What They Don’t Learn in Seminary

Keith KettenringChurch, Fun Stuff, Motley Christian

Please don’t be impressed by  people who go to seminary to be ministry leaders. They may have a Master’s degree but that doesn’t mean they have what it takes to make it in ministry.

I’ll never forget attending a graduation ceremony at The Master’s Seminary. John MacArthur stood before the seminary grads and audience and proudly announced, “Because these graduates have been trained according to God’s Word, they are fully prepared to serve God where ever He leads them.”

I almost laughed out loud. He should have known better. Knowing the Bible is one thing. But there is so much more to church leadership and ministry than even the best seminary can provide. You don’t learn ministry merely by attending classes, reading books, writing papers, taking exams, or memorizing definitions. You learn ministry by doing ministry.

Unfortunately, over the past decade or two, it’s gotten worse. Modern Christian ministry has gone way off the rails. Not only do cheeky church leaders bring their self-assuredness into unsuspecting ministries but they eagerly grab hold of whatever seems relevant, accomplishes their dreams, or leads them to ministerial success.

Thus, many evangelical churches are led by clones or clowns. They either conform to the fashionable trends of successful ministries (see video) or distinguish themselves in some bizarre, off-the-beaten path, innovative manner.

Without the solid grounding of a traditional ecclesiastic hierarchy or any kind of authoritative structure, ministry leaders are left to their own anemic and alarming devices. Even sadder, is their delusional belief that this “freedom” actually makes them stronger and more effective. In reality, it only feeds their ego leaving them inwardly conflicted and outwardly carnal. Ultimately, they are blinded by their delusion.

So, ministry leaders confidently think they know how to do their ministry yet are carried along on the ever-changing currents of trendiness. Whisk together ego and superficiality and you’ve got an unsavory sauce ruining even the most amazing dish.

I say all this to say: pray for your ministry leaders. They don’t know what they’re doing but have to act like they do. Recognize that they’re on a journey, too. Hopefully, there will be a bit of humility in them so eventually they’ll see their own poverty and desperately cry out for God.

Thankfully, He is merciful to all.