I can assure you that when facing these kinds of pastoral challenges it is wonderful to have a team of elders with whom I can think, pray, study and minister. Left to myself, each of those cases would have been handled with far less wisdom and care than they warranted.
A challenge every faithful church will face is how to believe and apply God’s Word in very difficult, personal situations. It is vital to have biblical teachings on law and gospel in your mind, but it is equally important to apply those teachings to life. It is in the work of application that some of my greatest pastoral challenges have come. This is also precisely where pastoral wisdom is needed if a church is to be led well through such situations. That has particularly been true of cases that relate to issues that are hotly debated in the broader culture.
Scenarios - Pastor - Pastor - Pastors - Situations
Consider the following scenarios and ask yourself what you would do if you were a pastor. Or, if you are not a pastor, what would you recommend pastors do in such situations?
A new Christian tells you that the man she is living with is not legally her husband because they divorced in their home country in order to be allowed to immigrate to the United States. Now, ten years later, she is a believer and wants to be legally married but he refuses because “nobody in America gets married.”
Father - Informs - Teenage - Daughter - Sex
A father informs you that he has just discovered his young teenage daughter “had sex” with a minister at their previous church (in the area) two years ago.
A woman comes weeping after a worship service and confesses that years ago she had an adulterous relationship with her former pastor who, along with pastoring that same church in your area, now also holds a prominent...
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