1 Timothy 3:1 - 7
NKJV - 1 This is a faithful saying: If a man desires the position of a bishop, he desires a good work. 2 A bishop then must be blameless, the husband of one wife, temperate, sober-minded, of good behavior, hospitable, able to teach.
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If a pastor's child makes a poor decision about drugs, alcohol, an immoral lifestyle or other sins and vices, should the pastor be held responsible? Granted, some situations clearly involve poor parenting and a pastor, like all parents, may bear some culpability in a given situation. Asking forgiveness, ackowledging shortcomings and humbling oneself before G-D in matters impacting adversely one's children, are good starting points. Open dialogue with that child can go a long way, too. Still, let's not blame a pastor needlessly for the sins of his child. Let's call the child to accountability and trust the pastor and the child will learn what he should learn from it all. At a certain point, grown children are responsible for their own decisions, good ones and bad ones. In Jewish thinking, the age of bar mitzvah (13 years) is the age of accountability. The bar mitzvah is formally brought into the community and told of his specific duties and responsibilities within the community. He is responsible to observe the ways of the L-RD, can participate in the ten man minyan required for prayer, and can draw his own conclusions when matters of conscience arise in the community. Jeremiah, the Hebrew prophet, did! Just that! Children can respond to G-D's call, too. Many pastors have learned compassion towards others when their 'perfect' child made seriously flawed decisions. It is also reprehensible that the pastor's covenant community of faith in which he faithfully ministers, expects perfection from the pastor and the pastor's family. The pastor, like his family members, has issues in his life to overcome. How much more his children? I think a pastor may be able to serve well if he can keep his eye on his calling, including working for the salvation of all of his children, and all the children within the community - not just his.. Many pastors have been diverted from their calling trying to bandage the gaping wounds of their grown children. Energy, time, finances and emotional stock have been lost by well meaning pastors with a 'savior' mentality towards their children. In essence, the child and his needs becomes the pastor's overlord. This shouldn't be. If a rebellious child chooses rebellion, only the Heeavenly Father can change the heart of that child, prodigal that he is. Yeshua spoke much on this topic; the acceptability of the repentant regardless of their age. Let G-D deal with the children once they are out of the nest while you, Mr. Pastor, continue to show forth a good example, by G-D's grace, to all, including one's own offspring. Stop diverting energies from your calling. Stop letting your child rule you and your resources. Invest even more into His kingdom, where rust, moths and THIEVES can't divert away from sovereign purpose. Start making the kingdom of G-D first and foremost as Mattityau 6:33 impores. Be a parent yet let your Heavenl;y Father deal with your own offspring. He knows their hearts.
1st Timothy 3 is very clear about this subject, but if the kids are grown up and out of the house the pastor wouldn't be responsible. We always try to keep our kids on the narrow road, regardless of age or where they live.
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