Another Pastoral Prerequisite.
The Greek word used here, didaskalia (did-as-kal-ee’-ah).
It carries with it a sense of formal instruction, or more specifically, the teaching or instruction of Christian doctrine especially as it relates to the application of Christian doctrine to our lives as Believers.
But Why Teach?
Why bother teaching? Why not just stick to preaching and proclaiming?
In Paul’s second letter to Timothy we read the following:
“All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” (2 Tim. 3:16-17)
Once someone comes to the saving knowledge of the Gospel, we must thoroughly equip them, and “all Scripture” is useful for doing that.
But teaching has its risks.
In James 3:1 we read, “Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.” As teachers, we’re responsible for our students.
Or as 1 Timothy 4:16 notes, we’re responsible for our hearers:
“Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.” (1 Tim. 4:16)
Teaching the Bible is one of the greatest privileges we have as Christians.
We should never take it lightly. We owe it to our students and hearers to understand who they are, what they value and what they need. But we also owe it to them and to Christ, to carve out the time to study and prepare to teach.