- Parent Category: FAQs
- Category: Bible Questions and answers about the Church
- Published on Wednesday, 18 November 2009 18:37
A few obvious details in 1 Timothy make it clear that neither Timothy nor any Ephesian elder was the paid pastor. No New Testament passage supports such a practice, no matter how convenient or prevalent it may be.
All the overseers in Ephesus, where Timothy was, were to assist in teaching the saints (1 Timothy 3:2). Paul had taught these men to labor with their hands in doing their work with the flock (Acts 20:34, 35). In addition, in 1 Timothy 5:17, Paul is not speaking about one man, but about "elders that rule well." These elders received honor for the responsibility entrusted to them. They were also to be honored in another way. The law taught that an ox was allowed to eat in order to satisfy the necessity (his hunger) caused by his work. Thus, elders that ruled well were to receive financial assistance in cases where their labors caused them to lack the necessities of life. This is quite different from a contractual arrangement where one man is paid to do the preaching.