A Scriptural philosophy of ministry is a set of unalterable principles that determine the course and direction of ministry. This philosophy begins not with programs, goals or needs, but with a right perspective of what God has revealed in His Word. A biblical philosophy of ministry is essential to doing God’s ministry in God’s way.
A High View of God
God is holy and calls us to be holy through a reconciled relationship with Him in Jesus Christ. A high view of God is essential in honoring Him through trust and obedience, as well as in resisting the dangers of tolerating sin and focusing on man. A high view of God results in experiencing the joy of the supremacy and sufficiency of Jesus Christ
A Sufficient View of Scripture
Scripture is absolutely authoritative and relevant for all of faith, life and ministry. A high view of Scripture is essential in receiving His provision of salvation and rejecting self-righteousness, pursuing obedience rather than comfort, trusting God’s Word rather than personal experience, and following divine truth rather than contemporary opinion. A sufficient view of Scripture results in experiencing the joy of the truth and grace of God’s Word.
A Right View of Man
Man is depraved and alienated from God, seeking fulfillment from sin and needing the forgiveness and transformation found in Christ. A right view of man is essential in confronting sin and trusting God to change lives rather than pleasing people, addressing real rather than superficial needs and exalting Christ rather than offering substitutes. A right view of man results in the right perspective and attitude of humility to seek God’s glory and grace.
An Accurate View of the Church
The church exists to glorify God, to be a repository of divine truth, to provide a context of loving fellowship with one another for the purpose of mutual edification, to be a training center whereby people can grow through the application of teaching and the utilization of their spiritual gifts, to be a light in this dark world, for the evangelization of the lost. Failure to correctly understand the purpose of the church leads to superficial and counterfeit ministry, resulting in disunity, where “program success” is glorified rather than God. People become passive spectators rather than active participants and leadership is focused on keeping the programs functioning. The result is that the church becomes an organization, run by men and programs, rather than an organism of committed believers empowered by the Spirit of God. An accurate view of the church results in the church fulfilling its purpose of glorifying God through exalting His Son, edifying His people, and evangelizing His world.
A Biblical View of Church Leadership
Spiritual leaders are servants, teaching, equipping, and caring for church members. Leaders must reflect the character of Christ to be models for the flock, and members are to respect and be submissive to these leaders. Failure to correctly understand biblical leadership leads to unbiblical discipleship and modeling and skewed ministry priorities. A lack of biblical priorities leads to ministry in sin with a focus on skills or ability rather than godly character. This can lead to disqualifying sins. Lack of adequate equipping for the task leads to frustration, which can produce a high turnover of lay leadership. Lack of adequate equipping leads to the failure to reproduce oneself in ministry, which results in the few faithful doing the majority of the work. A Biblical view of Church leadership results in Christlike leaders empowered by God’s Spirit to accomplish God’s ministry in God’s way.