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Kevin Miller

How did churches replace their pastors during the time of the New Testament? Would a church in Ephesus go looking for leaders from Philippi to come to Ephesus, or would the church in Colossae look for someone in Ephesus? It seems to me, based on 2 Timothy 2:2, that the standard practice was for pastors to train future leaders of the church from within their own congregations. “What you have heard from me in the presence of many witnesses entrust to faithful men who will be able to teach others also.” If the pastor does the proper entrusting to the appropriate faithful men, that would seem to eliminate many of the perils you mentioned. What do you think?

Brian Thorstad

Yes! I agree. The best case scenario is just exactly what you described. I have heard some wonderful stories of older pastors spending five years or more training up their successor. This is a great scenario for all involved. But it requires the right "departing pastor," the right church and the right "trainee pastor."

The scenarios I wrote about are those where the pastor has left (or is leaving) and there is no consensus about a successor.

Thanks for thinking deeply in terms of Scripture Kevin!

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