Basic Church Ministries

In every church, there are some primary ministries.  The size of the congregation or the purpose of a new pastor to come in doesn’t matter when it comes to these essential activities.  In a way, the following four types of ministry describe much of what groups of believers do in the world.

Ministry of the Word in Discipleship

As a foundation, the Word of God is the starting point for everything else.  So much Scripture attests this point (for example Mt. 4:4; 28:18-20; John 21:15; Acts 6:4; Eph 4:11-12; 2 Tim. 2:15; 3:16-17).  The great commission found in Matthew 28:18-20 focuses on our teaching the Jesus’ word to all nations.  The Scriptures are to be used in evangelistic and discipleship efforts.  Everything the church does is to be biblically-informed.  Our worship is to be in spirit and in truth (John 4:24).  Second Timothy 3:16-17 tells us that the Scriptures are sufficient in fully equipping people to do the work of God.

Christan Caregiving

Christian caregiving is not something that only the pastor does.  The whole congregation should be involved in the care of souls.  The pastor should take the lead here to model before the congregation and equip them to provide care for one another.  Acts 6, Romans 12, 1 Corinthians 12, and Ephesians 4 each demonstrate that all believers have a place of service in God’s assembly of believers.

Worship

It was already stated that worship is to be done in spirit and truth (John 4:24).  This is more than musical experiences in congregational services.  Worship is both personal and congregational.  In both settings, the character, position of the heart, and development of the believer in Jesus is essential to true worship.  Worship is coming before God in thanksgiving and praise (Psalm 100).

Sharing the Gospel

Evangelizing is another essential component of church ministry.  The church is supposed to teach the Gospel, pray for sinners, help individuals develop a personal ministry of evangelism and incorporate them into the larger outreach ministries of the church.  Sharing the Gospel as found in Matthew 28:18-20 notes that all the people in the world are the scope of our mission.  We are to go global and go local with the Word of God.

If you are a new pastor, church leader, or a new believer, these four essential church ministries make up the foundation everything else we in the Church.  Make sure they are Biblically-based and give honor to God and not man.

Help for Sunday School Teachers

Whether you teach youth or adults, I believe these following points will provide some guidance on how to improve your ability as a Bible teacher.

Be early

There is much to be said about punctuality in all areas of life.  However, when you are the Sunday School teacher, being early is very important.  The room needs to be ready for students and your materials set out.  If you arrive after class has started, it takes away from the quality of the lesson since you have less time and will be in a rush.

Be prepared

Closely connected to earliness is to readiness.  One helps lead to the other.  However, the difference lies in preparation to teach.  You need to know your lesson.  Second Timothy 2:15 reads, “Study to shew thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.”  The topic and outline covered should be familiar to you because of preparation.  In fact, the more you have prepared, the less you will get off topic and the less you will have to read from your notes.

Be resourceful

Using a variety of tone in speeches is essential.  It is also crucial to use a variety of teaching methods.  I prefer lectures, but not everyone does.  It is necessary to use the resources available to you when teaching the Bible lesson.  Different teaching methods and tools will make the lesson more productive to the learners.

Be present

Silence your cell phone.  Yes, the teacher needs to be respectful to the students by giving them their full attention.  However, the Holy Spirit also needs to be followed, and this only happens in a Sunday School Class when the leader is fully present.  Watch for those wrestling with the Spirit for more in-depth understanding or other moves of God.  If you have prepared the lesson well, you will be able to address those issues that may be off topic without fear of how to get back on topic later.  Remember, we are not aiming to merely give information but instead lead the students to transformation.