) that they end up not even knowing that the word “the” means anymore.
These institutions destroy he faith of those who attend them. They become over educated Pharisees who then go around destroying the faith of innocent people (Matthew 23:15).
The goal of the spirit behind these institutions is to destroy the church by destroying the faith of those who come to them and the faith of the churches, ministries and workplaces that their graduates with return to or be put in charge of.
So while education is of some value, be very careful where you choose to go to receive that education and just believe everything taught you at face value, but ask questions, search the scriptures and above all, let the Holy Spirit be your main Teacher and tell if what your what is accurate or not.
And remember, 99.9% of the time, if God is telling you to go to get a formal ministry degree or license, it is for the sake and benefit of man, not God.
The original 12 Apostles were uneducated fisherman empowered by the Holy Spirit and they were used to change the world.
Having a degree or license will get you into doors where others can’t go. Because sadly, there’s a lot of churches that will not let you in to teach if you don’t have the right education, degree, title, or letters behind your name no matter how anointed by the Holy Spirit you are. They worship the god of education and value the things the world values.
God wants us to stop judging as world judged and valuing the world see as important. God doesn’t value what the world values or judge by appearance like the world does. He searches the heart.
So, in conclusion, I will repeat once again what the Spirit is saying to the churches. Education, having a fancy degree, having endless titles or letters behind your name, what others have to say about you or who endorses you in this world are not what qualifies you for the ministry.
What qualifies you for the ministry is that God has called you to the ministry and that the Holy Spirit has equipped you to do the work of the ministry. It is having the endorsement of Jesus Christ and what He says about you is all that matters.
So go forth and do the work God have called you to do, me dear brothers and sisters in Christ. Amen.