Focal Passage: Titus 1:1-16
Someone described the perfect pastor like this: He preaches exactly 15 minutes, condemns sin, but never upsets anyone. He works from 8 a.m. until midnight and is also the janitor. He makes $60 per week, wears good clothes, buys good books, drives a good car … and gives about $50 per week to the poor. He is 28 years old and has been preaching for 30 years. He is wonderfully gentle and handsome. He has a burning desire to work with teenagers and spends all his spare time with senior citizens.
The perfect pastor smiles all the time with a straight face because he has a sense of humor that keeps him seriously dedicated to his work. He makes 15 calls a day on church families, shut-ins and hospitalized; spends all his time evangelizing the “unchurched” and is always in his office when needed.
All joking aside, finding a qualified pastor is serious business. Paul’s message to Titus was the same as that given to Timothy (cf. 1 Timothy 3:1-7). Pastors, also called “elders, bishops and overseers,” are to be blameless, one-wife men, diligent, firm yet loving fathers, spiritually disciplined, humble, generous, hospitable, sensitive, and holy. Pastors are also to know their Bible, and to steadfastly refute those who oppose Christ and the scriptures.
Paul knew that Titus had his work cut out for him in Crete – it was an extremely difficult mission field. The reputation of the Cretans is found in v. 12, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” Further, Paul referred to those who had opposed him during his time on Crete as “detestable, disobedient, and disqualified” (v. 16b). Moreover, those who were steeped in Judaism were the worst of the bunch.
Parishoners, if you are looking for a new pastor, spend much time in prayer for him and his family. Give him your best, allow him to both succeed and fail, and look at his time with you as a journey worth undertaking. If you already have a wonderful pastor, count yourself blessed!