Bryan Matthew Dockens

The evangelist is commanded to “be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, in purity” (1st Timothy 4:12), so it should come as no surprise that preachers are often first among Christians to engage in good works.  As important as evangelists and other specific roles in the church are (Ephesians 4:11-15), however, it remains necessary that “every part does its share” (Ephesians 4:16).

Teaching others is not just the preacher’s job.  The Hebrew writer penned, “by this time you ought to be teachers” (Hebrews 5:12), indicating that, given time, every Christian should develop the knowledge of Scripture and maturity of character necessary to inform others of the gospel.  Exemplars of this principle are Aquila and Priscilla, a married couple (Acts 18:2) who took time to teach and convert Apollos (26).

Hospitality is not just the preacher’s job.  Hospitality is commanded of all (Romans 12:13; Hebrews 13:2; 1st Peter 4:9).  No distinction was made between preachers and the rest of the church when the earliest disciples were “breaking bread from house to house” (Acts 2:46).  If hospitality is to be a one-sided proposition, preachers, worthy of their wages, ought to be on the receiving end (Matthew 10:9-11).

Visitation is not just the preacher’s job.  Visiting the sick, needy, and persecuted is a responsibility laid on each Christian (Matthew 25:34-46; Hebrews 13:3; James 1:27; 2:15-16).  Not preachers alone, but “whoever has this world’s goods, and sees his brother in need, and shuts up his heart from him, how does the love of God abide in Him?” (1st John 3:17).

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